From: Jacques Du Pasquier (
Date: Thu Nov 22 2001 - 11:36:31 MST a écrit (22.11.2001/00:31) :
> > Most New Zealanders do not mind US interventions _as long as_ they
> > see that America is not acting in its own interests and that it is
> > acting altruistically towards other people.
> The problem is, does *anyone* beleve america acts altruistically?
> Even if it does, it's considered dubious by most people. The Gulf
> War is a classic example.

Though I think that it is the freedom of anyone to behave
altruistically, and to show compassion, I don't think this should be
forced on anyone, nor even preached by anyone.

It has been shown many times that, while altruism in itself was fine,
asking for it and preaching it actually pursues manipulative goals
that no one should tolerate.

Read Ayn Rand's "The Virtue of Selfishness". Read Friedrich Hayek's
"The Constitution of Liberty". Read Nietzsche (who himself obviously
had a strong tendency to compassion, but who always rejected any
preaching of compassion for these same reasons).

If this is true for individuals, I think it is a fortiori true for
states, as getting your state to act altruistically means forcing the
other individuals composing the state to be altruistic (if the notion
of forced altruism has any meaning). A state should care about his
interests, leave other states free to pursues their goals, and enter
in voluntary, mutually beneficial relationships with other states.

As it forces all the individuals who compose it to participate in
(finance) its actions, it should not go beyond that. Let individuals
be generous if they care to be, and form private generous
organisations if they can get other individuals to voluntarily
participate in their cause.

I have no idea why so many Europeans and apparently Australians think
that Americans should be altruistic. I guess it is sheer distraction.
They may be generous at times. But how can you DEMAND or even expect
it, this is beyond me.


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