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Rational Egoism, Irrational Greed And Ayn Rand's Creed

Politics / Propaganda Oct 08, 2012 - 05:29 AM GMT

By: Andrew_McKillop


Best Financial Markets Analysis ArticleOil in New York is breaching long-term technical support at $89.83 a barrel, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. On the weekly chart, that’s the 50 percent Fibonacci retracement of the drop to $32.40 in December 2008 from an intraday record high of $147.27 in July that year. Losses tend to accelerate below chart-support levels from that retracement.

One claim of the declining band of Ayn Rand promoters is that European philosophies are not market friendly and need to be scrapped. Germany's Kantianism, even Nietzsche's Positivism and especially the Nihilism of France's Sartre must be replaced by simple greed, called RE or "rational egoism". Whether Germany needs any advice from the US on how to manage its economy is a moot point for some, and a waste of time for almost all Germans but at least in the US, Ayn Rand's RE has media and political support as a potential new invisible export item or product, for whoever wins the coming presidential elections.

Stalking not far below the surface is the agonizing question: Could Socialism and its most dangerous and degenerate version, Communism, be coming back this time under the wraps of Islamism? And yes there is a direct relation to Fibonacci, the 13th century Italian illuminati who is credited with bringing the zero, other Hindu numbers, and even the algorithm to Europe. Called the "Ada recursive algorithm" or Fibonacci algorithm, this is a whiz for designing buy-sell-hold strategies by greedy traders but was obtained, by Fibonacci, from texts of the outstanding Bagdad-based Persian mathematician called Muhammad ibn Musa Al-Quarizmi, latinized to "algorithm". In al-Khwarizmi or al-Quarizmi's time, the 9th century, Bagdad-based illuminati were particularly concerned with questions like the completion and balancing of souls marooned in the Islamic version of Purgatory - on the dark side of the Moon. Mathematics seemed to help in this task but it was from rocket science.

Marx and Mahomet are highly unfriendly to free-flowing markets and the pinwheel casino shell games of the trading circus, proclaimed as almost divine by Ayn Rand in various works like 'Atlas Shrugged'.  Her gung-ho advocacy is almost euphoric, to some, but in the same way that late-stage or mature capitalist society shoves its win something-lose something turn of the dice "values" down the throat of society, Ayn Rand's "values" are equally aggressive, exclusive, fragile and fascist-prone.

RE says that, inherently, almost by Black Magic, socialism creates an ever increasing centralized government, which must justify its growing power, size and cost by providing more services, entitlements and protection via laws and regulations for its citizens.  The cost of this ever increasing, self justifying central body of parasites - public sector employees - is crippling to the economy.

Real time costs (including annual budget and debt servicing) and long term legacy liabilities such as pensions, social and health benefits, retirement costs, and a lenthening list of other benefits for public sector employees, and workers in public-aided sectors of the economy, will always rise. Very soon, like Fibonacci's breeding rabbits, the cost spiral of The Socialist State will exceed comparable costs for any remaining "truly private" sector employees. Not so long after that, of course, the economy collapses.

RE and "Ayn Randism" is nothing if not a supposedly randy and vital set of "values" inviting us all to detest losers, and encourage the Darwinian Die Off and "expiration" of any country, let alone group or set of persons or "community" inside a country which does not maximise its production and consumption: there is simply No Alternative. Greed is Good. Waste is Wonderful. Stripped down to its flimsy essentials, the Ayn Rand "philosophy" say that.

Countries like Yugoslavia and Somalia, for example, "expired" in real time on the TV screens of the free world during the 1990s with a trifling few-hundred-thousand dead and maimed. Following this triumph for Die Off and RE, an attempt was made to do the same thing, replaying the same free market movie in Afghanistan, Iraq, Libya and other dangerous places for RE. After the struggle against Marxism, the struggle against Islamism moved into high gear, but the fatal differences between Islamic religious philosophy (and any other philosophy of any kind), and the tired one-liners of the "martial minded" followers of Ayn Rand made the result of this War For Freedom dead and lost from Day 1.

The intrinsic or basic neofascism of "Ayn Randism"  is clear: some countries are Born Losers, possibly because they are brown, black or Islamic; within those countries, their rulers are not committed to producing more than other countries; further down the scale, within their states and cities, individual communities and families are not committed to producing more and consuming more. And of course, inside each family there are persons who do the same because they are simply not greedy enough.

The nearest "philosophy" or "religion", in the US, which supplies any intellectual jam to spread on this old and stale bread, and sweeten its real taste of greed, fear and racism, is L. Ron Hubbard's Scientology. This is certainly one of the most decadent and delirious doctrines that a mentally subnormal person could possibly invent before being (hopefully) confined the rest of their life.

Ayn Rand was an intelligent, but very frustrated and conflicted, psychological case; not so different from L. Ron Hubbard. The confused or ill-intentioned followers of these degenerate doctrines have been done a big disservice by the low grade writers of cheap fantasy who invented them.

Ayn Rand is often described, by detractors, as mean-minded and psychologically unstable, but her lack of any knowledge about the economy is less open to challenge: her views on the role of debt not being the mirror image and counterparty of credit are "homely" and, for some, could be called "Austrian" but are nonsensical and have no relation at all to the real world. In her works like 'The Strike', the precursor to 'Atlas Shrugged', debt is called servitude and the King's evil way of stifling indvidual and private greed, replacing it with Royal greed.

One very current example concerns Germany, where "Ayn Randists" are peddling her New Philosophy with gusto. Should Germany quit the Eurozone "to its greater benefit and profit", RE-style, before the Eurozone falls apart - and certainly causing it to fall apart when or if Germany leaves ?

Germany runs a "permanent" trade surplus. The basic thing about running a trade surplus is that it always leads to a build up of counterparty debt in the system. Germany's trade surplus over the past decade is balanced by foreign liabilities. That's why Germany is rich: everybody owes Germany money due to its historical trade surplus but the country's future prosperity depends on those loans being repaid. If Germany left the Eurozone the subsequent repudiation, or at best massive devaluation of those liabilities would implode the Euro system and in the ensuing chaos nobody will be interested in settling the EU's "TARGET2 liabilities" to German banks, the balance between what German banks have lost playing the Eurozone debt game, and the profit they would make - if the lazy Club Med PIIGS countries could repay the German banks.

To be sure and at the same time, the European export markets on which Germany depends for over 65% of its "structural" trade surpluses would collapse, instantly. Capital flight from the rest of the Eurozone would cause an asset bubble in Germany that would make the Spanish housing bubble look like a rational and well managed response to "underlying market fundamentals".

Ayn Rand's triumph of greed, called Rational Egoism, would be short-lived for Germany. It was the winner and the others were the Born Losers. They went into Die Off, but when the system which rewarded greed and punished other values collapsed, the greedy fell to the ground, also.

Rand claimed to be "engineering oriented', preaching productivity as the highest human achievement but neither she nor her writer husband ever produced anything philosophical outside and except the 19th century versions of 'Atlas Shrugged' produced by Nietzsche, which were a lot better written. As we know, Nietsche's raging prose against Couched Potato Civilization, and his cult of the Superman were almost instantly siphoned into the degenerate doctrines of Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler.

The simplest driver of greed is fear of shortage, scarcity and poverty: proclaiming greed as out sole salvation (and salvation of our soul) is unrelated to the current crisis. In 2008, of course, things were different, trader greed was still alive and supposedly respected. Today, that is old hat, like the strident rubbish of Ayn Rand.

By Andrew McKillop


Former chief policy analyst, Division A Policy, DG XVII Energy, European Commission. Andrew McKillop Biographic Highlights

Co-author 'The Doomsday Machine', Palgrave Macmillan USA, 2012

Andrew McKillop has more than 30 years experience in the energy, economic and finance domains. Trained at London UK’s University College, he has had specially long experience of energy policy, project administration and the development and financing of alternate energy. This included his role of in-house Expert on Policy and Programming at the DG XVII-Energy of the European Commission, Director of Information of the OAPEC technology transfer subsidiary, AREC and researcher for UN agencies including the ILO.

© 2012 Copyright Andrew McKillop - All Rights Reserved Disclaimer: The above is a matter of opinion provided for general information purposes only and is not intended as investment advice. Information and analysis above are derived from sources and utilising methods believed to be reliable, but we cannot accept responsibility for any losses you may incur as a result of this analysis. Individuals should consult with their personal financial advisors.

© 2005-2022 - The Market Oracle is a FREE Daily Financial Markets Analysis & Forecasting online publication.


09 Oct 12, 08:13
The laughs on you

Ha HA. You can lie about Ayn Rand and misrepresent her ideas all you want, but you can’t ignore the fact that her books are selling over half a million copies per year 30 years after her death. People who have read and understand her new philosophy are not fooled.

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