Some Americans are taking issue with the late atheist and capitalist evangelist Ayn Rand’s influence over a young Paul Ryan. Like Ms. Rand, Mr. Ryan places a greater emphasis on the individual American’s ability to take care of himself with little if any help from the federal government. His promotion of the use of vouchers to purchase health care is indicative of that position.
Hidden in the intent to enthusiastically reveal Ms. Rand’s influence on Mr. Ryan is the atheist angle. How can a Roman Catholic like Mr. Ryan allow himself to be influenced by the philosophy of someone who believes that man’s focus shouldn’t be on throwing up prayers to an imaginary friend, but instead focus on bettering the human condition via self-reliance?
Mr. Ryan is far from being an atheist and in fairness to him his preference for a non-interventionist role of government and allowance of the free markets to work can easily be separated from Ms. Rand’s atheism. There are plenty of Bible-thumping Christians who believe in rugged individualism and the free markets.
As a libertarian I appreciate Mr. Ryan’s stance on vouchers for health care. Vouchers, if properly funded and defined, offer purchasers of health care services choice, especially for those who could not otherwise afford the average $14,000 a year in health care services. If the Obama Administration and liberal Democrats were really serious about reducing government’s cost for ensuring health care, they would abandon the “changing Medicare as we know it” rhetoric and allow consumers a choice in insurance plans and health care providers.
Then again, maybe liberals enjoy creating “God” in the image of good government so much that maintaining the current Medicare system as is is much more preferable.