Hugo Chavez: Faithful to Death

shutterstock_63526807There’s an old joke from the Cold War. It went like this: Hardline East German communist Walter Ulbricht (who erected the Berlin Wall) died and went to hell. There, the devil gave him a choice between the socialist sector and the capitalist sector. Devoted to the end, Ulbricht stuck to the faith, saying: “I’ll go to the socialist sector.” “Good choice,” averred the devil. “Over in the capitalist sector, they’re getting the full hellfire treatment. But in the socialist sector, they’ve run out of coal.”

Say what you want of Hugo Chavez, of his tactics, of his beliefs, and (as many are doing) of perhaps where he might be right now, but this much is certain: he stuck to the faith.

Many of us were downright amazed when Chavez, in his late 50s and desperately ill from cancer, opted to go to Cuba for treatment. It was a surefire death sentence. Only the most hopelessly devoted communist would be so naïve. Loaded with vast wealth he stole from his people, Chavez effectively chose acupuncture over the 21st-century healthcare widely available anywhere in the West.

And yet, the Venezuelan dictator clung to his religion. He went to Havana.

Chavez apparently gained some measure of comfort near the aging breast of his dying, beloved Fidel. He had so much in common with Castro, admiring the totalitarian’s unparalleled, unprecedented seizure of power and resources, all in the name of redistribution and “social justice.” Like Fidel, he pilfered enough riches from the ostracized affluent class to make himself one of the world’s wealthiest leaders. As he did, he churned the propaganda, blaming his nation’s every ill on his predecessors and on the alleged criminality of the very same rich—as Fidel has done, as the left generally has done.

A few years back, my wife and I were in Washington meeting with an old friend from grad-school days, a native of Venezuela named Daria. When we introduced her to another acquaintance, she remarked with a sad smile, “I’m from Venezuela. We’re communist now.”

In Chavez’s partial defense—and this isn’t saying much—he never achieved the scales of collectivism and depths of depravity of Fidel Castro, or of the world’s really bad communists. Venezuela didn’t become Cuba or the Soviet Union. Needless to say, Hugo Chavez was no Joe Stalin—even as, remarkably, he died on the 60th anniversary of Stalin’s death.

Nonetheless, like any man of the left, he had his enemy groups, and he used them to full advantage. Some of these assorted villains were flagged in a curious Washington Post obituary which headlined Chavez as a “passionate” albeit “polarizing” figure. What earned him even this slight compliment from the Post? Who knows? The same article noted that Chavez referred to the Catholic Church hierarchy as “devils in vestments.” But perhaps the Post was impressed less with Chavez’s opprobrium for the Catholic Church than his encomiums for Barack Obama.

Of course, Chavez was a big fan of Obama. He made this clear the first year of Obama’s presidency. In an extraordinary statement at the United Nations that September, Chavez sniffed, “It doesn’t smell of sulfur here anymore.” This was a swipe at former President George W. Bush. Waxing almost spiritual, Chavez mused: “It smells of something else. It smells of hope.”

Yes, even to Hugo Chavez, Barack Obama equaled hope; the theological virtue of Obama. The Venezuelan caudillo inspiringly appealed to David Axelrod’s legendary campaign slogan.

And like Obama, Chavez just as quickly jettisoned the words of hope when less-inspiring rhetoric better suited his intentions. He excelled at blaming things on the rich, on profit seekers, on greedy corporations, on nefarious jet-owners and millionaires and billionaires, on banks, on investors, and, of course, on George W. Bush. Unlike Obama, who he spoke of in angelic terms, Chavez called George W. Bush a “devil.”

Chavez often seemed to invoke the devil.

Alinsky-like, Chavez constantly isolated his targets and demonized them, calling them “degenerates,” “squealing pigs,” and “counter-revolutionaries.” It was pure demagoguery.

In this, and more, Hugo Chavez was faithful to the very end. Did he really think he would be healed in Havana? Was there no other hope? Or, in the end, maybe faith was all that Chavez had. He should have learned from millions of Cubans over the last 50-plus years: faith in Fidel leads only to destruction and death.


Mark III Photonics /

Dr. Paul Kengor


Dr. Paul Kengor is professor of political science at Grove City College and executive director of The Center for Vision & Values. His books include “The Crusader: Ronald Reagan and the Fall of Communism” and “Dupes: How America’s Adversaries Have Manipulated Progressives for a Century.”

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  • James H, London

    Continuing the True Faith, the South African public health system is staffed to a large extent by Cuban doctors (the local ones take their degrees and go into private practice or leave the country); it seems symptomatic of a certain ideology that Communist healthcare is the best.

  • pbecke

    You are a sick man worshipping at the altar of depraved US capitalism. Chavez has a greater chance of reaching heaven than you. By a long chalk.

  • Chavez was faithful til’ his death to his perverted interpretation of Roman Catholicism. So maybe after a long life of theft, murder, and adultery, he was longing for a long stint of time in purgatory.

  • Mike

    My research indicates that Chavez refused to loosed Venezuela’s strict abortion laws; so at least he was against killing babies unlike the masonic murderers who rule the developed countries.

  • Mike

    Its funny, why do we never hear a peep from conservative commentators about all the ruthless dictators the US government supports, who steal from and kill their people; and who are considered our friends as long as they agree follow to US neocolonialist policies. I am an honest conservative by the way

  • Mike

    As average Americans we cannot judge the emergent socialism of South America countries. For one thing we in the US do live in a socialist democracy. It is much softer form of socialism than in Venezuela, but nonetheless it exists in the US. Furthermore, any educated and honest person can see why socialism and communism is flourishing in South America. The poor have indeed been murdered and exploited by the European colonists and American corporations who took the land from the aborigines and exported the wealth to the first world. For hundred of years there was little, if any, help for the poor, other than that coming from missionaries and possibly local churches. Now, with their democratic voting power, the poor are throwing the exploiters out.

  • pbecke

    Well said, Mike. Our friend, below, and his ilk, think the Bible is just poetry. They won’t be considered a ‘goat’ and sent to hell. When they’re young, they think they’ll never grow old and die; and when they’re old, they’re so steeped in their sins, it’s too late for their conversion.

    Jesus delivered his Sermon on the Mount and Beatitudes to his own people, the poor, the Anawin, the people Ugo and Fidel did so much to care for, to help them to survive; not the monied people. In fact, we read in the Gospels that Jesus actually rounded on some of bhis followers quite bitterly for following him just to be sure of a s

  • Alex

    I was fortunate to visit Venezuela under Hugo’s rule. The country is a disaster. People fear for their safety there and the country has the highest murder rate of south America, not to take into consideration the popular “secuestro express” or kidnappings. There is so much corruption in the government The only people doing great are the chavistas. Chavez promised but did not delivered, so as far as the idea that he helped the poor you must be kidding…… He turned the country upside down! Wasted the country’s riches by giving it away to his communist sympathizers while the people are lacking the basic things. If he had been a great leader it would be evident after 14 years.!!! Everything is propaganda and lies. People go to jail and rot there and to have a different opinion means you are a traitor. The reason he could not fundamentally transform the country as quickly as Castro did is that the venezuelans learned something from the cubans and decided to stay and fight for their rights. He was full of hate and vengeance. He has done so much harm…. Communism does not embrace christianity….I know I am a cuban refuge!

  • Leftists are beyond depraved. Hugo “nationalized” the banks in Venezuela, then, in one morning rationalized that since the state owned the banks, HE owned the money of the Venezuelan people. Overnight, he robbed his entire country of their hard-earned savings and retirments funds. Our Blessed Mother was right, Communism and those “isms” bordering on it, are EVIL and that which is EVIL is from satan. NO CATHOLIC SHOULD FIND THEMSELVES SUPPORTING LEFTISTS BENT ON IMPOSING SOCIALIST/COMMUNIST AGENDA, NO CATHOLIC.

  • Bob Abu

    They have a cure Cancer in “the West?” This guy is really funny.

  • Bob Abue

    They are on our side. That’s why. What part don’t you understand?

  • Tommy

    Maybe I missed it, but I didn’t hear anyone answer (or ask) ‘why cuba’. Why not ‘in country’ care. Why not go to US or some other country, why not have the best Doc’s at his side, shipped in to help him. You can make all the guesses that health care isn’t worth anything in Venezuela. Perhaps so. Maybe he didn’t want to look like a hypocrit going to the mighty US capitalists . . .
    Many things may have weighed in the decision, but here is the 10,000 lbs weight that was the decision maker
    How Did Hugo Chavez come to power (coup-d’etat attempt that failed but earned him a name). With new found popularity and movmement behind him, we won by legitimate election. But all in all, Coup-d’etat was in the mix.
    Someone tried the same on him, tried and failed at a coup.
    But now, being sick, being basically an invalid for many weeks, I think him and his higher-ups weighed the possibilities.
    If he stayed and someone ran a coup against his admin, it would be complete. There might even be beneficial confusion as to ‘who is in charge’. Chavez, or his stand-in.
    With Chavez out of the country for treatment, it is totally clear that the stand-in is in charge, also if a coup seems successful, they still didn’t get Chavez. That would be a rallying cry for his supporters in Venezuela to fight the coup and bring back the rightful leader. HE would be allowed to carry on trying to arrange that, from Cuba. If he went to the US or some other ‘western’ state, they would either keep him as an exiled deposed leader (and keep him silent) or send him back to face ‘charges’. I find the ‘charges’ less likely as still, its a rallying cry that the people still had hopes of his return.
    I think his choice of Cuba was strictly anti-coup, not ‘staying true to his religion’.

  • vito

    Chavez – one of the word’s very few truly devout Catholic leaders. A great loss

  • vito

    And yes he did remain faithful to death.

    In 2011, in Venezuelan shrine of El Nazareno, in front of the shrine’s centuries-old crucifix, Chávez pleaded:

    “God don’t take me away now. I have much to do for this people. Give me your crown, Jesus; give me your crown since I am ready to bleed. Give me your cross, a hundred crosses, and I will carry them; but please give me life”
    In 2012, during Holy Week, Chávez requested a Mass and anointing of the sick from Cardinal Urosa. During the Mass, Chávez read the first reading and said:
    “Deep inside, I am still the humble altar boy I once was.”
    He also praised the cardinal for his “pastoral kindness”.
    A source from the Catholic Church in Venezuela told the National Catholic Register on the condition of anonymity that Chávez died:
    “As a practicing Catholic, assisted by the sacraments, which he constantly requested in the last period.”

    Unlike some recent American leaders who just pretend to be Christian and envoke their faith only when it supposedly gives them justification to wage yet another bloody war overseas.

    Chavez wanted good thinks for his people, especially the poor, and lived according to his ideals. He failed in some respects, he achieved great success in certain other. He will be loved by believers and freethinkers in his country alike, but not by the greedy.

  • John

    Soooooooooooooo true!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • rosebud

    Like Proverbs 30: 8-9; “Give me neither poverty or riches…” it all comes down to balance. No one can claim that all material wealth comes from evil greed but said wealth can surely corrupt. No one can deny how socialism thwarts personal incentive resulting in advancement impotency, yet no one can deny how those who have advanced society through personal incentive need to use their success for advancing the common good. And just so we don’t get discouraged by the seemingly comlpicated nature of it all (tendency to become a selfish “Workaholic” or a “Liberal Robin Hood”), try living in the moment/ practising the *Presence* of God’s peace; It’s a good “Barometer” in guaging how much energy we should exert one way or the other.

  • pbecke

    What do we read Our Lady saying in her Magnificat:

    ‘God puts forth his arm in strength
    scattering the proud-hearted;
    casts the mighty from their thrones,
    raising the lowly,
    fills the starving with good things,
    sending the rich away empty.
    God protects Israel, his servant,
    remembering his mercy,
    the mercy promised to our forbears,
    for Abraham and his heirs for ever.’

    Mary is evidently referring to what sociologists describe as a ‘division of labour’, albeit in an idiosyncratic context. Do you imagine that it was part of God’s plan that the poor should need rescuing from the predations of the rich? That He had effectively said, ‘You exploit, oppress and rob the poor, and I’ll see justice done for them, see their wrongs righted and their oppressors punished, eventually? Don’t you worry about them in the meantime.’

    No. If the basic Catholic precept that no one is to poor to be able to give something to charity, is true, how much more incumbent is it on the rich? And when such acts are performed through routine tax payments, it makes it easier for us to avoid patting ourselves in the back, not letting our left hand now what the right is doing.

    The reason people have worldly wisdom bestowed on them (what the World is pleased to call, ‘intelligence’, irrespective of the, at best, questionable assumptions, invariably so complex and crucial to our world-view that they chosen by the heart), is in order for them to use that worldly wisdom for the betterment of the lot of the more characteristically spiritual, majority.

    Note Our Lady’s reference to the poor as ‘Israel, his (God’s) servant’. This is a regular theme, throughout the Old Testament, as well as the New. The poor referred to in apposition to virtue, to righteousness, and the rich in apposition to ‘the wicked, the deceitful, the violent’. Why would this not be so? Scripture informs us that it is the poor whom God chose to be rich in faith.

    Also, that where our heart is, there is our treasure, too. People seldom become rich by chance or accident. As worldlings, they actually need more money and material goods than the poor, but the problem has always been that the rich are led not by the best of their number, who are very good, virtuous, righteous people, but by the worst of them, who can never, never, have enough.

    In fact, in the light of the cynicism with which nation states behave, most notably by far, imperial and post-imperial powers, it seems clear that they behave like psychopaths, the billionaires being the puppeteers who pull the strings of the politicians who govern them. The economic Armageddon we appear to be facing is a direct result of their endlessly avaricious ministrations.

    Christianity’s divinely-ordained way has been to avoid coups d’etats and the like, but there comes a time when there will always be men who will say, ‘Enough’s enough’, and resort to violence – inevitably asymmetric, since they are relatively small and powerless in terms of personnel and weaponry.

    The state of Israel was founded, not by the religious Jews, but secular Jews – and let it be said, eventually, by force of arms: freedom-fighters, terrorists. And yet we know that this was part of God’s plan for Israel and the world, for all his people.

    So, it’s not clear cut. We also know that Jesus taught that the tares and worthless fish should be left until Judgment Day, although it is difficult to see how improving the material lot of the poor, should not have been taken up, endorsed, sponsored even by the Christian church, once secularists had initiated the process; instead of which, under the Tridentine dispensation the worst Governments in Christendom were those of Catholic countries, tyrranical right-wing dictatorships. In South America, until quite recently.

  • NYCFiredog

    So, Mike. Who are YOU not giving a peep about? And under Obama, we’re especially silent against the Muslim oppressors. But the Communists are just as precious to Obama and his ilk.

  • NYCFiredog

    Do you mean AFTER he answers for every political prisoner who had the courage to speak against this regime? Do you mean he will be in Heaven AFTER he shut down and arrested the Press who opposed his dictatorship? He will answer to God for every one of them.

  • NYCFiredog

    Is it a soft socialist democracy that is now oppressing the Church and demanding they fund their employees abortions, abortificents, and birth control, in VIOLATION of our First Amendment Rights, GIVEN US BY GOD? Softer evil is still evil.

  • NYCFiredog

    The people of Venezuela can not even FIND labor after he has singlehandedly run the most oil rich nation in the world into the dirt with his Communism. Shall we speak about the Right to Speak. The Right to the Press, and the Right to oppose the Communist dictator in the Press? Shall we speak about the people driven into the dirt? Jesus was no communist. In fact Our Lady warned about the Communists at Fatima in 1917, so don’t go thinking you’re a mouthpiece for Our Lady.

  • NYCFiredog

    No, Chavez’s last words were “I don’t want to die.” “Please don’t let me die” He died a sniveling coward, knowing he was facing the only Judge he could not arrest for going against him and his regime.

  • NYCFiredog

    Here’s what Human Rights International said in just one paragraph about. Chavez. Does THIS sound like a devout Catholic leader? And don’t forget the 2 Billion Dollars he stole from his people. Embracing Abusive GovernmentsChávez also rejected international efforts to promote human rights in other countries. In recent years, Venezuela consistently voted against UN General Assembly resolutions condemning abusive practices in North Korea, Burma, Iran, and Syria. Moreover, Chávez was a vocal supporter of Syria’s Bashar al-Assad, Libya’s Muammar Gaddafi, and Iran’s Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, bestowing upon each of these leaders the “Order of the Liberator,” Venezuela’s highest official honor.
    Under Chávez, Venezuela’s closest ally was Cuba, the only country in Latin America that systematically represses virtually all forms of political dissent. Chávez identified Fidel Castro – who headed Cuba’s repressive government until his health deteriorated in 2006 – as his model and mentor.

  • NYCFiredog

    Dr Paul. The more I read you, the more I like you.

  • pbecke

    Read the parable of Lazarus, and weep for your fate. Like Fidel, Chavez was always besieged by a powerful and murderous right-wing rabble. You have the brass neck to whine about restrictions on the media.

    Unlike your baby, Pinochet, he didn’t have his goons train dogs to rape female prisoners, and generally have members of the prisoners’ families watch as their nearest and dearest were being tortured, no doubt often to death. Or, when feeling more benign, just dropping them int the sea from an aircraft.

  • pbecke

    You bet he will. And he’ll be rewarded for trying to check the wicked BEFORE the Last Judgment.

  • pbecke

    ‘ No one can deny how socialism thwarts personal incentive.

    Not as much as Christ did so unequivocally, notably in his Sermon on the Mount. Unless you are one of the more spiritually-gifted poor, you will only be able to live perpetually in the present, if you take the Sermon on the Mount seriously, rosebud.

    However, I understand to some extent your invocation of a balance between the perfection of indigence and at least being able to support oneself and one’s family in the face of a World hostile to the survival of the poor.

    One thing I did learn online from a young Cuban exile, who would have been a descendant of the original exiles, I believe, is that Fidel confiscated the assets of people on quite modest means, such as school-teachers, as well as the very well off, who had allowed the country effectively to be run by the US mafia.

    That of course was very regrettable and worse than that, of course, to such workers of modest means; but weighed in the balance, far worse crimes, if less visibly dramatic, have been, and are routinely being committed, even in stable societies such as those of the UK and US.

  • NYCFiredog

    You are severely confused by soaking your brain in that Marxist twaddle. Did Lazarus imprison those who did not agree with his beliefs? Did he steal money from his people? Did he run his land into the ground? And WHY do so many people try to escape from Fidel’s paradise in rickety boats risking life and imprisonment? And why does a nation that has to take 3 minute showers with constant power failures need to subsidize such a Castro Commie paradise with oil to keep them from turning into a North Korea? And why does Castro have concentration camps for aids victims if he is such a great guy?

  • laurettas

    I have friends in Venezuela that I have known since 1993, prompting me to have an interest in the events occurring there. When Chavez was running for president the first time, one of my friends called asking what I had been hearing in the US about him. I informed her of the concern that the bishops in Venezuela were expressing about him at the time. After he was elected he made many very negative comments about the bishops and seemed to have disdain for the Church in general. I saw this change dramatically after he was diagnosed with cancer. He may have, and hopefully did die, as a faithful Catholic but that was not his situation for the majority of his presidency.

  • If we’re living in a socialist democracy it is because we are delivering socialists into government power. I don’t know how many times history has to prove that no one can discuss and implement the redistribution of wealth as a state run effort without also discussing and implementing state power. So keep on in this direction my friend and soon we will be suffering the same fate as all people who have ever lived under the force of a government with the power to give and take away. Yes, we Catholics are all suppose to do our share to help the poor and needy but you people sadly interpret that to mean not people reaching out to people but the power and hammer of the state. Maybe it’s just too tempting for you to fantasize about how it would be to live in a society where poverty is easy. Here’s a news flash for you: Nothing is free. We pay for it all. Jesus never said to apply the sickle and hammer to his citizens. He never mentioned state oppression as a means of providing for the needy. He said for each of us to do our share to feed his sheep. He never said only the rich have to feed the poor. Remember the parable of the talents?

  • rosa


  • pbecke

    So, either that is a fabrication – which is normal for our media – or he had at least one traitor at his deathbed. I’m inclined to believe the former, since that is always a certainty, the default position.

  • NYCFiredog

    Sorry to break the news to ya. But yea, he died a coward just like Che. His lst words were whispered to one of his own believers who interpreted as he wanted to stay and fight for his people. You’re both deluded.

  • pbecke

    The talents in the Parable of the Talents refers to charity, the Wedding Garment, the active ingredient of all the virtues; and for the man who showed little of it, what he has will atrophy.

    The pusillanimous character, who ‘deposited’ one talent in a hole in the ground always has me in stitches, when he whines:

    * “Lord, I knew you that you are a hard man, reaping where you did not
    sow, and gathering where you did not scatter. I was afraid, and went
    away and hid your talent in the earth. Behold, you have what is yours.”

    And his Master’s (Jesus’) reply is even more amusing. Instead of denying it, gentle Jesus, meek and mild-like, he retorts:

    “You wicked and slothful servant. You knew that I reap where I didn’t
    sow, and gather where I didn’t scatter. You ought therefore to have
    deposited my money with the bankers, and at my coming I should have
    received back my own with interest. Take away therefore the talent from
    him, and give it to him who has the ten talents. For to everyone who has
    will be given, and he will have abundance, but from him who doesn’t
    have, even that which he has will be taken away. Throw out the
    unprofitable servant into the outer darkness, where there will be
    weeping and gnashing of teeth.”

    Notice that his fate is the same as that of the wedding guest, who was not wearing a wedding garment, again, charity.

    *Unfortunately, I can vouch for this personally… though I know it was for my own good, in the long run!

  • pbecke

    I agree with that 100%. Though I don’t consider it a soft Socialist democracy; and nor would you, if you were one of the millions of foetuses killed.

    If the Church had been in the vanguard, instead of the rear-guard of improving the dire, economic lot of the poor, Socialism would never have arisen. Socialists have simply used the Second Commandment as a front, where the right-wing, (even fascist governments condoned by the Church historically until quite recently, and publicly apologised for by Pope Francis), used the First Commandment, bringing Christianity into scandal and disrepute among the poor; the poor, who, we are assured by James, are those chosen by God to be rich in faith.

  • pbecke

    First, you write down a list for me of the bad things perpetrated by the US on its own people (don’t even bother with its derelictions, or the bad things it does abroad). How about that? We’ll all be able to see how observant you really are.

  • NYCFiredog

    Oh there are many things our own Government is doing that is very un-nerving, including, refusing to deny they would use Drones to kill Americans on American soil, and incrementally moving against the Rights given us under our Constitution, chipping away on Freedom of Speech, and Freedom of Religion. But THIS is not about our Government, it is about Chavez and his Marxist oppression and destruction of Venezuela’s economy, and Press, and any opposition to him and his doctrine. You take the usual liberal line of attacking elsewhere to divert attention to the one you are defending. CAN you defend Chavez by pointing to blame our own Government is doing? They are very separate and different. NOW, give me a direct refutation to Chavez’s crimes, even outlined by Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch.

  • pbecke

    You seem foolish almost beyond belief. Of COURSE, the details are different! However, That is of the most sovereign irrelevance.

    The excellent reason why I am directing your attention to your own country (I don’t need to be told which), is to point out to you that the faults of Chavez’s regime (completely setting aside the immense credit side of the balance-sheet of his having been ‘father of the poor’ in that country), pale into insignificance, in comparison. And many you would call crimes, to me were equitable measures taken against the real criminals of that poor country.

    In short it is an imperfect world, and if you think I have nothing better to do that to argue with someone who speaks of the inordinate wealth to the few as, the country’s ‘economy’, you’ve got another think coming.

    That country, the whole of Latin America, in fact, has been under siege by the Pentagon and the School of the Americas for a long, long time. Do you really think Chavez was being allowed to function even half-properly as its leader, without the threat from its own one percenters, incited and funded by the US?

    This says it all: ‘…Oh there are many things our own Government is doing that is very
    un-nerving, including, refusing to deny they would use Drones to kill
    Americans on American soil,…’

    And you have the brass neck to whine about media restrictions in Venezuela!

  • NYCFiredog

    Tyrant steals 2 BILLION DOLLARS from his people, and you call him “The Father of the Poor” Something tells me you won’t be able to discern the dichotomy in this absurd claim. Not a very successful diversion of attention away from your Commie tyrant onto the U.S. Chavez = to “Father of the Poor” as Ahmadinijihad is to Gandhi of the Middle East. But, now, I’m betting on the occupants of the Tyrant parts of Hell, or the warmer areas of Purgatory. Like they say, you can’t take it with ya. Who IS getting that 2 BILLION $ anyway?

  • Fear Feasa

    This site calls itself “Catholic Exchange”; would Our Lord Jesus Christ have written such a hate-filled article as this?

  • My 91 year-old father taught me a very simple standard to judge governments very long ago: “If the Berlin wall came down, which way would the people go?” Liberals constantly support communist tyrants by listing the faults of the non-communist governments they replace and refuse to look at the transgressions these communist tyrants inflict on their people and the world. Stalin and Mao were responsible for 30 million and 50 million murders in their own time in the name of saving the people. I in no way believe that these other governments did not have faults but to view these communists governments as being an improvement requires one to ignore my father’s simple standard.

  • Richard III

    Exactly. Money is NOT the root of all evil, LOVE of money is.

  • Richard III

    Where’s the hate?

  • Richard III

    I’d be careful here, pbecke, the people wreaking havoc in the American government are nearly all also the ones who admire Chavez and Castro and are in turn admired by the above.

  • Richard III

    In a way, he is the Father of the Poor in the sense that he took the people’s money and thereby impoverished them.

  • Paul

    The banks would have been so much more beneficial to all, if they had been left in private hands like those in the US, wouldn’t they, so that they could bring the world economy to the brink of catastrophe?

    Good point. Go to the top of the class.

  • Paul

    The concluding intercession in today’s Morning prayers in the Divine Office:

    ‘(Lord) End the rebellion within our hearts; – make us generous and willing to share.’

    I think our esteemed Mr Kengor and some of you would like to pass on that one, wouldn’t you? Or do you think putting a few pennies in the poor-box fits the bill?

  • Paul

    Wrong: the two are linked. ‘Where your treasure is, there your heart is.’ Are you trying to teach Christ, now?

  • Richard III

    No, I’m not trying to say I’m more all-knowing than God, I just meant that money, in and of itself, is morally indifferent, neither good nor evil. It can be used for bad purposes and for good ones, but bad is more likely when there’s any amount of money-love involved. You’re right that you can’t have love of money without money to love, but having money doesn’t necessarily seduce you, so to speak.

  • pbecke

    Sure! Just like Che Guevara. You’re nuts, believing that 100% predictable. CIA trash-talk.

  • NYCFiredog

    Pbecke—Are you still defending the very dead Che and his more recently but still very dead disciple that ruined the wealth and Liberty of Venezuela? That, what you call trash talk, was from the Bolivian Army that put down that cowardly Marxist dog, Che. “Please don’t kill me!!! I”m worth much more to you alive than dead!!!”

    Why do you idolize Marxist dictators that crush the Liberty of his own people? An idolizer of a Marxist mass murderer like Che and Castro?

  • NYCFiredog

    We are all stripped of our egos and defenses at death, especially those that go through illness. And the realization that we are leaving all of our defenses and are facing our eternity is terrifying, and hopefully (I do hope he found salvation at the end by renouncing his sins and turning to God), he did not smell sulfur as he wished on G W Bush. But in the end, all earthly power is gone and the Cuban Doctors, Castro or the devil himself can’t do a damn thing.