Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Atlas Shrugged: Real Life Edition II

So I have been saying since I started Atlas Shrugged that I was finding it so interesting that everything I was reading in the book, I would hear a politician say the same thing the next day and vice versa. Yesterday I am watching this administration telling the American people that they do not want to run GM and then I open Atlas Shrugged to read almost the same quotes—it's crazy!

The following is an excerpts from Atlas Shrugged,© Copyright, 1957, by Ayn Rand. Pages 898-891 and CBS News Obama: We Don't Want To Run GM

This is the part of the book towards the end when the looters(politicians) want to take over the steel companies - The Steel Unification Plan. 
Obama (yesterday) - "But I also recognized the importance of a viable auto industry to the well-being of families and communities across our industrial Midwest and across the United States. In the midst of a deep recession and financial crisis, the collapse of these companies would have been devastating for countless Americans, and done enormous damage to our economy -- beyond the auto industry."

Looters (Atlas Shrugged) - "The country's economy would not be able to stand a major dislocation at the present moment. There are thousands of Bolye's workers, suppliers and customers. What would happen to them if Associated Steel went bankrupt?"

Obama - "So let me explain as clearly as possible why we are making this investment. We inherited a financial crisis unlike any that we've seen in our time. This crisis crippled private capital markets and forced us to take steps in our financial system -- and with our auto companies -- that we would not have otherwise even considered. These steps have put our government in the unwelcome position of owning large stakes in private companies for the simple and compelling reason that their survival and the success of our overall economy depend on it.

Understand we're making these investments not because I want to spend the American people's tax dollars, but because I want to protect them. Instead of taking so much stock in GM, we could have simply offered the company more loans. But for years, GM has been buried under an unsustainable mountain of debt. And piling an irresponsibly large debt on top of the new GM would mean simply repeating the mistakes of the past. So we are acting as reluctant shareholders -- because that is the only way to help GM succeed."

Looters - "Mr. Boyle is an extremely able man. It's just that he's suffered some unfortunate reverse, quite beyond his control. He had invested large sums in a public-spirited copper crash of theirs has dealt him a severe financial blow. So it's only a matter of giving him a chance to recover, a helping hand to bridge the gap, a bit of temporary assistance, nothing more. All we have to do is just equalize the sacrifice—then everybody will recover and prosper."
Obama - "What I have no interest in doing is running GM"
Hank Rearden in Atlas Shrugged turns to the looters and tells them that they should take over his mills and run them. The looters response:
"Oh No!" gasped Mouch. 
"We wouldn't think of it!" cried Holloway.
"We stand for free enterprise!" cried Dr. Ferris
Look I cannot make this stuff up, it is an interesting time we live in. There are unfortantly a ton of examples like this, this is just what I came across last night while reading. I would recommend anyone to read the book. I am going to have a Atlas Shrugged give away soon so if you want to wait, but I would suggest purchasing...I think they are going on ebay for like $8 - great book for the summer!

Here is a link to Atlas Shrugged on amazon. Am I crazy? What are your thoughts on this, leave a comment


  1. I wonder what Ayn Rand would have to say about 2008-2009?

  2. David - she is rolling over in her grave as we speak

  3. The frightening thing is, is not so much the apocalyptic slope we're on is turning out to echo Rand, but that we have a textbook for it that for 50 years that has been largely ingored. Folks need only heed it, and man up to taking back their liberties.

    Else, we're going to relocate to Galt's Gulch.

  4. Ay yes, Atlas Shrugged is so epic, and addictive. Great post here. Yeah, I wonder what characters all the current politicians and financiers would be? The difference now, though, is that these two "extremes" have become blurred since Rand's time. CEOs now who aren't acting like CEOs and politicians in it for the money, etc. etc.