Ayn Rand has a problem with violence. I think that all anarcho-capitalist ideologies (of which Objectivism is certainly one) have the problem of violence.
To the extent that anarcho-capitalists defend violence, they do so for purposes of individual and collective self-defense. But that’s not what I’m talking about, here. I’m talking about aggression, particularly violence as an adjunct of theft. I’m talking about, quite literally, legalized banditry.
Continue reading The Neocon Problem of Violence
I’ve started the book Goddess of the Market: Ayn Rand and the American Right by Jennifer Burns, which is a bio of Ayn Rand. The book focuses on her intellectual influence rather than her artistic influence because, as Burns notes, Rand’s artistic influence is non-existent. Mostly, the people who like her books don’t read for pleasure but as a political exercise.
Burns uses new papers largely unavailable to previous researchers to write the book, and she attempts neutrality. As a researcher who is looking to contextualize Rand’s work into Rand’s life, neutrality is desirable. But, in the end, I have trouble getting behind it.
Continue reading Starting Goddess of the Market: Ayn Rand and the American Right
I very nearly stopped watching the Netflix show, Stranger Things, in the first three minutes, even though it is the kind of show I like. Government conspiracy horror? Yes, sir and/or ma’am, I’m your guy!
But it started in 1983 and some kids were playing ADVANCED D&D. So, like, the party is attacked by troglodytes and then “the” Demogorgon shows up. Demogorgon is a proper name, fools! And there’s no adventure where the party fights the very low level troglodytes AND DEMOGORGON. Trogs are, like, less than one HD, and Demogorgon is the baddest mo’ fo’ in the AD&D Monster Manual! PLUS, the mini of Demogorgon is CLEARLY a WOTC Aspect of Demogorgon mini from much later than 1983.
Continue reading The dudes making Stranger Things CLEARLY know nothing about ADVANCED Dungeons & Dragons
I’ve been reading about early America, colonial days up to the American Revolution, mostly. Of course, before the English got around to exploring things, the Spanish were the most prolific North American explorers.
Continue reading Why write a satire of Atlas Shrugged?
One of my predictions is about to come true: the burger chain, Wendy’s, wants to get rid of it’s human workforce. Apparently, they’ve crunched the numbers and think that paying humans is too costly.
I wrote a story, Robo-Burger, about a burger chain that was purely automated. In the story, the automated burger joint was the tipping point to a revolution.
Continue reading Wendy’s starts to get rid of humans, Kit Bradley predicts it . . . to his chagrin
One of the central problems, I feel, with Ayn Rand’s work in general, and Atlas Shrugged in particular, is that she was a very black-and-white thinker.
To her, any “governmental coercion” equals the Stalinist USSR.
Of course, I have hindsight she doesn’t have, but it is also my experience that Objectivist-inspired neocons have a convenient and peculiar way of historical interpretation.
So, after World War II, the United States was as close to a socialist democratic republic that we’d ever get, from the New Deal to the Marshall Plan, Keynesian economics held sway. The highest tax rate was around 95% both here and abroad.
Continue reading Starting some critique about Ayn Rand, oh, yeah, bab-ee, it’s AWN!
Starting a blog feels weird. I know I should have one, as an indie writer, but how to start? Like with all writing, I decided to start by starting, even though the odds of anyone reading this are low.
I am starting the research for a new project, whose working title is Atlas Stumbled. It is a satirical, unauthorized sequel to Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged. In the process of doing research, I often find much to discuss (or about which to rant), so that’ll be good feeder material for the blog!