Category: ayn rand stuff

Ron Paul: A show about nothing

It’s like, how much more Ron Paul could this be? And the answer is none. None more Ron Paul.

5,000 Americans contacted healthcare providers fearful they had contracted Ebola after the media reported that someone with Ebola had entered the United States. All 5,000 cases turned out to be false alarms…

Ebola is a dangerous disease, but it is very difficult to contract.

Finally, some common sense from the right wing. But then you realize: It’s coming from Ron Paul.

Ebola spreads via direct contact with the virus.

Meaning that what he says will sound reasonable at first. Until you begin to take it seriously, and think about it a bit, and then it will dawn upon you. This guy is an idiot.

To wit: What kind of viral disease can you contract without having “direct contact with the virus”? How the hell else would a virus take over your system? Telekinesis? You get my point. Jiminy Cricket, Ron Paul is a useless person.

The devastation wrought by years of war has made it impossible for these countries to develop modern healthcare infrastructure. For example, the 14-year civil war in Liberia left that country with almost no trained doctors.

You’re telling me the country’s doctors have Gone Galt. They’ve all come down with a case of Enlightened Self-Interest. Good for them, being so fully-empowered and self-actualized. Unfortunately, without them, Libertarianism will have a difficult time helping their poor fellow countrymen in a time of need. This virus in particular remains dangerously unimpressed with Ron Paul’s political acumen and philosophical dynamism.

President Obama’s response to the Ebola crisis has been to send 3,000 troops to West African countries to help with treatment and containment. Obama did not bother to seek congressional authorization for this overseas military deployment. Nor did he bother to tell the American people how long the mission would last, how much it would cost, or what section of the Constitution authorizes him to send US troops on “humanitarian” missions.

Nonetheless Paul has managed to come up with some advice for us. Here’s how we can all pitch in and stop this terrible epidemic:

The people of Liberia and other countries would be better off if the US government left them alone.

We can ignore it.

Leave it to private citizens to invest in African business and trade with the African people. Private investment and trade would help these countries develop thriving free-market economies capable of sustaining a modern healthcare infrastructure.

And after a few million people die of the disease, and Liberia has been reduced to empty jungle, a group of fully self-actualized individuals will descend upon the “country” and buy it lock, stock and barrel. That’s when the now-former Liberians will get the shiny healthcare system they richly deserve.

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Harry Binswanger can kiss my ass

Well. If it ain’t Swine Rand.

And: Hahahahaha

Give Back? Yes, It’s Time For The 99% To Give Back To The 1%
Forbes.com | Op/Ed | 9/17/2013 @ 8:00AM

Riot, anyone? If I could find Forbes’ front lawn I might water a bit of it.

It’s time to gore another collectivist sacred cow. This time it’s the popular idea that the successful are obliged to “give back to the community.” That oft-heard claim assumes that the wealth of high-earners is taken away from “the community.”

I work as hard as any of you Corporate Geniuses, I give up a bigger share of my meager income in taxes, and I do far more for my local community. But you guys make three hundred, or five hundred, times what I make. I never said you stole it, I said you didn’t earn it. You could civilize yourself by admitting that.

And beneath that lies the perverted Marxist notion that wealth is accumulated by “exploiting” people, not by creating value–as if Henry Ford was not necessary for Fords to roll off the (non-existent) assembly lines and Steve Jobs was not necessary for iPhones and iPads to spring into existence.

James Buchanan ‘Buck’ Duke used automated rolling machines back in the 1880s to mass-market the first modern cigarette, eventually monopolizing the domestic market with the American Tobacco Company. That the Earth invented tobacco, the farmers cultivated it, James Bonsack invented the rolling machine and Buck inherited the original tobacco company from Daddy are not in dispute. But Harry says it was Buck alone who created the billions and billions in ‘Value’ he sucked out of the enterprise. I trump Bullshit. He was a drug dealer with power enough to bully and destroy his rivals. Not much more than that. Whatever dubious value was created was to be found in the addictive cigarettes, and Buck never made a single one of those in his life.

What the Uber-Binswangers really admire about the rich is the way they prevent the real makers of ‘Value’ from receiving their just rewards. Cutting everybody else out of the profits, that’s how you create ‘Value’ Ayn Rand-wise.

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Ayn Rand uh-choppin’ broccoli

The hub of online libertarian thought and discourse focuses upon this week’s high court doings. The arguments on Obamacare draw the interest of the unflinching intellects who inhabit the eminent Reason.com.

Expect the usual. ‘Gosh, the proceedings are serious (titter). Look at how hard everybody’s trying (cough).’ Serious people always find the rest of us silly. Folks who can quote Ayn Rand chapter and paragraph from thousands of pages of stultifying prose probably find Supreme Court arguments whimsical.

Press your ear to Earth’s brain-box. You can fairly hear their thoughts . .

“How hard is it to be Ruth Bader Ginsburg, really? Who can’t sit at a desk? How hard is it to set fire to a gavel? What’s so smart about everybody when everyone’s stupid? You guys should try feeding America a diet of greed. Try baking a palatable philosophy with narcissism. When any of you losers can manage that, we’ll talk.”

With that attitude, Reason went right at the proceedings. Justice Scalia’s argumentum ad absurdum proved to be damn amusing.

“Could you define the market — everybody has to buy food sooner or later, so you define the market as food, therefore, everybody is in the market; therefore, you can make people buy broccoli,” Scalia asked during the second day of oral arguments.

Mr. Obama, you’re basing your argument for the mandate upon the Commerce Clause. Well, buying vegetables is commerce, too. What about a broccoli mandate? Hmm?

Now there’s some Randian lightning. John Galt would have shoved the government’s celery right back up its *ss, for sure. You too, Michelle. Scalia’s coup de rhubarb proved so logically devastating that the Reason-ers had to turn the question upon the world. Well, world?

87 Percent of Americans Agree With Conservative Supreme Court Justices on Broccoli Mandate
Emily Ekins | March 27, 2012

“If the government can do that, what else can it do?” asked Justice Antonin Scalia, referring to the individual mandate portion of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. He then questioned whether Congress could also require individuals to buy vegetables, such as broccoli.

Ever seen a poll on intentional absurdity? Look!

The recent national Reason-Rupe poll of 1200 adults released yesterday shows 87 percent of Americans believe it is unconstitutional for Congress to mandate that you buy broccoli. Eight percent think Congress can constitutionally force you to buy vegetables.

Notwithstanding the rampant intellectualism, I’ll assume broccoli is a vegetable.

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Getting a Life: It Has Its Pros and Cons

A person shouldn’t spend a lot of time on the Magic Book of Faces drinking coffee, staring into space (cyber and otherwise), and giggling at his or her own jokes. On the other hand, if I hadn’t spent this morning doing just that (ok, it’s 25 after twelve, quit nit-picking), how would I have stumbled upon this?

Pin-ups for Ron Paul. I thought it was a parody but…it wasn’t. I don’t even know what to say. I guess if there are people of color and liberals who can find reasons to support him, there are women that misguided as well. Like a chicken voting for Frank Perdue.

There are only two partial explanations for this display that I can come up with.
1.) Ambition. The GOP seems, in its Insane 2012 Death Spiral Dance, determined to graduate from “just plain nuts” to “eeeewwww, gross and nuts.” 2.) Yuck. I remember a guy I knew years ago that told me “Crazy chicks are hot.” I didn’t take that as a compliment since I was sleeping with him at the time. Although, in retrospect, since I chose to be with him, maybe he was right.

I guess some women need to see what life is like when they go ‘self-respect, optional.’ Calgon, take me away.

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Pardon me while I go on about stupid Paul freaking Ryan

On Wednesday, the GOP pitted conservative darling Paul Ryan against liberal hero Elizabeth Warren, with Ryan serving as a tribune to wealthy Americans and Warren as a populist fighter for working people.

What? You don't want to work?

So it begins, the 2012 battle for the hearts and minds of American voters. But you couldn’t get me to vote for Ryan, or any other Conservative, for simple reasons: they’re clueless. They vow to govern America through the thoroughly disreputable philosophies of the rich and powerful. To wit: We are good for you.

This is no way to run a good nation. This is the way banana republics and cults of personality operate. Organized around a single, selfish group of individuals, the country rises and falls upon the pursuits of the narrowest interests. If your needs aren’t aligned with the rich, that’s too bad for you.

Eliminating the capital gains tax would result in a massive payday for them. And if it puts exactly nothing back in your pocket, that’s too bad. If it slashes government income and results in rollbacks of programs you depend upon, say food stamps for your kids, that’s far worse.

The critical truth about government is this: it has finite resources. What the government gives to one group, it often denies to another. And that’s a reasonable mirror of our own lives. We have limited time, money and energy to devote to any one thing, the government, or society, or our fellow man, included. The government is an agent operating a lot like our ourselves, only benefiting far greater numbers.

Thus, the greatest truth: we are all in this together. So the government question becomes ‘How do we deliver the maximum benefit to all?’ I’ll go with Elizabeth Warren’s answer. The government should create ‘the commons,’ and these should benefit as many people as possible.

Political power distributed through democratic means, fair play business regulations, a productive but un-punishing tax code, a legal system which preserves personal liberty, durable and plentiful infrastructure, the freedom to live as you please — these make for a user-friendly world. This is the Great Western Society.

But each of these features is a limited resource. No matter how much you’d like to, you can’t drive over the same bridge everybody else is already using. If it’s jammed, you’ve got to wait or find another way. You can’t use the same part of the tax code as someone making a tenth of you. Even if a whole bunch of you tried, the codes would catch up with you by resetting against your favor. You can’t all live in the same beautiful neighborhood, you can’t all live in the same house. You can’t yell “Fire” in a crowded club just to demonstrate your First Amendment freedoms.

So the commons, while meant for everybody, are limited resources. Elizabeth Warren:

You built a factory out there? Good for you. But I want to be clear. You moved your goods to market on the roads the rest of us paid for. You hired workers the rest of us paid to educate. You were safe in your factory because of police-forces and fire-forces that the rest of us paid for. You didn’t have to worry that marauding bands would come and seize everything at your factory — and hire someone to protect against this — because of the work the rest of us did.

Now look, you built a factory and it turned into something terrific, or a great idea. God bless — keep a big hunk of it. But part of the underlying social contract is, you take a hunk of that and pay forward for the next kid who comes along.

Exactly. And this, Warren’s addressing of the essential Paul Ryan ethos — “I use it up, I win” — is where we jump off:

Moderator Ed Fuelner asked Ryan to respond to this argument. Ryan dismissed it as the “fatal conceit of liberalism.”

“Money and wealth made and created in America is the government’s unless they benevolently spend it back to people. It’s the other way around,” Ryan said.

Ryan’s ‘deconstruction’ is a great illustration of how shallow he is. Nobody’s ever argued that the government owns Paul’s wealth, that’s moronic. The argument is that the government provided a great many of the tools Paul used to create his wealth. Those tools take resources to produce and provide, and they don’t belong to Paul. They belong to us all.

If I borrow your lawn mower and mow the neighbor’s lawns at 20 bucks a pop, that may be a good idea. But I, being a reasonable person, would also throw a few bucks back at you for use of the mower. It’s not going to last forever — I haven’t done it any favors. Paul The User says “Screw that practice.” His Randian philosophy says it was brilliant of him to borrow your things, and that’s why he’s keeping every cent. The “Money and wealth made” is all his, regardless of the way he made it.

But you may say, “If the mower’s owner didn’t ask for anything, then that’s tough — forget him.” Fine. You want to talk strictly in terms of agreements? No problem: When you use the commonly owned tools, you enter into Warren’s social contract. You want to start a business by hiring publicly educated employees? You and the government are now partners. Simple enough? We have a meeting of the minds, a quid pro quo. Get ready to pay your taxes.

“No one is suggesting that we don’t need good schools and roads and infrastructure as a basis for a free society and a free enterprise system. But the notion that the nucleus of society is the government and not the individual, the family, the entrepreneur, is to me just completely, inherently backwards.”

More Ryan nonsense. The society is organized around the individual, and that’s fine. But its potential is enormously extended by avoiding anarchy and socializing common activities. Like making money. Paul Ryan wants all the tools and security of a collective but still wishes to extract every ounce and penny out of his efforts without regard to contracts he made with his neighbors. As if he lived first in a civilized place and then in a giant riot. He refuses to see the massive efforts of the people and the government, the centuries of work, that preceded him making his first buck. He is, in two words, a narcissist.

A Tuesday report by the Congressional Budget Office suggests that under conservative policies, wealthy are paying less and getting more while everybody else has stagnated . .

“Let’s not focus on redistribution, let’s focus on upward mobility,” he said. “If these studies are used as justification for erecting new and more barriers for making it harder for people to rise, all that will do is reduce our prosperity in this country.”

See what I mean? Totally self-deluded, clueless. Income taxes, even on middle-income families, are at a 50-year low. But one out of seven Americans qualifies for food stamps, more than 20% of our children live in poverty, 2.5 million more of them slipped into poverty in the last decade. Real wages for working Americans have shrunk over the same period, 74% of us think the nation has “gotten off on the wrong track,” and the august body Paul Ryan represents, Congress, is getting a record-low 9% approval rating. You can see why Conservatives love this guy. You show him a barrio graveyard, he sees Tutankhamen’s tomb. The way the riches stretch out in every direction, it hurts my eyes. Last:

“We’re coming close to a tipping point in America where we might have a net majority of takers versus makers in society and that could become very dangerous if it sets in as a permanent condition . . into a hammock that ends up lulling people into lives of dependency and complacency which drains them of their incentive and the will to make the most of their lives.”

And that’s when Paul worries for America. Not when the rich have decimated us with their narrow-minded, self-serving policies over the last 30 years. Not when they’ve recently triumphed in tweaking the economic commons in such an over-wrought and disastrously fanciful way as to shatter it to pieces, running the country aground. It’s when you people have taken too much. You’re probably on unemployment, taking even more as we speak. Look what you’ve done.

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A few choice words on Ron Paul . .

I am not a conspiracy gal, but, in fact, I am out to get Ron Paul as his eyebrows might be the most genuine things about him. People think he is more of a joke than a threat because he has a slightly smaller chance of winning the White House than I do, but here is what’s important about him:

1) For a guy who can’t really win an election, he has been taking up a seat in Congress for around 30 years, voting no on virtually everything because he is “against government.” Way to collect a fat (government) paycheck for doing the people’s business without actually doing any work.

2) Most important, some of us have been watching Paul for some time and are aware that the avuncular Libertarian thing is an act, albeit a successful one. He pulls in lots of pigeons, I mean followers, who can’t see past “End the Wars” and “Legalize Drugs.” Many of these political morons, I mean Americans, who are entitled to their own point of view spend all their time splitting the Left on behalf of their Libertarian Savior and getting very nasty when you attempt to point out that it directly aids the extreme Right.

3) It is now WELL documented that Paul is a serious career racist and has been since well before he began his career in Congress. His writings and associations over this time come from his deep involvement with the worst of the worst: basically, white supremacists and neo-Nazis. If you really want to see his most solid and consistent fan base, check out the threads about him on Stormfront.org and vdare.com. Oh — also, he is down with the John Birch Society. Takes money from, does photo-ops with, speaks at functions of, etc., all of the above. BTW: he hates women, LGBT people and poor people as much as he does people of color, but, if I get into all of that now, I’ll be in “new post” territory instead of comments [*boing* --ed.]. His writings and speeches were much more overtly racist in the past — he’s stealthier now, but, sadly for him, his past garbage has been preserved and is being re-distributed.

4) Even if none of the above were true, he is partially responsible for the existence of RAND PAUL. I rest my case.

As far as the eyebrow thing it is also possible that Dr. Paul has health issues that contribute to their disappearance, but, if I knew anything about, that HIPPA laws and patient confidentiality would prevent me from revealing it at this time. All I can say is Ron Paul is a very, very bad man despite any appearances to the contrary. American politics is very much about appearances, but, in Ron Paul’s case, a little peri-ocular merkin situation might be the best thing about him.

Cheers!

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You were right: Ron Paul is dumb

Mr. Randian Austrian Economics rebelogue, Ron Paul, opposer of wars on intellectual and moral grounds, ain’t exactly smart. Sorry to break it to you, fantards.

Here, in the video evidence, Ron makes the mistake of pretending to be too brilliant to get snared in the non-debate: is Evolution a Margy Parble? Because he’s a genius, he kindly relents and weighs thoroughly in. And the unique facade of the right-winger with brains clatters to the ground:

I think it’s a theory. The Theory of Evolution, and I don’t accept it, you know, as a theory.

This dodge? This is your standard knucklehead response. “It’s a ‘theory.’ Pbbbfft, ha.” Standard dick-4-brains argument, a la Rick Perry. A la millions of anti-Science morons, Ron Paul officially being one of them. A Scientific Theory is not the same as a Scientific Figment of Egghead Imagination. The Theory of Gravity co-exists with gravity, Ron. It explains very neatly how things fall out of the sky and the speed with which they hit the ground. You old fool.

. . The Creator that I know, you know, that created us, and every one of us, and created the universe, and the precise time and manner, and all, I just don’t think we’re at the point where anybody has absolute proof on either side . .

If, after 76 years of living on this planet, this response demonstrates the length to which your curiosity extends to Evolution, you’re a pale Einstein. Frankly, about one of the great, shocking revolutions in thought and in understanding the world around you, you just don’t care. You’ve never lifted a cerebral finger, and you never will.

The evidence, centuries of it, amassed by tens of thousands, perhaps hundreds of thousands, of people, stacks very cleanly on the side of Evolution. If you fancy yourself worldly and intellectual, but this is your pathetic awareness of the world’s existence, either your brains or your feet are made of clay.

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Electronic bite counters and your destiny with madness

The world ends in insanity. Common sense looks a mayfly. All is hopeless, no daylight for us. (done yet? no.) Here begins the American descent into madness. (still? yup.) Huddle the young and smother the old as civility rounds the corner for psychosis.

Okay: have you seen it? That gadget? The omen? The bite counter? Jesus, Joseph and Mary, save me from a future replete with these:

Bite Counter is like a pedometer for your mouth
By Ron Barnett, USA TODAY

Researchers have developed a way to fight obesity by helping people answer one fundamental question: How many bites of food are you eating?

The Bite Counter, a wristwatch-shaped device being marketed to weight-loss clinics and fitness professionals, uses technology developed by a Clemson University team for the military to track body movements in clearing buildings of insurgents in Iraq says Adam Hoover, an electrical engineering professor who handled the technical aspects of the design.

Well, any free-marketeer worth her weight can see the dangers inherent in such an electronic thingie. Pretty much everybody knows what horror comes next. (Anyone? I’m stumped.)

One News Now, “Your Latest News from a Christian perspective,” broke the story:

The insanity of a ‘pedometer for the mouth’
Chris Woodward – OneNewsNow – 8/26/2011

A wife and mother of three says the invention of a new product that counts how many bites a person takes indicates society may have reached the point of insanity…

“That is very strange — and I think we have reached the point of insanity that someone has created that [device],” says Julie Gunlock, senior fellow for the Independent Women’s Forum.

Gunlock says this is one of many supposed “health-related” items now currently available that go overboard. “BMI report cards [Body Mass Index] for children . . “

You know what’s crazier? The IWF pushing a notion of national insanity using the example of harmless technology. What the hell are you ‘fellows’ supposed to be doing, again? “The Independent Women’s Forum is dedicated to building support for free markets, limited government, and individual responsibility.” Well, then, I take it back. Libertarians aren’t intellectually shiftless crotch-grabbers, Julie, so you go right ahead. Lecture us away. Anyone that would take the advice of a Ms. Gunlock would be sane.

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Wall Street Journal calls our recession-era food stamp program a “crime wave”

Glibertarians attack. Since they’re too smart to vote in presidential elections, this is their contribution to society:

The Food-Stamp Crime Wave
James Bovard | Wall Street Journal

. . The Obama administration is far more enthusiastic about boosting food-stamp enrollment than about preventing fraud. Thanks in part to vigorous federally funded campaigns by nonprofit groups, the government’s AmericaCorps service program, and other organizations urging people to accept government handouts, the number of food-stamp recipients has soared to 44 million from 26 million in 2007, and costs have more than doubled to $77 billion from $33 billion.

Reality canapes, anyone? There’s a dark little economy playing over at The Ritz.
Should we take it in?

• The food-stamp poster boy of 2011 is 59-year-old Leroy Fick. After Mr. Fick won a $2 million lottery jackpot, the Michigan Department of Human Services ruled he could continue receiving food stamps . .

Decades after liberals derided Ronald Reagan’s reference to a Cadillac-driving “welfare queen,” Obama administration policies could easily permit Trust Fund Babies driving Rolls Royces to get free food courtesy of Uncle Sam.

Thank you detective James Bovard. Now we know who those extra 18 million people are. And at 134 dollars worth of food every month, we can conclude: this is how America got destroyed.

• Troy Hutson, the chief of Washington state’s food-stamp program, resigned in April after a Seattle television station revealed that some food-stamp recipients were selling their cards on Craigslist or brazenly cashing them out on street corners (for 50 cents on the dollar) and using the proceeds for illegal drugs and prostitution.

Hey, Columbo: why the bustling market for cards that can be swapped for food? Odd. Anyway, the millionaires are selling their monthly EBT cards for, uh . . *fingers and toes* . . 67 bucks? That’s not a lot of street cocaine. Or intercourse, anywhere. For a whole day. But I believe you, and I thank you for your Rand-ian douchenozzlery insight.

‘Who are you, James Bovard?’ I wondered. (can you blame me? yes.) So I looked you up. You are in the Wikipedia:

“James Bovard (born 1956) is a libertarian author and lecturer, and model whose political commentary targets examples of waste, failures, corruption, cronyism and abuses of power in government.”

Jim! Someone is poking fun at you:


You are beautiful and you are clever.

Quotations:

• “Democracy must be something more than two wolves and a sheep voting on what to have for dinner.”
• “A democratic government that respects no limits on its power is a ticking time bomb, waiting to destroy the rights it was created to protect.”
• “Elections are vastly overrated as a means for restraining government abuses.”



BONUS: This is the image appended to Bovard’s detective work. Someone at the Wall Street Journal took time to draw this up just so you could understand the post:

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The case for regulating Ayn Rand’s corpse humpers

Glibertarian Republicans go after the FDA again.

“Do we believe that McDonald’s and Kentucky Fried Chicken and Safeway and Kraft Food and any brand name that you think of, that these people aren’t concerned about food safety?” [Rep. Jack] Kingston said on the House floor. “The food supply in America is very safe because the private sector self-polices, because they have the highest motivation. They don’t want to be sued, they don’t want to go broke. They want their customers to be healthy and happy.”

Of course. Jack’s hit the nail on the head — who wouldn’t want others to be healthy and happy? Nobody. That’s why nothing ever goes wrong. People don’t want bad things to happen. So they don’t.

Union Carbide cared for its Indian neighbors. That’s why they didn’t spill a massive cloud of cyanide across Bhopal, killing 3,787 of them. Why would that proud subdivision of Texas’ Dow Chemical do such a thing? They wouldn’t. Those guys are all about happy and healthy. They don’t want to get sued. They wouldn’t want to go broke. That’s why they didn’t do it. The private sector polices itself, hooray. The children can return to kindergarten now, sorry for the delays.

How about that farm in Germany?

THE bean sprouts contaminated with a particularly nasty strain of Escherichia coli, a bug that normally lives quietly in the gut of humans and other animals, have now sickened over 3,250 people in Germany and caused 37 deaths. Since the outbreak began in May, a quarter of those infected have developed haemolytic uraemic syndrome (HUS)—a potentially fatal complication that affects the blood, kidneys and nervous system . .

Many of the patients with HUS will need kidney transplants or require dialysis for the rest of their lives.

They’d need dialysis IF the farm weren’t from the private sector. But because it’s a profit-driven entity, nobody shat any blood. Or died. Whoopee. Idiots police themselves.

Speaking of which — who wants to break laws? Who would choose to go to jail? Nobody. That’s why we don’t have police. Or lawyers. Or prisons. Hooray.

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The Ayn Rand Center decries individualism, attacks kindness on high moral grounds

Here comes the latest evidence that Randian philosophy is really, really stupid. Don’t worry if you’re not now in the mood to digest this post, the next banquet of absurd is already in the hands of the Atlas Catering staff.

Mark Zuckerberg, the Facebook guy, Time’s Person of the Year, just signed the Giving Pledge — the promise that billionaires will give away more than half their wealth to charitable organizations at some point, before or after death. This tragic news was too much for the Ayn Rand Center:

You may have heard of the trend of businessmen ‘Going Galt’ (a reference to Ayn Rand’s novel “Atlas Shrugged”),’ writes Don Watkins, an analyst with the Ayn Rand Center . . Other businessmen, however, have decided to ‘Go Guilt,’ i.e., to sign Bill Gates and Warren Buffett’s ‘Giving Pledge,’ vowing to give away most of the wealth they have earned.

Her fans seem to be saying Ayn Rand isn’t just warped, she’s all-subsuming. Nothing exists that can’t be reset into her framework of glorious self-interest. Nothing short of exalted selfishness can’t be mocked with accusations of useless shame. And there’s no evidence of guilt anywhere, but it’s still a wondrous framework, isn’t it? At least they can prove Ayn once existed.

. . 40 of the wealthiest Americans have signed the Giving Pledge, as it’s known. As people who have an enormous respect for those, like you, who create enormous wealth, we urge you not to join them . .

The premise underlying the Giving Pledge is that so long as you were pursuing your own goals and well-being, what you were doing wasn’t moral . .

Evidence, please. Any? At all?

Virtually everyone today shares that view–but what if it’s wrong? What if your greatest moral achievement consists, not in giving away your wealth, but in having produced it? What if morality is really about guiding you in making the most of your own life–not commanding you to serve the needs of others? What if the most virtuous thing you can do in life is to pursue your own happiness?

That’s certainly how arms traffickers operate, and what a virtuous bunch. In ‘making the most of your own life,’ they distribute as many weapons as they can while avoiding the onerous burdens of government interference.

And the corporate types who clung to the Third Reich were enormously productive and wealth-accumulating, making crematoria for places like Auschwitz. A crematory is a perfectly good thing, and what are businessmen supposed to be, psychics? Randians really appreciate successful, entrepreneurial types.

But even if my ‘greatest moral achievement’ is producing wealth, what does it matter what I do with it afterwards? Don? Anyone?

. . your wealth was not an undeserved gift. Every dollar in your bank account came from some individual who voluntarily gave it to you—who gave it to you in exchange for a product he judged to be more valuable than his dollar. You have no moral obligation to ‘give back,’ because you didn’t take anything in the first place.

But if I already made my massive fortune, I’m morally obligated to do . . what? Eat it all? The Giving Pledge only asks a billionaire to give away half, so they’re welcome to hang on to $500 million. Why not do it? “[T]he most virtuous thing you can do in life is to pursue your own happiness,” right?

No, Don swears, that’s morally flawed. The truly virtuous thing to do is to keep every penny — that pays Randian benefits to society. So his think tank criticized the sorts of deeds that would help millions of people.

Like we needed the education? This philosophy we already recognize as ‘greed,’ or ‘the glory of narcissism.’

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