Mainstream Objectivism's take on the election

Doug Bandler's picture
Submitted by Doug Bandler on Thu, 2012-11-08 06:23

Here is Ari Armstrong's latest blog post from the The Objective Standard.


The assumption in his analysis is that if only the Republicans were more libertarian they would have won the election. He doesn't use the word libertarian. I'm using it as a stand-in for individual rights. Here are some excerpts:

Mitt Romney always faced an uphill battle—largely because he and his party alienate many women, Hispanics, gays, and others.

Notice how he is granting good faith to Hispanics and women, etc, something I would never do.

That more women tend to vote for today’s Democratic party is no surprise; after all, women have the most to lose if Republicans successfully criminalize abortion.

But..., is there some legitimacy to this? I'm not so certain that if the Republicans stood for anti-welfare state measures combined with pro-abortion measures that that would have made a difference but Armstrong seems to think so. He seems to discount the fierce commitment to altruism that most women and non-whites have.

Nor is it any mystery why various other voting blocks tend to favor Democrats. Many Hispanics tire of the nationalistic, xenophobic, protectionist, anti-immigrant stance of much of the GOP.

Apparently Mr. Armstrong is not aware of the Reconquista agenda of many Hispanics. Again, he is granting good faith to the Hispanics and non-whites that voted for Obama. Its as if he is not aware or does not want to consider the fact that most non-whites have a racial solidarity and that they oppose whites as whites. Armstrong seems to think that deep down inside all those Hispanics is a libertarian soul waiting to emerge. Is he right? I would bet the ranch that he is not. Also, note how Armstrong paints all conservatives as "xenophobic" and "nationalistic". Wow, he might as well write for the Daily Kos.

In these cases, Republicans lose votes and elections because and to the degree that they advocate the violation of individual rights.

This is his main premise right here. I've followed him for years and he repeats this in nearly everything he writes. So what is the opinion of those on this forum? Is his premise correct? Did the Republicans lose because they didn't uphold individual rights? And all those single women and Hispanics and Muslims (!!) and Blacks (!!!) would have voted for him if only Romney advanced the cause of rational libertarianism? And what about the 47% that suck on the government tit?

I'm tempted to say that Ari Armstrong is a fucking idiot and the epitome of the race blind, gender blind, blank-slate idiot libertarian/Objectivist (Diana Hsieh is another prime example) that Conservatives like to make fun of. But I'm in a dark mood and very emotionalist right now. So I am *really* curious as to what people here think of this line of reasoning put out by mainstream O'ism. Is there merit to it or is it pure fucking idiocy?

Voter Fraud

Doug Bandler's picture

Another thing to consider is the massive voter fraud practiced by the Left. From Investor's Business News:

Democrats say America doesn’t need voter identification laws because there’s no evidence of election cheating. But when a candidate doesn’t get a single vote in 59 precincts, you’ve got to wonder.

One candidate did just that last week in Philadelphia, where Mitt Romney was shut out 19,605-0 in 59 voting divisions. …

University of Virginia political scientist Larry Sabato told the Philadelphia Inquirer that it deserves scrutiny.

“Not a single vote for Romney or even an error?” he asked. “That’s worth looking into.”

Philadelphia is also where 75 legal and credentialed Republican election workers were blocked or removed from the polls on Election Day. And Pennsylvania is the Democratic state where a duly legislated voter ID law was blocked by a judge for the 2012 election.

Romney was similarly blanked in nine precincts in nationally pivotal and heavily Democratic Cuyahoga County, Ohio, centered on Cleveland, where he did even worse than third-party candidates.

Seem impossible? Yes, it does. …

Equally as implausible were the turnouts in Democratic strongholds that either exceeded the number of registered voters or the voting-age population.

It’s possible for voter participation to exceed the number of registered voters — new residents and unregistered voters can register on Election Day and vote. But it’s unlikely when the average voter turnout has been 64% in the last two presidential contests.

Yet that happened in, yes, Pennsylvania, where Republican Gov. Tom Corbett has complained that some precincts voted at more than 100%.

Even more unlikely is turnout surpassing the voter-age population. But that happened in two counties in Colorado, a state won by Obama.

Despite all the smoke strongly suggestive of fire, left-wing publication Mother Jones ran a headline in August that read “UFO Sightings Are More Common Than Voter Fraud,” which sums up nicely the Democrats’ cavalier attitude toward the issue. …

These are the "liberal" that the ARI is trying to reach. But wait, there's more:

Though Obama won last week, he lost in all four states that strictly require would-be voters to present photographic identification before receiving a ballot.

Interesting. I have heard it reported that Obama supporters have bragged on Facebook that they voted four times for Obama. I'd bet much of this fraud was carried out by blacks and Hispanics. But it doesn't matter. Even if it was white college kids the fact remains: the Left is evil and the Democrats are a criminal organization.

The GOP are dead wrong on Hispanics

Frediano's picture

Spend even a little time in Tucson, or other border cities with large hispanic populations. These are hardworking, proud, family loving conservative people. These are -exactly- the kind of people with the kind of spines that once made America what it ... once was.

A handful of fringe crazies running the drug cartel does not define the hispanic culture or people, and yet, a majority of the atrophied GOP crust, who have seldom or ever met any hispanics, wants to brand them all as de facto criminals, while at the same time, pandering to the eyes-rolled-into-the-back-of-their-heads Christian Right who insist on injecting religion into public policy/politics.

The theocratic far right comes full circle, though, and stares at the theocratic far left -- the Scott Nearing "Social Religion" Progressives -- divided only by the narrow issues of choice/life and gay marriage-- both of which have no place in matters of public policy or races for public office. If legislation is fouled by inclusion of the religious term 'marriage' then FIX THE DAMN LEGISLATION and replace the term 'marriage' with 'civil union' and send the theocrats back to their respective churches, where they are all free to define 'marriage' any way they want.

Because of dominance by religious zealouts at both ends of the political spectrum, Americans have lost the ability to discern what is and what is not appropriate issues for matters of public policy. "Anything" has long been fair game to be voted on in America, barely fettered by a fluid constitution. "Marriage' is a concept of religion; America, the state, fucked up as soon as that religious concept was admitted into the public debate or matters of public policy. I would say that is expressly unconstitutional. We have an absolute right to private and public religion precisely because we are prohibited from any intrusion of state political religion. That is part of the GOP rot from within, pandering as realpolitik. The cost of that pandering was any sense of soul of the GOP, so any 'soul searching' -- now necessary four short years after the same lament in 2008 -- will come up dry.

Ditto its embrace with candy, dinner, and flowers of the concept of the POTUS "running 'the' Economy," as if this was the former Soviet Union. What I heard when Romney gleefully claimed to be the best man suited to 'RUn The Economy" was a GOP bereft of the ideas that once made America the greatest nation on earth.

As we speak, the desperate GOP is attempting to redefine itself as Democrat-Lite. Stick a fork in the GOP, it is done, and good riddance. Who grew the federal government more than Nixon, Reagan and Bush? They gave FDR and Johnson a massive run using our money.

Goodness, Greg!

Lindsay Perigo's picture

Well said re intrinsicism (the naivete of which is cringe-making when one looks at real-life). But!—it's not Ghate who's the main culprit, it's your poster boy Harry. Please tell him!

Wise Words Greg

Doug Bandler's picture

I agree with laissez faire although what immigration would look like in such a society is not immediately apparent. I don't think anyone knows that yet. We just know it wouldn't involve economic protectionism. But would it allow the mass migration of people from collectivist and violent cultures; ie the Muslim world and Mexico? See, that's what bothers me about the mainstream O'ist position. They never consider that and yet they write with a righteousness about the subject condemning anyone who disagrees with them as if they were "nationalists" and "nativists". Immigration is not a subject that Objectivists should make a primary point of debate. It is too uncertain and too speculative. Stick to my list below. They give you far more mileage.

Plus as you say, in today's context immigration is dangerous. What is that context? Well, a Leftist dominated state which aims at totalitarian control. Now shouldn't a fucking Objectivist know that? But judging from so many O'ist blogs, they don't. That is why I am so mad. I know Romney sucked meatloaf as a candidate but he was not the moral atrocity that Obama is, especially a term 2 Obama. I mean fuck, look at what Obama did with those men at Benghazi. He sentenced them to die. In effect, he killed them. That fucker is evil.

Every Objectivist should be able to see that and realize that these types of Leftists do not have good intentions with immigration policy. Now is not the time for an amnesty or other open border crap. I'm glad that I'm not the only one who sees this. But the ARI gang of writers is not focusing on the evil of the Left, they are once again harping on the evil of Conservatives. Its the same obsession with the "M2 imminent theocracy" crap.


gregster's picture

You have good grounds for criticizing Ghate for some of his formulation. He's falling into a common trap of intrinsicism. He has his objectivist 'axioms' but forgets that these are always to be taken in context. The context is that our survival is threatened, but he would blindly propose extending that threat due to his out-of-context feel-good righteousness. The stakes are now too high for a country to further lower the citizens' average potential. The legitimate function of the state is to protect the rights of its citizens. But the state, as is, is corrupt, and sinking due to its bad philosophy, these 'axioms' no longer apply. It's the libertarian trap.

More pro-Hispanic sentiments from the ARI

Doug Bandler's picture

Once again ARI is championing open borders and calling for MORE immigration. This is what they waste their fucking time with?

Let’s not succumb to the specious idea of demographic determinism to radically limit immigration. Instead let’s demonstrate the moral confidence, and intellectual rigor, to bid welcome to all; by offering them a proud and rational exposition of our nation’s principles and ideals. We, they—and our culture at large—will be immeasurably better off as a result.

There is so much rationalism in that paragraph that it staggers the mind. The ARI and all its associated writers should limit themselves to the following:

1) advocate the rejection of ethical altruism and champion ethical egoism
2) advocate the elimination of the welfare state
3) demonize the confiscation and redistribution of wealth as a great evil and moral obscenity
4) advocate the elimination of all preventative law and regulatory agencies
5) advocate the elimination of the Federal Reserve and champion free market banking
6) advocate the elimination of the public schools and loan programs for college
7) advocate a foreign policy that does not orient around transforming the Muslim world
8 ) acknowledge Islam's central role in Jihad terrorism and recognize that Islam is EVIL
9) advocate the elimination of the victimless crime laws
10) recognize religion's role in laws aimed at regulating culture
11) advocate a rational, secular worldview that rejects both collectivism and religion

That should be the extent of ARI's advocacy. Stay the fuck away from immigration. Its too complicated a subject and the open borders crap that they push is GARBAGE. In today's context it is DESTRUCTIVE. Fuck, right now the borders should be closed and those 20 million Hispanic illegals should be DEPORTED.

I am sick and tired of ARI's pro-open-borders bullshit. Once again they focus on bashing Conservatives instead of focusing on the evil of the LEFT and what the Left is planning on doing to all that disagree with them.

I am starting to HATE the ARI.

Thanks for the Mac Donald links

Doug Bandler's picture

Yet Dr. Diana Hsieh, Ph.D. and Ari Armstrong think that its just the mean Republicans and their supposedly anti-immigration views that explains why Hispanics voted Democratic over 70%.

This is my point. The "Hispanics are really libertarians waiting to come out" theory is bullshit. Its just like the "Muslims really want democracy and liberty and if we give it to them they will root out the radicals and end the Jihad." Its garbage and yet this is what mainstream Objectivism is spewing. Hsieh and Armstrong are the two prime examples of "Randroid" idiots that I detest. They bring NOTHING to the table.

National Review on Hispanic Voters

Neil Parille's picture

Three very good pieces, 2 by Heather Mac Donald and 1 by Mark Krikorian

Simply put, Hispanics vote Democratic because they are Democrats. On social issues they are liberal (majority of Hispanics support same sex marriage and 53% of Hispanic births are out of wedlock) and on fiscal issues they are liberal (supporting tax increases and ObamaCare). Their disproportionate reliance on government programs means they are more likely to vote Democratic.

Yet Dr. Diana Hsieh, Ph.D. and Ari Armstrong think that its just the mean Republicans and their supposedly anti-immigration views that explains why Hispanics voted Democratic over 70%.

How well did the Republicans do after Reagan's amnesty?


Another very smart Conservative

Doug Bandler's picture

Andrew C. McCarthy. Here is his latest column at NRO (he is the BEST of the NRO contributors).

He deals with the Hispanic immigration issue and he offers a very different interpretation than Ari Armstrong. The Wall Street Journal toeing the mainstream Republican line views Hispanics as "natural GOP voters". What a joke. But McCarthy quotes Heather Mac Donald who says this:

If Republicans want to change their stance on immigration, they should do so on the merits, not out of a belief that only immigration policy stands between them and a Republican Hispanic majority. It is not immigration policy that creates the strong bond between Hispanics and the Democratic party, but the core Democratic principles of a more generous safety net, strong government intervention in the economy, and progressive taxation. Hispanics will prove to be even more decisive in the victory of Governor Jerry Brown’s Proposition 30, which raised upper-income taxes and the sales tax, than in the Obama election.

Compare that to Ari Armstrong's argument that there is a libertarian soul in every Hispanic immigrant and that the GOP are a bunch of racist, xenophobic nationalists. McCarthy adds:

Heather is clearly right. Anyone who has followed her work on this topic for years knows her sobering insights are based on extensive, on-the-ground research and careful analysis. The Journal, which often reflects the views of the Republican establishment, bases its immigration views on wishful thinking. And not just its immigration views. Today’s bromides about “aspiring people who believe in the dignity of work and self-sufficiency” are of a piece with the Journal’s similar soft-spot for the “Arab Spring” and Muslim outreach. These GOP fantasies are similarly based on the wishful thinking that Islamists are also “cultural conservatives” sure to forge freedom-embracing democracies when empowered in the Middle East and become model Americans when courted here — sure to assimilate seamlessly into our society rather than seek to change it fundamentally.

McCarthy understands Islam well. He concludes with this:

Falling in love with your own high-minded rhetoric is no substitute for clear-eyed examination that takes the world as it is, not as we would have it.

I wonder what Ari Armstrong would say to that? Is it just me but when I read columnists like Andrew McCarthy or Diana West I feel like I am reading the writing of a mature adult. But when I read 95% of Objectivist opinion writers, I feel like I am reading the writing of an adolescent who is fucking clueless about the world. Armstrong strikes me as one such adolescent. Objectivism just has not reached a level of maturity to make a difference. It strikes me as still juvenile.

What this raises is the fundamental problem with immigration that Objectivists don't acknowledge. That immigrants bring their culture with them and that they will vote for greater collectivism once they get here. Also, that there is a problem with aggregates; ie once immigrant populations reach a certain level they organize politically and seek to transform America (with obvious assistance from the Left). And yet all you hear from mainstream Objectivist writers, from Yaron Brook on down, is that the Republicans are anti-immigration and that is bad. Sweet fucking Jesus. Will no mainstream Objectivist even acknowledge the problem with non-white immigration. I must admit, the Objectivist position on immigration not only turns my stomach but it makes my blood boil. I think if I met an Objectivist and they hit me with their open borders crap that I would take a swing at them. That is how furious this shit gets me. Yes, I am an angry white man.


Michael Moeller's picture

That poster's comments is nothing to laugh about. It is a serious deficiency in the understanding of contracts. Promote it if you want, but it is an undermining of objective law, not to mention claptrap.


As for race, I don't know

Kyle Jacob Biodrowski's picture

As for race, I don't know enough to be certain and I know the libertarian / Objectivist position is that culture is a product of ideas but I wonder if ideas are heavily influenced by biology.

If ideas are influenced by biology, it is unlikely that these same ideas couldn't be overidden by reason and discipline. Testerone in men makes men more aggressive and, because of this, men may adopt more pro-war ideas, but this is something that can be overridden by reason and good philosophy.

Culture reinforces its dominant ideas via books, movies, etc, which makes it difficult for bad ideas to be disgarded, it also makes it appear that certain ideas are determined by ones biology. Group solidarity is another obstacle when it comes to disgarding "group" ideas.

OK but...

Doug Bandler's picture

So basically what we are hoping for is a KASS libertarian. There's the rub. We can't even get a KASS Conservative let alone a libertarian who are almost as bad as leftists. (And the GOP won't nominate a libertarian candidate. Ron Paul is the closest we get and he represents the worst of libertarianism - the Saddamite wing.)

But then am I right that you disagree with Armstrong's main premise that the Hispanic and female voters harbored libertarian sentiments that were unfulfilled? That's what he stresses over and over again. It seems like you are saying that if Romney campaigned as a libertarian then those issues would have been important for voters. But then that raises the question, can any candidate campaign as a libertarian? It seems that Republican candidates have to walk a tightrope; they have to appeal to the Cultural Conservatives (ie the "religious right") and the libertarians and mushy independents. That is impossible to do.

But here is what I find interesting. If you go to Conservative sites, they argue that Romney lost because he was pro-gay-marriage, pro-amnesty, and pro-choice; the very things that Armstrong says that Romney lost for being against. So Conservatives think Romney lost because he was too liberal (or libertarian in a sense) and Armstrong thinks Romney lost for being too Conservative. Which is it?


As for race, I don't know enough to be certain and I know the libertarian / Objectivist position is that culture is a product of ideas but I wonder if ideas are heavily influenced by biology. I just don't know. All I know is that the most libertarian people on the earth are white Europeans (although some of that has spread to Asian micro-states like Hong Kong and Singapore - both heavily influenced by the British). But it is disappointing when even wealthy and educated ASIANS vote Left.


Lindsay Perigo's picture

Thanks for that link. I believe Armstrong is correct that the Republican candidate ought to be consistently pro-liberty (isn't it silly that the ARI folk still can't bring themselves to use the term "libertarian"?!), but I don't think it would have materially affected the outcome if Romney had been. He didn't campaign on the issues that separate out libertarians from conservatives. Romney's main problem was KASSlessness. Chris Christie would have booted Obafilth's ass (instead of licking it, as he did during the hurricane: was that a deliberate attempt to undermine Romney and solidify his own chances in 2016?). And Romney *could* have crucified TF over Libya, but chose not to. Armstrong doesn't even mention that. Almost universally now, those in the right lack the courage of what they claim to be their convictions. They lack the balls of their beliefs.

But you're barking up the wrong tree with this race thing. The colour of one's skin does not determine the content of one's character. Cultural factors will surely influence it, but that's a different matter, and brings us right back to philosophy. Nihilist pomowankery has inclined whites to be every bit as vapid and vicious as black or brown.

From Ari's article I linked to another on gay marriage. Had to laugh at one of the comments by a poster:

Here's the REAL solution. Get "gvt." outa the business. Don't redefine concepts. Reproduction is irrelevant.

Just use the contract relationship, under contract law, to cover contract relationships, every kind. Gvt., proper, doesn't dictate any provisions of any contracts. Its up to the individual to form & define his own concepts. Such concepts have input into forming & defining concepts used in laws, such as, in contract laws. When a relationship between a man & a woman involves reproducing themselves with each other, they can cover that in a contract. Parties to a contract relationship can tailor the contract to their needs.

With gvt., proper, merely enforcing contacts under law, no specific contracts or kinds of contracts get favored treatment. Gvt. gvns., that's all. And that's all there is to it.

Don't tell Moeller! Eye

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