I have been reading in the Catechism that both communism and capitalism are not in agreement with the church. What is exactly the church’s idea concerning government? I know the church was meant to be government “Government is upon his shoulders” and it still is really. As it is said “Rome rules the world”. The french kings of old and charlemagne were crowned in the name of the “king of kings”. So since the falling away, the Popes don’t seem to hold secular but spiritual power. Is that what is meant by “king of kings” ?
So I guess I really have two questions. The most important to me is Economic beliefs of the church.
Hope that clears up a vague statement.
Pope Francis has spoken out against “unbridled” capitalism, not capitalism in general. Meaning, people should not just focus on the stock market, or company performance without considering the human element. Suggest you read Evangelii Gaudium for more insight:
in particular, paragraphs 52-58.
The problem here is that both capitalism and communism can lead to cronyism and oligarchy. We tend to think symbolically and assume that because one label is slapped on a thing, that it holds up to all characteristics of that thing.
I believe Pope Francis did speak recently that entrepreneurs would help turn around Italy’s flagging unemployment, and entrepreneurship largely exists only in in-practice capitalist economies (as opposed to whatever label is slapped on them), for what that’s worth.
The best form of government would be a benevolent dictatorship with all rulings based on the principles of the Catholic Church.
You shall not covet . . . anything that is your neighbor’s. . . . You shall not desire your neighbor’s house, his field, or his manservant, or his maidservant, or his ox, or his ***, or anything that is your neighbor’s.
Text is from Vatican Catechism.
Short, short version: You shall not covet anything your neighbor has.
Both extremes are in violation of this commandment, each in its own way.
Let’s ask those living in theistic states who do not worship the one approved way that is approved of, they will have a much different opinion. Just imagine bring a Catholic in Iraq, Saudi Arabia or Iran. I had the opportunity to visit Turkey two years ago, and even though they are considered a modern theistic state, it was creepy.:eek:
You might also read Pacem In Terris
In the economic sphere, it is evident that a man has the inherent right not only to be given the opportunity to work, but also to be allowed the exercise of personal initiative in the work he does. (14)
The conditions in which a man works form a necessary corollary to these rights. They must not be such as to weaken his physical or moral fibre, or militate against the proper development of adolescents to manhood. Women must be accorded such conditions of work as are consistent with their needs and responsibilities as wives and mothers.(15)
A further consequence of man’s personal dignity is his right to engage in economic activities suited to his degree of responsibility.(16) The worker is likewise entitled to a wage that is determined in accordance with the precepts of justice. This needs stressing. The amount a worker receives must be sufficient, in proportion to available funds, to allow him and his family a standard of living consistent with human dignity. Pope Pius XII expressed it in these terms:
“Nature imposes work upon man as a duty, and man has the corresponding natural right to demand that the work he does shall provide him with the means of livelihood for himself and his children. Such is nature’s categorical imperative for the preservation of man.”(17)
As a further consequence of man’s nature, he has the right to the private ownership of property, including that of productive goods. This, as We have said elsewhere, is “a right which constitutes so efficacious a means of asserting one’s personality and exercising responsibility in every field, and an element of solidity and security for family life, and of greater peace and prosperity in the State.”(18)
Finally, it is opportune to point out that the right to own private property entails a social obligation as well. (19)*
It is also interesting to see what Pope John XXIII considered the rights of men:
- But first We must speak of man’s rights. Man has the right to live. He has the right to bodily integrity and to the means necessary for the proper development of life, particularly food, clothing, shelter, medical care, rest, and, finally, the necessary social services. In consequence, he has the right to be looked after in the event of ill health; disability stemming from his work; widowhood; old age; enforced unemployment; or whenever through no fault of his own he is deprived of the means of livelihood. (8)
A bit more extensive list than “life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness,” no?
The entire document is, of course, worth reading. Many here love to refer to Rerum Novarum and *Quadragesimo Anno *which both condemn socialism. Fair enough, however, we do need to remember that this usage of “socialism” refers to a specific thing: state ownership of the means of production, as opposed to what appears to be the common understanding of “socialism” around here… :eek: EVERYTHING!!! :eek:
As with most things, I think, you may well find the Church teachings on this to be neither liberal nor conservative, neither do they proclaim any system best, but outline the conditions that would satisfy the requirements of justice.
Visit Malta. Roman Catholicism is the State Religion. Nice little country…not creepy at all.
Been there. My city is bigger than the entire country.