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After Kerry Wins . . .

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I agree entirely.  I will always vote for a man of mixed premises who has vices but SOME virtues over someone who is totally evil.  When my choices are limited to those two alternatives, as they are in this election, voting for Bush is not a compromise, but voting for Kerry is total surrender.

Some Objectivists -- NOT Ayn Rand -- have suggested this strategy in the past.  Some advocated voting for Clinton against Bush 41 to "send a message" to the Republican Party that they should run better candidates.  The result?  They nominated Bob Dole the next time.  Some improvement!

If you want to "send a message" try philosophical arguments.

Betsy, I have been stunned since this argument first came out: stunned that voting for Kerry has been called "philosophic heroism," stunned that choosing not to vote could be called immoral. I don't understand how any Objectivist could ever advocate voting for that paragon of a fantasist of the Liberal Left. It has disturbed many a night.

I understand the danger from the Religious Right. After my initial arguments here, I spent several weeks immersing myself in their web sites, listening to the talk radio shows, and reading some of the literature which has been written advocating a "return" to the Christian values that built this nation. I recognized what they were doing years ago when they tried to get people on the San Diego school board. They are more active politically now than ever. So I grant that there is a problem here.

BUT (to use a Kerry tactic :dough: ) I don't see how siding with the Left is going to put a stop to this. I listened to several exchanges with the "best and brightest" from the Left, from academcia and and from their "intelligencia," with Hugh Hewitt and with Dennis Prager (on their radio shows). It was pathetic. They had no argument worth repeating. They did nothing more than wring their hands over the growth of the Religious Right -- and what they did say was so insulting that I ended up siding with Hewitt and Prager! (I did end up emailing both shows to inform them that not all secularists were cut from the same cloth and that as an Objectivist I didn't want to be lumped in with an ideology that I loathe as much as they do.)

How do we further the cause of Objectivism by being lumped in with such a bankrupt and depraved people? When did some Objectivists lose their certainty in the power of the truth of Objectivism? How does siding with Liberals advance our argument? I honestly do not understand how they came to their conclusions, for all that I have read. There are too many aspects of the overall context that do not seem to have been taken into account.

I don't understand it and it bothers me to distraction. The one answer to this thread from a Kerry supporter sounded like it could have fallen out of Kerry's own mouth! And he didn't answer my question, he merely rehearsed the same arguments and sniffed my way. The attitude I've seen from some of the Kerry supporters is hateful and assumes malevolence from those who do not agree.

This disagreement on something so fundamental, and the attitudes it is spawning is disquieting.

Disturbed, disquieted, bothered, distressed, distracted, and unable to understand. I guess that about says it. Oh! Add worried to death about the consequences of it all.

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That's the best retort to Kerry supporters ever posted on this forum!

Oh, I don't know. I kind of like this one:

How do we further the cause of Objectivism by being lumped in with such a bankrupt and depraved people [Liberals]?

Or this one:

Liberals are the Western equivalents of Islamic fundamentalists.

Or this one:

You have to be a complete altruist in order to find anything attractive about liberalism.

Or this one:

I hate Kerry like I've never hated another person in all of my life.

Or this one:

While the Right may allow other-worldly considerations to affect their political judgements on occasion, the Dems LIVE in an alternate universe.

And this one:

Religious conservatives get a lot of things wrong, while secular liberals get just about nothing right.

I got tons of these precious quotes. I stick them in my folder with all the meaningless anti-liberal Rush Limbaugh and Sean Hannity quotes.

Now, if you really still don't have an answer to the original question, I suggest re-reading the Peikoff for Kerry thread--rather than repeating the same question (with slightly different wording) over and over so loudly that you cannot hear anyone's answer to it.

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It's hard to say what will happen if there's a Kerry Presidency. Fortunately, he's not a Dictator and will share, in a sense, power with the two other branches of Government.

A Republican House may tighten the purse strings and Kerry would remain tough enough on homeland security, which may put us back into surplus status and keep the masses asleep from the Islamic nut jobs.

He may be able to use his influence to take back the house and senate. Republicans may cave on a Liberal leftist judge appointment. This could hurt us by allowing greater expansion of the Government.

I know that one of the risks of voting Kerry into office is he could get credit if the economy begins to boom again. That was one of the down sides of electing Clinton. In the 90’s we had a stronger economy, and that somehow validated President Clinton’s economic policy. I hear this all the time, even from Republican voters who say as sleazy as Clinton was, he sure knew how to run the economy.

I remember when Bush got entered the White House, I thought the Republicans would take great advantage and start cutting and slashing the budget and regulations. Clearly, I was wrong.

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I might abstain from voting. Either way I think I've lost. Shut my mouth and I sanction the ideals I hate. Open them and I sanction the ideals I hate. If Ayn Rand was Dominique on a bad day, I've been Dominique's spiritual twin for a good year. So I'm just going to fold my arms, abstain, and hope for the best while doing my best to spread my ideals which I'm actually doing quite fine with right now.

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...

Shut my mouth and I sanction the ideals I hate. Open them and I sanction the ideals I hate. If Ayn Rand was Dominique on a bad day, I've been Dominique's spiritual twin for a good year.

...

1. Being silent is not necessarily sanction. Only in some contexts would silence be sanction. E.g., "All members of the class who support Bush, say 'Aye', and the rest keep quiet." If a teacher says that, then keeping silent would be an indication of support -- but even then, that "vote" alone doesn't sanction any of Kerry's beliefs (if he has any). It would just mean you would select him, but it doesn't say why or to what extent you support him.

2. You might want to reconsider your wording about Dominique and Ayn Rand. "Dominique was Ayn Rand on a bad day," would be accurate. Ayn Rand had bad days occasionally. Dominique had a conflict problem for most of her life. And then she met Howard Roark and worked her way out of the conflict.

3. I agree with your conclusion. I too have decided to follow Ayn Rand's decision in the 1980 election: not vote for president.

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For those considering voting for Kerry, one thing to realize is that Kerry is not Clinton. Clinton wasn't driven by ideology. He was an opportunist with power-lust, a man content to sit back and bask in the adoration and pawing of others.

Kerry, as far as I've seen, is much closer to Hillary. He's an abomination that would use his power to promote his agenda agressively.

Now I think there was a strong argument in favor of getting Clinton in office, if one knew the real Bill Clinton. We could stand a few years with him in office.

But Kerry would not just stagnate the war, he would reverse our progress. Would he, for instance, stand up to international pressure to release Guantanamo prisoners? No. Would he let the military/intel have a free reign with information gathering, including interrogation? Doubt it. And it seems pretty clear he would reduce the war effort to a criminal/legal one.

In contrast, Bush is an unprincipled mix. He plays "from the gut", meaning he doesn't sit around questioning and doubting his actions, nor analyzing every detail. The downside of this approach is a lack of foresight (see the post-war Iraq for details).

Yet, who was the last President to actually make a large-scale effort to fight terrorism? Most of them took small-scale, one-time reprisals (Clinton bombing aspirin factories, Reagan bombing Libya) or retreated in defeat (Reagan after the Beirut marine barracks attack, Carter and Iran hostages).

The facts are clear: Bush has done the best job of any recent president of fighting terrorism. I don't think we need to have a John Galt or even a Steve Forbes as president to win this. We just need good enough. The shortcomings will only increase the cost (lives, years, and cost) of the victory. What will ensure defeat in this war is to stop fighting it -- which is what, I'm convinced, Kerry would do.

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MisterSwig: Just because we don't agree with Dr. Peikoff -- or with you --doesn't mean we haven't done the reading, or understand the reasons given. Speaking for myself, there are many things that I consider integral to the overall context of this argument that, in my opinion, have not been given the weight they deserve, or have not been considered at all. There are parts of the argument that make no sense to me, so I've tried to get those who agree to explain.

If this annoys you so much -- which, from your snide remarks I infer it does -- you are invited to remove yourself from the discussion at hand. You aren't helpful, you don't answer the questions asked, and your attitude is contemptuous of anyone who doesn't fall into line with you. You can still mine any thread you please for your folder of "precious" statements, of course, if that's what makes your heart sing.

I am not now, nor have I ever been, impressed by a bully who attempts to shame, intimidate, or ridicule me into anything. Such behavior belongs on an elementary school playground, not in an intellectual setting.

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Oh, I don't know. I kind of like this one:

Those quotes you so causually dismiss state facts and conclusions well-grounded in reality and their authors have supported them with citations and logical arguments.

That SOME Objectivists agree with you means nothing. Most Objectivists don't -- and for good reasons. Arguments from authority, even if the authority is someone as knowledgeable and respected as Dr. Peikoff, don't convince rational people. If you wish your position to be taken seriously, how about some counter-arguments and first-hand reasoning?

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MisterSwig: 

[...]

I am not now, nor have I ever been, impressed by a bully who attempts to shame, intimidate, or ridicule me into anything.  Such behavior belongs on an elementary school playground, not in an intellectual setting.

Actually, you see a lot of that in college classrooms :) , but I know you mean REAL intellectual settings.

This is, after all, an Objectivist list and, while some participants are not Objectivists, there are enough real Objectivists present to keep the discussion honest. Some may attempt an Argument from Intimidation, but it's not going to work. Not around here.

Real Objectivists are not easily intimidated. They judge those that try to substitute intimidation for reality and logic for exactly who and what they are.

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MisterSwig:  Just because we don't agree with Dr. Peikoff -- or with you --doesn't mean we haven't done the reading, or understand the reasons given.  Speaking for myself, there are many things that I consider integral to the overall context of this argument that, in my opinion, have not been given the weight they deserve, or have not been considered at all.  There are parts of the argument that make no sense to me, so I've tried to get those who agree to explain. 

If this annoys you so much -- which, from your snide remarks I infer it does -- you are invited to remove yourself from the discussion at hand.  You aren't helpful, you don't answer the questions asked, and your attitude is contemptuous of anyone who doesn't fall into line with you.  You can still mine any thread you please for your folder of "precious" statements, of course, if that's what makes your heart sing.

   

I am not now, nor have I ever been, impressed by a bully who attempts to shame, intimidate, or ridicule me into anything.  Such behavior belongs on an elementary school playground, not in an intellectual setting.

This will be my last response to you from me.

I personally find your posts to be reprehensible echoes of the faith-based Right. I can't speak for Mr. Swig but, as an avowed capitalist myself, I can understand where he's coming from.

As a result, I have placed you on my Ignore List.

I am glad that Objectivism-on-line has afforded us this feature, because I was under the impression that this forum was for the discussion of Objectivism and its various applications. I got this impression when I read, re-read, and re-read repeatedly the various rules and preambles that are a part of this site.

I have seen where some who call themselves objectivists have merely used the site to echo the rantings of Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, and Sean hannity, among others, and called this "objectivism."

I cannot, for one minute, believe that either Ayn Rand or Leonard Peikoff would concur with some of the blatantly conservative rants I read on this forum on a daily basis.

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According to the poll in this section over 50% of the people on this forum plan to vote for GW as opposed to 15% for Kerry. From reading the posts here I might assume tht most of the people here are Objectivists or semi-objectivist. Just because you disagree with Piekoff on 1 issue doesn't make you a Conservative.

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I am still debating whether to vote for George Bush or writing in John Galt. I will not vote for John Kerry and here are a couple of reasons why:

1) Kerry says he only wants to raise taxes on individuals who earn over $200,000 per year. He sets a national standard on what he considers individuals deserve. I’m surprised Republicans have not responded in a clear manner which includes cost of living. You could earn $200,000 per year in Alabama and your standard of living would be vastly different to an individual earning the same income in New York or San Francisco.

2) He advocates a national healthcare plan. I found humor in his response to a question during the second debate to a question about affordable healthcare and choice. He responded something on the lines of –oh yes, you will still have a choice. You can either choose to pay higher premiums or go with my plan-. He is a very good politician.

With all due respect for other Objectivists who will vote for Kerry, I do not agree that the Christians are only influential to the Republican Party. Just last night on the way home from a school function my husband pointed out a bumper sticker on the truck in front of us that said “Christians for Kerry”. I see both parties catering to religious institutions. Currently I live in a county that I would consider very conservative which voted Democratic during the last Presidential election.

It is best for me to decide what my priorities are. I greatly appreciate Mr. Laughlin’s discussion about methodology. (As well, the most comprehensive book I have read so far about Aristotle – which I discovered on an ad on the Ego blog.)

-Elizabeth

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This will be my last response to you from me.

I personally find your posts to be reprehensible echoes of the faith-based Right.  I can't speak for Mr. Swig but, as an avowed capitalist myself, I can understand where he's coming from.

As a result, I have placed you on my Ignore List.

I am glad that Objectivism-on-line has afforded us this feature, because I was under the impression that  this forum was for the discussion of Objectivism and its various applications.  I got this impression when I read, re-read, and re-read repeatedly the various rules and preambles that are a part of this site.

I have seen where some who call themselves objectivists have merely used the site to echo the rantings of Rush Limbaugh, Ann Coulter, and Sean hannity, among others, and called this "objectivism."

I cannot, for one minute, believe that either Ayn Rand or Leonard Peikoff would concur with some of the blatantly conservative rants I read on this forum on a daily basis.

Of course, even conservatives are privy to the truth. I don't listen to Rush, nor do I read Coulter, and I can't stand Hannity. I managed to see what I see all by myself.

I thank you for putting me on your ignore list, though. That was very thoughtful of you.

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Those quotes you so causually dismiss state facts and conclusions well-grounded in reality and their authors have supported them with citations and logical arguments.

Help me out. I can't decide whether the following quotes by you are consistent:

I have many Democrat friends ... Many of them vote Democrat out of family tradition and force of habit, some are "bleeding heart" altruists, some are intellectual Old Left, and some are anti-intellectual New Left. The latter are the real value-haters and the big Michael Moore fans.

Compare that to the Democrats and their supporters. They are so alienated from reality that their politics is based on a huge, hysterical MYTHOLOGY, accepted on faith, of right-wing corporate conspiracies, ethnic and sexual victimhood, and an environmental apocalypse.

How do you really feel about Democrats, Betsy? Are they your "friends?" Or are they "and their supporters" the devil incarnate?

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With all due respect for other Objectivists who will vote for Kerry, I do not agree that the Christians are only influential to the Republican Party.  Just last night on the way home from a school function my husband pointed out a bumper sticker on the truck in front of us that said “Christians for Kerry”.  I see both parties catering to religious institutions.  Currently I live in a county that I would consider very conservative which voted Democratic during the last Presidential election.

True. Christians are influencial to both parties. But the conservative movement has been taken over by a bunch of radicals who want to religionize government, uniting church and state. Look at Bush's faith-based initiatives. That is the main problem with the conservatives.

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Help me out. I can't decide whether the following quotes by you are consistent:

How do you really feel about Democrats, Betsy? Are they your "friends?" Or are they "and their supporters" the devil incarnate?

It's incredible how quotes can change into whatever meaning you please when taken out of context, isn't MisterSwig? It can make Ayn Rand even sound like Mr. Toohey or, God forbid, your devil incarnate Rush Limbaugh.

Just to remind you: "democrats" refer to "democrats in general"--not "ALL democrats"; while "democrat friends" refer to friends who are "democrats"--which is NOT inclusive of "all democrats".

So there is nothing inconsistent about Betsy's opinion of some democrats versus her opinion of democrats in general.

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I can not fathom how objectivist could even consider supporting John Kerry, the man who thinks government is the solution to every problem. Who supports minimum wage laws, nationalized healthcare, afterschool programs funded by the government, and increased taxes on the wealthy. Of course, President Bush is a lighter version of a socialist with perscription drug coverage, the so-called Faith-based Intitiative, No Child Left Behind, etc. I'm throwing my support behind Michael Badnarik, and while he doesn't possess the intellect of Harry Browne, he is a proponent of minarchist government and an unregulated free market. Supporting Kerry is atrocious, he is the most liberal of all US Senators save for maybe his drunken colleague - Chappiquidick Kennedy.

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Help me out. I can't decide whether the following quotes by you are consistent:

Then check the context.

I have many Democrat friends ... Many of them vote Democrat out of family tradition and force of habit, some are "bleeding heart" altruists, some are intellectual Old Left, and some are anti-intellectual New Left. The latter are the real value-haters and the big Michael Moore fans.

Here I was discussing the different kinds of Democrats ranging from the not-too-bad to the goddawful.

Compare that to the Democrats and their supporters. They are so alienated from reality that their politics is based on a huge, hysterical MYTHOLOGY, accepted on faith, of right-wing corporate conspiracies, ethnic and sexual victimhood, and an environmental apocalypse

Here I believe the context was the Democratic Presidential ticket, its most vocal supporters, and their essential arguments and ideology.

How do you really feel about Democrats, Betsy? Are they your "friends?" Or are they "and their supporters" the devil incarnate?

That depends on WHICH Democrats we are talking about. It depends on the context. Careful .. don't drop it! :confused:

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MisterSwig:

I've read your valid arguments, what I consider to be your invalid arguments, your cynical diatribes, and your sneering comebacks. We both know that we don't agree and that neither is going to convince the other of each particular position. What I haven't read are any answers to the question I posed and the topic of this thread: What do you think will be Kerry's response to the WOT and what do you think his relationship will be with the troops?

Everytime I bring up the military, you give me some form of "not in my name." Fine. I've had many discussions about this with members of the military and I can tell you that our forces are well aware of this particular group of Americans and are happy to ignore them while they fight for their families and their country. Believe me when I tell you that they are not fighting or dying in your name.

Since you are for Kerry, I would appreciate knowing what you think the the consequences of a Kerry presidency will be for the military? Since most people in the military have little respect for Kerry, what do you see as their reaction to his election?

Please try to answer this seriously. I know you are able to make a reasoned argument without the acid dripping from your tongue, the cynicism and the disrespect because I've read posts where you've done so to good effect. I appeal to your mind in this matter, not your emotions. I genuinely want to know what you think about this specific question.

Edited by oldsalt
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Here I believe the context was the Democratic Presidential ticket, its most vocal supporters, and their essential arguments and ideology.

You were comparing "Democrats and their supporters" to "religious conservatives." You make no mention of "the Democratic presidential ticket" nor "its most vocal" supporters in this particular post:

http://forum.ObjectivismOnline.com/index.p...indpost&p=50565

But if that is what you meant to convey, then I will note the correction.

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True. Christians are influencial to both parties. But the conservative movement has been taken over by a bunch of radicals who want to religionize government, uniting church and state. Look at Bush's faith-based initiatives. That is the main problem with the conservatives.

My point is that the Marxist belief "from each according to his ability, to each according to his need" is more blatantly a threat to the US at this time than the religious right. Which religion do I find more repellent ... worship of the state or mysticism? My answer is both. Which is more of an immediate threat - to me - the answer is obvious and I am unwilling to compromise my principles by voting for Kerry.

I see there is another thread regarding this issue and perhaps more articles by Objectivists to examine and will take my attention to that line.

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