alan jones
Alan Jones (Image: Sky News Australia)

The invisible hand that feeds The Ayn Rand Institute, committed to preserving the memory of libertarianism's patron saint, has taken a US government loan of up to $1 million.

The institute, which promotes free markets, applied for a loan under the pay cheque protection program, which gives businesses money to keep workers on. The decision was justified, director Harry Binswanger argued, because "it would be morally wrong for pro-capitalists to humbly step aside and watch the new money go only to anti-capitalists".

The Rand people aren't the only opponents of big government crying out for the public purse during a time of crisis. Conservative group Americans for Tax Reform got up to $300,000. So did a group called Citizens Against Government Waste which, along with Americans for Tax Reform, opposed stimulus bills which underpinned the loans.