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Old 08-15-2018, 12:55 PM   #16
Happy Monkey
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Not even a little bit.
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Old 08-15-2018, 12:58 PM   #17
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cmon. a little bit.
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Old 08-15-2018, 01:00 PM   #18
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All, right, a little bit. But only because things she said weren't wrong because she said them; she was wrong because she said the things. So she may have said things, incidentally, that weren't wrong, during her life. But not when she was trying to make a point.
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Old 08-15-2018, 01:20 PM   #19
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so you're saying a broken clock is right twice a day?



the overreaching message of Atlas Shrugged was the injustice experienced by the tycoon at the hands of the needy via governmental regulation and appropriation. But to me, the message was that you work for what you get, and deserve to keep it. If you don't work for it, you are not owed anything.

I do believe that society cannot exist without caring and providing for those unable to do for themselves. I also know that there are many many people that take advantage and abuse the systems that exist to support those that are truly not able to provide for themselves.



Ayn's thing was to shine light on the ones that demand support from those who are capable of helping them without respect for the desire of the capable.
She also had a lot to say about improving yourself and not being a slug.


I have a quote on the top of my monitor at work that reads,
"It is not acceptable to do less than you are able to do."
That is a paraphrasing of a blurb from another book I read, but it's pretty 'Randian'

Quote:
Originally Posted by Atlas Shrugged
Productiveness is your acceptance of morality, your recognition of the fact that you choose to live--that productive work is the process by which man's consciousness controls his existence, a constant process of acquiring knowledge and shaping matter to fit one's purpose, of translating an idea into physical form, of remaking the earth in the image of one's values--that all work is creative work if done by a thinking mind, and no work is creative if done by a blank who repeats in uncritical stupor a routine he has learned from others--that your work is yours to choose, and the choice is as wide as your mind, that nothing more is possible to you and nothing less is human--that to cheat your way into a job bigger than your mind can handle is to become a fear-corroded ape on borrowed motions and borrowed time, and to settle down into a job that requires less than your mind's full capacity is to cut your motor and sentence yourself to another kind of motion: decay--that your work is the process of achieving your values, and to lose your ambition for values is to lose your ambition to live--that your body is a machine, but your mind is its driver, and you must drive as far as your mind will take you, with achievement as the goal of your road--that the man who has no purpose is a machine that coasts downhill at the mercy of any boulder to crash in the first chance ditch, that the man who stifles his mind is a stalled machine slowly going to rust, that the man who lets a leader prescribe his course is a wreck being towed to the scrap heap, and the man who makes another man his goal is a hitchhiker no driver should ever pick up--that your work is the purpose of your life, and you must speed past any killer who assumes the right to stop you, that any value you might find outside your work, any other loyalty or love, can be only travelers you choose to share your journey and must be travelers going on their own power in the same direction.
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Old 08-15-2018, 01:50 PM   #20
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She was originally from a very wealthy family of Jewish bankers
wait, was... was that a bad thing?
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Old 08-15-2018, 02:47 PM   #21
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I do believe that society cannot exist without caring and providing for those unable to do for themselves. I also know that there are many many people that take advantage and abuse the systems that exist to support those that are truly not able to provide for themselves.
Pointing out people who abuse the system can be used to improve the system, or denigrate the system. Rand was solidly in the latter camp. And she definitely believed that society could exist without caring and providing for those unable to do for themselves. She called them moochers.


Galt's Gulch was populated by "the tech guy" from science fiction shows, who could produce a magic gadget solo, between scenes, that would solve the problem of the day. Plus, they resented all the people suffering from the problem of the day. A population of Scottys from Star Trek, but without the heart. Basically, a society of Ricks, from Rick and Morty.
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Old 08-15-2018, 03:01 PM   #22
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A society CAN exist without caring for moochers. But only at the expense of the truly needy. You can't differentiate effectively between the two. The supposed Utopia in the magic mountain at the end of the book was quite silly, I agree. But it doesn't completely invalidate everything she says in the book(s). I think there is something to be said about the value of an employer in our culture.



Without the risk and work those folks undertake, most of us are unemployed, and therefore unable to support our own families. If the government gets involved in redistributing their wealth, they harm everyone that works for them, and simultaneously dissuade others from rising to take their places.



I'd like to thank Mr Robert Nappen for being rich and owning 3 dealerships as a sort of hobby/investment. I've made a good living working for him these 14 years. I've had that conversation with his son. He always turns it around and thanks me for doing the work, making a profit and protecting his business from liability.. but I know he's worth more to this society than I am.
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Old 08-15-2018, 03:18 PM   #23
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And she wrote all that while collecting welfare.
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Old 08-15-2018, 03:36 PM   #24
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Quote:
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She was originally from a very wealthy family of Jewish bankers ...
Quote:
Originally Posted by Undertoad View Post
wait, was... was that a bad thing?
It isn't presented as a bad (or good) thing. It's simply a relevant detail, insomuch as it speaks directly to the crux of her resentment-- the loss of wealth to social upheaval / application of political theories.
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Old 08-15-2018, 03:54 PM   #25
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I think there is something to be said about the value of an employer in our culture.
Of course, but what Ayn Rand says is "nobody other than them matters, or is even fully human".

Quote:
Without the risk and work those folks undertake, most of us are unemployed, and therefore unable to support our own families. If the government gets involved in redistributing their wealth, they harm everyone that works for them, and simultaneously dissuade others from rising to take their places.
In my view, the biggest obstacle to entrepreneurship is the holes in the safety net, not the presence of the net. There may be some adrenaline junkies who work better when there's no net, but most people who may want to start a business will be dissuaded if the result of the business failing (which is more likely than not in the best circumstances) is complete ruin.
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Old 08-15-2018, 04:02 PM   #26
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I think Ayn Rand can be understood for what she was and what she represented, without being worshiped, vilified, or held accountable for who we think reads her books or what we think they got out of it.

Artistically, I think her books are a magnificent translation of stark ideals into compelling, if arguably one-dimensional, characters, who perfectly embody the concepts she is making her case for. Almost like comic-book heroes. I don't take her characters to be intended as poetically soft and mysterious human enigmas.

I recommend everyone who is interested in the creative arts to read Ayn Rand's Fountainhead, then watch the Gary Cooper film adaptation. Ayn Rand's screenplay adaptation of the novel is an absolutely brilliant, condensed, version of the book, which loses nothing while taking up shorter space. She accomplishes this by combining characters / plot elements which embody similar concepts, effectively "collapsing" the story. A class in screenplay adaptation should be taught based on what she does here.

Howard Roark, Ellsworth Toohey, Gail Wynand, Dominique Francon, and Peter Keating are remarkably relevant character archetypes for many people you will recognize dealing with. Especially Ellsworth Toohey, the ultimate string-pulling, Machiavellian sociopath.

I think the ideas that Ayn Rand promotes need to explored and understood--not rejected outright, and then, like everything--in moderation-- taken as simply one "part of a well-balanced breakfast"
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There's a level of facility that everyone needs to accomplish, and from there
it's a matter of deciding for yourself how important ultra-facility is to your
expression. ... I found, like Joseph Campbell said, if you just follow whatever
gives you a little joy or excitement or awe, then you're on the right track.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Terry Bozzio

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Old 08-15-2018, 04:07 PM   #27
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In short, Fountainhead is a better Ayn Rand book than Atlas Shrugged.
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There's a level of facility that everyone needs to accomplish, and from there
it's a matter of deciding for yourself how important ultra-facility is to your
expression. ... I found, like Joseph Campbell said, if you just follow whatever
gives you a little joy or excitement or awe, then you're on the right track.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Terry Bozzio
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Old 08-15-2018, 04:10 PM   #28
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But go for Siddhartha, or anything by Herman Hesse, first.

The Glass Bead Game is a better Hesse book than Siddhartha.
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There's a level of facility that everyone needs to accomplish, and from there
it's a matter of deciding for yourself how important ultra-facility is to your
expression. ... I found, like Joseph Campbell said, if you just follow whatever
gives you a little joy or excitement or awe, then you're on the right track.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Terry Bozzio
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Old 08-15-2018, 04:46 PM   #29
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Originally Posted by Flint View Post
In short, Fountainhead is a better Ayn Rand book than Atlas Shrugged.
Roark isn't as cartoonish as the supermen from Atlas Shrugged, but the climax of the story is when he blows up a building that he doesn't own because it wasn't built to his specifications.


I have no problem with characters being temperamental artists flying into rages. I have a problem with that being proposed as an ideal to be emulated. It's funny Rand chose an architect to be the hero; there's hardly a more collectivist form of creative expression. A painter is unlimited in what they can put on a canvas, but an architect has to deal with a team of experts in their own fields, any one of which may point out a reason the architect's vision needs to be modified by reality.


The comic book analogy is apt. The heroes of Atlas Shrugged are the comic-book mad scientists, who invented unobtainium and perpetual motion machines in their lairs. But an architect who moves to Galt's Gulch is just a doodler without his team.
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Old 08-15-2018, 05:36 PM   #30
Flint
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I like Roark. Like all Rand characters, he cartoonishly adheres to stark principles, but they're good ones. Focus on an area you have passion for, and become an expert in that field. Do it because it resonates with you and comes naturally. Develop your own original ideas. Do not betray principles which you have personally verified to be sound, simply because of the pressure of those who do not possess the same expertise as you have spent a lifetime's work to develop. Pick your projects and set your parameters the way you want--because you can, because that's how good you are. Others will enjoy different forms of power, manipulation, and coercion, but if you have the strength of your own core beliefs, eventually you will still be standing upright and with your dignity intact after the winds of change have blown away the transitory and opportunistic conditions that others once believed they could use to have advantage over you. And after all, the condition of being self-realized, and the inner peace and clarity it unlocks, is the true reward that those who subsist on false power will never be able to achieve.

...

I don't know enough about being an architect to know if that was the right profession to make this analogy with, but I do know that blowing up a building is a pretty flashy metaphor for the value of intellectual property --the physical object is removed, but the idea remains, and can never be removed by external force.
__________________
******************
There's a level of facility that everyone needs to accomplish, and from there
it's a matter of deciding for yourself how important ultra-facility is to your
expression. ... I found, like Joseph Campbell said, if you just follow whatever
gives you a little joy or excitement or awe, then you're on the right track.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . Terry Bozzio

Last edited by Flint; 08-15-2018 at 05:50 PM.
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