• • • If Mitt Romney is worrying, Paul Ryan is literally scary
Tom Holland, South China Morning Post Alan Greenspan |Atlas Shrugged |The Fountainhead |Individualism | Ryan proclaims himself a devotee of Russian-American author Ayn Rand. Her books, he says, are "required reading" for his campaign staff. This is frightening. I was once given a copy of Ayn Rand's The Fountainhead by a former girlfriend. Unaware it was her favourite book, I got no further than halfway down the first page before bursting into great gusts of laughter at the first of Rand's many non-performing similes. Describing her hero (poised naked on a cliff-top, if you will) she writes: "His face was like a law of nature." "Which one?" I hooted. "The Law of Gravity?" Alas, the standard of the writing did not improve. Rand's prose was turgid, her plot feeble, her ideas facile, and to call her characters one dimensional would be an insult to thickness.