Franchise Bankers are on the Autobahn to Perdition


As I promised, more thought-provoking ideas from Saul‘s, The Doubter’s Companion.

BANKERS Pillars of society who are going to hell if there is a God and He has been accurately quoted.

All three Western religions have always forbidden the collection of interest on loans. When Samuel Johnson defined the banker in the eighteenth century his status was clear: “One that trafficks in money.” Their venal sin of usury [excessive interest] continues to sit high on lists of scriptural wrongdoing, which raise the question of why bankers – the money-market sort excluded – tend to be frequent church goers. The respect in which they have increasingly been held over the last two centuries has paralleled the growth of economics based on long-term debt, which spread into every corner of society, from governments and corporations to the poor. The more money owed, the more the lender is respected, so long as the borrower intends to pay it back.

But what effect does this have on the moral position of bank employees? Few modern bankers are owners. Except through their salaries they do not profit from interest payments. Are they or are they not among the damned? Perhaps they should themselves be seen as victims of usury, having little choice but to lend their lives to the usurious process in order to feed their families. Yet for the borrower, these employees are the human face of usury.

The clearest situation for bankers would be if God didn’t exist. They would then be morally home-free and could go to church in a more relaxed frame of mind. See: DEBT.

Margaret Atwood observes lately that Christianity is based primarily on debt: Jesus came and redeemed man, opened the gates of heaven and paid off all past and future debt. The Aramaic words for debt and sin are the same. In the Lord’s Prayer, believers are directed to forgive trespasses (debts, offences) and it appears She does only as much as you forgive others their debts.

  • One of my lawn sprinkler customers retired after 35 years with the Royal Bank of Canada in 2009. She looks 10 years younger in 4 months and attributes it not having to lie to her neighbours anymore about what the bank did to them.

A recurring theme is that debt is a form of death, is life-taking. You make your own hell by losing your soul now, let alone the everlasting damnation bit (perdition). autobahn

The Road to Perdition, 2002 movie with Tom Hanks, Paul Newman and Jude Law.

One Response to Franchise Bankers are on the Autobahn to Perdition

  1. Carol Cross says:

    Interesting and informative article. There is no doubt that “Debtors are slaves” and that in the US and probably Canada, as well, we have been captured and enslaved by our credit card debt and our designer mortgages. But, of course, the standard of living has risen greatly for Americans who have chickens in their pots, cars in their garages, and McCastle residences in the suburbs. The American Dream was delivered for millions of Americans.

    Are the bankers now victims of their own faith and belief in “the house of cards?” Were they led astray by the big law firms who made possible the securitization of the future cash flows of all of the debtors? Wasn’t it the law and the attorneys and lack of regulation that created the bubble and the exotic securities that are failing and that have created the threat of a World Recession?

    If it is true that only God knows the future, why did the World’s financial community make such a big bet on the future by securitizing the cash flows of the future?

    As for Bank Employees! Employees are always willing to lie for their betters if the lie gives the bank an advantage and is bank policy. In the great disintermediation of the markets in the late 70’s and early 80’s, most all of the banks were involved in creative interpretation of early- withdrawal penalties that were prescribed under Regulation Q. Of course there was a run on the banks from CD customers who wanted to take the penalties and reinvest at the higher rates and the banks were engaged in self defense. Regulation Q died in the 80’s as a result of the call for de-regulation of the financial markets.

    Our new President has so many problems to face and solve. Hopefully, we will find out where we have been and some will go to jail, and we will be able to chart a plan for where we are going. But, I think our new status as the greatest debtor nation in the World and the greatest Military Power is something new that will require the application of the best minds of the country.

    I am happy that President O’bama hasn’t surrounded himself with lawyers.


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