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Monday, December 01, 2008

• • • Alan shrugged 
Larry Beinhart, Chronogram (Kingston, NY) Atlas Shrugged  |Capitalism  | Alan Greenspan was an Objectivist. What, you may ask, is an Objectivist? A follower of Ayn Rand, most famous for Atlas Shrugged, a novel in which the capitalist entrepreneurs go on strike against the collectivist shlubs in government (who dare to tax and regulate) and the working class (who dare to form unions), but they’re really just leeches, and when the great men abandon the shlubs, the world collapses. The true capitalists go off to the wilderness, form their own little utopia, build railroads that run on time and airplanes that never crash, and have fiery, gorgeous, young, college-educated heiresses desperate to bed them. It was an expression of her philosophy, which she took very seriously, and called Objectivism. [....] Ayn Rand’s real name was Alissa Rosenbaum. She was a Russian Jew. When I discovered that, I suddenly had a whole new understanding. There’s this thing about Jews. Pardon me, as I plunge into ethnic stereotyping here. But as a Jew, via Latvia and Belarus, I claim a certain latitude. Jews like to think. Nudge one, and a philosopher begins to spout.

• • Saying what you mean, meaning what you say 
David Hunter, News Sentinel (Knoxville, TN) The Fountainhead  | Few of us have the integrity of Ayn Rand’s fictional architect, Howard Roark, from her novel “The Fountainhead.” He blew up a skyscraper rather than compromise his design. But the price he paid for total integrity was as fictional as his integrity. We need those fictional people of integrity, however, because we need myths to live by, bigger-than-life people to inspire us and lend hope that we too can achieve what we imagine.

• • Atlas is about to shrug 
Human Events Online Atlas Shrugged  | Listening to the heavy hitters discuss the election outcome, I have not heard the real reason for the Democratic victory -- that we as a nation may have reached Ayn Rand’s tipping point.

 Block replies to readers, Part II 
Walter Block, LewRockwell.com Atlas Shrugged  | I think government loans and grants are beside the point. They are ALWAYS justified, in that the government is a robber gang, and the less money they have, and the more money others have, the better for liberty. (See Ayn Rand's Ragnar Dannesjkold on this.)

 Productivity not gimmickry generates great economies 
Bill Hare, Political Cortex Capitalism  | How revealing it is to see how the voodoo "free market" world of wild and wooly deregulation of the likes of Alan Greenspan and his guru Ayn Rand along with mainstays such as Milton Friedman and disciple Ronald Reagan had impacted on America, resulting in a crushing economic collapse of which we have sadly seen only the beginning.

 Modern American atheism 
Shannon Murphy, Bi-College News (Bryn Mawr and Haverford Colleges, Haverford, PA) Atheism  | Sigmund Freud, Karl Marx, Friedrich Engels, Woody Allen, Lance Armstrong, David Bowie, Noam Chomsky, Marie Curie, Richard Dawkins, Joyce Carol Oates, George Orwell, Guy Pierce, Karl Popper, Ayn Rand, Carl Sagan, Kurt Vonnegut, and Joss Whedon are/were all atheists.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

• • Strange but true 
Rizal Johan, The Star (Malaysia) Atlas Shrugged  |The Fountainhead  | Review of Strange and Stranger: The World of Steve Ditko, by Blake Bell.Bell’s main title for his book, Strange and Stranger, becomes more relevant when he introduces the objectivist philosophies of Russian emigre and US-based author Ayn Rand (1905-1982) whose signature books, The Fountainhead (1943) and Atlas Shrugged (1957), had a remarkable impact on Ditko’s attitude towards politics, which in turn influenced his work as a comics artist and writer. [....] Whether or not one agrees with Ditko’s ideas – and this reviewer, despite being a Ditko fan, finds those philosophies unpalatably right-wing and exclusionary – one must admire how the man stuck to his guns and expressed himself so effectively through comic books.

• • Giesbrecht, Michael John 
Modesto Bee (CA) Atlas Shrugged  |The Fountainhead  | Death notice.At an early age Michael was influenced by the writings of Ayn Rand reading among others her epic novel Atlas Shrugged, embracing the philosophical renderings of The Fountain Head and from there satisfying his taste for Objectivism by subscribing to it's publications and requiring of his friends that they become aware of the exceptional phenomenon of thought. ''The truth is not for all men, but only for those who seek it.'' -- Ayn Rand. Michael knew truth.

• • It’s the law 
The News (Salem, AR) Quote for the Day -- "The only power any government has is the power to crack down on criminals. Well, when there aren't enough criminals, one makes them. One declares so many things to be a crime that it becomes impossible for men to live without breaking laws." Ayn Rand

• • Spiffy lit geek shirts to buy for the book fiends in your life (including yourself) 
Michelle Kerns, The Examiner Atlas Shrugged  | What? You haven't read Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged? For shame; go read it, then I guarantee you'll want this [“Who is John Galt?”] shirt. And if you've got any Ayn Rand fans in your acquaintance, believe me, they will be as grateful as an Objectivist disciple can be.

 When authors say, ‘Gee, thanks!’ 
Julia Keller, Chicago Tribune Atlas Shrugged  | [Marlene] Wagman-Geller began to explore the facts behind the dedications to [...] famous books such as "Lolita" by Vladimir Nabokov, "The Bell Jar" by Sylvia Plath, “Atlas Shrugged” by Ayn Rand and "To Kill a Mockingbird" by Harper Lee, and put them in her brief but interesting book, "Once Again to Zelda." The title comes from F. Scott Fitzgerald's dedication of "The Great Gatsby" (1925) to his wife, Zelda.

Saturday, November 29, 2008

 Artist Frank Cieciorka dies in Humboldt County 
Seth Rosenfeld, San Francisco Chronicle As a freshman [Cieciorka] was politically conservative, an Ayn Rand acolyte. But by 1959 he had become active in the peace movement, opposing U.S. military intervention in Vietnam.

Friday, November 28, 2008

• • Ayn Rand said it best 
Phil Parisi, Free Lance-Star (Fredericksburg, VA) Letter to the editor.Heavy doses of income redistribution, taxes, universal health care, and government intrusion are available under the brand name Egalitaria. [....] Ayn Rand, writing in 1974 during the early stages of the development of Egal-itaria, made the following observation: “It is at a time like this, in the face of an approaching economic collapse, that the intellectuals are preaching egalitarian notions. When the curtailment of government spending is imperative, they demand more welfare projects.”

• • Who’s to blame for corporate fascism? It could be you 
Nickalis N. Tower, Nolan Chart Atlas Shrugged  |Capitalism  | Who are the Americans that provide the intellectual ammunition to fascist dreamers? Ayn Rand's character, Francisco D'Anconia, identified them: "Run for your life from anyone who tells you that money is the root of all evil." That is a warning of an approaching looter who is willing to ask the government to drain, harm, or otherwise loot you for his benefit.

• • How America’s greatest libertarian experiment failed 
Gene Messick, OpEdNews Atlas Shrugged  |The Fountainhead  |Capitalism  | A TRUE Libertarian could never run for Office, because that would support Government. [....] In terms of Business Philosophy, think: Ayn Rand, the weird Russian immigrant who never practiced what she preached, author of such classics of business barbarism as Atlas Shrugged and The Fountainhead.

Thursday, November 27, 2008

• •Who deserves our thanks? 
Stephen Grossman, Standard Times (New Bedford, MA) Atlas Shrugged  | Letter to the editor.Give thanks to Alexander Bell, for telephones; Thomas Edison, for industrial science, light bulbs, electricity distribution, phonographs and motion picture cameras; the Wright brothers, for airplanes; Henry Ford, for mass production and inexpensive cars; Albert Einstein, for the laws of nuclear energy; Frank Lloyd Wright, for rational, beautiful houses; 1940s American warriors, for destroying fascism; and Ayn Rand, for dramatizing rational morality in “Atlas Shrugged” and for the consistent, rational philosophy of objectivism.

 Smashing Pumpkins at Midland Theatre, Night Two 
Grant Snider, The Pitch - Wayward Blog (Kansas City, MO) Concert review.Under the guise of resting his voice from the cold he was getting over, [Billy] Corgan held forth on a number of subjects: excessive T-shirt prices ("Heroin addiction is expensive."), the Jayhawks ("Does anybody still care about college?"), Radiohead (I don't think he likes 'em), and Ayn Rand (the only author I've read who's as preachy as a Pumpkins concert).

 A mystery lies at the very bottom 
Thomas Mitchell, Review-Journal (Las Vegas) Capitalism  | On motivations for writing.Probably most importantly, [people write for] political purpose. [....] Ayn Rand wrote for free-market capitalism.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

• • It is what it is… Or is it? 
Alex Cantatore, Turlock Journal (CA) Atlas Shrugged  | The question, "Who is John Galt?" is asked rhetorically throughout "Atlas Shrugged," but is never meant to be answered. It's a sign of the times in Rand's America, a statement of the futility of living when the most oft-asked question simply has no answer.

 Secret Lives of the Great Authors 
David Murdock, Gadsden Times (AL) Review of the book Secret Lives of the Great Authors, by Robert Schnakenberg.Who can deny the charm of the revelations that Ayn Rand loved the TV show Charlie’s Angels and Toni Morrison is a “rabid fan” of Law and Order.

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