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Friday, June 14, 2013

• • • Economic ideas welcome, dissed 
Ayn Rand Institute  |Capitalism  | (Not available online.)
Lawrence O'Donnell is wrong in claiming, "We're all socialists now." That an intellectual of O'Donnell's stature could be so unaware of a small but growing pure capitalist movement in this country is astounding. We pure capitalists are pure capitalists precisely because we understand socialism for the evil that it is; the evil of parasitism. [....] If O'Donnell wishes to learn more about pure capitalism, I suggest he visit the Ayn Rand Institute in Irvine.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

• • Goldberg: ‘Right wing’ doesn’t equal ‘terrorist’ 
Every Muslim terrorist enjoys not just the presumption of innocence until proven guilty but the presumption that he's a fan of Ayn Rand.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

• • Ken Levine returns with ‘BioShock Infinite,’ but will he stay? 
In 2007′s “BioShock,” players descend into an underwater city founded by an acolyte of Ayn Rand. [....] “BioShock’s” decaying city of Rapture [...] told players all they needed to know about what had happened to its founder’s dreams of an objectivist utopia, while scattered tape recordings filled in details for those who wanted to know more.

Friday, March 15, 2013

• • High-tech incubator Blueseed not the first to target high seas 
Atlas Shrugged  |Capitalism  | The Ayn Rand-esque project has been mocked as “Atlantis Shrugged. ” “It’s just a fundamentally flawed idea. It’s the sort of idea that occurs to people if you have read one too many Ayn Rand novels,” said Paul Saffo, who heads foresight at Discern Analytics. “Let’s face it: Kevin Costner demonstrated that it also makes a very bad movie.”

Thursday, February 14, 2013

• • The myth of deregulation’s consumer benefits 
Atlas Shrugged  |Capitalism  | It's a song we've heard free marketers sing before in defense of all deregulation efforts: Less interference by clumsy old Uncle Sam will unleash the dynamic forces of capitalism and usher in a new era of industrial and consumer paradise (see Rand, Ayn, "Atlas Shrugged").

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

• • AIG and big banks are the ‘Takers’ taking from the rest of us 
The Fountainhead  |Capitalism  | In “The Fountainhead” and her other tomes of hyper-libertarian fantasy, Ayn Rand posits that society is composed of “Makers and Takers.” In her vision, it is the creative supermen of industry who are the Makers and it is the work-averse, collectivist leeches who feed off the wealth of capitalist empire builders who are the Takers.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

• • Letters: Religion, not politics 
It's surprising to me that so many preachers' ideas of evil seem to be limited to abortion and perhaps gay marriage. Yet the profoundly anti-Christian philosophy of Ayn Rand that some Republicans espouse and want to impose on America does not seem to reach the level of evil.

 You’ve Seen the Election: Soon You’ll Read the Book 
Paul Ryan  | Even before the votes were cast, [John] Heilemann at New York magazine gave us a sense of the narrative territory a [Paul] Ryan candidacy and book might try to occupy. Ryan, Heilemann writes, is sure to survive “the storm” of a Romney defeat “with an enhanced reputation among the Randian faction of the party.…”

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

 Right wingers careen into craziness to explain Obama’s victory 
Right-wingers will not let go of their own misleading mythology. They have a constricted vision of who the “real Americans” are and who they are not. Until election night, they still believed that people like themselves constituted a majority in this country. Now that they are faced with the truth of their own diminishing numbers, they are rejiggering reality. Incapable of accepting that the millions of people who voted for Obama are overwhelmingly hardworking, family-loving, patriotic Americans, they have to imagine them as the “takers” that Ayn Rand warned them were coming.

Friday, November 09, 2012

 6 simple steps to cure your political addiction 
Write this down and read it every time your head is about to explode: Whoever wins, the country isn’t going to go to hell in a handbasket, be attacked by Iran/Russia/North Korea, become socialist/Marxist/Ayn Randist (I made that last one up but it’s pretty clever, huh?) or get so bad that you'll have to move to Canada.

Sunday, November 04, 2012

• • • The dating game’s rebooting call 
Even objectivists yearn for romance. Adherents of Ayn Rand's philosophy may strive to live with an emphasis on the power of reason and objective reality, but that didn't stop Stephanie Betit and Jamie Hancock from falling so crazy in love that they'd constantly email during work, talk on the phone until 4 a.m. and drive for nine hours to see each other.

Thursday, October 25, 2012

• • • Review: 'Atlas Shrugged Part II: The Strike' is blandly mediocre 
Atlas Shrugged movie  |Atlas Shrugged  |Capitalism  | The downsizing of Ayn Rand’s thousand-page big-ideas novel, begun with last year’s sputtering salvo in a planned trilogy, continues with “Atlas Shrugged Part II: The Strike.” A new director is at the helm, and the producers have completely recast the doctrinaire dystopia. If the aim of those changes was to breathe new life into the adaptation, the mission has failed — a detail that’s not likely to deter members of the Rand choir who welcome the multiplex preaching.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

• • Kinsley: Homer Simpson for president 
Capitalism  |Paul Ryan  | Ayn Rand, the favorite author of many geeky teenage boys (who generally grow out of it) and Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan (who didn’t), combines an extreme libertarian capitalist message with a high-Soviet-propaganda literary style. This makes parody fairly easy. Still, it would be hard to top Mitt Romney, the Republican presidential nominee. His Ayn Rand imitation in remarks at a private fundraiser last May, caught on video and posted on the Web by Mother Jones, is pitch-perfect.

Saturday, September 01, 2012

• • Letters: Ayn Rand’s vision—and critics 
Atlas Shrugged  | Ayn Rand's epic tome, "Atlas Shrugged," is a relentless 1,100-some pages of excruciating reading, a fitting punishment for any libertarian. I've never come across one of them who has actually read the darn thing. They all say they've read it and even sport the bumper stickers with the opening line, "Who is John Galt?," but none of them has been so masochistic as to have actually read it.

• • Letters: Ayn Rand’s vision—and critics 
Atlas Shrugged  |The Fountainhead  |Egoism  | Having read “The Fountainhead” and “Atlas Shrugged” as a 19-year-old college student in 1958, I rapturized over Rand’s philosophy to my English professor. “Ah,” he said, “you may want to reread them in five years.” And so I did, and I saw how selfish and inhumane was their meaning. Some of us do grow up.

• • • Letters: Ayn Rand’s vision—and critics 
Altruism  |Ayn Rand Institute  |Atlas Shrugged  |Objectivist author  | As the author of a series of book chapters on the reviews of Ayn Rand’s novels, I think that The Times’ selection of excerpts is only slightly biased. Although there were positive reviews of “Atlas Shrugged” (such as John Chamberlain’s in the Wall Street Journal), the preponderance were negative and often so distorted and low-level that the publisher (Random House) was stunned.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

• • Letters: Paul Ryan and Ayn Rand 
Atlas Shrugged  |The Fountainhead  |Paul Ryan  | I have significant disagreements with both Paul Ryan and Ayn Rand. But an article like Kinsley’s demands a response. Unlike him, I’ll refer directly to his writing and use Rand’s actual words in “Atlas Shrugged”: “He saw the article … which was not an expression of ideas, but a bucket of slime emptied in public — an article that did not contain a single fact, not even an invented one, but poured a stream of sneers and adjectives in which nothing was clear except the filthy malice of denouncing without considering proof necessary.”

• • Letters: Paul Ryan and Ayn Rand 
Atheism  |Epistemology  |Paul Ryan  | Here’s my novel to follow-up on Michael Kinsley’s preamble to his parable about Paul Ryan, with the title, “A Tale of Two Pieties.” Introduction: It was the best of times, when “I grew up reading Ayn Rand and it taught me quite a bit about who I am and what my value systems are and what my beliefs are” (from a speech in 2005). It is now the worst of times, when: “I reject her philosophy. It’s an atheist philosophy” (from an interview this April).

Saturday, August 25, 2012

• • • Critic’s Notebook: Frank Lloyd Wright could be wrong for convention 
Atheism  |The Fountainhead  |Capitalism  |Individualism  |The Fountainhead movie  | [I]n the context of a national political convention, where every symbolic choice is sure to be scrutinized, there are more than a few risks in going with Frank Lloyd Wright as your architectural touchstone. And I wonder how many of them the Romney campaign has fully considered. For this particular ticket, the most obvious risk is the Ayn Rand connection.

• • • Ayn Rand’s ‘Atlas Shrugged’: What the critics had to say in 1957 
Atheism  |Atlas Shrugged  |The Fountainhead  |Capitalism  |Individualism  |The Fountainhead movie  |Image  | Excerpts of 1957 reviews of Atlas Shrugged.
Robert R. Kirsch, Los Angeles Times: It is probably the worst piece of large fiction written since Miss Rand’s equally weighty “The Fountainhead.” Miss Rand writes in the breathless hyperbole of soap opera. Her characters are of billboard size; her situations incredible and illogical; her story is feverishly imaginative. It would be hard to find such a display of grotesque eccentricity outside an asylum.