Among the issues most commonly discussed are individuality, the rights of the individual, the limits of legitimate government, morality, history, economics, government policy, science, business, education, health care, energy, and man-made global warming evaluations. My posts are aimed at intelligent and rational individuals, whose comments are very welcome.

"No matter how vast your knowledge or how modest, it is your own mind that has to acquire it." Ayn Rand

"Observe that the 'haves' are those who have freedom, and that it is freedom that the 'have-nots' have not." Ayn Rand

"The virtue involved in helping those one loves is not 'selflessness' or 'sacrifice', but integrity." Ayn Rand

21 May 2013

Responding to a Progressive Elitist University Request for Donations

A Brown University student of the Class of 2015 sent me an e-mail request for a donation to the university from which I earned my Sc.B. in Physics degree in 1969.  Because of the magnitude of the tragedy that Brown has so failed to provide young and bright students with an adequate education, I took the time to write the following response:

It is precisely because far too many faculty, staff, and students at Brown University view themselves as "partners and agents for collective social change" that I am deprived of the pleasure of supporting a real education at Brown.  They share the image of themselves as Progressive Elitists justified fully in the use of governmental force to impose values on a largely immoral or amoral people.  They wish to micromanage the lives of millions of people they do not know, yet consider incompetent to manage their own lives.  They ignore the essential fact that people are complex and highly differentiated in character, life circumstance, and values.  They seek an easily acquired sense of intellectual and moral superiority, while abrogating to themselves power and money taken by force.

A real education would encourage students to see how honoring the equal, sovereign rights of the individual to life, liberty, property, the ownership of one's own body, mind, and labor, and the pursuit of personal happiness is the real path to achieving the general welfare.  This education would illustrate the need for a legitimate government whose only purpose was the support of these individual rights and which would never seek to harm some while claiming it was helping the majority or some favored minority.  A real education would make it clear that a government that forces some or many to serve the interests of others is tyranny and disruptive of the real benefits of life in a society.  It would show how those benefits flow from the incredible richness of choices and freedom of action when all of our relationships are freely chosen for our mutual benefit.  It would honor freedom of conscience and of association, rather than crippling these freedoms as the big government approved by most at Brown University does.  These freedoms are critical to man who must live by the use of his mind.  An education is supposed to aid man in developing the rationality and analytical capability of that mind.

Unfortunately, any money I give to Brown is used mostly to deprive me and those I love of our individual rights.  It is used to increase the level of already exorbitant tyranny in the Land of the Free.  It is used to diminish the many wonderful advantages of living among others willing to engage in a free trade of ideas, goods, and services.  It creates a government so complex that the vast majority of citizens cannot understand what it is doing and how to control it.  They become pawns due to their limited time, money, and intellect to those few Progressive Elitists who actually do control government to some degree.  But just as the slave master was enslaved by his slaves, so are the Elitists enslaved by the ignorant or insufficiently informed people they think they control.

Soon, as is the case now, control of government is really in the hands of haphazard and conflicting special interest groups (factions in the terms of the founders), who step in and take what they want at the expense of everyone else.  A few of these special interests or factions:
  • Crony mercantilists such as green energy companies,
  • GE, GM, Chrysler, Boeing with its Export Bank subsidies,
  • farmers with crop supports,
  • students taking government student loans,
  • faculty taking government funded research grants,
  • labor unions forcing workers to pay them dues and buying politicians' votes, while systematically underfunding worker pension plans,
  • radical environmentalists claiming that economic development is the enemy even as developed countries do most to clean their environments,
  • global warming alarmists falsely accusing user's of fossil fuels of overheating the planet,
  • people faking disabilities by the millions,
  • millions on unemployment benefits for years,
  • big bankers and stock investors happy to see the Federal Reserve flood the economy with devaluing printed money,
  • home buyers buying homes they cannot afford with government encouragement,
  • insurers happy to see people forced to buy health insurance they cannot afford for coverage they do not need as the government asserts its ownership of our very bodies,
  • millions happy to use food stamps and other welfare rather than take a job,
  • those who use government licensing to keep others out of their profession, 
  • a huge government-run education establishment dominated by pro-big government propaganda, teachers unions, and mediocrity,
  • large companies that seek to cripple smaller companies with a myriad unintelligible regulations, and of course
  • the many power-hungry and corrupt politicians who populate both major parties, though especially the one most favoring the accelerating growth of government.
I had the independence of mind and the knowledge of history, economics, civics, business, and science to withstand the many pressures at Brown to conform to the Progressive Elitist viewpoint that the brutal use of force to accomplish their goals was justified by the claimed purity of those goals.  Of course, kings and aristocrats of old, slave owners, fascists, and communists all made very similar claims.  The end result for any society that deprives its individual citizens of their rights is all too well-known and can be ignored only by the ignorant or the malevolent.

Being a small business owner who has repeatedly converted his limited retirement funds into capital to keep his independent laboratory going through this government caused and government maintained recession of five years duration, my charity activity has to be carefully directed to those fighting the critical battle of our time, indeed of all time.  I am supporting the Competitive Enterprise Institute, the Cato Institute, the Atlas Society, the Institute for Justice, the Club for Growth, the Tea Party movement, the NFIB, and the Right to Work Committee.

Brown University is not very competitive given its concerted deception and propaganda exercised on young minds, too many of which are weak.  It gives me no pleasure to say this, since it is a huge tragedy that Brown is not performing the great service it should be and could be doing.


Harry Dale Huffman said...

That is the best we can do, now: Tell the hard truth to the self-deluded, self-aggrandized and incompetent people in positions of power and authority in our society.

Charles R. Anderson, Ph.D. said...

Yes, and we do have to take the time to do it regularly. We cannot allow the Progressive Elitists who are constantly trying to take control of our lives to believe that we are happy to entrust our lives to their judgment. We must be sure to tell them that we are competent to manage our own lives and that we do not believe their claims that they want power only for our good.