Thursday 19 August 2010

Objectivist parenting

Surely they, like us, would instead have reminded their little Johanna that if she shared the ball with Aidan, she'd be more likely to be able to play with Aidan's toys as well, and that opening with cooperate in tit-for-tat is generally optimal?
I'd like to start by saying that I don't get into belligerent shouting matches at the playground very often. The Tot Lot, by its very nature, can be an extremely volatile place—a veritable powder keg of different and sometimes contradictory parenting styles—and this fact alone is usually enough to keep everyone, parents and tots alike, acting as courteous and deferential as possible. The argument we had earlier today didn't need to happen, and I want you to know, above all else, that I'm deeply sorry that things got so wildly, publicly out of hand.

Now let me explain why your son was wrong.

When little Aiden toddled up our daughter Johanna and asked to play with her Elmo ball, he was, admittedly, very sweet and polite. I think his exact words were, "Have a ball, peas [sic]?" And I'm sure you were very proud of him for using his manners.

To be sure, I was equally proud when Johanna yelled, "No! Looter!" right in his looter face, and then only marginally less proud when she sort of shoved him.
I've read the "No! Looter!" line three times now and am still laughing. I'll probably go back and read it again tomorrow and laugh more. I also love that the looter kid's name is Aidan. Lovely touch.

HT: Haimona's shared items. Every now and then, I check through the shared items of folks who follow my shared items or who've clicked the "like" button on my posts, on the basis that if they like my stuff, they probably have pretty good taste overall and are probably more discerning than other people.

Update: The bit quoted above is of course satire. Satire that will be having me laughing all week. Read the whole thing.

In other news, the ritual disemboweling of the ACT party is just too depressing to blog about, so I won't.


  1. I don't know much about Ayn Rand, and I certainly haven't read Atlas Shrugged, but I loved this. I'm still feeling a bit sorry for dear little Aiden though ...

  2. I feel sorry for Aiden too. He ought to have been given a better name.... Hit the video linked on his name if you haven't.

  3. That's not Objectivist parenting. That's a wanna-be Objectivist who obviously doesn't know how to parent.

    Here's one who does.

    In other news, i.e., the ritual disemboweling of the ACT party -- it's the inevitable downward spiral of a party that's lost its reason to exist. The trajectory is inevitable; everything else is details.

  4. Actually, if you read the whole post you've linked to, I'm pretty certain it's supposed to be satire.

  5. PC: Of course it's satire!!! It's an absurd rendition of an Objectivist approach. But hilariously absurd.

  6. @PC I disagree that ACT has lost its reason to exist. With both the big parties fighting over the centre there is space to both the left and the right for minor parties to inhabit. The Greens are the obvious candidate for the left position, and the far right could ably be served by ACT. I think their woes are more due to infighting and lack of clear direction, rather than lack of a niche. Mind you, I may have misinterpreted what you meant, and if so I apologise unreservedly.
    Of course ACT and the Greens need to share bits of their respective patches with elements of the other minor parties, but that just adds to the rich tapestry that is NZ politics ;)

  7. Most American children these days seem to have been taught that if they ask for something - anything - politely, they should be given it. I've seen this attitude continue into adulthood, too.

  8. @FC: Ira is continually disappointed with us on those grounds.