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Thread: Ayn Rand

  1. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by Lark View Post
    Rand herself I cant read, her novels are bad and her philosophy reads a little worse than Lenin in its myopia but Samuel Brittan, a UK hardline capitalist who supported Thatcher but also has interesting perspectives on Keynes too, made a good case in one of his books for reading Rand because she provides, almost in characture, a counterweight to much cultural and literary attack upon selfishness.

    As I understand it Rand doesnt simply rage against communism, which is only the latest incarnation of what she hated, but religion also, the idea of self-sacrifice was anathema to her and the very best, which I would suggest is too generous, you could say about her ideas is that she wanted to create a world without sacrifice.

    I believe that everyone has a vision of the good but problems arise when they are myopic or blinkered and Rand was acknowledgely and deliberately so.
    I honestly wonder if she felt frequently attacked by other people as a child or something, and this increased an intense sensation in her of needing to be in self-protective and self-preservation mode. It just all seems so paranoid to me. "OTHER PEOPLE ARE OUT TO TAKE THINGS THEY'RE ALL LAZY BUMS WHO WON'T WORK THEY ARE GOING TO TAKE THINGS AWAY FROM ME AND ALL OF THE OTHER HARD WORKING PEOPLE ARRRRRGH!!!"

  2. #22
    Senior Member Santosha's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Thisica View Post
    I have heard a bit recently about Rand, especially in the United States after the 2007-8 financial crisis. As I don't know much about her ideas: what sort of ideas coming from her are particularly attractive to people?
    In essence, Rands philosophy is the concept of a man as a heroic being, with his own happiness as the moral purpose of his life, with productivity and achievement as his noblest activity, and reason as his only absolute.

    Everyones idea of heroic being, happiness, moral purpose, achievement, and reason, varies. I wouldn't rely on forum comments to decide how you think or feel about these things. Read the books.
    Man suffers only because he takes seriously what the gods made for fun - Watts

  3. #23
    Senior Member sculpting's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cascadeco View Post
    Is it strange that I actually agreed with many of her descriptions, because I thought it was true they probably came/come across that way to many, and in really entrenched-filled-with-red-tape-and-protocol organizations, it can become a reality? And, too, there are certainly individuals such as she caricatured who are hypocritical and who are rather as she portrayed them; I think you're correct though that she's disregarding or unaware of their core/actual motivations - and how they're quite different from her own. She's just viewing from the outside and judging from her own lens; but, doesn't mean in some cases her lens isn't more accurate than not.

    I agree her generalizations were very skewed, but I also think there is truth in her vision/view; which is why I was so intensely bothered by it. I think it was this underlying truth that made me so horribly depressed while reading both books; well, I should say that I remember really liking The Fountainhead (as did my infj friend), and agreeing with a lot of her premises. It didn't bother me. However Atlas Shrugged (which isn't so much a novel as a repetitious expounding of her philosophy such that you could easily remove 500 pages of repeated rants) ... Atlas Shrugged threw me into a terrible multi-month funk. I'm not kidding. It just depressed me so much, having to figure out the nuggets of truth in her premises and the sheer falsehoods where she was blind to/ignoring certain things, or just plain... skewed and projecting -- as you say, Orobas.

    In the end it's her own vision/perception of reality; some of it is true, or there are kernals of truth that need to be woven into a more complete vision. The rest of it? I had to purge from my system so that it didn't leave mucky residue within me.
    It is a very dark vision, i agree. When i read it, i think I was dealing with some of the more negative aspect of the EXTPs and ISFJs I work with. My work is not a healthy place at all, so they are all functioning in very stressful, very dark, self protective ways. I could see the patterns mirror over into what she saw and I sort of felt relieved that I wasnt totally bonkers. Given I was also in a very dark, immature Te-Si sort of place myself, due to stress, I could even buy into and identify the frustrations she felt at what she saw around her. However, I have the benefit of being able to ask others to explain their perspectives and understand that those patterns of behavior that can seem so foreign to me at times, and even a bit distasteful, are actually very reasonable and feel right to the people who are using them to defend themselves-we each have a right to be judged by our own standards I guess? So her's were not the correct ones apply to those people she described.

    Hehe, i totally skipped the 500 rants in Atlas shrugged altogether. I must say I found it quite hysterical though when all the INTJs skipped town and moved to a hidden valley in Colorado-WTF? *snickers* I do have to admit though, that under Te stress, sometimes I will feel like throwing up my hands and just giving up, so oddly I get the notion-kinda like throwing a little temper tantrum of "oh, you dont appreciate the hammer fisted, Te driven, duct tape approach to getting answers? Fine, I'll just go pout then and not help at all" *pouts* It is something negative I am actually working to improve on in myself, as it is a bit childish.

    But what can be VERY funny is that i will be chatting with an INTJ and hear almost exactly a saying out of her books pop out of their mouths. Ne, my curse.

  4. #24
    Senior Member Nicodemus's Avatar
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  5. #25
    Senior Member sculpting's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Savage Idealist View Post
    Perhaps she had some knowledge of Jung and purposely impemented it into her writing?

    I agree that she is INTJ. But her whole philosophy is largely reactionary, taking a completely opposite stance to communism in general. And while I agree that individualism is good in that can encourage people to be independent, there is little reason to embrace it the way she did.

    I doubt it. I'm a Fi-Te user and her philosophy is not something that I could live by, and I imagine many other Te-Fi users would agree.
    I dont think she knew anything about jung. I also would argue her response wasnt reactionary-it is exceptionally well thought out and formulated, just not really correct, flawed due to not enough data. Now-it does look like the type of Fi response you will see in an INTJ. Whatever Fi values they have, they will defend to the grave, come hell or high water. I guess some INTJs can be die hard sexist or racist or religious or antireligious or whatever, but the value they pick, they keep.

    Also-not saying people would willingly buy into her philosophy at all-I am purely just speaking to the remote chance of it being at all functional as a system-not being accepted as a system. Since it denies the Fi contribution you see in FPs, i suspect it still would not be accepted as a way of life for most folks.

    EDIT-I do say I kinda dig her though, but recognize the inherent flaws in her reasoning due to the lack of data, thus you take the writings with a grain of salt just as food for thought.

  6. #26
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    Quote Originally Posted by Huxley3112 View Post
    In essence, Rands philosophy is the concept of a man as a heroic being, with his own happiness as the moral purpose of his life, with productivity and achievement as his noblest activity, and reason as his only absolute.

    Everyones idea of heroic being, happiness, moral purpose, achievement, and reason, varies. I wouldn't rely on forum comments to decide how you think or feel about these things. Read the books.
    I'll be honest with you and say that this sounds much more like Eric Fromm, the socialist, than Ayn Rand, the, well, I'm not even sure that capitalist covers it but anyway...

    Before reading Rand and considering her the only paragon of balanced individualism versus some kind of neurotic giving or self-sacrificing crippling persona I'd check out Fromm's Man For Himself (as in "every man for himself") and get a much more balanced picture.
    All for ourselves, and nothing for other people, seems, in every age of the world, to have been the vile maxim of the masters of mankind.
    Chapter IV, p. 448. - Adam Smith, Book 3, The Wealth of Nations

    whether or not you credit psychoanalysis itself, the fact remains that we all must, to the greatest extent possible, understand one another's minds as our own; the very survival of humanity has always depended on it. - Open Culture

  7. #27
    Senior Member Thisica's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Marmie Dearest View Post
    Please don't insult INTJs that way. Thanks.
    I'm insulted, too!

    Oh well...Her ideas seem quite attractive, but to be frank, they are based on assumptions which turn out to be rather simplistic. Self-interestedness we can be, but it can't be the whole story, because an harmonious society requires some cooperation between its members.
    “To explain all nature is too difficult a task for any one man or even for any one age. 'Tis much better to do a little with certainty, & leave the rest for others that come after you, than to explain all things by conjecture without making sure of any thing.”—Statement from unpublished notes for the Preface to the Opticks (1704) by Newton.

    What do you think about me? And for the darker side, here.

  8. #28
    ^He pronks, too! Magic Poriferan's Avatar
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    Ayn Rand's moral philosophy promotes the tragedy of the commons.
    Go to sleep, iguana.

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    Live and let live will just amount to might makes right

  9. #29
    Senior Member tinker683's Avatar
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    I've read both the Foundtainhead and Atlas Shrugged and actually liked the 2nd book. The first one I had a bunch of gripes about the main character and the way the story ended but that's me.

    She had some ideas that I really liked. I liked the idea of two people treating each other as traders, both equals seeking to trade skills/time/whatever and refusing to be either a master or a slave. I liked that she railed against what I believe she called "sanctioning the victim" which is when a deadbeat basically argues that it's the producers moral responsibility to provide because he makes more/is more skilled/whatever and tries to use his own sense of compassion (or his own virtues) into manipulating him or her to take advantage of them.

    Aside from that, a lot of what she wanted to do was very idealistic (which is useful in it's own way) but wouldn't have any real application in the real world insofar as I can see.

    Bottom line: Read the books and make up your own mind. You may like it or you may hate it.
    "The man who is swimming against the stream knows the strength of it."
    ― Woodrow Wilson

  10. #30
    Certified Sausage Smoker Elfboy's Avatar
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    Ayn Rand FTW! listen to her for yourself. she's a genious

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