A Trap Set for Catholic Conservatives

Influential Catholics—many of them supporters of Barack Obama—are advancing a proposition that may have the result of sullying the reputations of Catholic conservatives and those Catholics arguing for a robust market economy.

They couch their arguments in Catholic Social Teaching; the common good, political community, love for the poor, subsidiarity. They compare this over against libertarianism; a radical individualism where each man sets and makes his own course that—damn all the rest—leads to his flourishing unless the heavy hand of the state interrupts it. Above all—to radical individualists—the State is the Enemy. Except some of what these people call libertarianism, isn’t.

This proposition got at least a partial airing out last Summer at a conference called “The Catholic Case Against Libertarians” hosted in the lovely offices of Bread for the Poor, offices far larger and far nicer than the poor pro-life group that I run and most others that I know.

One of the overarching questions, at least for some of us in the room, was where are the libertarians you all are talking about? Why weren’t any of them invited to speak, perhaps to engage, to explain themselves. One of the organizers answered that when he said, quite unbidden, that libertarians were not invited to engage the conference “because we are here to instruct them, not to engage them. It is similar to the Church’s instruction of communists.”

I do not want to suggest that any of the speakers were cagey but as I recall only one of them even mentioned the name of a group that is suspect. Matthew Boudway of Commonweal drew a bright line right at the real target of the conference. The line began with libertarianism and went straight to political conservatives and to free marketeers. “Most Catholic defenders of laissez-fair ideology describe themselves as conservative.” But even they know such an ideology is really the “great disrupter, its gales of creative destruction sweeping away traditions, institutions, and communities that stand in its way.” Where no others did, Boudway had the courage to name names. He named the Acton Institute. More on Acton below.

Boudway also said, “Show me a country that has surrendered its politics to the dictates of the market, and I will show you a culture where personal attachments of every kind are less secure than they once were and where the poor and every other vulnerable population are at most an afterthought.” To that I would say, yes please, show me that country.

John DiIulio of the University of Pennsylvania gave perhaps the most disappointing talk. He went after “self-professed Catholics” who had dared to challenge some of the Pope’s economic pronouncements. One expected more from him, who is greatly admired by Catholic conservatives, than his repeated suggestion that Catholic conservatives are “radical libertarians” and therefore not “true Catholics.” He said such as these are fine with families living in the streets, Third World children suffering from malaria and HIV/AIDS, and indigent elderly with curable diseases. It could have been an Obama campaign commercial.

Stephen Schneck, who runs the Institute for Policy Research and Catholic Studies at the Catholic University of America, gave among the most interesting talks, tracing libertarian ideas from Barnard de Mandevile’s 1704 poem The Fable of the Bees to the French Revolution to the Scottish Enlightenment to Civil War America and down to the present day.

He began, though, with Ayn Rand and John Galt. He took the detour through history to demonstrate “that I do understand libertarianism: its roots and its branches.” And he ended his historical tour back with Ayn Rand and John Galt.

That is the thing that occurred to some of us that day and subsequently. Any support of a market economy equals libertarianism equals Randism equals heresy.

Are we who favor smaller government, less regulation, and market solutions really the same as Ayn Rand and John Galt?

One of their targets, and the only organization named in the conference was the Acton Institute, the Michigan-based think tank that seeks “to promote a free and virtuous society characterized by individual liberty and sustained by religious principles.” Look at Acton’s core values and they line up almost perfectly with Catholic Social Teaching. I am not aware that Acton’s leadership has ever identified themselves as libertarians.

Catholic Democrats did go a little batty when Acton’s founder Father Robert Sirico published something called “Who is John Galt?” in which he suggested that, without noticing it herself, Ayn Rand had made John Galt a Christ-figure. The Catholic left dutifully reported that Sirico sees Galt as a Christ-figure, which he never did. Of course this make Father Sirico and Acton the worst kinds of libertarians. By the way, faithful Catholics like philanthropists Frank Hanna and Sean Fieler are on the Acton board.

Another person this group wanted to instruct was actually sitting in the audience that day. Andrew Abela had been named founding Dean of the Business School of Catholic University of America. When the school was founded, a mere 12 months before, one of the big donors was the Charles Koch Foundation.

Charles Koch gave a million and entrepreneur Tim Busch gave $500,000 in order to “support research into the role principled entrepreneurship can and should play in improving society’s well being.” In the CUA press release, the University said the Charles Koch Foundation “supports research and higher education programs aimed at improving understanding of how economic freedom advances human well being.” Freedom advances human freedom? Uh-Oh. A tempest ensued.

Almost immediately 50 professors wrote a letter to CUA president John Garvey and Andrew Abela suggesting that a grant was inappropriate in light of Catholic Social Teaching. The charges against the Kochs were they supported Governor Scott Walker in his fight to free public sector employees from having to join the union, that the Kochs support those who question global warming, and that they opposed expansion of Medicaid in some of the states. I honestly never knew that mandatory union membership was something my faith required, and global warming, too,

Likely with a chuckle, the University pointed out that a huge number of professors who signed the letter work at academic institutions that happily take scads of Koch cash.

Just like the Juice-Box Theologians, these folks seem intent on convincing Catholics that we are forbidden by the Church to be economic conservatives; that Catholics cannot believe in a market economy. Anyone who espouses these ideas is outside the Church, in the words of John DiIullio, not a “true Catholic.”

Now, many people these days do call themselves libertarian. But libertarianism is a bit like socialism in that many people who claim it probably don’t know what it means. Many are merely small government conservatives who may believe they are libertarians without understanding all that it means. And none of this is to say that libertarianism is not a problem, because it is a serious problem.

In the fight against abortion, same-sex marriage, and pornography, libertarianism is the enemy. I think of the Cato Institute. I think also of Students for Liberty. I watched Matthew Spalding debate the head of Students for Liberty at the Conservative Political Action Conference last year. The student called for Federal intervention to impose same-sex marriage on the states. Spalding, who is with Hillsdale College, called him a big government liberal.

But the libertarian problem is not helped by Catholic Democrats attacking their Republican counterparts. There is, in fact, great common cause that could be made by Catholic Democrats and Catholic Republicans including on the question of libertarianism. But that cannot happen if your project is less about advancing the cause of Catholic Social Teaching than it is about scoring political points and winning elections.

Austin Ruse

By

Austin Ruse is president of C-FAM (Center for Family & Human Rights), a New York and Washington DC-based research institute. He is the author of Fake Science: Exposing the Left’s Skewed Statistics, Fuzzy Facts, and Dodgy Data published by Regnery. He is also the author of the new book Little Suffering Souls: Children Whose Short Lives Point Us to Christ published by Tan Books. The views expressed here are solely his own.

  • The Truth

    Can someone, anyone please tell me exactly what does the Catholic Church teach?!?!?!?!

    • Objectivetruth

      Here ya go, click on below, the Catechism of the Catholic Church. Enjoy. The search engine is excellent. You’ll find peace and Truth.

      Let me apologize on behalf of the Church for all the “false prophets” out there claiming to be Catholic but in there next breathe support abortion, gay marriage, and contraception. They are spouting lies, and don’t let them bamboozle you. Under Church teaching, they have ex communicated themselves:

      http://www.scborromeo.org/ccc.htm

    • jacobhalo

      First of all, stop attending the Novus Ordo Missae. You will only hear sermons on teachings with which the priests agrees. You will never hear a couple of the teachings of Jesus, ” Those who are baptized and believe will be saved. Those who don’t believe are already condemned.” “Jesus tell the Jews, ” If you don’t believe that I am He, you will die in your own sins.” Since Vat.II, the church has not only changed some teachings, but they also don’t utter the teachings with which they don’t agree. Secondly, attend the Latin Rite mass, which is the real mass. You will hear sermons on issues, such as, Abortion, same sex marriage, etc. that you won’t hear at a Novus Ordo mass, which is a Protestantized mass. Thirdly, read the documents from the Council of Trent, and see how they differ from the teachings of Vatican II.

      • Prolifedem6M

        It’s really sad how Christ and the Holy Spirit deserted his Church with the calling of Vatican II. Or so you say over and over and over.
        I personally believe that Pope John was inspired by Christ to call the Council and what it arrived at is the fruit of the Holy Spirit. As is the “Novus Ordo” Mass. The Mass is beautiful in all its forms, including the Tridentine, the Novus Ordo and the Chrysostom expressions because they are all the vehicle for the greatest gift Christ gave to us, himself in the Eucharist.

        • fredx2

          Well said. For those who imagine there is no such thing as a good Novus Ordo, go to the Vatican youtube site, and watch the mass said by the Pope on Epiphany sunday. It’s the best Novus Ordo I have ever seen. Very reverent.

          • ForChristAlone

            I must admit that the only NO Masses I find reverential are those where the Canon is sung and those where the priest is ad orientem (vs ad populi)as assumed by the Roman Missal. We don’t need latin; we only need to eschew ‘priest as performer.’

        • Yes– few of those reciting this critique about Vatican II have ever even looked at it. These people are simply claiming that the Council should have been prescient of the 10 years following, with its political and cultural convulsions, including the advancement of “free love”.

          Today, Francis comes in and pushes a more strident, urgent agenda, that of purifying hearts and evangelizing, but guess who undermines him and refuses to consider pre-Vatican II ethics, staying in lockstep with secular ways? That’s right, it is the same neo-Thomist people, holed up in their tiny, schismatic, self-righteous echo chamber.

          • ForChristAlone

            Bergoglio has lost the trust of faithful Catholics.

            • If he has lost their trust, then they have not been faithful.

              • RufusChoate

                The cultish unthinking devotion to Bergoglio is tedious but calling people who have endured his and others irrational enthusiasms for failed and destructive movements in the Church and Culture over the last 40 years unfaithful is just the utterance of spiteful contempt.

                Bergoglio is a only man from a failed Archdiocese in a failed society operating under a failed political and ethical paradigm and he wants us to double down on it.

                • It is contempt, but it is not spiteful.

                  Now to people like me looking at your little echo chamber from the outside, the US neo-Thomists are a vocal, affluent minority within the US 6% minority among worldwide Catholics, but who cannot learn anything from others, not even their infallible Holy Father, who was duly elected by worldwide College of Cardinals based on his passionate declaration of faith. So his criticism in Evangelii Gaudium 93- 96 is one hundred percent correct.

                  • RufusChoate

                    Bergoglio isn’t infallible unless he claims it specifically on Faith and Morals in an encyclical or a pronouncement from the chair of Peter. He is only a man with a pathetic history of spitefully creating disunity in the Church in his brief period as Supreme Pontiff.

                    The Borgia Popes were also elected as were all of the Antipopes so his election is about as much a confirmation of his impeccability as their elections.

                    The people who rejoice the most heartedly for his antics are the least faithful, morally corrupt and apostates at such sites as the National Catholic Report. They are the Catholic Left whose failure to communicate, teach and live the Faith truthfully or honesty produced the problems in the Western Church today. Everything they touch has failed.

                    I don’t know what your issue is with Aquinas but there is one point that is certain if Bergoglio persists in his pattern of contemptuous abuse of the Faithful to the cheers of the unfaithful he will never be acknowledge as a Saint but always failure.

                    • Well, that is guilt by association. That is like saying that, because some unfaithful people affiliated with this or that cause like his words, then that makes him affiliated with that cause. I don’t see any of his US critics leading anyone new to Christ, they leave that to the Protestants, but yet they want everyone in the world to repent first and love Christ later. Cart before horse…

                      I am sure Francis will straighten out the NCR a bit, when he visits Philadelphia.

                    • Phil Steinacker

                      Dream on.

                  • Phil Steinacker

                    He is NOT EVER infallible, friend, UNLESS he speaks ex cathedra. Period.

                    Brother, are you ever deficient in your understanding of the faith!

                    • And you are so proficient, you cannot learn a thing from your Holy Father. Every Pope who ever was seated including Frabcis, continued to seek and know Christ even better… But not you!

                    • And you are so proficient that you cannot learn anything from your Holy Father. You know, every Pope ever seated understood that they needed to keep on seeking, to know Christ better. But not you!

              • Objectivetruth

                This makes absolutely no sense.

                • John200

                  Dear OT,
                  You are confronting a troll. Take your time, don’t get upset (hard to do, but it helps if you maintain your cool around pseudo-Catholics), don’t expect much sense, and maybe you will get a chance to bring Thomas Mullally toward the truth.

                  One step would be enough to justify your efforts.

                  • Objectivetruth

                    Thanks, John.

              • Phil Steinacker

                Wow! Such simplistic “logic.” No, it can’t be the pope’s fault that he is unfocused and offhand in many of his comments, and that many of his other statements reveal he definitely has been profoundly influenced by progressives in and out of the Church.

                But your myopia would hold us accountable by the absurd “thinking” of your last statement. Pope Francis – like every pope – is not infallible if he doesn’t speak ex cathedra, and this reality is proven by how wrong he is on his kindergarten grasp of economics and weather science.

                I trust in those of his statements which comport with Church teaching but I do not trust him when he innovates on Church teaching or introduces some of his off-the-wall notions which just don’t seem to fit with the solid Catholic upbringing I had.

                We’ve had 30 antipopes, friend. I, unlike some of my traditionalist friends, do not necessarily consign him to that group – yet – but neither am I obligated to believe every word he utters when his track record so far is so terribly mixed.

                You are completely wrong to suggest that the faithfulness of Catholics is measureable by how foolishly we trust questionable statements and actions by any pope.

                • “Kindergarten grasp of economics and weather science”, I think, is what you have. In first case, it seems you would believe that economics is strictly quantitative and also a science, tasked strictly with maximizing output. Catholics should want all of that, to be uninfluenced by faith? It is Satan’s playground…. And in second case, I imagine there is nary a science-based project you would endorse, based on the heated sales hob of some giant corporation. Meanwhile meteorologists with an interest in what gain exactly, are conspiring to stop your wheels from turning?

                • “Kindergarten grasp of economics and weather science” seems to be what you have, certainly not Francis. You believe that sound economics consists of kneeling at the altar of maximum efficiency and output. It is actually not a science st all, just a self-informing system of logic, controlled by elites. On the other hand, weather and atmosphere are independently measurable, a natural science. You most likely would support any new science-based endeavor based on the hyping of a large corporation with inherent interest. So what interest exactly do the meteorologists of the world have, in stopping your wheels from turning, that they would conspire en masse, to determine the greenhouse effects of carbon emissions?

        • ForChristAlone

          you’ll get no sympathizers here….most attend Mass and know better.

    • Michael Paterson-Seymour

      Read the Compendium on the Social Doctrine of the Church on the Vatican Website

      http://tinyurl.com/l7dhwhb

    • fredx2

      2+2=4

      • ForChristAlone

        ’bout sums things up

  • ForChristAlone

    I look forward to the day when there is a conference held with the title: “How Catholic Leftists Have Hijacked the Catholic Church To Advance The Statist Atheistic Agenda.” I will be among the first to sign up. And, lest we forget, the leftists will not be invited to speak either.

    And Austin, thanks for naming names. We will be compiling a list of these worst offenders for future reference.

    • St JD George

      You know you can start by reading the Naked Communist, or since the story is largely a familiar one just by searching on the phrase “45 goals”, and remember this was documented in the 50’s. They are all highly relevant, but pay particular close attention to goal no. 27 in destroying the church. I encourage you to read them all, including promoting deviancy in the name of mercy, and advancing “evil shall be called good and good shall be called evil”. Where have you read that phrase before – straight from the serpent.

      • heynorm48

        Whoa!! How many of these goals are already in place?

        http://www.uhuh.com/nwo/communism/comgoals.htm

        • St JD George

          Fred has offered a rebuttal so I await his reply. You can continue the search and find many good analyses of the successes. I don’t dwell too much on the purely governmental ones, but the ones promoting immorality and perversion in society I do. Sadly, hugely successful.

      • fredx2

        Actually, those goals are a little too perfect. The list was invented by a far right writer Cleon Skousen, and were never generated by the communists, or anyone else, on their own.

        • St JD George

          I would not be entirely surprised to learn, but I have never found evidence. Do you have a source?

          • Jane Galt

            No reply. Perhaps fredx2 wishes to retract his comment and is just too shy to do so.

            • St JD George

              Na, probably hasn’t come back to check, not one to not comment.
              How is John, ha?!

        • Desert Sun Art

          Well,Cleon Skousen is listed as the author of The Naked Communist, as referenced above. Any proof this list was invented?

        • Albert8184

          Actually the Left Wing CLAIMS that Skousen created that list but they never really go on to explain how the things on that list are coincidentally support tactics of subversion that are historically used by the Left Wing to foment revolution and social crisis. Because, after all, the Left Wing is a “revolutionary” movement. That’s why they call the Right Wing, “reactionary”..

    • St JD George

      And I have no doubt that the PC monitors in nondescript buildings are following along and compiling a list of nonconformists to the state religion as well.

    • That is moronic.

      • The expert speaks.

        • And the destroyer’s guns miss again… 🙂

          • Objectivetruth

            But he broadsided you below the waterline with two torpedoes….;(

            • That was only the decoy, Yamato sails on… 🙂

              • Objectivetruth

                Your engine room and forward compartments have flooded, Davey Jones patiently awaits you….

                • That’s neither objective, nor true…. what was this article about again?

                  • John200

                    It figures, you would have to ask.

                    Go back and read it this time, clown.

              • asmondius

                Yamato sleeps with the fish.

                • Nope– we just crossed your “T”…

                  • asmondius

                    Heh – If you’re crossing my ‘T’ I’ve presented you with a very small target.

                    • Yeah, but try to stop and turn… that is why crossing the T is considered goal of modern fleet action. Such as at Leyte Gulf, although having said that, I think that is where the real Yamato met her fate.

              • Yamamato was shot down. History isn’t your thing, is it?

                • I will sit you down for spelling lesson some time… Yamato was largest battleship in history, actually sunk not in Leyte Gulf, but in a 1945 battle south of home islands.

                  • RufusChoate

                    Launched in 1940, Yamato was also an epic failure by any criteria: tactically and strategically because it spend most of the war and operational history being a troop carrier and a target for American Planes and never engaged in fleet actions with other battleships

                    It demonstrated to anyone paying attention that the age of the dreadnought was over and age of the aircraft and guided missile begun.

                    It is legendary only because it was like the diplodocus, a small brained behemoth was massive size that appealed to Japanese Anime cartoonists of the 1970’s and small children.

                    • Still would have sunk a destroyer toe to toe…. DE-173 needs to change his name to that of a carrier….

                    • So, how long have you been an amateur comic?

                    • I was wrong, you already are a carrier…. Of the imperial disease.

                    • Your ailment is fairly pedestrian.

                  • My spellings fine..speak to Google auto correct.

                  • Hey, just to get you up to speed-we’re talking about Admiral Yamamoto being shot down,which you didn’t spell right either.
                    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Isoroku_Yamamoto
                    You should sit yourself down for therapy.

      • ForChristAlone

        mighty big words coming from the protestant wing of the Catholic Church.

        • St JD George

          How about mormonic … sorry, couldn’t resist.

        • Yours is the worldly, US Presbyterian ethic. What else could you call it, when you jump up and down insisting that our Holy Father has no right to speak against excesses in business and political spheres?

          • NDaniels

            No doubt, without freedom, there can be no innovation, but this does not change the fact that with freedom comes responsibility, and unrestricted capitalism can lead to atheistic materialism.

            • Who the hell has ever advocated “unrestricted capitalism” (and by “capitalism”, I mean free markets, because I refuse to use a nebulous and vacant term coined by Marx)?
              Even the most ardent believer in free markets (me) believes that there must be ways to adjudicate contractual disputes and provide for surety in execution, to establish the rules and habits of exchange, standards of measurement, content and quality and a myriad of other things. That is not “unrestrained”.
              The problem with the left is that they are invincibly ignorant and paranoid. The world is awash in laws and regulations, that no one can even count, let alone comply with. Many of these rules are capricious edicts that would make an Egyptian Pharaoh envious.
              Yet despite this, in the fetid swamps of the leftist imagination is always this concocted specter of a world of apocalyptic anarchy and the promise of nirvana to be delivered by the state.
              Despite the historical evidence of both the frequency and nature of the unrestrained state-they continually imbue it with the potential for omniscience, omnibenevolence and incorruptibility.
              Whenever I watch the old “Ten Commandments”, and I Dathan fomenting discord and coercing Aaron to use the “temple arts” to fashion a golden calf to worship, I realize that the Almighty

              • NDaniels

                True, Christians are called to be ethical in their Business dealings; “To whom much has been given, much will be expected is true in regards to Faith and talent as well as material goods”.

                Didn’t realize Marx coined that term!

            • Daniels, you get it… The only bad thing about innovation is too much, overtaking humanity. How can so-called conservatives be in favor, of a perpetual state of revolution? Creative destruction… Now there is a Satanic concept!

            • St JD George

              And CAN lead to great philanthropy depending on the path one chooses. With freedom comes responsibility, with slavery comes servitude.

            • Martial_Artist

              NDaniels, Just who are the omnicompetent individuals who you think should be appointed to “restrict” capitalism?

              • If I may, no one is advocating new laws, only that people open their hearts to the Holy Spirit… If people focus on faith, family, community, and life, the rapaciousness of our system is automatically deflated.

            • There has never been anything in America for any length of time which could rightly be called “unrestricted capitalism”. It is a phantom invented by the left.

          • jacobhalo

            The pope should be talking about the teachings of Jesus, who as far as I know, never talked about economics. Maybe, “Render to Caesar the things that are Caesar’s and to God the things that are God’s.”

            • Jesus never talked about economics… Except to point out that pursuit of wealth takes you away from God. What is harder than passing a camel through the eye of a needle?

              • Grace del Tabor

                Exactly ! I honestly believe that not capitalism nor communism or socialism have any chance to bring justice to our society. The Catholic Church Social Doctrine is the only one qualified to reach it. Not perfectly because we´re human beings and commit many mistakes. I cannot find any political position which brings any solution to save the welfare of everyone. What do you think about it ?

                • Yes, there are no laws of man that can make things right. Only to open every heart one by one to the CST and the Word of our Lord found in Matthew 5 to 7. No systems, no codes, no attempts to reconcile that Word with the the supposedly nasty business of of the world. The business of the world is as nasty as it wants to be.

                  • america111

                    Open every heart…, and there will not be laziness, or envy of others having more, etc.

                    • That’s right, try it sometime. The idea that man is inherently selfish is an idea foisted onto you by Satanic forces.

                  • ForChristAlone

                    “the supposedly nasty business of the world. The business of the world is as nasty as it wants to be.”

                    God created the world as “good” and for man’s purpose as steward. The world is not “nasty.”

                    • Yes, that is what I said. I am bemoaning the myth used to promote competitive economics, that man is inherently selfish, depraved and cast out into a cruel dog-eat-dog wilderness. With this mindset nan metes out his punishments, including all self-inflicted pain.

                      Speaking of nasty, I can see you actually get it and originally I attacked your post that was simply intended for the partisans… Will edit.

                • a fool

                  “As ye sow so shall ye reap.” This statement is the key to all answers. Plant not, eat not, have nothing to give. Plant more, receive more, have more to give away or to share. This is: “The way, the truth and the life.”

                  • This was also parable you take literally… an analogy about treating others well, lest their hatred is returned to you.

                    • a fool

                      in truth there is no hatred, only The Truth! To face Truth is one of the ahrdest things in life, thus, we have PC! (Pure crap) that is what we now have across our nation and the world! Never to give into temptation! “the tree is known by its fruits.” “But, by the grace of God there goes I!”
                      Always forgive, for i am not in that person’s shoes. But, what is True must be told. Sin is Sin there is no two ways about it. Debt is debt, it must paid. Sin = debt to God. Using the gift of Life He gave to serve not Him, but selfishness, committing Mortal Sins openly while promoting them, that is Sin upon Sins! Speaking as Roman Catholic only!

                    • Amen. Truly your moniker is good, we all need to be “a fool”. Give and you shall receive….

              • Objectivetruth

                Why don’t you sell the expensive computer you’re using and give the money to the poor?

                Hypocrite.

              • ForChristAlone

                The Gospels say nothing about pursuing wealth. How else can people survive if they do not pursue wealth? Now, if you insist on interpreting wealth to mean that which is more than one needs to take care of one’s human needs without consideration of assisting others in need, then you’re correct. But I do not interpret wealth this way.

                Wealth, for me, and most conservatives, is pursuing the means to take care of one’s human needs and not eschewing the obligation to assist those in need. It just so happens that conservatives – the free market types – are better at assisting those in need than are those on the left who are against free and open markets. Lastly, the Gospels do say something about pursuing wealth over and above the pursuit of heaven/ the spirit.

                • You are correct, and Jesus was only noting the reality of an obsession with gain…. Such as we have today. Our system penalizes those who do not engage in the material arms race….

                  I think an important point where we have lost our way, is simply trumpeting to our children that they can do anything, be anything…. And we see where that led us. What ever happened to parents and educators making a good faith attempt to find the fertile aptitude within each person?

                  • a fool

                    yes, agreed! our focus should always be “I am come to do thy will, Oh, God!” In doing His will, the self is not the focus, but the Goal is the focus; from taking care of one’s parents, to one’s spouse, the children, the neighbor, the country… the self is the last. Everything we have is a loan from our Heavenly Father for us to go through life based upon His gift. Wealth is form Him. He alone knows why some have more than others… t he point is to not create envy, no to envy. But always living with Gratitude for whatever He willed for each of us. “Thou shall not covet thy neighbors’ goods.” living within one’s means is important, to share whatever little one has with one’s neighbor is also important. But remember, charity begins at HOME. One must first take care of one’s responsibilities which are assigned by God. it through how we sue His gift that we are to either to receive “…. the more will be given to you, or the little that ye have shall be taken away.” God is always Merciful as well as He is Just!

                    • Amen! And again, your moniker says it all, because that is the root cause of all hard-heartedness, that is what everyone is afraid of, being made into “a fool”… but it is really the hallmark of our surrender, of our faith.

                    • a fool

                      God bless you, Thomas! His Wisdom endures forever! All those who Trust in Him and living in His Word, will always find Peace in Him and In Love with His Truth and understands what LOVE truly Means! It is infinite, limitless! One must be firmly planted in His Spirit and in His Truth! Living in Hos Word and He did! The flesh and the Word are ONE! “The word was made flesh and dwelt among men.” That Flesh of Jesus the Man live every word He had spoken, so must we who are the Holy Communicants! His Living Image is within us! God bless YOU!

                    • Hallelujah and God Bless you too– We will be spreading this news together! (The only Crisis, is in our hearts!)

                    • a fool

                      Yes, that is, one is what is within one’s skin. All good, bad and ugly are created under the skin before it expressed itself outwardly as one’s Reality in forms which often one resents, thus, problems of blame, hatred…. or loving and forgiving. What we are, we are. I am that I AM! “What i have opened, no one can shut. What i have shut, no one an open.”

                • a fool

                  “The more you have, the more will be giving to you. the little that you have will be taken away from you.” look at the parable of the 10 talents, 5 telants and the one talent. there is answer.

          • Phil Steinacker

            You paint with too broad a brush. He gets into specifics about economics and business models about which he knows nothing. He borrows analyses and “solutions” by the Left which he simply cannot grasp sufficiently to understand would hurt far more people than the situations he deplores. If he’d confine his speech to principles and not policy specifics, as past popes have done, he’d be on firmer ground.

            • I think you are subscribing to commentary/ summary of hopeful leftist publications, not direct quotes from Francis. Please give me a link…

      • Tim

        What do you want? This is Crisis Magazine.

        • Well, at least it is not The Federalist… 🙂

          • You’d be happier at Commonsqueal.

    • The Truth

      Never could understand the designation left or right. You either believe and follow or you don’t.

      • jacobhalo

        Correct. There is no such thing as a liberal Catholic or a conservative Catholic. There are the faithful and unfaithful. You can’t have differing opinions about a teaching.

        • hombre111

          So said the faithful Catholic as he put a match to the bonfire about to consume St. Joan of Arc. The argument was repeated later by Torquemada, as he sentenced yet another wretch to death. Your kind of thinking is dangerous, dangerous thinking, a blight on the history of religion, a guilty burden Catholicism will continue to bear as long as history has a story to tell.

          • jacobhalo

            My type of thinking is dangerous? The Catechism says that anyone who does not believe in the teaching of the church is a heretic.

          • jacobhalo

            Apparently, you are a liberal Catholic (unfaithful).

            • Liberal Catholic. One part envious leftist, one part sexual libertine.

              • M

                What nonsense! You would, with your crude tendency to stereotype, consider me a “liberal Catholic.” My family is wealthy. We envy nobody. We simply want everyone to have some of the advantages we enjoy — particularly health insurance, which is a basic human right. We’ve been in the position of almost losing a child to a health crisis. We would not wish that on anybody — not on the poor, not on the rich, not on the middle class. I would gladly pay higher taxes to ensure quality health care for all Americans (and I would like to see some of my tax payer dollars swung over from military spending to health care spending, but that’s another matter.)

                And “sexual libertine”? I think you project too much. Divorce rates, teen pregnancy, and porn consumption (as determined by a study of online credit card transactions) are higher in red states than in blue states. My own experience is that “liberal Catholics” are more likely to lead personally clean lives while refraining from judging the sex lives of others. Perhaps we don’t judge so much because those of us in happy, stable marriages just don’t obsess about other people’s sex lives so much. Conservatives are more likely to indulge in impure behavior while condemning the same in others. It’s not always the virulently anti-gay conservatives who are caught with rent boys, etc., but more often than not. Some call conservatives the “horny hypocrites.” It’s the red states that are awash in illegitimacy, incarceration, crystal meth labs, divorce, and federal handouts. Listen to Gingrich (three marriages) and Limbaugh (is it three or four failed marriages now, and then there’s the drug problem, and the Viagra in his suitcase en route to the Dominican Republic) pontificate about “immoral liberals” and wonder. For a humorous account of “Red State Babylon,” see http://www.vanityfair.com/news/2006/11/wolcott200611

                • Well congratulations, you are Exhibit 1 in the case of the obvious, in fact you are the poster child and you are kind enough to provide the prosecution with unsolicited corroborating testimony.

                  “with your crude tendency to stereotype,”

                  “the red states that are awash..”, “”liberal Catholics” are more likely to lead personally clean lives”, “Conservatives are more likely to indulge in impure behavior ” :” It’s not always the virulently anti-gay conservatives who are caught with rent boys, etc., but more often than not.”

                  Project much?

                  “We simply want everyone to have some of the advantages we enjoy.”

                  Translation:

                  I imagine that I’m better than others because I imagine that I have a lot of toys, and I have this weird feeling that’s a fusion of a little guilt and a lot of condescension. If people just had the things that I had, they’d be enlightened and refined like me, because well as I say in when I darken the door of a Church, I thank you Lord, I am not like these others.

                  I claim that I’m willing to be taxed more, but I won’t actually cut the check until its demanded by the IRS. I’m not one those people that’s stupid enough to lead by example and cut a check before it’s demanded, either to a charity as a voluntary disgorgement to the government:.

                  Gifts to the United States
                  U.S. Department of the Treasury
                  Credit Accounting Branch
                  3700 East-West Highway, Room 622D
                  Hyattsville, MD 20782

                  .

                  • M

                    No projections on my part. I didn’t need to rely on my own opinions — I just looked at the statistics, which are pretty clear. I’m sorry the facts contradict your fevered and fact-free paradigms. You’re also imagining that I suffer from guilt and condescension. I’m simply in line with the teachings of the Catholic Church on this one (please remember — this IS a Catholic blog.) If you want to argue with Pope Benedict XVI about whether or not universal health care is a basic right in today’s society (in fact he called it an “inalienable right” — http://www.uscatholic.org/culture/social-justice/2011/01/papal-prescription,) be my guest. Of course you’re free to believe that Benedict XVI suffers from guilt and condescension too. In fact you’re free to spew your bile at any of the leaders of the Catholic Church and to dispute anything they say. I just think their words are at least worth a fair and respectful hearing.

                    • You don’t even stay coherent in one thread. You can’t even tell the difference between care and insurance. I should pity you, but I’m frail and I can’t.
                      Since you are so well-heeled and have such great insurance, you might want to consider availing yourself of your policy’s mental health benefits.
                      Still even though you are transparently one of those political activists attempting to hijack religion in the service of Marx, I regard attracting your venom as a public service.

                    • M

                      I’ll leave you to stew in your own vitriol. As far as I can tell, you’ re a very unhappy, unstable, angry person with little of value to offer regarding Catholic teachings. I wish you only the best and hope that you get the help you need.

                    • You are so wrong, so often. This time, no exception. You’d be amusing of you couldn’t drive or vote.

                      Now lecture us on how the Church is wrong about contraceptives again and your imagined sanctity.

                    • M

                      I responded to your irrational hate-filled tirade against “liberal Catholics” with facts that very nicely countered your name calling. You have not addressed the facts but have continued to be abusive and irrational. I sincerely hope that you are able to get some help with your anger management problems. I am saddened that you are so filled with hatred and contempt, and I sincerely hope that you are able to move to a better and happier place. I will pray that you find peace and that those around you will be safe through your raging. In peace, M.

                    • If you want to make responding to me a career, have at it. I do a public service keeping you at your computer and away from things that might hurt the innocent.

                    • M

                      I’m glad I was able to dismantle your stereotype of “liberal Catholics.” I have nothing more to say at present except that I hope you get help.

                    • You need to learn the difference between demolishing something, and displaying it.

                    • Nestorian

                      Notice a pattern here, DE-173? Once more you are being denounced – and justly so – for being venomous and mean-spirited by one of your interlocutors on this blog. It is a constantly recurring pattern: As soon as your interlocutor begins to get the better of you in an argument, if not before, you lash out at him or her with violent insults.

                      I suggest you pay attention regarding this personal issue – if not to me, then to M, and the many others who have called you out on this.

                    • Here’s what I notice, some formal heretic and troll who was removed by the moderator persists in posting, making every word an act of defiant trespass. The trespasser then has the blazing audacity to complain about others.

                    • ForChristAlone

                      Lies, but you’re good at this.

                    • ForChristAlone

                      Desperation setting in. Last gasp. It’s over.

                • ForChristAlone

                  “I would gladly pay higher taxes to ensure quality health care for all Americans (and I would like to see some of my tax payer dollars swung over from military spending to health care spending, but that’s another matter.)

                  Nothing prevents you from divesting yourself of all unnecessary capital and giving it to your government. Sanctimonious.

            • Phil Steinacker

              You just finished saying there is no such thing as a liberal Catholic or a conservative Catholic. Now you pronounce another to be a liberal Catholic. You’ve condemned him to death because you just said he can’t exist.

              Of course, this is hyperbole on my part, but it does point up the utter falsehood of your original statement.

              • jacobhalo

                You are correct. I should had said an unfaithful Catholic.

          • Log, speck, eye.

            You know what? I’d hate to be you waltzing into the hereafter, with your arrogant self-righteousness. assured of your sanctity.

      • america111

        Yes, but commonly known as you believe and follow=right; you don’t= left

    • If that is the case, then join us, the Blessed Margaret of Castello Chapter, a lay Dominican chapter in Boise, Idaho, for the Colloquium on the Social Doctrine of the Catholic Church, at St. Mark’s in Boise, on April 18, 2015 to study and discuss the papal encyclicals and allow them to speak to this very point (among others): that the social welfare state misses the target. [Centesimus Annus, para. 48.]. http://www.dominicanidaho.org.

      • hombre111

        Hey, I heard of this nasty little group, even down here among the Baptists where I live, thanks to a letter from an outraged relative of mine, now gone to God. She said they slapped a deacon in the face because they were offended by his sermon, then bragged about it online. True heirs of the Grand Inquisition. He should have sued their butts, but like Jesus, he turned the other cheek.

        • St. Nicholas was known to throw a punch. Perhaps you might benefit from a sound thrashing, yourself, you conceited misanthrope.

          • hombre111

            Like my psychopathic friend once said, “I don’t know one problem that cannot be solved with a bullet.” Or, in your case, violence.

            • You could try the patience of a Saint mostly because it’s your intent. But as violence goes you are a serial abuser of truth.

            • jacobhalo

              Bullets solved the problem of Japan and Germany in WWII. They became civilized countries.

              • hombre111

                True enough. But wars have their inevitable evil consequences, even for the righteous victor, who committed what the the Catechism calls crimes against God along the way. And then there was the aftermath, as we became this perpetually hyper-armed nation, unable to stop even after the Cold War was over. Now our bullets have reaped a harvest in the Middle East.

            • papagan

              It’s clear that “DE-173” has some serious anger problems. 🙁

              • So says the guy who issued threats.

          • M

            This is abusive and irrational. These sort of violent threats are indicative of serious psychological instability and don’t belong on a Catholic blog. I pray that you receive the help you so obviously need.

            • Oh get a life. There’s no threat there. If you can’t understand the analogy to Arius, tough to be you.

              • M

                Pot meet kettle.

                • You really should try to come up with something more original. Like I said, if you are spending time on me, I’m doing a public service.

            • Nestorian

              DE-173, are you paying attention??

            • *

          • papagan

            “St. Nicholas was known to throw a punch. Perhaps you might benefit from a sound thrashing, yourself, you conceited misanthrope.”

            As I said elsewhere, you need help. Your comments suggest that you have a serious anger problem.

            • Read your own comment history and buy mirror.

              • papagan

                “Read your own comment history and buy mirror.”

                You want to compare my comment history with your own? Really? Interestingly, you provide not even one example of what you consider to be at the level of your own vulgar ad hominem rejoinders.

                • “Apparently my comments are too subtle for your jejune mind to grasp.”

                  “That statement reveals a fundamental confusion that is not uncommon.”

                  “Perhaps a solution more to the liking of those who wish to dismiss Catholic social doctrine and the question of social justice is to sterilize parents who do not earn enough to support another child, or to abort the extra child that the parents cannot support financially in view of insufficient income.”

                  “And who are you?”

                  “You employ a remarkably fuzzy logic.”

                  “Do you know anything about the Christian theological notion of human ecology? ”

                  “Sounds similar to the rhetoric of a sedevacantist””

                  “has become painfully evident that we’re not really communicating on the same or similar channels.”

                  “As to those who are altogether illogical, it makes no sense to me to respond to their purely emotional tirades.”

                  And yet you continue….

                  • papagan

                    “Apparently my comments are too subtle for your jejune mind to grasp.”

                    Whether the comment is or isn’t an accurate observation, I’ll admit that I could have expressed my thought more gently in that particular instance. Do you really believe, however, that that comment is nearly as harsh as a comment like this: “St. Nicholas was known to throw a punch. Perhaps you might benefit from a sound thrashing, yourself, you conceited misanthrope”?

                    • Your pseudo apology adide the problem isn’t with how you said it, it’s that you think you sit in judgment. In any case you revealed yourself for who you are many times and it provides some of us with merriment. Be true to yourself.

                    • papagan

                      “Your pseudo apology adide [sic] the problem isn’t with how you said it, it’s that you think you sit in judgment.”

                      Do you mean in the way that you sit in judgment of others? See below.

                      “[Neil de Grasse Tyson is] an arrogant idiot savant gasbag. Sheldon Cooper with less social skills.”

                      “I disagree with Al Gore’s politics and I find him to be an odious hypocrite, but I don’t care enough about him to hate him. The opposite of love is indifference, not hate.”

                      “Trust me, the next time time the hyperthermic amphibian shows up, I have something for him.”

                      “Narcissism is a disease of the left.”

                      “A charge of bigotry from a crank that cites the age of her opponents is laughable. You, madam are a hypocrite.”

                      “I think somebody should be testing you, because you’re bats!”

                      “What is it with trolls they can’t formulate a coherent response?”

                      “Keep writing, you really do expose yourself as a cultist and a troll.”

                      “No, you found a kindred spirit in M, assuming you aren’t just a paid shill. All we get from you trolls is claims of authority.”

                      “M’s been here before and its always the same-she’s either a paid jammer or in desperate need of attention…”

                      “Oh stop it. You waited three hours to badger Sainte for an answer, you pretentious charlatan.”

                      “You [M] are such a tedious bore.”

                      “And you [M] are merely an internet crank suffering under delusions of authority, affinity and grandeur.”

                      “Oh give it a rest. Wipe the spittle from the corners of your mouth…”

                      “You [M] aren’t smart enough to be insulted, drone.”

                      “Ageism. Apparently an aceptable [sic] prejudice among the climate cultist.”

                      “Oh get lost. Koch Brother! Dirty Oil! Over the age of 60! You are terribly, terribly troubled and completely guilty of everything you charge me (and others) of-get help before you hurt somebody.”

                      “Roger Mahony should do whatever the ecclesial equivalent of recusing himself from voting in the event there is another conclave before his ineligibility and if not, defrocked. He did grievous damage to the Church and should treated with the same scorn and revulsion one reserves for the likes of Cardinal Wolsey.”

                      “[If Dante were writing the Divine Comedy now instead of the early 14th century, he’d probably have mostly churchmen placed in Inferno – more than then, I’d say.] I concur.”

                      “He may not be a socialist, but he has redistributionist and statist impulses, and those are useful attributes for those who are socialists.”

                      “No. Jesus told YOU to give, not to advocate that the state take from SOMEBODY else to do it, or do you read some scripture where Jesus calls the tax collector, rather than let the rich man away. You are a blasphemer.”

                      “I don’t believe for a minute that you will let strangers in your house and if you do, you are a reckless idiot.”

                      “Blasphemer.”

                      “I can tell you that if I had been advising Pope Benedict, I’d have urged him to remove Bergoglio and to ensure maximum public embarrassment.”

                      “In your estimation, guided by the exacting criteria of your viscera.”

                      The foregoing quotations are only a few selections from the 9,963 comments that you’ve posted thus far. Are those statements posted by you a source of merriment?

                      I’ll close by adding one more excerpt from one of your own posts:

                      Look at your own comment history if you want to see ill-suited for any kind of conversation.

                      4.) Interpersonal Skills and Communications

                      Rating: Needs Improvement.

                      Mr. [X] seems unable to engage others without hostility or haughtiness–seems to confuse pedantry with persuasion and is easily perturbed when ideas or assertions do not receive ready acceptance from others. Most exchanges are … contentious and conclusions may be at odds with a reasonable interpretation of the facts surrounding the matter at hand.

                      Employee routinely resorts to insults and has made vague threats during rating period. Behavior seems habituated and despite numerous peer comments, remains persistent.

                      Recommendation.

                      Counseling as a Requirement of Continued Employment, with termination as contingent option. Employee should be required to attend counseling with requirement that significant, steady and prompt improvement be demonstrated. Counseling should include both respect and communications components. Employee should be subject to written agreement that unresponsiveness or further critical incidents will result in progressive disciplinary measures, up to and including involuntary separation for cause … based upon the nature and number of any such incidents.

            • Actually you didn’t say anything. You might have written it, but repeating yourself and announcing it is merely looking for attention.

        • jacobhalo

          Peter cut off an ear.

          • M

            And was reprimanded for it by Jesus Christ himself.

          • hombre111

            And Jesus reprimanded him.

            • He also reprimanded false teachers.

    • St JD George

      And I look forward to the day when there is one who comes to challenge the misguided Pharisees and gather up his believers. Until then I’d even settle for one who was unafraid to speak truth to lies with authority.

    • NDaniels

      Christ’s Church cannot be hijacked.

    • a fool

      Will join YOU! “He who is not with me is against me.” “I am the way, the truth and the life. Carry your cross and follow me.” “The heaven and the earth will pass away, my words will not pass away!” Never be a Desecrater of what is HOLY ! The Fires of Hell is Frost bite! In Hell there is no Light, there is No Life; it is death, that is ICE. Nothing grows on ice and is in total Darkness. When we die our body temperature departs from us, the presence within us that is our life left our body. it is no longer the temple of God. “The kingdom of God is within you.” Souls that live in the Word of God will not die, it will be welcomed by Jesus to join Him in heaven to enjoy Life Ever lasting with Him ~ The Most Holy Trinity and The Blessed Mother Mary, all the saints and holy angels. the souls that lived in darkness will enter into Ever Lasting Darkness and Coldness. He who trust God and loves Him, will love following His Word! As a son /daughter who loves to follow whose earthly father and tries to please him in every way possible for his love and approval. “The word was made flesh and dwelt among man.” The word of God made Jesus the God-Man. The flesh of Jesus the Man lived every word He spoke. Anyone who says he is a Roman Catholic better think it over before he/she continues to live in Mortal Sins, worse, while tries to promoting them to the young, the innocent and confushed! God have Mercy!

  • Rev Mr Flapatap

    I think they are misstating the issue. Nobody says that we don’t have an obligation to care for the poor and those in need. The problem is that these liberals want to outsource their obligation to charity to an impersonal, inefficient, and sometimes borderline tyrannical bureaucracy.

    • Objectivetruth

      One of the subtleties of the Gospel that has always fascinated me is how Christ physically healed the sick. Let’s face it, He was God and could have waken up one morning and over His morning coffee waved His hand and cured all the sick and crippled within a 10,000 mile radius. But He didn’t. He touched them, held them when he healed them. He spoke softly, lovingly, reassuringly to them. He spat in the dirt to make mud to caress the eyes of the blind man with a divine balm made of mud. He literally got His hands dirty. We are called to the same.

      • dbwheeler

        Jesus told them “Your faith has healed you”… there has to be an effort on the part of the poor and sick as well. I find too often there’s an arrogance about Catholic liberals that treat suffering people as too stupid to do anything themselves. Providing money and healthcare isn’t Christian works but social work. We are to be about teaching the good news first or at least equal to our giving. Words matter

        • Objectivetruth

          Agree. Christ spoke “what is more important, that your wounds are healed or your sins are forgiven?” We are to primarily give them Christ, first and foremost. Blessed Teresa of Calcutta was an excellent example. The Missionaries of Charity provide healthcare to the poor sick and dieing, but they are “Missionaries” of Christ first.

          • St JD George

            And missionaries do not promote infanticide or the immorality of sodomy.

        • The Catholic left is attentive to the needs of the poor the same way a woman with Münchausen syndrome by proxy is attentive to the health of her children.

          • dbwheeler

            Oh, my, that was a brilliant analogy and I learned a new term! Thanks Wikipedia.
            😉

            • Glad to be of service.

              • dbwheeler

                Pun intended?

                • I wish I had been that clever, alas dumb luck.

        • asmondius

          ‘Without truth, charity degenerates into sentimentality…’
          – Pope Benedict

          • St JD George

            The mark of true brilliance is to speak with simplicity in a way all understand without having to follow up with clarifications, explanations or corrections. God bless the gift to us of Pope Benedict, truly a brilliant man, and beautifully spoken in this quote.

        • Yes, and also there is a feeling among self-professed “Catholic conservatives”, that the poor must be poor because they have lived decadent, slothful lives, as if the free market system automatically rewards the conscientious and hard-working… That is just wishful thinking– in fact as a Christian, I think the rich should learn from the poor, not the other way around.

          • Kevin

            Right, never mind that there are poor people working three jobs and making so little that they qualify for food stamps.

            • Exactly– so much for the faultless operation of the system of capital. To which I imagine you will claim, that our system under the beckon call of mega- financiers and their corporate chieftains, is somehow suffering from too much government interference, and that somehow this is why the corporations who are calling the shots, do not pay living wages.

              • How much do you pay? Does it kill you to spread your bile using the products of a corporation calling the shots?

              • Phil Steinacker

                No, instead we’d claim that you will always have the poor with you. Oh wait, that’s right ! it was JESUS Who made that idiotic self-serving claim. He must be a mega- financier or a corporate chieftain.

                Living wage – now that’s another clear sign of your progressive leanings. No one deserves what an outsider group of fools determines to be a living wage. Caring for the poor is our responsibility by lifting them up as needed. That responsibility stops at demanding or requiring that business owners paying people beyond what their skill level and abilities are worth.

                Your socialism is showing when you pretend to have the moral authority to impose your “religion” on others.

                • You are correct, the Lambs of God will always be with us, because they are content with the few simple things God gave them.

                  • Objectivetruth

                    You’re laughable.

                    So the simple gift God gave you is an expensive computer??

                    Hypocrite.

                    • You are correct, and I did not claim to have perfected the simple ways myself…. I need work, but at least I know it.

                    • Objectivetruth

                      I’m guessing along with an expensive computer you have a car, a home with electricity, heat, air conditioning, plenty of food in the fridge? That you make more than $5,000 a year and have savings in cash and retirement? Correct?

                      Because all those things put you in the top ten percent of the richest people on the planet. That 6.3 billion people that don’t have all that you have look at you as a selfish “rich guy.”

                      See how this works? That you have it far better than 6 billion people and you’re the rich people you are attacking?

                    • Yes, what a shame I carry. However that is also my cost of living within this arms race of hoards. Income I have, but no liquid savings.

                    • Objectivetruth

                      You’re the guy with a Mercedes Benz, calling out the guy with the Rolls Royce for being greedy.

                    • SubjectiveDelusionary, I am the guy with a second hand Caddy devoting himself to faith, family, community, life, and advising everyone else to join me. You are the guy chasing the fool’s gold, and trying to infect the Lambs of God with your ambition.

                      You wouldn’t know a philosophy grounded in the Catechism and Gospel, if it jumped up and bit you on the a**.

                • Nestorian

                  Just because Jesus predicted that poverty will persist until the end of the present age does not mean that he approved of that state of affairs.

                  That, in fact, he strongly disapproved of it is readily evident from numerous of His statements, many of which are to be found in the Gospel of Luke (starting with his pronouncing of blessings upon the poor, but woes upon the rich).

            • Objectivetruth

              Who? Give us a name.

              And have you sold everything and given it to the poor?

              Hypocrite.

          • Objectivetruth

            But you are incredibly envious of the rich, why is that?

            As people age, I see a lot of such bitterness and jealousy. People like yourself, for example. Possibly you have friends or family members that worked much harder than you, sacrificed, and took risks, and made a lot of money (When you think about it, those people with what they pay in taxes in one year have helped the poor more through federal social programs than what the taxes you pay in twenty years!) The rich person who has worked hard has a greater appreciation and has probably given fifty times more to charity than you have. Is it their bigger houses that you’re so jealous of? Their vacations? What?

            Because all I see is in you, Tommy Boy, is one big green eyed monster.

            • If you think our system rewards hard work instead of the chicanery involved with easy money, you are in a dream state.

              • Phil Steinacker

                There is chicanery, that is true. It’s part of our fallen nature. It’s also rife among the poor like it is among the rich.

                Now your class envy is emerging. That didn’t take long.

                • Nope, to a true Christian the life of the rich is like living on the moon. No thanks.

                  • By any objective global or historical standard, having a computer that can publish your screeds and the leisure time to inflict them on society makes you among the richest people who’ve ever lived. You ask what you want to eat every day, not what CAN you eat.

            • M

              Why is any desire to help the poor being linked with envy? Is the Catholic Church being “envious” in promoting an agenda of social justice with preferential options for the poor? Was Jesus “envious” when he said, “Then the king will say to those at his right hand, ‘Come, you that are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world; for I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me something to drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you gave me clothing, I was sick and you took care of me, I was in prison and you visited me.'” Are you not aware that many wealthy people also support basic human rights such as universal access to health care? And that many educated people do not believe that individual charity is enough, in our complex society, to assure guaranteed health care for all (legislation has led to far more people being covered than charity ever did.) I think you need to think this over a little more carefully.

              • BPS

                I used to date a girl whose Uncle, a self-proclaimed socialist, like to say, “I don’t give any money to charities. I just vote democrat”!
                Yes, Warren Buffet supports Obama and the ACA and increasing tax rates. He (and others like him who ostensibly “support basic human rights” also spends billions on lobbyists so that loopholes are written into the tax and regulatory laws so that their enterprises are protected from upstarts (like me) and thus they become effective monopolists. That’s what you’re really supporting! Tax and regulate the upstarts, so I don’t have to wait for a tee-time at the country club!

              • Nestorian

                There are many passages in the bible – in both Testaments – that denounce the greed and complacency of the rich. By contrast, I am not aware of a single passage – in either testament – that takes the poor specifically to task for their envy of the rich.

                To be sure, there is the Tenth Commandment, which deals with covetousness – i.e. envy – but there is nothing about that commandment that in any way suggests that the poor in any given society are pervasively given to an unwarrantable envy of the rich. The derivation of that idea as an integral element of the ideologies of the rich is entirely self-serving, and not grounded in God’s view of things.

                Jesus, the prophets, and the apostles all seem pretty much to take for granted the woefully unjust nature of all the class-stratified socio-political systems of the present age, going back at least to Nimrod’s tyranny over Babel. The bible as a whole is a document for the poor, and against the rich.

          • Phil Steinacker

            I don’t know from where you got your sampling of conservative Catholics upon which you based your false statements. What you are describing is Calvinism, not Catholicism.

            You seem to be a typical progressive who imagines what you think conservative Catholics MUST believe, but in fact you are quite ignorant in this regard. The dead giveaway is your praise for the “heightened” wisdom of the poor as opposed to the wealthy. Poor populations are just as riddled with the same ignorance, greed, dishonesty, criminality, and all other forms of foolishness as found in any other group of people you might arbitrarily classify – perhaps more so.

            • Well, since a devotion to faith, family, community, and life definitely comes at cost of business climbing and income, it is safe to say there are more good Christians among the lower income levels.

              • Objectivetruth

                But yes, you are pro abortion and contraception, therefore not even Catholic.

                • Liar!! Pro-life is at the very core of everything I am telling you. When you stop forcing mothers or potential mothers to throw themselves into the wheels of capital, then you can speak again.

                • SubjectiveLiar!! Pro-life priority is at the heart of everything I am telling you…. When you stop making mothers and prospective mothers throw themselves into the gears of capital, them you may speak again.

                  • Objectivetruth

                    You support the ACA and Medicaid expansion, don’t you? You realize this is how the ACA diverted funds to the state Medicaid expansion programs supporting abortion which goes in to the pockets of Planned Parenthood? That this is how your pal Obama got around his promise to Bart Stupak that the ACA would not fund abortion? You did your homework on this, or is it news to you?

                    • FYI I opposed ACA which I felt was emblematic of oppressive neoliberalism. However my main complaint, that it was just welfare for health insurers, was never even brought to light by Republicans. Too busy sucking at the insurance industry titties…

                    • Never ones to do the right thing, there wasn’t a single Republican vote for the ACA, so on the rare occasion they ALL did the right thing, your complain.

                    • Maybe if they illuminated the bill as a gift to insurance industry, they could have won popular rejection e.g. Democratic votes to defeat it. No, they stayed quiet and rolled over.

                    • Right, because if the adults say don’t play with fire because you might burn something or yourself, but instead you set the house on fire-the warning wasn’t good enough.

        • John200

          All contemporary liberals treat people as too stupid to do anything for themselves. Otherwise, lefty would lose every election.

          It is not just the Catholic liberals.

          • There’s nothing quite like the self righteous condescension of “here, let me show you how to…”.

    • St JD George

      It’s quite simple, promoting envy is a useful tool to get oneself elected and thereby enabling oneself to the riches of their fellow man through the arm of the state without ever having to break a sweat.

      • chrisinva

        For the Left, properly-directed envy is both a tactic and a virtue. And, following Alinsky, they must personify it: Koch.

        Give the masses an evil doll to stick their pins in!

        Why? Because they reject principles and rules: everything must be ad hominem – fueled by envy, culminating in mindless hate.

        • St JD George

          You know, 99 out of 100 people never heard of Alinsky, maybe 999 out of 1000 or even less, and could care less. Having read rules for radicals and knowing his tactics of cunning and deceit makes it all the more infuriating because you can see them behind their not so transparent walls laughing at all the dumb bloke’s who fell for their trap while flipping them the middle finger. LBJ did that once (all that was reported) on AF1 after smiling and waving to the crowds, then once the door was closed he actually lifted his finger in contempt and had choice words for his adoring fans.

          • chrisinva

            Sen. Howard Metzenbaum (D-OH) once admitted the same malevolent hatred of the masses that he “served.” With Alan Cranston (D-CA), he was the leader of the Dem pro-abortion forces in the ’80s.

            He and Cranston have gone to their reward – but Cranston might come back: as I recall, it was someone on his (former) staff who told me he was going to be frozen until medicine progressed to the point that he could be resuscitated.

            • fredx2

              Oh boy. Now we need a law that says once you’ve been dead, and your head frozen, you can’t be elected again.

              • ForChristAlone

                fred, the best of the day…take a bow!

              • dbwheeler

                What about senators like Harry Reid who are the walking dead? He sure looks dead to me. Perhaps he shouldn’t be allowed to run again on the grounds he’s certifiably brain dead…or even spiritually dead. Shouldn’t he have to pass some sort of test? Hold a mirror under his nose to see if he’s breathing and/or visible?

          • The Devil’s greatest lie is making us believe it doesn’t exist.
            Oh that’s right RFR was dedicated to Lucifer and Cardinal Bernardin paid for Obama to attend Alinsky training.

            • St JD George

              The first sentence is so true. Leftists mostly don’t accept that evil exists in the world, somehow everyone who acts out is just a victim, has been discriminated against, is misunderstood or just under the influence of mind altering drugs. There is no “the devil made me do it” in their lexicon.
              Expand on the last sentence about “paid” and “training”.

              • Who are “leftists” holding back the “conservatives”? Since Gingrich and Clinton joined hands 20 years ago, all we have in control are neo-cons plus neoliberals, all cozied up in the center. Far left people, who are as powerless as true conservatives, do believe there is evil. They just see different evils, that the right either cannot or does not see.

                • St JD George

                  One sees humans as evil because they believe humans alone (except themselves) disfigure their beloved Mother Nature, while the other sees evil in the faces of those who actively are fighting against the mission of Christ on earth. While there may be more of one or the other in each party, neither the red or blue tunics has a lock on virtue, which is all the more reason to grant them the least amount of power over us in the name of benevolence as possible.

                  • Darned tootin’– faith in God, not in laws.

                    • St JD George

                      The problem I have with that statement (mine) is that though neither has a lock on virtue, and some would argue one is lacking in empathy, I see under the tunics ones who bear the mark in far larger numbers starting at the top. One may be complicit, but another is actively promoting to accept evil as good, and good as evil. We are not in this world to be apolitical, to not call out the Pharisees who would lead us astray out of the pasture. God first indeed to cast a bright light on the defenders of Godlessness and to drive the serpents from their shadows and “not so transparent” hiding places.

                    • No doubt, that is what these fellers have trouble with… Christians complaining about the one percent are neither envious nor covetous. Being rich to us is like living on the moon. We are only defending the sheep, including ourselves.

                    • St JD George

                      I’m not so sure about that middle statement, for a great many anyway. If not, why do so many loudly sing the refrain back led by their community agitators “soak the evil rich” yet ignore the perversity of promoting grave immorality?

                    • The OWS crowd is varied. Obviously I agree with the idea, that greed is not good, and that destruction cannot be creative. They are at least trying to apply ethics and morals, more than quite a few of the von Mises fans just across the way. A lot of them defend the family a lot more, too, and they many recognize the culture of death.

                      So, are we to fault them for being fooled by radical feminists etc etc, when no one has ever bothered to introduce them to Jesus?

                    • The OWS crowd is back in Mom and Dad’s basement.

                • jacobhalo

                  They are not neo-cons. they are psuedo-cons. Pat Buchanan is a real conservative.

                  • Somebody gets it… Two thumbs up for Buchanan!

                  • But guess what… Buchanan is a protectionist. Try that around here and you are nothing but a socialist.

                  • And Buchanan is an isolationist… Try that around here, and you are yielding to terror.

                    • jacobhalo

                      Pat isn’t a isolationist, he is a non-interventionist. Someone asked Pat why the terrorists are over here. He said they are over here, because we are over there. I agree 100%

                    • Thank God for that man… Anyone with a mind could see it… all we bought for a trillion dollars, is a continuous stream if enemies for our country.

                    • Two thumbs up for Pat!! Anyone of sound mind could see that the only thing we purchased for a trillion dollars, is a steady stream of enemies for the US.

                    • jacobhalo

                      I agree. This country has always been a war mongering country.

                  • Buchanan speaks against the business roundtable, sort of liiiiike… Our Pope.

                • Phil Steinacker

                  Impossible, for the far left is Evil Intrinsic. The parties are both filled with evil. The right struggles with evil, too because all are fallen.

                  But the left is Lucifer’s own. The left is founded on self-absorption and the love of money and power. That makes it worst of all, and Satan’s natural throne.

                  • The left people love money more than right people… Now I’ve heard everything! What happened to the fallen state being equally distributed?

                    • “The left people love money ”
                      Yes. Money is their god, their redeemer.

                    • Now you are beached, be-atch… That is patent hogwash.

                    • Can’t respond without profanity?

                    • I’m sorry. You are supposed to be creative, not profane. That’ll cost you this turn.

                    • Sorry, but the destroyer image is too inviting for my puns…

                    • I’ve explained this before. It’s not a warship reference. It’s a reference to the people that insist there was a Philadelphia experiment, (google it) which is relentlessly portrayed as a real event by adherents in spite of all evidence to contrary-
                      It reminds me that when dealing with indoctrinated statists and leftists (such as yourself) it is impossible to dislodge the fantasy of heaven on earth from you folks believe will come when your god state is just big and powerful enough to create paradise.

                    • It makes sense that your emblem would refer to a false event that has nothing to do with what you believe. Kind of like your philosophy takes us in the opposite direction from the Gospel.

                      So here we are again, hearing about the limitations of a depraved humankind, from a neo-Thomist. Same as Calvinism…. What you miss is that God can only make perfect things, including us. Our depravity and pain are at all times self-inflicted. We possess the will to cleave to the Word. (Did Jesus teach us His Word, only to have us throw in the towel and say we are just sinners anyway, and there is nothing we can do to make the world better?> Your nonsense about either mercilessly applying reason, or else you must be trying to create Heaven on earth, is just the tired old excuse for going along with Satan.)

                    • So you decided to skip over the declared meaning of my nom de plume and just impute your own meaning, and then rant on with hyperbole, well thanks for proving my point to the coherent folks out there

            • musicacre

              Wow, didn’t know that and just looked it up; receipts for payment and all ( on lifesite article in 2012)…so the organization for “Catholik” Development has had a hand in training future presidents. Sinister. (Typo on Catholic at first, then I thought better of it.)

              • Paid the airfare, too.

            • St JD George

              Ugh, I just looked up article too and about threw up. How sick is our church, it is quite sad. Where is archbishop Sheen when you need him.

            • jacobhalo

              Read a great book by Malachi Martin entitled, “Hostage to the Devil” It is about Satanic possession.

        • fredx2

          So true. What is fascinating is their insistence on personalizing and demonizing their supposed “enemies”. Cardinal Burke, Koch brothers, etc.

    • Well said.

    • meme1961

      Socialism is not charity.

      Socialism is slavery light, where government is the slave master.

      There are things that government must do. There are things that government may do, if the people allow it. The rest belongs to the family, and the individual, possibly through his voluntary association with like minded people.

      • That is mostly true, but hardly a rule. Israel is socialist, and it is manageable and unoppressive because of small size and common culture.

        And BTW, recently even Sweden has higher social mobility, compared to the US.

        • Sweden is a parasite.

  • The only support a principled entrepreneur should ever need from government is the return of the nun’s loophole to income tax law.

    • Michael Paterson-Seymour

      In his encyclical Populorum Progressio (1967) Bl Paul VI outlined the appropriate rôle of government in developing the economy: “Individual initiative alone and the interplay of competition will not ensure satisfactory development. We cannot proceed to increase the wealth and power of the rich while we entrench the needy in their poverty and add to the woes of the oppressed. Organized programs are necessary for “directing, stimulating, coordinating, supplying and integrating” the work of individuals and intermediary organizations.

      It is for the public authorities to establish and lay down the desired goals, the plans to be followed, and the methods to be used in fulfilling them; and it is also their task to stimulate the efforts of those involved in this common activity. But they must also see to it that private initiative and intermediary organizations are involved in this work. In this way they will avoid total collectivization and the dangers of a planned economy which might threaten human liberty and obstruct the exercise of man’s basic human rights.”

      He also had stern words for the Liberals: “certain concepts have somehow arisen out of these new conditions [industrialisation] and insinuated themselves into the fabric of human society. These concepts present profit as the chief spur to economic progress, free competition as the guiding norm of economics, and private ownership of the means of production as an absolute right, having no limits nor concomitant social obligations

      This unbridled liberalism paves the way for a particular type of tyranny, rightly condemned by Our predecessor Pius XI, for it results in the “international imperialism of money.”

      Such improper manipulations of economic forces can never be condemned enough; let it be said once again that economics is supposed to be in the service of man.”

      • Yes, but the need for government to do anything at all can be mitigated more efficiently by philanthropy from the local entrepreneur. Why force the money to make a 6000 mile round trip to DC if it can be put to good use sooner locally? Let those who want government fund government, let those who want individual charity fund individual charity.

        • Michael Paterson-Seymour

          But that does not remove the need for someone (and who, if not “the public authorities”?) to “lay down the desired goals, the plans to be followed, and the methods to be used in fulfilling them.”

          As Bl Paul VI says, “Organized programs are necessary for “directing, stimulating, coordinating, supplying and integrating” the work of individuals and intermediary organizations.”

          This task neeeds to be performed, not only by governments, but also, and especially, at the international level. Hence the Pope also says, “Who can fail to see the need and importance of thus gradually coming to the establishment of a world authority capable of taking effective action on the juridical and political planes?” A new international order and one wioth real teeth is needed.

          • Austin Ruse

            Laughable that someone in government can “plan” an economy. Dangerous, too.

            • Michael Paterson-Seymour

              Bl Paul VI foresaw the danger, which is why he insists that, “they must also see to it that private initiative and intermediary organizations are involved in this work.”

              Obviously, government ministers should work in the closest collaboration with leaders of industry, the representatives of organised labour, the intelligensia and others

            • St JD George

              You mean like the Soviet 5 year plans that had to be continually scrapped? Somewhere I read once about how government programs, however well intentioned (?), always lag and amplify the natural cycles to make things far worse than otherwise. And they never, ever learn the lesson of the law of unintended consequences.

            • John200

              It is hard to imagine a more idiotic premise.

              I enjoyed your article and learned from it.

              Thanks!

          • LarryCicero

            At what point does intervention by the state become excessive according to CCC 1883? This appears to contradict the principle of subsidiarity.

            • Michael Paterson-Seymour

              As the Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church explains, “On the basis of this principle, all societies of a superior order must adopt attitudes of help (“subsidium”) — therefore of support, promotion, development — with respect to lower-order societies,” which Populorum Progressio was designed to encourage.

              The sea and its resources (including the right of access to it by land-locked states) is an obvious example of the sort of problem that can only be resolved through international conventions. It is easy to think of many other examples.

          • Subsidarity can eliminate the need for organization, if practiced properly. Family first, then friends, then neighborhood, then village, then city, then county, then State, then Federal. In that order. “lay down the desired goals, the plans to be followed, and the methods to be used in fulfilling them.” belongs only to the final five of those, properly.

            • craig

              Good point. The best public authorities to specify goals, plans, and methods are those close to the action, especially those who will be directly affected one way or the other by the outcome. As in every other sphere of life, everyone is conservative about the things he knows best. The 1960s governmental optimism which permeates Populorum Progressio does not elevate the omniscience of government to an article of faith, but many misread it that way.

          • Sam Martinez

            Michael, I think you’re too smart for this group.

            • GG

              Said the relativist.

            • RufusChoate

              Tsk Tsk. Don’t fret about anyone ever speaking so loutish and disparagingly of you as not being smart enough for this group.

              They are generally gentle men and ladies.

      • RufusChoate

        As I frequently observe to the consternation of Libertarians, I see very little problems with authentic Church Teaching on economic (pre-Bergoglio) and Conservative Economic policies.

        The Left loves the Welfare State not because it is effective or just but because it is expensive and wasteful with great opportunities for creating wealth and political power for themselves administering it as a patronage program.

  • Objectivetruth

    “John DiIulio of the University of Pennsylvania gave perhaps the most disappointing talk. He went after “self-professed Catholics” who had dared to challenge some of the Pope’s economic pronouncements.”

    John Dilulio makes nice bank and benefits sitting in his cozy Ivory Tower office overlooking the campus of the University of Pennsylvania’s swank, only the rich can afford the tuition, campus. He should be careful spouting such pronouncements. Interestingly, Dr. Kermit Gosnell’s abortion house of horrors operated for decades a mere ten blocks from Penn. Where was your indignation then, John?

    Pharasees in glass houses….careful John……

    • Scott W.

      “only the rich can afford the tuition”

      Not to worry–for all their sanctimonious bluster, progressives go conspicuously silent on usury.

      • There is nothing more usurious than an Ivy tuition that turns a human being into a human annuity when charged at full rate, but is often reduced capriciously.

    • Anne Hendershott

      I agree – not surprised the DiIulio would disappoint. He was a major disappointment when he served in the Bush administration’s office of Faith Based Partnerships. He left the position”early” because of the conflicts he caused there. There were major problems – not sure why Austin would say he was “greatly admired” by conservatives – not the ones I know.

      • Objectivetruth

        Bastions of liberalism such as the University of Pennsylvania are a self absorbed bubble where Catholics enter and soon are enraptured by the IV League flora and fauna and soon absorbed in to the liberal body politic. I live close to Penn, I see it happen. One never hears pushback from the supposed Catholic academia on campus against atheistic “bioethicists” Kaplan and Emmanuel spouting the utilitarian “ethics” of euthenasia and abortion. Thankfully, John Hess, Father Tad and the crew at the NCBC are only twenty blocks from Penn fighting the good fight. If Penn were truly open minded, they’d hire the likes of Robby George, instead of the current Squishy token Catholics syncophants currently there.

  • Vinny

    Hmmmm, they don’t like Koch. Wonder what they think of George Soros.

    • Anne Hendershott

      Schneck likely thinks very highly of George Soros because Schneck has served on the Board of Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good – the fake Catholic Group that convinced so many Catholics to vote for the pro-abortion Obama instead of the pro-life Republican candidate because Obama would reduce poverty and thus reduce abortion.

      • Sam Martinez

        Mitt Romney was pro-life? Lady, Romneycare in Massachusetts was almost identical to Obamacare except that it covered abortion. This black-and-white ignorant thinking is what allows evil to prevail in politics.

        • St JD George

          Romneycare was born of compromise with a deeply blue legislature. Beyond the state house, one personally is committed through his actions to reduce the abortion rate. The other is personally committed through his actions that women have access to killing their babies at all costs, and even after birth. Politics is messy I’ll grant you, but the personal character contrast could not be more black and white, sorry.

        • Kathy

          I think she is talking about 2008.

          • RufusChoate

            Both 2012 and 2008, The Soros funded group- Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good had the same claim in 2012 for the reelection campaign of Obama.

            • Kathy

              Yes, but it was first used in 2008 to convince Catholics to vote for the abortion monger Obama.

              • Sam Martinez

                Abortion rates are at their lowest ever. Under Obama.

                • So are marriage rates and the labor force participation rate is at 35 year lows. You want to provide a plausible connection or just stick with assertiong correlation with causation?

                • Kathy

                  First of all, what is the pregnancy level now? I believe the pregnancy rate is lower during bad economic times. Secondly, how many women are using the morning after pill? To say Obama is somehow the cause of fewer abortions is ridiculous. Planned Parenthood is experiencing record profits. We know that ending pregnancies is their main product. If they are not performing mechanical abortions they are providing the morning after pill. He has not done or said anything to cause a drop in abortions. If that is the case (fewer abortions) it is certainly much more likely due to the pro-life movement and NOT anything Obama might have done. Get real.

                • asmondius

                  yup, a million per year is a mighty big accomplishment.

                • meme1961

                  Correlation is not causation.

                  Obama has nothing to do with this, except that in bad economic times, women are more careful not to get pregnant.

                  The most likely cause of the drop in abortion rates is the slow but successful conversion of the American mind in regards to this American Holocaust.

                • Objectivetruth

                  Coincidence. It’s like saying bat mitzvah’s were down under Hitler. 3d ultrasound, the strong efforts of Pro Life Groups have had an effect on abortion rates. If anything, Obama has done all he can to increase abortions. He hates having young women “punished” with a baby………

        • RufusChoate

          Romney is duplicitous and deeply flawed man and candidate but the Massachusetts legislation that bears his name was formulated in the Leftist fever swamp of the Massachusetts General Assembly while George Soros is still a convicted felon for engaging in insider trading in France along with a long sordid history of international corruption and vice.

          • I think if I had been the Chancellor of the Excchequer when Soros was manipulating the pound sterling, I’d have looked for a way to either expose him as a financial terrorist and have MI6 deal with him, or bait him into a “adverse position”.

            • RufusChoate

              I would have unleashed the SAS on him covertly and dropped him over the North Atlantic for a swimming exercise.

      • St JD George

        Sometimes I wish people would suspend emotions and partisanship and just study the facts objectively (ha). The reality that belittles the hollow arguments is that poverty has increased under these so called benevolent programs not decreased, income inequality has grown, more able bodied people have been put under a trance of semi-permanent state dependency, and more families than before have been torn apart. Thankfully abortion rates are down but not due to the politburo’s aggressive support for this inalienable right, it is due to the blood, sweat and tears of the pro-life effort at the local and state level to help stem this tide. The facts simply are that these programs are abysmal failures and so there must be some other motive for promoting them. I wonder what that might be.

        • meme1961

          20 Trillion dollars has been spent on the “War on Poverty”, and the problem is much, much worse than when we started.

          Interesting, isn’t it, that our national debt is about that figure?

          • John200

            You can add and subtract. Lefties cannot, or pretend they cannot.

            There are three subhuman trolls here, perhaps one with three accounts, and he is playing with you.

      • BXVI

        Why can’t CUA get rid of Schneck? I mean, how can he remain affiliated with the University? It’s a scandal.

        • Nestorian

          That’s exactly the purpose of academic tenure – to give professors the freedom to express opinions that might be unpopular and otherwise undermine their job security.

          If you really want CUA to get rid of Schneck, then that is tantamount to the argument that academic tenure should be abolished.

          I’m sure Anne Hendershott, for one, wouldn’t be pleased with that idea. I’m sure she would prefer that Schneck maintain his position to the alternative that her own academic position might become insecure based on a general abolition of tenure.

      • NDaniels

        Poverty is not an excuse for destroying the life of a son or daughter residing in their mother’s womb.

      • Guy McClung

        Anne-You go girl! So good to see your name here! Check out voting-democrat=sin at http://www.sinvotedemocrat.com.Guy Mcclung San Antonio

    • Or Tom Steyer. You can bet your posterior that they’ll cash their checks with alacrity.

      • St JD George

        Watching lib’s froth at the mouth over hearing the word Koch like Pavlov’s dog is a sight to behold. Especially when one goes and does the research to see who the top campaign donors were, individually and organizationally. The Koch’s were so far down the list to not be even funny. As I recall 9 of the top 10 were lib. I’m convinced that hypocrisy has too many syllables for them to remember and understand.

  • Nestorian

    Mr. Ruse,

    You have still not told us what your personal salary is, and what the terms of your health insurance policy are.

    Turnabout is fair play; if you are going to take potshots at your political opponents by noting that their offices are much more lavish than your own, then we all deserve to know also what material advantages you take for granted that you would deny to millions of others as a matter of law and public policy.

    • Gail Finke

      Wow, that’s some comment. I had no idea that whatever a person’s benefits or salary are mean that he or she wants to deny those same things to millions of other people forever by law! Thanks for enlightening me!

      • St JD George

        That’s because Nest is full of envy and concerns himself only with whether Mr. Ruse might have “more than his fair share”.

      • Nestorian

        Gail,

        Mr. Ruse himself has this idea. Otherwise why bring up the fact, as he did, that his political opponents’ offices are far more lavish than his own as part of his polemic against them?

        To that extent, I am merely giving Mr. Ruse a dose of his own medicine. Beyond that, it is a fact of common human experience that a person’s political convictions will usually be rather strongly shaped by their personal circumstances.

        As Sinclair Lewis said, “It is hard to get a man to understand something if his salary depends upon his not understanding it.” Mr. Ruse ought to ask himself if that adage applies to him.

    • Scott W.

      To paraphrase Our Lord, If Mr. Ruse has spoken wrongly, testify to the wrong. Otherwise, why do you beat him with distracting tu quoque?

      • Nestorian

        Why did Mr. Ruse himself do so by bringing up the comparative lavishness of his political opponents’ offices?

        • Scott W.

          That’s not how to quoque works.

          • Nestorian

            Ruse himself began the tu quoque game by using the lavishness of his opponents’ offices as a point against them. As I said in my original post, “turnabout is fair play.”

    • chrisinva

      Alinsky: forget ideas, create the bete noir! Ad hominem, ad hominem!

      Nestorian embraces the class consciousness of the Left: only the poor have the right to criticize!

      (Oh, and the well-to-do who agree with Marx and Juan Luis Segundo about the legitimate power of the poor).

      So convenient, so familiar, so boring: the lust for power, not truth.

      • Nestorian

        If you read your bible carefully and thoroughly (both testaments), you would recognize that the class consciousness of the left is pretty much that of Christ, the Prophets, and the Apostles too.

        If nothing else, read the Gospel of Luke and the Letter of James. You will see what I just claimed to be abundantly verified.

        • chrisinva

          Wrong again. There is no place in Christianity for the class struggle culminating in an earthly apocalypse followed by an earthly paradise where “Truly Socialist Man” will wander free like Robinson Crusoe (See Marx’s “The German Ideology.”)

          Nice try though.

          • Nestorian

            I never said that the Bible promises the poor a socialist paradise. What I said is that the radical moral critique that Marxists have traditionally directed at capitalism can find a very solid foundation in the Scriptures, with the Prophets’, Apostles’, and the Lord’s decidedly class-conscious compassion for the poor and condemnation of the rich – as may be seen across literally dozens of passages in both testaments.

            But what the Bible DOES promise the poor is a Millenium of peace and justice in which Christ Himself rules as earthly King, following His Glorious Return. At that time, Christ promise that “The meek shall inherit the land” (Mt 5) will find its literal fulfillment, as will Mary’s prediction that “The rich will be sent away empty” (from the Magnificat).

            • chrisinva

              The critique, yes. But not class consciousness, which denies free will and makes of man a mechanism imprisoned by his unchangeable membership in a historical class (but wait! the dialectic magically allows the **believer** to exit that historically determinist maelstrom and become **free** – if he joins the party faction that manages to survive the inevitable purges and assassinations, that is.

              Read the account of the Rich Young Man and tell me Jesus condemned him.

              Hint: “Jesus looked at him and loved him.”

              Another hint: **After** the rich young man had told him he’d followed all the commandments (4 thru 10) all his life.

              How many of us could tell Jesus that and not be swallowed up in a big black hole (see Acts – Ananias).

              Conclusion: “Class struggle” is materialistic, determinist, and inhuman. Find another ideology.

    • That’s none of your business. Asking such a question just shows you to be obnoxious and ill-mannered.

    • fredx2

      Let’s follow the logic here. If Austin Ruse takes potshots at his “political opponents” offices, then he should disclose what his offices look like. Obviously, Nestorian knows that will not work, so he instead seeks to understand Austin Ruse’s personal financial situation.

      Fail.

    • John200

      Dear Nestorian,
      If Mr. Ruse is as rich as you think, then he can afford to work for a small salary because his wealth, his power, and his influence,… um,uh,… oh, look at me, trying to educate a clown who thinks he is a 21st century Nestorian.

      Ha, ha, ha, ha,…. I am embarrassed but I brought it on myself. I apologize for the waste.

      • Objectivetruth

        Excellent…!

      • Nestorian

        The point is that Mr. Ruse is probably not one of the working poor – of whom there are tens of millions even in this country – who labor full-time and more, yet earn a pitifully unjust $15,000 a year or so while working at minimum wage. If Mr. Ruse labored under those conditions, I’m quite certain he would be singing a different tune on economic matters than that of the Republicans.

        My own guess is that Mr. Ruse earns at least ten times that. He has no idea what it is like to live under the stress and desperation of severe, grinding want and poverty, as is the lot of billions on this planet.

        But Christ does, and he makes clear his general preference for the poor, and his general condemnation of the rich, in quite a number of Gospel passages, particular as recorded in Luke.

        • John200

          Dear Nesty,
          1. Thank you for, “…yet earn a pitifully unjust $15,000 a year or so…”
          I re-apologize for the waste. To take you up on “unjust” would be to educate you (good idea!) but also, to discredit you in public (not needed).

          2. “If Mr. Ruse labored under those conditions,…” he would improve himself and his work so that he would not need your misdirected pity and generally backward thinking.

          Here is a quick course of forward thinking for you:

          1. Millions have improved themselves and their work. I am one, as is every adult in my extended family (100+ people come under this definition). Statistically speaking, I am 99% certain that you have done the same (I allow for the possibility that you are in the “reverse 1%”).
          2. You think they can’t.
          3. Sad and backward, Nesty.

          What to do??? Your screen name is an embarrassing heresy, already discredited. Your prudential thinking is not great.

          I’ll pray for you, and hope you learn something soon. Lent is a perfect time to recollect yourself and move to the light of orthodox Roman Catholic faith, while rejecting heresy.

          All this can be yours, and He wants you to have it.

  • Nestorian

    And for good measure, Mr. Ruse, you have also not yet told us why the fact that the “juice box” theologians cannot find decent academic positions makes them inferior human beings, and unworthy of offering a serious opinion on how Catholics ought to engage the political sphere.

    In point of fact, you owe them all an apology for this gratuitous and rather mean-spirited slur.

    • Scott W.

      This point I agree with because it seems that by “Juice-Box Theologians”, he has primarily one rather pugnacious Catholic blogger in mind. I would prefer that Mr. Ruse call people out by name rather than engaging in this passive-aggressive name-calling.

      • Austin Ruse

        Who are you thinking of?

      • fredx2

        I prefer the term “Marijuana Brownie Theologians”

    • craig

      To invoke one’s own Ph.D. credentials in an argument is always a demand to be cited as an authority. It’s fair for the hearer to question in return whether one’s claimed authority is actually accepted by one’s peers (either academic or professional), and not the self-styled authority of a ‘professor vagans’.

    • GG

      Do not be so Jansenist.

      • Nestorian

        I don’t get it. Please enlighten me: What is Jansenist about my calling out Mr. Ruse on his unjustifiable and mean-spirited belittling of his political opponents on account of their not having a decent academic position?

    • You owe us an apology for invading this website in bad faith, even if now you are using one of your various pseudonyms consistently.

  • Watosh

    Personally I am a Catholic and believe that following Catholic teaching will save the world, and not the liberal social ideas of the Democrat Party, nor will the liberal economic ideas of the Republican Party ill save the world. I do wonder though when someone claims they support a “smaller government and less regulation and market solutions” why they support the Republican Party when all Republican administrations, including the canonized Ronald Reagan, have enlarged the government, introduced more regulation, and practiced crony capitalism. I can see why they wouldn’t support the Democrat Party, which I certainly don’t myself, but the Republicrats?

    • Vinny

      Constitution Party.

      • Once again, the problem is a circus. New clowns will not help.

        • asmondius

          And we continue to be fed peanuts.

  • Gail Finke

    Excellent piece, thanks for covering this so we know what was said.

  • St JD George

    Having read Atlas Shrugged it never once occurred to me that John Galt was a Christ like figure, far from it. The book was the story of man’s struggles living of this world and devoid of God. In the context of the seven deadly sins to be sure John was full of pride. However, the societal response was full of every single sin except perhaps lust, though it too is clearly at the center of sinful worship today. Not thankful for the opportunities afforded them that they would not have had without with their own inept abilities, they chose not to exercise their free will in leaving but to tear down another’s success out of avarice, envy and greed. They chose to extract their wrath though deceit and underhandedness by using the strong arm of the government to extract their “fair share”. A particularly venomous viper brood were the sloth class who were quite comfortable living off the spoils of the accomplished in gluttony like royalty, or leaches. They would all rather live in a “collective squalor of misery” than see another man succeed and have more than them, not content with what they have. An over abundance of pride is sinful, particularly when lacking in empathy, but greed, envy, wrath, sloth, gluttony, and even lust are a toxic brew who’s aroma vents from the ground straight from the kitchens of Gehenna.

  • chrisinva

    Knute Rockne, a solid Catholic and Professor of Chemistry at my alma mater, put it bluntly:

    “The best defense is a good offense.”

    Given: the Catholic Left rejects Lumen Gentium. Prudential judgment on the part of the laity cannot offend their party line. When it does, they throw around the kind of gorilla dust that Mr. Ruse describes. Anyone who disagrees with them must be a “libertarian” – i.e., someone who disagrees with them. For them, no prudence need apply.

    Given: the Catholic left denies metaphysics – just like Marx, and, yes, just like the radical Libertarians.

    But let’s move to the positive: Humanae Vitae.

    The Catholic Left attacks Humanae Vitae, and, with it, the fundamental metaphysical and moral nature of man.

    The USCCB has been silent for years on Humanae Vitae, its president, Cardinal Dolan, lamented (WSJ 3-31-12).

    But that’s not all. The USCCB even **supports full funding** of federal “population control” programs at AID, which include not only billions of contraceptives (half a billion dollars a year), but also Depo-Provera and worse.

    Could this be due to the (sad and totally unnecessary) fact that AID is the USCCB’s number one source of funds – billions upon billions of dollars?

    Why? Make them tell you why! Explain **that** with “Catholic Social Theory”!

    We can arm-wrestle about prudential approaches all day long. They call us libertarians, while they are Marxists – the usual kind of Marxist, naturally: lazy, sentimental and vapidly unintellectual (after denying metaphysics, what’s left? Read the first line of Aristotle’s Metaphysics. They deny it. Conversation is pointless. It’s all demagoguery).

    So, put the question:

    To our dear Leftist friends: Why do you **deny** the fundamental moral teaching of the Church? And why do you support the mandatory confiscation of billions of dollars from the taxpayer to support programs that directly violate this fundamental and indispensable principle of the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God?

    And how can you peddle this grotesquerie in the name of Holy Mother Church?

    Ah. Those of us who love freedom are greedy. We hear that mindless mantra all the time.

    How about those who love power? Why does the Catholic Left, so supportive of expansion of federal power (and their control of it) ignore the libido dominandi, a.k.a. superbia vitae, which constitutes the motivating principle of the City of Man, whose leader is Satan? (viz. Augustine, Civitas Dei, I, Preface).

    Don’t try defending prudential choices against senseless spouting of pious sentiments.

    Go to the core of reality: the human person as created by God with a purpose.

    Why does the Catholic Left deny Humanae Vitae?

    Don’t let them change the subject. Offense! For the Glory of God and His creation!

    • St JD George

      Well said Chris, and a poor reflection on our sad Bishops who grovel at the feet of the state for crumbs.

    • Nestorian

      The Catholic Left has the Bible on their side. Read what Christ says throughout Luke’s Gospel, and what James says about the rich and poor in his letter.

      There was no need for Marx to develop a dialectical materialist metaphysical foundation for his moral critique of capitalism. He could have found all the ammunition he needed to make his case right in the Bible.

      • chrisinva

        Right. Christ said, “Let Caesar handle charity! Caesar loves better than you can!”

        Uh… which gospel was that, anyway?

  • Keith Cameron

    No group has done more damage to our beloved Church than Liberals and leftists. When are we going to ‘educate’ pro-abortion Liberal Catholics? When are we going to berate them about how far outside the teachings of the Holy Church they are? When are we going to begin to hold them accountable?

    • Sam Martinez

      This is a simplistic attempt to drive a wedge through the ranks of the faithful. The Church doesn’t tailor its teachings to suit the right or the left. She merely speaks the Truth. Part of that truth is that we as a society have certain responsibilities. I was at dinner with some friends the other night, and my friends were complaining about “Obamacare.” Our pregnant waitress said, “I know you aren’t aware of this as you’re probably all wealthy, but I am so grateful for the ACA. It means that my unborn son and I have coverage.” Some of you are too quick to dismiss the moral imperative of taking care of people like her and her son while waxing righteous about SSM. When you think it’s going to hit you in the pocketbook, you don’t want morality. When you think you can pontificate like a pharisee about other peoples’ immorality, then you’re all for it.

      • ForChristAlone

        “Our pregnant waitress said, “I know you aren’t aware of this as you’re probably all wealthy, but I am so grateful for the ACA. It means that my unborn son and I have coverage.”

        Your next question should have been: “Are you married? Because if you aren’t then it would be likely that you and your husband would be able to afford medical insurance instead of having it paid for by those who marry and have children.”

        As far as the responsibilities that we owe to the rest in society, you are absolutely right. Except that the guvmint ought not be depriving us of that right to assume those responsibilities for us. They should mind their own damn business and get out of my wallet.

        • St JD George

          You can’t ask that, it’s a cardinal law and will get you arrested by the PC police. On a more merciful tone, she never would have been denied maternal care at any hospital in the country before so that’s a Trojan horse. That’s not to say that the system we had before was perfect, but those in need were never denied basic care. What’s sad is that this was sold on a bill of lies, after lies, after lies. It was never about making health care affordable as verified by the runaway costs, it was always and only about the politburos take over of the sector of the economy.

          • GG

            And the cost has gone way up.

            • JR

              Indeed it has. The amount deducted from my son’s pay for health insurance went from about $150/month to over $750/month. He’s in that income bracket where he can’t really afford family coverage, but makes too much to get assistance to help pay for it. All the promises that health insurance would now be cheaper were lies on top of lies on top of more lies.

              • GG

                It is a burden and grossly unfair.

                Lies come from liars. No surprises.

              • meme1961

                No surprise at all, though, eh?

                That’s what happens when you use the wrong tool for the job. Any decent plumber will tell you that there are times when a job is much more expensive than it needed to be, precisely because some idiot tried to fix it first, using a pair of pliers he bought at 7-11 and the free screw driver he got at the gas station.

                Government’s proper place is to do that which cannot be done by the private sector. Health insurance (the term healthcare is an outright lie) is something that the private individual can do by themselves . . . and did, for a long time.

                If we accept “some people cannot afford something we believe they should have” as a sufficient justification for tyranny, we’ll get exactly that: tyranny.

        • Sam Martinez

          She is married, but let’s assume she was not. Does that mean she and her unborn child should be thrown on the scrapheap? How “pro-life” is that?

          • St JD George

            She wouldn’t, that’s a dumb thing to say.

          • Idiotic hyperbole. There are all kinds of other GOVERNMENT PROVIDED healthcare for unwed mothers, including Medicaid and WIC and….

            • Sam Martinez

              She and her husband work low paying jobs, so they don’t qualify for Medicaid.

              • ForChristAlone

                Are you sure that you’re eating at a restaurant? You behave rather oddly when you go out to eat. Despite how often you allege to frequent the place, you know:
                #1 your waitress is married
                #2 your waitress has one child
                #3 You waitress doesn’t qualify for Medicaid
                $4 your waitress is on welfare oops I mean Obamacare.

                What else do you know about the staff where you go out to eat? Aren’t you busy in conversation with those you’re with or are you bored with them? Or are you lonely such that you go out to eat to look for someone to socialize with? What’s the deal with your life?

                • Now you’re attacking a guy for caring about regular folks. What is your problem?

                  • Objectivetruth

                    You really, really hate people who have worked hard in there life and made money, don’t you? I guess you have a successful brother, that Mummy loves better?

                    Envy is a horrible sin, isn’t it?

                    • John200

                      You have discerned the emotion that inspires a troll. It ain’t the Holy Spirit. It’s the other guy…

                      black horns, bright red skin, nasty attitude, he is so mean he doesn’t even like himself… I know they guy… boy, it’s hot down there.

                    • Nestorian

                      Show me one Bible passage – even a single one – where Christ, the Apostles, or the Old Testament prophets specifically condemns the poor for their envy of the rich.

                      I, however, could point you to literally dozens of passages that specifically entail condemnations of the rich and solidarity with the poor in one way or another.

                  • Regular folks don’t impose the cost of their immorality on society, like Julia.

                    • GG

                      Exactly. It is always I wanna do what I wanna do and you need to pay for it because I say that is Church teaching. They take all of Scripture and constant teaching and throw it out and replace it with post modern ideology.

                  • ForChristAlone

                    You might be better returning to NCR

              • Objectivetruth

                Then she probably has to meet a high deductible with her plan from the ACA, with two people on the plan, most likely $8,000-$10,000 a year. So when she has her baby, she’ll have a nice bill to pay.

                But reading your other posts, I think you have Brian Williams syndrome. Your story is just that, a story.

                • GG

                  Exactly. The relativistic left always has ready made stories to push the propaganda.

              • Bovine excrement.

          • RufusChoate

            Her child would never be thrown on a scrap heap unless she chose to dispose of it. Every one has access to health care. Government made an anti-market rule to control people not out of compassion. The Left views healthcare as a patronage system. The Third largest employer in the world after the People’s Army and the US Military is National Health Service of Britain and less than 10% of these employee have any contact with patients or provide health care. They are co-opted drones.

            • Sam Martinez

              She would have got very limited care through an ER and would not have been able to pay for it herself. So who do you think would pick up the bill? Those costs would be passed on to the rest of us through our own medical bills. It makes sense, financially and ethically, to have universal health coverage. This is basic Catholic teaching.

              • RufusChoate

                See this the Left’s real problem: duplicitous rationales to conceal their lust for power.

                It is of no interest that they already provide universal health care to the indigent then claim they need to take over the entire industry to provide healthcare to the indigent. Medicaid and Medicare along with the usurpation of the healthcare market by the wage and price controls of the Second World War.

                All Hospitals provide care to the poor not merely in the emergency room at little to no cost based on their need. Catholic Hospitals always did the same.

                • M

                  Using the ER for primary care is the most expensive and least effective form of health care. Why is wanting to have health care for a poor, hardworking waitress and her unborn child — someone who has apparently bought herself health care through ACA — a “duplicitous rationale to conceal lust for power.” Must compassion, decency, and sensible economics be so vilified???

              • asmondius

                Where’s the father?

              • meme1961

                “It makes sense, financially and ethically, to have universal health coverage.”

                No, it doesn’t. If it did, then “Universal Supply of Needs” would be a moral requirement. God, who could supply our every need effortlessly, does not do so.

                It doesn’t make sense financially, unless you believe that tyranny and slavery is financially superior to a free market, and it doesn’t make sense ethically, because tempting others into situations of mortal sin is never right.

                Giving people stuff encourages sloth and envy, and claiming that sloth and envy are moral goods is the sin of giving scandal.

                “Universal Healthcare is a right” implies that someone will actually HAVE TO supply the material goods and the labor necessary to provide that care. This presupposes the right and power to force (enslave) people to produce those goods, and perform that labor.

                “This is basic Catholic teaching.”

                No, it is not basic Catholic teaching. You appear to be ignoring those parts of Catholic Social Justice teaching that you simply don’t like.

                Catholic Social Justice teaching also speaks about subsidiarity, and the good of work.

                It’s really this simple: even the Church does not force you, by threats of violence, to pay your tithe. And by God’s own words, they are quite literally entitled to 10% of your income.

                Socialism is evil; a form of slavery. Socialized medicine is simply a particular kind of slavery.

                • Kevin

                  Well then you are in disagreement with the teachings of the Catholic Church.

                • I have to snicker about how all y’all like to talk about “socialism is slavery”, but you would demand that the poorest pay back their predatory lenders down to the last dime, under duress of giving them a bad “credit rating”. You fellers are all for reducing people down to dollar figures, it’s all so completely rational and fair to view people like that, not oppressive like socialism at all… 🙂

                  • Objectivetruth

                    It’s funny how the god you praise and worship, Barack Obama, has an estimated net worth of $15 million. I don’t see him giving a penny of that away. And of course, he is all about wealth redistribution, EXCEPT HIS OWN!!

                    Where is thy outrage, Tommy? Where is your calling out him as one of the rich guys you’re so condemning?

                    • First, I do not like Obama. Second, when you say “I don’t see him giving his money away”, we know you are just spouting out air, and have never looked. I am sure he gives to charity like every other ambitious self-promoter, whose tax records are public.

                  • You are certifiably insane.

                  • Phil Steinacker

                    Tom, your ilk constantly engages in reading other people’s hearts for their motives or beliefs. That is one of the forms of judgment prohibited to you by the Church, The truth is that you have no way to know what meme1961 would demand or what “you fellers” are for.

                    The sorts of comments you toss around so loosely are typical of the judgmental left. Too bad that, as Ronald Reagan said, so much of what you know just ain’t so.

                    • I don’t read their hearts, only what I read around here.

                    • GG

                      If our God is false emotionalism and sentimentality then it is easy to confuse Christ’s teaching with our empty feelings and poor reasoning.

                • M

                  Why don’t you read what Pope Benedict 16 had to say about the morality of universal health care. Perhaps that would help with your understanding of Catholicism. And we’re not talking about the “slothful and envious” — we’re talking about children who have never been to a dentist, an optometrist, or a physician, and extremely hardworking people who can’t afford insurance. How does someone working 60 hours a week at minimum wage afford the minimum purchases to help his children move up to the middle class — health care and a college degree? Social mobility in the US is now among the lowest of major industrialized countries. We’re also the only first-world country not to provide universal health care. That is what is evil. And it is the very poor in this country that are being effectively enslaved. Many work their tails off in minimum wage jobs, but live without health care for themselves and their children.

              • Mr. Martinez, by now you should know these fellers have no interest in CST.

                • Phil Steinacker

                  Not cst as defined by your ilk, no.

                  • Not CST as defined by the Catechism, and every Papal encyclical on the topic since Leo.

              • Phil Steinacker

                No, Sam. Universal healthcare is NOT basic Catholic teaching. To repeat that lie is to lie yourself.

          • ForChristAlone

            I’m not convinced she was married despite what you say. You actually asked her? Doubtful. And don’t tell me about any ring she was sporting cuz that means absolutely nothing in our meaning-less culture.

            • Sam Martinez

              We eat there regularly, so I’ve got to know her. Yes, she’s married. Her husband works at Walmart and makes so little he qualifies for food stamps. That is the America we’re living in today. And why so righteous about her marital state? You are passing judgment on someone you don’t even know, which is pretty disgusting if you ask me.

              • St JD George

                Don’t worry, in the new race to the bottom program we’ll all at the same table together soon because equality has nothing to do with inalienable rights from our creator, it means equally dependent and subservient (except that is for the useful donor class). When they’ve finally eradicated ambition through indoctrination we’ll all be herded together in our pens at our troughs.

              • ForChristAlone

                Find a more upscale place to eat. Better yet, have all your meals at home where you’ll save money that you can then give to the nearest person rendered poor by Yo Boy’s guvmint.

              • asmondius

                He would have had healthcare coverage at Wal-Mart were it not for Obamacare.
                .
                I suspect your feeling is that either they have to have Obamacare or nothing at all.

              • Your passing judgment on us, who you don’t know. Hypocrite.

                And another thing, while you are wasting her time on your social voyeurism. Let her do her job.

            • GG

              Like our pal Hombre here the Left always has a story that exhibits all the necessary propaganda points. Neat and convenient. Not reality but convenient to press the propaganda point.

              Of course, it is two selfless and validly married people with degrees from Dartmouth, with a baby on the way, who are forced to work at Walmart and waitressing due to the evil cigar smoking Wall Street crook.

              Enter the savior on the demonic Left who finally forces “healthcare” on society so our couple gets a fair shake.

              Naturally, our Catholic faith demands we side with the demonic Left because some propagandist says so.

          • GG

            Strawman.

            • Sam Martinez

              Fact. You cannot call yourself “pro-life” unless you support the seamless garment of life — conception to death.

              • GG

                Fact, you are confused. No one here is against conception or natural death.

              • “Seamless garment” was political cover, and nothing more. As I recall it was favorite of Cardinal Bernardin who misspent the offerings of widows to send Obama to Alinsky school.

                • Sam Martinez

                  “Pro-life” is political cover if you don’t care about the post-born.

                  • asmondius

                    Have to be born first in order to be ‘post-‘.
                    .
                    Unfortunately, one million unborn each year instead are instead ‘toast’.

                  • meme1961

                    I can care about the post-born, and still be in absolute and total opposition to socialism.

                  • I care enough to keep them out of the godless clutches of the metastatic superstate.

                  • Phil Steinacker

                    Pretty judgmental about those you don’t know. You got called out by offering a “story” that covers all the political points you wanted to make. We don’t necessarily believe yours because we’ve seen liberals trot out such cover stories at State of the Union speeches repeatedly.

                    We care about the post-born; we understand the seamless garment was and is a ploy to dilute the integrity of the pro-life movement to give cover to Catholic liberals to vote for butchers like Obama and other pseudo-Christians supporting abortion and same sex marriage.

              • asmondius

                The don’t support Obamacare – it provides for abortions.

                • asmondius

                  (sic) ‘then’

              • meme1961

                “Fact. You cannot call yourself “pro-life” unless you support the seamless garment of life — conception to death.”

                Correct. But that has, quite literally, nothing to do with defining socialism as a moral good.

                The “seamless garment” refers to respecting a person’s right to life from beginning to end. What you are doing is conflating the moral right to live, with the right to take other people’s property.

                So, yeah, I can be against socialism in every form and instance, and still be pro-life. In fact, my opposition to socialism IS pro-life.

              • Phil Steinacker

                No, sam, not fact, just your poorly conceived opinion.

                You don’t have the sense that God gave change.

          • asmondius

            Christ said to give to Caesar what is Caesar’s – He didn’t say to give everything to Caesar so he could take care of everyone.

            • He also didn’t say everything Caeser wants is his either.

          • meme1961

            There is a difference between honoring the liberty of a person, and actively harming that person (throwing them on the scrap heap).

            As a private citizen, I can and do engage in charity. If she was truly incapable of caring for herself or her child, then she can ask for charity.

            That’s why there are so many Catholic hospitals in the world: the Church started ’em, ran ’em and gave free healthcare to those who could not otherwise afford it. I’m down with that.

            But her claim to hold title (to be “entitled”) to my property is a form of theft. How moral is theft?

            • Kevin

              People need health care. This is a basic tenet of Catholicism. Please don’t call yourself a Catholic if you would like to see this woman and her unborn child not be able to have any health care at all. And don’t call yourself “pro-life” either.

              • Phil Steinacker

                Who are you to call other people judgmental names?

                Are you 10 years old?

            • Nonsense– most Catholic hospitals have thrown in the towel. There is no room for compassion in health care, nor any other part of the “free market”.

              • Healthcare is among the most heavily regulated industries in the world. Arte you really that insane?

              • ForChristAlone

                how do you earn your living, presuming you do.

                • I am self-employed, so I know more about your beloved system than you do… If you act compassionately in business you are roundly punished. You either participate in an arms race of ripping off a maximum number of anonymous customers, or you are relegated to backwater status.

        • You realized imposing her political views was a waste of your time and a dimunition of your environment and merited a seriously reduced gratuity.

          • ForChristAlone

            I love visiting NYC, frequenting any of the better restaurants and asking the wait staff if they voted for Obama. If they answer “yes” I do not leave a gratuity (=tip for those reading this of the progressive persuasion). Doing this is about the biggest thrill of the visit to Gotham.

        • Mike M

          I think that a more accurate angle would be to say that healthcare would have been more widely available in the first place if the Progressive movement hadn’t legislated a system where rich people subsidize each others’ healthcare and poor people are shut out.

          • The pre-ACA mess was largely the result of two things. In World War II. the government imposed wage and price controls, and needing to secure employees from a diminished work pool meant they competed on the basis of “fring benefits”. After the war the IRS decided (properly) that such benefits were really in-kind payments in lieu of wagwes and began imposing an imputed tax on them.

            However, in the 1954 recodification of the Internal Revenue Code, the Congress enacted Sec 106 of the Code, which exempted employer paid health insurance without limit from tax. Then it really stunk if you were old, poor or without steady employment.
            Of course to fix that, the government gave us Medicare and Medicaid.

            You can trust your government!

        • Tim

          “Pope Benedict XVI and other church leaders said it was the moral responsibility of nations to guarantee access to health care for all of their citizens, regardless of social and economic status or their ability to pay.

          Access to adequate medical attention, the pope said in a written message Nov. 18, was one of the “inalienable rights” of man.”

          http://www.catholicnews.com/data/stories/cns/1004736.htm

          Some of you here are virulently anti-Catholic and callous to boot. What kind of society doesn’t guarantee health care to all of its citizens??? What kind of “human being” would want to deny health care to anyone, never mind a pregnant woman and her unborn child! Sick, sick, sick! And sinful!

          • You have reached the Twilight Zone of imagined Catholicism… I call it “hard-heartedness”… The Holy Spirit had been barred from their hearts, while they wring their hands about their bills. They are really as pinned down by bureaucracies as the poor, except the poor at least sometimes enjoy life, despite their monetary deficits. But somehow a poor man who just wants to be left alone, is sucking the life out these characters, by refusing to play as actively in the game.

            • M

              They imagine all poor people to be loafers. The reality is that many poor people are working multiple jobs trying to stay afloat. How can some of the posters here resent their having health care and education? I was shocked by the comments above somewhere about a low income woman being grateful to have health coverage through the ACA (which she was apparently paying for!). Clearly many of the posters would have preferred that this woman and her unborn child go to the devil. The lives of the poor are hard enough as it is without denying them basic human dignity, safety, and chances of upward mobility for their children. Why is this even in question on a Catholic blog?

              • You know it… That was painful, to see Mr. Martinez savaged because he was interested in his waitress. These guys ignore the working poor in their midst, lusting for a chance to get at someone who they can hustle. I am sure Martinez left a decent tip despite his budget issues… If these guys got a check for $9.35, they would leave the 65 cents…. 🙂

            • Objectivetruth

              But you are pro abortion and pro contraception, Mr. ACA.

              • SimplyALiar, a comprehensive pro-life stance is what I have, not slapping a sticker onto murderous philosophies like you… If you have complaints about ACA, take them to the insurance industry who helped craft it and is perfectly satisfied.

                • Objectivetruth

                  But you whole heartedly support the ACA, correct? Are you one of those demanding free birth control pills for one and all? I’m guessing you applaud loudly whenever Sandra Fluke comes is interviewed?

                  You are a fraud and a hypocrite.

                  • You suck the teat of United/Oxford, Aetna et al… The ACA is your monstrous twin…

          • M

            It’s sad to read some of the comments here by people who consider themselves good Catholics, but who stray so far from the teachings of the Church. If you don’t support universal health care, you’re not pro-life. Sorry.

            • Phil Steinacker

              No, it is sad to read the three of you repeatedly read minds and harts of others here and engage in prognosticating what they would or would not do in various hypothetical situations crafted in service to your fevered imaginings.

              Sam got what he deserve; in fact, he and you go off light in this portion of the thread.

              • M

                The only people I see “reading minds and hearts” are sex-obsessed conservatives trying to distract themselves from their own naughty thoughts by imagining others (usually “evil liberals”) doing all the things they long to be doing. It’s really very amusing:-)

                • GG

                  Relativists always call truth tellers obsessive. They hate truth.

          • Phil Steinacker

            You are mentally ill.

            • M

              He’s mentally ill because, like a good Catholic, he supports universal health care???

        • M

          Speaking of minding one’s “own damn business,”” how rude would it be to ask her if she’s married? As I understand the account, she’s married and has bought her own health care through ACA. I have friends who did the same and got slightly better coverage at half the cost. Why are you assuming this woman is having her medical coverage paid for by “married people with children” or that she needs to “get our of your wallet”? What an utterly absurd and antii-social interpretation! Do you want her or her unborn child to suffer? Does that accord with your views on protecting the unborn? It sounds to me as though the pregnant woman is behaving responsibly and showing admirable independence. As an aside, I have to wonder how quick you’d be to claim every $ of help you could get if you or a loved one needed it for medical benefits.

      • St JD George

        It’s not called the Un-ACA for a reason. She had options before, nobody was denied for lack of being able to pay for birth. The ACA is only about government control of this economic sector and is a clever name for just another redistribution scheme. She should enjoy it while she has it, because the day will come when the well goes dry, which it will when you pump more water out of the ground than is replenished, and the entitled class will panic because their God of the state was shown to be a golden calf.

      • GG

        It is simplistic to claim corrupt Obamacare helps one while killing another. The ends never justify the means.

      • Keith Cameron

        I have a somewhat different take on the ACA. I’m a Single parent, raising my Daughter on my own and also struggling to Pay my mortgage, property tax, Car insurance, Heat, electric, Gas, put food on the table, provide some leisure time opportunities for my child and taking on the additional financial burden of paying for her Catholic school education.

        I had (past tense) a very affordable child only policy on my daughter. I paid $50.00 a month and had a manageable co-pay of $2,000 for non-preventive care. I was very happy with that policy. As a Disabled Veteran my care (such as it is) is covered by the VA. With the advent of ‘Obamacare’ my “affordable” policy was cancelled and replaced by one that was 500% more expensive and now carries a $5,000 deductible.

        I’ve worked hard, played by the rules. And what really pushes me towards poverty is the burden of paying other people’s way. I volunteer at my local Parish (as does my Daughter). We give to every fundraising drive the Parish or School has as well as numerous other Charities that are near and dear to us.

        So, forgive me if I seem weary of being told that I’m not doing enough or that I’m somehow ‘privileged’. I’m not. And the privileges and niceties that I had so hoped I could provide for my own child are plucked away by Liberal policies that never hold anyone accountable except the taxpayer.

        • Sam Martinez

          Veterans are among the most privileged recipients of public funds in the nation. Early retirement at nearly full pay, discounts and freebies, shopping at the subsidized commissaries and exchanges, guaranteed health care, housing, etc. It’s wrong that you would resent others who work as hard or harder having the same advantages.

          • Adam Welp

            How’d that guaranteed health care work out for patients of the Phoenix VA Hospital?

            • St JD George

              At all VA hospitals.

          • When have you agreed to be shot at or have your life dislocated at a moment’s notice. They did all that, and had a DI running their butts through obstacles courses, so you could sit behind a computer running your yap. They retire early because at 50 you aren’t the soldier you were at 25.
            You ungrateful jerk.

            • Sam Martinez

              You’re the jerk. Most military don’t see combat. They and their families are the biggest dependents on the nanny state. Many of them would not be employable anywhere else.

              • ForChristAlone

                no, you’re the jerk and because of it, you should now get off of my website. did I mention that you’re a jerk, creep?

                • Kevin

                  No, he’s right. The military employs millions of people — in active duty, in the reserves, and in private companies that supply the military. It’s a giant jobs program that creates jobs we don’t need. Sorry. You need to get over your sacred cow that working for the military makes you sacrosanct. Mostly it means you’re sucking at the government teat and couldn’t get a job anywhere else. I’d rather see my tax dollars go to health care, schools, light rail, maglev trains, public parks and clean energy than obsolete weapons and make-work government jobs. Most members of the military are on tax-payer funded workfare.

                  • Now you’re talking. No more war!

                  • ForChristAlone

                    tell that to the dead who purchased your freedom for you. do you also wish that Christ was not incarnated and had not gone to the cross? you seem to so little appreciate what others have sacrificed for you.

                    • M

                      For the thousands of US soldiers who died in Iraq and for their families, I have only pity, sadness and sympathy. But how did they “purchase my freedom”? As someone said above, they died for Halliburton and for the stupidity and depravity of our leaders. Why should we “appreciate” their sacrifice? We should rage that they were effectively murdered! We should grieve for the hundreds of thousands of Iraqis killed, mutilated, orphaned, and displaced in the war. We should grieve for the trillions of dollars of our money wasted by an immoral war machine and for the social benefits that money could have purchased if it hadn’t been used for death. I would strongly encourage you not to fall for the old lie “Dulce at decorum est pro patria mori.” The sooner we all stop believing any military action by OUR side MUST be noble, the sooner we’ll start becoming more civilized and more Christian.

                    • What we purchased with the trillion dollars is not only the deaths of tens of thousands and the displacement of hundreds of thousand more, but also a steady stream of enemies for our country. But hey, you gotta keep the wheels turning.

                    • M

                      That is true. The war was an unmitigated disaster for all but a select few, who profited greatly from death and pain and bloodshed and heartbreak. War criminal Dick Cheney’s Halliburton made $39.5 billion profit from the war (http://readersupportednews.org/news-section2/308-12/16561-focus-cheneys-halliburton-made-395-billion-on-iraq-war .) Even Rand Paul has said that Cheney pushed for the Iraq war so that Halliburton would profit (http://www.motherjones.com/politics/2014/04/rand-paul-dick-cheney-exploited-911-iraq-halliburton .) At least $138 billion of our taxpayer money went to private or publicly listed firms for government contracts for services such as feeding the troops, private security, etc. And how much more are we all going to spend trying to fix the mess the war criminals left behind? And with so much of our public money drained away on death, misery, and destruction, there are still people on this board whining that a waitress, paying for coverage with ACA, has medical care!:-O

                    • Isn’t it insanity? The thing these fellers can’t even face, is that ACA is fully accommodating to the insurance companies, they are quite satisfied so there will be no GOP repeal.

                      How about this, after Ferguson they all sat around wondering why black kids are messed up. Well, the fact is they decided to make every poor unskilled mother leave home and work at minimum wage jobs, instead of paying the paltry welfare costs. Instead, the government was forced into child care granting. So they depress wages for other workers, pay more to remove mothers from children… These are your so-called pro-family people!

                    • M

                      The insurance companies are making out like bandits under ACA and millions more people have coverage. It’s a win-win. I have very strong personal feelings about the efficacy of ACA, which prevented our insurance company’s death squads — the nameless, faceless insurance company doctors who form the panels that may deny care — from throwing our chronically ill daughter out of treatment because … her condition was chronic, she wasn’t getting better, and they thought she was going to die anyway. (Of course what they really thought is that they didn’t want to incur the expense of saving her life.) Under ACA legislation, they couldn’t do that. They couldn’t kick her off the policy because she was getting expensive, and they couldn’t claim to have hit lifetime or annual limits. We checked the relevant portions of the law and threatened to litigate, our insurance company realized we had an open and shut case so they caved and agreed to continue paying for treatment, and our daughter recovered. ACA isn’t perfect, but it’s a heck of a lot better than what we used to have. I have a healthy, living child to attest to that.

                    • Praise the Lord! Personally I had felt that consumers had already learned to navigate the “managed care” mess, but who can dispute that there needed to be a harness placed on the providers? Because they were under financial pressure, and who would be the first to die? So these guys can talk about their bureaucratic death committees all they want, but the fact is that such committees existed before ACA, in the horrid little call centers of the so-called health managers.

                    • M

                      Thank you! We saw at first hand what happens when the profit motive is not restrained by government, which in this case played the role of consumer advocate through fair and decent legislation.

                    • I “felt”, not I “reasoned”. The signature declaration of leftists everywhere.

                    • No, it is the signature declaration of a Christian. Open your heart destroyer…

                    • Of the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit, at least four deal are graces that enhance reason to overrule emotion, so no. Thanks for playing though.

                    • Passions are closer to faith though– they are the Twelve Fruits of the Holy Spirit. And the Gift of Knowledge is not the knowledge you are thinking of, which is the knowledge stolen from the tree. The Gift of Knowledge is the ability to pray and know God.

                    • Passion isn’t feelings, stop screwing around changing words.

                  • Phil Steinacker

                    Another scumbag lefty.

                    Only the left claims we don’t need the military. You and tommy have zero cred.

                    • M

                      Nobody said we “don’t need the military.” What I’ve seen people saying is that the military is an over-bloated drain on our public resources and has done more harm than good — through the fault of a war criminal administration rather than through the fault of any individual soldier — over the last 12 years.

                  • GG

                    Yea, so instead of the military industrial complex sucking up people’s money you want some other government employee stealing it. Got it.

                    • M

                      Personally I’d like to see people’s money going to pro-life causes, like health care for all, than to pro-death causes like the military (and, yes, we need a defense system, but we don’t need the gargantuan, inefficient, archaic, and ineffectual mess that we have.)

              • dbwheeler

                Let’s see…hmmm. Community Organizers…now what are they good for? Oh, that’s right, they can become devastatingly bad presidents! Then there are the scaff and raff of Washington called bureaucrats, or politicians who have never done real work in their lives…the list is endless. To me, the worst of the lot are the lawyers. Is that what you do Mr Martinez? My nephew is in constant pain from his secret missions as an army ranger. In his fifties now, he is still working. I think you’re utterly clueless as well as tactless.

                • Phil Steinacker

                  These guys are dumber than a post. They are what therapists call “well defended.” They do not have eyes to see or ears to hear.

              • And most firefighters don’t die pulling people like you out of buildings-we honor them because they will.

              • asmondius

                Your real last name must be ‘Wellington’.

              • You are right to chastise a veteran for his self-righteousness against poor folks who “only” do manual labor. But wrong to say essentially, that they are lazy too!

                • Objectivetruth

                  Let’s review:

                  1. You hate people that defend our country from terrorists looking especially to kill liberals like YOU.

                  2. You are envious of people that work hard and make money.

                  All bases covered? Any other jealousies we need to know about?

              • Phil Steinacker

                I’d like to see if you’ve got the stones to say that to a couple veterans face to face.

          • Keith Cameron

            Your ignorance of what Veterans receive boggles the mind.

            • Adam Welp

              Keith,

              Thank you for your service. I didn’t serve but my sister was in the Army and was medically discharged a little more than half way through her first 6 year enlistment. She had a previously undiagnosed heart condition that made her medically unfit for military service. We owe brave vets like you a huge debt of gratitude.

          • ForChristAlone

            I’d really like to tell you what exactly I think of your comments about veterans and their service to this country, you creep. But I’ll be kind enough to leave the scatatology aside. Did I mention that you’re a creep?

          • Phil Steinacker

            You disgust me. These folks laid their lives on the line at very low pay and often awful conditions.

            What have YOU sacrificed for your country, Sam?

            You and the other two – the longer you keep posting here – reveal your shallowness and arrogant pseudo-Catholicism.

            Keith described his own struggle and you just crapped all over him. You are a fraud. So much for the hypocrisy and lying of the left.

            • M

              It’s the right — war criminals like Bush and Cheney — who “crapped all over” people like Keith and his fellow soldiers. Thousands of men and women were sent to Iraq — by a shamelessly greedy, callous, and psychopathic administration — to be killed or mutilated (and to kill and mutilate in turn) for … what exactly? These veterans have my deep and abiding sympathy, but why should we owe them gratitude? They were used as toilet paper by the war criminals and then cast aside with inadequate mental (many of them have PTSD) and physical health care. I don’t blame these veterans for the mess they left behind — they were merely tools in the hands of evil craftsmen. They are as much victims as the Iraqi people. We need to take care of our veterans, just as we need to take care of all our fellow citizens, but let’s not pretend that anything of value was accomplished by sending them to Iraq. That war has cost every US citizen dearly. Veterans are our fellow victims, even more victimized by the war than most of us. We owe them sympathy and support but let’s not pretend they “laid their lives on the line for us.” What they did — through no fault of their own — was futile, stupid, and destructive. We will all be paying for that war — in all sorts of ways — for a very, very, very long time!

      • RufusChoate

        Ahh yes the Left’s perriennel claim of the apolitical nature of Catholicism that always ends up sounding like warmed over Leftist pap.

        The Left in the Church told the Faithful who would listen that Homosexuals were perfectly acceptable candidates for Priestly ordination in the 1960’s and 1970’s and looked askance at the Weaklands, Shanleys, Porters and others while they looted and polluted the Church.

        Today we can look back and see that 85% of the ~1,400 claims of “Sexual” abuse was Male on Male (of varying age) and ~2 Billion dollars was stolen from the Faithful to fund their failure to adhere to Church doctrine dating back to the first century and clearly articulated by Saint Peter Damian. Ahh the sinless Left aren’t they great.

        A democratic form of government doesn’t represent society but the appetites of pressure electoral groups for subsidy of their vices.

        Society as a collection of individual has absolutely no responsible greater than the personal responsibility of the individual to tend to their own business and moral responsibilities. Individuals, Families, Churches and communities have responsibility for the care of others in their midst not Government .

        The concept that having government mandated Health Insurance is the same as HealthCare is fallacious nonsense. That waitress was never without access to healthcare or means tested Medicaid but the Left loves to pretend that Government solves the problems it creates.

        You should try paying cash for Medical Care some time to appreciate the hyper inflation caused by Government funding.

        Since the 1970’s the two groups of people in the US who enjoy the most lavish, expensive and extensive healthcare are the very wealthy because they can pay for it and the very poor because they can not pay for it.

        • meme1961

          “Today we can look back and see that 85% of the ~1,400 claims of “Sexual” abuse was Male on Male (of varying age) and ~2 Billion dollars was stolen from the Faithful to fund their failure to adhere to Church doctrine dating back to the first century and clearly articulated by Saint Peter Damian. Ahh the sinless Left aren’t they great.”

          Approximately 91% of the “priest sex abuse scandal cases” reported were examples of “homosexual grooming.” The technical term is “pederasty” (homosexual pedophilia where the child is an adolescent or older boy), but of course the MSM reported it as simple pedophilia, because to admit the problem was overwhelmingly one of allowing homosexuals to become priests would have conflicted with another of their agendas.

          In the aftermath of this PC disaster, Leviticus 21: 16-23 takes on new meaning, especially in the future discernment and verification process for the priesthood, eh?

      • jacobhalo

        Does Cardinal Kasper and his heretical comrades speak the truth about marriage?

      • asmondius

        Women having their abortions provided for are grateful as well.

        • Don’t forget the Georgetown floozy, Ms. Fluke.

      • meme1961

        The truly indigent and needy . . . these are the reasons that the Catholic Church invented hospitals.

        The PP ACA is a poison pill covered with a candy coating.

  • AcceptingReality

    I guess the list of those branded as heretics for supporting a free market economy includes Pope Leo XIII, Pope Pius XII and Pope St. John Paul the Great! The misconceptions about the Church’s Social Teachings are rampant. The vast majority think the Church advocates big government and redistribution and by extension, voting democrat. Never mind that conservatives do a ton of yoeman’s work for the poor, the disadvantaged and otherwise marginalized. We just don’t publicize it. Rather we keep our heads down and hearts focused on what the Lord commands us to do with regard to our neighbors in need.

    • chrisinva

      As Stan Evans (who is sick, and needs our prayers!) once put it, “Liberals will support anything, as long as it’s mandatory.”

      The Left can’t stand voluntary charity. “It’s not enough,” they prate. We need them to order us – through them and their fellow elites of course – to perform charity the right way: Make it mandatory!

      Here they borrow from Aristotle (perverting him, of course): we who love freedom are really natural slaves who need our betters to rule us.

      • St JD George

        There is one thing that despise more than voluntary charity, Christian charity. I can’t tell you how many stories (lots) over the past several years about how this administration is shutting down local Christian ministries who serve the poor because they do so leading with their faith. I’ve even read stories attacking Boy Scouts for doing service projects because they should have been done with union labor and paid. It’s utter insanity.

    • Prolifedem6M

      John Paul also spoke against rampant capitalism.

      • St JD George

        Who here is advocating “rampant” capitalism? I must have missed.

      • ForChristAlone

        the rampant capitalism that pays all our salaries and generates tax revenue for the guvmint.

      • St JD George

        I know you have a Christian heart and I’m happy to share that together. You might benefit from the “45 goals” search I mentioned above. I encourage you strongly because they are all eye openers, however, if you don’t have the time let me share at least this one with you to help understand. These are the professed goals of an organization whose mission is to destroy.
        27. Infiltrate the churches and replace revealed religion with “social” religion. Discredit the Bible and emphasize the need for intellectual maturity, which does not need a “religious crutch.”

      • fredx2

        All modern Popes have warned us of the excesses of capitalism. Capitalism, like anything else, is good when used for its intended purpose and can become evil when misused. It is probably true that much of the grinding poverty of Latin America comes from abuses of Capitalism. The Pope needs to educate himself on this subject. He needs to distinguish between mature, balanced free market economies, which are tremendous wealth generators and lift people out of poverty, and slimy oligarchies that can sometimes rise to the fore, distort true free markets and distort the free market so that the weatlhy skim the cream without generating jobs.

        He has to be much clearer on economic matters, or be thought a boob.

        • St JD George

          Unfortunately, as Augustine has aptly noted before, the depth of his economics understanding seems to be only through the lens of the Argentine experience and not more worldly. One hopes that he is being mentored to accelerate filling in those holes.

        • I eagerly await the Pope that warns us against the excesses of government.

      • asmondius

        Not familiar with that term – what does it mean?
        .
        Black Friday?

    • St JD George

      I don’t this doesn’t tell a complete story on what’s in a persons heart, but I’ve always been struck by the related analysis done on tax returns. People who identify as liberals have measly charitable deductions and are factors less than those who identify as conservative, particularly on the item of supporting their church and also adjusted for income. The standard rebuttal is always that the state is their church to whom they tithe.

    • ForChristAlone

      “The vast majority think the Church advocates big government and redistribution and by extension, voting democrat. ”

      Yes, and it begins with the bishops who in far too many cases are shills for the Dems and then the slime oozes downhill into Catholic Relief Services, The Catholic Campaign for Human Development and Catholic Charities USA. The the slime, in as much an unadulterated form, seeps into the crevices of our women religious orders that espouse the sodomite, social justice, women as priest, and Obama for President BS. Then it enters our parishes through half-baked DRE’s and Kumbaya music ministers. The slime is all around us. Careful not to step in it.

  • Prolifedem6M

    Let’s stop reading people out of the Church because of their political beliefs. The Church is big enough to accommodate the entire political spectrum. We need to be open to other points of view.
    The devil is adept at using both liberals and conservatives to accomplish his ends. God is our only true judge. We cannot know people’s hearts.
    Yes, those who promote abortion, doctor assisted suicide or sham marriage have read themselves out of the Church. Nevertheless, even they can still repent and start promoting the truth that the Church teaches.

    • ForChristAlone

      Ring us up when that repentance happens. It will be worthy of note when it does.

    • GG

      Open to truth, not error.

    • fredx2

      You are exactly right. Some continually seek to make the church a mirror of their politics. This is the wrong way round. The church is big enough for both sides.

    • There are some political beliefs that are inconsistent with being in the Church.

    • asmondius

      ‘We need to be open to other points of view.’

      Abortion, same sex marriage, contraception, etc….

  • Sam Martinez

    A little hypocritical perhaps? Catholic Republicans have had no qualms about claiming the moral high ground with regard to abortion (while frequently promoting policies that increase abortion rates) and homosexuality (while denying that tax-paying homosexuals should have the same rights as the rest of us.) So why all the righteous indignation when Catholic Democrats embrace Catholic teachings on social justice?

    • ForChristAlone

      The Catholic Catechism might help explain some of the answers to your questions.

    • gildad

      So Sam — just what are those policies that Catholic Republicans support that increase abortion rates?

      • Phil Steinacker

        I’m not surprised Sam didn’t answer your question.

    • GG

      The usual relativism from the left.

    • Phil Steinacker

      Because the Catholic Lying Left distorts and transforms those and all other Catholic teachings into their own image and likeness.

  • First some comments about libertarians:

    “Now, many people these days do call themselves libertarian. But libertarianism is a bit like socialism in that many people who claim it probably don’t know what it means.”

    The reason that this is true is that what is true about “libertarianism” is that is a group of herded cats on an open range without cowboys. Its incoherence is attested to by the fact that it incorporates Ayn Rand in its canon, often oblivious to the fact that she despised libertarians, calling them among other things “hippies of the right”.

    I know at least one self-described libertarian whose identity began with his involvement with home brewing, and calcified when his son received an anti-drug program at school that identified alcohol as a drug, without any distinction between alcohol and narcotics.
    He votes libertrarian because he’s convinced the major parties are a collusive duopoly, and doesn’t seem to undertand that if your problem is a circus, new clowns won’t help. Despite that this nonobservant product of a late life revert Catholic Mother and a Jewish father, he is passionately pro-life, as are many libertarians.

    Some others (not enough) recognize that SSM is a product of radical contractarianism, but that contracts are secured by the state, so that to extend the arrangement to same sex individuals is to expand the power of state. I see this as an example of the difficulties imposed by libertarianism. It cannot dispatch antibodies to a philosophical retrovirus, because as Russell Kirk observed, it values eccentricity.

    I suspect that in as much as libertarianism is often the viewpoint of young, unmarried, childless males and academics (it is rather funny to be lectured by the likes of Don Boudreaux, a career academic about the virtues of the free market) that pornography is widely accepted. This might also explain why they prioritize recreational marijuana legalization as a policy priority, instead of say eliminating the IRS, or the Department of Indoctrination.

    I suspect most small “l” libertarians think of themselves as such because they are looking for an alternative to the metastatic superstate, and resent the petty intrusions of government into every facet of life and the consequent erosion of the individual to order their life without some bureaucrat demanding forms or money. Like most reactive movements, it’s an attempt to build a coherent philosophy around rightfully perceived injustices and indignities. Many are benign and decent people, who should be evangelized, not marginalized. The capital L libertarian is far more likely to be dogmatic about abortion, SSM or such things because they are largely writers and academics making a living through the development of intellectual novelty.
    A final thought. It is interesting that the activist capital “L” libertrarian has at least one area of confluence with the Catholic left- they are rabidly open borders.

  • John Horvat II

    Those who criticize free markets fail to realize just how much is owed to the writings of medieval figures like Saint Bernardine, Saint Antoninus, Saint Thomas Aquinas, and other early Scholastics. We might also note that Spain’s School of Salamanca (1500-1650) began to shape conceptual milestones such as the subjective theory of utility, the quantity theory of money, opportunity cost, and liquidity preference in terms often clearer than those of the modern economists who followed them.
    Economist Joseph Schumpeter, referring to modern economics, notes, “‘It is all in A[dam]
    Smith’ was a favorite saying of [Alfred] Marshall’s. But we may also say: ‘It is all in the scholastics.’”

    • Brian

      Schumpeter was Phd advisor to Fr Bernard Dempsey (Interest and Usury; The Functional Economy) and wrote quite the glowing preface to the latter.

      Fr. Dempsey integrates insights from both post St Aquinas Scholastics and all the moderns from A Smith through Marshall in a manner previewing the above quotes from Populorum Progressio and St. JPII triology; Rupert Ederer (RIP) runs with a similar theme (Fr Dempsey was his Phd advisor) in Èconomic as If God Mattered“. highly recommend

    • John200

      Mr. Horvat, give a plug for Schumpeter’s “History of Economic Analysis” — or I will do it myself!

      Nice to meet you on CrisisMag.

      • John Horvat II

        The quote is indeed from Schumpeter’s great work “History of Economic Analysis.”

  • fredx2

    It’s really weird the way these people insist on strict adherence to what they see as “Catholic Doctrine” but then dissent from almost everything that actually is “Catholic Doctrine”.

    And the way poor little Acton Institute sets them off indicates their true purpose – their lives begin and end as Democratic Party activists. To the extent the Catholic Church can be used to advance their political party, it must be strictly obeyed. To the extent that it opposes their Democratic Party principles, the church must be hounded, ignored or denigrated.

    The whole “National Catholic Reporter” becomes instantly understandable if you understand its mission as supporting the Democratic Party. Otherwise, it certainly makes no sense as a Catholic entity.

    • The Catholic left is like a baseball. The leather cover conceals miles of tightly wound string wrapped around a core core. In this case, the core is plutonium.

  • Tony

    Tremendously disappointed in Professor Di Iulio, who has been treated by his conservative interlocutors with a great deal of respect and grace.

    It isn’t “libertarian” to notice that public sector unions are NOT in the same position relative to management as are private sector unions. If you are a coal miner, your union and the management of the mining company share certain interests. You want the coal to be mined. You want the coal to bring in money. You want (yes, even management wants) safe mines. You can then build from that common ground.

    But the public sector unions never face their employers, which are the taxpayers. They have no interest in keeping costs down, because the “business” can never fail. The people they negotiate with are ALSO public sector employees, or are the legislators, who often are the same people in a different suit. So your teachers’ union head “negotiates” for state regulations favorable to the union; sitting opposite the union head is his or her cousin, or a former teacher, or somebody whose seat in the state house depends upon union support. The actual employers — taxpayers, parents — are not in the room.

    FDR himself was opposed to public sector unions.

  • hombre111

    Well, at least Austin is not up to his usual rant against gays. But, in his clear reporting on the event he attended, he unintentionally gave a very convincing argument in favor of Catholic Progressives. If only our market economy had not been raised to the metaphysical level, as an explanation of everything, where the value of anything depends on how much money something is worth, or how much money it can earn. But it has. We are capitalists, not just in an economic sense, but even in a spiritual and moral sense.

    Capitalism, with its principle of “creative destruction,” has eroded the foundations of our families, helped extinguish (via Walmart and the other Big Box Stores) the economic bases of small and even medium sized communities, helped lower (via the destruction of unions and legislation that facilitates the movement of money from bottom to top) the wages of almost every American alive today, and is shoving the whole world toward an ecological catastrophe which will change human life for the next hundreds of years, of not forever.

    • When exactly are you going to end your reign of error and take leave of us as you promised?

      • hombre111

        Heh.

        • And other thing. Come out of the closet already. You have a revealing obsession with homosexuality.

          • ForChristAlone

            What’s another way of describing someone from the protestant wing of the Catholic Church? In a word, “homosexual.”

          • hombre111

            I have an obsession with justice. As a retired old guy, I live content on my pension, along with some Social Security, thank you.

            • The deepest form of deception is that which deceives ones self. Your “justice” is steeped in envy and disorder. Who the he-two sticks do you think funded your pension?

      • ForChristAlone

        a man (?) of his (?) word (?)

      • thebigdog

        Leftists lie… that’s what they do.

    • Austin Ruse

      I look forward to the day that the gays stop attacking civilization and I don’t have to write one more word about them. I hate writing about them.

      • St JD George

        It may just be the cross that we bear to our grave of this generation.

    • RufusChoate

      I hope you are using and appreciating that Schumpeter’s schöpferische Zerstörung is more creative than destructive with an overwhelmingly net positive effective for the economic well being of the individual, family and community. Creative Destruction has absolutely nothing to do with the destruction of the Family which is a issue of sexual morality and government disincentives to marry.

      • hombre111

        Sociologists have long chronicled the correlation between the collapse of the family and the rise of capitalism. We have some other great witnesses, including Dickens and Swift. Today, we have only to look at the families of the poor, their despair over marriage, and all their addictions which tear their families apart. We do not find the same tragedy among the better educated and the better off. Yes, the global economy has caused the fate of some of the poor to rise. But, in order for it to happen, wages in the U.S. have to go down. Right now, the most desperate are blue collar men who realize they have no share in the American dream. Of course, they blame it all on Obama.

        One other point: the economic well beig of every individual, family, and community in the world can only rise so far. The world with its limited resources cannot support a capitalist economy based on consumption. But all those poor people are going to go so far, anyway. A tiny percent of uber-capitalists are about to own half of everything there is, and so no signs of stopping. We are looking at the best capitalism can do, and it is not a pretty picture.

        • Objectivetruth

          I’ve asked you a dozen times before but…..who are you?

          You are definitely not a Catholic priest.

          • ForChristAlone

            the reinvention of one named bernadin

          • hombre111

            Heh, heh, heh.

            • Unexplained laughter is considered a warning sign of a “toroubled” employee, nut my employer’s employee assistance program.

            • Objectivetruth

              Fraud, fraud, fraud.

              • hombre111

                Disturbed by America’s fond response to “American Sniper.” I just preached a sermon I titled “The Catholic Narrative About War.” I quoted popes John Paul and Benedict about the two Iraq conflicts, then read from the Catholic Catechism about the subject. After Mass, I got the best response to a sermon in years. But, as usual, one guy, frothing at the mouth, reamed me out in front of his little kids. And, as usual, a few conservatives got together to complain to higher authorities and plot my demise. This, of course, is why I do not reveal my name on this site.

                • Objectivetruth

                  Sure thing there, Brian Williams.

          • GG

            Likely a composite of posters.

        • RufusChoate

          Sociologists are about intellectually rigorous and honest as any other pseudo-scientific construct of the Left. Sociology is only political science with pretensions of statistical analysis.

          The tax burden has forced more families to be two wage earners to the detriment of their family while the Welfare subculture encourages single parent families and sexual license.

          • hombre111

            A cut and paste job straight from the handbook of Tea Party ideology, from somebody who apparently enjoys economic security. .
            You become a two wage family, each with more than one job, when you work for near minimum wages at a place like Walmart. In their generosity, both Walmart and Kmart show their employees how to get food-stamps and find free medical care. In other words, they expect government to subsidize their business plan.

            • RufusChoate

              No cut and pasted involved but your pathetic mewlings are sourced directly from the 1970’s with a slight alteration of company names .

              The Left lives off the poor by claiming that they are concerned about their welfare while they loot the productive, grow rich and permanently employed off the dysfunction they encourage.

              • hombre111

                More cut and paste.

    • fredx2

      First, there is no ecological catastrophe. If you are inclined to know the truth of that matter, read the “Watts up with that” blog.

      Second, you forget that the elimination of socialism and the triumph of free market economies has led to a world where we can at last start the work of eliminating poverty on a world wide basis. The simple fact is that sociliast India was the poster child for extreme poverty and famine. Since India did away with socialism, it has become one of the richest countries in the world and is now eliminating poverty and it has not had a famine since then.

      Free market capitialism works – nothing else does. Where you make your mistake is assuming that everything going wrong in the world can be blamed on Capitalism. Since that is the only system that works, people use it and therefore you can blame everything on the one system that works. This is like saying we should abandon cars because people get into car accidents, causing untold suffering. If only we could go back to horses, all our problems would be solved.

      Does much work remain before we can call it nirvana? Yes. But people would be much better advised to focus on the human heart rather than pretend that some magic systemic change will bring in the millenium. We are in the middle of the greatest period of wealth creation in the history of the world, and you want to kill the goose to get at the golden eggs.

      • hombre111

        All things considered, socialism is a relatively new phenomenon that came because of the dismal failures of capitalism. Capitalism fought tooth and tong for survival and won. So far. But as we can see with the triumph of the .01%, it has no real future, except to plunder. Your average Joe wants to be a millionaire, but does not realize that there is less upward movement in the U.S. than in the “socialist” countries of Europe. As the world warms and the water runs out, free market solutions will only benefit the powerful. The workers in the U.S., which boasts about its individualism, simply hunker down and take it, almost totally controlled by employers. It is all Obama’s fault, of course. In socialist Europe, the level of misery found in the United States would have thousands of protesters on the streets.

        • John200

          Dear Father Hombre,
          Wishing the best for you, and accepting the premise that you are a Catholic priest, I offer some friendly advice: namely, get off of the subject.

          You do not understand either the free enterprise system or socialism. Nor do you show anything much in the way of economic history.

          No need to take you apart sentence by sentence, which would be as easy as peeling an onion down to its core. The point is, onions don’t have cores — when you get to the middle, you no longer have an onion.

      • hombre111

        “Free market capitalism works–nothing else does. Hmm. Why is does most committed of all capitalist nations lag behind the socialist countries of Europe by almost every measure: Health, education, percentage of people not in poverty, and a general state of well-being?

        • ForChristAlone

          Interesting coming from a guy who never had to work to earn a living. I guess one can have a parasitic relationship to the pew-sitting donors as well as one with the tax-paying capitalists.

          • hombre111

            You sound like Genghis, my deceased brother-in-law. The poor fool honestly thought a priest only works a couple of hours a week. Bet your pastor would be interested to know you call him a parasite. The Catholic Church is an hierarchical church. Why do you still belong, if you think its priests don’t work for a living?

            • Phil Steinacker

              I never bought the lie that you are a priest when I encountered it at NCR, and I don’t now.

            • ForChristAlone

              I guess priests could seek employment in the marketplace and then volunteer their time to serve the Church as do so any others.

              • hombre111

                Actually, not a bad idea. A job in the marketplace, along with wife and family. I vote for that.

        • Phil Steinacker

          Those socialist countries in Europe financed their move into socialism using the capitalist economies that actually pay for it. Eventually it will cease doing so.

          • hombre111

            You talk about the future. So do I. Some form of socialism will save us from ourselves. It will probably preserve some aspects of capitalism. But it will protect the weak from the ravages of the strong, something America seems unable to do.

            • ForChristAlone

              do you count yourself among the weak or among the strong?

              I think this is a very telling comment of yours. You view the world as predatory and your job is to save people from the predators, right? Ever think that you might be among the predators? After all, you’re drawing a salary from money donated by the poor.

          • As it was said, the problem with other people’s money is that it tends to run out.

    • thebigdog

      “Well, at least Austin is not up to his usual rant against gays.”

      So now you are attacking people for what they are NOT doing? How obsessive of you.

  • Mike M

    I want to take this opportunity to prod at liberal Catholics’ sacred cow of unionism. For the very reasons that the Church once established support for labor unions, I think that we must conclude that today’s union movement is anti-Catholic and an affront to human dignity. Support for the right to unionize was grounded in the right to free association. Unions now operate almost entirely by denying people that right. They insist on universal union membership, making their own association far from free, and their primary tactic to achieve their goals is to forbid their members from freely interacting with others.

    Their benefits were also recognized as part of a society built on the pillars of many freely acting civic institutions which are meant to be a “seamless garment,” so to speak. It’s nonsense from a Catholic perspective to support unions without supporting the autonomy of the other institutions of society… The sovereignty of the family, the independence of the Church, and even the activities of organizations like chambers of commerce. The existence of these organizations was envisioned as an antidote to an all-powerful state. Do liberals really support that vision? Unlike countless other civic institutions, though, the unions no longer function in the role that was envisioned for them in the social encyclicals. They were meant to be an association of workers, overseen by workers, encouraging each other to freely look out for one another’s interests. I’ve already discussed the freedom aspect, but there’s the additional aspect that the large unions are not organized as communities of laborers. They are managed in a top down style by people who aren’t laborers at all!

    So, they’re not free, they’re not really associations of workers, and and even if they were, liberals continue to support efforts to break down the institutional context in which they would have been justified.

    • Having once been a newspaper carrier (a kid) subjected to union harassment and intimidation- including from my own Great Uncle who was married to the widowed mother of the union leader, I say AMEN!

  • Harry

    We don’t have poverty on this planet because God miscalculated the amount of natural resources that would be necessary to support the population that would one day inhabit it. Poverty, for the most part, is caused by self serving ruling classes that are concerned with their own interests and nothing else.

    Such a ruling class can consist of a tinpot dictator who is a champion of limited government and free enterprise – government limited to himself basically, and free enterprise only for himself and his associates. Michael Novak, in his book The Spirit of Democratic Capitalism, mentions cases where such “pro-capitalism” governments made it illegal for the enterprising poor to start a business.

    Then there is the other extreme, the self serving “big government,” socialistic ruling classes, who don’t want anybody to figure out that if everybody owns everything, nobody really owns anything except those in power: the real owners of anything are those with the power to do what they want with it. Leo XIII put it this way in Rerum Novarum

    … Thus, if he lives sparingly, saves money, and, for greater security, invests his savings in land, the land, in such case, is only his wages under another form; and, consequently, a working man’s little estate thus purchased should be as completely at his full disposal as are the wages he receives for his labor. But it is precisely in such power of disposal that ownership obtains, whether the property consist of land or chattels. Socialists, therefore, by endeavoring to transfer the possessions of individuals to the community at large, strike at the interests of every wage-earner, since they would deprive him of the liberty of disposing of his wages, and thereby of all hope and possibility of increasing his resources and of bettering his condition in life.

    Other self serving ruling classes consist of some combination of these extremes. That can be an unholy alliance between big business and big government, where, as Pius XI puts it in Quadragesimo Anno, “This accumulation of might and of power,” obtained by the winners of a “bitter fight to gain supremacy over the State in order to use in economic struggles its resources and authority” ends this way: “Free competition has destroyed itself; economic dictatorship has supplanted the free market; unbridled ambition for power has likewise succeeded greed for gain; all economic life has become tragically hard, inexorable, and cruel.”

    There are other ways to merge the worst of those extremes. What Catholics should work for is what has been shown to have the power to create more wealth for more people than anything else has in the history of the world: The combination of freedom, democracy, free enterprise regulated no more than necessary so a healthy tension between the interests of labor and business is sustained, where entrepreneurs have incentive to invest in job-providing businesses and unions have the ability to obtain a living wage and safe, humane working conditions.

    There is one more ingredient that is essential to this formula: an appreciation the fact that “the common good,” is, in the long run, in the best interest of everyone. The rejection of that notion if favor of self interest alone is why the best formula for prosperity the world has ever known is being destroyed before our eyes.

    • “Poverty, for the most part, is caused by self serving ruling classes that are concerned with their own interests and nothing else.”
      You need to spend a little time dealing with what governments like to refer to as “vulnerable populations”. The ruling classes that benefit from having a reserve army of dependents are all government types.

      You could virtually eliminate modern poverty tomorrow if you could end unwed motherhood, divorce, drug use, criminality and the other social pathologies that are so obviously covaried with the welfare state and teach simple virtues such as delayed gratification, thrift, prudence and the things that accompany prosperous people and families.

      There will always be widows and orphans. I know of one orphan and that child wants for nothing, except the proper example of a father who doesn’t seem to give a rat’s posterior about the example he’s setting for this kid.

  • Stilbelieve

    Catholic Democrats – show me where in the Gospels Jesus teaches, directs his disciple to go get government to do what he tells them to do themselves.

    • Guy McClung

      I think Scripture says if you don’t work, you don’t eat.

  • Darryl Harb

    You can never underestimate the need for progressive Catholics to seek validation from the secular left.

  • Suzy

    Can any of you help me understand how Democrats feel they can be good Catholics and still support abortion and ALL politicians that also do?!!!

    • Cognitive Dissonance.

    • fredx2

      Because they want to use Catholic social teaching to force other people to give money to the poor. This makes them virtuous. So they can ignore everything else that has to do with personal virtue, because they are being virtuous by forcing others to do good.

      Here’s how this works:

      “Oh, so you left your wife and kids to run off with your secretary, huh? And you made that movie 50 shades of grey trying to mainline perversion. What kind of Catholic are you?”

      “I support the government giving more money to the poor, therefore I am a good and virtuous person.”

      • GG

        Clapping. Succinct and true.

  • sw

    “In the fight against abortion, same-sex marriage, and pornography, libertarianism is the enemy.” You are dead wrong here. There are some who support those, but there are plenty of libertarians, including me, Ron Paul, Tom Woods, Laurence Vance, etc. who are adamantly opposed to them.

    You do not understand libertarianism. I was always told that libertarians are socially liberal and economically conservative. This is an egregious mischaracterization.

    Libertarians are people who choose to guide their behavior and beliefs by a principal – the Non-Aggression Principal (NAP). As an ex-conservative, I can appreciate how difficult it is to for conservatives (and liberals) to understand what it is like to be guided by a principal. It is a foreign concept that is hard to understand. Conservatives and
    liberals have a list of line-items in their heads. If you agree with most, you are conservative and if not you are liberal. But libertarians have a principal.

    The NAP states that no one can initiate violence against another. If you or the conference speakers would like to argue against libertarianism, you need to address why it is morally acceptable, according to Church doctrine, for some people in some situations to be allowed to initiate aggression against others (i.e. violate the NAP). In your articles and in the speeches of the conference speakers, you (plural) have egregiously failed to do that.

    There is a significant difference between the moral statement “pornography is wrong” and the actionable statement “I support a group of men with guns to use those guns to threaten participants of pornography with kidnapping, beating, rape and possibly murder (i.e. imprisonment).” To say that something is morally wrong, is not the same as saying we need to answer it with violence.

    – “Any moral justification of violence must rest on other than biblical grounds.” Fr.
    John L. McKenzie, National Catholic Reporter, 2/22/80”

  • BXVI

    Is this the same conference where the Pope’s right-hand Cardinal Rodriguez-Maradiaga also spoke? I’m just saying, these folks seem to have been emboldened by the new Pope and his close advisors.

    “Free” markets have done more to raise people out of poverty than any development in the history of the world. That is a FACT that cannot be disputed by intellecually honest people. But, unregulated free markets hurt a lot of people by permitting expoitation of the weak and permitting capitalists to externalize costs (for example, to spew pollution into the air). Supposedly free markets that are subject to cronyism and corruption also hurt a lot of people.

    The debate that should be having is about how much government regulation of (and intervention in) the economy is necessary and appropriate to protect the weak who would otherwise be ground up and spit out by forces beyond their control while not stifling growth and prosperity. There are legitimate arguments on both sides. To paint all who contend that the balance in the United States is currently out of whack in favor of government intervention as “libertarians” who are not “authentically Catholic” is just intellectually dishonest.

    • BXVI

      Replying to my own post…
      These economically leftist Catholics would have far more moral authority if they were not themselves libertarians on the life issues.
      And, what seems shocking to me is that they believe governmental regulation and intervention in the American economy needs to be dramatically expanded – i.e., that the current level of government regulation and intervention are woefully inadequate. That seems to me to be a hard case to make based on actual arguments rather than name-calling and labeling.

  • Fulton J. Waterloo

    Yet another article defending the “free market capitalism” which has caused an INCREASING disparity of income in the last 40 years.

    • ForChristAlone

      not in your life. did it ever occur to you that the intrusion of statist policies into the economic life of a society severely distorts markets and reduces people to poverty? no, I guess you never considered that, but there are plenty of examples if you but open your eyes (and mind)

      • Fulton J. Waterloo

        No, I am just tired of people with blinders on who identify as staetist every attempt by the government to bring some regulation/civility to the economic process. In the last 40 years the overwhelming percentage of increased worker productivity has NOT gone to those who worked for it. That is a FACT. You are either dishonest, or willfully ignorant

        • ForChristAlone

          You cite as fact statements with no substantiation. The truth is sometimes very distasteful. As one very astute person on this site is wont to say: COGNITIVE DISSONANCE.

        • You are either dishonest, or willfully ignorant.
          I can identify in five minutes over 20 laws, (which means there are dozeens I’d have to look up) starting with the Securities Act of 1933, that have brought regulation to the economic process. In 2002, we had Sarbanes Oxley. It was to protect the “integrity” of our capital markets.
          How’d that work for you in 2008 as the mortgage market melted because the government insisted on making loans by racial quota, rather than character, capacity and collateral.

          • Fulton J. Waterloo

            So you think Glass-Steagall was a bad idea? PS do not try to impress me with your “credentials.”

            • JP

              Ask the Democrats. It was a Democrat who signed into law and a Democrat who repealed it.

            • Yeah, I think Glass Steagall was a bad idea. Uneforceable laws based upon misconception always are bad ideas.

              That you think its unassailable shows the paucity of your knowledge
              .
              I don’t expect to impress you with my credentials, but I’ll take your rejoinder as a declaration that you have none.

            • Austin Ruse

              But the fact remains. Glass-Stegall good or bad, is not required by Catholic teaching.

        • JP

          Yet, during the last 40 years, over $30 trillion of our nations wealth has been distributed from the richest to the poorest.

          • St JD George

            And we have more dependency and broken families than ever before in out history (even statistically) so what does that tell you … something we’re doing ain’t working. Or, maybe something somebody is doing to somebody else is working out quite well for them so they don’t want to stop it. Na, that would be too cynical.

            • GG

              Yea, all the mess is do to corporate greed and not personal perversion I guess.

              The people at the top of the economic spectrum and be as greedy as they want, but that is no excuse for misbehavior. Stable authentic families bring properity.

        • GG

          Stop doing what you ought not do and chances are very good you will do well.

          • Fulton J. Waterloo

            Well, GG with economic policies advocated by people like yourself, the US is well on its way to being a third world nation. Do you get some perverted glee in seeing your fellow citizens turned into poorly paid paupers? Time to go to confession, maybe?

            • GG

              Oh yea, right. We can see that by watching some biased PBS propaganda piece, but not from reality.

              Is the freshman level anti American dreck getting to be too old for you?

            • GG

              Time for you to go to confession? I cannot read your soul, but I can read your propaganda. Rash judgment is a sin.

        • Rickage

          Let’s look at medicine. Free markets in the 20th century produced vaccinations, medicines, devises and procedures that brought benefits to all in America – including the poor. Compare the free market of medicine to the socialized practice of medicine. The people of those societies have little access to the advances of medicine. Pick a country where the government regulates the practice of medicine – Russia, Kenya, Venezuela. Do their citizens enjoy the advances in medicine of the 20th century? “Staetist,” government elites take care of themselves, and then redistribute what’s left over to the rest.

    • GG

      Is it possible the disparity is due to poor moral choices by so many of us? No doubt greed and consumerism are rampant. They are our gods now, but so are other things that destroy souls and make us materially poor. Sex outside marriage, divorce, “remarriage” which is simply adultery, hedonism, relativism, and more all bring poverty.

      • ForChristAlone

        Got that right, GG. Poverty is more a function of social arrangements (like being married) than due to economic policies.

        • GG

          We never talk about how evil actions bring distress especially poverty.

      • Fulton J. Waterloo

        Yup, blame it on the workers, who are working longer hours than they did 40 years ago. You are confusing workers with those who do not work. But many of your ilk now use the same disparaging terms for working people that are used for people on welfare. You are locked into an intellectual blind alley: since capitalism is great, any evidence to the contrary must be ignored. You might not happen to also be a so-called “born-again Christian” are you? If you are, you belong to TWO Kool-Aide drinking ideologies.

        • JP

          The top 1% reside in five metro areas: New York, San Francisco, LA, Boston, and Chicago. These are followed by the Beltway Metroplex, Atlanta. Austin, and Philly. If you noticed, I listed not only the wealthiest, but the most liberal areas.

          • Fulton J. Waterloo

            Hmmm. Wealthy people generally live nera urban areas, I would think. After all, don’t you want access to the social and cultural offerings of an urban area? So now, you are trying to make sone bizarre connection to where wealthy people want to live, and associate that with liberalism?

            • Austin Ruse

              The thing about poverty is that it stands as high now as it did when the Great Society kicked in. So, leftist policies not only did not work, they destroyed the black family. Nice going!

        • GG

          I need this decoded? Are you saying “workers” are some special group? All people who work are workers. If we decide to fornicate, abandon our responsibilities, blame others, demand the State fulfill the role that we knowingly reject, then I fail to see that as a good act or one consistent with dignity or salvation.

          IOW, greedy people are only one part of the equation. We are not living in feudal times. Doing what we ought not do, calling it “luv”, and then demanding some other schnook pay for your illicit pleasures is an objective mortal sin and leads to material poverty as well. This is a grave offense against children.

    • As government has expanded in scope and scale, income disparity has gone up. It’s been accompanied by a debasement of morals.

      Policy affects income, not opinion articles.

      Once again we see, liberalism is a mental disorder.

    • JP

      It is difficult to say there is free market capitalism when in almost every developed nation, the governments of all shapes and sizes consume 25% of the nations’ private wealth. In the case of the last decade. income disparities have increased at a time when the federal government has expanded in size and scope.

      The truth of the matter is, we live in a world of socialized fascism.

  • JGradGus

    Not to be picky Austin but who is doing the proofreading at Crises these days? “They compare this over against libertarianism;” Did you mean to say ‘they compare this over and over again to libertarianism’ or ‘they compare this to libertarianism’ or what?

    • “but who is doing the proofreading at Crises these days” (sic)

      • JGradGus

        ‘sic’ is supposed to be put in brackets [ ] not in parentheses ( ).

        • No kidding. How come you can’t pay attention to your own stuff that attentively?

          • ForChristAlone

            Narcissism always manages to get in the way of clear-sightedness.

    • Austin Ruse

      But that is what i wrote and what i meant!

      • JGradGus

        Truthfully? “They compare this over against libertarianism;” Can one compare something “over against” something?

        • Austin Ruse

          No?

          • JGradGus

            Ok, you win only because of your chutzpah! 😉

            • Austin Ruse

              Im sure I’m wrong..just brazening it out. Brazening?

              • John200

                You need a lot of brass to play this game.

                I’d’ve said “brass balls” but I might get censored….

                • Austin Ruse

                  Brass balls made it!

  • pmains

    The most prominent libertarian politician in recent memory, Ron Paul, favors neither abortion nor same-sex marriage. Neither does his son. Moreover, he was the only presidential candidate with the courage to talk advocate Just War Theory in a climate very hostile to such views. Paul grew to oppose the death penalty after concluding that too many innocent people are being executed.

    And for what it’s worth, Ayn Rand rejected the label of libertarian.

  • JGradGus

    Except Catholic Democrats are not even trying to ‘advance the cause of Catholic Social Teaching.’ They are trying to advance BHO’s re-distributionist philosophy. Here is what Catholic Social Teaching is all about — http://www.americanthinker.com/articles/2013/12/conservatism_and_social_justice.html

  • samnigromd

    All need to support THE JUST THIRD WAY…THE JUST THIRD WAY….THE JUST THIRD WAY…..

  • littleeif

    Thank you, Mr. Ruse. Personally I do not share your obvious disappointment at the failure of Repubs to launch. I was surprised and even a little concerned they would invest a portion of an historic mandate on the life issue at all, especially considering the attack on women meme from the left, Senator Ovary and all the rest. Can’t we take the effort itself as an act of good faith? Having just endured six years without a nod in the direction of life … it actually felt good for a minute.

    I tire of the “damn the Republicans” drumbeat among those who support life – not referring here to your piece as much as the inevitable comments it generates. So our friends are fat, lazy, timid and weak. So what.

  • TERRY

    “Stephen Schneck is an idiot”

    Discuss

  • Dan O’Connor

    The Church teaches the State must outlaw injustice. Leftists don’t want that – they want injustice and the welfare nanny state as a bandaid over it. Right wingers don’t want that either – they want economic anarchy and justice for those lucky enough to be able to afford it.

    • John200

      On lefty, you have some credibility.

      On “right wingers,” you offer an insane caricature. Or (one hopes!) you are pretending to believe idiotic things.

      Stick around, you have arrived at a website where you will become sophisticated rather quickly.

    • ForChristAlone

      You’re right about leftists. As a “Right winger” I do NOT want economic anarchy and do want justice for all. But neither economic freedom and justice can come from a government that is morally bankrupt and corrupt to the core. Freedom and justice emanate from God despite what Cuomo says.

      • Dan O’Connor

        You are right, but we still must fight for what we can, using what we’ve got. Case in point — morally bankrupt as our government indeed is, I assume you are thankful it manages to sufficiently discourage your neighbor from breaking into your house and stealing your posessions 😉

        • ForChristAlone

          “I assume you are thankful it manages to sufficiently discourage your neighbor from breaking into your house and stealing your posessions ;-)”

          I am as thankful about this as I am about Obama’s IRS.

    • papagan

      Economic anarchy = twisted conception of free market. A truly free market is well-ordered and promotes the common good. What we have in place now is not in accord with the common good… Libertarians misunderstand authentic freedom.

  • mwidunn

    My problem is that EITHER side — liberal or conservative, “social justice”-, subsidiarian or “laissez-faire,” capitalist Catholics — should claim that its position represents the full panoply of Catholic teaching on Society and Economics. They don’t. What we have under His Holiness, Pope Francis I, is what we’ve had under previous Popes: People who are inclined to dismiss the Church’s Magisterium, because aspects of it don’t fit in with their socio-political paradigm. The whole situation just drips with hypocrisy: Consider Fr. John Zuhlsdorf — the supposed bastion of true Orthodoxy — and his increasing snarky, dismissive comments about Pope Francis I. (Apparently, an Apostolic Exhortation only really matters when it comes from a Saint-Pope with whom one tends to agree!)

    • ForChristAlone

      Beware of casting your lot with Bergoglio and not with Christ. Remember, Satan’s tactic is to sow dissension and division. We are to be configured to Christ who is the Truth.

      • papagan

        “Beware of casting your lot with Bergoglio and not with Christ. Remember, Satan’s tactic is to sow dissension and division. We are to be configured to Christ who is the Truth.”

        Bergoglio vs. Christ. Hmmm. Sounds similar to the rhetoric of a sedevacantist.

        • Bernonensis

          Is it now sedevacantism to believe the throne is occupied and wish that it weren’t?

          • papagan

            For those unfamiliar with the term “sedevacantism,” see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sedevacantism.

            As regards the Holy Father, he is the Vicar of Christ, notwithstanding the erroneous views of those who wish to lead faithful Catholics away from Pope Francis, e.g., http://www.novusordowatch.org/wire/paul-kramer-rejects-francis.htm.

            “Beware of casting your lot with Bergoglio and not with Christ.”

            It is ludicrous to suggest that one could follow Pope Francis, the Vicar of Christ, without following Christ. I recognize that traditionalists http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Traditionalist_Catholic hold a different opinion on this question.

            • Bernonensis

              If Wikipedia has an article on Bellarmine’s De Romano Pontifice you may find that worth reading, too. Then tell us whether you think Saint Robert’s opinion is ludicrous.

              • papagan

                “If Wikipedia has an article on Bellarmine’s De Romano Pontifice you may find that worth reading, too. Then tell us whether you think Saint Robert’s opinion is ludicrous.”

                Perhaps you like this passage:

                “Just as it is licit to resist the Pontiff who attacks the body, so also is it licit to resist him who attacks souls or destroys the civil order or above all, tries to destroy the Church. I say that it is licit to resist him by not doing what he orders and by impeding the execution of his will.” (De Romano Pontifice, 2.29)

                So? The opinion that the Holy Father is leading souls away from Christ still strikes me as thoroughly ludicrous!

                • Bernonensis

                  The opinion that the Pope cannot be a heretic ceases to be probable when there is credible evidence that he has deviated from the faith. Francis has encouraged non-Catholics to remain outside the Church, as he did in the case of his friend the Anglican pseudo-bishop Tony, whom he dissuaded from converting and who was, with the Pope’s connivance, buried with the honors due to a real bishop. In that case he most definitely led a soul away from Christ, and scandalized others. It is impossible to maintain seriously that the attack on marriage put forward by Cardinal Kasper and his kind has not received the approval and support of Francis; who knows what harm this will cause to the faith of many? If this seems ludicrous to you, then I have to wonder what you would consider an example of leading someone astray.
                  Playing one saint off against another won’t work. St. Robert was a cardinal, bishop and theologian, an authentic voice of the magisterium, who was writing a treatise on the powers and limitations of the papacy, and he recognized that there can be situations when it is licit to disobey the Pope. St. Catherine was a mystic Dominican tertiary, a private person, who urged obedience to the Pope then reigning; maybe if a modernist in a clown nose sat on the throne in the fourteenth century she would have written differently.

                  • papagan

                    “Playing one saint off against another won’t work.”

                    It appears that St. Robert Bellarmine’s actual stance is reflected in De Romano Pontifice, 4.6. That’s not “playing one [S]aint off against another.”

                    Incidentally, in view of your very familiar rhetoric of dissent, I wouldn’t be surprised in the least if you turned out to be a follower of the SSPX or some similar traditionalist group. I have personal experience with that type, and you will not elicit any sympathy from me.

                    • Bernonensis

                      I’m in the habit of omitting what isn’t relevant. Of course St. Catherine is a Doctor; so is St. Robert. What of it?
                      De Romano Pontifice 4.6 is also irrelevant, because what we were discussing is not whether the Pope a can be a heretic, but whether it is licit to resist him when he harms the Church, and on this point the formal statement of a cardinal and theologian (2.29) has to carry more weight than the private correspondence of a nun.
                      I’m familiar with your rhetorical style, too: baseless insinuation. There was nothing in ForChristAlone’s comments that suggested sedevacantism, nor do I belong to any traditionalist group, unless you count the Church Militant (and I don’t mean Michael Voris’s outfit). I attend the old Mass when I can, the Byzantine liturgy when I must. I have attended a Mass celebrated by an SSPX priest exactly once in the last forty years.
                      Your personal experience will have done you very little good if instead of paying attention to what you were being told you wasted your time making half-baked judgments about the ones speaking, as you have done here.
                      Your sympathy is neither expected, wanted nor needed.

                    • papagan

                      “I’m in the habit of omitting what isn’t relevant. … De Romano Pontifice 4.6 is also irrelevant, because what we were discussing is not whether the Pope a [sic] can be a heretic, but whether it is licit to resist him when he harms the Church, and on this point the formal statement of a cardinal and theologian (2.29) has to carry more weight than the private correspondence of a nun.”

                      Moreover, in a previous post you stated the following:

                      “The opinion that the Pope cannot be a heretic ceases to be probable when there is credible evidence that he has deviated from the faith.”

                      First, De Romano Pontifice 4.6 is not irrelevant vis-à-vis your bold assertion that “there is credible evidence that [the Pope] has deviated from the faith.” If you really believe that the Vicar of Christ has deviated from the faith, then go your own way. St. Robert Bellarmine and St. Catherine of Siena are far more reliable. It would be utterly dishonest to attempt to use either of these saints to persuade believers to turn away from the Vicar of Christ.

                      Second, regarding your statement about the relative weight of “the private correspondence of a nun,” I would not so quickly dismiss such correspondence, inasmuch as it was written by a great Saint and Doctor of the Church.

                      Third, you assume that there is real disagreement between St. Robert Bellarmine and St. Catherine of Siena on the point under dispute. I question that unstated and dubious assumption!

                      If the Pope tries to destroy the Church, then it is licit to resist him. That is a conditional statement, not a categorical statement. Here is another conditional statement: If God lies, then He is not worthy of our unconditional trust. The conditional statement is perfectly true, but it does not entail that God has lied or ever will lie. Similarly, the conditional statement concerning the Pope does not entail that he has attempted or ever will attempt to destroy the Church. That must be kept in mind when reading the following quotation:

                      “Just as it is licit to resist the Pontiff who attacks the body, so also is it licit to resist him who attacks souls or destroys the civil order or above all, tries to destroy the Church. I say that it is licit to resist him by not doing what he orders and by impeding the execution of his will.”

                      As far as I’m aware, there is no credible evidence that St. Robert Bellarmine ever entertained seriously the proposition that the Vicar of Christ might attempt to destroy the Church.

                      As regards the extraordinary form Mass, I have attended such Masses on more than a few occasions at three different parishes, but I stopped doing so a number of years ago. I’m certainly not opposed in principle to the EFM, but I observed more than a little spiritually toxic divisiveness among several of the persons who attended such Masses. I have not attended a Mass celebrated by an SSPX priest, and I would never do so.

                      As regards the comment made by “FCA,” it was surely problematic! At the very least, it insinuated division between Christ and his Vicar.

                    • Bernonensis

                      Yes, it was a mistake on my part to respond to your irrelevant introduction of Bellarmine’s opinion about the Pope’s immunity from the sin of heresy, because it afforded you an opportunity to confuse the issue. In case you’ve forgotten, what I objected to was your assertion that it is ludicrous to say that one could follow Pope Francis without following Christ. I gave what I think are pretty good examples of Francis acting in ways that do not lead to Christ. It doesn’t matter in the least whether the man is a heretic, a lunatic, a simpleton, a drunk or a visionary, because it isn’t about the state of his soul or what he may think — it’s about what results from his words and deeds. And this is what St. Robert addresses in DRP 4.6 .
                      I do not assume a disagreement between the two saints, but it seems you assume one in St. Robert himself. Maybe the theologians you are familiar with waste their time speculating about how one should act in situations that can never arise, but I see no reason to read Bellarmine that way. If he truly believed the Pope could never attempt to destroy the Church it would have been easy enough to have said so. Are you really trying to say that because a statement is conditional this is a reason to think the conditions are impossible?
                      It must be lovely to have the gift of reading hearts! Not only can you sniff out sedevacantism without evidence, you’ve even managed to discover that I’m a follower of the SSPX when even I wasn’t aware of it. Tell me, when you discerned this “toxic divisiveness” in the worshippers, what gave them away? Did they show less interest in you than you did in them?

                    • papagan

                      Those who believe that the Vicar of Christ has deviated from the faith and is leading others away from the truth will follow whomever they desire to follow according to their own private lights. That was foreseen by St. Paul (2 Timothy 4:3-4).

                    • Bernonensis

                      It isn’t a question of whether St. Robert believed a pope WOULD lead the faithful astray, but whether he COULD do it, and it’s clear that he did believe this. There is nothing ludicrous in believing that we are now faced with just such a situation, unless you willfully close your eyes to what is coming out of Rome these days.
                      St, Paul did foresee apostasy, but he also knew where to place the blame. (Gal. 2: 11-14)

                    • papagan

                      “[1] It isn’t a question of whether St. Robert believed a pope WOULD lead the faithful astray, but whether he COULD do it, and it’s clear that he did believe this. [2] There is nothing ludicrous in believing that we are now faced with just such a situation…”

                      Regarding 1, “could” concerns logical possibility, while “would” concerns future contingent reality. In the present case it is the latter that is of greater interest.

                      Regarding 2, the Vicar of Christ, chosen by the Holy Spirit, is the visible head of the Catholic Church. Any Catholic who is not a sedevacantist, moreover, must admit that Pope Francis is the Vicar of Christ. Those Catholics who presume to know better than the Vicar of Christ and who hold the opinion that he is presently undermining the Catholic Church might wish to found their own religious group. Surely you must be aware that it has been done before, and more than once. The choice is clear. Either follow the Vicar of Christ, or go your own way.

                      St, Paul did foresee apostasy, but he also knew where to place the blame. (Gal. 2: 11-14)

                      As regards the example of St. Paul (Gal. 2:11-14), I don’t know many living persons today of comparable stature within the Church, and he didn’t question the authority of Cephas; St. Paul didn’t try to persuade others to oppose that authority. As great as St. Paul was, he still knew his proper place. Furthermore, it would be ludicrous to suggest that St. Paul believed that apostasy could be traced back to the Vicar of Christ.

                    • Bernonensis

                      Clearly you understand the distinction between possibility and future contingency. Why do you insist in conflating them in your argument? St. Robert is of the opinion that it is possible for a pope to lead people astray, and that it is licit to disobey him if this should happen; he does not say anything one way or the other about whether it might ever actually happen, because he is a theologian, not a psychic. But it’s downright childish to maintain that because he expressed his opinion in a conditional statement it is ludicrous to think that the conditions might come about.
                      The Vicar of Christ is not chosen by the Holy Spirit; he is elected by the cardinals, who have the assistance of the Holy Spirit if they choose to avail themselves of it. But even if you were right about this, it does not follow that a person chosen by God for a position of authority necessarily exercises that authority rightly. David was a divinely chosen king, but he used his royal authority to commit adultery and murder.
                      What’s ludicrous is that you miss the point of what St Paul said. Cephas, Simon Peter, the Pope, was responsible for leading the Jewish Christians of Antioch astray, so that they were not walking uprightly according to the truth of the gospel (Gal. 2:13, 14). But you would accuse Paul of starting his own church for resisting the Supreme Pontiff !
                      I’m not a sedevacantist (although I’m surprised to find that, contrary to the logic of your argument, you consider them Catholic), and I do not question the legitimacy of Francis’s papacy or the extent of his authority. But I, like Paul, recognize that that authority has limits and can be misused. The choice is indeed clear: follow what the Church has always taught or don the clown nose with Papa Imbroglio.

                    • papagan

                      “Clearly you understand the distinction between possibility and future contingency. Why do you insist in conflating them in your argument?”

                      Fallacy of complex question.

                      “St. Robert [Bellarmine] is of the opinion that it is possible for a pope to lead people astray…”

                      If the Vicar of Christ were to lead the faithful astray, then he would err as pontiff. St. Robert Bellarmine, however, did not believe that the Vicar of Christ would err as pontiff, as is made clear by the following excerpt:

                      “It is probable and can be piously believed that the highest pontiff, not only cannot err as pontiff, but also as a particular person cannot be a heretic by believing anything false contrary to the faith.” (St. Robert Bellarmine, De Romano Pontifice, 4.6)

                      “…he does not say anything one way or the other about whether it might ever actually happen, because he is a theologian, not a psychic.”

                      If readers wish to ignore De Romano Pontifice, 4.6, that’s their choice, but it wouldn’t be an honest choice. Moreover, one need not have foreknowledge in the strict sense to affirm with confidence that the Vicar of Christ will not lead the faithful into error. For Catholics who possess and exercise the theological virtue of faith would concur with St. Robert Bellarmine on this important ecclesiological question.

                      “But it’s downright childish to maintain that because he expressed his opinion in a conditional statement it is ludicrous to think that [the Vicar of Christ will not lead the Church into error].”

                      You were the one who introduced St. Robert Bellarmine’s name in connection with this disputed point. Now, realizing that he cannot be used to advance your questionable opinion, you wish to retract his name? Fascinating…

                      “The Vicar of Christ is not chosen by the Holy Spirit; he is elected by the cardinals, who have the assistance of the Holy Spirit if they choose to avail themselves of it.”

                      You’re only half right. The cardinals elect the Vicar of Christ, but the Holy Spirit works through the cardinals. Thus, the Vicar of Christ is chosen by the Holy Spirit through the instrumentality of the cardinal electors.

                      “…it does not follow that a person chosen by God for a position of authority necessarily exercises that authority rightly. David was a divinely chosen king, but he used his royal authority to commit adultery and murder.”

                      The point in question is whether the Vicar of Christ will lead the Church into error. That point has already been addressed.

                      “[1] What’s ludicrous is that you miss the point of what St Paul said. Cephas, Simon Peter, the Pope, was responsible for leading the Jewish Christians of Antioch astray, so that they were not walking uprightly according to the truth of the gospel (Gal. 2:13, 14). [2] But you would accuse Paul of starting his own church for resisting the Supreme Pontiff!”

                      Regarding 1, I’ve never pretended to be a certified expert in scriptural exegesis, but at least I recognize that there are numerous complexities involved in such exegesis. When there is disagreement about the precise meaning of one or another passage of Sacred Scripture, the final arbiter is the Magisterium of the Church, not one’s private conscience, which must be formed with the aid of competent ecclesiastical authorities.

                      Also, in the Jerusalem Bible, footnote h casts some interesting light on the passage in question. In view of that footnote, it is not evident that the interpretation you wish to impose upon Gal. 2:13-14 is sound.

                      Regarding 2, (a) St. Paul was a recognized leader in the early Christian community, and (b) he did not attempt to persuade the faithful to oppose or reject the leadership or authority of the Vicar of Christ. You, however, are acting like a backseat driver. If you want to be in the driver’s seat, go and start your own religious group.

                      “I’m not a sedevacantist (although I’m surprised to find that, contrary to the logic of your argument, you consider them Catholic)…”

                      If a sedevacantist is a baptized Catholic, (s)he remains a Catholic, but not a Catholic in full union with the Catholic Church.

                      “…I do not question the legitimacy of Francis’s papacy or the extent of his authority.”

                      Glad to hear it, but please stop acting like a backseat driver!

                      “But I … recognize that that authority has limits and can be misused.”

                      All genuine authority is ordered to the service of the common good. If an individual invested with authority acts contrary to the common good, he acts outside the boundaries of his authority.

                      “The choice is indeed clear: [P1] follow what the Church has always taught or [P2] don the clown nose with Papa Imbroglio.”

                      Within the framework of the choice as you present it, P1 is short for “follow what the Church has always taught according to one’s own private interpretation.” That can be reduced to the modern principle of the primacy of individual conscience over the supernatural authority of the Church’s Magisterium. More on that principle can be found in Romano Amerio, Iota Unum: A Study of Changes in the Catholic Church in the XXth Century, Chapter 2.

                    • Bernonensis

                      “Fallacy of complex question” ? You have no idea what you’re talking about.
                      It is not true that if the Pope were to lead people astray, this would mean that he as erred as pontiff; he can err as a private theologian. Why do you think St. Robert makes a distinction between believing that he cannot err as pontiff ( a belief we all must hold) and believing that he cannot err as a particular person (which we can, not must, hold) ? And once again, whether St. Robert held this pious belief or not is immaterial; the fact that he makes the distinction makes sense only on the assumption that he recognizes both opinions as probable. Your repeated reference to 4.6 is still irrelevant for the reason I gave before: it does not address the question we were, and I, at least, still am discussing.
                      Your whole argument hinges on the notion that in DRP 2.29 St. Robert is proceeding with what he himself considers utter nonsense — pronouncing on what we can do in a situation that not only won’t happen, but simply can’t happen. And you “prove” this to your own satisfaction by pointing out that he expresses this bit of nonsense as a conditional statement!
                      Now that you’ve questioned my honesty for the second time (a third time, if I count your characterization of my remarks as disingenuous), I suggest that your own intellectual honesty is far from above reproach if you can’t admit that your line of reasoning on that point was absurd.
                      It was Benedict XVI who said not long ago that the Pope is NOT chosen by the Holy Spirit. If you have a problem with that, take it up with him.
                      There are actually two points in question : 1) whether it is possible for a pope to lead people astray so that it is licit to resist him; and 2) whether Francis has done this. Your problem is that you’re so eager to uphold an erroneous exaggeration of papal authority, and you want to avoid the need to defend the indefensible, that you trick yourself into thinking that the undesirability of 2) proves the impossibility of 1).

                    • papagan

                      «It is not true that if the Pope were to lead people astray, this would mean that he as [sic] erred as pontiff; he can err as a private theologian. Why do you think St. Robert makes a distinction between believing that he cannot err as pontiff ( a belief we all must hold) and believing that he cannot err as a particular person (which we can, not must, hold) ? And once again, whether St. Robert held this pious belief or not is immaterial; the fact that he makes the distinction makes sense only on the assumption that he recognizes both opinions as probable. Your repeated reference to 4.6 is still irrelevant for the reason I gave before: it does not address the question we were, and I, at least, still am discussing.
                      Your whole argument hinges on the notion that in DRP 2.29 St. Robert is proceeding with what he himself considers utter nonsense — pronouncing on what we can do in a situation that not only won’t happen, but simply can’t happen. And you “prove” this to your own satisfaction by pointing out that he expresses this bit of nonsense as a conditional statement!»

                      Since you more than once present a caricature of my views, I’ll not take the time to respond to such caricatures. I’ll assume that the caricatures were not deliberate, but a consequence of intellectual imprecision.

                      “It was Benedict XVI who said not long ago that the Pope is NOT chosen by the Holy Spirit. If you have a problem with that, take it up with him.”

                      What I said on the question of papal election is perfectly consonant with this: “How Is A New Pope Chosen?” http://www.usccb.org/about/leadership/holy-see/francis/how-is-a-new-pope-chosen.cfm. Cardinal Bergoglio wouldn’t be Pope Francis if it weren’t in accord with the will of God. So, I’ll say it again. Please stop acting like a backseat driver. If you want to be in the driver’s seat, start your own religious group.

                      “There are actually two points in question : 1) whether it is possible for a pope to lead people astray so that it is licit to resist him; and 2) whether Francis has done this.

                      There’s an example of the red herring fallacy. The real issue is whether the Vicar of Christ will lead the Church away from Christ. In response to that question, I cite again the following passage: “It is probable and can be piously believed that the highest pontiff, not only cannot err as pontiff, but also as a particular person cannot be a heretic by believing anything false contrary to the faith.” (St. Robert Bellarmine, De Romano Pontifice, 4.6)

                      Your problem is that you’re so eager to uphold an erroneous exaggeration of papal authority, and you want to avoid the need to defend the indefensible, that you trick yourself into thinking that the undesirability of 2) proves the impossibility of 1).”

                      Again, there’s an example of the straw man fallacy. In any event, it seems clear that, in your own opinion, Pope Francis is leading believers away from Christ. I don’t share that dubious opinion. Now I think we should simply agree to disagree.

                    • Bernonensis

                      You flatter me. It would take a skillful artist to caricature what is a cartoon to begin with.

                      You are absolutely wrong when you say that the question is whether a pope will lead the Church away from Christ.

                      First, as Catholics we both believe that the Church cannot fall into error. So, the question would have to be whether the pope will lead some Catholics away from the faith, or whether he will attempt (without success) to lead the Church away from Christ.

                      Second, however we phrase the question, the logically prior question to be answered is whether such a thing is possible. I attempted to address this and referred to De Romano Pontifice as an example of a reputable theologian holding that it is possible. But your misunderstanding of 4.6 led you to the unwarranted assumption that St. Robert held a view that made his own argument absurd. When I tried to explain your error you made the bizarre claim that the use of a conditional statement showed that St. Robert denied the possibility of its antecedent.

                      Third, even if the possibility of the pope doing that sort of harm is established, the question remains unanswerable, because it concerns future events that are unknowable to us. Surely you can see that.

                      There is no point in discussing the second question — whether Pope Francis is harming the faithful — or any tangential point like the role of the Holy Spirit in elections; the irrationality of your treatment of DPR shows that it would be futile.

                    • papagan

                      For readers who might still be unclear on the question of whether Pope Francis, the Vicar of Christ, will lead the Church away from Christ, one must keep in mind that preserving the unity of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church is an essential responsibility proper to the Vicar of Christ, the visible head of the Church. (That responsibility is not proper to backseat drivers.) Those who refuse to submit to his papal authority foster harmful division, not salutary unity in the Catholic faith.

                      “Furthermore, we declare, state, and define that it is absolutely necessary for the salvation of all human creatures that they submit to the Roman pontiff.” Denzinger, Compendium of Creeds, Definitions, and Declarations on Matters of Faith and Morals, 875. http://www.ignatius.com/Products/DENZ-H/enchiridion-symbolorum.aspx

                      Anyone who maintains that Roman Catholics need not or should not submit to Pope Francis implies that either (1) Roman Catholics may, without danger to salvation, refuse to submit to the Roman pontiff, or (2) Pope Francis is not truly the Roman pontiff. Neither 1 nor 2 (sedevacantism) can be held, however, without undermining full union with the Catholic Church.

                    • Bernonensis

                      The only thing that’s unclear is why you continue to argue about something was never in question. It is impossible for a pope to lead the Church into error. It does not follow from this that a pope could not lead a great number of Catholics away from the faith, or that he couldn’t attempt to destroy the Church, and if either of these things were to happen it would be not only licit but necessary to oppose him. That is what Bellarmine taught, it’s what St. Paul did, and it’s what Pope Francis is making a reality n our day.

                    • papagan

                      Perhaps you didn’t see this:

                      “Furthermore, we declare, state, and define that it is absolutely necessary for the salvation of all human creatures that they submit to the Roman pontiff.” Denzinger, Compendium of Creeds, Definitions, and Declarations on Matters of Faith and Morals, 875.

                      Anyone who maintains that Roman Catholics need not or should not submit to Pope Francis implies that either (1) Roman Catholics may, without danger to salvation, refuse to submit to the Roman pontiff, or (2) Pope Francis is not truly the Roman pontiff. Neither 1 nor 2 (sedevacantism) can be held, however, without compromising full union with the Catholic Church.

                    • papagan

                      “It is impossible for a pope to lead the Church into error. It does not follow from this that a pope could not lead a great number of Catholics away from the faith…” (Emphasis added.)

                      First, what do you mean by “a great number of Catholics”? 20% of Catholics? 50% of Catholics? 80% of Catholics? Second, I simply do not share the dubious belief that the Roman pontiff will lead a great number of Catholics away from the faith.

                    • Bernonensis

                      Six. Or 752,000,000. Does the number matter? Is it okay if he leads only one soul away from Christ? Should we be all right with that?

                    • papagan

                      As to the hypothetical question of whether the Pope could lead others away from Christ (“If he leads…”), you seem to have an intense fixation with this theoretical scenario. I don’t share that fixation, and I’m simply not interested in pursuing that theoretical question. Here I’m interested in what has happened or what will happen, and I’ve already made it quite clear that I don’t endorse the hasty opinion of those who hold that the Roman pontiff has led or will lead souls away from Christ.

                      As regards logic, one cannot derive “has done X” or “will do X” from “could do X.”

                    • Bernonensis

                      Wow. You still don’t get it, do you?

                      Say X means “leads into error” and Y means “is to be resisted”.

                      Now, in 4.6, St. Robert says “not-X is possible”, and you think this means that he asserts “not-X”. This is exactly the error you think I’m making,
                      Then, you look at 2.29 and create the flawed argument:
                      If X, then Y.
                      Not-X;
                      therefore, not -Y.
                      Do you have “denying the antecedent” in your list of fallacies?

                    • papagan

                      «Say X means “leads into error” and Y means “is to be resisted”.

                      «Now, in 4.6, St. Robert says “not-X is possible” [boldface added, and you distort what he actually says], and you think this means that he asserts “not-X”. [No I do not! More gross distortion on your part.] This is exactly the error you think I’m making [You’ve committed numerous errors, but I don’t think that that is one of them.],
                      Then, you look at 2.29 and create the flawed argument:
                      If X, then Y.
                      Not-X;
                      therefore, not -Y. [Again, gross distortion on your part. I haven’t posted a fallacious argument of that type. Here you’re guilty again of the fallacy of straw man.]

                      «Do you have “denying the antecedent” in your list of fallacies?» [That is the logical fallacy of denying the antecedent. At least you’ve got that correct! I didn’t post an argument with that logical structure, however. It’s all in your hyperactive imagination.]

                      “Possible” is not strictly equivalent in meaning to “probable.” Here is the relevant excerpt:

                      “It is probable and can be piously believed that the highest pontiff, not only cannot err as pontiff, but also as a particular person cannot be a heretic by believing anything false contrary to the faith.” (St. Robert Bellarmine, De Romano Pontifice, 4.6. Italics added.)

                      Perhaps English isn’t your native tongue. It’s also evident that your reasoning leaves much to be desired.

                    • Bernonensis

                      I understand the difference between probable and possible, but only something that is possible can be probable, and so the possibility of not-X is implicit in what St. Robert says in 4.6. I hope you know that “probable” does not mean “more likely than not”, and the probability of not-X certainly doesn’t imply that X is false. But if that is not what you intended to say, what was the point of mentioning 4.6 as part of an explanation of why you think the Pope will never err?
                      You said one cannot derive “has done X” or “will do X” from “could do X”. I couldn’t agree more, and I haven’t tried to do that. As I said before, I brought up St. Robert only as an illustrative example of a reputable theologian who held that it was possible that a Pope might commit errors that would make it licit to resist him. Whether this has happened can only be determined by evidence, and I’m trying to get a coherent statement of your criteria for what would constitute evidence, or of why you think there can never be such evidence, while you attempt to refute a logical argument I’m not making.
                      If there is misunderstanding here, you can clear it all up by telling me why you think not only that the Pope never will fall into error, but also that it is ludicrous to believe that he has. The closest you’ve come to this so far is to cite DRP 4.6, but what could you mean by this if not the invalid inference of “will remain free from error” from “could remain free from error”, the same logical mistake you think I’ve been committing?

                    • papagan

                      «[1] I understand the difference between probable and possible, but only something that is possible can be probable, and so the possibility of not-X is implicit in what St. Robert says in 4.6. [2] I hope you know that “probable” does not mean “more likely than not”, and [3] the probability of not-X certainly doesn’t imply that X is false.» (Emphasis added.)

                      Regarding 1, that is not evident. You say that you understand the difference, but you seem to want to believe that (S1) “It is probable and can be piously believed that…” is, in the present case, strictly equivalent in meaning to (S2) “It is possible and can be piously believed that…” In fact, in the present context, S1 is semantically closer to S3 “It is likely and can be piously believed that…” The statement “X is possible” does not necessarily entail the statement “X is probable.” If you truly grasp the semantic difference between “possible” and “probable,” then who are you trying to deceive?

                      Regarding 2, what one wants to be the case does not determined what is actually the case. In certain contexts, the term “probable” (as in statistical probability) is used to signify nothing other than what is possible, which excludes neither more likely nor less likely. In the present context, however, the term “probable” is used to signify something more than mere possibility, but not a probability as high as 1, that is, 100%.

                      Regarding 3, the probability of non-X does not imply that X is impossible. The terms “false” and “impossible” are not strictly identical in meaning. One shouldn’t confuse categories.

                      «But if that is not what you intended to say, what was the point of mentioning 4.6 as part of an explanation of why you think the Pope will never err?»

                      The problem is that you distort the proper meanings of important terms.

                      «As I said before, I brought up St. Robert only as an illustrative example of a reputable theologian who held that it was possible [BUT NOT PROBABLE] that a Pope might [redundant] commit errors that would make it licit to resist him.»

                      In reference to the relevant passage, I’ve indicated previously that it appears that St. Robert Bellarmine was considering a purely hypothetical scenario. He did not hold that that purely hypothetical scenario would some day be actualized. It is YOU who believe that there is credible evidence in support of the controversial opinion that the purely hypothetical scenario has been realized.

                      «If there is misunderstanding here, you can clear it all up by telling me why you think not only that the Pope never will fall into error, but also that it is ludicrous to believe that he has. The closest you’ve come to this so far is to cite DRP 4.6, but what could you mean by this if not the invalid inference of “will remain free from error” from “could remain free from error”, the same logical mistake you think I’ve been committing?»

                      I surely do not, and need not, infer “will remain free from error” from “could remain free from error.” If the Roman Pontiff, “the head of the college of bishops, … as the supreme shepherd and teacher of all the faithful, who confirms his brethren in their faith,” were to depart from the faith, the faithful under his care would fall away from the faith. The Church, however, is indefectible. That indefectibility extends to the entire body, including the head; indefectibility is not limited to a headless body. That’s consonant with the authoritative teaching expressed in Lumen Gentium http://www.vatican.va/archive/hist_councils/ii_vatican_council/documents/vat-ii_const_19641121_lumen-gentium_en.html. Those who maintain the contrary cling to an essentially different ecclesiology.

                      Now, let’s turn to a related matter. In another forum one can find the following expression of opinions:

                      «It is true that much of the opposition to the canonizations taking place Sunday has been centered on how they will affect our understanding of the pontificates of John XXIII and John Paul II, above all in our interpretation of the chimaera known as Vatican II. [Emphasis added.] …

                      «If, as punishment for our many sins and imperfections, God permits the canonization of John Paul II two days from now, we will know that the theological consensus was wrong, and that canonizations, at least when following a departure from the traditional process, are not infallible. [Emphasis added.]

                      «I will never enter a church, chapel, shrine, school, convent, cemetery or retreat house named for the Qur’an-kisser, and, unlike his many admirers, I will not pray to him, but for him, because I am a Christian.» (Emphasis added.) https://disqus.com/home/discussion/crisismagazine/are_canonizations_based_on_papal_infallibility/#comment-1355182535

                      Elsewhere, moreover, one can find the following:

                      «Fortunately, there were at least some synod participants who didn’t give a fig for what the Bishop of Rome thought of them, but who do care very deeply about what Christ thinks of them.» https://disqus.com/home/discussion/crisismagazine/what_i_saw_at_the_synod_and_what_it_means_for_2015/#comment-1651674226

                      Compare those bold passages with the following excerpt:

                      «”Furthermore, we declare, state, and define that it is absolutely necessary for the salvation of all human creatures that they submit to the Roman pontiff.” Denzinger, Compendium of Creeds, Definitions, and Declarations on Matters of Faith and Morals, 875.»

                      The former excerpts, unlike Denzinger 875, radiate a distinctively schismatic odor. The derisive comment about Vatican II–the 21st Ecumenical Council of the Church–points not to Pope Benedict XVI’s “hermeneutic of continuity,” but to a “hermeneutic of rupture” favored by SSPXers.

                    • Bernonensis

                      Regarding 1. What I said was that if X is probable, then X is possible. That’s hardly a claim of their strict equivalence, just pointing out what shouldn’t need pointing out, but apparently does in this case.

                      Regarding 2. I said : I hope you know that “probable” does not mean “more likely than not”. Your response: [W]hat one wants tp be the case does not determine what is actually the case. Quite right, and thank you for that admission that you don’t know what “probable” means.
                      To say that a statement is “probabile” is to say that it may be provisionally held to be true in the light of present knowledge; it is, as the etymology shows, something capable of being proven (or disproven), at which point it becomes “scibile”, something knowable. You were close to the mark when you said that it means that something is likely, but statistical probability has nothing to do with it. And to say that X is probable is not the same thing as saying that X is more likely than not-X.

                      Regarding 3, when I first wrote this section I spoke not of X, but of “the statement: ‘The Pope is free from error’ “. When I saw how awkward this made things I changed to “X” and I neglected to change “false” to “impossible”. Clearly it didn’t keep you from understanding what I meant.

                      Now, you’ve said that it seems that St. Robert held the same belief that you do, that the Pope will never err (in matters of faith, etc.). There is no basis for this apart from the erroneous assumption that “X is probable” means “X is more likely than not-X”. I think it’s more significant that he considers the belief to be “probabile”, not “scibile” or “certum”. From this we can conclude that he was not aware of anything establishing that it actually is the case.
                      There is, then, nothing to warrant your assumption that the hypothetical statement in 2.29 was intended as a “pure hypothetical”, by which you apparently mean something counterfactual. I have never said that St. Robert was asserting that a pope can err, or that a pope will err; I’m simply denying your claim that he asserts that a pope cannot fall into error.

                      So, again I ask : what was the point of referring to DRP 4.6 as part of an explanation of why you believe the Pope will never err ? If you can answer this we can move on to discussing why your citation from Unam Sanctam is not the case-closer you think it is.

                    • papagan

                      In view of various statements you’ve made, including your schismatic comment about the Church’s 21st Ecumenical Council, it seems to me that you would fit in very nicely with the SSPX. I’ve met and spoken with various SSPXers. I’ll say only that the SSPX and I do not mix well. Au revoir.

                    • Bernonensis

                      You probably don’t mix well with anybody. Glad tae see the back o’ ye, as Grandma would say.

                    • Bernonensis, your argumentation was sound. As an outsider I cannot for the life of me get into the mentality which puts the Pope far above criticism in the face of obvious deficiencies.

                      I for one don’t mind being part of a Church that has wrecked leaders. It’s just being dishonest about the mess that sticks in my craw.

                      I’ve had the pleasure of reading your exchange with Mr. Pagan and found his blind adherence to smack of the diocesan blockheads I ran into who scolded me for sharing Christ with Jews. Their office does not give them a right to disobey Scripture. In fact, they are more accountable and under greater scrutiny.

                    • Bernonensis

                      Thank you, Anglicanae. It’s always heartening to know that at least someone sees the sense in what you say.

                      “The Pope alone” is as thoroughly ignorant and misguided a slogan as “Scripture alone”, and can appeal only to someone unacquainted with either theology or the history of the Church. Why we encounter this attitude so frequently is a mystery, but I suspect that the numerous former Protestants turned Catholic apologists now to be found on the internet and in religious bookstores play, however unintentionally, a part in this.

                      Concerning this little exchange, maybe we should bear in mind that “papagan” is the Turkish word for “parrot”.

                    • Turkish? That is fascinating.
                      I am constantly made aware of how little I know about the complex history of the development of the doctrine of the Papacy. My sole concern as a potential convert to Rome is being faithful to a right understanding.

                      Thanks for your response!

                    • Mr. Pagan’s sophistry reminds me of the Baptists who believe in eternal security trying to exegete Christ’s words in Revelation 3:5 (“The one who is victorious will, like them, be dressed in white. I will never blot out the name of that person from the book of life…”) — they turn it on its head to say, “Christ won’t ever do it.” Or even the Hebrews 6:4 passage they argue the writer is asserting eternal security by using a reductio ad absurdum.

                      His is a papal Calvinism.

                    • papagan

                      “There is no point in discussing the second question — whether Pope Francis is harming the faithful — or any tangential point like the role of the Holy Spirit in elections; the irrationality of your treatment of DPR [sic] shows that it would be futile.”

                      As regards the role of the Holy Spirit in papal elections, what I stated previously is clear, accurate, and consistent with what is stated at the website of the USCCB.

                      As regards De Romano Pontifice 4.6, since it does not support the position you want to advance, one can see why you would wish to set DRP 4.6 aside. St. Robert Bellarmine isn’t on your side. He was a faithful Catholic, not an “über-Catholic.” (Über-Catholics = persons who believe that they are more Catholic than the Roman pontiff.)

                      As regards the posture Roman Catholics ought to take in relation to Pope Francis, the Vicar of Christ on earth, I’ve already commented on that.

                    • Glänzende Augen kriegen = persons who believe the Roman Pontiff is always more Catholic than anyone else.

                      Why can’t there be a middle way? Popes more or less fulfill their office. Sometimes they are heroic Catholic men; sometimes outright disgrace the office to which they are appointed.

                      Sure, Pope Francis isn’t the worst one in history… but he’s no gem.

                      I’m sure you’ll chalk that up to my being insufficiently converted, though.

                  • papagan

                    “St. Catherine was a mystic Dominican tertiary, a private person, who urged obedience to the Pope then reigning; maybe if a modernist in a clown nose sat on the throne in the fourteenth century she would have written differently.”

                    There was no “modernist in a clown nose” sitting in the Chair of Peter, and there never will be. On that point you and I evidently disagree.

                    • Bernonensis

                      Is English your native language?

                    • papagan

                      It isn’t clear that you read carefully. On Feb. 17 I wrote:

                      If the Pope tries to destroy the Church, then it is licit to resist him.”

                      Moreover, I’ve stated that I think it’s perfectly safe to hold that the Roman pontiff will not attempt to undermine the Church. You’ve made it clear that you do not share that view. If you’re so terribly unsettled by the leadership of Pope Francis, what is preventing you from joining some schismatic group? If you joined a schismatic group, what will you do when the leader(s) of the schismatic group fails to meet your criteria of ecclesiastical leadership? Would you simply join yet another schismatic group? In that case, why not just form a schismatic group in your own image?

                    • Bernonensis

                      Do you really think that repeating a statement I agree with is a defense of your statements that I have demonstrated are wrong?

                      It is true and not to be doubted that nobody, including the Pope, can destroy the Church. It is also true and not to be doubted that the Pope cannot err as Supreme Pontiff. That is what the Church teaches. But she does not teach that a pope cannot harm the Church, or lead faithful Christians into error.
                      It may be that the Pope cannot err as a private person, but this is a pious opinion, not a doctrine demanding any degree of assent, and it can’t be proven true; it can however, be proven false if there is evidence that he has in fact acted or spoken contrary to the official teachings of the Church, to which he is bound as much as any other of the faithful. Further, if thes words or actions cause harm to the Church, or (what is the same thing) lead the faithful away from the truth, then he can and should be resisted.

                      Now, you may think there is no evidence that Francis has done this, but from what you’ve said it’s obvious that you have decided that it is a priori impossible for such evidence to exist, since for you everything the Pope says and does is necessarily right. That position is not Catholic doctrine, nor is it aligned with common sense. Go ahead, be a good ostrich, ignore what’s plaln for the whole world to see. When you come up for air, you can enjoy your hobby of unfounded speculation about people you don’t know; the unrepentant adulterers and sodomites in line for communion with you should keep you amused.

                    • papagan

                      “Do you really think that repeating a statement I agree with is a defense of your statements that I have demonstrated are wrong?

                      “It is true and not to be doubted that nobody, including the Pope, can destroy the Church. It is also true and not to be doubted that the Pope cannot err as Supreme Pontiff. That is what the Church teaches. But she does not teach that a pope cannot harm the Church, or lead faithful Christians into error.
                      It may be that the Pope cannot err as a private person, but this is a pious opinion, not a doctrine demanding any degree of assent, and it can’t be proven true; it can however, be proven false if there is evidence that he has in fact acted or spoken contrary to the official teachings of the Church, to which he is bound as much as any other of the faithful. Further, if thes words or actions cause harm to the Church, or (what is the same thing) lead the faithful away from the truth, then he can and should be resisted.

                      “Now, you may think there is no evidence that Francis has done this, but from what you’ve said it’s obvious that you have decided that it is a priori impossible for such evidence to exist, since for you everything the Pope says and does is necessarily right. That position is not Catholic doctrine, nor is it aligned with common sense. Go ahead, be a good ostrich, ignore what’s plaln for the whole world to see. When you come up for air, you can enjoy your hobby of unfounded speculation about people you don’t know; the unrepentant adulterers and sodomites in line for communion with you should keep you amused.”

                      You seem prone to the straw man fallacy. If you’re trying to turn Catholics away from the Roman pontiff, don’t hold your breath! Either submit to his leadership of the Church, or jump ship and join (or form) a schismatic group. I don’t recommend the latter, but you must choose. Backseat drivers are not needed.

                    • Bernonensis

                      Oh, the straw man fallacy,eh? All right then, point it out. Do you think there is evidence that the Pope has erred? No, you’ve said so. Do you believe that there can ever be evidence that the Pope has erred? No, you’ve said that, too. Do you believe this because you think the Pope cannot err? Yes, as your misunderstanding of St. Robert has shown. Have I misrepresented your position? No.
                      I know you’re having a lot of fun trying to make use of the chapter on fallacies, but there are some other parts of your logic text that would profit you greatly.

                    • papagan

                      “Now, you may think there is no evidence that [Pope] Francis has done this [namely, acted or spoken contrary to the official teachings of the Church], but from what you’ve said it’s obvious that you have decided that it is a priori impossible for such evidence to exist, since for you everything the Pope says and does is necessarily right.” (Italics added.)

                      The portion in italics is but one illustration of the fallacy of straw man. It may also indicate that you’re a careless reader and/or an imprecise thinker. Following the principle of charity, I will not claim that you’re deliberately distorting my statements in order to mislead others.

                      “[1] Do you believe this [that there can never be evidence that the Pope has erred] because [2] you think the Pope cannot err? [3] Yes, as your misunderstanding of St. Robert has shown.”

                      Regarding 1, you distort what I’ve stated. I do not believe that there is credible evidence that Pope Francis has contradicted authentic Catholic doctrine.

                      Regarding 2, again you distort what I’ve stated. I do not believe that Pope Francis has erred with respect to authentic Catholic doctrine.

                      Regarding 3, either you’ve misread St. Robert Bellarmine, or you’ve deliberately distorted what he wrote. I hope not the latter.

                      “Have I misrepresented your position? No.”

                      Wrong. I hope the distortions aren’t deliberate.

                      By the way, what do you think about Pope Benedict XVI’s encyclical, Caritas in Veritate? Do you, like various other critics, find portions of that encyclical seriously problematic?

                  • papagan

                    “The opinion that the Pope cannot be a heretic ceases to be probable when there is credible evidence that he has deviated from the faith.”

                    Catholics shouldn’t be misled. The reckless assertion that there is credible evidence that the Vicar of Christ has deviated from the faith is dangerous.

                    “Francis has encouraged non-Catholics to remain outside the Church, as he did in the case of his friend the Anglican pseudo-bishop Tony, whom he dissuaded from converting and who was, with the Pope’s connivance, buried with the honors due to a real bishop. In that case he most definitely led a soul away from Christ, and scandalized others.”

                    That is misleading and unsubstantiated hearsay. As regards the charge of scandal, one should keep in mind that some were scandalized by certain actions of Jesus, e.g., Matthew 21:12-13. That scriptural example, incidentally, seems appropriate in view of the grave disorders observed today in the global financial and economic sectors, disorders that have rightly elicited strong criticism from the Holy See.

                    “It is impossible to maintain seriously that the attack on marriage put forward by Cardinal Kasper and his kind has not received the approval and support of Francis…”

                    It is extremely reckless and irresponsible to claim that Pope Francis has endeavored or intends to undermine the institution and sacrament of marriage. As regards the 2014-2015 global Synod of Bishops on the family, those who are prone to act like backseat drivers tend to do far more more harm than good. Let the Catholic episcopate handle without interference the doctrinal and pastoral aspects of these vital questions.

                    • Bernonensis

                      The sentence of mine that you quote (“The opinion that the Pope cannot be a heretic …” is not an assertion that he has done so. I believe there is evidence the current Pope may have deviated from the Faith, but that belief does not enter into the logically prior question of whether a pope can be a heretic. Have you given up reason for Lent?

                    • papagan

                      “I believe there is evidence the current Pope may have deviated from the Faith…”

                      Notwithstanding the contrary opinions of “über-Catholics” and other dissidents, I think it’s perfectly safe to hold that the Roman pontiff has not and will not promote or teach anything contrary to Catholic faith or morals. Those who believe that the Vicar of Christ on earth cannot be trusted to steer the Barque of Peter usually jump ship and join some schismatic group. Loss of unity is the inevitable fruit of refusal to submit to the visible head of the Catholic Church.

                      “Furthermore, we declare, state, and define that it is absolutely necessary for the salvation of all human creatures that they submit to the Roman pontiff.” Denzinger, Compendium of Creeds, Definitions, and Declarations on Matters of Faith and Morals, 875.

                    • Bernonensis

                      My humor is intentional.

                    • Sir, you are a good Catholic. Thank you for showing me a good Catholic can be in communion with the See of Peter while bemoaning what has befallen precious Rome.

  • AugustineThomas

    What we currently have in America is not capitalism, but oligarchy.
    That said, I’ve seen it all now that I’ve witnessed baby murderers telling me I’m not Catholic because I believe in the free market.

    • papagan

      Properly understood, a free market is a genuine good. See Centesimus Annus, 42. What we have in place is not truly free in the Catholic sense.

      As regards elective abortion, that’s clearly incompatible with Catholic teaching.

      Regarding your point about oligarchy, a secret many wish to keep out of public discussion is that what we now have in place is a faux democracy. What one finds hiding beneath the mask of democracy is plutocracy. Those who endeavor to conceal that truth have taken a regrettable turn.

  • Eamonn McKeown

    Sitting at Nannys last night I had to beat myself on the head with Catos recent mailings. How you can talk about morals without first mentioning God and religion cannot be rational. I do like Hillsdales mailings. This topic reminds me of ‘ The Millionaire Next Door ‘ how very frugal people became rich and frustrated the government by leaving their money to the church.

  • Guy McClung

    Just google Bernardin and Alinsky – and sit back and wonder

  • Guy McClung

    Big push is coming to big shove in the next election cycle for liberal and so-called “social justice” or “seamless garment” Catholic Democrats. To say “act virtuously, vote for
    Democrats,” your “Influential Catholics” obscure or camoflage issues of intrinsic evil which cannot be outweighed by any other consideration, no matter how heavy,
    pertinent, important, or “just” they describe it or demand its isolated
    consideration, they trot out global warming, hunger, poverty, refugees, lynching,
    torture, executions for crimes, war, and the gospel not mentioned in the
    gospels, the so-called “gospel of social justice”. But two intrinsic evils, [which
    are even called such in documents produced by bishops which are used by the
    liberal “Influential Catholics” to say “see, told you so, of course you can in
    good conscience vote for a member of the Party Of Death, and your vote will not
    only be an act of virtue, it will give glory to God] just won’t go away and as
    time goes on these two intrinsic evils, racism and abortion, not only are
    rearing their liberal-upsetting ugly heads, they are rearing up in full body,
    the bodies of tens of millions dead babies and in the bodies of tens of
    millions of dead minority babies. And their deaths are the intentional
    purposeful aim of the Democrat RETA policy [racial eugenic targeted abortion] –
    which is one of the few things their President promised to do that he has
    actually done and continues to do. About 60,000,000 dead babies since Roe,
    about 60% of them minority babies. Think think think [how Pooh Bear simplifies complex issues] – do 60,000,000 folks die in this country by accident? Is it pure happenstance that more than the majority of them are Black and Hispanic babies? Just a minor coincidence that Planned Parenthood was founded as and still is a racist eugenic organization, achieving their founder’s Saint Sanger’s goal of ridding the USA of the “human undergrowth” of inferiority minority races? Read the words of the platform of the Party Of Death on abortion and its alleged absoluteness; listen to what their President has said since he was an Illinois legislator and his pro-infanticide views of opposing saving the lives of babies who had survived the torture of an attempted abortion; study their efforts against any limit on the “absolute” right to abortion; check out how much of your tax money is today paying for abortions; review how ObamaDontCare furthers racial eugenic targeted abortions; check out the tens of millions of dollars of your tax money fed to the Democrat RETA enforcement arms like Planned Parenthood; and calculate how much of these tens of millions of dollars find their way into the campaign funds of Democrat candidates supported by the “influential Catholics.” And then ask any “Influential Catholic” who shills for the Party Of Death how they can continue to tell good Catholics to commit mortal sin by voting for Democrats. And when they have no reply, go to their shepherds, the bishops, and ask them. And then, stand outside the palace walls like John The Baptist and don’t whisper, shout the truth. Guy McClung, San Antonio

  • NDaniels

    Every follower of The Christ recognizes that God Is an advocate for the oppressed, but this does not change the fact that Christ Himself clearly stated, “Man does not live on bread alone, but every Word that Has Come forth from The Mouth of God”. (http://www.usccb.org/bible/matthew/4:4)
    Salvational Love is both individual and relational, for Love exists in relationship. Every act of Love is ordered to the personal and relational inherent Dignity of the human person, who, from the moment of conception, has been created in The Image of God, equal in Dignity, while being complementary as a son or daughter.
    The problem with Liberterianism, existed long before Ayn Rand created John Galt; Salvation for me but not necessary for thee, and we can define what is Good and what is evil, stems from the sin of pride, which can be traced back to that moment in Time, when no longer clothed with The Word of God, man realized he was naked.

  • NDaniels
  • Just wait when Francis issues his “Global Warming” oops, I meant “Climate Change” (since the LIARS changed its name after they were exposed) encyclical, the Liberals will have orgasms out of extreme pleasure with Francis.

    • NDaniels

      Paul, I think you know this is not an appropriate response. Please consider removing it.

      • It is a fact.

      • Is your name “Crisis Moderator”. If not, restrain your censorous impulses.

        • NDaniels

          Climate change is due to numerous factors due to weather conditions, which is different than claiming the weather changes are due to global warming without which there would be no climate changes.
          There is no excuse for the use of vulgarity which is insulting and demeaning.

          • ForChristAlone

            tell the people in Boston about global warming…like all other liberal bs, it’s just bs

          • It’s not demeaning or insulting to describe the Liberals who will actually have MULTIPLE ORGASMS when reading Francis’ endorsement of the LIE called “Climate Change” which was originally called “Global Warming.”

    • ForChristAlone

      No they won’t because we will all remind them and the dear Holy Father that all issues pertaining to the environment begin with protecting the primary environment which is a mother’s womb. In other words, there is no concern about the environment without first being concerned with the integrity of the womb.

      • “Integrity of the womb”…”Mother’s womb”… etc, …

        These are words that do not pertain to the vocabulary used by the current Vatican (which, may I remind you, compares Catholics to “Breeding Rabbits” – Pope Francis says it, not me).

        • ForChristAlone

          we will help them along by reminding them of this every chance we get…even the Vatican needs to be evangelized

          • You can’t evangelize a Pope. The only way to evangelize a Pope is to force him and his buddies to QUIT.

            • papagan

              “You can’t evangelize a Pope. The only way to evangelize a Pope is to force him and his buddies to QUIT.”

              Sounds like what one might expect to hear from those who believe that they’re more Catholic than the visible head of the Catholic Church!

              • As if the head of the Catholic church couldn’t be a doctrinal mess.

                Papalatry doesn’t make one a good Catholic.

                • papagan

                  “[1] As if the head of the Catholic [C]hurch couldn’t be a doctrinal mess.

                  “[2] Papalatry [sic] doesn’t make one a good Catholic.”

                  Regarding 1, that remark is rooted in a non-Catholic ecclesiology, according to which the indefectibility of the Church applies to the body, but not to the head.

                  Regarding 2, it is truly amusing to hear a non-Catholic speak as if he were an authority on what makes a Catholic a good Catholic! In any case, good Catholics don’t believe the Roman Pontiff is God, but they do understand that he is the Vicar of Christ on earth, and they accept all that this entails.

                  • Are you a patristics scholar, sir? It’s *easy* to be dismissive: “Oh, that’s just non-Catholic ecclesiology,” but which Ecumenical Council upholds this idea of yours? I’m willing to be corrected. But I’m also willing to bet you’d bend history in the service of your silly devotion to the concept of an impregnable pope (hence the admittedly outlandish but functionally accurate term of papalatry).

                    As to your second response, it’s truly amusing to hear a Catholic assume his baptism and confirmation are a shield against ignorance. Shall I recount the thousand-and-one true stories of the nominalism and sheer ignorance I’ve encountered with flesh and blood Roman Catholics? My young boys are more catechized than they are. But according to you, every Catholic has more knowledge and authority than a non-Roman Catholic on Catholic matters by virtue of their…confirmation?

                    • papagan

                      Several distortions (sadly), and strong emotions. In any case, if you’re seriously interested in the possibility of being received into full communion with the Catholic Church, you might consider, in addition to reflecting deeply on the writings of Bl. John Henry Cardinal Newman, contacting well-educated former Anglicans who converted to the Catholic faith.

                      Now, I think our discussion has come to an end. Au revoir.

                    • You’re being entirely too gracious to put a stop to it now. For a moment I thought I would have to endure another evasion.

                      But on a serious note, I do not take your counsel lightly. I’ve read a great deal from John Henry Newman’s writings, pre- and post-conversion, on the theology, church history, and philosophy. He is a hero of mine. I will revisit his writings again thanks to you.

                    • papagan

                      Having mentioned Bl. J.H. Newman, I neglected to include Avery Cardinal Dulles http://averydulles.blogspot.com/ and Christopher Dawson http://www.catholiceducation.org/en/culture/history/the-catholic-church.html. Like Newman, both Dulles and Dawson converted to Catholicism. A pdf version (gratis) of Dulles’ Church and Society: The Laurence J. McGinley Lectures, 1988-2007, can be found here: http://fordham.bepress.com/cgi/viewcontent.cgi?article=1000&context=relig. The second chapter is entitled “Teaching Authority in the Church.”

                    • Newman I’ve read, I’m thoroughly infatuated with Dawson (twice the prophet than he is a historian, and he is an exceptional historian), Dulles I’m only lightly acquainted with.

                      You’ll have to forgive my blasts of hot air in my recent litany of intemperate attacks upon your evidently learned person. My distastes for V2 notwithstanding, I’m listening to much of what you have to say. Thank you.

                    • papagan

                      Pax tecum. Regarding the Second Vatican Council, much has been written and is still being written about this significant and complex ecumenical council of the Catholic Church. One quite interesting and brief exposition can be found in Roger Aubert et al., The Church in a Secularised Society, Vol. 5 of The Christian Centuries, Chap. 23, “The Second Vatican Council,” pp. 624-38 http://www.amazon.com/Christian-Centuries-Church-Secularised-Society/dp/0232356084. Those who lightly dismiss the Second Vatican Council (VCII) reveal much more about themselves than they do about VCII.

  • Benedict XVI wasn’t perfect, nobody is, but he is far less worse and a lot much better than this Bergoglio character. For many reasons, I miss Pope Benedict XVI.

    • ForChristAlone

      Maybe he can ask for his job back. Perhaps, then, we could begin to dig ourselves out of this mess.

  • Jane Galt

    Very revealing. It looks to me like large numbers of opinion leaders and intellectuals in the church are throwing in with the Democratic Party.

    • ForChristAlone

      You must mean “so-called” intellectuals. You can’t have much native intelligence if you’re voting Democrat. However, they presume themselves to be intellectuals and accordingly are nothing more than effete snobs.

  • pbecke

    ‘Look at Acton’s core values and they line up almost perfectly with Catholic Social Teaching.’

    ‘I wonder what departure from Catholic Social Teaching the word, ‘almost’, signifies in that sentence.’

    Rather than deal with the specifics, far right-wingers always seem to think it’s enough to claim that something could be right out of Obama’s playbook or whoever the current, Democratic demon might be. Well, Jesus’ own teachings on economic injustice, from which, of course, Catholic Social Teaching was drawn, could be the central plank of Bernie Sanders’ economic policy.

    Capitalism is essentially systematized, open-ended greed, on the part of those who already possess wealth the rest of us would consider beyond the dreams of even the most pathological avarice, and is leading the entire globe to economic ruin. We have been watching the beginning of this Gadarene descent being played out.

    Mind you, top marks to Ayn Rand from turning the law of the jungle into a veritable philosophy – such erudite, subtle and sophisticated excogitations takes your breath away.

    • Objectivetruth

      Sigh…

      Yet another French Literature major who is envious of those that actually went out and worked hard for a living.

    • Austin Ruse

      Cartoon alert. Cartoon alert!

    • I think Francis can use you to write his “Global Changing” Or “Climate Warming” or whatever the Liberals are calling it, since the LIE keeps changing its name every now and then after being exposed. I suggest calling it, “Global Crap.”

    • ForChristAlone

      “Far right-wingers” = right out of the Alinsky playbook. You’re on script.

    • GG

      Do you have a bank account?

  • N.D.

    “It is similar to the Church’s instruction of communists.”
    Certainly that would be true in regards to those atheist materialists who objectify the human person when they deny the personhood of the son or daughter residing in their mother’s womb while reordering man as an object of sexual desire/orientation, thus deny the truth about the essence of the human person created in The Image of God, from The Beginning.
    Desiring Salvation for me and not for thee would be a liberterian problem, inconsistent with Christianity as well, as would a false ecumenism that does not desire to lead others to The Christ.
    Salvational Love is both personal and relational because Love exists in relationship.

  • Samuel63

    Thanks for the wonderful article. I wanted to recommend an audio piece linked on the Culture Wars website that uncovers the history of Sirico and his present day operation at the Acton Institute – http://romancatholicreport.com/sitebuildercontent/sitebuilderfiles/RobertSiricoAndSinsCryingToHeaven.mp3
    I have a number of relatives that are irrational democrats and others that are rabid republicans. A few today are voting for integrity. The slow growth of this latter group is encouraging. I believe there is a manipulating force or forces in the culture that desperately want to keep the catholic block divided. Hmmm. Who could that be?

  • papagan

    “Any support of a market economy equals libertarianism equals Randism equals heresy.”

    Of course that’s false. Read, for instance, Pope St. John Paul II, Centesimus Annus, 42. What we have in place now, however, is not what was endorsed in CA 42. That’s the problem…

  • papagan

    But the libertarian problem is not helped by Catholic Democrats attacking their Republican counterparts. There is, in fact, great common cause that could be made by Catholic Democrats and Catholic Republicans including on the question of libertarianism.”

    Indeed, insofar as both recognize that the kind of freedom embraced by proponents of libertarianism is the same twisted freedom championed by those who proclaim the right to procured abortion and SSM. It is a spiritually lethal freedom, a freedom that kills. Pope Francis, in contrast, advocates the fullness of freedom found in Christ.

  • SnowCherryBlossoms

    Whatever happened to Catholics just being Catholic?

  • Mark

    To Austin Ruse: “In the fight against abortion, same-sex marriage, and pornography, libertarianism is the enemy.” Really?The Libertarian Case Against Abortion
    Someone better tell the fine libertarian folks at http://www.libertariansforlife.org

    One popular misconception is that libertarianism as a political principle supports choice on abortion. And major elements within the libertarian movement (the Libertarian Party, for example) take abortion-choice stands. Nonetheless, libertarianism’s basic principle is that each of us has the obligation not to aggress against (violate the rights of) anyone else — for any reason (personal, social, or political), however worthy. That is a clearly pro-life principle. Recognizing that, and seeing the abortion-choice drift within the libertarian movement, Libertarians for Life was founded in 1976 to show why abortion is a wrong under justice, not a right.

    We see our mission as presenting the pro-life case to libertarians and the libertarian case to pro-lifers. Among supporters of LFL, some of us are members of the Libertarian Party, some are not. Some are religious, some are not. (Doris Gordon, our Founder and Coordinator, is a Jewish atheist.) Our reasoning is expressly scientific and philosophical rather than either pragmatic or religious, or merely political or emotional.

    To explain and defend our case, LFL argues that:

    1. Human offspring are human beings, persons from conception, whether that takes place as natural or artificial fertilization, by cloning, or by any other means.

    2. Abortion is homicide — the killing of one person by another.

    3. One’s right to control one’s own body does not allow violating the obligation not to aggress. There is never a right to kill an innocent person. Prenatally, we are all innocent persons.

    4. A prenatal child has the right to be in the mother’s body. Parents have no right to evict their children from the crib or from the womb and let them die. Instead both parents, the father as well as the mother, owe them support and protection from harm.

    5. No government, nor any individual, has a just power to legally “de-person” any one of us, born or preborn.

    6. The proper purpose of the law is to side with the innocent, not against them.

    For more, please read LFL’s literature in the Library.

  • Mark

    To Austin Ruse again: “Now, many people these days do call themselves libertarian. But libertarianism is a bit like socialism in that many people who claim it probably don’t know what it means.”

    That reminds me conservatism is bit like communism in that people who claim it probably don’t know what it means.

    Someone needs to educate all these prolife libertarians from the Ludwig von Mises Institute and elsewhere that they really don’t understand libertarianism.

    http://archive.lewrockwell.com/vance/vance290.html

  • RaymondNicholas

    The only liberal Catholic social teaching that I know of that deals with the poor is based upon the demographics of contraception, abortion and consumption. According to voting exit polls about half of Catholics support the culture of death. Blacks are generally poorer than whites and they abort at the rate of 4 times or more than whites; poor Hispanics are not that far behind. So-called Catholic charities of all kind support contraception and abortion and they export it abroad. Bishops, priests, and nuns encourage beliefs and behaviors that are contrary to Church teaching. Folks become numb and do not care. This is a simple strategy: kill off the poor people with contraception and abortion, then you do not have a poor people problem. With the poor people gone, you can consume more for yourself. Of course, it takes time to accomplish. All the modern theories and solutions are a load of horse dung. We have turned away from Christ to Satan. That is all we need to know.

  • St JD George

    The peril of false compassion, eloquently explained …
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jXQP3UJnagM

  • Captain America

    This kind of stuff needs general broadcasting throughout the church—when one or another political or partisan group tries to claim the label “Catholic” it needs a good sounding out.

  • Mark

    because the non-aggression axiom is central to libertarianism, and because force is justified only in self-defense, and because it is wrong to threaten or initiate violence against a person or his property, and because killing is the ultimate form of aggression that, to be consistent, libertarians should be opposed to abortion.

    “Now, many people these days do call themselves libertarian. But libertarianism is a bit like socialism in that many people who claim it probably don’t know what it means.” That reminds me…There are many people who call themselves conservative. But conservatism is a bit like communism in that many people who claim it probably don’t know what it means.
    Conservatives believe it is okay to kill babies in other countries using state of the art military weapons and spending beyond our means as long as it is for preemptive war. The conservative understand Jesus’s teaching as kill your neighbor if you think he might someday try to kill you, this is very different from the pro-life libertarian perspective.

  • Mark

    “In the fight against abortion, same-sex marriage, and pornography, libertarianism is the enemy.” Is that so Mr. Ruse? The non-aggression axiom is central to libertarianism, and because force is justified only in self-defense, and because it is wrong to threaten or initiate violence against a person or his property, and because killing is the ultimate form of aggression that, to be consistent, libertarians should be opposed to abortion.

    “But libertarianism is a bit like socialism in that many people who claim it probably don’t know what it means.” So Mr. Ruse, your telling me that numerous well staunch pro-life libertarians at the Ludwig von Mises Institute, Libertarians for Life, and numerous other libertarian websites and think tanks don’t know what libertarianism is?
    This reminds me conservatism is a bit like socialism in that many conservatives are really big government spenders, particularly when it comes to warfare. It seems the conservative has no problems killing babies as by product of collateral damage with sophisticated military weapons in preemptive wars. Many conservatives believe Jesus says kill your neighbor if you think one day he may possibly try to kill you. Yes indeed, conservatism is extremely dangerous! I realize there are some conservatives, say paleoconservatives, but they are really libertarians.

  • Akira88

    “Show me a country that has surrendered its politics to the dictates of
    the market, and I will show you a culture where personal attachments of
    every kind are less secure than they once were and where the poor and
    every other vulnerable population are at most an afterthought.”

    Mr. Bouday, if you let a man work to his potential — freely — you will get what we had in the 1900’s through the 1980’s — an immense amount of “charity” given freely — the way Christ meant for us to give.

    It is not about Catholics deemed wrongly “Conservative Catholics”; they are just “Catholics”. The Communists are these guys against individuals being free. These are the people supporting the dismantling of our nation that was founded under Christian principals. While the early days were not partial to Catholics, hard work, with their face toward God, Catholics achieved a decent life here in the US.

    Those fighting for the communist idea of “social justice” — which it is — are exclusionary demonstrated by the lack of presence of a Catholic with another point of view.

    You are the Libs – Church rads dismantling the Catholic Church in America as well as America proper.

  • TommyD6of11

    Austin Ruse,

    Great article … an important article … but I do not understand your fear of Libertarians. Small government, individualism does not mean hate the poor, kill babies in the womb and gay marriage.

    There are very strong Libertarian arguments that can be made against all of these evils:

    1) A baby’s right to life is the ultimate liberty

    2) Free markets give the greatest hope and prosperity to the poor; charity works, welfare enslaves.

    3) Gay Marriage is a canard;
    a) gays don’t want to get married (less than 2% do – I’m guesstimating),
    b) almost all gay marriage contracts allow cheating (gay men typically have 500 to 1,000 sexual partners in their lifetime, that’s a huge number!!!). Such an “open-marriage” is hardly a marriage at all which is just one reason they don’t last.
    c) Most gay marriages fail within the first year, almost none last more than 3 years.
    d) Gay Marriage has nothing to do with gays clamoring to marry their true love.
    e) The whole point of legalizing Gay Marriage is to get official “government approval” of their lifestyle. This, in effect, is forcing someone else’s values on all others which is about as anti-Libertarian as it gets.

    Libertarians can be as God loving as anyone else … and perhaps more so than those who instinctively look to the government to enforce morality.

    Was Jesus Christ anti-Libertarian? I doubt it. What’s my evidence. Simple. God gave us all a free will.

  • Mark

    “In the fight against abortion, same-sex marriage, and pornography, libertarianism is the
    enemy.” Is that so Mr. Ruse? The non-aggression axiom is central to libertarianism, and because force is justified only in self-defense, and because it is wrong to threaten or initiate violence against a person or his property, and because killing is the ultimate form of aggression that, to be consistent, libertarians should be opposed to abortion.

    “But libertarianism is a bit like socialism in that many people who claim it probably don’t know what it means.” So Mr. Ruse, your telling me that numerous well staunch pro-life libertarians at the Ludwig von Mises Institute, Libertarians for Life, and numerous other libertarian websites and think tanks don’t know what libertarianism is?

    This reminds me conservatism is a bit like socialism in that many conservatives are really big government spenders, particularly when it comes to warfare. It seems the
    conservative has no problems killing babies as by product of collateral damage with sophisticated military weapons in preemptive wars. Many conservatives believe Jesus says kill your neighbor if you think one day he may possibly try to kill you. Yes indeed, conservatism is extremely dangerous! I realize there are some conservatives, say
    paleoconservatives that are compatible with Catholic teaching but they are really libertarians.

  • Jdonnell

    No Catholic should support an economic system that results in a tiny number of rich and a great number of poor, or one which sees (as is now the indisputable case) declining wealth among most while the richest few keep gaining more. No conferences, no arguments about individual liberty or freedom can change the facts. Effects are plain; change is necessary.

  • NDaniels

    Libertarianism is a lot like socialism in that it views man as an end in himself; man was created to live in Loving relationship with one another in communion with God, the ordered Communion of Perfect Love that is The Blessed Trinity.

    Capitalism is an economic system that can be ordered to the Good of all persons, if it is grounded in Christian principles.

  • Sluggo

    Since when are abortion and same-sex marriage libertarian positions? Abortion is the murder of an innocent child. Either you accept the fact that a child’s life is terminated and is therefore murder, or you live in denial about what is actually happening. Libertarians are no different than any other political group/party that has adherents on both sides of the argument. Same-sex marriage is another non-libertarian issue. A true libertarian view of “marriage” would preclude the state’s involvement.

    Pornography? It already exists in every form imaginable and libertarians are not in power.

  • Alan_VT

    Kudos Mr. Ruse! This is as well thought out, and objectively stated an article as I’ve read on the subject. Libertarianism is a two-edged sword.

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