Latin America's first pope has frequently lashed out at the injustices of capitalism and the global economic system that excludes so much of humanity.
On Friday, Francis called for the United Nations to promote a "worldwide ethical mobilisation" of solidarity with the poor in a new spirit of generosity.
“Specifically, this involves challenging all forms of injustices and resisting the economy of exclusion, the throwaway culture and the culture of death which nowadays sadly risk becoming passively accepted,” Francis said.
Francis had a similar message to the World Economic Forum in January and in his apostolic exhortation "The Joy of the Gospel." That document, which denounced trickle-down economic theories as unproven and naive, provoked criticism in the US that he was Marxist.
Francis has denied he's Marxist, and spent years in Argentina battling Marxist excesses of liberation theology. But he has said from the outset that he wants a church that "is poor and for the poor" and ministers to the most marginal of society.
On Friday, he urged the UN to promote development goals that attack the root causes of poverty and hunger, protect the environment and ensure "dignified" labor for all.
"Specifically, this involves challenging all forms of injustices and resisting the economy of exclusion, the throwaway culture and the culture of death which nowadays sadly risk becoming passively accepted," he said.
The pope is Marxist? Really? Because of an “unfettered capitalism” remark? If pope francis were Marxist he wouldn’t exist, nor his office, his state, his religion.
If the pope were Marxist he wouldn’t believe in a class system with popes, bishops, clerics, and a vatican system that emphasizes the hierarchy and authority of the church. Nor would he use sheep and shepherd as a simile for dupe and priest, or should I say cheat and victim, keeper and jailed, stupid and informed, saved and not saved. Nor would he support a paternal or patriarchal class system much less women and the poor being classes that are somehow preserved because they are blessed. Oh that’s it, the pope talks to the poor to distract us from what the priests are doing–that’s legerdemain and not class destruction.
If the pope were Marxist he would allow women to observe any position or role in the church. He would allow women the same rights to their bodies as men have. He would support women in equality rather than as separate. He would support family planning. He would agree the bible has a horrid description of women, strangers, slaves, and others. He wouldn’t give a damn about sexual orientation or attraction.
If the pope were Marxist he wouldn’t believe in money. He would get rid of the gold, the property, the fancy clothes, any car of any size. He’d sell it all. No, he’d give it away in a magnificent gesture of love. It’s true he has cut back for a pope of which we can be proud. But he’s no Jesus riding into Rome on the back of an ass.
If the pope were Marx he would follow “all in common ” as in Acts 2:44.
Everyone kept feeling a sense of awe; and many wonders and signs were taking place through the apostles. 44And all those who had believed were together and had all things in common; 45and they began selling their property and possessions and were sharing them with all, as anyone might have need…
If the pope were Marxist he wouldn’t believe in the property rights of the individual and he’d liquidate the Vatican and refuse to consider Rome a separate country from the rest of Italy with its own laws above the people. Nor would he condone churches as separate buildings from the people. He’d make all churches public spaces owned by all but no one in particular. He’d happily dispose of all the property the Vatican buys and owns to make money and he’d allow the Vatican books to be inspected by any interested accountant. Just imagine if every church property were a public park, museum, gallery, or recreation center.
If the pope were Marxist he’d be supporting all unions, cooperatives, and communes. He’d be supporting communist countries as mistaken, not Marxist, because of their state and oppression centeredness and emphasizing they should decentralize power. He’d be linking libertarianism, anarchy-capitalism with Marx. He’d be talking about how Adam Smith warned that capitalism leads to property owners becoming indolent and inert because rents and passive income discourage activity. He’d be talking about how the stock market is not a system where the people own the companies but is about how companies are selling bets that they will grow, gambling funds at the expense of others where no one knows who will do well or not.
If the pope were Marxist he would speak more about the communalism and cooperatives of the second great awakening where people attempted to make alternative societies that were more socially enlightened and economically equal.
If the pope were Marxist he would talk about how the division of labor creates classes that make wealth unequal. He would take apart church hierarchy and everyone would be a priest.
If the pope were Marxist he’d support science and empiricism regardless of where it goes. There would be no more revelations and he would actively pursue evolution education. He would happily edit the bible. He would say Jesus was a great leader but not the son of god, or god, or the holy ghost or some such.
If the pope were Marxist he would not tolerate his religion as absolute truth and would deny there is a heaven or hell or atonement or redemption or salvation or the eucharist or the resurrection. He would admit that religion is a social tool that uses myth and falsehood to keep classes flaccid and placid. He would encourage other social means for impulse control encouraging therapy over confession, medicine and skill over prayer, welfare over abandonment.
If he were Marxist he would see society as progressing and able to change itself to a positive end. That utopia here on Earth is possible and there is no need for a heaven. No rapture. No apocalypse. No end of times. He would not see as humans fatally flawed where there will always be the poor.
If the pope were Marxist he wouldn’t see theology as symbolic capital where morality is bought and sold as a means towards an inside track to future well being. He would not see sin as an entity that can be commodified along with good works, or good intent. He would’t oppose material wealth to ideological wealth. He would not see ideology driving the people but rather production and material goods. He would say the poor need food and economy and not words of love, hopes of an ideal. He wouldn’t substitute gestures for a job.
Until at least some of this is true the pope is not Marxist. Rather he is laissez faire capitalist fighting Corporate Capitalism? Even the most laissez faire capitalist works to make corporations limited in their power. So that’s not it. He just wants to encourage Vatican Capitalism with the pope as press and the council as board.