I don’t recall reading anything “hard-nosed and cool” by Rod Dreher, ever. I compared him to Peggy Noonan because his great sweeps of emotion as if they were researched and reasoned, rather than felt and projected.
This has nothing to do with how he feels about Pope Francis. It’s my opinion, as a reader, on everything I have read from Rod Dreher, from the early 1990s to today.
That is, “... he presents his great sweeps of emotion ...”. A child distracted me while I was being critical.