Ron Johnson and the POG | Wis.Community

Ron Johnson and the POG

(Johnson's correct first name is Ron, not Rob. The typo has been corrected.)


(Cross-posted from my blog, Kaufman's Gull.)


According to , Wisconsin Republican Senate candidate Ron Johnson, president of plastics manufacturer Pacur of Oshkosh, WI, is a student of writer Ayn Rand's novel, Atlas Shrugged, a book that has become a of sorts.

You could, if you'd like, read all thousand or so pages of Rand's novel, but the moral of the story can be summed up as follows: unregulated capitalism is the most rational, moral way of life.

Rand's brand of morality does not allow for any merciful, religious feeling toward your fellow man or fellow creature; in fact, I think it fair to describe her philosophy as anti-Christian if by "Christian" we mean acting upon the love of one's neighbor, or as Christ puts it in the Sermon on the Mount: "Give to him that asketh thee, and from him that would borrow of thee turn not thou away."

Will tells us that Johnson is a Lutheran, but how does Johnson (or any anti-tax Christian) reconcile the values of the Bible with the values of Atlas Shrugged?

If followed faithfully, Rand's way of thinking leads straight toward what has recently transpired on Wall Street, in the Gulf of Mexico, in the coal country of West Virginia, in Arizona,  in Iraq and Afghanistan, everywhere there is injustice and violence in the name of freedom, everywhere there is cruelty and greed in the name of liberty.

We have tried for many years to turn greed into a virtue and the results have not favored life, liberty or happiness. Greed is bipartisan, God knows, but only the GOP has turned it into one of the pillars of its platform.

Will quotes Johnson as saying, "The most basic right is the right to keep your property." Not the Bill of Rights?  Not the Rights of Man? Let's use the right acronym: POG, the Party of Greed.

Or, if you prefer, the politics of "mine." As the Duchess says to Alice, in a book for children that adults can profit from, "The more there is of mine, the less there is of yours."

Or, as Alice tells the Duchess, "I have the right to think." That right, Mr. Johnson and Mr. Will, is the most basic, unalienable right of all, a right a good many Americans seem to have surrendered.


May 28, 2010 - 9:14pm