Some liberals ask: what’s the matter with Kansas? For it seems that many people there are voting against their own interests, with dire political consequences for themselves and others. They do so for reasons they regard as moral; yet their self-destructiveness does not serve those putative moral objectives, indeed it undermines them. In reality the only beneficiaries of working-class red-state self-impoverishment are sociopathic Randian 1%-ers.
Now for the paradox. What do you call selflessly opposing one’s own interests for the sake of the general moral good? Altruism, of course. And what does Rand herself say about altruism? That it is evil. And doesn’t the spectacle of altruistic red-state self-destruction tend to validate Rand’s point? Yet aren’t they being altruistic… for Randianism?
So Randianism is altruistically anti-altruistic! There are other such Randian paradoxes; collectively individualistic, irrationally rationalistic, and so on.
One may ask why social conservatives vote for their own impoverishment, for the sake of a perceived general good; for isn’t this altruism delusive, for it actually serves the interests of the most powerful and least scrupulous amongst us?
Orwell’s answer is that there is Outer Party and Inner Party. Inner Party supplies noble lies, which Outer Party believes; as Plato proposed, and Leon Strauss seconded. In particular, the Outer Party sacrifices, and the Inner Party collects those sacrifices. But isn’t that exact set-up (sacrificers and collecters) what Rand denounced? She spoke against evil self-sacrifice for Communism, but we now see that there can also be evil self-sacrifice for Capitalism.
If altruism is evil, then Outer Party practices evil, and Inner Party is complicit in evil. Thus actually-existing Objectivism objectively denounces itself; but in so doing partly validates itself. Altruism can indeed be evil... when it serves anti-altruism!