Anarcho-Capitalist Non-Voters For Obama

David Friedman gives his endorsement. Can we start an ancap non-voting Obama caucus?

Share this

Actually...

Actually, David Friedman said in the comments that he expects to vote for the LP candidate.

A very tenuous argument

The evidence he uses to support his Libertarian-Obama argument seems highly selective and the majority is flimsy at best: "he's not Bush," "his economic advisors are better than most democrats'," and "he made some innocuous remarks that one might construe as Libertarian."

Meanwhile the evidence to the contrary is enormous: promises to double the captial gains tax, to repeal the Bush tax cuts, to implement universal healthcare (Friedman mentions this in passing but seems to take no issue with it), to implement windfall profits taxes, etc. And Friedman only addresses this contrary evidence indirectly, claiming that he's "constrained by the fact that he's trying to get nominated".

I realize politicians make a living out of lies and unrealistic promises, but I'll take McCain's promise to lower taxes and implement laissez-faire economic policies anyday over Obama's promise to raise taxes and subvert the free-market.

McCain has also promised to

McCain has also promised to increase government spending far beyond what Hillary or Obama have proposed, through increases in military spending. So what good is McCain's promise to lower taxes? The money has to come from somewhere.

To be sure

And he's promised to cut spending in other areas far beyond what Hillary and Obama have proposed. I'm certainly not claiming that McCain would make an ideal president, just that he's preferable, from a Libertarian standpoint, to Obama. He's at least saying mostly the right things; beyond military spending, I can't say the same for Obama.

But has McCain said which

But has McCain said which programs he plans to cut spending on? What good is "saying the right things" when the "right things" are obvious bullshit?

Naturally, being a straight-talker, he's not afraid to tell people that a certain price will be paid for these defense hikes and tax cuts. As he explains, paying for his program will require "taking the savings from earmark, program review, and other budget reforms."

Straight talk!

Or, in reality, obfuscation. Clearly the reforms per se aren't going to save any money. McCain is proposing processes that could lead to program cuts. But he won't, you know, actually name any programs that he think ought to be cut. Because, after all, if he told people what he was planning to cut, they might realize that they liked these programs. So better to refer to them in a vague way.

That's fine, but lies and

That's fine, but lies and unrealistic promises are common to all politicians. The real issue is what makes Obama preferable to McCain? In my mind, a politician who says mostly the right things is better than a politician who says mostly the wrong things, keeping in mind that most of what they both say is probably bullshit. I'm more than willing to have my position changed on this matter (as I said, I'm in no way arguing that McCain will make a good president), but Friedman's argument for Obama seemed very flimsy.

The real issue is what makes

The real issue is what makes Obama preferable to McCain?

War.

Evidence

Here is the hardest evidence for it in terms of Obama's behavior:

"At one point he said something mildly favorable about school vouchers, retreating rapidly under pressure from the teachers' unions, and similarly with marijuana decriminalization. His most visible disagreement with Clinton is over her plan to force everyone to buy health insurance. He appears uncomfortable with that degree of coercion, even though he is willing to use the less direct version—taxation to subsidize the insurance that he thinks people ought to have."

I don't know why you "A very tenuous argument" did not mention this. Also David Friedman mentioned health care in passing because he provided a link to a post which discussed it at length. I thought "A very tenuous argument" did not summarize the post well; read it for yourself.

I did read it.

I don't know why you "A very tenuous argument" did not mention this.

I did mention it (re: "remarks that one might construe as Libertarian"). And my point was this isn't very "hard" evidence. As to Friedman's Obama-healthcare discussion, I've read it before, but as it was connected here to his discussion of Goolsbee and not to his discussion of healthcare policies, I said he menioned it in passing.