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Greed vs. Solidarity and Subsidiarity

Of course a person’s training, education and experience are worth a financial compensation, but in America we have fallen into the trap of measuring a person’s human worth according to their financial standing.

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What if we were to stand things on their head and start out with the basic value system that we are going to pay people not as little as we can, but as much as we can? What if, as employers, we were looking for every opportunity to assist our workers rather than expecting them to do everything for us? What if we started with the assumption that we were going to pay our workers enough to have a good life?

—from the blog post Take a 90% Paycut to Give the Workers More Money by Fr. Dwight Longenecker

The problem isn’t income inequality, but greed.

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The best way to address the problem of income inequality is not government programs, but personal virtue combined with the two essential principles of Catholic social teaching: solidarity and subsidiarity.

“Solidarity” means I am my brother’s keeper. Solidarity means we are in this together and that I am responsible not only for myself, but for my family, my neighbor, my fellow Catholic, my fellow man. Solidarity means that I take seriously my own responsibility for the poor man lying on my own doorstep.

“Subsidiarity” is the principle that problems should be solved and initiatives should be taken at the lowest, local level possible.

—from the blog post Income Inequality is Not the Real Problem by Fr. Dwight Longenecker

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