I got response from my last post from a supporter of Ayn Rand. It claimed that Atlas Shrug was a work of genius and had I read it. I am familiar with Atlas Shrug, and my mistake was to think that most intelligent people would see through its glarying emotional irrationalism. While I don’t have the space to go through most of its internal logical flaws, I will give one of the most obvious one. First, I do have to admire Atlas Shrug as a masterful work of rhetorician appealing to emotionalism, but it is exactly that that precludes it from be a work of genius. Brothers Karamazov, Marcel Proust’s work, and Moby Dick are works of genius, and by that standard, Atlas Shrug fails miserably.
The bookshelf of polemics as novel next the work of Upton Sinclair rather than bookshelf of great novel is a better place for her work. Upton Sinclair's work is very similar to hers as both are very Manichean in their worldview. The only difference being that he chooses the workers to be the Children of Light and capitalists to be the Children of Dark, while Ayn Rand chooses the opposite. They both still suffer from simplistic view of human beings divided by Good guys and Bad guys. Contrast these works with Brothers Karamazov’s view of human nature is enough to refute any claims of genius about Atlas Shrug.
Saying this, let's back it up by exposing just one of the illogical flaws (of the thousands I might add) in Atlas Shrug. One of the major forces, if not the major force is her character John Galt's dislike of the collective, or any collective movement. He is the hero standing for the power of the individual. He gets tired of being pushed around by the "looters" and "moochers" (her shorthand for those who are for the power of the collective), and decides to do something about it. He will pull out of the world and watch it fail, because without his genius, world will fall apart. If that premise were followed through to its logical conclusion then novel would be about a Ted Kazinsky type character, but a crackpot out in the middle of Colorado would be a honest, yet boring novel. What Ayn Rand has John Galt do is to gather and convinced other rugged individuals to join him in his strike, and then when the world collapses, they would come and take over the world. The famous gesture of making a dollar sign at the end of her novel is her exclamation point. So where is the flaw? John Galt gathers the power of the collective to battle the collective. It is not Galt who has the power, but his movement that does. And how do you join his group? You recite a creed against becoming part of a group and your belief in the individual and join the anti-group group.
His creed: I SWEAR BY MY LIFE AND MY LOVE OF IT THAT I WILL NEVER LIVE FOR THE SAKE OF ANOTHER MAN, NOR ASK ANOTHER MAN TO LIVE FOR MINE.
Huh? You stay on the good side of individualism against the power of groups by joining a group and losing your own individuality to the mass agreement spewed by John Galt. Again, Huh? You join John Galt's movement for the sake of John Galt in order to prove you stand for yourself and not another even if it bennifits john Galt and not yourself. (Long live double think, would have been a more honest creed for Galt) Galt is only powerful in the novel for violating his own creed. Only by joining the anti-group group can you fight the power of the group with … (You guessed it) the power of the group. We have entered into an Orwellian world where war is called peace, poverty is called wealth, and illogical nonsense is called Reason. So goes the Circus world of nonsensical thinking that Ayn Rand pass off as Reason, which would be funny entertainment if her views was not taken seriously. We are in middle of largest Randing experiment when Alan Greesnpan fought for and won the principle of no regulation for the derivatives markets. It is this market and its underlining greedy irrationality causing the meltdown. Who is John Galt? A fictional character who embodies illogical double speak.