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Friday, June 07, 2013

• • LTCI Watch: Skepticism 
,
Capitalism  | I’m sympathetic to objectivists and other people who believe in a pure free-market system, but I’m just not an objectivist. I don’t have any theoretical objection whatsoever to the idea of the existence of ERRP. I have no objection to some of my tax dollars going to pay for ERRP. I take no joy in seeing ERRP have problems.

Saturday, January 05, 2013

• • On the Third Hand: Violent tendencies 
,
[T]he reality is that we all benefit from providing care for people with health problems that could lead to violent actions. Even if we lived in a pure Ayn Randian society, the Ayn Randian society would provide some kind of government-supervised response to this challenge.

Friday, November 30, 2012

• • On the Third Hand: Frivolity 
,
We have a beloved reader, Sunforester, who posts many passionate comments about the idea of the futility of government efforts to help the poor. My version of Sunforester’s position is that Sunforester, like Ayn Rand, believes that imposing taxes on citizens is a form of theft; that government intervention will almost always make things worse for everyone; and that efforts to justify government programs that “help the poor” are usually just intentional schemes to take from the poor and the middle class and give to the rich, or eventually will turn into that sort of scheme, even if the organizers’ intentions are good. And, of course, the frustrating thing for someone who kind of likes Medicare and Social Security is that, in the long run, Sunforester is clearly absolutely right.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

• • LTCI Watch: Even Eskimos Loathed Senilicide 
,
Personal life  | Rose Wilder Lane, the daughter and editor of Laura Ingalls Wilder and one of the founders of the modern Libertarian movement, is famous for never paying into Social Security or taking benefits out. But Ayn Rand eventually did use Social Security and Medicare in her later years, and it seems hard for even the most fervent advocates of libertarian to be comfortable with the idea of letting elderly people who can no longer live alone fend for themselves.

Wednesday, December 07, 2011

• • LTCI Watch: What Will They Do Next? 
,
My suggestions for moving forward, in a fairy tale alternative universe where Republicans and Democrats can sometimes put partisanship aside and move forward on something other than a life-or-death budget bill: Acknowledge that even the most fervent Ayn Rand-thumping Objectivists among us are reluctant to let frail, disabled elderly people -- even elderly people who failed to plan for their financial future when they very clearly had a chance -- die alone on the sidewalk.