Underlying our technological achievements is the conviction that success is possible, that if you put your mind to the task, you can accomplish great things, that through your own efforts you can forge a human way of life out of the wilderness. You are not the victim of chance or genetic makeup; you are not the plaything of the stars or some ineffable deity. You are a human being, able to think, act and produce on your own, able and worthy of living a joyous life here on earth. And that is precisely what the terrorists want to destroy. That is precisely why they hate us.
There are too many terrorists worldwide for their actions to be explained as psychotic. Whether they are Osama bin Ladens or Ted Kaczynskis, they take their philosophy seriously. For them, evil lives in the form of Western man, in a capitalist society, using his own mind to reshape the world to achieve his own happiness. The terrorists want to destroy that.
Their ideal world, the Eden envisioned by these nihilists, is a negation--a world absent of things: no skyscrapers, no space program, no science, no technology. It is a world devoid of the products of the rational, independent human mind. It is a world of self-abnegation, submission and subservience. It is a world of living death.
The fundamental battle we face today consists not of bombs and rockets, but of ideas--the ideas of those who value human life on earth versus the ideas of those who oppose it.
Sunday, November 30, 2003
Why Do The Barbarians Hate Us?
According to Dr. Michael Berliner of the Ayn Rand Institute: