Ayn Rand in Heaven

Ayn Rand was a muddle-headed thinker who wrote wooden prose, “novels” that were really merely polemics .1 She maintained the beliefs that all wealthy people merited their wealth, that all poor people merited their poverty, that selfishness was a virtue, that the myth of Robin Hood was pernicious because Robin Hood stole from the rich and gave to the poor. Because she did not believe in history (or complexity or nuance), Rand did not count as important that Robin Hood lived during feudal times. In her philosophy, it does not matter to her how wealth and poverty were distributed in feudal times, nor how the wealthy got wealthy. Her fictional world is ahistorical. In her world, government is synonymous with force, but in her worldview, the only legitimate use of force is to take from the poor and give to the rich. She loathes democracy and thinks well of plutocracy. The current Bush/Cheney government of plutocrats would be very much to her liking, I think.

She is a high priestess in the Cult of the Market Gods.

Ayn Rand’s writing is known be esteemed by, among others, Alan Greenspan (“the whore”, as my father calls him), and by impressionable teenage boys with little social success. I don’t know if Dick Cheney is a fan of Rand, but he is the epitome of a Randian hero.

Anyway, Rand is dead, presumably in Heaven. From whence she must be beaming down upon us with great joy at the developments of the past few weeks, when a hundred billion dollars was taken from the treasury and given to the investor class, all in the name of “stabilizing the market” (Market gods angry! Market gods want eat money! Must feed market gods! Paulson! Bernanke! Feed market gods more money! Now!) The wealth transfers of the “Resolution Trust Corporation” bailout of the S&Ls under the Reagan regime, the Bear Stearns and Fannie Mae/Freddy Mac handouts of more recent times were as mere hors d’oeuvres before the meal of the Great Investor Class Bailout of 2008. It’s about time for a Randian beatification or maybe even apotheosis, wouldn’t you say.

UPDATE: I forgot to include a link to this diary entry over on Daily Kos, which got me thinking. I agree with the post 100%.

1. When the woman who is now my wife and I were first dating, we found ourselves talking about Ayn Rand novels one afternoon. I had read Atlas Shrugged and one or maybe two others, but not The Fountainhead. She summarized it for me in one memorable sentence: “In this one he’s an architect.” Really, if you’ve read one of her novels, you’ve read them all.

Getting back to our paranoid rootz: The Palfrey “suicide”

My original vision for Wetmachine was that it would be kind of an anti-Boing-Boing: a technology-themed site full of fear and dread, skeptical of the notion of “progress” and paranoid about machines from nanoscopic brain-rearrangers to the DNA-sniffing, face-recognizing satellites in the sky– the Overmind emergent. Then of course 9/11 changed everything.

I’m sorry, that was a joke.

Or no, actually it wasn’t. For what’s the point of a half-joking technoparanoia site when Dick Cheney is in the White House? What I’m trying to say is, do you think the “D.C. Madam” killed herself, or do you think she was suicided?

By the way, that’s a link to the site “Infowars.com”, where the motto is, “Because there is a war on for your mind”. That site, like its sister site Prison Planet, represent the deepest fears of my fellow Wetmechiners about what Sundman may turn our little site into if he ever sets free his technoparanoiac demons. I guess with Infowars and Prison Planet out there, there’s no need for me to go nutz on Wetmachine. (But Harold, Greg, Howard: Watch out! The first danger sign is when he starts to talk about himself in the third person!).

Continue reading

Fourthbranch and the Sally Ann Quinn parlor game

By the grace of God I don’t get TV in my house, and, modulo the occasional exception of a cable intermezzo of a few months’ duration here and there, haven’t for nearly twenty years. But I’m not a Puritan, and so, when I’m on a business trip as I am now, I sometimes put on the tube, and if there’s no baseball to be found I check out what’s up with hoi polloi. So it was that tonight I saw for the first time, on TV, the legendary salonista Sally Ann Quinn.

She was pretty hot, I’ll admit; younger and better looking than I had imagined. After all, she was already a doyenne at the time of Bill Clinton’s first inaugural– a priestess in the cult of High Broderism. It was she who famously pronounced Slick Willy too plebeian, too common, to inhabit the place which we rubes across the land had thought belonged to us, viz, the White House, until Sally Ann Quinn set us straight. So you can forgive my imagining her an old hag.

As an habitual, nay, addicted reader of political blogs I had of course read about her shot across “Fourthbranch” Dick Cheney’s bow in today’s WAPO, in which she said that “some Republicans” were looking for an excuse, presumably medical, to ditch Cheney and replace him with the sweet-smelling dreamboat Fred Thompson. So when I got back to the hotel room tonight after a hard day in the Silicon Valley salt mines and began my futile search for non-Giants baseball and saw her name under the crylon “The Plot against Cheney,” I had to stop and look, as at the proverbial car wreck– this one with a decapitation.

Continue reading

Meet the Whore: Tim Russert carries Cheney's water once again

The most amusing thing about the trial of Scooter Libby was Libby’s conviction. The second-most amusing thing was the revelation that so-called Vice President Dick Cheney likes to go on Tim Russert’s infotainment show Meet the Press because he can “control the message.” And the third most entertaining thing about the trial was Russert’s admission under oath that he only reports what the government gives him permission to report.

Sheesh, what a whore. No wonder his corporate masters at General Electric love him so! He’s the perfect marionette!

Anyway, so this week it was revealed that the White House has been flagrantly violating the Presidential Records act for five years or so, encouraging its employees (that is, our, your and my employees) to use email accounts provided by the Republican Party and other front groups. Also, the White House revealed that up to five million email messages that were on the actual proper White House servers have been quote lost unquote.

Wetmachine being a site for geeks, I won’t bother to go into the umpteen reasons why this claim can safely be dismissed as bullshit.

Below the fold: more ranting about the most pathetic bubblehead ever to rise to prominence from Buffalo, New York, and some song lyrics from the glory days of Motown that you’ll really enjoy.

Continue reading

Dick Cheney, “Uniquely Ridiculous”

Pardon me for piling on, and I’ll get back to my usual Wetmachine technoparanoia beat forthwith, but kindly allow me to chime in here with Josh Marshall on the subject of the criminal, nonsensical, dangerous and stupid sociopath who shares the presidency with what’s-his-face, that chimp-faced guy about whom the Grammy-winning Dixie Chicks were embarassed to share a home state:

But Dick Cheney’s an exceptional case. He stands on his own unique ground of ridiculousness. And because of that he’s not simply a bully but a glass bully. Outside of the very hard right wing of American politics, pretty much everyone now sees that Dick Cheney is a screw-up and a moron of historic proportions.

It really is time for us to laugh this guy out of office, is it not, my fellow patriots? Every moment that we allow him to remain in the constitutional office he now occupies (however he got there) is a moment that imperils all of us, and those who will follow us.

Those of you who do not think Dick Cheney is a screw-up and a moron of historic proportions, kindly resume your telephone santitizing or whatever else you were doing. Everybody else, please contact your state senators and representatives and get this impeachment ball rolling. Clearly the congress is not going to take up impeachment until we make them do it. When it comes it will come from the state legistlatures. Do your part. Make sure your state reps are on board.


I have chaged the title of this little entry, which never really worked (something about Cheney being a fart joke). The point I was trying to make, which is small but important, is that this man deserves no respect at all. Fearing him is understandable — he’s a Tony Soprano-like sociopath who manages to extract apologies from people whom he has blasted in the face with shotguns. But he deserves no respect, especially not the phoney-baloney respect “for the office, not the man.” The guy is a first-class moron, every bit as clueless as Bush is. Bush is a universal laughingstock, but Cheney, although he’s despised, is somehow still considered “smart” in some circles. He’s about as smart as the rocket scientists who decided to go to the Sun instead of the moon. To avoid the heat problem, they were going to go up at night.