PopeWatch: Peronism

VATICAN-POPE-AUDIENCE

 

PopeWatch has been disappointed that more attention has not been paid to the life of Pope Francis in Argentina, since PopeWatch believes that is a key to understanding him.  A brief article touches upon the Pope as a Peronist:

When Pope Francis was simply Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio, Archbishop of Buenos Aires, he would visit these communities regularly. One of his biographers, Paul Vallely, says he was known as the ‘Bishop of the slums’.

Francis was certainly not a radical in Latin American political and religious terms. He lived modestly in a small downtown flat but he did not live, as some fellow Jesuits did, among the poorest. And while he embraced the Catholic Church’s preferential option for the poor, he rejected the class struggle tinge that came with liberation theology.

But Hilary Burke—an American journalist who has spent the past 12 years in Buenos Aires and co-authored the recent Time magazine cover story declaring Francis ‘Person of the Year’—says the slums made a deep impression on him and his attitude to economics.

‘These particular slums—villa de miseria—are sort of off the grid,’ she says. ‘So they don’t have basic services, such as electricity or sewage and they tend to be, in Buenos Aires, home to a lot of immigrants from neighbouring countries.’

‘I think part of what he must have learned is how unfair the system is, the economic system, just in the fact that this kind of poverty exists. This is a very wealthy country.’

If you look deeper than the anecdotes about the cardinal who travelled among the sweaty crowds on the Buenos Aires subway, you can see how the life of Buenos Aires shaped the current Pope.

Francis was not born into poverty but lower middle class austerity. His family neighbourhood, Flores, was austere but the streets were clean, the kitchen tables full, and children played on the pavements and filled the classrooms.

For much of the 20th century, Argentina had one of the highest standards of living in the world, largely because of the strength of its middle class. The post-war government of Juan Peron—and the movement that he and his wife Eva, or Evita, spawned—strengthened the labour movement and laid the basis of a welfare state.

‘Peronism’ has clearly influenced Francis, insists one of Argentina’s leading scholars and broadcasters, Pedro Brieger. ‘He was and is close to Peronism because Peronism is a popular movement,’ Brieger said. ‘If you want to be close to the masses, you have to be Peronist.’

Go here to read the rest.  Peronism has developed into a fairly amorphous term in Argentina, and you can find people of widely varying ideologies embracing that title.  However, at bottom much of Peronism still consists of demagogic appeals to class warfare, combined with crony capitalism and government boondoggle projects.  Juan Peron and Evita were not solely to blame for transforming Argentina from a nation that should, based on resources, be one of the richest in the world to a spendthrift nation always tottering on the verge of economic collapse, but they certainly played a major role.  PopeWatch fears that the dubious economic views of the Pope are quite in line with the insane economic policies embraced 68 years ago by the original Peronists.

 

 

42 Responses to PopeWatch: Peronism

  • For an in depth look at how Peronism and communism influenced Pope Francis’s politics, a must read is “Francis, A Pope For Our Times”. The two authors are Pope Francis fan boys, so this isn’t a smear attack on him. It’s available via Amazon.

  • Sorry, to quibble, but a country’s affluence in this day and age is a function of its human capital and public policy which orders institutions to reward entrepreneurship and productive skill development. Handsome agricultural land and tourist attractions are agreeable to have, but not necessary. Oil and minerals can be a danger to salutary economic development (see Ecuador and Venezuela).

    Argentina (along with Chile and Uruguay, IIRC) was in 1928 a second tier affluent country and had a higher standard of living than much of Europe. IIRC, the evolving industrial sector in the Southern Cone of South America was, as in the Antipodes, based on primary product processing. As we speak, per capita income in Argentina is about a quarter that of Australia and less than half that of New Zealand (and not terribly different from what it was in America in 1928). Unlike Chile and Uruguay, Argentina has not in recent decades improved its relative standing. So, eight decades of stagnation. Bad policy does that to you.

    You notice several things about Argentina:

    1. Regional differences in living standards are immense, not only in comparison to the U.S. but in comparison to Britain and Italy where such variation is much more jagged than it is here. The northwest around Tucuman has real income levels roughly similar to those of Paraguay over the border. The federal capital and the resource rich provinces in Patagonia have income levels more like a second tier European country (the Czech Republic, perhaps).

    2. Demographic concentration in the national metropolis is immense. Fully 30% of Argentines live in greater Buenos Aires. The only affluent country which approaches this level of concentration is South Korea, where about 25% of the population live in the capital. The position of Paris is atypical anywhere in the occidental world, but 85% of Frenchmen live in the provinces.

    3. Social Security spending is ample. IIRC, about 11% of domestic product is transferred this way, v. the 5% or so which prevails in America.

    The Pope has a history of speaking of economic matters with buzz words derived from opinion journalism. I tend to doubt he has much of a remedy to offer to his people.

  • “Sorry, to quibble, but a country’s affluence in this day and age is a function of its human capital and public policy which orders institutions to reward entrepreneurship and productive skill development. Handsome agricultural land and tourist attractions are agreeable to have, but not necessary. Oil and minerals can be a danger to salutary economic development (see Ecuador and Venezuela).”

    Agreed Art. My point is that in a country blessed with resources if a government simply steps aside, in effect does nothing, prosperity will usually ensue. Chile after Allende is a classic close at home counter example to Argentina.

    http://blogs.ft.com/beyond-brics/2014/01/24/chile-and-argentina-economic-worlds-apart/

  • Readers, please go back and re-read Art Deco’s second paragraph in the post above.

    Peronism is a failure as an economic prescription. Pure and simple. Anyone who thinks otherwise is deluded. I don’t mean that harshly for the millions who go along with it, but removing the harshness does not make it untrue.

    Pope Francis talks movingly of pastors “having the smell of the sheep”. It would make sense that, if the sheep in Argentina have the smell of Peronism then Francis would have no other way to pastor them but to buy into Peronism. His pastorial ideals would require him, in some manner, to accept the delusions of Peronism.

    This really highlights the dangers of the church getting too close to any ideology outside of the creed. No matter how good the ideology (and some, particularly in the USA, are very good), there is always the danger of being co-opted, and worse, of failing to see the inevitable shortcomings of the ideology.

  • A very notable feature of Peronism was its coporatism; an idea that has been a favourite of Catholic Counter-Revolutionaries since Louis de Bonald and Rene de la Tour du Pin.
    Le Tour de Pin believed every trade, industry and profession should be organized corporately and through this corporative system he promoted a programme which organized society by social function and which gave corporations public legal recognition and autonomy in all areas pertaining to their proper sphere. As this corporative system extended itself into the political arena, it would grant a proportionate, yet real representation to all segments of society by true participation. The idea has mediaeval origins and, to this day, the Lord Mayor of London (not to be confused with the Mayor of London) is elected by the livery companies (the old trade and merchant guilds or “Incorporations” as they are called in Scotland.
    This was in direct opposition to the liberalism of the French Revolutionary, embodied in the Le Chapelier law and the Allande decree: “The guild no longer exists in the state. There exist only the particular interests of each individual and the general interest. No one is permitted to encourage an intermediate interest that separates citizens from the common interest through a corporate spirit”
    Corporatism was a key element of the Fascist programme in Italy and the Falange movement in Spain, with the Upper House of the Cortes being composed of representatives of the guilds.
    It has been largely a Latin phenomenon

  • That’s funny. People know the pope as a Peronist and not a Catholic. Who would’ve guessed. What he should do is champion the cry for all governments and nations to submit to the Social Kingship of Christ; instead, he is Time Magazine’s man of the year. He should be on the top of the SPLC hate list for his staunch support of Catholic doctrine, but what do I know, I’m just a lay man. Please pray the rosary at least once a day. Say one Our Father, one Hail Mary and the Glory Be at the end for the intentions of the pope.

  • It has been largely a Latin phenomenon

    Good, or we might all have Argentina’s stagnation and episodic bouts of hyper-inflation conjoined to Spain’s decades-long experience as the bearer of the occidental world’s most dysfunctional labor markets.

  • “This is a very wealthy country.”

    I stopped reading there!

    Argentina could and should be “a very wealthy country.” However, it is an economic basket case run by oligarchs (political and economic elites) who pit one class against against another class.

    The road to Hell is paved with good intentiions.

    The Pope is from Argentina where “capitalism” means “state-enabled vampire cronyism.” So, he mistakes that for free markets.

    7/8/2013: Socialism produces the same results everywhere: In the Argentine breadbasket, the regime moves to jail “hoarders” as bread prices soar. Bloomberg: “Argentina plans to apply a law that forces holders of wheat and flour suitable for bread making to sell stock on the domestic market in a bid to contain inflation.” (Instapundit)
    6/6/2013: David Galland interview on Argentina at Zero Hedge: It is like a textbook case in government gone mad.
    “They have stolen the retirement accounts, devalued the currency, and put capital controls in place. There are trade controls so that people can’t import necessities into the country, but instead, have to manufacture them locally, with the government giving monopolies to their friends. They have price controls, which force the local supermarkets to not raise their prices. This will ultimately lead to shortages. And, there are already shortages of certain items. They didn’t like an opposition newspaper, so they nationalized the newsprint manufacturing industry. In fact, just about every single thing that you could do to screw up a country, they have done. It is comical to see the extremes they have gone to. For example, in Argentina, if you publish an inflation statistic that differs from of the official government numbers, you could be hit with a $100,000 fine. I had never heard of this anywhere else – except maybe in communist Russia. They are really completely out of control and the country is spinning off into la-la-land. Frankly, I love living right in the midst of all of it.”

  • Regardless of whether he is a Peronista or sympathizer of that cult or simply retains such a lens on life, Pope Francis has a responsibility to be informed and to be careful—to think, better yet to learn, before he speaks. His few comments on economic matters seem at times platitudinous, such as repeating the phrase “trickle down,” or even partisan. Recently I re-read Centesimus Annus and again was struck by the care taken by St. John Paul in writing it. JP blended his philosophers love of wisdom with careful research to arrive at an understanding of free enterprise, and intellectual property, and salvific charity, as opposed to meaningless nostrums—and this from a man with no background in the “free enterprise” experiment. It could serve us well if Pope Francis, and frankly many American bishops, would take time to perhaps read and comprehend the words of his predecessors on the subjects of subsidiarity, solidarity, social justice, free enterprise and statism.

  • “PopeWatch has been disappointed that more attention has not been paid to the life of Pope Francis in Argentina”
    Spot on! A worthwhile task for the would be investigative journalists.

  • Argentina is a basket case of a nation and it has been for some time. This holds true both politically and economically. Judging from Jorge Bergoglio, the Catholic Church isn’t in great shape there, either.

    It is one thing to say that one favors the poor, sympathizes with the poor, supports the poor and wants preferential treatment for the poor. None of that helps solve poverty in any way. A private sector job is the only cure for poverty.

    Latin American nations have almost never understood or bothered to understand market capitalism, property rights, the markets – the things that make an economy prosper and provide opportunity. They have been saddled with a mentality of mercantilism, where the governments establish monopolies, choke off innovation and condemn untold masses of people to poverty.

    Chile, after Allende, began to get it. Chile’s economy blows away Argentina.

    All of this is beyond Pope Francis.

  • Whaddyaknow, Time magazine fits Pope Francis into a box of their own labeled “Peronism” then pastes his image on their rag’s cover and proclaim him their Man of the Year. Supplying opinions ready-made, that’s always been the Time-Life media empire’s business model.

    I’m not buying it. Sure, Pope Francis’s ideas about worklife, business, and economy are muddled, ill-expressed, and very likely ill-informed. But that no more makes him a Peronista than the similarly failed mish-mash of ideas in the heads of American Democrat Party voters makes them Klansmen and Klanswomen, never mind McGovernites or even Obammunists.

    Finally, I suspect that the villa de miseria is “off the grid” because of a lack of basic property rights for the dwellers there and an honest market for utility services more than anything else.

  • Stop attacking the Pope like a bunch of market square gossips. Do not obstruct the Holy Spirit. Have faith and trust.

  • The Holy Spirit and the Pope are not the same Tom. Since this papacy I have heard some of the most bizarre ideas put forward by his defenders regarding honest criticism of a pope. For a breath of fresh air I like this comment from Cardinal Ratzinger in 1997 when queried about whether the Holy Spirit picks the Pope:

    “I would not say so, in the sense that the Holy Spirit picks out the Pope. . . . I would say that the Spirit does not exactly take control of the affair, but rather like a good educator, as it were, leaves us much space, much freedom, without entirely abandoning us. Thus the Spirit’s role should be understood in a much more elastic sense, not that he dictates the candidate for whom one must vote. Probably the only assurance he offers is that the thing cannot be totally ruined.

    There are too many contrary instances of popes the Holy Spirit obviously would not have picked!”

  • You ignored my first sentence.

    On another matter the meddling of the US in the affairs of its poorer southern neighbours has perhaps contributed or even caused the “basket case” that you allude to.

  • “On another matter the meddling of the US in the affairs of its poorer southern neighbours has perhaps contributed or even caused the “basket case” that you allude to.”

    Perhaps? The truth is: not at all. Go read today’s thread on Peronism. It totally refutes this malarkey with regards to the Southern Cone. The basket case there is entirely self inflicted.

  • Go read today’s thread on Peronism – eek, left out “go back” and “reread”

  • It is difficult to separate politics and religion, and keep our Catholic political advice to Catholic principles.. there is a lot of latitude there! Father Drinan would have thought he was following Catholic teaching, as do so many liberal Catholics.
    I don’t know much about Peron and haven’t read The Joy of the Gospel yet- would you say it reflects a peronist grounding?

  • I don’t have my copy of Paul Johnson’s Modern Times at hand, but I distinctly remember him saying that anti-Americanism, by which I mean Argentina’s problems, and by extension South America’s, were the result of “meddling [by] the US in the affairs of its poorer southern neighbours” was a distinct feature of Peronism.

  • I don’t recall Johnson writing that, although it would be ironic if he did. Xenophobia has usually been a part of Peronism but the main target has been Great Britain. Juan and Evita always railed about the English domination of the Argentine industries, and there is the traditional antipathy over Falklands/Malvinas. Anti-Yanqui rhetoric was also there, but quite secondary.

  • Ernst Schreiber

    The exclusion of Argentinian exports from the Marshall Plan in 1948, whilst not exactly “meddling” did real harm, hampering growth, especially in its agricultural sector.

  • “You ignored my first sentence.

    On another matter the meddling of the US in the affairs of its poorer southern neighbours has perhaps contributed or even caused the “basket case” that you allude to.”

    No, I didn’t, I responded to it. The Pope does not share the immunity to criticism of the Holy Spirit.

    I addressed your other contention in an earlier comment by me in this thread.

  • Paul Johnson certainly had Peron’s number in Modern Times:

    “As President, Perón gave a classic demonstration, in the name of socialism and nationalism, of how to wreck an economy. He nationalised the Central Bank, railways, communications, gas, electricity, fishing, air-transport, steel and insurance. He set up a state marketing agency for exports. He created Big Government and a welfare state in one bound: spending on public services, as a percentage of GNP, rose from 19.5 to 29.5 per cent in five years. He had no system of priorities. He told the people they would get everything at once. In theory they did. The workers were given thirteen months’ pay for a year’s work; holidays with pay; social benefits at a Scandinavian level. He would track down a highly successful firm which spent lavishly on its workers and force all firms to copy its practices, regardless of their resources. At the same time he carried out a frontal assault on the agricultural sector, Argentina’s main source of internal capital. By 1951 he had exhausted the reserves and decapitalized the country, wrecked the balance of payments and built wage-inflation into the system. Next year drought struck the land and brought the crisis into the open. Seeing his support vanish, Perón turned from economic demagoguery to political tyranny. He destroyed the Supreme Court. He took over the radio station and La Prensa, the greatest newspaper in Latin America. He debauched the universities and fiddled with the constitution. Above all, he created public “enemies”: Britain, America, all foreigners, the Jockey Club, which his gangs burned down in 1953, destroying its library and art collection. Next year he turned on Catholicism, and in 1955 his labour mobs destroyed Argentina’s two finest churches, San Francisco and Santo Domingo, and many others.

    That was the last straw. The army turned him out. He fled on a Paraguayan gunboat. But his successors could never get back to the minimum government which had allowed Argentina to become wealthy. Too many vested interests had been created: a huge, parasitical state, over-powerful unions, a vast army of public employees. It is one of the dismal lessons of the twentieth century that, once a state is allowed to expand, it is almost impossible to contract it.”

  • I’m beginning to see why your blog is called the American Catholic.I’m inclined to think that American exceptionalism and Peronism come from a similar place, and the former has perhaps been responsible for more harm as its backed by more capital.

  • Rubbish Tom. The only American president who could bear any comparison to Peron is Obama and this blog has been highly critical of him. Try again to make a comment, and this time please attempt to support it with facts, rather than only with your obvious desperate desire to support Pope Francis against any criticism, facts be hanged.

  • Filial desire, not desperate. But then maybe a desperate desire to protect the pope is something to be proud of.

  • Defending the pope is admirable when he is right, and deplorable when he is wrong, and history well illustrates that popes, beginning with the first one, can be wrong. Pope Francis I think would agree, based upon this statement that he made that some of his predecessors:
    “have often been narcissists, flattered and thrilled by their courtiers.”

    http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way/2013/10/01/228200595/francis-says-the-court-is-the-leprosy-of-the-papacy

  • I don’t see where he’s gone wrong.

    If he does I’ll chose to remain silent . I’m certain he won’t err on faith and morals.

  • When he is speaking ex cathedra on faith and morals he cannot err. In regard to going wrong PopeWatch has given extensive day by day coverage to the doings of the Pope, and I would be surprised if even he did not regret some of the remarks he has apparently made in interviews and phone calls. Among mistakes outside of this area I would cite the ongoing persecution of the Friars of the Immaculate.

  • On another matter the meddling of the US in the affairs of its poorer southern neighbours has perhaps contributed or even caused the “basket case” that you allude to.

    During the course of the 19th and early 20th century, one or another South American country saw their customs revenue seized for non-payment of debts. Other than that, there has not been a European or North American garrison in South America since 1822. U.S. Marines were present in Nicaragua for a number of years between 1924 and 1934 and there was long a garrison present on the Panamanian isthmus. Beyond that American forces have never got out of the Caribbean. Clandestine services organized a coup d’etat against a pro-Soviet government in Guatemala in 1954, but otherwise little post-war political disorder in Latin America is attributable to them. What ‘meddling’?

    Again, the Southern Cone republics were 2d tier affluent countries in 1928, rather like Israel or New Zealand today. A certain legal order, democratic in its later stages, characterized Chilean politics from 1831 (with two notable interruptions), Argentine politics from 1853 to 1943 and again since 1983, and Uruguayan politics from 1890 (with two interruptions). These were 1st world countries which developed severe politico-economic pathologies during the Depression and the period immediately antecedent. Unlike a number of European countries also dysfunctional around the same time, these Latin countries did not begin to recover until around 1977.

    It may please Latin American litterateurs and labor meatheads to attribute their countries’ economic and political problems to the United States government. it may please the ignorant and opinionated in North America to take them seriously. But the thorough falseness of the complaint is manifest.

  • Being a nuclear engineer, history is not my field of expertise so I know little to nothing about Peronism. But what is apparent is this: Jorge Bergoglio knows as much about what creates real wealth in a society as Barack Hussein Obama, and both cry to the hilltops about social justice and equality while supporting of creating those very policies and programs which are most injurious to what they say are their goals. And both are driven by the cult of personality – no surprise there.
    —–
    However, that said, God will protect His Church today just as He did in the days of Pope Alexander VI, though the protection may likely involve pain.

  • I think the un-appreciated north american involvement is not just the government, but the businesses- mining, United Fruit, sugar etc. I don’t sense an antipathy toward democracy or republicanism.. but toward capitalism. Some of the same antipathy in Africa and Asia toward Britain.
    I notice our pope has not made an effort to learn English, the second most spoken language in the world (after Chinese). Maybe there is some resentment there and we should all pray for humility.

  • I think the un-appreciated north american involvement is not just the government, but the businesses- mining, United Fruit, sugar etc.

    I am aware peace-and-justice types in the Church fancy that foreign direct investment is nefarious by definition, but neither you nor I are obliged to take them seriously. There is empirical evidence that the generation of export enclaves – from mining and plantation agriculture – is associated with retarded economic growth. I am not sure the economic sociologists who discovered that (Christopher Chase-Dunn et al.) ever were able to isolate causes. One can readily imagine that countries without resources on the ground to generate year-to-year improvements in production and income are vulnerable to the export enclave phenomenon.

    You’ve had five countries with a mess of mineral wealth: Mexico, Venezuela, Ecuador, Bolivia, and Chile. Mexico’s oil industry has been a state monopoly since 1938, Venezuela’s has been a state monopoly since 1976 (and foreign investment therein was derived from Britain and the Netherlands prior to that, not the United States), Ecuador’s oil industry is relatively novel (founded in 1967) and has had since 1972 considerable state participation and been since 1992 dominated by state companies. Mining in Bolivia has been a state-dominated enterprise since 1952. There’s an antique history of foreign investment in mining in Chile; however, Chile is one country in Latin America where economic prosperity and political order have generally been the rule. Mexico has much trouble with political corruption and street crime, but the country has had uninterrupted continuity of government since 1920 (for nearly as long as it’s had an oil industry).

    As for United Fruit, the most salient measure of its conduct is how it compared with the domestic gentry in its treatment of its workforce. Did United Fruit render the regime in agricultural labor relations better or worse than it had been before? (While we are at it, since United Fruit liquidated its holdings in Latin America around about 1970, complaints about United Fruit are not exactly topical).

    I’m just not seeing how shifting the complaint from the U.S. government to commercial companies in the U.S. renders the complaints any more valid.

  • Art, I am sure that you are aware, and I am sure that the supporters of Peronism are not, that foreign direct investment has always played a major role in the growth of the U.S. economy. In the 19th and 20th centuries Europeans consistently viewed the U.S. as a economically, socially, and legally safe place to invest their money. If the ‘Yankee imperialism mongers’ were correct that foreign direct investment hurts the countries absorbing the investments, then the U.S. should also have been a basket case for the past two centuries. Since this is not true the critique of foreign direct investments must also not be true.

    Sadly, the U.S. is now moving economically in the direction that Latin America has generally taken, with scapegoating, crony capitalism, tax money payoffs to interest groups, etcetera (of course, there always was some of this, but it is growing). The capitalistic culture is atrophying and will die if we forget how to act without direct government support and intervention.

  • Art, of course Mexico’s street crime problem is closely linked with U.S. illegal drug use. I would love to make posters for schools with Mexican drug cartel crime scene photos and the caption “Do you buy drugs? Then you bought this too”. Of course the alleged bleeding hearts would never let it in the door.

  • Elevated crime rates are fairly unremarkable in Latin America, no matter where you are. Chile and Uruguay are exceptions, but they are exceptions in a mess of other ways as well. Mean homicide rates between 13 and 25 per 100,000 are the norm. There are two or three Central American states where it’s been worse in recent years (Honduras) or worse as a matter of course (El Salvador, long a country with a very violent culture). (That in the United States has varied between 4 and 11 per 100,000 in the last 60 years; European rates settle around 2 per 100,000). The beef about the drug trade (which generates organized crime) has a small amount of truth to it, but it’s more likely to be used as fodder in another blame-shifting exercise.

  • Re, Chase-Dunn et al. The effect they found was an association with the relative size of foreign investment stocks not foreign investment flows. Ceteris paribus, foreign investment flows are associated with economic dynamism. (The United States has not, however, had proportionatly large inflows until about 30 years ago). A cross-sectional assessment suggests the effect re foreign investment stocks manifests itself in countries with contextually large mineral exports, not with other countries.

  • To clarify my viewpoint, I am definitely Not complaining about capitalism and it’s effect on the world. I should have said “was” not “is” as I was thinking not necessarily of current concerns of the pope, but the kinds of things that would have had an effect on his thinking as he was forming his response to perceived needs in his own culture.
    .
    The influence of communist and socialists in the southern part of this hemisphere was/is strong, so that anti capitalist ideas could be part of the air he breathed growing up and in later formation. (which I guess would be in the 60’s and 70’s)
    Not saying United Fruit is an issue today- I barely remember what that was all about anyway. I am saying societal antipathy or resentment to capitalism might still have an effect.
    I think the pope is concerned about greed, and about poor families. I don’t think that is being a bleeding heart, but that it is ultimately a very practical concern and response to what he has seen in Argentina.
    .
    We can’t institutionalize or systemize charity through government, we can only hope individuals will be moved to do what they can. Financially successful conservatives ( which we are in my family) are) are typically generous. That is the example I think the pope is trying to set. He, as I have said before, is like me: a work in progress.

    Communism’s effect on the culture of the Americas from Mexico on south still lasts. After the communist attack on Catholicism in Mexico 1917 and following, much of Catholic culture was effectively lost and the Mexican people became very susceptible to evangelical Christian attempts to convert them. Also a resurgence of interest in pre Christian religions.

  • Plutarco Elias Calles et al traded in a highly anti-clerical agrarian populism. His successor Lazaro Cardenas was certainly a part of the red haze, but PRI and its antecedents were not Communist as that term is properly used.

    In terms manifest in electoral results, Uruguay, Chile, Peru, Nicaragua, and El Salvador have had large Communist or post-Communist parties for at least a time. In the rest of Latin America, Marxism has a journalistic/academic tendency which gets little popular traction (as it is in many occidental countries).

  • [br] Stop attacking the Pope like a bunch of market square gossips. Do not obstruct the Holy Spirit. Have faith and trust. [br]

    I’ve read that Catholic pneumatology is much less developed than its Orthodox counterpart in part because of the overemphasis Catholics have not-infrequently placed on the office of the Pope. It’s essential not to conflate the two.

    Also:

    [br] “Peter has no need of our lies or flattery. Those who blindly and indiscriminately defend every decision of the Supreme Pontiff are the very ones who do most to undermine the authority of the Holy See—they destroy instead of strengthening its foundations.” – Dominican Bishop Melchior Cano, a theologian at Trent. [br]

  • So much of US aide is tied to the population control agenda.Obama, the Abortionist in Chief has not just appeared from nowhere.He is a natural progression of successive US governments.I’m no justice and peace type.There is a cultural marxism which appears to be quite separate from the economic debate, and at present the US seems to be the leader in that area.

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