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Showing posts from March, 2018

Trade Unions and the Catholic Church

trade Unions and the Catholic Church         Gerry O'Shea In the early 20th century, the Catholic church was strongly in favor of the development of trade unions, a major controversial public issue at that time. Pope Leo's encyclical Rerum Novarum, which was promulgated in 1891, vigorously promoted the right of workers to organize and negotiate their wages and terms of employment. Employers used every trick in the book - fair and foul - to prevent   workers   from having an organized voice. Employees often looked to Rome for support, and every pope since Leo has affirmed   that workers   have a clear moral right to union representation.   Mike Quill, the outstanding Kerry man who founded the Transport Workers' Union with help from the Communist Party in the 1930's, laced his speeches with references to   papal statements of support for workers' rights. Pope Francis has confronted the conservative argument that the best economic arrangement for worker

Just Imagine

Just Imagine             Gerry O'Shea Just imagine the outrage on the political right, If a Democratic President called his attorney general an idiot and a fool, mocking his appearance, comparing him to the clownish Mr. Magoo,   because the AG wouldn't illegally protect him and his family rather than do his sworn duty according to the constitution. If a well-researched story claiming that, let us say, one of Obama's lawyers paid a named prostitute $130,000 a few days before the presidential election to buy her silence, just imagine how he would be trashed by the Christian fundamentalist leaders inside and outside Washington. They would hold their noses while decrying the breakdown of the whole moral order. Think of the giggling by Paul Ryan and company if a Democratic president, who had evaded service in Vietnam by getting five deferments because of a faulty heel, proclaimed his bravery by asserting, with a straight face, that if he was in the vicinity when stu