Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Some Timely Advice from Ayn Rand on "How to Judge a Political Candidate”

Writing on the 1964 presidential campaign, Ayn Rand  offered this advice on “How to Judge a Political Candidate”:

If [a candidate’s] stand is mixed, we must evaluate it by asking: Will he protect freedom or destroy the last of it? Will he accelerate, delay or stop the march toward statism?

By this standard, one can see why Barry Goldwater is the best candidate in the field today.

No, he is not an advocate of laissez-faire capitalism—this is one of the contradictions in his stand. Like all of today’s political figures, he is the advocate of a mixed economy. But the difference between him and the others is this: they believe that some (undefined) element of freedom is compatible with government controls; he believes that some (undefined) government controls are compatible with freedom. Freedom is his major premise.

Rand’s advice is timely today.

It is not necessary or realistic to wait for the perfect laissez-faire capitalist ticket. We only need one that offers enough pro-freedom material to work with.

Clearly, in 2012, the Obama Democrats embody statism. The Romney/Ryan ticket is not nearly as strong for freedom as the Dems are on statism. Still, the Repubs generally lean more toward freedom, or at least a delay of statism. And Ryan is an open admirer--albeit a qualified admirer, but an admirer nonetheless--of Ayn Rand. (Note: this is not to imply that Rand would see it this way.)

Given the GOP ticket as the only viable choice for liberty advocates, we must strenuously promote the pro-freedom elements of the Republican ticket and platform, and of the party in general. And we must just as strenuously expose their anti-freedom contradictions, particularly on the issue of morality, so as to—as Craig Biddle advises—“constantly pressure them to move as far right as possible.”

1 comment:

Mike Kevitt said...

Granted, we need only enough pro freedom in a ticket to work with, because we can only do so much at a time, or in 4 yrs. or in 8 yrs. But, every new ticket elected should be closer to perfect laissez-faire than the one before, until we DO have a perfect laissez-faire ticket. Then, let's keep it that way.