Posted by: Christine Johnson | August 31, 2009

Open Veins of Latin America: A Good Way to See Our Policies?

On this thread at Domestic Vocation, I insisted that we ought to pray for Ted Kennedy, that I had no problem with him having a Catholic funeral (though I will leave it to people who tortured themselves by watching it to discuss the contents of said funeral), and that it’s useless to throw stones at the man now.
One commenter said she was glad I said such things, then went a step further and said we shouldn’t withhold Communion from pro abortion politicians. I disagree, and quite strongly. I gave my reasons, mostly saying that just because we are all sinners doesn’t mean that some of us ought not present ourselves for Communion; the Church teaches that there is a difference between venial and mortal sins, and those in mortal sin should not receive Holy Communion. Her answer said that businessmen create horrible situations that should be mortal sins, and then gave Open Veins of Latin America as a good source of information. Unfortunately, this book is not much more than Communist propaganda. This thread can deal with that, as I try to keep most politics here instead of at Domestic Vocation. Below are some links about the book.
  • Watching America: Facing the “Open Veins of Latin America” ~~ This link, while favorable to the book and the ideas behind it, clearly shows the book to be a Communist piece. The translator to English was a member of the Communist party in the US after emigrating here from the UK, and left the US in the 1950’s. It also discusses President Obama’s approval of portions of Cuba’s Communist system. (I hope and pray it’s only portions of it!) Here’s a bit from that:

    Putting his political identity aside, as a young intellectual, Obama might be able to resonate with some parts of the book. A few years ago, when talking about Cuba, Obama once confessed that when he became aware, from reading, that Cuba has a good medical science education and medical system, he began to see the country in a new light. Therefore, shortly after he became president, he attempted to mend relations between the U.S. and Cuba. This was apparently not done on a whim.

  • Mona Charen wrote a bit here, mostly detailing Chavez’s totalitarianism in Venezuela. That he gave the book the our president shows that he thinks it’s a good one. That alone makes me worry.
  • This blog brings up that the author’s shining example of what’s good for Latin America is…Castro?

    Galeano’s thesis is that Latin America has provided the fundamental tools–through cash crops and natural resources–for the nations of North America and Europe to grow richer, at the expense of the poorest of the poor of Latin America. He begins with this line:

    The division of labor among nations is […] that some specialize in winning and others in losing.

    It’s a line fraught with understandable anger. And it’s just that anger that infuses every bit of the raw data Galeano uses to tell his story. His conclusion? That Cuba–and communism–have the answer. Ignoring, of course, the fact that Cubans are just as oppressed and poverty stricken as the rest of Latin America.

More is found online, and feel free to add links in the com boxes.

Me? I’m not convinced that it’s a good source. I’ll have to look at Kay’s other link later, but as for this book, I wouldn’t dream of trusting it. For an interesting look at the Church’s history in dealing with natives (specifically American Indians), This Rock magazine had a great article recently. Indeed, the Church has been at work building and attempting to save Western Civilization for quite some time.


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