Friday, November 21, 2008

The stupidest comment ever made about the financial crisis

Stupidity knows no ideology. In fact, we could start a whole other blog dedicated to asinine comments made by people on both the left and the right about the financial crisis. That said, I believe I have found the stupidest commentary on the subject (thus far) and it comes from Daniel Henninger of the Wall Street Journal:
"This year we celebrate the desacralized 'holidays' amid what is for many unprecedented economic ruin -- fortunes halved, jobs lost, homes foreclosed. People wonder, What happened? One man's theory: A nation whose people can't say "Merry Christmas" is a nation capable of ruining its own economy...

Responsibility and restraint are moral sentiments. Remorse is a product of conscience. None of these grow on trees. Each must be learned, taught, passed down. And so we come back to the disappearance of 'Merry Christmas.'

It has been my view that the steady secularizing and insistent effort at dereligioning America has been dangerous. That danger flashed red in the fall into subprime personal behavior by borrowers and bankers, who after all are just people. Northerners and atheists who vilify Southern evangelicals are throwing out nurturers of useful virtue with the bathwater of obnoxious political opinions.

The point for a healthy society of commerce and politics is not that religion saves, but that it keeps most of the players inside the chalk lines. We are erasing the chalk lines."

In the words of my 10th grade English teacher: "No, no, no, no no!" There is no war on Christmas and there never was. And since when is lack of religion in the public square been a problem in America? And why doesn't Western Europe, which is vastly more secular than the US, experience more financial crises than we do?

Capitalism has taken a real beating in recent months, probably more than it deserves. This crisis is not the end of the free market; it took massive failures on both the private and public sides to make this a reality.

That being said, markets do fail sometimes and we need to admit that. We can't just pass something like this off by saying, "well the system works, but the problem is people aren't responsible enough". That's not analysis.

If it's so easy to get an editorial job at the Wall Street Journal, can I have one?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Hah! You are right - that is by far the most idiotic thing I have ever heard. Someone should probably tell him that "chrismas is f*cking cancelled, because if people like you keep having influence in the economy we will be poorer than in the days of this "Jesus" guy you always refer to"