The 2012 election comes down to a battle of these philosophies.
Paul Ryan, an Ayn Rand acolyte, is the architect of the Ryan Budget. For years Paul Ryan has championed pushing the government away from helping the poor and at risk.
Ayn Rand is the Philosophical underpinning of Paul Ryan and the modern GOP.
I am challenging the moral cause of Altruism;
The precept that man's moral duty is to live for others;
That man must sacrifice himself to others.
Ayn Rand - Mike Wallace interview 1959 @ 4:48 (Link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1ooKsv_SX4Y)
Rand also advocates that Man’s purpose is his own happiness as gained thru using logic alone.
“(Man) has to hold reason as an absolute… his highest moral purpose is the achievement of his own happiness”.
This philosophy gives cover to those who want to take from everyone and collect everything for themselves. We see it in how GOP tax policy is working. You can call it Voodoo Econ or Trickle Down or whatever. It can be gain for the sake of gain.
Some flaws to this philosophy:
- What if the individual is crazy and feel their happiness can be achieved by picking up a gun and blowing people away? (see: Loughner, Jared)
- When has one gained enough?
- Does happiness just become the gaining things or money for the sake of gaining?
- Is the finish line when you get all the money?
- Or when you achieve global domination?
- Only have a small number of people can “WIN” in this philosophy.
At that point they have caused so much misery – those who have been dominated globally can say sardonically,
“Yeah, I’m glad YOU’RE happy”.
This is what the GOP is practicing these days.
President Obama, a Christian, is cast as the last defender of the Social Safety Net.
For purposes of this article I want to define Christianity as the Philosophy of Christ as related in the Sermon on the Mount; otherwise known as the Beatitudes. I want to separate Christ as deity from what He was saying.
Matt 5:1-12 ( King James Version – Link http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew%205:1-12&version=KJV )
- And seeing the multitudes, He went up into a mountain: and when He was set, His disciples came unto Him:
- And He opened his mouth, and taught them, saying,
- Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
- Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted.
- Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth.
- Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after righteousness: for they shall be filled.
- Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy.
- Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God.
- Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God.
- Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteousness' sake: for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
- Blessed are ye, when men shall revile you, and persecute you, and shall say all manner of evil against you falsely, for my sake.
- Rejoice, and be exceeding glad: for great is your reward in heaven: for so persecuted they the prophets which were before you.
I want to boil this down to:
- You see someone in trouble – you help them.
- It doesn’t matter what people on the outside say while you are doing it - you help them.
- You get bonus points for taking lip from idiots ripping you while you are helping someone.
The self-interest is the street cred you get from being a person who lives their life properly. You become the person others want to be. You will have the right attitude to enter the next life (assuming there is one).
If you want to say this is the Christian value system that built this country – I think you are safely standing on 2nd base. The country has been cohesive because of shared sacrifice. The sacrifice part of this is what we celebrate when we honor “The Greatest Generation”; getting us through The Great Depression and WWII.
The Constitution’s purpose was “to promote the General Welfare”. The GOP wants to demote the Constitution to a private, vouchered inequity fund.
In 2012 President Obama is taking it on the chops for setting up stuff like:
- Obamacare to help those who are (and will eventually) get sick.
- TARP that kept people’s jobs to keep them fed.
- Green Energy investment so we can get off oil.
- Preserving Pell Grants so kids have a chance to think our way out of the mess we are in.
I can get the big list if you like, but it is easy to pair what the Obama Administration is attempting to the attitudes of the Beatitudes.
Will the 2012 Christian Right of the GOP be able to reconcile not Mormon Philosophy vs. Christian Values, but the slew of oxymorons called Ayn Rand-y Christians in their midst?
The 2012 Election will boil down to:
- Do you want to help other Americans or not?
- Are you Ayn Rand selfish or Jesus Christ selfless?