Maybe my Bipolar Disorder helps me to better understand “the Great Bipolar Catholicism” he refers to that so many seem to misunderstand. I would say that it does, though perhaps not in the way you might think. In the avoidance of extremes on both ends, we find the truth, and life in Christ. It is in the avoidance of extremes that I find the truth of my dignity that keeps me from committing suicide during a mixed state episode. In like manner, it is in the avoidance of extremes in Catholic social teaching that we find the truth of human dignity for all.
Too many get caught up in “either/or” thinking. This holds true with some who want to push subsidiarity over solidarity, or vice versa. Catholics would do well to understand the dangers of “either/or” thinking in studying their Faith. “Both/And” instead of “either/or” permeates our Faith across the board, and most especially in Catholic social teaching. Catholics are “both/and” people, not “either/or.”
I believe that there is much to like in Paul Ryan’s philosophy but also there are some things to reject. For example, to expect us to assume that the wealthy will automatically care for the poor if there is no government involvement seems rather absurd, and yet Ryan seems to be operating on that assumption. Solidarity will not come without government involvement today, particularly given the corruption in society. The poor cannot pay the debt our country is in, unless they are given jobs, and despite the fact that there is a great deal of wealth in America, it is not being used to create jobs. If the wealthy would rather create jobs than pay taxes that go to entitlements, why haven’t they been doing it?
Most people agree with me on that, according to a new poll.
As the income gap between rich and poor widens, a majority of Americans say the growing divide is bad for the country and believe that wealthy people are paying too little in taxes, according to a new survey.
The poll released Monday by the Pew Research Center points to a particular challenge for Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, whose party’s policies are viewed by a wide majority as favoring the rich over the middle class and poor.
The poll found that many Americans believe rich people to be intelligent and hardworking but also greedy and less honest than the average American. Nearly six in 10, or 58 percent, say the rich don’t pay enough in taxes, while 26 percent believe the rich pay their fair share and 8 percent say they pay too much.
Suffice it to say, Father Barron’s thinking on the matter mirrors my own. I supported Rick Santorum for president despite his support for the Ryan plan because he understands the main reason for government dependency is the breakdown of the family, and because of his manufacturing plan which provided a financial incentive for the wealthy to create real jobs for the poor.
I look forward to his remarks at the Republican convention tonight which, as I understand it, will focus on the work requirement for welfare. It’s a shame we don’t have more good paying jobs for the poor to become taxpayers. I hope that Republicans are right that the wealthy will create jobs eventually, but I’m not really holding my breath for that to happen without Rick Santorum’s manufacturing plan in place.