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  • A principle pronounced by Pope Pius XI in 1931 and written as a response to the Great Depression in the United States. This principle, found in the papal bulletin Quadragesimo Anno, states that a higher entity in the social order may not do for the lower order what the lower order is capable of doing for itself. Subsidiarity is a feature of federalism. In the United States, subsidiarity can be found in the Tenth Amendment of the Bill of Rights. It was asserted as countering the trend toward excessive centralization of government as well as communism and socialism.

    The purpose of subsidiarity is to limit the role of the government in order to protect the place of private individuals and institutions while simultaneously justifying some ...

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