Manon is the personification of the demon of greed, as well as the Hebrew word for money. Manonism, or the cult of money, received a theatrical indictment during the Occupy Movement when the Wall Street bull was paraded by Christian activists among the demonstrators and mockingly worshipped in a scene that was meant to remind us of Moses and the golden calf episode in the Bible. Later, the newly-published first issue of the Occupy Wall Street Journal called Wall Street the “financial Gomorrah of America”.
More recently, only days after the Orlando massacre, Republicans blocked legislation that might have made it more difficult to people who are suspected of terrorism, or mentally unbalanced, to gain access to certain guns. This seemed to contradict common sense, basic decency, and respect for life, but our politicians are beholden to moneyed interests and place higher priority on profit than all these other values, and the NRA lobbyists are quite wealthy. The US is the biggest weapons producer and exporter on Earth.
Similarly, for the sake of profit, time and again, we find our politicians and many other functionaries engaging in immoral acts, placing the lives and health of their clients and constituents in danger.
Money is a means. It’s a very useful and practical means for acquisition and exchange of goods, but nonetheless a means, and should not be seen as the end. We know this from the observation that there are people of wealth who are miserable, and there’s research that suggests that money acquired beyond a certain point does not lead to greater happiness. This research vindicates the doctrine of Philodemus of Gadara concerning the natural measure of wealth.