Good article. Social justice is all too often a code word for socialism. When I heard the new Pope’s claim to fame was “social justice” I was immediately wary. Many people are arguing that he isn’t a supporter of big government and point to his distancing himself from liberation theology, but I’m still not that confident. It certainly looks like he is on record as opposing “austerity” cuts in Argentina because they would supposedly hurt the poor. Argentina has been unstable for years because they’ve spent too much money building disastrous social welfare states.
Quite frankly, and I know this is very politically incorrect, I am tired of hearing about the poor. I think a misguided focus on helping the poor through government is precisely why the West has run up massive debt and is slowly imploding. We’ve spent far too much time talking about “the poor”. It’s time society focuses on people that actually produce something, folks that make free markets work, entrepreneurs that build businesses and employ people, business that bring food and medicine to people all over the world, etc.
The Catholic Church used to always condemn Marxism and Socialism, as intrinsically evil, because they use humans as slaves of the State and destroy the family unit. They are systems which use human beings as “means to an end” which is unacceptable in Catholic Theology. It is why contraception, abortion, euthanasia, homosexuality is always intrinsically evil.....you can never reduce humans to a commodity which Marxism/Socialism always does.
Subsidiarity—and the integrity of the Family unit, is the most essential element of a civil society. I have read encyclicals which state that all systems have flaws but the best economic system which has been proven the best for all is the one based on Free Market Capitalism. For it to work-—as even Adam Smith and John Locke and Founders knew-—you have to have a Virtuous society (religious) and promoting Virtue was essential for all Just governments.