Friday, October 26, 2012

You may be more of a lefty than you realise...

Many early Utopian Socialist movements and Social-Democratic parties were influenced by the Golden Rule. That is to treat others as you would expect them to treat you.

Then there is Ayn Rand's praising selfishness as a virtue...

From Penigma:

As part of my broad interest in comparative religions, including not only the well-known major religions, but also the minor ones, I did some reading on the various pagan faiths, including the works of Anton Lavey. Contrary to popular belief, pagans are not, for the most part, Satanists. Pre-Anton Lavey (a rather pretentious revision of his real name, Howard Levey), Satanism in the medieval European sense was a revision or opposite specifically or western Christianity. Most paganism, past or present, has no connection to Christianity, good or bad, whatsoever. Lavey's Satanism does NOT rely on a reworking of either Christian ritual or the Christian mythos.

Naturally, I've also read nearly everything ever written by Ayn Rand.

While I don't expect Ryan to be conversant with the finer points of either Lavey OR Rand, as he seems to be more of a poseur than any kind of genuine intellectual figure, either philosophical or mathematical, the dominant themes of both Rand and Lavey of selfishness as an expression of individualism, the opposition to altruism as the antithesis of selfishness, the emphasis on materialism are all consistent with both authors.

Lavey might actually be more positive towards the equality of women, and less of a misogynist than Ryan and the Rand-loving right.

So when I post the following, it is with a certain wry appreciation of how superbly accurate in detail, beyond the simple quotations shown, it really is. This was NOT taken out of context, it is not the gross distortion that someone unfamiliar with either Rand or Lavey might take it to be; it is a fair representation of Ryan, Rand AND Lavey.


  1. I wonder if Fat white man has gotten around to reading Ayn Rand yet, and if so, which title he selected to read.

    Hope he's doing ok; I don't read everything here, so I may have missed something, but I haven't seen any comments from him recently. If you're reading - hi FWM! I hope you have something to contribute from recently reading Ayn Rand.

  2. Dearest DG said: "Naturally, I've also read nearly everything ever written by Ayn Rand."

    And you have copied her writing style. Using 3,000 words to say what could be said in three simple sentences.

    your bestest friend
    orlon sellers

    1. Only simple minded people thinnk like you do Orlon.

      I'm guessing you haven't read Rand. You lack the intellect to wade through her, or the concentration.

    2. My dearest DG said: "I'm guessing you haven't read Rand. You lack the intellect to wade through her, or the concentration.

      Oh, I've read Rand until I was bored out of my mind. That took about 3 pages.
      To quote Twain, "Once you put it down, you simply can't pick it up.”

      Definitely, I understand your kinship toward Rand, you are very similar in that you are both full of yourselves.

      your bestest friend
      orlin sellers

    3. I recently tried rereading Atlas. I got about 150 pages in and said fuck it.

    4. Mikeb, I look forward to seeing Dog Gone call you deficient in intellect. Of course, she's lazy about these discussions. Whenever anyone challenges her nonsense, she disappears.

  3. Dog Gone, you've read nearly all of Rand's writing? You truly are stubborn. I found myself unwilling to spend thousands of pages with her obnoxious characters. Besides, her ideas are better expressed elsewhere.

    You appear to be trying to shock us by connecting Ryan to Lavey, but that only works with fundamentalist Christians. I doubt that they're reading your blog, anyway.

  4. They aren't all long Greg; some like Anthem are relatively short - 100 or so pages.

    Her ideas are terrible no matter how or whom expresses them.

    Ryan and Lavey have terrible ideas, terrible values, a complete lack of ethics and morals, and it should concern far more people than just fundies.

    But then I doubt you understand Rand's ideas, or are sufficiently well-read in either philosophy or religion to be familiar with Lavey, much less to correctly identify yourself who epresses those ideas.

    Share with us, do, who you have read that rehashes Rand's ideas better, and why they have merit - if you can.

    You have again reveale your ignorance. What a shame the students in Arkansas are being taught by someone who themselves is still desperately in need of an education.

    1. You criticize me for my supposed lack of education, but look at the grammar and spelling that you use to do it. Look up the correct use of "whom," for example.

      I find it odd that you're here defending the depth of Rand. Her belief in selfishness is an extension of the right of each person to make choices, and it has some merit, but I find her reductionist philosophy to be too extreme. She neglects the value that we gain from living in a society. Much of her thought is derived from Aristotle and the existentialists, with her own vision of what each of those meant, but I find those sources to be better.

      I have read Anthem and The Romantic Manifesto as well. I gave Atlas Shrugged a chance, but as a friend of mine says, I don't have to drink a whole bottle of whiskey to know it's bad. The latter is what I was referring to in my comment about thousands of pages.

      As for LaVey, I am familiar with his ideas. The Temple of Set is more interesting. LaVey has always struck me as having more style than substance.

      But Dog Gone, why do you persist in this notion that I know nothing about anything? Just because I don't feel the need to blither at length about irrelevant topics doesn't mean that I'm not informed on those topics. I just don't find Rand or LaVey worthy of a lot of my time.

    2. While we're on the subject of pagans, here's one point that is relevant to a previous discussion. The word, paganus, is Latin for country dweller--in other words, redneck. It took on its current best-known meaning, non-Christian, in the period when Christianity became the official religion of the Roman Empire. Christianity had taken root first in the cities, but spread out to the countryside at a slower rate.

      Thus, I'm a pagan in two senses (or a heathen, which means the same thing): I am from the country, but I'm also someone who respects the ancient gods of Greece and of the Norse peoples.

  5. Btw Campy, you might be surprised how many fundies read my blog; I've been getting a lot of traffic from outraged fundie White Supremacists lately.

    Enough that blog traffic has been roughly doubling every other quarter. I believe Laci was copie on some of the silly religious lectures I've received by email. It was great fun to direct them to more authorative sources than they had previously accessed in the course of correcting them on religious texts.

    1. You could send them to me as well, since I'm well-versed in fundamentalist religion, having been raised in such a demonination and read myself out of it--both in religious and scientific texts. It may surprise you to learn that part of my graduate school work was on the Bible as literature.

  6. Indivisualism? LOL nice meme try.