In a previous post, we discussed some questions with Mr. Bhaskar Patel regarding Objectivism. In this post, we’ll continue exploring other important questions raised by Mr. Patel and you are invited to raise your own objections and refuttals.
Objectivism is a philosophy developed by the Russian-American philosopher and novelist Ayn Rand. This philosophy holds that reality exists independent of conciousness and that man’s moral purpose is to pursuit happiness. In order to do so, man needs government not to interfere on his decisions and only to protect his individual rights and private property. Objectivism holds that individuals are not sacrificial animals, and as such they should never live for others or ask others to live for them.
Now, we’ll go to review Mr. Patel commentaries and questions:
- Capitalism ensures survival & growth of the fittest. There is a winner and a loser. The winner may become greedy to the exclusion of the rest.
It is not Capitalism that ensures the survival of the fittest; it is Nature that ensures that the fittest are to survive. Capitalism is a moral social system that allows for humans to be happy, and free to cooperate and satisfy their needs. As a matter of fact, Capitalism is the only social system that could enable men to freely decide to help and protect those humans that in nature would have surely died (the physically and mentally ill, elderly, orphans, etc).
In today’s world, it is government who supposedly helps and aids those men and women who lack the ability to protect themselves and ensure their survival. Unfortunately, this welfare services granted by government have allowed for parasites to also abuse of the system and doesn’t create an incentive for men to live by themselves.
- Have you ever seen the purest form of ‘capitalism’, as you describe it herein above, exist or succeed on a broad scale? why not?
As Ayn Rand wrote and Ludwig von Mises acknowledged in the book “Theory and History“, Laissez-Faire Capitalism has never existed. The closer humanity has been to Laissez-Faire Capitalism was during the a short time of the last two decades of the XVIII century. This happened after the Constitution of the United States of America was signed and allowed for a social system as such to exist. However, decades passed and it never came to be a functioning social system in the United States.
Government intervention and the introduction of mercantilist privilegies couldn’t be avoided (they were the rule in the rest of the world) and the United States felt trap of it. Today’s economy is a mixed economy system in which the principles of capitalism (freedom and protection of individual rights, a small but efective government, and others) are non-existent.
- Ms. rand may have considered certain elements or aspects of religion as evil but it is also a source of tremendous inspiration and healing in this world. How can you ignore it if you’re serious about curing the ills that harm our world.
Ayn Rand considered religion to be “a blind belief, belief unsupported by, or contrary to, the facts of reality and the conclusions of reason.” As such, she said it was the greatest enemy of reason and humanity. Religion is a dogmatic belief by faith in any explanation of reality. As such, religion is NOT Ethics and it is wrong to consider its teachings as the origin of morality, good and ethical behavior. The ills and harm done by other men in the world can only be “cured” if men respect each other and aren’t forced to sacrifice for the benefit of others. Men are not “good” or “evil”, it is on their own to choose what to do. Human’s need no religion to act ethically, they only need to understand reality and act accordingly. More than inspiring and healing the world, religion has been used to create many harm and kill millions of men in the name of mysticism.
- Did Ms. Rand lead/live her adult life as she prescribed it? If not, why not?
Ayn Rand said that her philosophical system was a recognition of reality and of human’s nature. As such, any men could try living rationally, coherently and happily. For her, a men that lived under those principles should be considered a hero, a hero that could actually exist outside fiction and romantic books. Many of her critics questioned her, she was a human and as such she wasn’t perfect.
Ayn Rand was known for her consistency and for being a radical defensor of her ideas. She never allowed herself to be surrounded by parasites and asked always for men to be the best they can be. I consider her to have lived consistently to her ideas. There are two biographical works that could be a good idea reading; you could start by checking this article wrote by The Economist under the title “The life and views of Ayn Rand. Capytalism’s martyred hero“.
- If you exclude the US & Canada, do you know of any significant bilateral relations for diplomacy and international commerce that is a win-win situation
Of course, during the XIX and XX centuries many bilateral agreements were signed by countries in the areas of commerce, defense and government cooperation. Still, most of diplomacy is dealt bilaterally (without UE, NATO, UN, etc. interference).
It is a fundamental in international relations to have reciprocity and equal benefits for any agreement, treaty and compromise. In multilateral relations this cannot by applied and allows for different benefits and obligations from the participant countries. It was only after the Great Depression that many countries turned to multilateralism.
- Without Government tax-rebates, subsidies, incentives, protection etc, do you believe private sector will invest in technologies, or utilities, or infrastructure projects or medicine? I am not taking about a small-business here?
Craig Biddle, editor of The Objective Standard, proposed that a new system of private contributions could emerge after taxes, subsidies, and government welfare is eliminated. I recommend you to check this video of the lecture “Morality of Capitalism” in the segment were he answers a question regarding tax payments and common will (link to lecture). Although I disagree with some of his points regarding private cooperation, he does make a good point explaining that it does is possible for our society to live happily without the current taxation system and cooperate.
- What is the source of ‘capitalism’? Who provides it? How did they accumulate it?
This is my favorite question. Capitalism is a social system based on and derived from ethics. As such, it based on and derived from a metaphysics. This metaphysics is that reason is man’s basic tool for survival and rationality is his highest virtue. Capitalism has a moral imperative in which all of its members have their life as the standard of value. It is philosophy that provides for it and individuals who take it into practice. For Capitalism to exist, men need to eliminate all mysticism and altruism. Men need to have reason as man’s only mean of perceiving reality and has his only guide to action.
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