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Ayn Rand vs. Obama?

Very interesting tack Obama is taking here defending against McCain…


Any Ayn Rand fans care to comment?


  • “On the stump this week, Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill., has pushed back against Sen. John McCain’s description of his tax policies.

    “The reason that we want to do this, change our tax code, is not because I have anything against the rich,” Obama said in Sarasota, Fla., yesterday. “I love rich people! I want all of you to be rich. Go for it. That’s the American dream, that’s the American way, that’s terrific.

    “The point is, though, that – and it’s not just charity, it’s not just that I want to help the middle class and working people who are trying to get in the middle class—it’s that when we actually make sure that everybody’s got a shot – when young people can all go to college, when everybody’s got decent health care, when everybody’s got a little more money at the end of the month – then guess what? Everybody starts spending that money, they decide maybe I can afford a new car, maybe I can afford a computer for my child. They can buy the products and services that businesses are selling and everybody is better off. All boats rise. That’s what happened in the 1990s, that’s what we need to restore. And that’s what I’m gonna do as president of the United States of America.”

    Hmmm. First off, I am not familiar enough with Ayn Rand’s work to criticize nor applaud her thoughts. I have found that most of us, depsite what label we HAVE put on us, or put on ourselves, (labels and words are quite limiting and dismissive of broad thinking) ultimately want the same things. Democrats and Repulicans each want the same ultimate things- they just disagree on how best to achieve it. C’est la vie in our currant cultural/political/monetary system.

    As far as Barack’s above copied statements, I see nothing wrong with what he is saying. So he called McCain and Palin’s criticism of his so-called solialistic plan as being a selfish ideal to promote. It is. On the flip side, I can also agree with people who do not want to pay any higher taxes to our gov’t who cannot account for billions of dollars and mishandles and misappropriates our tax money already.

    The problem is not one party over another. They have both been infiltrated by the same few corrupt, power- mongering elites and their families at the top who have been pulling the strings for many many years now. Until we stop fighting amongst ourselves, the regular people who out number the corrupt elite, we will not be able to solve the true problem. Abortion, taxes, welfare, poor economy, gov’t takeover, etc will solve itself when we each look past the surface differences and see the common enemy that threatens us all. Or we can continue squabbling over the “small stuff,” remaining too distracted to recognize and stop their machinations while we blame “the other party.” The two main parties are one and the same in the end.

    I am voting Nader/Gonzalez-Independent. I had hoped Obama would provide the integrity he promises, but when he voted for the Banker Bailout so easily and quickly I saw clearly he is still not the true change we hope for and need, even if, possibly, slightly better than the imbecile, pathetic puppets of McCain and Palin. I do not think it is completely “throwing away a vote” though to vote one’s conscience and to also support there are more than two parties running.


    “The Federal Reserve caused the 700 billion dollar bailout and economic crash:”

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KV9yDLhKbjg – part I, 2 min

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WjGy9gjcoIo – part II , 2 min 45 sec

  • MeditatingMeditating Raw Newbie

    Obama isn’t saying people who don’t want to pay higher taxes are selfish. He is saying that those who, once they have made it, don’t want to fund programs that help others make it too are selfish. Once many of us feel we have risen as high as we can go, we don’t give a damn if our fellow citizens have access to student loans, healthcare, or other services and opportunities that help them raise themselves up and then pay dividends back to our entire society. That is what he meant by saying we should provide opportunities for “all boats to rise.” His commentary is on those who would say after getting on board, “Hey, I’m in the boat now so let’s speed off and screw everyone else.”

    A perfect example of this type of thinking, as it applies to another social policy, would be Clarence Thomas, a man who benefited immensely from affirmative action and then wanted to take it away from those left.

    It isn’t surprising that many people would miss the obvious point of his comments. The corporate model has invaded our culture to the point where it never occurs to some people to consider anyone but themselves.

    Saying it is punishment to require those most able to pay to contribute a little more so others can move up is not only a propaganda ploy it is incorrect. Those who make more actually pay less as a percentage of their income when you take into account tax write offs like mortgage deductions (and the more you make the more deductions you may be eligible for). If you are writing off $36k a year in mortgage deductions yearly and you are in a 35% tax bracket then you got a tax credit of app. $12K which the family who rents does not get. Factor that back into your income as untaxed and your tax rate is lower.than the family who can’t afford to buy a home.

    ASPIRE – It would be wonderful if there was a simple answer to all that has gone wrong with our country.

    I am not a fan of the Federal Reserve and think it should be disbanded but it is not the only problem we have not did it alone cause the economic crisis. They reasons behind all our problems is that most of our citizens are unconcerned, lazy, disinterested, uninformed, and can’t be bothered with caring about and being involved in the best interest of our country.

    It doesn’t help that our corporate fascist media keep us misinformed/uninformed, but that doesn’t prevent us from finding out the truth if we want to. Most of us just don’t give a damn and only want to point our fingers at others. Imagine if most of us understood how we were being manipulated and railroaded and took to the streets in protest how different things would be.

  • Rawk’N Rawl- nice contribution. Got any productive thoughts or are you just good for acerbic-ness?

    As far as I understand Ayn Rand’s philosophy (and I have not read either of her books or her work necessarily), I agree with her that gov’t should mainly be to protect the rights of its citizens, thereby gov’t should remain small. I still do not label myself Republican (nor do I label myself anything). It seems Republicans like to speak about keeping gov’t small while the Republicans in office, lately, have been guilty of increasing gov’t control while stripping us individuals of our Constitutional rights while crtiicizing Dems for wanting more gov’t. They both talk out of both sides of their mouths. Who cares what party something is labeled. I want to see action, not words. Mccain’s actions have been completely in line with Bush’s. Perhaps Obama will show more integrity… perhaps he won’t. But he, at least, doesn’t have the track record of Mccain’s identical Bush agenda along with allowing an imbecile, underqualified, religious fundamental radical nutjob, moron to take a position of authority and to possibly become the President of the US due to greed and desperation and the counting on American people to be so stupid to not see through his greedy, idiotic, and possibly extremely harmful ploy in order to try to get women’s votes (although there are obviously many who do not care or recognize it still- so I guess it has worked to some degree- how big will remain to be seen shortly).

    As far as Obama’s statements, I have my doubts as to whether or not he is also in alignment with slowly restricting our individual rights as the Bushes’ administaions have done along with a numerous amount of Presidential and political predecessors. The problem is McCain is no better and, in fact, offers a higher probability of absolutely continuing on with Bush’s disasterous agenda of keeping the power within the few hands of the true Elitists, limiting the People’s individual rights, and continuing to add to our deficit with wars and non-sustainable energy plans while ruining the economy even more. Not to mention he’s not of good character, a sexist bigot, a racist and elitist.

    Meditating*- I agree, the Fed Reserve is not the ONLY problem. There are many, including the ones you point out. I strongly feel that if we, the people, would take a stand against the Fed Reserve, the IRS, income tax on individuals, etc- two unConstitutional scams brought against the American people without the proper channels that are bleeding us dry and keeping us in eternal debt and enslavement though, a HUGE piece of the problem would begin to be resolved and get the ball started rolling in the right direction towards a better society for all to live fairly in.

    I truly hope when Obama is elected (and I hope it is him over McCain since it can’t be Nader, Dennis Kucinich, or Ron Paul) he will prove my new doubts wrong about his overall integrity!

  • lol. Thank you for your help in learning a new word today! Look at you, being productively helpful afterall!

    So being an Ayn Rand fan, what are your thoughts on Obama’s comments then? Please do enlighten us with your highly advanced education and thought process while continuing to look down upon those who you deem lesser than your mighty and magnificent self. So you can be bitingly witty... Big frickin’ deal. So can the majority of people given the chance. Got any actual helpful things to contribute to the conversation? Don’t like what I think? Whhaaaaa. Quit whining if you won’t even contribute. :P

  • Aspire, you are not missing much by not having read Ayn Rand. Fans of hers tend to be shrewish and tinkle their pants easily if challenged.

  • ooh, an intellectual fight. Cool.

  • TomsMom- lol. Interesting. ;)

    Ungrateful- Yes, quite entertaining, eh? Can you tell I am bored at work tonight? ;)

    Btw- just received this info in an email. Although I prefer my news/info delivered without sarcasm originally upon being presented, I still find this info intriguing and worthy of further consideration. Food for thought anyone?...

    from: http://www.newswithviews.com/Stang/alan170.htm


    by Alan Stang

    October 29, 2008


    “As I write, little more than a week remains before E-Day, on which most Americans will vote. Nerves are being fearfully wracked. Even people who are usually somnolent say they can’t take the stress. There is a real danger that, unaddressed, the frustration of choosing between a Communist illegal alien raised by a Communist sex pervert and a POW traitor who is a Soviet front man could lead to an epidemic of Acid Reflux Disease or even an outbreak of Restless Leg Syndrome.

    The purpose of this modest piece is to reassure you. Stop tormenting yourself. Further self-flagellation is pointless. Your next President has already been selected. Didn’t you know? Sure, go ahead and vote if you like, if you have nothing else to do, if you don’t mind standing in long lines between Obamatron morons and McCrud zombies, but enjoy the reassurance of knowing that the powers above Ponzi Paulson and Helicopter Ben Bernanke and Co. have already made their choice.

    He is Zbigniew Brzezinski. What? Who? Is this some kind of Polish joke? Sadly, it is not. The lustiest enjoyer of Polish jokes in my experience was a remarkably gorgeous Polish lady I knew many years ago in the Bay Area. Every couple of years, I would come through on a speaking tour and she would press me for the latest Polish jokes I had heard. Again Zbigniew Brzezinski is not one of them. He is not just a victim of partial vowel deprivation.

    In 1970, Zbigniew Brzezinski wrote a book entitled Between Two Ages: America’s Role in the Technetronic Era (New York, Viking Press). Let’s browse through it to find out what Zbigniew is. Zbig dedicates the book to Ian, Mark and Mika, his kids. A nice touch, don’t you think? He’s a family man. Starting on page 72 of my Penguin edition, he explains “why Marxism represents a further vital and creative stage in the maturing of man’s universal vision.”

    Marxism is “a victory of reason over belief. . . . To a greater extent than any previous mode of political thinking, Marxism puts a premium on the systematic and rigorous examination of material reality and on guides to action derived from that examination.” In other words, Marxism is a better system than our own. Marxism examines material reality and recommends action better than does the U.S. Constitution.

    Page 83: Marxism “represented a major advance in man’s ability to conceptualize his relationship to his world.” It carried “an essentially ethical message.” It “was derived from a totally rational method of inquiry.” P. 123: Marxism “provided a unique intellectual tool for understanding and harnessing the fundamental forces of our time. . . . t supplied the best available insight into contemporary reality; it infused political action with strong ethical elements . . . .”


    Zbig Brother even excuses Stalin’s purges and mass murders. Page 134ff: “Yet though Stalinism may have been a needless tragedy for both the Russian people and communism as an ideal, there is the intellectually tantalizing possibility that for the world at large it was, as we shall see, a blessing in disguise. . . .” What? Yes. You see, “the internal violence employed by Stalin . . . had a restraining effect on unbridled nationalism.”

    But isn’t Zbig today fanatically opposed to the continuing Soviet Union? Yes, he is, but not because he opposes Marxism. As we have seen, he is a lifelong Marxist. He opposes the Soviets precisely because he loves Marxism so much. He believes the Communists have misused it. He believes that he, Zbigniew Brzezinski, could impose it correctly, the way old Karl himself would have done it.

    Enter David Rockefeller. David is a confessed traitor, a conspirator who is working in a secret cabal to destroy the United States. What? David Rockefeller? How do we know that? In 2002, Random House, in New York, published his Memoirs. Remember, this is not someone accusing him of something. ]This is David Rockefeller himself talking on page 405:

    For more than a century, ideological extremists at either end of the political spectrum have seized upon well-publicized incidents to attack the Rockefeller family for the inordinate influence they claim we wield over American political and economic institutions. Some even believe we are part of a secret cabal working against the best interests of the United States, characterizing my family and me as “internationalists” and of conspiring with others around the world to build a more integrated global political and economic structure – one world, if you will. If that’s the charge, I stand guilty, and I am proud of it.

    Because this sleazy extrusion of an unmarried female canine is a traitor – because he loves totalitarianism – he was naturally attracted to lifelong Marxist Zbigniew Brzezinski. Zbig became David’s prime minister. In 1973, under David’s direction, Zbig formed the Trilateral Commission, which is the foreign ministry of the Council on Foreign Relations, a preeminent founder of which was Marxist Edward M. House.

    Both these groups work tirelessly to promote world government, which would mean the abolition of our own. Remember, the United States government and world government are mutually exclusive. You can’t have them both at the same time. If you are working for the latter, you are trying to destroy the former.

    In 1976, Zbig and David literally interviewed dour peanut farmer Jimmy Carter at David’s Tarrytown estate. They liked what they heard and installed Democrat Jimmy as President of the United States. From the beginning, Jimmy was a Rockefeller factotum. Zbig Brother was his National Security Adviser. Jimmy came close to wrecking our economy. Okay, but what does all this have to do with the 2008 campaign?

    In the 2000 campaign, Zbigniew Brzezinski, lifelong Marxist, was foreign policy adviser to Senator John McCain, who said this: “I am honored that Zbigniew Brzezinski will join my foreign policy team. As a former national security adviser and a highly respected foreign policy expert, his broad experience makes him an invaluable asset to my team.” So Zbig went from Democrat Jimmy to Republican John. Remember that at the top – above the candidates – you have one party with two branches.

    What about this year? This year, Zbig is back, running foreign policy for Hussein. Indeed, remember Mark, son of Zbig? Mark was one of the sons to whom Zbig dedicated Between Two Ages in 1970. Mark is all grown up now and shaving. Can you imagine? Mark is foreign policy adviser to Senator Hussein. So who is foreign policy adviser to Senator McCain this year? The envelope please! El Senador Juan McCain’s foreign policy adviser this year is Ian Brzezinski, the other Zbigniew son.

    That is correct. Lifelong Marxist Zbigniew Brzezinski – David Rockefeller’s Prime Minister – controls both sides of the forthcoming charade through his sons. Again, you can relax. It really makes no difference who wins. The only difference will be a difference in style, a difference in personality, natural differences peculiar to us all. Remember, David Rockefeller admits, boasts, that he and his family exercise inordinate influence over the United States. This is how he does it.

    Do you need to know anything more to understand that a literal conspiracy controls both main political parties, and that at the top – above the candidates – both parties are the same? What was that you said about “change?” Remember, Zbig ran foreign policy for McCain in the 2000 camaign. This year, Hussein is just as much a factotum of Goldman Sachs and other instrumentalities of world government as McCain.

    Notice that our Communist media say nothing about this. They understand perfectly well that if they sass David Rockefeller they could lose their jobs. So they specialize in arguing about lesser fry. So, sure, vote next week, but do so with the assurance that it makes no difference; that the conspiracy for world government has already chosen our next President. He is Rockefeller prime minister and Marxist Zbigniew Brzezinski.

    Long live Zbig Brother!”

    Not familair with Marxism? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Marxist


  • MeditatingMeditating Raw Newbie

    ASPIRE – That was an interesting article. When you look at our situation on one level, I think both parties are corporatists and they are taking us down a road that will lead to the destruction of our freedoms and a form of economic enslavement of all people. Everyone wants to believe so desperately in a savior that they will imagine one. I suspect the people are the only ones that can free themselves and they aren’t willing to do that yet.

    Having said that, it makes a big difference who is elected because that will determine how quickly we get down the road to destination. While none of us will know what would have happened, imagine what our country might be like today if the Supreme Court had not seated Bush in 2000. What if we had pushed heavily into new green technologies and created the equivalent of a new dot.com economic boom? Do you think Gore would have signed into law the horrible laws that abolish our freedom and give the president authority to behave like a despot? I do not believe we would have a Patriot Act but for Bush being president and I seriously question if 9/11 would have happened. (While I believe my government capable of any atrocity, I do not think there is enough irrefutable evidence to prove our government was involved in 9/11, there has been enough to convince me they were reasonably sure it would happen and chose to do nothing.)

    In a way, our political system is like our pre-programmed genetic code and our choices for president is like choosing either a SAD diet or a whole food diet. If you are eventually going to die, does it really make a difference which one we choose? I too get very depressed looking at the big picture, which I don’t see changing any time soon. But which option we choose today still makes a real difference.

  • One of my mates ‘un-cooked’ for Obama recently :).....very proud of him

  • TomsMom – I believe DagnyTaggert is named after a character of Ayn Rand’s. I have never found her “shrewish and tinkle their pants easily if challenged.” On the contrary, though we don’t agree on many things, I find her posts thoughtful and intelligent. It’s soooo dangerous to paint with such a broad brush. Much like calling call Democrats communists or all Republicans evil capitalist pigs. Typically such statements just make you wrong.

  • EasyCheetah, you’re tinkling again. The post was intended for you. You bit, so trying to start up a spat between myself and awesome member DagnyTaggert is useless.

  • No spat intended. Dagny totally awesome – agreed – However, as I am not an Ayn Rand efficianado I didn’t realize there was anything directed toward me personally there and still keeps you painting with a broad, useless, not to mention wrong brush.


  • EasyCheetah and TomsMom – Thanks to both of you for the compliment! I’m extremely flattered by both.

    Tomsmom – don’t go insulting all Rand fans! There are some real thinkers grouped in with the tinklers.

    I think Ayn Rand is oft misunderstood and even more often overapplied. Ayn Rand was – in my opinion – a great writer and philosopher. I know people who think her writing is awful – so not everyone is in agreement here. I was embarrassed by a professor in college when I turned in a paper comparing Dostoevsky’s ideal man with Rand’s and the prof wrote on my first page “From the sublime to the ridiculous.” Bastard. But, to my point, Ayn Rand was a writer and a thinker – and she has caused millions of others to actually think deeply about the world and their place in it. She deserves so much credit for that.

    Ayn Rand was not a statesman. She was not a world leader. She was not a psychologist. She was not an examplary human being.

    She was a person who was shaped by her place and times. She grew up in Russia as Alice Rosenbaum – a Jew who was upper middle class but then suffered terribly after the revolution. She recollected later in life that at one point, her mother had to ration out the peas to the family for dinner – everyone got a certain amount. Ayn Rand saw the worst side of communism and its effect on people – the way it dulled the greatest to bring them down the level of the below-average.

    Ayn Rand invented herself. She picked a new name and came to America at around 21, where she tried to make a career in the movies. She worked as an extra on hollywood films and she married an actor.

    Rand wrote novelized accounts of her philosphy, objectivism. In it, she praised rational thought. She noted how high man can soar and said it is okay to soar as high as you can, to guard what you esteem, and to not bring yourself down to make others comfortable with you. She portrayed charity as something that is not a virtue when the recipient is undeserving. She did not say that no charity should be given – just that the recipient should deserve it for some virtue of their own.

    She was wrong about so many things. Rand had an affair with a younger man, one of her group of “followers,” Nathanial Branden. His wife, Barbara, was another member of the group. Rand and Branden went to Rand’s husband Frank and to Barbara and told them they were going to start having sex with each other twice a week. They told their spouses that they could not object and still be objectivists (ironic…), because if they were true believers, then they could not justifiably hold the person they love back from achieving or having what they want. It was horrible – they hurt their loved ones terribly.

    Ayn also failed to live up to what she wished to be. People say she used to spend long minutes staring at herself in the mirror. She hated how she looked. Ayn was a Jew from Russia – short, dark, curvy. She looked nothing like the female protagonists (Dagny, Dominique) whom she created. She thought a hero’s outside should reflect their inside, yet hers did not.

    Ayn Rand was against homosexuality – thought it was perverse, but did not think it should be legislated against. Rand thought a woman should be able to be President of the United States but should never want to – that it would be a horrible position for a woman to find herself in.

    I write all of this by way of saying that there is good in Rand and there is bad. This is not some simple philosophy that I believe anyone should adopt wholesale. Pick out the good and leave what you feel is the bad. Push yourself and live rationally, but do not think that you will be untouched if you refuse to ever give a helping hand to others. We cannot live in a huge society where people are left to fall on their faces if they are not strong enough to rise up on their own. The un-achievers will quickly outnumber and cause damage to the achievers. You cannot leave half of society behind to flounder. But you can do everything possible to let the people who can achieve do it as grandly as possible and not overtax their successes.

    I think Ayn Rand would be rather impressed by Obama. He is a self-made man whose innate characteristics have made him a leader and a success. I think Rand would be disgusted by Bush – he represents the characters she referred to as “second-handers.” Honestly, she would probably have a soft spot for McCain – he used to be a handsome man in uniform and she liked her manly heroes.

    I believe wholeheartedly that I can be an objectivist and a Randian and still give to charities. I believe I can embrace what I feel is her notion of selfishness without embodying the more common connotation of the word. I believe that real objectivists can be rational about everything and examine it for themselves – even when the subject is objectivism itself and Rand herself. Think. Achieve. And measure yourself by what you can do – not by who is doing more than you.

  • Bravo Dagny. :)

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