Wednesday, December 29, 2010
-Almost the entire century was a time of positive expectations with a sense of impending progress. It was a time of hope, trust and benevolence. But these were not blind pollyanish hopes but the result of a conviction that man could improve his life and surroundings through hard work and independent thinking.
-Yet, nature is very harsh and deadly and it took a special attitude to survive in the wilderness without the aid of modern conveniences.
-People had to make, with their own hands, many of the things they needed for subsistence and this made them strong and tough but also more honest since they had to be honest with themselves about what they needed for survival.
-People were more civilized and respectful of other people because they realized that each man was a resource of knowledge and survival skills. This made them appreciate each other more and respect those among them who had shown some particular skill or ability. The good hunter or good carpenter was always prized by his contemporaries.
-They could more easily tell when they were being bamboozled by someone.
-They got more angry when they felt they were being bamboozled and/or taken advantage of. Because of this, they expressed that anger and acted upon it to the point of direct violence against a thief or charlatan. Yet, most often, this violence seldom led to more than a black eye or bloody nose...the important thing was that the blackguard learned his lesson or left town.
-This means they also understood that the thief and the charlatan were birds of a feather and they had no problem hating them with vigor because they understood how deadly such people could be and how their efforts made survival, which was already hard, even harder. This is frontier justice.
-They loved intensely and appreciated the value of those they selected as their wives, husbands, friends and partners.
-When nature threatened, they pulled together, not out of altruism but out of self-interest and once the threat was over, they went back to their individualized lives.
-They did not make disaster into a reason for sacrifice. They got angry at the idea of sacrifice and those who would require it...even preachers (This fact has been lost beneath the emergence of self-sacrifice as it is preached in modern times).
-When they made a decision they stuck with it and took responsibility for thinking and doing. So they thought more carefully and came up with firm answers that reflected a moral perspective.
-They respected knowledge and culture and sought to bring it to the wilderness in the forms of books and theatrical presentations, music, dances and other forms of socializing.
-As soon as organized society and division of labor formed, they took advantage of it but still were wary of those who would introduce paper money, debt and contract. As the saying goes, their word was their bond.
-They trusted farmers and felt they were more honest and they distrusted merchants and people who made a living off of the work of others such as speculators, bankers and lawyers.
-They didn't like being told what to do.
-None of this would have been possible without the Bill of Rights and the philosophy behind it which is individualism.
Remember these lessons as we work in 2011 to restore the honor, decency and work ethic of our ancestors.
Friday, November 19, 2010
The tactics, goals and methods employed by the Obama administration; the bailouts, the stimulus packages, the executive orders and the unilateral rules making as well as a host of trial balloons intent on re-distributing income have failed with the American people.
Yet with the coming Republican majority in the House of Representatives, we appear to be headed toward intense debate rather than fixing problems. Many people are saying don’t go after this program or that; right now is not the time to go after NPR; we have more important issues to address; getting people back to work and improving the economy. Some people say we should ignore earmarked programs that represent a miniscule amount of theft and keep our hands off of programs that represent a gargantuan amount of theft. This debate within a debate threatens to block our ability to act at all.
The strategy behind this obfuscation is that of progressives of both the Republican and Democratic Parties. Both parties want to continue the spending banquet that they enjoy regardless of how much damage is done to the lives of real people. They don’t want change, in spite of how bad things are, so they avoid meaningful reform of government. They have no bearings, no principles that would guide their decisions, they are pragmatists concerned only about the “practical” means of keeping power. They are the problem.
A different, though not new, idea came out of the Tea Party revolution that swept so many Republicans into power in 2010. The idea that the Constitution meant something has emerged and, certainly, there are more than a few interpretations of what it means to get back to the original meaning of the Constitution. So I’d like to offer my suggestions and hopefully, by approaching these debates from a Constitutional base, we can obtain a political consensus rather than baseless gridlock.
I think the Bill of Rights expressed one principle that will help in our understanding of what the Founders had in mind. The principle of individual rights holds that each individual is a sovereign agent who must make his own decisions about his life. I use the word “sovereign” to contrast individual rights with the idea of sovereignty of the King or of the government. When we say that the individual is sovereign we negate and deny the idea that anyone else is above him or in control of his life and the decisions he will make. No one, neither King nor government has the authority to dictate the choices that the individual is responsible for making on his own behalf. This precludes any government regulation that would tell an individual or business how to operate, the decisions that individuals may make in the marketplace when selecting products and the moral choices they might make when it comes to their most important decisions and dealings with others in society. It assumes that man is capable of deciding for himself, that his mind is competent to affect his survival. In other words, by right, according to the nature of man and of how he survives on this earth, no one has the authority to dictate to him what he will do. The only constraint on the individual under this premise is that he or she must also operate according to that principle when it comes to dealing with others; he must respect their individual rights.
This principle means no income taxes, no welfare, no re-distribution of any type and especially no interference in the individual’s personal choices about what he will buy, what he will sell, what he will say, with whom he will associate, what he will think or believe, what he will do with his money and property.
Once that principle is established, we must agree not to look for exceptions or find arguments that justify violating these rights in delimited ways or in any way. This first principle, the principle of individual rights, is sacrosanct and the individual who is thus liberated, as long as he does not violate the rights of others, must then live with, suffer from or prosper as a result of his individual choices. Even charity must be a freely chosen act.
Because we know that reason is the singular most efficient faculty possessed by man, and since we know that once left to their own devices, most men will seek to live according to the best exercise of their minds, we know that the result of a society based on individual rights, the best possible outcome, will be a vast realm of peace and prosperity.
As I wrote in a previous blog post, “Do You Know Your Rights”:
“You have a right to make a living. This means you can create your own job by learning skills and selecting the profession you desire. More than this, you have a right to be proud of making a living. You should never accept the idea that you owe something to a collective or to others. The idea of having a moral obligation to “give back” to society is a collectivist notion intended to make you feel guilty and exploit your production for the sake of despots. The more freedom you have to make a living, the better our society is becoming. Likewise, the more the government creates jobs paid for by the money of other citizens, the worse our society is becoming. You do not have a right to a job created by government for the purpose of giving you an income.
You have a right to what you create. If you use your mind to create a product, what you create is yours to trade with others or to keep. Your production cannot be taken from you for the sake of a collective that thinks it knows what to do with your work. In order to be productive, you had to use your mind and, because of this, whatever you produce is yours by right. You also have a right to be proud of what you create. You should never accept the idea that all production and creative thought is a collective endeavor undertaken for the sake of the group.
You have a right to make as much money as you can possibly make. You create wealth by producing and if you have invested time in educating yourself, spent money in buying the tools of production and worked hard for hour upon hour, the money you make, all of it, should be yours to keep. No one, especially the government, has a right to take it.
You have a right to say what you think without fear of disapproval from others. Your mind is your property. It is an expression of your excellence and of your ability to ascertain reality. Just as you respect the right of others to think, your right to think should be respected as well. Only when you are free to express what you think are you living in a society that is just and fair. If government assumes the power to tell you how to think and how to express yourself, you are living in a society that considers you a slave. If government attempts to punish you for your ideas, you are living in a dictatorship.
You have a right to be moral. Whether you are young and inexperienced or old and wise, you are the decision maker about what is right for you. No one has the authority to dictate to you what you should do. As long as your actions do not violate the rights of others, you have the ability and the obligation to decide for yourself what is moral.
You have a right to your own philosophy. Whether you accept a religion or a secular philosophy or decide upon your own philosophical views, no one has the right to tell you how you should think. Just as in any other decision, if you accept wrong ideas you will have to deal with the consequences. No one can force you to accept a given religion or body of ideas at the point of a gun or by law.
You have a right to associate with whomever you like. This right is an extension of the fact that you have a right to decide what is moral. No one has a right to demand that you go to group meetings, that you repeat slogans and that you think group thoughts. You are a free person and you can do as you please so long as you do not violate the rights of others.
You have a right to all the energy you can use…there is no way you will ever use more energy than is available to the planet. The more energy you use, the more you can produce and the more money you can make. As long as your energy use does not harm the property or lives of others, you should use all the energy you can use to make a better life. Anyone who says you are harming the planet is trying to destroy your mind and stifle your ability to enjoy your life.
You have a right to privacy. What you do in the privacy of your own home is your business so long as you violate no other person’s rights. No one has a right to invade your privacy without due process of law whether it is a policeman or a census taker. You have a right to your body and your health. Your health decisions are yours to make in consultation with your doctor. The government can never tell you what to do with your body. You have a right to choose your doctor, choose your treatment, choose your method of payment and no one can violate your body and tell you or your doctor what to do.
You have a right to protect yourself against violence and fraud. The government that seeks to prohibit your right to self-defense is a government intent on robbing you. You have a right to live where you want. As long as you are able to trade income for a residence, you are free to live where you choose. No one can tell you what house or what neighborhood should be your abode.
You have a right to trial by a jury of your peers. A fair trial using objective laws and logical argument is the only way you can keep thieves and government from destroying your rights or stealing your property. It is also the best way to fairly settle disputes among citizens in civil cases.
You have a right to capital accumulation. Capital accumulation is the method that enables you to grow your wealth. Savings, astutely invested, should never be skimmed by government. When the government assumes the right to take your savings by means of money inflation or direct taxation, it is operating as a thief. You have the right to keep your savings in whatever form you see fit such as gold, silver or secured paper. The government has no right to decide for you what currency you should use.
You have a right to make your own economic decisions. The government has no right to intervene in your economic decisions, business operations, banking decisions, transactions or more. It does not have the right to tax your property away or tell you how you should act economically. It has no business regulating your business and as long as you are not defrauding anyone, it should always be “hands off” of your economic activity.
Each of these rights is an extension of the concept of individual rights. If our society respects these rights, then we can have a vibrant, healthy society, diverse in people and in opinions, where the best ideas win and where there is no limit to how far you can advance. It is a secure society because there are no threats to the individual, where people can trust one another and where self-sufficiency and respect are the hallmarks. Let no one tell you that freedom is the gateway to sin or that self-interest is evil. Never let them tell you that freedom has failed and it is time for central planning. The man who tells you that is a thief. Freedom is the gateway to accomplishment, to cooperation, to reason and to happiness. Anything else is slavery.”
If our elected leaders would keep these principles in mind and recognize that the government does not have a justification, nor does it have a prerogative to violate these rights, we’ll know our priorities going forward.
In addition, we should look closely, not only at the 16th Amendment, but also at the Interstate Commerce provisions as well as the “general welfare” clause in the Constitution and interpret them, properly as restrictions on government action, not as license to act. There is no valid justification for the violation of individual rights by government – which means that the common interpretations of these clauses are invalid. Any effort to use them to justify government coercion must be opposed and stopped by the people.
The principle of individual rights is the principle that can guide our politicians as they move forward. The only proper “social” goal of government is to respect and protect the rights of individuals.
This is the debate we should be having.
Friday, November 12, 2010
Have the progressives learned a lesson? Have they reviewed the flaws in their thinking, corrected the mistaken premises that caused their electoral defeat? No, they are continuing with their strategy of feigned superiority based on feigned outrage at demons they have created. Below is a list of the strategies they will employ going forward.
1. As long as we allow them to participate in the debate about governmental policies, they will offer us an incrementalist strategy. They will give us a mix of solutions, some good, most bad, from which to choose. Through this process, they hope that we will compromise with them and allow them to continue their advance toward more coercive, more rights-violating re-distribution schemes.
2. They will continue with their divide and conquer strategy by attacking the fictitious “Military Industrial Complex”, our troops, as well as our past wars and military actions. The goal here is to denigrate our power in the world and our ability to defend freedom against dictatorship. Their criticisms are designed to prejudice the American public against the many fine soldiers in the military as well as the justified actions taken on behalf of freedom and the long-term stability of the world; and especially our desire for a peaceful world. By turning the tables, so to speak, making us into the dictators and murderers of the world, they undermine our strength and willingness to defend ourselves; and this destroys the freedoms acknowledged in the Constitution and our need to fight for them when necessary.
The left claims that their goal is to fight war mongering and special interests that need war in order to make profits; but what they want to attack is the profit motive itself, the idea that a free country can produce abundance and become a bulwark against the thieving dictators that the left has turned into victims. If they can destroy our industries, they can make us weak and destroy our freedoms.
3. They will continue to divide us by means of the various groups that they contend exist in our country. They will designate certain groups as victims and others as oppressors. These divisions are myriad and ever-changing based upon which divisions yield the most immediate political gains at any given moment. They will pit black against white, Hispanic against white, rich against poor, rich against middle class, middle class against indigent, Hispanic against black, Muslim against Christian, Arab against Jew. The problem for the left, with this approach, is that Americans generally dislike being herded into groups, and even new immigrants will seek to individualize themselves and strive for affluence. Oftentimes, by the time the left has created a major ethnic or racial division politically, the people in the designated groups will have moved on into the middle and upper middle classes through their own diligence and hard work.
4. Once again they will debate among themselves about how they are going to mainstream socialism. This has always been difficult for them because people generally reject the notion that it is their duty to sacrifice their hard earned income for the sake of others, especially if it is accomplished by force of law. People work hard enough as it is and they don’t like being forced to work harder for the sake of others who do not earn their own keep. There is a sense of injustice about it. The left will always debate about the difficulty of having to present themselves and their socialist views to the voting public. Giving the voters a choice in the matter always means electoral defeat.
In fact, after a major electoral defeat, when the idea of re-distribution has been rejected, they often delude themselves by crying that if they had only admitted they were socialists they might have been able to “sell” the idea and win a mandate. Other leftists who consider themselves to be realists suggest the incremental approach over time so that one day the people will wake up and realize that they have a socialist state and everything is fine and working well. I’ve suggested before that this day will never come. The more they incrementally impose coercive measures into society, the worse things get. So the electoral defeat comes anyway. This is why socialism is seldom voted into power when it is a clear explicit choice (think McGovern). Most socialist states in history came into power by means of violent revolution and they too ended in economic collapse.
5. Yet, what keeps the left at the table is an ages-old killer. It is an idea that has insidiously destroyed life; an idea so unscientific, so backward and barbarous, a killer that hides behind fake benevolence; an idea known as altruism. Altruism is the belief that man's duty is to sacrifice for others regardless of what is in his self-interest. Altruism is a war against self-interest, a war against the individual; and by destroying man's right to pursue self-interest, altruism destroys much of the good that man would otherwise bring into the world. Historically, the losses caused by altruism are staggeringly huge and, if measured, would total billions of lives. The imagined damage to be caused by global climate change pales when compared to the loss of life and human energy that can be attributed to altruism's impact on the planet.
The Dark Ages are a good example of the influence of altruism. This period was full of famine, starvation, poverty, early death and illiteracy because the leaders convinced the people that their purpose in life was to sacrifice their minds and bodies for God and the state. When people have no prospect of affecting their own futures, when they must obey rules established by others; rules that demand their willing sacrifice; when they are not allowed to use their minds, when they never learn such concepts as individual rights inherent in their nature, the result is always death and destruction.
The ritual practice of altruism has been with mankind since the first kings discovered a need to control the masses and turn them into herds of obedient cattle. A religious ritual is a re-enactment by men of the lives of the gods. The most common ritual is the suffering savior allegory about the man who learns, through his suffering, that he is good only if he sacrifices for others. Altruism, joined with collectivism, creates the compliant “good” citizen; who mindlessly obeys the edicts of Kings and Religious leaders. Today, altruism is taken for granted, almost to the extent that it is invisible. Point to a problem, it is taken for granted that someone must sacrifice, see a starving person, someone else must starve so he may eat. The nation has enemies; young men must sacrifice their lives so that the kingdom may grow. Who must sacrifice? It is always the better, the most intelligent, the most beautiful, the most productive, the most industrious; always it is the better person who is denigrated, defamed, humiliated and destroyed, not because he is a parasite, but because he is not a parasite. Refuse to sacrifice and you are the enemy of society, the bringer of evil, the selfish brute who would take rather than give. So go the propaganda and lies of altruism.
Yet, the flaw in this scheme of moral manipulation is that altruism, because it invalidates the human mind, creates only devastation, battlefields running red with blood, concentration camps filled with rotting corpses, nations looted of their wealth and starving children who have no one to take care of them. This is because altruism is not about being a good citizen; it is about letting men in power loot wealth and human energy under the pretext that things will be better “if you’d only give a little.” To convince the citizen that he is only giving "a little" they minimize the value of life, of production, of human inventiveness and of self-reliance. If they convince you that you are nothing, then everything they take from you must have little value too.
Altruism is at the base of the ideas of the left and of the right today. Our President once told a would-be plumber that re-distribution helps everybody, as if this were an unquestionable truth. He was oblivious to the fact that re-distribution destroys everybody. He tells us that in order to spur economic growth we must devalue the currency, oblivious to the fact that whenever this form of re-distribution has been tried, it plunders and destroys entire nations. His wife tells us that “Barack Obama will require you to work. He is going to demand that you shed your cynicism. That you put down your divisions. That you come out of your isolation, that you move out of your comfort zones. That you push yourselves to be better. And that you engage. Barack will never allow you to go back to your lives as usual, uninvolved, uninformed.” In other words, things will be better “if you’d only give a little.” She is completely oblivious to the fact that she is talking down to people as if she were a Queen speaking to peasants who wouldn’t know what to do without Her. And if you look at our nation since "Barack" took control, things have not gotten better as a result of the unprecedented re-distribution he has enacted.
It is altruism that she demands; self-sacrifice for the sake of the King.
Will the left give up altruism? Will the right? Will they not see that the opposite principle, the principle of individual rights and the pursuit of happiness, the principle that the state has no right to confiscate the property of citizens is the very principle that did away with the Dark Ages and with concentration camps and economic hardship? Will they not examine the lies in their views? Such as the lie that man is a mindless slave who must do what he is told? The lie that man is meaningless and dirty and selfish? The lie that he can only be happy when he gives to others? The lies that reason doesn’t work, capitalism doesn’t work, freedom doesn’t work?
The question becomes then, why allow anyone who preaches altruism into the debate at all? After, the 2010 elections, the people now control the legislative agenda; they have the majority. There is no benefit to continuing the march toward dictatorship by allowing the left to incrementally advance their force-laden solutions. Why don’t we demand our freedoms, stand on individual rights and then let the left respond to us? Why compromise when compromise would mean our demise?
One thing you can count on; the left’s strategies for power will not change. They are too deeply entrenched in their mindset. According to their critique, capitalism is the scourge of history, the enslaver and the exploiter. In spite of the fact that the lives of capitalist workers today are several magnitudes more comfortable than during the 19th Century, the left’s view that the workers are exploited by capitalism will persist. At the base of this view, and of every other re-distribution scheme proposed by people on the left and the right is the idea that the individual has a duty to sacrifice for others. You find it everywhere, on the left with Obama and Soros, and on the right with Beck and the neocons.
As long as you believe it too, the thieving politicians will always have a seat at the table.
Tuesday, November 9, 2010
This time it is really bad for them. And they are so depressed again. Their counselors appear to be laughing under their breath again to see them on the couches again crying that the American public has rejected them...again. All they’re trying to do is make things better. Why don’t things get better and how could those hicks vote them out again? What’s wrong with the world?
The Tea Parties have been instrumental in creating a Republican majority in the House, in spite of the left’s efforts to marginalize them. So with that failure under their belt, they continue to marginalize them. Where did these people come from?
ACORN has been defunded by Congress and they've filed for bankruptcy. They were too busy defending themselves in the courts from the last election and they couldn't take Obama's money this time to register fraudulent voters so they could claim a grass roots surge of support from the bottom up. So much for the idea of "the poor man's revolution."
The media was not able to swing many votes this time and so they engage in character assassination of newly elected Republican politicians while decrying character assassination toward themselves.
Our educational system continues to indoctrinate our children with leftist anti-capitalist propaganda while the left ignores the fact that they have failed to educate those children in how to read, write and calculate. So they tell us it is better for America if we continue to let them run the schools.
The global warming scam has been exposed and so they spew fire about how stupid the deniers are in rejecting real impending global disaster that seems never to come.
Glenn Beck is causing George Soros to be exposed for the nation killer that he truly is which causes Soros to lose billions…and the press stands in line to get more of Soros’ money.
The unions are on the verge of going bankrupt because the Republicans are poised to stop the deficit spending necessary to bail them out; and to make things worse, they plan on investigating their ties to Obama.
The cities and states run by Democrats for decades are going bankrupt so they elect the Democrats back into power because they are experienced in government. But Obama will soon not be able to bail them out.
Barney Frank got re-elected and looks forward to the investigation into his role in the sub-prime fiasco.
President Obama wonders how he is going to advance the Alynsky strategy that his college buddies insist upon. Should he just rule by Executive Decree, create an emergency so he can declare Marshall Law or just take dictatorial power while he has the chance?
Everywhere the leftists are talking about the evils of capitalism and how they intend to fight the corporate interests that they’ve been partnered with over the last two years. They complain that the capitalism they tried to destroy has failed, and they even pretend that they are defending the middle class by raising taxes on the people who hire them.
In order to pretend to be courageous, some of them are outing themselves as socialists and calling their collaborators cowards for not standing up and saying it out loud. I think they regret not coming out when they had the chance to mainstream themselves. Now they are looking at another 40 years before they can deceive another generation of Americans into thinking that they are just nice fellows who happen to admire Mao.
What do the leftists have to do to make people think that they are really just a bunch of cuddly nice furry little people who want to make things better with other peoples’ money? Why do Americans always associate them with Stalin and Mao and Castro?
Just watch, one of them is going to start a new company selling little cuddle-bears named Josef, Mau Mau and Fidel. Maybe that’ll help.
That’s the problem with the left. They just can’t sell socialism to the American public – no matter how hard they try to indoctrinate the children. They are now convinced that the right move after Obama’s victory in 2008 would have been to outlaw the Constitution and the elections and just declare Obama ruler for life.
I’m sure George Soros would be sleeping better had they done that.
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
Is he really just learning on the job? Did he really think the oceans would fall and the skies would open when he became President? Does it take an election defeat to teach him a lesson that he should have already known? Why didn't he know that it is his job to protect American citizens not confiscate their earnings? He should certainly have known that free people do not like being treated like draft animals.
Well, if we must educate our President on the job, we have certainly made a mistake in electing him. How could so many educated citizens, who certainly know their own limitations, elect to the highest office in the world a person who does not know his own limitations?
Well, if we have to teach you to be a grown up, Mr. President; here goes:
Mr. President, you should reflect on the education you received in your youth from people like your mother, from Frank Marshall Davis and perhaps even from your father. These people taught you that capitalism is evil and that it should be destroyed. And we know that your socialist friends and fellow radicals in the various schools you attended held the same Marxist belief. Perhaps you should reflect on that; and you should ask yourself the following questions: is it possible that you and all your radical friends are wrong about capitalism? Is it possible that your job is not to create a crisis in our economy but to protect our freedom to make our own decisions?
Is it possible that all your friends, the William Ayers, the Reverend Wrights and many others in your life were wrong? What if they don’t have the knowledge of history (or of economics) that you think they do? Perhaps they have miscalculated in thinking that they have the right to decide what is a proper society or who should pay taxes and who should not?
What if their idea of social justice is an excuse for slavery; and, most importantly, what if you do not have the authority to decide who gets taxed, who gets fired, who gets bailed out, who can drill for oil; who should “nudge” us in any direction whatsoever? What if all this moral authority you assume for yourself was not really given to you by the election of 2008? What if you really have no authority to violate the individual rights and the individual choices of citizens and business people?
Mr. President, perhaps you don’t understand as much as you think you do. Perhaps you are revealing to the world your utter inability to lead; perhaps you are embarrassing yourself for all to see. The point is, the office of President of the United States does not give you the authority to make arbitrary, unilateral decisions that everyone else must follow because you won an election. We live in a constitutional republic that limits every office of the government including yours. The government is limited in what it can do and prohibited from dictating individual choices and decisions. For lack of a better word, this is what they call "freedom."
Perhaps your constitutional scholarship did not teach you that, properly, you cannot make arbitrary decrees, that only Congress can write laws, not you. Perhaps you missed the point that our government was limited to only those actions authorized by constitutionally drafted laws and that you have no right whatsoever to violate the Bill of Rights. I feel like I'm talking to a second grader.
Where did you come up with the idea that being elected President meant you could do whatever you want? We are not your subjects, you are not a god, and we won’t accept your efforts to turn us into slaves, no matter how much Michelle says you are going to require of us.
What if your belief that you hold a moral authority over other individuals is actually a “reflection” of your immaturity, your poor education, perhaps even your arrogance?
Sunday, September 26, 2010
He is probably asking himself some hard questions: why don’t the American people want these benefits? What makes people want to repeal the entire bill?
His solution is to put Andy Griffith on the air.
Is it possible that the people are wiser than President Obama on this issue?
The Founding Fathers, particularly Jefferson and Madison, were political philosophers of the highest caliber. They engaged in far-reaching studies of governments around the world and through out history. They wanted to create a new form of government that retained all the best attributes of the better systems but which also restricted the negative attributes. They understood the flaws in communism(1), theocracy, monarchy, oligarchy, democracy, to name a few, and they found these systems wanting in their ability to protect men against the development of tyranny. Their solution was a republic that instituted strong restraints on the government such as effective divisions of power, checks and balances, a written Constitution, a bill of rights and the pursuit of happiness.
The Founders saw any system of government that sought to exploit given groups for the sake of other groups as tyranny. For instance, they did not want the un-propertied mass of people, by vote, to expropriate the property of the rich (re-distribution) and they did not want the rich to use influence with the government to get even more rich (oligarchy). They wanted all groups to be left to their own devices and free of any form of coercion from any direction.(2)
Our President, on the other hand is not a political philosopher; he is an ideologue who thinks that (in essence) a fascist oligarchy with elements of communism (re-distribution) is the best system. He minimizes the studied views of Madison and Jefferson and criticizes the Constitution because it does not re-distribute wealth. His “system” would bring into government the negative attributes of both democracy and oligarchy – as if it represented something new that has never been tried. Not only does he hope for the ignorance of the American people about the damage that these systems have caused in the past, he accepts the invalid verdict of Marxist critics that capitalism is exploitation. He considers capitalism to be selfish, wasteful and coercive while at the same time he seeks to retain in his own government these same negative attributes.
If he were to look at his own economic program, in particular his Stimulus Program, that has produced not a single net job, he would be asking himself why the jobs are not coming, why he has to tamper with the numbers, why he has to call government hiring for the census an indication of an improving economy. Instead of lying to us, he should be asking why his policies aren’t working. But he doesn’t ask that question. Why?
The answer is because the President is a committed statist.
A statist adheres to the principle that the government has the moral authority to use force against citizens for any reason whatever. A citizen is considered the property of the state and it is his duty to do as he is told; to sacrifice himself, if the state demands it, for a “higher” good. Further, if the state determines that a particular social goal is a priority, the citizen must dedicate himself to that goal. There is no choice in this matter; the collective rules and the individual’s wants, needs or goals are unimportant. If some people have to starve for the sake of the “greater good”, that is fine.
Statists consider that leadership consists of passing laws or issuing decrees that the rest of society must obey. They assume that citizens “know” that their decisions are the will of the people. The pragmatic statist thinks that his leadership skill is to be found in intelligently manipulating the elements of society in order to accomplish “good” results. He uses college professors who are adept at statistics, and who claim to have a deep knowledge of how society works, to advise him on how to pull the levers of the social machine, to prime the pump, so to speak, and create abundance and happiness all around.
A statist adheres to the principle of collectivism which claims that people, working together, sacrificing for each other, can accomplish great things. They consider that collectivism is the key to winning wars, defeating poverty, eliminating waste and improving the morale of the nation. This too is considered practical. The statist envisions a world of happy workers, each laboring for the goal of the collective, and contributing to the total product which keeps growing larger.
Which brings us to the third principle of the statist and that is altruism. Altruism is the idea that it is the duty of each individual to participate in the collectivist dream; in fact, that he must participate or else he is an enemy of the people. The altruist thinks that if people do not willingly contribute their work, their time and their lives to the collective vision, they are criminals; they must be punished and ostracized.
The problem for statists like the President is that they are fraught with cognitive blind spots. Their visions blur when it comes to anticipating the final outcome of statism, the point when the gross product is supposed to keep getting larger. The vision of a happy, affluent society, for some reason, never materializes. It must always be pushed off into a further distant future…while the wise leaders figure out how to manipulate the society even more. They look for situations where men are not performing their duties, and they determine how the government can “nudge” them so society can be improved. Each intervention creates more problems and breeds more interventions and takes society to the point where the leaders lose track of what caused what and how to fix what. The brilliant scholars, now called dunces, are hauled off to prison or summarily purged as enemies of the state. What none of the statists realize is that when you combine altruism with collectivism you end with slave labor, concentration camps and genocide...or revolution.
The most basic blindspot of statists is found in their theory of man’s nature. To them, man is an ignorant brute who will always do the wrong thing unless a “benevolent” authority keeps them on the right path. The truth that statist authorities do not see is that man is not a brute, he is a being with volition and the ability to survive by means of his mind. In other words, man has the ability to thrive if he is left alone. This is the fact that the statists refuse to accept and this is why every statist society in history has been a dismal failure.
Which brings us to the President’s Achilles' Heel.
The American people did not vote for the President’s Health Care program, his jobs stimulus bills, his interventions, his unilateral decrees, his lawlessness. This is because most of the people are rational. They are not mere brutes who follow any lie told to them. They know that these programs are not in their self-interest. They know that their future hard work (in the form of debt) is merely being re-distributed; nothing is being added to the gross product…which means no “stimulation” is being accomplished. They are smarter than the President and all his professors combined.
The rationality of the American people represents the President’s Achilles Heel, his deadly weakness within his perceived strength as a leader. It doesn’t matter how cleverly he tells a lie; it is still a lie and people can see through it. The fantasy that you can create economic well-being by giving to some people other peoples’ money does not wash. You cannot indefinitely spend tomorrow’s money; sooner or later you lose your credit rating and you are destitute.
The American people are reading between the lines of the President’s actions and statements. Though many of them don’t know what statism is, they can see that there is something wrong with the President’s manner of speaking. They ask themselves whether he is a communist, a socialist, a fascist, a welfare statist and they debate with themselves (endlessly) the meaning of what he does not say, the nature of the people that he brings into his administration, the decrees he issues, the laws he disregards and they know that the principles he claims to espouse, free markets and capitalism, are clearly not what he advocates.
They see clearly that he advocates a government of men…and not of laws.
(1) Via Aristotle’s writings on communism, holding all property in common.
(2) See Federalist Paper #10 by Madison
Saturday, September 11, 2010
Thursday, September 9, 2010
"Change doesn’t come from Washington. Change comes to Washington."
“The change we seek has always required great struggle and great sacrifice. And so this is a battle in our own hearts and minds about what kind of country we want and how hard we’re willing to work for it.”
“So let me remind you tonight that change will not be easy. Change will take time. There will be setbacks and false starts and sometimes we’ll make mistakes.”
“We’ve done this before: Each and every time, a new generation has risen up and done what’s needed to be done. Today we are called once more, and it is time for our generation to answer that call. For that is our unyielding faith that in the face of impossible odds, people who love their country can change it.”
“I recognize that there is a certain presumptuousness in this, a certain audacity, to this announcement. I know that I haven’t spent a lot of time learning the ways of Washington. But I’ve been there long enough to know that the ways of Washington must change.”
“The genius of our Founders is that they designed a system of government that can be changed. And we should take heart, because we’ve changed this country before.”
“When I hear the cynical talk that blacks and whites and Latinos can’t join together and work together, I’m reminded of the Latino brothers and sisters I organized with and stood with and fought with side by side for jobs and justice on the streets of Chicago. So don’t tell us change can’t happen.”
“And so if we do not change our politics � if we do not fundamentally change the way Washington works � then the problems we’ve been talking about for the last generation will be the same ones that haunt us for generations to come.”
One thing that President Obama never talks about is what he means by the word “change”. The question is, what is he changing America into; specifically, what is the “system” he wants for us? Is it a system of constant change such as socialism or fascism? It is certainly not the kind of slow, deliberate change that created the domestic tranquility for which our Founders strove.
Believe it or not, this issue of changing our government was critical to the discussions during our Constitutional Convention in 1787. Our Founders wanted a government that could be changed but only in a very limited, slow, deliberate and thoughtful way; they wanted to secure and strengthen freedom not change it on a whim. They wanted a government based on sound and true principles that corresponded with the real world in which men lived. And, more importantly, they sought to institute “protections” against the government changing into a dictatorship. They created the separation of powers, checks and balances, regular elections, property rights, judicial review and even freedom of speech in order to ensure that society did not change into a system where factions such as economic or religious groups could turn the government into a tool of oppression. They wanted a government that secured “domestic tranquility” rather than revolutionary change. They created a republic.
The real issue for the Founders was not how to re-distribute income. They established a government that, for the first time in recorded history, allowed and protected the pursuit of happiness; a system that allowed hard working people to keep the results of their work…by right. They were philosophically grounded in Enlightenment ideas, the development of parliamentary government in England, the experiments of the Ancient Greeks and Roman forms of government; and they carefully pondered how to create something so good and so well constituted that it could not be changed easily. Many of their arguments revolved around the question of how to ensure domestic tranquility.
Something tells me that President Obama would probably give lip-service to the idea of domestic tranquility. I think he wants to ensure that people don’t correctly understand that the “change” he refuses to define is really revolutionary change; the kind of change that obliterates and unravels all the work done by the Founders. Revolutionary change destroys domestic tranquility because it is an assault on the Constitution and individual rights.
Why is President Obama’s “change” the opposite of domestic tranquility? First of all, any undefined concept can only do harm. The fact that it is undefined means that those in charge of it can “change” the definition to suit their needs at any time. It is reminiscent of George Soros’ “Open Society”; a full democracy where a majority can enslave the productive minority without opposition. In such a “democratic” system, we find that few honest citizens can garner the support necessary to defeat or amend the plundering of their property. A government that has a free hand to disregard individual rights and Constitutional protections can do virtually anything it wants in the name of changing the system to something that it decides is “fair”. What you get is what we’ve got; a government whose leader rules virtually by decree without reference to laws or the Constitution.
This “change” society destroys economic activity because business people and private citizens are effectively prohibited from planning their futures. As a matter of survival, they must refuse to invest in the future until domestic tranquility is restored. If they have only plunder of their property to look forward to, they will not produce very much. This is a law of nature, not something you can fix about man. It is a form of justice where honest people refuse to feed parasites.
The truth is that a revolutionary government like ours does not see domestic tranquility as a value. Its highest value is change. Change is necessary because the leaders do not know what to do and they must have the flexibility necessary to change policies and conditions unilaterally and without debate. Their greatest enemy is the man who expects to be reasoned with and treated honestly. This is why revolutionary governments have always made an enemy of capitalism and capitalists. They have committed virtually every form of crime against these people including murder and imprisonment, disenfranchisement and plunder. Capitalists are the proverbial scapegoats of history, damned by altruism because they pursue happiness and want to live better lives.
Revolutionary government needs the ability to steal value through re-distribution, progressive taxation, debt, expropriation, violation of contracts and outright nationalization…in order to get the money it needs to build oligarchs, regulatory agencies, secret police and armies. Revolutionary government requires altruism and self-sacrifice among those it intends to loot and, therefore, it cannot be constrained by such ideas as individual rights and reasoned debate. So the “change” that revolutionary government requires is the destruction of domestic tranquility.
Revolutionary governments, seeking change, necessarily make bad decisions. For instance, our government, under the Obama administration, has accepted Keynesian economic fallacies that recommend government re-distribution (through debt) to stimulate demand for products. The false premise of Keynesianism is that government can spur economic activity by giving money to consumers who will then buy from producers. But the money given to the consumers has been taken from the producers, capitalists, factory workers, service employees; and this means that the government is not creating wealth…it is only moving it around (This is why the Stimulus Programs have not created any new jobs). Where producers would otherwise invest their money in production, thereby increasing domestic products, wealth is reduced due to re-distribution.
In fact, the government is destroying what would otherwise be rational expenditures of money, diverting those expenditures from the purchase of production capacity to the purchase of snacks, alcoholic beverages and candy. The economy declines because it has been “changed” into a less efficient system. A perfect example of this, if it is implemented, will be the so-called “Cap and Trade” program that will move even more money around and destroy one of the most vital industries we have; our energy industry. This program will tax today's most efficient uses of energy and re-distribute money to oligarchs paid by the government to develop inefficient energy products whose prices will be subsidized by the government in order to encourage their consumption. If you thought Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac were failed re-distribution schemes (that brought about a financial collapse) you haven’t seen anything yet. This is what you can expect from President Obama’s vision of change in America.
The basic fallacy of Keynes and Obama is best expressed by Jean Baptiste Say, "...it is the aim of good government to stimulate production, of bad government to encourage consumption."(1) How does good government stimulate production? It establishes domestic tranquility and leaves people alone to make their own economic decisions.
Domestic tranquility is promoted when the government is prohibited from violating individual rights, and more importantly, when the government is constrained, into the distant future, from interfering in the private decisions of citizens. When the government can never “change” into a rights-violating government, then the people can freely plan their lives, invest their money, produce abundance and make profits…into the distant future. They require domestic tranquility in order to survive.
It is not likely that President Obama will ever admit that his “change” is the cause of our economic problems. He would prefer to blame capitalism and small business people for being selfish than to admit that his policies have upset our domestic tranquility. He pretends not to see what is in front of his eyes, that his government is doing exactly the opposite of what is necessary for a vibrant economy. His government is “changing” so fast and regulating so much that people do not know how to prepare for the future. He is destroying their rights so fast, spending their money so fast at a level unheard of in the history of the world, that you can validly ask whether he is deliberately destroying our nation.
The re-establishment of domestic tranquility is not about being a Republican or a Democrat. The Founding Fathers did not think of party divisions or of winning elections when they sought to create the circumstances that enabled citizens to perennially live without the interference of government. Today, we have no such tranquility and the actions of our change-prone government are pushing us further and further into decline. Not only is the private citizen under siege by his own government but the consequences of President Obama’s policies will likely make our nation vulnerable to enemies intent on destroying us.
We need to restore the time-honored principles that created our society, not because they are traditional but because they are true; they lead to the kind of society where citizens can plan their lives; where they can live secure in the knowledge that they are protected from tyranny.
In this sense, we need to change change back to the original change.
(1) Jean Baptiste Say, Traite d'Economie Politique (Say's Law, that supply creates its own demand was originated in 1803).
Wednesday, August 25, 2010
The Cordoba Initiative to build an Islamic "community center" a few blocks from the Ground Zero site in New York has hit a nerve with Americans. The more coverage the media gives to this issue, the higher the level of anger. Yet, I think many Americans do not yet realize the real issues; they just know, in their gut, that there is something wrong and that building this mosque is not about freedom of religion or property rights for Muslims. The real issue is the Muslim religion and the ideas it offers to mankind.
This mosque is an open and deliberate attack on American values. First of all, a piece of the Airplane that destroyed one of the Twin Towers fell on the building where the mosque will be built. This makes the land for this building sacred to many Muslims because it represents the "martyrs" (read murderers) who were in that plane. They were as "gods fallen from the sky" and where they landed was determined, for them, by God. In the same way that other Muslim Mosques around the world have been built at places of great military victories, this plane hitting this Park51 building represents "the hand of God" to many Muslims. It represents a miracle from God, divine intervention in the affairs of men. Even the name "Cordoba Initiative" is symbolic of the practice of building Mosques at places of great Muslim victories. Read about the history of the Cordoba, Spain Mosque and the symbolism it holds among Muslims even today.(1)
I think most Americans know that there is something very wrong with the insistence of progressives and "moderate" Muslims that this mosque be built at this particular spot. You have to ask yourself why the government of the freest nation on earth is spending tax dollars to enable Muslim Imams to travel the world on behalf of their religion. Is this not a violation of the separation clause of the Constitution? Why is our government enabling the leaders of any religion to travel the world on taxpayer dollars? Why is our government taking up common cause with people who will not criticize Hamas as a terrorist organization? When will our leaders begin to expose the racism, bigotry and genocide of people who think, in the name of their religion, that they can shame Americans by killing them?
Americans were not born yesterday. We know that refusing to answer a direct question means that the worst is true. And we know the significance and the meaning of having our rights trampled by government; and when we recognize it, as we did with the original Tea Parties before our Revolutionary War, we will express our opinions. We will not stand by idly and pretend that we are not being insulted.
And worst of all, we recognize that so-called moderate Muslims are not important when it comes to building the mosque. What is important are the terrorists hiding in Pakistan who will celebrate when they learn that Americans have allowed a mosque to be built a mere two blocks from the site of their brutality. This mosque, to the terrorists, is not about building bridges of understanding among moderate people; it is about the capitulation of America.
There are many reasons why Americans should question this project
- Project leaders are not willing to listen to the objections of those who oppose the mosque.
- They refuse to come clean about where they are getting the money for this building.
- They tell us they want to build bridges with Americans but give every indication that Americans should change their minds about Islam (and Israel?) and convert to Islam. This is not building bridges; this is the beginning of Muslim evangelism, brainwashing, political spin and lying to the American people.
- Project leaders have not expressed a desire to learn about such concepts as separation of powers, separation of church and state, individual rights and even the suffering of those who were victimized by the September 11 attacks.
- The Muslim religion has a political component that insists that Sharia law be the law of the land for Muslims regardless of where they live. This is a clear violation of the American principle of separation of church and state.
It seems that the bridges they want built, the understanding they seek is our understanding of their need to impose their religion on us and their fervent belief that anyone who is not a Muslim is an infidel worthy of punishment.
With this in mind, I posted the following on Daniel Pipes' blog today.
"I think the basic differences between Islam and Christianity are that Christianity had to go through the Enlightenment and had to moderate itself in order to survive in a secular society where the government was prohibited from establishing a religion. The brutal forms of altruism in Islam were not expunged from the religion because Islam never had to survive in a free society with secular laws. This is why this issue is becoming so important today. (The brutality of Islam comes to us full bore straight from the Middle Ages into a modern, secular, technologically advanced society built by reason and respect for the rights of individuals. Islam has come into the modern world without the mediation of reason and knowledge, without a recognition of the value of man and of what it means to be free. People should come to America for their own freedom, not to enslave free people.)
If Islam wants to survive, we must tell (those who want to "build bridges") in no uncertain terms that they must accommodate our system of government, (they must recognize) the separation of church and state and (know) that Sharia law will never be allowed in this country...period. (If they want a dialogue with us about our values, we must tell them that their idea of a God who rules people is anti-thetical to our way of life, that there is no authority over us that can demand obedience and submission. We must let them know that we will not submit to anyone.)
If they don't like this, then they will forever be resisted by free people in this society. The more debate we have about this issue, the more we secure the right of all people to think as they will. Victory for Americans after the first Tea Party was the victory of reason against the imposition of ideas based on faith, supernaturalism and force - and the more open debate we have on this issue, the more secure will be our liberties. What a shock that the left doesn't understand this...
Yet, we must realize that the basic premise that Islam shares with all other forms of religion is altruism. This morality demands the sacrifice of more than "material" possessions. It demands that men give up their minds and their most basic critical faculties (as well as their values). (Altruism) is the (moral) crime that accounts for the utter ignorance and brutality of so many who practice Islam. Altruism negates the human mind in the name of "the good". When a group of people give up their minds to faith all they have left is brute muscle and cruelty." (parentheses and small edits added)
(1) For an excellent article on this issue, see http://pajamasmedia.com/blog/the-cordoba-house-and-the-myth-of-cordoban-ecumenism/
Friday, July 30, 2010
To those people who wear the symbols of totalitarianism, I'd like to ask, "Do you really have such little regard for life that you can rationalize your way into believing that a cold-blooded killer is a humanitarian…or worse, that he is in some way cool? Grow up. Look around you for a change."
If you want a cool image to put on your T-shirt, there are plenty of handsome Hispanic men from which to choose. Some of them are actually pretty cool guys. But if you think it's cool to advertise ideas that have killed untold millions around the world, really, what are you thinking? Communism is not cool, anti-capitalism is not cool, murder in the name of these ideas is not cool. Would you murder your next door neighbor who runs a factory and employs your father?
A few years ago, I watched a boxing match where Mike Tyson sported a tattoo on his arm of Mao Tse Tung. I thought to myself, “What an idiot.” Yet, even today there are many highly educated people who praise Mao. How is it that they ignore the atrocities he committed in the name of communism? How is it that they consider him a hero? Do they also want millions of Americans to be murdered for the sake of a “socialist” state? One would have to conclude that they do.
The same goes for those of you who admire and are inspired by Che Guevara, the Cuban revolutionary known for the murder of thousands of Cubans without trial. One would have to wonder why you don’t also sport images of Hitler and Stalin.
If you think monsters like Che are cool, perhaps you should visit Miami and talk to some of the families whose relatives were killed at Che’s command. Or talk to those whose relatives were killed by Che's own hand. If you think Che was justified in these murders ask yourself whether these people at least had a right to due process and trial by jury. Do you really advocate murder by the whim of people like Che? Is this what you are about?
Ask yourself how you would feel if it had been your grandfather who had been killed by Che. As the “cool” Che told a cheering UN General Assembly in 1964, “Certainly we execute!. And we will continue executing as long as it is necessary! This is a war to the death against the revolution’s enemies!” You may not know that those enemies included Americans and that Che would not have hesitated to use nuclear weapons against American cities. Pretty cool, huh? I think not.
Did you know that Che also took long-haired teenagers off the streets of Havana and put them in prison camps replete with machine guns and watch towers? His was not a typical American summer camp. You would have come out of such a camp, if you came out, a different person.
I quote from Humberto Fontova’s article: “…Carlos Machado was 15 years old in 1963 when the bullets from the firing squad shattered his body. His twin brother and father collapsed beside Carlos from the same volley. All had resisted Castro’s and Che’s theft of their humble family farm.
Rigoberto Hernandez was 17 when Che’s soldiers dragged him from his cell in La Cabana, jerked his head back to gag him and started dragging him to the stake. Little “Rigo” pleaded his innocence to the very bloody end. But his pleas were garbled and difficult to understand. His struggles while being gagged and bound to the stake were also awkward. The boy had been a janitor in a Havana high school and was mentally retarded. His single mother had pleaded his case with hysterical sobs. She had begged, beseeched and finally proven to his “prosecutors” that it was a case of mistaken identity. Her only son, a boy in such a condition, couldn’t possibly have been “a CIA agent planting bombs.”
“Fuego!” and the firing squad volley riddled Rigo’s little bent body as he moaned and struggled awkwardly against his bounds, blindfold and gag. Remember the gallant Che Guevara’s instructions to his revolutionary courts: “Judicial evidence is an archaic bourgeois detail.” And remember that Harvard Law School’s invitation to Fidel Castro to speak on campus, and rollicking ovation he received, happened in the very midst of this appalling and lawless bloodbath.”(1)
Yet, I think one of the most telling stories about Che involves how this "brave knight" of the revolution died. From Fontova again: “One day before his death in Bolivia, Che Guevara—for the first time in his life—finally faced something properly describable as combat. So he ordered his guerrilla charges to give no quarter, to fight to their last breaths and to their last bullet. With his men doing exactly what he ordered (fighting and dying to the last bullet), a slightly wounded Che snuck away from the firefight and surrendered with fully loaded weapons while whimpering to his captors: “Don’t Shoot! I’m Che. I’m worth more to you alive than dead!” His Bolivian captors viewed the matter differently.”(2)
Che was an evil murderer of bound innocents and a wimpering coward when it came to his own life. That wasn't cool. He did not go down like a proud revolutionary convinced of the righteousness of his cause - with bullets flying and screaming to the top of his voice "Viva la revolucion!". The real Che was a slobbering, sniveling, cockroach begging to be spared from the very same death he had so easily dished to others. Remember that when you wear his cool T-shirt, man.
To learn more about the real Che, go to: http://www.discoverthenetworks.org/individualProfile.asp?indid=2054.
Friday, July 23, 2010
Recently, there have been several media attacks against Tea Party organizations. I have explained the basis for these attacks in my blogs entitled “Understanding Obama”, “The Altruism Bomb” and “Whose Shilling for Dictatorship?” to name a few. Finally, some American citizens have stated openly that President Obama is a socialist. More and more intelligent people are saying it. This is progress for the fight against slavery. But, in my opinion, the truth is that he is destroying the capitalist system and replacing it with a fascist dictatorship.
One point the left keeps making is that it represents the height of bigotry to connect Barack Obama to Adolph Hitler. They claim that only a bigot would make such a connection. I say we are in the “smiley face” stage of the coming dictatorship, when the leader must make us think he is really just a nice person who loves his country and wants to make a better world. This is the stage when the killer disarms his intended victim so he can strike.
Leftists all over the country are howling at people who think that the Obama administration is moving us toward a fascist state. Yet, I’m certain that many responsible people have been thinking similar thoughts and they wonder at what Dr. Leonard Peikoff called “The Ominous Parallels” between post-Weimar Germany and our country in his famous book.
You should wonder, like me, why, even today, we have a tremendous curiosity about Nazi Germany. Thousands of documentaries have been made about Hitler and the Nazis during the 65 years since we defeated them in World War II. We ask ourselves, how did this madman manage to fool one of the most advanced and sophisticated cultures in history? Remember, we are an advanced and sophisticated culture too. How did he get away with his blind barbarous murder of innocents? Is this sort of thing in our future? Why didn’t anyone stop him as he gained more and more power? No one seems able to stop President Obama while his policies increase government power. How was he able to just take over and rule by decree? President Obama seems to be making lots of unilateral rulings too. Why did the Germans allow Hitler to violate the rule of law? Why are we allowing President Obama to violate the rule of law?
We tell ourselves that we want to understand what caused Hitler’s ascendancy so we don’t repeat the same mistakes. Dr. Leonard Peikoff has told us about the basic premises of the Nazis and how they exploited the cultured philosophy of the Germans. He tells us of their view of morality, that they considered proper action to be based in sacrifice. He tells us of their collectivism, and how they tied German morality to sacrifice for the collective. He tells us of the Nazi’s aversion for capitalism and how they used anti-capitalism in order to denigrate, isolate and murder the Jews. And he tells us of the various ideas and principles that enabled the Nazis to argue for dictatorship. In fact, the book is peppered with quotes from Hitler and leading intellectuals of the age that sound remarkably similar to the ideas being broadcast today in the media.
Today’s intellectual and political establishment, like that of the Nazis, practices a grim pragmatism that sees all issues and events as merely about politics. They tell us that those who question the administration just hate the President. They tell us that in our time, in our country, it is not possible for an American leader to be a fascist.
While the Nazi’s preached sacrifice as the highest ideal, President Obama speaks of shared sacrifice as the highest ideal. While the Nazi’s preached anti-capitalism and denigrated successful Jewish businessmen and intellectuals, President Obama preaches anti-capitalism and promises to make the rich pay more taxes (and he is thought to favor the Palestinians and Iranians over the Jews). While the Nazis created emergencies in order to justify their pursuit of dictatorial power, President Obama proclaims numerous emergencies that justify immediate action without the support of law or the Constitution. While the Nazis sought out large industrial enterprises to help build its massive army, President Obama seeks out large industrial enterprises to fight a "collective" war against carbon emissions. While the Nazis used propaganda to justify their power grabs, President Obama uses a compliant and propagandistic media to keep the facts from reaching the public. While the Nazis sought to enlist and educate youth in Nazi principles, President Obama uses the educational system to teach young people that the Democrats are cool and the Republicans are in the pay of capitalists. And he suggests that young people should choose to serve (sacrifice) for the sake of the collective rather than pursue productive careers.
The left tells us, through countless articles and blogs, that using the “fascist” charge is a vicious political slur. They want to ensure that the American people do not discover that the term is really a description of a sinister political and economic system that has destroyed several societies. Fascism is a political and economic system that allows private property but determines, through government, how that property will be used. They don’t want you to know that fascism is the actual system that we have in our nation today. They are afraid that if you recognized it, you will reject them wholesale.
And they don’t want you to predict the future. If you truly knew the direction in which they are taking us you will see the coming nightmare. You see, fascism requires an evil enemy…the group or person who is to be made responsible for all the “emergencies” that the fascists promise to fix. Fascism needs you to hate this enemy and see him as someone who must be crushed (as the Nazis crushed the Jews). The enemy who the fascists offer up for you will be the successful, the rich and the intelligent. They need you to hate this person so they (the fascists) can make you into slaves. And since this enemy is really the individual who provides value in society, you are destined to starve when he is destroyed. This is the future they don’t want you to predict.
We are in the midst of a new McCarthy era. Once again, the fighters for freedom are being denigrated and disenfranchised in order to protect the advance of tyranny. Today, they call us bigots and racists in order to silence our voices. Today, in the midst of the one administration that has gained unprecedented control over our lives, they tell us everything is getting better, nothing really has changed and it is a crime to say that our leaders are fascists.
This effort to silence and discredit the Tea Party protesters has nothing to do with black and white, Democrat or Republican; it is an effort to bury the individual rights for which the protesters stand. It is an effort to establish a fascist dictatorship.
There I’ve said it and I won’t take it back.
Does it take a bigot to see the truth today?
Friday, July 16, 2010
Most parents try to teach their children to be self-sufficient and as soon as they see their child making his own way, they think their job is over; they turn him free. In fact, this is the time when the child is in the most danger. It is the time when he meets the destroyer.
The destroyer is an animal of prey. He is a person who cannot survive on his own. He has invented various means that enable him to latch on to the creator and steal value from him.
At first, when he is young, the creator thinks the road is clear. He feels a great energy and happiness and pride because everyone applauds his creative spirit. Everyone praises his ability and the more he creates the more they love him. The destroyer is circling above, waiting for a chance to pounce.
The destroyer is often one of the first to praise the creator. The creator thinks that everyone is like him, honest, truthful and self-sufficient. He cannot conceive of someone who would steal the substance of another person. Sometimes the destroyer marries the creator, having found his mark. Sometimes the destroyer creates laws that skim profits from the creator using a host of lies that blame the creator for doing harm. Sometimes he sues the creator for thousands or millions of dollars.
The methods invented for stealing value from the creator are numerous; their ultimate goal is to convince the creator that he owes something to the destroyer. In some way, whether it involves outright theft or institutional theft, the destroyer sets up a scheme that forces the creator into the position of draft animal.
After a time, the creator realizes that somewhere along the way, while his creative skills were growing, he had lost his position of being loved. Once the destroyer became comfortable, he stopped praising the creator and began making demands. The praise and admiration, the fidelity and love became vitriol and hatred, infidelity and ridicule. The destroyer had become the master while the creator had become a slave.
Once the creator sees that the destroyer had always been out to leach from him, he reacts to the position in which he has been placed. He realizes that the tables have been turned; he has been called a destroyer by the very people who once claimed to love him. He realizes that those one-time lovers are now vicious haters screaming that they have been enslaved by the creator who now owes them reparations. If they are successful in obtaining the status of permanent parasite, the destroyers demand that the creator work harder so they can live the life that the creator has somehow stolen from them. There are any number of lies and propaganda extant in society to help the destroyer in this scheme.
This predatory scheme has existed for centuries. It has been practiced by Kings and Queens who exploited their enslaved subjects. It has been practiced by monks and priests who exploited their faithful worshippers. It has been practiced by unappreciative wives or husbands against their alimony-paying spouses. It has been practiced by the supposedly “exploited” poor against productive capitalists. It had been practiced by the Nazis against the Jews, by the Chinese against small business people, by the Russians against the bourgeoisie and by the progressives against the capitalist system of America. At every turn in history, there have been destroyers who have stolen the values brought into the world by the creators and who have enslaved their betters for the sake of plunder.
In 2010, in America, the destroyers showed their naked thieving hands. In this singular year, the creators realized that the ancient game of plunder could not have been successful without their acquiescence. In 2010, the creators woke up.
Today the creator is a Tea Party protestor and there is nothing the destroyer can do about it. The destroyer can call the creator a bigot, a right wing extremist or a racist. He can call him a fascist or astro-turf…but the real truth is now known. The destroyer has finally been exposed as an undeserving parasite. He can say whatever he wants. He can lie that he is only trying to make things better. It doesn’t matter.
The divorce is final.
Friday, July 2, 2010
Many people think that sacrifice is good, but bear with me. I am going to make real to you the most murderous idea ever; and hopefully, I will convince you that altruism has to be stopped.
When a broad abstract principle operates in a society, sometimes people are not educated by their teachers about its full implications and consequences. When society does not identify its abstract principles in terms of their actual premises and application, enlightened communication about them never takes place and the human action to which they lead is seldom correctly understood. Likewise, if a principle promises benign results but instead delivers deadly harm, the harm may become associated with other causes. The result is always a crisis of values.
The crisis of values in our culture today is real; the problem according to our leaders is that man refuses to sacrifice for others. Most say that our moral crisis is caused by capitalism and individualism. They bemoan the loss of collective joining to solve what they consider to be collective problems. They tell us that “it takes a village” or that “we are all in it together”. They claim that because people are more selfish today; more concerned about self-gratification and the acquisition of goods the world is in moral decline.
On the other hand, some people, like me for instance, think the problem is altruism and that most people don't understand its role in creating our moral crisis. I think that ours is not a crisis in the sense that people refuse to sacrifice for the common good. In my view, it is extremely “good” that they don’t and the extent to which they don’t is to our benefit. We should do no sacrificing. There is already too much of it. In fact, I think that the crisis of values exists today because many people blindly pursue altruism and are incapable of identifying its harm in their lives.
Whenever altruism takes over a society, whenever it becomes powerful enough to interfere in most private transactions; whenever it turns the bulk of those transactions away from the principle of self-interest and toward the principle of sacrifice, stock markets collapse, industries grind to a halt, small businesses die, machines break down, people scrape trash cans for a meal, children starve, governments become dictatorial, slave labor replaces free labor, murderous criminals kill and plunder, law disintegrates into street riots, genocide replaces normal standards of justice and bombs fall. The biggest bomb in history, even more destructive than an atomic bomb, is altruism, the idea that it is proper for men to sacrifice their energy, time and production for the sake of others. How does altruism do this? It replaces correct every day decisions about life and value with the decisions of moral authorities who demand that someone lose in every transaction. And then it expects that somehow the world will become a better place, even though they've destroyed the ability of people to prosper.
What is altruism? Why is it so prominent around the world? Why have so many people accepted it blindly without critical analysis?
“Altruism is selfless concern for the welfare of others.”(1) Yet, altruism is a philosophical concept that existed long before Auguste Comte, the French philosopher who defined it in modern times. In fact, it has been prevalent in human societies for centuries, having been the guiding principle of many cultures, primitive and advanced. Considered to be a benign expression of love for mankind as well as hope for the future, the idea has been used to justify virtually every brutal act of mass murder.
“What?” you say. “Not true.” I submit that in order to understand altruism, we have to understand what it is, how it works; how it is propagated and what happens when people practice it.
Here are some examples of altruism as it has been practiced through the ages:
• Human sacrifice – the sacrifice of life usually of the most beautiful for the sake of the “survival” of the collective.
• Faith – the sacrifice of the independent mind so it can be made blank and open to exploitation by the moral authority.
• Animal sacrifice – the sacrifice of an animal that is held to be the property of the individual for the sake of a theocracy or government.
• Taxation – the sacrifice of money or goods for the sake of a theocracy or government.
• Tithing – the sacrifice of a percentage of income usually for the sake of a theocracy to be re-distributed to the poor.
• Charity – the sacrifice of money or other possessions for other people, usually voluntarily – the effect of which is the re-distribution of income – usually done out of guilt because of the influence of the moral authority – sometimes done out of good will (which is not always a sacrifice).
• Duty – the sacrifice of desired action for the sake of the collective.
• Government programs – the sacrifice of tax payer dollars for the sake of social goals – usually accomplished through government coercion.
• Income re-distribution – the sacrifice of income for the sake of those with less or no income, usually done through government coercion.
• Progressive taxation – the sacrifice of more income from those who have more accumulated capital for the sake of those who have less, accomplished through government coercion.
• Government regulations – the sacrifice of normal business processes or desired business action to sacrifice smaller companies for the sake of established companies that favor the regulations – also used by government to force successful companies to bribe government officials.
• Slavery – the sacrifice of human energy and the ownership of one’s body for the sake of the government or government cronies – the forced sacrifice of labor to lower production costs for slave masters.
• Collectivism – the sacrifice of the individual of all property, energy and life for the sake of the collective.
• Monarchy – the sacrifice of individual sovereignty for the sake of a King or Queen.
• Oligarchy – the sacrifice of property by the individual for the sake of an entrenched group with coercive government power to control vital industries and limit competition.
• Fascism – the sacrifice of business goals and decisions for the sake of government direction of those goals and decisions and to accomplish “social goals” without regard to market forces and individual decisions – causing businesses to lose profits in the form of business loses and bribes to government. (Millions sacrificed for the sake of the Volk)
• Socialism – the sacrifice of property of major industries for the sake of government ownership of that property – to benefit government elites.
• Communism – the sacrifice of all property and individual rights for the sake of government ownership of the entire society – to benefit government elites. (Millions sacrificed for the sake of a future prosperity that did not arrive)
• The Military Draft – the sacrifice of individual freedom, rights and life for the sake of the enslavement of young men – to advance the goals of government elites. (Thousands of innocent lives sacrificed for an unnecessary war)
• Anti-trust prosecutions by the government – the sacrifice of economic success by successful companies for the sake of unsuccessful companies – accomplished by violation of the rule of law and coercive government.
• Progressive “social justice” – the sacrifice of real justice where the victims of crime are considered less important than the criminals and where justice is dispensed based upon a re-distribution standard where the less successful win large judgments when opposing rich corporations – accomplished by disregarding the facts of any case and considering the economic status of parties to a legal disagreement.
• Trade tariffs – the sacrifice by the consumer when he buys products that come from foreign countries, presumably to “save” local jobs – accomplished by a sacrifice of product quality, money and foreign companies on behalf of less productive local companies. The result is often retaliatory tariffs that cause a loss of jobs locally and force local companies to move to other countries.
Each of these forms of altruism is an expression of the idea that the individual should give up something of value for the sake of others.
Let’s identify altruism’s influence on some major issues today:
• The antipathy of many politicians toward free enterprise causes them to make more and more regulations over the free exchange of individuals and businesses. This is based on the premise that private businesses are doing something harmful to people in trading with them. The presumption is that instead of pursuing profits, they should act in the interests of society or the poor (which in fact they are doing in pursuing profits). This is altruism punishing self-interest and attempting to regulate it for the sake of the politicians’ views of what society wants. Anyone who is not operating according to the principle of altruism is to be controlled. Few people disagree with this and there are countless calls for government to punish successful businesses by regulating them, restricting them from acting, slowing them down, taxing them, breaking them up, sending executives to jail for making decisions that are in the interest of their company, etc. For instance, the DISCLOSE Act is intended to silence corporations from expressing their opinions before an election. How do politicians justify silencing the companies that the government seeks to take over? They are profit-seeking organizations and because so they should have no say in how they are regulated and otherwise dominated by the government. This requires that these companies sacrifice their self-interest to the machinations of plundering politicians which means more campaign contributions to the politicians.
• The government’s bail outs of the auto companies GM and Chrysler violated bankruptcy law and destroyed the contracts that investors had with these companies under the premise that the private investors should sacrifice for the sake of saving the economy. Here, sacrifice by the Chrysler investors was determined by the government to be in the best interest of society. These companies, in the long-run, will probably not survive because they are being directed by the government, the plundering unions and because many people will not want to invest in these companies.
• Government “social justice” programs such as welfare, the Community Reinvestment Act, Cash for Clunkers and many more re-distribute money from tax payers and banks for the sake of “saving” the economy or helping the poor. Again, corporations and tax payers are considered to be operating according to the principle of self-interest (by being productive and earning a living) and are therefore to be punished for the act of succeeding.
• President Obama’s dismissing of our allies, showing a willingness to talk to terrorists and apologizing for America’s actions over the last few decades is based on the fact that America should have been sacrificing itself to the poor nations all along. His outreach to dictators and his symbolic bowing before potentates sends a clear signal that the United States is now under the control of a person who has offered it up as a sacrificial lamb to be bled by sundry third world non-entities. When they start confiscating American property in their countries, the President will do nothing.
• The President’s unilateral canceling of the nuclear defense shield in Poland was a sacrifice of Eastern Europe to the Soviet Union and Iran under the hope that these nations would see the United States as magnanimous. The altruistic premise is that all opinions, even those of dictatorships, should be considered as morally equivalent to that of the United States. The result, if Obama is not stopped, will be the devastation and re-conquest of east European capitalist countries by the savages of plunder in Russia.
• The “ObamaCare” Health Care program will sacrifice the medical professions, reduce the number of hospitals, reduce the quality of health care, put many insurance companies out of business and increase costs while also raising taxes and rationing care. All of these companies and individuals are now required to sacrifice their services and income for the sakes of those who get their health care from government or for the sake of companies controlled by the government.
• The Cap and Trade Bill will create a large oligarchy of companies that will milk money (through government grants and stimulus dollars) from the taxpayer to build unproductive factories, producing unwanted products, creating subsidized and non-productive jobs, lowering energy consumption, reducing the output of other factories, destroying productive jobs, raising taxes and lowering our standard of living. The American tax payer will be forced to sacrifice his standard of living, his income, his comfort and his future for the sake of fake companies that will, in conjunction with the government, set up money laundering schemes from the tax payer to off shore accounts.
• Union Card Check will give unions the upper hand in shaking down businesses that will have to sacrifice production and profits. Here, the union workers will be portrayed as innocent victims of evil capitalist companies who are in some way out to exploit them. Companies and employees will be forced to pay into pension plans that will be plundered by union bosses. Another result, will be more company profits paid to politicians under a protection racket managed by politicians.
• The Obama Treasury Department removed the $400 billion financial cap on the money it will provide to keep Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac afloat, further punishing the tax payer for a problem created by the government through the Community Reinvestment Act. Now banks and tax payers will keep alive the very companies who caused our financial meltdown. Presumably, the argument here is that these companies do a lot of good in helping poor people (altruism) and so they must be spared. The truth is that the Democrats are using altruism here to defend a company that paid heavy amounts to Democrat candidates and engaged in massive fraud by Democrat operatives. The American people are sacrificing, not for anything good, but to support and maintain corruption, no matter how much it costs and no matter how much damage is done to peoples’ lives.
• The President’s 2009 Jobs Stimulus Program cost almost $1 Trillion and amounted to one of the biggest re-distribution schemes in the history of the world. It sacrificed money from the private economy that could have been used by private business people to create resurgence and instead re-distributed it primarily to state governments to cover budget shortfalls. It also re-distributed billions of dollars to government “sacred cow” programs through grants to fund collectivist boondoggles that did nothing to create new jobs. The loss, the corruption, the lies, the utter disregard for common sense, the sacrifice of this much money for the sake of altruistic re-distribution is a scandal of monumental proportion. The incompetence that it took to even think that this might make things better is staggering when you consider that the economic knowledge that would refuted this move has been available for centuries.
If the above is not enough to make you question the morality of altruism, let’s look at the act of a young person sacrificing two years of his life for the sake of the poor. The extent to which this person chooses to forego his own education for the sake of supporting others is the extent to which his decision harms him. This decision causes him to lose valuable time in the development of higher levels of knowledge and skills, time that he cannot recover later in life. The stunting of his development by two years lowers the level of success that he could otherwise have achieved in terms of a full life time – further, it harms all mankind by keeping others from enjoying that higher level of development through trade with this individual. For instance, what could have been a renowned concert pianist becomes a music teacher for second graders. It is like refusing to save money early in life…the results are not seen until one experiences a lower standard of living later.
Another example: the person who willingly sacrifices two dollars for the sake of a hungry child may not see it as a sacrifice if the two dollars are not taken away from his own children, but when the two dollars is $5000, then the money that feeds hungry children could actually cause the life of the sacrificed individual if he is not thereby able to replace a bald tire on his automobile. It might even cause the life of the hungry children that were fed by the $5000.
Let’s assume that the person that receives the $5000 taken from the individual above uses that money to eat and feed her own child. Perhaps that child may someday become a productive citizen and this does sometimes happen. But, in this case, his mother made the decision to birth him in order to qualify for that $5000 from the government. This young child could just as easily grow up to become a thief or murderer because his mother never taught him the value of hard work, never having experienced it herself. She may even teach her child that it is his right to have his needs fulfilled by others. So he decides that he need not study in school because the government will provide for him while he wastes his time on television, video games or just hanging around the corner. He joins a gang and believes that gangs breed strength and that the entire neighborhood should sacrifice in order to ensure that he has a diamond ring and a luxury car to drive.
Or another possibility; perhaps the welfare child will someday meet his more successful benefactor, and seeing that he is well-dressed, blames him for his poverty. There is no reason, in his mind, why he should not take a gun and force the man to sacrifice an additional $100 before he shoots him in the head. The robbed man is, after all, the evil exploiter who is keeping him in poverty. The young killer sees evil rich people in movies all the time, hears politicians and his local gang leader talk about how evil and exploitative rich men are – so why not kill one? That original $5000 has just destroyed the life of the very benefactor that kept the young man alive all these years. This death is caused by altruism.
Let’s go back in time and wipe out the $5000 tax payment. Rather than call this man selfish and evil for keeping it, let’s assume that he is able to replace that bald tire and even use that money to take a course in business management. The $5000 makes it possible for him to become a business owner and manager. He makes so much money that he is able to hire a young woman (the soon to be young mother) to an entry level position. Because he has his own story of accomplishment, he sets up a benefit program for his employees and enables this young woman to get a college education. She becomes a business owner and eventually marries, has a child and teaches the child about the value of work and the possibility of success in life through production. All of this good happens because altruistic leaders did not take $5000 out of the young man’s income years before. So what is the value of altruism? Where is the moral crisis?
You might say that this example is not typical but I beg to differ. When you see the advanced society we live in compared to the most backward regions of the world, you see that the clear difference between them is the philosophy that they practice. The more affluent societies are those that have capitalism to a higher degree and the most backward societies are those where looting thugs use altruism to enslave their people, denigrate the United States and rule by the gun. Ideas do have consequences and no amount of blaming of poverty on the productive rich will obscure the fact that no one can get rich in a society ruled by brute force and looting thugs – thugs who believe that it is the altruistic duty of all members of society to sacrifice for them.
Essentially, there are three parties who must participate in any act of altruism. The first party is the producer, the person who must sacrifice for others. This person is someone who has something of value, either money, products, knowledge, intelligence or his own physical energy and time. The second party is the moral authority, the person who has the ability to direct the first person to give up something of value for another person. And the third party is the so-called victim whose condition requires that someone sacrifice for his/her sake.
The producer is most often split between two moral codes. One code holds that he has a right to the pursuit of happiness and that self-sufficiency is the hallmark of a moral person. He believes in work and making his own way and he thinks that his value lies in his ability to create or make things. This code is contradicted by another code imposed upon him by the moral authority who tells him that his purpose in life is to relieve the suffering of other people who are victims of his success, who are made poor by his pursuit of happiness.
Using the moral code of altruism, the moral authority promises punishment if the producer does not give up his time, energy or production for the sake of the victim. He will either be ostracized on earth as selfish and evil or he will suffer in eternity for his pride and lust.
Guilt and ridicule imposed by the moral authority on the producer are so strongly expressed that few producers can bear the onslaught of hatred and animosity extended toward them and they often do whatever is necessary to satisfy the demands of the moral authority. The producer, because he is often attacked in this way, spends his life fearing the ire of others, refusing to think for himself and paying bribes to the moral authority and the victim to prove that he is not the evil monster they claim he is. The psychological consequence for the producer, when he is insulted for being selfish, is to freeze morally, to be totally disarmed because he has accepted the moral authority’s philosophy without question(For examples, see Gates and Buffet).
The altruist morality holds that man’s capacity for happiness is proof of his evil; it turns each man into his own worst enemy, his own accuser within the quiet reaches of his subconscious mind. The self-esteem he does not have, the normal acts he is not allowed to commit, the freedom he does not possess, give him only hatred of life and a jealous anger at other men who were not attacked in this way. Altruism kills self-sufficiency, pride and innocence.
Because the producer becomes morally frozen by the attacks of the moral authority, he is the ready target of anyone who would seek to exploit his thought, time and energy for his own benefit. All anyone has to do is tell him what they want, and he’ll provide it; hoping that his acquiescence gains approval.
There is only one solution to this loss of self-esteem. The statement he should utter is: “Enough. I will sacrifice no more.”
The Moral Authority
The moral authority, has preached the philosophy of altruism for centuries. His goal is to convince the producer that he has a moral obligation, first, to accept his authority, and secondly, to do as he is told. To accomplish this goal, he preaches that man is basically imperfect or evil, that his sin consists of pride and independence. He preaches the value of collective joining and attempts to convince the producer that “no man is an island”.
There are basically two types of moral authority. The first is the mystic who uses fear of “the ineffable” to cause people to lose confidence in their thinking abilities. He demands faith because he isn't sure that he knows what he's talking about; and without faith, he would not be able to fill the producer's and the victim's minds with the philosophy of sacrifice. The second is the brute who uses force and the threat of force to cause fear in people. He is also a mystic because he has no clue what goes on in the minds of the people he seeks to enslave and he knows that without force, no one will go along with his mindless lust for power. Sometimes, the mystic and the brute work together in plundering the productive people they enslave. Both need to reduce people to the status of unthinking slaves who will do whatever is demanded of them.(2)
Both types of moral authority send out among society their “moral police” to ensure that everone is sacrificing sufficiently. If you have ever criticized a young person for being too prideful, too happy, too selfish, too bright or too beautiful, then you have been the moral police.
The key to identifying the moral authority and his moral police are statements that reveal a negative moral evaluation of the producer and advocate higher taxes and more government programs to be paid for by the producer. Tell-tale statements include: "I have no problem with..." and finishing the statement with a coercive measure as if his "having no problem" with government enforced morality somehow wipes out the opinion of people who do have a problem with it. A common question is "Are we going to be the kind of society that..." then finishing the question with a supposedly benevolent goal that requires coercive measures, as if his deciding on the benevolent goal is a convincing argument for the coercive measures. That other people disagree with him is of no consequence. The end justifies the means.
The influence of philosophy in society makes it appear that the moral authority is not always present in human transactions. This is because people are educated, by altruist propaganda, to "voluntarily" sacrifice in every situation. This "influence" is so strong that many people are not able to develop other means of interaction that do not include or require altruism. The moral authority uses powerful examples of the altruistic premise in order to convince people that sacrifice is the proper thing to do in all circumstances. This makes altruism into a powerful influence in society, so powerful that most people think only altruistic thoughts...without the presence of an intervening moral authority. I call this the altruist cultural paradigm and once it becomes embedded in society, it automatically leads to a mindless "ritual" sacrifice and self-sacrifice.
The victim is a non-entity whose lack of education and initiative has rendered him helpless in the work of survival. He is actually a victim of the moral authority, who has taught him to be passive and who has coddled him into believing that some harm has been done to him by the producer.
There is something that both the producer and the victim have in common. They are both told that they are deficient. The victim is told that he cannot survive on his own and the producer is told that he is the cause of the plight of the victim. Both are being lied to and this is particularly visible when one of the victims decides to educate himself and become a producer. He will most often be strongly discouraged from doing so.
One thing you will seldom see is the moral authority going to peoples’ homes asking them if they need something from government. The result is that many poor people languish, believing the propaganda of altruism but wondering what to do. In order to obtain the benefits of government, they will have to “apply” (beg) for their benefits. This often involves standing in line in a dingy government building, looking at the uncaring faces of people who can't be fired from their jobs, filling out forms and then being rejected by letter. Then they have to go back to the government office in order to appeal, stand in line again and be told that they have to fill out more paperwork. In time, their career becomes standing in line for benefits. The only real enjoyment they get is being able to watch television at the government office where the moral authority tells them how lucky they are that he loves them.
What happens when the moral authority exerts his influence over the lives of people? In a society based on altruism, it is easy to call for sacrifice if it is the producer who must sacrifice. The problem is, when the producer must sacrifice his money, the so-called victims will soon be sacrificing their jobs and homes and cars.
First, the producer must give up a big part of his production for the sake of the victim while the moral authority skims some of it for his own survival and pleasure. Since the producer cannot use his profits to invest in new production, his life, as well as the lives of all other citizens, are harmed. But more than this happens: the producer must consider himself a slave, he must accept the role of draft animal whose life is slowly being bled. He must accept the constant drain on his energy and this has a negative pyschological effect upon him. There is no justice in life. In spite of the propaganda that tells him how happy he should be working for the good of the whole, he hates the endless hours spent just trying to survive in a society where the harder he works, the more is taken from him. Eventually the producer realizes that the only way to find relief is to hide his production, to slow it down and pretend to be a victim.
The moral authority, on the other hand, becomes fat and happy as he enjoys the plunder he has skimmed; while also becoming increasingly concerned about the fact that the producer seems to be providing less and less. He sends his “moral police” to shakedown the producer, to enslave him and impoverish him if necessary.
The fact that the producer is becoming poor does not stop the moral authority. He realizes the only way to survive and enjoy riches is to advance the idea of altruism even more perfervidly. He must invest everyone in society in following a grand vision where all sacrifice for all and everyone must give his utmost for the sake of society. So the appeal to altruism becomes louder and the means used to ensure sacrifice become more coercive. The state now becomes the oppressor of the people and, the producer becomes wise to the fact that “the good” is not what they are trying to accomplish. He realizes that the moral authority cannot do anything without his work and creativity, so he cuts his production even more. As the society descends further, conflict among victims increases as more and more people want to be taken care of. With too many victims and too few producers, the moral authority thinks he has no choice but to force people to work. So he creates concentration camps, huge building projects, purges, a justice system where you are guilty before proven innocent and summary executions to send a clear signal to the producers. Yes, altruism leads to dictatorship.
A further result is the loss of initiative, creativity, new ideas and new enterprises. The society is riding on the diminishing waves of the progress that was made before the purges and new economic policies.
Decline and destruction are always the result of altruism. You cannot find a society that succeeded without some effort to challenge altruism. The three most un-altruistic societies in history, and the three most successful were the ancient Greeks who, through their philosophers, waged a constant war against the tyranny of the majority, the Republic of Rome, built upon the rule of law, and the United States of America (also built upon the rule of law). All other cultures either failed miserably or they languished for centuries in poverty, disease and serfdom.
Now let’s look at a typical economic trade in a free society. This transaction has only two participants, the parties who trade with each other for mutual benefit. They do not need a third party to tell them about correct action. They each consider their long- and short-term goals and determine for themselves if the trade is in their self-interest and, once the transaction is consummated, they go about their business without guilt; neither of them thinks he has exploited the other.
This reveals another fallacy of altruism. An altruistic transaction, must include the moral authority who intervenes between the two traders. Neither the producer nor the “victim” is allowed to consult his or her self-interest; they must merely do what the authority tells them and this always involves one of the parties giving up a value for the sake of the other.
Let's look closer, what argument must be made in order for the moral authority to actually have the authority that would allow him to intervene in a normal transaction? Is it because he is close to God or is it because he wields the power of knowledge? I think neither. First of all, it is questionable whether any man could have a knowledge of what God demands. How do we know that we aren't being bamboozled by a charlatan? We should not merely accept the idea that someone knows what God demands. Secondly, if the moral authority has superior knowledge, what is the premise of that knowledge? Where did he get that knowledge and what gives him the right to assume that his knowledge is any better than any other person's? And with the multitude of different opinions held by men, what gives one person the right to decide what is best for me in my circumstance, at this particular point in my life and considering what I seek to accomplish? Why should I apply to anyone for approval of my decisions?
There is no moral authority with the power and the knowledge to correctly decide in every circumstance involving millions of transactions on any given day what people should do. My property is mine, created by me, and I should decide what to do with it. Likewise, for anyone with whom I trade. No one has the right to assume that he should tell us what is right by any standard. And he has no right to impose a "collective good" over my private good. All of his decisions, must, by their nature, be incompetent and ineffectual. There is no argument to justify my sacrificing my values for the sake of anyone...especially for someone that is not me.
The truth that has not been told about altruism is that its real victim is the producer. It is the producer who is vilified, ostracized, criticized, denigrated, insulted, hated, murdered, racialized, taxed, expropriated, discriminated against and lied about. The producer is the singular benefactor of mankind who has experienced the rage and the cruelty of the ages. Most of those millions massacred by the proponents of altruistic systems were producers. It is only altruism that could consider such a person to be evil. It is only altruism that would seek to wipe him out for the sake of brutes and witch doctors.
So why has altruism ruled history? I think it is a historical scam. The leaders of man, through the ages, assumed authority over him by means of ineffable powers that they supposedly possessed; powers of judgment and decision-making that made "average" people feel inferior. They established, in the minds of "the people" an impression that they had superior knowledge; and in their confused primitive states, average men let these moral brutes set up a society where they were required to do what they were told.
It is no wonder then that every decision and intervention of our leaders in the past involved sacrifice. It was a perfect way to steal the production of the people and to become rich at their expense. Today, altruism is used for precisely the same goal, to create emergencies that pool human energy and force men to sacrifice for the whole - thereby stealing their production.
Don't you think we're too smart for that kind of manipulation today? I submit the time for this dependence on moral authorities is over.
Altruism is the collectivization of morality, the focusing of human action on benefiting some people at the expense of others. This means that the individual, in order to be altruistic, must sacrifice a higher value for a lower value or a disvalue. This is the actual meaning of altruism. Otherwise it would not be a sacrifice but a gain. Why is this important? It means that altruism lowers the human potential of the producer and steals from him value that he has created through his own diligent thought. Neither of the beneficiaries, the moral authority nor the victim, could have created what the producer created and this means that they have little concern for the value of the producer and little understanding of what it took in terms of self-respect, knowledge, effort and investigation of reality to create the product that they have stolen. They are giving no value to the producer that he could not have easily earned himself through his own effort. In other words, they do not value the producer except as a slave.
Think about that next time you pay your taxes.
The problem historically is that altruism has never been studied from the perspective of the productive person. It has always been considered to be a transaction that has no negative consequence for the producer. Even today, all news that we watch on television is about politicians and their doings. On the other side are stories of people who are suffering under a "failure" of capitalism. Seldom do you hear about the successes of the people who actually feed the rest of us, the entrepreneurs and business tycoons who are responsible for so much good. If you do hear about them it is regarding anti-trust prosecutions and other invented scandals. Finally, you never hear any news stories about the failure of altruism, the squalor it creates, the incompetence of moral authorities (politicians and bureaucrats) and the loss of self-respect for beneficiaries of government largesse.
Human value comes from the mind, the esteem in which the individual holds his self, the thinking engaged in and the values that the individual selects. A proper morality requires a rigorous attention to the facts of reality, a dedication to truth and a focused effort to gain usable knowledge. More importantly, it requires a rejection of any idea or person that would prohibit and keep a person from achieving the good he has defined.
Collectivists/altruists/progressives miss the fact that altruism throws a symbolic bomb into society that destroys the relationship between sovereign individuals who engage in trade with each other. This crucial transaction, engaged in millions of times per day, is the crucial factor that makes society successful. To interfere with it is to destroy the possibility of mutual trade to mutual benefit. To interfere with it is to destroy free society. The altruism bomb clogs up the works of freedom and individualism. It creates an ideology of sacrifice that leads to exploitation through a narrative that eliminates the producer as a moral agent in society. And it monopolizes political discussion by making altruism the only valid solution to the problems of society; the result is that the problems of society are made worse.
Through altruism and the propaganda against self-interest, the moral authority creates Sumner’s “Forgotten Man”(3), the producer, and he enables the exploitation of creative man; thereby destroying human cooperation as thoroughly as does a bomb thrown into a market full of people.
To posit that the successful man is morally responsible for the unsuccessful is to posit that there is no difference between individuals and that one has been unfairly treated by the other…yet, this view is a contradiction that disregards the role of the mind in society and it assumes that the successful thinker is responsible for doing the thinking that the victim refused to engage. This is a reversal of responsibility; it means that one man, the producer, is responsible for his own thinking, if he is successful, and he is responsible for the thinking of the unsuccessful.
Properly, the full range of moral action must include reason, productivity, property acquisition, the pursuit of happiness, respecting the rights of others, none of which are considered moral according to the premises of altruism. This full range, in order to be experienced maximally, requires that the individual put himself first and that a proper society does not demand that he sacrifice himself, his values, his goals and his time for the sake of others. A proper society demands that the free individual be protected against having his property and time stolen from him by thieves of all types, street criminals, charlatans and politicians. In fact, there is no difference morally between requiring that an individual sacrifice for others at the point of a gun or at the point of suffering eternally in hell. The cause (sacrifice is a duty) and the result (overall impoverishment) are the same in either case.
People, individuals, must solve their own problems by means of work, thought, planning and improvement of infrastructure. Altruists, most often, will bring you a fruit basket or a turkey but they do not solve human problems. They claim they can bring you dams and power plants, but all they wind up bringing are finger paints, molded cheese and no hope that tomorrow will be any different. Tomorrow someone else will need a turkey and the person who got a turkey yesterday is out of mind and starving today. And if they truly wanted to alleviate suffering, they’d introduce logic and capitalism to those who cannot take care of themselves. They’d also go into the streets of those backward countries and fight against the dictators that are keeping people poor, not against the G20.
In analyzing the contradictions of altruism’s moral crisis, we must ask: if it is wrong for the individual, according to altruism, to do something for himself, why is that same act right when someone performs it for another individual?
Our crisis of values, the poverty and moral decline of millions of people, is created by global altruism and made possible by the fact that altruism does not and cannot achieve good. Altruism leads to immorality because it requires the immoral sacrifice of mind and body for the sake of others. The end (the immorality of dependence) does not justify the means (guilt, coercion and slavery).
Altruism, then, leads to global cultural and social contradiction. The replacement of that contradiction with reason and rational social institutions is the solution to our cultural moral crisis (Indeed, the strength of our society, such as it is, is that we don't practice altruism consistently – our middling commitment to the pursuit of happiness makes us the most moral society in history – and the most damned by looters (progressives), thugs and dictators).
Notice that altruists never ask the basic question of what “good” is actually done by altruism. That the problems of others continue to demand more sacrifice is lost to the evaluation – few conclude that altruism is not working (they would rather declare that capitalism is not working). And because altruism never preaches self-sufficiency, indeed considers it a sin, there is no hope that people will be saved as long as altruism dominates society. For altruists like President Obama, there will never be enough sacrificing.
Morality should not be something you do because you have to; it is something you should want to do with your whole being; something you want to run to, so to speak, because it is good for you, so beneficial and life-serving that it beats all the alternatives. This is why the morality of self-interest has always created better societies. They are better because they are based in objective law, individual rights and mutual trade for mutual benefit. The best societies outlaw altruism and favor the pursuit of happiness.
The ego is the good inside of you if you nurture it with clear thinking and pride. It is assertive hope seeking the best in life, it is selfishness without the comparison of one’s self with others – a pure form of self-regard that includes the basic conviction that one can pursue one’s happiness without holding back. The ego is the source of human freedom in society. It is freedom, a celebration of man and his capabilities. If we understand that the ego is the foundation of man’s emotional core, his free mind supplemented with knowledge, we learn to express it in a human way, not as a guilty pursuit of mindless pleasures, but as a pursuit of a happy life lived long-range without guilt and without regret – and especially without fear. The ego has nothing to do with “others” but is the essence of human striving and even the source of such positive emotions as good will and romantic love. The Ego is a natural quest to which the individual is drawn for self-understanding and self-fulfillment, in short, for happiness.
The successful person today should understand fully what success means: you are hated by progressives precisely because of your success. Those who hate success believe that you are evil; you have done something unthinkable to them: you have discovered or learned something that made you successful – you have learned that it is possible to succeed within a chaos of failure. In other words, you used your mind, they did not, and they intend to make you suffer for it. So they tell you, “Money is the root of all evil”, “Pride is a sin” in order to make you question your brilliance and your greatness. They believe that you must bear the burden of their prejudice against you and that you deserve to suffer. Hopefully, this does not happen in your private life; but it is happening wholesale in the public arena and it is affecting everything around you.
Yet, in spite of the progressives’ “world view”, the power of reason and egoism can be seen everywhere. Look at the clean cities, tall buildings, air conditioned offices, jumbo jets and space stations built by people in the United States and you see the power of men who can look at reality, who have confidence in the validity of their senses and use their minds to create technology that positively affects their own lives and that of others. Reason is released by political freedom, and because man is free, he can benefit from his own thinking; because he is free he can trade with others who see the value of his skills and products; because he is free he can make his own life and the lives of others better through production. This is the power that progressives hate. This is what they consider evil, this is what they consider to be theft – while they (the altruists) enjoy their beautiful multi-million dollar homes, limousines and private jets – given to them from money they have extorted through making honest men feel guilty.
Altruism never solved a social problem and all the millions of dollars wasted in failed efforts to alleviate poverty only keep the poor from lifting themselves up by diverting investment to consumption. Yet you hear no cries by those altruists who claim they care about the poor that we should establish and protect capitalism. One can only assume that they don’t care about the poor.
The only way to stop the disasters caused by altruism is to make altruism unpopular, to expose it as a false and failed idea and to make sure everyone knows that it is being questioned and challenged by thoughtful people. Once people realize that altruism is evil, we will be able to stop the wheels of fascism and dictatorship from moving forward.
Until we realize that altruism is our deadly, bloody, hateful enemy, we will never be able to save our society.
Please note: I want to acknowledge the achievements of philosopher and novelest Ayn Rand who, through her novels and writing, has exposed the evils of altruism. Many of my arguments are based upon my understanding of her writings on altruism as well as upon my own intellectual development. I alone am responsible for those understandings.
(2)For a full description of these types see "For the New Intellectual, the Philosophy of Ayn Rand"
(3)See my blog post: "The Forgotten ism"