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My friend, in the Objectivist world of Ayn Rand, whose funeral featured a six-foot dollar sign made out of flowers next to the open casket, greed is God. They run influential libertarian think tanks like the Cato Institute in D. But they also tend to be people who—unlike all those semiotics majors who'd written off Rand as Nietzsche in a bra even before they'd graduated—impact our lives in direct ways.The second thing is that it is helpful to conjure Keanu Reeves in his The third thing you must understand about the Speech is that it's extreme stuff—but it's not fringe. Randians run some of America's biggest companies (Ralph Lauren, John Mackey of Whole Foods), hedge funds (Victor Niederhoffer, Peter Thiel), and banks.
That kid stands up, walks outside, and reflects on the 727 pages of he's just wolfed down. Nearly 2,000 hectoring, brook-no-ambiguity, you're-either-a-lion-or-a-leech pages of breathtaking psychological obtuseness. But none of us can escape the shadow of the lone straight shaft of the Taggart Building tumescing in the distance. Then you, sir, need to give thanks to Ayn Rand Assholes everywhere—as well as the steely loins from which they sprang. He's a New York City author and blogger who calls himself both a genius and an "elitist anarchist." What's that mean?
And realizes: That was nearly 2,000 pages (more, really, given that Rand's loathing of collectivist parasites is matched only by her loathing of paragraph indents) without a single instance of irony or humor. In time, he begins to understand that his ordeal consists of two phases. And then there is the digesting, which is quite another. The operatic rapes heralded by whips and rock drills. This is because there are boys and girls among us who have never overcome the Randian infection. And now the rest of us have to spend the next decade scaling the slippery slopes of the huge suppurative crater that was left behind. almost purely at the level of injunction—taking the things John Galt says and does as straight as a biblical literalist takes the eye of the needle? It means that if a panhandler asks him for a little money or food, Malice says, "I called me 'a hateful blowhard who touts his genius-level intellect and dismisses most of the world as inferior, deluded, or hypocritical.' They also called me a 'human cockroach,' because I'm indestructible.
He's an Ayn Rand Asshole, yes, but old-school. If so, is a given Objectivist coupling what it was in The Fountainhead—"an act of scorn.
Not as love, but as defilement…[by] a master taking shameful, contemptuous possession"? I cite my junior year of college, during which I frequently experienced precipitations of plaster dust onto my face while lying in bed, thanks to the ARA who lived above me, and his girlfriend.
Clarence Thomas makes his clerks watch the 1949 Gary Cooper film version of _The Fountainhead. There's even an Ayn Rand dating Web site, for Christ's sake: the Atlasphere.
_Mark Cuban requires no quiz: Which individual has most influenced the lives of Americans in the past twenty-five years? Which presents two related questions: Do Objectivists look to the novels for amorous, as well as economic, instruction?We're talking about a phase, no different from purple hair and lip rings, right?Well, yes, it's true that in most cases, the fever breaks. That boy (or you, or I) can dismiss the books as a "phase" and attempt to busy ourselves with the kind of degenerate "stylists" Rand scorned (Faulkner, Nabokov). Been wondering whence the too-long-ascendant political and economic ideas and forces behind Greenspanism, John Thainism, blind Wall Street plunder, bankruptcy, credit-default swaps, Bernie Madoff, and the ensuing Cannibalism in the Streets?Here's the interview transcript: During my own college days, I did observe that a number of the fresh-minted Randroids in my midst became intellectually disciplined to a degree I wouldn't previously have thought possible.I also admit that a few of them became better questioners of ideas and of themselves—which in turn made them more honest people.He created a broad-based conception of what was cool and hip. He made a joke about jerking off into a liver, and no one in the audience knew what he was talking about. You can still make Howard Roark jokes that play, but it's been at least twenty years since you could do that with Portnoy. Philip Roth is a great writer, but his signature character has had far less purchase on the collective imagination than Galt or Roark. The countless "nonentities" and "looters" who've been slapped upside the head with it. And to a degree that still confounds mainstream academic philosophers (most of whom find Rand's work laughable), that is how it has been taken.No matter what you think of Rand, there's no denying that the woman just swings a really big dick."It's curious, that dick of Rand's. ARAs extoll the Dick for the same reason they embrace their own "asshole" moniker: to celebrate Ayn Rand's essential Us-vs.-the-Losers combativeness. Which means there are three things that all Americans must know about it.And for years I've wondered whether they: provides all the feelings of compensation one might need for any period of terrifying inadequacy.""_Atlas Shrugged _was a life-changing event for me," says John Allison, who recently retired as the CEO of the BBT Corporation and remains the chairman of the huge North Carolina-based bank.During his last five years as CEO, BBT's charitable arm awarded nearly million to support the study of capitalism from a moral perspective on college campuses—in most cases with the stipulation that be required course reading."I was a 19-year-old at the University of North Carolina the first time I read it," Allison recalls.In fact, one cannot understand what an Ayn Rand Asshole is without considering that dick. For ARAs, being dickish is the She spent two years writing it. The first is that the Speech serves as both the foundation and finished edifice of Objectivism, Rand's utopian vision of an entrepreneurial elite freed at last from any obligation, financial or moral, to the hangers-on of the world; free from religious hokum and from having to feign concern for the wee; free to ercise the "virtue of selfishness" in pursuit of money and glory.(The novel ends with Galt atop a mountain, raising a hand to trace the sacred sign of the dollar over the desolate earth that he and his A-Team are at last ready to return to and revive.) Is greed good, you ask?