I read Atlas at 14 and thought it was profound. I tried reading it again five years later and after about thirty pages threw it in the trash.

Rand is tragically easy to deconstruct; her family had been upper middle class in Russia and got taken down a peg by the Bolsheviks. The remainder of her life was a reaction to that.

Her “philosophy” is even easier. Take Marxism (more correctly, a simplified stereotype of it), stick a negative sign in front of it, call it something new.

Rand was a desperately sick woman and the simple mindedness of her ideas attracts generations of simpleminded people. There is an interview with Mike Wallace available on YouTube and it’s worth a watch but if you see the whole thing then you’ve a stronger stomach than mine.

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