It’s been argued that if Obama wins, the left will properly once again be blamed for the failures of collectivism. This is actually an example of a broader principle, one Miss Rand identified in her essay “The Anatomy of Compromise” :
“When opposite basic principles are clearly and openly defined, it works to the advantage of the rational side; when they are not clearly defined, but are hidden or evaded, it works to the advantage of the irrational side.”
I suggest rereading that essay before Tuesday’s election.
The essence of conservatism is an attempt to have altruism and freedom; it is essentially an attempt to obscure and evade basic principles. Saying of McCain that “at least he’s better than Obama” means seeing him as a mixture of pro-altruism and pro-freedom elements. But conservatives are not just disintegrated mixtures; they are essentially compromised. It is wrong to see them as simply a mixture of good and bad in whom the good can be fostered. A conservative is never going to allow the advocacy of freedom to diminish his fundamental commitment to faith and altruism.
Ayn Rand also writes, “The rational (the good) has nothing to gain from the irrational (the evil), except a share of its failures and crimes; the irrational has everything to gain from the rational: a share of its achievements and values.”
Conservatism is the collaboration by which altruism gains unearned credit for the achievements–the freedom and prosperity–of a selfish society. Conservatism makes altruism look feasible.
This is why the really colossal, groundbreaking new incursions of government power have been coming from the right. Next to Bush’s establishment of an economic dictator and $700 billion socialization of the financial industry, the welfare programs the Democrats want are just a drop in the bucket. The left may dream these things up, but the right actually makes them happen.
So how do we avoid reaching the ultimate goal of altruism? “There is no way to stop or change that process except at its root: by a change of basic principles,” Miss Rand writes. “In order to win, the rational side of any controversy requires that its goals be understood…. The irrational side has to deceive, to confuse, to evade, to hide its goals.”
Let us first, then, state our goal unequivocally: a society that protects above anything else everyone’s right to be selfish.
Which candidate’s for that?
 Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal, 145.