Tuesday, October 19, 2010

The Devil Does, Indeed, Wear Prada

So I read this compelling article saying, essentially, that it's high time to address rising income inequality. 

I have a couple of really loaded friends who might take a few moments from chasing their capitalist dreams to read this entry, so I'm going out on a limb when I say this, but: duh. 

In my Catholic high school, Fr. Caffrey taught us the following definition at the beginning of one term: "Religion is the answer to the questions of the mysteries of life." An intellectually playful man, he had a glint in his eye when he told us weeks later that to some people, sports are a religion. I was all like, "What?" and he happily supported his thesis that to some people, sports are the answer to the questions of the mysteries of life. I can't remember how, but that's not important; what's important is that critical moment in my life when I started to wonder, "What's so sacred about religion?"

I personally know some people who regularly worship a supernatural deity, and who live in accordance with the principles of humanism--which is not the subversive philosophy I was indoctrinated to believe when I learned about the Scopes trial. These people are a credit to humanity and a testament to their religion. But let me put them aside for a moment. 

I think we all know people whose actions evince worship of other gods, regardless of where their dress slacks sit of a sabbath morning. Some of them are alchemists who have discovered a magic formula. "P" stands for power here: 

$ + P = 2$ + 3P. 

Talk about the magic of compounding! 

It is my contention that the upcoming elections are not about witchcraft, small town folks, Main Street, big government, tax relief, deregulation, race, masturbation, gun control, family values, global warming, marriage equality, small business, and certainly not the Constitution or the principles upon which our country was founded, EXCEPT--and this is a big except--to the extent they serve the First Church of Getting Richer. 

For more on this, I invite you to read what I consider Justice Stevens's swan song, his brilliant dissenting opinion in Citizens United v. FEC. It's long, but never tedious. If you don't have the time or inclination, perhaps it can be summed up in its sad reference to the following quote from Thomas Jefferson: "I hope we shall crush . . . in [its] birth the aristocracy of our monied corporations which dare already to challenge our government to a trial of strength and bid defiance to the laws of our country." That's in footnote 54. 

OK, I'm going to go enjoy this gorgeous, sunny day with my dog now. 

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