There’s no reason to reinvent the wheel. I have read many books over the last four decades, but the author that is specifically American and deals specifically with the evils of our present time is Ayn Rand. Books like hers would not be produced by any other culture other than an American one, and the specific challenges we have now are addressed in those works, so it’s the quickest way to get people to what they need to know by referring them to her. I was delighted when President Trump was elected because, in many ways, I felt he was the main character from The Fountainhead and that America would prosper quite a lot by having an Ayn Rand type of hero in the White House. Ayn Rand fans have found my Gunfighter’s Guide blog site a safe place to think about big things for many years. The people I get along with most are people of the Objectivist philosophy, a branch of philosophy created by Ayn Rand, which I would say is a natural evolution of thought going back to well before Plato in Greece. It helped that Ayn Rand came from Russia, where communism ruined her life and the lives of everyone she knew. Fleeing to America, she had a platform to express those disappointments, and that became her great American novels. Most of all, Ayn Rand identified a very treacherous enemy, which I would simplify as the great fight between the lazy and the ambitious. Most of the world’s governments are in a fight to appease the lazy while profiting on the ambitious efforts, including parasites like the Davos crowd who want the same without the burden of even being in a government. But that’s not to say I agree with everything Ayn Rand said or did. For quite a long time, I have been doing my own thing that requires some explanation that many are having when they talk to me, as they have been lately very ambitiously, about Atlas Shrugged because it is so relevant to the world we see today.
I have several problems with Ayn Rand; first of all, she was an atheist. While that can bring a fresh perspective to a way of thinking, the lack of spiritual curiosity is too rigid for me. I have my own philosophy going on; I would never count myself an Objectivist or a disciple of Ayn Rand, which is why I’m not more involved in the various groups that evolved out of Ayn Rand. Too many people who call themselves Objectivists are just as religiously rigid in dedication to her as Christian people are to Jesus Christ. I have a problem with group behavior in general; all of them have the problem of insisting that their point of view of the world is the final nail in a coffin. Any challenge to their superiority results in conflict. In Ayn Rand’s case, her supporters tend to like to mimic the events of the book, to Strike against the world and deny it of their talents, hiding in some remote places in society and letting everything fall apart. That is my main problem with Atlas Shrugged; it’s built on the premise of Striking, which I am against in every way that you can imagine. I am a person who is against limits to my ambition, and I propose to fight those who get in my way instead of running away from them. I write my own books, and my latest, The Gunfighter’s Guide to Business, is my argument that it is far better to be a Gunfighter than an Objectivist in society. Ayn Rand came late to the American experiment while it was under attack by global socialism pushes. In history, America had done great things long before she came along, even though our educations have sought to remove that evidence from our eyes. Essentially, the gunfighter mentality of western expansion was an approach that worked and should further be projected to the world at large instead of all this “striking” business. It’s like some wife that is trying to convince her husband into something she wants him to do by denying him sex. Withdrawing work in our society is not a solution, I would say we need to fight for our right to be productive, not to yield to the forces that are trying to shut it all down.
There were characters in Ayn Rand’s books who refused to the very end to hide from the parasites of existence, but my view of the entire effort is that it’s a feminine one. Women look at conflict differently than men do, biologically. I see no reason to yield to the lazy just so they don’t rob my existence, and that is essentially the plot of Atlas Shrugged. Deny the world of your great effort until they say uncle and beg you to return to society to save them. Because by themselves, they will choke and destroy their lives. Then there was the problem with Objectivists over the Trump Presidency. He was too compromising to be the uncompromising figures from The Fountainhead. Ultimately, Objectivists had a problem with him as a person. That is where I separated myself from them during 2015 and 2016. Instead, I found the game of Poker and the smell of gunpowder to be much more effective in doing the same, in protecting the integrity of the ambitious while knocking down the efforts of the lazy to loot off the productive. When dealing with people with all types of backgrounds, we can’t afford to be rigid. It’s like landing in some foreign country and expecting them to know your home language. You have to adjust your thought to the people capable of considering it, and by such measures, you can win over everyone. Ayn Rand’s run and hide suggestion don’t appeal to me. I prefer 100% of the time to stand and fight. And I’ll fight over anything and everything. But to me, that fight is more like winning at Poker with all the skills needed to win each round than in surrendering integrity to the masses.
With all that said, there isn’t a better story out there than Atlas Shrugged at identifying our times’ problems. Where I disagree with Ayn Rand and Objectivists in general, it’s really a matter of strategy. But to understand the issues we are dealing with, which is why we are talking about Ayn Rand again a year into the Biden administration, which is ripped essentially straight from the pages of Atlas Shrugged, Ayn Rand is a great place to start. I would blame her rigidity in thought, her either-or approach to things on being a European immigrant who never fully recovered from what the Soviet Union did to her family. She became a libertarian in America, supportive of loose sex and drugs, and had a rigid political view which formed her concept of Atlantis in the book. Many of her followers are looming out there, disconnected from the problems of our times as much as they can be. They will not help the Biden administration have success off their efforts. They will Strike and let him die on the vine. But for me, that is a boring way to approach this problem. I much more respect the attitude of Andrew Jackson, who would dual anybody in a gunfight at the slightest provocation, and in essence, brought our government under a proper kind of control for the first time since the creation of the Constitution. President Trump reminds me a lot of President Jackson; he’s just as combative, just not with guns. But it is in that attitude I see its best to eliminate the enemies from our lives. And it’s the position I have with my Gunfighter’s Guide. Playing Poker with the enemy and taking all their money and power is much better than running and hiding. But Ayn Rand is a great place to start for the person looking for answers about why things are the way they are.