Feed 'Progressivism,' Get Hand Bitten

Monday, January 30, 2023

Another day, another ordinary thing becomes a vehicle for left-wing propaganda, real, imagined, or both...

In a Salon piece discussing the sudden replacement of the M&M "Spokescandies" with Maya Rudolph, I could not help noticing the following few paragraphs:

Image by MingleMediaTVNetwork, via Wikimedia Commons, license.
M&M's has, in a minor way, backed up its declared progressiveness with minor monetary contributions to causes most conservatives would consider to be left-leaning. Earlier this month it launched a limited-edition package in recognition of International Women's Day, each featuring Green, Brown, and Purple upside down -- wow! -- in a show of "supporting women flipping the status quo."

A dollar from every pack sold supported partnerships with She Is The Music and We Are Moving the Needle, according to a company press release, but only up to $500,000. A cool $300,000 in additional donations were made to Female Founder Collective, the Geena Davis Institute On Gender In Media, and "women who are flipping the status quo, as part of the overall program."

Terrific, until you consider that the Mars family, which owns Mars Inc., is estimated to be worth upwards of $94 billion, which certainly makes those heralded contributions look like a pile of Purple's innards. [links omitted, bold added]
One would think from this that the Mars family were running a charity badly, rather than a business well. And one would understandably consider that writer -- as someone sympathetic to that cause -- to be an ingrate, and a sanctimonious one at that.

But the issue here isn't merely etiquette, and it's not confined to one reporter, because this is very common attitude comes from altruism, that very common and unquestioned moral framework that holds as an unexplained absolute that self-sacrifice is one's highest moral duty.

"Progressives," who ultimately hope to force everyone else politically to commit sacrifices, frequently damn the corporations and those wealthy people who support them for not doing enough.

For example, if some company advertises so much about green energy that one might wonder if they're a power company rather than a brewer -- they'll just be accused of "greenwashing."

This is just more of the same, and it stems from the nature of altruism and the fact that what one can construe as the "needs of others" has the same infinite capacity as a black hole.

Things like this remind me of the following passage in Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged. A former factory worker is discussing an attempt to run that factory according to the motto, From each according to his ability, to each according to his need"
Yet this was the moral law that the professors and leaders and thinkers had wanted to establish all over the earth. If this is what it did in a single small town where we all knew one another, do you care to think what it would do on a world scale? Do you care to imagine what it would be like, if you had to live and to work, when you're tied to all the disasters and all the malingering of the globe? To work -- and whenever any men failed anywhere, it's you who would have to make up for it. To work with no chance to rise, with your meals and your clothes and your home and your pleasure depending on any swindle, any famine, any pestilence anywhere on earth. To work -- with no chance for an extra ration, till the Cambodians have been fed and the Patagonians have been sent through college. To work -- on a blank check held by every creature born, by men whom you'll never see, whose needs you'll never know, whose ability or laziness or sloppiness or fraud you have no way to learn and no right of question -- just to work and work and work -- and leave it up to the Ivys and the Geralds of the world to decide whose stomach will consume the effort, the dreams and the days of your life. And this is the moral law to accept? This -- a moral ideal? (pp. 617-618) [bold added]
This attitude also explains headlines like this: "McDonald's president who made $7.4 million last year says proposal to pay fast-food workers $22 an hour is 'costly and job-destroying'."

What that man did to earn $74 million was harder and more valuable than flipping hamburgers. He might know, and what he was paid has nothing to do with the truth of his words: Among other things customers will balk at the higher prices they will have to pay to support paying burger flippers more than they are worth. (The "progressive" ones will btch about being "exploited" at the whims of a company that, in fact, has to make ends meet and exists to turn a profit.)

To a committed altruist, there is no such thing as moral credit for anyone who is getting a modicum or luxury, enjoyment, or even comfort out of life, because those things can be given away.

Anyone who has aided a "progressive" and been puzzled by ingratitude (but I repeat myself) is being told. Those people should listen, and start asking themselves very deeply why they should put up with it.

But frankly, I'd be happy if even a few loudly complained about the ingratitude and would ask, Why bother at all?

-- CAV

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