The Popes and Democracy
by Ives Dupont
[The original pamphlet containing this work has pictures of several Popes on its cover. The following text is also included in the pamphlet, giving a brief history of each featured Pope. - Editor.]
ABOUT THE POPES ON THE FRONT COVER
[Cited Herein] PIUS VI (1775-1799).
He reaped the bitter fruits of the policy of appeasement of his predecessor, Clement XIV. He was forcibly removed from his Palace by the French troops which had invaded the Vatican; his pontifical ring was stripped from his finger and, at the age of 82, he was dragged to France where he died a prisoner in humiliating circumstances.
PIUS VII (1800-1823).
General Bonaparte had, by then, become Napoleon I. Pius VII fared hardly better than his predecessor. Faced with extravagant demands, he courageously replied that "No Emperor had any rights on Rome". Napoleon attacked the pontifical States. French troops were advancing when he excommunicated the Emperor. He was made a prisoner, spent 3 years of his captivity in Italy, and the last 2 in France. But he returned to Rome after the fall of Napoleon, and died 8 years later, in 1823, at the age of 81.
GREGORY XVI (1831-1846).
Revolution broke out as he took his throne; but Gregory was no dilly-dallier; aware that the Italian revolutionaries enjoyed the backing of their French colleagues, he accepted the help of Austrian troops. The Holy See was safe. He was a foe of Liberalism and Democracy, a firm believer in the alliance of the throne and altar. He fought Liberalism all his life with the utmost vigor, and opposed all innovations.
PIUS IX (1846-1878).
Hailed as a Liberal Pope by revolutionaries of all shades, Pius IX lived through the Revolution of 1849, but suddenly and completely, he renounced his former policies of appeasement. His famous "Syllabus of Errors" condemned the very errors he had once encouraged. Further, he defined the dogmas of the Immaculate Conception and Papal Infallibility to the rage of Free-Thinkers and Liberal Catholics alike.
LEO XIII (1878-1903).
He upheld the teachings of his predecessors in no uncertain terms; was the author of momentous Encyclicals on political government, social questions, and he condemned the nascent "Christian Democracy" as utterly opposed to Catholic Truth.
ST. PIUS X (1903-1914).
Under his pontificate Masonic and Liberal ideas had already seriously penetrated Catholic thinking: he condemned the errors of the Modernists and Sillonists, clashed with the Masonic French Government on a number of vital issues, and upheld the Monarchical-Hierarchical concept of Government.
PIUS XI (1922-1939).
His reign was comparatively calm on the morrow of the First World War, but he fought the rising influence of Socialism and Communism and re-asserted the basic principles of political government taught by the Church.
PIUS XII (1939-1958).
He, also, fought Communism with the utmost vigor and condemned Totalitarianism in all its forms. At the close of World War II, his Allocution on Democracy was an indirect warning against Western Errors. On the philosophical and doctrinal fronts, he condemned the errors of Teilhardism and Progressivism which were to overcome the Church shortly after his death.
"The absolute ruler may be a Nero, but he is sometimes a Titus, or a Marcus Aurelius; the people is often Nero, and never Marcus Aurelius." (Rivarol)
"Monarchy is by its nature dissociated from party rule; Democracy is by nature party rule... "Even a monarch of mediocre talents and natural gifts has the advantage of having received an education for his profession; a democratic leader, in most cases, is nothing but a dilettante... "As long as monarchy was a living force, wars were of a relative and restricted nature. No monarch was thoroughly dispossessed and the price to be paid for military defeat was merely a city, a county, a province. There was no such thing as 'unconditional surrender'. Conscription was an invention of the French Revolution and so were wars on a nation-wide basis... "A monarch and, even more so, a dynasty, can plan policies on a grand scale - for the remote as well as for the immediate future. There can be relatively more mutual confidence in a monarchical world, because the changes in political direction are fewer. Today all of Europe nervously watches every American national election... Burckhardt wrote: 'Since politics has been based on people's inner fermentations, all certainty is at an end...'" (Erik von Kuehnelt-Leddihn, "Liberty or Equality")
PART I. GENERAL NOTIONS
1. Communism, Democracy, Monarchy
2. Marxism, Liberalism, Theism
4. Democracy and Capitalism
5. Socialism and Collectivism
6. What is Democracy?
7. The Origin of Democracy
8. The Two Concepts of Democracy
9. Democracy is the Source of Authority
10. The Two Forms of Modern Democracy
11. What is "Government by the People"?
12. How Rulers can be Chosen from the People and by the People
13. True Democracy is Good
PART II. SPECIFIC CONCEPTS
14. The Source of Authority
15. Is Man Free, Thinking and Responsible?
16. Can Man become Free, Thinking and Responsible?
17. Christian Freedom and Democratic Freedom
18. Liberty, Equality, Fraternity
19. The Separation of Church and State
20. Complete Freedom of Expression
21. Equal Co-operation of all Citizens
PART III. ON THE EFFECTS OF MODERN IDEAS
22. Popular Sovereignty
23. Public Opinion and Political Parties
24. The Exalted Claim of Responsibleness
25. Freedom in General
26. Freedom of Opinion
27. Freedom of Expression
28. Freedom of Action and Capitalism
29. Equality and Education
30. Cutting off the State from the Church
31. Equal Co-operation - An Uneven Fight
32. Modern Democracy, its Outcome
33. Pius XII and the Rights of Man
34. Parliament, Suffrage and Power
35. Personal Power and Fascism
36. Cardinals and Politicians
PART IV. THE MASTER PLAN OF THE DEVIL
37. The Development of Modern Errors
38. A Subtle and Gradual Process
39. An Unholy Trinity
40. Diabolically Logical
41. Giving to Man what Belongs to God
42. The Family Tree of Modern Errors
42a. Remarks on the Family Tree
PART V. THE ATTITUDE OF CATHOLICS IN A WORLD OF ERRORS
43. What the Popes Think
44. What Modern Man Thinks
45. How the Popes Speak
46. How Modern Man Speaks
47. What the Popes Tell us to Do
48. Warnings given by the Popes
49. Human Prudence and Divine Wisdom
50. The Folly of the Gospel
51. The Division of Catholics
52. Some Objections and their Answers
"The Democratic Idea favours the nurturing of a human type prepared for slavery in the most subtle sense of the term." (Nietzsche) "It disregards any criterion other than the popular will expressed at the polls and in parliamentary majorities... In the order of ideas, it is an absolute error; in the order of facts, it is absolute disorder." (Dr. Don Felix Sarda Y Salvany, 1886) "It is the complete independence of Man; Man viewed as the sole source of Truth, Goodness, Justice, Authority, Right and Wrong; Man acknowledging no other Lord and God than himself, Morality becomes a matter of common standards - as changing as Man himself; the law of God does not exist." (Rev M. Tamisier, S.J.) This treatise on Democracy was originally written in 1962 shortly before the opening of the Second Vatican Council. It was submitted to a Catholic Publishing House - and rejected. This was understandable; whilst Vatican II marked the triumph of Liberalism and Modernism, it did not initiate those evils; they had been with us for many decades but their subterranean work often passed undetected.
The rejection of this manuscript, then, was not unexpected. As early as 1956 I was aware of the tunnelling work going on within the Church. The intervening years since 1962, however, have made many of my early propositions much more credible now than they were then; civil unrest, often with bloodshed, has spread to every country. Scenes are taking place in the streets of Melbourne which we now take for granted because they have grown gradually, but they were quite unheard of in 1962. I remember discussing with a friend who shared my views that blood would soon be spilled in Melbourne. We agreed that we would be dismissed as "crackpots" if we ever mentioned this publicly. Melbourne, and Australia in general, were then remarkably free from the follies common in Western Europe. But Australia has quickly caught up with the rest of the world and ugly scenes are now not uncommon in our streets. As a result, the very ideals of Democracy are being questioned by writers who, occasionally, find space in newspapers such as "The Age" and the "Herald". This questioning is even more noticeable overseas which shows that the thinking few are beginning to wonder if there is not something radically wrong with our peculiar idea of what a Democracy should be, and if its deceptive appearances are not concealing an incurable canker. In 1962, however, such questioning was virtually unknown. And in 1945, there was such an infatuation with democratic ideas that Pius XII, when he found it necessary to warn against it, thought it expedient to make a somewhat unrealistic distinction between true and false Democracy. Not that the distinction was in itself unreal, but in 1944/45 no Western nation was prepared to admit that _its_ brand of Democracy was false, and that true Democracy in the Thomist sense can, as Pius XII himself said, be found even within an absolute monarchy. The warnings of Pius XII, therefore, fell on deaf ears. Even worse, his encyclical was interpreted as a vindication of Democracy! Why was the West so infatuated with Democracy? The reason is obvious. Hitler had just been defeated, and Hitler, in the eyes of the West, represented the very antithesis of Democracy. This view, of course, was quite absurd: Hitler came to power precisely because of the Democratic constitution of the republic of Weimar, just as Lenin came to power in 1917 thanks to Kerensky's Menshevik Democracy. In a Monarchy he would have had no chance. The Republic of Weimar was indeed democratic, but Germany had just lost World I and her economic situation was beyond repair. Moreover, the German people were smarting under the humiliation of their defeat. The Kaiser who, in 1914, had unsuccessfully tried to dissuade the militarist Prussian Aristocracy, had gone into exile, and was held in the West as the blood-thirsty tyrant responsible for the War. Thus came into being the Republic of Weimar - the brain-child of the democratic West. It did not take very long for Hitler to rise to power as, indeed, the democratic masses always give themselves the worst possible tyrants in times of acute stress. Political Democracy is not a viable, enduring regime; it is essentially unstable, open to intrigues, given to demagogy; it is a process leading to complete disintegration of the Nation first, and of the State eventually. Unrest and violence will grow into anarchy. The Western nations, including Australia (which is culturally Western), will surely experience dictatorship, an evil worse than Democracy, yet its inevitable outcome. (This note was added in 1971. The manuscript has been brought up to date with the inclusion of quotes from the Encyclicals which have been issued since 1962.) THE POPES AND DEMOCRACY "I have long been convinced that institutions that are purely democratic must, sooner or later, destroy liberty, or civilization, or both... Socialism is the infirmity that attends mature democracies." (Lord Acton)
What do we see on the world scene to-day? What are the political forces confronting each other, the concepts vying for popular approval? In the main, we have Communism, Democracy, and Monarchy. The latter, however, has no great significance as a political force; but it is still there and, although diluted to the point of losing all its specific attributes in the West (e.g. England), it seems to be reviving in some of the emerging nations.
These political systems take their origins in three different ideologies: Marxism for Communism, Liberalism for Democracy, and Theism for Monarchy. In the West, when monarchy was at its zenith, it had the support of the Catholic Church, although the Church never taught that hereditary monarchy was the only conceivable form of lawful government. Nevertheless, and in spite of the numerous quarrels between Monarchs and Popes, the Church always supported the monarchical concept of government. Even in modern times, the Popes have given evidence of their monarchist sentiments (e.g. Pius XII). That Monarchism and Christianity should have always gone hand in hand is nothing to be wondered at; the Church itself is a monarchical-hierarchical Organisation in which authority is handed down rather than ascending from below; and Christ is the King of Kings. In point of fact, it is extremely doubtful if the Kingship of Christ will ever be effectively recognised in a society whose thinking has been conditioned to abhor the very notion of Kingship.
Liberalism, as a political philosophy (not party politics), is rooted in Rationalism, that is to say, in the belief that human reason can attain truth unaided by divine revelation. In its original sense, Nationalism was not necessarily atheistic; it did not always profess hostility to divine revelation, but simply independence from it. Since, according to its premises, human reason can attain truth unaided, it follows naturally that man must be free, that is, free to do what his reason tells him is right. Hence, the birth of Liberalism. As will be seen later, the concept of man's reasonableness and freedom is eminently Christian, but in a totally different sense, and this ambiguity, which has always been cultivated by the enemies of God, has been responsible for a great many evils.
The philosophy of Liberalism has given birth to a political system: Democracy; and to an economic system: Capitalism. In both systems, freedom of action and expression is the mainstay, and both rest on the private judgment of persons, not on considerations flowing from divine revelation. It is not difficult to see, therefore, to what abuses these systems can lead: moral values are not considered. When they exist at all, it is merely as a legacy of Christian tradition, the complete disappearance of which is only a matter of time. Once moral values have totally disappeared, no limits will be set to the claims of man, nothing will restrain his craving for complete freedom: anarchy and bloodshed are the inevitable outcome. But, before we reach that final stage, laws are enacted which are increasingly permissive, since, according to the Liberalist creed, laws must reflect the will of the consensus. Thus, evils such as divorce, abortion, euthanasia and homosexuality are made lawful. As early as 100 years ago, many thinkers forecast what we are now witnessing. But their warnings were unheeded, if not held up to ridicule, and modern man continued on his democratic path toward chaos and anarchy.
Marxism has a system too: Socialism leading to Communism. True Communism is probably impossible to achieve, although it was tried in China. Russia is really a Socialist country. Marxism has an economic system: Collectivism. Basically, however, there is no intrinsic difference between Socialism and Democracy (which is what I shall attempt to show in the following pages). The differences lie only in the methods used, and these methods are bound to converge, are, in fact, already converging. Collectivism is nothing but State Capitalism, a far worse form than in the West. To sum up, both Democracy and Socialism are attempting to set up the City of Man. They are the offsprings of the same errors; belief in man and rejection of God. "The greatest folly of our age is to attempt to construct a lasting and fruitful temporal order without the only foundation on which it can endure, namely, God." (John XXIII, "Mater et Magistra") A Christian Democracy is just a dream; in fact, a contradiction in terms as will be shown later. The City of God cannot be built but in a Monarchical order because, "such was the form of government established by divine law. For Moses and his successors governed the people in such a way that each of them was ruler over all; so that there was a kind of kingdom." ("Summa", Part I, 2, a 105, a.l.)
It is first of all necessary to understand exactly what the word "democracy" means. Strictly speaking, democracy means "government by the people". It is in this political sense that it is generally used. However, it possesses a secondary meaning, i.e. "movement of benevolence for the benefit of the people". This has no political implication, it only denotes a social awareness of the needs of the people. It could also be found in, say, an absolute Monarchy (Cf. Pius XII, 1944 Christmas message). But it would be more aptly named "demophily" (love for the people). It is in this latter sense that Leo XIII and Pius XII used the word "democracy" in their Encyclicals. In view of this, these Encyclicals cannot be cited to justify political democracy. To do so would be to disregard the Popes' express teaching: "Many excellent men find the term Christian Democracy objectionable. They hold it to be very ambiguous and for this reason open to two objections. It seems by implication to covertly favour popular government, and to disparage other methods of political administration... Under the shadow of its name, there might easily lurk a design to attack all legitimate power either civil or sacred... It would be a crime to distort this name of Christian Democracy to politics, for although Democracy implies popular government, yet in its present application it is so to be employed that, removing from it all political significance, it is to mean nothing else than a benevolent and Christian movement in behalf of the people... This is what Catholics are to think on this matter." (Leo XIII, "Graves de Communi") (Quotations from Pius XII will be given later.)
Democracy is not a new thing; it is inherited from Greece and Rome. Some city-states in the Middle Ages had democratic constitutions and many Christian heresies were inspired by a misguided democratic outlook. It finally found its way into England where it began to acquire its modern form (see below). French philosophers brought it back from England in the 18th century and perfected its modern form, with special emphasis on emancipation from all authority which is not based on popular will, especially religious authority. During the Napoleonic wars, it spread from France all over Europe, and eventually throughout the world through colonisation. The English and American type of democracy was somewhat different from that practised on the continent, but it became increasingly influenced by the continental forms.
Traditional democracy was regarded as being one possible way, among many others, of designating leaders. It was seldom regarded as self-sufficient, and never as an exclusive political system. In traditional democracy, the people designated leaders but did not formulate policies, leaving that to their leaders, in whom they placed all their trust. Kings, magistrates, even Bishops, have been elected in this way. But, once elected, they had effective powers; they were real leaders, not merely representatives of the people. A leader takes initiatives and assumes responsibilities, whilst a representative, strictly speaking, takes no decision of his own, being only the spokesman of the people or the party. Modern democracy, on the other hand, is regarded as being the only legitimate way to designate leaders (see above quotation). It claims to be self-sufficient, rejects all other political systems as being contrary to justice, and gives the people, or political parties, the right to dictate policies. It is no longer exclusively a system of designation which, owing to circumstances peculiar to times and places, may be preferred to other systems; it is an exclusive regime, claiming absolute rights. Any suggestion of its possible suppression is regarded as absurd and contrary to basic human justice. Traditional democracy was a revocable right, partly or fully granted - or withdrawn, according to the needs of the moment; but modern democracy is regarded as an inalienable right, the only fountainhead of political justice, lawfulness, and authority.
In its modern form, democracy is absolute. Any law which is not based on popular will is regarded as tyrannical, and any law based on popular will can never be suspected of being tyrannical. The possible "tyranny of the masses" is a concept quite alien to modern democratic thinking. Conversely,, the word democracy has become a synonym of freedom, whilst in fact, tyranny or freedom can indifferently be found or not found in a democracy. Modern democracy has become an end in itself, a yardstick of truth and goodness, a mystique, a superstition. It is "a criterion for judgments, a theory of knowledge, a method, a principle, an aim, an ideal, a way of life, a matter of faith." (C. B. Carson) The people become the sole judge of what is good and bad, just or unjust. Natural Law, and especially Divine Law, have no place in the modern concept of democracy. Modern democracy was not born in the minds of God-fearing men, but in the minds of so-called philosophers who had already abjured their Christian faith, and rejected Christian Philosophy. It follows that many tenets of modern democracy are contrary to Christian doctrine, a thing which the Popes have repeatedly stressed. In all modern democracies, without exceptions, Christian principles are continually flouted, and Christian values superseded by man-made ideas.
Modern democracy can be either direct or indirect. It is direct when the people elect their supreme leader in a general election. It is indirect when the supreme leader or group of leaders are elected by an Assembly which is itself elected by the people. Direct democracy is often dictatorial and tyrannical. Indirect democracy, on the other hand, is open to party quarrels and intrigues, and is lacking in effective authority. Both forms of modern democracy deny the other the right to call itself a democracy: indirect democracy is said to be plutocratic, and direct democracy of being fascist. Both accusations are justified.
Democracy being "government by the people", it remains to be seen what this term may be made to convey. It may mean "absolute rule of the majority" or it may mean "popular share in the affairs of the State", without necessarily involving absolute majority rule, nor even any popular rule at all in the strict sense. We have seen what modern ideas are in his respect. St. Thomas Aquinas, however, had quite a different conception of democracy. He did say that: "people have the right to choose their rulers," and he also said that: "rulers can be chosen from the people," but he never contemplated majority rule. He did not see democracy as a political creed or as a self-sufficient and complete system finding in itself justification for any sort of legislation, but rather as a set of institutions within a monarchical-hierarchical structure. People have, indeed, the right to choose their rulers because if it were not so, they might be ruled against their own wishes. People should also be able to provide rulers from among themselves, and not choose them only from an upper class, because it is from the people, in the final analysis, that the life of the nation renews itself. St. Thomas' teaching is therefore eminently wise, and he made it clear that: "such was the form of government established by Divine Law. For this is the best form of polity, being partly Kingdom, since there is one head of all; partly aristocracy, in so far as a number of persons are set in authority; partly democracy, i.e. government by the people, in so far as the rulers can be chosen from the people, and the people have the right to choose their rulers."
St. Thomas gives a number of biblical references which make it clear that authority is not exercised by the people. The people only designate rulers, but do not impose them; for the final appointment of rulers designated by the people rests with the superior authority. This democratic procedure which, as we shall see, has been in various ways explicated in the Papal Encyclicals, is a far cry from modern ideas of popular sovereignty. "Let me have from among you wise and understanding men, and such whose conversation is approved among your tribes, that I may appoint them your rulers." (Deuteronomy, Ch. 1, Ver. 13) A similar reference can be found in Exodus 18:25, which shows that Moses himself, as the supreme ruler of the Jews, appointed the lesser rulers designated by the people. Modern Popes, in particular Pius IX, Leo XIII, St. Pius X and Pius XII, have re-asserted that authority comes from above, that is, from God, and is handed down rather than ascending from the people. The people only designate leaders.
As already explained the basic principle of democracy, the designation of rulers from the people and by the people, is good and reasonable. But even then, its use is limited. Moreover, it is within a hierarchical and monarchical structure that it works best. The designation of rulers cannot be equated with the granting of authority; this is the error of the agnostic philosophers of the 18th century, and which is now widely accepted even among Christians.
That the concept of popular sovereignty was spread by philosophers who had lost their Christian faith is an important point which should not be overlooked. God is the only true Sovereign of the Universe. As such, He is the only source of authority. And Christ, the Son of God, the King of Kings, was the only person empowered to delegate it. He delegated it to the Bishops. From the Bishops, authority flowed into the Kings through the coronation ceremonies and the anointing, then to the temporal rulers appointed by the Kings. Moses too, received authority directly from God and passed it onto lesser rulers who were designated by the people. But when the authority of God is rejected, and the Kingship of Christ no longer recognised, the source of authority has to be sought elsewhere. The 18th century philosophers placed it in man, and this new concept, i.e. popular sovereignty, is the basis of Modern Democracy. It is a concept wholly contrary to Christian doctrine: "The Sillon (the 1910 Christian Democrats) primarily places public authority in the people, from whom it then flows into the government in such a manner, however, that it continues to reside in the people." But Leo XIII absolutely condemned this doctrine in his Encyclical 'Diuturnum illud' on political government, in which he said: "Modern writers in great numbers, following in the footsteps of those who called themselves philosophers in the last century, declare that all power comes from the people; that consequently those who exercise power in society do not exercise it from their own authority, but from an authority delegated to them by the people and on the condition that it can be revoked by the will of the people from whom they hold it. Quite contrary is the sentiment of Catholics who hold that the right of governing derives from God as its natural and necessary principle." Admittedly, the Sillon holds that authority - which it first places in the people - descends from God, but in such a way 'as to return from below upwards, whilst in the organisation of the Church, power descends from above downwards.' But besides it being abnormal for the delegation of power to ascend since it is in its nature to descend, Leo XIII refuted in advance this attempt to reconcile Catholic doctrine with the error of philosophism. For, he continues: "It is necessary to remark here that those who preside over the government of public affairs may indeed in certain cases, be chosen by the will and judgment of the multitude without repugnance or opposition to Catholic doctrine. But while this choice marks out the ruler, it does not confer upon him the authority to govern; it does not delegate the power, it designates the person who will be invested with it. Moreover, if the people retains the power, what becomes of authority? A shadow, a myth; there is no more law properly so called, no more obedience." (St. Pius X, "Our Apostolic Mandate, August 25, 1910) (The emphasis is mine). To sum up this excerpt: 1) Authority comes from God alone. 2) Authority does not reside in the community. 3) Authority (therefore) does not come from the community. 4) (More specifically), the authority of the government does not come from the community. 5) Authority does not (even) flow from God into the Community. 6) Authority (therefore) cannot flow from the community into the government. 7) The government may, in some cases, be chosen by the community. 8) But this choice does not confer authority upon the government. 9) It merely designates those who will be invested with it. 10) The community cannot retain authority (assuming that it had it in the first place). 11) Any contrary claims are absolutely condemned, and constitute an attempt to reconcile Catholic doctrine with the error of philosophism. This may come as a blow to many sincere Christian Democrats who have been influenced by modern ideas; yet, the doctrine of the Church as explained by St. Pius X and Leo XIII leaves no room for doubt or specious interpretation. Besides, it is confirmed by other Popes as well: "It is trampling upon the most certain principles of reason, (to) dare cry out together that the will of the people, manifested by what they call public opinion, or in any other way, constitutes the supreme law." (Pius IX. "Quanta cura") "In political and economic matters, the laws ... are not determined by the deceptive wishes of the multitude, but by truth and justice; the authority of rulers is vested with a sacredness more than human."
(Leo XIII. "Immortale Dei") "The life of the nations is now disintegrating through a blind cult for the force of numbers. Every citizen is now a voter, but ... as such, he is only a unit of a number making up the majority. His position, his place in the family or in the professions are not taken into account." (Pius XII - Message of 6th Apr. 1951) Majority rule results in sociocracy, wherein Society, seen as a physical organism, has precedence over human persons. Modern democracy leads to it, because it places authority in the masses.
Modern democracy says he is. In a sense it is true. Man is free thinking and responsible in essence. He is free because God gave him free-will. He is thinking because God gave him an intellect capable of dealing with abstract ideas contrary to animals which can think only about concrete realities. He is responsible as a consequence of his freedom and mental faculties. But these three qualities are only potentialities. In actual fact, the average man is anything but free, thinking and responsible. It is indispensable to differentiate between the Absolute (or Essential) and the Contingent (or Accidental). Failure to do so is at the root of many dangerous fallacies. A political system (contingent by necessity) cannot be built on the absolute premises of man's freedom, intelligence and responsibleness. Man is not wholly free because he is often a slave to his passions. Being the slave of his passions, he cannot be fully responsible. Being clouded by emotions, his judgment cannot be wholly reliable. A system which gives sovereignty to the least thinking and responsible members of the community is bound to be the least desirable. "... the feeble and grovelling wisdom of man ..." (Pius XII "Summi Pontificatus") "He who would have the star of peace to shine permanently over society, must ... set his face ... against their (the people's) excessive reliance upon instinct and emotion, and against their fickleness of mood." (Pius XII "1942 Christmas Message") "It would be vain to think that their (the enlightened men's) sage judgment ... will be generally accepted by public opinion, or even by the majority of men." (Pius XII "1944 Christmas Message") "Human reason is (not) the sole arbiter of truth and falsehood, and of good and evil." (Pius IX "Maxima Quidem") It follows that the people must be guided and not be the guide. "According to (the Sillon) Man will be a man worthy of the name only when he has acquired a strong, enlightened, and autonomous consciousness, able to do without a master, obeying only himself, and able to take on and bear without erring the most demanding responsibilities." (St. Pius X "Our Apostolic Mandate") Here is our "free, thinking and responsible man". And what did the Pope think of it? "Such are the big words with which human pride is being exalted, like a dream which carries man away, without light, without guidance, and without help, into the realm of illusion..." (St. Pius X "Our Apostolic Mandate")
A claim commonly made by modern democrats is that man can be "educated" to really become free, thinking and responsible. Let us see what the Popes think about this: "Will that great day ever come to pass? Unless human nature could be changed, will it ever come? To sum up, such is the theory, one could say the dream of the Sillon; and that is what its teaching aims at: what it calls the democratic education of the people..." (St. Pius X "Our Apostolic Mandate") "(The aim of this education) is rather to induce in them (the children), and to awaken in them, by every possible means a kind of civic sense, which is held to be indispensable for the political future of the country." (Pius XII "Summi Pontificatus")
Used loosely, words can be misleading. It is important to note that Freedom can have two different meanings. In the Christian sense freedom is the faculty to choose between different courses of action; this is free-will, as opposed to the mechanistic determinism of inert matter, or the instinctive automatism of animals. But the free-will of man is morally bound by certain unchangeable laws of divine origin. Free-will, is in fact, the freedom to choose between obedience and revolt; our duty is evidently to choose obedience to God's authority. That is why Pius XII, commenting on the trilogy "Liberty, Equality, Fraternity" said that freedom was a duty: "What a spectacle is that of a democratic State left to the whims of the masses! Liberty, which is really a duty of the individual, becomes a tyrannous claim of freedom to give free rein to one's impulses and appetites at whatever cost or detriment to others." (Pius XII - Christmas 1944) In this allocution on democracy, which was widely misunderstood, Pius XII also explained what the freedom of the citizens of the modern state should be: "They (the citizens) shall have full freedom to set forth their own views of the duties and sacrifices imposed upon them." Duties and sacrifices, the Pope said; but modern democracy insists on rights and privileges ... To set forth views the Pope also said; but modern democracy holds that the citizens have the right to dictate their views ... These are the significant differences, There is still a deeper implication in this question of freedom: if freedom of choice really implies obedience to the moral law, and if obedience to the moral law gives true freedom, it follows that the alternative, i.e. revolt, can only result in tyranny. Indeed, the Angelic Hierarchy is perfectly free because Angels are perfectly obedient to God, their King and Father. Their voluntary obedience gives them freedom. Compulsion arises only when perfect obedience is lacking. But modern democracy opposes freedom to obedience. What it calls freedom is, in fact, a revolt. Having chosen revolt, it can only find tyranny. This is the deeper reason why modern democracy evolves into Socialism: the element of compulsion inherent in Socialism is rendered necessary by lack of voluntary obedience, (to take but one example, nationalisations may be necessary because Capitalists, who are actuated by greed, fail to observe voluntarily certain moral principles). Christian freedom, therefore, is the factual faculty to choose between different courses of action, but not the moral liberty to do so. In the liberal sense, freedom is a complete emancipation from moral restraint, a refusal to recognise any superior law, a claim that man is bound only by the laws he himself makes. Such a belief can have far-reaching consequences, and if the western democracies have not yet reached a stage of complete anarchy, this is because the peoples of the West are still influenced by their Christian tradition. But the fact remains that such a concept of freedom is a revolt against the laws made by God, a revolt against God Himself. Since modern democracy is rooted in Liberalism, it is also a revolt against God. The divorce laws are a case in point. Like all other manmade laws they can be changed according to the whims of Man, by way of suffrage, until the sacredness of marriage has been completely destroyed. In other fields, business in particular, we have seen that this complete freedom can sometimes be broken by arbitrary measures such as nationalisations, and, thus, freedom ends in tyranny. Considering now the deeper implication as we have done in the case of the Christian concept of freedom, we find again that freedom, in the liberal sense, being essentially a revolt, ends in tyranny through quite a different process too: obedience to God is true freedom; revolt against God is tyranny. How can this come about? When all superior laws are rejected, freedom becomes essentially egoistic. It is the freedom of instincts, that of animals, and, eventually, the complete subjection of self to inner urgings. Since desires can never be satisfied, this tyranny knows no limits. Animals, of course, are not subjected to this tyranny, because their instincts exist only in relation to their real needs. But Man, as a thinking animal, has imagination; his inner urgings are imaginary as well as instinctive. That is what the promoters of liberal ideas failed to realise in their enthusiasm for the animal state: "Animals have the natural advantage over us of their independence ... in that natural state enjoyed by untamed quadrupeds, birds, and reptiles, man would be as happy as they." (Voltaire)
What modern democracy calls liberty is a tyrannous claim of freedom. The ideal of Equality is no less misleading: it is true that all men are equal in essence, and that they all have to be judged by God; but they are not equal in merit and will not be equal in glory; they are not equal in knowledge, intelligence, common sense and wisdom; they should not, therefore, have equal civil rights. Not only is it unwise for the nation as a whole to give equal civil rights to everybody, it is also unfair to the less gifted citizens: a civil right entails a corresponding responsibility, and these citizens are, in fact required to take on a responsibility beyond their competence. Compulsory voting is an example of this. It is utterly absurd to give a farmhand a voting power equal to that of a professor of Political Science! Yet, that is just what is happening. At national level the result can only be disastrous. Egalitarianism, moreover makes all actual inequalities appear unjust, intolerable, even immoral. Far from filling men's hearts with contentment, it produces frustration, unhappiness, envy and hatred, with the resulting social evils. Egalitarianism overlooks an important fact, namely, that all men need someone else they can look up to for inspiration, guidance or comfort. Making all men equal is frustrating this basic and inborn need. "And such is the (alleged) greatness of human dignity, (supposedly) effected by the famous trilogy: Liberty, Equality, Fraternity! ... A theory opposed to Catholic truth, warping the essential and fundamental notions which regulate social relations in every human society. ... By separating fraternity from Christian charity thus understood, democracy, far from being a progress, would mean a disastrous set-back for civilisation." (St. Pius X "Our Apostolic Mandate") (The words in parentheses have been added to show the tone which is evident in the context of the passage.) "It is utterly untrue, and mere empty talk, to say that all citizens have equal rights." (Pius XI "Divini Redemptoris") "That ideal equality, about which they entertain pleasant dreams, would be, in reality, the levelling down of all to a like condition of misery and degradation." (Leo XIII "Rerum Novarum") "The masses ... are the capital enemy of true democracy and of its ideal of Liberty and Equality." (Pius XII - Christmas 1944) This passage seems to convey the impression that Pius XII supported the democratic ideal of Liberty and Equality which was condemned by Leo XIII, St. Pius X, Pius XI, and other Popes not quoted here. Needless to say, such a contradiction is not real. Pius XII took great care to elaborate, saying that "Liberty was a duty", and that Equality was an equal right for everyone to live in conformity with his station in life. This is not what the 18th century philosophists said and even when Modern Democrats do not disavow openly what the Pope said they certainly put quite a different emphasis on the words "Liberty, Equality". "In a people worthy of the name those inequalities which are not based on whims, but on the nature of things ... do not constitute an obstacle to ... a true spirit of union and brotherhood." On the contrary, so far are they from impairing civil equality, that they show its true meaning, namely, that ... everyone has the right to live his own personal life honourably in the place and in the conditions in which... Providence has placed him." (Pius XII "Christmas message 1944") Incidentally, this passage is a reminder that inequalities are not an obstacle to true Fraternity (brotherhood). Modern Democrats hold, on the contrary, that Fraternity can only be achieved when all men have equal rights in every respect. Moreover, Fraternity without Christian charity is only a myth. So, why not return to the old concept of Charity and drop Fraternity, its godless substitute?
The separation of Church and State is iniquitous and disastrous. It is a step backwards which can only have the direst consequences on the future of civilisation. The State must draw its strength from the Church. A State separated from the Church is like a man separated from God. "The State cannot be built unless the Church lays the foundations and supervises the work ... You cannot build a society without God." (St. Pius X "Our Apostolic Mandate") As early as in the 18th century, Pius VI, in "Caritas Quae", spoke of - "the fury of those called the Tiers Etat ... (the authors) of that baleful constitution separated and cut off from the Catholic Religion." In "Quanta Cura", Pius IX spoke of "the false and perverse opinions (which wanted) to abolish that mutual co-operation and agreement of counsels between the Priesthood and Governments." In "Ad Apostolicae" he said that it was an error to believe that: "In the case of conflicting laws the civil law should prevail (over that of the Church)." And in "Acerbissimum", he explicitly condemned the opinion that: "the Church ought to be separated from the State, and the State from the Church." Today, however, many "liberal" or "progressive" Catholics hold such views, seemingly unaware that when the civil law prevails, the divine law is more and more encroached upon by an inevitable, irresistible and gradual process. Basic human liberties are then lost in the name of "freedom". Let us not forget that Communists, too, speak of "freedom". When they believe that they are free from religious superstition, they are not necessarily less in earnest than the modern Democrat of the West who is convinced that it is a great blessing to be free from the "interference of the Church" in all domains of life, and in education in particular. The state of the world today is conclusive proof that the Popes were right. No lasting improvement will ever be secured in national and international affairs unless Church and State are united again. Vatican II in "Gaudium et Spes", does not contradict this, but what it says does not possess the clarity of the above, and lends itself to false interpretations. It stresses the juridical autonomy of Church and State (which is not denied in the above excerpts), and it ignores the moral obligation of the State to follow the Church's teachings (which is emphasised above). Vatican II does speak of "co-operation between Church and State", but apparently on an equal footing, as if the Church has as much to learn from the State in order to run her affairs, as the State has to learn from her in order to run its own affairs. This is a far cry from the "supervision" advocated by St. Pius X. In many ways, the process of "supervision" has been reversed. Take education; at first all schools were run by the Church - which was quite proper since Truth comes from God and cannot be divorced from the Word of God. But the victory of Masonic and liberal ideas in general, the rise of agnostics and atheists to power, produced a new situation: the State set up its own system of education. Today, the State supervises Catholic Education! This, of course, is intolerable; and there is no doubt that it would not have succeeded at all if the Catholic Hierarchy had simply refused to comply with the Law. Indeed, no government can afford to lose the Catholic vote, and if a particular government were foolish enough to do so for the sake of its sectarian principles the opposition would immediately grasp the opportunity and profess a contrary policy. In time, both parties would recognise the right of the Church to be completely independent, for party platforms do change from generation to generation - and even from decade to decade.
Freedom of expression, strictly speaking, is not the same as freedom of opinion or belief. But opinions usually tend to express themselves, so no distinction will be made here between the two. "(It is) insanity (to believe) that the liberty of conscience and of worship is the inalienable right of every citizen ... that the citizens have the right to manifest openly and publicly their ideas, by word of mouth, through the Dress, or by any other means." (Gregory XVI "Mirari Vos") Two years later the same Pope had to list again the points of doctrine which were attacked by the Liberals: " ... the barrier must be erected against the wild license of opinions and speech ... the condemnation of an absolute liberty of conscience..." (Gregory XVI "Singulari Nos") It is clear that freedom of expression is not unlimited. Freedom of the Press in Particular is contrary to Christian doctrine. Vatican II says that man has a right to religious freedom. This change of attitude has been explained away through so-called "Evolution of Values" - a most unconvincing argument since an unchangeable principle is here involved, i.e., has Error the same rights as Truth? The reason for this apparent contradiction must be sought elsewhere. The plain truth is that the Church is now on the receiving end - persecuted by Communist governments. And since the Catholic Church is the true Church, it has indeed a right to religious freedom. Likewise, since non-Catholic denominations hold at least part of the truth, they too have a right to religious freedom in Communist States. But what of their freedom in a non-Communist state? Obviously, they cannot be coerced out of existence. Their juridical right to spread their doctrines may be tolerated for prudential reasons, but it cannot be regarded as a moral right. Nevertheless, one would have liked to see this distinction clearly formulated in the Vatican II Decree. But then, in the absence of an authoritative leadership, the Conciliar Fathers, whose views were conflicting on many questions, often resolved their differences through compromise and ambiguity. (See "Dignitatis Humanae")
This rapid survey of modern democratic errors would not be complete without saying a word or two on one of the basic tenets of Modern Democracy, namely, the right of every citizen to co-operate in the common effort. St. Pius X condemned "the dangerous alliances" made by some liberal Catholics. He condemned the suggestion that all and everyone, irrespective of their religious and philosophical beliefs, should co-operate with equal rights in building the civilisation of tomorrow. He explained why this was an error. "There is no true civilisation without a moral civilisation, and there is no true moral civilisation without the true religion. It is a proven truth, an historical fact. All practical realisations reflect the nature of one's religious convictions, just as the limbs of a man down to his fingertips owe their very shape to the principle of life that dwells in his body. What are we to think of an association in which all religions and even Free Thought can in all freedom manifest themselves?" (St. Pius X "Our Apostolic Mandate") Throughout this passage (2 full pages), St. Pius X explained that such co-operation between people of various religions and philosophical horizons could only result in the setting up of "some kind of new religion at once godless and humanistic." He stressed that true Christians alone are qualified to build the society of tomorrow, and that they must do so without associating with misbelievers and unbelievers. They must have full and complete leadership, "not seeking perilous coalitions and dangerous compromises." It follows that the civil constitution cannot grant equal rights to all citizens, nor can it allow all citizens to rise to positions of power, otherwise unbelievers would soon run the whole State. It follows that the Organisation of the State must be modelled on the Organisation of the Church, so that men may have the same necessary guidance in matters temporal as they have, through the Church, in matters spiritual. A State which allows itself to be ruled by the masses instead of controlling and guiding them, is like a man who allows himself to be ruled by his passions and instincts.
It is not possible to review in an article such as this all the effects of modern democratic ideas. We can glance at only a few; they are indeed innumerable. It would be a grievous error to believe that modern Democracy is a self-contained and independent political concept, having no bearing on other aspects of life. Modern democratic ideas are rooted in Liberalism and Humanism. As such, they are the result of a state of mind the outcome of certain philosophy which projects its evil effects into every aspect of our lives. It is futile to acknowledge and fight some of these evils whilst, at the same tine, praising the alleged virtues of popular power. Both derive from the same cause, and that cause must be eradicated: it is the spirit of revolt of the 18th century "The general revolt in the depths of the human conscience." (Pius XII "Summi Pontificatus") Modern Democracy is inseparable from other evils; it inevitably evolves into tyranny. These two main points have been acknowledged by countless thinkers all over the world. When numbers count more than individuals, when the community counts more than persons, when society is considered as an end for which man exists, when it is regarded as a living thing whose interests have precedence over individual interests, tyranny is sure to follow sooner or later. When all these beliefs are held as truths, it becomes natural to regulate and condition the human person for the alleged benefit of the community. It becomes natural to co-ordinate individual efforts and national production with little regard for the human person (planning); natural also to impose or permit medical practices for the health of the community (water fluoridation, compulsory X-Rays and vaccinations); natural to "improve" the community by birth-control and euthanasia, or artificial insemination and human sterilisation, etc. Perhaps it will be argued that there is little connection between all these things. But if we look at it more carefully, we will discover that they all result from the same basic outlook: the so-called welfare of the community; the fitting of society to economic conditions instead of fitting economic conditions to the needs of individuals. In all of them, the concept of society as a physical and living organism is evident, and this concept is inseparable from the myth of popular sovereignty, whereby man becomes an insignificant unit within the all-important community. It does not matter whether the tyranny to which some of these evils give rise is called Bureaucracy) Plutocracy, Sociocracy, Technocracy, Fascism, Socialism or Communism, it is still the same tyranny and the only difference is a difference of emphasis. It is all rooted in Liberalism and Humanism. Paradoxically, the love of freedom evolves into its antithesis. Christianity raises the human person to the highest dignity; that of a child of God called individually to eternal happiness. It follows that any form of society which reduces the human person to a mere unit within a mass, which considers quantity more important than quality, which, prefers popular opinion to the considered judgment of an elite, which substitutes complex laws and regulations for a moral code, which gives precedence to the State, and subjects the human person to all sorts of de- humanising and depersonalising customs and practices, is necessarily anti-Christic. Like Communism, though to a lesser extent and to a lower degree, Democracy has most of the anti-Christic characteristics: craving for unlimited material power (Antichrist will want to create things), rejection of God (Secularism), and, last but not least, Modern Democracy has such a wide appeal as to deceive a large number of the elect themselves. This craving for power and deceptive appearance were noted by Pius XII. " ... a social order which, beneath a deceptive appearance, or mask of conventional formulas, conceals a fatal weakness and an unbridled lust for profit and power." (Pius XII - Christmas 1952) As for tyranny, Plato noted in the "Republic": "Democracy is fatally doomed to develop into tyranny." Aristotle also made a similar remark. That is probably why St. Thomas Aquinas, who had studied both authors, did not advocate absolute democracy, but only democratic institutions within a monarchical social structure (it being understood that the monarch should have real authority, and not be a mere figurehead). In more recent times, St. Pius X made a similar remark about tyranny - "Yes, truly, one can say that the Sillon (i.e. Democracy) brings in its train Socialism." (St. Pius X "Our Apostolic Mandate")
Being the triumph of private individual judgment as against the judgment of an elite, Modern Democracy is in politics what the Reformation was in religion. It has a complete faith in public opinion, and claims that public opinion is expressed by the press and the party, or parties. True, genuine public opinion must, to some extent, be able to make itself known; but no political party, any more than the press, is the tangible expression of it. At best, it is the opinion of a very few. At worst, it completely shapes and manipulates it. "The masses ... become an easy plaything in the hand of anyone who seeks to exploit their instincts and impressions." (Pius XII - Christmas 1944) When the party has managed to bring its candidates to power through such means, the Assembly is not at all the tangible expression of genuine public opinion; it is more concerned with the interests of the ruling party than with the welfare of the people. In an election, the choice must be spontaneous; every candidate should be personally known by the voters. Otherwise, the basic democratic principle as understood in the Bible and in the "Summa", is warped and vitiated. Genuine democracy is incompatible with the existence of Political parties. Dr. Rumble acknowledged this truth in a radio reply (Cf. "Catholic Weekly", 11-10-62), when he pointed out that even the best of political parties had to put forward a program, not according to Christian principles, but according to the appeal it may have on the multitude! This acknowledgment was probably not intentional, but whether Dr. Rumble intended it or not, this is an indictment of the party system. Pius XII said (Christmas 1944) that "those in power should be impartial". But how could men belonging to political parties possibly be impartial? Pius XI noted that representative regimes were dangerous. "It is patent that these led themselves more readily than any others to factional intrigues." (Pius XI "Urbi Arcano Dei") Once a party is in power, the State becomes only a means to further its ambitions and the masses become the instrument: "The masses ... can be used by the State to impose its whims on the better part of the real people." (Pius XII - Christmas 1944) Cardinal Pie noted that the first attempt at universal suffrage (in the Christian era), resulted in the release of Barabbas and the condemnation of Christ, a very striking observation which fully justifies the warning given 19 centuries later by Leo XIII, namely, not to confuse "the deceptive wishes of the multitude with truth and justice". As for St. Pius X, he was even more explicit when he said: "In these democratic practices ... you will recognise, Venerable Brethren, the hidden cause of the lack of discipline with which you have so often had to reproach the Sillon." (St. Pius X "Our Apostolic Mandate") "There is an error and a danger in binding down Catholicism) by principle, to any particular form of government. Such error and danger are all the greater when one associates religion with a kind of Democracy the doctrines of which are erroneous." (St. Pius X "Ibid.") (Note that St. Pius X was referring to the practice of Modern Democracy as exemplified by the Sillon in 1910, - one of the early movements to try to reconcile Christianity with Modern Democracy, but the Pope did not intend to condemn the practice of Traditional Democracy as understood by St. Thomas.)
The lives of the saints, the Imitation of Christ, the teachings of the great Doctors, in fact, the whole of devotional, didactic, meditative, hortatory and homiletic Catholic literature, tells us to be wary of our own thoughts, for the wisdom of Man is not the wisdom of God; it tells us to be child-like in everything, and not to claim that we are really mature in any respect. This is Christian wisdom: our freedom is a surrender; our thinking is fallible; our maturity is imperfect and open to question. Admittedly, this is a difficult ideal, but it is worth labouring for. In opposition to that ideal, Modern Democracy holds that we are "freethinking and responsible": our freedom knows no moral law; our thinking is wisdom itself; our maturity is "adult". "..such are the big words with which human pride is being exalted.." (St. Pius X) "Such is the exalted claim that it (Democracy) makes on the moral maturity of the citizen." (Pius XII - Christmas 1944) Such is - "the revolt in the depths of the human conscience ... the feeble and grovelling wisdom of Man ... is boasting of progress when relapsing into decadence ..." (Pius XII "Summi Pontificatus") Revolt against God's laws means disaster. There is no other cause to account for the decadence of the West.
The conflicting opinions which exist in our society, far from being "healthy" and "stimulating", lead to sterility, divisions and dissensions. They cancel out one another and only confusion and bewilderment remain. The triumph of private judgment, and belief in free expression lead to unbridled exteriorisation of the lower instincts, and to unlimited and destructive freedom of action. Materialism, moral decay, godlessness, widespread rivalry and hatred, and eventually wars and revolutions, are the inevitable outcome. It is no mere coincidence that rebellions, coups and riots are flaring up all over the world. They are only milestones on the road of Hatred paved with a disorderly love for freedom. Freedom in the liberal sense of the 18th century philosophers is a selfdestructive mirage, bathed in blood.
Freedom of opinion, even before it is expressed in words or translated into actions, is in itself a deadly thing. True, Modern Democracy does not attack moral principles as such, but it makes them a matter of personal opinion only. It does not recognise the existence of the moral order - "an order which is transcendent, universal, absolute, equal and binding on all." (John XXIII "Mater et Magistra") Everything is regarded as a "matter of personal opinion". All opinions, therefore, are good and respectable. There is no objective truth, no fixed rules in Art; one must be "broadminded"; one must "march with the times". The result is utter confusion of the mind. If there is no Absolute Truth transcending human reason, the "truth" of one man is as valid as the "truth" of another, and you end with having as many truths as human beings. In these conditions, the fight against illiteracy, far from promoting understanding between people and nations, will only make discord more general by multiplying the number of human "truths". UNESCO, which is as godless as its parent-body, the UNO, is falling into this error. Moreover, if all opinions are good and respectable, it follows that, indeed, they should be respected - almost too obvious to be said. But if all opinions and viewpoints are to be respected, the door is open to compromise, conciliation and appeasement. The USA, which is the champion of modern Democracy, has been following this line since 1945 in its foreign Policy, allowing Communism to spread more and more since every new act of aggression can be settled by "compromise". Unfortunately, space does not allow even a brief review of American Foreign policy, but it would certainly be illuminating. It is no exaggeration to say that the West is committing suicide because of the misguided beliefs of its statesmen.
We have seen that freedom of opinion, by its denial of Absolute Truth, fosters confusion in the mind of the thinking person. That is why in our times such a large number of intellectuals are completely bewildered and make the most astonishing statements. But freedom of expression is still more serious, for it injects into the unthinking masses the conflicting opinions of the thinking few, and prepares them for destructive action, unless, through weariness, it promotes a general apathy in the people. Freedom of expression is also responsible for the flooding of the book market with objectionable publications. It is therefore largely responsible for the lowering of moral standards, juvenile delinquency and criminality. Thus, these and other evils of modern society can be traced to a basically erroneous philosophical belief. (Freedom of expression was condemned by Gregory XVI on these grounds; Cf. "Nunquam fore").
The practical consequences of freedom of action are so varied and numerous that it is impossible to discuss them all in a single paragraph. Let us take, as an example the story of Capitalism, which is based on "laissez-faire", (let act). Money is essentially a means of exchange; as such it is a necessary and legitimate human device, the possession of which, or of what it secures, being not immoral in itself (private ownership). "Private ownership, including that of productive goods, is a natural right which the State cannot suppress." (e.g. through arbitrary nationalisations). (John XXIII "Mater et Magistra") But Capitalism changes the use of money to make it a means to produce more money. In normal circumstances, money is the result of work. In Capitalism money is the result of money and, therefore, replaces work. This perversion of money has led to many abuses, and these abuses, in turn, have been responsible for the emergence of Socialism and Communism. Capitalism is based on Freedom of action, and on the humanistic assumption that happiness can be achieved on earth through better and greater production of material goods. It is the child of both Liberalism and Rationalism. As such, it is the- twin brother of Modern Democracy and cannot be separated from it. Capitalism artificially boosts production with a complete disregard for the people's real needs. Capitalism sets up an "economy of the manufacturer", to the detriment of the "economy of the consumer", which is the only sound form of economy. Production takes precedence over all considerations; and instead of serving man, it eventually makes man a slave. "A system has been constructed which considers profit as the key motive for economic progress, competition as the supreme law of economics, and private ownership of the means of production as an absolute right that has no limits and carries no corresponding social obligation. This unchecked liberalism leads to dictatorship rightly denounced by Pius Xl as producing 'the international imperialism of money'. One cannot condemn such abuses too strongly by solemnly recalling once again that the economy is at the service of man". (Paul VI "Populorum Progressio") This passage has been misunderstood by some contemporary commentators; Pope Paul did not condemn the use of Capital, but Liberal Capitalism. He did not condemn the profit motive, but the absolute precedence given to it with no regard for the real needs of the people. He did not condemn private ownership, but the unlimited and exclusive claim of the owners. Still less did the Pope advocate State Ownership - even by implication. State ownership, indeed, is not the only possible alternative to private ownership of the means of Production. Public ownership, as advocated by John XXIII in "Mater et Magistra" is a third alternative in which "the wage-earners are made sharers in some way in the ownership, or the management or the profits". It is clear, therefore, that Pope Paul did not contradict in this passage the teaching of his predecessors. The unlimited claim of the owners is indeed scandalous when an oil magnate can earn up to $300,000 a day thanks to his investments, whilst a family man working in a factory starves on $80 a week. Production being regarded as the supreme good, it is an imperative necessity to produce always more and more, and, therefore, to sell more and more. Advertising then comes into play, invading the life of the people, warping their judgment and creating non-existent "needs", in order to sell the ever-increasing production. This is what could be called the "productive" aspect of Capitalism; its evil nature is evident, even if we refrain from considering here the fact that it instills into the minds of the people a false set of values.
But there is another very important aspect, the "speculative" aspect, so to speak. Capitalism can work only because credit is granted by the Banks. Originally, Banks lent the money that was deposited in their safes because it had become evident that a large proportion of these deposits were never Withdrawn all at the same time. Perhaps 10% only of the deposits would be withdrawn. The Banks were therefore in a position to lend up to 90% of the existing deposits. But the loans themselves were often transferred from Bank to Bank without being in circulation in cash. On a $1,000 deposit, it becomes therefore possible to lend Up to $10,000 (by book entries), since only 10%, $1,000, will be in actual circulation, and since this figure is precisely what was deposited in the first place in cash. Needless to say, this is a very sketchy outline of banking procedures, but it does show that credits are actually non-existent money, and, what is more, interest is charged on this non-existent money! Loans are granted to the government in the same manner, with the effect that the National Debt in some countries is continually rising, and that a large proportion of Income Tax money is issued - not to repay the National Debt, but to serve the interest on it! To put it bluntly, the sweat and toil of the people is used to fatten the anonymous wire-pullers of International Finance. Income Tax, by the way, is a relatively recent invention, and some economists say it could easily be suppressed. It is noteworthy too, that the cost of the goods produced must include the interest paid to the Banks, and is therefore higher than the purchasing power of the working force, with the effect that there is scarcity in plenty, and people are held in economic subjection. "Laws must prevent the worker from being condemned to an economic dependence or slavery irreconcilable with his rights as a person." (Pius XII - Christmas 1942) This economic slavery is at the root of strikes and social unrest. Likewise, the ever increasing National Debt makes devaluation a recurrent necessity which governments cannot evade, but which discourages thrift and brings misery to old people, reducing them to "the most abject poverty after a life of hard saving and hard work." (Pius XII - Christmas 1952) Space does not permit speaking of the stock and share business, but the conclusions drawn would be the same as above, namely, that Capitalism is truly a tyranny. Socialism and Communism are bent on the destruction of Capitalism, but what they put forward is worse than the evil they want to cure: the tyranny of the State instead of the tyranny of capital. "Whether this slavery arises from the tyranny of private capital or from the power of the State makes no difference to its effects." (Pius XII - Christmas 1942)
Culture is the work of a few outstanding figures who rise above the general mass of the people. Civilisation is the tangible expression of culture, and it presupposes that the masses work in conformity with the patterns of culture set by the few. Culture, too, presupposes an awareness of spiritual and moral values, and is the sum total of the independent thinking of the few. From these two points, it follows that true civilisation is not possible when the masses do not follow the few but themselves set the pattern of things to be; or, again, when the few are no longer independent thinkers and lose the sense of the spiritual. A technological civilisation is not a civilisation worthy of the name because a man may be a scientist without being cultured. A democratic civilisation is not a civilisation worthy of the name, because the pattern of things to be is set by the masses instead of the few. In a society where popular sovereignty and equality are regarded as essential, the leadership of the few is either non-existent, or it is exercised only on a plane which is most easily grasped by the masses, namely, the material plane, the realm of technology. In such conditions, civilisation does not progress, it deteriorates; and our concept of society is false. "True progress can only be achieved by the return of numerous and influential people to a true concept of society." (Pius XII - Christmas 1942) Either explicitly, or implicitly, this excerpt fully vindicates, what has just been said: 1) We are not truly progressing now. 2) Leadership must come from above. 3) Our present concept of society is false. St. Pius X said much the same thing, although in a different form: "Our predecessor (Leo XIII) stigmatised a certain democracy which goes to such lengths in its wickedness as to give sovereignty to the people, and which presses for the suppression of classes and for their levelling down." ("Our Apostolic Mandate") Modern educational systems illustrate this two-fold error: popular sovereignty and equality. The schools of today seem to be dedicated to the mass production of mediocrities. Promising children are held down to the level of the "majority" because we are not so much concerned with the formation of elites as with giving secondary education to every child. If a child shows personality, he is a "freak", he must "adjust" to his environment. A child must above all become a "useful citizen", that is to say, he must conform to the concept of an egalitarian society, and not outshine his school mates. The team spirit above all! In the overemphasis given to sports, the "team" is paramount, and sports which are strictly individual do not receive the same encouragement. In the curriculum, cultural subjects such as Latin or grammar are increasingly being superseded by science subjects. That the citizen of tomorrow may be unable to express himself clearly does not seem to matter so long as he is able to contribute to technological progress. In this way, better cars will be built, faster planes will be made, better bombs will be designed and, undoubtedly, this will bring happiness to all and sundry ... Such is the superstition of our technolatrous civilisation, a godless, materialistic superstition, which is instilled into the minds of our children by our secular educational system. Popular sovereignty has even infiltrated some of our schools (especially in the USA) where children are asked what subjects they want to study. Popular sovereignty, equality, uniformity, quantity, are all inter-related when closely examined. They warp the true purpose of education.
"It is a proven truth, a historical fact, that there is no true civilisation without a moral civilisation, and no true moral civilisation without the true Church." (St. Pius X) "The moral order does not hold except in God. Cut off from God it disintegrates." (John XXIII "Mater et Magistra") It follows that a State without religion inevitably becomes immoral sooner or later. The process of deterioration may sometimes be slow, depending on the strength of the Christian faith which remains in the people, but it is bound to end in total immorality (morality, here, being understood in its broad sense, encompassing all Christian virtues including Faith, and not only pertaining to sexual morals). Since total immorality implies Atheism, a State separated from the Church evolves infallibly towards Atheism. In other words, such a State eventually becomes Communist, the Communist creed being Atheism brought to perfection and completion. Let no-one think that this is a far-fetched chain of reasoning; it is an inevitable development which has been noted by many thinkers. Human laws made by a State cut off from the moral law have no firm basis. They no longer reflect the will of God, but the whims of man. Divorce laws are a case in point. The very existence of a secular education system is another; indeed, not only should private schools, which are still tolerated by the modern State be subsidized, but State schools, in fact, should not exist at all. Is this an extreme view? It may seem so in the context of modern thinking, but, then, modern thinking is strongly influenced by the power of darkness. Teaching is the imparting of knowledge, and knowledge ultimately comes from God. There is no true knowledge without God. What then are we to think of godless schools? Let us not lose sight of the important fact that secular education is of comparatively recent date. Before society had rejected God all schools were run by the Church, and so were hospitals and tribunals, (the terms 'Sister' and 'Your Worship' have no other origin). It is, indeed, the natural vocation of the servants of God to educate, render justice, and care for the sick. Far from being merely a personal opinion, this is the teaching of Christ as expressed by His Vicar on earth: "All education belongs pre-eminently to the Church... it is the inalienable right as well as the indispensable duty of the Church to watch over the entire education of her children, in all institutions, public or private, not merely in regard to the religious instruction there given, but in regard to every other branch of learning." (Pius XI "Rappresentanti in Terra")
Modern errors are so closely correlated that little can be said in this paragraph without repeating what has already been said. Equal co-operation of all citizens is, in fact, a myth. Every-one wants to see his own views prevail, and since the views of unbelievers are diametrically opposed to the views of Christians, such co-operation can only become a hard-fought contest of wits. Christians, however, are at a disadvantage in that they have scruples and do not believe the end justifies the means. It follows that the unscrupulous will eventually prevail. This was noted by Pius XI in "Quadragesimo Anno". The victory of the unscrupulous is finally reflected in all aspects of political, social and economic life, some of which I have already discussed. Equal co-operation of all citizens is just another instance of how the errors of Modern Democracy can undermine Christianity and corrode the faith.
If Modern Democracy were really the great step forward we are told it is, if it were the fulfillment of the most cherished dream of mankind for a better world wherein justice and peace would dwell, the Popes would certainly have hailed it as such, but they have not. On the contrary, they deplore the absence of the very things which Modern Democracy was supposed to give us, and they note with sorrow the growth of the very evils which Modern Democracy was supposed to eliminate. Last, but not least, the Popes condemn again and again errors and evils which are peculiar to Modern Democracy, and they stress how inevitably democratic theories lead to Fascism, Socialism, or Communism.
In his 1942 Christmas message, Pius XII stated that every man had the right to own his own home, and that the herding together of human beings should be avoided. Is it not a fact that large blocks of high-rise flats and enormous factories are a creation of modern economic planning? The Pope reaffirmed the right to religious education. Is it not a fact that all schools were run by the Church in the past, and that modern Democracy not only upholds secularism, but also obliges Catholic parents to pay taxes for the maintenance of the pagan education system? The Pope asserted the right to the attainment of the purpose of marriage. Is it not a fact that modern economic conditions prevent families from having as many children as they would like? Is it not a fact that the "engineering of the community" is moving towards the introduction of laws for the compulsory limitation of births? And what of Divorce and Abortion, Euthanasia and Eugenics? The community concept in democratic societies threatens the most basic liberties of the human person. Thus, Pius XIl condemned all the evils to which modern ideas have given rise. But, significantly, in the Rights of Man which he listed, he did not mention at all the right to vote!
In another allocution, the Pope mentioned: " ... the objectivity, impartiality, loyalty, generosity and integrity (of those in power), without which a democratic government would find it hard to command the respect, and the support, of the better section of the people." (Pius XII - December 1944) Since any-one can be a candidate, and since the unscrupulous are always at an advantage, a Parliament can hardly be made up of men possessing the qualities named by Pius XII. This reason, in fact, was given in "Urbi Arcano Dei", and again in "Quadragesimo Anno". Further, governing a nation is a difficult art and a responsible one. Whereas a medical practitioner has to spend many years of arduous study, followed by a period of practical work in a hospital, a politician who is responsible, not only to a few hundred patients, but to a whole nation, is not required to produce any qualifications at all! It is realities like these that make parliamentary democracy a huge and sinister farce. Human beings are persons; for power to be humane, therefore, it must be personal. True, personal power can also be inhuman, for man is a fallen creature and he easily becomes sub-human without the grace of God. Yet, power can not be humane without being personal, as a pear can not be such if it does not come from a pear-tree. But in democracy, far more than in an hierarchical society, an elaborate legislation is necessary. This is so because a body of men cannot issue decisions all at once, and their considered judgment (or what they believe to be their considered judgment), must be embodied in advance in a code of laws to cover all the possible cases which they are able to visualise. Such laws cannot easily be waived, and their enforcement is entrusted to a bureaucracy. In specific cases, therefore, the Bureaucracy simply, blindly and unfeelingly, applies the letter of the law. That is why impersonal power cannot but be inhuman. Quite a different matter is it when regulations are made by Ministers or their officers: at any time they can feel free to waive them to fit a specific case. Democracy is inseparable from the mass concept (or community concept). Persons matter less than the community. This most grievous error is further aggravated in a Socialist society. From being unfeeling, the ruling Bureaucracy grows to be brutal. Democracy, Socialism (or Fascism) and Communism, are but milestones along the same road. Being impersonal, a Democracy has no memory, no imagination, no will, no courage, no vitality, and no responsibility; for these are human attributes, that is, personal attributes. This explains why a democratic government makes the same mistakes over and over again, (it cannot learn from history, having no memory). Such a government is incapable of devising imaginative, forwardlooking policies. It has not the will to impose necessary measures. It has not the courage to face up to unpleasant realities; it conceals what might cause alarm. It avoids responsibility like the plague; it cannot take swift, clear-cut and positive decisions. Its decisions are those of a Commission or a Committee, that is, the outcome of a compromise or the will of the majority within the Committee. In the first case (i.e. compromise) the decision has been watered down, and it no longer represents the exact view of anyone in particular; in the second case (majority), the wisdom of the decision is deemed to be quantitative. It is tragic that the western powers should be unable to perceive the real cause of their weakness and decay before we are actually engulfed in the most terrible disaster of all history
Personal power is not to be confused with Fascism. A Fascist dictator does possess personal power but personal power is not Fascism. All pears are fruit but not every fruit is a pear; the present generation, being the product of our modern schools, immediately thinks of Fascism whenever personal power is mentioned, confusing the fruit and the pear. Fascism is, above all, the direct form of Modern Democracy (see para. 10) it is a perversion of personal power. Properly understood, personal power is not incompatible with genuine democratic institutions. Intermediate rulers can be elected by the people, but once elected, they must have effective powers and not be dependent on the whims of public opinion, or the intrigues of parliament and parties. Western institutions, however, sometimes appear to be good in some respects. This is not because they are democratic, but because they are still influenced by 19 centuries of Christian tradition, and fail thereby to be wholly democratic.
If the right to vote is regarded as indispensable in civil government, why not in the government of the Church too? That Cardinals should be elected by the faithful is the logical conclusion of the belief in popular suffrage. Then Cardinals would elect the Pope, and we would have a really "democratic" Church. Perhaps it will be argued that politics and religion are two different things? They are indeed, but as far as the workability, usefulness and efficiency of the governing body are concerned, what is true for the one is also true for the other. In the monarchical-hierarchical organisation of the Church, as set up by Christ Himself, cardinals are appointed by the Pope, not elected by the people, and that is one of the reasons why the Church has withstood the test of 19 centuries. If cardinals were to be elected by the people, anarchy would soon prevail, and the Church would disintegrate just as modern democratic States. The affairs of the State are no less difficult to conduct than the affairs of the Church. It is taken for granted that Cardinals should receive a long and thorough training, from the seminary through to the Priesthood, and onwards. But politicians are not required to have any qualifications whatsoever! With enough oratory to sway the mob, and enough money to run an electoral campaign, any-one can become a member of Parliament. Such is the tragic farce of modern Democracy.
37. THE DEVELOPMENT OF MODERN ERRORS
For approximately seventeen centuries men acknowledged that authority comes only from God, and temporal rulers sought the approval and the blessing of their bishops who, by divine right, ruled in their dioceses as successors of the Apostles. Then came the Philosophists. As always, the Power of Darkness used pride to achieve his aims - the pride of human reason. As always he called the Light, Darkness and the Darkness, Light. That is why the Medieval times are now referred to as the "Dark Ages"; (in fact, the Dark Ages were pre-Medieval), and why Philosophism is referred to as "Enlightenment". As always, the Devil acted with subtlety: he did not bring in Communism immediately, he brought in Modern Democracy first, knowing that the one would lead to the other. The lures inherent in the first would more easily lead to the destruction of man by the second. The Devil acted with cunning. So shrewd is he that even Christians were deceived. To make a thorough job of it he instilled into modern minds the myth of historical inevitability. "We must march with the times" we are told, as if the times were not what we are making them!
The present state of the world is not due to chance; it is the outcome of the everlasting struggle between good and evil. The Devil knows that his fight against God has to be gradual if it is to have any chance of success. Therefore, he began his fight in the 16th century by dividing Christianity. When the first battle had been won, the Devil moved from the religious field into the philosophical field, and conceived Rationalism, which put human reason before Revelation. Christians being already divided, there was no single front to defend the primacy of Divine Revelation. The interpretation of Divine Revelation being divided against itself, it could not resist the claim of the so-called primacy of human reason. Human reason appeared more reliable, and so the new philosophy installed itself. It naturally followed that man began to think about an earthly paradise. Hence Rationalism begot Human Messianism (i.e. Humanism). It was then logical that man should not want to be impeded by standards of moral conduct. He had to be free from all restraints, and his reason alone was going to tell him how to act and behave. Thus came into being the doctrine of Liberalism. Almost immediately, this doctrine extended to every field of human activity, especially economics, politics and science. From being philosophical, it became practical - a way of life, the philosophical origin of which, most people do not suspect nowadays.
After this, Human Messianism combined with Liberalism to set up CAPITALISM, an economic system based on greed and usury, which paves the way for Communism. Rationalism and Liberalism combined to give birth to the principle of popular sovereignty - (being free and reasonable, every human being was to make all decisions). Rationalism and Human Messianism combined to give birth to scientism (or the cult of Technology, the worship of the work of man i.e. technolatry whereby we expect salvation from better and higher production, an error which was observed by Pius XII in his 1952 Christmas message. We speak of "Progress" in terms of industrialisation, completely unaware of "the undeniable advantages of an economy based chiefly on agriculture". (Pius XII)
Thus, the unholy trinity, viz. Rationalism, Human Messianism, and Liberalism, laid the ground-work for all the evils which are destroying modern society. Observe how gradual the process has been: a) Difference in religious views (affecting the soul). b) Alteration in philosophical thinking (affecting the intellect). c) Organisation and purpose of the physical world (affecting the will). Observe how logical the development: a) Reformation (dividing Christianity to weaken Divine Revelation). b) Rationalism (doubting that man can rely on Divine Revelation). c) Human Messianism (asserting that man can rely on himself). d) Liberalism (trusting man wholly). e) Capitalism (Human Messianism plus Liberalism). f) Democracy (Rationalism plus Liberalism). g) Technocracy (and Technolatry) - (nationalism plus Human Messianism). This development is too gradual and logical to leave any doubt that there is an Intelligence behind it. This Intelligence is that of the Power of Darkness. A number of Saints have said that, in the Latter Days, evil will be done by men of good will. There is no doubt that many Catholics believe in good faith that we are living in an age of progress, and that Modern Democracy IS Progress. The superficial advantages which it presents hide from many its intrinsic nature, the errors on which it is based, and the evils which accompany it. The deception of the Devil has worked.
I am not concerned, here, with the human causes and agencies which made this development possible. They are only secondary causes and agencies. The Reformation, which I have taken as the initial cause, was itself a consequence, - largely that of the corruption within the Church. But that corruption was also the consequence of something else, because, in history, everything that follows is a consequence of something else. We could go back very far into the past without finding the initial cause. So I have taken the Reformation as the beginning, it representing a coherent movement, an organised human endeavour, as opposed to a mere state of affairs. There is no doubt that, without attempting to put the blame on anyone in particular, for the responsibilities were evenly distributed on either side, the Reformation did break the oneness of Divine Revelation. Since the Bible was then interpreted in different ways, the Rationalists had their chance to show that Revelation was unreliable. As explained above, this could only lead to the eventual rejection of God. Having rejected the authority of God, society could only be subjected, sooner or later, to the authority of man. It was inevitable that all powers would be crystallised into one man, or a small group of men. And so came Democracy, Fascism, Socialism, and Communism. In all these regimes or systems, authority is supposed to come from man, not from God, whilst in the past it was publicly acknowledged that the king was exercising the authority of God, and the coronation ceremonies had a sacramental character that was far more than a mere symbol. It was the consecration of the King to his people by the hands of the Bishop. That is the way it should be, namely, that temporal power be bestowed upon one man by the spiritual power of the Church. (Note, however, that the so-called "divine right" of the Kings is an extreme view contrary to Catholic doctrine. Only Bishops have a divine right.)
We have seen the development of modern errors. The fact that the evolution of modern society over the last four centuries is seldom seen as the work of the Devil, must indeed be very pleasing to him. If we are blind to his cunning, how could we avoid being mere pawns on the chessboard of his fight against God? Here, now, for the convenience of the reader, is what could be called "The family tree of modern errors". It has not the ambition of being exhaustive, but rather of showing at a glance the rational development of the chief modern errors, with a short definition of their tenets and what they involve. First read the table across, and then down. With a little attention, the reader cannot fail to see the development from one error to the next.
(Either as a formulated doctrine, or as a general outlook.)
(Man is reasonable. Human reason counts more than Divine Revelation.)
|No immediate consequence in Economics, Politics, and Education, because Rationalism, which is purely a philosophical option, has not yet produced its fruits.|
(Human reason alone is to be trusted, and especially what can be experienced through the 5 senses.)
(Being reasonable, man must be free from all authority and restraint.)
(In Politics, Liberalism gives birth to Democracy.)
(In Education, Liberalism gives birth to Secular schools.)
|Human Messianism |
(It is usually called "Humanism", but this term has been avoided in this booklet because it has at least 3 different meanings. Human Messianism hold that man alone, through the exercise of his reason, can work out his happiness on earth.
(Happiness can best be achieved through the free use of money and credit.)
|Liberal Democracy |
(Being free and reasonable, every man must have a share in government. He will have that share through Universal Suffrage.)
|Secular Education |
(Being free and reasonable, the children of men must be able to "think for themselves" and not be subjected to a religious "bias". Accordingly, schools are secularised, i.e. taken from the Church. But religious instruction is not yet wholly suppressed.)
|Human Messianism |
evolves more and more toward Materialism (earthly happiness through the use of reason applied to material goods).
|Bureaucratic Plutocracy |
(But the free use of money enables some groups to become very powerful. They soon control the State itself; and the State becomes bureaucratic, or, rather, plutocrats use bureaucracy in the name of the State in order to better organise the use of money and credit for their own benefit. In short, Capitalism takes over the State.)
|Pluto-Bureaucratic Democracy |
(Being now controlled by Finance (Plutocrats) and by party committees; people are no longer really free, although the deceptive appearances of freedom are retained (Pius XII). It is the economic subjection of the masses - (Pius XII again). This is the so-called "Free World" of today, and the first form of Sociocracy.) (Sociocracy is that form of human organisation wherein society counts more than individuals.)
|Secularist Education |
(as above, but teaching is becoming increasingly positivist in outlook. This distinction between Secular and Secularist education is justified by facts, and has been acknowledged by the Bishops of America in their 1961 Annual Statement: "At first" we read, "there was no intention of excluding religion, but the rising measure of secularism has produced the school without religion.")
(The happiness of man on earth is to be found only in material goods.)
(Aware of the evil nature of Capitalism, which they wrongly equate with private ownership, Socialists want to break the power groups of the plutocrats, and organise the use of money on behalf of the people. Thus, Materialism, which was brought into our way of life by private Capitalism, is now set up as a doctrine by Socialism. It receives the official seal of the State. In short, the State takes over Capitalism.)
|Socialism or Social Democracy |
(Since Economics always govern Politics in modern times, a guided economy necessarily involves a guided Democracy along socialistic lines. Socialism, in fact, virtually admits that man is not unselfish, therefore, not really reasonable. Socialism is really a reaction, but so radical a reaction that it takes us back to pre-Christian times. That man may be redeemed by grace does not occur to Socialists. Therefore, man must be controlled by law and regulations. This is the second form of Sociocracy.)
|Laicist Education |
(We take a step further now. A materialistic philosophy is introduced into text-books. Secular education took the schools from the hands of the Church; Secularist education tried to suppress religious instruction; Laicist education now introduces anti-Christian ideas. A gradual and logical development. Note, however, that belief in a Supreme Being of some sort is not yet explicitly rejected, but the name of God is generally avoided.)
(Since economics rests on Labour as well as on Money, Labour itself must now be organized. In other words, Socialism organises money, Communism organises labour as well. Man becomes a complete slave in order to manufacture - in theory, a greater number of goods.)
(By virtue of the same law which made Liberal Democracy subject to money groups, and Social Democracy subject to State control, the economics of Communism deprive man of all civil rights in order to better use him as a working unit. Suffrage has now become a farce. This is the last form of Sociocracy.)
|Atheistic Education |
(Dialectical Materialism is now the main subject of the curriculum; it impregnates all other subjects. Religion is "scientifically" exposed as a superstition, and the existence of God is explicitly denied. The cult of Science (Technolatry) is taking the place of God. Thus the work of the Devil is near completion.)
There are many points in the "Family Tree of Modern Errors" which it would be desirable to develop. Space does not permit me to do so, but it is not difficult to see the relationships between the various errors listed above if one gives the table a little attention. It is quite clear, for instance, that the myth "free and reasonable", i.e. Liberalism and Rationalism, is the one cause that underlines all errors. Consequently, all these errors are inseparable, and more especially Materialism, Capitalism, Democracy and Secular education. Since these errors are inseparable, it is futile to fight against some while supporting others as a worthy ideal. It is also quite clear that Secular Education is but the first step towards Atheistic Education - ("He who is not with Me is against Me".) The children of a Church school could not be taught that there was no God, so the obvious step was to take the schools from the control of the Church, and this was done in the 19th century. The secular schools, however, did not ban religious instruction immediately. That was to be the next step, namely, Secularist Education. But even Secularist education did not dare to attack Christian ideas openly. Some time had to elapse so that the next generation, having had no religious instruction, could the more readily accept anti- Christian ideas spread by Laicist Education. Of course, there was no question at that stage of asserting that God did not exist. It was deemed preferable to omit the name of God whenever possible, and, when not possible, to substitute instead the term "Supreme Being". The use of "Supreme Being" became, in time, so vague and remote as to lose all significance. And so the door was opened for Atheistic Education. This is exactly what has happened, or is happening, with some little variations, in virtually every country. The overall scheme was not so much conceived by man as carried out by him. The overall scheme is the master plan of the Devil to deceive and use men in order to better bring about the destruction of mankind.
Being divinely inspired, the Popes cannot reject the sociopolitical concepts which built Christendom and made it radiate throughout the world in seventeen centuries of history. If, however, a Pope should do so, one would have to infer that he is a heretic. There have been heretical Popes in the long history of the Church, and it is virtually certain that history will repeat itself in the Latter Days (i.e. the Great Apostasy predicted by Our Lord). But, endowed with the priceless heritage of Christian tradition, Popes as a whole have consistently condemned modern errors. These errors have led the whole world to the brink of disaster. Fully aware of the danger, the Popes have made their position clear. "There is no need to break away from the past ... It is sufficient to restore the institutions that were broken up by the Revolution and to adapt them to the new environment resulting from the material development of society ... the true friends of the people are not innovators but traditionalists ..." (St. Pius X, "Our Apostolic Mandate") "Thus, they say, Democracy is to usher in the reign of complete justice! Is that not an insult to other forms of government, reducing them in this way to the level of ineffective makeshifts? ... Now then! ... your Catholic youth is told ... that the great Bishops and the great Kings ... were unable to give their peoples either real justice or true happiness! ... The spirit of the revolution is obviously there, and We can only conclude that the social doctrines of the Sillon are false; its spirit is dangerous, and its teaching deadly." (St. Pius X, ibid.)
Regrettably, a large number of Catholics, good though they may be in their personal lives, have lost sight of these teachings and have allowed the pernicious errors of the so-called Enlightenment to poison their thinking. In condemning the Revolution, St. Pius X did not condemn any revolution in particular; he condemned the revolution of ideas which took place in the 18th century, and which is usually called "Enlightenment" in the English-speaking world. Had he meant the French Revolution of 1789, the result would be the same, because the French Revolution was based on those ideas. Modern man is now completely convinced that those ideas are right. But can a Catholic ignore the teachings of the Popes?
The Popes usually do not mince words; they are quite outspoken, and their language is often forceful. Even Pius XII, whose real thinking had sometimes to be sought between the lines (as in his 1944 Christmas allocution), was distinctly blunt at times (as in "Summi Pontificatus" and "Humani Generis"). When the Popes denounce an error, they do so in no ambiguous terms, witness Pius XI: "It is utterly untrue to say ..." (para. 18 above), and Gregory XVI: "It is insanity to believe ..." (para. 20 above).
Modern man, however, conforming to the accepted fashion prevailing among well-mannered and educated people, would not say: "It is utterly untrue." Now, that is just not done! Modern man would use a cautious paraphrase. He would not assert, he would not even suggest straight away, but just venture a qualified opinion: "May I venture to say that this may not always be quite correct." This artifice of style, of course, sounds radically different from: "It is utterly untrue." It really contains four understatements a) It is correct to some extent (but not quite) b) It is sometimes correct (but not always) c) It is not, it may only be (a reservation bearing on both "always" and "quite".) d) It is not an assertion; only a requested "venture". When an opinion is so watered down, it loses most of its significance. It leaves a doubt in the minds of the listeners. Nothing is certain any longer, and everything becomes a matter of "personal opinion". _Modern language conceals its lack of moral courage behind a screen of moderation_. It reflects the misguided sense of tolerance and desire to appease which are typical of our times. What a contrast to the language used by the Popes! Christ, too, always used direct language, that used to shock many of His listeners and even his own disciples. Should a Catholic, therefore, be afraid of being outspoken?
The Popes leave us in no doubt as to what we should do, as to how we should speak. St. Pius X condemned "those Catholics who leave their religion on the door-step", and are ever ready to compromise with the spirit of this age, to collaborate with the victims of modern errors, and to observe a prudent silence. He said: "No more of this silence which would be a crime." Speaking of those Catholics who are afraid of asserting the truth, Pius XII went as far as using the words: "Doubters, cowards weaklings" (in "Summi Pontificatis"). Later, he spoke of "the hot-headed supporters of appeasement", and he warned: "Many among the younger clergy especially, will be led astray by this baa example." (Humani generis"). Is there any room for complacency? If we do not ignore the teaching of the Popes on modern political errors - and we cannot - have we not the duty to speak out?
The following warnings should be a matter of deep concern for every Catholic. They make plain a fact which is all too often studiously ignored, namely, that many Catholics have been contaminated by the errors of our times. "The partisans of errors are to be sought not only among the Church's open enemies; but, what is to be most dreaded and deplored, in her very bosom, and are the more mischievous the less they keep in the open. We allude, Venerable Brethren, to many who belong to the Catholic laity, and what is much more sad, to the ranks of the priesthood itself ... thoroughly imbued with the poisonous doctrines taught by the enemies of the Church." (St. Pius X, "Pascendi Dominici Gregis") Three years later, St. Pius X gave another warning, especially intended for the priesthood: "Let not the Priesthood be misled by the miracles of a false democracy into the maze of modern ideas; let them not borrow from the rhetoric of the worst enemies of the Church, the high-flown phrases, full of promises, which are as high-sounding as unrealisable." ("Our Apostolic Mandate") In 1942, Pius XII felt compelled to issue a similar warning: "Not a few of those who call themselves Christians, bear some share in the collective responsibility for the aberrations, the disasters and the low moral state of modern society." (Christmas 1942) Warnings like these should induce every one of us to closely examine his social and political beliefs.
If the enemies of the Church "dare cry out" all these errors, - to use the very words of Pius IX (para. 14), why should we not also denounce such errors? Why should we adopt the "strategy of silence", or even worse, why, as St. Pius X said, should we attempt to reconcile error with truth? Human prudence in this respect is folly in the eyes of God. Silence is the beginning of compromise; and compromise, apart from being the surest way to disaster, is a betrayal of our principles. Principles, not expediency, must direct our actions. Principles are based on permanent and objective truths, whilst expediency is based on the subjective appreciation of the circumstances of the moment. Policies based on expediency are unstable and forever changing.
Nothing could have seemed less opportune than the preaching of the Gospel in the time of Christ. Humanly speaking, it was folly. Far from being a success in the worldly sense of the term, the predication ended up in the ignominious death of its promoter, and the persecution of His disciples. The Pharisees were triumphant and the Roman legions had re-established "law and order." But, as is often the case, this human folly was divine wisdom. Christianity was to change the whole world, including the Supreme Ruler of the Roman Legions three centuries later. A cross appeared in the sky with the words "In hoc signo vinces", and this miracle led Constantine to his victory, and eventually to his conversion. So, today also, it may seem folly to overtly oppose the established order. It may seem more opportune to observe a prudent silence, or even seek a compromise, but what a lack of faith it denotes! What a miserable betrayal of Christian principles! Do we not know that God can work another miracle if necessary? But must we not give Him a token of our will to fight? Indeed, if we are to believe St. John Bosco, St. Louis-Marie Grignon de Montfort, and many other Saints, the occurrence of such a miracle, in the not too distant future, is a distinct possibility. But, miracle or not, our will to fight should be the same. There can be no compromise with a social order rooted in Liberalism. What is called "moderation" is a facile excuse for doing nothing. It is often a mask concealing a lack of courage and determination. To be sure, compromises can secure some immediate advantages. But an immediate and limited advantage is a very poor reward when the price is the long-range and essential interests of Christianity! That such a policy amounts to a betrayal was stated by St. Pius X: "The Church has never betrayed the welfare of the people by dangerous alliances."
There is no doubt that the Catholic world is divided on a number of issues (this was first written in 1962 - it is far worse today) - including that of whether this division should be brought out into the open or, on the contrary, quietly ignored in a spirit of appeasement. Who is right and who is wrong? The answer is to be found in the Encyclicals, numerous excerpts of which have been given in this booklet. One cannot be wrong if one follows the Popes, and adheres to the pre-Enlightenment philosophy. Would it cause a rift? Indeed, it might, but "It is sometimes necessary to cut off a limb to save the rest of the body" (St. Pius X). We must never forget the Papal pronouncements. If we do not forget them, we cannot get round what they say. And if we do not evade the issues involved, we cannot fail to realise that today's political and social order is based on ideas which are basically false and dangerous. But if we do neither of these things we are either irremediably blind or lacking in intellectual integrity.
Many quotations in this booklet come from the Letter on the Sillon which St. Pius X sent to the French Bishops in 1910. It may be argued that it is now out of date. It is true that the Sillonist movement is now dead, as such, but its errors are very much alive, and have spread far and wide. The excerpts given in this booklet should make this fact quite plain. It is clear that the subject matter of this Letter is as applicable today as it was then. Quotations such as this booklet contains are sometimes said to be meaningless because they are read out of context. This is a facile objection, and the implicit accusation which it carries does not appear to be fair. It is naturally impossible to quote a whole letter or encyclical in an article such as this. Many of the quotations are so clear, however, that no doubt can reasonably arise as to their real meaning. Others, perhaps, would gain by being read in the context. But since I indicate every source of reference, anyone may verify it for himself. It is sometimes said that political and social questions do not concern the average Catholic and that, for them, it is sufficient to lead a good life, go to Mass, and generally follow the commandments of God and the precepts of the Church. If such were the case, the Popes would not have written so many social Encyclicals. They would not have insisted, again and again, numerous quotations could be given - that all Catholics should take an interest in political and social questions. In the Encyclicals, we find a lucid survey of modern ills and evils, with their causes, consequences, and remedies. Many aspects of modern life which puzzle the average man, become crystal- clear in the light of the Encyclicals and other documents. At a time when so many bulky books are written, adding only to the general confusion of our age, one cannot help thinking that the Encyclicals, in their relative brevity, are truly inspired by the Holy Spirit. It is tragic that they should meet with so much indifference. Could it be that modern conditions, the complexity of life and the development of social relations make the past Encyclicals obsolete? It might be so if Encyclicals were intended to outline methods and systems. But the Encyclicals do not outline methods, they deal with basic principles, and especially when such principles are threatened by the new methods or systems which society may choose to put into practice. Basic principles do not change, they remain forever valid. It is necessary, of course, to adapt methods, systems and institutions to the new environment resulting from the material development of society - that is precisely what St. Pius X said (see para. 43 above) - but this necessary adaptation must not violate principles. The idea that what was true yesterday is not necessarily true today is now quite common. It is often expressed in phrases such as: "You are behind the times, we do not do that any more; it's had its day; you are old-fashioned ... " But this modern way of expressing disapproval avoids all reference to the truth or falsity of a proposition. It is an easy way to settle a question without a rational discussion. This idea, in fact, is basically a Marxist idea. In the doctrine of Karl Marx, truth is not a "being", but a "becoming". When we closely examine the modern ideas which have won recognition in virtually every quarter, are usually discover their origin in Marxism. Marxian ideas have penetrated modern thinking without our even being aware of it. It would be a mistake to believe, however that these ideas are to be found only in Communism. And the idea that truth undergoes changes is one of them. If Encyclicals are not obsolete, at least, some may argue, they are not binding upon our faith. After all, Popes are infallible only when they speak "ex cathedra". For the rest, they merely express personal opinions, and we are not obliged to subscribe to these opinions. This argument is all the more dangerous in that it cleverly introduces two statements which are substantially true: Encyclicals are not articles of faith, and the Popes are not infallible in the strict sense when they write them. But Pius XII disposed of this fallacy in "Humani generis" when he said: "Nor is it to be supposed that a position advanced in an Encyclical does not, ipso facto, claim assent. In writing them, it is true, the Popes do not exercise their teaching authority to the full. But such statements come under the dayto-day teaching of the Church, which is covered by the promise "He who listens to you, listens to Me". (Luke X. 16). For the most part the positions advanced, the duties inculcated by these encyclical letters, are already bound up, under some other title, with the general body of Catholic teaching." (Pius XII "Humani generis") I think I have refuted the arguments most likely to be put forward. The political and social teaching of the Encyclicals simply cannot be dismissed.
If, changing with the times, Truth is no longer a being, i.e. a thing-that-is, but is regarded as a becoming, i.e. a thing-that-becomes (see para. 52), it follows that motion becomes more important than essence. This basically Marxian concept is indeed peculiar to our times. We find it in the prominence given to words such as: evolution, development, action, progress, etc. Man, who is really an essence is supposed to be still evolving; the development of industries even if they are useless - is supposed to bring happiness to the people, and so on. Action is the god of modern society as Power is its goddess. Action no longer needs to be justified by reference to its end; it is self-justifying. "He is a man of action" constitutes a praise which no-one would raise questions about. Action and motion become the be-all and end-all. Speed takes the place of reflection and intelligent discussion. The accumulation of disconnected and often meaningless bits of information, features, and "situations" is a characteristic of modern journalism, radio and motion pictures. When a novel or a play is "full of life, dynamic, cram-full of movement" it is likely to be an instant success. The love of speed and movement is also reflected in the statistics of motor-car accidents. It would be an exaggeration, however, to say that all these things are the result of Marxian ideas, but they are certainly closely related. Like Marxian ideas themselves, they can be traced to the writings of the 18th-century philosophists, the promoters of the great Revolution of Ideas which is called Enlightenment. (For most of this paragraph I am indebted to a work by Jean Ousset: "Marxism-Leninism", most certainly the best I have read on the subject.)
An essence is absolute, but a motion is contingent. When, however, motion takes precedence over essence, as is the case in modern times, their respective attributes are automatically inverted (ours is indeed the Age of Inversion: in politics (where authority is supposed to come from below); in economics (see paras. 22 and 28); in morality (which is a feature of all declining civilizations); and in many other domains), and motion becomes absolute whilst essence is merely contingent. We find a practical application of this false concept in the belief, prevalent in the USA, that man can be improved; or in Russia, that man can be moulded to conform to the trends of history, which is really a motion. Thus, man no longer makes history, history is supposed to make man. History is regarded as a creative power, and man as the raw material. History is supposed to follow an inevitable course, and man is merely carried along with it. Man must "march with the times"; he must not be "old-fashioned", and so on. But let us make no mistake about it: the flow of history is not irreversible. It is not unrealistic, therefore, to advocate a return to past institutions. What is indeed unrealistic is to believe that today's political and social order is here to stay. It is already fast decaying from within, and it will inevitably be swept away by some disaster unless we change it ourselves before it is too late.
Will the free world introduce these changes? It does not appear likely. Supposing that Democracy were strong enough to destroy Communism (and it may be), or that, being strong enough, it had the will to take the necessary risks (which is doubtful), new differences would still arise afterwards, just as they arose after the destruction of Hitlerism. This is so because our humanist philosophy bears in itself the seeds of dissension and division. As long as we do not recognise our errors we will not be prepared to introduce any changes. Whilst the fatalism of history is a myth, the free choice of an error has fatal historic consequences. When things come to a show-down, it is probable that the western democracies will crack from within. Faced with agonising alternatives and harrowing dilemmas, the wavering middle-of-the-course leaders will gradually give way to more resolute and more extremist Leftist politicians. Then, the transition from Socialism to Communism will be a speedy process. A global war is unlikely, but that does not mean that there will be no fighting at all. Nor does it mean that the struggle will be over, but only that our social order, as such, will collapse. The real struggle will then be in earnest and it will be very different from what is generally expected. Our Lady of Fatima told us in plain words that unless "men do penance, Russia will spread her errors throughout the world, promoting wars and revolutions, and whole nations will be annihilated." In 1917, this prophecy sounded incredible; Russia counted for nothing on the world scene, and the Bolshevist revolution had not yet succeeded. Today, however, Russia is a World Power. Our Lady then gave to Lucia a secret message which has not, as yet, been communicated to the world. Finally, she said: "In the end, Russia will be converted and there will be peace." There is no doubt, therefore, that, with the help of God, the Communist tyranny will be over-thrown. I have mentioned Fatima because it is well-known throughout the Catholic world, and because it has been publicly acknowledged by many high-ranking prelates, especially in Europe; also by the late Pope Pius XII. But the Fatima message is not the only one of its kind. Whilst the defeat of Communism is an absolute certainty, there is every reason to believe that it will not come before a temporary victory. Again, if Communism is to be a divine punishment, (we have seen that it is, and the Fatima message, among others, gives an implicit confirmation), it is logical to expect that it should score a temporary victory.
After this, one may hope that the world will recover its sanity. Even now, not a few people think that we are going through the final stages of an epoch-making crisis, from which will arise a political order entirely different from what has been known so far, a political order combining past institutions with the social awareness of the present. This new order will be deeply religious in character accepting the spiritual supremacy of the Church in every field, and restoring authority to its rightful place. The Kingship of Christ will at long last be recognised, for the idea of monarchy will no longer be repugnant to man. His Holy Mother will be acknowledged as the Queen of all Peoples, the Co-Redemptrix, Mediatrix and Advocate. On that day, which is not far off, the whole world will enjoy peace and prosperity, because the Will of our Father will be done on earth as it is in Heaven.
--- THE END ---
Ives Dupont was born in the 1920s and deceased in the late 1970s (I do not know the exact dates, but he died of cancer in his late 50s). Originally a French citizen, he fought in the French Resistance and then emigrated to Australia after World War II. He is best known for his book Catholic Prophecy The Coming Chastisement, which is still available from TAN Books & Publishers, P.O. Box 424, Rockford, Illinois 61105, which is must reading for any student of Catholic prophecy. The current work was issued by Tenet Books, P.O. Box 180, Hawthorn, Vic. 3122, Australia. However, I believe the firm was his own, so it is probably no longer in existence. The original copyright is presumed to have expired, as the work has not been seen since its original issuance. This undertaking is done in memory of Mr. Dupont, who was a truly great Catholic. The reader is urged to remember him in your prayers.
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