Things That Make You Go Hmmm — November 21, 2008 at 7:12 pm

WSJ: Non-Christians Have Ruined the Economy


I’ve read and re-read this editorial column by Daniel Henninger and the only synopsis I can come up with is simply that, according to him, “Non-Christians Have Ruined the Economy”.

Henninger, a Pulitzer Prize-winning deputy editor for the Wall Street Journal‘s editorial page, in a bizarrely convoluted series of steps, links the move away from saying “”Merry Christmas” to the economic crisis our country is facing.

I know, I know. I couldn’t follow it either.

Let’s let Mr. Henninger speak for himself here:

…so it will come to pass once again that many people will spend four weeks biting on tongues lest they say “Merry Christmas” and perchance, give offense. Christmas, the holiday that dare not speak its name.

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.

According to Henninger, the collapse of the banking industry was due to a lack of three things among those in charge of these institutions: responsibility, restraint and remorse. These things, he posits, are moral sentiments (the first two) and a product of conscience (the third thing.) And moral sentiments and products of conscience are only available, it seems, to those who are religious. Or, more specifically one can only surmise, those who are Christian. (Christmas–>Christians–>morally superior, get it?)

It’s actually pretty stunning that a man paid as much as Henninger is presumably paid would do something like this on the pages of the nation’s premier news source for much of the business world. What he has done is to basically tell his readers, many of whom are quite likely involved in some way or another in the banking industry that has so completely melted down, that they have put the country in economic ruin because they are morally deficient and lack a conscience. I gotta tell ya, on that point, he and I are pretty much in agreement.

But to go the next step and say that what’s causing this moral deficiency is that the country as a whole has abandoned is religiousity, well that’s a step into pretty murky water. No. Scratch that. That’s a step in Crazyville.

I don’t typically say “Merry Christmas”. Instead I usually say “Happy Holidays”. Why? Because frankly, where I live, I have no idea if the person I’m talking to is a Christian, a Jew, a Muslim, a Buddhist, an athiest or any other religious (or not) persuasion. I guess I’m just trying to be friendly to everyone.

And by doing that I caused the greedy bastards in the financial industry to allow their greed to take our country down the tubes? Really? I did that?

You know what I say to that, Mr. Henninger?

Bite me.

I’m just sayin’…