Whether you like her book or not, it is an influential book and it isn’t going away. She is to conservatives what Marx is to liberals, i.e. the extreme version of what most conservatives believe. Her philosophy is flawed and most conservatives only really take parts of her philosophy, (most of the parts conservatives do not agree with deal with Rand’s disdain for religion, which again is quite similar to Marx).
Her book, Atlas Shrugged, deals with a hypothetical in an unreal world. What if those who went on strike were the “backbone” of society, rather than the poor lower class workers whose only apparent drive, according to Objectivists, is to tear down the powerful and intelligent. However, this hypothetical is not real. What Rand and Objectivists seem to forget is that the powerful and intelligent die, and are no more, yet someone still takes control. So if one or two, or even a bunch of them stop working, others will fill in and do the work.
Rand and Objectivists cannot look at the real world, but have to use hypotheticals to explain their flawed philosophy. If you look at all the characters in her books, they are all one dimensional. Tell me, in real life, have you ever met a person who was perfect, who did everything exactly as he was supposed to do? I have never met anybody who did not have a flaw in their character. yet I am to believe, as Objectivists would like, that by following their philosophy, I have somehow attained perfection in my character. Even Greenspan has gone back on his words!
Rand’s black and white view of the world fits well into conservative thought because they like to look at the world through a two-dimensional prism, or at least they like to believe they look at the world through a two-dimensional prism, but yet even Bush beds with dictators, i.e. Uzbekhistan.
The problem with Rand’s book, which Objectivists can’t stand being brought up about her book is that her heroes have no flaws and her villains have no redeeming qualities. But yet we are to believe Kadafi of Lybia changed overnight. How can that be? He’s a villain, or at least he was. Can villains have redeeming qualities to Objectivists?
Another problem, which is the title of my review….look at the name of the book. It is called “Atlas Shrugged.” According to Rand, Atlas is a mythical being who holds the earth on his shoulders. Apparently, in her view, the earth begins to weigh heavier and heavier on his shoulders, strengthening the burden on poor Atlas. When one character is asked what does Atlas do with this extra burden, another character replies “he shrugs.”
So think about it. Rand’s “Atlas” characters, the mighty, the rulers of business and industry….do they “shrug”? Is going on strike shrugging? So what is really her point? it seems that the book ought to actually be called “Atlas Revolutions”. It seems more appropriate. If Atlas only shrugs, would not her mighty heroic characters just shrug their shoulders and get back to work?
Yet another example of how unrealistic her book really is.
Finally, and this last point is to the many Christians who find her book and her philosophy appealing, I have one question:
Was Christ selfish?