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Wednesday, May 08, 2013

• • Paul Ryan’s Austerity Agenda Relies on Bad Math, Coding Errors and a ‘Significant Mistake’ 
Capitalism  |Paul Ryan  | The Budget Committee chairman was never the economic whiz that his fans imagined. Rather, he’s an Ayn Rand-obsessed ideologue who seeks to promote austerity out of a seemingly sincere belief that it is necessary. [....] Ryan is honest, he must admit that his sense of urgency with regard to the debt is misplaced. He can still argue, as an Ayn Rand enthusiast and a Republican partisan, for cuts in federal spending and for a general downsizing of government. But he should at least acknowledge that the argument is based on Rand’s fictional writing, not on economic reality.

Thursday, February 14, 2013

• • The State of the Union Is Best Served by Growth, Not Austerity 
Paul Ryan  | The great debate in America is not about the “fiscal cliff” or the “debt ceiling” or the “sequester” or whatever other fantasy pops into Paul Ryan’s head when he’s not reading Ayn Rand. [....] Obama does not have to go all-in with the progressives to get the point across. But he should recognize the value of this outline for countering the fiscal fabulism of Ryan and the Ayn Randites who would make America a nasty and brutish place.

Thursday, January 31, 2013

• • • Meet Ron Johnson, the Randiest of the Ayn Rand Republicans 
Atlas Shrugged  |Paul Ryan  |Ron Johnson  | There is ample evidence to suggest that leading Republican members of the House and Senate are a good deal more familiar with the fiction of Ayn Rand than with the self-evident truths of Thomas Jefferson, James Madison or Abraham Lincoln. [....] But it is now safe to say that no congressional Republican is more in the thrall of Rand than Wisconsin Senator Ron Johnson.

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

• • If at First You Don’t Secede… 
Atlas Shrugged  |Capitalism  | The architectural love child of Walt Disney and Ayn Rand, [Glenn] Beck’s dream is based on “Galt’s Gulch,” the community inspired by John Galt, capitalist superhero of Rand’s novel Atlas Shrugged.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

 His Supporters Treated “Atrociously,” Ron Paul Refuses to Back Romney 
Anyone who has ever read an Ayn Rand novel or George Orwell's 1984 is familiar with the lifeless patterning of the propaganda state, where the big lie is repeated so steadily that it is eventually mistaken for truth. As speaker after speaker on the opening night of the Republican National Convention took their turn at spinning a "We Built It" fantasy -- based not on what President Obama said or intended to say about small business but on an imagining of what might turn the maximum number of voters against the president -- the last shred of dignity that a great American political party might had retained for itself was tossed off.

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

• • Ryan Is No Rand 
Atlas Shrugged  |The Fountainhead  |Capitalism  |Egoism  |Individualism  |Paul Ryan  |Personal life  |Video  | Paul Ryan, like a college libertarian, claims to be a staunch follower of the anti-government icon Ayn Rand. But as a federal employee, who believes in limiting the rights of immigrants and women, he’d most likely be disowned by her. Nation columnist Melissa Harris-Perry explores the tensions between Ryan and Rand, with help from this article by Nation writer Ben Adler.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

• • • Comments of the Week: Voter ID Laws, Ayn Rand and the Rights of Transgender People 
Paul Ryan  |Personal life  | In response to Ben Adler's "Paul Ryan Doesn't Follow Ayn Rand on Civil Liberties," our readers had a lot to say on Paul Ryan's love for (some of) the beliefs of Ayn Rand.

Sunday, August 12, 2012

 Paul Ryan Covers Romney's Right Flank 
Until just a few days ago, Ryan was considered an unlikely prospect for the No. 2 spot on the Republican ticket: too rigid in his budgetary obsessions, too whacky in his enthusiasm for Ayn Rand's novels and Austrian economics, too enthusiastic about taking apart Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

 After the Heartbreak in Wisconsin 
[I]t is entirely possible that by November, Tea Party-driven Republicans will control the White House, Supreme Court and both houses of Congress, pushing the States towards a 1929-style crisis. Or Obama will be re-elected to govern alone in a sea of conservative followers of Ayn Rand and Democratic lifers too timid to fight.

Monday, April 30, 2012

• • Paul Ryan’s Claim That His Budget Reflects Catholic Justice Teaching Is ‘Nonsense’ 
Egoism  |Individualism  | [Ryan] took a shot at moral relativism, suggesting that when the pope expresses concern regarding the global financial system he is “talking about the extreme edge of individualism predicated upon moral relativism that produces bad results in society for people and families, and I think that’s the kind of thing he is talking about.” That’s an interesting statement coming from a congressman who frequently mentions his reverence for Ayn Rand, the novelist who set herself up as a high priestess of individualism. It’s also wrong.

Saturday, March 31, 2012

 A Budget For Wall Street Versus A Budget For Main Street 
Capitalism  |Paul Ryan  | Ryan says he wants to save Medicare, Medicaid and Social Security. And in this he is sincere. Like many of his Republican compatriots, the budget commttee chair has collected a lot of campaign contributions from insurance-industry insiders and Wall Street speculators. But there’s more to Ryan than that. As an Ayn Rand–reading critic of government, he’s far more comfortable than most Democrats and Republicans with the idea that “the market” would do a better job of delivering health care and retirement benefits. Unfortunately, Ryan’s route to “saving” those popular programs relies on what looks an awfully lot like the “crony capitalism” he so frequently decries.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

• • A Budget Referendum on Austerity, Ayn Rand and Paul Ryan 
Paul Ryan  | Ryan, a veteran of more than twenty years on Capitol Hill (as a Congressional aide and then a congressman), knows a good deal about economics, and a good deal about politics. And he is right when he suggests that his budget is forcing a choice. But which choice? Catholics United, the national Catholic social tradition advocacy organization, suggested Tuesday that another choice is playing out. Noting Ryan’s oft-expressed admiration for objectivist author Ayn Rand, the group declared: “Paul Ryan’s 2013 Budget Reflects the Teachings of Ayn Rand, Not Jesus Christ.”

Thursday, January 19, 2012

 Ron Paul, Take Two 
It makes no sense for progressive pundits who have devoted their lives to defending the welfare state, progressive taxation, labor unions and the federal government’s ability to protect citizens from abuses at the state level to heap praise on Paul, who vigorously opposes all those things as part of his Ayn Randian anti-government, every-man-is-an-island worldview.

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

• • “Idolizer of the Market”: Paul Ryan Can’t Quite Hear Catholic Church’s Call for Economic Justice 
Individualism  |Paul Ryan  | Amusingly, the congressman [...] took a shot at moral relativism, suggesting that when the pope expresses concern regarding the global financial system he is “talking about the extreme edge of individualism predicated upon moral relativism that produces bad results in society for people and families, and I think that’s the kind of thing he is talking about.” That’s an interesting statement coming from a congressman who frequently mentions his reverence for Ayn Rand, the novelist who set herself up as a high priestess of individualism. It’s also wrong.

Friday, September 02, 2011

• • • Revealed: Ayn Rand’s Script for a Hollywood Movie Glorifying the Atomic Bomb 
Atlas Shrugged  |The Fountainhead  |Capitalism  |Personal life  | It may surprise many to learn that, like many famous novelists, Ayn Rand had a period when she “went Hollywood.” In 1943, Rand sold the rights for The Fountainhead to Warner Bros., and wrote the screenplay. She was then hired by top producer Hall Wallis as a writer, idea generator and script doctor. Her screenplays included the Oscar-nominated Love Letters and You Came Along. Right after the war she became involved in the anti-Communist movement in Hollywood and appeared as a friendly witness before Congress in testifying about the Red influence there.At the same time, I’ve learned, she also had a kind of love affair—with the atomic bomb.

Friday, February 25, 2011

 Back to our future 
Individualism  | Excerpt from the book Back to Our Future.
When it launched in 1988, the Just Do It campaign was an instant and groundbreaking success. Ayn Rand may pre­viously have outlined the Objectivist rationale for indi­vidualism and narcissism, but Nike’s slogan (and all the other rip-offs) mass-marketed that individualism and narcissism as aspirational theol­ogy. Back to Our Future.

Saturday, January 22, 2011

 China’s banks trump US credit system 
Capitalism  | The failure and collapse of the American banking system, which no longer wants to provide financing for capitalist ventures—the result of the 2008 crash—means that capitalist entrepreneurs have to turn to a communist country, which operates a robust banking system, including making venture-capital loans available. Why doesn’t the United States have a state-owned national bank in place to provide federally guaranteed loans to entrepreneurs? Why doesn’t the United States have an industrial policy like, say, Germany’s? Ask Ayn Rand.

Sunday, January 09, 2011

• • The right-wing reboots segregation 
Egoism  | As we pass from 2010 to the new year, Congress resumes in its conservative-dominated configuration. This new wave is sustained by a right-wing power base informed by ideologues who would eviscerate the Fourteenth Amendment’s promise of equality by restricting voting rights and limiting public expenditures on the “parasites” who leech off the welfare of “their” America. Many of these views, while wrapped in Ayn Rand’s individualist “ethical egoism,” protect a political and social order based on wealth and impermeable group privilege, one also rooted in a segregationist “us versus them” mentality, albeit persisting well beyond the racial divide.

Friday, December 31, 2010

• • TheNation.com’s top stories of 2010 
Just in case you missed any of our greatest hits of 2010, here's a list of some of our—and your—favorites! [....] Corey Robin, Garbage and Gravitas Ayn Rand was a melodramatist of the moral life: the battle is between the producer and the moochers, and it must end in life or death.

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

• • Busted: Stories of the financial crisis 
Alan Greenspan  |Capitalism  |Egoism  | In 2008, after two decades as head of the Federal Reserve (where his insistence on low regulatory standards and lower interest rates helped inflate the credit bubble), [Alan Greenspan] had a revelation on par with Saul on the road to Damascus. There was “a flaw in the model...that defines how the world works.” That flaw was greed: the “self-interest of lending institutions” failed to protect shareholders, much less customers. The evident irony is that greed—the self-interest of individuals, spread across the society—is exactly what’s supposed to make capitalism work. This is a tenet of classic liberalism, raised to a fundamentalism by Ayn Rand and her protégé Greenspan.