Saturday, August 1, 2015

Laudato Si

My old friend bachfiend asks my opinion on Laudato Si, Pope Francis' recent encyclical on the environment and on economics.

I posted on it at some length at Evolution News and Views, and I'm happy to add a few thoughts here.

I love the encyclical. The Holy Father is right about nearly everything--about our responsibility to care for creation, to love and serve the poor, and to use the proceeds of our labor with God's purposes in mind. Capitalism provides enormous opportunity for all manner of sin--greed, envy, theft, idolatry.

I disagree with Pope Francis on only two points.

1) The Holy Father is mistaken about global warming. AGW is a hoax, just the latest in a 150-year string of fake science apocalypses (Malthusianism, eugenics, DDT hysteria, Global Cooling, heterosexual AIDS,  etc.). The Holy Father needs better science advisors.

2) The Pope didn't stress sufficiently the enormous contribution capitalism has made to bettering the human condition, saving lives, and ending poverty in many nations. Capitalism has many spiritual dangers, but it is unparalleled as an engine of economic prosperity. Socialism is a failure everywhere, and  is closely linked to totalitarianism (ie National Socialism, International Socialism).

Socialism is no less than capitalism a system that promotes sin, and socialism has been a bane to mankind. Socialism has also been a bane to our environment-- National Socialists and International Socialists devastated large swaths of the earth.

But overall Laudato Si is a beautiful encyclical, and its message of stewardship and love for the poor is desperately needed in our time. 

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