It may seem like a stretch to blame religion for worsening the world's financial meltdown, but it's not. The entire conservative free-market approach to government is based on a flawed understanding human nature. The Creationist viewpoint is not just a religion, it is also a way of thinking that permits and encourages illogical thinking. Religion teaches people to reject facts in favor of opinion and hearsay.
Worse, the Creationist approach discards the most valuable tool available to an economist: An accurate, scientific understanding of human behavior. An economist who rejects Evolution Science also rejects the profound insights that come with it.
One of the cool things about Evolution Science is that the principles apply to a wide variety of interacting systems, not just biological life. Any time you have competing, mutable entities, whether they are corporations, memes (ideas), nations, or plants and animals, a clear understanding of the principles of evolution can give amazing insight into the way these entities interact.
To those who understand evolution, topics like predation, competition, and especially parasitism, are no mystery at all. When we view banks, brokerages and insurance companies as evolving, mutating memeplexes, that compete with each other in the classic "survival of the fittest" battle, we can predict certain things. We can predict that, in an unregulated marketplace, unethical (but successful) memeplexes will evolve. We can predict that "parasitic" (but successful) memeplexes such as "derivative funds" that are nothing more than quasi-legal casinos, will evolve. We can predict that the "tragedy of the commons," where each individual makes decisions that, collectively, hurt everyone, will be an everyday occurance.
By contrast, a Creationist rejects this sort of thinking. Or perhaps a better way to say it: A Creationist is incapable of this deep and profound insight into the financial world. By rejecting evolution, they reject the insights that go with it. The religious explanation of nature is simplistic: God created the world and its plants and creatures, and created humans to look over everything. Evil was introduced when Adam and Eve succumbed to the serpent's temptation. Morals are God-given, and are enumerated in the scriptures.
Religion offers no insight into human behavior, and even less into the behavior of complex social structures such as banks, insurance companies and stock brokerages. It is worse than silent ... it offers only ineffective solutions, such as prayer and wishful thinking.
Any useful model of the world economy must be based on an understanding of evolutionary systems. Anything else is just a fairy tale. Given that the Republican Bush Administration is filled with Creationists, is it any surprise that they can't understand the economy?
So, as you look in dismay at your stock portfolio, our the declining value of your home, or maybe you even lost your job, you can chalk up one more way that Creationists are damaging society.