Monday, September 05, 2005

New Orleans: The Problem of the Weak

Ayn Rand had a simple solution for the "weak" -- they died. She had more than a passing love for social darwinism.

This is not rare. It is deeply embedded in the modern Republican party: Gordon's Notes: What Is Conservatism and What Is Wrong with It?. A variant of this, that wealth is God's blessing upon his chosen, is at the core of theocratic capitalist fundamentalism.

New Orleans is the lesson for America on what this principle means in practice. The elderly, the young, the disabled, the poor -- the weak and those who love them -- they were stuck. The lack of systems to protect them, the slow response to their distress, is all consistent with Rand's Objectivism and Bush's odd blend of libertarianism and theocratic capitalism. I'm sure racism played some role, it's a part of every aspect of our life -- but I think that the deeper issue is a universal disdain for "the weak".

The catch is, if one accepts Ayn Rand's worldview, one must be comfortable with the suffering of "the weak". Those inclined this way will find many powerful allies. Perhaps they will adopt a badge so that all may know who they are.

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