Tuesday, April 23, 2013

Ayn Rand Was Right About Something (Really!)

Leaving for Australia in July.
From what I've heard the Aussies seem to live an FHP lifestyle.
Substance over style to put it simply.
My dream.

When I was younger I tried my hand at reading some Ayn Rand.
I liked Anthem & couldn't get into Atlas Shrugged, but I absolutely loved The Fountainhead.
Probably one of my favorite books.
However, I have to qualify exactly why it's so influential to me for some very important reasons.
  1. Ayn Rand was a fucking headcase.
  2. Ayn Rand (and to a lesser extent Ron Paul) set back libertarianism decades.
    • Pie-in-the-sky idealism & goddamn "Objectivism" made the stereotype of the crazy absolutist libertarian shitwipe.
    • Only today is the movement even beginning to grasp the supposedly simple concept of pragmatism.
  3. Rand makes numerous assumptions about human society that just aren't true.
    • Access to resources & systematic flaws make Objectivism impossible; if the game isn't fair, complete objectivity isn't possible.

That being said, Rand's influence on my personal philosophy has been enormous.
I wasn't sure which was the best way to show you what I'm saying.
Blogs can't provide context for quotes well (#BloggerProblems, amiright?)
Oh well.
Hopefully this will make some fucking sense (it probably won't), but feel free to leave a comment if you disagree.

  • "But you see, I have, let's say, sixty years to live. Most of that time will be spent working. I've chosen the work I want to do. If I find no joy in it, then I'm only condemning myself to sixty years of torture. And I can find the joy only if I do my work in the best way possible to me. But the best is a matter of standards--and I set my own standards. I inherit nothing. I stand at the end of no tradition. I may, perhaps, stand at the beginning of one."
The marginal utility of income peak in America is around $48,000.
In non-economist terms, there is not much benefit to aggregate happiness simply from income over 48k a year.
Do what you love.
Just make sure you make enough so your family doesn't have to mortgage the cardboard box to get food.

  • "As a matter of fact, one can feel some respect for people when they suffer. They have a certain dignity. But have you ever looked at them when they're enjoying themselves? That's when you see the truth."
Contrary to popular belief people show their true character in times of prosperity, not adversity.
Our natural systems are set up to make sure we fucking survive.
How about when you have the resources to improve the long term outlook of both you & others?
A lot of lazy assholes squander all they receive.
They don't earn.

  • "It takes two to make a very great career: The man who is great, and the man-- almost rarer-- who is great enough to see greatness and say so."
One type of person I've always detested is the critic who cannot & will not perform in the arena where he himself can be criticized.
Pusspops, all of them.
It takes a man to enter the arena & become great.
It takes an exceptional man to spot that greatness.
Don't forget that.

  • "Mr. Roark, we’re alone here. Why don’t you tell me what you think of me? In any words you wish. No one will hear us."
    "But I don’t think of you."
This is the hardest quote to put into context.
I don't have to though.
The point is simple:
If you don't give someone power over you, they don't have power!
The human mind is fucking badass.
Our brains can be total dickheads, but that's ok.
They do a lot of good too.

The great thing about books is everyone has their own opinion & take-away.
This is mine.
If you don't like that, well, I don't think of you.

You turd.

Peace.
JF.


 

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