“Coinciding interest opportunism” refers to the growing convergence between far right religious fundamentalism, corporate-fixated neoliberal market fundamentalism, historically revisionist nationalism, and other extremist ideologies in a way that is meant to coincide, co-opt and manipulate each other, either due to common interest or cynical power-building.
In a weird example of coinciding interest opportunism, the anti-abortion group American Life League (ALL) is claiming that the highest levels of the Roman Catholic Church has been infiltrated by communists. While the report was released in October of last year, it’s resurfacing in far right media, lately.
The “communists” in question are the World Social Forum, which is not an organization, but rather an annual meeting between advocacy organizations, NGOs, social movements, anti-poverty initiatives, human rights campaigners and progressives — mostly groups opposed to globalization and poverty — as an alternative to the World Economic Forum. According to ALL, “the problem is that the World Social Forum is an organization dedicated to the spread of Marxism, abortion, and homosexuality.” In addition to those, the group also later cites feminism and ecology as major points of concern.
ALL is outraged that a confederation of 162 Catholic relief, development and social service organizations known as Caritas Internationalis is a member of the WSF, and a few other Catholic charities also participate.
Since the coexistence with womens’ and LGBT groups hasn’t sparked adequate outrage, the campaign is being refocused as an exposé of communist infiltration of the Vatican. At the far right website BarbWire, Cliff Kincaid warns:
“The World Social Forum itself just held another international conference focusing on one aspect of the Sachs agenda: global taxes. The WSF announced the launch of the Global Alliance for Tax Justice, including a statement that “Our vision entails progressive redistributive taxation polices that fund the vital public services, end inequality and poverty, address climate change and lead to sustainable development.”
“… Critics are concerned because of the pope’s several statements indicating hostility to the system of capitalism and free markets…”
This is the latest in coinciding corporate and fundamentalist outrage being leveled at Pope Francis over the issues of poverty and climate change. The irony here is that some of the same groups complaining lately that their religious freedom is being infringed upon are also attempting to micromanage the economic perspectives of religious organizations and charities (suggesting that one cannot be both Christian and socialist), as well as insisting they cut themselves off from networking with groups that aren’t sufficiently identical in thinking.