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Peikoff and supporting the Democrats

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Great! Another to leave - and hopefully a growing trend that becomes a mass exodus from the Republican Party!

And what will that solve, exactly? In a two party system, there is really only one other place for people to go, and that is to the democrats. Weakening the republicans strenthens the opposition party. Why would any Objectivist wish to give greater power to the party whose only guiding principle is amassing power for powers' sake? The left in this country is anti-capitalism, anti-liberty, and anti-reason, they worship the unearned, denounce the earned and despise anyone who has achieved success on his own right. There is nothing that they hold dear that I place any value on.

Is there no political strategy in Objectivism? Did Ayn Rand ever outline one? It would seem not, since people here are all over the lot as to who they plan to vote for. Next November, maybe half of us will vote democrat and the other half republican. We can cancel out each others vote and make ourselves even more irrelevant to the political process than we already are. The Christians joined the republican party and changed it to suit their agenda. Perhaps that is recipe for political success that Objectivism should examine.

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Well, I feel like I see both sides here. I think that Objectivists want to support a party they believe in (and that's certainly not the Democrats or the Republicans at this moment in time), but like most Americans, they simply try to vote for the lesser of the evils. The debate here seems to be which is the lesser of the evils.

I think what intellectualammo was trying to get at, and correct me please if I'm wrong, was that a mass exodus out of the Republican party would send them a strong message that they are heading down a slippery slope that many Americans (hopefully most) will not take with them. If we can get them, some other party, or even a single candidate for that matter, to get back to the basic principal that the only job of government is to protect freedoms, then I'm certain Objectivists will be on the same page with one party and/or one candidate.

This is a tumultuous time for our nation and I think that's evident by the amount of debate going on among groups of people who usually believe the same things. Hell, even the Christian right is fractured right now. It seems like it's all up for grabs by the narrowest of margins and everyone is frustrated and fighting for what they think is right and where the country should go, or shouldn't go. At least it shows we're all passionate and ready for change. I'll quit rambling now.

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Why would any Objectivist wish to give greater power to the party whose only guiding principle is amassing power for powers' sake?
You mean "a party", not "the party". That is also the only guiding principle of the Republican party.
The left in this country is anti-capitalism, anti-liberty, and anti-reason, they worship the unearned, denounce the earned and despise anyone who has achieved success on his own right.
That's largely true, except that it fails to distinguish Republicans and Democrats, because the ideology of the left prevails in both parties. The influence of historical beliefs is relevant only for a relatively few years, and the election of Nixon, as a Republican believe it or not, signalled the end of any claims the Republicans could make about being in opposition to the anti-capitalist, anti-liberty and anti-reason forces. Three terms of Bush presidency puts paid to the (ridiculous) idea that the Republican party is an immutable friend of Objectivism, and two terms of Clinton also shows that the earlier Democratic party commitment to socialism is entirely negotiable. In fact, Democrat socialism is not a fundamental defining characteristic of the donkey party, it is a weak contingent one -- it was, at the time, something that the donkeys latched on as a way of getting votes (many decades ago). The elephants assimilated to the donkeys on economic issues as a way of depriving the asses of The Pro-Socialist Vote, and thus religious fundamentalism became the Idiot-Vote Attractor plank in the elephant approach to seizing and maintaining power (that, and the Fear Factor plank).
The Christians joined the republican party and changed it to suit their agenda. Perhaps that is recipe for political success that Objectivism should examine.
Because the religious statists are a really big force in American politics, I don't think there is any point in studying that strategy -- it would be analogous to studying Jupiter, to understand the physics of a dust particle. But still, what this means is that we should make a concerted effort to influence the Democratic party, because they are philosophically adrift, and are really looking for an issue to define themselves with. The Republicans are a lost cause, having been taken over by the Xers. What Objectivists should do is get involved in Democratic party politics, to prevent a similar rise of religionism in the Democratic party.
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Thanks for the link. I do have a question, though. Quoted from the lecture:

In a 5-4 decision, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled five years that it is legal for the state of Ohio to subsidize vouchers for religious schools. Critics saw this as a dangerous precedent, eroding the principle of church-state separation.

I have never understood the 'danger.' Nor has anyone ever given me a satisfactory reason why vouchers should be given for all schools except religious ones? If money is being siezed from religious people to fund public schools, why should their vouchers exclude the one school that they might choose simply because it is religious? It seems that there is some merit to the argument that separation of church and state has become discrimination against religion by the state.

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I think what intellectualammo was trying to get at, and correct me please if I'm wrong, was that a mass exodus out of the Republican party would send them a strong message that [...]

...until they are not affiliated with religion, they should not get a vote nor should anyone be a registered member of, thereby sanctioning such an abomination.

All the political parties of today, I call for a mass exodus from. You want a change? This can bring it about. We should be trying to encourage people to not register, join, volunteer, or support such political parties of today and instead become registered as independent voters, and not to cast our votes to parties that are affiliated with religion...but cast to the lesser of evils on election day. Right now, we don't know who the candidates are going to be, but right NOW we can register as independent voters, and go from there.

Edit note: Changed "Independent" to "independent", at the author's request.

Edited by softwareNerd
See: Edit note
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But still, what this means is that we should make a concerted effort to influence the Democratic party, because they are philosophically adrift, and are really looking for an issue to define themselves with. The Republicans are a lost cause, having been taken over by the Xers. What Objectivists should do is get involved in Democratic party politics, to prevent a similar rise of religionism in the Democratic party.

What values held by Objectivists do you believe that the democrats will latch on to? They will never advocate capitalism. They view it as unfair and unjust. They tolerate it only because of the wealth it creates. They view morality as subjective. Most view reality the same way. The only thing they seem to have in common with Objectivism is a distaste for the religious right--but not religion. Most democrats are quite religious. They quite frequently tie their support to the welfare state to their religiosity. I should know, I have heard that argument for years from my leftist Catholic in-laws.

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I have never understood the 'danger.'

It is a horrible thought that government support any particular institution other than those required for the protection of individual rights. It is worst when the institutions government supports are the worst. The worst institutions are the religious ones, because they are religious. Not only do they follow unreason, but they are explicit advocates of unreason in fact and in name. Most other institutions such as progressive education and socialism pay lip service to reason, while negating it utterly; but they pay lip service to it.

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It is a horrible thought that government support any particular institution other than those required for the protection of individual rights. It is worst when the institutions government supports are the worst. The worst institutions are the religious ones, because they are religious. Not only do they follow unreason, but they are explicit advocates of unreason in fact and in name. Most other institutions such as progressive education and socialism pay lip service to reason, while negating it utterly; but they pay lip service to it.

Peikoff's reasoning is that religion has a moral component that pulls people in, whereas leftists just have a random soup of ideas and are incapable of supporting a moral component. D types don't have the ability to successfully challenge the M types in the long run because of this. M type religion trumps M type socialism, because socialism has had its day, and because religion posits its better world in another realm, which is never open to empirical testing.

As to religion being less rational than extreme leftist ideology, I disagree. According to Peikoff, Nazi concentration camps were the most evil creations in human history. N. Korea looks to be worse than even Iran in terms of it’s treatment of its population. And, I would say, environmentalism is on a rung below Nazism. In fact, postmodernism involves a direct rejection of reason. The weakness in the left is that they can't, allegedly, get enough traction against religion. I do notice in this presidential campaign they (the left) are co-opting religion more than I can remember in the past.

At the end of the day, Peikoff may be right, but I'm not going to jump the gun and decide on any direction until I'm reasonably convinced one way or the other.

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What values held by Objectivists do you believe that the democrats will latch on to?
The most obvious one would be that it is not the proper function of government to enforce, impose or encourage religious views. A second would be a rejection of mysticism.

Let me simply restate and repeat the point I just made. There is an intellectual vacuum in the Democratic party, a complete lack of distinguishing feature that generates votes for them. The one noteworthy point that makes the parties different is religion. They can at best try to neutralize the Republicans on this point by embracing religion. They can distinguish themselves from the Republicans by not going that direction. Since Republicans do not have a principled support of capitalism (except for the wealth it creates) and they have an even more appaling moral credo, there is nothing that positively distinguishes the Republicans. The Republicans are in no area better, and in one area worse, so I can't seen any argument for Objectivists supporting Republicans. Because of the dangerous rise of religious fascism, this alone is enough of a reason to switch parties.

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Since Republicans do not have a principled support of capitalism (except for the wealth it creates) and they have an even more appaling moral credo, there is nothing that positively distinguishes the Republicans. The Republicans are in no area better, and in one area worse, so I can't seen any argument for Objectivists supporting Republicans. Because of the dangerous rise of religious fascism, this alone is enough of a reason to switch parties.

Not for me it isnt. I dont fear the religious right nearly as much as I do the environmentalists, the multiculturalists, the pacifists, the anti-capitalists and the moral relativists of the left. I am not going to join a political party whose goal it is to destroy all that I value today just in order to prevent the rise of a political party that might pose some unsubstantiated threat to my liberty tomorrow. Christianity and capitalism have coexisted in America for 200 years. I have yet to see evidence that that is going to change. It is the left that is destroying this country and the republicans seem to think that the only principled reisistance can be found in Christianity. Objectivists can offer republicans a rational, non-religious set of principles to confront the left, thereby weakening the left and the Christian right at the same time. All the left offers is a non-religious path of destruction. The right can be salvaged.

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I dont fear the religious right nearly as much as I do the environmentalists, the multiculturalists, the pacifists, the anti-capitalists and the moral relativists of the left. I am not going to join a political party whose goal it is to destroy all that I value today just in order to prevent the rise of a political party that might pose some unsubstantiated threat to my liberty tomorrow. Christianity and capitalism have coexisted in America for 200 years. I have yet to see evidence that that is going to change. It is the left that is destroying this country and the republicans seem to think that the only principled reisistance can be found in Christianity. Objectivists can offer republicans a rational, non-religious set of principles to confront the left, thereby weakening the left and the Christian right at the same time. All the left offers is a non-religious path of destruction. The right can be salvaged.

Voting Democratic could lead to the worst of both worlds: no-escape socialist collectivism AND religious authoritarianism. Leftists led by their legal arm the ACLU are eviscerating Christianity while advancing Islamism. Via their legal arm, left-wing liberal Democrats are providing special protections to Islamic fanatics, establishing special prayer sessions in American public schools for Muslims while prohibiting Christians from the same activity -- and now are opening madrasas in NYC to cultivate Muslim culture and attitudes in the name of multiculturalism. Christianity is irrational, but homegrown Islamic fanatics pose a much greater threat.

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All the political parties of today, I call for a mass exodus from. You want a change? This can bring it about. We should be trying to encourage people to not register, join, volunteer, or support such political parties of today and instead become registered as independent voters, and not to cast our votes to parties that are affiliated with religion...but cast to the lesser of evils on election day. Right now, we don't know who the candidates are going to be, but right NOW we can register as independent voters, and go from there.

Just to clarify, by independent I mean, getting a voter registration form, and checking the box that says "NO AFFILIATION" and that is not to be mistaken for the Independent Party, as people often have done. I don't even remember seeing that party on my registry, but again to vote independent of a party means checking the "NO AFFILIATION" box. I strongly recommend everyone of voting age who is either a member or a guest of this forum to do so, if they haven't done so already. I'm calling for a mass exiting of the political parties of today, those who support the parties, even and especially those campaigning for the virtues of the candidates of today, whether they are Republican, or any of the other parties that are out there today. Come election day we vote for the lesser of two evils, and before election day we should do not campaign for the virtues of these parties candidates, but identify which is the lesser evil and vote. I will not campaign for any form of poison, but instead decide which is not as harmful and take it. I've already seen a person here specifically, already starting to do such a thing...campaigning for his poison... I however only campaign for a remedy...that is...a mass exodus from the political parties of today - and - when I do vote in this coming election, I am not actually voting for the candidate or for the party in which he or she belongs to, but rather voting against the most evil of the two choices by voting for the lesser of them. Do not think: "who is better?" Oh, no! Think: "who is worse?" The former would involve the candidates virtues, while the latter would not.

Edited by intellectualammo
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I've already seen a person here specifically, already starting to do such a thing...campaigning for his poison... I however only campaign for a remedy...that is...a mass exodus from the political parties of today - and - when I do vote in this coming election, I am not actually voting for the candidate or for the party in which he or she belongs to, but rather voting against the most evil of the two choices by voting for the lesser of them. Do not think: "who is better?" Oh, no! Think: "who is worse?" The former would involve the candidates virtues, while the latter would not.

If you are referring to me, then yes, I am 'campaigning for my poison.' Why? Because if people of principle and rationality abandon en mass the current political parties, that will leave those parties donimated by the unprincipled and irrational. That will guarantee us a future where our only choices will be the lesser of two evils--which is still evil. What I am advocating is choosing the party that may still be influenced(the republicans) and work within the party to improve it.

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If you are referring to me

No, no...I was referring to someone's slanted website that I have mentioned in a previous thread somewhere.

Because if people of principle and rationality abandon en mass the current political parties, that will leave those parties donimated by the unprincipled and irrational.

Aren't they already dominated by them? :ninja:

But if those people of principle and rationality do leave, it can open up a whole wealth of opportunites. Like forming a different party, or the parties in existence will go through reformation...and so on. It's a way of lessening the evil further, of dissolving that evil, and certainly a way of not sanctioning the evil in and of the parties today, by not joining them.

What I am advocating is choosing the party that may still be influenced(the republicans) and work within the party to improve it.

...and what I am advocating is not joining any party of today, and work and vote from outside of it...to improve things.

Edited by intellectualammo
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What is this phrase as a whole meant to convey? Why does it require the use of all three terms? To strike a blind, irrational fear into my heart?

The term "left-wing liberal Democrat" denotes people who are on the far left of the political spectrum. This is in contrast to more moderate centrist Democrats.

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The term "left-wing liberal Democrat" denotes people who are on the far left of the political spectrum. This is in contrast to more moderate centrist Democrats.

Are there conservative Democrats? Are there right-wing liberal Democrats?

There is no such thing as a moderate in politics, standard terminology notwithstanding. There are only principled politicians and pragmatic politicians.

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I am curious as to why there has been almost no mention of Ron Paul? He seems to be the only anti-statist candidate running for either major party. Is it simply because you think he has no chance at getting the nomination? I find it somewhat odd that many Objectivists would consider voting for Barak Obama or Hillary Clinton before Ron Paul considering he is the only one in ANY of the debates to actually praise capitalism as an economic system or suggest that the government should be greatly reduced in size.

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Ron Paul is also the most viciously anti-immigration and anti-abortion, and the most ardent America-hating pacifist.
As a rule, I would encourage people to keep unsupported personal opinions out of the discussion, since this is a question of fact. You should give evidence to support your conclusion; otherwise, the argument falls on its face. Try a resource like this.
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Ron Paul is also the most viciously anti-immigration and anti-abortion, and the most ardent America-hating pacifist.

That may be, but his anti-statist views more than make up for his few short-comings IMO. I am actually pretty shocked that more Objectivists don't give him a chance. After all he is the most capitalist candidate out of anyone in either major party.

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That may be, but his anti-statist views more than make up for his few short-comings IMO. I am actually pretty shocked that more Objectivists don't give him a chance. After all he is the most capitalist candidate out of anyone in either major party.

Using the power of the Law to deny women control over their bodies sounds pretty Statist to me. Paul's position taken to its logical conclusion makes a women hostage to the fetus within her body. Feh!

Bob Kolker

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That may be, but his anti-statist views more than make up for his few short-comings IMO. I am actually pretty shocked that more Objectivists don't give him a chance. After all he is the most capitalist candidate out of anyone in either major party.

What makes you think we want a presidential candidate with some of the right political conclusions?

Objectivists influenced by Peikoff wnat a culture with all of the right metaphysical, epistemological, and moral premises.

Edited by y_feldblum
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Objectivists influenced by Peikoff wnat a culture with all of the right metaphysical, epistemological, and moral premises.

That is the objective, of course. The question is how you get there. It is not going to happen overnight, and it is not going to happen at all until this country begins to at least move in the right direction. At this point, we should be happy with that.

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