Selfishness and Greed

Kyrel Zantonavitch's picture
Submitted by Kyrel Zantonavitch on Wed, 2017-08-16 04:31

"Greed, for lack of a better word, is good. Greed is right. Greed works. Greed clarifies, cuts through, and captures the essence of the evolutionary spirit. Greed, in all of its forms -- greed for life, for money, for love, knowledge -- has marked the upward surge of mankind. And the USA."
--Gordo Gekko, the movie 'Wall Street,' 1987

Everyone should be selfish always. Everyone should be greedy at all times. Everyone should selfishly pursue, and greedily lust after, their own greatness and happiness without limit.

Life is all about personal achievement and individual accomplishment. Life is all about pleasure and enjoyment. To be morally and spiritually good and great, one must selfishly and greedily focus on these personal standards and goals, with passion and ferocity, at all costs.

Being massively selfish and greedy is the key to prosperity and joy for both the Holy Individual and his derivative society. Anyone who cares about human pleasure and the good life for all –- for a world where every Individual and all of mankind magnificently thrives -– must emphatically promote the ethical guides and ideals of selfishness and greed. Nothing in the entire virtuous world yields more eudemonia for humanity than these two natural, healthy, rational, wise North Stars.

Such is human nature, both personal and social. Such is the normal, natural, legitimate, proper, logical, scientifc, healthy, beautiful way human beings truly are and invariably should act.

It's when human beings pretend to be unselfish and sacrificing to others -– or worse, actually are so -– that all the problems begin in personal well-being and social harmony. The Individual and society quickly disintegrate, mutually destroy, and miserably perish.

The fact is each lone Sacred Self knows himself, and his needs and wants, the best by far. No idealized philosopher-king or ultra-engenious-and-saintly dictator or theoretical supercomputer can ever remotely compare in the Individual's knowledge of himself. And each single Sacred Self is motivated to satisfy his needs and wants the best by far. No paternalistic guidance or outside cajoling can even remotely compare in this motivation. And each separate Sacred Self has the most ability to achieve his wants and needs the best by far. No outside entity of whatever skill and power can remotely compare to this all-important talent.

For a man to serve or self-sacrifice for his brothers, while they serve or self-sacrifice for him, is absurd. This isn't his job. This isn't any of his business. This isn't why he was put here on this earth. This "brother's keeper" monstrosity violates human nature and the nature of all of living existence. Invariably, in this ludicrous trade and strategum, both sides lose badly.

For a person to repudiate and immolate himself for the benefit of "god" -– which gives every evidence of not existing -– is bizarre and crazy. Even if god does exist there's no indication whatsoever that he or it wants your servitude or will experience any type of value or pleasure in "receiving" it. If anything god wants you to fully exploit and enjoy the one and only brief life and supreme treasure he seems to have given you.

For a person to repudiate and immolate himself for the benefit of the amorphous, indifferent, destructive "collective" -– which has no independent or real values, goals, and existence -– is bizarre and truly crazy. However common for today and the past 2600 years, this grotesquely serpentine, torturous, ineffecient, and hilariously incompetent way to achieve human needs, wants, pleasures, and happiness is so irrational and foolish as to be effectively insane.

To the extent the wretched, contemptible, ugly, moral belief and ideal of unselfishness and sacrifice is actually practiced, the invariable result of altruistic servitude to "god", or the Other, or the Group, is total devastation and universal agony.

Life is sacred. Life is special and unique. And so is every human Individual inside it. The precious, priceless, sacrosanct, and untouchable Individual should be cherished and worshipped at all times and at all costs by society and the entire, elaborate, social structure. Everything whatsoever should be oriented toward Him.

Practically everybody has hopes and dreams. Practically everybody has profound values, high standards, and noble ideals. It's the sacred and absolute duty of each Individual to chase and realize them with as much selfishness and greed as humanly possible. Thus anyone and everyone who genuinely cares about the greatness and happiness of the Holy Individual, and the success of his subsequent society, needs to dedicate himself overwhelmingly and utterly to the noble and heroic moral ideal of 100% selfishness and 100% greed.


Kyrel Zantonavitch's picture

Lindsay -- Thanks for the analysis. Your feedback is helpful to my thinking and strategizing on this! Smiling

I also think your term sacrifism is a good one.

Nevertheless, I currently differ in my approach to this issue. In philosophy and culture, I think language is half the battle. I think AR did a good job in capturing the term "selfishness" and turning it to her advantage. My belief is it's best to continue that strategy -- and extend it to "greed". Nowadays this formerly superpowerful term of damnation and evil, "selfishness", is much less overwhelming than in Rand's day. The concept is in equal retreat. I have confidence these two currently-mankind-destroying terms can be fully turned around and fixed over time. Thus the present day right-wing conservative belief in self-sacrifice to god, and the present day left-wing progressive belief in self-sacrifice to the collective, will lose eventually. I think a ferocious, full-frontal attack is the best strategy.


Lindsay Perigo's picture

To me it reinforced the need for us to acknowledge that we've lost the words "altruism" and "selfishness" to everyday use, and need to find alternatives. Someone unfamiliar with Objectivism would read your article and conclude you were a psychopath/sociopath. In everyday use, universally, "altruism" means benevolence and "selfishness" means being a jerk. We'll never get those words back. I've already suggested "sacrifism" as a replacement for "altruism," but have yet to think of a good replacement for "selfishness." I was thinking "selffulness" for a while.

I also think we need to contemplate the awfulness of Generation Airhead, swimming in Narcissism, and the enormity of persuading the reachable that fry-quacking group-nonthink moronnials are not embodiments of rational selfishness but the complete lack of it. There's no self there! Youngsters like our Bruno here are miraculous exceptions.


Kyrel Zantonavitch's picture

I'm disappointed no-one has commented -- yea or nay -- on my provocative and controversial essay above. Sad

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