A friend pointed out this rather fascinating thread at Fisheaters to me.
It starts out describing what sounds like a wonderfully tasteful liturgy at an Anglo-Catholic Episcopalian church, and the frustration that accompanies knowing these heretics (and not just nominally so, but in quite significant ways: the pastor there apparently supports revisionist sexual morality, etc) can somehow pull off good taste while Roman traditionalists, even though some drive for hours and have 8 kids...for some reason often have just Low Masses or poorly done Missa Cantatas on Sundays.
But, the thread unfolds into some interesting territory. Besides the misogyny question that gets thrown out there (the thread author's point, actually, merely seems to be that he thinks only [major and minor] clerics, and thus men, should be doing the work of taking care of parishes, and so lay men shouldn't really be involved ideally either...a point on which I agree), the thread could be taken as some real soul-searching in traditionalism about just what its priorities and values are.
For example, one poster (who, it is implied, may even be some sort of sedevacantist or heretic himself) is quite adamant about the point that traditionalism is about doctrine, and that liturgy is merely a reflection of that, as pro-sodomy Anglo-Catholics prove. That there may be a "high church vs. low church" divide in traditionalism is suggested, with an anecdote even about a sacristan who resigned at a trad parish once because too many High Masses made it feel too Novus Ordo!
A commenter here recently called me a Jansenist, and though I've always been very pro-Solemn Liturgy, there is a side of me which does sympathize with the puritanism of this sort of "low church" mindset. Indeed, a personal experience led me to think about this point today, about how terrible reprobates can still be into good liturgy, and I realized that sometimes these left-wing liturgical dilettantes, combined with the general right-wing trad craziness, make me tempted to conclude that "the road to Hell is paved with beautiful liturgy."
The priest at Mass today, serendipitously, preached (in what was clearly a veiled critique to the trad audience) about seeking renunciation of the world for the wrong reasons, just as basically a way to ironically express individualism and to use the subculture to feel superior. I was even tempted today just throw up my arms and embrace "conservative" Novus Ordo Catholicism again, because at least those people are obedient, unquestioningly orthodox and, if vapid, at least reasonably bland in their sanity. And maybe liturgical blandness is the price we pay for true humility (which seeks not to stand-out or express taste or preference)?
The original poster, however, argued well that if "lex orandi, lex credendi" holds, then we can't put Faith "before" its liturgical transmission somehow. That Faith primarily comes from the (liturgical) traditio, and that the formulas and administrivia are only, as it were, superstructure, and here I'd have to agree. If heretics and libertines can act out their hollow liturgies where Good Taste is worshiped rather than God, it must ultimately only be because these are not, in fact, actual liturgy, actual sources of grace (perhaps proving something of Leo XIII's point about the invalidity of their Sacraments). So the connection is complex; good liturgy has the primacy in transmitting the true faith, yes, but liturgy isn't just a certain choreography. Without the unbroken connection back to the Apostles or communion with Peter, the choreography in itself can be graceless, seen as compatible with abomination and heterodoxy, and hence the almost unquestionable damnation of the Anglo-Catholics in spite of their good taste (but empty, amounting to little more than a monument to human pride).
However, the question of practicality comes in too in this discussion. The original poster dances around advocating an end to mandatory celibacy (because that can get you banned at Fisheaters, or could at one point)...but does raise the question: if Catholic priests allegedly are celibate so they can dedicate full-time to the worship of God, how come the Anglicans (who are allowed to be married clergy) are somehow able to put on better liturgy, even in very small congregations, than the Catholic priests who dedicate 24-hours a day allegedly? Is it really just because money accomplishes everything, and Anglicans are WASPs, whereas there is something of a blue-collar demographic slant to Catholicism?
Or (as I would suggest, of course) is it because when you can have married clergy, they can also be part-time or volunteer. Or, at least, the main guy can be helped by a cadre of part-time folk who can take on one or two services a week or whatever.
But, of course, above doctrine and above liturgy, the one non-negotiable for some trads is priestly celibacy. Better an infinity of Low Masses and poor catechesis than get rid of that...