Who is John Galt?

Ayn Rand’s epic novel, Atlas Shrugged, is finally coming to the silver screen.

Whether you’ve read the book or not, you won’t want to miss Part 1 of the film, which debuts around the country the weekend of April 15-16-17th.

So far, the nearest confirmed theaters are in the Seattle area. You can help bring it to Portland, or a theater in your city, by “Demanding” it at the link below.

[UPDATE 3-25: The movie will open in Regal Fox Tower Stadium 10 theater Downtown Portland April 15th. Follow details on Facebook here.

The book was published in 1957, but the producers of the film have wisely set it in 2016. This way, Americans can see what’s coming if we don’t turn around the collectivist government in Washington.

It’s a great story, and a powerful warning. Don’t miss it; “Demand” it below:


More information about the movie:

Official Atlas Shrugged movie web site

Movie scene:
Henry Rearden Comes Home

Movie trailer


Steve Buckstein is senior policy analyst and founder at Cascade Policy Institute, Oregon’s free market public policy research organization.

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Posted by at 10:30 | Posted in Economy, Individual Responsiblity | Tagged , , | 82 Comments |Email This Post Email This Post |Print This Post Print This Post
  • Bob Clark

    Another good read I am finding is Kevin Miller, Freedom Nationally Virtue Locally or Socialism. Basically, it argues virtue (such as being “green”) is something that is o.k. to pursue at the local level but it shouldn’t be crammed down from the national level, unless obvious externalities. Under this approach, the freedom to pull up stakes and move between communities creates a healthy competition between communities for quality of life whereas the top down cram down federal government virtue approach leads to an overlording church of the state.

    So, under this paradigm its o.k. if Portland city wants to enforce its brand of green nazism within its jurisdiction as people still have the ability to fairly easily pull up stakes and go elsewhere. The federal government is also obliged to continue enforcing the bill of rights for individuals.

  • Sybella

    I have read Atlas Shrugged about twenty years ago. It is definitely a long read and pretty dry in lots of places. The overall picture painted by Ayn Rand is a picture of today. Consider she wrote that, I believe in the fifties. That was some crystal ball she has. If you have what it takes to read the book, you will be astonished at the picture she painted and the one she painted is us now. Different names, different places, but the same story. I’m afraid the same end. But I now know who John Gault is.

  • Sybella

    I have read Atlas Shrugged about twenty years ago. It is definitely a long read and pretty dry in lots of places. The overall picture painted by Ayn Rand is a picture of today. Consider she wrote that, I believe in the fifties. That was some crystal ball she has. If you have what it takes to read the book, you will be astonished at the picture she painted and the one she painted is us now. Different names, different places, but the same story. I’m afraid the same end. But I now know who John Gault is.

  • David Appell

    Like everyone else, I read Ayn Rand when I was young. She seemed to make such good sense…. then I grew up and encountered the normal difficulties of adult life. I realized that Rand had no prescription for, and never mentioned, the weaker members of society — children, the sick and ill, the weak, the handicapped and disabled, those who suffer and need help.

    What would happen to John Galt if he suffered a devastating stroke? Rand would leave him to lie in the gutter.

    I began to see the world is not so black and white, and care about the plight of the weak. I learned how Ayn Rand depended on government help for treatment of the lung cancer she suffered after a lifetime of smoking…. she did not have the courage of her convictions, but turned to the govt for help when she needed it to stay alive.

    That pretty much says it all.

    • *David Appell:* I realized that Rand had no prescription for, and never mentioned, the weaker members of society — children, the sick and ill, the weak, the handicapped and disabled, those who suffer and need help.
      *JK:* Yeah, like you climate fraudsters never mention how you shutting down the worlds low cost energy sources will kill millions.

      That tells us all we need to know about you.

      BTW, why are all of the major climate “scientists” keeping silent about Mann’s “hide the decline” fraud?

      If you need refresher here is a credible Phd on the subject:
      https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=8BQpciw8suk

      As I told you a couple years ago, you have missed the opportunity of a lifetime to do an expose of the whole climate fraud scheme.

      Thanks
      JK

      • David Appell

        I am not surprised that Jim Karlock chooses to change the subject instead of addressing my point. Rand’s dismissal of the weak, sick and needy has been discussed for at least two decades now (I learned about it from the writings of M Scott Peck), and it’s a serious critique that I’ve never seen answered. Especially when it’s become known, in the last few years, that Rand herself did not rely on her own resources but turned to government support for her (self-inflicted) ailment. I don’t blame her for seeking help to salve her suffering and save her life… but I do blame her for a lack of compassion. Almost everyone eventually needs such help, even the supposed supermen (“John Galt”). Anything else is Social Darwinism.

        • David Appell:I am not surprised that Jim Karlock chooses to change the subject instead of addressing my point. Rand’s dismissal of the weak, sick and needy
          JK: I’m not suprised that David continues to ignore the vast destruction that his climate cures will bring.

          He like the other warmers simply don’t care about hurting people with their alleged climate solutions that will only make Al Gore & his Wall Street buddies rich.

          Thanks
          JK

          • David Appell

            > He like the other warmers simply don’t care about hurting people
            > with their alleged climate solutions that will only make Al Gore & his
            > Wall Street buddies rich.

            This is baloney, but again, it avoids the issue here, which is: how do the followers of Rand justify her avoidance of the problems of the poor, disabled, and weak against her advocacy for the strong and competent? In other words, how is society supposed to work in her vision?

          • David Appell: This is baloney, but again, it avoids the issue here, which is: how do the followers of Rand justify her avoidance of the problems of the poor, disabled, and weak against her advocacy for the strong and competent?
            JK: Try to understand this simple concept, David: YOU are avoiding the problems of the poor with YOUR advocacy of high energy prices, cap & trade and other crackpot climate schemes.

            David Appell: In other words, how is society supposed to work in her vision?
            JK: I give. How is society supposed to work under your greenie vision of hiogh energy prices and high cost of living?

            Thanks
            JK

          • David Appell

            Obviously, government should give assistance to those who cannot pay for the energy they need.

            After all, no one should go cold in such a rich society.

            Likewise, we should require that industries that pollute the commons pay for their destruction. A tax on carbon emissions is probably the best and first attempt at doing so.

          • David Appell

            Obviously, government should give assistance to those who cannot pay for the energy they need.

            After all, no one should go cold in such a rich society.

            Likewise, we should require that industries that pollute the commons pay for their destruction. A tax on carbon emissions is probably the best and first attempt at doing so.

          • David Appell: Obviously, government should give assistance to those who cannot pay for the energy they need.
            JK: What about the millions/billions of people who live in third world countries – who is going to pay their energy needs or do you advocate that they go back to burning dung to cook food and die early from inhaling the fumes?

            David Appell: Likewise, we should require that industries that pollute the commons pay for their destruction. A tax on carbon emissions is probably the best and first attempt at doing so.
            JK: Sorry David, CO2 is NOT a pollutant, but a necessary building block of life. Only crackpots believe CO2 is a pollutant. Of course the people hoping to get rich from carbon trading also say that , but they are generally smart enough to realize it is a lie.

            Of course any carbon tax will just be passed on to the customers of those industries. And if they can’t pass it along, they go out of business or move to China. Is that what you advocate?

            Thanks
            JK

          • David Appell

            > JK: Sorry David, CO2 is NOT a pollutant, but a necessary building block of life.

            As you well know, at certain levels CO2 is necessary for plant life, and at certain levels it is unnatural and excessive and causes dangerous warming.

            The dose makes the poison.

            There is no black-and-white picture. One must actually consider the context. Don’t be an ass.

          • David Appell

            > Of course any carbon tax will just be passed on to the
            > customers of those industries.

            Maybe. Maybe not. Some companies will absorb the cost. Some won’t. In any case, *someone* has to pay for the damage these carbon emissions do to our environment. Either we pay now, or future generations pay later. Which is more fair? Your choice. Personally, I think that, on moral grounds, today’s consumers should pay for the damage they are doing, today, to the environment.

          • David Appell: Personally, I think that, on moral grounds, today’s consumers should pay for the damage they are doing, today, to the environment.
            JK: Damage? What damage.
            Crops are growing better because of more CO2.
            You have NEVER shown that CO2 can affect climate.
            You have NEVER shown that man’s CO2 is the CO2 building up.
            You have NEVER shown that moderate levels of warming are harmful.
            AND the earth has been stasis/cooling for ten years.
            AND we are now having record cold with only liar Hansen’s NOAA at the outlier.

            You have NO case & you know it.

            Did you ever get around to watching this credible scientist explain hide the decline? It tells you everything you need to know about the whole field of climate alarmism – in one five minute clip.

            https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=8BQpciw8suk

            Once you realize that the most impressive “evidence” of climate change is a fraud AND that it involved several of the major climate scientists AND that most of the others in the climate alarmist field have aided the cover-up with their silence AND the scientifically illiterate press has not even noticed, then you can see how deep this fraud runs. AND you realize the whole field is populated with fraud. And that included those alleged scientists that you sat across the table from.

            That you would have billions of people hurt with carbon controls for an obvious fraud is just plain despicable. But that is so typical of a greenie.

            Thanks
            JK

    • valley person

      I think Rands answer would have been that Galt could never just die in the gutter because he was such a genius he would have a 401K that was so well invested it would never lose money. And if he did die in the gutter, well thems the breaks. Piffle to the Plebes.

    • Steve Plunk

      David, David, David. Why is it liberals must take arguments to the extreme? Rand, and most Libertarians, understand some government is necessary. She also understood the inherent evil in a government with no bounds. Heck, the Founding Fathers understood the same thing and worked to put limits on government.

      Take the Declaration of Independence statement regarding the the complaints against the King. “He has erected a multitude of new offices, and sent hither swarms of officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance.” Too much government does that as we are seeing now.

      Rather than attack Rand personally why don’t you stick the topic of her ideas? In the book the government becomes so corrupt and so manipulative they work to stifle inventions that can benefit mankind. They punish the productive and create a populace that can only dismiss legitimate questions rather than think about them.

      Government is not the cause or patron of the private sector but the necessary parasite that feeds off of it. But it is still a parasite that can kill it’s host or weaken it as we see today.

      You can wave your hand at Jim Karlock’s points but what he says is true and the conundrum for you liberals. Why do you advance goals that undermine other goals? Global warming cures all come at the expense of other people some of which cannot afford them. A problem that cannot be reconciled with today’s technology.

      The ultimate sin being perpetuated by those on the Left who continue this madness of wanting to be everything to everybody is the fact they will leave a legacy of debt and burden to generations that follow.

      • David Appell

        Steve Plunk wrote:
        > Rand, and most Libertarians, understand some government is necessary.

        That was certainly what I took from Rand — rather, she believed that that the strong deserve to dominate over the week.

        > She also understood the inherent evil in a government with no bounds.

        Government today is not without bounds — frankly, it is global corporate power that is increasingly without bounds. Government regulation is barely keeping up. But it is necessary to protect citizens from corporate excesses, who (like Rand) ignore the plight of the weak, sick and disables in pursuit of ever more profits.

        > Heck, the Founding Fathers understood the same thing and worked
        > to put limits on government.

        1776 was hardly 2011 and, except for a few fundamental principles, little of what the “founding fathers” understood of society pertains today. They never foresaw the vast power that corporations would assume. Government today is certainly not stifling the creative — if anything, it is corporations like insurance companies who are curtailing entrepreneurs via their restrictive and onerous health insurance policies.

        • Steve Plunk

          If you took away thoughts of the strong dominating the weak then that explains a great deal about your political philosophy.

          The perversion of the commerce clause as well as the necessary and proper clause has nearly done away with the idea of limited government.

          If the Constitution of 1776 is out of date then we have the mechanism to amend it. Sadly no one wants to do it the right way. Government regulations of today make it nearly impossible for entrepreneurs to even get started let alone navigate the tough early years. Blaming insurance companies? Only those on the left could make such outrageous claims.

          • David Appell

            Steve Plunk wrote:
            > If you took away thoughts of the strong dominating the weak
            > then that explains a great deal about your political philosophy.

            Stevce, can you show me even one passage where Rand advocates for the rights and needs of the poor, sick and disabled?

        • Steve Plunk

          If you took away thoughts of the strong dominating the weak then that explains a great deal about your political philosophy.

          The perversion of the commerce clause as well as the necessary and proper clause has nearly done away with the idea of limited government.

          If the Constitution of 1776 is out of date then we have the mechanism to amend it. Sadly no one wants to do it the right way. Government regulations of today make it nearly impossible for entrepreneurs to even get started let alone navigate the tough early years. Blaming insurance companies? Only those on the left could make such outrageous claims.

        • Sybella

          Are you aware she had lived under communism and was familiar with the damage unfettered government causes.

          On your earlier post, you mentioned what about the poor, weak, ill and infirm. If you read the book you are aware the government took care of them by taking from the rich. Apparently you didn’t see the damage that caused. Methinks it’s time for you to read it again. This time real all the words on all 1197 pages.

      • valley person

        On cost of energy, no one can make declining fossil fuels be perpetually cheap, even if one wanted to do so to help poor people and even if we cared nothing about the pollution that ensues. Besides that, if global warming proceeds, and if sea levels rise, there are over 100 million very poor people in Bangladesh who will pay the price. If its a matter of poor people in rich countries paying a bit more for electricity to help out much poorer people in other parts of the world, then ok. But we could choose to put the burden on the middle and upper classes. After all, its your party that is currently cutting subsidies for home heating oil.

        Government is not a parasite on the private sector. Government is a service provider to people, including private sector businesses. The private sector could not function minus people educated at public expense, a justice system operated at public expense, public sewer and water systems, a public military to protect sea lanes, public streets and highways to move commerce on, and a whole lot more.

        Government provides services: education, justice, physical and economic security. In a democracy people get to choose what services they want to have provided through government. Ayn Rand had zero concept of this. You also seem to have little concept or appreciation of it.

        • Steve Plunk

          If government is not a parasite why do they charge me for a service I do not receive? When asked they replied “because we can”. Liberals still harbor naive thoughts of a benevolent government here only to serve.

          • David Appell

            Steve Plunk wrote:
            > If government is not a parasite why do they charge me
            > for a service I do not receive?

            Steve, are you really this stupid?

            You are paying for the benefit of society-at-large. Moreover, lots of others are paying for services *you* receive but they do not. It is all for the common good. You can dispute that, and you can vote for candidates who support your position and you can even run for office yourself.

            But please don’t act like you have no idea what benefits you are getting from government that others are paying for. Some of us, at least, aren’t stupid.

          • Anonymous

            “Steve, are you really this stupid?”

            David, Steve and most of the other OC regulars really re that stupid. You can’t see the forest for the trees.

          • Steve Plunk

            Calling people stupid is not a contribution to the discussion. I may disagree with David and his ideas may be considered stupid but he is not. Until you contribute something of substance I can’t say about you, whoever you are.

          • Anonymous

            Was I talking to you? This was a private discussion between myself and David, and I’ll thank you to please mind your own business.

          • Steve Plunk

            David, I am responding to vp’s claim that government provides services for fee and the trend among local governments to subvert measure 5 limitations by charging fees rather than taxes. The city of Medford charges me a ‘fee’ for storm drains that do not exist on my street yet they claim it is not a tax. They provide no direct service so it is indeed a tax and a clear violation of measure 5. It’s complex to say the least.

            So no, I’m not stupid and you know it. If the government continues to use newspeak perhaps another novel will be up for discussion.

          • valley person

            The fee is for manaing the storm water on the street. All storm water does not go into pipes. Some of it goes into ditches which have to be maintained, and from there into detention basins that have to be maintained. Why do you think all this should be provided to you free of charge?

          • Valley person

            You failed to acknowledge any of the essential services government is providing you, and focused on some unmentioned service you are not getting. You apparently are a glass half empty kind of guy when it comes to government.

            I’ll tell you what Steve. The next time you call 911 ask them to send the parasites over in the red truck to save you sorry self.

          • Steve Plunk

            I pay taxes for those services. Tell me, if you only get part of a meal you pay for at a restaurant are you a half full kind of guy? I’m being forced to pay for something I’m not getting so my complaint is valid.

            I prepay through taxes for those guys to come and provide emergency services. None the less they are workers doing their job and must rely on a host to provide revenue to even exist. Once again the liberal argument is to take things to the extreme rather than deal with reality.

          • valley person

            Yes, we all pay taxes for services, so get off your high horse. That was my point. Service providers are not parasites.

            Rely on a host to exist? You’ve got a lot of nerve given that your business is totally dependent on public roads, rules of the road, and law enforcement. You drink the public water out of the tap and flush your crap into the public sewer system. You probably went to public schools and universities. Without all this you would have died of cholera before you hit 18. I think you are the one needing a reality check.

        • Taxmenomore

          none of these services are anything we want except safety.
          None.

          • David Appell

            Taxmenomore wrote:
            > none of these services are anything we want except safety.

            So then, you think you can do whatever you want, regardless of how it affects your neighbor — or how his/her actions affect you?

            You don’t care if others foul your air or pollute your water or alter your climate — only that you are “safe?” Is that what you are saying?

          • Valley person

            How would the cops get to your house when you call 911 without public roads?

          • Founding Fathers

            You don’t want safe products? Many products are much safer because of government regulation.

            You don’t want clear air and clean water? Both are much cleaner than they were 40 years ago because of government regulation.

            You don’t want a safe work environment? Workplace deaths are much lower than they used to be because of government regulation.

            You may not want those, but if we didn’t have those, you might not be around to enjoy your “freedom”.

        • Dean Apostile: On cost of energy, no one can make declining fossil fuels be perpetually cheap,
          JK: Are you completely ignorant of recent news? We have more energy in natural gas than Saudia Arabia has in oil and we have a couple hundred year supply of coal. We have vast new discoveries of domestic oil (even and BHO tries to shut down oil production and make the cost of energy skyrocket)

          All we have to do is shove some green idiots out of the way and we will have all of the energy we need. And cheap too.

          Please don’t try to feed me that “what will we do in a hundred years” crap.

          Please don’t try to claim that natural gas is not oil. It is now cheaper to make diesel out of natural gas than from oil.

          Thanks
          JK

          • Valley person

            Putting aside that you aren’t supposed to trust everything you read in the lamestream media, the price of natural gas is volatile and generally headed up, not down. So if we switched entirely to gas, we would pay more for energy, not less. As for coal, that puts us back to square one. Why bother with renewable energy if we don’t care about pollution? Unfortunately for you (or fortunately, though you resist) we do care about pollution, so increased coal burning is not going to happen. Especially not in Oregon. Our single coal plant is scheduled to close. Or don’t YOU read the papers?

          • Steve Plunk

            Jim,

            I have noticed the Left suddenly covers their ears and screams na-na-na-na-na-na when the recent changes in our energy outlook are brought up. Industry experts refer to the new gas reserves as a black swan event. Something unanticipated that will change preconceived notions and perhaps the world. That just doesn’t fit the peak oil, peak energy Malthusian dreams they have. They want nothing more than to see us change our way of life.

          • valley person

            A black swan event? How does the temporary availability of more gas change peak oil theory? Peak oil theory (which was limited to oil, but never mind) factors in temporary increases in extraction as a response to prices rising. More money allows more expensive extraction techniques. But it doesn’t put more oil in the ground.

            Malthusian dreams? Malthusian nightmares maybe. Not dreams.

            I don’t give a fig about your way of life. The problem is we share the same planet, so when your way of life impinges on mine I protest.

          • Steve Buckstein

            “I don’t give a fig about your way of life. The problem is we share the same planet, so when your way of life impinges on mine I protest.”

            Be careful here, Valley. I assume you’re protesting some people voluntarily purchasing limited petroleum products to fuel their car-dominated transportation lifestyles.

            It’s not much of a stretch to then admit that social conservatives have a valid concern about, say, gay marriage, which they believe “impinges” on heterosexual marriage. You may see this as a stretch, but I don’t think they will.

            I assert that neither of these protests should gain much currency in any political sense. If we live in a free society, then we should all grant others the right to their own way of life to the maximum extent possible. Want to kill, rob or defraud me, then, yes, I’ll protest and call on government to stop you. Short of those, we should all back off and live and let live, lest we end up reducing the quality of everyone’s life, including our own.

          • David Appell

            Steve Buckstein wrote:
            > It’s not much of a stretch to then admit that social conservatives
            > have a valid concern about, say, gay marriage, which they believe
            > “impinges” on heterosexual marriage.

            It comes down to evidence. Same-sex marriage has been in place in several states now for several years. What evidence is there that it is “impinging” on heterosexual marriage, however you want to define “impinge?”

            On the other hand, there is copious evidence for anthropogenic climate change.

          • David Appell

            Jim karlock wrote:
            > We have vast new discoveries of domestic oil….

            Not really:

            Washington Post, 3-24-11: “The U.S. government has estimated that there are 18 billion barrels of oil in the outer continental shelf of the lower 48 states that are off limits to development. That may sound like a lot, but it is only about 2.5 years of supply for the United States, and it would take several years to allocate leases and drill exploratory wells. Even if the estimated 10 billion barrels of oil in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge were available for development, today’s policy decisions would have no impact on gasoline supplies for as much as a decade.”
            https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/five-myths-about-gas-prices/2011/03/18/ABaUtbQB_story.html

            Science magazine, 3-25-11: “Despite a near tripling of world oil prices, non-OPEC production, which accounts for 60% of world output, hasn’t increased significantly since 2004. And many of those same experts, as well as some major oil companies, don’t see it increasing again — ever. In their view, it’s stuck on a flat-topped peak or plateau at present levels of production for another decade or so before starting to decline. “Stable [non-OPEC] production is the best we can hope for,” says energy economist Robert Kaufmann of Boston University. “I have trouble seeing it increase more. It’s a wake-up call.”

  • Manofaction

    People should quit reading and DO SOMETHING to get Oregon back on the path to capitalism. I fear it is already too late if the best we can do is read books and go to movies. Nothing is produced that way. Nothing of any value.
    Nothing.

    • Steve Buckstein

      Manofaction, of course reading and watching movies aren’t necessarily “the best we can do.” But, without reading how would you even know that capitalism is superior to every other economic system?

      Understanding economics and politics requires reading, watching and listening to those who have studied such issues. Probably many of the people you hope will “Do Something” to get Oregon back on the path to capitalism first understood its value by reading Atlas Shrugged. The movie will rekindle their interest and likely reenergize them to “do something.” And, for those who never read the book, the movie may just energize them too. That’s a very “productive” outcome.

    • Steve Buckstein

      Manofaction, of course reading and watching movies aren’t necessarily “the best we can do.” But, without reading how would you even know that capitalism is superior to every other economic system?

      Understanding economics and politics requires reading, watching and listening to those who have studied such issues. Probably many of the people you hope will “Do Something” to get Oregon back on the path to capitalism first understood its value by reading Atlas Shrugged. The movie will rekindle their interest and likely reenergize them to “do something.” And, for those who never read the book, the movie may just energize them too. That’s a very “productive” outcome.

      • David Appell

        Steve Buckstein wrote:
        > Probably many of the people you hope will “Do Something” to
        > get Oregon back on the path to capitalism first understood its
        > value by reading Atlas Shrugged.

        Yes, they did. And then they grew up.

        They realized that Rand had no empathy, and no concern, for the weak, for the sick, or for the handicapped.

        Then they learned that even Rand was not a superman, but in her needy years turned to government support — hiding her real name in the process.

        We have tried capitalism for about 200 yrs now. It has left many, many people behind — in the 1800s, in the early 1900s, and today. 50M+ Americans now have no health insurance — 1/6th of the country — and today’s crony capitalism has no answer to this problem.

        Conservatives like Steve Buckstein have absolutely no answer to this huge, immense problem. Clearly, they have theirs, and they could not care less about the plight of others.

        How much longer do you think businesses can adsorb health insurance premium increases of 10E%+ a year, when GDP is increasing at 2-3%/yr?

        Do the math.

        • Taxmenomore

          most are left behind by their own choice sadly

  • Bob T

    David Appell: “50M+ Americans now have no health insurance — 1/6th of the country”

    ‘Tis not capitalism that prodiced that result, but over-regulated medicine and health insurance. Look, when the government mandates so much minimum coverage, under the guise of helping the consumer, that policies are very expensive, you get lots of people who go without. Exacerbate that by the government not allowing individuals the same tax write-offs for individual policies that businesses have. All of this would be like
    the government being so concerned that people might get injured driving a tin can car that it mandates such high minimum safety designs that the cheapest car is $100,000.
    You’d then blame capitalism for our Third-worldish level of per-capita car ownership.

    Bob Tiernan
    Portland

    • David Appell

      Bob T wrote:
      > ‘Tis not capitalism that prodiced that result, but over-regulated
      > medicine and health insurance.

      This is bullshit. Insurance companies will not insure most Americans because they have pre-existing conditions — even something as minor as high blood pressure. Such people cannot buy health insurance anywhere…. and if insurance companies do offer such policies across state lines, they are so expensive as to be inaccessible.

      • Steve Plunk

        David, I thought you more sophisticated than that. Using foul language?

        The funny thing about our recent foray into health care reform is it does nothing to control costs but merely rearranges who pays for an ever more expensive system. That’s not going to help the poor for very long.

  • Rupert in Springfield

    Hopefully this will be a good movie, but I have to admit Im a little worried about the trilogy idea.

    For fans of Rand it will be interesting. For the silly set, the David Appells, it probably wont be worth seeing.

    The anti intellectual thought process of Rands critics never ceases to amaze. Perhaps thats the best lesson her writing taught. Did Rands concepts purport to answer every aspect of society? No, of course not, they never pretended to. Even Rands supporters have long pointed out that her theories never allowed a place for families for example. This is really obvious stuff. The fact that Rands detractors first think that this completely invalidates anything she ever said, and second that they have to have someone el;se point it out to them says a lot about the thoughtlessness of the left.

    Then again, when you have a crowd that can be so easily swayed by the global warming con, you know you arent exactly dealing with top shelf thinkers.

    Rand had some interesting ideas, They no more covered every aspect of humanity than windmills or solar panels. For brain dead fools to think they did says more about the reader than the writer.

    • Steve Buckstein

      “For fans of Rand it will be interesting. For the silly set, the David Appells, it probably wont be worth seeing.

      True, Rupert. Luckily for the “silly set”, Rand fans don’t advocate forcing them to spend their own money to watch the movie. If only they wouldn’t advocate forcing us to do all kinds of things, spend our own money on things we object to, etc. She had different terms for them…but she would know just what you’re talking about.

      • Rupert in Springfield

        >If only they wouldn’t advocate forcing us to do all kinds of things, spend our own money on things we object to

        Exactly – I have never had issue with Socialism, up to that point where they put a gun to my head to demand participation.

        When the time comes that a Capitalist puts a gun to someones head and orders them to start a business, I will regard both as equally evil.

        Until then, I should think that essential difference makes obvious why Socialism appeals to the totalitarian, Capitalism to he who wants to be left alone.

    • Valley person

      I don’t know who says nothing she said is not valid. There is little argument with the idea that individual initiative and private enterprise are crucial in solving problems and helping society progress. What people who are not Rand fans argue is that she missed half the equation. The part about people working together within a free, stable, democratic, sometimes messy political system. And part of that involves creation of economic security. She confused any measures to do the latter as totalitarianism, as do many on the right today. She, and I suspect you and Steve, have a hard time with shades of gray in politics and economics.

      Your crack on global warming being a prime example. You can’t accept the reality of it because it contradicts you faith in the free market.

      • Steve Buckstein

        valley, sorry but I see “shades of gray” all over the place. It’s just that, on balance, it’s still obvious to me that less coercion in society is better than more. Freer markets are better than controlled markets, or the faux markets that are so popular with big government fans.

        Of course Rand had her flaws; from my first introduction to her ideas I realized that I really liked them, but wasn’t so keen on meeting her. That compares to someone like Milton Friedman who was as personable as his ideas were powerful.

        But Rand’s personal flaws do nothing to detract from her ideas.

        • Valley person

          Its Rands ideas I have a problem with. I couldn’t care less about her personal virtues or flaws. Her ideas were crackpot. Its a shame they are still hanging around. They should have been buried alongside communism as 2 extremes that are equally lousy for people and societies.

      • Rupert in Springfield

        >I don’t know who says nothing she said is not valid.

        Did you actually write that sentence?

        I mean you seriously wrote that?

        Did you go to any school of any kind, at any age, for any period of time at all?

        >Your crack on global warming being a prime example. You can’t accept the reality of it because it contradicts you faith in the free market.

        Again, did you just write this?

        The free market has nothing to do with whether AGW is scientifically true or not thus is irrelevant. I reject AGW for three reasons –

        A – It does not hold up to repeatability of experiment,

        B – The primary proponents of the belief system act in direct contradiction to the way one would expect were such beliefs true,

        C – Solutions proposed to remedy AGW, even if true, are ludicrous both in their intellectuality and their clear design to enrich the few under cover of hoax.

        None of that has anything to do with the free market. However your confusion on such a thing would be another example of why, clinically, I think you would be considered an idiot.

        • Valley person

          Careful where you cast garbled syntax stones Rupert. You of all people should not go there. Your Yoda moments are legendary and are forever recorded on the net.

          But I’ll try to write more clearly just for you. Its your faith in the free market that prevents you from accepting the science of global warming. Its not the free market that prevents your acceptance.

          Se how the difference? Your “faith in” versus “the market”?

          There is no planet sized experiment for global warming. The variables that have been isolated all point to the conclusion that the earth is warming due to a buildup of greenhouse gasses do to actions by people. Every major scientific body on the planet has said so, and they are not waiting for a planet scale laboratory. What do actual scientists know that you don’t? A lot. They don’t care how big Al Gore’s house is or how often he flies. They don’t factor this into their calculations. You do. Enough said.

          Solutions proposed (from a proper syntax standpoint by the way, you have that backwards. It should be Proposed solutions, but never mind) are ludicrous? No Rupert, ignoring reality is ludicrous. Or to put it your way, Ludicrous is to ignore reality. Solar panels on a rooftop, even imperfect solar panels that cost more than one can make up in savings in several decades, are not ludicrous. But one person putting solar collectors up and expecting to dent global warming is ludicrous. That is why it takes public policies that encourage many people to act.

          A market that fails to charge for planetary pollution distorts price signals. It passes costs on to others present and future. Look this up in econ 101.

    • Steve Plunk

      Rupert, I doubt the movie will be good unfortunately. The story is complex, there’s little room for special effects, and ultimately it will depress people as they see what’s going on around them. It’s sad too that people will use any failure of the movie as proof of Rand’s ideas deserving the trash bin. I hope I’m wrong and it’s a success.

  • Jack Roberts

    I’d love to see a movie version of Atlas Shrugged. I still agree, however, with the critical review of the book written by Whitaker Chambers in National Review at the time it was written. He realized that Rand’s militant atheism reduced her form of meritocratic libertarianism to a soulless, joyless pursuit of self-interest that ultimately becomes unsatisfactory. I’m sure Chamber’s would not have been surprised by the later revelations about Rand’s personal life.

    • Steve Plunk

      Of course now that Rand’s ideas have been tempered with the wisdom of good Americans over the decades they make more sense and are much more palatable. Like many great ideas refinement does them wonders.

  • Bob T

    Bob T:

    ‘Tis not capitalism that prodiced that result, but over-regulated
    medicine and health insurance.

    David Appell:

    This is bullshit. Insurance companies will not insure most Americans because they have pre-existing conditions — even something as minor as high blood pressure. Such people cannot buy health insurance anywhere…. and if insurance companies do offer such policies across state lines, they are so expensive as to be inaccessible.

    Bob T:

    You sound silly by saying that people “cannot” get insurance if they have
    so-called pre-existing conditions, and then make a claim about how
    expensive it would be if they could.

    But anyway, nothing you said counters the points I made about medical insurance
    and the government micro-management (not capitalism) that has turned it into
    what it is.

    As for the comment you made this time, of course you can get insurance if you
    already have one or more conditions or illnesses. It will cost more, or course. Keep
    in mind that medical insurance as government has redesigned it is not really
    insurance by pre-paid medical care. You seem to think that insurance companies
    exist to have people hand them $100 and then demand $300 in return, for
    everything. Insurance was never meant to be something to pay for routine doctor
    visits and various other things that are far from catastrophic. If auto insurance
    was the same way, with coverage for oil changes, and flat tires, and anti-freeze
    changes, it’d be very expensive. But it’s not.

    You also seem to have this same belief shared by many progressive types who believe
    that, oddly, businesses are in business to NOT make money, i.e. to not sell anything
    to anyone. If government ends the mandates for health insurance policies, there
    will be demand for all sorts of policies covering everything from one single item such
    as strokes, to a multitude of things all picked from a list by the consumer. But the
    government pretty much prevents that, and people like you then blame the market
    for why policies are so expensive.

    Knowing even a little about economics is preferable to repeating soundbites, don’t
    you think?

    Bob Tiernan
    Portland

    • valley person

      Yes, one can always get insurance at a price. But if the price is beyond one’s means, then one cannot get it, a fact that is true for tens of millions of Americans today. An unregulated insurance market would be great news for every charlatan who would offer to sell you a policy they couldn’t possibly back up. A thousand Bernie Maddoffs would step right up. Policies would be very cheap and worth even less than that, so we might have more people with insurance and even fewer with actual health care. Great solution Bob.

      Knowing a little bit about sales pitches is also preferable to soundbites.

      FYI…many progressive types, including yours truly, not only get that most businesses need to make money, we are in business ourselves and we make money, so please drop it.

  • Steve Buckstein

    UPDATE 3-25: The movie will open at Regal Fox Tower Stadium 10 theater Downtown Portland April 15th. Follow details on Facebook here:
    https://www.facebook.com/event.php?eid=192694567436116&ref=ts

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