Tag Archives: Karl Marx

Is America Being Played? Vic Biorseth thinks so…

The End Game?

By Vic Biorseth, Friday, September 14, 2012

Thinking Catholic Strategic Center

Could the end game have begun already, so soon after the great Tea Party awakening, and the general realization of what the game is about? Before the whole population is even aware that there is a game?

“Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts and minds of men?” was the line deeply intoned by the voice over the radio in an old, old, but much beloved regular radio show from a bygone era. We might well ask that very question about what’s going on in the geopolitical world today, at this moment in time. Nothing is what it appears to be. I don’t know for certain all that’s going on behind the scenes, but I do know this:

We are being played.

We have spoken elsewhere in this site about the sneaky, underhanded linkup between Marxism and Islam to cooperate in the cause of increasing global chaos and instability. In a bygone era Islam quietly shook hands with National Socialism and stood with them to oppose the civilized world, so no one should be surprised by this newer uneasy alliance between more sophisticated forms of Marxism, and more sophisticated forms of Islam.

But, Marxism is rabidly atheistic, and Islam is ferociously theocratic, you say; close alliance between them is therefore impossible. “The enemy of my enemy is my friend” say both Marxism and Islam. They will work out their religious differences later, after they have cooperated in destroying all other opposition. When their common enemies are no more, then they may turn their guns on each other; but that is for tomorrow, not today. One step at a time.

Some clues have been dropped in the embassy attacks in Egypt and in Libya:

Masks used in the Occupy Wall Street activities were used in the storming of the embassies; what’s the linkage between the OWS movement and the American embassy attacks in North Africa? What were those American OWS masks doing over there?
It is reported and pretended that some movie disrespectful of Mohammed incited the “spontaneous” mob action, but it has been shown that the most important parts of the action was a very carefully planned, timed, choreographed and orchestrated attack, and not spontaneous at all.

The attacks are reported and pretended to be anti-movie and not anti-USA mob action; but what the rioters chanted for the cameras was “Obama, Obama, we are all Osama!” Indicating vengeful bloodthirst for Obama, over Obama and Biden publicly spiking the football over the killing of Osama.

Most of the claims for the movie causing all of this, rather than any planned event or series of events planned to begin on September 11, seem to come from our side of the ocean, not theirs. Most of the Moslems had never seen the movie or any trailer, although some had heard of it; could some Marxists have whispered in their ears?

I smell the tactics of Saul Alinsky in all of this.

The current upper echelons of American government are permeated with Alinskyites. (Alinskyites are the sneakiest, most treacherous forms of Marxists, who always work under deep cover, and who are never what they appear to be.) For example, our Secretary of State, Madam Hillary, wrote her college thesis on Saul Alinsky. For another example, our President, Comrade Obama, peace be upon him, is another Alinskyite. The only non-academic job he ever held was with an Alinskyite organization called the Deveolping Communities Project, where he was employed as a Communist Agitator. Excuse me, I meant to say Community Organizer. (The two terms are synonymous.) You might say that Madam Hillary and Comrade Obama majored in Alinsky.

And what, exactly, did Professor Saul Alinsky (RIP) teach?

  • How to bring down America and topple the American government, from the inside, using deep treachery.

In Refuting Marx we said that Karl Marx, influenced by the evil and treacherous writings of Machiavelli and by the Hegelian Dialectic, sought to incite and induce chaos and revolution on a global scale, to bring down governments using armies of mal-informed “useful idiots” incited by committed agent provocateurs, all of whom were expendable for the cause of the Revolution. This is the evil “The Ends Justify The Means” idea advancing into Western, supposedly Judao-Christian, mainstream thought. And there it continues to grow and spread. “All is fair in love and war” is an example commonplace derivative notion, seen in song, literature and entertainment. But all is Not fair, in anything. The Ends do not justify any and all means.

But after suffering so many failures and set-backs in attempts at direct “popular” revolution, Marxism survived – and thrived – as a strategy of world conquest by going largely underground and becoming even more treacherous, and even more deceptive, and even more evil. Advances in strategy and tactics included Alinsky’s get on the inside and destroy the system from within, in which the revolutionary or his recruited agent-provoacateur would put on a suit and tie, act civilized, play the game according to the rules, by all appearances, but maintain the revolutionary destructive zeal. The Cloward-Piven strategy was developed and deployed, by which armies of Useful-Idiots would be recruited and “Community Organized” into large groups that might

  • apply in massive application submissions for various government and/or corporate programs – disability; college tuition grants; rent subsidies; more benefits; higher pay; retirement; better insurance; any large government or large corporation “charitable” program, in order to overload the system and cause it to break down.
  • find and put into practice large-scale voter fraud prgrams at various elections around the country.
  • incite hostility toward “the system” and/or “the man” and/or the sitting government in various targeted minority groups, and identify new groups ripe for infiltration and recruitment to the cause.
  • organize seemingly disorganized public spectacles, such as the OWS movement, and provide some loose organization, targets and incentives to anarchists.

“Popular” revolution is quite impossible in America; therefore, Marxism has had to become far more treacherous, sneaky and underhanded here than anywhere else on earth. But the goal remains the same: to bring down the government and replace it with a typical Marxist dictatorship.

In Refuting Mohammed we said that Islam declared war on us, and on the whole of the non-Islamic world, long before we existed as a nation. Before Columbus sailed. Before the Reformation. Mainstream, mainline Islam declared war on the whole non-Islamic world somewhere around the year of our Lord 600. Read here what the Moslem is instructed – by the irrevocable word of Allah, spoken through the lips of his prophet Mohammed, recorded forever in the Koran – to do to us non-Moslems:

  • So when the sacred months have passed away, then slay the idolaters wherever you find them, and take them captives and besiege them and lie in wait for them in every ambush, then if they repent and keep up prayer and pay the poor-rate, leave their way free to them; surely Allah is Forgiving, Merciful. – Koran Sura 9:5.
  • Fight those who do not believe in Allah, nor in the latter day, nor do they prohibit what Allah and His Apostle have prohibited, nor follow the religion of truth, out of those who have been given the Book, until they pay the tax in acknowledgment of superiority and they are in a state of subjection. – Koran Sura 9:29.

Again, this is mainstream Islam. It is not the Moslem Brotherhood, or any of the groups they gave birth to, such as Al Queda. It is Islam. That is to say, the Moslem Brotherhood is absolutely mainstream, in Islam. It is not a matter of interpretation. No Moslem may oppose or disagree with those words. That is what they are instructed to do, and how they are instructed to behave toward us.

Now, Islam is a theocracy; a radical combination of Church and state, in which ecclesial law and civil law are all contained in one book: the Koran. No law – including our own Constitution – is above the Koran, in the house of Islam. Islam thus seeks not only to convert us out of our own religions, but to rule us via the Koran, and to hell with our Constitution. Others may argue and quibble about Sharia law, and different manifestations of it in different lands – but I’m telling you that the real threat is not Sharia, and not any terrorist group coming out of Islam; the real threat to America, to Israel, and to the whole world, is Islam itself.

Once Islam was militarily beaten back and driven out of Europe, it never recovered its former military capabilities of conquest; nevertheless, the imperative to grow itself and conquer the world remained a vital commandment in the Koran. So, Islam, like Marxism, found other ways.

As we said in Refuting Mohammed, Islam has never changed it’s commitment to continue the march to Ummah. In WWII Islam aligned with the Nazi-Fascist branch of Marxism because of its treatment of the Jews. Over time, Moslems have become Machiavellian in nature. They have adopted The Ends Justify The Means, and become underhanded, sneaky and treacherous, just like the Marxists. In dar al-harb, where we infidels live, Moslems are the most peaceful, wonderful, loving examples of people to be found in the Islamic faith. Until they gain a little more population and a little more power. The Islamic attitude changes, radically and brutally, when and where Islam is in control.

The final goal of Islam is the same as the final goal of Marxism: Borderless, nation-less, one world global government, which is to say, a world dictatorship.

The history of Islam is a history of war and of conquest; the ideology/religion of Islam is one of brutal domination, subjugation, forced submission, misogyny, abuse, torture and murder.

When they gain a strong control of an area of total or near total Islamic population, such as in Dearborn Michigan, they become increasingly beligerent toward the non-Islamic host government, to the point that the host nation may actually have to fight to regain legal control of its own territory. It has become, for them, Dar Al-Islam – the house of Islam – and they will not give it up without a fight to the death. There, so long as they are the occupiers, the only law that may be applied is Islamic law.

If you think it is not the same in Dearborn Michigan as in the various Islamic controlled areas in the environs of Paris France, you are very sadly mistaken.

In Refuting Obama we indicated that Comrade Obama, peace be upon him, is not like us, and is not even like the most rabidly Marxist of his American compatriots and allies. He wasn’t raised here, and he doesn’t really understand America or Americans. He is, by instinct, much more of a raw Marxian than an Alinskyite. Where the Clintons masterfully work the slow, steady Progressive method of advancing the Revolution, Comrade Obama wants all chaos, all instability, all break-down, right now. He wants to bring it on. He is more the old-time Revolutionary, and much less the Progressive or the mere Liberal. While the ultimate goal for all of them is the same, he wants to achieve it all, right now.

Many are puzzled as to why he seems so embarrassingly stupid in his approach to American politics; lately he seems to be committing political suicide almost every time he opens his mouth, or when he does not speak when he clearly should speak. But I don’t think he cares too much about whether he wins the 2012 election; he’ll take it if that’s all he can get, but he would much rather be dictator than President. He will do whatever he thinks he has to do to win the election, but that is not the first thing on his agenda. He would much rather be dictator over a ruined, empoverished, destroyed, burning and warring America than a properly elected President over a strong and prosperous American nation that he loathes and despises.

To that end, he is spending us into economic collapse, printing money to make it worthless, cutting defense and interfering with military effectiveness, insulting and alienating allies, encouraging and befriending enemies, saddling us with impossible and nonsensical law, overriding the Constitution and bypassing Congress at every turn, and generally making a shambles of the American system of government. He is pissing us off, on purpose. Agitation is the name of the game. Instability, anger, chaos and hostility are the necessary ingredients of a radical transformation of the system, which is what he intended from the beginning.

Expanding our view to encompass the geopolitical situation, we see that the rest of the world is in a much more precarious state than America, even as bad as our own situtation is. While we are well along the way down the increasingly steep economic slippery slope, many European nations are now over the cliff. Every time they get some sort of bail-out – which is to say, every time they stupidly try to borrow their way out of debt – the stock market goes up, proving again that the stock market condition has no real world relationship to the state of the world economy, or to any nation’s economy. Each bail-out makes the condition worse, not better, and makes the inevitable crash even more unbearable for the population. There is not enough money existing in the world to pay off all that debt, and they keep trying to borrow more just to continue to exist as nations. (And so do we, with all of our ideological Marxists in high office.)

How will all those nations ever get out from under the collapsing Euro? How will they all reestablish their own currencies, and their own national identities? Will European nations, and even the European Union itself, descend into civil war?

When we look to the Obama inspired and encouraged Arab Spring, or Moslem Spring, or Springtime of Democracy all across North Africa and the Middle East, we, for the most part, miss the similarity to the Springtime of Revolution ushered in by the publication of Marx’s Communist Manifesto in 1848, when some 50 nations experienced violent Communist revolution. The ignorant of history are doomed to repeat it. We miss, or miss-interpret, the growing relationship between Marxism and Islam at our own mortal peril.

The more recent violence involving the storming of American embassies, the murder of an American ambassador and other Americans, the burning of American flags, the raising of Al Queda flags, and the trashing of American property is blamed, by our government, on a movie trailer that very few people have ever seen.

Again, I smell Alinsky.

I have little doubt that this movie trailer, or some description of it, was used to incite some Moslem useful idiots to violence; but these were planned attacks, perhaps part of a larger strategy, timed to begin on September 11. It would not surprise me to learn that the movie itself was made, or made available, or somehow abrogated by Alinskyites as an excuse to be used by our predominantly Alinskyite government leadership to both condemn Judao-Christianity and excuse outraged Moslems. It’s a double whammy for them. It’s a more sophisitcated advance of the revolutionary cause.

At any rate, civil war and broader war is ongoing, or on the brink, in the world of Islam.

The risky business of revolution is what this is all about, and Comrade Obama, peace be upon him, is a greater risk taker than any of his fellow Democrats. He is more of a Lenin than an Alinsky. The risks are high; they always are; but so are the potential rewards.

The Egyptian chant “Obama, Obama, we are all Osama!” would indicate that there are some Moslems who would like Obama’s head on a pike. No big deal; revolution is risky business. There are other Moslems who find him useful. Among Democrats, the Clintons would probably like his head on a pike; and he would like theirs on a pike. But at the moment, they work together in the greater interest of the common cause.

Among the Moslems, the Shia and the Sunni despise each other; yet, they will join together against the rest of the world, just as they did under Saladin. When the rest of the world is under submission, they may turn back to war with each other; but first, they will obey the Koran and conquer the non-Islamic world.

So it has always been in the world of Marxism. Stalin is credited with personally signing millions of death warrants of fellow Communist Party faithful in his purges. There can be only one dictator.

Dictatorship requires revolution; when revolution is not popularly supported, it requires subterfuge, chaos, destabilization and perhaps war. The bigger the war the bigger the opportunity. World War would offer the grand prize. Always, after such grand, multiple-nation conflagrations – the Islamic Conquest; the Crusades; the Reformation; World War I; World War II; there is a major reshuffling of power in the world. Marxist would-be dictators and Moslem would-be Caliphs all hope to capitalize on the situation and make themselves the one who winds up on top.

Failing that, they might become a lesser dictator of a lesser country, or, a high-ranking bureaucrat, or politiocrat, or close adviser to the grand high leader. Chaos, disorder and terror must come first. Out of chaos comes opportunity. Out of chaos comes the Machiavellian champion to restore order and assume the throne. Marxism and Islam, both, see that as the path to dictatorship. They will cooperate, for a time, to achieve it. And Comrade Obama, peace be upon him, is prepared to go either way in the end. He can play the Marxist, and he can play the Moslem; what he actually is, is what they all are: the Selfist.

They make fools of the world. While many followers of Marxist ideology, and many followers of Islam, may believe in God, or at least in some higher ideal, none of their leaders do. It’s all a sham. They believe only in themselves. Everyone beneath them are merely different layers and types of useful idiots; mere expendable tools to be manipulated and used for special purposes and then discarded.

What are we to do about all this? Steady as she goes.
do Not keep your head down; keep your eye on the ball. Do not be distracted from the fact that Comrade Obama, peace be upon him, intends the destruction of all that we hold dear. This predictable election year “October Surprise” may be a war; perhaps even a world war. Historically American voters rally round the President in any such national emergency.

Don’t do it. Don’t be fooled.

We have got to get through this next election in the normal way; even if he suspends the Constitution and declares martial law; even if he suspends the election on an emergency basis; somehow, we have got to make it through this next election, or America is lost forever.

He doesn’t really know what’s going to happen any more than we do. Chaos is unpredictable. His only leg up is that he is the chief instigator of the chaos, but he cannot predict what that chaos will ultimately bring about.

Steady as she goes; keep your eye on the ball.

Fast; pray; prepare.

The Lord will sustain us.

Reference Material/TCSC

The Pillars of Unbelief: Six modern thinkers who’ve harmed the Christian mind — Part III: Karl Marx (1818-1883)

SOURCE: (3) The Pillars of Unbelief – Karl Marx

By Peter Kreeft

Among the many opponents of the Christian faith, Marxism is certainly not the most important, imposing or impressive philosophy in history.

But it has, until recently, clearly been the most influential. A comparison of 1917, 1947 and 1987 world maps will show how inexorably this system of thought flowed so as to inundate one-third of the world in just two generations — a feat rivaled only twice in history, by early Christianity and early Islam.

Ten years ago, every political and military conflict in the world, from Central America to the Middle East, turned on the axis of communism vs. anti-communism.

Even fascism became popular in Europe, and is still a force to be reckoned with in Latin America, largely because of its opposition to “the specter of communism,” as Marx calls it in the first sentence of his “Communist Manifesto.”

The “Manifesto” was one of the key moments in history. Published in 1848, “the year of revolutions’ throughout Europe, it is, like the Bible, essentially a philosophy of history, past and future. All past history is reduced to class struggle between oppressor and oppressed, master and slave, whether king vs. people, priest vs. parishioner, guild- master vs. apprentice, or even husband vs. wife and parent vs. child.

This is a view of history even more cynical than Machiavelli’s. Love is totally denied or ignored; competition and exploitation are the universal rule.

Now, however, this can change, according to Marx, because now, for the first time in history, we have not many classes but only two — the bourgeoisie (the “haves,” owners of the means of production) and the proletariat (the “have-nots,” non-owners of the means of production).

The latter must sell themselves and their labor to the owners until the communist revolution, which will “eliminate” (euphemism for “murder”) the bourgeoisie and thus abolish classes and class conflict forever, establishing a millennium of peace and equality. After being utterly cynical about the past, Marx becomes utterly naive about the future.

What made Marx what he was? What are the sources of this creed?

Marx deliberately turned 180 degrees around from the (1) supernaturalism and (2) distinctiveness of his Jewish heritage to embrace (1) atheism and (2) communism. Yet Marxism retains all the major structural and emotional factors of biblical religion in a secularized form. Marx, like Moses, is the prophet who leads the new Chosen People, the proletariat, out of the slavery of capitalism into the Promised Land of communism across the Red Sea of bloody worldwide revolution and through the wilderness of temporary, dedicated suffering for the party, the new priesthood.

The revolution is the new “Day of Yahweh,” the Day of Judgment; party spokesmen are the new prophets; and political purges within the party to maintain ideological purity are the new divine judgments on the waywardness of the Chosen and their leaders. The messianic tone of communism makes it structurally and emotionally more like a religion than any other political system except fascism.

Just as Marx took over the forms and the spirit of his religious heritage, but not the content, he did the same with his Hegelian philosophical heritage, transforming Hegel’s philosophy of “dialectical idealism” into “dialectical materialism!” “Marx stood Hegel on his head,” the saying goes. Marx inherited seven radical ideas from Hegel:

Monism: the idea that everything is one and that common sense’s distinction between matter and spirit is illusory. For Hegel, matter was only a form of spirit; for Marx, spirit was only a form of matter.

Pantheism: the notion that the distinction between Creator and creature, the distinctively Jewish idea, is false. For Hegel, the world is made into an aspect of God (Hegel was a pantheist); for Marx, God is reduced to the world (Marx was an atheist).

Historicism: the idea that everything changes, even truth; that there is nothing above history to judge it; and that therefore what is true in one era becomes false in another, or vice versa. In other words, Time is God.

Dialectic: the idea that history moves only by conflicts between opposing forces, a “thesis” vs. an “antithesis” evolving a “higher synthesis.” This applies to classes, nations, institutions and ideas. The dialectic waltz plays on in history’s ballroom until the kingdom of God finally comes — which Hegel virtually identified with the Prussian state. Marx internationalized it to the worldwide communist state.

Necessitarianism, or fatalism: the idea that the dialectic and its outcome are inevitable and necessary, not free. Marxism is a sort of Calvinistic predestination without a divine Predestinator.

Statism: the idea that since there is no eternal, trans-historical truth or law, the state is supreme and uncriticizable. Marx again internationalized Hegel’s nationalism here. Militarism: the idea that since there is no universal natural or eternal law above states to judge and resolve differences between them, war is inevitable and necessary as long as there are states.

Like many other anti-religious thinkers since the French Revolution, Marx adopted the secularism, atheism and humanism of l8th century “Enlightenment,” along with its rationalism and its faith in science as potentially omniscient and technology as potentially omnipotent. Here again the forms, feel and function of biblical religion are transferred to another god and another faith. For rationalism is a faith, not a proof. The faith that human reason can know everything that is real cannot be proved by human reason; and the belief that everything that is real can be proved by the scientific method cannot itself be proved by the scientific method.

A third influence, on Marx, in addition to Hegelianism and Enlightenment rationalism, was economic reductionism: the reduction of all issues to economic issues. If Marx were reading this analysis now, he would say that the real cause of these ideas of mine was not my mind’s power to know the truth, but the capitalistic economic structures of the society that “produced” me. Marx believed that within man thought was totally determined by matter; that man was totally determined by society; and that society was totally determined by economics. This stands on its head the traditional view that mind rules body, man rules his societies, and society rules its economics.

Finally, Marx adopted the idea of the collective ownership of property and the means of producing it from previous “utopian socialist” thinkers. Marx says, “The theory of communism may be summed up in the single phrase: abolition of private property.” In fact, the only societies in history that have ever successfully practiced communism are monasteries, kibbutzes, tribes and families (which Marx also wanted to abolish). All communist governments (such as that of the U.S.S.R.) have transferred ownership to the state, not to the people. Marx’s faith that the state would “wither away” of its own accord once it had eliminated capitalism and put communism in its place has proved to be astonishingly naive. Once power is seized, only wisdom and sanctity relinquish it.

The deepest appeal of communism, especially in Third World countries, has been not the will to communalism but “the will to power,” as Nietzsche called it. Nietzsche saw more deeply into the heart of communism than Marx did.

How does Marx deal with the obvious objections to communism: that it abolishes privacy and private property, individuality, freedom, motivation to work, education, marriage, family, culture, nations, religion and philosophy? He does not deny that communism abolishes these things, but says that capitalism has already done so. For example, he argues that “the bourgeois sees in his wife a mere instrument of production.” On the most sensitive and important issues, family and religion, he offers rhetoric rather than logic; for example: “The bourgeois clap-trap about the family and education, about the hallowed correlation between parent and child, becomes all the more disgusting….” And here is his “answer” to religious and philosophical objections: “The charges against communism made from a religious, a philosophical and, generally, from an ideological standpoint are not deserving of serious examination.”

The simplest refutation of Marxism is that its materialism simply contradicts itself. If ideas are nothing but products of material and economic forces, like cars or shoes, then communist ideas are only that too. If all our ideas are determined not by insight into truth but by the necessary movements of matter if we just can’t help the way our tongues happen to wag — then the thoughts of Marx are no more true than the thoughts of Moses. To attack the grounds of thought is to attack one’s own attack.

But Marx sees this, and admits it. He reinterprets words as weapons, not as truths. The functions of the words of the “Manifesto” (and, ultimately, even of the much longer, more pseudo-scientific “Capital”) is not to prove what is true but to encourage the revolution. “Philosophers have only interpreted the world; the thing to do is to change it.” Marx is basically a pragmatist.

But even on this pragmatic level there is a self-contradiction. The “Manifesto” ends with this famous appeal: “The communists disdain to conceal their views and aims. They openly declare that their ends can be attained only by the forcible overthrow of all existing social conditions. Let the ruling classes tremble at a communistic revolution. The proletarians have nothing to lose but their chains. They have a world to win. Working men of all countries, unite!” But this appeal is self defeating, for Marx denies free will. Everything is fated; the revolution is “inevitable” whether I choose to join it or not. You cannot appeal to free choice and at the same time deny it.

There are strong practical objections to communism as well as these two philosophical objections. For one thing, its predictions simply have not worked. The revolution did not happen when and where Marxism predicted. Capitalism did not disappear, nor did the state, the family or religion. And communism has not produced contentment and equality anywhere it has gained power.

All Marx has been able to do is to play Moses and lead fools backward into the slavery of Egypt (worldliness). The real Liberator is waiting in the wings for the jester who now “struts and frets his hour upon the stage” to lead his fellow “fools to dusty death” the one topic Marxist philosophers refuse to face.


ACKNOWLEDGEMENT

Kreeft, Peter. “The Pillars of Unbelief — Marx” The National Catholic Register, (January – February 1988).

To subscribe to The National Catholic Register call 1-800-421-3230.

THE AUTHOR

Peter Kreeft, Ph.D., is a professor of philosophy at Boston College. He is an alumnus of Calvin College (AB 1959) and Fordham University (MA 1961, Ph.D., 1965). He taught at Villanova University from 1962-1965, and has been at Boston College since 1965.

Catholics and Socialism by Stephanie Block

socialism1

       One of the interesting discussions following the wake of this year’s political campaign has been about Catholics and socialism. Is it OK to be a Catholic socialist? (Wonder what sparked this line of thought?)

       Despite Pope Pius XI saying, back in the 1930s, that “No one can be at the same time a sincere Catholic and a true Socialist”, some Catholics want to argue the point. They claim the “Christian socialism” described in Acts, in which “All those who had believed were together, and had all things in common; and they began selling their property and possessions, and were sharing them with all, as anyone might have need,” is the inspiration for the “scientific socialism” espoused by Marx and Engels. After all, Marx and Engels say it is.

       Well, of course Marx and Engels say their inspiration for the socialist ideal was early Christianity. It gives their theories authority and respectability. As Saul Alinsky drily exhorts young radicals, “… you do what you can with what you have and clothe it with moral garments.” [Rules for Radicals] Marx and Engels are simply clothing socialism with Christianity, the wolf in a sheepskin.

       At the blog called Catholic America: A closer look at Church, Culture and Change, which is a feature of Newsweek/Washington Post, writer Anthony M. Stevens-Arroyo recognizes that the salient component of “Christian socialism” is choice. He glosses over this, however, and only a paragraph later is reminding the reader that he must also bear in mind another Christian principle, namely that “the needs of the many outweigh the needs of the few.” We see where this is going.

       And so here it is: “At stake in contemporary Catholic America is a growing awareness that the U.S. economic system has serious flaws.” OK, Mr. Stevens-Arroyo, hold on there just a minute. Yes, the U.S. economic system has serious flaws but that’s the human condition. There has never been and never will be an economic system without serious flaws. But the US economic system, for all its flaws, has been the envy of the world…and has brought prosperity to the majority of its citizens.

       Stevens-Arroyo continues: “In addressing the financial system, “socialism” is not a dirty word for Catholics.” Um…yes, it is. Re-read the Pius XI quote, above. Or, read John Paul II, who, without any illusions about its imperfections, writes, “it would appear that, on the level of individual nations and of international relations, the free market is the most efficient instrument for utilizing resources and effectively responding to needs.”

       John Paul is not so generous with socialism. “[I]n today’s world, among other rights, the right of economic initiative is often suppressed. Yet it is a right that is important not only for the individual but also for the common good. Experience shows us that the denial of this right, or its limitation in the name of an alleged ‘equality’ of everyone in society, diminishes, or in practice absolutely destroys the spirit of initiative, that is to say the creative subjectivity of the citizen.”

       Referring to Pope Leo XIII, he says: “His words deserve to be re-read attentively: ‘To remedy these wrongs (the unjust distribution of wealth and the poverty of the workers), the Socialists encourage the poor man’s envy of the rich and strive to do away with private property, contending that individual possessions should become the common property of all…; but their contentions are so clearly powerless to end the controversy that, were they carried into effect, the working man himself would be among the first to suffer. They are moreover emphatically unjust, for they would rob the lawful possessor, distort the functions of the State, and create utter confusion in the community’. The evils caused by the setting up of this type of socialism as a State system – what would later be called ‘Real Socialism’ – could not be better expressed.” [Centesimus annus]

       It gets worse. The pope continues, “Socialism considers the individual person simply as an element, a molecule within the social organism, so that the good of the individual is completely subordinated to the functioning of the socio-economic mechanism. Socialism likewise maintains that the good of the individual can be realized without reference to his free choice, to the unique and exclusive responsibility that he exercises in the face of good or evil. Man is thus reduced to a series of social relationships, and the concept of the person as the autonomous subject of moral decision disappears, the very subject whose decisions build the social order.”

       Benedict XVI has some hard words for socialism, too. “Let us recall the fact that atheism and the denial of the human person, his liberty and his rights, are at the core of the Marxist theory…Moreover, to attempt to integrate into theology an analysis whose criterion of interpretation depends on this atheistic conception is to involve oneself in terrible contradictions. What is more, this misunderstanding of the spiritual nature of the person leads to a total subordination of the person to the collectivity, and thus to the denial of the principles of a social and political life which is in keeping with human dignity.”

       Why are we even discussing this? The answer is that you have a large body of people – the Catholics living in the US – who, if they knew their Church teachings, rather than what other Catholics say they say, might rebel at incoming socialist incursion. Socialism – the unchosen, forced-onto-society, “scientific” version that has martyred hundreds of thousands – is a really dirty word to Catholics.

Ahem. Let me try that again. Socialism is a really dirty word.

The Revolution Will Not Be Televised: Was Jesus a Socialist? That is the question. By Kyle-Anne Shiver

Jesus and Hope
Jesus and Hope

 

By Kyle-Anne Shiver

     While I truly tremble at the mere mention of the name “Jesus” in the same sentence with the word, “socialism,” this question is one of the central issues of this presidential election, with Barack Obama a convert to the Marxist Black Liberation Theology practiced by Jeremiah Wright.  And I believe it deserves consideration. 

     Of course, who am I to even attempt to answer such a question?   I’ve spent two days now trying to figure out where to begin. 

     After all, Jesus preceded Marx historically by nearly 19 whole centuries.  In addition, Marx built his entire socialist philosophy on the initial premise that God was merely a human delusion, and the second that religion was nothing more than an “opiate of the masses.” 

     Therefore, any attempt to make Jesus a socialist begins with many contradictions.

As Pope Benedict XVI has written:

“Let us recall the fact that atheism and the denial of the human person, his liberty and his rights, are at the core of the Marxist theory…Moreover, to attempt to integrate into theology an analysis whose criterion of interpretation depends on this atheistic conception is to involve oneself in terrible contradictions.  What is more, this misunderstanding of the spiritual nature of the person leads to a total subordination of the person to the collectivity, and thus to the denial of the principles of a social and political life which is in keeping with human dignity.”

     Both Pope John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI have had to confront various forms of liberation theology and socialist interpretations of the Gospel of Jesus Christ.  And both concluded unequivocally that all such attempts at transforming Christianity into a political creed, giving special favor to the materially poor, was like mixing oil with water.  They simply do not mix.

As Pope Benedict XVI explains further:

“In its positive meaning the Church of the poor signifies the preference given to the poor, without exclusion, whatever the form of their poverty, because they are preferred by God…But the theologies of liberation…go on to a disastrous confusion between the poor of the Scripture and the proletariat of Marx.  In this way they pervert the Christian meaning of the poor, and they transform the fight for the rights of the poor into a class fight within the ideological perspective of the class struggle.”

     So, what is the Christian meaning of the poor?  It is simply that there are a host of ways to be poor.   And according to the Christian faith the worst form of poverty is not material; it is spiritual.  One can be rolling in money and material goods, but be spiritually impoverished.  One can be materially poor as dirt, but spiritually rich. 

     Jesus did make many statements about the virtues of being generous with one’s own material wealth, whether it be great or small.  However, the innate crux of every one of Jesus’ admonitions to give to those less fortunate was freedom.  Unless the deed was done freely, according to the giver’s own free will, there was no blessing in the deed at all.

     Today, the faith component of Barack Obama’s candidacy rests upon this one particle of Jesus’ ministry, that by coercively “spreading the wealth” to all by means of a state collective distribution center we will somehow achieve the kingdom of Jesus on earth.  In this belief, Obama is backed by a host of religious left people of a host of faiths, most predominantly those claiming to be Christian.

     Much of the theological component to the Christian left’s support for Barack Obama is found in Matthew 25:31-46, which refers to the Judgment of the Nations at the prophesied Second Coming of Christ. 

Matthew 25:31-32:

“When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, he will sit upon his glorious throne, and all the nations will be assembled before him.  And he will separate them one from another, as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats.”

     The Gospel writer then goes on to define how God will separate the “good” nations from the “bad” nations, based upon how each nation has treated the “least of these” among them.  These “least” are enumerated by Matthew as the hungry, the thirsty, the stranger, the naked, the ill, and the imprisoned.  In the Gospel, Jesus tells the nations, when you did good to these “least” you did it to me, and you will be deemed good and worthy of the God’s kingdom.

     This judgment of the nations was to occur at Jesus’ Second Coming.  According to Catholic Biblical commentary, the definition of the “least of these” described in Matthew was not absent theological meaning.  Although there is some disagreement over the authentic meaning of these verses, “a stronger case can be made for the view that in the evangelist’s sense the sufferers are Christians, probably Christian missionaries whose sufferings were brought upon them by their preaching of the gospel.” 

     The real problem with assuming that all of these merciful works can be taken at face value and given a purely political meaning is that these words were intended to apply to Christian missionaries carrying out the Great Commandment given by Jesus immediately before his Ascension into heaven. 

And what was that Great Commandment?

“Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you.  And behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age.”

Gospel of Mark:  28:18-20

     Personally, I think one could write volumes about this intersection of faith and politics.  Indeed, volumes have been written.  And what we are left with is still the very question that Jesus posed to the Apostle Peter:

“Who do you say I am?”

Kyle-Anne Shiver is a frequent contributor to American Thinker.  She blogs at commonsenseregained.com