Atlas Shrugged full movie now available

Unfortunately, just because it's out doesn't mean it's worth watching.

I'm only a few minutes in, but am already pretty disappointed. Moves really fast and the actors are seemingly awful (also, they don't know how to walk naturally, it's really fucking weird).

Anyway, I'll just leave this here. Would love to know what you guys think.

Edit: YouTube link no longer works, here's Megavideo

Comments (118)

Nov 6, 2011

if ayn rand would have seen this, she would have rolled over in her grave...

Nov 6, 2011
esbanker:

if ayn rand would have seen this, she would have rolled over in her grave...

why would she roll in her grave if she was alive?

Money Never Sleeps? More like Money Never SUCKS amirite?!?!?!?

Nov 6, 2011

I already watched this a few days ago. Its not an all around bad movie. This is only the first part, there are supposedly two to follow later this year. If i had to rate this part, I would give it a 3.9/5 stars. I won't say anything about the movie, but the ending certainly leaves you wondering and wanting to see the next series. Oh yea, and having read the book helps(to say the book is better, is an understatement)....

Nov 6, 2011

It's not absolutely terrible, it just could have been so much better. It is such a great piece of intellectual property (Rand's writing style aside), it seems like a waste.

If this producer was smart, they'd sell the production rights to a major studio. Then again, most of Hollywood is pretty far left leaning. I think Clint Eastwood might be the only director who leans right/libertarian.

I can hope somebody eventually makes a great movie from the book. It is long overdue.

Nov 6, 2011

Is every decent book going to be converted into a movie? If there were any semi interesting and well known novels I wouldn't care to see as movies they would be Ayn Rands. How do you capture the complexity of the characters and discern the pertinent topics of a 900 page book. Horrible idea, anyone associated with this film should evaluate their decision making process.

Nov 6, 2011

Torrent will make your life much easier.

As for the movie, I will watch soon as I just finished reading it and must write 20 pages on it tonight. If you read the wiki you will understand why it's criticized. Looks like production has been hell for numerous years.

If the glove don't fit, you must acquit!

Nov 6, 2011

who is this ayn rand? she the one who wrote all those vampire books in the '90s?

Nov 6, 2011
ivoteforthatguy:

who is this ayn rand? she the one who wrote all those vampire books in the '90s?

haha

Nov 6, 2011

Any torrent links? They took this video down literally when I was in the middle of watching it.

Nov 6, 2011
the_red_baron:

Any torrent links? They took this video down literally when I was in the middle of watching it.

Fixed that, let me know if it's working properly.

"Millionaires don't use astrology, billionaires do"

Nov 6, 2011

I agree, the movie is palatable but doesn't do an ounce of justice to the unabridged novel.

Personally, I'd love to see a good movie adaptation. However, I'm highly skeptical that it can be done. Since most of my fellow Americans have the attention span of a monkey strung out on blow...this watered down version is probably the best we are going to get.

Nov 6, 2011
RagnarDanneskjold:

I agree, the movie is palatable but doesn't do an ounce of justice to the unabridged novel.

Personally, I'd love to see a good movie adaptation. However, I'm highly skeptical that it can be done. Since most of my fellow Americans have the attention span of a monkey strung out on blow...this watered down version is probably the best we are going to get.

exactly my thoughts about the american psycho movie.

Nov 6, 2011
ivoteforthatguy:
RagnarDanneskjold:

I agree, the movie is palatable but doesn't do an ounce of justice to the unabridged novel.

Personally, I'd love to see a good movie adaptation. However, I'm highly skeptical that it can be done. Since most of my fellow Americans have the attention span of a monkey strung out on blow...this watered down version is probably the best we are going to get.

exactly my thoughts about the american psycho movie.

Dayum son. Sounds like I need to read American Psycho next.

"Millionaires don't use astrology, billionaires do"

Nov 6, 2011

Garbage in, garbage out. What did you guys expect?

"...all truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident."

  • Schopenhauer
Nov 7, 2011

My coworkers went to go see it because they're very conservative. The general response was a resounding meh.

I figure the source material probably doesn't translate well to the silver screen, so you get the situation my flixster app is giving me:

95% of users liked it
8% of critics liked it.

So if you like Ayn Rand a lot, you'll enjoy it.

Nov 7, 2011

I saw it and thought it sucked. The acting was subpar and the story was less than interesting. Haven't read the book though hopefully I can soon.

Nov 7, 2011

I haven't seen it yet, but the $10mm budget scares me. The trailers looked like the acting would be sub par, I like talk-y movies so I bet I will like it if the acting isn't too bad.

Reality hits you hard, bro...

Nov 7, 2011

On that note, the Fountainhead (1949 movie) is great and has fantastic actors like Gary Cooper and Patricia Neal.

Reality hits you hard, bro...

Nov 7, 2011

Nice, thanks for the heads up MMB. And I've heard from a few fellow Rand fans that the movie blew donkey chesticles.

Nov 7, 2011

They didn't do too bad of a job considering the $10mm budget and rushed filming schedule. Some of the acting was weak tho. The end scene when Dagny was screaming at the fire was cheesy.

Making money is art and working is art and good business is the best art - Andy Warhol

Nov 6, 2011

Couple more programming notes here:

1.) Anyone else feel guilty about the irony that we're pirating a movie whose central theme discusses the dangers of a freeloading society?

2.) Anyone else annoyed by how fat Ellis Wyatt is? From the description in the book, I imagined him to look like this (Conrad Hilton in Mad Men):

Image and video hosting by TinyPic

"Millionaires don't use astrology, billionaires do"

Nov 7, 2011

I'm gonna see it...mainly because of the number that you are not talking about- the 86% audience rating. Critics generally hate movies that espouse conservative or non-liberal values....aka they love Bowling for Columbine but not a pro-Gun movie.

I would understand if it sucked because of its low budget, but from what I've heard from people- it's actually good.

Reality hits you hard, bro...

Nov 7, 2011

The trailers were pretty shitty

Nov 7, 2011
turtles:

The trailers were pretty shitty

U MAD BRO?

Nov 7, 2011

The trailer I saw looked pretty good.

Is hating on movie trailers the next bubble?

Nov 7, 2011

huh this film's looks like its going have a Wall Street like effect on some younger souls....

Nov 7, 2011

.

Nov 7, 2011

looks good if ur a conservative
looks like a piece of *** if ur a liberal

IVY for Life

Nov 7, 2011

I might see this so I can feel like a semi-intellectual.

Nov 7, 2011

Just saw it and while it could have been better I think they did a fair job considering the $10 million financing and a short filming period. You have to remember that idea novels like this are going to have a hard time transitioning to movies by that very virtue. There are no Michael Bay explosions or homo-erotic vampires chasing each other. The acting could have been better but the actors playing Dagny and Hank did well. Lilian was every bit a bitch as I imagined her. My main objection was that the movie didn't convey the hostility towards entrepreneurs/business people that the book did.

Making money is art and working is art and good business is the best art - Andy Warhol

Nov 7, 2011

Anyone have a safe link to this movie where I can watch it?

Nov 7, 2011

I would hold off on watching it before you finish The Fountainhead and then Atlas Shrugged. I don't think it's possible to capture those books on film- there's simply no way to do so without losing what made them so unique. And side note- you do not need to be liberal or conservative to read these books and enjoy them.

"You stop being an asshole when it sucks to be you." - IlliniProgrammer

Nov 6, 2011

I loved the book but walked out of the movie (which I rarely do). It's not that I was upset that it didn't do justice to the book, it was just a really bad movie

Nov 7, 2011

I can't stand Atlas Shrugged. The pseudophilosophical book for people who believe they created all their accomplishments in a vacuum and owe nothing to society. Complete trash.

Nov 7, 2011
monkeysama:

I can't stand Atlas Shrugged. The pseudophilosophical book for people who believe they created all their accomplishments in a vacuum and owe nothing to society. Complete trash.

I will prob respond to any critical responses...lol. You are aware that Ayn Rand did not espouse not giving to charity or anything. Everything was supposed to be done in one's self interest and for someone's benefit. So if you derive any utility from giving $$$ to the poor (most people derive a moral/religious satisfaction from it) you can do so. The government shouldn't force you to do anything. (I'm certain that someone will bring up Rand's atheism, she didn't espouse elimination of religion [although she thought it was a huge scam and corrupt] she didn't want it to have any basis in the government- as it should be)

Reality hits you hard, bro...

Nov 7, 2011
monkeysama:

I can't stand Atlas Shrugged. The pseudophilosophical book for people who believe they created all their accomplishments in a vacuum and owe nothing to society. Complete trash.

+1

'Oh, yeah, that's right. That's what's it's all about, all right. But talkin' about it and bein' it, that's two different things.'

Nov 7, 2011
monkeysama:

I can't stand Atlas Shrugged. The pseudophilosophical book for people who believe they created all their accomplishments in a vacuum and owe nothing to society. Complete trash.

And it is one of the most poorly written books to reach its level of prestige.

I am not cocky, I am confident, and when you tell me I am the best it is a compliment.
-Styles P

Nov 7, 2011
Ayn Rand:

It is morally proper to accept help, when it is offered, not as a moral duty, but as an act of good will and generosity, when the giver can afford it (i.e., when it does not involve self-sacrifice on his part), and when it is offered in response to the receiver's virtues, not in response to his flaws, weaknesses or moral failures, and not on the ground of his need as such.

Reality hits you hard, bro...

Nov 7, 2011

+1

Didnt even know a movie was being made, but loved the book. Few books have ignited such emotion in my while I was reading it.

Nov 7, 2011

I'm really looking forward to this movie. I had considered Atlas Shrugged one of those books that could never be made into a quality film that was faithful to the book, due to Hollywood's extreme lefty biases. However, from reading the website for the movie, it seems that the directors and producers are intent on staying true to Rand's message. I hope it comes across on film.

Also of note, this movie only covers the first third of the book - there will be at least 1 or 2 more films after this one.

Nov 7, 2011

Except, for the most part, the utility of the rich is not to give to the poor. They would rather live in gated communities and send their kids to private schools than make sure the police force is adequate and the public schools are well maintained. That is because if they can help themselves with a 1 percent incremental gain for a dollar spent versus a 20 percent incremental gain per dollar spent on public goods they'll spend it on themselves. Under a long enough timeline this sort of behavior causes the US to resemble Mexico or Brazil and all the problems such inequality brings. Classic tragedy of the commons.

Best Response
Nov 7, 2011
monkeysama:

Except, for the most part, the utility of the rich is not to give to the poor. They would rather live in gated communities and send their kids to private schools than make sure the police force is adequate and the public schools are well maintained. That is because if they can help themselves with a 1 percent incremental gain for a dollar spent versus a 20 percent incremental gain per dollar spent on public goods they'll spend it on themselves. Under a long enough timeline this sort of behavior causes the US to resemble Mexico or Brazil and all the problems such inequality brings. Classic tragedy of the commons.

The essential point of Objectivism is that you aren't morally obligated to donate to any cause, and that any cause you donate to must be for some selfish reason. The notion that all rich people have no overlapping self interests with the poor is inane. For example, the Kennedys donated a lot of money to the Catholic Church which in turn provides food and ministry for the poor. I donate to the CF Foundation, which in turn will try to find a cure for CF. I will not donate money to fund research of the effects of cocaine in monkeys, so why should the government force me to? You, third-world example is also not correct in my opinion. First because the lack of a permanent safety net (charities would still support the poor, it doesn't just evaporate) would make people who can work seek it. As of now unemployment benefits and EBT, etc. can motivate people to stay on the dole longer because they make more money (although in the long run this is obviously not true). And since when was America a third world country prior to the New Deal? In fact it can easily be argued that the New Deal prolonged the Great Depression and is causing 99% of our economic problems today.

Reality hits you hard, bro...

Nov 7, 2011

Greed will help out the poor more than the government. It is not evil or anything of the sort.

Reality hits you hard, bro...

Nov 7, 2011
MMBinNC:

Greed will help out the poor more than the government. It is not evil or anything of the sort.

Friedman is a genius.

Nov 7, 2011

Just going to touch on this too, to donate to a charity, you should make sure that their views are consistent with both Objective values and your values.

To begin with, some education charities, some scientific & medical research charities, some emergency-oriented assistance charities, etc., have goals that are consistent with the values that are held by an Objectivist as core values, and so a donation of an amount that does not impinge on your quality of life might actually be nicely selfish. The ARI and Cystic Fibrosis Foundation are among those charities. What are to be avoided are charities with goals that are inherently contrary to objective values, such as environmental legislation groups and the "general welfare" charities that seek to shield people from the need to make an effort or to change destructive aspects of their lives, and so on.

If the charity has expressed goals that are consistent with Objective values, you also have to consider the context surrounding that particular charity and what exactly you would be sanctioning by supporting that particular charity at that point in time. If there were two charities with exactly the same goals but where one recognised that people were not morally obliged to help others whereas the other did, then donating to the other would be out of the question even though the goals themselves might be worthy, you are sanctioning their views outside of their goals as well. For example, if a new Director of the ARI said that it is our moral obligation to support the ARI for the sake of the future independent of ourselves and to give until it hurts and then still keep on giving, then its revenues would and should crash in a heap. Then,when the new Director was summarily fired, the newer one would return the ARI to its proper focus of showing how affordable donations are in donors' own interests, whereupon revenues would resume.

Once you've considered all that, the amount you donate should be an amount consistent with the entire context of your own values. You should only give an amount you can afford, this being an amount that will not compromise your enjoyment of other parts of your life. For instance you most likely shouldn't be giving away your entire college or retirement fund to the ARI even though it is the ARI, but something a bit more than what you might spend on fast food or movies wouldn't go astray, and you should seriously consider featuring the ARI highly in your will if you have more than enough to set your family up satisfactorily after your death (check out their Atlantis Legacy program for more information).

That's all there is to it: is it consistent with objective values, and, if so, is it consistent with your own personal values? If yes on both counts, then it is perfectly selfish to donate, and where you decide how much. Altruism sucks, under this knowledge people would still donate to a variety of charities, and sensibly so.

Reality hits you hard, bro...

Nov 7, 2011
MMBinNC:

Just going to touch on this too, to donate to a charity, you should make sure that their views are consistent with both Objective values and your values.

There was a thread about books a while ago, and ANT made a great comment about Rand (that I unfortunately can't find). The gist of it was that the problem with her books isn't that they're wrong, it's that 20-year-olds read them and think that they suddenly understand the entire truth of the world.

I had a philosophy professor who used to say that philosophies weren't religions, and as such it was a mark of intellectual deficiency to pick one and believe in it to the complete exclusion of all others. Yeah, Ayn Rand's books are interesting, and as long as you have a brain they'll make you think. But to say that things in your life should adhere to Objectivist values - as if Objectivism is some sort of universal truth - is just intellectually bankrupt. I think Rand's work is soulless in the way that only a bitter Russian-emigre-turned-wannabe-Hollywood-writer could be, but that's just me.

Oh, and I can only hope this movie can replicate the novel's tremendous subtlety . You know, the way that Rand was able to get her philosophy across without having a character in the novel deliver a speech listing the principles of that philosophy.

Nov 7, 2011

Not doubting you can come up with a dozen people who are rich who donate to charities. That wasn't my point and to attack that is nothing more than a straw man argument. My point was that on the AGGREGATE the rich will further their own goals to the expense of everyone else if they are allowed. For every Warren Buffett there are a dozen HMO directors lining their pockets by rejecting claims for cancer treatment.

As for quoting Milton Friedman, that's got to be the biggest joke of all. When the poor get a hand out that's called welfare. When the prime rate is set artificially low, giving free money to business interests and inflating the worst bubble since the 1920s, that's called capitalism.

Nov 7, 2011
monkeysama:

Not doubting you can come up with a dozen people who are rich who donate to charities. That wasn't my point and to attack that is nothing more than a straw man argument. My point was that on the AGGREGATE the rich will further their own goals to the expense of everyone else if they are allowed. For every Warren Buffett there are a dozen HMO directors lining their pockets by rejecting claims for cancer treatment.

As for quoting Milton Friedman, that's got to be the biggest joke of all. When the poor get a hand out that's called welfare. When the prime rate is set artificially low, giving free money to business interests and inflating the worst bubble since the 1920s, that's called capitalism.

  1. Charitable donations are not just given by the "rich"
  2. With over 50% of what the government collects in taxes/spends on SS/Medicare/Medicaid wasted, charities are FAR more efficient
  3. With more income, why would those donating not donate more?
  4. This argument will go nowhere since you will obviously not move on your stance that the virtue of selfishness = no utility from giving to charity = poor starving in the street

Reality hits you hard, bro...

Nov 7, 2011

Ayn Rand... Ayn Rand... is this the same Ayn Rand who sucked on Social Security and Medicare until the day she died?

Nov 7, 2011
midnightoil:

Ayn Rand... Ayn Rand... is this the same Ayn Rand who sucked on Social Security and Medicare until the day she died?

She was forced to pay into the system, why should she not benefit from it? That is in complete adherence to her beliefs. No doubt she would rather have not paid in and received no benefits.

Reality hits you hard, bro...

Nov 7, 2011

If you want some concrete numbers also, $300bn was donated to charities in 2006, that same year Unemployment and welfare spending by the government totaled $359.5bn. With 50% of that wasted, charities provided far more benefits, even if you lump in Medicaid/other health related expenses (excluding Medicare) its pretty much equates to the charitable giving. And with the Objectivist system people would have more $ and give more to charities (on the AGGREGATE) and by removing a permanent safety net we would also have less people needing these benefits.

Reality hits you hard, bro...

Nov 7, 2011

tI'm sorry, but the Greed is Good mantra doesn't work if you are trying to defend objectivism. The clear point of the book is that decisions should be made based on rational thought, not on emotion or by force. The characters take this philosophy to the extreme when they cannot even accept a ride in a car without paying the owner. Greed is an emotion, and has no place in such a society.

Nov 7, 2011
<span class=keyword_link><a href=/finance-dictionary/what-is-london-interbank-offer-rate-libor rel=nofollow>LIBOR</a></span>:

tI'm sorry, but the Greed is Good mantra doesn't work if you are trying to defend objectivism. The clear point of the book is that decisions should be made based on rational thought, not on emotion or by force. The characters take this philosophy to the extreme when they cannot even accept a ride in a car without paying the owner. Greed is an emotion, and has no place in such a society.

If you listen to Freidman's explanation, I think its more in line with the notion that the greed he is talking about is self-interest seeking behavior, and that every state/person is driven by it. Greed is good in the sense of the pursuit of self interest is good, not that the irrational pursuit of material wealth is good (aka accounting fraud, Madoff, etc.) I think in many people's minds pursuing self interests and living only for yourself and not for another man is considered greed- a mistake.

Reality hits you hard, bro...

Nov 7, 2011
MMBinNC:
LIBOR:

tI'm sorry, but the Greed is Good mantra doesn't work if you are trying to defend objectivism. The clear point of the book is that decisions should be made based on rational thought, not on emotion or by force. The characters take this philosophy to the extreme when they cannot even accept a ride in a car without paying the owner. Greed is an emotion, and has no place in such a society.

If you listen to Freidman's explanation, I think its more in line with the notion that the greed he is talking about is self-interest seeking behavior, and that every state/person is driven by it. Greed is good in the sense of the pursuit of self interest is good, not that the irrational pursuit of material wealth is good (aka accounting fraud, Madoff, etc.) I think in many people's minds pursuing self interests and living only for yourself and not for another man is considered greed- a mistake.

The word should then be rational self-interest. Not greed.

Nov 7, 2011

MMBinNC: You seem pretty knowledgeable about Ayn Rand. I've wanted to read "Atlas Shrugged" for a long time, but haven't yet. Recently, I heard some friends of mine bashing the book and Rand herself, so I'm hoping you might weigh in on your defenses. Basically, they were saying that she is a terrible writer and crazy. Also, they were saying that all their philosophy professors constantly bash her, and say that "Atlas Shrugged" is incredibly overrated.

Nov 7, 2011

All this is is people treating a bad idea like a religion.

Nov 7, 2011

dagny taggert looks exactly like i pictured her when reading the book (pretty good looking imo). The movie actually looks good too. I like how its set in the present period. I'll go see it.

Nov 7, 2011

For some reason, I feel like this is incredibly relevant to this thread: http://www.econtalk.org/archives/2006/12/boettke_o...
I urge everyone on here to listen to it.

Nov 7, 2011

fools need to throw me some affiliate dollars off the opening weekend

Nov 7, 2011

There are few books that I have found to be more profound than The Fountainhead, which is one of Rand's other popular books. I dont have the time at the moment to get into the philosophical debate but thanks for starting this thread. "Howard Roarke laughed..."

Nov 7, 2011

holy shit, the guy from One Tree Hill is directing it

hopefully they can still make a decent movie with such a low budget

Nov 7, 2011

I'm curious why opinions on this board are so bipolar. One either loves her philosophy or hates it. Personally, I read The Fountainhead and found its impact on me to be quite profound, as junkbond mentioned. However, with hindsight as well as some time, I'm beginning to wonder whether or not her philosophy is actually all it claims to be. Although I am a fan of her books, I can start to understand why some of her ideas may be intellectually bankrupt...

I remember doing my first 'research paper' in my freshmen year of high school on The Fountainhead, and much of my research included gathering opinions from a host of literary critics and other readers. Again, opinions were quite bipolar. Nevertheless, there were the few who were still unsure. Many of them used to be former Rand fans, yet time served to soften their thinking. Perhaps her philosophy, as with any, must be taken with a grain of salt.

"Rage, rage against the dying of the light." - DT

Nov 7, 2011

As much as I respect a lot of what Rand represents (I'm essentially a libertarian, not to mention an atheist), I just despise her writing style. Anyone who think's she's a good writer really needs to read more (and I don't mean crap like Da Vinci Code, Girl With the Dragon Tattoo, etc.)

Nov 7, 2011

Who turned this website into the CATO institute?

Nov 7, 2011

I think Ayn Rand's got psychological problems.

Look at her history.... She must be a HUGE communist hater because the SSR government took over her family's wealth. Her family, before the 1917 Russia Revolution, employed cook, maid, nurse and governess. Pretty baller.

In my view she didn't write the book to teach people her fake philosophy to begin with. She did it to solely satisfy her anti communism hatred deep within her mind. She's fallen so deep as to say Greed is the salvation of all. Yea.. she's got problems in her head.

Nov 7, 2011

If everyone who read Atlas Shrugged read A Critique of Pure Reason instead the world would be a better place.

Nov 7, 2011
monkeysama:

If everyone who read Atlas Shrugged read A Critique of Pure Reason instead the world would be a better place.

Kant's theory of Pure Reason is far too neat an explanation for an incredibly complex world. Although I agree that more of these people should read it (and Kirkegaard and Nietzche) because unlike Atlas Shrugged, it isn't a 4th grade reading level. That being said, I consider myself an objectivist and Atlas Shrugged is one of my favorite texts.

"Until and unless you discover that money is the root of all good, you ask for your own destruction. When money ceases to become the means by which men deal with one another, then men become the tools of other men. Blood, whips and guns or dollars."

Nov 7, 2011

trailer inspired me to pick the book up.

liked it up until the point where they accidentally stumbled upon "A brand-new locomotive half the size of a single Diesel unit, and with ten times the power. A self-generator, working on a few drops of fuel, with no limits to its energy. The cleanest, swiftest, cheapest means of motion ever devised" just laying around in the old abandoned 20th Century Motors building....

i'm sorry but that is simply just too ridicules... i mean seriously, how retarded is the notion that they are going to find the greatest technology ever devised just laying around...

i'm a bit worried Rand is about to abandon all storytelling in favor of a series of thinly-disguised philosophical lectures, in which case the wikipedia article on objectivism would be a superior alternative to the ~700 pages left in the book.

someone talk me into finishing the book please - not withstanding the irony of asking for help from the collective to finish a book about individualism.

Nov 7, 2011
LLcoolJ:

trailer inspired me to pick the book up.

liked it up until the point where they accidentally stumbled upon "A brand-new locomotive half the size of a single Diesel unit, and with ten times the power. A self-generator, working on a few drops of fuel, with no limits to its energy. The cleanest, swiftest, cheapest means of motion ever devised" just laying around in the old abandoned 20th Century Motors building....

i'm sorry but that is simply just too ridicules... i mean seriously, how retarded is the notion that they are going to find the greatest technology ever devised just laying around...

i'm a bit worried Rand is about to abandon all storytelling in favor of a series of thinly-disguised philosophical lectures, in which case the wikipedia article on objectivism would be a superior alternative to the ~700 pages left in the book.

someone talk me into finishing the book please - not withstanding the irony of asking for help from the collective to finish a book about individualism.

btw I would say keep reading, it does tell you who invented the motor, I alluded to it in my post above and while the feasibility in real life is probably....limited to say the least, the reason the motor was abandoned and who did so/why is told in detail.

Reality hits you hard, bro...

Nov 7, 2011

It's a bed time story for rich people who want to feel morally justified doing everything they can to not pay taxes. There is absolutely no saving grace.

She also can't write her way out of a paper bag.

Nov 7, 2011
monkeysama:

It's a bed time story for rich people who want to feel morally justified doing everything they can to not pay taxes. There is absolutely no saving grace.

Liberty is about much more than that...

Nov 7, 2011

Some people like her writing style others don't. I'm not saying by any means is she the greatest writer ever, but I like her writing style, especially in her shorter novels. The Fountainhead and Anthem are two of my favorites, but all of her works from the Virtue of Selfishness to Night of January 16th are all good reads. I do admit some of the things in Atlas Shrugged were a little out there, from the feasibility of the electrostatic engine that John Galt made to Project X. Take the book as a whole rather than critiquing the scientific merit- you'll enjoy all books better that way. The use of the electrostatic engine in Atlas Shrugged is to be able to create Galt's Gulch and showing the misuse of private technology by both the government and greedy people (distinguished as above). I'd say keep reading, the hardest part of the book for me was galt's speech, and even that was interesting. If you're looking for straight Objectivism just read like Anthem and the Virtue of Selfishness- outlining egoism and anti-collectivism. Atlas Shrugged is one of the most enjoyable fiction books that clearly espouses a political view IMHO.

Reality hits you hard, bro...

Nov 7, 2011

All I have to say is:

"Until and unless you discover that money is the root of all good, you ask for your own destruction. When money ceases to become the means by which men deal with one another, then men become the tools of other men. Blood, whips and guns--or dollars. Take your choice--there is no other."

"Until and unless you discover that money is the root of all good, you ask for your own destruction. When money ceases to become the means by which men deal with one another, then men become the tools of other men. Blood, whips and guns or dollars."

Nov 7, 2011

I've always wanted to read that book, but I am reconsidering it now that I've read this thread.

The idea that people should pursue their rational self-interest is just a fucking tautology. If that's all Rand had to say, I see no point in reading the book.

Nov 7, 2011

Welcome Econ! Glad to have you in on this topic lol.

Nov 7, 2011
ANT:

Welcome Econ! Glad to have you in on this topic lol.

Haha! Ditto!

I'm thrilled that there's so many libertarians on this website. I've only came across a handful of libertarians in my everyday life, so I'm glad that there's more out there than I previously realized.

Nov 7, 2011

I'm interested to know how high the tax rate can rise before you guys (like Ant) decide to up and leave. There has to be a tipping point at which it no longer makes sense to work in/be a citizen of this country. So what's your number???

Btw, I see homeless on the street everyday and don't feel bad about not giving them money because I know I'm already supporting them with my tax dollars under threat of force by the government. Not my fault if the government isn't doing its job and putting my money to work for them.

Nov 7, 2011
chewingum:

I'm interested to know how high the tax rate can rise before you guys (like Ant) decide to up and leave. There has to be a tipping point at which it no longer makes sense to work in/be a citizen of this country. So what's your number???

I think another interesting question, is how incremental/marginal changes effect your willingness to produce more? So, at what point do you say, "Fuck working 100 hour weeks in IB! I only get to keep 50% of my income anyway, so I might as well work at a non-profit or teach finance at a community college."

Nov 7, 2011

Atlas Shrugged has a clever narrative and paints an easy to follow good vs. evil bias that is psychologically easy to latch on to -- especially for Americans considering we'd drop gloves in a second to kick ass for freedom and liberty. But being such a polarizing issue, many will draw their lines in the sand without realizing the true reality of contemporary American politics or that it's easy to blame Big Brother when other private sector forces is kicking your assets.

The irony here is that while we're wasting time discussing how unholy government regulation/oversight/taxation might be, the private sector in contemporary America has figured out how to use government to slow/squash innovative solutions from nascent industries that might cut into their market share or disintermediate them all together.

So every time you rave about big bad government taking my profits, realize that we have one of the higher corporate tax rates in the world but collect relatively little revenue from it (the latter you'll never hear on CNBC). Loopholes, off shore headquarters with 3 or 4 staffers for a 10k+ corporation, etc.

The reality of present day corporate political life is that they actually use DC insiders to their advantage (e.g. bailouts, FED window, etc.). Try writing a bill in DC without lobbyists breathing down your neck! Truth is, lobbyists write many of the speeches politicians recite and occasionally, actually write the legislation itself. (I know, I worked in pharma.)

If anything deserves monkey poo thrown anywhere... there's the place to start.

Moreover, anytime an author with Rand's biases takes such a strong stance, that stance should come under immediate scrutiny. Why is she so anti-gov? Why is she so anti-taxation? Based on her family's history (communists seizing family money), taking economic policy advice from Rand is like basing an entire country's divorce law on the testimony of a jaded wife after hubby nailed her sister.

She's bitter, she's angry, and she has every fcking right to be pissed as hll, but for someone who spent a lifetime screaming how evil "socialized anything" is, it shows piss poor personal ethics to rely upon the very lifeline that she spent her whole life saying was evil.

Attempting to be the chess player, not the chess piece @ Steadfast Finances

Nov 7, 2011
Matt_SF:

The irony here is that while we're wasting time discussing how unholy government regulation/oversight/taxation might be, the private sector in contemporary America has figured out how to use government to slow/squash innovative solutions from nascent industries that might cut into their market share or disintermediate them all together.

That's part of the reason Rand, Friedman, Hayek, etc. want smaller government. They're pro-markets and pro-capitalism, not pro-business. They hate the fact that anybody (including corporations) are able to use the political process to improve their own power. One of the biggest arguments against governmental power is that people will hijack that power and hurt others.

Nov 7, 2011
ANT:

OMG, my head is going to explode. Social Security is essentially bankrupt. A fucking ponzi scheme. These parasites in Washington have known for decades that SSI was going insolvent, but because old people are a powerful voting block, no one has even tried to fix it. Medicare/aid is rife with waste and high costs. No one tries to fix that.

Funny you should say that, I was just reading one of Richard Russell's Dow Theory Letters the other day where he made the comparison between Madoff and Social Security. The ponzi scheme only gets exposed when there aren't enough new investors to pay off the old ones. I wonder how much longer this one can last...

Nov 7, 2011

Anyone here know that BB&T gives this book to all new employees and has the philosophical reasons as a way for them to learn and build the company?

Also, the college I'm graduating from that is currently going through a huge transformational stage is being redone with the same kind of reasoning that can be found in the book. We have the huge Atlas Shrugged statue in gold on our campus. All seniors get a copy of Atlas Shrugged for their senior sem class too. Still haven't read it though. Too busy with Ascent of Jamie Dimon and JP Morgan Chase

Nov 7, 2011
brooksbrotha:

Anyone here know that BB&T gives this book to all new employees and has the philosophical reasons as a way for them to learn and build the company?

Also, the college I'm graduating from that is currently going through a huge transformational stage is being redone with the same kind of reasoning that can be found in the book. We have the huge Atlas Shrugged statue in gold on our campus. All seniors get a copy of Atlas Shrugged for their senior sem class too. Still haven't read it though. Too busy with Ascent of Jamie Dimon and JP Morgan Chase

The BB&T thing is talked about here: http://www.econtalk.org/archives/2007/05/allison_o...

Nov 7, 2011

I'm seeing it, I love Rand

Nov 7, 2011

Great post econ. Mad man love for you bro.

Nov 7, 2011
ANT:

Great post econ. Mad man love for you bro.

Haha -- thanks man.

The cool thing about that podcast too, is that they talk a bit about the book. The CEO totally buys into helping people less fortunate than himself, being involved in the community, etc. At the same time, he's a huge fan of the philosophy of "Atlas Shrugged." It really goes to show you, that people who buy into this stuff are not greedy, just interested in keeping their money, paying less taxes, etc. That's really just a caricature of libertarianism. In fact, a lot of public libertarians are huge fans of charity and helping out, they just don't want to be told how to do it by the others via force.

Nov 7, 2011

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_most_charitab...
This is government charity.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/news/datablog/2010/sep/0...
This is private charity

http://www.usatoday.com/news/nation/2007-06-25-cha...
300 Billion in 2007.That is 10x what the government gives.

The richest nation in the world is also one of the most incredibly charitable. Give us more of our hard earned money and we will donate and help more and more.

Nov 7, 2011
Matt SF:

So every time you rave about big bad government taking my profits, realize that we have one of the higher corporate tax rates in the world but collect relatively little revenue from it (the latter you'll never hear on CNBC). Loopholes, off shore headquarters with 3 or 4 staffers for a 10k+ corporation, etc.

Do you realize the fallacy on corporate taxation? They pass on the cost to consumers, so in effect we are paying the taxes for the corporations and also limiting innovation. Read about the Fair Tax, while a lot of people are not fans of it (even though I like the premise, at least in theory), it outlines the logical fallacy of corporate taxation. You think X corporation is gonna take a shave on its margins if the demand for its product is inelastic or not very elastic? lol Sin taxes are stupid as hell as are taxes on input products and staples. What product can you think of that you/society can do without if the prices are raised across the board? I honestly can't think of many. And if, say McDonalds, encounters this proposition they can either sink into less profitability and lose shareholders/MCAP, etc. or lose customers and have the government collect less money anyway. Its inane. So I say, you go tax havens! Saving the American consumer. Fuck corporate taxes.

Reality hits you hard, bro...

Nov 7, 2011
MMBinNC:

Do you realize the fallacy on corporate taxation? They pass on the cost to consumers, so in effect we are paying the taxes for the corporations and also limiting innovation.

Well, the standard/textbook economic explanation is that corporations and consumers split paying for the taxes, depending on the elasticity of demand. So, it's probably not true that they're able to push all of the tax burden onto the consumer, but your overall point still holds. That is, it's a myth to think that taxing corporations won't lead to consumers paying part of that tax (and in some cases, the majority of that tax) in the form of higher prices. Also, these taxes lead to lower production/output and probably less competition.

Nov 7, 2011

absolute butcher from the book. I thought some big names like brad pitt were suppose to be in this

Nov 7, 2011

I hope they don't leave out one of the major points in this book, which is the moral and general fallacy of religion. Rand was an Atheist -- one of the things many conservatives conveniently push under the rug while preaching her economic views.

Nov 7, 2011

I for one, could care less about the movie.
I've read fountainhead. I thought it was an engaging read as a work of fiction. The "points" that Rand was trying to get across, i could care less about.
I started Atlas shrugged but just couldn't get past the dense/verbosity.
By the way...Greenspan was a devout "Randian". Not sure if this means anything but I'd thought I point it out.
I recall reading somewhere about Rand cheating with one of her "members", who also was married. Their respective spouses knew about it but just let it be b/c they didnt want to anger Rand. Then the guy started sleeping with another woman and he was basically excommunicated from the group. A letter was drafted up and signed by some of the more senior members, including Greenspan.

On a side note, in the fountainhead, what the hell was the whole Roark/Dominique rape scene about?
It came across like a gratuitous nude scene that you see in B movies.

Nov 7, 2011

Religious and economic views can be different. Just because Rand was an Atheist doesn't mean she cannot have a good argument for how capitalism should be. Liberty is about accepting differing viewpoints.

Nov 7, 2011
ANT:

Religious and economic views can be different. Just because Rand was an Atheist doesn't mean she cannot have a good argument for how capitalism should be. Liberty is about accepting differing viewpoints.

Word. I completely agree. That being said, her views about religion are in the book everywhere -- so include them. Just my opinion.

Nov 7, 2011

Reading Atlas Shrugged was a rollercoaster of "This is awesome" and "Jesus Christ when will this bitch stop with the propaganda???" for me. I also believe objectivism (as how Rand envisioned it at its purest) to be a few notches below Tom Cruise and his merry fags.

That said, the book is one of those that has left an effect on me as well, you simply cannot disagree with its basic tenets on politics and perhaps life in general. Some people just take philosophy way too seriously. Looking forward to watching this.

People like Coldplay and voted for the Nazis, you can't trust people Jeremy

Nov 7, 2011

Still looking forward to the movie

Nov 7, 2011
Nov 7, 2011
Nov 7, 2011

I thought this was pretty interesting, too:

Nov 7, 2011

A few more:

Nov 7, 2011

This one is pretty good too: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e7CjdJ1QyxI

Nov 7, 2011
Comment
Nov 7, 2011
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Making money is art and working is art and good business is the best art - Andy Warhol

Nov 7, 2011
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Reality hits you hard, bro...

Nov 7, 2011
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"...all truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident."

  • Schopenhauer
Nov 7, 2011
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Reality hits you hard, bro...

Nov 7, 2011
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"...all truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident."

  • Schopenhauer