Atlas Shrugged: The Mocking

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Compare and Contrast.

Let's compare and contrast Megan's attitude towards the poor and the rich. That's always fun.

The Poor:
On the other hand, expanding jobless claims to 52 weeks seems like a no brainer--not because it's awesome stimulus, but because it would be nice if people who can't find jobs in a severe economic contraction don't have to take up a second career as bank robbers.


The Rich:
Bankers are not criminals. As a class, they are exactly as self-interested, self-destructive, and short-sighted as other classes of people that liberals want less highly regulated, such as unions and community organizers. I don't view the purpose of regulation as punishment, or protection against a malevolent class. I view it as an attempt to make our institutions more effectively channel self-interest into collectively welfare-enhancing activity. Thus you can see why I might be somewhat uncomfortable with those who seem to view the crisis as an exciting opportunity to put those uppity bankers back in their place.


Megan assumes bankers are honest and poor people are dishonest. This fits in nicely with her theory that only rich people can be moral, because people are only moral if it benefits them. That may be Megan's belief, but it's not everyone else's.

It's so tiresome to have to constantly fight against immoral, shallow people. Why don't they just stick to little jobs that don't harm anyone, instead of trying to swim with sharks?

A person with such poor ethics and judgement should not be advising others about money.

6 comments:

clever pseudonym said...

Life in MeganLand:

People who screw others over for money so they can be rich: moral, good, virtuous iPhone users who should not be subjected to the indignities of credit checks. C averages in English/Anthropology/Psychology majors at designer Ivy League schools make us better than brain surgeons that matriculated from OK State U. Anything outside of our personal experience is irrelevant.

People routinely screwed over, exploited, and deliberately kept under a thumb to keep said moral betters rich: fat, stupid, incapable of making proper decisions about their lives. The best of them rise to lowly state colleges. Frequently brown, always having the nerve to not be born to wealthy parents and advantage like us. We've never met or mingled with any of these people, but nonetheless feel qualified to write about them with authority.

Entrance fees are low, as long as we're allowed an "associated" job title.

Susan of Texas said...

And we tell the lesser people that liberals look down on them because they are not coastal elites, like us.

merlallen said...

Can we put her in jail for stupidity?

Susan of Texas said...

She is far more useful as an example of how some people rationalize their lack of empathy. Since she is educated and has a wide audience she's especially dangerous.

I hope McArdle's sucess continues for a very long time. It's fairly easy to see the motivation behind her reasonable-sounding words; many others are harder to understand.

Susan of Texas said...

Some day I will remember to edit--.

Julia Grey said...

Bankers are not criminals. As a class, they are exactly as self-interested, self-destructive, and short-sighted as other classes of people that liberals want less highly regulated, such as unions and community organizers.

Clue the first: unions and community organizations are not likely to be in a position to initiate global financial meltdown. Listen carefully, Megan darling: the larger the potential harm inherent in people's activities, the wiser it is to keep an eye on them. Given that they are, as you say, "just as self-interested, self-destructive, and short-sighted as other classes of people," their activities are far more dangerous than those of "self-interested, self-destructive and short sighted" shop stewards.

I don't view the purpose of regulation as punishment

Except insofar as punishment of current perpetrators can act as a deterrent to similar perpetrations in the future. You love deterrence theory, don't you, dear?

or protection against a malevolent class.

Clue the second: we prefer to think of it as protection against a malevolent class STRUCTURE.

I view it as an attempt to make our institutions more effectively channel self-interest into collectively welfare-enhancing activity.

Blind squirrel, nut, etc. Not that she notices what she hath wrought.

Thus you can see why I might be somewhat uncomfortable with those who seem to view the crisis as an exciting opportunity to put those uppity bankers back in their place.

Just as I am somewhat uncomfortable with those who assume that the ONLY reason we want to see responsible regulation of the banking industry is because we're mindless, vengeful assholes.

She doesn't even stay on track with her own argument. How does our selfish, short-sighted self-centered self-interest (that's all that matters to us, remember) benefit from regulations whose sole (supposed) purpose is to "punish" people we're jealous or resentful of?

Smacking them around Just Because I Hate and Fear Them will enhance my personal well-being exactly how?

But wait. Megan seems to get some kind of virulent satisfaction out of smacking the hoi polloi around. So in seeing us as merely indulging in punitive tantrums maybe she's just projecting again.