It's one thing keeping the bible out of government policy, it's another keeping equally irrational non-religious nonsense out, …strange bedfellows indeed.
"Thanks to the trail paved in Weiss’ book, we did some further digging into the money cartel financing this “spontaneous” outpouring of campus and Tea Party interest in Rand, whose work is regularly considered by top academics to be mediocre and simpleminded."
“ARI seeks to spearhead a cultural renaissance that will reverse the anti-reason, anti-individualism, anti-freedom, anti-capitalist trends in today’s culture. The major battleground in this fight for reason and capitalism is the educational institutions—high schools and, above all, the universities, where students learn the ideas that shape their lives…To date, more than 1.4 million copies of these Ayn Rand novels have been donated to 30,000 teachers in 40,000 classrooms across the United States and Canada.
“Based on a projected shelf life of five years per book, we estimate that more than 3 million young people have been introduced to Ayn Rand’s books and ideas as a result of our programs to date…partnerships have been established between ARI and the corporate community to advance Ayn Rand’s ideas in the universities." ~ Ayn Rand Institute
"Weiss piqued our curiosity when he mentions in his book that the Ayn Rand Institute based in Irvine, California is holding its annual gala fundraiser, not on the west coast, but at the swanky St. Regis hotel in Manhattan and charging $1500 a plate. We learn further from Weiss that Arline Mann, Managing Director and Associate General Counsel of the Board of Goldman, Sachs & Company is the Co-Chair of the Ayn Rand Institute. To move the money trail along, Weiss interviews Barry Colvin, Vice Chairman of a hedge fund, Balyasny Asset Management, who just up and decides to open a New York chapter of the Ayn Rand Institute and spearhead a fund drive."
Oh my goodness! I hope someone sets up a "critical thinking" institute teaching how to analyze ideas! I also hope they are able to reveal the ways Randian philosophy has polluted our politics and economics. I am going to have to do some more reading on this. Thanks for the information.
It is astounding to me that Ayn Rand continues to hold the attention of modern business people. I read a couple of pages of Weiss's book available on line and will order it from the Library. Her line of thinking is like "dyslogic" thinking ... if this, then that, gets caught up somehow in grasping for money as if that were all that mattered. I wonder if they can see, smell and feel grass from their penthouses, or if they see the hungry and sick of the world that are made so by the billions made on hedge funds. A good dose of poverty with their coffers dried up sounds like a good remedy. Exploitation to the core.
OK, if some live like that, finding ways to live meaningful lives is a challenge, not because I envy their wealth, but because I know how their wealth insulates them from the things I hold dear, whether it is forest or river or sky or people. I'm not good at speaking in philosophical terms, but I know what I feel when I read of such people as the Randians.
I did misspell psychopaths. Thanks for the alert.
From Monbiot.com (<- link to article):
This is a great article by The Guardian's George Monbiot.
"Ignoring Rand's evangelical atheism, the Tea Party movement has taken her to its heart. No rally of theirs is complete without placards reading "Who is John Galt?" and "Rand was right".
Sociopathy, nihilism, greed, casuistic misinterpretations of Aristotle, jejune tautologies sold as meaningful proofs, vacuous aphorisms. the whole victimhood of the wealthy shtick, the contradictory ideal of an absolute morality, eye of newt, wart of hog, etc, these are some of the issues that explain why she's never taken seriously by any credible student or scholar of philosophy
It can all be distilled down to: A metaphorical infant who has yet to grok that being human is being part of a complex interdependency with other humans, absolute independence is just another name for "dead", and lacks empathy for any but themselves. Grasping at everything graspable within reach, whilst chanting their first words; "Mine! Mine! Mine!". Continue this status quo into adulthood, and hope they don't have kids of their own.
It works well for the Teabagger Taliban though, they've found another Jesus in the martyring of John Galt…
Oh! I wish I had written about these aspects! I just roiled at the word of "insult" being applied to descriptions of Randian philosophy. Grasping greed! Perfect! Teabagger Taliban! Yes!
Sorry dude, I never drank the koolade on this one. The entire thing is bullshit, not even worth lending any credibility. Too much question begging. I don't accept any of Rand's gospal. While it goes to great lengths to verify itself within its own context …it doesn't translate to anything rational, it's just meaningless petitio principii to me.
"Oh! but when I say this, I actually mean…"
It doesn't work on me when theists do it either, just because this cult's messiah is a character in a work of fiction, …doesn't make it any different.
Mr. M. my quarrel with Ayn Rand began some 59 years ago while I was still in high school. My father was an ardent reader of Ayn Rand and spouted lectures of her philosophy. My father was a brute of the first order. He never, ever hit me. He tried one time about 37 years ago and I knocked him out and stood over him as he came to consiousness and I told him if he ever hit me I would sue him for everything he had. He never tried again. My mother was not so lucky; she was brutally beaten often and died as a result of his last beating.
My first memory is of being in my crib and watching as Dad beat my Mom to unconsciousness, blood was everywhere. I didn't make a sound, but hid under my pillow until I went to sleep. That was the first episode I can remember and it was the beginning of a very tragic story of my learned helplessness and the 20 years it took me to extract myself from an abusive marriage.
Now, as to Rand. She spouted selfishness. Independence. Ignore the needs of others. Get what he wanted without regard for the costs others pay for his needs, wants, and desires.
I do not insult Rand, I describe her. She was a sick woman and it took me years to discover that sad truth. She influenced Alan Greenspan, Reagan, Martin Friedman, the Bush tribe, the Republican party, the Tea Party, and even Scrooge evokes thoughts of Ayn Rand's philosophy. Of course we can't forget Nathaniel Branden and his silly/sad story.
Rand's philosophy is held by many who may not have subscribed to her emotionally immature, sophomoric adulthood, unable to participate with people and problem solving of the real world. Her support of laissez-faire capitalism has proven to be the great crippler of USA politics and family life. The notion of individualism does not take into account the role of USA foreign policy in impoverishing developing countries while enriching exploiters and dominators. She claims to be against violence but the practices belie that claim and the consequences prove all too clearly what she was about and what her disciples are up to.
Put a bible in the hands of an objectivist thinker and run, don't walk, to the nearest shelter. I worked for 20 years with battered women and children and when I looked at the family systems, I could recognize the yeast that turned families into violent war machines.
My philosophy, in essence, is the concept of man as a heroic being, with his own happiness as the moral purpose of his life, with productive achievement as his noblest activity, and reason as his only absolute.
My philosophy, in essence is the concept of human beings created as part of an incredible universe rich in diversity, and all the elements available on earth to be appreciated and husbanded wisely by the human species, not at the top of the pyramid but as part of an Indra's Net. Humans are created to participate with life and existence, not dominate or exploit it. Compassion is a human characteristic to be treasured.
"Compassion is a human characteristic to be treasured." -- I like that Joan and agree
I like that pretty graphic you put up too.