T Nation

Obama vs Ayn Rand

â??The spike in sales of Atlas Shrugged more than a half century after its initial publication is truly remarkable,â?? Dr. Brook pointed out. â??Annual sales of Atlas Shrugged have been increasing for decades to a level not seen even in Ayn Randâ??s lifetime. Sales of the U.S. paperback editions averaged around 70,000 copies a year in the 1980s, and doubled to about 140,000 copies a year in the current decade. And the pace of sales has been accelerating recently, reaching an all-time high during the novelâ??s 50th anniversary in 2007, surpassing this mark in 2008, and on course to set another record in 2009.â??

Almost 7,000,000 copies of Atlas Shrugged have been sold since it was first published in 1957."

http://www.aynrand.org/site/News2?id=23741

Obama someday will be remembered about as well as Martin Van Buren or Zachary Taylor. Ms. Rand will live on as the quintessential AMERICAN philosopher.

I read the book with in last year (VIA AUDIO BOOK) I did not see it like most people see it . Obama is not the only enemy we have had . All Presidents in US history were guilty of obstruction in the free market. Since as I recall there were no blacks in the book , I am sure Rand would have disliked Obama more than any other

“There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”

Atlas Shrugged is an important book and so is The Fountainhead. I don’t see how anyone could think otherwise, even if they ultimately disagreed with the message or didn’t go all-in for Ayn Rand’s brand of objectivism.

[quote]jjackkrash wrote:
Atlas Shrugged is an important book and so is The Fountainhead. I don’t see how anyone could think otherwise, even if they ultimately disagreed with the message or didn’t go all-in for Ayn Rand’s brand of objectivism. [/quote]

Eh, I know Rand is the mother of ‘Objectivism’ the thing is there is a morality already tied to it which is categorized as ethical egoism. It’s a misleading title for a Philosophical outlook imo. If you are trying to be objective, it would seem you want to remove ethical egoism from your rule set.

While Ayn Rand’s childhood, and overall life was super rough because the government took so much from her successful father which did a number on her life, there are also examples of unabashed Capitalism that have led to the exact same conditions, only the super wealthy ethical egoists end up with control of everything, and it ended up being that necessarily children of poor ended up having to work (think industrial revolution), which is every bit as bad as Ayn Rands upbringing. In both cases, I think Ethical Egoism was the morality pushing people into poverty whether it’s industrialization or collectivization. When you stop giving a crap about giving people opportunity to live a decent life, shit sucks for everyone except those at the top.

The important lesson I learned from Ayn Rand is that if you lean too far right, or too far left, you take away opportunity and pigeonhole people’s opportunity by buying into the bullshit either way.

Just so happens on these boards, the tendency is neocon, you guys tend to idolize people like Reagan and Rand for their great ideas, but you all conveniently forget the terrible pitfalls of their philosophies, if not the actual history of some of the things they have done.

I think I have a great understanding of where Ayn Rand came from. Her problem is she couldn’t imagine herself in other peoples shoes, only her own.

[quote]Severiano wrote:

[quote]jjackkrash wrote:
Atlas Shrugged is an important book and so is The Fountainhead. I don’t see how anyone could think otherwise, even if they ultimately disagreed with the message or didn’t go all-in for Ayn Rand’s brand of objectivism. [/quote]

Eh, I know Rand is the mother of ‘Objectivism’ the thing is there is a morality already tied to it which is categorized as ethical egoism. It’s a misleading title for a Philosophical outlook imo. If you are trying to be objective, it would seem you want to remove ethical egoism from your rule set.

While Ayn Rand’s childhood, and overall life was super rough because the government took so much from her successful father which did a number on her life, there are also examples of unabashed Capitalism that have led to the exact same conditions, only the super wealthy ethical egoists end up with control of everything, and it ended up being that necessarily children of poor ended up having to work (think industrial revolution), which is every bit as bad as Ayn Rands upbringing. In both cases, I think Ethical Egoism was the morality pushing people into poverty whether it’s industrialization or collectivization. When you stop giving a crap about giving people opportunity to live a decent life, shit sucks for everyone except those at the top.

The important lesson I learned from Ayn Rand is that if you lean too far right, or too far left, you take away opportunity and pigeonhole people’s opportunity by buying into the bullshit either way.

Just so happens on these boards, the tendency is neocon, you guys tend to idolize people like Reagan and Rand for their great ideas, but you all conveniently forget the terrible pitfalls of their philosophies, if not the actual history of some of the things they have done.

I think I have a great understanding of where Ayn Rand came from. Her problem is she couldn’t imagine herself in other peoples shoes, only her own. [/quote]

All Ms. Rand actually does is take western ideals of individual liberty to their logical conclusions. Her point is that you are free or you are not. You can’t be free sometimes and a slave at other times.

Look at how Obama shits all over the Constitution. He has used executive orders to crap all over it. Now the lowlife wants to do the same with guns. He hates freedom of the individual.

Free or slave…pick one.

[quote]jjackkrash wrote:

Atlas Shrugged is an important book and so is The Fountainhead. I don’t see how anyone could think otherwise, even if they ultimately disagreed with the message or didn’t go all-in for Ayn Rand’s brand of objectivism. [/quote]

Neither are particularly “important”. There’s nothing original in them. And the idea that they are “American” is always an odd claim when I hear it - Rand’s philosophy and politics are of the continental variety. It’d actually be more appropriate to call her books “French” or “Russian” than “American”, since her ideas spawn from continental radicalism.

In the canon of “important” books - especially American books - these books aren’t even in the same zip code.

[quote]smh23 wrote:

“There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”[/quote]

Love it.

[quote]jjackkrash wrote:
Atlas Shrugged is an important book and so is The Fountainhead. I don’t see how anyone could think otherwise, even if they ultimately disagreed with the message or didn’t go all-in for Ayn Rand’s brand of objectivism. [/quote]

hey you forgot the Hobbit Trilogy , it was better than important :slight_smile: I have read 3 or 4 of Tolken’s books . They are spectacular

[quote]smh23 wrote:
“There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”[/quote]

Lovely quote from the eminent screen write and comic book writer. Who could ever forget his gripping plot and character development in the classic cartoon series Jackie Chan Adventures. He really set the bar for weekend animated entertainment aimed at those seven and under.

[quote]pittbulll wrote:

[quote]jjackkrash wrote:
Atlas Shrugged is an important book and so is The Fountainhead. I don’t see how anyone could think otherwise, even if they ultimately disagreed with the message or didn’t go all-in for Ayn Rand’s brand of objectivism. [/quote]

hey you forgot the Hobbit Trilogy , it was better than important :slight_smile: I have read 3 or 4 of Tolken’s books . They are spectacular
[/quote]

I was unaware that these books had finally been published in a graphic novel format. Good for you. I’m sure it has been a long wait.

[quote]JEATON wrote:

[quote]pittbulll wrote:

[quote]jjackkrash wrote:
Atlas Shrugged is an important book and so is The Fountainhead. I don’t see how anyone could think otherwise, even if they ultimately disagreed with the message or didn’t go all-in for Ayn Rand’s brand of objectivism. [/quote]

hey you forgot the Hobbit Trilogy , it was better than important :slight_smile: I have read 3 or 4 of Tolken’s books . They are spectacular
[/quote]

I was unaware that these books had finally been published in a graphic novel format. Good for you. I’m sure it has been a long wait. [/quote]

I think you would be amazed at the accomplishments of some of the people you look down on :slight_smile:

[quote]JEATON wrote:

[quote]smh23 wrote:
“There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”[/quote]

Lovely quote from the eminent screen write and comic book writer. Who could ever forget his gripping plot and character development in the classic cartoon series Jackie Chan Adventures. He really set the bar for weekend animated entertainment aimed at those seven and under. [/quote]

Indeed he did.

I reproduced the quote because it’s funny, not because the man who spoke it is successful or admirable.

[quote]Headhunter wrote:
Ms. Rand will live on as the quintessential AMERICAN philosopher.
[/quote]

I would put Twain, Jefferson, Adams, Franklin, Emerson, Thoreau, way ahead of her when it comes to that categorization.

And no novel she wrote can compete with Moby Dick, Huck Finn or The Great Gatsby.

If we were to compare her to writers and philosophers outside of the US she falls further back.

She is more of an “American” mediocrity. All she really does is make people feel better about their moral defects, character flaws and vices.

I think Das Kapital was wrong on a number of levels, but I wouldn’t sit here and claim it wasn’t important, even if Marx borrowed ideas from others; even though he wasn’t an “American” author; and even though it wasn’t completely “original.”

Also, without The Fountainhead, we wouldn’t have the early works of Rush. Which would be a fucking travesty.

[quote]jjackkrash wrote:

I think Das Kapital was wrong on a number of levels, but I wouldn’t sit here and claim it wasn’t important, even if Marx borrowed ideas from others; even though he wasn’t an “American” author; and even though it wasn’t completely “original.” [/quote]

“Wrong” isn’t the issue - “good” is. Das Kapital was very bad for many reasons, but important? Unquestionably. Did he borrow, sure - but Marx wasn’t unoriginal.

Rand’s books are big, dumb wannabe-epics that don’t offer any unique insight into life. Its heroes and villains are reductionist and her great insight into humanity relies on a bunch of cheap stereotypes. And, ironically, she borrows more from Marx (materialism, etc.), than she does from Western liberal thought.

I don’t care if teenagers read her books, but to consider them serious or important? Not unless you’ve never outgrown being a teenager.

And Rand’s philosophical endgame of replacing the “cross with the dollar sign”? In what universe is that “quintessential American philosophy”? That wasn’t the philosophy in 1776, and it ain’t now.

[quote]Headhunter wrote:
â??The spike in sales of Atlas Shrugged more than a half century after its initial publication is truly remarkable,â?? Dr. Brook pointed out. â??Annual sales of Atlas Shrugged have been increasing for decades to a level not seen even in Ayn Randâ??s lifetime. Sales of the U.S. paperback editions averaged around 70,000 copies a year in the 1980s, and doubled to about 140,000 copies a year in the current decade. And the pace of sales has been accelerating recently, reaching an all-time high during the novelâ??s 50th anniversary in 2007, surpassing this mark in 2008, and on course to set another record in 2009.â??

Almost 7,000,000 copies of Atlas Shrugged have been sold since it was first published in 1957."

http://www.aynrand.org/site/News2?id=23741
[/quote]

You should have posted this here :