All the Kingdoms of the World

Vallier has done a valuable service by patiently pointing out all the moral and political problems entailed by any attempt to establish integralism. The most important problem with integralism, however, is less in its conception of the state than in its conception of the Church.
Charles De Koninck is known for participating in an acrimonious debate about the character of the common good and Catholic personalism in the mid-1940s. This is unfortunate because that debate clarified little, and it distracted attention from De Koninck’s important perspective on modernity. We need De Koninck’s philosophy of nature because it can aid us in understanding the achievements of modern science while serving as a bulwark against reductionism.
The common good is the final cause of political association, not least because practical decisions are always decisions about achieving what is good and avoiding what is bad. But invoking the common good under the influence of De Koninck, Maritain, or even Aquinas doesn’t on its own advance the political conversation that characterizes a healthy polity.