From the beginning, the word was out that as Pope Benedict XVI, Joseph Ratzinger would be a conservative hard-liner. In some ways that's turned out to be the case. The Catholic Church's views on such issues as women in the priesthood, marriage and contraception isn't likely to change under his stewardship. His reevaluation of the Latin Mass has some crying and moaning that he is even more right-wing than anyone expected.
I find myself taking a second look at some of my notions and beliefs viz a viz the right/left because of some statements coming from Benedict XVI. Rather than being the hard rightist than some have imagined, some of his statements lean towards the far left.
He has spoken on the evil of unbridled capitalism and now, he has taken up the challenge of dealing with climate change as a moral obligation . I've no doubt that the problems facing countries such as Philippines cannot be solved by pure Capitalism.Capitalism may enable some to be "lifted up by their bootstraps" but the poor must first have bootstraps. While speaking out against the excesses of Capitalism , the Pope was quick to point out that Marxism is not the answer.
There's been a great deal written from Conservatives on the idea that "global warming" was more anti-capitalism and less good science. I've been leaning that way , but now with Pope Benedict's guidance, I'm taking a second look at this right/left division of my world view.