A chief tenet of progressive orthodoxy is that disciples must repeatedly sermonize anti-capitalist dogma to the socialist left congregation. Whether it is an international event or a political development, followers are required to crack open the gospel of Karl Marx, break gluten-free bread, drink the blood of Joseph Stalin, and tweet the iniquities of the market economy. Over the last several months, leftist academics have exploited the Coronavirus pandemic to pontificate on capitalism’s sins and espouse socialism’s virtues, alluding to vague notions and liberal tropes of income inequality and racial inequity.
Case in point, Pope Francis.
Prayers for Deliverance
Pope Francis recently presented his vision of a post-COVID-19 world by releasing his new encyclical, Fratelli Tutti (Brothers All). The document stated that the current political and economic establishment needs to be reformed to address the legitimate needs of the people who have been affected by the virus outbreak. Francis wrote:
“Aside from the differing ways that various countries responded to the crisis, their inability to work together became quite evident. Anyone who thinks that the only lesson to be learned was the need to improve what we were already doing, or to refine existing systems and regulations, is denying reality.
“The fragility of world systems in the face of the pandemic has demonstrated that not everything can be resolved by market freedom. It is imperative to have a proactive economic policy directed at ‘promoting an economy that favours productive diversity and business creativity’ and makes it possible for jobs to be created, and not cut.”
The Pope also lamented on the populist uprising springing across the globe, denouncing it as demonizing and isolating dialogue, solidarity, and the common good. He added that the world needs to reject isolationist and nationalistic policies championed by political leaders, pointing to the need for charity and kindness. This, he says, is “the basic decision we need to make in order to rebuild our wounded world.”
But is Francis, who lives in luxury and presides over an estimated $10 billion worth of banking and insurance investments, right about anything in his polemics? To paraphrase Laura Ingraham of Fox News, perhaps the Pope needs to keep quiet and just preach the Bible.
In March, the market economy turned into a command economy, with central planners dictating what could be manufactured and what consumers could be allowed to do. Free movement was abandoned in favor of nationwide house arrest. Cash registers were substituted for “closed” signs. All minutia of the economy became planned to accommodate big government scholars – doomers, experts, politicians, and bureaucrats – who refused to allow a crisis to go to waste. While power-hungry fools had already managed elements of the market-oriented economy, the road to serfdom had been amplified to save lives. The nation’s esteemed representatives shut down people’s livelihoods, central banks bailed out the stock market, and lawmakers gave private industry free money. Pray tell, Pope Francis, how is this the fault of market capitalism?
Today, if you commit the cardinal sin of speaking out against mini-Maos and socialist philistines, you are labeled a “covidiot” and accused of wanting to murder your grandmother. It is ironic, considering that this is exactly what several iron-fisted governors did when they transferred sick patients to nursing homes. Despite what we know now – the virus’ survival rate is 99.6% for most people – the tyrants continue to justify lockdowns, house arrests, and expansion in the state’s size and scope.
Capitalist forces that have escaped the state’s clutches have done a remarkable job for the economy – at home and abroad. From personal protective equipment to food to COVID-19 treatments to coronavirus vaccines, the private market has stepped up to the plate, tapping into the profit motive. The free-enterprise system is trying to breathe, while politicians continue to strangle entrepreneurship.
Pope Francis’ Socialist Piety
The socialist piety of Pope Francis has been on display since his ascent to the throne of the Vatican. He has sanctimoniously railed against the very system that has enriched the two-mile Italian fortress for all these years, allowing him to reside and travel in luxury. He has described capitalism as “terrorism against all of humanity,” “the dung of the devil,” and a “structure of sin.” And yet, the Pope claims that he is not a Marxist. Is he an authentic character who truly cares for the impecunious? If so, the Pope should wish to abolish poverty and make everyone wealthier by endorsing the advancement of capitalism worldwide. Over the last century, it has lifted more people from the ashes of destitution and despair than any other economic system in history. Now that the coronavirus-induced expansion of government has threatened much of these gains, capitalism is receiving exorcism by Marxists.
It is a bad look for the Vatican when prosperity preacher Kenneth Copeland seems more rational than the current head of the theocratic absolute elective monarchy.
Read more from Andrew Moran.