5 comments

  1. FWIW I have been thinking about your critique of leftist interpretation CST, and while I agree that Catholics should be circumspect when thinking about solutions that involve more bureaucracy and welfare-spending, I think we are stuck with the modern state as the only institution we have to work with. I know that you are well versed in the teachings of illberial Catholics like De Maistre, Cortes and Schmitt who supported an authoritarian government, not so much as a end in and of itself but as means for providing breathing room against the forces of chaos. I suppose I merely apply this insight to the economic realm. I don’t think the New Deal statism was necessarily ideal or the “end of history” but I do think it provided a semblance of order and its impact on the lives of workers and traditional culture was generally positive. That the New Deal had positive results I think had much to do with Catholic participation and influence. We can raise the question as to what to do when the state has stemmed the tide of chaos- merely saying the state will whither away is obviously problematic so there I think is that the main issue.

    As an aside what’s with the The Remnant becoming the Alex Jones Show with a Rosary? First Ron Paul gets invited to the Fatima conference – I still cannot figure out the reason for that is there a theory out there that the third secret was about the evils of fiat money? Why was Judge Andrew Naplitano’s book recently promoted? It is almost as though Ferrara and co. have forgotten all about that really acrimonious debate they had four years ago.

    While I share your general critique of “social justice” and “socialist” Catholics who sometimes go too far, there are also still significant problems in the right-wing distributist quarter as well. I don’t mean to sound like an overly scrupulous-purist but it seems that all forms of distributism are tainted by liberalism in some form or another.

    1. A few points…

      First, I have not been keeping up with what The Remnant has been featuring, though I will say that postmodernity makes for strange bedfellows. There are those within the libertarian/quasi-libertarian circle who share views which dovetail with traditional Catholic concerns, which may explain Paul’s appearance at the Fatima Center.

      Second, and on that point, I would like to think through some of what I am going to call the “queer” elements on the edges of traditional Catholicism, namely the ties with a very “Americanist”/”nationalist” outlook. But of course as you well know, there are traditional Catholics who feel fine being aligned with the Tea Party, Lew Rockwell, Acton, etc. So that’s not really a new phenomenon, just a depressing one.

      Third, I am not inherently anti-New Deal. I think one of the unfortunately legacies of the New Deal is that it shows the difficultly, in a liberal democracy, of rolling back or, rather, recalibrating social programs after they have outlived their usefulness. But the Great Depression and the New Deal response is a very complex question, and so it’s not easy to give a positive/negative answer to the whole thing. Also, hindsight is 20/20.

      More on this soon…

        1. Let me rephrase. I think keeping many of the ND programs centralized and in the hands of the federal government outlived its usefulness once it was clear that the national economic system had recovered. At that point more control should have devolved to the states to ensure more local control and administration, with the exception of programs and legislative measures which addressed macro-level economic sectors, e.g., banking and finance.

          I want to reiterate that I have no objection to the ND per se, and I would even go so far as to say that the Court shouldn’t have killed NIRA, though NIRA’s implementation and lack of clear policy goals made it a poor recovery instrument in the end.

  2. “In union with his predecessor, Leo XIII, and eventual successor, Pius XI, Pius X’s vision of capitalist/labor relations is a harmonious one maintained through private aid, insurance, trade, and professional associations.”

    I happen to believe in faeries that bring me golden lollipops and rainbow colored unicorns which regurgitate bourbon into my cup each evening.

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