Is America Finished?

Don’t give up on America yet. America is destroying itself in certain ways. At the same time, the rest of the world is learning with increasing clarity that freedom is superior to socialism or fascism. Although America has drifted dramatically towards both of these compared to its earlier era, it also moves a bit away from them at times too. (Consider how the majority demand more drilling for oil, despite the dictates of the environmentalist establishment.) More are starting to see the practical advantages of freedom over statism. After a few years of Obama, or even McCain and the Democratic Congress, people will see this even more.

What’s still totally lacking is any understanding that freedom doesn’t exist without a morality of individualism. It takes an Ayn Rand (author of Atlas Shrugged and many other titles) to figure this out. She of course even goes deeper, into the metaphysics and the epistemology that make freedom possible and necessary. But America still has a lot going for it. Would you rather be living anywhere else? I doubt it. Would you rather be alive today than in the time of Thomas Jefferson? I’d rather be alive today because there are far more things to make life livable — and thanks to discovering Ayn Rand and a few other thinkers — not to mention Thomas Jefferson himself — it’s not a bad life at all.

We’re still free in so many important ways. Most people might watch and read mediocre trash, but I can read and watch what I like. Even in an age of terrorism, our life expectancies are greater than ever before. Also, don’t forget that a minority of people committed to a consistent idea have disproportionate influence. For example: More and more young people in their late teens and early 20’s are finding my website. It’s truly astonishing in the last one or two years. These same young people, in most cases, are grasping rational philosophical ideas. I’m even encountering people who are switching from fundamentalist Christianity to Objectivism — now that’s checking your premises!

There’s a lot of reason for hope, and the rational thing to do is expect and count on the best while facing the negative when it happens. When the negative happens, you have an enormous opportunity to spread rational ideas in ways that you don’t during more ho-hum times. When the next terrorist event occurs, there will be an opportunity to tell people why this keeps happening. You’ll have their ears in ways you don’t normally have them. When Social Security collapses once and for all, you’ll be able to explain to them why it had to happen. Yes, it’s too bad these things must happen because of all the errors, evasion and stupidity out there. But sooner or later, reason and reality will triumph … because they must.