Usurer – a great huge monster, lays waste all

Usury, called Kandhuvatti, in Tamil is a stone around the neck for millions of Indian people. The usurer is seen as someone who gives a helping hand at the time of need.

But what he really is…

Ask the families who committed suicide, businessmen who went mad, farmers who are broke! They all may not directly blame the usurer, but their fate is sealed by Usury.

Read what Martin Luther has to say about usury – quoted by Karl Marx in “Capital”. (bold highlights added)

Taking the usurer, that old-fashioned but ever renewed specimen of the capitalist for his text, Luther shows very aptly that the love of power is an element in the desire to get rich.

“The heathen were able, by the light of reason, to conclude that a usurer is a double-dyed thief and murderer. We Christians, however, hold them in such honour, that we fairly worship them for the sake of their money….

Whoever eats up, robs, and steals the nourishment of another, that man commits as great a murder (so far as in him lies) as he who starves a man or utterly undoes him. Such does a usurer, and sits the while safe on his stool, when he ought rather to be hanging on the gallows, and be eaten by as many ravens as he has stolen guilders, if only there were so much flesh on him, that so many ravens could stick their beaks in and share it.

Meanwhile, we hang the small thieves…. Little thieves are put in the stocks, great thieves go flaunting in gold and silk…. Therefore is there, on this earth, no greater enemy of man (after the devil) than a gripe-money, and usurer, for he wants to be God over all men.

Turks, soldiers, and tyrants are also bad men, yet must they let the people live, and Confess that they are bad, and enemies, and do, nay, must, now and then show pity to some.

But a usurer and money-glutton, such a one would have the whole world perish of hunger and thirst, misery and want, so far as in him lies, so that he may have all to himself, and every one may receive from him as from a God, and be his serf for ever.

To wear fine cloaks, golden chains, rings, to wipe his mouth, to be deemed and taken for a worthy, pious man …. Usury is a great huge monster, like a werewolf, who lays waste all, more than any Cacus, Gerion or Antus. And yet decks himself out, and would be thought pious, so that people may not see where the oxen have gone, that he drags backwards into his den.

But Hercules shall hear the cry of the oxen and of his prisoners, and shall seek Cacus even in cliffs and among rocks, and shall set the oxen loose again from the villain.

For Cacus means the villain that is a pious usurer, and steals, robs, eats everything. And will not own that he has done it, and thinks no one will find him out, because the oxen, drawn backwards into his den, make it seem, from their foot-prints, that they have been let out.

So the usurer would deceive the world, as though he were of use and gave the world oxen, which he, however, rends, and eats all alone…

And since we break on the wheel, and behead highwaymen, murderers and housebreakers, how much more ought we to break on the wheel and kill…. hunt down, curse and behead all usurers.” (Martin Luther)

quoted in  “Capital” by Karl Marx – Volume One
in Chapter Twenty-Four: Conversion of Surplus-Value into Capital

source : https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/

Permanent link to this article: http://new-democrats.com/martin-luther-on-usury-capital/

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