Pope Francis is touring his native Latin America and on Thursday unleashed a blistering attack on free-reign modern capitalism, drawing the ire of persistent critic and conservative radio personality, Rush Limbaugh.
In a talk in Bolivia, Francis quoted 4th Century Greek bishop, Basil of Caesarea, and called the unfettered pursuit of money the “dung of the devil.”
This fueled an angry tirade by Limbaugh. In an audio clip procured by Media Matters, he says:
“Have you ever heard of unfettered communism? You ever heard of unfettered Marxism? What is this unfettered capitalism? It’s just more bastardization of language to denigrate the greatest economic system yet devised that creates prosperity for the most. And opportunity for everybody! And because it does that, it must be reviled, it must be impugned, it must be destroyed so you put the word unfettered in front of it.”
And that means “unregulated,” Limbaugh went on, adopting a mocking voice. “It has to be regulated, because capitalism is so unfair that it has to be regulated in order to make sure that the rich don’t just steal and take everything.”
He went on to rant:
Well there isn’t any unfettered capitalism. And there hasn’t been any unfettered capitalism, in I don’t know how long, if ever! But we do not have capital–capitalism is not why the United States is in a quagmire… Barack Obama and the policies of his and the Democrat Party are why this country is stagnating right now.
He then launched into an invective against President Obama saying he is “not a capitalist” and was only elected because he is African-American.
In Bolivia, Francis’ remarks included apologizing to indigenous people for the brutality they suffered at the hands of the Catholic church and blasting the economic and environmental injustices that happen as a result of the current global capitalist system.
“This system is by now intolerable: farm workers find it intolerable, laborers find it intolerable, communities find it intolerable, peoples find it intolerable. The earth itself – our sister, Mother Earth, as Saint Francis would say – also finds it intolerable,” the pope said, according to the Guardian.
Listen to Limbaugh’s audio via Media Matters here: