Monday, October 13, 2008
“If you need further proof of Zen look at the world TODAY. We are living through the ultimate Zen moment: ideological forces unleashed over past hundred years are coming to their final, epochal battle. And we get to be part of it!” (Marx-Lenin-Gramsci-Alinsy-Ayers-“Cloward-Piven”-ACORN-Obama.)
— Chris Nicholson, Thanksgiving 2008
That last line, (Marx-Lenin-Gramsci-Alinsy-Ayers-“Cloward-Piven”-ACORN-Obama.), really got me to thinking.
“Who is John Galt?”
I cannot help but see everything that has been happening since the start of the US primary election campaign through a lens supported by a shiny blue-green handle of polished Reardon Metal. I just can’t.
Monday, October 13, 2008
“Health care is a right.”, “Wall Street greed”. “Fairness” in taxation. “Progressive”. Hideous cronyism. Food rations. Government-forced actions for the good of “the poor”. Unabashed collectivism run rampant. Conniving, preening newspapermen, sure of—and exploiting—their power. Fuel shortages. People freezing in the cold. All that’s missing is “Brother can you spare a dime?”. Of course, that’d have to be up-priced to $4.50. starbucks is a right just as surely as healthcare is a right,
“Who is John Galt?” John Galt is the walking, talking end result of a man who lives his life in a fashion consistent with a philosophy* based on the concept of human rights, Then, against all odds, he causes the world’s economies to stop via removing the “intellectual capital” necessary to stop the cascading failures rippling through the infrastructure of the economy in order to save himself (and thereby, as luck would have it, others) from the horrors of life in an advancing collectivist dystopia.
*This philosophy, known as “Objectivism” was created on a base of, primarily (imho), of Aristotle, logic, by Ayn Rand, and was most unequivocally laid out in John Galt’s speech in Atlas Shrugged, my favourite book of all I’ve read. It has been deduced from first principles from the sole idea that what makes “man” (ie: humankind) unique is our ability to reason. Oh, and upon the basic premise that a person is dropped into this existence by no choice of his/her own, into a situation not of his (or her) choosing. Everything else, from property rights to how humans band together to form civilizations, the roles of government in those civilizations,to freedom of speech and the right to bear arms, flows from these two underlying pillars. Much more about Ayn Rand, here.
“Who is John Galt?” is also the question that characters throughout the novel have adopted as a common refrain in response to news of the latest failure in the system, or as answer to the “who is responsible for the failure of x” question. “Who is responsible for the mess at Fanny Mae and Freddie Mac?” ”Who is John Galt?” It is an early literary instance of the “meme warfare”. (I think it’s unintentional, but there it is.) In Atlas Shrugged, the expression’s origin is a mystery that is explained as the story unfolds, because NOBODY KNOWS WHO HE IS, he’s a cypher and is a metaphor for what is causing the world to stop. Ironically, it turn’s out that he is in fact a person who is in fact stopping the world’s engine. But I digress.
“Where is John Galt?”
John Galt is a metaphor. He is the ideal of the human superman. He is the personification of reason (that which separates us from the other animals), rigourously applied. He acts, rationally—with all that THAT implies—in his own self interest. John Galt is political man acting on his own behalf to make is way to the best of his ability who asks only for an equal playing field.
Thus, he’s a part of everyone, to lesser or greater degree. John Galt’s clarity of thought and expression is needed in this period. The historical allusions are patent: he explains (over the nation-wide radio network (that he “hijacks” to get the message out) how evil collectivism is and how the “virtue” of altruism is actually the most antihumanitarian idea ever proposed. (Of course, it’s fiction, so Miss Rand can have her hero “name names”). I think the question should be rephrased, for today, to be “Where is John Galt?”
If John Galt’s inside everyone, where is he? The signs are slowly starting to come to fore: the crowds at McCain events are demanding answers and demanding that the message get out. They’re demanding answers because their own personal John Galts are demanding answers, and answers that are consistent with their values; the media-arm of the Obama campaign, having long since cast their objectivity aside, are pulling out all stops to beat the John Galts into submission by repeating the big lies, but John Galt, the personification of reason’s application, is not buying it. Our John Galts are screaming for the truth, aching from the cognitive dissonance when our reality and our common sense rub, chaffingly, against the constructed reality being foisted upon us by the forces that seek to undo us. McCain seeks to speak to our Galts, as they slowly awaken from their inter-election hibernation.
And then, out of the west, blows a breath of fresh air in the form of the plain-spoken Sarah Palin. Values-based without question. The Alaskan unafraid to deconstruct, faux-grecian column by faux-grecian column, the media-constructed facade of the opposition’s reality. In an Objectivist sense, Palin is beyond the pale as Objectivism is atheistic to its core. That said, Palin helps awaken our John Galt because she appeals to core values, (admittedly not Objectivist, but close enough) that are shared or, sadly, vaguely-remembered: the greatness of “Man”, the primacy of reason and the necessity of character, the joy of being alive.
All of which leads me to my point. When I amend my own line to include the adversary, thus “Marx-Lenin-Gramsci-Alinsy-Ayers-“Cloward-Piven”-ACORN-Obama vs Aristotle-Smith-Locke-Jefferson-Madison-Rand-Reagan-McCain”, and focus on the end of each line we see that Obama is the perfect end of that particular line while McCain is not John Galt, and John Galt is the perfect end of the line.
In this epochal battle, though, we have to ask have McCain/Palin aroused and spurred to action John Galt?
Here’s the strategy I believe he’s following in face of the hostile media. (Lifted from my earlierpost). By “grassroots” and “electorate” I’m referring to our John Galts.
Strategy: Mobilize the grass roots. Via a timed release during CSW* of precision-guided memes into the popular culture using advanced semiotic techniques and by asserting control of the news cycle, that is by manipulating the manipulating deadwoods—which, happily, demonstrates a uniquely linear modality of thought—the campaign’s messages can be brought to the electorate in the age of YouTube in snippets, where there they’re amalgamated on-line by allied cyberforces and promoted by allied media.
Allow the electorates’ flames of natural curiosity to be stoked by promoting the available alternate information sources and judiciously add fuel to keep the fire burning.
I firmly believe that McCain has come to some similar assessment of the theatre of engagement and consequences of failure. If he has come to a similar strategy conclusion then it comes down to us (well, by “us” I mean Americans, one of whom I sadly am not). Are we John Galt enough to finish the battle? Because he currently is executing a strategy that will force the answers that will be Obama’s undoing and in the process exposing the rampant collaboration of the deadwoods. Our personal John Galt will surely act to save himself and Atlas will shrug. If Ayn Rand believed in heaven, it would be nice to think of her looking down, saying, “don’t you say I didn’t warn you!”