Wednesday 19 September 2018

Two Archbishops and the Dalai Lama

The Archbishop [of Canterbury]’s background is, rather unusually for a clergyman, in business, since he worked as an oil executive until the late 1980s. So it is unlikely that he is altogether unaware of these straightforward economic truths. Unfortunately, he has failed to grasp that inequality and poverty are reduced by markets, and that the real examples of exploitation and injustice that he notes are largely the products of attempts to subvert them, either by corporate distortions, government interventions, or discredited socialist economic plans.

He might take a lesson from the remaining Archbishop of Canterbury who was murdered, and whom I missed out from the earlier list. In 1381, Simon Sudbury was dragged out of the Tower of London and on nearby Tower Hill had his head hacked off by a mob. His offence was that he had approved of the introduction of more taxes.

Andrew McKie

[Cardinal] Wuerl’s defense is that he is not an evil man who looked the other way about the behavior of a known sexual predator, but merely an incompetent dolt. And Wuerl

seems to think that being guilty of gross incompetence should entitle him to keep his job. A responsible leader of good character would have walked away in disgrace the moment he learned of these scandals. Wuerl’s first public comment on the McCarrick story was to say, “I don’t think this is some massive, massive crisis.”

Jonathan V. Last 

[The Dalai Lama's] comments came during a visit to Malmo, Sweden. In 2015, that country added an extra 2 per cent to its population through migration. So the question of how many people Europe should take in and when some limit might be reached is especially pertinent there. For his part the Dalai Lama advised his audience to “Receive them, help them, educate them. But ultimately they should develop their own country.” Worse was that the Nobel prize-winning Buddhist leader continued: “Europe belongs to the Europeans”.

As it happens, on this occasion I find myself broadly in agreement with the Dalai Lama, though wouldn’t have put things quite so bluntly. It is best that Europe does not become the home for everyone in the world who makes it here. Societies that are fundamentally altered without the consent of their peoples will be hard-pushed to remain orderly or harmonious. And it is by no means obvious that the best solution for the developing world is for their most talented and driven people to come to Europe and scratch out a living on the edges of our legal economy.

Of course polls show that most Europeans agree with the Dalai Lama. Yet few people are lucky enough to actually be the Dalai Lama. So the recognition grows that what is tolerated from one mouth will not be tolerated from another. And the question of who is allowed to speak basic truths in our societies ferments away.

Douglas Murray

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