A line from Pope Benedict XVI at the very beginning of his apostolic journey in Benin, Africa, when he was welcomed at Cotonou's airport by the president and the civil and religious authorities, on November 18, 2011, summarizes very well the theme of this issue of MICHAEL:
"Modernity need not provoke fear, but neither can it be constructed by neglecting the past. It needs to be accompanied by prudence for the good of all in order to avoid the pitfalls which exist on the African continent and elsewhere, such as unconditional surrender to the law of the market or that of finance."
As the Pope pointed out, it is not only Benin or Africa, but all the countries in the world that have surrendered unconditionally to the laws of the market and that of finance, with disastrous consequences for the human populations. The Holy Father took up the same topic in his address to the members of the Diplomatic Corps in the Vatican, on January 9, 2012:
"Truly the world is gloomy wherever it is not brightened by God's light! Truly the world is dark wherever men and women no longer acknowledge their bond with the Creator and thereby endanger their relation to other creatures and to creation itself. The present moment is sadly marked by a profound disquiet and the various crises – economic, political and social – are a dramatic expression of this.
"Here I cannot fail to address before all else the grave and disturbing developments of the global economic and financial crisis. The crisis has not only affected families and businesses in the more economically advanced countries where it originated, creating a situation in which many people, especially the young, have felt disoriented and frustrated in their aspirations for a serene future, but it has also had a profound impact on the life of developing countries."
Man has never been able to produce so much, thanks to new technologies, and yet, poverty has never been so widespread. This is because the money system does not represent reality, but has become an idol to which the human person and the environment must be sacrificed. The present financial system is flawed and is due to collapse for many reasons — not to mention the astronomical debts of all nations.
Even the United States of America, the richest country in the world, is going bankrupt. For example, the city of Detroit, formerly prosperous with the car industry, is turning into a ghost town, with 80,000 vacant plots. Its population has diminished by 25% over the last ten years, and the average price of a house is $6,000…
Those in charge of such a fraudulent system will stop at nothing to achieve their end: global dictatorship, with a world government. They will even replace heads of governments with bankers without bothering with elections, to make sure their policies are applied by governments. Or they will have laws passed to put into jail anyone who dares to question their policies, calling them "terrorists".
There is definitely a moral crisis, when man does not respect human life (through the killing of babies by abortions) or God's creation (through the useless waste of the environment with the planned obsolescence of goods). Pope Benedict XVI mentioned it in his speech to the Diplomatic Corps: "I am convinced that legislative measures which not only permit but at times even promote abortion for reasons of convenience or for questionable medical motives compromise the education of young people and, as a result, the future of humanity." (See The Battle for Life)
Nevertheless, there is hope for a better future, since a solution exists to improve the present system, and guarantee economic security to every individual. This system is well known to the regular readers of MICHAEL: it is the financial proposals of Scottish engineer Clifford Hugh Douglas, known as Social Credit, or economic democracy. And speaking about hope, we invite you to read the testimony of a great figure of the Church, the late Cardinal Van Thuan of Vietnam. Good reading!