Lady Brin

Did Obama take Econ 101?

38 posts in this topic

While KPO'M does not express a particularly Objectivist approach to politics, it is a way of approaching the subject that Ayn Rand was familiar with and wrote about.

I talk about politics as it is, not as we would like it to be. So does Leonard Peikoff. In 2004 and 2006, he concluded that voting for the Democrats was the better of two undesirable options.

I have not yet decided what the better option is for 2008 (nor has Peikoff made his views known). However, regardless of what I may want, I see 2008 as a positive year for the Democratic party for the reasons I stated previously. That doesn't mean I agree with those views, but it does mean that I think that the majority of voters will act in accordance with those views.

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Since when does being "pro-business" make a party or a candidate "worthy of our support" -- if you mean an Objectivist's support? That is not the Objectivist standard of political merit. What about supporting and protecting individual rights? Sarbanes-Oxley, government regulation, and most government spending are wrong because they violate individual rights.

All of these assertions and speculations are just worthless blather without an understanding of the importance of individual rights.

A pro-individualist party will be pro-capitalist, which in the long run is pro business.

It will also in the long run be pro-artist, pro-intellectual, pro-farmer, pro-medicine, and even pro-religious freedom. So what? None of those are essential.

The essential -- and the only standard for who deserves support -- is individual rights.

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While KPO'M does not express a particularly Objectivist approach to politics, it is a way of approaching the subject that Ayn Rand was familiar with and wrote about.

I talk about politics as it is, not as we would like it to be. So does Leonard Peikoff. In 2004 and 2006, he concluded that voting for the Democrats was the better of two undesirable options.

Much as I disagreed with Dr. Peikoff's electoral recommendations, it is slanderous claim that they were based on an unprincipled, concrete-bound assessment of "politics as it it" rather than a reasoned concern for what he "would like it to be."

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While KPO'M does not express a particularly Objectivist approach to politics, it is a way of approaching the subject that Ayn Rand was familiar with and wrote about.

I talk about politics as it is, not as we would like it to be. So does Leonard Peikoff. In 2004 and 2006, he concluded that voting for the Democrats was the better of two undesirable options.

Much as I disagreed with Dr. Peikoff's electoral recommendations, it is slanderous claim that they were based on an unprincipled, concrete-bound assessment of "politics as it it" rather than a reasoned concern for what he "would like it to be."

I agree. Peikoff was basing his decision precisely on Individual Rights not on "politics at it is" whatever that means.

KPO, does it mean without a context of the rest of life?

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While KPO'M does not express a particularly Objectivist approach to politics, it is a way of approaching the subject that Ayn Rand was familiar with and wrote about.

I talk about politics as it is, not as we would like it to be. So does Leonard Peikoff. In 2004 and 2006, he concluded that voting for the Democrats was the better of two undesirable options.

Much as I disagreed with Dr. Peikoff's electoral recommendations, it is slanderous claim that they were based on an unprincipled, concrete-bound assessment of "politics as it it" rather than a reasoned concern for what he "would like it to be."

Surely no one can accuse someone who thinks that the Republican Party "stands for medieval theocracy" and that the Democrats are defending "civil rights" as assessing "politics as it is" :wacko:

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I agree. Peikoff was basing his decision precisely on Individual Rights not on "politics at it is" whatever that means.

I understood Dr. Peikoff's position, but there was just no way I could pull the Dem handle. As a business person I would have *felt* like I was shooting myself in the foot, so I didn't vote. I also couldn't vote for a horsehead. :wacko:

I seriously doubt if I'll vote this time. I haven't been able to rationalize that voting for a socialist-wannabe to prevent a fascist from being elected is the moral thing to do. I'm very conflicted. Actually I'm very scared.

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I agree. Peikoff was basing his decision precisely on Individual Rights not on "politics at it is" whatever that means.

I understood Dr. Peikoff's position, but there was just no way I could pull the Dem handle. As a business person I would have *felt* like I was shooting myself in the foot, so I didn't vote. I also couldn't vote for a horsehead. :wacko:

I seriously doubt if I'll vote this time. I haven't been able to rationalize that voting for a socialist-wannabe to prevent a fascist from being elected is the moral thing to do. I'm very conflicted. Actually I'm very scared.

I am frightened, too. I tentatively expect to vote for McCain to keep Obama out and then to endure 4 years of torment and destruction anyway, trying to remember that if McCain wins that the torment would have been worse otherwise. Remember that morality deals with the realm of what choice is possible to you in reality, not what you would prefer if the choice were up to you. The election determines which of the two major candidates will be in power and which of these two will not be; voting within the choice you are given is not a philosophic endorsement of fascism. If you think your vote makes a difference in your state then use it; you can't abstain from one of them being elected and you can't be expected to sacrifice yourself by not participating at all.

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Remember that morality deals with the realm of what choice is possible to you in reality, not what you would prefer if the choice were up to you.

I don't think I fully understood this before.

If you think your vote makes a difference in your state then use it; you can't abstain from one of them being elected and you can't be expected to sacrifice yourself by not participating at all.

I'm not sure I fully comprehend this statement. Could you elaborate?

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Remember that morality deals with the realm of what choice is possible to you in reality, not what you would prefer if the choice were up to you.

I don't think I fully understood this before.

If you think your vote makes a difference in your state then use it; you can't abstain from one of them being elected and you can't be expected to sacrifice yourself by not participating at all.

I'm not sure I fully comprehend this statement. Could you elaborate?

For the first part, it means that one of them will be elected whether you participate or not -- a refusal to vote does not change that so you had better take that into account. There are no abstentions and no time outs. They will proceed whether you like it or not and with or without your participation, so if you have a way to influence the outcome you had better use it the best you can.

For the second part, it means not to let someone talk you into the claim that a moral position in voting requires that you not do whatever you can to save yourself from the worst candidate. You had said that as a business person you are frightened of socialists (presumably now more of Obama than McCain) but while you understood Leonard Peikoff's argument, you couldn't bring yourself to follow it and vote for the Democrat and "shoot yourself in the foot", so you didn't vote the last time -- implying that you thought you had been convinced that voting for a Democrat was right even though you sensed that it threatened you more. So you abstained because of the greater threat to yourself, which you could not bring yourself to endorse and "shoot yourself in the foot". Abstaining was a half way measure that half way shot yourself in the foot and didn't resolve anything. But there is no moral conflict. If you are personally threatened by a candidate there is no valid moral argument for you to vote for him, or to support him half way by not voting for his opponent. You cannot be expected to sacrifice yourself in the name of "morality", of all things, by voting against your own interests or failing to act to the fullest you can in the only choice you are given. If you think the moral course of action requires you to sacrifice youself -- "shooting yourself in the foot" or half shooting yourself -- then "check your premises".

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The question is not whether the Republicans represent a healthy society - which no Objectivist thinks. It's whether the Bird Flu/Ebola represented by Obama and other Democrats is worse than the Pneumonia/Measles represented by the Republicans.

Perhaps the best reason to vote for Obama (or Barr) is that Obama with a Democratic Congress would drive our economy down the tube. The real change we want will only come when we've reached rock bottom.

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The question is not whether the Republicans represent a healthy society - which no Objectivist thinks. It's whether the Bird Flu/Ebola represented by Obama and other Democrats is worse than the Pneumonia/Measles represented by the Republicans.

Perhaps the best reason to vote for Obama (or Barr) is that Obama with a Democratic Congress would drive our economy down the tube. The real change we want will only come when we've reached rock bottom.

And just who do you think has the resources and means to fight anything from a position of "rock bottom"? How do you propose that people understand what is a proper social system from seeing only that they have been clobbered and that capitalism is being blamed? How do you propose that anyone at all identify what is right from knowing only what they have is bad? How do you propose that we live in our limited time on earth under the conditions of destruction you propose?

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I recently posted this on the HBList.

How important is the health care issue? Its probably by pure accident, but it seems like McCain plans to go in a decent direction with health care.

Part of the problem with health care is that people don't even see the prices they spend. In fact, after medicare, tax benefits, and how much the employer usual pays behind the scenes, the average Joe usually only sees about 14% of what he is actually paying. It all started with the act during the depression that gave tax breaks to employers. Its definitely not a free market construct. (statistics from "The Cure" by Dr. David Gratzer)

Obviously, the best route is to drop medicare/aid and taxes altogether, but some of the policies on his site look like they might accidentally fix parts of the health care system. He wants to be able to have people see how much they are spending. This means people will start looking at prices again, and see how much really comes out of their pocket (well, more than just 14% of it anyways).

To me, that seems so much better than going to universal health care and have more money come out of my pocket. I'm not saying his solution is good, but it seems much more less bad than universal health care.

From:

http://www.johnmccain.com/Informing/Issues...cf2edb527cf.htm

"John McCain Will Reform The Tax Code To Offer More Choices Beyond Employer-Based Health Insurance Coverage. [...]

John McCain Will Encourage And Expand The Benefits Of Health Savings Accounts (HSAs) For Families. [...] "

It seems like a total accident on McCain's part, as his plan is to pull socialistic policies from one part and put it in another part of the economy. But the end result might seriously help health care in America.

I doubt either know economics at all, or even the relation of wealth to life... Its like picking between Orwen (sp?) and Ferris from Atlas Shrugged.

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Perhaps the best reason to vote for Obama (or Barr) is that Obama with a Democratic Congress would drive our economy down the tube. The real change we want will only come when we've reached rock bottom.

When the Romans began to loose their liberty in the early empire it did not stop until they were left under an absolute oriental despotism with secret police. It only stopped there because there was nothing left to take. Liberty once lost is not easily regained.

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