Monday, February 20, 2006

The Capitalist's Amicus Curiae

Since its inception, the Center for the Advancement of Capitalism has filed several amicus curiae (friend of the court) briefs with American courts, including briefs on the Microsoft antitrust case, the Nike commercial speech case, the University of Michigan affirmative action cases and a case involving the application of the antitrust laws to the US Postal Service.

The reason that the Center elected to file the briefs is academic: the decisions of the US Supreme Court and lower courts affect the freedom and prosperity of every American. Additionally, as the most intellectual branch of our government, the courts are the realm where Objectivists are particularly well-suited toward having a positive impact.

Building upon CAC's groundbreaking legal advocacy, I propose a new effort to submit amicus curiae briefs on every key case before the Supreme Court that impacts the right of Americans to live for their own sake and to profit from their own work. I solicit the financial support of Objectivists who believe in fighting for their freedom—and who want to help to find and empower new Objectivists in the process.

My proposal and my call for financial support will be met with controversy by some. It will be argued that individual legal arguments alone cannot change the direction in which our nation is headed. Those who demand quick results often find easy disappointment.

Yet as a stream of principled answers to important questions of our day, coupled with law-review essays, newspaper op-eds, and other elements of a well-constructed campaign of Objectivist intellectual activism, CAC's legal advocacy will have a significant impact—if one is willing to think and fight for the long-term.

The principle governing my optimism is straightforward: to be heard by others, one must speak to their interests. To attract new adherents to our philosophy, I believe that one must constantly demonstrate that Objectivism provides practical answers to the problems that we face as a people and that Objectivism's proponents consistently act from a reasoned base. While spreading knowledge of Ayn Rand’s written works is the proper foundation of any campaign to advance Objectivism, it is not the only means of advancing Objectivism. Ayn Rand provided powerful analyses of the trials of her day—it is for us to analyze and answer the trials of ours.

Ayn Rand’s genius created a tool that will allow man to reach summits that today we can only imagine. Will you join me and help to expand her legacy? Will you help to support the Center and be a part of its new effort to expand the fight for reason, egoism and individual rights in our most important institutions?

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