It paid off, as Holmes offers readers a succinct and correct critique of Pope Francis' speech at the United Nations. He writes:
I have immense respect for his Holy One who embraces change, both within the Vatican and globally, and for the Jesuit tradition of education and ministry. Pope Francis, for many people, including me, is a provocative figure. In his speech to the United Nations today he said that economic progress can be achieved through “the legitimate redistribution of economic benefits by the state.” I question his economic logic while admiring his caring heart and good intentions. Far-reaching progress can best be achieved through development not redistribution. The secular proverb “Give a man a fish and he’ll eat for a day, but teach him to fish and he’ll eat for a lifetime” comes to my mind. Certainly the pontiff’s aspiration to feed the world is honorable, but the people who take the risk to plan the seeds and work hard to harvest the crops are not to blame for the hungers that exist. America is the most charitable nation on earth and our focus for increasing prosperity should be on helping people to fish and farm for a lifetime of financial independence.
- extend banking facilities to the poor, especially women;
- eliminate the exploitation of the poor by money lenders;
- create opportunities for self-employment for the vast multitude of unemployed people in rural Bangladesh;
- bring the disadvantaged, mostly the women from the poorest households, within the fold of an organizational format which they can understand and manage by themselves; and,
- reverse the age-old economically vicious circle of "low income, low saving, and low investment," into economically virtuous circle of "low income, injection of credit, investment, more income, more savings, more investment, more income."
Grameen Bank has been a huge success for the past 39 years:
- by 1980, the Bank had ~15k creditors;
- in 1998, 2.34M creditors;
- in 2008, 7.67M creditors (97% of them women; and,
- in 2014, 9.4M creditors.
Those capitalist microenterprises generate the income that the poor need to feed and clothe as well as to shelter, educate, and provide medical care for their families. And, as they rise out of poverty, their microenterprises are developing economies as well.
So much for socialist redistributionism...it has failed every place where it's been tried, even Argentina.
Let the discussion begin...
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