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The Greatest Lie - Altruism?

DetectableNinja
Posts: 6,043
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11/18/2011 7:28:26 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
"What is the greatest lie every created? What is the most vicious obscenity ever perpetrated on mankind? Slavery? The Holocaust? Dictatorship? No. It's the tool with which all that wickedness is built: altruism. Whenever anyone wants others to do their work, they call upon their altruism. Never mind your own needs, they say, think of the needs of... of whoever. The state. The poor. Of the army, of the king, of God! The list goes on and on. How many catastrophes were launched with the words "think of yourself"? It's the "king and country" crowd who light the torch of destruction. It is this great inversion, this ancient lie, which has chained humanity to an endless cycle of guilt and failure. My journey to Rapture was my second exodus. In 1919, I fled a country that had traded in despotism for insanity. The Marxist revolution simply traded one lie for another. Instead of one man, the Tsar, owning the work of all the people, all the people owned the work of all of the people. So, I came to America: where a man could own his own work, where a man could benefit from the brilliance of his own mind, the strength of his own muscles, the might of his own will. I had thought I had left the parasites of Moscow behind me. I had thought I had left the Marxist altruists to their collective farms and their five-year plans. But as the German fools threw themselves on Hitler's sword "for the good of the Reich", the Americans drank deeper and deeper of the Bolshevik poison, spoon-fed to them by Roosevelt and his New Dealists. And so, I asked myself: in what country was there a place for men like me - men who refused to say "yes" to the parasites and the doubters, men who believed that work was sacred and property rights inviolate. And then one day, the happy answer came to me, my friends: there was no country for people like me! And that was the moment I decided... to build one. " - Andrew Ryan, BIOSHOCK

What do you think about that little speech? Agree? Disagree? Why?
Think'st thou heaven is such a glorious thing?
I tell thee, 'tis not half so fair as thou
Or any man that breathes on earth.

- Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus
Yarely
Posts: 329
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11/18/2011 7:31:50 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 11/18/2011 7:28:26 PM, DetectableNinja wrote:
"What is the greatest lie every created? What is the most vicious obscenity ever perpetrated on mankind? Slavery? The Holocaust? Dictatorship? No. It's the tool with which all that wickedness is built: altruism. Whenever anyone wants others to do their work, they call upon their altruism. Never mind your own needs, they say, think of the needs of... of whoever. The state. The poor. Of the army, of the king, of God! The list goes on and on. How many catastrophes were launched with the words "think of yourself"? It's the "king and country" crowd who light the torch of destruction. It is this great inversion, this ancient lie, which has chained humanity to an endless cycle of guilt and failure. My journey to Rapture was my second exodus. In 1919, I fled a country that had traded in despotism for insanity. The Marxist revolution simply traded one lie for another. Instead of one man, the Tsar, owning the work of all the people, all the people owned the work of all of the people. So, I came to America: where a man could own his own work, where a man could benefit from the brilliance of his own mind, the strength of his own muscles, the might of his own will. I had thought I had left the parasites of Moscow behind me. I had thought I had left the Marxist altruists to their collective farms and their five-year plans. But as the German fools threw themselves on Hitler's sword "for the good of the Reich", the Americans drank deeper and deeper of the Bolshevik poison, spoon-fed to them by Roosevelt and his New Dealists. And so, I asked myself: in what country was there a place for men like me - men who refused to say "yes" to the parasites and the doubters, men who believed that work was sacred and property rights inviolate. And then one day, the happy answer came to me, my friends: there was no country for people like me! And that was the moment I decided... to build one. " - Andrew Ryan, BIOSHOCK

What do you think about that little speech? Agree? Disagree? Why?

Yep. It's all in the power of manipulation
"Anarchism stands for the liberation of the human mind from the dominion of religion and liberation of the human body from the coercion of property; liberation from the shackles and restraint of government. It stands for a social order based on the free grouping of individuals""
-Emma Goldman
000ike
Posts: 11,196
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11/18/2011 7:48:44 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
I think the orator misused, raped, and utterly abused the word "altruism," contorting its meaning to give his histrionic speech some kind of dramatic impact. He goes on a little side rant about "where a man could own his work, where a man could benefit from the brilliance of his own mind," but ignores the fact that we know nothing as individuals, and for the grand majority of the world, it is the work of others and the work of societies past and present from which we derive our knowledge.

Thats no speech. Its a rant.
"A stupid despot may constrain his slaves with iron chains; but a true politician binds them even more strongly with the chain of their own ideas" - Michel Foucault
DetectableNinja
Posts: 6,043
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11/18/2011 7:52:10 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 11/18/2011 7:48:44 PM, 000ike wrote:
I think the orator misused, raped, and utterly abused the word "altruism," contorting its meaning to give his histrionic speech some kind of dramatic impact. He goes on a little side rant about "where a man could own his work, where a man could benefit from the brilliance of his own mind," but ignores the fact that we know nothing as individuals, and for the grand majority of the world, it is the work of others and the work of societies past and present from which we derive our knowledge.

Thats no speech. Its a rant.

Well--it IS a character from a video game. However, that video game is probably one of the most philosophically minded games I've played. Andrew Ryan's role is that of the man who has created an underwater city, and is totally consumed by his own idealogue. The whole point is that these are rants. However, I do feel that his character is one of the most fascinating I've encountered in fiction, and his audio-tapes raise good discussion topics.
Think'st thou heaven is such a glorious thing?
I tell thee, 'tis not half so fair as thou
Or any man that breathes on earth.

- Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus
Wnope
Posts: 6,924
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11/18/2011 7:54:36 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 11/18/2011 7:52:10 PM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 11/18/2011 7:48:44 PM, 000ike wrote:
I think the orator misused, raped, and utterly abused the word "altruism," contorting its meaning to give his histrionic speech some kind of dramatic impact. He goes on a little side rant about "where a man could own his work, where a man could benefit from the brilliance of his own mind," but ignores the fact that we know nothing as individuals, and for the grand majority of the world, it is the work of others and the work of societies past and present from which we derive our knowledge.

Thats no speech. Its a rant.

Well--it IS a character from a video game.

And that's what you get for posting video game dialogue as a thread starter.
DetectableNinja
Posts: 6,043
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11/18/2011 7:57:20 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 11/18/2011 7:54:36 PM, Wnope wrote:
At 11/18/2011 7:52:10 PM, DetectableNinja wrote:
At 11/18/2011 7:48:44 PM, 000ike wrote:
I think the orator misused, raped, and utterly abused the word "altruism," contorting its meaning to give his histrionic speech some kind of dramatic impact. He goes on a little side rant about "where a man could own his work, where a man could benefit from the brilliance of his own mind," but ignores the fact that we know nothing as individuals, and for the grand majority of the world, it is the work of others and the work of societies past and present from which we derive our knowledge.

Thats no speech. Its a rant.

Well--it IS a character from a video game.

And that's what you get for posting video game dialogue as a thread starter.

Is that a problem? I don't want to go on a rant, because I'm not sure what you were implying: however, I will direct you to the post above. I posted that speech because I thought it raised a good topic for discussion--the idea of altruism and how it affects society.

The source material is irrelevant. Even if it was the scrawlings of a dime-store hooker on a bar napkin, but it raised an interesting idea, I'd have posted it.
Think'st thou heaven is such a glorious thing?
I tell thee, 'tis not half so fair as thou
Or any man that breathes on earth.

- Christopher Marlowe, Doctor Faustus
darkkermit
Posts: 11,204
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11/19/2011 10:11:31 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
Absolutely. Here's a great theory based on it:

http://theroadtopeace.blogspot.com...

Although it's just a blog, the author uses a lot of peer study reviews to back up his claims and the flow is quite logical. It's a long read, but very interesting and worthy of ones time.

It gives a good analysis of the theory of altruism. It makes the case for why altruism exists and that wars are created due to sexual selectivity and altruism.
Open borders debate:
http://www.debate.org...
darkkermit
Posts: 11,204
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11/19/2011 10:14:27 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
Basic summary:

"War is inseparable from, and impossible without, altruism. Group commitment combined with bias oriented in-group/out-group differentiation, and a psychological defense mechanism capable of convincing even the worst of us that we are basically good, allows us to employ altruistic impulses for war. Humans universally commit to, and identify with, groups which differentiate themselves culturally and psychologically. In-group/out-group differentiations that view the out-group as not having inherently different behavior or desire attributes allow in-group commitment to out-group inclusive higher level groups; for example, humanity. Differentiations that ascribe inherent positive attributes to in-group and, oppositionally, inherent negative attributes to out-group, begin the psychological justification process for racism, aggressive war, and genocide. Commitment connects individual self-image to the group. We are good, therefore our group is good. Conformity and commitment are strengthened by perceived threat, which causes differentiation to become oppositional. We altruistically kill and die."
Open borders debate:
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PARADIGM_L0ST
Posts: 6,958
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11/19/2011 11:56:14 AM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 11/18/2011 7:48:44 PM, 000ike wrote:
I think the orator misused, raped, and utterly abused the word "altruism," contorting its meaning to give his histrionic speech some kind of dramatic impact.:

Fully agree. Ridiculous hyperoble and the OP is simply manipulating the meaning of what altruism is and is essentially ascribing it to all acts of selfishness. It's all semantics. While it's true that some people commit altruistic acts for selfish means, not all do, and even if they did, people still benefit from it.

If you save someone's life through CPR just to get praise for it, it doesn't undermine the fact that the person is still alive because of their actions doesn't change. The selfish motive doesn't undermine the fact that guy is alive... the motive is irrelevant to the beneficiary.

Stupid article, stupid premise... that's my take on it.
"Have you ever considered suicide? If not, please do." -- Mouthwash (to Inferno)
Stephen_Hawkins
Posts: 5,316
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11/19/2011 4:04:25 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
The thing is, altruism is raped and abused as a guise for promoting self-interest.
Give a man a fish, he'll eat for a day. Teach him how to be Gay, he'll positively influence the GDP.

Social Contract Theory debate: http://www.debate.org...
bluesteel
Posts: 12,301
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11/19/2011 8:56:05 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
It sounds like the philosophy of Nietzsche: that the weak try to impose their morality on us so we can't crush them.
You can't reason someone out of a position they didn't reason themselves into - Jonathan Swift (paraphrase)
CosmicAlfonzo
Posts: 5,955
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11/19/2011 9:19:46 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
True altruism is when someone gives to someone they never expect to meet again, and don't expect any kind of return from.

I do believe that altruism exists, it is truly out there.. However, when an act of "altruism" leads to bragging, or when "altruism" is used as a means to effect policy or influence other individuals, I have a lot harder of a time believing in the honest intent of those who speak of it.

Altruism exists, but honest altruism is private and done without expectation of reward.

Some might argue that if you get a warm feeling from helping others, this does not make an act altruistic, but I will disagree.
Official "High Priest of Secular Affairs and Transient Distributor of Sonic Apple Seeds relating to the Reptilian Division of Paperwork Immoliation" of The FREEDO Bureaucracy, a DDO branch of the Erisian Front, a subdivision of the Discordian Back, a Limb of the Illuminatian Cosmic Utensil Corp
Yarely
Posts: 329
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11/20/2011 2:13:29 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
This rant shouldn't be directed at the altruistic people, but at the manipulators. Manipulation should be the greatest lie. Manipulators are the ones who take the people's altruism to their advantage. The victims shouldn't be faulty. It should be the reverse.
"Anarchism stands for the liberation of the human mind from the dominion of religion and liberation of the human body from the coercion of property; liberation from the shackles and restraint of government. It stands for a social order based on the free grouping of individuals""
-Emma Goldman
Yarely
Posts: 329
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11/20/2011 2:44:18 PM
Posted: 5 years ago
At 11/20/2011 2:13:29 PM, Yarely wrote:
This rant shouldn't be directed at the altruistic people, but at the manipulators. Manipulation should be the greatest lie. Manipulators are the ones who take the people's altruism to their advantage. The victims shouldn't be faulty. It should be the reverse.

That didn't make much sense. Ignore what I just said. I mean there's a difference between altruism and manipulation. Manipulation is using altruism in a malicious way while true altruism is completely different
"Anarchism stands for the liberation of the human mind from the dominion of religion and liberation of the human body from the coercion of property; liberation from the shackles and restraint of government. It stands for a social order based on the free grouping of individuals""
-Emma Goldman
MarquisX
Posts: 925
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12/8/2011 1:21:06 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
Ninja you should read the book. It goes deeper into who Andrew Ryan is and his whole philosophy and also why it was flawed.
Sophisticated ignorance, write my curses in cursive
DaveElectric
Posts: 107
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12/12/2011 6:19:03 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
The only act that I'd consider altruistic is a soldier jumping onto a grenade for his buddies. Every other action is egoistic.
DaveElectric
Posts: 107
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12/12/2011 6:20:34 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
'I think the orator misused, raped, and utterly abused the word "altruism," contorting its meaning to give his histrionic speech some kind of dramatic impact. He goes on a little side rant about "where a man could own his work, where a man could benefit from the brilliance of his own mind," but ignores the fact that we know nothing as individuals, and for the grand majority of the world, it is the work of others and the work of societies past and present from which we derive our knowledge."

Because everyone's contribution to knowledge is equally valueable.
DaveElectric
Posts: 107
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12/12/2011 6:21:41 PM
Posted: 4 years ago
You do realize that Bioshock is supposed to be a propaganda attack against Objectivism or any strand of egoism for that matter.
belle
Posts: 4,113
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12/17/2011 10:38:10 AM
Posted: 4 years ago
i was hoping this thread was going to be about whether or not true "altruism" can exist, not a third rate retelling of objectivism >.>
evidently i only come to ddo to avoid doing homework...