Tuesday, October 13, 2009

God Was My Financial Advisor

I think there's a certain irony to the fact that the people of the most overtly Christian nation on Earth (the United States, natch) derive so much revenue from two things that are pretty explicitly described as sinful by either The Bible or a long history of Christian teachings: gambling and lending money with interest.

Everything from state lotteries to various ways to make money off the stock market cover the gambling side of things. Even more excitingly, a fairly large chunk of the ongoing financial crisis was caused by gambling ON lending money for interest. I don't think Dante covered that one in Inferno, though he did cover the penalty for giving God the finger.*

If, as people like Jerry Falwell have charged, God used 9/11 to punish the U.S. for allowing homosexuality and promiscuity, then one would think that such widespread gambling and profit-minded money-lending would bring down the wrath of God as well.

Not that I think it did, mind you. If God's wrathfulness exists, evidence would seem to suggest that it must occur entirely post-mortem. Folding Christ's point about rich men, camels and the eye of the needle into things, I'm pretty sure there are a lot of very surprised people arriving in Hell daily.

Well, if I believed in Hell, which I don't.

* Yes, I know Vanni Fucci actually gives God the "fig." Same difference.

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