Stalin was famously dismissive of the Pope, demanding to know how many armed divisions he could command. But Catholicism has outlasted both communism and socialism. Although the religion's critics are right to point to the paradox of its championing of the poor with its own love of the good life, there is an integrity and spirituality about its purpose that even an agnostic like me has to concede.
The church, like New Labour, is careful not to be anti-business or anti-capital. But where New Labour is silent, Catholics are prepared to mount a challenge. They want decent wages; more autonomy and dignity at work; they want the rich to accept obligations to promote the common good; firms to recognise that there is only any morality to profit making if it is as a consequence of delivering a declared economic purpose - to manufacture a great car, build a safe plane or whatever. - Will Hutton, The Observer (click below for full article)