Hypocrites? Of course not, they're our spiritual leaders!

Images - The Archbishop of York Dr John Sentamu and The Archbishop of Canterbury Dr Rowan Williams. I'm sure you can work out which is which.

The poor old woolly Anglican Church has put its foot in it again. After blasting short-sellers as 'bank robbers' and 'asset strippers' and calling for much tighter regulation of the financial markets, it appears that - surprise surprise - part of the Church's not inconsiderable wealth has been built up recently by betting on the value of Sterling falling - in other words, short-selling.

Of course we can't realistically expect the Archbishop of Canterbury, the most reverend Dr Rowan Williams, and his conservative token-sidekick, the Archbishop of York Dr John Sentamu, to have any deep understanding of the financial manoeuvres of their own organisation; most mere mortals do not understand the shady dealings of the economic world, but one would expect their ignorance to preclude them from making any kind of comment on the issue.

Ah, no, how naive of me. Of course their chief role in life, the reason why they get all that publicity, those colourful robes, a comfy palace with all the tea and sherry they can drink - not to mention a large stipend - is so that they can proselytise to the rest of us about how to live our lives.

So lets take a little look at what they said recently, with a translation in italics.

In a dinner speech to bankers in the City of London, Dr Sentamu said "The love of money is the root of all evil. We have all gone to this temple called money. We have all worshipped at it. No-one is guiltless... We have all become enslaved." (I wonder if he had the Pope in his sights?) Now donate some of it to the Church you greedy bastards, or at least teach our financiers how to make as much money as you do.

"The market takes its rules from Alice in Wonderland." I actually mean this as a compliment, the Church's rules are nothing like as close to the real world.

Dr Williams said "Marx saw how unbridled capitalism became a kind of mythology. He was right about that" I'm dead jealous, I've never once said anything so memorable or profound.

The full text of his comment is worth reading -

"Fundamentalism is a religious word, not inappropriate to the nature of the problem. Marx long ago observed the way in which unbridled capitalism became a kind of mythology, ascribing reality, power and agency to things that had no life in themselves; he was right about that, if about little else. And ascribing independent reality to what you have in fact made yourself is a perfect definition of what the Jewish and Christian Scriptures call idolatry."

I don't need to put my translation in, the comment is humorous enough in itself; financiers are therefore fundamentalists, money becomes an idol to be worshipped.

The rampant hypocrisy here is almost too much to bear - full credit to the bearded-one for saying all this with a straight face.

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