Republicans have been on an Ayn Rand binge for the last ten years, overdosing on the mantra of selfishness as the new God since the Randian Tea Party swept the House. At the same time, the Republicans continue to stamp their morally deficient policies with Jesus. However, atheist Rand sought to replace Christianity with her own belief system, and even called the Christian message monstrous.
BreakingPoint.Org wrote, “She (Rand) once said she wanted to be known as “the greatest enemy of religion.” And when Rand said “religion” she meant Christianity, which she once called the “kindergarten of communism.””
Yes, communism. It’s odd, isn’t it, that the people barking the loudest about President Obama wanting to “fundamentally change America” and suggesting that the President is not a Christian and, even on the far right suggesting that he is the anti-Christ, at the same time embrace the economic philosophy of Ayn Rand. Gone are the conservatives of charity, service, responsibility and morality.
It shouldn’t surprise anyone that as America ushered in her culture of greed with former Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan at the helm, the right was mimicking Rand’s worship of the self and claiming selfishness to be the new Jesus. Greenspan, who had been an associate of Rand’s and had been deeply impacted by her worldview later admitted that he had been wrong.
Greenspan confessed during a House Oversight and Government Reform committee, “I made a mistake in presuming that the self-interests of organizations, specifically banks and others, were such as that they were best capable of protecting their own shareholders and their equity in the firms.” Of course, it was too late by then. We had careened over the cliff of feeding the id — morality and ethics but a retreating image in our rear view mirror. We were a country with no tempering super ego.
It’s old school to talk of ethics these days — makes me long for characters like Atticus Finch as role models for our children. Stemming from the modern morality of reality TV narratives like survival-of-the-fittest and he-who-consumes-the-most-wins, Americans are considered weak if they don’t attack first and steal all of the food for themselves, stepping over the less privileged to get more than their share. It’s social Darwinism meets Any Rand religion and it’s not pretty.
The American Values Network points out that Republicans face a crisis of moral values for their party stemming directly from their claims to be guided by both Jesus and Ayn Rand. They explain:
GOP leaders and conservative pundits have brought upon themselves a crisis of values. Many who for years have been the loudest voices invoking the language of faith and moral values are now praising the atheist philosopher Ayn Rand whose teachings stand in direct contradiction to the Bible. Rand advocates a law of selfishness over love and commands her followers to think only of themselves, not others. She said her followers had to choose between Jesus and her teachings.
GOP leaders want to argue that they are defending Christian principles. But, at the same time, Rep. Paul Ryan (author of the GOP budget) is posting facebook videos praising Rand’s morality and saying hers is the “kind of thinking that is sorely needed right now.” Simply put, Paul Ryan can’t have it both ways, and neither can Christians. As conservative evangelical icon Chuck Colson recently stated, Christians can not support Rand’s philosophy and Christ’s teachings. The choice is simple: Ayn Rand or Jesus Christ. We must choose one and forsake the other.
Video courtesy of American Values Network:
The Ayn Randians also got into bed with the Dominionist or Reformationists. Apparently this is a Machiavellian marriage of convenience meant to dominate our resources. Neither group appear to be bothered by the obvious incompatibility of their stated values and have even managed to convince a good percentage of Americans to traipse along behind them unquestioningly, spitting at anyone who disagrees with them and mocking the sick, the disabled, the elderly, and the needy.
While Republicans run on cultural war issues of the personal, their ideas translate on a policy level to killing Medicare, Medicaid, defunding Planned Parenthood and schools, and raising taxes on the elderly while giving huge tax breaks to corporations. It’s easy to get confused by their claims of moral superiority to think that we are discussing personal morality, but when we talk politics, we are discussing how those values get played out in legislation and impact all of America. Do we think government is meant to be run by people who outright reject a moral obligation to others? It’s most peculiar that conservatives push to have government run by their Bible while at the same time worshiping a philosopher who despised the message of Christ.
Two and a half years ago, still stumbling in the darkness brought down upon us from the age of selfishness, America elected a man as President who embodies the highest values of personal responsibility, reason, kindness, judgment and true family values. And so as a nation we are at war with ourselves, with nothing less than the soul of America on the line. Conservatives embraced Ayn Rand and turned their back on compassion. They embraced the extreme self over the collective. And when this didn’t work, instead of examining their platform for inconsistencies or leaks, they doubled down on immorality wrapped in the glittery paper of a fake Jesus of consumption and greed.
Republicans should have to choose between Ayn Rand and Jesus, but they won’t. They lack the moral fortitude and the strength of their convictions to do so. Instead, they’re going to leave it up to us to choose for them.
Image: Buffalo Beast