Rodney Posted July 21, 2018 Share Posted July 21, 2018 This song, "Desert Pete" by The Kingston Trio, at first blush seems to convincingly argue against the ethics of rational self-interest: Quote You've got to prime the pump, you must have faith and believe-- You've got to give of yourself 'fore you're worthy to receive. There is no denying the impact of the song for many listeners. Judge for yourself: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=08kEFELCb3I However, I think the song's impact stems from factors that do not have to involve the literal truth of the quoted lines: the compelling issues of pioneer life and human survival that form the factual background; the power of art--the excellence of the song as a song, including the fact that the spoken portions are poetic and underpinned with good music and the chorus has a good melody; the repetition in the chorus, with its well-known artistic effect of tying all the thoughts into a satisfying unity; and a certain underlying truth behind the moral force of the tale. I think it is possible to state that moral principle in terms compatible with rational self-interest. I have my own formulation. Anyone else care to address it? Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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
Already have an account? Sign in here.Sign In Now