I was going to post this as a comment to Ms. Huffington's latest post (Credit Card Crisis, part II), but of course, it veers way off the topic and could be seen as fatuous at first glance:
Ok, commenters ------- I dare someone to make a comment, now lol -
As Arianna said in her post today, the bank(st)ers thought as they plunged into the sliced and diced ever riskier credit default swaps and other "exotic instruments," with a "consequences be damned" attitude.
That's the internal individual and collective problem with unregulated "pure, free" capitalism. Its only value is the largest short term (usually quarterly) profit - that's IT.
In that world, if you don't have a shining Spiritual inside to help you guide your values and behavior, and the choices in the general culture are regress to mythic Christianity (hopefully rational and postmodern Christianity is on the rise, finally) or this kind of nihilisitc hedonism and materialm, (or they both can go together because the shallowness of mythic belief leaves a big hole where being "bad" actually feels temporarily good.)