A proposal by the Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace calls for a new world economic order based on ethics and the “achievement of a universal common good.” It follows Pope Benedict XVI’s 2009 economic encyclical that denounced a profit-at-all-cost mentality as responsible for the global financial meltdown.
Vatican pronouncements on the economy are meant to guide world leaders as well as the global church. United States Roman Catholic bishops, for example, have released a voter guide for the 2012 election that highlights social concerns such as ending poverty.
“It is an exercise of responsibility not only toward the current but above all toward future generations, so that hope for a better future and confidence in human dignity and capacity for good may never be extinguished,” the document said.
It highlights that reforms must assure that financial and monetary policies will not damage the weakest economies while also achieving fair distribution of the world’s wealth.
While past Vatican pronouncements have condemned unfettered capitalism, the latest criticized “an economic liberalism that spurns rules and controls.”
It also attacked “utilitarian thinking,” saying what is useful to the individual does not always favor the common good.
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