Reese says we'll all be shocked and disappointed to learn the Pope is a radical communist, to the left of Obama and he'll have very positive things to say about the United Nations and multilateralism, even if it means we have to start doing away with national sovereignty.
You read it right. Joe Stalin's got nothing on the Pope.
Continuity of Benedict's thought with the teaching of earlier popes will be evident. Rather than rejecting the progressive social teachings of his predecessors, Benedict will show himself to be the left of most Americans including President Obama.
You remember all of Barney Frank's cronies who bought houses they couldn't afford and are now getting the debt wiped off their mortgage while you and I get on the train and work 14 hours a day to pay for our homes? Well, Reese thinks the Pope thinks greed can be eliminated by rewarding ineptitude and laziness. It's clear to the Pope, Reese claims, that the system of going to school, earning degrees, hustling and working hard to advance our careers is a financial paradigm that must be rethought.
Unlike President Obama who wants to reform a system that he believes is out of control, Pope Benedict wants to rethink the whole system. As he said earlier this month, "The financial and economic crisis clearly shows that certain economic-financial paradigms that have been dominant in the past years must be rethought."
This is good news for liberals who thought Benedict's first encyclical "Deus caritas est" (God is love) was too heavy on personal responsibility and not heavy enough on social change. But it is bad news for conservatives. If they think that Obama is a socialist, what will they think of Benedict after the encyclical?
My nineteen year-0ld had a thought ~~ "Let's all stop paying our mortgage."
Everyone I know who is still employed is doing the work of two and three people - while everyone watching Jerry Springer is getting their debt wiped off their mortgage. If Reese thinks the Pope thinks it's time for the government to pony up, bring it on baby. I'll be relieved to have my debt wiped out, cancel my 300 a month commuter rail pass, 400 month healthcare co-payment and cruise down the end of my driveway to pick up my food stamps, my free healthcare card and checks for the month.
I'm thinking I'm going to wait until the encyclical comes out. I'm thinking Reese oughtta stop putting credence into every thought that comes into his head. I'm thinking the Washington Post can no longer distinguish between birdbrained ideas and a released Catholic Encyclical.
To me, the strangest paragraph was when Reese went on to say he thinks the Pope thinks the Encyclical "Catholics in Political Life" is a suspicious partisan mass movement.
Benedict also fears church involvement in the political arena where he believes the temptation to partisanship is too great. Some believe that he is suspicious of mass movements and revolution because of his experience with Nazism and the student upheavals of the 1960's. He will call elites to conversion, but he will not call the people into the streets. While his goals are revolutionary, his politics are quite conservative. He could not lead a Solidarity movement as John Paul did in Poland or as Cardinal Sin did in the Philippines.Phew.
But, just in case, they're shaking the moth balls off their tie-dye shirts & bellbottoms at Woodstock Institute.