This article is very far from good, alas.
It directly undermines the Pope's reconciliation efforts and is disloyal to the Pope, accordingly.
That is doubly shameful given that George attacks Lefebvre precisely for disloyalty!
I'm sorry to see this article from George since he has hereby chosen to undermine the Pope's work of peace-making and let us not forget "blessed are the peace-makers".
Some of the very things that he accuses Bishop Fellay and others of doing, he does himself - distorting the facts, arrogance, impeding the healing process, raising the stakes, attacking the Church's self-understanding, pick-and-choose cafeteria Catholicism.
As I know from the late Cardinal Gagnon, Lefebvre and he DID agree a settlement during the 1987-8 negotiations.
It was the Secretariat of State that rejected the agreement, in the first instance, not Lefebvre.
Gagnon had been given plenipotentiary powers but when he used them to reach agreement the Secretariat simply vetoed the arrangement.
To say that John Paul II "got nowhere" with Lefebvre is thus simply untrue and George should be ashamed for uttering it - especially at a time when the Pope is trying to build bridges.
The truth is that just as Lefebvre was formed through the political and religious disputes of his culture, so has George been formed in the disputes of his culture.
These include the "bitter hatred" that defined American society and culture in its war against the old world and - let us admit it - the Church, from the time of the American revolution through to the revolutions of the 1960s which gave America the likes of Clinton and now the most anti-life President that America has ever seen.
If George could point to a long line of holy, orthodox, Catholic Presidents, political leaders and US governments, just as the Catholic kingdoms of Europe can with their holy kings and governments, or even if he could point to a line of Presidents who adopted mainstream historic Christianity then he might have something to dwell on - but he cannot.
The only Catholic President was chiefly notorious for his marital infidelity. He also secured the vote of Protestant ministers by assuring them that he did not support the Catholic Church's teaching on Church and State.
Neither, it is clear from this article, does George.
That, together with his clear undermining of the Pope's pacific and reconciliatory objectives, is perhaps the most serious mistake that George makes in this rather sad, angry and disloyal little article.
Paragraph #55 of Blessed Pius IX's Syllabus condemns the doctrine of universal separation of Church and State.
It is clear that George disagrees with Blessed Pius IX's teaching and, instead, thinks the State should always and everywhere be neutral on matters of the truth-claims of the Church.
He has also clearly never read the letter of St Pius X entitled Our Apostolic Mandate in which that saintly pope condemns the principles of the French Revolution, as did all his predecessors, including the Pope of the time, Pius VI. St Pius X even states:
"all that is needed is to take up again, with the help of the true workers for a social restoration, the organisms which the Revolution shattered, and to adapt them, in the same Christian spirit that inspired them, to the new environment arising from the material development of today’s society".
"Indeed, the true friends of the people are neither revolutionaries, nor innovators: they are traditionalists".
George, spuriously calling up the name of Vatican II as if it supported his separation of Church and State error, defies the teaching of Pius VI, Pius VII, Leo XII, Pius VIII, Gregory XVI, Bl Pius IX, Leo XIII, Benedict XV, Pius XI, Pius XII and Bl John XXIII on the subject and pretends that Paul VI and John Paul II support his error when they never taught it.
Now he is directly undermining the peace efforts of Pope Benedict XVI to reconcile with SSPX.
George is even doing so in the frankly shameful way of trying to lump Bishops Fellay and Williamson together as if Fellay were really supporting Williamson's shameful remarks when Fellay has expressly distanced himself from them.
That directly undermines the Pope's objective of reconciliation by trying to paint Bishop Fellay in the worst possible light, ally him with Williamson's odious comments and so put a wedge between Fellay and the Pope.
That directly undermines the papal peace-making.
Shame on you, George!
Where is your charity? Where is your love of souls? Where is your outreach to your fellow man?
Even the French and German bishops have given a better example on this issue.
No - this article is a shame and a pity.
I had expected better so much more wisdom and charity from George Weigel.
How sad that he has so missed the mark.