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Obama and Why The Peikoff Argument Does Not Apply

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TheEgoist
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Leonard Peikoff, who is Ayn Rand's intellectual heir, co-founder of the ARI and considered to be the head of the Objectivist political and philosophic movement has taken a stance in recent elections that has left it's assumed " right wing " basis in bewilderment. In 2004, and perhaps beyond, Leonard Peikoff has chosen to vote Democrat, and advocates all proponents of reason and civilization to do the same. Dr. Peikoff's rationale for this decision was because Kerry, while in no way an admirable politician, was in favor of a position that is essentially doomed to fail; Socialism. I myself was hesitant to come to this position to begin with, but accepted after debate with other Objectivists that Religion was a much more dangerous threat than Socialism was for the following reason.

The Kerry Democrats of the 2004 election were in favor of many despicable things, but what lied underneat it all was actually nothing. There was no vigorous moral or philosophic message of the Kerry campaign. The position was purely that Socialism will work for the betterment of individual Americans. This position by itself does not pose any kind of long-lasting threat to America. As it was with far-leftists before like Carter, America would quickly realize the ruin socialism brought to it and quickly elect someone who would fix the economic crisis of the Democrat administration.

However, a lethal dose of Religion into politics through reoccurring Republican presidencies would be, as a person I heard once describe it, an " existential nightmare ". Unlike the Kerry socialists, the fervent Religion of the Right was backed up with a strong philosophy. The essence of this argument is: tell people something will work, and when it doesn't they will go back to how it was before. But if you get a figure such as God involved, and tug on the convictions of the foolish Religiouspopulation in America, and you've got yourself a system that can sustain itself through the fear of the Lord. Religion doesn't promise that your life will be better, it only promises you that you will obey the mandates of the Bible, the Koran or whatever holy book is being used to justify tyranny.

It is no secret to the public that at least a few of the Supreme Court justices are more than conservatives, they are allies with the Religious right who advocate an end to the right of abortion, a blurring of the lines between state and church, amongst other horrific stances. You can find these positions expressed by the justices in another post on my blog The Dirty Kuffar.

But why have I shied away from the position of Peikoff and many Objectivists in this election? It is certainly not because John McCain is some kind of social liberal. He most certainly is not. He's as good as Bush, which is to say not at all. If someone is as arcane and backwards to accept that a woman does not have a right to choose abortion, this person is not worth much consideration in the social department. McCain will elect more Religionists to the Supreme Court. He will do nothing for the personal freedoms of others, and very little for economic freedom; if anything.

The reason I reject the argument is because it is not valid in this election. The Socialism of Barack Obama is not the same brand we saw in former elections, and it is not far separated from Religion. As I explained in another earlier blog, Barack Obama is not afraid of mixing Christianity with politics. It is not the harsh, scary Religious fascism of the Right which will subjugate you to the church and God. It is taken from the Judea-Christian ideal of being your brother's keeper, of giving away your money to others, of living for others rather than living for yourself.

However, it is not so much the Christian aspect itself that scares me here. Obama's Socialism is not a shallow one. It is one that IS based in philosophy, in a morality that is contra individualism and egoism. It not only says that Socialism will work, but that serving others is a moral obligation, that it is as Michelle Obama puts it the true " American way ". The stars simply were not in the eyes of people during the Kerry campaign. That may be why he lost. But Obama has rallied, like a powerful preacher, many loyal followers who are behind not only a pragmatic political cause, but a moral one which asserts that all must pay their innate debt to society, whether you be rich or poor. This view of the Obama campaign has not been made by me alone, or just a few bloggers, but a myriad of media sources all recognize that what Obama has done in this election is nothing short of a cult of personality, and for a cult of personality to be effective one must have an intense moral fervor. Kerry was viewed by many as a zombie-like candidate, but George Bush had Christianity backing him. The 2004 election was one that revolved heavily around Religious social values, and this election will deal more with economic values. Barack's values are the values of Jesus Christ, of Immanuel Kant, of Auguste Comte; Altruism. Obama has setup for Democrats what they have needed to maintain a stronghold on America: a Religion based in altruism, which perhaps may say that a woman has a right to choose, but also says that someone should pay for her choice, not because it will benefit you, but because it is your moral duty to that woman.

Do not take this as an endorsement for John " the Maverick " McCain from me. As of now, I am refraining from voting for a president in the upcoming election. I won't choose between 2 types of ideologies that want to enslave me to God, or to my neighbor. Americans should not be accepting a lesser of two evils. A choice for a lesser evil, is a choice for evil nonetheless. Neither of our options are less malignant here. Both of the choices will lead us further down the path of an explicitly religious culture and government.

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Interesting post. This election has been weighing on me heavily for many of these reasons. As of now however, I'd have to disagree, although I'm definitely still thinking it through especially now during the conventions. I'll most likely vote for Obama because I think I largely agree with Peikoff. Religious influence could inflict the kinds of wounds upon Americas fundamental rights that I would doubt the left would be able to muster. One more fundamentalist Supreme Court judge from the right could mean the difference between the entire separation of church and state. As terrible as Obama and the left is, they would likely at least appoint someone who endorses secularism.

You also mentioned that Socialism could be as effective philosophically as religion in America. I'd disagree with this also. I don't think that many Americans would buy into the pity party that Socialism presents itself as, especially in the face of decades of past and current evidence against it. Most people I encounter in my day-to-day life, don't like to be sob stories. If they can help it they prefer to do things themselves, and earn their own way. Many Americans are also largely pragmatic. Renowned for being "apathetic" and "selfish", gloriously so, at least in the sense of apathy in the face of being told to serve others, not yourself.

The Democratic party's ideology also seems to make it inherently prone to constant infighting and petty disagreements. I doubt the effectiveness of the left far more than the right when it comes to actually passing laws and making change. I watched the Democratic National Committee hearing earlier this year, and it was completely ridiculous. They spent more time on praising race, gender, and state affiliation than anything else. It was a complete mess of egalitarianism with everyone trying to be "fair". At one point someone actually become so disgruntled they stood up and shouted "no you shut up!", before their group was escorted out by security. Apply this kind of party unity to a wider scale and add the environmentalists, disabled, unions, and every other little clan or tribe and it's a recipe for gridlock.

However, I have to wonder, if the Democrats do win this election, would it really serve as a shock to the Republicans enough to make them reconsider their religious fundamentalism? The Democrats seem to be embracing religion more than ever. What if instead it has the unintended consequence of simply reinforcing the idea that religious pandering works, making parties simply embrace it more so.

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I completely agree with you TheEgoist. Thanks to the likes of Gore and Obama I think that we are witnessing the rise of a new left. It appears that this new left has combined the worst aspects of both left and right; Socialism and Religion.

The new left of today has thrown out the over used and discredited Marxist dogma and has embraced the “love your fellow man” type dogma from Christian or even Islamic religions. There seems to be a complete reversal from the previous election were the Conservative base had direction and felt united and the Dems were falling all over themselves. Now Obama and his horde of greenie socialist have lead a coup in the left and overthrew the Clintons and the other ‘90s era type Democrats. The Right however is still spinning from the fall out from the economy, gas prices, the Iraq war, and the Bush Stigma. John McCain is the perfect candidate for the Republicans of today because nobody is sure were he stands and is different from Republicans in the past. Some republicans still favor a strong central government, big spending and support religious issues; however, since the Bush fiasco it appears this base has been shaken up and could not even get their own candidates the nomination . So the Right is left with a Maverick and the common hatred for the Dems.

In both parties their appears to be two competing factions. Obama and his socialist weenies appear to have the upper hand on the left but the lines are still being drawn and the dust is still settling on the Right to tell what is what just yet. If the Religious neo-conservatives still come out on top their strangle hold on the Republican party will have at least been weakened if not abolished all together. Their seems to be room for a lot of cross over as well; with the left being more religious and the right becoming more socialist.

I could be wrong about all of this but if one thing is certain its that both parties are undergoing change and we are going to experience different animals then what we have faced in the past.

I myself will be voting for McCain for the same reason a lot of Objectivist are voting for Obama. I believe McCain has no real agenda is looking for a nice keystone towards the end of his career before he retires. Hell, he doesn’t even want a second term, does this sound like a guy who wants to shake things up? Obama on the other hand is a man on a mission and has a thirst for power as well as to enforce his socialist policies. Objectivist in the US would be wise to recognize the change in the political wind and adjust their political standings to compensate for the change. Keep in mind these are not the wimpy Dems that the Republicans have been kicking around for the last decade. This new left is Dangerous!!!

Edited by Rearden_Steel
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Dr. Peikoff's rationale for this decision was because Kerry, while in no way an admirable politician, was in favor of a position that is essentially doomed to fail; Socialism.

This is not Dr. Peikoff's rationale. His rationale was that a viewpoint based upon a Disintegrated framework is doomed to fail. Socialism backed by M's would be a threat.

The marriage of religion to leftist causes such as Environmentalism was exactly the shift highlighted at OCON this year.

Edited by KendallJ
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This is not Dr. Peikoff's rationale. His rationale was that a viewpoint based upon a Disintegrated framework is doomed to fail. Socialism backed by M's would be a threat.

The marriage of religion to leftist causes such as Environmentalism was exactly the shift highlighted at OCON this year.

If you don't mind could you please flesh this out for me a little bit?

I am unfamiliar with the DIM hypothesis and I don't expect you to reproduce it here but a little more meat for me to chew on would be greatly appreciated.

I am astounded at the inroads Environmentalism has made into public policy. Fallacious as it is I know it will ultimately be defeated but it looks like it's going to be around longer than I originally thought. Witness the other replies to the Chicago Tribune article I posted yesterday. I would guess that 75% of those commenters have totally bought into Environmentalism and are willing to use force to implement it. You wouldn't believe the number advocating forced sterilization to keep population down.

Your last point seems to indicate a switch in voting strategy from Dr. Peikoff's position, is that true? Could you mention more about what was said at OCON?

For the first time ever I was going to sit home on election day but now, depending on how Socialist and how Environmentalist Obama talks, I may be forced to vote for McCain.

Thanks.

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I'll answer quickly because I don't have much time.

I spoke to the issue a couple of years ago. I think it's very contextual, but the general theme is correct. Piekoff was speaking about a point in time.

http://forum.ObjectivismOnline.com/index.p...st&p=130030

He specificaly did not address any questions on the election at OCON.

What was said was said by ARI in their presentations on Cultural Activism, which are avialalbe on their website in their entirety. This would be Yaron Brook's and Ankar Ghate's talks.

Basically, religion is the key threat. Anyone who says America is more secular today has missed the rise of fundamentalism in the last 30 years, which they chronicle. The fact that religion is marrying itself to leftist causes doesn't in any way minimise the fact that it is still very entrenched in the right, which is the reason Peikoff was adamant one not vote republican. The fact that it is making inroads into leftist politics bodes poorly for anyone trying to decide how to vote, but it bears out the hypothesis. M based on irrationality is the threat whether it is on the right or the left.

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I like the idea of making change at the local level by voting for anti-religious Rep, and then at the national level voting in a way that leaves neither party in total control at any given time. Let them bicker with eachother while making change from within.

Edited by brian0918
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This is not Dr. Peikoff's rationale. His rationale was that a viewpoint based upon a Disintegrated framework is doomed to fail. Socialism backed by M's would be a threat.

The marriage of religion to leftist causes such as Environmentalism was exactly the shift highlighted at OCON this year.

And my point was the same. The Democrats have gone from a pragmatic party of bumbling bafoons, with no real founding philosophy, to a political party with an explicit ethical ethos ( Their goal is to turn America into a nation of servants, one to another ).

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The Democrats have gone from a pragmatic party of bumbling bafoons, with no real founding philosophy, to a political party with an explicit ethical ethos ( Their goal is to turn America into a nation of servants, one to another ).
Do you consider that to be distinct from the goal of the Republicans (and if so, based on what fact)?
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And my point was the same. The Democrats have gone from a pragmatic party of bumbling bafoons, with no real founding philosophy, to a political party with an explicit ethical ethos ( Their goal is to turn America into a nation of servants, one to another ).

So the title of the thread should be "Obama and why the Peikoff argument applies more than ever..." ?

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Perhaps I should re-name it, then. I just know of many Objectivists who are keeping to the 2004 mentality of voting in Kerry to avoid a furthering of Religion.

Do you consider that to be distinct from the goal of the Republicans (and if so, based on what fact)?

I would say the Republicans stick more to the social side of things, binding people to service to the church and to " god ".

EDIT: This is not to say Republicans are fiscally admired, but more that they stick to the " typical " view of Religious oppression, of being forced to worship God, to abstain from all sex because God says so etc.

Edited by TheEgoist
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Just to put a little door stop in here, for anyone considering the 'hell, I'm not going to vote for ANYONE!' point of view: Scott Powell, of the 'History at our house' and 'A first history for adults', is going to be posting an article to his blog at some point, on why, with evidence from history, abstinence can prove more effective than voting for the lesser of two evils.

http://powellhistory.wordpress.com/2008/06...wer-not-to-vote

Obviously, this was posted back in June, so either he's working on a long post or he's been delayed by the actual history course.

My theoretical vote would be for Obama. I recognise the threat he poses, and think him a greater one than McCain, but as someone pointed out, a Republican congress will oppose any Democratic Executive decision much stronger than a Democratic congress will oppose a Republican Executive decision.

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My theoretical vote would be for Obama. I recognise the threat he poses, and think him a greater one than McCain, but as someone pointed out, a Republican congress will oppose any Democratic Executive decision much stronger than a Democratic congress will oppose a Republican Executive decision.

I think the gridlock argument (give one party control of the presidency and the other control of Congress) makes real sense. It actually worked to some extent during the Clinton years. However, in the current situation every political commentator is projecting strong Democrat control of both the House and the Senate. An Obama presidency coupled with a fillibuster-proof majority in the Senate could lead to some real change in this country and it would be virtually all bad.

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But why have I shied away from the position of Peikoff and many Objectivists in this election? It is certainly not because John McCain is some kind of social liberal. He most certainly is not. He's as good as Bush, which is to say not at all.

On religion, McCain isn't as religious as Bush, which is one of the reasons I question this voting for Obama stuff. In fact, Obama appears to be more religious than McCain. I also think that McCain would be tougher than Bush militarily.

Peikoff really hasn't stated a position on this election that I know of, but I have heard that Binswanger is not going to vote for either candidate.

Regarding the grid lock argument, gags is right, we already have a majority of democrats in both the House and the Senate, so giving the White House to another democrat just green lights liberals.

I think it's McCain or nobody this time around, and maybe next time we'll have a better democrat to choose from. That's only four years away.

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The most important concepts in the philosophy of Objectivism and the founding of the USA are freedom and individual rights.

I don’t know history as well as many of you but I don’t think religion is nearly as strong in America today as it was in the 18th century. But that didn’t stop the founding fathers from creating a constitution based on freedom and individual rights.

Maybe some of you can comment on how religion did or did not influence the rise of Communist nations. What role did religion play in the rise of the USSR? I found the following on Wikipedia:

As the founder of the Soviet state V. I. Lenin put it:

"Religion is the opium of the people: this saying of Marx is the cornerstone of the entire ideology of Marxism about religion. All modern religions and churches, all and of every kind of religious organizations are always considered by Marxism as the organs of bourgeois reaction, used for the protection of the exploitation and the stupefaction of the working class."

I found the following Obama quotes that clearly state his support of government forced redistribution of wealth:

"We have an obligation and a responsibility to be investing in our students and our schools. We must make sure that people who have the grades, the desire and the will, but not the money, can still get the best education possible."

"We need somebody who's got the heart, the empathy, to recognize what it's like to be a young teenage mom, the empathy to understand what it's like to be poor or African-American or gay or disabled or old - and that's the criterion by which I'll be selecting my judges."

"We need to steer clear of this poverty of ambition, where people want to drive fancy cars and wear nice clothes and live in nice apartments but don't want to work hard to accomplish these things. Everyone should try to realize their full potential."

"We live in a culture that discourages empathy. A culture that too often tells us our principle goal in life is to be rich, thin, young, famous, safe, and entertained."

All of the McCain quotes I’ve found seem to be related to maintaining military strength and cutting taxes.

Even if McCain is more religious than Obama and gives us “more of the same”, I don’t think I could ever vote for someone who publicly supports socialism as much as Obama does.

I understand that religion teaches that selflessness is moral which makes it easier for politicians to promote government forced redistribution of wealth by claiming to help people in need.

I also think it’s possible for a president to be religious but still fully understand and support the concepts of freedom and individual rights.

But to vote for Obama, simply because democrats are not as religious as republicans, while knowing from Obama’s own words that he doesn’t support freedom and individual rights, just doesn’t make any sense to me at all.

Edited by turboimpala
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The most important concepts in the philosophy of Objectivism and the founding of the USA are freedom and individual rights.

I don’t know history as well as many of you but I don’t think religion is nearly as strong in America today as it was in the 18th century. But that didn’t stop the founding fathers from creating a constitution based on freedom and individual rights.

Maybe some of you can comment on how religion did or did not influence the rise of Communist nations. What role did religion play in the rise of the USSR? I found the following on Wikipedia:

As the founder of the Soviet state V. I. Lenin put it:

"Religion is the opium of the people: this saying of Marx is the cornerstone of the entire ideology of Marxism about religion. All modern religions and churches, all and of every kind of religious organizations are always considered by Marxism as the organs of bourgeois reaction, used for the protection of the exploitation and the stupefaction of the working class."

I found the following Obama quotes that clearly state his support of government forced redistribution of wealth:

"We have an obligation and a responsibility to be investing in our students and our schools. We must make sure that people who have the grades, the desire and the will, but not the money, can still get the best education possible."

"We need somebody who's got the heart, the empathy, to recognize what it's like to be a young teenage mom, the empathy to understand what it's like to be poor or African-American or gay or disabled or old - and that's the criterion by which I'll be selecting my judges."

"We need to steer clear of this poverty of ambition, where people want to drive fancy cars and wear nice clothes and live in nice apartments but don't want to work hard to accomplish these things. Everyone should try to realize their full potential."

"We live in a culture that discourages empathy. A culture that too often tells us our principle goal in life is to be rich, thin, young, famous, safe, and entertained."

All of the McCain quotes I’ve found seem to be related to maintaining military strength and cutting taxes.

Even if McCain is more religious than Obama and gives us “more of the same”, I don’t think I could ever vote for someone who publicly supports socialism as much as Obama does.

I understand that religion teaches that selflessness is moral which makes it easier for politicians to promote government forced redistribution of wealth by claiming to help people in need.

I also think it’s possible for a president to be religious but still fully understand and support the concepts of freedom and individual rights.

But to vote for Obama, simply because democrats are not as religious as republicans, while knowing from Obama’s own words that he doesn’t support freedom and individual rights, just doesn’t make any sense to me at all.

When Obama makes a mess of things then people will know that his views aren't sustainable...

Or are they? I know they are immoral(Only Objectivists realize this though) but are they sustainable?

Edited by dadmonson
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You need to look at the party as a whole also. McCain may be less religious at least while the spotlight is on him, but what about voices of authority within the party, the religious. A single candidate might keep his faith on the low down in order to get elected, but nevertheless if elected the party would continue the same as it has and probably with even more confidence than before. Haven't you witnessed the same 8 years of increasingly religious Republican decision making in politics that I have? The same party that has been increasingly fervent opposing such fundamental issues as separation of church and state, the right to choose on abortion, marriage, and science itself. I think it's strange that all of a sudden once the attention is shifted to the left for a brief moment all of these things apparently become non-issues. If the efficacy of Socialism is at best up for debate as a dead practice, then there can be no debate that religion definately is not a dead practice, now more than ever. If you have any doubts whether religion is losing steam I'd say you should just look at this short clip:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OE0t3hZBwHY...feature=related

That scares me just as much, and maybe more than Obama's left. Have you so quickly forgotten that not long ago McCains "spiritual guides" were John Hagee, and Rod Parsley?

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You need to look at the party as a whole also. McCain may be less religious at least while the spotlight is on him, but what about voices of authority within the party, the religious. A single candidate might keep his faith on the low down in order to get elected, but nevertheless if elected the party would continue the same as it has and probably with even more confidence than before. Haven't you witnessed the same 8 years of increasingly religious Republican decision making in politics that I have? The same party that has been increasingly fervent opposing such fundamental issues as separation of church and state, the right to choose on abortion, marriage, and science itself. I think it's strange that all of a sudden once the attention is shifted to the left for a brief moment all of these things apparently become non-issues. If the efficacy of Socialism is at best up for debate as a dead practice, then there can be no debate that religion definately is not a dead practice, now more than ever. If you have any doubts whether religion is losing steam I'd say you should just look at this short clip:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OE0t3hZBwHY...feature=related

That scares me just as much, and maybe more than Obama's left. Have you so quickly forgotten that not long ago McCains "spiritual guides" were John Hagee, and Rod Parsley?

John McCain just wants one term then he will bow out of politics. If elected the Republicans will have no hold on him (they don’t call him the ‘Maverick’ because he flows the party line). He’s old and seems somewhat uninterested in rocking the boat.

Obama on the other hand is a man with an agenda. He has a strong will to bring his socialism and environmentalism to the table. He’s a guy whose opinions hang on the whims of the majority, so it he screws something up I don’t think hell care. Since when are socialist ready to admit the fault of their system anyways? They’ll just blame the joblessness and inflation on individual and greedy capitalist that are not equal to their noble cause. If anything it will just get them more votes.

It looks like the Dems are going to have even a larger majority in Congress as well doubling up Obama’s threat.

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I cant think of an argument that can make the case that turning the country over to Obama, Reed and Pelosi is a good idea. Since it seems certain that Reed and Pelosi will keep their leadership positions, the only rational choice in this election would be a vote for Mccain. Aside from keeping the 'Axis of Evil' from controlling of the US government, there are side benefits to a McCain victory that should not be overlooked. First, a Mccain victory will demonstrate to future Republicans that towing the line of the religious right is not the only path of success in politics. It will succeed in further marginalizing the role of Evangelicals in the Republican Party. A Mccain loss will do the opposite. Should he lose the election, his failure to woo the religious right will get the blame, thus only strengthening the hold of religion over the Republican Party.

As for the Democrats, an Obama loss might get them to conclude that nominating extreme left-wing candidates is a recipe for electoral disaster. That seems unlikely since they didnt seem to learn from the Clinton/DLC example, but instead continued along the path of defeat paved by Mondale, Dukakis, Gore, Kerry and now, possibly Obama.

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I cant think of an argument that can make the case that turning the country over to Obama, Reed and Pelosi is a good idea. Since it seems certain that Reed and Pelosi will keep their leadership positions, the only rational choice in this election would be a vote for Mccain. Aside from keeping the 'Axis of Evil' from controlling of the US government, there are side benefits to a McCain victory that should not be overlooked. First, a Mccain victory will demonstrate to future Republicans that towing the line of the religious right is not the only path of success in politics. It will succeed in further marginalizing the role of Evangelicals in the Republican Party. A Mccain loss will do the opposite. Should he lose the election, his failure to woo the religious right will get the blame, thus only strengthening the hold of religion over the Republican Party.

As for the Democrats, an Obama loss might get them to conclude that nominating extreme left-wing candidates is a recipe for electoral disaster. That seems unlikely since they didnt seem to learn from the Clinton/DLC example, but instead continued along the path of defeat paved by Mondale, Dukakis, Gore, Kerry and now, possibly Obama.

How does this calculus play out now that McCain has chosen a nutty creationist as his running mate?

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Do not take this as an endorsement for John " the Maverick " McCain from me. As of now, I am refraining from voting for a president in the upcoming election. I won't choose between 2 types of ideologies that want to enslave me to God, or to my neighbor. Americans should not be accepting a lesser of two evils. A choice for a lesser evil, is a choice for evil nonetheless. Neither of our options are less malignant here. Both of the choices will lead us further down the path of an explicitly religious culture and government.

You make some excellent points, but I think you depart from reality in the above paragraph.

"Americans should not be accepting a lesser of two evils;" but, unfortunately, we will be required to do just that. So far, I have not heard any pronouncements, tacit or implied, that federal marshalls will be pounding on my door to drag me off to church. I have heard plenty of rhetoric which indicates that they will certainly be there for their pound of flesh should I be remiss in the proffer.

I am not a big fan of either candidate but I am a realist and will endeavor to choose the one who will leave me a shekel or two more than the other one. More important than that, we need a leader who deeply believes in this country and will ensure its survival. That is, after all, the primary responsibility of a government. If, as you suggest, both candidates will lead us down the same path, perhaps their devotion to this country should be a deciding factor.

I may misjudge; but I shall judge.

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First, a Mccain victory will demonstrate to future Republicans that towing the line of the religious right is not the only path of success in politics. It will succeed in further marginalizing the role of Evangelicals in the Republican Party.

I'll add some perspective.

US News & World Report: McCain Supports Efforts to Ban Gay Marraige. But, he also opposed Bush's federal gay marriage-banning ammendment.

McCain quote via NPR: "I have stated time after time after time that Roe v Wade was a bad decision..."

WorldNetDaily: "'We've both been very vocal about being pro-life,' Palin told the Associated Press, speaking of herself and her husband, Todd."

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How does this calculus play out now that McCain has chosen a nutty creationist as his running mate?

The same. McCain is not the candidate of the religious right. That was made clear during the primaries as Huckabee garnered huge support as a protest vote. The choice of Palin was not made to appease the Evangelicals--although it may do so--it was made to satisfy the conservative base and appeal to women voters in the wake of Clinton's defeat.

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How does this calculus play out now that McCain has chosen a nutty creationist as his running mate?

I don't know much about Palin other than the superficial stuff that the media have thrown out thus far. What is the evidence that she's a "nutty creationist"? Just curious, is it possible to believe in creationism and not be a nut?

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