On 'World Day of the Poor,' the pope's fellow Argentinians vote themselves out of poverty
In the Vatican, Pope Francis declared Sunday the "World Day of the Poor," exhorting for the care for the poor and the needy.
It was a fine Catholic message, rooted in traditional Gospel teachings. His motive is to help the poor be less poor.
The pope even called poverty a "scandal" in a tweet, warning those who didn't help the poor that there would be hell to pay.
Poverty is a scandal. When the Lord returns, he will settle accounts with us. Let us #PrayTogether that each of us, according to the gift we received and the mission entrusted to us, may strive “to make charity bear fruit” and draw near to some poor person.— Pope Francis (@Pontifex) November 19, 2023
He then laid out a banquet for the poor.
It was all well and good, and undoubtedly done with the best of intentions.
But over in his homeland of Argentina, something else was happening and yes, it was about the poor. Some 40% of the population there has now fallen into poverty.
Instead of voting for the socialist candidate the pope clearly favored when he warned about "populists" and "outsiders" in previous weeks, these very poor people decisively voted to help themselves be less poor, by electing Javier Milei.
It was ironic because Milei is a critic of the pope, whom he considers a socialist, and ran for election on a vow -- and a powerful program -- to kill off poverty.
What a message to the pope on that day, the day he declared the "World Day of the Poor." The poor just told the pope what actually helped.
The poor of the pope's concern opted not for more handouts, but voted not be poor anymore.
This isn't some mythical delusion of theirs.
Milei ran on an open and transparent plan to dollarize his country and get rid of the lousy, trashy, always mismanaged peso, which socialist governments have printed up with alacrity to fund their big government spending sprees.
For decades, socialist governments have claimed they spent what they spent was all to help "the poor." But the poor weren't fooled this time. Socialists never help the poor. They only help themselves -- by creating more poor people.
The poor, voted 'no' to socialism and 'yes' to Milei -- and they were his strongest supporters.
Obviously, they wanted something more than a handout.
They voted against their impoverishers, the ruling socialists, the creators of hunger and want, and presumably the ones the pope said would have hell to pay at the final judgment, though I am not sure he realized it.
What a thing to be a fly on the wall in the Vatican as some flunky told the pope the news that Milei was elected. The pope is not an idiot, and would know very well who in his country voted for Milei and why.
Right now there's an intellectual battlefield going on in the world of economics, where swamp and establishment types claim that Milei's plan for dollarization in Argentina won't work. They sign long letters and imagine that their herd thinking "proves" them right.
But they are not right. Economist Steve Hanke has carefully studied the multiple success stories in Latin America of nations that lifted themselves out of poverty based on dollarization -- Panama, El Salvador, Ecuador, et al.
In every instance, dollarization cleans up the poverty left by socialists and gives ordinary people a fighting chance of saving money and building wealth and turning it into capital for investments, which is where prosperity actually comes from.
The message sent by the poor of Argentina is that socialism creates poverty.
For them to send a surprise message to the pope on his own 'world day of the poor' is a powerful message indeed about the value of capitalism in killing off poverty and helping the poor.
The next president of Argentina hates socialism.— Citizen Free Press (@CitizenFreePres) November 19, 2023
Javier Milei: "Socialism is always and everywhere a violent, murderous, impoverishing phenomenon." pic.twitter.com/U055prd6OT
Pope John Paul II understood this very well.
The current pope still has a learning curve -- which he can beat if he will listen to his own impoverished countrymen, who have a very good idea about how to help the poor.
This isn't to say that Catholics and other Christians shouldn't help the poor on an individual level.
But it does say that on a systemic level, poverty can be created by the state when socialism is involved, and poverty can be eliminated by the state when capitalism is employed.
More prosperity means more money around to help the truly needy. Anything else is Venezuela, where everyone (other than the ruling party elite) is impoverished and nobody can help anyone else even if they want to. The only thing people can do is flee.
That's not the story in Argentina right now. Argentinians voted to help the poor by electing Milei. And as the pope has said, it will be bad stuff at the pearly gates for those who don't help the poor. Socialists can look in the mirror.
Image: Twitter screen shot