The nature of the standards by which we measure our success





"The greatness of Western Civilisation is not an 'ethnocentric' prejudice; it is an objective fact." -- Edwin A. Locke, Ph.D.

This assertion is quoted from the Ayn Rand Institute (ARI) website; an institute dedicated to the work of Ayn Rand, founder of Objectivism and author of the best selling novels Atlas Shrugged and The Fountainhead where much of her views are expressed. In essence, Objectivism advocates reason and egoism. Asked to define it "while standing on one foot", Ayn Rand did so accordingly:

Metaphysics: Objective Reality
Epistemology: Reason
Ethics: Self-interest
Politics: Capitalism

The key relevance of Objectivism to Get Real! lies in the ARI's qualification of the nature of Western Civilisation -- the very standard that we Filipinos and most Third World coutnries have chosen to measure the success of their nation by.

In one of the ARI's microsites, Multiculturalism and Diversity - The New Racism, from which the introductory quotation of our article is taken, three core achievements of Western Civilisation are identified and are described to be accountable for "an increase in freedom, wealth, health, comfort, and life expectancy unprecedented in the history of the world". These results are greatest in the country where the principles of reason and rights were implemented most consistently - the United States of America.

According to ARI, the three core achievements of Western Civilisation are:

Reason. Embracing logic and reason and releasing themselves from the hold of mysticism in their quest for knowledge.

Individual rights. The recognition that governments and nations exist to serve individuals. We form nations to ensure the protection of individual interests and employ governments to execute this principle.

Science and technology. "Reason and rights freed man�s mind from the tyranny of religious dogma and freed man�s productive capacity from the tyranny of state control".

Examine our culture in the context of these three simple concepts and weep. We aspire for the greatness of the West but stop short of adopting and living by simple principles such as these.

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