What’s with this sudden adoption of the philosophy Ayn Rand by the GOP? Why has she suddenly become the virtual replacement of ‘Don’t Thread On Me’? Is it that the Tea Party realizes that signs like ‘half breed muslin ‘ no longer promote their rabble rousing or that the long form birth certificate was not photo shopped? What ever the reason, they have awakened enough of my curiosity for me to take a more than a perfunctory look at what Ayn espoused; because that’s all it would take to declare this new Tea Party poster child another GOP desperate measure.
Now, for the sake of trying to determine what could have caused the GOP to crown Ayn their political hero, let’s first look at what they claim Americans want. According to their tea leaves, Americans want less debt for their grand children and greater opportunities for capitalist ventures. They want less immigrants in their country and more of the benefits of immigrant labor. Of course, immigrant labor is part of the foundation of capitalist ventures but that is just a minor detail. They want big government to shrink, State government to mushroom and palling around with communists/socialists like China and Iran to stop immediately; but this does not include the communist behavior of Israel which has been funded since 1948 to create great walls and demilitarized zones on the lands their Arab neighbors, who they treat like serfs. These are just a few of the items on the continuously evolving Gop political manifesto.
So, how does this factor in to the philosophy of Ayn Rand, you ask. Let’s see how this stimulates the politics of the GOP. In her fictional creation of a Utopia, America, Rand created a social existentialism she labeled objectivism which requires one to pursue his own happiness – you know, the well known phrase in the Declaration of Independence. This happiness, she ascribes to the moral purpose of one’s existence. For the GOP, this is al that is needed; the philosophy of a writer of fiction, projecting her elitist social preference through an American Utopia and living out her preference for serdom via protagonists who make social strangulation a blood sport.
This is the America the GOP wants.
But, GOP, this is not real. This existed in Ayn’s head. Man is inherently co dependent. This means that at no point in time, any one man will possess all of the tools he needs to make him happy. And this shows in her characters, GOP. Rand has a penchant for the protagonist who pursues happiness but does so at the social marginalization of others. This means that Rand’s main characters though they had the desire and wherewithal to pursue happiness could not do so without marginalizing the happiness of others, you know, the ones they treated like serfs. Conversely, the ones who were being treated like serfs were also in pursuit of happiness but could only achieve that by making their overlords happy. So, for Rand’s Utopia, pursuing happiness means trading one’s happiness; giving the trader with the greater means the uuper hand and therefore the greater chance of receiving his happiness.
Which brings us back to the GOP and their modern day romance with politics according to Rand. What has fascinated the GOP is Rand’s call for the individual pursuit of happiness. This is what Paul Ryan and the other GOP protagonists of this story line have fallen in love with.
Health care is the individual’s burden irrespective of how politics has made it impossible to purchase. Women need to learn to protect themselves against violence and do not need and Act to make it illegal for a man to stalk and slay her. Employers have a right to export jobs to low paying countries in order to protect their profits. After all, that would make them happy and the wage earners of a whopping twelve US dollars annually will be happy too. Gut welfare too, because too many people a certain demographic are on it. They even have a food stamp president.
I could go on ad infinitum, here, but my sense is that you have gotten the point. Rand has rise to the level of posthumous hero in the GOP/Tea Party. Her philosophy was built upon musings for a fictional America; one that lauded the elite and excluded the peons. This is their vision for today’s America.
Enter, one Mitt Romney; fickle enough to resurrect the mythic musings of this dead, assumed philosopher.