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Friday, September 04, 2015

Pope Francis: Communist

“A man without work feels in some way that he is refused citizenship in the advance army of civilization and denied unity with fellow workers who by their work have earned a right to leisure. Leisure is earned; unemployment is unearned. Until his self-respect becomes completely destroyed, the unemployed man feels that he is not a part of the civilization in which he lives, because he has made no contribution to it. Unemployment, in the eyes of the Catholic, takes its biggest toll not from the economic man, but from the moral man; its greatest wound is not the empty pocket, but the empty heart.”
Pope Francis will be condemned as a socialist for expressing the sentiment above.

Traditionalists will call Pope Francis a raving leftist, and will point out that the words, written verbatim above, are the kind of nonsense we can only expect from FrancisChurch and its liberal, bleeding-heart socialist compadres.

"Why does God allow this outrageous man to tear down the Church? This must be the End Times!"

That's what we hear from the traditionalists when Pope Francis mentions such things.

But when you point out the quote is actually from page 99 of Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen's 1940 work "Freedom Under God, the Dignity of Labor" you hear.... crickets....

Definitely no apologies.
Just ... crickets.

127. We are convinced that “man is the source, the focus and the aim of all economic and social life”.[100] Nonetheless, once our human capacity for contemplation and reverence is impaired, it becomes easy for the meaning of work to be misunderstood.[101]We need to remember that men and women have “the capacity to improve their lot, to further their moral growth and to develop their spiritual endowments”.[102] Work should be the setting for this rich personal growth, where many aspects of life enter into play: creativity, planning for the future, developing our talents, living out our values, relating to others, giving glory to God. It follows that, in the reality of today’s global society, it is essential that “we continue to prioritize the goal of access to steady employment for everyone”,[103] no matter the limited interests of business and dubious economic reasoning. 
128. We were created with a vocation to work. The goal should not be that technological progress increasingly replace human work, for this would be detrimental to humanity. Work is a necessity, part of the meaning of life on this earth, a path to growth, human development and personal fulfilment. Helping the poor financially must always be a provisional solution in the face of pressing needs. The broader objective should always be to allow them a dignified life through work. Yet the orientation of the economy has favoured a kind of technological progress in which the costs of production are reduced by laying off workers and replacing them with machines. This is yet another way in which we can end up working against ourselves. The loss of jobs also has a negative impact on the economy “through the progressive erosion of social capital: the network of relationships of trust, dependability, and respect for rules, all of which are indispensable for any form of civil coexistence”.[104] In other words, “human costs always include economic costs, and economic dysfunctions always involve human costs”.[105] To stop investing in people, in order to gain greater short-term financial gain, is bad business for society.


Sean W. said...

I have to chuckle when I hear American Catholics call people "communists." This isn't the 1960's. Our big enemies today are not lowbrow communist monsters, but middlebrow corporate monsters. Why Catholics, and especially traditional ones, feel morally obligated to enrich their mortal enemies on geopolitical/ideological lines that are like 20 years out of date, I will never understand.

Great blog, by the way, Mr. Kellmeyer! Long time reader, first time commenter; I appreciate your principled clarity.

Steve Kellmeyer said...

You obviously have superb taste! :)

Tony said...

I read that quote and as a knuckle-dragging right winger, had no problem with it regardless of who wrote it. When Ven. Fulton Sheen says that "unemployment is unearned", that is true in the case of the person who loses their job through no fault of their own. There are also the cases of those who are unemployed who can't find a job and just give up looking, and yet others who have no interest in working at all.

Oh, and what is a "traditionalist"?