The Rittenhouse Review

A Philadelphia Journal of Politics, Finance, Ethics, and Culture

Thursday, February 03, 2005  

100 Years Later
Still Dead

If your local newspaper, unlike mine, hasn't already subjected you to a misguided paean to the 100th something-or-other surrounding the psychotic, predatory, pretend intellectual going by the name of Ayn Rand, consider yourself lucky.

But not immune.

Bloggers -- and the fringistas at the Cato Institute -- piously worshipping at the alter of the adulterous adulterant are just now whipping their anti-collective conformist selves into a weeping wizzle of whackery.

It's a horrible scene to watch, but not to worry: Just duck for cover and wait.

Soon this assault of sophomoric nonsense will be over for another one hundred years.

It shouldn't take long. Like any intelligent person's otherwise forgivable flirtation with what has been hysterically over-styled as "objectivism," just give it until junior year to resolve itself. If you're still afflicted at that point, well, you're on your own.

[Post-publication addendum (February 3): Possibly-non-pot-smoking libertarian Julian Sanchez, like his employer and the foundations and interest groups who fund same, is excitedly anniversarial about Rand's death. Or maybe Sanchez is panting over her birth. What do I care? Regardless, Sanchez unintentionally urges men and women of higher intelligence, those understandably averse to reading -- or rereading, given the orders they received to study Rand's dreck by instructors constituting the Sixth Column of academia -- so unbearably repetitive, iterative, overwrought, and fatuous works as those featuring Rand's unduly celebrated cardboard figures John Galt and Howark Roark, to crib from a cheat sheet. Believe it or not, given the slavish devotion of Sanchez and Rand to that which they proclaim to be "capitalism," Sanchez and his employer are offering the their reductive primer at no cost.]

[Post-publication addendum (February 4): Reader S.K. writes: "I love the way you hate Ayn Rand. I had one of those hipster governmentt teachers in high school in the early 70s. A sneaky guy tried to get us to think -- during the year I discovered Rand. I read her because her work was supposed to be 'deep,' which I definitely was not. Anyway, the teacher asked me one day what I'd been up to. Trying to sound intellectual I replied, 'I've been reading some Ayn Rand.' 'Ah, the adventures of Super Honky,' he responded. 'How's that working for you?'"]

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