As my colleague Roger Aronoff reports, the media are livid that President Donald Trump is dismantling former President Barack Obama’s “climate change” legacy of deindustrialization and federal government control of energy resources. Meanwhile, factions of the U.S. Catholic Church and some Protestants are brainwashing church members into accepting the non-Christian idea that religious faith involves a belief in an Earth Spirit.
A so-called “Little White Book” was handed out in a number of American Catholic churches on April 16, supposedly to offer reflections based on the Resurrection narrative of the Gospel of Mark. Instead, the book included a number of Marxist sermonettes, such as that the “seven social sins” include “polluting the environment; contributing to widening the divide between rich and poor; excessive wealth; and creating poverty.”
Inside the booklet, Catholics were also told to celebrate “Earth Day” on April 22, practice the “Small is Beautiful” philosophy, and take their cues from Native Americans who “believe in the Great Spirit.”
The “Little White Book,” a publication of the Catholic Diocese of Saginaw, Michigan, is one in a series of booklets, with three million currently in circulation.
The Catholic Diocese of Saginaw created the original “Little Black Book” on the Lenten season, followed by the “Little White Book.” The series is the brainchild of notorious liberal and “gay-friendly” Bishop Kenneth E. Untener.
Exact figures were not available on how many “Little White Books” were distributed in Catholic churches on April 16. But it appears that the church is moving toward the idea of an “Environmental Sabbath,” long popularized by the United Nations. A brochure about the project encouraged children to hold hands around a tree and meditate.
The “Little White Book” highlights the importance of the environmental encyclical “Laudato Si: On Care for our Common Home,” released by the Vatican under the name of Pope Francis and demanding that “technology based on the use of highly polluting fossil fuels—especially coal, but also oil and, to a lesser degree, gas—needs to be progressively replaced without delay.”
The “Little White Book” also promotes the work of Fr. Thomas Berry, a New Age figure described as “a major figure in the environmental movement.”
Berry called himself a “geologian,” rather than theologian, and was president of the American Teilhard Association, named after the mystical Jesuit philosopher Teilhard de Chardin. Berry’s books included Evening Thoughts: Reflecting on Earth as Sacred Community, and he is buried at Green Mountain Monastery in Greensboro, Vermont.
United States Conference of Catholic Bishops: Department of Justice, Peace and Human Development
United States Conference of Catholic Bishops: Migration and Refugee Services
Catholic Charities USA
Catholic Relief Services
Catholic Health Association of the United States
Columban Center for Advocacy and Outreach
Conference of Major Superiors of Men
Catholic Rural Life
Franciscan Action Network
Global Catholic Climate Movement
Holy Name Province, OFM
National Council of Catholic Women
Leadership Conference of Women Religious
Association of Catholic Colleges and Universities
Sisters of Mercy of the Americas
But Catholics are not alone in being targeted for action in favor of “climate justice.”
A group called Young Evangelicals for Climate Action has accused President Trump of issuing an executive order that reflects concern for the interests of “energy elites over vulnerable people.” The group even advocates a “climate prayer” for those “being impacted by climate disruption,” whatever that means.
At a background briefing on Trump’s executive order, a senior official explained that “This policy is in keeping with President Trump’s desire to make the United States energy independent. He believes that we can serve the twin goals of protecting the environment and providing clean air and clean water, getting the EPA back to its core mission, while at the same time, again, moving forward on energy production in the United States. The United States is the largest producer of oil and natural gas in the world. We have plenty deposits of coal. We want to look at nuclear, renewables, all of it. And again, we can do both to serve the environment and increase energy at the same time.”
The Heartland Institute cautions that environmentalists and global warming alarmists will use the upcoming Earth Day to further their agenda by promoting “unsubstantiated claims about looming climate disasters—which the mainstream media promotes as absolute truth without researching and examining the mounds of data that prove otherwise.”
In honor of Earth Day, the group is offering some of its environment and energy publications in a special “Earth Day Bundle” at 22 percent off list price.
On Saturday night, a lunatic by the name of Jason Brian Dalton went on a weekend killing spree in Michigan. The next day, contradicting the official Catholic Catechism, Pope Francis called for the worldwide abolition of the death penalty.
The pope doesn’t have to worry about Dalton getting the electric chair or a lethal injection. Michigan does not have the death penalty, which means Dalton, even if convicted of murder, will be entitled to a life at taxpayers’ expense—complete with three meals a day, free health care and cable TV.
On the same day that the pope spoke out against capital punishment, the late Justice Antonin Scalia, a Catholic, was laid to rest. Scalia had said that judges who oppose capital punishment should resign. But that’s not a contradiction of church teaching. Article 2267 of the Catholic catechism, an authoritative compendium of church teaching, says the church “does not exclude recourse to the death penalty, if this is the only possible way of effectively defending human lives” against criminals.
Scalia said the death penalty is not immoral and noted that support for it has been part of Christian and Catholic tradition in the old and new testaments.
Conservative Catholic Vic Biorseth discusses how the Catholic Church has abandoned its traditional teachings and now gets paid by the Obama Administration to bring Muslims into the U.S. and water down America’s Christian heritage. Vic blogs at CatholicAmericanThinker.com and has written the book, “Culture = Religion + Politics. Who Are We?”
Catholic writer Vic Biorseth has coined the term “Crony Catholicism” to describe how the American branch of the Roman Catholic Church has been working hand-in-glove with the Obama administration, even assisting in what he calls “the advance of Islam in America at the expense of Christianity.” Biorseth is among a growing group of American Catholics who have become disillusioned with the liberal trends in the church and have turned to the use of new media, including blogs, to sound the alarm.
A self-described “old time Catholic” stirred to a major renewal in faith by the anti-communist Pope John Paul II, Biorseth was rejected for the local Diaconate for being “too rigid” in his religious views. He has written a book, Culture = Religion and Politics: Who Are We?, describing the decline of America and how the country can be saved from the Marxist, atheist and Islamic forces trying to destroy it. He dedicates the book to the truth, his wife, and “to the America that was, and that can be again.”
The book looks at the history of America and the West and argues that our success as a nation has been based on Judeo-Christian values, now under sustained assault by the President of the United States, referred to as “Comrade Obama, peace be upon him.” The phrase “peace be upon him” is an Arabic phrase often used to refer to a prophet of Islam. Alluding to Obama’s Marxist tendencies, Biorseth also refers to the President’s approach as “Obamunism.”
In terms of the presidential race, Biorseth praises GOP candidate Donald Trump for making illegal immigration a major national issue and declares, “I don’t like him, but I love what he is doing. He is taking on and doing damage to two exceptionally destructive movements in America: 1. The political correctness movement. 2. The mainstream news media.”
In a list of recommendations for saving America, he calls for “taking down the news media” and opening up new lines of communication for private citizens that include “free, open and unlimited publishing and broadcasting of ideas and opposing arguments…” Indeed, his book, which is self-published throughCreateSpace, an Amazon company, is an example of how ordinary citizens are taking matters into their own hands.
Going further, he says, “Remove the press and all press space, facilities and equipment from the White House, the Capitol Building and all other government facilities…Eliminate all existing press passes and credentials allowing special access to government facilities and personnel. The press is to be no more free and no more restricted in government access than any other private citizen.”
He doesn’t spare his own church from scrutiny, exposing what he calls Marxist and homosexual elements on the verge of becoming a “controlling force,” even in the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. An avid listener to Rush Limbaugh’s radio show, Biorseth credits the national conservative radio host for covering significant stories ignored by the liberal media, including the recent reports that a secret cabal of Cardinals had forced Pope Benedict to resign, in order to make the leftist Francis the pope.
He faults Francis, during his address to Congress, for citing Dorothy Day among four historical American figures. Biorseth calls her a “Catholic Communizer” who did not belong in the company of figures like Abraham Lincoln. He says Francis, in his remarks, also seemed to favor Obama’s immigration program that is designed to help the “Marxocrat Party” and diminish American sovereignty over its own borders.
What he found most appalling about the address, Biorseth says, was what Francis did not say. He says Francis did not address the “Culture of Death” of abortion and sexual perversion that has been given a stamp of approval by members of the U.S. Supreme Court and others who were in his audience.
At his “Catholic American Thinker” website, referring to our latest blockbuster revelations about how the Obama administration is funding the pro-Muslim immigration programs of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, Biorsethwrites, “Could you ever imagine that Catholic Bishops would ever bring in illegal Moslems while closing Catholic Parishes? Well, you don’t have to imagine it.” He notes the evidence in our column of how Catholic Churches are closing, mostly across the Northeast, while the Bishops are getting federal funds to settle Muslims from the Middle East in American communities.
Citing one dramatic example, he notes how Holy Trinity Roman Catholic Church in Syracuse, New York, was closed down, and then leased to an Islamic society which renamed it “Mosque of Jesus the Son of Mary,” or Masjit Isa Ibn Maryam. Biorseth comments, “All the crosses were replaced with copper crescent moons, in favor of the moon Mohammed worshiped before he invented Islam.”
Holy Trinity Catholic Church in Syracuse had been built by German immigrants 100 years ago. The church was closed in 2010 and taken over by a Muslim group, which removed six crosses from the steeples in order to turn it into a mosque.
Answering the question in the title, “Who are we?” Biorseth answers, “We are a Christian nation, from our birth.” In order to save the country, he advises, “Get off the couch. This ain’t no pleasure cruise…You make culture. You are the root of culture…Lead the way. Show others how to do it. Show others who we are. Restore Western civilization. That is your calling, and you are the only one who can do it.”
You may have noticed the news that trust in the media remains at an all-time low. As if to drive that figure even lower, CNN was busy much of Tuesday afternoon trying to spare a killer from the death penalty on the false grounds that Catholicism forbids capital punishment.
No wonder our media are held in such disregard.
CNN’s Vatican senior correspondent John Allen said, “You know, the Catholic Church has a long history of opposing the death penalty.”
False. Section 2267 of the Catholic Catechism says, “The traditional teaching of the Church does not exclude, presupposing full ascertainment of the identity and responsibility of the offender, recourse to the death penalty, when this is the only practicable way to defend the lives of human beings effectively against the aggressor.”
On a website called Crux, which covers “all things Catholic” and for which Allen serves as associate editor, we find an article noting, “The Church doesn’t teach that the death penalty is immoral, but says it should only be used in rare circumstances when the state has no other way to protect society from violent offenders.”
So why did Allen mislead his CNN audience?
Speaking to anchor Brooke Baldwin, CNN’s Allen went on, “It was as far back as 1969 that Pope Paul VI urged the abolition of the death penalty and every pope since has upheld the same tradition. I think the interesting thing, as you say, is that Pope Francis was just in the United States, got a rousing ovation from Congress, was widely hailed by political authorities up and down the country. This is sort of the first test, Brooke, as to whether those people who were cheering the pope’s presence are also going to be willing to act on his concrete agenda.”
The popes or the bishops and cardinals can have their own personal opinions, but the fact is that the teaching of the church does NOT forbid capital punishment. He knows this.
The Catholic Answers website notes that both the Old Testament (Genesis 9:6) and the New Testament (Romans 13:4) seemingly endorse the death penalty.
The Ellicott’s Bible commentary notes that the phrase “To bear the sword” from Romans seems to be a recognized Greek phrase to express the power of the magistrates. “It is clear from this passage that capital punishment is sanctioned by Scripture,” the commentary says.
So Allen had the facts wrong and wanted “those people who were cheering the pope’s presence” in the U.S. to accept his personal plea but disregard church teaching. This distortion is one reason why people don’t trust the media.
Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia notes that support for the death penalty has been part of Christian and Catholic tradition in the Old and New Testaments. What’s more, it was morally accepted when the U.S. Constitution was adopted. Scalia recently told a group of students, “If the death penalty did not violate the Eighth Amendment when the Eighth Amendment was adopted, it doesn’t violate it today.”
The Supreme Court has formally ruled that the death penalty is not a violation of the Eighth Amendment’s ban on cruel and unusual punishment. What’s more, in June, the Court in a 5-4 ruling upheld the use of a particular drug for lethal injection in executions.
In the case at issue on CNN and other media on Tuesday, a woman named Kelly Gissendaner was given the death penalty by lethal injection because she ordered the murder of her husband, Douglas Gissendaner, in 1997. Her lover, Gregory Bruce Owen, stabbed her husband to death.
The family of Douglas Gissendaner issued a statement, noting, “Kelly planned and executed Doug’s murder. She targeted him and his death was intentional. Kelly chose to have her day in court and after hearing the facts of this case, a jury of her peers sentenced her to death… As the murderer, she’s been given more rights and opportunity over the last 18 years than she ever afforded to Doug who, again, is the victim here. She had no mercy, gave him no rights, no choices, nor the opportunity to live his life. His life was not hers to take.”
Despite media opposition to the death penalty, the majority of Americans still support it. Pew found that 56% favor the death penalty for people convicted of murder, while 38% are opposed.
Pew did find declining support for the death penalty among Democrats, helping to explain why the Democrats masquerading as journalists in the media oppose it. Pew explained, “Much of the decline in support over the past two decades has come among Democrats. Currently, just 40% of Democrats favor the death penalty, while 56% are opposed. In 1996, Democrats favored capital punishment by a wide margin (71% to 25%).”
Among Republicans it found that 77% favor the death penalty. Among independents the figure was 57% supporting capital punishment.
In addition to their liberal opposition to the death penalty, the media perceived a sexist angle in this case, since Gissendaner “became Georgia’s first female prisoner to be executed in 70 years,” as CNN put it, or “the only woman on Georgia’s death row,” as noted by The Washington Post.
Prior to the pope’s U.S. visit, CNN’s John Allen had written that “Francis knows that the death penalty is controversial in the United States, and that a strong camp in the American Catholic Church passionately defends it. Looking ahead to his trip here in September, this could be one of those moments in which discretion seems the better part of valor. On the other hand, it’s also a chance for Francis to show that he’s serious about the death penalty by saying something he knows full well many Americans, including some members of his own flock, don’t want to hear.”
As noted, Francis did condemn the death penalty before Congress. However, as a result of Georgia carrying out the ultimate punishment in the Kelly Gissendaner case, it appears that the pope’s influence in this area has been shown to be non-existent. He had actually pleaded for Georgia authorities to spare her life in a last-minute letter.
The credibility of the pope is a problem, since his personal views are contrary to church teaching and Georgia authorities ignored him anyway. But John Allen’s misrepresentation of the facts hurt his own credibility and that of the media, whose trustworthiness can only continue to decline.
Socialist Bernie Sanders (I-VT) is ecstatic over the pope’s address to Congress. In a message to his supporters, titled, “Why we must listen to Pope Francis,” he was particularly pleased with the fact that in his address to Congress, “Pope Francis spoke of Dorothy Day, who was a tireless advocate for the impoverished and working people in America. I think it was extraordinary that he cited her as one of the most important people in recent American history.” Day was a Marxist apologist for socialism and communist regimes. We covered this territory in my column, “With Pope’s Help, U.N. Bypasses Congress on Global Socialism.”
With Republican congressional leaders under fire from conservatives for cowering in the face of a Democratic Party onslaught, all that they needed was to roll out the welcome mat for a Marxist pope who would put them further on the defensive. But that’s exactly what happened.
Phyllis Bennis of the Marxist Institute for Policy Studies was right: “Pope Francis’ address to Congress was almost certainly not what John Boehner, Mitch McConnell, and other congressional leaders had in mind when they invited the pope to speak.” Speaking for many on the left, including the pro-abortion lobby,she said, “His clear call to end the death penalty was the only example he gave of protecting the sanctity of life: Even amid a raging congressional debate over Planned Parenthood, he never mentioned abortion.”
The list of left-wing causes in the pope’s address was extensive. Bennis noted “his calls to protect the rights of immigrants and refugees, end the death penalty, preserve the planet from the ravages of climate change, and defend the poor and dispossessed.” And then there was the attack on the policies of peace through strength, which keep us free. “Being at the service of dialogue and peace also means being truly determined to minimize and, in the long term, to end the many armed conflicts throughout our world,” the pope said. He then asked, “Why are deadly weapons being sold to those who plan to inflict untold suffering on individuals and society?”
He should ask that of Vladimir Putin.
Most Americans understand the rationale for legal immigrants. But illegal aliens who commit crimes are something else. The pope seems not to recognize a difference.
The death penalty is a punishment reserved for heinous killers. But he doesn’t mention abortion, which has taken tens of millions of innocent lives. This seemed strange to conservative Catholics, who are starting to come to grips with the fact that this is a “progressive” pope, who is not hostile toward what anti-communist Pope John Paul II called the “culture of death” through population control and reduction.
Francis’s answer on the arms control issue was to challenge the United States alone and blame its spending on national defense on monetary motives. “Sadly, the answer, as we all know, is simply for money: money that is drenched in blood, often innocent blood,” said the pope. “In the face of this shameful and culpable silence, it is our duty to confront the problem and to stop the arms trade.”
That’s a slander of our brave fighting men and women, many of whom have given their lives or sacrificed their limbs to bring freedom to people around the word, especially Muslims in such places as Iraq and Afghanistan.
Against the global Jihad, what does the pope expect the U.S. to do? Disarm?
Praising “his uniquely progressive papal perspective,” far-left radio host Amy Goodman noted that “The pope has been frank in his criticism of much of the core of U.S. society: capitalism, consumerism, war and the failure to confront climate change.” This is a fraud, of course. They used to warn us against global cooling. It then became global warming and now climate change. The cause always changes until they find something to lure people into schemes for bigger government and higher taxes.
Recognizing the socialism of the pope, Al Jazeera posted an article, “Bernie Sanders, the pope and the moral imperative of systemic change,” by Gar Alperovitz, the co-chair with James Gustave Speth of The Next System Project. Speth, former administrator of the United Nations Development Program, put his name on its 1994 “Human Development Report,” which openly promoted global taxes for world government.
The “Next System” is another name for the replacement of global capitalism by global socialism.
Those endorsing this project, in addition to Alperovitz and Speth, include:
Jane Mansbridge, Harvard University
Gerald Hudson, Service Employees International Union
Annie Leonard, Greenpeace USA
Robert B. Reich, University of California at Berkeley
Dean Baker, Center for Economic and Policy Research
Barbara Ehrenreich, Author
Jeffrey D. Sachs, Columbia University
Gerald Torres, Cornell University Law School
Larry Cohen, Communications Workers of America
Julie Matthaei, Cornerstone Cohousing
Leo Gerard, United Steelworkers
John James Conyers, Jr., 13th District, Michigan
Bill McKibben, 350.org
Saskia Sassen, Columbia University
Frances Fox Piven, City University of New York
Manuel Pastor, University of Southern California
Phillip Thompson, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Oliver Stone, Academy Award-winning Filmmaker
Medea Benjamin, CODEPINK
Timothy E. Wirth, United Nations Foundation and Better World Fund
Sarita Gupta, Jobs With Justice
Noam Chomsky, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Van Jones, The Dream Corps & Rebuild The Dream
Lawrence Mishel, Economic Policy Institute
Roxanne Dunbar-Ortiz, California State University
Daniel Ellsberg, Author
Herman E. Daly, University of Maryland
Ralph Nader, Consumer Advocate, Author, Former Presidential Candidate
Ai-jen Poo, National Domestic Workers Alliance
Anna Galland, MoveOn.org Civic Action
Danny Glover, Actor, Social Activist
Tom Morello, Musician, Activist
Jill Stein, 2012 Green Party Presidential Nominee
Nancy Fraser, New School for Social Research
“We have fundamental problems because of fundamental flaws in our economic and political system,” the New Project proclaims. “The crisis now unfolding in so many ways across our country amounts to a systemic crisis. Today’s political economic system is not programmed to secure the wellbeing of people, place and planet. Instead, its priorities are corporate profits, the growth of GDP, and the projection of national power.”
The group goes on, “Large-scale system change is needed but has until recently been constrained by a continuing lack of imagination concerning social, economic and political alternatives. There are alternatives that can lead to the systemic change we need.”
Yes there are. They are called socialism and communism. But they would rather call it “sustainable development,” in order to confuse people about how the American way of life is being targeted for extinction.
If the Republican establishment thinks it has a problem with Donald Trump, just wait until the Pope visits America next month and endorses socialist Bernie Sanders for president. Such a move, which is not beyond the realm of possibility, would put the head of the Roman Catholic Church firmly in the Democratic Party camp during a critical election year in which Republicans hope to turn back the tide of transformational Marxism represented by President Barack Obama.
A story on a Catholic news site, “Is Pope Francis going to endorse…Bernie Sanders?!,” looks seriously at the possibility. The article noted that the words of the pope, during his trip to America, “will be heard by millions of American Catholics who are one of the most influential voting blocs in today’s political landscape.” It said, “Today, topics such as income inequality, healthcare and the environment are resonating with voters and Pope Francis has come down on these issues in such a way as to annoy many conservative Catholics. The end result is many Catholics could be contemplating a vote for a liberal candidate, particularly the self-described democratic socialist, Bernie Sanders.”
Meanwhile, an article in the Jesuit publication America says there are seven Catholic candidates running for president, but that the one quoting Pope Francis the most often “is a Jewish guy from Vermont”—Senator Bernie Sanders.
But the fact that one socialist quotes another socialist is really not that surprising.
While Sanders openly calls himself a socialist, some in the media are trying to insist that Pope Francis, who is coming to America in September, is not a socialist.
A writer for the liberal magazine Newsweek said back in 2013 that “…the notion that Pope Francis is a true socialist is absurd. Socialists believe in the state taking control of the commanding heights of the economy. They believe the free market should be substituted by a command economy in which goods are produced according to need and prices are fixed to ensure fairness.”
However, in 2014, Francis met with executives from the United Nations andopenly urged “the legitimate redistribution of economic benefits by the state…”
Both socialism and communism are based on the ideas of Karl Marx, who proposed an economic system based on state control. His Communist Manifesto had ten planks, perhaps the most famous being abolition of the right to private property. But Marx also proposed the abolition of the family so that the state could control the lives of its members.
In addition to Francis’ call for the redistribution of economic benefits by the state, the Associated Press reported that Bolivia’s Marxist President, Evo Morales, had said that, he, too, “thinks that what Pope Francis preaches amounts to socialism.”
Francis accepted a “communist crucifix” from Morales and took it back with him to the Vatican. It was a crucifix carved into a wooden hammer and sickle. Despite reports to the contrary, Francis said he wasn’t offended by the gift.
“Pope Francis has shown great courage in raising issues that we rarely hear discussed,” Sanders said in a Senate floor speech. “The leader of the Catholic church is raising profound issues. It’s important that we listen to what he has said.”
Sanders seized on the pope’s statement on November 24, 2013, that “Some people continue to defend trickle-down theories which assume that economic growth, encouraged by a free market, will inevitably succeed in bringing about greater justice and inclusiveness in the world. This opinion, which has never been confirmed by the facts, expresses a crude and naive trust in the goodness of those wielding economic power and in the sacralized workings of the prevailing economic system.”
As we noted at the time, the term “trickle-down” is associated by some in the liberal media with President Reagan’s pro-growth policies. The term is meant to disparage the beneficial impact of tax cuts on the economy. It is telling that Francis would pick up on this smear of Reagan spread by the liberal media. In fact, there is no “trickle-down school of economic theory” or economic thought.
On August 16, speaking at Loras College in Iowa—a Catholic school—in a venue not far from a large crucifix, Sanders again invoked the pope in arguing for socialism in America.
The Des Moines Register reported that Sanders said “his plans for a Sanders White House are parallel to the message of Pope Francis.” Sanders said, “Pope Francis is raising these issues all over the world. And anybody who thinks what I am saying is radical, read what the pope is saying.”
The pope is “becoming very political,” GOP presidential candidate Donald Trumptold CNN’s Chris Cuomo. Trump, who is a Protestant, said he had great respect for the head of the Roman Catholic Church but that he would challenge the pope’s anti-capitalist message. Trump said he would inform Francis that “they better hope that capitalism works, because it’s the only thing we have right now. And it’s a great thing when it works properly.”
While the Jesuit publication America noted how Sanders had been quoting the pope more often than other candidates, Time magazine had run a story in January on how Sanders, who was then just considering a presidential run, was the political figure “whose political philosophy lines up most closely with the economic and social theories of Pope Francis.”
The magazine said, “Unlike many leaders who name-drop Pope Francis to score political points—he is, after all, likely the most popular man on the planet—Sanders quotes the Pope because he actually believes his message.”
Time added, “Sanders’ social-media accounts are filled with quotes from the Holy Father about the need to reform socioeconomic systems.”
Before Pope Francis took over the papacy, in a development involving the mysterious resignation of Pope Benedict, the Vatican had strongly condemned both socialism and communism.
For example, Pope Pius XI said that socialism “cannot be reconciled with the teachings of the Catholic Church because its concept of society itself is utterly foreign to Christian truth.” Pope Pius IX referred to “the wicked theories of this Socialism and Communism.” John Paul II called socialism a “simple and radical solution” that was being presented in an “attractive” way by its proponents, but which constituted a “danger” to the countries in which it was being imposed.
Before coming to America the pope is going to Cuba, where he will presumably meet with the Castro brothers, who rule over a communist prison camp and socialist economic basket case. Francis worked with the Obama administration and the Cuban regime on the deal for the U.S. to recognize Castro’s Cuba.
Almost one-tenth of the island’s population of 11 million has fled to the U.S., withrecent high-profile defections coming from the Cuban national athletic teams.
In Venezuela, where Marxists have ruled with the support of the Cuban regime, aphoto of a $2 Venezuelan bolivar bill being used as a napkin has gone viral. In addition to the collapse of the currency, Fusion magazine reports that Venezuela’s product shortages “have become so severe that some hotels in that country are asking guests to bring their own toilet paper and soap…”
Venezuela’s mentally unstable Marxist President Nicolás Maduro has blamed the CIA and a “Plan Vulture,” which he claims is destabilizing leftist Latin American governments through economic sabotage.
Sanders hasn’t yet echoed Maduro’s accusations. But back in 2006, then-Rep. Sanders participated in a propaganda event to announce the first delivery of fuel under a discounted heating oil program established by the Venezuelan government and the State of Vermont. The purpose was to give credibility to the Marxist regime running Venezuela and lead people in the U.S. to believe the regime was so compassionate that it wanted to help poor people in the U.S., in addition to its own downtrodden.
In view of recent developments, it might be appropriate for the media to ask socialist Sanders and the socialist pope about how their economic theory is working in places like Venezuela and Cuba.
Bolivian President Evo Morales presents Pope Francis with a crucifix incorporating the hammer and sickle symbol during a meeting at the presidential palace in La Paz. Photo: Juan Carlos Usnayo/Agence France-Presse/Getty Images
To my Catholic friends, while I am loathe to criticize that which they hold dear, there comes a time when silence is the wrong answer. When Pope Francis first surfaced, I thought he had the potential to be a great Pope. But with the potential of greatness, also comes the opportunity of infamy. Pope Francis is a Marxist and embodies many, many principles that I stand against, not only as a Constitutional Conservative, but as a Christian. This last week just solidified my uneasiness concerning this Pope.
The Bolivian President, Evo Morales (who Trevor Loudon and I have long contended is a Marxist), presented the Pontiff with a crucifix depicting Jesus nailed to a hammer and sickle, which the Pope returned after a brief examination. What is under contention is what the Pope said when presented with the gift. His comments were pretty much drowned out by a flurry of camera clicks. While some have claimed he expressed irritation, muttering the words “eso no está bien” (“this is not right”), Vatican spokesman Federico Lombardi said the Pope more likely said “no sabía eso” (“I didn’t know that”) in bemusement at the origins of the present. Which would make sense as NewsBusters and the Wall Street Journal noted, President Morales also “draped a medallion over [the pope’s] neck that bore the hammer and sickle.”
Communism has murdered well over one hundred million people in the last century alone. Many, many of those were Christians. As Ann Barnhardt put it, “Our Blessed Lord and Savior shown crucified on a hammer and sickle is, by all metrics, worse than Our Lord shown crucified on a swastika.” This constitutes blasphemy for me – Pope or not.
I also disagree that the Pope is being manipulated for ideological reasons. I think he knows full well what he is doing. We seem to have a knee-jerk response now when a leader does something unspeakable, unforgivable or outright evil – he/she didn’t know what they were doing… they were incompetent… or they were being manipulated. Knock it off! These people are not stupid; they are not rubes or babes in the woods who are so easily misled. (That’s not to say that they weren’t misled in very early life, ref. Proverbs 22:6 “Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.” That is to say, if you can indoctrinate someone in his early youth, you won’t need to sway him later: he’s already in your groove, and his decisions and choices will reflect that, not some imagined confusion of the moment.)
As for the Bolivian government insisting there was no political motive behind the gift and the Communications Minister, Marianela Paco, saying that Morales had thought the “Pope of the poor” would appreciate the gesture… bull crap. It’s the melding of politics and religion into a nightmarish agenda that is apocalyptic in scope and intent.
José Ignacio Munilla, bishop of the Spanish city of San Sebastián, tweeted a picture of the encounter, with the words: “The height of pride is to manipulate God in the service of atheist ideologies.” That is exactly right – on all counts, concerning all parties involved. It’s hard to overstate how important that observation is.
The Pope, after arriving in Bolivia, stopped to pray at the death site of Luis Espinal, a Jesuit murdered by Bolivian paramilitary forces in 1980. Espinal is being painted in press reports as a reformer who stood against the military dictatorship in Bolivia. Pope Francis also reportedly received a medal, bearing a hammer and sickle from Morales that was issued in memory of Espinal’s death.
Father Albo showed a reporter a published photo of a crucified Christ attached to a homemade hammer and sickle, instead of a cross, that Father Espinal kept by his bed.
“He was of the left. This is certain. But he never belonged to any party or pretended to be part of one,” said Father Albo, who said he hopes to present a replica of the hammer and sickle crucifix to the pope.
Father Espinal “gave a lot of importance to the dialogue between Marxists and Christians,” he explained. “It was not pro-Soviet … (it was) the need for the church to be close to the popular sectors. Some understand this, others don’t. To me it is very clear.”
It was said that the Pope wasn’t offended by Morales’ gift. “You can dispute the significance and use of the symbol now, but the origin is from Espinal and the sense of it was about an open dialogue, not about a specific ideology,” Lombardi said. Nope, it was all about ideology. This Argentinian Pope has been roundly criticized by many Marxists for not protecting Leftist priests during the military dictatorship in his country. Since becoming Pope, he has made major strides in bringing Liberation Theology to the fore in the Vatican. Thus, his campaigning for massive social and political change. This is Christianized Marxism. The irony of that term has to be savored. Kind of like “therapeutic cancer.”
Although Liberation Theology has grown into an international and inter-denominational movement, it began as a movement within the Catholic Church in Latin America in the 1950s–1960s. It is purported that Liberation Theology arose principally as a moral reaction to the poverty seen as having been caused by social injustice in that region. But its roots are solidly Marxist. The term was coined in 1971 by the Peruvian priest Gustavo Gutiérrez, who wrote one of the movement’s most famous books, A Theology of Liberation.
Latin American Liberation Theology met opposition from others in the US, who accused it of using “Marxist concepts” and that lead to admonishment by the Vatican’s Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith (CDF) in 1984 and 1986. The Vatican disliked certain forms of Latin American Liberation Theology for focusing on institutionalized or systemic sin; and for identifying Catholic Church hierarchy in South America as members of the same privileged class that had long been oppressing indigenous populations.
Pope Francis used his trip to Bolivia, Ecuador and Paraguay to highlight problems faced by indigenous communities and to warn against “all totalitarian, ideological or sectarian schemes.” That sounds very good. However, it started to go off the rails when he urged the downtrodden to change the world economic order, denouncing a “new colonialism” by agencies that impose austerity programs and calling for the poor to have the “sacred rights” of labor, lodging and land. That’s sheer Marxism. And exactly what does he mean by ‘austerity programs?’ You mean the over taxing of the general populace in order that elitists can keep up their glutinous spending sprees? Or do you mean austerity as in cutting spending, sticking to a budget and reducing debts? It certainly makes a difference on how the term is being used here.
His speech was preceded by lengthy remarks from the Left-wing Bolivian President Evo Morales, who wore a jacket adorned with the face of Argentine revolutionary Ernesto “Che” Guevara. Che was executed in Bolivia in 1967 by CIA-backed Bolivian troops. That certainly set the stage for Pope Francis and his speech.
Then the Pope gave a magnanimous and historic speech asking for forgiveness for the sins committed by the Roman Catholic Church in its treatment of Native Americans during what he called the “so-called conquest of America.” This is highly offensive and revisionist – it is skewed history. It’s true that American Indians were slaughtered by evil men and eventually, after a length of time, the colonists took over America. It is also true that Indians slaughtered many of the settlers and in horrific ways. Conquest and war are facts of history by the way, something Europe and the Vatican are very familiar with. It is a human condition that is ongoing and never ending as populations replace each other and wars rage on. He’s apologizing as though the Catholic Church had set out to do those things… it didn’t. Men did those things in the name of governments and in the name of the church. Apologizing for the deeds of men who acted on their own volition, but in your name, is to presume responsibility and control of actions over which the church had neither. The colonists did not set out to ‘conquer’ America either. They fled persecution in Europe and wanted to build new lives for themselves. Conflict came with Native Americans and the rest is history. Yes, evil was done, but that evil was not the totality of the story or our history and it certainly was not one-sided. It is also not something we need to ‘apologize’ for.
Then Pope Francis uttered my favorite quote – he quoted a fourth century bishop and called the unfettered pursuit of money “the dung of the devil,” and said poor countries should not be reduced to being providers of raw material and cheap labor for developed countries. Actually, when I heard the original quote, it said ‘capitalism’ not ‘money.’ While seeking unlimited riches can be a sin, it is not always so and not all wealthy people are guilty of this sin. It is also true that poor countries should not be treated as merely sources of materials and labor, however, those countries also benefit from that part of the economy. Countries are free to prosper and if more lived under free capitalistic governments where free trade was the norm and people were allowed to innovate and work for themselves, then there would be far fewer impoverished countries. But first, you’d have to get rid of the Marxists and dictators. Kind of a conundrum.
For dessert, the Pope repeated some of his encyclical on climate change. That’s Marxism on a global scale and smacks of fascism as well. It’s a twofer. Climate change is a seductive lie wrapped in a green package, but it is rotten from the inside out.
The Pope closes with what sounds to me like the echoes of Barack Obama and communism:
“Let us not be afraid to say it: we want change, real change, structural change,” the pope said, decrying a system that “has imposed the mentality of profit at any price, with no concern for social exclusion or the destruction of nature.“
“This system is by now intolerable: farm workers find it intolerable, laborers find it intolerable, communities find it intolerable, peoples find it intolerable The Earth itself – our sister, Mother Earth, as Saint Francis would say – also finds it intolerable,” he said in an hour-long speech that was interrupted by applause and cheering dozens of times.
And the useful idiots cheered on even when they knew in their heart of hearts that all of the above is nothing more than a call to follow those that would rule over us, using Mother Earth as a handy excuse and targeting for blame the engines of free enterprise, using language meant to equate it with greed, while overlooking the primary source of real greed: corrupt totalitarian governments, born of Marxism.
Pope Francis was not finished by any means concerning ‘colonialism’:
“No actual or established power has the right to deprive peoples of the full exercise of their sovereignty. Whenever they do so, we see the rise of new forms of colonialism which seriously prejudice the possibility of peace and justice,” he said.
“The new colonialism takes on different faces. At times it appears as the anonymous influence of mammon: corporations, loan agencies, certain ‘free trade’ treaties, and the imposition of measures of ‘austerity’ which always tighten the belt of workers and the poor,” he said.
Last week, Francis called on European authorities to keep human dignity at the centre of debate for a solution to the economic crisis in Greece.
He defended labor unions and praised poor people who had formed cooperatives to create jobs where previously “there were only crumbs of an idolatrous economy”.
The Pope even went so far as to praise Bolivia’s social reforms to spread wealth under Morales. That’s wealth redistribution and again, Marxism. But that is only scratching the surface on this Pope – there is oh, so much more to be concerned about when it comes to Pope Francis.
My friend and colleague (and someone I truly admire) Cliff Kincaid has done excellent research into Pope Francis and his doings. Americans need to take note who has the ear of this Pope:
Top Vatican adviser Jeffrey Sachs says that when Pope Francis visits the United States in September, he will directly challenge the “American idea” of God-given rights embodied in the Declaration of Independence.
Sachs, a special advisor to the United Nations and director of the Earth Institute at Columbia University, is a media superstar who can always be counted on to pontificate endlessly on such topics as income inequality and global health. This time, writing in a Catholic publication, he may have gone off his rocker, revealing the real global game plan.
The United States, Sachs writes in the Jesuit publication America, is “a society in thrall” to the idea of unalienable rights to life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. But the “urgent core of Francis’ message” will be to challenge this “American idea” by “proclaiming that the path to happiness lies not solely or mainly through the defense of rights but through the exercise of virtues, most notably justice and charity.”
In these extraordinary comments, which constitute a frontal assault on the American idea of freedom and national sovereignty, Sachs has made it clear that he hopes to enlist the Vatican in a global campaign to increase the power of global or foreign-dominated organizations and movements.
Sachs takes aim at the phrase from America’s founding document, the United States Declaration of Independence, that “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.”
These rights sound good, Sachs writes, but they’re not enough to guarantee the outcome the global elites have devised for us. Global government, he suggests, must make us live our lives according to international standards of development.
Sachs is putting forth that the UN should be in charge of all national and individual rights. That we have to sacrifice our individual rights for the greater, collective good. What hive mentality. He’s also for massive global taxation, population control and one world government. “We will need, in the end, to put real resources in support of our hopes,” he wrote. “A global tax on carbon-emitting fossil fuels might be the way to begin. Even a very small tax, less than that which is needed to correct humanity’s climate-deforming overuse of fossil fuels, would finance a greatly enhanced supply of global public goods.” The bill he wants to stick the US with is $845 billion.
The Pope has not only aligned himself with Sachs, but with the UN’s Secretary-General Ban Ki Moon, who told a Catholic Caritas International conference in Rome on May 12th that climate change is “the defining challenge of our time,” and that the solution lies in recognizing that “humankind is part of nature, not separate or above.” The pope’s encyclical on climate change is supposed to help mobilize the governments of the world in this crusade. This spells slavery for the world and an all-powerful tyrannical elite who will ruthlessly rule us through Marxist politics and a one world religion.
Sachs is not alone in his ideas. A short time ago, former President Shimon Peres met with the Pope at the Vatican and proposed that the Pope head up a UN for religions. I kid you not.
But the main topic of conversation was Peres’s idea to create a UN-like organization he called “the United Religions.”
Peres said the Argentina-born pontiff was the only world figure respected enough to bring an end to the wars raging in the Middle East and elsewhere in the world.
“In the past, most of the wars in the world were motivated by the idea of nationhood,” Peres said. “But today, wars are incited using religion as an excuse.”
Vatican spokesman Fr. Federico Lombardi confirmed to reporters that Peres had pitched his idea for “the United Religions” but said Francis did not commit to it.
“The pope listened, showing his interest, attention, and encouragement,” Lombardi said, adding that the pope pointed to the Pontifical Councils for Interreligious Dialogue and for Justice and Peace as existing agencies “suitable” for supporting interfaith peace initiatives.
The meeting in September was the third one inside of four months. In an interview in the Catholic Magazine Famiglia Cristiana, Peres also called for the Pope to lead the inter-religious organization in order to curb terrorism: “What we need is an organization of United Religions… as the best way to combat terrorists who kill in the name of faith.” I literally cannot believe what I am hearing. This could well be the birth of a one world religion. This looks suspiciously like a move to reclaim the lost glory of the Church, harking back to those centuries when it held sway ’round the world, commanding fealty from kings and nobility. This “progressive” innovation is really a reactionary repackaging of the most sweeping colonialism in history. With one tongue they “condemn” colonialism, while with the other tongue they offer global subservience as the “solution” to the demon du jour.
Religion is the sigh of the oppressed creature, the heart of a heartless world, and the soul of soulless conditions. It is the opium of the people.
The Pope is offering the masses the opium of Marxism in his stances. The question is, will the world follow him down this path? So many these days just want someone to give them everything and take care of them… they hunger for a leader who will absolve them of their sins and promise them forgiveness and welcome them with open arms. Will people, in the name of peace, usher in a one world order and willingly give up their freedoms? I’m afraid history says they will, but I know Americans, Christians and others will not be assimilated so easily by Marxist musings and flowery articulation. Pontification will only carry you so far – if you follow this pied piper, you will find yourself in the loving embrace of the UN – that Democracy of Dictators – and all that entails.
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