• "God invented war so Americans could learn geography" -- Mark Twain.

Friday, February 27, 2009

Pope to Take on Greenspan

The News: In an address to diocesan clerics within his bishopric, Pope Benedict XVI stated that the Church has the duty to present a reasonable and well-argued criticism of the errors that have led to the current economic crisis. This duty, he said, forms part of the Church's mission and must be exercised firmly and courageously, avoiding moralism but explaining matters using concrete reasons that may be understood by everyone.

Referring to his forthcoming social Encyclical, the Pope presented an overview of the crisis analysing it at two levels. At the macroeconomic level, the Pope said the present system was grounded in selfishness and idolatry of wealth. Here the Church must make her voice heard - nationally and internationally - in order to help bring about a change of direction towards a political economy based on self-sacrifice and concern for the needy. At the microeconomic level, individuals would have to "alter their ways." (Vat. News. Serv.)

The Note: It is not altogether radical to assert that the Church has a mission to critique political economy. She has done so before. What would be radical is a criticism that went beyond "moralism". One is left to wonder what sort of economy the Pope has in mind that would base itself -- systematically -- on self-sacrifice and concern for the needy.

©WCG, 2009