No doubt the Pope is a nice man with good intentions. But good intentions, absent any concern for cause and effect, has and continues to condemn hundreds of millions of human beings to poverty, disease and hopelessness. The Pope's policy positions, as George Will points out in an editorial today, would exacerbate the poverty of the world's poorest people and reduce the standard of living of those hundreds of millions of people who have escaped the ravages of poverty in the last two generations.
Good intentions are not worth much and often deflect us from the reality.
Other than isolated individuals no group of people in the history of the world has ever escaped poverty except by the beneficial impact of free markets. That's right -- capitalism!
World history, until the seventeenth century, was a history of one band of thugs exerting power over another band of thugs, while the mass of humanity was in bondage. Not until capitalism and free markets came along did the mass of humanity have any hope at all. Meanwhile earlier Popes, as George Will points out, were busy condemning folks like Galileo for their heretical views that, at the time, they thought were inimical to the interests of humanity. Not much has changed.
Folks that spend their lives in cloistered jet planes and fancy palaces are quick to claim that they represent poor folks -- the Pope, Hillary Clinton, John Kerry, Nancy Pelosi, Al Gore, Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders and on and on. These folks have no idea idea how poor people live. How would they? Yet they claim to speak for the poor as they condemn free markets and rail against capitalism.
But, as George Will notes today, free markets and capitalism and have been the only friends that poor folks have ever had and rich pro-government folks will continue to oppose free markets and capitalism in order to preserve their position and status. Add the Pope to the list of those opposed to freedom and free markets.