Konst & Politik

Staffan Jacobson, författare & lundabo

Ayn Rand – nyliberalismens iskalla guru.

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Ayn Rand, ursprungligen Alisa Zinovjevna Rosenbaum, född 2 februari 1905 i Sankt Petersburg i Ryssland, död 6 mars 1982 i New York i New York, var en amerikansk kalkonfilosof och medioker sf-författare. Hon förknippas främst med sin egen kvasifilosofiska skola objektivismen som försvarar rationell egoism, individualism, kapitalism (laissez faire) och en ”objektiv” moral. Hon hade en egen sekt som styrdes med järnhand och där flera nyliberala personligheter (som Milton Friedman) ingick. Hennes hemsnickrade amatörfilosofi och beundran för starka individer ledde henne bl.a. till att försvara och romantisera seriemördaren William Hickman, som kidnappade en 12-årig flicka, tog emot lösensumman – och lämnade ut den döda kroppen till föräldrarna.

”Hickman proclaimed that ‘I am like the state—what is good for me is right,’ which Rand called ‘the best and strongest expression of a real man’s psychology I ever heard’.”

Om förakt för svaghet är ett av fascismens säkra kännetecken stämmer det också bra in på Ayn Rands ”filosofi”.

Filosofer av facket betraktar vanligen hennes hopkok ”objektivismen” som oseriöst. Altruism (medmänsklighet, oegennytta, osjälviskhet) var ett av Ayn Rands främsta hatobjekt: ”If any civilization is to survive, it is the morality of altruism that men have to reject”. Hon avskydde alla kollektiva sociala lösningar och avrådde andra att nyttja sådana, men när hon fick lungcancer p.g.a. mångårigt kedjerökande använde hon sig utan att blinka av sjukförsäkringssystemet för egen del. Hon led förmodligen av en allvarlig empatistörning, men var samtidigt karismatisk och verbal, vilket gjorde att hennes böcker spreds och lästes särskilt i amerikanska högerkretsar. Och av svenska centerpartisten Annie Lööf .

Wikipedias grundare Jimbo Wales är mycket påverkad av Rand, vilket i sin tur mer eller mindre påverkat hela Wikipediaprojektet. I Wikipedias artiklar om Rand hyllas hon vanligen förbehållslöst.

Ayn Rand var gift med Frank O’Connor. Under den ökända McCarthy-perioden vittnade Rand om påstådd kommunism i Hollywood. Denna häxjakt förstörde många människoliv och nämns idag med ånger och beklaganden. Rand utkom 1943 med boken Urkällan. Boken blev hårt kritiserad för sin ideologi och de första försäljningssiffrorna var låga. Boken följdes av Rands centrala verk Och världen skälvde (1957). Boken fick, liksom Urkällan hård och sarkastisk kritik ofta baserad på bokens extremt individualistiska ideologi.

Det kan också inom parantes nämnas att Scientologernas sektledare Ron Hubbard även han ursprungligen var en enklare pulp fiction och SF-författare.

 

Vidare läsning: Om Ayn Rand.

  • In Answer to Ayn Rand by Nathaniel Branden and Barbara Branden — Couple who were once two of  Rand’s closest associates give their side of the break between them and Rand. Written in response to the article ”To Whom It May Concern” in The Objectivist, in which Rand publically repudiated the Brandens.
  • Rand’s work: style and quality by Gary Merrill — Criticism of Rand’s writing style and lack of scholarship in Introduction to Objectivist Epistemology. Orginally a post to a discussion group, now preserved as a freestanding essay.
  • Rationalistic Solipsism: The Life and Thought of Ayn Rand by Ellen Myers — Myers recounts Rand’s life story as one of ”dogmatic rationalism,” which she should have ”exchanged for truth and freedom in Christ.” Written for the journal of the Creation Social Science and Humanities Society.
  • Estonian & Latvian Genocide by William Pierce — Pierce, a well-known anti-semite, begins by denouncing Rand as a ”Soviet Jewess,” and then segues into a discussion of supposed Jewish slaughters of gentiles during World War II.
  • Romancing the Stone-Cold Killer: Ayn Rand and William Hickman by Michael Prescott — Criticizes positive comments Rand made about Hickman, a kidnapper and murderer, in her personal journals when she was 23. Prescott say Rand’s comments ”make me question not only her judgment, but her sanity” and show that she was ”a psychological and moral mess.”
  • Was Ayn Rand evil? by Michael Prescott — Blog post that psychoanalyzes Rand as possibly being ”a narcissistic, manipulative sociopath.” In a subsequent post, Prescott backs away from his earlier comments, calling them ”unfair.”
  • Re-evaluating Ayn Rand by Grant Schuyler — Accuses Rand of ”rude and deeply inappropriate behaviour” in her handling of philosophical disputes, and warns that ”Her life shows the danger of becoming an isolated figure, especially one surrounded by a quasi-cult of insiders.”
  • Ayn Rand: An Unsympathetic Introduction by Timothy Wirkman Virkkala — Briefly reviews some of Rand’s published works, then critiques Rand herself, stating that ”even the most most extremely negative judgments against her character have some merit to them.”
  • The Narcissism, Scapegoating and Leftism of Ayn Rand by Bob Wallace — Essay by a religious libertarian describing Objectivism as ”a narcissistic, scapegoating, and leftist expression of Rand’s Narcissistic Personality Disorder.” Wallace compares Rand with Karl Marx, Adolf Hitler, the Marquis de Sade and Satan, and fingers her as the source of Satanism and suicides.
  • The Secret Teachings of Ayn Rand by Bob Wallace — This essay, similar to the previous one by Wallace, describes Rand as a ”scapegoater who believed in human sacrfice,” and says she ”obviously had something very wrong with her, which she was trying to fix through her writing.”
  • Ayn Rand: Sociopath (author anonymous) — MySpace page devoted to criticizing Rand for her ”mental illness.”

 Om William Hickmann:

  • Cantillon, Richard H. In Defense of the Fox: The Trial of William Edward Hickman. ISBN 978-0837567570.
  • Neibaur, James L. (2016). Butterfly in the Rain: The 1927 Abduction and Murder of Marion Parker. Rowman & Littlefield. ISBN 978-1442251199.
  • Newton, Michael (2000). Stolen Away. Pocket Books.
  • ”Mutilated And Lifeless Body Of Kidnapped Girl Returned To Father For $1500 Ransom”, The Havre Daily News-Promoter (Havre, Montana) December 18, 1927
  • ”Hickman Faces Trial Judge”, Davenport (Iowa) Democrat, January 25, 1928
  • ”Hickman is Guilty; To be Sentenced Early Saturday”, Zanesville (Ohio) Signal, February 10, 1928
  • ”Hickman Executed for Murder of Marion Parker”, The (Danville, Va.) Bee, October 19, 1928

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12 comments on “Ayn Rand – nyliberalismens iskalla guru.

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    4 september, 2016

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      8 september, 2016

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