It has been said by many analysts and economists that the Wall Street miscues (to put it mildly) which led to massive bailouts and global fallout, was the result of, plain and simple, greed. In his encyclical, Pope Benedict XVI calls for a global economy based on God-centered ethics, rather than on profit.
This is bound to upset some conservatives, as the Pope calls for more, rather than less regulation. In part of the encyclical, in fact, Pope Benedict XVI calls for a global authority:
To manage the global economy; to revive economies hit by the crisis; to avoid any deterioration of the present crisis and the greater imbalances that would result; to bring about integral and timely disarmament, food security and peace; to guarantee the protection of the environment and to regulate migration: for all this, there is urgent need of a true world political authority, as my predecessor Blessed John XXIII indicated some years ago.In fact, I can hear conservatives crying "socialism!" over this next statement. The pope said every economic decision has a moral consequence and called for "redistribution of wealth."
Such an authority would need to be regulated by law, to observe consistently the principles of subsidiarity and solidarity, to seek to establish the common good, and to make a commitment to securing authentic integral human development inspired by the values of charity in truth.
Furthermore, such an authority would need to be universally recognized and to be vested with the effective power to ensure security for all, regard for justice, and respect for rights.
Lowering the level of protection accorded to the rights of workers, or abandoning mechanisms of wealth redistribution in order to increase the country's international competitiveness, hinder the achievement of lasting development. Moreover, the human consequences of current tendencies towards a short-term economy — sometimes very short-term — need to be carefully evaluated.This is interesting, because it has been said by many, including me, that corporations and even governments focus on the short-term, and ignore long-term consequences.
The full English translation of the Pope's encyclical can be found here.