Great article in FIRST THINGS: Correcting Catholic Blindness. ACTION ITEM!

I must alert you to a piece at First Things by Sam Gregg: “Correcting Catholic Blindness”.

Alas, it is behind a paywall.  Alas, they made some other less worthy pieces available for free.

That said, we have the option of buying this article for $1.99 and it is worth every penny and the inconvenience.

Gregg gives examples of globalization and free markets that work, and he points out problems as well while underscoring that the fastest way out of poverty for people is this not that.  It is fair.

For example, Gregg contrasts Chile and Uruguay with Argentina.  They both come out of the same sorry mess and have a lot of the same issues.  Argentina is going down the toy-toy while Chile and Uruguay are not.

Do we want to get people out of poverty or do we just want to talk about it?  Do you want to score points by bloviating or do you want to help them?

Thus, it is good to have a thoughtful and well-informed article about these issues – for a change.

Here’s what I suggest.

Since this article is entombed in First Things (journal of record for the choir), and in the August edition no less, when everyone is at the beach, we have do some of the lifting for them.  Perk up some people at FT, which has had some struggles over the last few years.

Purchase the article, print, read, and share.  Yes, buy it.  Stick the crow-bar in your wallet and give up some of that stuff that you can’t take with you.  It’d be great if about 2000 of you regular readers here spent the $1.99 and then got to work.  Just do it.

About Fr. John Zuhlsdorf

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  1. Mike says:

    Just bought it, and printed it. Going to dentist now with something to read beside the blechy mags in the waiting room!

  2. Phil_NL says:

    Or, take a subscription. It’s a paltry 39 dollars even for the print version (and international delivery isn’t much more; in both cases you pay barely above cost, I reckon). Even if you only read half the content of half the issues , it’s decent value for money.

  3. Phil_NL says:

    As good as the article is, I must question one of its premisses: “Nor, it must be said, have European Catholic bishops been especially creative in responding to Europe’s economic troubles.” suggests that bishop should respond to economic troubles.
    I find that quite debatable; the bishops have no special expertise on the matter – one might even say they often have an above-average level of ignorance on the matter, given their experiences and formation – nor does it rank highly on their job description. Their first duty is managing their dioceses and sheparding the Catholics in them to Heaven. Of course a bishop can – and in some circumstances should – concern himself with the material plights of his flock or grave injustices committed against them, but all thing considered, the situation in Europe is not such that the flock is in dire distress or wronged beyond measure. If any bishop in Europe would see a need to involve himself in matters of economics, how much more would bishops in the rest of the world have to act? Yet most bishops from poorer areas are in fact much more concerned with conversions, moral issues, perhaps / hopefully some schools or hospitals, and only then might they touch on economic policies. It think that is a set of priorities that can teach a lot to many European bishops.

    In all, not only should bishops (including the Pope) heed what kind of economic policies work and which do not (and get rid of their attachment to the non-working kind), they should perhaps re-asses the amount they spent on economic politics altogether, and sent it to a much, much lower place on their priority list. It’s not that there isn’t any work in the spiritual arena.

  4. marcelus says:

    …..Partially correct.

    Argentina is a giant, good or bad. Commodities exporter , world #1 soy bean producer and moreeee much more. Idiotically run by our very own and elected politicians.. Thing I see happens elsewhere too from comments in this blog.

    Uruguay is the first? country in the Americas to legalize marihuana and traditionally non catholicn and proud of it.

    Chile on the other hand is run by an high elite conservative and military supported (yes,they have not been able to get rid of armed forces direct or indirect control the military heads of the armed forces become senators for life when they leave the army)

    As they say, if Argentina sneezes, Uruguay and Chile catch a cold.

  5. Deusetmealux says:

    Well I can´t say anything about Chile but I agree with Marcelus about Argentina being a giant that is idiotically run. Well I’d like to add that we here in Uruguay have our own lot of idiotic politicians.
    I can’t agree much with the idea that Uruguay is not going down the drain. Not only is Argentina like the titanic that in sinking sucke under the lifeboats but we here in Uruguay are far from being as well as the goverment would have everyone believe. O yes we are better at window dressing but just come here and live and work for a bit. Don’t take the bishops conference of Uruguays word on how well we are doing because they are head and heals sold out to the party in government have been for long and this hasn’t changed much. Education and health care have never been worse. Crime is on a constant galloping rise and we had never had so many homeless living in the streets. Curruption is rampant even though Argentina has always better than us in this we are close behind in our humble way. We here only hope that the ever diminishing aproval of the governing party will give us a change in the next elections that will see the goverment in another parties hands no matter which. But no matter who wins the election there will be a dreadfull fall and God help us at getting out of it. Argentina will suck us under and we have done our own part to make our capacity to react and risist almost nile.
    So I’d say the people writing this should come down here and live with us a while before they make comparisons and draw conclusions.

  6. HyacinthClare says:

    I think Phil_NL said this, but those of us who subscribe to the print edition can subscribe to the online for free. I just did.

  7. AgricolaDeHammo says:

    I bought it. Going to read it over with particular interest. I’ve been talking with quite a few “illiberal” Catholics about economics and government who aren’t fans of Acton-style economics. What I’d really like to hear is Gregg on modern Finance.

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