Saturday, August 25, 2018

The spectacular failure of American morality

A piece by Umair Haque. Just a brief excerpt follows. Please see the link for a much more developed argument.

"America developed a moral philosophy that’s utterly unique in the world, and in history. One that’s solely its own, not used anywhere else — and is fatally, weird, gruesome, and backwards, when you think about it. It goes like this. American morality says that what’s good for everyone is acting aggressively in our own self-interest. Bang! Collapse. History and human nature say exactly the opposite is true: what’s best for us is doing good for others."

"So while much of what is now the rich world was learning the great lesson of history, and people were investing in one another — the roots of Germany’s public healthcare system, for example, date back to the 1890s, as does the French pension system — America, instead, developed an odd, backwards, perverse, set of moral ideas. Today we call them 'self reliance' and 'individual responsibility' and so on. But they are still, at heart, the broken, ruinous morality of the slave society — in which I am indifferent to the suffering of others. They’ve failed catastrophically — as we’ve discussed — because they were bound to."

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