Musings on AEI

AEI stands for American Enterprise Institute — i.e. making exploitation respectable.

Some humans are antagonistic towards their own kind. This is peculiar and un-natural. Other species do not typically attack and/ or consume their own kind. Tadpoles do because they strip anything of nutrients, if it does not move out of the way. Ill or lethargic tadpoles get et. Also, frogs, which seem to be triggered to snap at whatever (a bird or a helm of grass) passes within their sight at a particular velocity, sometimes catch and swallow their own kind. Thus the population arpund a pond gets reduced.

Anyway, abnormal behavior begs to be explained. When the human antagonism goes so far as murder and cannibalism, it has been explained as a ritual designed to honor or appropriate the wisdom of the demised. Simple murder is either accidental, legally justified or a crime to be punished. In one particular case it is defined as a sacrifice to sanctify all mankind, as the ritual of the Eucharist reminds us. On the other hand, when the aggression is not destructive and only injures mildly, it still requires justification to normaluze the unnatural. Most species rely on imitation not coercion to transmit talents from generation to generation. So, coercion is anomalous, as well, and calls for justification.

Followers of Darwin have decided that some humans are just unfit. That actually fits with the notion that all humans are born sinful and must be improved. That justifies making them do what they are told and provide service to their betters in the process. And, if they do not serve, they can be punished until they do. Exploitation is a step down from predation of one’s own kind. Kinder and gentler, don’t you know?

Exploitation is not a pleasant term. Enterprise sounds better. What enterprise refers to is the act of reaching into an exchange berween parties and taking a portion for oneself. It is the behavior of the middleman. Predation by indirection.

Much effort has gone into promoting enterprise as a laudable behavior. In the 1950’s, the Chamber of Commerce, a population that moves things around and aims to benefit from doing just that, sponsored an essay contest for school children on the topic “How free enterprise has helped to make America great.”

Let loose the predators to make America great again!