My sermon today is in response to reading “Trump’s Money Man: How Robert Mercer, a reclusive hedge-fund tycoon, exploited America’s populist insurgency” by Jane Mayer in this week’s edition of The New Yorker.
Having wealth increases options: who to associate with both socially and professionally; what to eat; when to seek medical care; where to live; and a delusional sense of why you deserve choices that others do not.
But options increase complexity: who you lose (and forget to consider) when you associate only with those most like you; what your costs are (and costs to the environment) to bring food to your table from all over the world; when your ability to pay for what ails you influences the financial greed of pharmaceutical companies, resulting in others not able to pay; where the space taken up by where you live reduces safe space available to others; and why it seems impossible for you to apply your intelligence to the challenge of considering all, rather than just yourself.
And complexity increases risk: who hates you; what food you eat is poisoned by peciticides and toxic water; when your body becomes less naturally resilient because of artificial supplements; where you live isolates you from others and makes you more vulnerable; and why your money does not equal wealth…
…if wealth is more than money.