And Now, a Few Virtuous Words

Virtue is the only irreducible asset. It’s present in all commerce but vanishes the instant its purchase is contemplated. It leverages the most delicate, secretive and expensive deals but never takes a cut. Virtue inspires profit but cannot be bought.

Truth can. Truth is pliant, subjective, fungible. It will sell to the highest bidder. Virtue is inviolate and incorruptible. Virtue is the essence of all transactions but can never be commoditized. Truth is merely virtue’s ticker tape.

Virtue appears to be scarce, but it isn’t— it’s everywhere: in gulps of air for the drowning, in infinite stars for the poet, in hidden veins for the miner, in gapped-tooth smiles for raggedy-assed street hookers. Virtue has the maidenly honor of a selfless gift bestowed—and really is its own reward. Virginity isn’t; virgin scarcities notwithstanding.

The idea that innocence and virtue are synonymous is way off. Virtue sometimes requires estimable cunning.

Virtue is also more durable than morals, ethics or laws. The latter are derivatives. Virtue is a window into a natural order apart from deeds, words and numbers; its elusive purpose resides in speechless, numberless potentials. It is as fragile as a notion and vaster than the observable universe because— in its observation— the universe becomes worth inhabiting.