Vespasiano

John McCain: Pseudo-Maverick

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Edward Cline, author of the Sparrowhawk series of novels, has begun an assessment of John McCain and his Presidential candidacy at The Rule of Reason. In my view, Mr. Cline is spot-on when he writes "[Mr. McCain's] attribution of the principal role of 'sacrifice' in the [American] Revolution is a reflection on either his ignorance of the Revolution or his corrupted understanding of it, or both, a corruption and ignorance also responsible for the pandemic notion in the culture that the U.S. was founded as a 'democracy,' and not as a republic." As always, I find that the clarity and beautifully integrated nature of Mr. Cline's writing needs no "assistance".

Here is Part 1 of Mr. Cline's projected series. I will post future installments as they appear.

John McCain: Psuedo-Maverick 1

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Edward Cline, author of the Sparrowhawk series of novels, has begun an assessment of John McCain and his Presidential candidacy at The Rule of Reason. In my view, Mr. Cline is spot-on when he writes "[Mr. McCain's] attribution of the principal role of 'sacrifice' in the [American] Revolution is a reflection on either his ignorance of the Revolution or his corrupted understanding of it, or both, a corruption and ignorance also responsible for the pandemic notion in the culture that the U.S. was founded as a 'democracy,' and not as a republic." As always, I find that the clarity and beautifully integrated nature of Mr. Cline's writing needs no "assistance".

Here is Part 1 of Mr. Cline's projected series. I will post future installments as they appear.

John McCain: Psuedo-Maverick 1

Thanks for posting this, V. I'm truly grateful to Mr. Cline for taking the time to write such excellent analysis of the candidates and the issues at stake. He's a terrific writer.

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And here is the particularly hard-hitting second installment of Mr. Cline's assessment of Mr. McCain. An added value of this segment is its comparison between Messrs. McCain and Obama.

John McCain: Pseudo-Maverick II

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Cline's article was informative but I have no idea what this closing sentence means:

Come November, voters should send McCain, Obama, and Congress a reply that echoes John Galt's in Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged: "Get the hell out of my way!"

As has been noted many times, after the next election we are either going to have McCain *or* Obama as the next President, and Congress is unfortunately not going to go away either. So is this a suggestion not to vote, or one to send them a letter saying "Get the hell out of my way!"?

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Cline's article was informative but I have no idea what this closing sentence means:
Come November, voters should send McCain, Obama, and Congress a reply that echoes John Galt's in Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged: "Get the hell out of my way!"

As has been noted many times, after the next election we are either going to have McCain *or* Obama as the next President, and Congress is unfortunately not going to go away either. So is this a suggestion not to vote, or one to send them a letter saying "Get the hell out of my way!"?

I was wondering the same thing myself. Does "echoes" mean the same words, or words of similar meaning? It's hard to see it as meaning not to vote, for not voting is a nothing, while "Get the Hell out of my way!" is positively something.

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My comments might be slightly off subject. But, can anyone point to one country in history that once it became corrupt turned itself around? In all my studying of history I cannot name one. Some people might say that England turned itself around when Margaret Thatcher became Prime Minister, I disagree. It seems to me that Margaret Thatcher slowed down the progress of socialist/statist ideas but they are a lot worse off today than when she was in office. So, if a person votes for Obama I think they are going to help speed up the fall of this great country with nothing and no one of greatness to replace it. If a person votes for McCain they might slow down the fall of this great country while hoping for enough time to form a more rational society. But, either way, as long as this country keeps going in the direction it is, it is going to fall. So, when we are given two candidates that are as bad as the choices we have right now, realize that politicians are only representative of the people that put them there, we are in for one hell of a ride and it is not going to be a good one.

Just some thoughts.

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But, either way, as long as this country keeps going in the direction it is, it is going to fall.

You could have reasonably said that at the beginning of Jimmy Carter's administration and definitely proved it by the end of the Carter presidency.

But then came Reagan.

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My comments might be slightly off subject. But, can anyone point to one country in history that once it became corrupt turned itself around? In all my studying of history I cannot name one.

Europe after the Dark Ages. But it took a very long time. (Doesn't that make your day? :wacko: ) It will take a long time here, too, but -- if possible at all -- not as long because of the increased speed of communications.

Some people might say that England turned itself around when Margaret Thatcher became Prime Minister, I disagree. It seems to me that Margaret Thatcher slowed down the progress of socialist/statist ideas but they are a lot worse off today than when she was in office.

Likewise for Reagan, and McCain is no Reagan.

So, if a person votes for Obama I think they are going to help speed up the fall of this great country with nothing and no one of greatness to replace it. If a person votes for McCain they might slow down the fall of this great country while hoping for enough time to form a more rational society. But, either way, as long as this country keeps going in the direction it is, it is going to fall. So, when we are given two candidates that are as bad as the choices we have right now, realize that politicians are only representative of the people that put them there, we are in for one hell of a ride and it is not going to be a good one.

Just some thoughts.

It is grim but realistic.

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Cline's article was informative but I have no idea what this closing sentence means:
Come November, voters should send McCain, Obama, and Congress a reply that echoes John Galt's in Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged: "Get the hell out of my way!"

As has been noted many times, after the next election we are either going to have McCain *or* Obama as the next President, and Congress is unfortunately not going to go away either. So is this a suggestion not to vote, or one to send them a letter saying "Get the hell out of my way!"?

He hasn't published his conclusion yet. Whatever it is, the election is about which one we have to live under, not sending messages.

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[Mr. Cline] hasn't published his conclusion yet. Whatever it is, the election is about which one we have to live under, not sending messages.

Indeed. I understand there will be at least a third segment.

But one of the most important identifications Mr. Cline makes and sets out explicitly in this second installment, and with which I am wholly in agreement, is the following:

So, what is the difference between [Mr. McCain and Mr. Obama]? As mentioned in Part I, only the speed with which Obama, McCain, and their respective Parties wish to reach the goal that remains unnamed or repressed in all their minds: an American-style fascist state. Obama and his Democratic ilk, in the shrill style of their hippie and Yippie predecessors, want to accomplish it now. McCain and his Republican ilk, in the traditional "Grand Old Party" style, wish to sneak up to it on tiptoe.

Read: an American-style fascist state is what BOTH Mr. McCain and Mr. Obama seek. They differ only in terms of the manner in and speed with which they wish to bring it about. For myself, I submit, at least at this present moment, that should one feel the need (duty?) to vote at all this November (under most circumstances, I most certainly would not), it can be only these questions of MANNER and SPEED that can in this particular case be the focus of one's attention since there is absolutely no difference between the two relative to substance and fundamentals.

Speaking only for myself . . . the very idea of a Democrat controlled Congress with a Democrat president inoculated by a multicultural protective shield (one in which he is already becoming comfortably swathed) is something beyond my ability to countenance.

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[Mr. Cline] hasn't published his conclusion yet. Whatever it is, the election is about which one we have to live under, not sending messages.

Indeed. I understand there will be at least a third segment.

But one of the most important identifications Mr. Cline makes and sets out explicitly in this second installment, and with which I am wholly in agreement, is the following:

So, what is the difference between [Mr. McCain and Mr. Obama]? As mentioned in Part I, only the speed with which Obama, McCain, and their respective Parties wish to reach the goal that remains unnamed or repressed in all their minds: an American-style fascist state. Obama and his Democratic ilk, in the shrill style of their hippie and Yippie predecessors, want to accomplish it now. McCain and his Republican ilk, in the traditional "Grand Old Party" style, wish to sneak up to it on tiptoe.

Read: an American-style fascist state is what BOTH Mr. McCain and Mr. Obama seek. They differ only in terms of the manner in and speed with which they wish to bring it about. For myself, I submit, at least at this present moment, that should one feel the need (duty?) to vote at all this November (under most circumstances, I most certainly would not), it can be only these questions of MANNER and SPEED that can in this particular case be the focus of one's attention since there is absolutely no difference between the two relative to substance and fundamentals.

Speaking only for myself . . . the very idea of a Democrat controlled Congress with a Democrat president inoculated by a multicultural protective shield (one in which he is already becoming comfortably swathed) is something beyond my ability to countenance.

I think there is more than a difference in speed, although speed counts for a lot when you are trying to live under the descent to hell. McCain is a sacrifice-worshipping statist but not a multiculturalist New Lefitist America-hater, which distinction does pertain to substance and fundamentals and is partly what determines the manner and speed of the descent. That doesn't mean McCain would not do some very bad things.

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I think there is more than a difference in speed, although speed counts for a lot when you are trying to live under the descent to hell. McCain is a sacrifice-worshipping statist but not a multiculturalist New Lefitist America-hater, which distinction does pertain to substance and fundamentals and is partly what determines the manner and speed of the descent. That doesn't mean McCain would not do some very bad things.

I must disagree, and strongly, that any person who has the kind of fascistic visions as does Mr. McCain can ever be said to be a person who is not at some level an 'America-hater': irrespective of the patriotic politician's turns of phrase that issue from his lips, those very visions render him as a person in opposition to the very idea that IS America. I will grant, however, that unlike Mr. Obama and his explicit hatred for this nation and the ideas upon which it was founded and for which he must be opposed with every ounce of vehemence it is possible to muster, Mr. McCain and many of those who share his vision may be in ignorance of the very real contradiction their stated positions represent.

Perhaps.

Nonetheless, those positions are what they are and no amount of tortuous, intellectual gyrations will make them anything else.

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You could say that anyone with statist advocacy of any kind of sacrifice is hating America, but to focus on that exclusively obliterates the possibility of making important distinctions with the worst kind of multiculturalist, New Left collectivism. Where a basic premise will lead if followed consistently and to the exclusion of everything else a person believes to be important is not the same thing as where someone wants to take us when he does emphasize it. McCain is bad enough on his own terms without equating him with an Obama and the Democrat progressive New Left. He is a different kind of statist.

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Cline's article was informative but I have no idea what this closing sentence means:
Come November, voters should send McCain, Obama, and Congress a reply that echoes John Galt's in Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged: "Get the hell out of my way!"

As has been noted many times, after the next election we are either going to have McCain *or* Obama as the next President, and Congress is unfortunately not going to go away either. So is this a suggestion not to vote, or one to send them a letter saying "Get the hell out of my way!"?

Both. Mr. Cline has responded very briefly to a similar question in the Comments section of the second installment of his McCain series. Check it out.

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Cline's article was informative but I have no idea what this closing sentence means:
Come November, voters should send McCain, Obama, and Congress a reply that echoes John Galt's in Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged: "Get the hell out of my way!"

As has been noted many times, after the next election we are either going to have McCain *or* Obama as the next President, and Congress is unfortunately not going to go away either. So is this a suggestion not to vote, or one to send them a letter saying "Get the hell out of my way!"?

Both. Mr. Cline has responded very briefly to a similar question in the Comments section of the second installment of his McCain series. Check it out.

What action could voters take? Don't vote. Write in freedom-oriented candidates where permitted. Start ad hoc committees. Inundate Congress with letters to Senators et al. Don't give Congress and the winner a clear mandate to destroy this country. Use your imagination.

Short term "start ad hoc committees" and "use your imagination" in place of voting in order to change the course of a culture is flailing in the face of political reality. Changing the course of a culture is a very long term prospect, not something that is accomplished by trying to turn a political election into philosophical referendum in desperation. Everyone knows there is no "mandate" or popular groundswell for McCain and that the election is mostly about whether or not Obama will be kept out, and in that sense there should be a "mandate". One should always speak out and not grant the sanction of the victim, but that does not change the purpose and results of an election determining who is in power.

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In her final Ford Hall Forum talk, The Age of Mediocrity Ayn Rand states that she did not vote for any presidential candidate in the 1979/1980 election between Carter and Reagan. She also goes on to state that "there is a limit to how much I can shrink the object of the idea of voting for the lesser of two evils." I would recommend to anyone that is having a difficult time of choosing which of the "lesser of two evils" they should be voting for or contemplating not voting at all, to listen to this talk which can be purchased at the AynRand Bookstore.

http://www.aynrandbookstore2.com/prodinfo.asp?number=AR18M

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In her final Ford Hall Forum talk, The Age of Mediocrity Ayn Rand states that she did not vote for any presidential candidate in the 1979/1980 election between Carter and Reagan. She also goes on to state that "there is a limit to how much I can shrink the object of the idea of voting for the lesser of two evils." I would recommend to anyone that is having a difficult time of choosing which of the "lesser of two evils" they should be voting for or contemplating not voting at all, to listen to this talk which can be purchased at the AynRand Bookstore.

http://www.aynrandbookstore2.com/prodinfo.asp?number=AR18M

You can listen to it on the ARI website here:

http://www.aynrand.org/site/PageServer?pag...yjyzg6y02.app5a

from the list of speeches, including a section on Ford Hall, here

https://secure2.convio.net/ari/site/SPageSe...=reg_ar_library

But those of us who lived through both Carter and Reagan know that Reagan did make a difference for the better.

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My comments might be slightly off subject. But, can anyone point to one country in history that once it became corrupt turned itself around? In all my studying of history I cannot name one.

All the time. It is a falsely historic truism we are taught nowadays, that history moves in "eras", and during the Enlightenment era, or the Renaissance, countries were uniformly good, or uniformly moving towards the right direction. Nothing could be further from the truth. Upon careful inspection you find the history of Europe punctuated with crises, and with men who stepped in to turn their country around. In the early 1800s Charles Babbage wrote that England had lost all of its Renaissance creative impulse, and was stagnating into complete oblivion. You can still read his seminal essay, and take a lot of notice of its title: Reflections on the Decline of Science in England, and on Some of Its Causes. To change the course of things, he came to power, founded the Royal Academy of Sciences and peopled it with capable men. Britain thus impelled, turned around into a gigantic technological and scientific powerhouse of the 19th century, and he went on to build a mechanical, pre-electronic, computer!

At the beginning of the 18th century, Joseph Addison, the most spectacular writer of his time, said that Britain has lost all capacity for literature and creativity; the native soil had become too barren and was incapable of producing great writers like the old Shakespeare anymore. He went on to write and teach, and through his own and close allies' gargantuan effort, he had initiated a revolution in English creativity literature, so that by the 19th century, you would get amazing novels like Middlemarch and Sherlock Holmes.

When men awoke from the Middle Ages, a few singular Brits were stunned at their culture's own barbarity and irrationality in comparison to the old Romans, and proceeded with great urgency to rise to places of power and attempt to turn Britain around. Which, needless to say, they succeeded.

And that's the story of just one country in Europe. The history of every country during the supposedly monolithic 'good times' was peopled with constant declines and falls, averted through titanic efforts of far-seeing individuals.

Just the Greek and Roman history is itself replete with stories of statesmen who lived in corrupted and slowly rotting cities, and singlehanded turned the entire society and its people around through the sheer power of their intellect and will, Demosthenes, Cicero, Camillus, etc.

====

In regards to this thread, I am a bit perplexed at why we review one Presidential candidate but avoid all contrast with the other. Surely we accept should candidates not on how they score according to our wishful thinking and rosy heights of imagination; but most importantly in how they contrast with the other alternatives, and taking almost no other consideration into account, than that.

I also don't understand this notion to send candidates the message to get out of the way. Something of a more precise suggestion would be welcome.

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But those of us who lived through both Carter and Reagan know that Reagan did make a difference for the better.

I disagree. He actually had the exact effect that Ayn Rand stated in her talk, short term benefit, mostly in economics.

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My comments might be slightly off subject. But, can anyone point to one country in history that once it became corrupt turned itself around? In all my studying of history I cannot name one.

All the time.

I disagree. If one pushes out the time line far enough we could state that almost any country has not fallen just tripped. So, what should a person use as an essential marker to judge that a country only has ups and downs or has fallen? I think an essential that one could use to judge if a country has fallen is when the people accept different fundamentals than those originally stated at the formation of the country. When a country that was formulated/created on the idea of man's rights discards the whole concept of rights and trambles them in the street, I think we can state that the country has fallen or is well on it's way.

With that said, I do not think this country has fallen. But, this country is a long way down the wrong road and is on a very slippery slope. I also think that the original fundamentals of this country are worth fighting for and hence why I cannot agree to giving them up to the petty tyrants in government and all the weaklings that elected them.

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But those of us who lived through both Carter and Reagan know that Reagan did make a difference for the better.

I disagree. He actually had the exact effect that Ayn Rand stated in her talk, short term benefit, mostly in economics.

Reagan had long-term benefits as well.

1) In our country, he accomplished Ayn Rand's #1 domestic priority (Objectivist Newsletter, Vol. 1, #1, January 1962) -- getting rid of the Fairness Doctrine. This led to radio becoming an active and open ideological medium from Rush Limbaugh to the Leonard Peikoff Show.

2) In foreign affairs, Reagan took a principled moral stand against communism labeling the USSR an "evil empire" and demanding "Mr. Gorbachev, tear down this wall!" In a few years, the country that Ayn Rand fled and saw as the source of our greatest foreign threat could no longer threaten us nor foment anti-American proxy wars around the globe.

3) After years of the New Left's irrationalism and Jimmy Carter's "malaise" and high "misery index," Reagan spoke to the proud and optimistic American sense of life. The return of that sense of life restored the economy during Reagan's term and the "peace dividend" resulting from the downfall of communism fueled the prosperity of the Clinton years.

(If this line of discussion goes much further, I'll split this off as a separate topic.)

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My primary reason for bring up the election that Reagan won was not to primarliy discuss Reagan's pros and cons. My main intention was to show that Ayn Rand had a problem with voting in that election and decided not to vote at all, and as ewv has already mentioned, McCain is no Reagan. Obama is also bad and probably at least as bad as Carter if not worse.

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So, what should a person use as an essential marker to judge that a country only has ups and downs or has fallen? I think an essential that one could use to judge if a country has fallen is when the people accept different fundamentals than those originally stated at the formation of the country.

I don't look for an "essential marker", because I don't think essential markers even exist. I mean, unless a country has completely physically disintegrated, or the capacity to act became forbidden, it's never "a fundamentally fallen" country. I mean look, I already gave you the most starkly depressing example -- the Middle Ages. A few enlightened Brits looked at their country, and gasped in disgust, and set on reforming their country's rotten ways and unsightly principles. I mean what does it even give you, psychologically, to classify the US as essentially gone? Does it allow you more options, or open up more possibilities? I don't get why good people sometimes pursue the worst news possible.

To a historically minded person, which you are, it should be clear that countries have been in absolutely more horrible conditions than the US in previous times; again, think Middle Ages!, and yet intransigent men have always come and pulled them out. If you're tired waiting for that ideal man to solve all of our problems, why can't you become him yourself? Learn to speak persuasively, join the city council, advance upwards through your honesty, become a mayor of a city, and then a governor, and before you know it, a good, honest man is leading one of the fifty states in the union.

Self-pity is never useful. Nor is it how intransigent men have solved their crises in the past.

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So, what should a person use as an essential marker to judge that a country only has ups and downs or has fallen? I think an essential that one could use to judge if a country has fallen is when the people accept different fundamentals than those originally stated at the formation of the country.

I don't look for an "essential marker", because I don't think essential markers even exist. I mean, unless a country has completely physically disintegrated, or the capacity to act became forbidden, it's never "a fundamentally fallen" country. I mean look, I already gave you the most starkly depressing example -- the Middle Ages. A few enlightened Brits looked at their country, and gasped in disgust, and set on reforming their country's rotten ways and unsightly principles. I mean what does it even give you, psychologically, to classify the US as essentially gone? Does it allow you more options, or open up more possibilities? I don't get why good people sometimes pursue the worst news possible.

To a historically minded person, which you are, it should be clear that countries have been in absolutely more horrible conditions than the US in previous times; again, think Middle Ages!, and yet intransigent men have always come and pulled them out. If you're tired waiting for that ideal man to solve all of our problems, why can't you become him yourself? Learn to speak persuasively, join the city council, advance upwards through your honesty, become a mayor of a city, and then a governor, and before you know it, a good, honest man is leading one of the fifty states in the union.

Self-pity is never useful. Nor is it how intransigent men have solved their crises in the past.

I am not waiting for anyone! I also have absolutely no self-pity, I face the facts as they are. I talk to people every single day on many different subjects and most of the conversations are not on exercise and diet. And please point out where I stated that the U.S. was essentially gone. What I stated is that this country is a long way down the wrong road. And if you read my other post you would see that I stated that this country is still worth fighting for and taking it back from the corrupt petty government tyrants and the weaklings that voted them in.

Just a reminder, I am not the one that started a thread a few months ago about a song that is generally saying "good-bye to America." Give up, I will never give up. I might choose a tactical retreat and rethink my attack, but hell will freeze over before I give up.

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