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Throw your vote away. Always!

Never be "practical" or "realistic." Never vote for evil or "the lesser of two evils." Never vote for tyranny.

Vote for freedom 100% of the time. Find the most economically capitalist, socially libertarian, and politically pro-freedom candidate you can -- and then loudly, proudly, defiantly, aggressively vote for him! Cast your vote in steel! And be sure to spit in the voting monitor's eye when you do so!

Your attitude and philosophy should be: no nonsense, no bullshit, no apology, no surrender, and no retreat. Take care that you don't regret your vote later on; take care that you don't have to rationalize, excuse, and explain it away.

Don't ever politically advance and morally sanction slavery. Don't you dare!

Always bear in mind that if you vote for the right-wing conservatives, or the left-wing progressives, then they will socio-economically prosper and politically strengthen. No-one will know or care that you secretly favor liberty. How could they? You're casting your vote for welfare statist totalitarianism!

However, if you self-assertively vote for individual rights and freedom, everyone will know. The conservatives and progressives will both take note -- and then adjust themselves in a capitalist, libertarian, and freedomist direction. This will happen both after the current election, and during the next campaign.

The powers-that-be will work for and actively court the liberty bloc. They'll tailor their positions and beliefs towards you. They'll noticeably alter and uplift their whole legislative behavior.

So don't be a traitor to yourself and to mankind. Don't be a communist or fascist monster from hell.

But if you do make the decision to perpetrate an act of political raw evil and vote for slavery -- in the pathetic belief that "It's just this one time" or "It's only because this election is so damn important," and you think your one pitiful impotent vote among millions will make a difference -- then recognize that as a result the freedom groups and parties will necessarily decline and the slavery folks will ascend.

And who's fault will that be? Your fault! You need to vote for freedom now and forever and always!

If not you, who? If not now, when?

If you decide to walk into a voting booth, try not to be a complete and total scumbag and retarded monkey from hell. Try not to be a complete and total destroyer of yourself and the world.

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For some reason, I am recalling the conversation between Mr. Thompson and John Galt:

"Look," said Mr. Thompson placatingly, resuming the edge of his seat. "I don't want to argue. I'm no good at debates. I'm a man of action. Time is short. All I know is that you've got a mind. Just the sort of mind we need. You can do anything. You could make things work if you wanted to."

"All right, put it your own way: I don't want to. I don't want to be an Economic Dictator, not even long enough to issue that order for people to be free-which any rational human being would throw back in my face, because he'd know that his rights are not to be held, given or received by your permission or mine."

"Tell me," said Mr. Thompson, looking at him reflectively, "what is it you're after?"

"I told you on the radio."

"I don't get it. You said that you're out for your own selfish interest -and that, I can understand. But what can you possibly want in the future that you couldn't get right now, from us, handed down to you on a platter? I thought you were an egoist-and a practical man. I offer you a blank check on anything you wish-and you tell me that you don't want it, Why?"

"Because there are no funds behind your blank check."

The people don't want a capitalist/libertarian dictator forcing them to be free. They don't want us (Objectivists/liberatarians?) imposing our code on their lives. They want cradle to grave assurance and insurance. They like the two parties and they want what they give them no matter what the partisans say in their arguments about NOT wanting what the OTHER party wants. Who can blame them? The mixed economy and it's corresponding political structure is all they know and all they care to trust (to the extent you could say they trust). They fear and even despise anything else. I refuse to try to impose it on them. I'd rather go Galt to the extent I can. I'll vote. I'll vote to minimize the damage and prolong whatever freedom does exist. I'll give everyone a chance to choose more and more freedom eventually... if they want it. But I won't play your game.

From Ayn Rand in 1972:

Q: What do you think of the Libertarian Party? [FHF: “A Nation’s Unity,” 1972]

AR: I’d rather vote for Bob Hope, the Marx Brothers, or Jerry Lewis. I don’t think they’re as funny as Professor Hospers and the Libertarian Party. If, at a time like this, John Hospers takes ten votes away from Nixon (which I doubt he’ll do), it would be a moral crime. I don’t care about Nixon, and I care even less about Hospers. But this is no time to engage in publicity seeking, which all these crank political parties are doing. If you want to spread your ideas, do it through education. But don’t run for President—or even dogcatcher—if you’re going to help McGovern.

I'm not going to help President Obama.

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Craig24 -- I think Rand was mistaken. She also opposed creating an Objectivist political party -- another error.

Nixon was better than Hospers? Please. It's no joke to support the more pro-freedom candidate.

People should vote their principles. No-one should politically empower and morally sanction welfare statism. A vote for evil and slavery is a vote for evil and slavery.

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Here's some thoughts from someone who actually got elected:

"Truth advances and error recedes step by step only; and to do our fellow-men the most good in our power, we must lead where we can, follow where we cannot, and still go with them, watching always the favorable moment for helping them to another step." --Thomas Jefferson to Thomas Cooper, 1814. ME 14:200

And here's the part that comes immediately prior, concerning the founding of the University of Virginia:

"I agree … that a professorship of Theology should have no place in our institution. But we cannot always do what is absolutely best. Those with whom we act, entertaining different views, have the power and the right of carrying them into practice. "

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Vote for freedom 100% of the time. Find the most economically capitalist, socially libertarian, and politically pro-freedom candidate you can -- and then loudly, proudly, defiantly, aggressively vote for him!

Well said, Woton. I'm a little suprised that TOS decided to endorse Romney/Ryan using the 'vote for the lesser of two evils' argument.. (although not that suprised. Peikoff continually uses the same argument). The main point I've heard from them is that "either Barack Obama or Mitt Romney is going to win." (Source) But the problem with this point is that you could say it about any election. Democrats or Republicans have always won, and always will win, because they make up the majority. Why bother considering anyone else?

To me, this argument shows a defeatist attitude. Why have any beliefs at all if you aren't going to act on them? By compromising (promoting the 'lesser of two evils') you're promoting ideologies that you don't believe in, and giving up better alternatives in favor of the majority's beliefs. If everyone acted this way, we would only have a two-party race. But that's not how it is. There are people who still run and vote on principle, and that's what Oists should be promoting.

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So, if you have a candidate who will put all taxes at 5 percent or less and another who will put the same taxes at 80 percent or more, you will vote for neither candidate since they both believe in taxation (for social programs, etc)?

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Mdegges -- TOS seems very cynical and defeatist. Very amoral and unprincipled. Very depraved, ultimately.

With their policy, how will Freedom ever defeat Tyranny? TOS are the bad guys -- the advancers and supporters of Big Brother. :(

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Biddle's points make a lot of sense, but he's still choosing the pragmatic candidate. After reading that article again, I think he seems more concerned about getting press (doesn't matter if it's negative or positive) for Ayn Rand rather than voting for the best candidate. If that's not a compromise of values, I don't know what is.

So, if you have a candidate who will put all taxes at 5 percent or less and another who will put the same taxes at 80 percent or more, you will vote for neither candidate since they both believe in taxation (for social programs, etc)?

If there's a third candidate who believes that government shouldn't interfere with business at all, that charities, schools, and businesses should all be privatized, and that the result of these actions would mean <5% taxes, who would you vote for? (Note: There's been candidates who have advocated these beliefs since 1971, but I haven't heard of a single candidate who advocated 5% or even 80% flat taxes. Even so, taxation isn't the only issue to consider. Overall, who is the best candidate who shares most of your views? That's who you should vote for.)

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To support the best candidate you can, and eventually get him (or someone with a similar philosophy) elected. One vote for Johnson is one less for Obamney

Forget the current election. It's over. It's done. It's finished. It's Obama or Romney because the country wants one or the other. Johnson is not in the picture.

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Craig24 -- I think Rand was mistaken. She also opposed creating an Objectivist political party -- another error.

Nixon was better than Hospers? Please. It's no joke to support the more pro-freedom candidate.

People should vote their principles. No-one should politically empower and morally sanction welfare statism. A vote for evil and slavery is a vote for evil and slavery.

The country has chosen their candidates so it's a foregone conclusion that it will be Obama or Romney.

Well said, Woton. I'm a little suprised that TOS decided to endorse Romney/Ryan using the 'vote for the lesser of two evils' argument.. (although not that suprised. Peikoff continually uses the same argument). The main point I've heard from them is that "either Barack Obama or Mitt Romney is going to win." (Source) But the problem with this point is that you could say it about any election. Democrats or Republicans have always won, and always will win, because they make up the majority. Why bother considering anyone else?

To me, this argument shows a defeatist attitude. Why have any beliefs at all if you aren't going to act on them? By compromising (promoting the 'lesser of two evils') you're promoting ideologies that you don't believe in, and giving up better alternatives in favor of the majority's beliefs. If everyone acted this way, we would only have a two-party race. But that's not how it is. There are people who still run and vote on principle, and that's what Oists should be promoting.

It's an acknowledgement of a reality that you and I (and TOS) have no power to change. A vote for Johnson might give you some kind of personal satisfaction that you didn't compromise but it will accomplish nothing and could impose 4 more years of Obama. If you know your action will have only two possible consequences (Romney is elected in spite of you or Obama is re-elected because of you), then you shouldn't waste your time. Elections happen twice a year for all the various offices. What you do the other 363 days a year is 2 million times more important. When Rand says "If you want to spread your ideas, do it through education. But don’t run for President—or even dogcatcher—if you’re going to help McGovern.", she is telling you what should be done to correct the problem. It may help to understand that elections are a CONSEQUENCE not a cause of political change.

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One vote for Johnson is one less for Obamney
Yes, this is true. How will this lead to Johnson being elected? Do you mean he would be elected if enough people acted this way? If so, that is true as well. However, the reason that either Obama or Romney will be elected is not that people who lean libertarian are going to vote for the lesser evil or some such thing. The reason we'll have Obama or Romney is because they best reflect the political philosophy of an overwhelming majority of U.S. voters. If this is true, how will voting for Johnson help him or someone like him be elected?

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A vote for Johnson might give you some kind of personal satisfaction that you didn't compromise but it will accomplish nothing and could impose 4 more years of Obama.

I say it depends on where you live. If you're in California or one of the other states that's certain to go to Obama, then by all means vote for Johnson and help get his popular vote figure higher. Also, if you're in a state that's solid for Romney, I say vote Johnson. If you're in a battleground state, as I am, you've got some moral dilemmna to grapple with. I'm hoping the November polls show Romney comfortably taking my state, so I can vote Johnson without conflict.

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From little acorns and so on. Isn't there a strong case for the LP becoming an important

swing vote which both the GOP and DP will have to take future notice of?

I predict modest but steady gains by the Libertarian Party.

Just a feeling...

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I predict modest but steady gains by the Libertarian Party.
That feeling is not substantiated by the history of the party. The percentage of votes for the LP presidential candidate has hovered around 1% for 3 decades, and the underlying trend is flat. The results for their Congressional candidates is similar. At state level, their have been some victories, but the trend appears pretty flat.

Even if we assume that another (say) 3-4% or people might want to vote LP in their heart of hearts, their doing so is not going to convince the vast majority of Americans that the role of government should change.

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That feeling is not substantiated by the history of the party. The percentage of votes for the LP presidential candidate has hovered around 1% for 3 decades, and the underlying trend is flat. The results for their Congressional candidates is similar. At state level, their have been some victories, but the trend appears pretty flat.

Even if we assume that another (say) 3-4% or people might want to vote LP in their heart of hearts, their doing so is not going to convince the vast majority of Americans that the role of government should change.

Ow! Reality bites. Maybe my perception is because I hang round with some libertarians so often.

Still ... I've got $20 says they'll make a gain this year.

Anyone?

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...If this is true, how will voting for Johnson help him or someone like him be elected?

Oists advocate radical change. A small way to act on those beliefs is to endorse and vote for the candidate who could potentially make them a reality. It's true that voting is a minor issue and Johnson isn't likely to win, but it's hypocritical (and unnecessary) to vote for a person that you disagree with on major issues. I think you guys are forgetting that no third party candidate will ever become president without support, in and outside of the booths.

Edited by mdegges

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The federal government of the United States is organized around electing individuals, not parties or ideologies. There is no provision for parties or factions within the U.S. Constitution, and the phenomenon of the two party system emerges spontaneously as a result of the winner-take-all electoral system for representatives and executives. See Duverger's law. In America the major political parties are merely ad hoc organizations for promoting particular candidates, they are not ideologies. If there is a discernible ideology within a political party that is merely because individuals prefer to associate with like-minded individuals.

Each geographically defined district votes for its own single representative. While the disadvantage is that minority interests get no representation, there is at least a link and accountability between the elected representative and those who voted for him. That advantage far outweighs the disadvantage. This is individualism embedded into the design of government.

Part of being objective is considering the full context of one's decisions and not mere wallowing in a subjective feeling of self righteousness. Other people exist, their votes matter and denying that reality is an example of evasion. Your vote is neither an oath nor a moral sanction, it is merely a means of hiring the better candidate for a government job.

The wild emotional tone of the original post is also a failure of objectivity. One does not promote rationality by bandying about language such as "a complete and total scumbag and retarded monkey from hell".

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The federal government of the United States is organized around electing individuals, not parties or ideologies. There is no provision for parties or factions within the U.S. Constitution, and the phenomenon of the two party system emerges spontaneously as a result of the winner-take-all electoral system for representatives and executives. See Duverger's law.

That's not quite right. The two party system emerges from the plurality-takes-all elections. Even though the actual election has a majority requirement (by electors, or failing that by House members), the parties themselves have rigged the elector selection by adopting a plurality-takes-all system in their respective states. They have also rigged the issues to evenly divide the populace near 50-50, leaving no room for a third party to take advantage of a weakened party.

So are we to accept the two-party hegemony because the two-parties have rigged it in their favor? And are we really to accept that these are two parties, and not two wings of a single party, each with the same goals? Those goals: to win and to rule. To win sometimes, but always to rule.

For those of you willing to vote for one or the other as a lesser of two evils, consider the words of John Adams:

"There is nothing which I dread so much as a division of the republic into two great parties, each arranged under its leader, and concerting measures in opposition to each other. This, in my humble apprehension, is to be dreaded as the greatest political evil under our Constitution."

Voting for the lesser of two evils results in a greater evil than either individual candidate presents: a continuation of the two-party hegemony.

Vote your conscience. Let Obama (or Romney) win with a plurality. Let the "uncounted" third-party vote grow with each election until someone comes forward to claim them. Or -- let the nation continue its downward spiral, dragged down by the greater or lesser of two evils.

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Part of being objective is considering the full context of one's decisions and not mere wallowing in a subjective feeling of self righteousness. Other people exist, their votes matter and denying that reality is an example of evasion.

Do you mean that voting for a third party candidate is an act of evasion, because he won't win in this election? I don't see how the latter implies the former. No one here has said that other's votes are meaningless - just that the only vote you have control over is your own, and that the majority's views need not influence it.

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Do you mean that voting for a third party candidate is an act of evasion, because he won't win in this election?
No, voting for any of the three candidates, or abstaining from voting, cannot be evidence of evasion. Evasion is about how one got there, not about the final vote.

Voting for Johnson will not help him win, nor will it help the Libertarians win some future election. However, if you have concluded that the GOP and Dems are both bad, and both nearly equally bad, in both the long term and the short term, then there's no reason to vote for either. If you decide to stay at home after coming to such a conclusion, that's a few extra minutes in your life. If you want to make a symbolic vote for freedom and think that voting Libertarian is the way to do that, that seems pretty reasonable too.

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