Greed is extremely dangerous.
This has been shown time and time again. The situation is this: a certain percentage of greedy people achieve significant power and employ that power to maximize their own wealth at the expense of everyone else. The more they succeed, the more they corrupt their society and the wider their sphere of corruption. They get more and more, everyone else gets less and less, and the pattern continues as long as the greedy can maintain it.
Characteristically, the greedy hide their ugliness by surrounding themselves with as much material beauty as possible--art, fashion, jewelry architecture, and so on. Don’t forget the philanthropy. It is the best smokescreen of all.
Ugly hearts love beautiful (read: expensive) trappings.
In American, 400 billionaires currently hoard an amount of wealth equal to the worth of the bottom 50% of citizens. We basically live in a covert monarchy, the barons and dukes being the mega-rich moguls. They buy politicians, and they buy the media (Fox News, owned by Rupert Murdoch, is a glaring example). It’s a classic syndrome of sin, going back all the way to Egypt and Sumer.
I guess I shouldn’t be appalled by the denial of the American people, given that they are following a time-honored path of ignorance, but, what the heck, call me a dreamer. It is absurd that about half of Americans think global warming is not human-caused. They believe Rush Limbaugh, a fire eater with a radio show, rather than the overwhelming consensus of scientists (see my last blog oped).
My statement about greed needs a corollary: Greed is dangerous because people are prone to hear what they want, which makes them fodder for social puppeteers.
Opposite greed is ethics. Ethical people don’t want more and more stuff. They tend to focus on things that are too precious to be given a price. They see the folks around them as more than pawns. Animals and nature are more than resources to exploit.
On first glance, you’d think it easy to distinguish greedy people from ethical people. Two problems here. First, greed is a master liar. Second, master liars can brainwash the public.
Also, mind-viruses like racism make things easier for Greed. If the population is racist, Greed plays to their racism. Another trait that makes the masses an easy mark is religious fanaticism.
Play the Jesus card, and the herds flock to you.
Greedy people never admit they are greedy and might not even know they are greedy. When someone does a lot of awful things, there is a tendency to hide that evil, to lock it away in the mind where it can’t be seen. The right hand doesn’t know that the left hand is doing.
Imagine what kind of sick discipline it takes to tell bald lies to everyone you meet while you backstab anyone that gets in your way. Do you want that kind of mind in your skull?
I guess no one wins when greed wins. Those who built their many mansions on the backs of the rest of us have to barricade their souls from their own eyes. It’s a world where the only true victors might be sociopaths, whose minds have gaping holes to begin with.
Moral of the story: If you live in a world where conscience is an impediment to happiness, follow the money trail. It will lead you to the root of your problem.