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Presidential Vote  

129 members have voted

  1. 1. Do you intend to vote for President?

    • Yes, for McCain
      22
    • Yes, for Obama
      9
    • No, I refuse
      65
    • No, just not interested
      7


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In Lithuania's parliament(seimas) elections, many people showed their creativity as a kind of protest against money wasting made by the bureaucratic machine. Some of them even brought pens of different colors and wrote what they felt about it. Or, some of them just crossed out all the members in the list, while others wrote some other person, like Chuck Norris, for example. Those who abstain could do something like this.

Kind of hard to do on a touch-screen voting machine.

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Speaking of Obama, has anyone else noticed that all the pictures available of him and his "much loved" Grandmother are about 20 years old? Things that make you go hmmmmmmmmmmmm...

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Help me to understand the antagonism and suspicion of these posts to Adam's very similar views?

It's not really antagonism or suspicion, just the fact that all Objectivists demand absolute clarity. There isn't any "close enough" on this issue because the view of the proper functions of government is core to Objectivist political philosophy. No, we're not a political party but we do advocate a specific political outlook.

Libertarianism is such a grab-bag of conflicting ideas that it's better to discuss in terms of philosophical positions rather than political ones. The three fundamental ones are:

Anarchism--the view that there are no proper functions of government and thus that there should be no government.

Objectivism--the view that the purpose of government is to protect individual rights, which cannot properly be carried out by private citizens or organizations, thus that the proper government is one that consists of police, military, and courts, and NOTHING ELSE.

Statism--the view that the government can and should control a vast number of things having nothing to do with violations of rights, up to everything.

It's good that you and your friend like Objectivism. I was a libertarian/anarchist sort about 6 years ago when I didn't know any better, but more research and reading led me to change my mind. So, I encourage you to do more research and reading and refrain from calling yourself an Objectivist as long as you don't agree about the proper functions of government.

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My problem is I'm still trying to figure out my states method for abstaining from a vote. As far as I can tell it varies from state to state, and not voting can possibly just be counted as a non-vote, or a protest vote. I plan on asking one of the little old ladies likely to be working at the polls, but I'm not sure if I should count on them to know how to field such a question.

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My problem is I'm still trying to figure out my states method for abstaining from a vote. As far as I can tell it varies from state to state, and not voting can possibly just be counted as a non-vote, or a protest vote. I plan on asking one of the little old ladies likely to be working at the polls, but I'm not sure if I should count on them to know how to field such a question.

It'll almost certainly be really obvious. Paper ballot? Don't mark, punch, or whatever, either Obama or McCain. Touch screen? I haven't used one but I understand it's got a "skip" button. A lot of people blow off the "Shall Judge Nietzche Vaux be retained in office?" type questions with no ill effect.

This is not a big deal.

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I'm in 100% agreement with this. Over the past 4 years my thinking on the threat posed by religion in the U.S. has changed to the point where I'm no longer willing to vote for anyone with a religious base--at least not for an executive position. I might conceivably be convinced to vote for Republicans for, say, legislative positions in the hope of achieving government gridlock, but that seems like a dangerous position and a fine line to tread. Since most politicians worship the principle of compromise, it's impossible to tell whether they'll stand on the principles they claim to espouse and actually serve as any kind of useful opposition.

What exactly is what you see as dangerous?

A politician can be counted 99.99999% of the time on one thing: to do what he must to win the next election. So while gridlock usually is beneficial since it prevents government from acting, the GOP now thinks Dole lost in 96 because they failed to pass a budget on time. From such a lesson they may just decide to help pass a (socialized) health care bill if they think that'll get them re-elected (much as the Democrats voted for Gulf War II even if they were against it).

Or are you concerned that the religious left may rise and hook up with the religious right?

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A politician can be counted 99.99999% of the time on one thing: to do what he must to win the next election.

No they can't, because they don't *know*.

Or are you concerned that the religious left may rise and hook up with the religious right?

I'm concerned with the institution of a theocracy in this country, that's what I'm concerned with.

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For Jesus Christ Almighty's sake, don't vote for Chuck Norris! Check out the Real Chuck Norris Facts.

--Dan Edge

Something funny to hear for an atheist.

Kind of hard to do on a touch-screen voting machine.

My country is so inadvanced it still uses paper blanks. Huh.

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I think it is legitimate to add "3rd party" to this poll. I think there are many students of Objectivism here who may see a vote for a third party as a protest vote. Some of us, myself included, just may not be able to bring ourselves to not vote (especially since many of us are still going to the polls for local/state reps and issues). I think the media and public would pay more attention if a third party, known for their message of individual liberty, were to receive 20 % of the vote rather than have that 20% go to "abstained".

I'm still not sure why there is a hatred of the libertarian party when many of the stands they take on issues fall on the side of more individual freedoms and less government. I don't see that they advocate "anarchy" (as mentioned in the debate page) and people like myself it's likely they're a much different organization today than they were when Rand gave that interview.

I'm not advocating that all objectivists should vote Libertarian here, but I see nothing wrong with it given the choices. I'm still trying to understand what exactly the so called "Objectivists" on this board DO advocate and how they expect to achieve their political goals outside of a political party.

Which is the party that advocates the philosophy of Ayn Rand? Where is todays Objectivist leader and which party will they choose to reform towards Rand’s philosophy? With the Republicans catering to the Christian right and the Democrats catering to the socialist left, doesn't the libertarian party lend itself to such a reformation?

Sorry if I sound frustrated here, my intention is not to flame anyone. I suppose this is my typical negative attitude when I only see the country heading further into a fascist hell-on-earth.

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Might big question is this...

If roughly 60%* of the population didn't vote in the last election. What makes you think that anyone is going to care about your opinions? They don't seem to care too much about the 184,438,735 million of other people who didn't vote at all.

*When you take the number of people who voted for Kerry or Bush, combine them together and divide by the current population of the country you get .3962878454, which can be rounded to 40% Meaning only 40% voted last time around.

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If roughly 60%* of the population didn't vote in the last election. What makes you think that anyone is going to care about your opinions? They don't seem to care too much about the 184,438,735 million of other people who didn't vote at all.

That's a really sloppy way to think about it. Winning elections is NOT about getting the other 60% to vote. It IS however about getting marginal voters (i.e. the next 1 or 2 %) to vote. Voters on the margin, those that might vote if but for some reason that is holding them back, are CRUCIALLY important to strategists.

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I will repeat my #1 reason for voting against McCain...Politically, McCain cannot nominate a secular Justice to fill his seat. Stevens' replacement will likely sit on the court for several decades.
Indeed. In addition to th SCOTUS, it is also about time there was some more balance (grid-lock?) in the appeals courts. Check out this New York Times article for some statistics.
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I will repeat my #1 reason for voting against McCain...Politically, McCain cannot nominate a secular Justice to fill his seat. Stevens' replacement will likely sit on the court for several decades.

I'm not sure how good a reason this is. McCain may not be able to nominate a secular justice, but I doubt that a theocratic one would be confirmed by the heavily Democratic Senate he would be facing. People tend to discount the impact of the Senate on the President's ability to nominate whomever he wishes to the Supreme Court.

I think there are many good reasons not to vote for McCain -- I just don't think this one deserves to be #1.

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Which is the party that advocates the philosophy of Ayn Rand? Where is todays Objectivist leader and which party will they choose to reform towards Rand’s philosophy? With the Republicans catering to the Christian right and the Democrats catering to the socialist left, doesn't the libertarian party lend itself to such a reformation?

That's just the problem. There *isn't* a political party that comes even close to advocating the philosophy of Ayn Rand because the ideological base is so bad. Objectivist leaders today are intellectuals spreading ideas, not politicians running for office. It's not possible to reform any of the existing parties because they are grounded in bad ideas, including the Libertarian party.

Objectivism isn't a political movement, it is and should be an ideological one. Starting with politics is putting the cart before the horse.

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It struck me that this election has made me start to experience some real personal anxiety about dealing with the government in any capacity. I always had some, usually around tax-time, but it's *never* been this bad before. I have to go to the DMV tomorrow to get my driver's license renewed and the prospect is really frightening me. I know from previous experience that it will probably only be a minor hassle, but the knowledge of what they *could* do to me is wearing on my nerves and making me unable to sleep.

If you think that's so bad, try to imagine what dealing with Jury Duty would be like! I just got summoned this week. Hoo boy, here we go again! I cannot vote to convict a defendant who broke an unjust law. They're not going to like to hear what I have to say about jury nullification.

My only beef with Motor Vehicle people is that now they are asking for Social Security numbers. I went through a considerable hassle at my last license renewal because I told them it was none of their business; that SS is between a Subject and the Social Security Administration only. After a 15-minute delay, I got my renewal. What a waste of time, given that illegals can get licenses without having to pass any test--just go to any corrupt DMV official and pay a 'fee'. :)

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So in Volume 20, # 2 of The Intellectual Activist, Tracinski argues that McCain is the "Lesser of Two Evils".

Basic summary points:

On morality:

Obama - advocates the "altruist welfare-statism and foreign policy appeasement"

McCain - "basic convictions are a generalized altruism expressed by his frequent exhortation to serve 'a cause greater than your own self-interest'“ and Pragmatism.

Tracinski argues that there is one crucial question about these two candidates: "Does he love America?” He goes on to analyze:

Obama: his association with people such as Wright and Ayers tell us: "that Obama himself may not hate America, but he has been comfortable dealing closely for long periods of time with people who do hate America and who have been willing to say so loudly, publicly, repeatedly."

McCain: His history as a POW "enduring torture for years rather than betray his country, speaks volumes." And quotes McCains speech at the Republican convention where he describes when and why he fell in love with his country as a POW.

Tracinski goes on to support his argument by pointing out that "Foreign policy is the one area in which the president acts virtually alone." He mentions how McCain advocated the surge far before Bush implemented it and how Obama was opposed to it. He also points out that McCain has a sincere desire to fight for America even if he really doesn't understand America or free markets.

Tracinski also advocates voting for Republican congressional reps in order to block the democratic leadership from passing its agenda. He cites 3 "positive political developments" that the congressional Republicans have been responsible for:

1) Defeat of a proposal for "cap-and-trade" energy rationing.

2) Initiation of the "campaign to repeal restrictions on domestic oil exploration"

3) Their unexpected blocking of the first financial bailout bill and denouncement of it as "a slippery slope to socialism". Even though they were "browbeaten into voting for the bill", it was "a spirited defense of liberty in Congress"

I apologize to Mr. Tracinski if I was not able to effectively capture his detailed article in my summary. It may be posted at his web site in the near future if you'd like to read it: http://www.intellectualactivist.com/

I also see the basic point that no political party really advocates an "Objectivist viewpoint" and I understand that Objectivism is not a political party. However, I'm still not personally convinced that the most appropriate action is to abstain from voting. It sounds like the basic idea advocated here is that the general population needs to be schooled in Objectivist thinking and subsequently will make more rational, pro-Objectivist philosophy decisions at the polls. If this were the case, then one would expect that one of the existing parties would not necessarily evolve "good ideas" but trend away from the bad ones. It's likely that they will demonstrate better behavior as they attempt to cater to a more pro-Objectivist minded electorate.

Edited by ds1973
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McCain may not be able to nominate a secular justice, but I doubt that a theocratic one would be confirmed by the heavily Democratic Senate he would be facing. People tend to discount the impact of the Senate on the President's ability to nominate whomever he wishes to the Supreme Court.

The Senate won't be asking the right questions, though. They'll be focusing on stuff like Roe v. Wade and the 1st Amendment, when this issue is really one of 14th Amendment jurisprudence. All the court needs is one more "states rights" justice to tip the establishment clause incorporation issue towards disincorporation and *bam* the establishment clause no longer applies to the states. It's not a high-profile issue that the Democratic Senate (assuming it remains Democratic throughout a McCain presidency) is likely to notice. How many Senators asked Alito during his confirmation hearings whether he was in favor of disincorporating the establishment clause?

Even if McCain isn't able to push an expressly anti-abortion, pro-Jesus candidate through the Senate, he won't even be nominating non-Federalists. One more Federalist on the court is all it will take.

~Q

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So in Volume 20, # 2 of The Intellectual Activist, Tracinski argues that McCain is the "Lesser of Two Evils".

Of course, Trancinski is nothing more then a glorified Republican cheerleader and apologist. He has advocated in the past that we switch to a one party system, with only the Republicans.

Edited by Mammon
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Of course, Trancinski is nothing more then a glorified Republican cheerleader and apologist.

From what I can tell, you are nothing more than a glorified Democrat cheerleader and apologist. Should we pay no attention to what you say on the topic of politics? Or should we judge your words against the facts of reality?

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A vote of no confidence for me. I will not support these two. I will not bother to speculate on how better off this country would be if one of these two men were to become president, because all empirical evidence shows that it won't be.

First, trusting that McCain will not continue the policies of George Bush, or enhance them further is like putting your trust in Jesus Christ. You have no logical reason to believe this. (Bush policies: Tax less, spend more. Altruistic wars rather than wars of self interest. Expansion of federal bureaucracy. Enhancement of the religious right and it's policies. Compromise on fiscal-social issues to the worst aspects of the Democrats)

McCain is just as bad as Bush and he isn't even president yet. He just voted for a massive bailout, and he swore to give a lion share of that money to buy out peoples bad mortgages. He has endorsed the Bush expansion of medicare that he had originally voted against in 2003. He swears to take on big oil and big pharmacies. He has aligned himself with the formerly benign-in-his-campaign religious right by bringing Palin into the fold. He supports a culture of life, or what many Objectivists know as a culture of living death, a life dedicated to potentials that we must never exploit for our own purposes.

I don't think I need to even make you aware of Obama's evils. Objectivists seem more apt to become keen on the insanity of socialism, but seem slow to notice the same thing on the Right.

The most notable part of Obama's candidacy and likely presidency is that he may be an inspiring figure for the seemingly inevitable religious left. Craig Biddle does a decent job of discussing this in the new ARC lecture "McBama VS America".

Gun to my head, I'd vote for Obama. Thankfully, guns aren't pointed at my head, quite yet.

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My country is so inadvanced it still uses paper blanks. Huh.

Given the relative ease with which e-voting can be tampered with(Google Diebold and see what turns up), I'd say your country is better off with paper slips.

As for me, I will not be voting because I am Canadian, and for that reason am not legally entitled to do so. I will continue to look across the border in horror at two candidates who view my country's lumber industry as a personal affront.

Edited by Dr. Radiaki
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