Update #2 – “Has Europe Lost Its Soul?”

Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathon Sacks delved into the morality of today’s economic crisis.

Just as corporations have become international and have outsourced jobs and manufacturing, so too, he argues, they have outsourced moral responsibility, i.e., the attitude that “it is someone elses problem,” the result being a business world without trust.

The word “credit,” he reminds us, is from the Latin word credo, meaning “I believe.” “Confidence” comes from the Latin meaning “shared faith.” Trust has deep religious roots, and without it in our banking and economic structures, these systems fail.

The moral vision of the rightness and wrongness of a business practice is not dependent on governments, laws, courts and the like, but rather upon conscience, virtue and an internalized sense of obligation to others. The Judeo-Christian ethic for generations was burned into our moral circuitry, you might say, and regulatory bodies were not all that necessary to ensure the common good was protected. Even if legal liability was limited, moral responsibility was present.

Rabbi Lord Sachs said, “Those who believe that liberal democracy and the free market can be defended by the force of law and regulation alone, without an internalised sense of duty and morality, are tragically mistaken.” He went on to say, “When money rules, we remember the price of things and forget the value of things, and that is dangerous…….. Success depends on the ability to delay gratification, which is precisely what a consumerist culture undermines.”

Again, some food for thought. My question is how do we regain the economic “soul” not only of Europe, but here in the United States.

Any reactions or comments from you?

About Deacon Bob

Moderator: Deacon Bob Yerhot of the Diocese of Winona, Minnesota.
This entry was posted in Economy, Ethics and Morality. Bookmark the permalink.

One Response to Update #2 – “Has Europe Lost Its Soul?”

  1. Mike Young says:

    I sure don’t have the final answer. It seems that if we can do with less, so others that don’t have enough, can have our share, makes sense to me. This could go along way toward helping others and ourselves by understanding that less can be better for us and others that have real needs can have their needs met. Simplistic perhaps, but then that is all I can come up with at this moment. As Christ suffered so must we suffer in different ways and forms, easy for me to say but of course I don’t always do it, pray for me, please.

Comments are closed.