Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Nazi-Catholic Connection

Pope Benedict and National Socialism—the Connection
By Ron Fraser

Few commentators have picked up on the connection between Pope Benedict’s recent encyclical on the global economy and Nazi ideology. Cause and effect. There’s a binding universal law that connects the two. So it is with Pope Benedict’s most recent, long-awaited encyclical, “Caritas in Veritate” (“In Charity and Truth”). That encyclical is inherently joined to a consistent theme that has run through Catholic social doctrine over the past 120 years, finding its most extreme political outlet in the National Socialism that gripped Europe in the wake of the great global crisis of the 1920s and ’30s.

Is it entirely coincidental that this pope would choose the worst global economic crisis since the Great Depression to profoundly endorse those same principles that laced the economic theories of fascism and Nazism just one lifetime ago during a similar crisis?

Pope Benedict’s encyclical is the latest contribution to Catholic economic theory, traditionally known as Catholic social doctrine. That doctrine is founded upon Pope Leo XIII’s encyclical “Rerum Novarum” (“On the Condition of Labor”), issued in 1891 in response to the tensions that resulted between capital and labor in the wake of the Industrial Revolution. It endorsed an essentially socialist approach to economic control.

Building upon the theme established in “Rerum Novarum,” Pope Pius XI issued his encyclical of May 15, 1931, titled “Quadragesimo Anno” (“On the Reconstruction of the Social Order”). The text of that encyclical introduced the concept of subsidiarity that has long since become a catch cry of the European Union.

Pope John XXIII followed up with the introduction of the theme of globalism, calling for all peoples to live as one community working for the common good, in his encyclical titled “Mater et Magistra” (“Christianity and Social Progress”), issued May 15, 1961. This publicized the concept of a global “common market,” working for the good of the “global community,” themes that are deeply embedded in the general philosophy that is behind development of the EU.

The theme of solidarity then threaded its way into Catholic social doctrine with the release of the encyclical “Populorum Progressio” (“The Development of Peoples”) by Pope Paul VI, March 26, 1967. Twenty years later, “Solidarity” became the motto of the Vatican-sponsored Polish workers movement, which was the prime mover behind the effort to break the Communist yoke on Eastern Europe thus enabling the EU to build its long-awaited eastern leg ... Click here to continue

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