Autores: Héctor Zagal Arreguín
In quaestio 78 of the Summa Theologiae, Thomas Aquinas criticizes the charge of interest by a monetary loan arguing it to be unfair in itself. Aquinas’ condemnation to usury as an unfair action has its foundations on a passage of the Nicomachean Ethics, where Aristotle talks of virtue as the right balance between an excess and a defect, differentiating it from actions that are wrong on the whole. Herein, Saint Thomas rescues Aristotle to determine the nature of money as a tool, i.e. its own and main use. Aquinas accepts that each object has its own end and exchange value per se. However, he regards money as a changeable object whose actual value cannot increase without a measure of contrast or the work of an agent. By analysing the actual and potential worth of money, we can understand why Saint Thomas insists on usury as an unfair action per se.
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