Given the upcoming gubernatorial election in Virginia, Selfish Citizenship has two recent posts coming to different I-am-going-to-vote-for-X conclusions:
- Voting novelist Ed Cline as a write-in: Voting with Integrity.
- Voting for Republican candidate Cuccinelli: The Case for Cuccinelli by @CouldntBRighter
Missing is any selfish case posted for Democrat Terry McAullife, so he must be the standard bearer for unselfishness and altruism; however, in fairness, Cuccinelli would passionately argue that he is the mostest unselfish altruist in the campaign.
While of course, if you are a Virginian, you will selfishly make your own choice; however, I want to take a moment to chew the guest post by @CouldntBRighter, because it has the virtue of being thoughtful and not partisan.
In summary, @CouldntBRighter makes the following points:
- Using Reagan as an example, a grossly flawed candidate, who is wrong more often than he is right, can be a better office holder than the worse candidate. Related to this point, see the prior selfish post Voting the Lesser of Two Evils?
- The U.S. Senate now contains Republicans who more explicitly and consistently advocate for individual rights, which increases the possibilities of a better presidential Republican than Reagan, who will need the support of governors like Cuccinelli. Related to this point on the relative strengths and possibilities of Republican factions, see the prior selfish post The Republican Hydra.
- Cuccinelli advocates better economic policies (lower tax rates, expanded production of fossil fuels in Virginia, opposition to ObamaCare and Medicaid expansion), which is more important than Cuccinelli letting religious troglodyte Del. Robert Marshall loose on the uteruses of Virginia. Related to this point about the conflict between the protection of economic and abortion rights, see the prior selfish post An Open Letter to America’s Spinsters.
- Democrat Terry McAullife is an evil bastard hybrid of the Clintons and Obama, who will become the Pol Pot of Virginia governors, which could not be achieved by prior Democrats: Tim Kaine, Mark Warner, Doug Wilder, Gerry Baliles, and Chuck Robb. In fairness, but in response to a lack of consideration for the limited powers of Virginia’s governor, I admit that I am using a good bit of cheek and hyperbole in my summary of his point, so the reader should consult the original post.
- A vote for anyone other than Cuccinelli is a vote for McAulliffe. [Editor’s Note: Really, so I should just vote for McAulliffe instead of via write-in for the best man for that particular position, novelist Ed Cline? Those are really the same? I should sacrifice my personal franchise to the selection of the Republican Party’s selectorate, because that has worked so well in the past.]
- Anyone who makes a different choice than Cuccinelli in this election lacks integrity. [Editor’s Note: Really? I have to sacrifice my independent judgment in a life-boat-election to that of another person so that I can have integrity? Is that how virtue works?]
Despite my disagreement with the conclusion, there are several positive points that I would like to draw from @CouldntBRighter argument,
- He looked for evidence in reality. As Founder John Adams stated, history is the laboratory of political science.
- He examined choices in a hierarchy of values. As Ayn Rand wrote in “Concepts of Consciousness,” Introduction to Objectivist Epistemology, 32–33 [via Lexicon]:
“A moral code is a set of abstract principles; to practice it, an individual must translate it into the appropriate concretes—he must choose the particular goals and values which he is to pursue. This requires that he define his particular hierarchy of values, in the order of their importance, and that he act accordingly.”
There are few relevant concepts to my disagreement with his conclusion, although he and I are in full agreement on these points:
- Related to the virtue of independence, Ayn Rand wrote in “Galt’s Speech”, For the New Intellectual, 128 [via Lexicon]:
“Independence is the recognition of the fact that yours is the responsibility of judgment and nothing can help you escape it—that no substitute can do your thinking, as no pinch-hitter can live your life—that the vilest form of self-abasement and self-destruction is the subordination of your mind to the mind of another, the acceptance of an authority over your brain, the acceptance of his assertions as facts, his say-so as truth, his edicts as middle-man between your consciousness and your existence.”
- Related to the virtue of integrity, Ayn Rand wrote in “Galt’s Speech,” For the New Intellectual, 128:
“Integrity is the recognition of the fact that you cannot fake your consciousness, just as honesty is the recognition of the fact that you cannot fake existence—that man is an indivisible entity, an integrated unit of two attributes: of matter and consciousness, and that he may permit no breach between body and mind, between action and thought, between his life and his convictions—that, like a judge impervious to public opinion, he may not sacrifice his convictions to the wishes of others, be it the whole of mankind shouting pleas or threats against him—that courage and confidence are practical necessities, that courage is the practical form of being true to existence, of being true to truth, and confidence is the practical form of being true to one’s own consciousness.”
IMHO, the crux of our disagreement relates to Virginia politics. @CouldntBRighter always references national political issues as being the deciding factor in Virginia gubernatorial politics; whereas, I look at issues particular to Virginia politics (for example, see my reference to the 1994 Senate race previously, my list of Democratic governors in this post, and my reference of Bob “I’m an Platonic-Christian asshole” Marshall). My concern relates to the co-optation of Virginia’s Republican Party by Christian extremists (see Pat “I’m a delusional asshole” Robertson) ; whereas, my friend excuses or forgives such excesses to block the evil of Democratic economic rights violations. Further, we disagree about the power of a Virginia Governor, who cannot be re-elected.
Essentially, in current politics, no good options are available…like a thermometer, our politics gets down to do you want to take it orally or rectally. I have chosen to explicitly reject that choice and personally vote for my highest values; does that mean that I have no integrity?