Saturday, April 21, 2012

(letter to a friend in Boston who sent the link to an article in the Globe) 

 Many thanks for sending such a good article by a really good writer. I'll try to remember Brian McGrory.  Oh, the irony; an Irishman (Scot?) writing scathingly about another Irishman.  The Celtic people and their barroom brawls.  They never stop fighting; if it isn't the English, it's each other.  My favorite barroom sign about the Irish is this:  "The Lord made whiskey so the Irish wouldn't take over the world." 

Of course, anybody with a delightfully Irish name like Tim Kelly deserves $50,000,000 a year.  Or more properly understood, $24,000 an hour.  I wish I did not want as much as they do, to have lots of money to throw around.

What the article misses saying, as do most complaints, is that the damage such an atmosphere of obscene recompense does is that it cheapens money itself. And everyone suffers.   

Jane Fonda, for example, is worth how many millions --- and I heard her say this last night in an interview, 

"At last," said Jane, "at the age of 73, I feel I am a whole person." 

Well, it is the right values in the wrong person.  If only she did not come from great wealth and pursue great wealth and spend all that time working obsessively on the body beautiful.True, she looks simply amazing at the age of 73.  But then, too, Ted Turner still kicked her out of bed after what --- 50. She spent years worrying that he would and then he did.  

Very few get past the era without being soiled by the perverted values of the age.  Look at the people who have embraced the disgusting values espoused by Ayn Rand. That is true evil. 

And it will pass.  

But will it pass before it does more and permanent damage?  Perhaps I am dreaming. I am not trying to say that happiness and wholeness of personhood cannot be attained unless you walk away from money.  But I do think real truth is always at risk when unlimited amounts of money are available.  Money is the root of evil because what it most buys --- which poverty cannot buy,--- is a mirror which only reflects us as we wish to be seen and as we believe ourselves to be worthy.  

The cult of money is the Culture of Narcissism.