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Why God? was: "Theorem" of Corruption




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prabhu.guptara@ny.ubs.com wrote:

>      Historically, it is not rich countries that have become more moral,
>      equal and free (as the popular fallacy has it today),

Agreed, but the rich countries do operate the most powerful
media/propaganda apparatus and are better able to propagate a the notion
that their actions are moral and therefore they are rich. 

>      it is moral
>      countries which have eventually succeed in becoming egalitarian, free
>      and rich (in that order).

I don't see how history supports this. Material wealth seems to be the
product of chance more than some social practice- I don't think the people
of Saudi Arabia or Brunei are a great deal more "moral" than, say, the
people of Lebanon or Bangladesh. 

>     As we have driven God from marketplace and
>      senate, the inculcation of morality in the populace is, in fact, now
>      the weakest factor of the three, worldwide.

I fail to see why the notion of an omniscient, omnipotent being is
essential to the inculcation of values such as honesty, compassion, and
egalitarianism. On the contrary, I see the invocation of such a being
frequently used as a justification of illegitimate power [e.g. the theory
of the divine right of kings to rule], or as justification to wage war
[aka crusades- past and present]. For more on this see my essay on "False
Gods". 

>     And, whatever
>      rationalists may say, in the absence of God the emotional reason for
>      venality that is unanswerable is: "When it is to my advantage, why
>      not?".

I don't think the question is un-answerable. My response is, advantage is
relative- immediate vs long-term: my savagery today my benefit me
immediately, in the long term, the legitimation of savagery may result in
the same savagery being perpetrated on me. 

I belive what we call "moral" derives not from some "god" entity but a
formulation of the greatest good of the greatest number over the greatest
period. 

-Charu



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