"A better question might be, “What they have overlooked, that I know?”
It's hard to argue with a man who holds the opinions of such a large number of people who have designed very successful socioeconmomic systems in such contempt, so I'll take a pass on this one.
"For most of human history, men have been ruled by two evils either individually or in collusion; the Genghis Khan’s or the Shamans. Both seek one goal – power. The power to rule men. Then in human history there was a spark; the Renaissance, which culminated in a star burst called the American Revolution. Those intellectuals of the time, Jefferson et al, laid it out – freedom of the individual.
But beginning in the late 18th century, and moving forward, the American experiment started its decline. The intellectuals telling us that the Founding Fathers’ philosophy was immoral, and that collectivism or socialism was superior. They tell us that the wealth we produce should be given away to the far corners of the earth, because we are guilty for being able to produce it, while the others cannot."
Much as I admire Jefferson, the proof of his ideas is in the pudding. By your own admission the American experiment is in decline. My question for you is: If it hasn't worked here, then where? It seems the people are not up to the system. Is that the fault of the people, or the system. If it is the fault of the people, where do you propose to find a worthy people? A people who will make such a system work as designed and leave you in peace to pursue your individual happiness, free of such immoral obligations as altruism and taxes that benefit society at large?
"They are willing to die for freedom. Patrick Henry said it best, “Give me liberty, or give me death.”
Freeedom is heady stuff but the devil, as always, is in the details. Hanging onto freedom is easier said than done, and the places that seem to be most successful are those who have struck a balance between individual freedom and the welfare of the group. Think taxes and altrism for openers.
"Contradictions cannot exist. Either the theory is defective, or the application is defective. The proper theory coupled with the right philosophy works. Jefferson had it right. The Altruists dismantled it."
It's a democracy, Nick. The people appear to have spoken, and the altuists have carried the day, as they have in the countries I mentioned in my previous post. Perhaps the theory/philosophy is defectve?
But the essence of our disagreement lies in a fundamental disagreement over the highest purpose of man. You proceed from the premise that man's highest duty is his own happiness; I proceed from the premise that man's highest purpose is the perpetuation of the human race, what I call a biological imperative, that requires occasional acts of altruism or even taxes, be it in the form of money in modern times or a hunter sharing his kill with other members of his tribe in prehistoric times. This behavior is so critical to our survival that it has been encoded in our genes and expressed as an emotion originating in our limbic system. It hard to argue with something that has endured so long that it obviously has been selected as a trait that contributes to survival. IMO, any philophical system that argues otherwise is questionable, at best, and more likely a recipe for disaster. The failure of the system you espouse, by your own admission above, makes the point pretty definitively, IMO.