It is often said that if you want to truly know a person, then meet their friends. With this truth in mind, it turns out that (not surprisingly), cult-philosopher of the right-wing and libertarian crowd, Ayn Rand, was a big fan of the disgusting sadist William Edward Hickman, who kidnapped and dismembered a 12 year old girl in 1927.
In her journals, Rand glowingly wrote that Hickman, “is born with a wonderful, free, light consciousness — [resulting from] the absolute lack of social instinct or herd feeling. He does not understand, because he has no organ for understanding, the necessity, meaning, or importance of other people … Other people do not exist for him and he does not understand why they should.”
Normal Americans (non-Republicans) spent the past year bearing witness to the clutches of teabaggers protesting health care (of all things) while waving various signs extolling Ayn Rand philosophy, believing themselves to be the “Atlas” who would be sure to shrug off the burdens that the unwashed masses inflict on their superiority when they dare demand a society that works for everyone, but truth be told, these teabaggers themselves are often the very “humanity of mud to be ground underfoot” and “fuel to be burned” that Rand assigned to the working class.
Ayn Rand herself has been called a textbook sociopath characterized by self-preoccupation as well as unapologetic lack of empathy. In fact, a commitment to selfishness and a rejection of altruistic behavior are elevated to the the height of morality in her worldview.
Much like today’s right-wing bloviators with an elevated sense of self importance, Rand considered herself one of the greatest philosophers of all time, recommending the “three A’s”—Aristotle, Aquinas, and Ayn Rand. It’s quite disturbing to think that many of the elite shaping policy today attach themselves to Rand’s “Objectivism,” described by author and one-time Objectivist Michael Prescott as, “an ethics of rational self-interest from which any altruistic motives or duties are excluded. There follows a defense of pure laissez-faire capitalism, the only socioeconomic system that gives free rein to profit-seeking selfishness. Reason, egoism, individualism, capitalism – Objectivism in a nutshell.”
Its easy to see why Republican philosophy would attract sociopaths. Elevating Malignant Narcissism as a political philosophy is a way of justifying self-serving malevolence, anti-social uncharitableness and downright unkindness – even glorifying it. Ayn Rand ideologues include Alan Greenspan (who publicly stated that his job was to create “worker insecurity” as a way of keeping the Serfs from rising up against their Sovereign Lords and whose “supply-side” economic fraud has plunged the world towards yet another Republican Great Depression while making a handful of people filthy rich), Clarence Thomas (who assigns Rand’s “The Fountainhead” as required reading for all his law clerks), Rush Limbaugh (who rails against pro-social behavior such as community service as something only to be engaged in by societies’ losers) Glenn Beck (who also encourages his followers to continue contributing nothing to society and whose “9/12 march on Washington was partially sponsored by the Ayn Rand Center for Individual Rights.)
Normal people (non-Republicans) view Rand’s affinity for a self-serving, child murdering and dismembering psychopath as a “real man” as a window into a dark mind to be, at the most, analyzed but not emulated. I’m sure this disturbing revelation won’t trigger a mass “road to Damascus” moment for her followers – quite the contrary. No doubt they will reach into the bag of Republican Dirty Tricks and pull out the old standard of justification by any means most commonly by attacking the messenger – far be it for a right winger to abandon their sick philosophy when, according to their self-serving pathology, society is supposed to adjust itself around their sick philosophy.
It’s a safe bet that we would never find a highly evolved person singing the superior praises of selfishness and the virtues of a child-murdering sociopath who’s crime is far more heinous than these words can describe. Read Mark Ames‘ article for more about Ayn Rand’s sick mind and the entire account of William Hickman’s gruesome crime here.
Personally, I hope that the right wingers make good on their threats and “Go John Galt” on us. This is a reference to and Ayn Rand character in “Atlas Shrugged” who triggers the collapse of society by simply refusing to work. Unlike when the proletariat strike, the Galt-inspired rich go on strike and the whole world comes tumbling down. More than a work of fiction, Rand’s tome is a nod to the inflamed sense of self importance conservatives have; their Malignant Narcissism actually convincing them that the rest of us freeloaders and parasites can’t survive without them.
Let these twisted souls convince each other that they the pivots that turn the Earth’s access, but we must never reorganize our society to suit the sickest among us.
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