Sunday, April 10, 2005

Bush Hails Pope's Stand Against Communism

Yahoo! News - Bush Hails Pope's Stand Against Communism

I pointed this out a few days ago, but it bears repeating. In his 1987 encyclical, Sollicitudo Rei Socialis, Pope John Paul II said:
...the Church's social doctrine adopts a critical attitude towards both liberal capitalism and Marxist collectivism....The developing countries, instead of becoming autonomous nations concerned with their own progress towards a just sharing in the goods and services meant for all, become parts of a machine, cogs on a gigantic wheel....A disconcerting conclusion about the most recent period should serve to enlighten us: side-by-side with the miseries of underdevelopment, themselves unacceptable, we find ourselves up against a form of superdevelopment, equally inadmissible. because like the former it is contrary to what is good and to true happiness. This super-development, which consists in an excessive availability of every kind of material goods for the benefit of certain social groups, easily makes people slaves of "possession" and of immediate gratification, with no other horizon than the multiplication or continual replacement of the things already owned with others still better. This is the so-called civilization of consumption" or "consumerism ," which involves so much "throwing-away" and "waste." An object already owned but now superseded by something better is discarded, with no thought of its possible lasting value in itself, nor of some other human being who is poorer....the ones who possess much are relatively few and those who possess almost nothing are many. It is the injustice of the poor distribution of the goods and services originally intended for all....It is necessary to state once more the characteristic principle of Christian social doctrine: the goods of this world are originally meant for all…

The truth can't be the truth if we pick and choose which particular words to heed and which to ignore. It is fine for George W. Bush to applaud the late Pontiff's opposition to Communism. Why won't he acknowledge his opposition to unregulated, laissez faire, "free-market" capitalism?

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