Steve Packard: Video: The Phil Donahue Show: Ayn Rand Interview From 1979
This is a classic interview, because you had two very intelligent people with lots of followers, who both had a message to deliver. But came from very different sides of the political spectrum. Ayn Rand, being a Libertarian/Objectivist and Phil Donahue being a Progressive/Socialist even. Two people with very different beliefs on what the role of government is. Especially the role of the Federal Government. Ayn, whose see government’s role as basically doing nothing more, than to basically protecting our freedom and constitutional rights. And Phil Donahue, believing that government should be doing a lot for its people. That there’s only so much we can expect that the private enterprise can do for the people.
The Phil Donahue belief I guess, is when people have a lot of economic freedom, we see too much income inequality, that we should tolerate in a democracy. And that we need a strong Federal Government to provide the human services, that we shouldn’t trust private enterprise to do for the people. And if that means having high taxes to pay for these human services, so be it. If that means we get good public services from all of these taxes. So this was a discussion between two people, who have very different views in what the role of government is and what it should be doing for its people. But two people who are very intelligent and can make their case very well in how they look at the world ideologically.
The best thing that I could probably compare this interview with today, it would be like Ralph Nader interviewing Ron Paul, or vice-versa. Two men that are actually pretty similar when it comes to social freedom and civil liberties. But are very different in what they see the role for the Federal Government as it relates to the economy. Ron Paul basically believing that people should be able to keep and spend as much money as they make and be able to spend it as they see it, as long as they aren’t spending that money hurting people. Ordering hits and that sort of thing. And Ralph Nader, believing that a country is a community and to be a member of this community, we should all have to pay a price for it. To make this community as strong as it can be. Similar to Rand-Donahue.