Smith -vs- Rand...

by: Les Carpenter
Rational Nation USA
-vs- Tyranny

Adam Smith -vs- Ayn Rand. Capitalism was their common goal, the justification for achieving the ends of capitalism was their difference.

Based on pure logic and objectiveness Smith would have to concede to Rand.

Looking beyond the 18th, 19th, and 20th centuries, and post Soviet/Chinese/Southeast Asian communism, the debate is once again forefront and center.

Given the changing realities of modern western society how would you characterize capitalism today and what specifically would you suggest we ought modify or do differently?

For a insightful yet brief analysis of Smith and how his views might relate to the present please see taospeaks as you consider the foregoing.

There remains one thing abundantly clear. We as humans have yet to agree on the ultimate right solution. This is as it should be. Knowledge, growth, and ultimately achievement is NOT made by everyone always agreeing. Wouldn't you agree?

Cross posted at Rational Nation USA.


  1. "Based on pure logic and objectiveness"

    Neither of those exist as empirical values, so Smith would need to concede nothing.

    Objectivism is a Star Trek fart poke once you begin to see how shallow and empty it is. It presupposes that nothing got us here.

    It's dumb. Stupendously dumb, really. It has a certain romantic allure, but plenty of incredibly dumb things have that component.

  2. I don't see these justifications for capitalism (Smith vs. Rand) as being in conflict. They are, in fact, complementary.

    At the very least, serving oneself serves the public interest by ensuring that the needs of at least one member of the public have been met.

    To the point, objectivism's singular focus on a morality of the pursuit of self-interest accounts for the failure of libertarianism to appeal to a broader audience.

    I think anyone interested in this sort of discussion should read about Jonathan Haidt's discussion of politics and moral foundaions:

  3. Funny how the German always sounds right.

    Nothing in Smith's work would ever require of him in an argument with Ayn Rand to concede. Nah

    Neither of those exist as empirical values, so there exists nothing for either to concede.


    Always end in the verb. It makes German a hoot. Good English works the same way.

  4. Ended a sentence in a prepositional phrase. 50 lashes. hehe


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