PayPal Founder Backs Development of Ayn Rand Lands

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Uber-wealthy libertarians are busy seasteading, which according to Wikipedia is the concept of creating permanent dwellings at sea, called seasteads, outside the territories claimed by the governments of any standing nation.

Peter Thiel, former head of PayPal and founder of the $2 billion hedge fund Clarium Capital is also backing the development of sovereign countries free of “laws, regulations, and moral codes of any existing place,” by “investing” $1.25 million in The Seasteading Institute, a 501(c)3 organization founded by Patri Friedman, a former Google engineer and grandson of neoliberal economist, Milton Friedman. A 501(c)3 tax designation means that donations to The Seasteading Institute are tax-deductible; contributors who don’t want to live in the United States where they are subject to laws, taxation and moral codes, are not shouldering the entire cost of their Ayn Rand wet-dream: another tax shelter is born.

Uber-wealthy libertarians like Peter Thiel and Patri Friedman are not interested in investing in the future of the United States.  If you want your own country, then pay the entire cost yourself and leave the rest of us out of it. Peter Thiel does not believe in democracy, so why are taxpayers subsidizing The Seasteading Institute and its donors in their quest to found undemocratic countries? Will women be granted entry into seastead heaven? And if they are, will they enter as equals with the right to vote, if such a thing will exist in a seasteading society: in Peter Thiel’s artificial world the answer would probably be no.

Peter Thiel is gay (outed in 2007) and he engages in misogyny and class warfare. Who are his enemies? Women and low-income people, especially voters. According to Details, Thiel backed James O’Keefe’s ACORN video lies sting.  Who is not Thiel’s enemy? Homophobes. As co-author of The Diversity Myth, he defended Keith Robois, who during Thiel’s final year of law school shouted, “Faggot! Hope you die of aids!” Thiel wrote that “Keith did not deserve months of public condemnation and ostracism.” Later, Robois became an Executive Vice President at PayPal. Are there other enemies you might ask?

[Plantir Technologies, founded by Peter Thiel] and other firms were hired by the US Chamber of Commerce to “develop tactics for damaging progressive groups and labor unions, in particular ThinkProgress, the labor coalition called Change to Win, the SEIU, US Chamber Watch, and StopTheChamber.com.” Bank of America hired Plantir to “wage cyber warfare,” on Wikileaks.

There are quite a lot of people who think it’s not possible,” Thiel said at a Seasteading Institute Conference in 2009, according to Details. (His first donation was in 2008, for $500,000.) “That’s a good thing. We don’t need to really worry about those people very much, because since they don’t think it’s possible they won’t take us very seriously. And they will not actually try to stop us until it’s too late.” [The Outlook]

“The United States Constitution had things you could do at the beginning that you couldn’t do later. – Patri Friedman (Yea, like owning African slaves, women servile, and poor indentured white folks, they worked like mules and dared not complain).

I don’t want to stop Peter Thiel, Patri Friedman and their Cato Institute cronies. I want them to leave, as soon as possible. Don’t call on women and welfare recipients that you so disdain for a glass of water when a hurricane or tsunami wrecks your John Gault ivory tower or when attacked by another country (oh wait, that’s what Xe/Blackwater is for while they lobby for U.N. recognition).

Peter Thiel wants to live minimum wage and welfare free, which also means labor union free. In other word his dream includes a hell where workers are free to break their backs, go hungry and be at the mercy of their masters: unruly workers will be punished in underwater cells. I almost forgot: no building codes and lax weapons regulations which will come in handy when they go gunning for building contractors after their platforms fall into the sea. Civil rights? Fuggedaboutit.

The following excerpt from Ayn Rand’s adult-onset adolescence, by conservative columnist and former George W. Bush speechwriter Michael Gerson is so applicable:

Rand is something of a cultural phenomenon — the author of potboilers who became an ethical and political philosopher, a libertarian heroine. But Rand’s distinctive mix of expressive egotism, free love and free-market metallurgy does not hold up very well on the screen. The emotional center of the movie is the success of high-speed rail — oddly similar to a proposal in Barack Obama’s last State of the Union address. All of the characters are ideological puppets. Visionary, comely capitalists are assaulted by sniveling government planners, smirking lobbyists, nagging wives, rented scientists and cynical humanitarians. When characters begin disappearing — on strike against the servility and inferiority of the masses — one does not question their wisdom in leaving the movie.

None of the characters expresses a hint of sympathetic human emotion — which is precisely the point. Rand’s novels are vehicles for a system of thought known as Objectivism. Rand developed this philosophy at the length of Tolstoy, with the intellectual pretensions of Hegel, but it can be summarized on a napkin. Reason is everything. Religion is a fraud. Selfishness is a virtue. Altruism is a crime against human excellence. Self-sacrifice is weakness. Weakness is contemptible. “The Objectivist ethics, in essence,” said Rand, “hold that man exists for his own sake, that the pursuit of his own happiness is his highest moral purpose, that he must not sacrifice himself to others, nor sacrifice others to himself.”

If Objectivism seems familiar, it is because most people know it under another name: adolescence. Many of us experienced a few unfortunate years of invincible self-involvement, testing moral boundaries and prone to stormy egotism and hero worship. Usually one grows out of it, eventually discovering that the quality of our lives is tied to the benefit of others. Rand’s achievement was to turn a phase into a philosophy, as attractive as an outbreak of acne.

In response to Warren Buffet’s “stop coddling the super-rich” challenge, John Bloch, founder of H&R Block said that “the wealthy have a debt to this country. I’m sure that Peter Thiel and the rest of the anarcho-capitalist invisible-hand-of-the-market-in-everyone’s-wallet gang of thugs tore up that memo.

Goodbye to Peter Thiel, Patri Friedman (his grandfather’s neoliberal economic theories fucked-up the Chilean economy), and their fellow selfish bastards anarcho-capitalists: you will not be missed. And please take the entire NRA and the Teahadist with you: they can serve as your labor force. Be sure to renounce your United States citizenship before you go and leave your passports at the border -  the sooner the better. Goodbye, we hardly need ya.

3 responses

  1. Thank you for linking to my blog.

    In my research of seasteading, one of the things I came across is that actually a lot of people have tried living at sea. Yet not to escape regulation, but to escape rent.

    For instance: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3mC43CddkLQ

    So we should ask, what is rent? Well, in the case of payments to landlords, it is the price you pay to basically exist on the earth as a landless person.

    I wrote another piece related to this topic, which I hope you’ll find as important as I have.

    http://embraceunity.com/economics/the-only-economic-reform-worth-talking-about/

    • Thank you for informing me about Land Value Tax. I have read you article as well as some of the linked items but not all. I have also downloaded Progress and Poverty. I want to take time to read and consider what you have presented, before commenting.

      I have no problem with seasteading, people should follow their path as Richie has done. However, I am concerned about the environmental effects of humans colonizing the oceans – just look at what we’ve done to the land. What I object to is the belief that people get rich on their own: that is a myth. In Peter Thiel’s case, his belief that women and welfare recipients are oppressing him is absolutely ridiculous.

  2. You are right to be concerned about environmental issues, and any self-proclaimed “libertarian” who wouldn’t be interested in correcting negative externalities is not very libertarian at all.

    You are also correct about Thiel’s absurd beliefs, though my criticisms of him were on his own terms. He absolutely fails even the most basic tests of libertarianism.

    He is in the business of hiring corportist goons to attack groups like wikileaks, and cozy with military robotics manufacturers, and made most of his money from patent rents. He is a sleazeball, and I hope he drowns.

    On a lighter note, I look forward to hearing your thoughts about Progress and Poverty. The book changed my life.

    Peace