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Is Obama selfish?

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posted on Dec, 15 2012 @ 01:37 PM
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In Ayn Rand's view of morality selfishness is a virtue and selfishness a vice. This idea runs contrary to popular views of morality in both her time and the present. The questions always come “ Isn't the thief selfish? Isn't a dictator selfish? Isn't it selfish to eat the whole cake and leave none for anyone else?” Ect. That answer to those questions is most likely yes. They are behaving in what they take to be their best interest. The dictator assuming power and wealth would seem to be acting in his best interest and most likely was done with that as the motive. However acting with one's self interest as the motivating force is not enough to make that action actually be in one's own interest. This being the case it is necessary to point out that it is not the motivation of self interest behind the actions of the thief, ruler or cake eater which makes the actions immoral or bad for one's health, but it is rather the rejection of rationality, the disconnect between cause (action) and effect, the error in reason made between motivating intention and actual outcome, that is the culprit.

The king, president or any ruler who has attained a position of power would be thought of as acting in his self interest. The position grants them wealth, freedom and ability to influence people. All of these seem to be great benefits and worthwhile rewards for a “selfishly” motivated ruler to claim. This would then appear to be a case where it is truly in one's self interest to hold a position such as the president. Where you are in the position to exercise power over others, control the military, control the currency and restrict the freedoms of those you oversee. In doing such things you are rewarded greatly by the interest you protect (business, organization, individuals), those who are in bed with government. Surely that's in a persons best interest. People cry “Look at Obama hes doing great from being president!” Well I would argue that it is actually not in Obama's or any other “leader's” interest to restrict, control or infringe on the freedom of other individuals. It is actually not rational self interest that is being practiced and that it once again is merely another an example of how the motivation of self interest is not by itself enough to make an action or series of actions in one's own interest. There is once again a disconnect between action and effect.

Now why, keeping in mind the benefits previously acknowledged, is it not in Obama's self interest to govern as he is and cater to those around him as he does? To put it into context lets take a look at perhaps a ruler or king in the 1500's. Even though he may be king he is not even living at the level of a “peasant” today. He has no computer, microwave, refrigerator, car. He is not able to travel from place to place by plane or communicate with a person on the other side of the planet. While it may seem that being king is great and it is in his best interest to restrict freedom and hold others down, he is really just impeding mans progress which is to his own detriment. It is in this same sense that Obama is not acting in his self interest by restricting the free market, restricting freedoms and catering to his buddies. He like the 16th century king is man impeding progress and likewise not able to enjoy the fruits that are born of it.

Therefore while the self interest may be the motivator for a kings actions it is not enough to ensure that the actions are actually in his self interest. One must use reason as well to help guide the actions. Man's self interest is a process of discovery and is of the utmost importance.
edit on 15-12-2012 by crankySamurai because: formatting




posted on Dec, 15 2012 @ 01:41 PM
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Would a person who wasn't selfish want to run for president? Someone has to do the job. He seems less selfish than other presidents I have seen. Degree of selfishness is the question. He is for the Middle class and certain big businesses.



posted on Dec, 15 2012 @ 01:57 PM
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reply to post by rickymouse
 


you didn't even read the post....



posted on Dec, 15 2012 @ 02:13 PM
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reply to post by crankySamurai
 


Sure I read the post. I reread it again just now. It still says the same thing.

I was just trying to answer the question in the title. It didn't ask any questions in the OP. I can't really comment on the OP, that is just a statement and history lesson that sums up things, I can't refute it or add much because it's pretty thorough.



posted on Dec, 15 2012 @ 02:35 PM
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reply to post by rickymouse
 


Well the point that I am making is that Obama is not actually acting in his self interest at all...



posted on Dec, 15 2012 @ 02:43 PM
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reply to post by crankySamurai
 


All people act in self interest and also for the interests of a certain group of people. Obama isn't really too selfish but can be construed as selfish by someone outside of the group. The whole thing is really a perception thing. I flagged your thread because I am interested in what people outside his group think. I am in the middle class, or the group that is effected positively by his actions.
edit on 15-12-2012 by rickymouse because: (no reason given)



posted on Dec, 15 2012 @ 02:57 PM
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Originally posted by rickymouse
Would a person who wasn't selfish want to run for president? Someone has to do the job. He seems less selfish than other presidents I have seen. Degree of selfishness is the question. He is for the Middle class and certain big businesses.


Obama is destroying the middle class.
Wake up!



posted on Dec, 15 2012 @ 03:09 PM
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reply to post by rickymouse
 


To act selfishly has been demonized in this society. I am making the point that to act selfishly is actually a moral virtue and to be strived for.

I am also saying that it is not enough just to simply act with the motivation of self interest, that there must be rational principles followed for that action to actually be selfish. Just acting with the intent of bettering yourself without rationality will put you in the position of the mugger who is trying to improve his life but without achieving it.

The mugger who resorts to stealing is essentially admitting the weakness of their mind, which is mans primary tool for survival, and instead resorting to that of an animal which uses force to meet its needs for survival. Obama and other leaders who resort to force are not living by means of man but of an animal.

Just as an animal cannot survive by the means of lower life forms such as plants, laying there immobile, man cannot survive by means of an animal, by using brute force to attain his needs.

Man must use the tool of him mind if he is not trying to aim towards destruction. It is in mans rational interest to do this and it is a moral virtue in that way.
edit on 15-12-2012 by crankySamurai because: (no reason given)





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