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Birth of a Randian; or, Matt Davis' Lighter Side of Exploitation

by: Eric B.

Wed Sep 26, 2012 at 17:28:58 PM EDT


What does Alfred Thayer Mahan, the Colonial exploitation of Africa, and Obamacare have to do with the Populist Party? I have no idea, and it doesn't appear that MLive's in-house sedetionist has a clear idea, either. That's okay for me, because at least I didn't write a column tying them all together.

So when our oldest, a high school freshman, was assigned to write about the 1890s political environment, the American People's (a.k.a. "Populist") Party of the time, and its influence on modern America, I was intrigued, especially at the premise of the question: How did the party attempt to cure "social injustice"?

First, we had to have a discussion of the term "social injustice."

It was quickly apparent that the question was premised on the idea that society had somehow visited an inequity upon the poor, the down-trodden, the have-nots -- you name it. To this I pointed out to him that, yes, especially with respect to race, there indeed was de jure injustice. Jim Crow was alive and well at the time. (I resolved to save Plessy v Ferguson for another discussion; I am trying to disabuse him of his desire to become a lawyer.)

If I seem to remember my half-afternoon of law school, de jure injustice refers to an injustice of law, which means that in this case MLive's in-house sedetionist is pounding law here, rather than pounding fact, which is a step above pounding the table in making an argument. In other words, his teacher asked him to explore why people of the American Midwest, farmers most of them, felt that they were being cheated and sought to address it through political means (rather than staging a peasant's revolt); instead, what the teacher is going to get is a lecture on how since their grandchildren would one day have iPads, the ungrateful wretches ought to be happy that the rail barons didn't call out the Pinkerton's on them (except when they did). It's going to be a long, long year for that poor guy/gal, especially with this piece of illumination:

Inside the classroom, there should be nothing but an intense academic download, a competitive environment for grades and class rank, and lively -- positive -- interaction between students and their peers and teachers.

Anyone wondering why it was that Republicans objected to the law mandating that schools establish anti-bullying policies ... it runs counter to their ideas that schools ought to be learning environments based on cut-throat competition and where cooperation is only encouraged as a means by the individual to "get ahead." It's these people that required that we write laws requiring that if you pass by someone bleeding to death on the sidewalk that you at least call the authorities (at some point, he does allow that children should be taught compassion ... how this jibes with the idea of a cut throat academic competition explains much why their ideas all never seem to work).

He gets around to his point, which is that he has books in his house. This is why he's the thoughtful conservative. Also, Obamacare sucks. But, we've been down that road with him before. 

Eric B. :: Birth of a Randian; or, Matt Davis' Lighter Side of Exploitation
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Atlas Shrugged Part 2 - October 12th (0.00 / 0)
Since you brought up Ayn Rand - can I ask if we can demonstrate outside theaters showing this piece of drek with signs that remind the attendees that it is simply NOT POSSIBLE to be a Randie AND a Christian?  


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