by Kit Bradley
Written March 2017
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
In Galt Gulch, one of the few laws was that nothing should be given for nothing. How much should a wife charge for a meal, washing clothes, sex? Should they be able to sell all of those services on the free market? After all, that was the very origin of Galt’s Gulch: mercantile contracts. They embraced the traditional way of payment for married women, as they called it.
James Gussey was on his third wife by the time he got to Galt’s Gulch. Owing to a botched plastic surgery his face had a stretched, glassy look. When adding to his slight build might cause one to imagine that he was unpopular with women. Hundreds of millions of dollars ensured he never lost his sex appeal, and he had the confidence borne of a man to whom the word “no” was an illusion.
James Gussey’s third wife was Laine Maxton-Gussey. James had seduced her when she was seventeen and unsophisticated. Arriving at the Gulch, she was twenty-seven, a tall Viking beauty of a type that seemed to be very popular among millionaires of the time.
Continue reading The Traditional Way of Payment
by Kit Bradley
Written March 2017
Ronnie Drumpf in Galt’s Gulch by Kit Bradley is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial 4.0 International License.
Some of Ronald Joseph Drumpf’s first memories were helping his father to collect rents from Brooklyn tenements. Ronald’s old man, Fred Drumpf, left Germany in his teens to avoid military service – in later years, Ronald would avoid the American draft into World War II. It was just Ronald, his father and Vincent – a heavyset Italian-American with scars on his face and knuckles. Fred Drumpf introduced Vincent as a “boxer,” and it was true after a fashion, and Vincent was certainly in the hurt business.
Continue reading Ronnie Drumpf in Galt’s Gulch
Here’s another Atlas Shrugged fanfic from yours truly! One of the fascinating things about these characters – now that I’ve got a little distance from the novel – is that Rand leaves them as nearly blank slates. Even when some of the characters do having living family, like Hank Rearden, their family seems to have no real relationship with the character, evidenced by Hank’s mother’s name, in the novel, is literally “Hank’s mother.” She has no proper name. And while both Francisco and Dagny are obsessed with long dead ancestors, we learn almost nothing about their immediate family and nothing at all about their fathers. Ayn Rand has daddy issues that burn so brightly that people are Jupiter are blinded by them.
Dagny: Guys, we’ve got to save John Galt! I know we’re never supposed to do something for nothing, and, let’s be honest, John is there because of his own stupidity! He could have stayed in capitalist utopia. He could have left after the speech. He could have run when I arrived at his apartment. But, no! He stayed, and allowed himself to get captured, and despite this being against our CAPITALIST values (in which we never give any help to anyone without charging them) let’s ignore that and save him!
Hank Rearden: Yes!
Francisco d’Anaconia: Yes!
Ragnar Danneskjold: Argh! Yes! If I get to jump through a window!
Continue reading Atlas Shrugged EXECUTIVE CAPITALIST Summary: Chapter 30
Commie Dr. Statler: I need to control the sonic or cosmic ray cannon (no one knows which, it’s like the writer didn’t know the difference between sound and cosmic rays)! This despite the fact that I was horrified to learn of it’s existence, I’ve suddenly decided that I want to be a warlord! I’ve driven for days to get to it! Even though the country is supposedly in ruins with gangs and violence everywhere, I can drive totally unmolested for two thousand miles!
Commie Cuffy Meigs: I got here, first!
Commie Dr. Statler: You fool, don’t touch that lever! You’ll destroy us and everything within a hundred miles! You’ll destroy a BRIDGE!
Continue reading Atlas Shrugged EXECUTIVE CAPITALIST Summary: Chapter 29
Evil Commie Government Officials: For some reason, we stood around listening to that four-and-a-half hour long speech from John Galt without moving or saying anything!
Dagny Taggart: Give up, he’s won!
Evil President: No! Look for John Galt, instead, so we can give him a job! That’s what true evil would do!
Eddie Villers: Ms. Taggart, I know who John Galt is. I’ve been telling him every little personal detail about your life, and all of our confidential business secrets, to him for years.
Continue reading Atlas Shrugged EXECUTIVE CAPITALIST Summary: Chapter 28
My finishing purge of Atlas Shrugged is to discuss the flaws in her political and social reasoning, as opposed to merely talking about why the book is a disaster artistically. (And it is a disaster artistically, as close to objectively awful as a book gets.)
Ayn Rand, in Atlas Shrugged and elsewhere, isn’t just proposing a form of laissez-faire capitalism. She is proposing a system of ethics in which selfishness and greed are the dominant – maybe even sole – principles. To many people, this is absolutely terrifying, and Atlas Shrugged does a very good job of exposing the reason that’s terrifying, even though Rand doesn’t seem to notice it.
Continue reading Atlas Shrugged Reviews as Political Commentary
Dagny Taggart: Gosh, I just noticed that John Galt literally works for me! For years, people have been saying “Who is John Galt?”, even in this very building, without even noticing that John Galt literally works here! How dumb have I been? I mean, should I feel really embarrassed that John Galt literally works in the same building as me, and I’ve been looking for him for two years? Nah. I’m a CAPITALIST!
Jim Taggart: You have to listen to the Evil Commie Government Officials give a speech.
Dagny: Ugh, I guess so.
Continue reading Atlas Shrugged EXECUTIVE CAPITALIST Summary: Chapter 27
Hank Rearden: My mill is dead because of commies, and my money is seized by the gub’mint! They tried to trick me into helping people not starve to death, but I’m too smart for that!
Hank’s Mom: You haven’t visited us in months! Come over.
Lillian: Ha! I’m here!
Hank: Curses! I divorced you because I’m INNOCENT!
Lillian: Dude, you slept with another woman for two years and then bribed judges to get the divorce so I couldn’t get anything. That’s the total opposite of innocent.
Hank: That’s CAPITALIST JUSTICE!
Continue reading Atlas Shrugged EXECUTIVE CAPITALIST Summary: Chapter 26
I’m reading about Ayn Rand because I intend to write a parody of Atlas Shrugged, which takes the form of a novel that occurs immediately after the end of Rand’s novel (albeit changed enough to remove the threat of copyright infringement, and strengthen a fair use defense in case something weird happens). The purpose of the parody is to create a rejoinder to the political, philosophical, and economic principles that Ayn Rand lays out in the novel.
It is simply uncontroversial that Ayn Rand’s followers, particularly those at the Ayn Rand Institute, use the novel Atlas Shrugged to spread Rand’s philosophy of Objectivism. In The Ayn Rand Lexicon: Objectivism A to Z, Atlas Shrugged is quote dozens if not hundreds of times to illustrate the philosophy of Objectivism. The Ayn Rand Institute has given hundreds of thousands of copies of Atlas Shrugged to schools with the express purpose of introducing new generations of readers to Objectivism. John Galt’s long speech in Atlas Shrugged is considered to be the first complete expression of Objectivist principles. It is also my personal experience that followers of Ayn Rand quote Atlas Shrugged the same way Christians quote the Bible – at nearly every turn for nearly any occasion.
Continue reading Why I’m Writing a Parody of Atlas Shrugged