There is some debate on the right about whether President Obama is a fundamentally well-intentioned incompetent or a more Machiavellian figure so power-hungry that he is willing to kneecap key sectors of the U.S. economy in order to advance his political agenda. My own view is that the distinguishing feature of Obama’s ideology is the utter inability of the president and his partisans to distinguish between the national interest and their own political interests. (That is one problem with electing a messiah rather than a chief administrator.) If you believe that your guy is a uniquely gifted, once-in-a-lifetime transformational figure with a mandate to save the country, and that he is opposed by uniquely wicked servants of Mammon and partisans of unreason, then it follows that your political interests are identical to the national interest, and consequently you have such grey eminences as Bill Clinton, who has managed to secure for himself a career as an elder statesman without ever having been a statesman, insisting that Republicans are “begging for America to fail” — because they oppose large parts of the president’s health-care program, which the president now opposes, too, having set aside measures that are too unworkable or punitive to act on until some more politically opportune time.
Market orders are complex and organic; political orders are relatively crude and artificial. Obamacare, to take the year’s most dramatic example, is an attempt to impose a simpleton order on a much more sophisticated order, like trying to make microchips with cookie cutters. Such attempts generally end badly, succeeding only in bringing chaos out of order. Friedrich Hayek described the process in The Road to Serfdom: The plan never pans out the way it was expected to, and the planners are obliged by political necessity to take ever more arbitrary and authoritarian steps in order to give the appearance of success to an enterprise that cannot in fact achieve its goals. Even in a democratic society — perhaps especially in such a society — the effects are corrosive, undermining the rule of law, liberal institutions, and the mutual trust that enables meaningful social cooperation. Therefore the question of incompetence vs. malice is not entirely a question of A or B.
Search this site
The Affectionate Display
“Greg Swann has insights into emotion on levels that really make you think. He can pluck that one annoying gray hair with pinpoint accuracy. He is a philosopher of sorts and he says and does what philosophers do. He shakes you to the bone, bumps your cup and lets you see what spills out. You see what you see and he sees what he sees. I’ll bet they are dramatically similar and extraordinarily different.” –Jeff Price
My favorite job title is Poet. Why? No license, no union, no credentialism. If you can learn, you will. If you can't, you won't waste my time. I grow regardless.
I’m not like you. That’s why you should listen to me. I’m in an empathy of opposites with everyone: All they see are reasons to complain, when all I want to do is dance. I know why we are the way we are and how we can learn to do better with each other – making everything better.
I am fomenting a philosophical revolution that will change everything for everyone in due course. How? By finally fully redeeming Western Civilization.
You’re going to help.
Save the world from home – in your spare time!
Disintermediate the ruling class: Read the free book that tells you how to do it.
Disintermediation means cutting out the middle-man, and, by teaching you a new way of thinking about human nature and about your own unique self, the free book Man Alive! puts you in charge of your own philosophical affairs.
The book's objectives are precise and concise: To take the claim of justice away from the state, the mantle of intellectual authority away from the academy and the experience of reverence away from the church. It puts all of those things back where they belong — in your mind. There is no middle-man on truth.
- For sane Muslims:
- For the other kind:
- For the rest of us:
Support ThriversEd on Patreon!
I speak your language
I am delighted to speak anywhere, anywhen, and I am interested in any opportunity you can come up with for me to evangelize egoism. I am rich in ideas that, so far, few of us seem to prize. If you value the idea of self-adoration in the way I do, let's talk about how we can increase our numbers.
More by Greg Swann
A 100% FREE collection of some of the best of the Ramblin’ Gamblin’ Willie stories. You will want to read all of my books, but here is a cost-free way to get started.
Buy my books at Amazon.com
My other writing isn't collected in one place, but here's a shopping list for finding the best of it:
- Greg Swann writes – fiction and early essays.
- PresenceOfMind.net – a weblog I maintained in the early years of the new millenium.
- BloodhoundBlog – a national real estate weblog I started and contribute to. Much of the content there will be real estate related, but everything I write is focused on the self, and this is best represented in the longer essays.
- SplendorQuest.com – a weblog devoted to celebrating the uniquely human life.
Email Greg SwannGSwann@PresenceOfMind.net
Fair warning: Your name and email address will be kept confidential, but unless you say otherwise, your text is blogfodder by default.
Self Adoration done socially
Thrive by Email
- Want to put the eclipse in the shade? Shine with your own light instead.
- The way to beat Ci compliance displays is to rob them of their oxygen: Your compliance.
- How do you live happily among people at war with all joy? Cultivate indifference and press on regardless.
- No Nork nukes yet: Is James “Kill ’em all” Mattis an amiable spy in the house of malice?
- Do you believe in magic? Love is made from its own shared and mutual propitiation!
- Want to put the eclipse in the shade? Shine with your own light instead. on
- How do you live happily among people at war with all joy? Cultivate indifference and press on regardless. on
- Even if we manage to comb the Marxist lice out of our hair, a Ci culture still won’t have any kids. on
- Since we know Ayn Rand was lying about her marriage, what else was she lying about? on
- What’s the secret to raising generation after generation of great families? The right map. on
- Photo credit: Sunrise on Phu Chi Fa by Tom BKK.