Objectivist Overruled


Me:  Why does everyone talk about a-ha as a one-hit wonder?  Have they all forgotten about a little song called “The Living Daylights?”  Maybe I could do an essay about that.  I guess it’s not like a better idea is just going to walk up and— 

Objectivist:  Hey, you’re that 1585 guy, aren’t you?

Me:  Madam, the very same.  What can I do for you?

Objectivist:  I just wanted to tell you that I love how you rip on stupid people and religion.  You’re my favorite Objectivist website!

Me:  Thanks, but too bad I’m not an Objectivist.

Objectivist:  What?  But you must be!

Me:  Nope.

Objectivist:  Why not?  What do you dislike about Objectivism?

Me:  Well, there’s the fact that Ayn Rand sucks and Objectivists are shitheads.  But other than that, nothing.  I mean, I guess I like words that start with “o.”  Anyway, let me ask you this:  if I asked you to name an a-ha song besides “Ta—

Objectivist:  You mean you don’t think there are any good points in Rand?!

Me:  Sure, there are good points in Rand.  Or there would be, if I had never heard of Nietzsche.  But since everything good in Rand is ripped off from Nietzsche, and everything in Rand that is not ripped off from Nietzsche is retarded, why don’t you just read Nietzsche? 

Objectivist:  I tried, because I liked the idea of its being about special people who are better than everyone else, but then I saw that when Nietzsche does it, it’s more an existentialist description of the way humanity advances itself, wherein even the gifted individual eternally struggles to obtain fulfillment from a world where, although nothing is wholly condemned, neither is anything wholly justified.  Plus he includes artists, which is faggy.  

Me:  So basically, you read Rand because Rand tells you that you’re perfect the way you are and society is unfair to you.  But isn’t this supposedly what you guys hate most about P.C.?  That it allows unenlightened people to bask in self-satisfaction instead of working to improve themselves?

Objectivist:  Sure, but there’s a big difference.

Me:  How so?

Objectivist:  P.C. is when other people do that, but Objectivism is when I do it.  Duh.

Me:  Touché.

Objectivist:  Besides, I don’t need to improve myself.

Me:  Who says so?

Objectivist:  Rand.

Me:  Anyone besides Rand?

Objectivist:  Other people who read Rand.

Me:  Okay.  The one thing we have in common is that we are both nonbelievers where religion is concerned, right?

Objectivist:  Right.  So?

Me:  So I want you to go back over what you just said very carefully and try to see how it is exactly the same shit as religion.

Objectivist:  No, it’s not!  Religion teaches empirical falsehoods, and we only believe things that are objectively true.

Me:  I see.  Like the idea that rich people are rich because they are smarter and worked harder than everyone else, whereas poor people are poor because they are dumb and/or lazy and fucked it up themselves?

Objectivist:  Exactly!  People don’t want to hear it, but it’s true.

Me:  …Or maybe people don’t want to hear it because it can be objectively falsified in a few dozen different ways, like how a rich person with shitty standardized test scores is several times more likely to obtain a college degree than a poor person with excellent standardized test scores, or how parental income is a far more accurate predictor of eventual income than IQ is.


Me:  Huh?  I didn’t act offended.  I dispassionately presented you with hard data that falsifies your claim.


Me:  Listen, are you going to do anything besides that thing where you pretend to be sad?  I pretty clearly wasn’t making an emotional appeal.   

Objectivist:  HERE’S THE WORLD’S—

Me:  If you do “world’s smallest violin,” I’m going to start hucking weasels at your face.

Objectivist:  Ha ha, I offended you!

Me:  Well, you didn’t offend me so much as you annoyed me.  And no shit you annoyed me, because you were going out of your way to be as annoying as possible.  How is that a victory for you?

Objectivist:  How is it not?

Me:  Amazing.  And you say you’re not religious?

Objectivist:  I am the exact opposite of a religious person in every way.

Me:  Fascinating.  Simply fascinating.

Objectivist:  Objectivism is not a religion or a cult.  Religions are pretty lies and special rules made up to give unfair assistance to the weak and inferior.  Objectivism is a school of philosophy dedicated to the idea that intellect, rather than emotion, should be the sole currency of all human endeavor.

Me:  Really.  Even interpersonal relationships?

Objectivist:  Yes.  Humans should mate based on intellect alone.  It’s the only logical thing.

Me:  Ah.  You realize Ayn Rand only came up with that because she was ugly, right?

Objectivist:  Excuse me?

Me:  Oh, I was just saying that Ayn Rand was heinous and dumpy and hairy and smelled bad, and that the only way she could get anyone to bang her was to start a cult that ordered people to bang based on intelligence.  In other words, she made up special rules to give herself unfair assistance in an area where she was inferior, even though her life’s work was dedicated to the assertion that people shouldn’t do this.  And then when one of the guys who helped run the cult decided he couldn’t stand banging her anymore, she had a huge emotional shit fit and kicked him out for being “illogical.”  This really never struck any of you as being not only unbelievably hypocritical, but also just straight-up pathetic?

Objectivist:  HOW DARE Y—

Me:  Oh, I’m sorry.  Did I just OFFEND you?

Objectivist:  Um…  No, not at all.  You obviously just can’t handle the idea of a world based solely on logic and intellect.

Me:  Sure I can.  I’m incredibly intelligent.  It’s just that I am also physically attractive, and so I have no need to make up transparent pathetic bullshit to get people to fuck me, unlike your hero, the repellant troll Ayn Rand.  So, according to Ayn Rand, this makes me better than Ayn Rand.

Objectivist:  Impossible.  By definition, no-one is better than Ayn Rand.

Me:  So, the figurehead of your organization is definitionally infallible?

Objectivist:  Yes.

Me:  And your organization’s foundational assertions about the operations of external reality remain eternally true, even when falsified by hard data?

Objectivist:  Yes.

Me:  And — just checking once again — you are not a religion?

Objectivist:  Nope.  We are an organization dedicated to the philosophy of Ayn Rand.

Me:  “Philosophy…”  But she wrote novels.  So you just mean you like her novels?

Objectivist:  Sure.  All true winners do.

Me:  Great.  Only you guys are not winners.  You have dedicated your lives to a worldview derived from crap novels for teenagers, and you get together in little clubs to pretend the shit in the books is real.  That is what losers do.  You might as well be speaking Elvish or referring to outsiders as Muggles.

hp nerds lotr nerds rand nerd
Pictured:  People pretending that ponderous YA fiction is real.

Objectivist:  That’s absurd.  There’s not even anything about economics in those other books.

Me:  Yeah, but there are issues in the world besides economics, and you need to get your opinions on those from somewhere.  What’s your stance on abortion based on, Breaking Dawn?

Objectivist:  I’ll have you know I take Objectivism very seriously.

Me:  So seriously that if they made an Ayn Rand movie you would wait on line in costume?

Objectivist:  Yes!  I mean, No.

Me:  Uh-huh.  Got it.

Objectivist:  Anyway, stuff about Rand’s or my character or personal habits is irrelevant.  Let’s talk about policy.  As you know, currently the Objectivist community is outraged about America’s descent into socialism under Obama.

Me:  Yes, I know.  I’ve seen you all out there protesting about how your taxes are higher when in point of fact your taxes are lower.  Did you mean that your taxes are higher on some spiritual plane to which I in principle do not have access, or what?

Objectivist:  How many times do I have to tell you, we’re not a religion?  And yes, the taxes of the richest Americans have too gone up under Obama.

Me:  Oh, I know.  And are you yourself rich?

Objectivist:  Excuse me?

Me:  I’m asking, do you and all the other people out there with the John Galt signs actually all personally make more than $250K a year?

Objectivist:  Oh.  Well… no.

Me:  Okay.  Does any one of you out there with the John Galt signs actually make more than $250K a year?

Objectivist:  Ah…  Not as such, no.

Me:  So you are not actually rich.

Objectivist:  No.

Me:  So your taxes have not actually gone up.

Objectivist:  Sure they have!

Me:  Please explain. 

Objectivist:  You see, even though technically we do not literally have that much money, we are tough, anti-P.C. winners, and so we are metaphysically part of the upper echelons of society.  So, even though our taxes have not actually gone up, our, you know, quote/unquote, “taxes have gone up,” if you follow me.

Me:  Ah.  And, just because I haven’t checked in the last minute:  still not a religion?

Objectivist:  No way.  Just a bunch of no-nonsense logicians who think that people are individuals who should look out for Number One instead of worrying about handouts for slackers.

Me:  Okay, you’ve convinced me.  I am going to start looking out for Number One, and not worrying about anybody else.

Objectivist:  Excellent!  So you are against a government-run, single-payer health care system?

Me:  Nope.  I am totally for it.

Objectivist:  What?!  Why?

Me:  Well, you see, I am a freelance writer and teacher, and even though I am educated and driven and contribute a lot to society, I do not have a job that gives me health care, and have actually never even come close to having a job that gives me health care, and unless I make a drastic career change probably never will have a job that gives me health care until I finally become a full professor someplace when I am like 50.  So the plan that you oppose is the cheapest, and probably only, way for me to get health care. 

Objectivist:  But people are supposed to look out for Number One!

Me:  That’s what I’m doing.  When I say “Number One” it means me and not you, right?

Objectivist:  But a government-run single-payer health care plan means diverting the wealth of those who produce more to help those who produce less!

Me:  Well, I could take issue with your assertion that it takes 300 teachers to be as “productive” as one professional baseball player.  But instead I’ll just ask you why I should care that such a plan does this.

Objectivist:  Because even if you and a few other productive people who have fallen through the cracks deserve health care, a lot of the other people who would benefit from a government single-payer system don’t.

Me:  So, I’m not just supposed to be against helping other people at my expense, I’m also supposed to be in favor of denying myself something I need just so other people can’t have it too?  That’s not the act of a “logical” person — it’s the act of a toddler who needs to be on some kind of medication.

Objectivist:  But people are supposed to look out for themselves and say Fuck everybody else!

Me:  Exactly.  This plan would help me.  I am looking out for me.  You are somebody else.  Fuck you.

Objectivist:  But that’s not how it’s supposed to work!

Me:  How so?

Objectivist:  It doesn’t count when the government lets a bunch of regular people take a small amount of rich people’s money in the form of nationalized health care!  It only counts when the government lets a small amount of rich people take a bunch of regular people’s money in the form of exorbitant prescription prices and obscene insurance premiums and then refuse to pay for jackshit anyway!

Me:  Why?

Objectivist:  Because that’s the cooooool waaaaaay!!  Like in the booooooks!!

Me:  I’m sorry, I didn’t quite catch that.  Could you say it again in Elvish?

Objectivist:  Listen, the bottom line is, people on my side are allowed to do shitty things to get your money, but you’re not allowed to do it back.

Me:  I see.  Why not?

Objectivist:  Because we’re powerful winners, so we deserve it.

Me:  Okay.  Well, I’m bigger than you.  Does that mean I should be able to beat you up and take the money you have on you right now?

Objectivist:  No, of course not.

Me:  Why not?

Objectivist:  Because that would be an act of physical violence, and people are only supposed to use intellect.

Me:  Until someone decides to ignore your intellect, at which point you can just say Fuck it and blow shit up, like that other guy does in that other stupid book you like?

Objectivist:  That was a metaphor.

Me:  For what?

Objectivist:  Itself.

Me:  I see.  Anyway, if taking people’s money is always okay as long as you are using your intellect, then logically you should think that what Bernie Madoff did is okay.  After all, he did it with his mind, and he had to be smart to do it.

Objectivist:  What Bernie Madoff did was fraud, and it’s a crime.

Me:  Yes.  In other words, a sufficient number of people are of the opinion that it’s wrong in order for there to be laws against it.  Similarly, a growing number of people are of the opinion that unrestricted corporate bullshit of the type you not only excuse but openly praise is also wrong, and should also be against the law, i.e., regulated by the government.

Objectivist:  But those people are losers!

Me:  Are you bringing anything to the table here besides holistic assertions about who is or isn’t a “loser” based on shitty books?

Objectivist:  Yes.

Me:  Okay, what?

Objectivist:  A pair of sunglasses, and this cool t-shirt about how I’m a bitch.

Me:  Those aren’t really points.

Objectivist:  Oh, I beg to differ.  And people better listen when I beg to differ, because I’m a BITCH!

Me:  I think we’re done here.

Objectivist:  WOO!!  YEAH!!  BITCH!!  LOOK OUT!!  WOO!!

Me:  Right.  Got it.  Bitch.  That’s great, yeah.  Listen, I’ve got to go home and transcribe this dialogue now.

Objectivist:  And I’ve got to get back to protesting how my taxes were raised.

Me:  You mean how your “taxes” were “raised?”

Objectivist:  Um…  Yes.

Me:  Okay, well.  It was nice meeting you, Objectivist.  Goodbye.

Objectivist:  Elen síla lúmenn' omentielvo.

Me:  What was that?

Objectivist:  Nothing.

read more awesome 1585 essays.

like and follow The 1585 on Facebook.

blog comments powered by Disqus