Sunday, January 14, 2007

Ayn Rand - Mike Wallace Interview, 1959

Part II

Part III

Do note the vital inconsistency she makes: she says the only role of government is justice and law. However, government/statism means a complete monopolization of this area (like we see today), and through this monopoly it will support itself through taxation, which goes against these same principles she described herself.


Anonymous said...

For a more detailed explanation of Rand's philosophy, Niels, see Rand's many works of nonfiction where she addresses your supposed inconsistency:

Don't let a 30-minute interview from 50 years ago be your only input to Objectivism. :-)

Anonymous said...

well, so you are paying the government to protect you, what's the inconsistency? unless you are assuming abuse of these powers, but that's a different story.

Charles Johnson (Rad Geek) said...


I have no objection to a government protecting you from injustice, if you willingly pay for it to do that on your behalf. I do have an objection to a government forcing me to subscribe to its protection, if I would prefer to make arrangements with a different agency, or to fend for myself. Any government which forcibly suppresses responsible and non-aggressive competitors is initiating force against innocent people, and thus illegitimate on the Objectivist theory of justice. Any "government" which does not suppress responsible and non-aggressive competitors has forfeited any claim to sovereign authority over the legitimate use of force, and thus has ceased to be a government in Rand's sense of the word. For more, cf. Roy Childs' "Open Letter to Ayn Rand."

I now plead for Natural Society against Politicians, and for Natural Reason against all three. When the World is in a fitter Temper than it is at present to hear Truth, or when I shall be more indifferent about its Temper; my Thoughts may become more publick. In the mean time, let them repose in my own Bosom, and in the Bosoms of such Men as are fit to be initiated in the sober Mysteries of Truth and Reason. My Antagonists have already done as much as I could desire. Parties in Religion and Politics make sufficient Discoveries concerning each other, to give a sober Man a proper Caution against them all. The Monarchic, Aristocratical, and Popular Partizans have been jointly laying their Axes to the Root of all Government, and have in their Turns proved each other absurd and inconvenient. In vain you tell me that Artificial Government is good, but that I fall out only with the Abuse. The Thing! the Thing itself is the Abuse!Edmund Burke (1757): A Vindication of Natural Society