Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

Skip to comments.

Papal Bullishness
IBD Editorials ^ | November 25, 2008

Posted on 11/25/2008 9:16:15 PM PST by Kaslin

Capitalism Italy's anti-globalist finance minister claims that Pope Benedict made a 1985 "prophesy" of this year's market drop. What he really said was not clairvoyant, but self-evident: Economic freedom demands ethics.

"Capitalism begins with giving," George Gilder declared in "Wealth and Poverty," the 1981 book often described as the Reagan administration bible.

"Not from greed, avarice or even self-love can one expect the rewards of commerce, but from a spirit closely akin to altruism. . . . The investor must give his money, offer his goods, freely, depending on the voluntary willingness of others to respond with creative efforts of their own."

Gilder insists that "faith in the providence of God" is "essential to successful capitalism," and he argues that "we need religious beliefs" because "they tell us that free humans with faith in the future and a commitment to it will prevail."

Four years after Gilder wrote that, Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger, then-prefect of the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, expressed a similar sentiment at a symposium in Rome devoted to "Church and Economy in Dialogue."

"It is becoming an increasingly obvious fact of economic history that the development of economic systems which concentrate on the common good depends on a determinate ethical system, which in turn can be born and sustained only by strong religious convictions," the future Pope Benedict XVI said in a paper entitled "Market Economy and Ethics."

He added: "Conversely, it has also become obvious that the decline of such discipline can actually cause the laws of the market to collapse."

(Excerpt) Read more at ...

TOPICS: Business/Economy; Culture/Society; Editorial
KEYWORDS: catholic; economy; popebenedict; ratzinger; vatican

1 posted on 11/25/2008 9:16:15 PM PST by Kaslin
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | View Replies]

To: Kaslin
Even an agnostic like Hajek believed that ancient moral systems promoted the market. He did not believe that the system of commerce we now have was sustainable without monotheistic moral systems (Cf. The Fatal Conceit, pp 135-140 in the U. of Chicago paperback edition, 1991). He held this view on purely evolutionary grounds--grounds that I don't find persuasive, as he simply could not believe in any personal, supernatural deity. Nonetheless, he has many interesting things to say, e.g.,
Even those among us,like myself, who are not prepared to accept the anthropomorphic conception of a personal deity ought to admit that the premature loss of what we regard as nonfactual beliefs [i.e., supposedly mythical Christian morals] would have deprived mankind of a powerful support in the long development of the extended order that we now enjoy, and that even now the loss of these beliefs, whether true or false, creates great difficulties. (p. 137)

2 posted on 11/25/2008 10:26:57 PM PST by ishmac ("There are no permanent defeats in politics because there are no permanent victories." Lady Thatcher)
[ Post Reply | Private Reply | To 1 | View Replies]

Disclaimer: Opinions posted on Free Republic are those of the individual posters and do not necessarily represent the opinion of Free Republic or its management. All materials posted herein are protected by copyright law and the exemption for fair use of copyrighted works.

Free Republic
Browse · Search
Topics · Post Article

FreeRepublic, LLC, PO BOX 9771, FRESNO, CA 93794 is powered by software copyright 2000-2008 John Robinson