Pope Francis and the Economy

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Sertorio
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Pope Francis and the Economy

Post by Sertorio » Tue Feb 12, 2019 3:18 am

Cassowary is always talking about the evils of socialism and the marvels of capitalism. Maybe he will like to read what Pope Francis - a Christian - has to say about it. I picked an extract from the Apostolic Exhortation Evangelii Gaudium, which summarizes what the Pope - and the Church - thinks about this question:
No to an economy of exclusion

53. Just as the commandment “Thou shalt not kill” sets a clear limit in order to safeguard the value of human life, today we also have to say “thou shalt not” to an economy of exclusion and inequality. Such an economy kills. How can it be that it is not a news item when an elderly homeless person dies of exposure, but it is news when the stock market loses two points? This is a case of exclusion. Can we continue to stand by when food is thrown away while people are starving? This is a case of inequality. Today everything comes under the laws of competition and the survival of the fittest, where the powerful feed upon the powerless. As a consequence, masses of people find themselves excluded and marginalized: without work, without possibilities, without any means of escape.

Human beings are themselves considered consumer goods to be used and then discarded. We have created a “throw away” culture which is now spreading. It is no longer simply about exploitation and oppression, but something new. Exclusion ultimately has to do with what it means to be a part of the society in which we live; those excluded are no longer society’s underside or its fringes or its disenfranchised – they are no longer even a part of it. The excluded are not the “exploited” but the outcast, the “leftovers”.

54. In this context, some people continue to defend trickle-down theories which assume that economic growth, encouraged by a free market, will inevitably succeed in bringing about greater justice and inclusiveness in the world. This opinion, which has never been confirmed by the facts, expresses a crude and naïve trust in the goodness of those wielding economic power and in the sacralized workings of the prevailing economic system. Meanwhile, the excluded are still waiting. To sustain a lifestyle which excludes others, or to sustain enthusiasm for that selfish ideal, a globalization of indifference has developed. Almost without being aware of it, we end up being incapable of feeling compassion at the outcry of the poor, weeping for other people’s pain, and feeling a need to help them, as though all this were someone else’s responsibility and not our own. The culture of prosperity deadens us; we are thrilled if the market offers us something new to purchase. In the meantime all those lives stunted for lack of opportunity seem a mere spectacle; they fail to move us.

http://w2.vatican.va/content/francesco/ ... udium.html

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Sertorio
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Re: Pope Francis and the Economy

Post by Sertorio » Tue Feb 12, 2019 3:27 am

A bit more of the same document:
No to the new idolatry of money

55. One cause of this situation is found in our relationship with money, since we calmly accept its dominion over ourselves and our societies. The current financial crisis can make us overlook the fact that it originated in a profound human crisis: the denial of the primacy of the human person! We have created new idols. The worship of the ancient golden calf (cf. Ex 32:1-35) has returned in a new and ruthless guise in the idolatry of money and the dictatorship of an impersonal economy lacking a truly human purpose. The worldwide crisis affecting finance and the economy lays bare their imbalances and, above all, their lack of real concern for human beings; man is reduced to one of his needs alone: consumption.

56. While the earnings of a minority are growing exponentially, so too is the gap separating the majority from the prosperity enjoyed by those happy few. This imbalance is the result of ideologies which defend the absolute autonomy of the marketplace and financial speculation. Consequently, they reject the right of states, charged with vigilance for the common good, to exercise any form of control. A new tyranny is thus born, invisible and often virtual, which unilaterally and relentlessly imposes its own laws and rules. Debt and the accumulation of interest also make it difficult for countries to realize the potential of their own economies and keep citizens from enjoying their real purchasing power. To all this we can add widespread corruption and self-serving tax evasion, which have taken on worldwide dimensions. The thirst for power and possessions knows no limits. In this system, which tends to devour everything which stands in the way of increased profits, whatever is fragile, like the environment, is defenseless before the interests of a deified market, which become the only rule.

(...)

60. Today’s economic mechanisms promote inordinate consumption, yet it is evident that unbridled consumerism combined with inequality proves doubly damaging to the social fabric. Inequality eventually engenders a violence which recourse to arms cannot and never will be able to resolve. It serves only to offer false hopes to those clamouring for heightened security, even though nowadays we know that weapons and violence, rather than providing solutions, create new and more serious conflicts. Some simply content themselves with blaming the poor and the poorer countries themselves for their troubles; indulging in unwarranted generalizations, they claim that the solution is an “education” that would tranquilize them, making them tame and harmless. All this becomes even more exasperating for the marginalized in the light of the widespread and deeply rooted corruption found in many countries – in their governments, businesses and institutions – whatever the political ideology of their leaders.

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SteveFoerster
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Re: Pope Francis and the Economy

Post by SteveFoerster » Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:35 am

Pope Francis... he's the one living in a tax-free compound, surrounded by gold and guns, promoting charity and world peace, right?
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Sertorio
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Re: Pope Francis and the Economy

Post by Sertorio » Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:42 am

SteveFoerster wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:35 am
Pope Francis... he's the one living in a tax-free compound, surrounded by gold and guns, promoting charity and world peace, right?
His thoughts are what matters, not where or how he lives.But the latter is easier to criticize than the former...

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Re: Pope Francis and the Economy

Post by SteveFoerster » Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:01 am

Sertorio wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:42 am
SteveFoerster wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:35 am
Pope Francis... he's the one living in a tax-free compound, surrounded by gold and guns, promoting charity and world peace, right?
His thoughts are what matters, not where or how he lives.But the latter is easier to criticize than the former...
Just saying that sounds awfully libertarian to me. :lol:
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Sertorio
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Re: Pope Francis and the Economy

Post by Sertorio » Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:18 am

SteveFoerster wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 11:01 am
Sertorio wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:42 am
SteveFoerster wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:35 am
Pope Francis... he's the one living in a tax-free compound, surrounded by gold and guns, promoting charity and world peace, right?
His thoughts are what matters, not where or how he lives.But the latter is easier to criticize than the former...
Just saying that sounds awfully libertarian to me. :lol:
Cass would say he is a damned communist... :D

neverfail
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Re: Pope Francis and the Economy

Post by neverfail » Tue Feb 12, 2019 1:10 pm

SteveFoerster wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:35 am
Pope Francis... he's the one living in a tax-free compound, surrounded by gold and guns,.....
It goes with the patch of turf. Unavoidable!

Tax free? He has no private income so what is there to tax?

Gold? What gives you that idea? No private wealth either.

Guns? Of course he has a security detail and he needs one. Popes in the past have been assassinated. Within living memory an attempt was even made on the life of Pope John Paul the Second.

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Re: Pope Francis and the Economy

Post by SteveFoerster » Tue Feb 12, 2019 2:17 pm

neverfail wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 1:10 pm
SteveFoerster wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:35 am
Pope Francis... he's the one living in a tax-free compound, surrounded by gold and guns,.....
It goes with the patch of turf. Unavoidable!

Tax free? He has no private income so what is there to tax?

Gold? What gives you that idea? No private wealth either.
Oh, please. High level Vatican officials live like royalty and are surrounded by splendour and you know it.
neverfail wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 1:10 pm
Guns? Of course he has a security detail and he needs one. Popes in the past have been assassinated. Within living memory an attempt was even made on the life of Pope John Paul the Second.
And I don't fault him for having security, but I do fault him for the glaring hypocrisy of calling for the disarmament of poor people whose lives may also be under threat from violence.

Then again, the Roman Catholic Church is a moral cesspool in so many other ways, what's one more?
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neverfail
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Re: Pope Francis and the Economy

Post by neverfail » Tue Feb 12, 2019 7:37 pm

SteveFoerster wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 2:17 pm
neverfail wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 1:10 pm
SteveFoerster wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:35 am
Pope Francis... he's the one living in a tax-free compound, surrounded by gold and guns,.....
It goes with the patch of turf. Unavoidable!

Tax free? He has no private income so what is there to tax?

Gold? What gives you that idea? No private wealth either.
Oh, please. High level Vatican officials live like royalty and are surrounded by splendour and you know it.
Have you actually been there to see for yourself?

The splendor of the interior decor of the Vatican (which I have seen some of, by the way) is inherited from past ages when indeed Popes and even cardinals saw nothing wrong with living like kings . Like it or lump it they are stuck with it as custodians of a priceless piece of world heritage.
neverfail wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 1:10 pm
Guns? Of course he has a security detail and he needs one. Popes in the past have been assassinated. Within living memory an attempt was even made on the life of Pope John Paul the Second.
SteveFoerster wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 2:17 pm
And I don't fault him for having security, but I do fault him for the glaring hypocrisy of calling for the disarmament of poor people whose lives may also be under threat from violence.
In the whole of the content of the link provided by Sertorio (in which Pope Francis makes his plea to the World) I saw no call for the disarmament of poor people whose lives may be under threat from violence.

In any case poor people as a rule are not owners of firearms and cannot afford to be. it is those who abuse and exploit them who usually own the guns.

In any case Steve, you seem to have accumulated an old fashioned, protestant sort of bigotry against the Catholic Church that is totally out of place in our age of ecumenical christianity. Like a Lutheran former pal of mine from Germany who clung to the fake impression that the Catholic Church had not lifted its game since the time of Martin Luther.

Luckily, the large majority of protestants I have known have not been like that but usually have turned out to be men and women of goodwill - true christians first and protestants of their respective denominations second, in that order.

I therefore cordially invite you to pull the scales from your eyes; stop living in the past (like my Lutheran pal of yore) and become a man of goodwill and true christian also.

The glaring hypocrisy is yours Steve Foerster: for sitting in judgement in a parody of God seated on his heavenly throne.

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Re: Pope Francis and the Economy

Post by SteveFoerster » Tue Feb 12, 2019 9:45 pm

neverfail wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 7:37 pm
SteveFoerster wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 2:17 pm
neverfail wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 1:10 pm
SteveFoerster wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 10:35 am
Pope Francis... he's the one living in a tax-free compound, surrounded by gold and guns,.....
It goes with the patch of turf. Unavoidable!

Tax free? He has no private income so what is there to tax?

Gold? What gives you that idea? No private wealth either.
Oh, please. High level Vatican officials live like royalty and are surrounded by splendour and you know it.
Have you actually been there to see for yourself?

The splendor of the interior decor of the Vatican (which I have seen some of, by the way) is inherited from past ages when indeed Popes and even cardinals saw nothing wrong with living like kings . Like it or lump it they are stuck with it as custodians of a priceless piece of world heritage.
Yes, I'm sure when Jesus said “If you would be perfect, go, sell what you possess and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow me” that He just forgot to add, "...unless you're a Prince of the Church in which case it's perfectly okay to ignore that bit and live like a king."
neverfail wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 7:37 pm
neverfail wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 1:10 pm
Guns? Of course he has a security detail and he needs one. Popes in the past have been assassinated. Within living memory an attempt was even made on the life of Pope John Paul the Second.
SteveFoerster wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 2:17 pm
And I don't fault him for having security, but I do fault him for the glaring hypocrisy of calling for the disarmament of poor people whose lives may also be under threat from violence.
In the whole of the content of the link provided by Sertorio (in which Pope Francis makes his plea to the World) I saw no call for the disarmament of poor people whose lives may be under threat from violence.

In any case poor people as a rule are not owners of firearms and cannot afford to be. it is those who abuse and exploit them who usually own the guns.
LOL, that's hilariously false. In the U.S. I would expect that wealthy people are less likely to own guns than working class people. They're not made of platinum, you know.
neverfail wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 7:37 pm
In any case Steve, you seem to have accumulated an old fashioned, protestant sort of bigotry against the Catholic Church that is totally out of place in our age of ecumenical christianity. Like a Lutheran former pal of mine from Germany who clung to the fake impression that the Catholic Church had not lifted its game since the time of Martin Luther.

Luckily, the large majority of protestants I have known have not been like that but usually have turned out to be men and women of goodwill - true christians first and protestants of their respective denominations second, in that order.

I therefore cordially invite you to pull the scales from your eyes; stop living in the past (like my Lutheran pal of yore) and become a man of goodwill and true christian also.
Hardly. I started out in life with no hard feelings toward the Roman Catholic Church. But over the years they earned my disgust, and that of many others, through their revolting sexual abuse scandals and the relentless coverups suborned by the highest levels of church hierarchy.
neverfail wrote:
Tue Feb 12, 2019 7:37 pm
The glaring hypocrisy is yours Steve Foerster: for sitting in judgement in a parody of God seated on his heavenly throne.
If God is just, it's Catholic hierarchs, those latter-day Pharisees, who He will judge the most harshly, for relentlessly soiling His name with their filthy actions. Make no mistake, they are the ones who are an abomination unto the Lord.
Writer, technologist, educator, gadfly.
President of New World University: http://newworld.ac

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