Financial crises–like the one currently threatening Ireland, Portugal, Spain, and the whole European Union–can be extremely complex. Aleister Crowley would admonish us to observe a simple solution, and the answer to all crises, which cuts to the core of every issue:
The unfamiliar reader might think this is no solution at all, but a formula for anarchy and the end of civilized society. As Aleister Crowley has made abundantly clear, however, that while “Do what thou wilt” offers that level of freedom, it does not simply mean to “Do as you please.” Rather, he describes the new formula as one which sets “every man to the task precisely suited to his individual nature, and furnish[es] him with the means of discovering the nature of his true Will.”
The question of how to apply the above principle to practical politics and statecraft can be answered in numerous ways, no matter what the specific issue. Aleister Crowley’s writings have begun this exploration and it is one of the purposes of this blog to investigate what he has offered.
“Gambling is to be encouraged as the means of eliminating the imbecile.” –Aleister Crowley in “Considerations of an Open Letter to Labour”
Considering the specific question of the current financial crisis threatening the stability of the European Union, it seems likely that Aleister Crowley would have favored a policy of non-intervention in the collapse of the banks in Ireland. That is to say, they would be allowed to fail, “as the means of eliminating the imbecile.”
It seems this very policy was pursued by Iceland, (that’s Iceland, not Ireland, careful readers!) which is today in a better position than Ireland. According to Iceland’s President Olafur R. Grimsson “The difference is that in Iceland we allowed the banks to fail. These were private banks and we didn’t pump money into them in order to keep them going; the state did not shoulder the responsibility of the failed private banks.”
Moreover, Aleister Crowley might have even regarded the colossal gambles and failures of banks, which have created worldwide financial crises, as treasonous. As he writes in his “Considerations of an Open Letter to Labour”:
“Any financial transaction which manifestly inconveniences the state is to be treated as treason, and punished with death.”
At the same time, Aleister Crowley also advocated the free flow of funds and encouraged financial gambles as necessary to the functioning of society while warning against undue thrift. He argues that people making financial gambles should be allowed to fail just as they are allowed to succeed.
“When one hesitates to pay money out, one cannot expect other people to feel otherwise. So everything becomes increasingly constipated. I am not denying the virtues of thrift, but it’s a long and tedious business; and all the big fortunes are made by shrewd gambling.”