Saturday, January 28, 2012

The Money Quote On Incompetence of Pope Benedict 's Aides At Time

I linked this John Allen piece with other links on what the matter of what some call the Vatican "Corruption" Scandal we are dealing with this week.

John Allen has perhaps the money quote of Benedict's Pontificate as to the people that advise Pope Benedict and carry out ( we hope ) his wishes. I bold the money quote at the end of this excerpt which I contend at times can apply to other matters:

..In truth, money management is one of the few areas in which Benedict XVI has actually taken a strong interest in terms of internal administration. Rocked by a series of scandals, including the 2010 seizure of $30 million in Vatican Bank assets for allegedly violating European money-laundering protocols, Benedict created a new Financial Information Authority in December 2010 with the power to oversee the transactions of every department in the Vatican. Given the notoriously compartmentalized culture of the place, this amounts to a real revolution.
Benedict has also directed the Vatican to come into compliance with international norms on financial transparency. Ironically, the same day the Viganò story broke, the Vatican announced it had ratified three U.N. conventions intended to curb illegal currency flows and transactions around the globe.

In part, these efforts reflect a realization by Benedict XVI that he can't credibly preach to the outside world about the need for greater ethics in the economy, as he has repeatedly done, if the perception is that he doesn't have his own house in order.
Why, then, if Benedict is committed to glasnost, would Viganò be shipped off -- especially in light of the mixed signal it inevitably sends?

Most Vatican-watchers believe the answer lies in Bertone, whom everyone admires as a sincere and affable guy, but who's also been a decidedly mixed bag as an administrator. In this case, insiders say Bertone was persuaded that Viganò was disruptive, and thus fell back on the classic Vatican logic of "promoting to remove" without adequate consideration of how that move would look. incompetence

At a bare minimum, Bertone had to know since October that Viganò's correspondence with the pope, which was widely alluded to at the time, amounted to a ticking time-bomb. That no steps were taken to get ahead of the story thus represents yet another chapter in the checkered PR record of the last six years.

In the Middle Ages, alchemists sought to turn lead into gold. Some of Benedict's aides actually seem to have a genius for turning potential public relations gold, in this case Benedict's impressive financial reforms, into lead.

1 comment:

Kurt said...

"..and thus fell back on the classic Vatican logic of "promoting to remove""

For which the Catholics of St. Louis are very grateful! :)