Dagny Taggart: I told everyone that those commie limits on production would cause disaster. It’s causing disaster! Ha! I will, of course, ignore ongoing industrial sabotage by the person I literally call “the destroyer”, not to mention widespread piracy that has stopped metal production in the US – it is ONLY the result of the COMMIES.
Commie Business Leaders: It is a disaster! We will also fail to blame industrial saboteurs or pirates! We will blame James Taggart!
James Taggart: Huh? I’m a sychophant!
Commie Business Leaders: Dime a dozen, dude.
Dagny: Anyone wonder why the pirates don’t loot . . . I mean, ahem, not loot! I mean steal from Francisco d’Anaconia and instead “sink” his boats?
World: Nope. But, then, again, we didn’t bother to think Francisco was defrauding people on San Sebastian mine disaster, or that time he was an insider trader and leaked company secrets at James Taggart’s wedding, or think that maybe all those “disasters” at his mines – which happened the day after he revealed insider information at the wedding – were somehow because of d’Anaconia’s industrial sabotage. So why would he think that he’s in league with pirates, simply because they are attacking his goods specifically, and also doing it in a different way? That’s not suspicious! No one on shore has ever worked with pirates, after all!
Kit Bradley: This is what a world of straw men looks like!
Francisco d’Anaconia: Dagny, I have a mancrush on Hank Rearden, no homo! But why do you work for the commies? You shouldn’t. Blah, blah, blah, it is by the work of our labor, blah, blah, blah.
Dagny: I have no idea what you’re talking about.
Kit: Dagny, by this point, you’re the ONLY person who doesn’t know what he’s talking about!
Lillian Rearden: Hank, I know you’re boinking Dagny. Stop it!
Hank Rearden: Nope. You can get a divorce from me, but I made promise to you and I will keep it. Y’know, except for the part about me not boinking other women. So, I’m not, in any sense, keeping my word, but I’ll say I’m keeping my word and not divorce you, even though our relationship is a disaster.
Lillian: I insist you dump Dagny!
Hank: If you insist, I’ll beat you up. Which is also a violation of my wedding vows, not to mention all that stuff about the importance of free negotiations without violence, but it’s rather late to be expecting consistency from this book, is it?
Kit: By the way, has anyone else noticed that it’s only the “heroes” in this book who are actually violent?
Lillian: Well, okay, I’ll give you everything you want, because despite the fact you’re cheating on me, and have threatened to physically assault me, I won’t let you get off that easily!
Kit: ??? Good grief, Lillian.