Monday, March 22, 2010

A Monument to Power-Lust

The passage of ObamaCare by the House of Representatives has all but assured that it will become law. It establishes not only the theoretical framework for totalitarian control of American medicine, but also for federal control of higher education through a last minute amendment nationalizing the government’s student loan program. It is a massive violation of individual rights, including property rights. As a bonus, an attack on academic freedom is thrown in. It has been justified on the altruistic-collectivistic grounds that, as the Star-Ledger puts it, “all Americans have a right to decent health care [because] a great nation cannot leave 47 million of its people out in the cold”.

A “right” to a manmade product such as healthcare means that someone must be forced to pay for it and/or forced to provide it. It establishes the principle of the master/slave relationship enforced by government. The slave is anyone who has achieved financial self-sufficiency or who has acquired the skills and ability to deliver healthcare services. The master is anyone who claims a “need’ for healthcare that he can not or will not pay for. A “right” to healthcare means legalized plunder, enforced at the point of a governmental gun. This is the nature of socialism in all of its incarnations. The historical record on this is unequivocal. Socialism means slavery and the totalitarian state. The degree of a nation’s enslavement is equal to the degree of its socialization. ObamaCare has slid the dial a long way toward totalitarian socialism on America’s steady slide down the slavery meter.

This is what ObamaCare’s supportors are endorsing. Whatever their motives, and in view of socialism’s barbaric historical record, compassion is not one of them.

But under the philosophical nihilism of the Left’s Postmodernism, such concerns as history, facts, cause-and-effect, and logical consequences don’t matter. Reason is impotent and logic is unnecessary. Reality is whatever we wish it to be. What matters is “compassion” for the people left “out in the cold”. But though they may believe their altruistic rhetoric, there's more than meets the eye for the architects of ObamaCare. Altruism, the ethical doctrine that holds that virtue consists of living for others, is window dressing to cover up the deeper motives of those who preach the sacrifice of all to the needs of all. What are the underlying motives? A 1962 essay by America’s philosopher and moral defender, Ayn Rand, offers an answer. In a piece called The Monument Builders published in The Virtue of Selfishness, she writes that power-lust is the motive and is manifested [largely] in “the desire for the unearned”. But, she writes:

“The desire for the unearned has two aspects: the unearned in matter and the unearned in spirit. The desire for the unearned in spirit is the more destructive of the two and the more corrupt. It is a desire for unearned greatness; it is expressed by the foggy murk of the term ‘prestige’.

“The seekers of unearned material benefits are merely financial parasites, moochers, looters or criminals, who are too limited in number and in mind to be a threat to civilization, until and unless they are released and legalized by the seekers of unearned greatness.

“ ‘The public’, ‘the public interest’, ‘service to the public’ are the means, the tools, the swinging pendulums of the power-luster’s self-hypnosis. Since the concept [of ‘the public’] is so conveniently undefinable, its use rests only on any given gang’s ability to proclaim that ‘The public, c’est moi’, and to maintain the claim at the point of a gun.

“There are two ways of claiming that ‘The public, c’est moi’: one is practiced by the crude material parasite who clamors for government handouts in the name of a ‘public’ need and pockets what he has not earned; the other is practiced by his leader, the spiritual parasite, who derives his illusion of ‘greatness’ – like a fence receiving stolen goods – from the power to dispose of that which he has not earned and from the mystic view of himself as the embodied voice of ‘the public’ ”.

“Of the two, the material parasite is psychologically healthier and closer to reality: at least, he eats or wears his loot. But the only source of satisfaction open to the spiritual parasite, his only means to gain ‘prestige’ (apart from giving orders and spreading terror), is … the building of public monuments.”

ObamaCare is the public monument of the spiritual parasites of the Democratic Party.

President Obama and his ObamaCare political sponsors have no material desires. They are the latest batch of a breed that has been the bane of mankind: They are seekers of unearned greatness. They will trample over anyone’s rights and lives, as they proclaim themselves the champions of “the people”.

In the coming months, the Democrats will viciously defend their monument by declaring anyone calling for repeal as a callous enemy of the sick. They will say that a return to the failed “free market” system will mean a return to the days of “discrimination against the sick”, without even defining what that means. They will beat their chests as champions of the helpless little people, who will never again be victimized by insurance industry “abuses” that, whatever its sins, is nonetheless a creature of government.

The shameless exploitation of people with medical problems used as props for the plunder of the wealth of Americans and the enslavement of the medical profession in the run-up to passage will increase exponentially as Democrats seek to defend their monument.

But ObamaCare is not about the sick who can’t afford treatment or the uninsured or insurance industry abuses or the runaway costs or “compassion” or any of the rationalizations of the day offered by the Democrats. It never was.

ObamaCare is about the power and the prestige of Obama and Pelosi and Reid, et-al. If ObamaCare is not repealed and replaced with free market … which means individual rights … reforms, our healthcare freedom will erode at an accelerating pace. But, as Ayn Rand observes, our freedom will be sacrificed “not for ‘the good of mankind’ nor for any ‘noble ideal,’ but for the festering vanity of some sacred brute or some pretentious mediocrity who craved a mantle of unearned ‘greatness’ ”.

ObamaCare is a monument to power-lust.

Remember that as you try to stomach the rhetoric of the Democrats’ defense of their “noble ideal”.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Thank you for reading and applying the relevant ideas in Ayn Rand's essay on the Monument Builders forward to ObamaCare. It's very clarifying.

Roxanne A.