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Thursday, January 31, 2013

 A second chance at change 
,
Paul Ryan  | Sensing that history was running away from them on gay issues, conservatives generally opted not to assail Obama’s paeans to gay rights. Instead, they took him to task for his forceful defense of welfare-state liberalism. In a not-so-thinly veiled reference to erstwhile Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan’s Randian attack on social programs, Obama denied that those who benefit from Social Security and Medicare are “takers.” Such programs strengthen the social bond, the President argued, providing beneficiaries the economic security that allows them to participate fully in the nation’s civic life.

Saturday, December 01, 2012

• • Facing the elephant in the room 
,
Perplexingly, libertarianism gets a get-out-of-jail free card from many college liberals. Perhaps there’s a hangover effect from reading Ayn Rand in high school (even though Objectivism receives nothing but scorn).

Monday, February 21, 2011

• • Uncommon interview: Brad Keywell 

Ayn Rand Institute  |Atlas Shrugged  | Interview with the cofounder of Groupon.
[Q:] On your website it lists some of your favorite books, and I noticed many of them are by Ayn Rand, and that on the list of charities you admire is the Ayn Rand Institute. Are you an Objectivist? [A:] I’m not... [laughs]. I would not consider myself an Objectivist, but I would consider myself somebody who is profoundly moved by Atlas Shrugged and who looks at Atlas Shrugged as an important book for any aspiring entrepreneur or aspiring “do-er” in our society.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

• • Commuting for communism 
,
Capitalism  | Everything you know about communism is wrong; and that’s to be expected, because you probably don’t know much to begin with. Or so claimed Raymond Lotta, of the Revolutionary Communist Party (RCP), in a November 11 lecture on campus. This is a big claim, especially at the University of Chicago, and it attracted attention. About 200 students crammed into the Kent Auditorium to get themselves some reeducation—or at least witness a fight. Could Lotta convince the Chicago Objectivist Society to fight for the emancipation of the proletariat? Would he make a dent in the prevalent political apathy?

Saturday, May 24, 2008

• • Writer-in-residence George Saunders reflects on career 
,
Atlas Shrugged  |Capitalism  | As a young man, Saunders was inspired to pursue higher education by the books of objectivist Ayn Rand, who espoused laissez-faire capitalism. “I read Atlas Shrugged, and that is really why I went to college,” he said. But after working for corporations and witnessing worker abuse firsthand, Saunders’s political stance turned liberal.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

• • • Objectivism requires dose of humility 
,
Atlas Shrugged  |Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal  |The Fountainhead  |The Virtue of Selfishness  | I came to realize that most of Rand’s political ideas are cruel, absolutist garbage that leave little room for tolerance and respect for others. Humility is a prerequisite to intellectual discovery and to the sense of reverence, wonder, and gratitude with which we should move in this world. A better worldview would value both the life-affirming confidence displayed by Rand’s characters and the life-affirming humility of a monk, a saint, or Socrates.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

• •Altruistic war criticized in talk 
,
If there is one factor that can be blamed for U.S. military inefficiency and wartime casualties, it would be too much American altruism, said Yaron Brooks of the Ayn Rand Institute in a talk hosted by the U of C’s Objectivist Club. Brooks, an advocate of Randian Objectivism and a regular guest on CNBC, spoke on “The Morality of War” to an audience of about 20 students and faculty members this past Monday.

Saturday, April 29, 2006

• •Objectivists host panel on Danish cartoons 
,
Report on a University of Chicago event.