The Worst Thing About Obama and Bush Jr.

What all leaders must ask themselves when taking on new power is this: What will a person who has much worse intentions than I destroy with this power?

In the first case, it is important to ask this to understand the destructive nature of power, the tendency toward violence which occurs when you give one person domain over another.

In the second, we see what appears to be a natural trend downward in our leadership.  Each group of leaders in our nation, over the last four decades, seems to have worse intentions than the ones before them.

Thus a leader must understand the negative consequences of a power he or she would take and then assume that these negative consequences will become reality in the near future.

Any leader with good intentions will do more to limit his or her own power in all matters so as to save future generations from the abuse of scoundrels and psychopaths.

Unfortunately, when we examine the highest office of the United States we find our recent string of leaders to be lacking in this crucial element.  We have not seen an American President work to limit his own power in a very long time.  I would argue since Kennedy and Eisenhower.

Certainly Obama and Bush Jr are terrific examples of men who felt that their mandate to do work was more important than their mandate to keep the American people free from tyranny.

The greatest example of this muddleheaded thinking comes from Obama’s signing of NDAA 2012, a defense authorization bill that allows for indefinite detainment of US citizens on US soil, without trial or due process, if they are labeled terrorists by the government.  Obama claims to be doing this with best intentions.  Whether or not you believe him, he obviously does not concern himself with the intentions of those who come after him.

Whatever is said by his critics and supporters, in this most important matter, Obama has struck a mighty blow against the freedom of all Americans.

The Suicide of a Selfish Society

Since the dawn of civilization humankind has struggled with the burden of psychopathic leadership.  The history of the social contract is riddled with instances in which psychopathic individuals took power, raped, pillaged, consumed, waged war and destroyed to satisfy what we know is an unquenchable desire in the dark depths of the psychopathic personality.

In my forthcoming book I intend to show how a dramatic increase in psychopathy among leadership in modern society is generating a crisis for our human species and the world generally.  The fears expressed by great minds only a few decades ago are actualized through a flood of psychopathic leaders who behave in an entirely selfish and insane manner without regard for history, tradition, the good of humankind or even their own long term well-being.

For this moment, however, I want only to point out that the progress of human civilization has required, since its inception, safeguards against entirely selfish behavior.  The first manifestation of this can be described by evolutionary psychology and moral foundations theory, which argues that humans who felt more clearly the importance of loyalty, caring for others rather than harming, fairness, liberty and sanctity had a much stronger chance of living and passing on their genes than those who lacked these moral traits.  Morality is first a matter of survival fused into our genes.

When humankind moved beyond tribes and into chiefdoms, the probability for an amoral person to survive increased with the capacity to commit crimes anonymously.  As society moved from groups of 40-50 to groups of 1,000-10,000, religion evolved from a relatively amoral superstition to a much more moral edifice, “systematically discouraging antisocial behavior.”

For centuries religion and other structures have kept humankind moored to a moral foundation.  In recent years, however, the emergence of a new and twisted philosophy has emerged as a growing force.  In this philosophy, selfishness is a virtue and being completely selfish is the highest form of living to which one may aspire.

Ayn Rand, however you feel about her books, is one of the most popular figures of this new disfigured line of thinking.  While her two large novels appeal to a very energized portion of the population, what must not be missed is her insane attempt to move past merely condoning selfish behavior to prove, through literary gymnastics and tortured character development, that being selfish is the very best thing which any person may be.

Of course this is anti-human, in a very Nietzschean sense, and while this message of basking in selfishness is a soothing salve for those feeling guilty for their success (often at the expense of others around them), we must not allow for this stylized immoral influenza to spread.  The rise in psychopathic leadership, and the psychopath’s insatiable selfishness, presents the greatest danger to our species today.  Reinforcing selfishness increases our tolerance of psychopathic leaders; a program we cannot afford in our modern era.