Sunday, August 19, 2012

Its Bash Ayn Rand Fest at Huffington Post

The story came out in the news that the new VP candidate, Paul Ryan, is an admirer of Ayn Rand, and the attacks are coming out of the woodwork. A lot of the same old strawman attacks, smears, misrepresentations and outright lies are being told about Ayn Rand.

One of the most blatant is that she was an admirer of a child killer, William Edward Hickman. The source material for this comes from The Journals of Ayn Rand. She wrote about this child murderer, making notes for a story she wanted to write, using Hickman as a model for a major character. What the liars are leaving out is that in those journals, Rand calls Hickman "depraved" and a "Purposeless monster".

The other big smear is the very true fact that Ayn Rand accepted Social Security and Medicare payments near the end if her life, supposedly proving that she was a hypocrite, and could not live by her unrealistic moral philosophy. But in no way was accepting SS and Medicare hypocritical. She had payed taxes most of her life in America, and she considered taxation to be theft. As she explained years before she accepted any such payments, in an essay called “The Question of Scholarships,” in The Objectivist, 1966:

Since there is no such thing as the right of some men to vote away the rights of others, and no such thing as the right of the government to seize the property of some men for the unearned benefit of others—the advocates and supporters of the welfare state are morally guilty of robbing their opponents, and the fact that the robbery is legalized makes it morally worse, not better. The victims do not have to add self-inflicted martyrdom to the injury done to them by others; they do not have to let the looters profit doubly, by letting them distribute the money exclusively to the parasites who clamored for it. Whenever the welfare-state laws offer them some small restitution, the victims should take it . . . .

The same moral principles and considerations apply to the issue of accepting social security, unemployment insurance or other payments of that kind. It is obvious, in such cases, that a man receives his own money which was taken from him by force, directly and specifically, without his consent, against his own choice. Those who advocated such laws are morally guilty, since they assumed the “right” to force employers and unwilling co-workers. But the victims, who opposed such laws, have a clear right to any refund of their own money—and they would not advance the cause of freedom if they left their money, unclaimed, for the benefit of the welfare-state administration.
But since there are some people who need an excuse, any excuse at all, to reject Ayn Rand and everything she said, the continue to cling to these smear tactics, and refuse to even apologize when their falseness is pointed out to them.

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