Monday, September 06, 2010

Does God make you rich?

Here's an interesting chart, the data comes from polls carried out in various countries and plots the importance people place on religion (y-axis) against GDP (x-axis); the implication is that richer countries are less concerned with religion. Deeply religious, poor countries will appear in the top left and rich, godless countries will appear bottom right, I'm glad to see the UK firmly in the latter quadrant (click to see a larger version) as it seems like all the countries I'd rather not live in because of poverty, repressive governments or on-going conflicts etc. aren't in our square, maybe religiosity is negatively correlated to morality and peacefulness as well as wealth?


There is one strange outlier though, the USA pops up in the upper right quadrant, does this mean that they have  picked the right God to worship or that they simply just live with the cognitive dissonance that must be produced by residing in a modern (scientific) society and being very religious at the same time? I'd love to see this animated over the last 100 years to see what the movement trends are.

12 comments:

Elizabeth said...

Now that would be a good reason to believe in God -- if it made economic sense!

Steve Borthwick said...

E, it does, for clergy at least! ;)

gerrardus said...

Steve, it really, really doesn't make economic sense. Many of our clergy are intelligent, sensitive - and quite a lot are graduates of proper universities. They'd make a lot more money if they weren't on a stipend, and probably work half the hours.

Lisa said...

Steve, are clergy even decently paid? I mostly think of them as the proletariat where the church makes a bundle (some churches more than others) and a few at the top live like royalty, whereas the workers are just exploited.

Steve Borthwick said...

Lisa/gerrardus you are right of course, an imprecise comment, I was thinking of the fat-cats (like the Jerry Falwell's and Benny Hinn's of this world) rather than the regular troops :)

gerrardus said...

Even the average bishop earns less than the average IT Project Manager. OK you get a reasonable house (or castle, currently, if you're +Durham) but it's also your office.
If money came into it (and of course it doesn't) they'd have make me Archbishop for it to be worth taking the pay cut!

gerrardus said...

In fact, I'm a little worried. Looking at the image in this D Mail link - they don't make it clear if this is a pole dancer, fire man or bishop? http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-507086/The-great-pay-divide-Why-pole-dancers-bishops-RAF-pilots-earn-SAME-salary.html

Steve Borthwick said...

G, IT project managers are generally over paid in my experience; as for your picture if Bishops were like that then I think all your attendance problems would be sorted!

gerrardus said...

Never really attended a church with attendance problems, oddly enough.
We PMs are a sadly neglected bunch. Sometimes I wonder what we actually do,but then I've seen projects that weren't managed and remember why we're there. Mind you I still can't get my head round how a PM wouldn't take any interest in the project that was actually being delivered, as opposed to its delivery.

Steve Borthwick said...

G, Most IT PM's I come across are programmers or analysts who get to the top of their salary band and reluctantly move into "management" to pay their mortgages rather than because of any great career desire. Very occasionally you come across professional managers who enjoy managing and actually do something other than run around asking people if they're finished yet, I wish there were more out there like that!

gerrardus said...

I hate asking if people have finished yet. Actually, no it's not the question, it's the answer I never like.

Steve Borthwick said...

Me to! the answer is never simple and much of the time is spent debating semantics I find, programmers tend to be a pedantic lot in my experience! :)

I did spend a decade doing PM, it was good for a while but I found I got tired of it in the end, I prefer the innovation & hands-on stuff these days.