The following is an excerpt of the August 13 statement for Labor Day published on the website of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops.
“Millions of Americans suffer from unemployment, underemployment or are living in poverty as their basic needs too often go unmet. This represents a serious economic and moral failure for our nation,” wrote the committee’s chairman, Bishop Stephen Blaire of Stockton, California, in the statement, Placing Work and Workers at the Center of Economic Life.
Bishop Blaire cited the 12 million Americans officially unemployed, the millions more who are underemployed or who have given up looking for work, 10 million “working poor” families, and 46 million people, including 16 million children, living in poverty as a sign of a broken economy.
He cited the words of Pope Benedict XVI, who said poverty often “results from a violation of the dignity of human work,” either because of a lack of job opportunities or because, in the words of Pope John Paul II, “low value is put on work and the rights that flow from it.”
According to Bishop Blaire, the “terrible human costs” of a broken economy include workers being exploited or mistreated, stagnant or falling wages, and stress on families.
As a result, “many employees struggle for just wages, a safe workplace, and a voice in the economy, but they cannot purchase the goods they make, stay in the hotels they clean, or eat the food they harvest, prepare, or serve.”
The full 2012 Labor Day statement can be found here.
So many Americans are suffering due to the unconscionable greed of others, the failure of our government to fulfill its duties to America, and to our national moral collapse. This is not the America we grew up in, and the American Dream has been turned into the National American Nightmare. It is a time for honest introspection, for simpler and more wholesome lives, and a time to turn this great ship around. If we fail to seize the moment, this moment in history will seize us all. The teachings of the Catholic Church were never more clearly proven to be The Solution than in these days of our national and worldwide sufferings. We can do far, far better than this, and do it we must.
Maryanne Leonard, it is not just the type of greed you mentioned that is causing the collapse in Stockton, there are a whole lot of other moral failures going on there and many other places, the one against the Ninth Commandment, which is a type of greed that the govenment cannot fix unless they put in laws against adultery and tighten up the divorce laws (make divorce harder). Are you willing to go that route? Even if you are, many aren’t. That is one of the major problems.
Yes Anne T you are correct…we are fools to think that BIG government can make laws to correct issues that need fixing, it may help on the more common ground ones but with the government becoming so anti-Christian then we are fools to think that it will be a fair government.
The solution, not mentioned by Bp Blaire, but by the Pope: Bishops should “become holy”. Why is this such a mystery? Is it not the most obvious thing? With bishops who are not holy, then how is the Church supposed to lead the world into the Gospel? Answer: It can’t. The bishops therefore are holding God hostage. Old Nimrod, king of the Tower of Babel, aimed his arrow at God’s eye, but missed. The bishops, kings of the Church, stand in God’s eye and babble. So, what is the difference?
That’s some “solution” you offer!
You’ve repeated “the bishops should become holy” far more often then the Pope ever did, and unless you quote him in a relevant context, there’s no reason to believe that he intended this to be the panacea for all that ails us. Furthermore, your nonstop prattle about the bishops holiness can get you deep into Donatist territory. I don’t believe the Pope is a Donatist.
The story of Nimrod and the arrows is not in the Bible (it might be in the Koran?), and has nothing to do with poverty or the state of our Bishops’ souls anyway. Finally, bishops aren’t “kings of the Church” and it is you who’s babbling.
Francis, he refers to something that Pope Benedict XVI said to the bishops of the Phillipines last year. I can no longer find a reference to it on the Internet. JLS has his own interpretation of it.
k, my interpretation is to repeat it; yours is to ignore it. He may have been speaking to Philipine bishops, I don’t know, but it is a statement to all bishops. One of the top Vatican cardinals also told the bishops to stop with their administrative acting and become bishops.
Your interpretation is that all bishops are not holy. But that is not what he said.
k, it is the only logical conclusion of what he said. When a pope tells a bishop or bishops to become holy, the only possible rational reason for it is that they are not. One of the depressing things about some bloggers on this site is that they never learned how to reason. Do you know that there is a difference between reason, imitation and craftiness? I find most Catholic bloggers to be rife with imitation and craft, but reason is a scarce act among so many of even college educated and professional Catholics. Countless intelligent Catholics are leaving because of the extreme dullness of intellect found among bishops and other clergy. This is the fault of the Church, and is called sloth among other things.
JLS, I can not find the quote but I remember discussing it with you last year. It was a general statement to the Phillipines bishop conference. There is much going on politically and economically in a very Catholic country. I took it as a reminder that involvement in worldly things will not do as much for their country as the holiness of the bishops. Don’t get distracted, in other words. I am sure that all bloggers here can reason. It would be an error to assume that what they post is all that they know or all that they can do. Imitation of Christ, the saints the Blessed Mother, the Holy Church is a good thing. Craftiness, not so much although, some humor does lighten things up. You have gotten off some good puns, yourself. I agree that things have become dull. I agree that the bishops do not seem to address the issues that we, as the laity, would like them to discuss. I would like them to discuss the means to holiness. I do not know anyone who left the Church because of the intellectual dullness of the bishops. I know some who left because of sloth. Are we wanting the bishops to set people straight? They try and they are criticized.
The Pope has said it once this year, Francis. Why would you make a mockery of him by implying he should go to town on it? That is what the laity is tasked to do, kind of gentle interim between God and severe chastisement.
What does this sentence mean: “That is what the laity is tasked to do, kind of gentle interim between God and severe chastisement.” The laity is supposed to perform some kind of chastisement? Of whom?
What exactly did the Pope say about the bishops and holiness? When and where, and in what context? Was it in a newspaper interview? A speech or sermon to some group? Where?
Since you think this is such an important papal pronouncement, and since neither k nor I can find it, perhaps you can provide some way to locate it so we can all see it and comment intelligently.
The Pope does not need to go to town on it, Francis. Going to town on it is the laity’s responsibility. The laity, in my little construct here, would play somewhere betwixt extreme chastisement and some act of God … say, such as replacing all the bishops. Use you imagination in league with your reason and based fact; I know you have never done so, but if you ever do, you might be amazed.
I thought it mean intercession.
Francis, the Donatists were not holy and neither are most bishops, which should be the obvious reason behind the Pope’s request that they turn to Christ and not to the govt for their religious inspiration.
It’s worth repeating. It is a part of the Gospel, Francis. Don’t you believe we should repeat the Gospel frequently, especially when it is not responded to?
One of the key principles of Catholic social thought is known as the principle of subsidiarity. This tenet holds that nothing should be done by a larger and more complex organization which can be done as well by a smaller and simpler organization. In other words, any activity which can be performed by a more decentralized entity should be. This principle is a bulwark of limited government and personal freedom. It conflicts with the passion for centralization and bureaucracy characteristic of the Welfare State. This only leads to corruption and greed.
This is why Pope John Paul II took the “social assistance state” to task in his 1991 encyclical Centesimus Annus. The Pontiff wrote that the Welfare State was contradicting the principle of subsidiarity by intervening directly and depriving society of its responsibility. This “leads to a loss of human energies and an inordinate increase of public agencies which are dominated more by bureaucratic ways of thinking than by concern for serving their clients and which are accompanied by an enormous increase in spending.” Pray for our church leaders and shepherds to share the papal message. We need a “Holy” Change!
You are right!
If the Bishops were really holy, they would be preaching our responsibilities to our fellow men less fortunate than we are, they would get off the government wagon, they would renounce the so called tax exempt status which is what I call the modern Thirty Pieces of Silver.
Whenever you give the government the power to control welfare, you give that same government the power to enslave the people, the same goes for medical care as well. In spite of all the evil that this government is inflicting on the Church in America, most bishops are still Democrats, go figure!
God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
Kenneth M. Fisher
Exactly, Kenneth, exactly!!!
Right on Kenneth. All humans are created by God with certain talents and I believe people who just want to sit and only use their talent of ‘opening up the government check’ may someday be judged by God that they sat on this earth doing nothing with their God given talents. I believe that many of the self proclaimed ‘poor’ need to be held to task by Church leaders, bishops and priests, and told that it is SINFUL to just sit on their collective butts and squander what God has given them. Will many of those who waste their talents someday say to God that “nobody told me what I did was sinful”? Poor people have souls to be saved too and life is just not one big mulligan. Do you think I will ever hear a member of the clergy instructing many of the poor on sloth, thievery, lying, greed, envy, laziness, disfiguring your body (temple of the Holy Spirit) with piercings and tattoos. Will the priest next Sunday castigate the ever increasing number of people who are showing up at Mass tattooed?
Of course, Bishop Blaire’s answer to all of this is more and more taxes and more and more socialist programs, sending more and more of our production to other countries, birth-control (there is a high cost for this), working and shopping on Sundays forcing the Mothers to also work, which makes for an empty house for the children, using food for fuel, paying the farmers for not planting. Just a few of the many things that are causing our problems. Paul Ryan has the right idea, and we have to be brave and go back to the roots of this country, which was founded on the Holy Word of God and did not include socialist programs of the government. Jesus did not tell Caesar to feed the hungry, clothe the naked, etc., but He told this to the Church, of which, Bishop Blaire should be aware of. Eliminate all of these socialist programs and our taxes will go down and we will have more money to buy things, which will make more jobs, and those that come to this country for handouts, will leave, freeing up God’s resources for the needy. Painful, but simple. The early Americans didn’t hang around government offices waiting to be fed, they planted their own crops instead. +JMJ+
“paying the farmers for not planting”: around here, there are many large fields that go unplanted … sort of. Every few years a crop of some unrecognizable plant will go in, be watered, and then harvested. However, this is seldom and these plants are neither grain nor vegetables … not sure what the use if any happens to be. Nor does it appear to be fuel crop either. Maybe it is the cheapest thing that will grow, so the farmer can collect some money from the govt ?
Good response JMJ Mine was less respectful of Bishop Blaire as I described it as a rubber stamp reply that bravely said absolutely nothing.
Bud, your heart is in the right place. We tend to fire buckshot at the bushes, and other more careful responders take methodical aim. There’s room for both, don’t you think?
Too bad Bishop Blaire, and many, many other American bishops, is that they miss the point of being bishops. In fact, their embarrassingly immature notions of the economy, and human behavior, have lead to the election of President Obama (with majority Catholic assistance). This is not the Age of Robber Barons, dear Bishop Blaire, and your statement does nothing but give support to crazies in Congress and the Obama Administration to further look to the State as the source of survival and benefit. How many TLMs are said in your diocese, good bishop? How many seminarians are there? How are you teaching about salvation, and the effects of sin?
I mean no insult to the Bishop but his “Labor Day Statement” citing the obvious results of unemployment” is absolutely nothing but a common “Bishop’s) rubber stamp. He should be addressing things a little more directly as a leader, teacher and shepherd, He says absolutely nothing to address the problems.
“Millions of Americans suffer from unemployment, underemployment or are living in poverty as their basic needs too often go unmet. This represents a serious economic and moral failure for our nation”, as stated by Bishop Blaire. I would like to take this strictly secular statement and make it into a statement more relevant for a Catholic bishop to make: “Millions of Americans suffer from a lack of moral direction and are living a life of spiritual impoverishment. This represents a serious failure on the part of the Catholic hierarchy in our nation.
God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
Kenneth M. Fisher
Exactly, read my answer to Maryanne above, so many clergy are afraid to mention the real causes of poverty, for one thing where a breakage of the Ninth Commandment reigns, so does poverty. It could not be otherwise,
Editor, the link does not work.
The editor replies: Thanks for bringing this to our attention. The link has been fixed.
The Bishop’s website PovertyUSA will be of interest to some.
Many bishops (USCCB) have and do support every intitlement program that comes down the pike. They support increased taxes and every government idea (many which are immoral) to “solve” the problems of the poor. We are those called by Christ to care for the poor, not the federal government. We are less able to do so when 50 to 70 cents of every dollar we earn in our business goes to taxes…we cant’ hire another person even though we could use the help. This doesn’t even address the problem of the HHS mandate and how we would have to deal with that obamanation. Most people in this country are generous and caring…but the government has regulated and taxed us out of our ability to be either! Wake up USCCB! If you would stop you socialist diatribe long enough to get truly moral people in the white house we could all be the people God intends us to be once more…and practice our faith without government intervention.
While the bishops and other clergy are so worried about losing tax sfree status simply rubber stamps what the political bozos push……after all we must approach the question of the Chrystal Cathedral purchase as they continue to compete with each other. after producing the San Francisco Mausoleum example!
You are absolutely correct, Alice. Many of our bishops are basically socialists. Their grasp on economics is at best tenuous. They obviously do not understand the pernicious effects of the soviet-style wealth distribution and class warfare
their stated policies represent.
How can we the laity get them to see their error, though,Anton? Send them encyclicals from the past on the evils of socialism? Would they even read them? It’s worrying how people who are supposed to be so in tune with the Magisterium and the teachings of the Church can be so in error in their thinking. I’m so heartsick at the pride and error Cardinal Dolan is exhibiting. It’s making my stomach upset all the time. I’m so saddened by our bishops and cardinals and they don’t even seem to care about what is happening. I’m reading “A Crisis of Saints’ by Fr.George Rutler and the exquisite writing blended with his sadness over the current state of the church should be must reading for all caring Catholics. It’s a call to arms in a way, as the book says “The call to heroic faith in an unheroic world”. It’s so rich that I read a chapter at a time just to savor the language and beauty of his thinking. It’s a short book but so important to one’s growth as a Catholic.
There is no need for our bishops to rewrite the issue of “social justice” when Christ’s own commandments have been so clearly, ably and completely expanded and applied to the modern world in the many encyclicals of Leo XIII, Saint Pius X, Pius XI and Pius XII, all addressing the exact, same problems. This primary concern of Christ, CHARITY, did not begin with Vatican II. Why cannot the Conference simply reissue excerpts quoting and citing from those encyclicals?
A soul knows instinctively when it gives charitably. One does not have to be Catholic to exercise charity. For example, Jesus tells us that charity is when someone lays down his life for his brother. This act is not monopolized by the Church, but is found universally.
Employers are very shy right now about hiring, because they don’t know what they will be on the hook for in taxes and health insurance. Plus, the idiots in power are planning strategies that will drive up the cost of all forms of energy, including trucking costs. Plus, the EPA type people come out with new regulations faster than flies breed. Under these circumstances who will hire?
Great time to be a lawyer.
bad time to be a doctor
I am always surprised by people who rail against taxes for everyone but say that we in the Church should tend to the poor. Since taxing all citizens is a theoretical sharing of the burden by everyone, doesn’t it seem fairer to tax all than to burden Christians alone with caring for the poor? Not that we do not care for the poor, nor are we unwilling to continue to do so. But why condemn the theoretical sharing of the burden? Why not condemn the way the taxes are levied, upon whom, and how high they are, followed by condemning the way our taxes are distributed by the governing agencies? We should take it upon ourselves to know whereof we speak and give our thoughts some exercise to test their validity before posting sing-song rants that amount to little more than knee-jerk recanting of other people’s repetitious recantings, most of which are partisan slogans rather than hard-won thoughts worthy of sharing or of reading. The teachings of Jesus require thought and are worthy of following and of sharing with others; most of the posts on websites, even including this one, are not worthy of following or repeating. Follow Catholic teachings and use the brain God gave you to apply these teachings to today’s challenges before posting silly rants on CCD; in other words, think, live and write in the Catholic vernacular or consider picking up a new hobby.
I repeat, whenever you give the government the power to tax for the alleged benefit of the poor, you give the government the power to control because they are the ones who decide who to give to and how much. Believe me it is often not the poor who benefit, and the ones who do are often turned into slaves of the Democrats and Republcrats.
What do you think is going to happen when the people on the dole are greater than those earning or at least trying to earn a living. You may find out soon!
God bless, yours in Their Hearts,
Kenneth M. Fisher
What about giving the poor the great gift of having to learn how to eke out a living and develop character such as not giving in to envy?
What about giving the 1-percenters the great gift of having to learn how to eke out a living and develop character such as not giving into the idea that they shouldn’t have to pay unto Caeser what is Caeser’s?
Francis, that is what the bishops are supposed to be doing. A Vatican cardinal told them to stop with their administrative nonsense and be bishops; the Pope told the bishops to be holy: This holiness of bishops is what persuades the 1% towards charity. Presently the 1% looks at the bishops as employees, or vassals, whose purpose in life is to do the bidding of the 1%. It is heartwarming, Francis, to realize that you’re asking the right questions.
Francis, first learn to spell Caesar before speaking about who should pay him and why, and then find some other way to express yourself other than in the cant phrases used by the biased media who constantly reiterate and regurgitate the pap coming out of the mouth of the current administration. I’m utterly fed up with hearing about that illusive 1%. It’s jargon and meaningless in normal conversation. I suppose it must mean something to you, and you can encapsulate complicated philosophical thoughts into pat phrases like that, but it’s utterly meaningless to most of us. Sorry, but that’s how I see it! ;O)
But have a nice day!
I meant to say elusive. Typo or spelling error? hmmm. Only the shadow knows.
“Caeser” knows ;-)
MaryAnne wrote: “We should take it upon ourselves to know whereof we speak…”
When we already know everything, especially know everything about how to do a bishop’s job without ever even darkening the door of a seminary,… Why would we ever take it upon ourselves to know anything more?
Don’t have to know how to do a bishop’s job, Francis, because being a bishop is not a job. Once again, a Vatican cardinal called the bishops to stop already with their job games and be bishops. Simply being holy converts civilizations, Francis. Handling govt money or collections coffers does not advance the Gospel or direct people to Heaven. That is what holiness does.
Say on, brother. I’m getting like my corgi with a nose for rotting meat…when the conversation turns to social justice rather than simple acts of charity, my nose starts twitching. There’s hardly ever any discussion (especially from our bishops) on spreading the good news and saving souls from going to hell. I see up close how well our supposed poor live in this country, from having flat screen tvs to wearing really good tennis shoes. Is no one teaching values or speaking to them about Christ’s mercy and love? The focus should be on showing God’s love and relying on providence. Florida has enacted a welfare reform bill where people receiving state funds have to take a drug test. If they don’t pass, they don’t get a check. I suppose there will always be those who think this is mean. I’m not even going to think about such bone deep lunk-headedness.
If we didn’t have the poor, then we wouldn’t have had the late MSgt Benevides, MOH for six intense hours of saving and resaving four dead soldiers’ bodies and eight wounded soldiers, and being filled with shrapnel, bullets, bayonet wounds … son of a poor sharecropper on the US border … Tango Mike Mike (The Mean Mexican). Later the Social Security cut his benefits, which were then reinstated by order from President Reagan. When he retired, his heart had shrapnel in it and one lung had never healed. He put his life on the line for six hours of pure honor, laying down his life for his brothers. Would only most bishops spend six seconds laying their lives on the line for their lambs.
You are making thoughtful and pertinent comments, Maryanne. I think Bishop Blair is right in what he is saying. He is only reiterating Catholic social teaching. Some people don’t realize that in many areas the unemployment rates are high and there really aren’t jobs for young people. When there are too many people and too few jobs, you can’t blame the jobless. Some places do have jobs (such as North Dakota) but lack housing for all the workers.
Maryanne why do you think the government will do a better job at taking care of the poor? The church has always done a better job until the government took over and now we have forced upon Catholic agencies to gays adopting innocent children, we have free abortions for the poor and we have free birth control…there must be something wrong when people want a lot of government control yet get upset when the government offends their faith. I DON”T LIKE A GOVERNMENT TO FORCE ME TO VACCINATE MY CHILDREN WITH vaccines made out of aborted unborn elements, high levels of mercy and aluminum!
Bishop Blair would do well to ask for a reassignment to a third world country or move saving the unborn to the top of his agenda. These Social Justice issues in America should hardly be a priority of US Bishops.
The Bishop did not quite finish his artilce.
Obama has had almost 4 years in office, two of which his Party controlled both the House and the Senate.
Obama’s economic policies that punish businesses and belittle incentive business ownership – DESTROYS jobs.
His economic policies have been a disaster.
“Millions of Americans suffer from unemployment, underemployment or are living in poverty as their basic needs too often go unmet. This represents a serious economic and moral failure for our nation,” – Bishop Blaire.
This is another reason NOT to VOTE for OBAMA.
Obama is a serious economic and moral failure for our nation.
The only good thing Obama has done is accelerate the since of dignity among the black population. But I do not see why they need a socialist tyrant to provide that for them.
There’s vastly more you “do not see” than you can imagine!
The olde socialist “big picture” mode of intellectual intimidation, Francis. That’s why you liberals can justify abortion and sodomy, because anyone who objects “does not see the big picture”. And your liberal position is not Catholic because it denies the Gospel, in that A. Jesus tells His disciples not to silence the faithful, and B. the Holy Eucharist unites the faithful whether bishop or street urchin with God, ie makes the soul one with God. Thus, Francis, the big picture is not necessary at all, but is only a fantasy of those who prefer fractionation of reality. In other words, Francis, I do not have to see any big picture, or see more than I can imagine. You really need to do some homework on this topic, say day and night study for thirty years, so as to reach a competent level of understanding … or you can simply become holy, whichever is easiest for you.
The olde conservative “big picture” of an intellectual flatland, lumps “anything I disagree with” as “liberal.” That’s why you can make abortion and sodomy the only issues worth talking about, and condemn anyone who doesn’t spend every living breath talking up those two points — because anyone who would maintain the preferential option for the poor is “a socialist tyrant.” And your hyper-conservative position is not Catholic because it denies the Gospel, in that A. the Gospels and the Hebrew scriptures before them contain far more verses relating to feeding the poor and tending to orphans and widows than they do regarding sexual immorality, and B. the Gospel demands that we love God first, ie makes the animus one with God. Thus, there is no fractionation of reality, no separation between “us” and “them,” neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free, male nor female, for we are all one in Christ Jesus.
Abortion and sodomy are fixations. I understand why they loom large for people. They are life and death issues and carry an eternal bad consequence. They are political issues. They are black and white issues. They are areas where they can feel morally superior. And they are areas that are fed by the media and well organized activists. If the preferential option for the poor was presented as a platform of fighting against those who demand that the hungry not be fed, they would join the protest.
Abortion is not “sexual immorality”. It is murder. Murder is not to be taken lightly…a person must first have life to appreciate or benefit from any one of your pet social justice issues. If you cannot defend life from conception to natural death you are not a Catholic, so argue the point over coffee with your political cronies.
I didn’t write and did not intend to equate abortion and sexual immorality. I wrote my comment following JLS’s “abortion and sodomy” structure, to show how small the shift between perspectives really is. I guess that didn’t work for you?
As for “pet issues,” I don’t keep issues as pets; my dog is a much better pet. And as for who decides whether someone is Catholic or not: You can be Catholic even if you don’t accept that equal rights, the right to food and medical care do defend life, but if so you haven’t embraced the fullness of our faith.
Finally, I don’t have “political cronies” and I’m not going to go away quite so easily!
Sometimes I wonder if it’s really about helping the poor or is it jealousy or envy one feels towards the upper class…..
I find it interestion how often people mix up the concepts of charity and social justice. The church teaches that we must do both. Charity seems to be what we do best; give help to the poor, the needy and those in pain. Social Justice is trying to end poverty, neediness and pain. Archbishop Romero (paraphrase) said that when he helped feed the poor he was praised as a saint. When he asked why there was poverty he was called a communist. There are twenty million people in our country who are unemployed and very few job openings unless you have a degree in electronic engineering and programming. Those job losses were created by the companies that are supposed to be building up the available jobs. They send jobs overseas, not always because of cheaper labor but because that is where trained workers are available. Work with the unemployed in this country for a while and we will see that the old bromide “go get a job” is nearly an unrealistic request. Where will the get a job? Who will provide it? Don’t be fooled by the notion that companies are afraid to hire because of future health costs. That is a lie. Companies don’t hire because they don’t need more people to get the job done. Productivity is so high in this country that we don’t need more workers, at least in most industries. We need to find a new way to create jobs and build the economy. We need to look for root cause. It is likely to be poor educational systems, poor training in the trades, overly high paid executives of even medium sized companies Why does the executive of a medium size company need a multi-million dollar salary? Try to find root cause and you come away with different answers that what you hear on the 10 second sound bits of the political season.
It is interesting that the blame goes to those who have created jobs-for not creating more jobs or reducting jobs. Why don’t those who complain create jobs?
k, they way I read Bob’s comment, and the way I see the job market myself, is that there are actually a lot of jobs and a lot of work to be done. But we’ve lost so many low or mid-wage and manufacturing jobs that we have a much less balanced domestic job market.
Each of us is called to contribute as we can. Many of us who “complain” as you say, also do tutoring and mentoring. If one kid moves up from flipping burgers at MacDonalds to get and hold a technical job, he earns more money and someday hopefully supports a family. And, another kid gets the job at MacDonalds.
One area where I disagree with Bob is that “the companies … are supposed to be building up the available jobs.” In our version of capitalism, short-term profit and share price are everything. Responsibility to shareholders takes precedence over social good or creating jobs. Capitalism in the US has become at its core an amoral system.
Francis, nice comment. The Popes have taught that the first need is for companies to provide work for people- work that is worthy of them, and that will allow them to raise their family and meet their needs. You are right that profit has overtaken the idea of the social benefit of work. How do we change that? You know, towns and states license companies to operate in their jurisdiction. There is no reason that certain stipulations go with that licensing.
Most of this Church and govt theorizing was done in a world past, when working people were overworked and underpaid. Today this is not the case. No one seems to be coming up with the theories that address today’s situation within the USA. However, what they are coming up with is the theories and implementations that address much of the rest of the world. Socialism is self centered and ineffective. Free enterprise actually allocates goods and services where the demand is located. Govt needs to stick with military defense and regulating dense population centers, and stay out of the other 75% of what it is involved with, which robs free enterprise and pays tyrants who can do nothing, produce nothing and get in everyone’s way. The bishops need to cut their ties with both socialist and capitalist organizations and stick with preaching and teaching the Gospel … and working on their own holiness. The poor do a whole lot better when bishops practice holiness than when bishops funnel money to them. Jesus came in His holiness, not in his welfareness.
Francis and Bob One, I appreciate the contribution you are making by creating jobs and mentoring/tutoring. I am an unskilled worker. My husband is a professional. I remain out of the workforce so that I do not take a job from someone who needs it worse than I. That is my small contribution.
k, I did that once; even obtained unemployment insurance and food stamps, just to make sure to keep bureaucrats employed.
JLS, a single man that got food stamps? We might have to put you in the Snithsonian.
k, that was back in the day … in my idealistic youth, when I spent all my time reading and writing flowery poetry … and of course chasing after any coed who would read one of them. The law of supply and demand entered my realm at some point … just as my last food stamp disappeared. I realized clearly then that it took me less time to find a job than to stand in the food stamp application line … and besides I could buy more food and even gasoline and pay for dates … that was a big advance, over sitting on the curb in front of the dancehall saturday night discussing with some girl why it was bad to have money.
The old divide and conquer rhetoric rut used by the emotionally adept and intellectually bankrupt.
K. Many of us do!
POPE ON SOCIAL JUSTICE:
“In this world of ours, in which, despite the profession of good intentions, the value of the person, of human dignity and human rights is seriously threatened by the widespread tendency to have recourse exclusively to the criteria of utility, profit and material possessions, it is important not to detach the concept of justice from its transcendent roots.
“Justice, indeed, is not simply a human convention, since what is just is ultimately determined not by positive law, but by the profound identity of the human being.
“It is the integral vision of man that saves us from falling into a contractual conception of justice and enables us to locate justice within the horizon of solidarity and love.” (Pope Benedict XVI, Educating Young People in Justice and Peace, 1 January 2012)
Thank you max, especially for adding the reference showing everyone where the quote came from. Now anyone can verify the source, whether it is a translation from another language, and what the context is. We can be assured that you truly honor the pope by faithfully repeating his words and meaning.
Francis, why not be honest and say that you blog on this site because you like to read what you cannot find in books? Instead you chastise bloggers for not reciting your favorite passages from Church documents. If you really were only interested in Church documents then you would not bother with this site, since you’d be too busy reading everything published by the Vatican.
Honesty demands me to say I comment on this site because I am a total narcissist who loves to read back his own writing.
I am grateful that a range of people with many perspectives quote favorite passages from the bible, from the CCC, and the writings of saints and popes. After all, I don’t have time to read them all, and our deposit of faith includes tremendous diversity of perspective!
What I don’t find helpful is unsupported claims which are at substantial variance with what my Catholic teachers taught me, and at variance with what I read.
FRANCIS, i love your first paragraph:
“Honesty demands me to say I comment on this site because I am a total narcissist who loves to read back his own writing.”
thisz is probably true of all of us, but you are th eonly one (so far_) to admit it!!!
Francis then if you are a narcissist then you can also type thoughts on private docs, save them on your computer and go back to read them….why put others in torment why not just publish your stuff for your own private viewing……just saying. oh by the way, no pun intended but all lies…ya right, you expect us to believe what you just posted. max believe it or not, but not everything is like that…
JLS, a field may be lying fallow intentionally in order to allow natural forces to refresh the soil; the farmer may be ill or deceased; the property may have been listed for sale, in escrow, or sold, perhaps to a developer or corporation. Assuming the owner is on the dole is like assuming a man at rest is on the dole. Most small farmers also work paying jobs. Farming is not ma-and-pa-on-the-homestead these days. Unless you grow a high-value specialty crop, you’re losing money, breaking even, or have inherited your land, home, and equipment; in any event, probably you are not getting government subsidies. The best-paying crop these days is developed land. Only big corporations are making much money, and the little guy is working 365 days/year trying to hold on to what he’s got. Working farmers today are often older folks nearing retirement, and some have retired and stayed on the land if their house is there. Corporations are buying land as young people want the comfort, ease, excitement and predictability of city living, not the high costs, simple pleasures and nightly fears built into the farming life today.