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Source link: http://archive.mises.org/8060/catholic-social-teaching-and-the-market/

Catholic Social Teaching and the Market

April 29, 2008 by

Here I go again — here’s the text of something like what I said on my tour of Poland in December.

Whatever religious differences you have with me, please denounce me via email rather than in the comment section.

{ 172 comments }

newson May 6, 2008 at 9:33 pm

to owen:

i’m flogging a dead horse here, but how do you propose to ensure that monies from taxpayers in wealthy countries actually arrive to the poor, not intercepted by corrupt government officials? (we’ll leave aside all ethical arguments here, as we’re not going to see eye-to-eye on this point).

Owen May 6, 2008 at 10:11 pm

newson:

Don’t get angry because you can’t get your point across properly. Just try and articulate it better.

I don’t propose to in short. But there are plenty of third world countris with access, however there are still people dying from lack of basic necessities.

In a free market the charities should have completely ‘saved’ all these people but they haven’t. Why? Because the functioning of the free-market is not the problem, it is the lack of donations.

newson May 7, 2008 at 1:01 am

to owen:
i highlighted the section to encourage you to read it – it’s actually your suggestion to end third world poverty, and it’s the current system. government to government aide already dwarfs private charity. why is your system not working?

here it is again, re-articulated:
“how do you propose to ensure that monies, collected via taxes from wealthy-nation citizens, actually arrive to the poor, not intercepted by corrupt government officials?”

your answer seems to be, let’s forget about those countries and concentrate on the easy-access countries (of which there are none, because they all have huge import taxes, custom imposts, regulations etc). there are no countries in dire need of aide who have secure property rights.

ethiopia has more resources for sustenance than singapore or hong kong, which were poor forty years ago. the latter got no aide, ethiopia has had bucketloads (and most from redistribution). why is your redistribution failing, notwithstanding the billions spent?

Owen May 7, 2008 at 1:56 am

Newson:

You are correct that alot of development aid comes from western governments and there is general agreement it is not enough. Therefore it is not minimal redistribution because it does not even meet basic necessities.

If you are sure there are no countries that can be used as a comparison then I accept your point. There really is no definitive evidence either way that charity can or can’t provide for the needy. However there isn’t any credible evidence that it can’t.

That was in fact my original proposition that we don’t know for sure whether charity would work but we do know for sure that if a stable, democratic government with a firm rule of law and running liberal free-market policies redistributed a minimal amount of resources to cover the basic needs of the poor then this would DEFINATELY work. Choose any developed country and eliminate all taxes except a minimal redistribution and watch the economy flourish whilst no-one starves.

Under a pure free-market this is probable but you just cannot say for sure.

The Catholic Church would err on the side of caution because the minimal amount lost has significant gains of ensuring the poor are fed.

newson May 7, 2008 at 2:00 am

please read “aid”!

newson May 7, 2008 at 2:14 am

sani obacha, former military ruler of nigeria, stashed over 2 billion usd in swiss banks (thank you government aid, more please!).

ferdinand marcos of the philippines, over 500 million usd, and we’re talking about when the dollar was worth a lot more.

the list of bad guys is endless, tax revenues are not.

Owen May 7, 2008 at 3:30 am

Newson:

Democratic minimal redistribution by its very nature only redistributes amongst the members of that country. There is no requirement to undertake any foreign aid – this should all be done by private charity as you suggest.

Problem is that the low amounts of such charitable aid amongst such obvious plenty in the developed world gives one little confidence that were there to be more money in these peoples back pockets that they would donate enough more or simply buy another Hummer.

Overseas Charitable Aid is not a necessary requirement of free-market charity because each country should be able to look after itself more or less. Overseas charitable Aid SO FAR gives a very poor indication of the desire or preference to help everyone that actually needs it.

Inquisitor May 7, 2008 at 9:14 am

“maybe it’s just so horribly immature it is trying to insult me by referring to me as female.”

For rational individuals, this should mean that referring to one as female in order to insult is immature. How this entails a problem on my part with women is beyond me.

Scott D May 7, 2008 at 10:57 am

Owen,

You also might want to read this:

http://www.garretthardinsociety.org/articles/art_lifeboat_ethics_case_against_helping_poor.html

I think that there is a lot wrong with Hardin’s economic views in general, but he does lay out the case quite convincingly for why redistribution, carried out with the aim of feeding the world’s poor, is a path to self-destruction.

Owen May 7, 2008 at 7:36 pm

Inquisitor:

Who said it was an insult. Are you paranoid? Do you somehow think women are inferior? Because that is how it is coming out. Not only a confederate flag waving troll but but a sexist too? Sad.

Scott D:

Minimal redistribution is only meant to feed the poor of the state from which is governs – not the world. It is free-market charity that tries to feed the worlds poor but shows again and again why it is unable to do so – personal preferences will never allow the last person to be fed.

Minimal redistribution has only the same failings as the free-market that prevent it from working. These are the organs of the state not doing their job properly. The free-market requires rules provided by courts and a police force in order to function and these MUST be provided by the state. Were these not to be provided by the state you have a state of ANARCHY in which we are actually already in – just that the largest voluntary groups are called governments.

There is the same potential and scope for negative consequences if the provision of these services go awry than if the redistribution mechanism goes wrong.

Inquisitor May 7, 2008 at 8:09 pm

My my, the troll reveals its biases again. If only it read what I said carefully, instead of injecting its own stupidity into everything it sees. I saw no other reason for it to attribute to me feminine pronouns as the like other than a cheap attempt to denigrate me – and as it should be clear from what I said, I find any such attempt immature. From this, anyone with half a brain would realize what my position on such insults is. Apparently expecting a hostile troll to be, well, hostile, is now paranoia. I leave it to the readers of this blog to evaluate the troll’s statements as they stand.

Inquisitor May 7, 2008 at 8:13 pm

and the like*

Owen May 7, 2008 at 9:17 pm

Inquisitor said:

“I saw no other reason for it to attribute to me feminine pronouns as the like other than a cheap attempt to denigrate me”

Spot the woman hater!

Inquisitor May 8, 2008 at 9:26 am

Spot the troll.

TLWP Sam May 8, 2008 at 9:40 am

I think you meant to say ‘whack-a-troll’.

Owen May 8, 2008 at 12:15 pm

Hard to face the facts huh? Can’t be bothered apologising to all the women out there you slandered?

Though not. (yawn)

Inquisitor May 8, 2008 at 12:22 pm

A dumb troll that can’t even interpret pretty simple sentences properly, how novel. No, I can’t be bothered to explain such things to troll. Go on blathering like the imbecile you are. It’s your own time you’re wasting.

Inquisitor May 8, 2008 at 12:23 pm

A dumb troll that can’t even interpret pretty simple sentences properly, how novel. No, I can’t be bothered to explain such things to a troll. Go on blathering like the imbecile you are. It’s your own time you’re wasting.

Owen May 8, 2008 at 12:55 pm

Inquisitor said:

“I saw no other reason for it to attribute to me feminine pronouns as the like other than a cheap attempt to denigrate me”

Seems pretty self explanitary – let’s see what other think shall we? Especially the women here, I wonder what their thoughts are?

Inquisitor May 8, 2008 at 1:56 pm

The troll is grasping at straws. If I considered such an insult immature, whence does it follow I view women as inferior? Else I’d not see the insult as immature. Have fun reconciling that contradiction.

Owen May 8, 2008 at 2:02 pm

The troll is grasping at straws. If I considered such an insult immature, whence does it follow I view women as inferior? Else I’d not see the insult as immature. Have fun reconciling that contradiction.

There is no contradiction. You hate women.

Inquisitor May 8, 2008 at 2:09 pm

Perfectly demonstrating that from a contradiction, anything can follow. Well done.

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