The Pope constantly warns against ideology, and yet he is the most ideological of popes, His ideology is that of the contemporary Left on most issues, including immigration, ecology and economics. He rarely critiques Leftist governments, while he regularly does so governments perceived as right of center. There are signs that his ideology is wearing out its welcome in South America. From Yascha Mounk writing in The Atlantic:
To secure his reelection in the first round of the elections, on October 20, he needed to either win a majority of the vote, or lead his closest challenger by at least 10 percent. As the night wore on, and the state’s official electoral commission updated results in real time, it became more and more clear that he would fall far short of that goal.
That’s when the vote tally suddenly froze. For 24 hours, the website of Bolivia’s electoral commission offered no more updates. Then the official result was finally announced: Morales had supposedly won 47.1 percent to Carlos Mesa’s 35.5 percent, winning the election outright.
The strong circumstantial evidence of vote tampering succeeded in inspiring what years of more subtle attacks on democratic institutions had failed to do: Millions of Bolivians went out into the streets to demand a fair election. They were threatened and beaten by pro-government gangs. Yet the public mood steadily swung against Morales. Parts of Bolivia’s police and military made clear that they would no longer be willing to do his violent bidding.
When an independent observer mission from the Organization of American States published its audit of the election yesterday, the game was finally up. After the OAS announced that there had been “clear manipulations” of the vote in a scathing report, Morales agreed to new elections. A few hours later, as scores of his own allies started to abandon the sinking ship, he resigned from office. Though the future of Bolivian democracy still remains radically uncertain, this is a momentous turning point: one of the first times in recent memory that an authoritarian populist has been forced to vacate his office, because his own compatriots would not stand for his abuses.
Morales’s departure from office marks both a sea change in Latin American politics and a stinging rebuke to the naïveté of parts of the Western left. Even though there had always been strong evidence of their anti-democratic leanings, new socialist leaders such as Hugo Chávez in Venezuela and Morales in Bolivia were widely celebrated throughout the first decade of the 21st century as the future face of Latin America.
Now virtually nothing remains of their erstwhile appeal. Chávez and his successor, Nicolás Maduro, have made Venezuela deeply authoritarian and shockingly poor. Meanwhile, the Bolivian people have come out in great numbers to stop Morales from violently crushing their protests. As one of the most famous slogans of the Latin American left holds, El pueblo unido jamás será vencido: The people united will never be defeated.
From east to west, and south to north, the dream of Latin America’s so-called pink wave has turned into a nightmare. And the many scholars, writers, and politicians who have for years sung the praises of aspiring dictators like Maduro and Morales should not be easily forgiven for sacrificing the rights of distant people on the altar of their rigid ideology.
Go here to read the rest. I expect this to impact the Pope little. Like most true ideologues, the Pope has a tendency to ignore reality when it doesn’t comport with his beliefs.