Boris Johnson (the mayor of London) declared that inequality is essential to fostering “the spirit of envy” and he hailed greed as a “valuable spur to economic activity”… and Pope Francis comes out with his first big, written text of his papacy… dealing with the same issues, but from a biblical and human perspective.
Mr Johnson read what the Pope has to say about inequality, envy, greed and economics.
This is just an excerpt of his full text…
The Pope Just Published One Of The Most Powerful Critiques Of Modern Capitalism That You Will Ever Read – Source: Business Insider
My own comments are inserted between a selection of the Pope’s comments…
Pope: On the failure of traditional economic dogmas: “… some people continue to defend trickle-down theories which assume that economic growth, encouraged by a free market, will inevitably succeed in bringing about greater justice and inclusiveness in the world. This opinion, which has never been confirmed by the facts, expresses a crude and naïve trust in the goodness of those wielding economic power and in the sacralized workings of the prevailing economic system. Meanwhile, the excluded are still waiting.”
I have long said that the key is not trickle-down economics because those who are good with money do not leave any of it to fall on the floor for others to benefit from because they have teams of people studying things like efficiency and economies of scale.
I have suggested that trickle-up is the way to go… by having the broadest base of inclusion possible. This is why I like the idea of personal freedoms, personal self determination, social connectivity and free internet (despite the downsides). I also advocate that government has a role in encouraging economic growth by helping to create these freedoms and support for the people through which the economy will flourish.
Pope: On the world’s obsession with money: “We have created new idols. The worship of the ancient golden calf (cf. Ex 32:1-35) has returned in a new and ruthless guise in the idolatry of money and the dictatorship of an impersonal economy lacking a truly human purpose.”
While the global economic in is crisis the TV keeps saying that as long as the DOW keeps going up everything is fine. In reality everything is not fine because the numbers of jobless is sky rocketing. But the golden calf is money, not people, not jobs, not people.
Pope: On the dangerous mix of inequality and consumerism: “It is evident that unbridled consumerism combined with inequality proves doubly damaging to the social fabric.”
When I hear of governments wanting to protect their population from the damaging effects of porn in the home via the internet, I remember what happened when someone published the website black list of Australia’s filter and the list includes sites that are political in nature and critical of political leadership, such as Wikileaks. Now I am very cautious when getting excited at the offer to “protect” society, because that may just be smoke screen to oppress society.
Pope: On the role of the state in providing for the common good and regulating the economy: “This imbalance is the result of ideologies which defend the absolute autonomy of the marketplace and financial speculation. Consequently, they reject the right of states, charged with vigilance for the common good, to exercise any form of control. “
Let the market will decide, the wisdom of the crowd… is just rubbish peddled by rich people who do not want any restraints on their ability to become even more rich.
One of my biggest concerns at this time is that too much power has been given to people who appear to be chosen because they are sociopaths… chosen because they are unable to tell right from wrong… chosen because they have no self restraint, no inner moral compass that speaks up (as a conscience) and tells them that they shouldnt be doing what they are about to do.
As the Pope says
Pope: In our time humanity is experiencing a turning-point in its history, as we can see from the advances being made in so many fields. … This epochal change has been set in motion by the enormous qualitative, quantitative, rapid and cumulative advances occurring in the sciences and in technology, and by their instant application in different areas of nature and of life. We are in an age of knowledge and information, which has led to new and often anonymous kinds of power.
Beware giving power to people who are sick
This power is in the hands of unknown, unelected and powerful people who do not know right from wrong. If you doubt this, take a look at this article… or the offline copy of the article:
It is truly scary to me that people who think in this way have power. Just imagine the profoundly sick mind that thought up and then had the shamelessness to actually suggest this plan of action (taken from the article that I referenced above)…
As admitted by the U.S. government, recently declassified documents show that in the 1960′s, the American Joint Chiefs of Staff signed off on a plan to blow up AMERICAN airplanes (using an elaborate plan involving the switching of airplanes), and also to commit terrorist acts on American soil, and then to blame it on the Cubans in order to justify an invasion of Cuba. See the following ABC news report; the official PDF documents; and watch this YouTube interview with the former Washington Investigative Producer for ABC’s World News Tonight with Peter Jennings.
If I ran a company or a government and I found my people thinking in this way and planning such atrocities I would remove them from power and help them seek treatment. I would institute a company wide or government wide retraining scheme to educate my employees on right and wrong, ethics, morals, values and the value of human beings. When I read that article I wonder how many of these people were approached and offered the help that they clearly need?
The danger of extreme libertarian thinking
I am in favour of personal freedoms, people empowering themselves and making better lives for themselves. But. I once heard Helen Zille say something like “the role of government is to help those who cannot look after themselves”… or something to that effect… and I thought it was spot on.
Here is another quote by Helen Zille…
… who propound the view that “each man is for himself and the devil take the hindmost.” – Business Day
This is very much what I see unfolding and it must not happen. We must not create a world in which no one cares for “the hindmost”. We must not allow a situation in which the devil literally has his way with the weakest and most vulnerable.
Am I being dramatic? I am not.
I know first hand that enemy plans to create poor and desperate people who he can drive into drugs top help them feel better and then drive them into prostitution to pay for their drug habit. These areas become labelled and promoted as “sex tourism”. The enemy desires to have cities and countries where the poor can be abused by people who have money.
The Economist reports
Germany has turned into a giant brothel and even a destination for European sex tourism. The best guess is that Germany has about 400,000 prostitutes catering to 1m men a day. Mocking the spirit of the 2001 law, exactly 44 of them, including four men, have registered for welfare benefits.
… nobody denies that many women become sex workers involuntarily. Of particular concern are girls from poor villages in Romania and Bulgaria who may have been forced, tricked or seduced to come to Germany. Once there, they are trapped as Frischfleisch (fresh meat) in brothels, perhaps because they owe money to their traffickers or fear reprisals against their families at home. – The Economist
Am I being a hypocrite?
Having said that and with this is in mind…
The National Security Agency has been gathering records of online sexual activity and evidence of visits to pornographic websites as part of a proposed plan to harm the reputations of those whom the agency believes are radicalizing others through incendiary speeches, according to a top-secret NSA document. – Top-Secret Document Reveals NSA Spied On Porn Habits As Part Of Plan To Discredit ‘Radicalizers’
… if I havent made it clear enough in my 1,100 blog posts so far, yes I have done some of these things and that is why I know they are evil.
Nobody needs to “out” me, because I have been “outing” myself on this blog for 7 or 8 years. I know the enemy uses things that are kept in the dark so I long ago decided to bring my own secrets into the light.
I know these things “first hand” because I have been involved in them. I didnt want to be left in the grip of the enemy and now I dont want other people to be left in the grip of the enemy either. This is why I blog my journey out of addiction, so that others can find a way out. This is why I spend time helping people, because I know what it is like to be caught in the trap.
- We simply cannot and we must not employ people because they are sociopaths. Such people are ill, they are not well, they need help.
- We must reform our governments if they have over stepped common moral boundaries. We must retrain our leadership and any other parts of government who have been allowed, trained or encouraged to think in sick ways.
- We must take action to create a healthy growing economy with the broadest base of inclusivity and freedom.
- We must redress the past where by design we left “the hindmost” people to suffer and fall into predators hands. We called it capitalism. We rationalised it as “the natural order of things”. We labelled it Darwinian. But it was sin. We sinned. We must take steps to repent and then to fix what we did.
To summarise the situation that the world is facing, the Pope says it well…
Pope: The worldwide crisis affecting finance and the economy lays bare their imbalances and, above all, their lack of real concern for human beings; man is reduced to one of his needs alone: consumption.
Consumption… “the hindmost” which we abandon… they are also consumption… they are the fodder to predators. I know. I was one of those people who were hurt by people stronger than me, people who should have known better.
How Jesus Christ taught His disciples to live
We must think about ways to reform the world we live in. We must stop thinking of grotesquely rich people as desirable and the ideal, and instead see the truth, they have acquired far more than they need and the world would be a better place if they listen to Jesus Christ’s advice…
“If you have two coats, give one away,” he said. “Do the same with your food.” – Luke 3:11
and consider how the disciples lived…
All the believers were one in heart and mind. No one claimed that any of their possessions was their own, but they shared everything they had. With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus. And God’s grace was so powerfully at work in them all that there were no needy persons among them. For from time to time those who owned land or houses sold them, brought the money from the sales and put it at the apostles’ feet, and it was distributed to anyone who had need. – Acts 4:32-35
We can live like that too. Its not hard to care for other people. It means making time for them and considering their needs as well as your own needs.