Willie Sutton: The Father of our Modern Banking and Finance System
William “Willie” Sutton was born on June 30, 1901. He crossed over on November 2, 1980. Humanity lost something when he departed; let me tell you! Dear brother Willie was a prolific American bank robber. Alas, for all of his effort, during a criminal career that spanned forty years, he was only able to steal an estimated 2 million dollars but then again, that was back when a dollar was worth—well, when a dollar was worth 100 cents! The poor fellow spent over half of his adult life in prison (uh, it was back in the day when “the government” threw crooks in jail). He had a knack for robbing banks disguised as someone other than who he actually was. That “talent” earned him two memorable nicknames: “Willie the Actor” and “Slick Willie.” Mrs. Sutton’s bouncing baby boy Willie is also known apocryphally, as the urban legend who, when asked by a reporter why he robbed banks replied: “… because that’s where the money is!” (Though he denied ever saying that, in 1976 when collaborating on a book he co-authored with Quentin Reynolds entitled: “Where the Money Was” Yeah, I know what you’re thinking)
Stupid us! Now, who would ever think that he thought of that?
His legendary frankness led learned men of medicine to name a “law of science” after him. It’s called “Sutton’s Law” (although I doubt if Slick Willie ever contemplated its mystery with any degree of intellectual agility). Sutton’s law states that when a qualified medical professional is engaged in diagnosing any medical issue, he should first consider the obvious (Duh!). This suggests that there is some kind of sensible requirement for a doctor to conduct those tests which could confirm his most likely suspicions (So now we understand the reason for all of those “tests” our doctors always have us take to our continual annoyance!). Imagine that? And what is more, this “contour” of reasoning is taught in every medical school! So, medical students eventually adopt a principle that compels them to order tests in a sequence that most likely leads to a more accurate diagnosis. This has its benefits because it results in a more precise treatment and that, dear family, goes a long way toward minimizing any unnecessary costs. Park that piece of information in the back of your mind for now.
Joseph Butler was born on the 18th of May in the year 1692 and he died on the 16th of June 1752 in Wantage, Berkshire, England (Now called Oxfordshire). He eventually became a bishop, theologian, apologist, and philosopher. I know he may not sound as significant a personality as our dear Willie. Bishop Butler is best known for his critique of Thomas Hobbes’s “egoism” (Light workers, attend!) and a rather expansive critique of John Locke’s “theory of personal identity.” During his life and after his death, Bishop Joseph Butler’s work influenced many, many philosophers, including David Hume, Thomas Reid, and Adam Smith (Is anybody in my little family beginning to make connections here?).
Among geek philosopher wannabes, like myself, he is famous for his Fifteen Sermons Preached at the Rolls Chapel in 1726 and an Analogy of Religion, “Natural and Revealed” which he gave as a dissertation in 1736. The Analogy is an important work of Christian apologetics in the history of the controversies over deism (a belief in the existence of a God on the evidence of reason and nature alone rejecting any supernatural revelation or spiritual connotation). He sort of believed that the One Creator God created the world but, after doing so, remained indifferent to it. Yeah, I know, sometimes it seems that way, doesn’t it?
To continue, his apologetic concentrated on an analogy between the principles of “divine government,” (as promoted by theological nerds of “biblical revelation”) and those phenomenal currents of observable events that are so much a part of our material reality. Somehow, as he engaged in this exhaustive inquiry, he began to arrive at the conclusion that, in the course of nature—as we observe it objectively—God must be the “Author” of both! You know … “the order of the Universe” (as a divine government) and the human condition as a product of the “order of the Universe.”
At least … that’s what I think he said.
Well, anyway, he summed it all up in his now famous (and rather blunt) quotation: “Every thing is what it is, and not another thing.”
Why did I go off on this ridiculous tangent? Oh, yeah! I remember now! We started off sharing the history of Willie Sutton. Yes! Right! Sorry. Well, I thought that I’d draw a contrast between these two men—one a vulgar and impetuous heister and the other a deeply spiritual and animated thinker—to demonstrate how the All-Mind tries its damnedest to get us to understand the nature of our material reality. You see, we’ve seemed to have lost our way in the World. We can’t seem to recognize the obvious attributes of “the other” even when they state their case and then proceed to act out their part in the play—you know—that grand illusion that all of our Vedic Adventurers keep slapping us up the sides of our heads with from time-to-time.
Men (and women) rob other people because they haven’t the compunction to work for their own gratuities. They’re lazy bastards. Lazy bastards have a lot of time on their hands. You know? When they’ve settled into their estate (as lazy bastards) they eventually figure out that if they could get everyone else to bring the money to them, they wouldn’t have to go around engaging in rapacious enterprise to accumulate the wealth their psychotic compulsions require of them. That’s a lot of work, after all! So, in the fullness of time, they invented banking.
Now, along comes one of our lazy bastards and figures out that, since everyone is “centralizing” the accumulation of wealth at convenient locations (dotting the countryside with the aesthetics of empire—imagery and architecture) well, why not go there to get all the wealth you could conceivably consume? And so, with the invention of “finance,” the birth of the modern banking system was born. Willie Sutton set the standard for authenticity. He pursued a life of crime with panache and as much human dignity as was possible given the nature of his personality—which, I will remind you, was something that he never used in his profession because, he declared, “You can’t rob a bank on charm and personality.” How true.
So now, dearest brothers and sisters, you just sit back and think about what you’ve read here on our Miss Jean’s blog with deliberate concentration. Remember that portion of this commentary that cited the nature of “Sutton’s Law” and how it results in a more cost-effective outcome for the treatment of disease and then ask yourself if the assertion that I’ve made in this Op-Ed isn’t rooted in the very “Truth” that what we see is what we get. After all, our engaging, pensive philosopher, Reverend Butler—having thought it all through quite thoroughly a couple of centuries ago—seemed to have come upon a devilishly natural principle of empiricism. Empiricism is a doctrine that asserts all knowledge is derived from sense and experience (an argument that should appeal to light workers in general) and I state it to you once again: “Every thing is what it is, and not another thing.”
Having observed, at length, the symptoms of social disorder and the foundation of the iniquitous disintegration of Western Civilization—and knowing our own suspicions to have merit (having tested our hypothesis)—how then should we prescribe effective treatment?
I guess Senator Warren doesn’t sound so petulant after all, does she? Go figure.
Love and Light,