¿Eso es Comunismo? Cantinflas- translation needed

Can any Spanish speaking people help me understand what this video discusses.
¿Eso es Comunismo?. Cantinflas.


I understand it brings up the catechism, communism and sounds like some papal encyclicals. I’d like to better understand the discussion in the video.
Thanks to anyone that can help

I need better speakers on my computer. I couldn’t hear it well enough to say, wished I could turn up the volume.

The people are asking the visiting priest about some ideas that they’ve heard come up in catechism classes that will prejudice the children towards communism or otherwise against the rich classes in society, such as the idea their labor should be in proportion to their salary (i.e., rich people should not be able to accumulate wealth without actually working to earn it, just as the working class does). The man replies by telling the priest that this kind of thinking has resulted in many workers demanding an increase in salary, to which the priest replies “good!”. The woman says “Isn’t that communism?” and the priest replies that it isn’t, that it’s actually in line with this or that papal encyclical which says x, y, z (various examples from various popes: Pius X, John XXIII, etc.). The man replies “But the manner in which you go about it (securing the livelihood for the workers) can create problems”. The priest replies “I don’t think so, because HH Leo XIII in the year 1891 said in his encyclical that the state should help the working class, because the riches of the state come from the work and exertion of the workers.” The priest then laments that this has not occurred in the time since that statement, and asks if it isn’t the case that if there are errors to be sorted out with the poor (e.g., I’m guessing, the attraction to this type of philosophy in Latinoamerica), then the error that creates them with the rich should first be sorted out? The man says “That’s not what the encyclical says”, and the priest replies “No, I’m saying that, because getting rid of poverty makes a more equitable world.” The man then asks the priest how it is that he remembers the content of encyclicals so well from memory, and the priest replies that he learned them as a novice priest, where it was like a punishment to learn them, until one day he was in the presence of the archbishop, who said that he would obtain great benefit from applying their wisdom to economic matters. The manner corrects him, thinking he misspoke “(You mean) ecumenically”, to which the priest replies “Well, it’s a question of economics…that’s why they punished me.” :smiley: (read: for speaking out on such matters in this way)

Funny clip, with some wise things to think about. :slight_smile:

It appears that the moustached priest teaches the catechism to children, and the blonde priest is relaying that a wealthy businessman (Don Silvestro) has been complaining about what is being taught regarding work/salary

B: Blond, older priest
M: Moustachioed priest

B: something worries me; I believe you had good intentions, but don Silvestre complained to me that in your catechismal lessons you’re imparting certain troublesome views to the children

M: like what?

B: you tell them that that the expenditure of their work should be in relation/proportion to their salaries

M; of course: if people charge (demand in salary) more than what they put in (labor), they should charge less; but if they work more (in relation to what they ask for in salary), then they should charge more (for their services)

B ; did you know that those theories have begun causing problems? And that many workers have already been asking Don Silvestro for higher wages?

M: how good

B: good? Why?

M: remember that the riches should not be accumulated by the wealthy, but should be divided among the workers

Woman: but that’s communism!

M: no – that the encyclical of (I think he says “encyclical of Pio XI). . . .and the encyclical says that workers should earn sufficiently to live at a “truly human” level that allows them to get their families ahead

B: but the manner in which you focus on this can bring problems.

M: I don’t think so because his holiness Leon XIII said this in his encyclical in 1891 - that the state should help the proletariat class, because it is through the labor and effort of the worker that the wealth of the state/nation exists. He said that a while ago, and nothing happened. It’s an error to try to put an end to the wealthy; it’s necessary to put an end to the poor

B: I didn’t see that in the encyclical

M: because it’s not there; that’s what I say. Because in ending poverty there will be more equality in the world

B: how can it be that such a distracted/forgetful person like yourself knows the encyclicals from memory?

M: As a novice, I was made to memorize them as a punishment. One day in the presence of the archbishop I told him that I expected great benefits/gains to come out of the economic discourse

B: “ecumenical”

(Dzheremi, I thought he said “No es question de economia” - “It’s ***not ***a question of economy – that’s why they chastised/punished me”, implying that he was speaking tongue-in-cheek to the archbishop and that in the end it’s not really about economics at all, but that some church members cared more about economics than social justice for the individual worker. I interpreted it to be a dig at the church hierarchy, as this was what could be called a “Marxist” priest. I may have misunderstood, though. What do you think he meant by saying that he was punished for talking about economics?)

Hmm. Now that I listen to it again, I think I did mishear the last bit – he does say “no”, though then it remains an open question as to what is going on in the other half of the conversion – why does it follow the other priest’s insistence on another interpretation (“ecumenico”) if he doesn’t mean it as a corrective? And either way it appears we have the same interpretation – he is punished for talking economics; it’s merely a matter of whether or not you think it’s justified or “on topic”/central to the message of the Church (which obviously this priest does, what with the quoting of the encyclicals)…which, of course, is a big question when it comes to controversial liberation theology/leftist Catholicism in that part of the world.

Why would he be punished? Hahaha. Didn’t you see the title of the video and the attitude of the older man and the woman? That’s communism! That’s the whole context of the conversation, right? – The young, “Marxist” priest, and the older people who are not comfortable with that sort of thing because it rocks the boat. You can imagine that he wouldn’t have gotten in trouble in the first place if there wasn’t the conservative hierarchy there to get upset about these things, so of course it’s a dig at the hierarchy, but I’m not really sure how to answer your question. He’d either get punished for being off-topic (your interpretation) or being a little bit uncomfortably on topic (my interpretation, which now that I listen to it again may be wrong, but somehow still fits with the overall theme of the video, hahaha). But either way the result is the same. :slight_smile:

Thanks for the great replies and effort.
I don’t really understand much at all about Marxism/communism, particularly within the South American context.
Dosen’t Pope Francis promote a similar desire to the younger priest in the video. Ie: combating rampant capitalism while also combating poverty?

Sure, but there’s a history in Latin America specifically of re-imagining the gospel and the church in left-wing political terms. This is called “Liberation theology” and was a big controversy in a lot of the RCC for years, until (IIRC) Pope John Paul II put his foot down during a visit to El Salvador in the 1980s (the days of the Sandinista uprising) and told the priests and bishops who supported this theology to “regularize (themselves) within the Church” – meaning they could serve the Marxists or they could serve Christ, but they couldn’t serve both. That didn’t stop the popularity of that particular interpretation of the gospel in the Latin world, but it was an important step in getting the official message out there that Christ is not a proto-Marxist or whatever.

My take was that when the older priest heard him speaking of “economics” to the archbishop, the priest was trying to clarify because supposedly (for him, at least) the issue of social justice trumps the issue of economics. It seemed as though the mention of economics threw him off and he didn’t understand why the younger priest would use that word because for him, it actually *was *an ecumenical issue.

yes, I think so. And I might have heard incorrectly as well.

Yes, I noticed how the woman simplified his message by saying “but that’s communism!” in a horrified tone of voice. I’ve never watched this program, but the sense I got was that it was making fun of people who use the word “communism” incorrectly, or who just assume that anything pertaining to fair wages is automatically communist. It was basically making fun of the woman for her supposed ignorance. This clip of the program at least appeared to have pro-Marxist leanings.

And the insinuation is that church clerics (including the hierarchy) are/were in bed with the wealthy business owners at the expense of the poor; hence, the reason they “punished” him for talking about just wages.

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