Project August: Day 12 – Money Is Only a Tool

Well, I apparently botched yesterday’s post. Hopefully this one will be better. So let us go in a different direction. I am pulling from a blog I have not visited before. I found it through my wordpress reader. On this twelfth day of August, 2013, the topic for the day in Project August is money.

The blog for today is Thomé Review, and the post that is the prompt for this entry in Project August is “Money: The Root of All Evil?

I recently encountered an individual who claimed that a majority of society’s ills are due to the existence of money, and that a society without money in which people “produce for need and not profit” is what the world needs to move towards. This person boldly declared, “Money is the root of all evil.”

First of all, this person is mistaken off-the-bat: they were probably trying to quote the famous bible verse “The love of money is the root of all evil”, which has a far different meaning. On the other hand, maybe the person actually meant what they said. Whatever the case, they are totally off-the-mark. Money, the actual use of currency, is not an evil. Quite the contrary; the use of money is one of mankind’s most benevolent practices, and has immeasurably improved life for millions of people across the world. The modern lives we lead are made possible by the use of currency. Saying “We need a world without money” also implies that we need a world where people live at a primitive and laborious level.

That post goes on to talk about the usefulness of currency. I will be talking about this from a somewhat different angle.

I have read and heard may people say that money is the root of all evil. The Thomé Review is correct in pointing out that the actual Bible verse (1 Timothy 6:10) says that love of money is the root of all evil. And more modern translations generally say the love of money is a root of all kinds of evil. The distinction between money as a root of all evil and love of money as a root of kinds of evil is significant.

And let me say now, money in and of itself cannot be a root of evil. Money has no will. Money is merely a tool. It has no animus of its own. Evil requires will and intent. Money is devoid of this and therefore cannot be a root of evil.

Love of money, on the other hand, the intent and will to possess money and the power it can provide, this can indeed be a root of evil.

To make getting and having money an idol, which is to say living in service to the acquisition of money, this is a root of evil. Particularly from a Christian perspective, as the idolizing of money will lead a person away from the Christian faith.

Now some people like to try to claim this is a problem libertarians have. They try to claim libertarians are greedy and selfish because we libertarians do not share their preference for forcibly taking money away from other people. But who is greedy; the person who says “stop taxing me to pay for wasteful and inefficient programs that cause society more problems than they solve,” or the person who says “you have more money than I think you should have, and therefore I want you to have your money taken from you under threat of force and to have the money that was taken from you spent in a manner that I prefer”?

Yes, of course that question is biased and unfair. But then, so are most of the criticisms people make of money and libertarianism. (Get used to it. From time to time, I talk about libertarianism and criticisms of libertarianism. I know it is not as fun as the D/s stuff, but it is just as important to me.) And often when people start going on about money being the root of evil, they are complaining about capitalism or libertarianism or some combination of the two.

That is all for today. I do not feel well. And right now, staring at the computer screen is giving me a headache.

Lord willing and the creek don’t rise, I will be here tomorrow with something to say.

Have a nice day.

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