Wednesday, April 22, 2020

Defrauding Workers of Just Wages, the Topic of New Encyclical "Intentio Est"

Jean DuBois

PATRIARCHAL SEE 22 April 2020 (ORCNS) - Archfather Don Rutherford released a Patriarchal Encyclical today entitled Intentio Est ("Intent is") regarding the defrauding of worker wages due to economic shutdown resulting from global government responses to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Archfather stated that this situation is pushing the world toward the serious possibility of one of the greatest humanitarian crises in history. Read the full text below: 


Intentio Est

Patriarchal Encyclical on the Defrauding of Worker Wages Due to Economic Shutdown
Resulting from Global Government Responses to the COVID-19 Pandemic

22 April A.D. 2020 

To the Christian Faithful Around the World 


     Intent is the most essential factor in determining whether an action is right or wrong. An act with a proposed good end that requires an evil act renders that act immoral. We speak in this case of the situation facing workers around the world due to economic shutdown imposed by governments during the COVID-19 pandemic. We spoke earlier regarding the humanitarian impact of such responses, which placed and continue to place hundreds of millions of people in severe peril, including risk to their lives through loss of wages. Indeed, defrauding workers of their just wages is counted among those sins crying to Heaven for vengeance. That is precisely what governments have done by forcefully shutting down large segments of their economies under the supposed justification of saving lives. However, as We have said before, it is not a question of lives versus money, but lives versus lives, for peoples’ lives are being robbed through artificially not being permitted to work. It is a basic right of mankind to provide for himself and for his family. To prevent workers from earning their just wages, particularly over a long period or indefinite period, under the stated purpose of saving lives may have a good stated end purpose, but nevertheless requires doing evil in the process, thereby rendering the overall act immoral. 

     The government responses around the world have divided workers into broad categories called “essential” and “non-essential,” arbitrarily defined by the state. These designations in this case wrongly imply that the right to work is justly held by one set of workers and not another. It wrongly permits one group to work for their daily bread and consigns another group to spend down what savings they may have and/or be dependent upon charity or payments from the public treasury. Such workers are robbed of the dignity of providing for themselves and the ability to carry out their just work in freedom. 

     The government responses around the world have furthermore divided workers into four main groups. The first are the upper-level executives, professionals, and major corporations. They have more resources and are more likely to weather the economic storm. Indeed, they may even profit from it. The second are the essential workers and essential businesses, as arbitrarily defined by the state, whom We have just mentioned previously. They can continue earning their wages and likewise may be able to profit from the situation. The third and fourth groups are small businesses deemed non-essential and workers deemed non-essential. Though all groups could easily be defrauded of just wages, it is the third and fourth groups who are in the most peril. They are the most vulnerable and most likely to suffer from the public choice to shut down the economy. The businesses are in serious risk of bankruptcy, lost of life savings of their owners, and loss of collateral property justly gained through free labour. Even if they are compensated and made reasonably whole by the state, which is highly unlikely and impracticable except perhaps for the shortest of shut downs, such compensation does not render a disordered act morally correct. Truly it is a sin committed against at least hundreds of millions of people around the world, a sin crying out to Heaven for vengeance! 

     Due to this situation as outlined here, the world is heading rapidly towards the strong possibility of the greatest humanitarian crisis in recent history. The time to act morally for good is now. We, therefore, call upon all the faithful of the world to work to encourage governments to end their forced economic shut down, but only through legitimate and moral means, for to do otherwise would likewise be of the same nature of morally disordered act of which We rightly accuse the governments. Similarly, We call upon the governments of the world to consider these matters and end their forced economic shut down, restoring the dignity and freedom to work for daily bread, to work for their very lives, that is the right of all men and women. 

Ego Archipater R.