We have spent the last forty years cultivating a nation of sociopaths. People without the slighted trace of empathy for others.
We have pushed the nihilistic philosophy of a hack writer, Ayn Rand to a point where it has donned a panoply of unquestionable wisdom.
Would anyone actually want to live in a world run by psychopaths like John Galt?
The idea of the rugged individual, the lone gunman fighting a war by himself is quite insane. We live in a structured world where my writing this post required the cooperation of countless people; without their maintaining the structure of the web this message would travel no further than my desk.
But according to the sociopaths, pointing out how corporations require a symbiotic relationship with a community or nation to exist, and would not exist purely on the efforts of an individual, is somehow subversive.
From Alternet: http://www.alternet.org/visions/how-will-99-deal-psychopaths-1
A lot of the world’s misery can be traced to people who lack the wiring for empathy. What can we do to contain the damage they cause?
By Joe Brewer
July 26, 2012
Did you know that roughly one person in a hundred is clinically a psychopath? These individuals are either born with an emotional deficiency that keeps them from feeling bad about hurting others, or they are traumatized early in life in a manner that causes them to become this way. With more than 7 billion people on the planet that means there are as many as 70,000,000 psychopaths alive today. These people are more likely to be risk takers, opportunists motivated by self-interest and greed, and inclined to dominate or subjugate those around them through manipulative means.
Last year, the Occupy Movement drew a distinction between the top 1% and the remaining 99% — as distinguished by measures of wealth and income. Of course, this breakdown is misleading, since there are many top income earners who sympathize with the plights of others and are not part of the problem. But the real defining metric reveals itself: 1% of the global population is comprised of people who exhibit psychopathic tendencies.
The global economy we have today is built on a deep history of top-down hierarchies that promote domination and control. There have been plenty of feudal lords, warrior chieftains, and violent dictators throughout the last 6000 years of burgeoning civilization. The modern era saw the ascension of “ corporate personhood ” as an amoral entity enshrined into law by an 1886 ruling of the US Supreme Court. This provided a new mechanism for mobilizing capital by the moneyed elites to deploy their wealth into the realm of public policy and civil society — creating the dysfunctional economic system we must now contend with as we struggle to address global challenges.
We find ourselves in a situation where economic philosophies that celebrate selfishness can be implemented through a web of legal and financial tools that elevate and reward those individuals with psychological tendencies toward self-interest — the same people who also have a predisposition to game social contexts to their advantage regardless of impacts on others. Thus the psychopathic corporation was forged as a Frankenstein monster that enabled the constant flow of psychopathic blood, continuously replenished by the 1% of the population born into psychopathy in each new generation, to rise into positions of power as stock traders, corporate executives, and corruptible politicians.
What can we do collectively to contain and manage this small minority of people who are driven by selfish motives with no concern for others? How must we include them in our plans so that global civilization can transition to a configuration of peaceful cooperation and environmental balance? This is the defining question for global financial stability and environmental sustainability. It runs right to the core of our inability to garner collective action on such systemic challenges as climate change, global poverty, and corporate corruption. It is the central issue of political power that has so far eluded our environmental and social justice movements.
Continue reading at: http://www.alternet.org/visions/how-will-99-deal-psychopaths-1