Progressives love them some Pope?

And by love I mean the purely platonic, non sexual and definitely non same-sex love. Love as in love his position on issues, not necessarily his position on the Gay Lobby, cue dramatic chipmunk. It’s hard to know if stuff like this is the Vatican planting a narrative to see how it grows — it does reek a bit of that — or the real deal. But I can understand, given past Papal apathy or outright corruption and complicity, on class warfare and income inequality, why anyone who stays focused on those growing issues might be a welcome breath of fresh air:

NYT — The new Pope’s passion for social justice and lifting up the poor has already earned him the adoration of American liberals just weeks into the Argentinian’s papacy. In a way, Pope Francis is a progressive’s dream-come-true — a devout figure with enormous credibility among conservatives and Christians, who has used his megaphone to speak out against greed, consumerism and economic policies that alienate the poor and vulnerable.

“I think about those who are unemployed often because of an economic conception of society that seeks egoistic profit regardless of social justice,” Pope Francis told a crowd in St. Peter’s Square last month, in one of his many remarks that have caught the attention of liberals. “

As a progressive I think the Pope kinda rocks,” Neera Tanden, president of the Center for American Progress, the influential think tank with close ties to the White House, said on HBO’s “Real Time With Bill Maher” in late May. “He’s been great on so many issues.”

Lifting up the society’s least fortunate has been a central theme for man who replaced Pope Benedict XVI in March.

“The Pope has the duty, in Christ’s name, to remind the rich to help the poor, to respect them, to promote them,” Pope Francis said in a May 16 speech to a group of ambassadors. “The Pope appeals for disinterested solidarity and for a return to person-centered ethics in the world of finance and economics.”


  1. CaitieCat says

    Funny, I don’t see him doing anything about distributing some of the Vatican’s enormous hoard of ill-gotten wealth to help those same poor.

    Strange, that, huh? It’s almost like he wants others to do the sacrificing, while he and the other Princes of the Church carry on as they have since the Borgias and before.

  2. Pierce R. Butler says

    … Pope Francis is a progressive’s dream-come-true …

    One of those misogynistic, homophobic, don’t-rock-the-boat progressives who subscribes to the NY Times, that is.

    … egoistic profit …

    Yeah, sure, the world economy is structured around simplistic psychodramas, right, Sr. Bergoglio?

    … the Center for American Progress, the influential think tank with close ties to the White House…

    And what more “progressive” credentials could one imagine?

    “He’s been great on so many issues.”

    Look how many rapist-priests he’s turned over to the law, and how many torturers and dictators he’s confronted!

    “The Pope appeals for …”

    Referring to oneself in the third person always signifies deep personal humility, as Pierce R. Butler has said.

    … a return to person-centered ethics in the world of finance and economics.

    The way it used to be, back, uh, when?

  3. says

    I don’t trust this Pope, or his Church. It sould be noted that women who try to get greater economic, sexual, and reproductive freedom often get accused of being selfish, greedy, materialistic, and out for nothing but their own short-term pleasure and convenience. (How often do we hear that last word sneeringly uttered when the question of abortion comes up?) We need to be wary lest the very good goal of living well with less material things get co-opted by authoritarians to justify keeping others from enjoying the fruits of liberty and their own work.

  4. says

    The way it used to be, back, uh, when?

    Good fucking question. And what the hell does he mean by “person-centered” anything? Don’t most Christian churches consider it a sin to be “person-centered” as opposed to “God-centered?” “Person-centered” means “humanist,” and the Church have spent CENTURIES bashing “humanism” as contrary to any allegiance to God.

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