The 2020 Election - Capitalism vs Collectivism Rand Style


Recommended Posts

The 2020 Election - Capitalism vs Collectivism Rand Style

The essence of the 2020 Presidential election is shaping up to be capitalism vs. collectivism in the way Ayn Rand laid it out. 

I don't know what's happened in the Objectivist subcommunity. I keep seeing the enormous difficulty our fearless leaders have in applying Rand's thinking to current events. 

This might be because of sematics, gobs and gobs of semantics. For example, President Trump is considered among the intelligentsia (both within O-Land and without) as a nationalist. We rarely hear of him referred to as a capitalist.

But capitalist he is. And I mean politically. How many times has he said at important events like the State of the Union that America will never become a socialist country? He said it at the UN. He said it at one rally after another. He has preached the gospel of a non-socialist America in the short time he has been a politician more than anyone since Ayn Rand if public spread of the idea is the measure. And I'm including Ronald Reagan in that.

In President Trump's conception, a capitalist society cannot exist without a nation or nations to practice it in. This is probably why he never bothered with the theory of capitalism. His life has been more about living capitalism than talking about it. In other words, he's been too busy building things and making money from it to bother with studying and forming mental constructs he can use to condemn people with or get a job at a think tank with.

I happen to think he's right about living it first, then preaching it. Frankly, I myself fall short on doing the same. (I'm working on correcting that, though.) 

Our O-Land luminaries are so stuck on abstract ideas they gleaned from Rand, they don't know how to apply them to current affairs. 

In the post following this one, I am going to present a case from a person who is NOT an Objectivist, but who dug up a lecture by Rand (on the McGovern campaign) and applied it to what is unfolding right before our eyes. Every day. And it has been happening for a long time.

Yet nobody in O-Land has been talking about it.

Just like they are missing the critical issue of the 2020 campaign, capitalism vs. collectivism, because in their heads and pronouncements, they claim President Trump is no capitalist. They call him a fascist, big government person yada yada yada, and that leads them to anywhere except the fundaments.

Oh, they get the collectivism part. I mean, with Bernie openly calling himself a socialist, all the Dem primary candidates agreeing with supplying health care for illegal aliens, and so on, how can anyone miss it? But bashing collectivism in abstract terms only (with the exception, maybe, of pointing to Venezuela), and all the while saying capitalism is the answer--without having anything concrete to point to that modern folks understand or relate to, is just plain stomp down lame.

The issue of the century is right before them, in Randian terms at that, and they are missing it.

Well other people are not missing it.

I'm presenting below a post about someone not in O-Land who didn't miss it. And it's brilliant.

Hopefully other examples will arise and someone (or I) will add it to this thread as time goes along. In fact, I believe we are seeing the start of a new wave of Rand in politics--totally outside of O-Land. Time will tell.

Michael

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites

Lookee what I found, a dude in the alternative media called RazorFist.

You can find him here: The Rageaholic.

Now why am I talking about him? Because he is talking about Ayn Rand better than I've seen in a while and applying it to modern politics during an election year.

Check this out. I was so impressed with the following video, I transcribed part of it. (Actually, I used Google's transcription, then cleaned it up, then researched and cleaned that up. It was work.) Don't be misled because it doesn't mention Rand in the title. The bulk of the video is about Rand.

Bernie BTFO'd on Super Tuesday!

 

Note: I didn't know what BTFO meant, so I looked it up. According to the Urban Dictionary, BTFO means: "Acronym which stands for 'blown the fuck out.' Generally used to refer to a sports team that loses to another by a large margin. Especially if the losing team was expected to win."

Now, about the video, RazorFist presents a passage of Ayn Rand speaking at the Ford Hall Forum in the context of today's Democratic party. He starts showing a picture of Rand, then keeps her voice going in VO as he puts up a string of recent images from the news that illustrate her points. He also cites a passage from "The Left: Old and New," which can be found in The Return of the Primitive.

He shows and marvels over how predictive Rand was and it is fantastic.

The whole video is a little over 12 minutes, but the passage in the transcript below goes from 3:16 to 9.05. (Hell, just watch the whole thing.) I have put all words by Rand in italics.

The first excerpt is from Ayn Rand's talk, “A Nation’s Unity,” on October 9, 1972 at the Ford Hall Forum. This talk was an analysis of the McGovern campaign. Man, how little has changed...

 

For context, RazorFist was talking about the splintering of the left that is taking down the Democrats in this election. And it's unfolding right before our eyes.

Quote

RAZORFIST: And if I can make a momentary detour into philosophy here, I believe that's the purest expression of what Ayn Rand described as The New Left. Whatever you feel about the philosophy of the Ex-Soviet Siren in question, in a collection of essays called The New Left: The Anti-Industrial Revolution, she pegged the future of the Democratic parties so hard, Buttigieg splayed his ass cheeks fucking reflexively. 

The Old Left, she alleged, were misled on many points, but ultimately [they were] at least amenable to personal liberties and the personal pursuit of profit. 

The New Left, she argued, were reduced to a slathering horde of me-monkeys conditioned to rally around just one social or political cause at once, easily corralled into individual groups for ease of exploitation for fucking votes, endlessly generating political pressure groups and lobbying organizations, demanding unequivocally their cause célèbre takes center stage in the party's platform.

Keep in mind the historical context. This was during the late sixties, folks, the noxious nexus point for the hippie fucking left.

 

AYN RAND: Suppose it was decided but never announced openly and explicitly that the nation holds the absolute power of a Greek city-state. But since one cannot convene an entire nation to a monthly meeting, the people are compressed into groups representing various interests, and the government acts as arbiter and ruler – who listens to their clashing demands and enforces the will of those it deems to be representative of the public interest.

[NOTE FROM MSK: SKIP IN RAND'S ORIGINAL TEXT.]

First, there is a business lobby. But you don’t mind it, it helps your boss.

Then there is a labor lobby. But you don’t mind it – it helps you!

Then there is a farm lobby. But you don’t notice it. It is too remote from your activities.

Then a neighbor on the next block forms a group demanding better roads, and two blocks further a woman forms a group demanding better schools.

Another group demands ‘free lunches‘ for all school children and a rival group demands free textbooks.

Your windows are smashed one night by a group of the local juvenile delinquents or "problem adolescents." They shout "non-negotiable demands" which you cannot quite untangle, but you gather it has something to do with "Youth Power."

The residents of the local Old Folks' Home form a group demanding ‘Senior-Citizen Power’.

The old-maid file clerk-at the office, whom you can’t stand because she can’t keep the files straight, is given a promotion--with the help of a group that demands the "Liberation of Women."

You have no time to keep track of it all. You notice only that your taxes keep rising and rising--and your money keeps buying less and less.

You are late getting to the office one morning because the local welfare recipients’ group lies stretched out across the highway, demanding a yearly income greater than half of yours; you slam on your breaks just in time to avoid running over the group’s leader, a lady known as "Fatso," who has 12 children and no visible husband.

[NOTE FROM MSK: SKIP IN RAND'S ORIGINAL TEXT.]

There’s a group that demands the display of sexual intercourse on the screen and another group that demands censorship of all movies above the intellectual level of a six-year-old. So you give up going to the movies.

 

RAZORFIST: I will now quote directly from the text. 

Quote:

And so today we see the spectacle of old Marxists blessing, aiding and abetting the young hoodlums (who are their products and heirs) who proclaim the superiority of feelings over reason, of faith over knowledge, (...) of spiritual concerns over material comforts, of primitive nature over technology. (...)

The old-line Marxists used to claim that a single modern factory could produce enough shoes to provide for the whole population of the world and that nothing but capitalism prevented it. 

When they discovered the facts of reality involved, they declared that going barefoot is superior to wearing shoes.

Unquote.

[NOTE FROM MSK: THE PASSAGE IS FROM RAND'S ESSAY, "THE LEFT: OLD AND NEW."]

She was unremittingly dumped on when she made this argument at the time, by the way, with shitbag historian and unauthorized Rand biographer, James T. Baker, calling [it] a, quote, "shrill proclamation... And that it's more negative than positive, more destructive than constructive." 

How did that appraisal hold up, you fucking hack? 

In short, she argued the New Left was a scion of the 60s, meaning the modern DNC birthed the generation of one issue voters--at that time largely civil rights and environmentalism as an expressway to temporary electoral gains. 

And as the 70s gave way to the 80s, gave way to the 90s, [it] steadily spawned one single issue voting bloc after another. Until now--in 2020--when the DNC has become increasingly incapable of servicing them all, particularly as these disparate groups continue to conflict. 

If you err on the side of social change, be it tranny tug jobs in public restrooms, or the even more alarming increasingly audible specter of pedos rights, you see a steady decrease in minority turnout because Gary, Indiana ain't exactly a hotbed of ladyboys and shemales. 

If you argue for open borders, unions get up in arms because it drives down dues by slashing the shit out of workers' wages. The New Left went from "reals" to "feels," from philosophy to collectivist convenience, and now, just a few generations later, there's too many "feels" to fucking fix.

Believe me, this will do more to spread Rand among the young people than sitting around bickering about low-audience niche purity issues within O-Land.

Some may not like RazorFist's constant punctuation by profanity, but, hell, we get similar right here on OL. :)

This is really good work by RazorFist. Some may not like his style, but he is--and will be--part of changing the world for the better. Here's a hint to back that up. He posted his video yesterday and, at the time of my post here, it has over 87,000 views--on YouTube alone. (Being a good alt media dude, he uses different platforms.)


As a footnote, in a few places, Razorfist cut out a section from Rand's original text. I have indicated where in the transcription, but for the point of the message, and especially for keeping the video tight for his target public, I think he chose cuts that worked well. I wished he would have mentioned he did that, but whatever.

Also, Razorfist put up an image of the text from "The Left: Old and New" that he quoted. There were a couple of skips in that, too, which I indicated with three dots, and I had to correct the text in a few places on trivial things (like changing "was" to "is," etc.) I mention this merely for the sake of being a nitpicker. 

If I missed anything, please let me know.

Otherwise, enjoy the show.

:) 

Michael

  • Like 1
Link to post
Share on other sites
33 minutes ago, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

I don't know what's happened in the Objectivist subcommunity.

Is this an Object-i-visit? Your observations are spot on.

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 3 months later...
On 3/5/2020 at 1:44 PM, Michael Stuart Kelly said:

The essence of the 2020 Presidential election is shaping up to be capitalism vs. collectivism in the way Ayn Rand laid it out. 

I think the two biggest news stories have shifted the sands since March 5. Wow. Gallup Polls are gone. Less than six months to go, but we still have a lot of time to panic. Joke.  

Wednesday, June 17, 2020. The Rasmussen Reports daily Presidential Tracking Poll sponsored by BonginoReport.com for Wednesday shows that 46% of Likely U.S. Voters approve of President Trump’s job performance. Fifty-three percent (53%) disapprove.

The latest figures include 33% who Strongly Approve of the job Trump is doing and 46% who Strongly Disapprove. This gives him a Presidential Approval Index rating of -13. (see trends)

Now that Gallup has quit the field, Rasmussen Reports is the only nationally recognized public opinion firm that still tracks President Trump's job approval ratings on a daily basis.

From real Clear Politics President Trump Job approval. Approve 42.8 Disapprove 54.9 Disapprove +12.1.

General Election: Trump vs. Biden, Biden 50.2 Trump 41.7

Link to post
Share on other sites
  • 2 months later...

RAZORFIST: The New Left, she argued, were reduced to a slathering horde of me-monkeys conditioned to rally around just one social or political cause at once, easily corralled into individual groups for ease of exploitation for fucking votes, endlessly generating political pressure groups and lobbying organizations, demanding unequivocally their cause célèbre takes center stage in the party's platform. end quote

Bernie Sander’s hero is Josef Stalin. What a monster. Peter

From “Archangel,” pages 67 - 71 by Thomas Harris . . . whenever I find myself thinking about Josef Stalin, I find myself thinking of one image in particular. I think of Stalin as an old man, standing beside his gramophone.

He would finish working late, usually at nine or ten, and then he would go to the Kremlin movie theater to watch a film. Often, it was one of the Tarzan series - for some reason Stalin loved the idea of a young man growing up and living among wild animals - then he and his cronies in the Politburo would drive out to his dacha at Kuntsevo for dinner, and after dinner, he would go over to his gramophone and put on a record. His particular favorite, according to Milovan Djilas, was a song in which howling dogs replaced the sound of human voices. And then Stalin would make the Politburo dance.

Some of them were quite good dancers - Mikoyan, for example: He was a lovely dancer. And Bulganin wasn’t bad; he could follow a beat. Khrushchev, though, was a lousy dancer - “like a cow on ice” - and so was Malenkov and so was Kaganovich, for that matter.

Anyway, one evening - drawn, we might speculate, by the peculiar noise of grown men dancing to the baying of hounds - Stalin’s daughter, Svetlana, put her head around the door, and Stalin made her start dancing too. Well, after a time she grew tired and her feet were hardly moving and this made Stalin angry. He shouted at her, “Dance!” And she said, “But I’ve already danced, Papa, I’m tired.” At which Stalin - and here I quote Khrushchev’s description - “grabbed her like this, by the hair, a whole fistful, I mean by her forelock, as it were, and pulled, you understand, very hard . . . pulled, jerked and jerked.”

Now, keep that image in your mind for a moment, and let us consider the fate of Stalin’s family. His first wife died. His oldest son, Yakov, tried to shoot himself when he was twenty-one, but only succeeded in inflicting severe wounds. (When Stalin saw him, according to Svetlana, he laughed, “Ha!” he said. “Missed! Couldn’t even shoot straight!”) Yakov was captured by the Germans during the war, and after Stalin refused a prisoner exchange, he tried suicide again - successfully this time, by hurling himself at the electrified fence of his prison camp.

Stalin had one other child, a son, Vasily, an alcoholic, who died age forty-one.

Stalin’s second wife, Nadezhda, refused to bear her husband any more children - according to Svetlana, she had a couple of abortions - and late one night, aged thirty-one, she shot herself through the heart. (Or perhaps it would be more accurate to say that someone shot her. No suicide note has ever been found.)

Nadezhda was one of four children. Her older brother, Pavel, was murdered by Stalin during the purges; the death certificate recorded a heart attack. Her younger brother, Fyodor, was driven insane when a friend of Stalin’s, an Armenian bank robber named Kamo, handed him a gouged-out human heart. Her sister, Anna, was arrested on Stalin’s orders, and sentenced to ten years in solitary confinement. By the time she came out, she was no longer capable of recognizing her own children. So, that was one set of Stalin’s relatives.

And what of the other set? Well, there was Aleksandr Svanidze, the brother of Stalin’s first wife - he was arrested in ‘37 and shot in ‘41. And there was Svanidze’s wife, Maria, who was also arrested; she was shot in ‘42. Their surviving child, Ivan - Stalin’s nephew - was sent into exile, to a ghastly state orphanage for the children of “enemies of the state,” and when he emerged, nearly twenty years later, he was profoundly psychologically damaged. And finally, there was Stalin’s sister-in-law, Maria - she was arrested in ‘37 and died mysteriously in prison.

Now, let us go back to that image of Svetlana. Her mother is dead. Her half-brother is dead. Her other brother is an alcoholic. Two uncles are dead and one is insane. Two aunts are dead and one is in prison. She is being dragged around by her hair, by her father, in front of a roomful of the most powerful men in Russia, all of whom are being forced to dance, maybe to the sound of howling dogs.

Colleagues, whenever I sit in an archive or, more rarely these days, attend a symposium like this one, I always try to remember that scene, because it reminds me to be wary of imposing a rational structure on the past. There is nothing in the archives here to show us that the Deputy Chairman of the Council of Ministers or the Commissar for Foreign Affairs, when they made their decisions, were shattered by exhaustion and very probably terrified - that they had been up until three A.M. dancing for their lives and knew they might well be dancing again that evening.

Not that I am not saying that Stalin was crazy. On the contrary. One could argue that the man who worked the gramophone was the sanest person in the room. When Svetlana asked him why her aunt Anna was being held in solitary confinement, he answered “Because she talks too much.”  With Stalin, there was usually a logic to his actions. He didn’t need a sixteenth-century English philosopher to tell him that “knowledge is power.” That realization is the absolute essence of Stalinism. Among other things, it explains why Stalin murdered so many of his own family and close colleagues - he wanted to destroy anyone who had any firsthand knowledge of him.

And this policy, we must concede, was remarkably successful. Here we are, gathered in Moscow, forty-five years after Stalin’s death, to discuss the newly opened archives of the Soviet era. Above our heads, in fire-proofed strong-rooms, maintained at a constant temperature of eighteen degrees Celsius and sixty percent humidity, are one and a half million files - the entire archive of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of the Soviet Union.

Yet how much does this archive really tell us about Stalin? What can we see today that we couldn’t see when the Communists were in power? Stalin’s letters to Molotov -  we can see those -  and they are not without interest. But clearly they have been heavily censored. And not just that - They end in ‘36, at precisely the point when the real killing started.

We can also see the death lists that Stalin signed. And we have his appointment book. So we know that on the eighth of December, 1938, Stalin signed thirty death lists containing five thousand names, many of them his so-called friends. And we also know, thanks to his appointment book, that on that very same evening he went to the Kremlin movie theater and watched not a Tarzan movie this time but a comedy called “Happy Guys.”

But between these two events, between the killing and the laughter, there lies - What? Who? We do not know. And why? Because Stalin made it his business to murder almost everyone who might have been in a position to tell us what he was like . . . . end quote

Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now