Some Things I Have No Time For (Part Two)
I have no time for people who tell me the profit motive is freedom, or that greed is a virtue. The profit motive is merely one of a thousand reasons to act in the state of freedom — certainly a practically useful reason, but hardly definitive of the state of freedom, anymore than what Aristotle calls useful friends (co-workers, regular customers) are definitive of friendship. Furthermore, equating the profit motive with freedom implies that acting without concern for material profit is illiberal or anti-freedom — which is exactly what modern so-called conservatives tend to believe. They are typically suspicious of anyone who says, “I’m not in it for the money,” as though this attitude, to the extent it can be believed at all, indicates some sort of radical, perhaps a communist. As for the idea that greed is a virtue because action in accordance with greed creates wealth, the presuppositions underlying that view are so thick, not to mention thick-headed, that one would have to be an economist or some other type of immoralist to believe it.
I have no time for the jargon of “marginalized” groups, “systemic oppression,” and “people on the periphery.” I have been marginalized all my life, all systems are oppressive of everyone in the only way that matters (spiritually), and it has been my lifelong dream to live on the periphery — I have found any measure of happiness in my life only when I have felt profoundly peripheral.
I have no time for meeting people halfway. Halfway to where? That is the only relevant question — aside from this question: Why do we have to meet?
I have no time for people who can tell me how remarkable their artistic idea is — and who have to tell me. If they cannot explain what art is, or why I should care about it, then their brilliant expositions of method and form are like a man blind from birth trying to explain which colors are the most beautiful.