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Writings based on Objectivism, the philosophy of Ayn Rand

Ayn Rand's most popular novels are Atlas Shrugged and The Fountainhead, which present her philosophy, Objectivism, in vivid characterizations.

  Metaphysics, epistemology, ethics, esthetics, and  politics are the five main branches of philosophy that she identifies. Utilizing her methodology, one can be rational about all aspects of life. These essays present my understanding of Objectivism.

Older Essays

This is Your Mind

Independence Day Special 2005

Copyright Issues Statement

Independence Day Special 2011:

 Jesus or Ayn Rand?

Don't Blame Wall Street

Governments and Individual Rights

Anarcho-Capitalism rebuttal

Doctors and Individual Rights

Internet Freedom VS On-line Piracy

Laws Must be Specific to Preserve Freedom

To Students of Objectivism

Kant as Founder of Modern Art

Thinking in Terms of Principles

The Purpose of Art

On Objectivity -- The Method of Thought

Applications of Philosophy

Happiness by a Proper Standard

Morality and War

Induction and Anarchism

Immigration and Applied Egoism

Independence Day 2012:

  Losing the Battle

On Civil Society

Batman and Justice

Paul Ryan and Objectivism

Philosophy in the Workplace

Articulating Freedom

The Argument for Freedom

Psycho-epistemology

Black Friday Special, The Morality of Profit

Intellectual Property Rights

How The Internet Works

Carnegie Museum of Art and Natural History

The Morality of Copyrights and Patents

Justice

Freedom of Speech -- a Sacred Right

Objective Value

Teleological Measurements

Induction

Causality

Cognition

Ayn Rand as a Moral Hero

Moral Integrity

On Dualism

Protest NSA Spying

The Objectivist Trilogy

The DIM Hypothesis

Tolerance and DIM

Individual Rights

How We Know

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Donít Blame Wall Street

By Thomas M. Miovas, Jr.

10/13/2011

 

There are a lot of people I know via FaceBook and other forums that are falling for the idea that Wall Street caused the Financial Crises by coming up with and speculating on mortgage backed securities. As they put it, Wall Street was on a speculative binge and eventually the bubble burst because they got too greedy and had to be bailed out. This is an incorrect analysis of the situation.

What caused the bubble and the speculation was the government forcing banks to deal with uncreditworthy people, who bought homes when they couldnít afford them or signed deals with a variable interest rate thinking interest rates would remain low. Both thoughts were supposedly backed by the government via Freddie Mac and Fanny Mae, semi-government institutions that bought up mortgages to keep people buying houses they couldnít afford. In other words, what fueled the speculation on the bundling of mortgages into securities was the government forcing there to be a bigger market than would otherwise exist in a free economy. There is nothing wrong with commodity backed securities, and nothing wrong with mortgage backed securities. But the speculation boom and then bust was caused by the government giving false promises of backing up mortgages via Freddie and Fanny. Once the mortgages were not paid back in sufficient numbers, the commodity became devalued and those mortgage backed securities became valueless as an investment tool. But, again, this was caused by the government guaranteeing those mortgages, at least in several statements made by the government, since they were forcing banks to deal with uncreditworthy individuals. Turns out it was an empty promise, so the market crashed when too many people defaulted. So, if you want to blame someone, then donít blame the banks or Wall Street, but rather governmental interference in the economy Ė they caused the bubble and they didnít stand by their promise to back those mortgages or to keep interest rates low.

Now, with that said, I do not think either the banks or Wall Street should have been bailed out when the market crashed. But again, this is governmental interference in the economy, and not a free market, so donít blame capitalism. The closest system to what the government is trying to institute is fascism Ė where the government tells private businesses what to do at the point of a gun. It is not freedom and will lead to further government induced speculations as the government bails out one then another business that is doing what the government wants them to do. It is a way of the government accruing power over productive individuals. This is what people ought to be against Ė the regulations and the forced dealing with businesses that should fail due to making wrong decisions. So, donít blame the banks or Wall Street for the Financial Crises Ė the blame rests squarely on the government that forced banks to deal with uncreditworthy individuals and then bailed out the banks and Wall Street when the market crashed.  The government is in the process of shifting the blame to Wall Street, with some success, but the evil was committed by the government, not the capitalists.

 

 

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Thomas M. Miovas, Jr.

tmiovas@appliedphilosophyonline.com

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Proud to be an Objectivist -- one who follows Ayn Rand's philosophy of Objectivism: I've earned it.