The subject of Thursday’s (8 p.m., Eastern Time) “Stossel” on the Fox Business Network will be the novel “Atlas Shrugged”. There will be interviews with leading Objectivists including Dr. Yaron Brook.
Atlas Shrugged sales are going through the roof as of the economic crisis. In 2008, an all time high of 200,000 copies were sold. People find some similarities between the novel and the present happenings. When Ayn Rand was asked “Is Atlas Shrugged a prophetic novel or a historical one?” she replied “If some people believe that Atlas Shrugged is a historical novel, this means that it was a successful prophecy.” One has to agree.
As Richard Salsman pointed out, “altruism” is the root of the present economic crisis. . Subsidies doled out to prop up failing businesses are a classic case of robbing productive individuals to “help” the incompetent. Politicians are trying to solve these problems through more and more controls, not paying attention to the fact that it was controls which led to the crisis in the first place. Controls breed further controls. It is easy to blame the free market and “greed”, but it should be obvious that the problem is much deeper. (The heroes of Atlas Shrugged were branded “greedy”.) If people had understood the ideas put forward in the “Atlas Shrugged”, the world would have saved a lot of pain.
Laws to promote house ownership for the poor were the root cause of the housing bubble. George Bush said in a speech in 2002: “We use the mighty muscle of the Federal Government in combination with State and local governments to encourage owning your own home. That’s what that means. And it means – it means that each of us – each of us – have a responsibility in the great country to put something greater than ourselves – to promote something greater than ourselves.” We must be “unified in service to the greater good”, said Obama. One is tempted to quote John Galt, “Why do you shrink in horror from the sight of the world around you? That world is not the product of your sins; it is the product and the image of your virtues.”