Darrell Cody

The bad guy won. The fight continues.

50 posts in this topic

The important thing in my opinion is to help move the GOP away from abortion, gay marriage, immigration, etc. There needs to be a strong change in the philosophical stance of the GOP. I don't know if the best way to do that is by writing letters, voting for libertarian candidates, or become an actual member of the GOP to influence nomination contests.

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The important thing in my opinion is to help move the GOP away from abortion, gay marriage, immigration, etc. There needs to be a strong change in the philosophical stance of the GOP. I don't know if the best way to do that is by writing letters, voting for libertarian candidates, or become an actual member of the GOP to influence nomination contests.

Yes. People like Akin can go to hell; don't make us political martyrs for your principles.

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All the suffering and loss incurred in the Revolutionary War, spat upon by a voting public that has drank the poison hemlock. The genius of Ben Franklin, Madison, Jefferson, Washington, all of them trumpled under the feet by millions lemmings running towards the cliff of collectivism and scarcity. I realize that the decay started long ago in America, but with Obama we saw the first lights of a man who not only hates this country and her rich history, but who also openly embraces world tyrants and ideologies that are evil. Yes, I am angry. Angry at a public that refuses reason and welcomes moral bankruptcy. I now must fight harder and harder to preserve what little vestige is left of a once great country. America of yesteryear is no more. I doubt America will survive another decade. The heartbreaking part of this story is that my children will grow up in a nation spoiled by blind faith and trillions in debt, rights lost and never to be known, opportunities lost, dreams put out of reach from some empty suits in Wash DC. But I fight on. The surest way for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.

"I swear by my life and my love of it that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine."--AR

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Well said Erik.

If anything, I'm actually more motivated. The looters are a lost cause, there will always be looters, and they'll most likely always be the majority. I'm taking this opportunity to work more on my conservative friends, to show them that religious altruism is NOT the way to win the battle.

We need to find the Reardons, the Wyatts and the Mike Donnigans, share our intellectual ammunition and can fight on.

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As one who has fought lifelong the programming of my "cradle catholic" upbringing and specifically the damage installed in my sense of life, I can tell you that both true believers and most of those afraid to cut the strings have at root a tragic sense of life. Man is not made for this world and will die and must die reconciled right to the ultimate good if he wants eternal life. I have looked death in the face on operating tables twice since October 2 and I can tell you those impulses come unbidden and with great strength. Most religiously trained and attached people will give up and get in line with the "humanitarian" "philosophy" of the progressives. Many will shove the conflict out of the way when it sneaks into consciousness and many will be like the husband in AR's play "Ideal" who will hold on to bitter resentment in their hearts but will go along. Some are happy with the statist program and others figure they'll be OK if they just go along. But the seeds of the disease underlying all of their resolves have been sown deep.

I had been pondering already - before the election - how much of my own individual precious life I want to spend on that mess. The stent in my heart and the coratid artery repair seem to have given me a reprieve. For a week? a month? a year? even ten? The sun is shining and the sky is blue and it's getting difficult to think how and why I should spend any more time on American politics.

People act in association by nature; no one is born alone and no one comes to mature reason and productivity alone and no one I ever heard of succeeded alone. Objectivism needs a robust analysis, theory, literature, a vivid narrative of rational people living in culture, society and politics if it can even begin to affect the current political course of the United States. From where I sit right now I'd rather have seen Rand write more novels, plays, movies , TV shows and pushed them into production.

I guess you could say that I'm not optimistic; others have more reason to remain in the theater of action.

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So many likeminded people and so many different opinions about what to do next. Lots of confusion. Despair. Sleeve-rolling. Teeth gritting. Uncertainty. Anger.

Objectivists, libertarians, center-Right Republicans. All of us wonder what to do next. I am caught in it too. I feel every stage of grief all at once. I feel the same as Erik, and those who are angry. I also feel the same as Elliot and people like Roger Simon who wish to roll up their sleeves and fight harder. Still there are those like Glenn Reynolds and some of his readers who think it's not as bad as it seems, and America is far from collapse or any kind of catastrophe.

Yes. This is reality. This is what we have to deal with. How do we do it? What do I do with my wife and my 2 year old daughter and my two slightly over-mortgaged homes? How can I live a happy life and survive?

One way is simply to hunker down, prepare for the worst. Simplify and ride it out. I have a job, for now. Will it weather the storm I think is coming eventually?

Another way is to "Shrug". There are many people I know in life who I work with and who I would call "producers." People who have actual skills and know how to make things and do actual meaningful work. I would like to corral all those people in to one state or one corner of the world and live my life. A little like the Free State Project or on a smaller scale, Galt's Gulch. This seems slightly far-fetched, but that's what I would like to do.

Another way is to try to find the new Land of the Free, if it can be found. If I am going to immigrate somewhere else, will it be any better? If it is, for how long?

Forgive this stream of consciousness. It's not exactly an organized presentation but this is what I'm thinking, and I assume many others are thinking something similar.

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I'm fortunate to have a really good job with some very good options. I expect that in the next 2 years I'll make enough that I'll have the freedom to make much more bold decisions.

I have a friend who is very wealthy. He does a lot of VC work for start ups now. At dinner on Saturday night, he, his wife and I where discussing politics with me and I jokingly asked if he was ready to go Galt. His wife looked at me with a straight face and said "Cayman Islands".

I'm not being dramatic and saying "I'm out". My life, for the time being, is here. However, I am saying that depending on what happens over the next few years, this is something I may consider. I would make it a point to become a Francisco D'anconia.

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I doubt America will survive another decade. The heartbreaking part of this story is that my children will grow up in a nation spoiled by blind faith and trillions in debt, rights lost and never to be known, opportunities lost, dreams put out of reach from some empty suits in Wash DC. But I fight on. The surest way for evil to triumph is for good men to do nothing.

I was born in London in 1938. Two years later the blitz started. The bombing raids were terrifying for a three year old. Our house wasn't hit but others weren't so lucky. I was evacuated to Wales. I always had enough food, but other children didn't. By the end of the war great damage had been done to infrastructure. When I returned to London I was able to play in the ruins of entire city blocks.

Winston Churchill was the leader during the war and he was beloved as a war leader. But he was a Tory (conservative). The people blamed the Tories for the great depression. So in the election of 1945 Churchill and the Tories lost in a landslide to Clement Atlee and the Labour Party (socialists).

Atlee continued the food rationing that had been imposed in the war. He also nationalized a large part of the economy including the rails, the steel industry, the coal industry, and the healthcare system.

The economy stagnated except for a thriving black market. Taxes were draconian (The Beatles later sang, "There's one for you, nineteen for me." which closely reflected the 96% top rate.) Under successive governments, both Labour and Conservative, Britain became known as "the sick man of Europe."

Fast forward to the 1980s. Maggie Thatcher dramatically cut income tax rates, denationalized industries, and adopted a host of pro-market reforms. The result was that Britain became an economic powerhouse, the most dynamic economy in Europe.

It is useful to view the reelection of Barack Obama in this context. We're in for a tough four years. The economy won't do as well as it should and there is a higher risk of inflation, recession, or even a depression. But if a country like England, whose population is more socialist than America's, can survive World War II and a series of Labour governments, to elect a leader like Thatcher, then surely the USA will survive four more years of Obama.

And, from a long term perspective, things are looking up. Obama's first four years caused people to revisit Ayn Rand's work, specifically "Atlas Shrugged". The Ayn Rand Institute and others are injecting an Objectivist viewpoint into the general culture. Quotes from Rand have become part of the national conversation. While there is much work to be done, and much danger to be faced, there is every reason to hope that your children and grandchildren will have a bright future.

In my judgment it is not time to "go Galt". Dropping out of the work force means that skills stagnate and wealth is not acquired.

Neither is it time to flee the USA. This is the place where the battle must be fought. The only hope for the world is for America to return to the values that made it great. If the battle is lost here, then nowhere will be safe.

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I was born in London in 1938. Two years later the blitz started. The bombing raids were terrifying for a three year old. Our house wasn't hit but others weren't so lucky. I was evacuated to Wales. I always had enough food, but other children didn't. By the end of the war great damage had been done to infrastructure. When I returned to London I was able to play in the ruins of entire city blocks.

Winston Churchill was the leader during the war and he was beloved as a war leader. But he was a Tory (conservative). The people blamed the Tories for the great depression. So in the election of 1945 Churchill and the Tories lost in a landslide to Clement Atlee and the Labour Party (socialists).

Atlee continued the food rationing that had been imposed in the war. He also nationalized a large part of the economy including the rails, the steel industry, the coal industry, and the healthcare system.

The economy stagnated except for a thriving black market. Taxes were draconian (The Beatles later sang, "There's one for you, nineteen for me." which closely reflected the 96% top rate.) Under successive governments, both Labour and Conservative, Britain became known as "the sick man of Europe."

Similarly, the early 20th century in the USA looked quite bleak. 3 terms of FDR, two world-wars, great depressions, dust bowls, etc, all make 2 terms of Obama seem like a cakewalk. If they survived then we will have to find some way as well.

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Do you know how welfare voting works, though? No amount of cultural influence will do much of anything if there's a horde of welfare takers who keep voting for more statism. Other than classical dictatorship, that's the strategy of every leftist party in the world.

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I think once a nation attains a certain population size it becomes more and more difficult to retain a free and civilized society. The sheer size makes it a problem. If you look at Heritage.org's freedom index, the "freest" economies and nations are not large; Australia, New Zealand, Swizterland....The USA is a sad 10th place (when we ought to be first). No matter how airtight and well crafted a nations laws may be, without a citizenry's embrace of reason and the values of individual rights, it is hard pressed for such a nation to maintain liberty.

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The one thing which really scares me is that no matter how well or how fast we inspire Americans to move politically to the right, we are still going to be outbred by hispanics, who trend to the left quite dominantly. Later generations of hispanics are found to move slightly to the right, but they are always left of center as a group, much more so than average Americans.

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Brian B., thank you for your remarks. Born in the late 1940's here, it seems like my life has been spent watching the ascent of the Progressives. I had hoped their influence had finally crested with the first Obama term, but apparently not. I tell my finance students things have been darker than now and recovered and you are right to remind us of times that were darker yet, only to be overcome.

There needs be, in my opinion, something like the Alinsky "Rules for Radicals" for people like us. I personally do not believe trying to influence intellectuals by itself will ever sufficiently undermine the Progressive Agenda to help enough.

Obviously, my recent experiences have colored my mood; but by the same token, I have now vivid first hand experience of the Benevolent Universe Premise in the two teams of doctors who are booting me in the butt and telling me to get in shape for the next twenty years or more. And add your words as well!

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Do you know how welfare voting works, though? No amount of cultural influence will do much of anything if there's a horde of welfare takers who keep voting for more statism. Other than classical dictatorship, that's the strategy of every leftist party in the world.

That is one of the the fatal flaws of democracy. One a politician offers a share of the national treasury to the plebes he will be elected and elected again. At this point politics becomes a race to the bottom. A ruling oligarchy can hold on to power indefinitely as long as they promise bread and circuses to the many. This goes on until the system collapses from its own dry rot.

ruveyn

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Do you know how welfare voting works, though? No amount of cultural influence will do much of anything if there's a horde of welfare takers who keep voting for more statism. Other than classical dictatorship, that's the strategy of every leftist party in the world.
The one thing which really scares me is that no matter how well or how fast we inspire Americans to move politically to the right, we are still going to be outbred by hispanics, who trend to the left quite dominantly. Later generations of hispanics are found to move slightly to the right, but they are always left of center as a group, much more so than average Americans.

L_C and Carlos;

The peoples in the two scenarios that you describe share a common trait: they both think that it is in their rational self interest to vote for ever larger government benefits. The solution is quite simple: show them that their lives are poorer and meaner if the government provides for them than if they earn their own values.

The solution is simple to state but difficult to implement. For example ...

In England people will tell you that the National Health System is the best in the world. If you ask them about their own interactions with their doctors and hospitals, you often hear horror stories of treatment that is inadequate or flat out denied. An English friend of mine told me that: "Over here diabetes is a do-it-yourself disease."

Contrast that with the situation in the US. Many Americans will tell you that they are dissatisfied with the health system. They say that there should be a single payer, government run, healthcare system. When you ask them about the treatment they receive from their doctors, they go into rhapsodies of praise. Their doctors are wonderful, they say, and they are full of gratitude.

These two examples show the magnitude of the problem. In both cases the populations think that healthcare should be free, provided by the government. Their real world experiences have no power to shake this belief. Only philosophical education can lead them to understand that their self-interest is best served by a capitalist healthcare system.

How do we get there from here? The Ayn Rand Institute has described and is executing the necessary steps. It starts by training philosophers, who then teach fundamental principles to intellectuals in other disciplines, who promulgate the ideas to the general population. This is a process that will take generations.

It needs to be stressed that there are no shortcuts for this process. Some pin their hopes on making changes through the political process. This is doomed to failure. Unless attitudes change, any political victories will be transient.

L_C, in another thread you wrote about the difficulty of acquiring a CPAP machine through the Swedish health system. This is a great example to exemplify the virtues of lower taxes and more choice.

Carlos, I don't think that Hispanics are any different to you and me. If they acquire a clear understanding of where their self interest lies, they will act on it. They will vote in droves to eliminate government programs and reduce the tax burden on themselves and the industrialists who create their jobs.

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[...]

And, from a long term perspective, things are looking up. Obama's first four years caused people to revisit Ayn Rand's work, specifically "Atlas Shrugged". The Ayn Rand Institute and others are injecting an Objectivist viewpoint into the general culture. Quotes from Rand have become part of the national conversation. While there is much work to be done, and much danger to be faced, there is every reason to hope that your children and grandchildren will have a bright future.

In my judgment it is not time to "go Galt". Dropping out of the work force means that skills stagnate and wealth is not acquired.

Neither is it time to flee the USA. This is the place where the battle must be fought. The only hope for the world is for America to return to the values that made it great. If the battle is lost here, then nowhere will be safe.

I agree. As long as we have free speech in this country, we have a chance to fight back -- and I intend to use it for all I'm worth.

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As always, Betsy's upbeat attitude is always refreshing, and BrianB, I appreciate your real-world historical perspective in England. We are certainly not living in "Dark Times" yet, compared to other periods of the 20th century.

But notice I said "yet". I speak for myself only, but I assume others will agree, that the problem with the last few years and this latest election is that although we are not at war, in a depression, witnessing terrible events really of any kind, I feel "something" coming. I'm not sure what that something is, but I see the writing on the wall. I won't present all the evidence here but certainly there are many signs, foreign and domestic, that show that our country is getting worse, not better. We have not learned anything from 9/11, which still haunts me a bit, and our electorate still craves handouts (and that's just the 50% that actually gets off the couch to vote).

The other thing is this: Brian, you say that we can educate the public, but it will take generations to fix the problem. I think that's what many including myself are lamenting: I don't want it to take generations. I want MY LIFE, RIGHT NOW, to be better. Yes, this is the reality we live in and I must deal with it, and not evade it. But this is not the way things are supposed to be. I am 36, I've worked hard and loved life, I'm at the top of my career. I should be looking to the future with anxious, restless anticipation. But I am not. The future for me and my daughter is very, very uncertain.

With that in mind, however, I do agree with Betsy and others that the US is the best place to be right now, which is why my wife and I, after a long, intense discussion over the last few nights, have decided to stay put, and simply prepare ourselves financially for what may come. We had considered our options in other countries and other states outside Arizona, but all of those options require giving up something we don't want to trade. For instance, the Heritage Foundation's study of countries around the world has been mentioned here in this discussion. Australia is ranked fairly high there. But I've been there, and the reality is that there is quite a bit of paternalism there, not to mention restrictive gun rights. Surprisingly enough; my wife, tall, skinny blonde girl that she is, really likes having a shotgun in the house. Gun rights and freedom of speech, like Betsy said, are two fundamental rights that we still have here that are really unparalleled in the world.

Even more important, raising our daughter outside the US would probably not result in her having that "rugged individualism" that my wife and I got from growing up here. I think any other civilized country will give our daughter the feeling that she's always being looked after and taken care of. I'd like to know more and to be proven wrong, but I've been to Europe and I think I know what would be in store there.

So here we stay and fight the culture war.

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I agree. As long as we have free speech in this country, we have a chance to fight back -- and I intend to use it for all I'm worth.

More power to you. I have never heard your voice but if it sounds like your writing, I say let your foes beware. As my grandmother, bubbe Melitzer (alihavah ha-shalom) used to tell me, bubbele, you got some mouth.

ruveyn

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