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Thomas Piatak


Thomas Piatak is a contributing editor to Chronicles: A Magazine of American Culture. He writes from Cleveland, Ohio.

  • It's Elementary

    By Tom Piatak | March 10, 2014
    "Un pere, une mere, c'est elementary." This is the batte cry of La Manif Pour Tous, the French group that mobilized in opposition to gay marriage in France.
  • The Inconvenient Dead

    By Tom Piatak | October 14, 2013
    On Sunday, 522 Catholics killed for the Faith during the Spanish Civil War were beatified in Spain.
  • Democrats to the Barricades

    By Tom Piatak | October 09, 2013
    While the political spotlight has been on the government shutdown, the Democrats have not forgotten that America's political future will be shaped by the immigration bill passed by the Senate but stalled in the House.
  • A War on Syria Is a War on Christians

    By Tom Piatak | September 08, 2013
    Ten years ago, Chronicles was one of the few American publications pointing out that the American invasion of Iraq would be a disaster for Iraqi Christians.
  • Mass Immigration Bad for America Bad for the Church

    By Tom Piatak | September 02, 2013
    This Labor Day, elite opinion is pushing a piece of legislation that poses a clear threat to the interests of working Americans, the immigration bill supported by President Obama and passed by the Senate. By massively increasing legal immigration and regularizing illegal immigration, this bill promises to further depress wages and to throw more Americans out of work
  • Meandering and Craven

    By Tom Piatak | August 26, 2013
    Last Friday, Commonweal published an essay by former First Things editor Jody Bottum entitled "The Things We Share: A Catholic's Case for Same-Sex Marriage." The reaction of National Review's Michael Potemra was to pronounce Bottum's piece "fascinating and brave." A less apt description is hard to imagine.
  • Death in Oklahoma

    By Tom Piatak | August 22, 2013
    Earlier this week, Chris Lane, an Australian baseball player, was brutally killed in Duncan, Oklahoma. Police have charged James Edwards and Chancey Luna with first degree murder for killing Lane. Lane was white; Edwards and Luna are black, though an accomplice, Michael Jones, charged with being an accessory after the fact, is white.
  • The Worst Republican Nominee Ever

    By Tom Piatak | August 03, 2013
    John McCain is back in the news. The media is exulting that "The Straight Talk Express Is Back" because McCain has taken to denouncing members of his own party as "wacko birds" and to carrying water for Obama in the Senate.
  • A Small Miracle

    By Tom Piatak | July 26, 2013
    It's as if The Nation admitted Alger Hiss's guilt, The New Republic discovered the virtues of evangelical Christianity, or National Review concluded that Barack Obama has been an outstanding president.
  • They Don't Like Hot Dogs And They Don't Like Us

    By Tom Piatak | July 04, 2013
    Much of the discussion over the immigration bill that just passed the Senate focuses on how it will deal with illegal immigration. But much of the financial backing for the bill comes from Silicon Valley, which wants to vastly increase legal immigration, particularly the H1B visa program, which allows American employers to import technical workers from abroad.
  • Your Tax Dollars At Work

    By Tom Piatak | July 01, 2013
    Last week, Fr. Francois Mourad, a Syrian Catholic priest, was brutally murdered by Islamist rebels in Syria.
  • The Senate Turns Its Back On Working America

    By Tom Piatak | June 27, 2013
    Today, the Senate passed an immigration bill that promises amnesty to illegal immigrants and a massive increase in legal immigration.
  • Immigration Bait and Switch

    By Tom Piatak | June 20, 2013
    Tonight media reports are hyping a deal to add a border fence to the Amnesty Bill currently being considered in the Senate.
  • Electing a New People

    By Tom Piatak | June 11, 2013
    A bill that the media is touting as providing "comprehensive immigration reform" is currently making its way through the Senate.
  • Another White House Globalist

    By Tom Piatak | June 10, 2013
    Whenever it is polically expedient, Barack Obama criticizes free trade. He did it in 2008, when he told Ohio primary voters that he would renegotiate NAFTA.
  • Vive la France

    By Tom Piatak | May 30, 2013
    Last weekend, Paris saw the third march of roughly one million people against gay marriage.
  • The War on Christmas Comes to Spain

    By Tom Piatak | May 23, 2013
    Every Christmas, we are instructed that there is no War on Christmas. But the hostility to Christianity and Western culture that motivates the War on Christmas is in fact widespread.
  • Google Gets One Right

    By Tom Piatak | April 25, 2013
    Google often gets grief over the events and people it chooses to honor.
  • Butchery in Philadelphia

    By Tom Piatak | April 12, 2013
    Several commenters have decried the lack of media coverage of the trial of abortionist Kermit Gosnell in Philadelphia. Gosnell is charged with the deaths of one pregnant woman and seven children who were born after botched abortions; those children were killed by having their spinal cords severed.
  • A Misnamed Magazine

    By Tom Piatak | April 05, 2013
    The American Conservative has had dozens of articles and posts on gay marriage. The general tenor has ranged from arguing that gay marriage is inevitable to criticizing opponents of gay marriage to arguing that support for gay marriage is the conservative position. What has largely been absent is any opposition to gay marriage.
  • The Quiet of Easter

    By Tom Piatak | April 01, 2013
    In recent decades, the public profile of Easter in the United States has diminished. Americans now spend more on Halloween than on Easter, and the public attention Easter receives is largely negative.
  • Pope Benedict XVI: A Brief Reflection

    By Tom Piatak | February 11, 2013
  • A Band of Brothers No More

    By Tom Piatak | January 24, 2013
    Yesterday, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta announced that the Pentagon was largely eliminating restrictions on women serving in combat units. This is perfectly consistent with the egalitarian ideology to which the Obama Administration is committed.
  • A Christmas Miscellany

    By Tom Piatak | December 21, 2012
    Peter Brimelow has written a discussion of the War on Christmas for that is well worth reading. In it, Peter puts me in the unusual role of optimist. There are still many people in this country who want to suppress the public celebration of Christmas, and the situation in the schools, where culture is formed and transmitted, remains terrible.
  • Robert Bork, RIP

    By Tom Piatak | December 19, 2012
    Today brings the sad news that Robert Bork has passed away.
  • The War on Christmas

    By Tom Piatak | December 17, 2012
    The desire to efface Christmas that lies behind the elevation of Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and all the rest is illustrated by the New York City schools, which ban Nativity scenes but regularly display menorahs and Moslem crescents.
  • The Power of Christmas

    By Tom Piatak | December 16, 2012
    The power of Christmas (and Christianity) shows through even in unexpected places, such as Saturday Night Live.
  • A Daughter of Mary and Target for Herod

    By Tom Piatak | December 08, 2012
    Last night, my wife and I attended the vigil Mass for the Immaculate Conception at our parish. We sat immediately behind a family I had often seen but never sat by before, a woman in her forties with Down syndrome and her father. I could not help being moved by what I saw.
  • No Halos, Please, We're Eurocrats

    By Tom Piatak | November 23, 2012
    Slovakia's plan to issue a two Euro coin commemorating the 1150th anniversary of the arrival of Saints Cyril and Methodius in Great Moravia, of which Slovakia was a part, has run afoul of Christophobic Eurocrats.
  • Too Old, Too White, Too Male

    By Tom Piatak | November 09, 2012
    After the election, Al Cardnenas, head of the American Conservative Union, complained that the Republican Party was "too old and too white and too male." One wonders what Mr. Cardnenas would say about the Continental Congress or the Constitutional Convention.
  • Why Romney Lost Ohio

    By Tom Piatak | November 06, 2012
    Four years ago I wrote, "if Republicans want the joke to be on them, they can listen to [Rich]Lowry [of National Review], line up to damn the American auto industry, and look forward to losing the Great Lakes states year after year after year."
  • Diversity Threatened in the NBA

    By Tom Piatak | October 31, 2012
    The Minnesota Timberwolves will be fielding a team this year that is only one third black. That means that the Timberwolves will have a much higher percentage of blacks than the general population, though a far lower percentage of blacks than any other team in the NBA.
  • How Does A Traditionalist Vote?

    By Tom Piatak | October 26, 2012
    Recently, Dan McCarthy of the American Conservative had a piece asking, "How Does A Traditionalist Vote?"
  • An Island of Saints

    By Tom Piatak | October 21, 2012
    Today, Pope Benedict XVI canonized Mother Marianne Cope, the second canonized saint who worked at the leper settlement on the island of Molokai.
  • Free Trade Still Doesn't Work

    By Tom Piatak | October 16, 2012
    This morning the Cleveland Plain Dealer ran an important opinion piece by Alan Tonelson of the redoubtable United States Business and Industry Council on manufacturing and the presidential election.
  • America's Secular Party

    By Tom Piatak | October 10, 2012
    Yesterday's Washington Post reported that, according to a recent Pew Center study, 19.6% of Americans now describe themselves as having no religious affiliation.
  • What's Missing From This Picture?

    By Tom Piatak | October 02, 2012
    If Romney cannot even talk about these issues, why would anyone expect him to do anything about them? Indeed, Romney is already beginning to retreat on immigration, even though his relative hard line on illegal immigration helped him win the Republican nomination.
  • Andy Williams, RIP

    By Tom Piatak | September 26, 2012
    Today brings news of the death of Andy Williams at the age of 84.
  • Free Trade Is For Suckers

    By Tom Piatak | September 25, 2012
    In other words, only the United States clings to the ideology of free trade, while other countries take the manufacturing jobs that used to be ours.
  • Murderous Ingratitude

    By Tom Piatak | September 12, 2012
    Yesterday brought the shocking news of the murder of the US Ambassador to Libya, Christopher Stevens.
  • The Forgotten

    By Tom Piatak | September 11, 2012
    Yesterday the AP had a very interesting story on newly declassified documents that support the view that FDR and Churchill knew that the Soviets were responsible for the massacre of over 20,000 Polish prisoners of war at the same time they were publicly following Stalin's lead and blaming the massacre on the Nazis.
  • Globalization Hurts the Middle Class

    By Tom Piatak | August 21, 2012
    Derek Thompson of The Atlantic has an interesting post arguing that globalization is the single most important factor in the decline of the American middle class.
  • Yes, Virginia, Paul Ryan Is Catholic

    By Tom Piatak | August 16, 2012
    Venues in which a person's fidelity to Catholic teaching is generally viewed as a negative are suddenly voicing concern about Paul Ryan's adherence to Catholic social teaching.
  • Pay Up Or Else

    By Tom Piatak | August 16, 2012
    Today's Cleveland Plain Dealer has an article analyzing a revealing ad the Obama campaign is running here in Ohio.
  • It's Ryan

    By Tom Piatak | August 11, 2012
    This morning, Mitt Romney chose the backdrop of the USS Wisconsin, one of four members of the mighty Iowa class and a magnificent symbol of American power, to introduce Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin as his running mate.
  • Wages Now Lower Than in 1968

    By Tom Piatak | July 16, 2012
    This month the Census Bureau reported that the inflation adjusted median income for male workers was $32,127 in 2010, less than the $32,844 such workers earned in 1968.
  • Farewell to Mayberry

    By Tom Piatak | July 04, 2012
    Yesterday brought the news of Andy Griffith's death at 86. Unfortunately, the type of television exemplified by The Andy Griffiith Show died long before its star did.
  • Quick Thoughts on the Supreme Court

    By Tom Piatak | June 28, 2012
    Putting together the Court's two most notable recent decisions, the Arizona immigration decision and the Obamacare decision, leads to this unsettling conclusion: there is virtually nothing the states can do on their own, and there is virtually nothing the federal government cannot do. If that is what the Founders intended, I'm a unicorn.
  • More on Roberts

    By Tom Piatak | June 28, 2012
    I hate to disagree with Rick Oliver, but I think he is too optimistic about John Roberts.
  • Globalism Is Not A Conservative Value

    By Tom Piatak | June 27, 2012
    Barack Obama's recent concern over sending American jobs overseas is as phony as his broken promise, made during the Ohio Democratic primary in 2008, to renegotiate NAFTA, but there is little doubt that his attack on Mitt Romney's record of outsourcing American jobs during Romney's tenure at Bain Capital is politically potent.
  • Mitt Romney Promises to Expand Immigration

    By Tom Piatak | June 22, 2012
    President Obama's announcement of a de facto amnesty for illegal immigrants by administrative fiat offered a chance for Mitt Romney to appeal to the majority of Americans who consistently tell pollsters that they want to see immigration reduced.
  • A Quiet Man

    By Tom Piatak | June 22, 2012
    I recently had the chance to visit the village of Annascaul on the stunningly beautiful Dingle Peninsula in Ireland. The attraction in Annascaul was the South Pole Inn, opened by Annascaul native Tom Crean after his retirement from the Royal Navy.
  • Insulting Poland, Cont.

    By Tom Piatak | June 01, 2012
    It turns out that Barack Obama had managed to insult Poland before he ever talked about a "Polish death camp."
  • Barack Obama, Culture Warrior

    By Tom Piatak | May 31, 2012
    One of the sillier stories told to garner support for Barack Obama in 2008 was that he would help bring Americans together by peacefully ending the culture war, a culture war most Americans found tiresome.
  • Insulting Poland

    By Tom Piatak | May 30, 2012
    American presidents seem to have a habit of insulting Poland. Gerald Ford probably lost the 1976 election when he maintained in a presidential debate that Poland was not dominated by the Soviets and never would be under a Ford Administration. (The Poles, who were in fact dominated by the Soviets, weren't able to register a protest).
  • For Greater Glory

    By Tom Piatak | May 23, 2012
    Review of For Greater Glory
  • Cheer, Cheer for Old Notre Dame

    By Tom Piatak | May 21, 2012
    Just three days after Georgetown University had Kathleen Sebelius on campus to address an awards ceremony during commencement week, another prominent Catholic university found a better way of dealing with Sebelius.
  • Georgetown Needs An Exorcist

    By Tom Piatak | May 18, 2012
    Today brings news that Georgetown alumnus and author of The Exorcist William Peter Blatty intends to pursue a canon law lawsuit against his alma mater that may possibly result in Georgetown's not being able to call itself a Catholic university any longer.
  • Brideshead Revisited in 2012

    By Tom Piatak | March 06, 2012
    The funeral of the Marquess of Marchmain was marred by the refusal of the parish priest, Father Mackay, to give Communion to two of the mourners, Lady Julia Mottram, the Marquess' daughter, and her partner, the artist Charles Ryder.
  • The Evil Party Rides Again

    By Tom Piatak | January 31, 2012
    There are many reasons to criticize the the Republicans as the Stupid Party, and I have often done so. But we need to remember that, in Sam Francis' dichotomy, the other major party is the Evil Party. And some of what the leader of the Evil Party is doing has no real precedent in American history.
  • Voting in America

    By Tom Piatak | November 08, 2011
    Why are there bilingual ballots?
  • The Mob vs. the Statesman

    By Tom Piatak | October 31, 2011
    Pat Buchanan's new book, Suicide of a Superpower, continues to raise many of the issues he has long stressed and shows where we are likely to end up, if we do not change course.
  • The Jobs Go Out Like the Tide, Continued

    By Tom Piatak | September 30, 2011
    Wednesday, at a meeting with Hispanic activists, President Obama vowed to keep pushing for what he calls "comprehensive immigration reform."
  • The Jobs Go Out, Like the Tide

    By Tom Piatak | August 29, 2011
    Mike Dorning of Bloomberg has an interesting article on "The Slow Disappearance of the American Working Man."
  • Today's Rich Are Different

    By Tom Piatak | August 17, 2011
    It used to be that plutocrats felt they were part of the society in which they lived, or at least felt the need to act as if they were part of that society.
  • Goodbye to Borders

    By Tom Piatak | July 20, 2011
    This morning's Cleveland Plain Dealer carried a sad headline: Borders, the nation's second largest bookstore, was liquidating, and its 10700 employees will be unemployed by the end of September.
  • The Conservative Movement Raises the White Flag, Again

    By Tom Piatak | June 28, 2011
    Unless you live in a cave, you know that New York's legislature recently passed a bill recognizing homosexual marriage, a bill that was quickly and enthusiastically signed into law by the latest loathsome member of the Cuomo clan to govern the Empire State.
  • Music for Today

    By Tom Piatak | June 23, 2011
    History contains many tragedies, and one of these is the early death of Mozart.
  • Wages Stagnate, Even Neocons Notice

    By Tom Piatak | June 21, 2011
    Farsighted conservatives have warned for decades that globalization was leading to wage stagnation in the United States. This was, for example, a major theme in Pat Buchanan's The Great Betrayal, published in 1997.
  • Cardinal Stepinac: Another View

    By Tom Piatak | June 13, 2011
    It pains me to disagree with a writer I like and admire, but Srdja Trifkovic’s piece on Cardinal Stepinac makes no attempt to explain, much less understand, why Catholics respect and admire this brave Croatian martyr.
  • Where Your Tax Dollars Go

    By Tom Piatak | June 06, 2011
    Forbes has a list out this morning of America's five richest counties.
  • Of Gods and Men

    By Tom Piatak | May 10, 2011
  • Good Friday, Bad Earth Day

    By Tom Piatak | April 22, 2011
    When I turned on my computer this morning, I got reminders from both Yahoo and Google that today was...Earth Day.
  • The Republicans and Abortion

    By Tom Piatak | April 13, 2011
    Lucy just pulled the football away from Charlie Brown again.
  • Trump and Trade

    By Tom Piatak | April 07, 2011
    This morning brought the surprising news that, according to the latest NBC/Wall Street Journal poll, Donald Trump is running second among GOP presidential hopefuls, at 17%, behind Mitt Romney's 21%.
  • A Reminder of Hope

    By Tom Piatak | March 25, 2011
    As our country plunges into yet another foolish war in the Moslem world and teeters on the edge of bankruptcy, it is easy to be focused on the negative.
  • A Modest Proposal for the Eurocrats

    By Tom Piatak | January 27, 2011
    Recently, the European Union published a calendar for school children that noted Moslem and Jewish holidays but made no mention of any Christian holiday, including Christmas. The same principle operates here, in the countless public school "winter concerts" that highlight music for Kwanzaa and Hanukkah but feature no Christmas carols.
  • Globalism Ascendant

    By Tom Piatak | January 10, 2011
    Last week, President Obama named William Daley as White House Chief of Staff and Gene Sperling as the chief White House economic adviser. Last fall, he named Austan Goolsbee as the Chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers.
  • Merry Christmas to Chronicles Readers

    By Tom Piatak | December 24, 2010
  • Miller and Lennon

    By Tom Piatak | December 15, 2010
    Sixty-six years ago, a small plane took off from southern England for Paris. It never made it.
  • The Forgotten

    By Tom Piatak | November 29, 2010
    I recently came across an item in the Catholic press describing a Mass of Reparation offered in Britain for the 12,000 Slovenian Catholics handed over by the British to be murdered by Yugoslav Communists in May 1945.
  • Nazis in the Strangest Places

    By Tom Piatak | October 26, 2010
    Last night, on the recommendation of friends, my wife and I went to see Secretariat. We both thoroughly enjoyed this wholesome, well-made movie, that manages to be suspenseful even though most moviegoers already know that Secretariat won the Triple Crown in 1973.
  • Support for Free Trade Plummets

    By Tom Piatak | October 11, 2010
    On October 2, 2010, the Wall Street Journal ran an article detailing the results of the most recent NBC/Wall Street Journal poll.