The theme of this the 11th meeting of the bilateral commission [of the Chief Rabbinate of Counterfeit Israel and the ‘Holy’ See’s Commission for Religious Relations with ‘The Jews’] was titled “Religious perspectives on the current financial crisis: vision for a just economic order” … Papers on the theme were provided by Dr. Meir Tamari, former chief economist of the Bank of Israel …”
Here are some relevant writings from Rabbi Dr. Meir Tamari, former chief economist of the Bank of Counterfeit Israel, whose ‘vision’ the Vatican has turned to for direction towards ‘a just economic order’:
All Jewish sources, however, show that Judaism does not see anything intrinsically wrong with lending money at interest. On the contrary, it is a perfectly normal and beneficial part of economic activity, like the supply of other forms of capital.” (Rabbi Meir Tamari, With All Your Possessions: Jewish Ethics and Economic Life, p. 167
Perhaps the best proof that [according to rabbinic Judaism] taking interest is not regarded as being evil per se, but rather only forbidden because the Torah said so, is the rule that while one may not take interest from other Jews, it is permitted in regard to non-Jews. (Rabbi Meir Tamari, The challenge of wealth: a Jewish perspective on earning and spending money)
“… it is essential to remember that there exist a religious obligation to make interest-free loans available to other Jews … [however,] one may lend money at interest to non-Jews.” (Rabbi Meir Tamari, In the marketplace: Jewish business ethics)
Financial economists may find Meir Tamari’s treatment of interest and profits rather unsatisfactory, and his treatment of Scripture and the Mishnah may also be seen as controversial. One interesting point is the distinction between financial dealings between Jews, where interest is not permissible, and between Jews and Gentiles where it is, the justification for this being in Deutronomy. Maimonides interpreted the Hebrew word tashikh, you may charge a foreigner interest, as you shall charge a gentile interest. It was this that justified Jews becoming involved in moneylending throughout medieval Europe and instrumental in the development of modern banking practice. While relations between Jews and Christians were kept on a business footing, those within the Jewish communities were based on exchanging favours and mutual trust in the absence of interest based transactions. This discriminatory treatment of Jews and Gentiles may be criticised by non-Jews, but it served to strengthen bonds within Judaism and the feeling of a common identity. (Rodney Wilson, “Comparitive Religious Thought on Economic Behavior and Financial Transactions,” Journal of the Association of Christian Economists)
The masses of Jewish migrants from Eastern Europe in the 19th and 20th centuries had neither the assets for collateral nor the personal history of financial activity necessary for recourse to the banking systems of their new host societies. Their astonishing economic development would have been totally different to what actually materialized, were it not for the existence of Jewish free loan societies in every country. (Rabbi Meir Tamari, “‘Both a Lender and a Borrower Be:’ The Challenge of Money)
The corollary is that the astonishing decline in wealth and increase in indebtedness of non-Judaic nations and individuals which has accompanied the astonishing “economic development” of East European ‘Jews’ would have been “totally different” if it had not been for predatory lending practices which rabbinic teaching readily permits against non-‘Jews’ as Rabbi Dr. Meir Tamari explains above.
The Bilateral Commission of the Chief Rabbinate of Counterfeit Israel and the ‘Holy’ See’s Commission for Religious Relations with ‘The Jews’ has issued a statement addressing the present world financial catastrophe. This bilateral commission recognized the unbiblical, talmudic ‘Noahide laws’ in 2007 according to which, Christian ‘idolators’ (believers in the Divinity of Jesus Christ and Trinity) should be executed by decapitation.
If you believe that a joint Vatican-Chief Rabbinate of Counterfeit Israel plan for economic reform will bring about any godly change in events, there’s a dead ‘Messiah’ in Brooklyn they probably could also sell you.
The rabbinic canon provides the rationalization for the kind of financial predation witnessed throughout the world today. Moreover, as Thomas Jefferson aptly noted, the rabbis’ tradition is practically void and valueless as a reference for ethics and morality.
As readers of symbols we note that the seventh bilateral meeting rolled out the so-called ‘Noahide laws’ and the eleventh meeting rolls out a so-called ‘ethical economic order.’
COMMISSION FOR RELIGIOUS RELATIONS WITH THE JEWS
BILATERAL COMMISSION MEETING
OF THE DELEGATIONS OF THE CHIEF RABBINATE OF ISRAEL AND
THE HOLY SEE’S COMMISSION
FOR RELIGIOUS RELATIONS WITH THE JEWS
(Rome, March 27-29, 2012; Nissan 4-6, 5772)
1. The Jewish co-chair Rabbi Shear Yashuv Cohen opened the meeting, giving thanks to God for the historic transformation in Catholic-Jewish relations since the Second Vatican Council (1962-65) and for the establishment of the bilateral commission of the Chief Rabbinate of Israel and the Holy See, after the historic visit of Pope John Paul II to Israel.
Cardinal Peter Turkson, the new Catholic co-chair, responded paying tribute to his predecessor Cardinal Jorge Mejía and welcomed the delegations, in particular those who had just joined the bilateral commission. Cardinal Mejía together with Cardinal Cottier, as the former senior members of the Catholic delegation, accompanied by Cardinal Kurt Koch, President of the Holy See’s Commission for Religious Relations with the Jews, visited with the delegations and expressed their joy at the continuity of this work as a blessing for both communities and for humanity.
2. The theme of this the 11th meeting of the bilateral commission was titled “Religious perspectives on the current financial crisis: vision for a just economic order”. The special guest on the first evening was Prof. Ettore Gotti Tedeschi, President of the Vatican’s Istituto per le Opere di Religione, who provided an analysis of the causes of the financial crisis and shared thoughts on possible ways forward. Papers on the theme were provided by Dr. Meir Tamari, former chief economist of the Bank of Israel, and Prof. Stefano Zamagni from the Economic Science Department of the University of Bologna.
3. Following from the presentations and discussion, the following points were highlighted:-
While many factors contributed to the financial crisis, at its roots lies a crisis of moral values in which the importance of having, reflected in a culture of greed, eclipsed the importance of being; and where the value of truth reflected in honesty and transparency was sorely lacking in economic activity.
4. At the heart of Jewish and Catholic visions for a just economic order is the affirmation of the sovereignity and providence of the Creator of the world with whom all wealth originates and which is given to humankind as a gift for the common good.
5. Accordingly, the purpose of an economic order is to serve the wellbeing of society, affirming the human dignity of all people, each created in the Divine Image. While this concept of dignity affirms the value of the person, it is antithetical to egocentricity. Rather, it requires the promotion of the wellbeing of the individual in relation to community and society, emphasizing human obligations and responsibilities accordingly and thereby affirming human solidarity and fraternity.
This posits the obligation to guarantee certain basic human needs, such as the protection of life, sustenance, clothing, housing, health, education and employment.
Particular attention must therefore be given to the vulnerable – the poor, the orphan, the widow the sick and disabled; and the stranger, which in today’s society is particularly relevant to migrant and foreign workers – whose condition serves as a measure of the moral health of society or lack thereof, and the degree of solidarity within it.
6. Furthermore, just as the Divine gift of wealth places obligations upon the recipient in relation to those less fortunate materially; similarly countries with developed economies have the obligation to recognize their responsibilities and duties towards countries and societies in need – especially in this era of globalization.
7. Concepts highlighted for the promotion of a more just economic order included:
– the universal destination of the goods of the earth; a culture of “enough” that implies a degree of self-limitation and modesty; responsible stewardship; an ethical system of allocation of resources and priorities; and the critical importance of honesty, transparency, gratuitousness and accountability.
8. Just as the crisis has required partial remission of debts on national and international levels, there is a need to extend this to families and individuals for their economic self-rehabilitation.
9. The members of the bilateral commission underscored the role that the faith communities must play in contributing to a responsible economic order and the importance of their engagement by government, educational institutions, and the media, to this end.
10. In addition to the ethical wisdom drawn from our spiritual heritages, religious communities are an integral part of civil society, which must play a central role together with politics and business, in ensuring the subsidiarity necessary for a just social and economic order.
11. Furthermore the crisis has revealed the profound lack of the ethical component in economic thinking. Hence, it is imperative that institutes and academies of economic studies and policy formation include ethical training in their curricula, similar to that which has developed in recent years in the field of medical ethics; and also ethical counselling to decision makers on a national and international level.
12. The meeting concluded with prayer to the Source of all blessing that the words of the Psalmist will be fulfilled
“Mercy and truth are met together; righteousness and peace have kissed (each other).
Truth shall spring out of the earth and righteousness shall look down from heaven.
Yea, the Lord shall give (that which is) good; and our land shall yield her increase.
Righteousness shall go before Him; and shall set (us) in the way of His steps”
Rome, March 29th, 2012 – Nissan 6th, 5772
|Rabbi Shear Yashuv Cohen
(Chairman of the Jewish Delegation)Rabbi David Rosen
Rabbi Prof. Daniel Sperber
Rabbi Prof. Avraham Steinberg
Mr. Oded Wiener
Msgr. Pier Francesco Fumagalli
|Peter Cardinal Turkson
(Chairman of the Jewish Delegation)
Archbishop Elias Chacour
Archbishop Antonio Franco
Archbishop Bruno Forte
Bishop Giacinto-Boulos Marcuzzo
Msgr. Pier Francesco Fumagalli
Fr. Pierbattista Pizzaballa O.F.M.
Fr. Norbert J. Hofmann S.D.B.