The stupidest argument I’ve yet heard against supporting President Donald Trump on any issue comes not from the left, but from the free market right.
The argument goes: “If the economy goes wrong under Trump, capitalism will get the blame. The socialists will triumph. If the economy goes wrong under a Democrat, socialism will get the blame.”
First of all — get the blame by WHOM? The media? Does anyone seriously think the media will ever blame socialism for anything, and ever credit capitalism with anything? Or maybe they mean academia. Does anyone seriously think the same campuses throwing off not just Ann Coulter and Milo, but also George Will and Charles Murray, will ever blame socialism and Communism for anything? Get real!
The unspoken premise here is what philosopher Ayn Rand — also a strong advocate of individual rights and hands off capitalism — termed “social metaphysics”. Metaphysics refers to the nature of reality. Social metaphysics is a term that describes giving undue or even total weight to the opinions of the mob on a subject. “If the mob [the media, academia, the voting masses] says capitalism is bad, then capitalism is bad.” Or: “The mob can be wrong, but their opinion still matters most of all.” It’s not exactly an objective or intellectual premise worthy of the name.
Whenever the economy collapses, as it did in 2008, the answer from every side has always been: we have too little government intervention. From Herbert Hoover to George W. Bush (with the exception of Ronald Reagan), Republican presidents have always gone the route of more government intervention and more socialism, not less, when there’s a problem. Would Donald Trump? I’m not certain he would. I am certain any other Republican would. And I am certain that any Democrat would, even without an economic crisis.
People have been sold on the false idea that most economic well-being is caused by government spending and intervention, while most economic failure and disappointment are caused by freedom. Exactly the opposite is true. Donald Trump is a pragmatist on the subject. This means he can go either way. Based on his lust for tax-cutting (a second tax cut in the works), and his lust for deregulation, he’s clearly a pragmatist with enormous sympathy for the free market. Hillary Clinton was no pragmatist. She was a phony, and she was cautious, but on each and every issue she went with bigger government, higher taxes and more social spending. And if the Democrats decide in 2020 that she’s really gone for good, the next phase of their party will make Hillary Clinton look like Adam Smith.
President Donald Trump is not an advocate of laissez-faire capitalism. He presumably wants to keep the Federal Reserve, the income tax, Social Security/Medicare and all the other non-market or anti-market forces that place our currency and economic well-being more under the thumb of politicians and bureaucrats than in the rationality and justice of a truly free market. He’s not Adam Smith. He’s not Ayn Rand. He’s not Milton Friedman. But we are never offered those kinds of choices in an election. And even if we were, it’s unlikely a shift in political leaders would really matter. Hearts and minds must be changed first, and while socialism is still a hard sell with about half the American population, totally “libertarian” free market laissez-faire capitalism is an even harder one, I’m sorry to say.
If you think that supporting the Democratic Party’s direct and deliberate plunge into disaster — under Hillary Clinton or the even more openly socialist loonies that party now embraces — then you’re sadly delusional. I can’t even believe I have to argue the point.
If you really cherish and love the ideas of individual rights and freedom, then you ought to fight for those ideas while supporting the next best things available in our candidates — and eschewing the totally toxic, self-destructive totalitarian brew of the left.
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