Thursday, December 17, 2009

What would Ayn Rand Say?

We don't need the government to protect the environment?

[Playboy 23] My position is fully consistent. [Obj 977] In the Middle Ages, man's life expectancy was 30 years. If it were true that industry is destructive to human life, one would find life expectancy declining in the more advanced countries. But it has been rising steadily. Anyone over 30 years of age today, give a silent "Thank you" to the nearest, sootiest smokestacks you can find.

What about the other species?

[Obj 966] Contrary to the ecologists, nature does not stand still and does not maintain the kind of "equilibrium" that guarantees the survival of any particular species - least of all her greatest and most fragile product, man. [Cult Update 12] Man cannot survive in the state of nature ecologists envision. Man has to discover and produce everything he needs, which means that he has to alter his background. Man has to manufacture things. The lowest tribe cannot survive without that alleged source of pollution: fire. It is not merely symbolic that fire was the property of the gods which Prometheus brought to man.

Don't you enjoy the world's biological diversity? Doesn't the natural world fill you with wonder?

[Donahue #2 26:18] No. You know when I'm filled with wonder? When I look up at skyscrapers, at the manmade, at what men were able to achieve on their own, without the help of faith or any sort of mysticism.

But you do acknowledge that pollution can cause problems for people?

[Obj 789] Pollution is primarily a scientific, not a political problem. In regard to the political problem: if a man creates a physical danger or harm to others which extends beyond the line of his own property, the law can hold him responsible. If the condition is collective, such as in an overcrowded city, appropriate and objective laws can be defined, protecting the rights of all involved - as in the case of oil rights, air-space rights, etc.

How about laws based on "True Cost," like pollution-credit systems, which incent industry to compete on finding environmental solutions?

[Obj 790] Such laws must not be aimed at a single scapegoat, i.e. the industrialists. [Obj 981] Industry is not the only culprit. The handling of sewage and garbage disposal problems, so frequently denounced, has been the province of local governments. [ARL 21] Americans will enthusiastically clean their streets, their rivers, their backyards, but when it comes to giving up progress, technology, the automobile, and their standard of living, Americans will prove that the man-haters "ain't seen nothing yet."

You must despise alternative transportation protests like London's annual "Reclaim the Streets" action or the "Critical Mass" bicycle demonstrations.

[Obj News v4 56] It can be rationally proved that the airplane is objectively of immeasurably greater value to man, to man at his best, than the bicycle. But if a given man's transportation needs do not extend beyond the range of a bicycle, [there is no] reason why the rest of mankind should be held down.

So, mass transit and roads themselves should all be private. No more departments of transportation or motor vehicles.

[Column 24] The only way a government can be of service to national prosperity is by keeping its hands off. [Margin 143] By their very natures, bureaucrats are neither intelligent nor competent, but parasites. The competent do not go in for government service.

And of course, any government power opens the door to corruption.

[Obj News v1 40] Cases of actual corruption are not a major motivating factor in today's situation. The motive power is the manipulations of little lawyers and public relations men pulling strings. These lobbyists are profiteers on America's self-immolation.
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