Sunday, 7 September 2008

Glenn Jameson, National SOLOist

So, Glenn Jameson over at SOLO, is a "key creative talent" behind National's latest billboard campaign. Many people, such as Peter Cresswell, are up in arms over it.

However, I digress. Frankly, so what?

The fact is, he has the right to go and work for whoever he wants to work for. He has no "duty" to go and work anywhere. Isn't that what Objectivism is about? Glenn was acting in his rational self-interest. Given the choices, benefits and consequences involved, he decided to go and work on the National Party's advertising team. This does not necessarily say, however, that he agrees with the National Party and what it stands for. Indeed, he has a rather pragmatic justification for his work with the National Party.

All things considered, I too would rather have him work for, say, the Libertarianz, just like most SOLOists and Libertarianz. But it should not be held against him. He chose to do what he considered to be the best thing to do out of all his choices. He looked at the National Party's views and compared them with his. And he took the job.

Besides, when this is all over, he's pretty much free to do whatever he likes again. It's merely for this election campaign that he has decided to work for the Nats. He has not done anything wrong, on any level. Yes, we may question why he did go and work there, but we should not:

a) feel morally superior; and

b) go on a Medieval witchhunt, just because he made a decision in his rational self-interest that we may disagree with.


Rick said...

I don't agree with that, beyond the fact that it's his right. No libertarian refuses others the right to make moral mistakes. But there's more to Objectivism than being on the member of the right cause.

Turning in Libertarianz for National is a short-range break with Glenn's professed values that's going to bite him in the long-run. That he could even consider this move is a sign that something fundamental went wrong in his sense of life long ago, it is much more fundamental than which political party one belongs to. One can't do this and also host the notion that it doesn't do self-harm. We violate our conscience by what we do, not by what we say.

Glenn, you should consider this a moral experiment. If, or when, you can't take it anymore you'll see for yourself what a mistake you've made. Hopefully your SOLO mates will be there to help put you back together again. Smacking you around is not good medicine, it's tantermount to the same moral crime.

Callum said...


I see what you mean, about Glenn's turning in Libertarianz for National. However, let's put it this way:

The National Party is, well, a big blob of politicians from the centre-right, with little in the way of actual principles, when it comes to the Party as a whole.

Glenn, you must remember, is a very principled man.

So instead of approaching Glenn's employment by the National Party with a sense of dread, we need to be more optimistic. This could be a deadly-serious opportunity to infiltrate the National Party with Objectivist/Libertarian ideals. Glenn could be doing us all a great service by working for the National Party -he can get real, proper Objectivist thought into the National Party -which then passes into the minds of other New Zealanders, from all around the political spectrum.

And ultimately, a large party influenced to some degree by Objectivism could be a turning point, not just for New Zealand but for the world.