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A crazy lady, babbling
about reason and rationality
in a Dionysian way.
"Contradictions don't exist,"
but her idealized smart,
independent women are all
looking for men tough enough
to dominate them.
She sneers at proof by
assertion, and resorts to it
repeatedly for pages on end.
"No one survives here by
faking reality in any way."
Except the author.
An awful ear for english,
using words like
"looter" when any native
would say "thief".
But I actually agree with Rand's
"values"... truth and justice
and freedom and all that.
Maybe it just seems trite to me to
expound about it for hundred of pages.
But then, it may just be because I
don't need to hear it. I'm always
surprised to meet someone who doesn't
believe in truth, though plenty of them
exist. People searching for a
beautiful delusion they can lose
themselves in without reality breaking
down the door. TRUTH
And as for justice, sometimes
it seems like no one believes
in it, substituting instead a
sense of "niceness". NICE
There are things to like
The rejection of the mind/body
dichotomy...an attempt at being
A willingness to try to write a
novel of ideas, as opposed to
the more modern obsession with
detailed descriptions of existance.
Recognition of the importance
for preserving life and
improving quality of life.
Her attempt at an
ethical defense of Rand's proposed ethical defense
capitalism. of pure capitalism ("freedom is
good") is a nice try: it's
comprehensive and concise
repetitiously at great length),
but not without problems.
Are individuals free to stand
by and allow someone to die?
How much difference is there
between actively causing
something, and passively
allowing something to happen?
Having read Rand, the welfare
issue may no longer seem as
simple (at best it becomes the
lesser of two evils) but to
really settle it you have to
get into the practical defenses
of capitalism ("socialism
doesn't work too well"), and
all of the piecemeal, lengthy
arguments of economics.
"I can accept almost anything, "Always be what other people
except what seems to be want you to be, then you've got
easiest for most people: the them right where you want them."
half-way, the almost, the
just-about, the in-between."
"Centralization relieves the
"People want nothing but mirrors blight of monopoly."
around them. To reflect them
while they're reflecting too...
Reflections of reflections and "But there are also sins of
echoes of echoes. No beginning omission to consider. To fail
and no end. No center and no to save a life is as immoral
purpose." as murder. The consequences
are the same -- and since we
"You know how people long to be must judge actions by
eternal. But they die with every consequences, the moral
day that passes... They change, reponsibility is the same..."
they deny, they contradict -- and
they call it growth. At the end
there's nothing left, nothing
unreversed or unbetrayed..."
Ayn Rand seems incapable of
writing a decent ending. Her
sense of dramatic structure
gets skewed by her didactic
intent, I suppose. Or maybe
she just can't handle longer
works. Rand a playwrite
trying to be a novelist?
But she has written plays...
which also suffer from weak
endings, come to think of it.
"Ideal" is a neat idea:
An actress modeled on Greta Garbo
has to go on the run from the
police. Out of the thousands of
fan letters that she's received
she has saved a small bundle,
each of which claims to have seen
some depth of meaning in her
performances. She goes to each
of these people looking for
shelter, and in each encounter
they repudiate the ideals they
expressed in their letters... My fave: an artist obsessed
all of them save one. with painting the woman's
image doesn't recognize her
face to face.
Another play, "The Night of January
the 14th" isn't such a bad
job. It's a court room drama
where the jury is composed of
members of the audience, whose
decision determines how the
It's also interesting as a somewhat
sympathetic view of gansters, an
attitude frequently found amongst
libertarian sorts. Al Capone Cyril Kornbluth's the _Syndic_:
considered as a noble businessman The Mob takes over, and does
fighting unreasonable regulatory better than the government did.
Much of the drive of Rand's
work is the same as the
drive behind stories about
romanticized jewel theives,
pirates or revolutionaries. In _The Fountainhead_, the
The flamboyant rogue, the main characters have red hair
noble criminal. And much of (to show individuality) and
the flaws arise from trying yellow hair (to show some
to rationalize these kind of Aryan purity?). When
impulses away, and make over reading the story, though,
all her characters into it's difficult to shake the
goody-goodies consistent impression that they both have
with her ideology. black hair.
So Rand might be compared
to Nietzsche: she's out
to redefine good and evil.
Rand's stated opinion of (Dec 6, 2011)
Nietzsche was that while on the
surface he might look like a More recently it was
champion of individualism and revealed that early
right-thinking, he babbles too drafts of "The
much about the joys of submerging Fountainhead" had
yourself in the oneness of chapter head quotes
Dionysian revelry to be a from Nietzsche.
Nietzsche claimed to be Dionysian.
Rand claimed to be Apollonian.
"The Passion of Ayn
Rand", a biography of (I should probably read
Rand and co, has some _Judgment Day_ by Branden
interesting stuff in sometime, for the sake of
it. equal time.)
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