First, Gus Van Horn regrets agreeing with Robert Tracinski and voting Republican. He is dismayed by Republican support for various statist schemes. He thinks it is better to have Democrats in charge because (to put it in my words) they don’t pretend to be friends of capitalism and the free market and people would see more clearly that we are heading away from freedom.
Well, I’m not surprised that the Republicans are no friends of freedom. I still don’t see how they’re worse than the Democrats. We’re heading downhill either way. The most important question to ask is: Which way do I vote to buy us the most time for Objectivism to spread through the culture? The far left elements and the whiff of totalitarianism in the Democrats frighten me. However, I will admit that the Republicans are deteriorating so quickly that the difference between the two parties is almost a moot point.
Second, Jack Wakeland fantasized on the Forum for Ayn Rand Fans about shooting a regulator. Diana Hsieh is horrified and Nicholas Provenzo wants Wakeland to rescind his remarks or stop referring to himself an Objectivist.
My eyebrows rose when I first read Wakeland’s fantasy. I take it as over-the-top bravado like you hear from young libertarians. Vigilantism is wrong, especially when we still have freedom of speech and the peaceful recourse to change the law. I am most bothered by this sentence:
Killing a regulator who does not answer to the will of the people is justice.
“The will of the people” is some high-flying rhetoric, but what does it mean? Regulation is bad because it violates individual rights, not because it is undemocratic.
I file his statement away and watch carefully for a more explicit, well considered statement.
Third, Harry Binswanger on HBList and Edward Cline have criticized Robert Tracinski for misunderstanding how ideas move history in an essay called “What Went Right.” I want to read Tracinski’s essay before I judge. This is certainly something to watch.
UPDATE: Slight revision.
UPDATE: Wakeland retracts. Also here.