Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Ayn Rand: Patron Saint of The Plutocracy - 4

Ayn Rand @ Hollywood
In this series I have been linking the dogma of the neoCon far right with the ideology of Ayn Rand.

It is in some part an ironic story for neoCons to identify with, because she was an immigrant from Russia who settled in Hollywood, married in Hollywood, and became a citizen while in Hollywood (Wikipedia).

Those "values voters" the neoCons claim as their own would also find some of Rand's ideology iffy ("In 1954 Rand's close relationship with the much younger Nathaniel Branden turned into a romantic affair, with the consent of their spouses", ibid, Wikipedia).

Progressive posts in this series moved from general characteristics of neoCons, then to some specific characteristics, and finally those characteristics were linked to current neoCon politicians in the U.S. campaign for the office of President and Vice President.

In the first post (Ayn Rand: Patron Saint of The Plutocracy) we looked at the secular and the religious roots of the dogma she espoused in no uncertain terms in her novels, essays, and interviews.

In the second post (Ayn Rand: Patron Saint of The Plutocracy - 2) we focused on some of the sociopathic and psychopathic nature of her dogma.

In the third post (Ayn Rand: Patron Saint of The Plutocracy - 3) we linked the dogma to Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI) with his own words:
In a 2005 speech to a group of Rand devotees called the Atlas Society, Ryan said that Rand was required reading for his office staff and interns. “The reason I got involved in public service, by and large, if I had to credit one thinker, one person, it would be Ayn Rand,” he told the group.
(ibid, quoting The New Yorker). Thus, I have not linked the V.P. candidate Paul Ryan to Ayn Rand in a theoretical way, rather, I have done it with the words that neoCon himself spoke during a prepared speech.

Today we, you readers and I, will see that the neoCon candidate for president is no piker when it comes to the dogma of Ayn Rand either:
There are 47 percent of the people who will vote for the president no matter what. All right, there are 47 percent who are with him, who are dependent upon government, who believe that they are victims, who believe the government has a responsibility to care for them, who believe that they are entitled to health care, to food, to housing, to you-name-it. That that's an entitlement. And the government should give it to them. And they will vote for this president no matter what … These are people who pay no income tax.
[M]y job is is not to worry about those people. I'll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives.
(Mother Jones, quoting Williard 'Mitt' Romney, emphasis added). No need to discuss the falseness and utter out of touchness Romney's sentiment reveals, but I will quote Chuck Todd on his program this morning: "Those 47% of the people he described ... well 40% of them are Romney voters" (paraphrased).

Today's post deals with how that Romney speech behind closed doors stacks up with the dogma of Ayn Rand:
Selfishness, it contends, is good, altruism evil, empathy and compassion are irrational and destructive. The poor deserve to die; the rich deserve unmediated power.
Rand was a Russian from a prosperous family who emigrated to the United States. Through her novels (such as Atlas Shrugged) and her nonfiction (such as The Virtue of Selfishness) she explained a philosophy she called Objectivism. This holds that the only moral course is pure self-interest. We owe nothing, she insists, to anyone, even to members of our own families. She described the poor and weak as "refuse" and "parasites", and excoriated anyone seeking to assist them.
Atlas Shrugged, published in 1957, depicts a United States crippled by government intervention in which heroic millionaires struggle against a nation of spongers. The millionaires, whom she portrays as Atlas holding the world aloft, withdraw their labour, with the result that the nation collapses. It is rescued, through unregulated greed and selfishness, by one of the heroic plutocrats, John Galt.
(Ayn Rand: Patron Saint of The Plutocracy, quoting George Monbiot). As was asked in another Dredd Blog post, "what planet does he think he is campaigning on?" (NeoCon Planet: The Presidents of Kolob), or as we also asked in another post, is he "lying for the lord?:
D. Michael Quinn called the use of deception by LDS church leaders, "theocratic ethics." (The Mormon Hierarchy: Origins of Power, page 112) Smith lied to protect himself or the church; which was an extension of himself. Dan Vogel in his excellent work, Joseph Smith: The Making of a Prophet, described Smith's viewpoint; he was a pious deceiver. Smith used deception if in his mind; it resulted in a good outcome. Smith had Moroni, an ancient American prophet and custodian of the gold plates declare, "And whatsoever thing persuadeth men to do good is of me; for good cometh of none save it be of me. ( Moroni 4:11-12). Translation: if deception was necessary to do good, or bring a soul to Christ, then it was worth it, as long as God approves. Smith believed he knew when God approved of lying.
(The Homeland: Big Brother Plutonomy, quoting Lying For The Lord). Several videos are available at Mother Jones.

The previous post in this series is here.

Ode to Ayn Rand:

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