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Right Wingers and Ayn Rand.

A slight rant, I suppose, but one conservative saintly reference that spills my beans is Ayn Rand.

Heard a woman on CNN recently, I think, mutter about how her parents were "liberals" but when she read Ayn Rand, she heard the call and has been conservative ever since. They've turned Rand into the patron saint of free market religion and a perverse 'screw you pal it's all about me' individualism that has nothing to do with modern oligarchic, authoritarian reactionary conservatism of the modern age.

I read and studied Rand in my political philosophy days at Uni in the 70s. Simplistic drivel, I thought. It's not her they identify with, but the image of her, the myth, like they do with Reagan, or Jesus, for that matter.

I've heard this kind of "Randian" nonsense too often over the years. It's a simplistic kind of individualism that is especially American in nature, but a perverse form of American individualism.

I suppose hard wired conservative people look for intellectual props to validate their view.

Anyone agree or disagree?

David1955 8 Nov 19
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3

Most of my exposure to her writings are through others who follow her. My experience is her followers are self-aborbed and lack empathy.

1

I agree with CeliaVL - Atlas Shrugged was confusing, especially true for a kid with dyslexia. I believe that many who claim that Rand was a "true conservative" really did not understand hr philosophy of government or the governed. What most do not remember is that Rand was an agnostic if not an atheist.

1

I thought 'Atlas Shrugged' was a very confused book and not nearly thought through enough. I have read some of her essays, too, and found them better thought out and more interesting, but I suspect most of the people who claim to follow her theories haven't really read her. I can see that self-centred isolationists would be drawn to her.

1

Years ago I started to read Atlas Shrugged, ...attemptwd to get into it twice but coul dn't stomach it. Waste of my time. A Coursey Wikipedia reading is all A. Rand deserves or will get from me. I would no sooner read a whole book of hers than I would of Ann Coulter.

2

By far the worst DVD I ever picked up was Rand's Atlas Shrugged Part II. What a stillborn work of Libertard propaganda. After mostly fast forwarding through the trash I felt like I should have been paid for putting up with the infomercial brown-nosing and tea-bagging those who own the most top 1% ish. That movie made me research any movie before ordering.

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3

I have a friend who is very generous and has always struggled to get by, and yet she is an Objectivist. And she is very intelligent. It puzzles me.

Like the lady I saw on CNN whose parents had been progressive. She seemed a sensible person, but because of Rand she still supports Trump. Truly confused thinking.

@David1955 Yes, someone I like supports Trump too. I wonder what worldview these people have.

4

Individualism as envisioned by Rand works efficiently within the context of capitalism and fascism. It has no bearing in a collectivist economic system. That is why Reaganomics was essentially Randian economics. Garbage to be sure, all.

Rand's philosophy boils down to the advocacy of a dog-eat-dog, semi-sociopathic lifestyle, on both economic and personal levels - a very ugly way to live. Reaganomics was indeed Randian, but with an added touch of right-wing voodoo, e.g., "You can decrease the deficit by cutting taxes."

7

I read Rand when I was very young. Her ideas were new and shiny to me for a short while (again, I was very young), until I figured out all of the contemptible implications. Now I regard her work as immature, hateful drivel. When an adult cites her as a legitimate thinker, I immediately lose respect for that person.

Perfectly stated!

I admit I liked The Fountainhead when I was an adolescent, but I re-read it ten years later and found it horrifying. I wouldn't let Howard Roark within a country mile of me. What a self-absorbed jerk! But then, I've altered my adolescent romantic opinions on Heathcliffe as well, who needs to be slapped with a restraining order and wear an ankle bracelet. Glad I snapped out of all that.

@seaspot_run I relate. I shudder when I remember all the idiotic opinions I had when I was an adolescent and even a young adult. I guess I was a late bloomer, to the extent I've bloomed at all. I think adult admirers of Ayn Rand, like Paul Ryan and Ron and Rand Paul, are emotionally stunted.

0

I've heard nothing but bad about her from today's public intellectuals. I watched a YouTube video of a show she did with Phil Donahue and I thought she defended her views very well. That said, I'm a big fan of social democracy.

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5

I haven't studied her or even read much about her but have heard references to her enough to understand what she is about.

I also read recently that near the end of her life, she did in fact receive assistance from those programs she so detested the rest of us having

Why does that not surprise me. It's always amuse me that right wing people I've known who hate welfare and public programs and so on and go on and on about it, but if there's a lurk, perk, benefit, subsidy or hand out going, they're right in there getting it. They are always deserving, but no one else is, apparently.

5

I've never found time to read her. There's always something better to do with my time. And the argument that I should read widely doesn't extend to that shit specially when I meet the Randian cult devotees who are selfish, unthinking and don't even attempt to find solutions to the today's problems. Last one I chatted to about homelessness in London (a very big problem) blamed it on not having a free enough market in housing.

I have no point of reference with that kind of delusion.

5

I hate her and her philosophy deeply. The philosophy of selfishness and the kind of power for power's sake that is at the heart of fascism. How much similarity do you find between her and Nietzsche?

Same kind of problem thinking.

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