Friday, January 04, 2013

The Pope vs Paul Ryan


Ryan has long tried to fashion himself an image for Wisconsin voters as a sturdy conservative Catholic. He's certainly been fanatically anti-Choice but Pope Benedict's New Year mass shows the basic divergence between the Catholicism of Ryan's anti-Choice/anti-gay zealotry and the Catholicism of one of the most conservative Popes in the last century. Ryan may try to pass himself off as a loyal son of the Catholic Church but he has always picked and chosen which parts of Catholicism he embraces and which parts he discards. And his stronger loyalty to Ayn Rand's reactionary social theology is what brings up Ryan's latest problem with actual Catholicism-- the kind Jesus Christ preached, not the kind crooked hucksters like Grover Norquist, Joe Pitts and Richard Land preach.

No doubt the Pope had right-wing politicians like Ryan in mind when he talked about "hotbeds of tension and conflict caused by growing instances of inequality between rich and poor" and when he denounced "the prevalence of a selfish and individualistic mindset which also finds expression in an unregulated capitalism, various forms of terrorism and criminality." That pretty much sums up the Paul Ryan wing of the Republican Party.

Even a Pope as conservative in the extreme as Benedict has been mortified with the excesses of the kind of unrestrained, unregulated greed-obsessed capitalism promoted by Ryan and his extremist colleagues. He's been calling for a new economic model and the kinds of ethical regulations for markets Ryan and the GOP oppose with all their "souls," saying the global financial crisis was proof that capitalism does not protect society's weakest members.

The Ryan wing of the congressional party led the fight against the Grand Bargain-- although in the end Ryan, a Wall Street shill at his core, voted YES with Boehner and against Cantor and McCarthy. And this was a Grand Bargain their own propaganda agents, like Charles Krauthammer, called a "complete surrender" and a victory for the Democrats (if not for the middle class, for Inside the Beltway Democratic careerists and their own agenda, which included-- in the Grand Bargain-- outrageous subsidies for favorite corporate entities from NASCAR, the railroad industry, the film industry, the oil industry and, of course, Goldman Sachs).

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At 5:09 AM, Anonymous me said...

Maybe the pope & Ryan will end up sharing a prison cell.

At 5:43 PM, Blogger Dennis Jernberg said...

"the prevalence of a selfish and individualistic mindset which also finds expression in an unregulated capitalism, various forms of terrorism and criminality..."

Did the Pope have in mind what Howard Roark did to that public housing development in The Fountainhead? You know, an act of terrorism committed out of a selfish and individualistic mindset? Not to mention the criminal act he inflicted on poor Dominique in the bodice-ripper rape scene that has inspired such passion for Objectivism... I wonder...


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