And I've been having a lot of discussions relating to it on my facebook account.
Somebody sent me this excellent article, which sums up my thinking about it, and even adds some of Pope Paul's thoughts on it.
To me this is the most salient paragraph:
In other places, the Pope stressed on more than one occasion that the Council must not be understood to have taught anything contrary to what the Church had taught in the past, and that everything it taught must be interpreted in a manner consistent with past teaching properly understood. Here again, some have argued that this means we are free to reject anything in Vatican II that appears to us to be somehow “different”. But all this means is the same thing that is true of any magisterial exercise, that the Magisterium must always be understood in such a way that both the older and the newer formulations are seen to be true. This is exactly what Pope Benedict XVI has been stressing with his hermeneutic of continuity, as opposed to a hermeneutic of rupture.
If you want to see contradictions, you will see contradictions.
If you want to understand how they reconcile, you can.
The question is: do you want to understand everything to be consistent, or not?