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Banks are helping sharia make a back-door entrance - Comments

Thomas Byrne's Avatar Comment 1 by Thomas Byrne

It may sound on the face of it like hate speech but, if you can't live by the laws of the country you're in; feck off back to the Middle East. And if we do grant muslims sharia law (and i hope to spagetti monster the people in power are not that thick) where does it end? We'll have every one demanding they're own tailor made laws. Also how would the laws affect people who grow up and abandon their religion or people who join in from another religion? It'll get very messy very quickly.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 08:14:00 UTC | #110813

PrimeNumbers's Avatar Comment 2 by PrimeNumbers

I fail to see the need to bend over backwards to Muslims, of which this is yet another example of.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 08:14:00 UTC | #110814

digitalia's Avatar Comment 3 by digitalia

I can see the need from the point of view of businesses and politicians in Canada where the Muslim population is the fastest growing demographic. this chunk of the population needs to be catered to, and I believe the numbers show that they do enjoy the voting side of democracy.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 08:25:00 UTC | #110818

drcancerman's Avatar Comment 5 by drcancerman

people who grow up and abandon their religion or people who join in from another religion?

According to sharia law, it will happen one of the 2, die, or be killed for converting, or will end up without rights, living in a prosecuted situation and neighbours or the chance to keep living but anyone that comes close are a potential killer, since the individual has no rights and should be killed.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 08:28:00 UTC | #110820

PrimeNumbers's Avatar Comment 4 by PrimeNumbers

They might be fast growing, but unless they keep their private beliefs private, which is where all bad habits belong, they're going to become even more unpopular. Canadians are too tolerant by far, and Muslims about the least tolerant religion their is = culture clash.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 08:28:00 UTC | #110819

Chris Bell's Avatar Comment 6 by Chris Bell

I'm not sure that I see the problem. Private institutions (banks) are designing a product to cater to the Muslim population. No laws are being passed.

I may not like it because I think it needlessly separates and alienates Muslims from mainstream culture. If that is all the article is saying, then I agree. The first sentence of the article seems out of place then.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 08:29:00 UTC | #110821

drcancerman's Avatar Comment 7 by drcancerman


I Agree 100% with what you said!
Islam is so "tolerant" that a movie about women suffering under the law of islam manage to make its director dead.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 08:30:00 UTC | #110822

kraut's Avatar Comment 8 by kraut

Thus they engage in deceptive and dishonest banking practises."

I thought "deceptive and dishonest" was the premise of any religion.
So two deceptive and dishonest practitioners join hands - money marketeers and the priests. A beautiful combination to behold. I just wonder - when will we see the first "sharia" based banker dangling from a bridge?

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 08:38:00 UTC | #110826

weel's Avatar Comment 9 by weel


"I fail to see the need to bend over backwards to Muslims"

But the bank doesn't; it is not a government or a political movement leaning one way or another, it is simply a profit-making corporation catering to what it perceives as the wishes of some of its customers. Now you and I may think it is pretty silly for people (1) to expect a bank to follow rules that are many centuries old and pre-date modern finance, and (2) to expect banking to be possible without something that is effectively similar to interest, and (3) to believe that by some clever clerically approved accounting manipulations unholy interest can be transformed into halal sharing of profit.

But it's not the bank's fault that its customers demand what they demand any more than it is a furniture store's fault if its customers demand fake antique chairs made of dark-brown stained pine that are soooo two decades ago, or a hairdresser's fault if customers insist on a Maggie Thatcher hairdo.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 08:40:00 UTC | #110827

digitalia's Avatar Comment 10 by digitalia

...yeah, what weel said :) (outlined what i was trying to say better than i could)

also take that same statement, replace "banks" or "corporations" with "politicians", and "profits" with "votes" - although those last two are almost synonyms nowadays!

gotta think Bottom-Line people, not what's "good", "just" or "right". question motives not morality.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 08:46:00 UTC | #110831

drcancerman's Avatar Comment 11 by drcancerman

digitalia and weel

So at the end you two will support a sharia law in a country? So, not to angry our muslims masters we should put sharia law instead of a constitution?

Even though that is not what you two said, but little by little that is what, at end will be.

So you support as well, making the selling of pork meat illegal??(We know that muslims masters hate pork meat...we should cater their needs, since financially speaking they are great!)

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 08:52:00 UTC | #110837

liberalartist's Avatar Comment 12 by liberalartist

Sounds to me that this is a corrupting way to bank and banks do fall under a lot of regulations and rules, so I see a problem with it. 'Deceptive' does not belong in banking or we are all in trouble. This is not just a simple matter of catering to the clientele, especially since the clientele didn't seem to be complaining.

And what if the chinese in Canada suddenly demanded communist banking practices - people would be up in arm! But Islam is a religion so everyone is afraid to be against it and be politically incorrect. But Islam is not just a religion, it is also a political state and should be opposed because it goes against democracy.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 08:58:00 UTC | #110842

digitalia's Avatar Comment 13 by digitalia

wow, cancerman, you need to take a toke of that joint in your avatar. :)

i won't speak for weel (i'm not going to assume to know what someone believes based on one post on a website) but i'm just trying to point to the more direct cause of this potential shift in financial philosophies. i don't think it's enough to point at something and says "it's bad" without attempting to understand the root causes and hard facts behind such a movement - regardless of whether this Web-exclusive comment from Globe's site is properly researched or just prematurely throwing up a caution flag.

points being:
1) Muslim population in Canada is rising faster than most other segments of the population.
2) Banks and Politicians ARE going to cater to them.

it's up to the more informed among us to look at ways such movements can be combated.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 09:04:00 UTC | #110845

digitalia's Avatar Comment 14 by digitalia

...however, reading the comments on this article at the Globe's site I think his real issue is the fact that unknowing MUSLIMS will be the victims here. maybe this falls under the same category as the faithful Christians who flush away millions a year in tithes to their favourite church? could be enough to turn more people off their religion once they realize how they're being taken advantage of.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 09:28:00 UTC | #110853

drcancerman's Avatar Comment 15 by drcancerman


The point is, putting a sharia bank is one step closer to a sharia law being implemented! How many steps is it needed for that? I dont know, but it is damn close, because if you criticize islam you are a racist, bigot and should be sue and be killed, so, I think you should guess how far we are.

As an atheist I oppose to anything religious in public places like banks, and the idea of having sharia law is repulsive to me or any freethinker. Their belief should be confined in mosques only, or church only for christians.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 09:54:00 UTC | #110861

QuickEye's Avatar Comment 16 by QuickEye

It also might be looked at the other way around: the banking trying to sell their products, and sugar-coat their product so that a new market niche could be explored deeper. This in itself shouldn't bring about the change of the country's legislation.
If the product fails, than the bank is supposed to get rid of it. If it is a success, and the bank is making profit on it, than it is a viable business practice. Like offering kosher, halal or vegetarian meal on airplanes.
Renaming 'interest' to something else doesn't change the nature of it, as the article quotes a banker. In that case it is more about the deception by the religion that is the question, but that is not the banks' problem.
If the articles quotes are right, than it seems that the airline (bank) might be selling the same tray of food as kosher/halal/vegetarian: only the label is different. But than again: that is the religion's problem.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 09:59:00 UTC | #110865

PrimeNumbers's Avatar Comment 17 by PrimeNumbers

Weel, there are many examples in society where we don't give people what they want just because they want it.

However the difference is here that if I and a few friends went to the bank and demanded atheist bank accounts I'd be laughed out the door....

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 10:08:00 UTC | #110867

rod-the-farmer's Avatar Comment 18 by rod-the-farmer

What was missing here was exactly what these purported loans would look like. They are charged no "interest", but some other fee ? The devil is always in the details.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 10:16:00 UTC | #110870

Steve Zara's Avatar Comment 19 by Steve Zara

It's just a case of remembering that Banks are as honest as religions.

Please don't generalise like this. I use the Co-Operative Bank in the UK. I use it because it has a policy of ethical investment - for example, working to help fight climate change, and to defend human rights. The Co-Operative movement has a long and honourable history.

Cynicism may be fashionable, but it isn't always right.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 10:53:00 UTC | #110879

drcancerman's Avatar Comment 20 by drcancerman

The devil is always in the details.

OI! Dont say that out loud, I'm trying to ambush some unsuspecting individual! If you say that again I won't have a nice place to ambush and get a free soul! Then...I'll have to work for it!!


Sat, 26 Jan 2008 11:13:00 UTC | #110886

kraut's Avatar Comment 21 by kraut

"As far as I am concerned they are all the same."

a bank is a bank is a bank is there to make money, no matter if the shareholders each own 0.0000001% or each ten%.
They might decide to spent the profits differently, but I remember the examples of the Union owned savings institutions in germany - as voracious as any other bank.
And as I said - two crooked organizations hand in hand, a picture to cherish.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 13:06:00 UTC | #110926

Eric Blair's Avatar Comment 22 by Eric Blair

Sleep of Reason:
It's just a case of remembering that Banks are as honest as religions.

Steve Zara:Please don't generalise like this. I use the Co-Operative Bank in the UK. I use it because it has a policy of ethical investment - for example, working to help fight climate change, and to defend human rights. The Co-Operative movement has a long and honourable history.

Cynicism may be fashionable, but it isn't always right.

So it's OK to generalize about religions but not banks? Some religions do positive things too, obviously.

The point others have made about banks and sharia law (just business) is generally true except that banks, in Canada at least, are regulated by government so creating "sharia-compliant" loans may actually involve government at some point.

Loans are a form of contract, so it's important that nothing in the sharia-type loan should change how commercial law applies to either party.

Otherwise, yes, it's just a marketing ploy. No one, Muslim or not, is obligated to follow.


Sat, 26 Jan 2008 13:37:00 UTC | #110941

Steve Zara's Avatar Comment 23 by Steve Zara

So it's OK to generalize about religions but not banks?


All generalizations are wrong, especially this one.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 13:50:00 UTC | #110947

BigJohn's Avatar Comment 24 by BigJohn

As is apparent from this, the jews and arabs are closely related in both culture and heritage.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 13:54:00 UTC | #110949

Vinelectric's Avatar Comment 25 by Vinelectric

Islamic banking maybe deceptive but the back breaking interest rates on my loans are definitiely a crime!

Sharia banking may not be feasible in the real world (as it would halt economic growth eventually) but if any of these bank succeeds in finding an interest free, deception free solution I'll definitely join and invite all my believing and non-believing frineds as my dreams..I suppose !

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 16:48:00 UTC | #111000

al-rawandi's Avatar Comment 26 by al-rawandi


I have done some modelling in trying to create an "Islamic system" of investment.

It is impossible to be totally compliant, however the equity market can be a means of investment, so long as companies that are invested in do not engage in


Companies that have levels of debt or are highly leveraged are excluded. Dow Jones actually has an index of Islamically compliant companies. And there are several mutual funds in the US in the game. I thought about getting the management company I worked for involved, but there was a lot of work to do, and returns were not guaranteed.

Islamic scholars (some) have signed of on a fixed income instrument subsitute that could be used in a fixed income or money market fund. It is known as sukuk. I don't fully understand them, but they are bond alternatives.

All Middle Eastern countries maintain an interest system in addition to any "Islamic" system. Saudi interest rates are directly tied to those in the US.

The fundamental problem is that interest is a method of encouraging lending and incurring risk in the lending. Without interest, banks could not afford to give money to start up companies. In an Islamic system the bank would have to take part equity ownership, and that is not always a good idea.

I have developed a theory on interest free lending, but that is way off topic.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 17:02:00 UTC | #111003

Atheist_from_Hell's Avatar Comment 27 by Atheist_from_Hell

So let me get this straight. Some Moslems feel the need to delude themselves that interest on a loan is not interest if it is called something else, so that they can maintain their delusion that the archangel Gabriel spoke to Mohammed 1400 years ago. Lies being used to support other lies. Typical religious nonsense.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 17:19:00 UTC | #111010

al-rawandi's Avatar Comment 28 by al-rawandi

From Hell,

Yes. Call it something else, and sleep at night.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 17:21:00 UTC | #111012

dragonfirematrix's Avatar Comment 29 by dragonfirematrix

Sharia banking? Sharia banking?? Sharia Banking???

There is no sense giving in to the religious on any subject. The old saying is "if you give them an inch, they will take a mile."

I understand tolerance, and tolerance is a good thing. However, tolerance should only be shown to those who themselves are tolerant. We should show intolerance to those who are intolerant. The religious are not tolerant people. Therefore, how should we treat the Islamic, and Christians for that matter, on any issue?

Other than my above comment, would you like Friday fries and a cup of green pee with that Mecca Burger?

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 19:50:00 UTC | #111100

al-rawandi's Avatar Comment 30 by al-rawandi

dragon fly,

The pros? I can run a shariah fund and make 1.5% + on a management fee. I would then proceed to buy alcohol and bacon with the money, so I could again sleep at night.

Sat, 26 Jan 2008 20:00:00 UTC | #111104