Saturday, March 14, 2009

On The Basic Failure Of Galtism

The basic problem with Galtian philosophy and the silly people who preach it is that at its heart, it's a completely moronic paradox. One one hand, Galtism is applied selfishness: the hubris-born belief that the world will not survive your absence. It is by definition, elitism of the highest order. And yet on the other hand, Galtism is always passed off by its adherents as a populist movement where the people must band together against a common foe, the foe in this case always being the Government and whoever heads it, in this case Barack Obama.

Populist Elitism. You have to love it. At its very core Galtism is a delusion of self, making it the perfect social religion of the self-delusional GOP. One has to believe that they are the engine that drives all progress in America and by that logic, the globe, and yet Galtism always contains a minimum of pissing and moaning about how tough it is, and how The Man is always keeping you down.

Delusions of grandeur mixed with a persecution complex. Enlightened self-interest taken to its selfish endpoint, combined with consistent whinging that everyone else is the problem, the moochers and the looters and the people suckling off the government teat. Or as Rorschach famously said in Watchmen, "The people will cry out 'Save us!' And I will whisper 'no.'"

Nothing more than megalomania with a veneer of sepia-toned civility. It's the Divine Right of Kings for the Kindle Age. No wonder they love Rand so much. It allows them to de-humanize society and elevate themselves. Not the first people to do so, won't be the last.

But in the end (expanding on the Watchmen theme) what makes it so appealing to a group of maladjusted anti-social hatemongers is that Randian Galtism allows the inner child of these juvenile delinquents to pretend they are ethically tortured superheroes, cruelly fated themselves to have to decide the fates of millions for a society too corrupt to ever be allowed to decide for itself, all the while feigning moral superiority. It's all a sick game of emo LARPing to them. Paradox defined.

If you can think of a better definition for the modern GOP, I'd like to know. They've been preaching Galtism for years now.

Loyalty Oaths And Nonsense

Florida GOP Rep. Bill Posey has decided to go for broke on the Obama "fake birth certificate" baloney, introducing a bill that would require all Presidential candidates to submit a certified copy of one to be eligible to run.
CNN reports that Posey has submitted a bill to require all presidential candidates to submit a birth certificate -- which Posey says is needed in order to remove this issue as a reason to question any president's legitimacy.

"Opponents of President Bush used the 2000 election results and the court decisions to question the legitimacy of President Bush to serve as President," Posey said in a statement. "Opponents of President Obama are raising the birth certificate issue as a means of questioning his eligibility to serve as president. Neither of these situations are healthy for our Republic."

Posey's spokesperson told CNN that Posey takes President Obama's word for it that he's a citizen: "This was not meant as an insult to the president. It is simply meant as a way to clarify future election laws and to dispel the issue so we can move on with doing business for the country."

Sure it's not a direct insult to President Obama who of course would be required under this law to submit one as the Presidential candidate for the Dems in 2012. It's not racist in the least, this being required after 43 other white Presidents.

Jon Singer at MyDD correctly calls this as a major opening for the Democrats in Posey's district.

The introduction of this ridiculous and frankly shameful piece of legislation should put Bill Posey squarely in the sights of House Democrats for 2010. The district Posey represents, Florida's 15th, is only marginally Republican, with a historical R+4 PVI rating. In 2008, John McCain carried the district -- though only by a narrow 51 percent to 48 percent margin. That fall, Posey received just 53 percent of the vote in what was his first successful congressional run, despite the fact that he outspent his relatively unknown Democratic challenger by close to a 9-to-1 margin.

Clearly, Posey is not entrenched, and his district isn't overwhelmingly Republican. So the fact that he is allying himself with a fringe that reporters are comparing to the conspiracy theorists who believed that Bill Clinton was involved in Vince Foster's death or that George W. Bush was in some way involved in 9/11 makes him highly vulnerable and ripe for a challenge in 2010.

Dems should make every effort to take Posey down on principle now. No doubt the GOP will want to reward him for this "birther" idiocy.

The Point Is The Plan, Guys

Our "Liberal, Obama-Loving Media" goes straight after the President with Scott Wilson's hatchet job on the front page of the WaPo.
In his inaugural address, President Obama proclaimed "an end to the petty grievances and false promises, the recriminations and worn-out dogmas that for far too long have strangled our politics."

It hasn't taken long for the recriminations to return -- or for the Obama administration to begin talking about the unwelcome "inheritance" of its predecessor.

Over the past month, Obama has reminded the public at every turn that he is facing problems "inherited" from the Bush administration, using increasingly bracing language to describe the challenges his administration is up against. The "deepening economic crisis" that the president described six days after taking office became "a big mess" in remarks this month to graduating police cadets in Columbus, Ohio.

"By any measure," he said during a March 4 event calling for government-contracting reform, "my administration has inherited a fiscal disaster."

Obama's more frequent and acid reminders that former president George W. Bush left behind a trillion-dollar budget deficit, a 14-month recession and a broken financial system have come at the same time Republicans have ramped up criticism that the current president's policies are compounding the nation's economic problems.

Obama had initially been content to leave partisan defense strategy to his proxies, but as the fiscal picture has continued to darken, he has appeared more willing to risk his image as a politician who is above petty partisanship to personally remind the public of Bush's legacy.

If the GOP talking point that Obama Is The Worst President Ever is to take hold, Obama's defenses, in this case "Bush left me with a disaster on an economy" have to be hacked apart like Freddy Kreuger's handiwork at a cheerleader camp. It's pretty obvious to me that the most recent GOP point of "Obama's trying to do too much" has failed. Obama has been able to counter with "Bush didn't do enough, so I have to do multiple things at once." Hard-working, dilligent Obama of course wins that argument over President Working Vacation, so today we see the Village rolling out the newest way to bash Obama: Blaming Bush is nothing more than partisan rancor.

Seems exceedingly simple to me, but John Cole's stumped as to the nature of the piece and the normally reliable Steve Benen almost misses the point completely. This is the weekly GOP talking point memo for the Sunday Talking Head Shows where we'll see plenty of Republicans saying "You know it's too bad Obama is blaming Bush for this economy when he's now the one responsible for it."

Remember The Plan: Destroy. Obama. The Village is coming in hard with the assist here, and the GOP knows they have the Washington press on their side. When the Village is regurgitating GOP memos almost verbatim, you know they're still on the dark side.

But You Forgot About Timmy

Timmy The Invisible Boy is taking his act on the road to London today at the G20 summit of financial ministers. But the one question on everyone's mind there is "How ya gonna fix the banks, Tim?"
The ministers were meeting near London to prepare for a leaders' summit on April 2 but prospects for tangible progress this weekend were limited by splits on what emphasis to place on government spending and regulation.

Nor was there any more clarity from the United States on how it plans to clean up banks' toxic assets, which many say is essential to get the world economy moving again.

That shifted the primary focus to securing pledges that the International Monetary Fund, Asian Development Bank and other agencies have the financial firepower to come to the rescue of countries in difficulty.

"We need a commitment from countries that they will do whatever is necessary and as for long as necessary to support their economies," said Alistair Darling, Britain's finance minister, host to the talks at a luxury countryside hotel.

Ahh, but Timmy The Invisible Boy doesn't have any answers, and nobody else wants to spend the kind of money the US government is doling out for its stimulus.

Not looking really good for the G20 here. Somehow I expect the membership requirement will change in the next few years.

StupidiNews, Weekend Edition

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