This week's Tip of the Black Hat goes to Father Guy Selvester, author of the weblog Shouts in the Piazza, thanks to the following:
"I marvel at the so-called Vatican experts who claim to know so much about what's going on 'inside' the Vatican. I'm truly flabbergasted at how frequently they pursue stories about patently obvious things and then claim that they broke the story or spearheaded the investigation into... you fill in the blank. They think they're running another Catholic News Service but in reality they're just tapping out their own little rant. More often than not they just take what they'd like to be true and keep saying it over and over and over and over until they convince as many people as they can (and themselves to boot) that it is true. Beware of people who claim to have the 'real story.' Nine times out of ten it's something they either made up, heard from the friend of a friend of a friend, or found somewhere else on the internet at 3:00 AM and posted it while everyone else was asleep. The people who speak for the Vatican work at the Sala Stampa. Everybody else is just someone at home with a computer, a healthy opinion of themselves and, perhaps, a little too much spare time."
In light of impending rumors, be they concerning the religion of politics, or the politics of religion, we could all afford a reminder of our true place in the overall scheme of things.