I didn't get a chance to flag Peter Beinart's very good Washington Post column yesterday about the disappearance of the Jewish vote. It's worth a read. (One quibble: Beinart throws an elbow at Ariel Sharon's "hard-line policies"--isn't Sharon the guy bucking his entire hard-line base to advocate withdrawal from the territories? He deserves some credit for this.)
Beinart's piece dovetails nicely with Jody Bottum's sensational essay on The Myth of the Catholic Voter. Jody argues, quite convincingly, that as a political demographic group Catholic voters no longer exist.
Towards the end of the piece, Jody touches on the importance of the "Catholic vocabulary" in politics and how the inclusion of this vocabularly in the cultural lexicon is what gives the illusion of Catholics being a political power.
I really can't say enough about Jody Bottum as a writer, and this long, fascinating piece is worth your time.
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