One of the main criticisms of Psychological Egoism as as theory is
precisely the fault that you identify. It is an oversimplification of
motivations, such that one must be either selfish or unselfish (imposible
according to te P. E.), and there is no acknowledgement of the complexity
of motivations, nor of their interdependence. Your explanation via
object-relations is very interesting. Hobbes was trying to develop a
theory of motivations without the benefit of modern psychology.
> From: "Howard E Gorman" <[log in to unmask]>
> Subject: Altruism
> Perhaps what makes this discussion of altruism vs selfishness so
> troubling is that issue of altruism is always posed as 'either/or' --
> eiither my pursuit of happiness is oblivious to your pain or my concern
> for your happiness makes my pain irrelevent. This seems to me too be
> uncomfortably close to the splitting of the paranoid/schizoid position,
> i.e., either I don't care if I destroy you, or everything you do that
> makes me uncomfortable risks destroying me.