Eye-Opening Perspectives for Heroic Hearts

Eye-Opening Perspectives for Heroic Hearts

Monday, October 15, 2012

Engelhardt and Capaldi: Dipped In A Deep Dilemma

How Yale, MIT, Rice, Tulane, the Koch Brothers and Petro Chemical Plants Share a Common Philosophy

by Winsip Custer CPW News Services

    With the push to reinstate the Republican agenda on the American populace, an agenda that Mitt Romney will not clearly articulate beyond returning the cutting of taxes for the upper class, unleashing them to create new jobs, presumably in the luxury yacht business, unless Choy Lee Yacht builders can do it for less, Americans are searching for reality.
     Others assign to Obama a far left-leaning posture that his first four years do not bear out.  Beyond Obama-care and a discredited attempt to build the renewable energy business, Republicans are hard pressed to show where Obama significantly strays from a centrist position.  With Obama’s clear infatuation with President Abraham Lincoln who was first a lawyer for the railroads and whose wife's Springfield, Illinois law firm employed Michelle Obama, Americans fail to see the irony. 
     Festus Green Pusley of the citizen bank watchdog group Brazen Banks Back At It Again holds advanced degrees in philosophy, economics, history and human factors engineering from Madison-Overton University. Mr. Pusley believes that the free market capitalism of the Reagan-Bush era with it “unleashing Wall Street against Main Street” and the corresponding deregulation that led to the 2008 melt-down was contrived.  “Alan Greenspan admitted that the ‘Greenspan put’ went kaput and that his worldview was flawed,” said Pusley.
     Pusley outlined what he believes is the phalanx of philosophical and theological programs aimed at justifying Greenspan’s kaput ‘put’ with high profile apologists, deep-pocketed funding within leading  U.S. academic institutions and over reaching claims of the near deification of the free market model.
     “Start at Harvard University," said Pusley.  "Harvard is the ‘West Point of Free Market Capitalism’, but it has had problems with its crop of graduates.  Many have little regard for any sense of fair play or of monitoring their own behavior.”  Pusley pointed out that Harvard had been given a grant to create a department of ethics, but turned it down.  That did not stop free marketeers from going at it from a different angle or from different schools.  "Not from the ‘West Point’ of free market capitalism, but from the ‘West Point of U.S. Intelligence'….Yale University," said Pusley.
     “The Harvard Business School was the home of Dr. Kenneth Goodpaster who left Harvard when it refused to accept funding for an ethics department.  Dabney Boles writes for CPW News:  “Was it the Koch brothers whose money was rejected because aside Skilling, Bush, Paulson and Romney it was all too obvious if the sword point was at Harvard? What will Goodpaster add to St. Thomas' Center for Ethical Business Culture’s annual Ethics Case Competition hosted by the CEBC, the University of St. Thomas Opus College of Business and UnitedHealth Group?  Case studies from real cases involving Koch Industries and UnitedHealth Group? Will he ask David Koch a simple question: Have you talked to the bees? Really talked to the bees?"  Pusley noted that it was the Kochs who funded the Goodpaster appointment at St. Thomas College.

     Pusley has tried to encourage David and Charles Koch as well Goodpaster and others to create a spiritual retreat titled Talking to the Bees:  Judeo-Christianity, Western Orthodoxy, the Free Market and John the Baptist.  "I'm not very hopeful that they would be willing to live on locusts and wild honey for a week, nor that Donald Rumsfeld and Dick Cheney could do without Aspartame in lieu of natural bee honey and Stevia instead of Monsanto's genetically engineered corn syrup," said Pusley.
    When Harvard refused the challenge, Yale picked it up as quickly as it picked up pre-Colombian artifacts from Peru or Geronimo's skull from Oklahoma, but not under the auspices of its business school.  Instead, Yale created  the Spiritual Enterprise Institute from beneath, beside and seemingly above the chummy waters of the messy Free Market. Yale's was a divine blessing neatly made evident by generous contributions from those with a free enterprise spirituality. Pusley assumes that the funding for the rejected Harvard program was perhaps to have been given by the Koch Brothers. David and Charles' father was a founder of the John Birch Society and of Koch Industries. Following in their father’s tracks, they also supported the funding of the Tea Party with its numerous links to the Libertarians.

     “The line is clear," said Pusley.  "From John Birch to the Tea Party with a Remora-like attachment of the Libertarians.  Rand Paul’s father’s Congressional District is home to key Koch Industries' companies so it is logical that Rand would be a big Tea Party advocate and the Libertarian umbrella provides a physician with a philosophical framework for relieving concerns about petro-chemical dangers to human health. The Tea Party is synonymous with Petro-Chemicals and the pollution record of the Koch’s is abysmal.  They support any philosophy, ideology or, better yet, theology that supports the Old Testament notion from Genesis of “subduing the earth," Pusley asserts, "which we all know allows for substantial collateral damage." 
     "So the Yale elites, the 'West Pointers' of U.S. intelligence community, exported a similar program to the South.  Specifically to New Orleans where The Center for Spiritual Capital at the Jesuit University, Loyola, is modeled on Yale’s approach to anointing Laisse Faire Capitalism.   It was a marriage as familial as Allen Dulles' kinship to Avery Dulles, the CIA's Director and staunch Presbyterian and his cousin, the first Roman Catholic convert to become a Cardinal without first becoming a Bishop. It is there at the Jesuit's Loyola that the institutes's director, Nicholas Capaldi, an expert on the philosophy of Utilitarian, John Stuart Mill, Capaldi boldly asserts the marriage between Judeo-Christian tradition and free market economics.
   Not unlike Yale’s Spiritual Enterprise Institute, Capaldi’s Center for Spiritual Capital states:
    Loyola's goal for the center is to revitalize America's spiritual capital. Judeo-Christian heritage is the core of America's spiritual capital. As the defining element in American culture it has made possible our economic and political achievements and freedoms; these achievements cannot be sustained without that heritage; the heritage has important positive implications for commerce both nationally and globally; the heritage is often misunderstood and misrepresented, and, for all of the above reasons, the heritage needs to be reaffirmed. 
     The Center for Spiritual Capital  also quotes Pope John Paul II who leans more toward one of the versions of creation in Genesis than the other without noting the tension between the two (Genesis 1 and Genesis 2) that was so eloquently explored by Jewish theologian Joseph Soloveitchik in The Lonely Man of Faith.  Relinquishing the Genesis tension, the Pope said boldly if misguidedly when divorced from the two differing accounts:
     Man is made to be in the visible universe an image and likeness of God Himself, and he is placed in it in order to subdue the earth...In carrying out this mandate, every human being reflects the very action of the Creator....Organizing such a productive effort... taking necessary risks... an essential part of that work [is] initiative and entrepreneurial ability.

     This is music to the ears of the Koch brothers, to many who believe that fossil fuels are the center of the earth’s energy solutions just as the church believed that the earth was the center of the universe in spite of the evidence and the church was , therefore, deserving of silencing the critics….Copernicus and Galileo. It is music to the ears of Libertarians who historically desire, like David and Charles Koch, avoiding a $350 million pollution fine and 97 count indictment in Texas in 2000 with the election (*appointment) of George W. Bush instead of Al Gore.  Indeed, with the election of Bush, Koch’s huge fine evaporated within days like the Benzene they released into the Texas sky at 15 times the allowable level with untold pain and suffering to those who contracted various cancers from their disregard potentially injuring the families of the very people who worked for them, joined their father’s Birchers or defended them in court cases and community publicity battles. 
     According to Pusley it's not hard to understand the connections between the traditional tension of the Puritan Protestant New England Brahman families of Yale and the Roman Catholics in New Haven whose ideas would migrate South. The Protestant's marriage to the earliest Roman Catholic immigrants was slowly incorporated at Yale only to migrate somewhat to Harvard where in the cradle of Boston's burgeoning Irish Catholic culture they began to eclipse the Protestants.  The Protestants, driven by their own ambition and presbyopia that blurred the lessons of history just as it had the Catholics, both forgot the tension between Gensis 1 and Genesis 2. George Washington Riggs was in the Yale class of 1833, the same class that founded Skull & Bones.  T. Lawrason Riggs was his grandson and stands as the lynch-pin between the two faiths, equally bent on persuing a lopsided vision of the Genesis story to the detriment of the entire world.  This is the same Riggs family that incorporated the Riggs National Bank in Washington that funded Samuel F. Brown Morse's telegraph, were the bankers for countless U.S. presidents and generals and even handled the banking of Chile's brutal right-winged dictator, Augusto Pinochet.  Riggs children would mine lead and other metals used in fortifying the "Arsenal of Freedom" which many have come to believe, when seen in light of Dwight D. Eisenhowers' caution about the American Military Industrial Complex, but who also banked at Riggs Bank, is more accurately the "Arsenic of Freedom".  "They both miss the point in the definition of what is orthodox Christian belief by misreading scripture and assessing its cautions," said Pusley.  "Where orthodoxy is defined by Genesis 1 without Genesis 2, subduing the earth without concern for its proper stewardship and maintenance a natural orthodoxy will sooner or later be proscribed."

     “Logically, Capaldi’s New Orleans based spirituality center would have a counterpart in Houston, the center of the world’s petro-chemical empire where hospitals like M.D. Anderson, smack dab in the center of the petro-chemical cloud touts its wonderful breakthroughs in cancer research.   Meanwhile, at Massachusetts Institute of Technology where the Koch brothers fund cancer research the announcement was recently made of the drastic reduction in the cost of production of proton-beam radiology therapy devices aimed at killing things like Benzene produced cancers,” said Pusley.
     “At Rice University is Libertarian apologist and ‘ethicist’, Hugo Tristram Engelhardt.  Engelhardt wrote a watershed book on bio-medical ethics, The Foundations of Bioethics, and then after several years, provided a second edition that was a kind of proof-texting of Biblical justifications for Libertarianism.   Engelhardt works within the shadow of the James A. Baker Center for Public Policy with its longstanding ties to George H.W. Bush and to the Union Pacific Railroad through Baker’s ancestors.  Rice is also the home of Kenneth Pitzer, a recipient of the Robert Alonzo Welch Award for chemistry, a president of Rice, close associate of chemist Norman Hackerman, also president of Rice and University of Texas.  Pitzer, together with William  Liscum Borden, provided the testimony needed to strip J. Robert Oppenheimer of his national security clearance when Oppenheimer joined other scientists like Albert Einstein in rejecting the unbridled militarization of the atom bomb with creation of a larger hydrogen bomb.   Oppenheimer, presumably a communist based on the Borden and Pitzer testimony, was replaced by Dr. Edward Teller, the Dr. Strangelove of the nuclear arms race.   I prefer to view the problems in the same way that Yale’s William Sloane Coffin viewed the civil rights issue when he was asked by William F. Buckley if he wasn’t trying to be Utopian.  ‘We have a long way to go before we have to worry about becoming idolatrous in our pursuit of a better world,’" said Pusley summarizing Coffin's rebuttal to Buckley's charge. 
     “A Roman Catholic trained at Tulane in medicine and at the University of Texas in philosophy, Engelhardt, who grew up in the small German town of New Braunfels north of San Antonio where Allen Dulles imported the Nazi scientists through Operation Paperclip, where AT&T, the company whose fiber optics cable splitters in San Luis Abispo and San Francisco read everyone's email and where the NSA is currently building a monolithic storage facility for housing the mountains of data collected with or without search warrants in a facility the size of the Alamo Dome and where the first school in the U.S. is forcing students to carry computer tracking devices, found a kindred spirit in Capaldi.  Capaldi, whose appreciation of John Stuart Mill’s utilitarianism is not far removed from Libertarianism, nor from Adam Smith or Milton Friedman’s Laisse Faire Capitalism, is well pleased," said Pusley.
    "While the widely acclaimed German theologian, Karl Barth, would argue that one could not read the Bible without concluding that ‘Democracy was ordained by God,’ trying to lay a clear line around Christianity’s endorsement of Adam Smith or any other economic philosophy is much more problematic.  Engelhardt, whose interest in pharmacology is also incorporated into his research has become a member of the Eastern Orthodox Church citing its powerlessness in comparison to Western Christianity as part of its overall appeal,” said Pusley.  "Copernicus and Galileo would not need a weaker form of Christianity to get their ideas across, but rather the marriage of science to a stronger form of Christianity under the single-mindedness of Martin Luther which serendipitously piggy-backed Gutenberg's advances in Northern Europe and breaking down the church's misguided parochialism," said Pusley noting that Yale, Loyola and St. Thomas were resurrecting the old model to protect the petro-chemical industry.
     “Capaldi remains tied to the Jesuit school, Loyola, with its unswerving faithfulness to Western Christian Orthodoxy as he sees it. The Koch brothers remain attach to nearly any school that will promote their philosophy....from MIT to the Roman Catholic Saint Thomas University where Kenneth Goodpaster now teaches.  At Massachusetts Institute of Technology is the David H. Koch Center for Integrative Cancer Research,” Pusley continued.
     Pusley sees a pattern.  “You can draw a line between these entities, take a step back and see a not so well disguised system of ideological mass aimed at encapsulating the contributions of the petro-chemical industry as a divinely ordered asset that centers on the spiritual capital it provides...or more precisely....on the capital it gives and then spiritualizes.  Does it provide a skewed view of spiritual capital?  Most assuredly.  It's as different as St. Francis of Assisi was from his father, whose cloth dying businesses gave workers a deadly rash....leading to Francis' now famous stroll though Assisi buck naked.  Francis was not unlike Jim Morrison of the Doors whose father was the U.S. Navy Admiral in charge of the Vietnam War's Gulf of Tonkin affair which William Sloan Coffin also abhorred.   Francis was a peaceful version of William Ayers whose father was on a dozen U.S. military complex company boards during the same Vietnam era.  More recently there is John Walker Lindh, the quirky American Taliban, whose father was a chief attorney for Pacific Gas and Electric, the well-polluting company made famous in the Erin Brockovich story,” said Pusley who added...."needless to say, John Walker Lindh is not likely to enroll at either Yale or Loyola's spirituality programs when he is released from prison, though he might never have joined the nutcake Taliban with their wretched treatment of women among other atrocities, had things been more circumspect and the tension described by Soloveitchik even marginally maintained."

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