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Friday, February 15, 2013

• • The People’s Guide to CPAC 2013 
Atlas Shrugged  | John Galt watch: A Saturday panel titled "Has Atlas Shrugged? Business in America" will feature Carly Fiorina (whose business career wasn't exactly done in by Obama) and will be moderated, if she accepts the invite, by CNBC's Maria Bartiromo.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

• • Sen. Ron Johnson: “I Guess I Identify With Hank Rearden” 
Atlas Shrugged  |Ron Johnson  |Image  |Video  | The best interview you'll see today is Wisconsin Sen. Ron Johnson's interview with the Randians of the Atlas Society. Johnson basically debuted in the national media by praising Ayn Rand, and calling Atlas Shrugged his "foundational book."

Monday, September 10, 2012

• • • Cato Shrugged 
Ayn Rand Institute  |Atlas Shrugged  |Egoism  |Leonard Peikoff  |Paul Ryan  |Yaron Brook  | Since the war on terror broke out, Cato’s been a bunker for non-interventionists. Its foreign-policy shop is staffed with critics of the Iraq war. Objectivists don’t see foreign policy that way. The Ayn Rand Institute, founded in 1985 by Rand’s intellectual/financial heir Leonard Peikoff, has spun off arguments for war rooted in a philosophy of self-preservation.

Saturday, September 08, 2012

• • Atlas Shrugged II: The Trailer 
Atlas Shrugged movie  |Video  | They all laughed at the producers of the Atlas Shrugged trilogy. They all laughed! But the sequel is wrapped, and the trailer is now up, giving us our first look at Samantha Mathis as Dagny Taggart.

Thursday, August 30, 2012

• • • Cato Shrugged: Panic About An Incoming Leader’s Admiration for Ayn Rand 
Ayn Rand Institute  |Atlas Shrugged  |Capitalism  |Leonard Peikoff  | My friend Jeremy Lott broke the news of an Allison speech at a meeting of the Ayn Rand Institute, the Objectivist group run by Leonard Peikoff, whom Rand considered an intellectual heir. According to tweets from the meeting, Allison had been open to “reform” of Cato’s foreign policy shop -- meaningful because pure Objectivism is hawkish, and Cato’s current national security hawks are not. The Lott story trafficked the libertarian blogosphere. It surprised people, even though Allison had recently written the introduction to a “capitalist guide” through Atlas Shrugged. Allison has now sent out a water-calming e-mail to Cato staff.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

• • • Paul Ryan’s Ayn Rand Reader: Lesson Two 
Atheism  |Atlas Shrugged  |Egoism  |Individualism  |Paul Ryan  | Aaron Goldstein wonders why so many media outlets are scribbling about Paul Ryan’s Ayn Rand love, when they never devoted the “same energy to scrutinizing President Obama’s intellectual development vis a vis Saul Alinsky and the very much alive Bill Ayers, Reverend Jeremiah Wright and Rashid Khalidi.” A good question! I write about this because I 1) read Atlas Shrugged in high school and have kept a copy around ever since, and 2) worked at Reason magazine for two and a half years, where Rand’s work and its impact in politics were deeply understoood. I’d talk to a congressman like California’s John Campbell, and he’d break the ice by talking about Rand. Starting in 2010 or so, though, Rand became controversial again.

Tuesday, August 14, 2012

 Paul Ryan’s Ayn Rand Reader: Lesson One 
Atheism  |Atlas Shrugged  |The Fountainhead  |Capitalism  |Paul Ryan  |Image  | Jane Mayer beat everybody to the punch this weekend with a taut explainer of Paul Ryan’s once-loud, now-denied admiration for Ayn Rand. Recently, she wrote, “Ryan distanced himself from Rand, whose atheism is something of a philosophical wedge issue on the right, dividing religious conservatives from free-market libertarians.” And that has been a strange spectacle. Who denies all of a writer’s works because some of those works are girded by atheism? Up to 2011 or so, Ryan never had a problem with this. Now, he can no more denounce Rand than he can denounce his own white grandmother. Still, now that Ryan claims he’s more of a Thomas Aquinas guy than a Randian, it pays to understand what he took from the late Russian-American objectivist.

Thursday, May 31, 2012

 The Libertarian (Ever) Hopeful 
In its 36 years of fielding presidential candidates, the Libertarian Party has settled on two types. The first: obscure activists who hew to the Ayn Rand Bible. The second: semi-famous politicians who might, finally, give the party an electoral media breakthrough.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

 Ron Paul’s Billionaire 
Thiel is what the hard-working objectivist wants to be when he grows up. When he’s introduced at last, and the students hear how much Thiel made from the PayPal sale—“$1.5 billion”—they ooooh with respect.

Sunday, February 05, 2012

• • This Is Newt Gingrich Speaking 
Atlas Shrugged  |Capitalism  | In the final days of the Florida campaign, I heard Newt Gingrich debut than refine a different sort of campaign promise. If elected, he said, businesses and job-creators would realize -- within moments -- that they could start being productive again. [....] Too late, it occurs to me: This is the plot of Atlas Shrugged. Capitalists, fed up with a patent-stealing, work-punishing, wealth-looting government, hide out in an enclave founded by mega-capitalist John Galt.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

• • Ayn Rand’s Timeless Novel of Courage and Self-Sacrifice 
Atlas Shrugged movie  |Atlas Shrugged  |Egoism  | This is my promise: You will not be more amused by any press release today than by this one. The company distributing the (handsome) collector's DVD of Atlas Shrugged, Part One has an announcement.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

 Ron Paul Will Fix Everything 
Last week, Ron Paul scheduled a “major announcement.” Given the kind of year we’d had, I was worried that Paul would be announcing a surprise endorsement -- all in for Gary Johnson! -- or a sex scandal involving tattered posters of The Passion of Ayn Rand. I shouldn’t have worried. This was the announcement: A plan to cut $1 trillion in the first year of a Paul presidency.

Friday, September 09, 2011

• • Disclosing Donors 
[Radley] Balko points out, correctly, that Mother Jones doesn’t disclose all of its donors; the heavy breathing [by them] about Koch is hypocritical! But to mangle an idea from Ayn Rand, A does not equal A.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

• • Other Memorials 
After finishing up work yesterday, I biked down to southwest D.C. and got my own look at the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Memorial. [....] I was inspired to love my fellow man. I was also inspired to make some jokes about other potential monuments. Like these: [....] The Ayn Rand National Memorial -- Vistors walk into a 120-story skyscraper made completely out of high-tech metal and take an elevator up to see a 50-foot sculpture composed of pieces from other monuments. Why? Because the people honored by those other monuments were pathetic and weak.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

 Sarah Palin Documentary Rakes in $60000 to $75000 
Atlas Shrugged movie  | The roll-out [of The Undefeated], from what I gather from blog chatter and the frequent status updates from the film’s distributor, is going to look a lot like the selling of Atlas Shrugged. Make the movie a cause; get Palin fans ginned up to watch it in order to send a message.

Friday, July 08, 2011

 Liberals Can Take Hostages, Too! 
Republicans fear their base, and they know 1) they can be primaried by conservatives if they buckle on taxes and 2) they can't be rescued by pro-business groups, which aren't so Randian, like the Chamber of Commerce.

Friday, June 17, 2011

• • Live Free or Move 
Image  | [Keene, NH] is one of the epicenters of the Free State Project, the decade-old effort to build a libertarian beachhead of 20,000 like-minded souls in New Hampshire. [....] [Inside the Keene Action Center,] a calendar near a bar says who’s cooking and when; on the other side of the room, a bookshelf has homemade jam and copies of novels by Ayn Rand.

Friday, June 10, 2011

 AMC Theaters Will Screen Palin Documentary 
Atlas Shrugged movie  | The marketers of the The Undefeated, Steve Bannon’s Palin documentary, announce with some pride that the movie’s going to launch “exclusively at select AMC theaters.” No repeat of the Atlas Shrugged debacle of paying theaters to please, please, take it.

Thursday, June 09, 2011

 Palin, the Movie: Coming July 15 
Atlas Shrugged movie  | [Director Steve] Bannon went into detail about a release strategy that made much more sense than the release of Atlas Shrugged, before anyone goes and makes that comparison.

• • Capitalism and Freedom and Booze 
Atheism  |Ayn Rand Center  |Lin Zinser  | As luck would have it [at the Competitive Enterprise Institute gala dinner] I got seated next to Lin Zinser, director of outreach for the Ayn Rand Center; I was curious what she thought of the newly energized liberal campaign to remind conservatives that Rand was an atheist who really, really didn’t like Christianity. “Oh, something like that happens every few years,” she shrugged. “It comes up and it fades away. That’s just not something people are going to worry about when they’re so much more worried about the economy.”