Conventional wisdom says that a selfish man will be greedy. He will lie, cheat, and steal. The problem is that lying, cheating, and stealing do not work. These actions do not serve a man’s best interest. What does is studying hard in school, earning a degree, getting a good job, working hard, building a reputation for honesty and dependability, and being a good friend. If you are good to your friends, you will have and keep good friends. Conventional wisdom is wrong; conventional selfishness is irrational. One should be rationally selfish.
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The three variations of collectivism are socialism, fascism, and communism. They differ in detail, but not in kind.
The simplest way to understand the essence of collectivism is to look at a honey bee hive. The citizen in any pure form of collectivism (Marxist Utopia) is a worker bee and has no rights. He has only has a moral duty to work and sacrifice his life for his hive, for his collective, whether that group is his village, community, country, or race. The personal happiness of a citizen in a collective is irrelevant; his life is expendable. All that matters is that he contributes to the survival and to the “common good” of his hive. His individual life is relevant only to the extent of his sacrifice. His moral worth is judged by how much he sacrifices.
Collectivism works for honey bees, but it does not work for human beings. Humans possess a conceptual consciousness. They are self-aware and can think as rational beings. Humans are capable of living independent lives and of pursuing their individual happiness. They can do this only if they possess private property–which is the only means by which they can live independently. This is why private property is a fundamental right. Note that any redistribution of the wealth by the government is a violation of this right.
The United States was founded on individualism which is the political opposite of collectivism. For the first time in history it was recognized that the citizens of a nation were endowed with inalienable rights, among them being life, liberty, property, and the pursuit of happiness. The government was created to secure theses rights and derived it’s just powers from the consent of the governed. This implied that each individual citizen was sovereign, that his life belonged to him and was important, and that his moral purpose was to achieve his personal happiness on earth.
Collectivist governments rob Peter to pay Paul. The more they rob Peter, the faster they become poor. The Democrats in America (Leftists/Liberals/Progressives/Statists) are in an orgy to give to Paul (welfare recipients, illegal aliens, refugees, political friends and cronies). Note that self-described Democratic Socialist Bernie Sanders in the first Democrat Presidential Debate wants to give all kinds of “free stuff” to everyone. “Peter” will have to pay for all of that “free” stuff that he wants to give to Paul. As Margaret Thatcher said, “The problem with Socialism is that you eventually run out of other people’s money.”
A nation’s prosperity is proportional to its freedom. All dictatorships are poor. The richest countries are semi-free–there are no free countries in the world. Redistribution of wealth by the government is a violation of the property rights of the person who earned the money (Peter). If you take enough of Peter’s money and make it too difficult for him to earn the money he needs to pursue his happiness, he will quit working hard. You will have killed the goose that lays the golden eggs. This is the theme of Ayn Rand’s enduring best seller, Atlas Shrugged. When Peter decides that he no longer wants to work hard to support those who produce less than he does, or who produce nothing, he will simply loaf along like everyone else. Let someone else work hard! This is why dictatorships collapse into poverty, disorder, and violence. If you voted for Socialism, then welcome to your collectivist utopia. You deserve it!