Wednesday, 25 May 2011

The problem with Ayn Rand

The first episode of Adam Curtis's excellent documentary series, All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace (named after an American poem by Richard Brautigan), has reminded me to consider and articulate my absolute objections as well as total empathetic agreements of principle on the philosophy of Ayn Rand. The cultural influence and political consequences of her ideology by Curtis were elaborated on, importantly the economic catastrophe caused by her justifications of egotistical selfishness, including the responsibilities of her confidant Alan Greenspan while head of the U.S. Federal Reserve. Paradoxically, I found total realization when discussed alongside an idealistic and innovative revolutionary schism originated in California, based upon the potential and implications of the technological advances of civilization. 

I have identified as a libertarian ever since I became aware of the meaning of the term. As defined by Oxford Dictionaries,

a person who advocates civil liberty.  
a person who believes in free will.

To elaborate, the term has only been monopolized in uneducated intellectual dishonesty, in the United States to indicate a dogmatically narrow minded belief in laissez-faire "free market" monopoly capitalism, more than often void of defending individual freedom from authoritarian statism and fundamentalism entirely, or even the corporate welfare state for the wealthy subsidized through coercive taxation, derived in 1950s charlatanism including from Rand's. The first libertarians were Enlightenment revolutionaries of the European continent, being why the anarchist, socialist and syndicalist societies of anti-fascist and anti-totalitarian resistance movements in Spain were libertarians also.  The first person to use the term "libertarian"  was Joseph Déjacque, who said in a letter to the great Pierre-Joseph Proudhon, anarchist founder of mutualism. "The word queries modern individualism - the notion of libertarian from the start is an expression subversive."

Individualist liberation is realized by empathetic and mutualist solidarity of mind and action, in self-interest against homogenizing and dehumanizing hierarchies of control. The foundation of democracy is the decentralized and intrinsic collective of individual fulfillment and understanding, rather than uniformity of authority, subjugation or ignorance. Now observing the advent individuation found through the memeology of social networking, we comprehend the vacancy of Rand's sociopathic selfishness.

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