Laudato Si 178: Instant Gratification

Earth from Apollo 8The encyclical letter Laudato Si is available here on the Vatican website.

178. A politics concerned with immediate results, supported by consumerist sectors of the population, is driven to produce short-term growth.

The flaw is not only with politicians, but also media interests who sell product in connection with reporting on sensational events.

In response to electoral interests, governments are reluctant to upset the public with measures which could affect the level of consumption or create risks for foreign investment. The myopia of power politics delays the inclusion of a far-sighted environmental agenda within the overall agenda of governments. Thus we forget that “time is greater than space”,[Evangelii Gaudium 222] that we are always more effective when we generate processes rather than holding on to positions of power. True statecraft is manifest when, in difficult times, we uphold high principles and think of the long-term common good. Political powers do not find it easy to assume this duty in the work of nation-building.

Certainly they don’t. And more: they invent excuses not to do so.

About catholicsensibility

Todd lives in the Pacific Northwest, serving a Catholic parish as a lay minister.
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2 Responses to Laudato Si 178: Instant Gratification

  1. Liam says:

    They don’t invent excuses so much as provide rationalizations for votes given or omitted by the electorate. For example, in America, it may be fairly said that the federal electorate purposefully keeps government divided in such a way as to prevent fundamental changes that would be desired by the more ideologically pure wings of each main political party.

  2. Liam says:

    PS: I realize you’re not an anniversary guy, but today’s Jubilee marks the 50th anniversary of the closing of Vatican II.

    (And Sunday was the 150th anniversary of the ratification of the Thirteenth Amendment to the US Constitution.)

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