An astute insight from commenter Lucinda:
Unselfishness is a [bad] ultimate virtue because it contains no good judge.
Selves judge experience. Selfishness at least has the ability to correct itself if the results are bad enough for the self.
But under the rule of unselfishness, if any judgments are made, they must always be made by those without personal experience, by definition.
Unselfishness as ultimate authority is incoherent and/or impersonal.
There was an analogy that went around at some point of Heaven and Hell being the same, a feast with overly long spoons irrevocably affixed to the arms. Those who only thought of feeding self would suffer, those who learned to feed each other were blessed. It is an ugly portrayal, but beyond that, I think it pretty well exposes the basic feeling of permanent impotence of those who honestly espouse such nonsense.
This comment makes explicit for me a long-standing feeling about the sinister way that unselfishness works for the destruction a person, institution or society; if once it becomes established as the supreme virtue.
This has often been a mistake made about Christianity - the notion that it is, or should be, primarily about unselfishness. The evil consequences of this interpretational error can be seen in the tragic, mistaken and self-destructive life of evolutionary theorist George Price. An error in understanding what Christianity was about - misapplied with zeal and rigour; apparently led him by steps to a increasingly sordid and deluded lifestyle, through depression to suicide.
But where does this error come from? Ultimately, I think, from the failure to recognise that the business of God's creation is love; that creation and love are supreme and positive values; and that both creation and love are rooted in the individual.
As children of God, we each have within-us that which is divine; so each person is a part of divine creation and the divine plan. It is necessary, therefore, that we each bear responsibility for developing our unique and irreplaceable part in the whole.
To try and live by an ethos of unselfishness, of 'putting others first' - would be a denial of this primary personal responsibilty.
No wonder that it leads to self-destruction.