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Is the Pope capitalist?

Pope Francis kisses a child as he arrives on his pope-mobile for his weekly general audience in St. Peter's Square at the Vatican, Wednesday, Nov. 27, 2013. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino)

Pope Francis has issued a 224 page Papal Exhortation – setting out his vision for the church. On CNN Vatican analyst John Allen pointed out a lot of it is familiar Catholic doctrine.

“It’s not that everything is up for grabs. He says that on women priests and abortions – things are not going to change.”

Which seems like a rebuke to bishops who have threatened to turn away pro-choice politicians at the communion rail.

He also says Christians “should embrace Muslims with affection and respect in the same way that we hope and ask to be respected in countries of Islamic tradition.”

But then he goes on to economics – one of this quotes in particular caught the interest of the business types on CNBC, “How can it be that it is not a news item when an elderly homeless person dies of exposure, but it is news when the stock market loses two points.”

But he doesn’t stop there. He writes:

“Human beings are themselves considered consumer goods to be used and then discarded. We have created a “disposable” culture which is now spreading. We threat people as leftovers,” he says.

But his harshest words are reserved for capitalism and consumerism.

“Some people continue to defend trickle-down theories which assume that economic growth, encouraged by a free market, will inevitably succeed in bringing about greater justice and inclusiveness in the world. This opinion, which has never been confirmed by the facts, expresses a crude and naive trust in the goodness of those wielding economic power.”

“The culture of prosperity deadens us.” “Man is reduced to one of his needs alone: consumption.”

A strong message: I wonder if it’ll sink in.

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