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Debunking Tom Woods’ “Catholic” Austrian economics

October 21, 2012
Father James Sadowsky, SJ

Father James Sadowsky, the Jesuit “grey eminence” behind Murray Rothbard and Tom Woods

By all appearances, Thomas Woods Jr., a noted promoter of the “Catholic” strand of Austrian economics, is being groomed as the heir apparent to Lew Rockwell in the Libertarian propaganda network. Given Woods’ increasing role and visibility, his background and ideas deserve to be explored further, and the contradictions between the Catholic doctrine and Austrian economics need to be exposed.

As documented in The “Catholic” Arm of Libertarianism, the Jesuits’ involvement in the Libertarian-Communist false dialectic is nothing new, and has in fact been ongoing for several centuries. In fact, according to Mises Institute’s founder Lew Rockwell, the Spanish Jesuits of the University of Salamanca were the founders of modern “free-market” thinking. Not surprisingly, Jesuits are also behind several of the Austrian think-tanks and propaganda outlets that have sprouted all over America in the last century.

While the Jesuits’ involvement with education and intellectual life may be laudable in some respects, many readers will no doubt be aware that the Jesuits occupy a significant position in the globalist elite’s hierarchy, and that their ideologies and goals often differ substantially from those associated with the traditional Catholic doctrine. In fact, as I wrote in The “Catholic” Arm of Libertarianism, Jesuits are likely part of a long-term Illuminati plot to “infiltrate and subvert Catholicism from within”.

Clearly, Thomas Woods Jr. is being positioned to slowly take over Rockwell and continue this dubious tradition of “Catholic” Austrian economics. In fact, Woods has devoted a considerable part of his output to justifying the “free market” from a “Catholic” perspective (see for instance The Church and the Market: A Catholic Defense of the Free Economy).

However, there are apparently indissoluble differences between the Catholic and Austrian perspectives, and Woods, despite his scholarship and clever arguments, has not been able to avoid them entirely. In this article, we will first expose Woods’ connections to the Jesuit hierarchy as well as to other “controlled opposition” movements, before discussing some of the contradictions inherent in his intellectual positions.

Father James Sadowsky, SJ: the éminence grise behind Rothbard and Woods

The term “éminence grise” (grey eminence) was first used to describe a French monk who advised Cardinal Richelieu behind the scenes. The tradition continues today with Jesuit priests discreetly advising and guiding academics who are then charged of disseminating their ideas to an unsuspecting public.

One such grey eminence was Father James Sadowsky (1923-2012), who taught at Fordham University for 38 years. Sadowsky, a co-president of the International Philosophy Quarterly and a member of the Mont Pèlerin Society, was no run-of-the-mill Jesuit: while he was teaching in Beirut (prior to his appointment at Fordham), one of his students was Peter-Hans Kolvenbach who later became the General Superior of the Jesuits and, according to some alternative researchers, one of the most powerful men on the planet.

Sadowsky, described as an “anarcho-catholic priest”, was a close friend of Murray Rothbard from the early 1960s until Rothbard’s death. While we are told that Sadowsky and Rothbard mutually influenced each other and did not always agree on everything, it is reasonable to suspect that Sadowsky was behind many of Rothbard’s ideas, given what we know of the Jesuits’ modus operandi.

Sadowsky likely exerted a major influence on Woods as well: Woods cited Sadowsky’s writings several times in The Church and the Market and openly sought to acknowledge Sadowsky’s contribution to his book.

Besides the questionable Jesuit infiltration of the Catholic doctrine, it is important to document Woods’ and Rothbard’s connections with Sadowsky as this corroborates the evidence already presented on this blog and elsewhere regarding the Jesuits’ centuries-old campaign for the acceptance of usury in Catholic countries, as well as their unremitting role in fanning the flames of the Libertarian-Communist dialectic.

Woods’ ties to the John Birch Society

I have already shown how the John Birch Society was part of an operation orchestrated by Rothschild and Rockefeller operatives to channel the anti-Communist movement into an essentially harmless organization entirely under the control of the Money Power elites. As such, members and affiliates of the John Birch Society can generally be regarded as gatekeepers who may be telling the truth on many topics, but who generally remain silent on Freemasonry, Zionism, or the Jesuits’ involvement in the elites’ plans for a global takeover. A notable example is G. Edward Griffin.

Unlike Griffin, Woods does not seem to be openly affiliated with the JBS, so we do not know whether he is a bona fide member of the organization (perhaps some better-informed readers can confirm this). However, we know that Woods has given numerous speeches at JBS-sponsored conventions, and videos of his speeches and interviews are available on the JBS website. This strongly suggests that, knowingly or not, Woods is associated with an organization that fits the “controlled opposition” label to a T.

Woods’ cognitive dissonances on government, usury, and the Church

Can one denounce government and “statism” and at the same time be a faithful Christian? Although we are not necessarily in favor of “big government” here at the Daily Knell, we also do not claim to strictly follow religious edicts. However, the following passage from Paul’s Letter to the Romans is a seemingly insoluble dilemma for any minarchist or anarcho-capitalist Libertarian who claims to follow the Bible:

“Let every person be subject to the governing authorities; for there is no authority except from God, and those authorities that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists authority resists what God has appointed and those who resist will incur judgment. For rulers are not a terror to good conduct, but to bad. […] For the same reason you also pay taxes, for the authorities are God’s servants, busy with this very thing. Pay to all what is due to them – taxes to whom taxes are due, revenue to whom revenue is due, respect to whom respect is due, honour to whom honour is due.”

As noted by this blogger, “it seems very difficult to reconcile Christianity with any kind of anti-state ideology, left or right”.

Usury is another fundamental point of dissent between the Catholic and Austrian doctrines. As I pointed out in my earlier article, “Woods has struggled mightily to justify the Austrian School’s endorsement of usury which goes against authentic Catholic teachings”. In fact, Woods resorted to quoting a Jesuit, Leonard Lessius (1554-1623), who “played a significant role in eroding the interest prohibition”, to wiggle himself out of this uncomfortable position.

The plain truth is that it is impossible to reconcile any form of usury with the Catholic doctrine, as explained in this remarkable article by Anthony Santelli, a former student in economics at George Mason University who reverted to Catholicism and came to the conclusion that “all along it has been usury that lies at the root of many social ills.”

Finally, it is difficult to understand how Woods, as a practicing Catholic, can praise the work of some of his Austrian predecessors such as Rothbard and Ludwig von Mises. Indeed, Rothbard wrote at length about the Church’s hatred of liberalism, while the atheist Mises claimed that Christianity had become a “religion of hatred”. Here, it may be relevant to note that both Woods and his advisor Sadowsky are converts: Sadowsky was originally an Anglican, whereas Woods was a Lutheran.


Like his mentor Rockwell, Woods’ role is to convince Catholics, and more generally “right-wing” traditionalist Christians, that usury, along with the “free-market” anarcho-capitalist utopia of Austrian economics and its Satanic core, are compatible with their religious beliefs. This, of course, is a lie, as many writers have shown. In his attempts to defile Christian precepts with Libertarian propaganda, while refusing to address the true causes of our social and economic problems, Woods dutifully fulfills his role as a Jesuit-controlled gatekeeper.


Libertarian network chart:

See our new page where we will periodically update our chart depicting the networks orchestrating the Libertarian propaganda. Recommended for new readers or if you need to refresh your memory about the names and roles of the main Libertarian propagandists and their elite handlers.

11 Comments leave one →
  1. October 21, 2012 2:51 pm

    Reblogged this on Recovering Austrians.

  2. October 22, 2012 7:09 am

    “Paul”, to whom you referred, was Saul of Tarsus, marauding Murderer of Christians, until he appointed himself the ’13th Apostle’ (there can be only 12). “The Charlatan”, as he was called by both James, the Brother of Jesus, and Peter (2 REAL Apostles), is the author of
    the persuasion to never question authority, mentioned above. Jesus never said anything resembling that. When asked about paying taxes, he dodged the question, and said to pay
    to Caesar what was due him. But, nothing is due him. Saul may be considered the very
    first ‘Jesuit’. It is my unpopular contention that this is exactly what he was. His doctrine is
    at odds with Jesus’ words, not correlation.

    • The Daily Knell permalink*
      October 22, 2012 7:12 am

      Indeed, there are many questions surrounding Paul/Saul of Tarsus. The point was that it is difficult to claim to follow the Bible and at the same time be against government.

    • blkthorn permalink
      October 25, 2012 3:10 am

      Whosoever shall fall upon that stone shall be broken; but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder.
      19 And the chief priests and the scribes the same hour sought to lay hands on him; and they feared the people: for they perceived that he had spoken this parable against them.
      20 And they watched him, and sent forth spies, which should feign themselves just men, that they might take hold of his words, that so they might deliver him unto the power and authority of the governor.
      21 And they asked him, saying, Master, we know that thou sayest and teachest rightly, neither acceptest thou the person of any, but teachest the way of God truly:
      22 Is it lawful for us to give tribute unto Caesar, or no?
      23 But he perceived their craftiness, and said unto them, Why tempt ye me?
      24 Shew me a penny. Whose image and superscription hath it? They answered and said, Caesar’s.
      25 And he said unto them, Render therefore unto Caesar the things which be Caesar’s, and unto God the things which be God’s.
      26 And they could not take hold of his words before the people: and they marvelled at his answer, and held their peace.

      (Saul of Tarsus, marauding Murderer of Christians, until he appointed himself the ’13th Apostle’) Sorry saul did not apoint his self as an aposite. GOD does that.

      And he fell to the earth, and heard a voice saying unto him, Saul, Saul, why persecutest thou me?
      Acts 9:8 KJV

      And Saul arose from the earth; and when his eyes were opened , he saw no man: but they led him by the hand , and brought him into Damascus.

      Acts 9:11 KJV

      And the Lord (GOD) said unto him, Arise , and go into the street which is called Straight, and enquire in the house of Judas for one called Saul, of Tarsus: for, behold , he prayeth

      Acts 9:17 KJV

      And Ananias went his way , and entered into the house; and putting his hands on him said , Brother Saul, the Lord, (GOD) even Jesus , ( Emmanuel, which being interpreted is, God with us.) that appeared unto thee in the way as thou camest , hath sent me, that thou mightest receive thy sight , and be filled with the Holy Ghost.

  3. November 20, 2012 4:14 pm

    The problem with articles like this one is that it deals mostly with the symptoms of the disease and not the disease itself.
    Austrian economics has always been Jesuit economics. Period.
    Since the mid 1500s, the Jesuits have infiltrated every single country on the planet, taken control over dictators, monarchs and presidents, subjugated the rights of We The People, installed privately owned central banks that drain We The People’s hard-earned money (in the form of illegal personal income taxes), and controlled the entire economy of each country and state.
    Brilliant work!
    So it doesn’t matter whether this guy Woods will replace so-and-so, because . . . meet the boss, same as the old boss. The new guy just toes the line that is laid down by the Jesuits, even if it may be Sadowsky. But, then again, Sadowsky has a Jesuit boss with an agenda that was established perhaps 50-100 years ago with some modifications over the decades.
    William Dean A. Garner
    NY Times bestselling ghostwriter/editor
    Author of Who Really Owns Your Gold: The Intended Global Meltdown of 2012-2014

  4. February 24, 2014 10:35 pm

    The Socialist Myth of the Greedy Banker & the Gold Standard


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