Today's Melissa Harris-Perry show on MSNBC, with Joy Reid guest-hosting, displayed a "Pope" poster of Pope Francis in the style of Shepard Fairey's "Hope" poster of Barack Obama made famous in 2008.
The show featured a long segment analyzing the Pope's critique of capitalism. What's the message of the poster and of MSNBC's decision to display it? That Pope Francis and Barack Obama share a critique of capitalism? That Barack Obama is himself a Pope-like figure? Something else? View the video after the jump.
Please share your thoughts of what the poster might represent to MSNBC.
Note: not that many NB readers were likely enthralled by the "Hope" poster back in 2008, but looking at it now, what are your thoughts? Had there ever previously been an American presidential campaign poster transforming a political candidate into a cult figure?
REV. PAUL RAUSENBUSH: And [Pope Francis] points the finger at capitalis, and says, you have to look at this. What I think is interesting is you don't have to be a Marxist to critique capitalism. In some ways we're seeing with Rush Limbaugh and others an idolatry of capitalism. I think what Pope Francis is looking at and saying is we have to do better.
PROF. MICHAEL PEPPARD:Getting back to John Paul II, the ideology that John Paul II saw consuming the world was communism. And Francis sees the ideology consuming the world as being a free-market capitalist idea is becoming a mindset that governs everything. So the Catholic world-view he's trying to put forward is people are more than the sum total of their economic indicators. They're more than a sum total of market forces. He's trying to lead to humanization.
JOY REID: Right, and that sounds like a direct challenge, TOsort of the capitalism is a religion in this country.