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Monday, April 25, 2011

Ayn Rand accepted social security and medicare.

So Ayn Rand is a hypocrite because she accepted social security? After all, she rails against people taking government assistance, correct?
Except, there’s one problem: Rand specifically addressed the issue of individuals taking benefits from government programs they were forced to pay into in a 1966 article for The Objectivist newsletter:

"It is obvious, in such cases, that a man receives his own money which was taken from him by force, directly and specifically, without his consent, against his own choice. Those who advocated such laws are morally guilty, since they assumed the “right” to force employers and unwilling co-workers. But the victims, who opposed such laws, have a clear right to any refund of their own money—and they would not advance the cause of freedom if they left their money, unclaimed, for the benefit of the welfare-state administration."

In other words, programs like Social Security and Medicare aren’t optional. People are forced to pay into them or they are fined or imprisoned.  Given that reality, there’s really nothing hypocritical at all for a proponent of limited government, and an opponent to social programs like Social Security and Medicare, to try and get back from these programs what they were forced to put in.

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