The latest news
and commentary on
Ayn Rand and Objectivism

in a reader

by email

on Twitter


About Randex

Relevant content:
Brief  •
Medium  • •
Substantial  • • •

Top publications
and authors

May 2012 (278)
April 2012 (351)
March 2012 (225)
February 2012 (279)
January 2012 (351)

December 2011 (217)
November 2011 (354)
October 2011 (338)
September 2011 (302)
August 2011 (341)
July 2011 (410)
June 2011 (451)
May 2011 (582)
April 2011 (745)
March 2011 (297)
February 2011 (289)
January 2011 (245)

December 2010 (239)
November 2010 (247)
October 2010 (325)
September 2010 (264)
August 2010 (279)
July 2010 (263)
June 2010 (241)
May 2010 (257)
April 2010 (314)
March 2010 (283)
February 2010 (317)
January 2010 (269)

December 2009 (301)
November 2009 (342)
October 2009 (257)
September 2009 (236)
August 2009 (243)
July 2009 (152)
June 2009 (160)
May 2009 (203)
April 2009 (262)
March 2009 (312)
February 2009 (193)
January 2009 (184)

December 2008 (166)
November 2008 (201)
October 2008 (268)
September 2008 (164)
August 2008 (125)
July 2008 (118)
June 2008 (121)
May 2008 (124)
April 2008 (133)
March 2008 (151)
February 2008 (152)
January 2008 (97)

December 2007 (107)
November 2007 (145)
October 2007 (179)
September 2007 (175)
August 2007 (124)
July 2007 (97)
June 2007 (95)
May 2007 (116)
April 2007 (90)
March 2007 (101)
February 2007 (92)
January 2007 (108)

December 2006 (62)
November 2006 (94)
October 2006 (102)
September 2006 (114)
August 2006 (62)
July 2006 (75)
June 2006 (78)
May 2006 (71)
April 2006 (114)
March 2006 (82)
February 2006 (76)
January 2006 (90)

December 2005 (82)
November 2005 (81)
October 2005 (90)
September 2005 (65)
August 2005 (91)
July 2005 (65)
June 2005 (65)
May 2005 (61)
April 2005 (74)
March 2005 (41)
February 2005 (109)

By Country
United States (18190)
Canada (844)
United Kingdom (844)
India (468)
Australia (209)
The Bahamas (124)
South Africa (96)
New Zealand (67)
Philippines (41)
Israel (33)
Ireland (32)
United Arab Emirates (30)
Pakistan (22)
Hong Kong (20)
France (17)
Malaysia (16)
Netherlands (15)
Spain (13)
Jamaica (12)
Thailand (10)
Russia (9)
Sri Lanka (9)
Switzerland (9)
Japan (8)
Germany (7)
Bangladesh (6)
China (6)
Nigeria (6)
Singapore (6)
South Korea (6)
Bahrain (5)
Bulgaria (5)
Kenya (5)
Northern Mariana Islands (5)
Qatar (5)
Turkey (5)
Zimbabwe (5)
Ghana (4)
Nepal (4)
Poland (4)
Taiwan (4)
Argentina (3)
Belgium (3)
Fiji (3)
Malta (3)
Trinidad and Tobago (3)
Venezuela (3)
Bermuda (2)
Czech Republic (2)
Egypt (2)
Lebanon (2)
Namibia (2)
Uganda (2)
Brazil (1)
Cambodia (1)
Denmark (1)
Ethiopia (1)
Finland (1)
Greece (1)
Guam (1)
Guatemala (1)
Guyana (1)
Honduras (1)
Indonesia (1)
Iran (1)
Iraq (1)
Italy (1)
Korea (1)
Mongolia (1)
Morocco (1)
Peru (1)
Saudi Arabia (1)
Sierra Leone (1)
Sweden (1)
Turks and Caicos Islands (1)
Ukraine (1)
Vietnam (1)

Mark Wickens

Powered by ExpressionEngine

Thursday, May 09, 2013

• • Communitarian Conservatism Redux 
Capitalism  |Individual Rights  |Individualism  |Paul Ryan  | Perhaps if the arguments between libertarian and communitarian conservatives would seem more meaningful if they resulted in significantly different policy initiatives, or in a different kind of politics. Certainly the “compassionate” crowd is prone to engage in the same savage denunciations of liberalism as anything Rick Santelli ever uttered, and it’s no accident that the Tea Party Movement is equally rooted in the kick-the-looter psychology of Ayn Rand and in the Christian Right (often finding a common inspiration in the idea of a divinely created Republic in which property rights are eternally absolute).

Monday, April 08, 2013

• • Moneybag False Equivalency 
Best I can tell, like many other wealthy men, [the Koch brothers] read Ayn Rand under the covers after bedtime as adolescents, and never grew up.

Wednesday, April 03, 2013

• • • Another Blow To the Christian Objectivist Movement 
Altruism  |Atheism  |Atlas Shrugged  |Egoism  |Paul Ryan  | Because a remarkable number of conservative middle-brow “intellectuals” (one thinks of a certain congressman from Wisconsin) are forever trying to square circles by embracing Ayn Rand’s perspectives on political ethics (in which selfishness is the supreme virtue and altruism encourages “looting”) with traditionalist Christianity, it’s always useful to find fresh reminder of Ayn Rand’s rabid hatred of “the mysticism of the mind,” her term for religion.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

• • • Ayn Wouldn’t Have Apologized! 
Alan Greenspan  |Atlas Shrugged  |Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal  |Capitalism  | Now that Lululemon has itself a product-quality issue, it seems to be abjectly apologetic in a way that does not seem to comport with the self-righteous confidence of Ayn Rand’s capitalist heroes. [....] Perhaps this is what Rand had in mind in entitling one of her books (a collection of essays in which Alan Greenspan did a lot of the writing): “Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal.”

Tuesday, March 05, 2013

• • Not Working for Free, But Thanks For Thinking of Me 
Capitalism  |Individualism  | [I]n any economic context where employers have all the power, and the supply of workers is almost limitless, even the very nicest people on earth (much less those who are not so nice) feel no particular compunction about being unreasonable. This is why in a free market economy we need labor laws, unions, minimum wages, and a social safety net. The Randian concept of individual workers freely contracting with free employers and thereby establishing an entirely objective value for work is often just a cruel joke.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

 SOTU Day-After Thoughts 
Paul Ryan  | Anyone imagining there is some sort of “moderate Republicanism” in the wings that Democratic charity can vault into control of the GOP should watch Marco Rubio’s official response last night and pay attention to something other than his water-guzzling. This is the guy who was supposed to offer a “reformed” Republicanism with greater appeal than Paul Ryan’s Randian budget-cutting or Rand Paul’s unvarnished Tea Party extremism. Yet his speech was almost nothing other than a repetitive rejection of the power of the public sector to play any positive role in national life other than at the Pentagon.

Monday, February 04, 2013

• • The Randian Case for Restricting Immigration 
Rand Paul  | You might figure a guy like Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) would have to be a bit conflicted on the immigration issue. Give his father’s identity, he’s probably been exposed to every pro-immigration argument ever made. Libertarians are, by and large, pro-liberalized immigration for all the obvious reasons. But he represents Kentucky, and occupies the seat once held by Jim Bunning, whose big winning ad in his own first successful race featured a Hispanic voice thanking his opponent for a pro-NAFTA vote with: “Muchas gracias, Senor Baesler!”

Thursday, January 24, 2013

• • Women and Libertarianism 
The Fountainhead  | I gotta say, of all the self-appointed tasks in American political discourse, making libertarianism a gender-balanced movement strikes me as one of the most Sisyphean. It would require someone with the grit and charisma of a Howard Roark.


Friday, January 04, 2013

• • Procreate Or Die! 
Capitalism  | One of the more lurid aspects of the American conservative lurch-to-the-right in recent years has been the quashing of the inhibitions of the Self-Righteous Rich. Like characters in the Ayn Rand novels many of them avidly consume, these folk are furious at those of us who have not made our own selves wealthy and enraged at the idea that they might owe something to the society that has blessed them so richly.

Monday, December 17, 2012

 Love You, Man! 
Paul Ryan  | So Paul Ryan and Mark Rubio regaled the audience at last night’s Jack Kemp Foundation’s award dinner with what might be called a two-pronged attack on the GOP’s present political problems. Ryan spent most of his time expressing great empathy for people—especially poor people—outside the current GOP voter coalition, clearly aiming to distance himself and his party from all the Randian talk about “the 47%” and “the takers” that used to be part of his own rhetoric brand.

Saturday, December 01, 2012

 The Bloc Vote Strikes Again 
Paul Ryan  | Think Progress’ Igor Volsky reports [...] lines from Paul Ryan about how and why he and Mitt lost. [....] Volsky goes on to contrast this “turnout” talk with Ryan’s pre-election assertions that the election was a big, bold choice between big, bold policy agendas. But to an old cracker like me, the Dairy State Randian’s words had a very different connotation.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

• • • Objectivism: An Adolescent Disorder 
Atlas Shrugged  |The Fountainhead  |Egoism  | I’d have to say my nominee for Most Redundant Headline of the Year is for Jonas Blank’s ruminative TNR essay: “I Was a Teenage Objectivist.” Of course he was. So was I, and so were God knows how many other people, particular nerdy boys seeking ego-reinforcement against the discipline and disdain of parents, the idiocy of teachers, and most of all the contempt of classmates.

Monday, April 30, 2012

• • • Paul Ryan, “Second-Hander” 
Altruism  |Atheism  |Atlas Shrugged  |Capitalism  |Egoism  |Paul Ryan  | The thing about Ayn Rand, as anyone who has actually read her works can attest, is that she offered readers an all-or-nothing proposition. She didn’t entertain, she instructed. This was most evident in Atlas Shrugged, whose centerpiece was an endless didactic “radio broadcast” by her hero John Galt, identifying all human misery with the “mysticism of the mind” (supernatural religion) and the “mysticism of the muscle” (socialism, or more accurately, the rejection of strict laissez-faire capitalism), and with the ethics of altruism both reflected. After penning Atlas Shrugged, Rand spent most of the rest of her life making sure everyone understood that her philosophy was a comprehensive system that rose or fell as a whole.

Wednesday, September 07, 2011

• • What to expect at tonight’s GOP debate 
Capitalism  | It’s also not entirely clear how, mechanically, a “dump Obama” movement is supposed to materialize and then be executed. For a precedent, [Matt] Stoller goes all the way back to 1896, when Democratic Party leaders denied Grover Cleveland renomination. Even if you buy the idea that Obama is as out of touch with party sentiment and progressive values as laissez-faire beau ideal Cleveland was (there’s a reason he was Ayn Rand’s favorite U.S. president), the nominating process is obviously not as susceptible to elite “leadership” as it was 116 years ago.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

• • A Paul Ryan Campaign? Are Republicans Out of Their Minds? 
Atlas Shrugged  |Paul Ryan  | Aside from the laurels he has won by putting together a budget proposal that reflects the long-frustrated conservative goal of demolishing the New Deal/Great Society safety net once and for all, Ryan is also beloved of neoconservatives struggling to rebuff resurgent neo-isolationism in the GOP, and he is a faithful ally of social conservatives as well. And what libertarian can’t help but feel good about a congressman who reportedly has made Atlas Shrugged required reading for his staff?

Monday, February 28, 2011

• • Dixie Madison: Republicans want Wisconsin‘s economy to become just like the South’s 
Capitalism  | Scott Walker is hardly alone among Midwestern Republican governors in pursuing an agenda that combines business-tax cuts and other incentives with attacks on public investments and Southern-style hostility to unions. [....] Why is this model of economic growth so appealing to the Tea Party? For one, it tends to jibe very well with the Ayn Randian belief in producerism: the idea that “job creators”—business owners—are the only source of economic growth in society, and that everyone else—the workers, government employees, and the poor—are just “useless eaters” shackling those who exercise individual initiative. While many Democrats are baffled by Scott Walker’s attack on the unions—shouldn’t he be focused on jobs rather than eliminating workers’ protections? they ask—the fact is that today’s conservatives believe this is the right and only way to create jobs.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

 Mean regression: The Tea Party is turning states into little Ayn Rand laboratories 
It’s hard to imagine a more enthusiastic endorsement of the old moonlight-and-magnolias approach of making lower business costs—including taxes, wages, and all those inconvenient regulations aimed at protecting the workforce or the environment—the sole strategy for economic development, at the expense of other public and private goods.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

 Unstable platform 
Capitalism  | I strongly suggest a reading of the Iowa Republican Party Platform by anyone who accuses "liberals" or "the media" of exaggerating the extremism of today's conservatives. [....] It’s hard to miss principle number seven, which would have satisfied Ayn Rand even on one of her crankier days: “The individual works hard for what is his/hers. Therefore, the individual will determine with whom he/she will share it, not the government. No more legal plunder. Legal plunder is defined as using the law to take from one person what belongs to them, and giving it to others to whom it does not belong. It is plunder if the law benefits one citizen at the expense of another by doing what that citizen himself cannot do without committing a crime.” Given that principle, it’s not surprising that elsewhere the platform flatly calls for the abolition of Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid (along with minimum wage laws), and of the federal departments of Agriculture (!), Education and Energy. It also appears to oppose any anti-discrimination laws of any sort.

Friday, December 11, 2009

• • • In Galt they trust 
Atheism  |Ayn Rand Archives  |Ayn Rand Institute  |Atlas Shrugged  |Night of January 16th  |The Fountainhead  |We The Living  |Capitalism  |Egoism  |Personal life  | Reviews of Ayn Rand and the World She Made, by Anne C. Heller and Goddess of the Market: Ayn Rand and the American Right, by Jennifer Burns.
To Rand, those who accepted "enslavement" to God–or for that matter, such conservative totems as family or tradition–had no moral standing to pose as fighters against socialism. This premise, more than any personal weaknesses, probably best explains her violent opposition to partial appropriation of her philosophy to suit the needs of the appropriator. As she said in 1966, "There can be no compromise on basic principles. There can be no compromise on moral issues. There can be no compromise on matters of knowledge, of truth, of rational conviction." Unfortunately for Rand’s posthumous wishes, the appropriation of her philosophy among today’s populist conservatives is full of compromises and incongruous combinations.

Monday, August 31, 2009

• • The return of the welfare queen 
Atlas Shrugged  |Capitalism  |Going Galt  | CNBC financial reporter Rick Santelli became a right-wing folk hero for a rant about the injustice of being asked to help the "losers" who took out mortgages they should have known they couldn't pay. This was at about the same time as Republican members of Congress began handing out copies of Ayn Rand's "Atlas Shrugged," with its prophecy of a dystopic society in which socialist "looters" and Christian "altruists" had brought the United States to its knees, and some conservative agitators began urging "productive" Americans to emulate Rand's plutocratic heroes by "going Galt" and refusing to contribute to the welfare state. The "tea party" movement that ramped up in opposition to Obama's economic stimulus proposals was heavily freighted with this sort of revolt-of-the-producers attitude.