Sunday, February 12, 2012
Who is John Galt?
I'm listening to Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand on an audiobook. It has been years since I first read the book. I was listening to the book while driving to meet family in Birmingham today. The book, a post-captalist view of the United States, paints a grim photo of the country after the capitalists are driven down by increasing taxation and government regulations and disappear. While driving through Birmingham and seeing the rusting foundries and deserted buildings and rail yards, it seemed like I was driving through the scenes Ayn Rand was painting with her words. It seemed like I was IN a movie. The scenes I was seeing could mix with the dialogue of the movie perfectly. It was like watching a movie come together before your mind.
I am halfway thorough Atlas Shrugged and find myself driving around just to listen to a few more chapters of the book. Rand remarked that the core idea for the book came to her after a 1943 telephone conversation with a friend, who asserted that Rand owed it to her readers to write a nonfiction book about her philosophy. Rand replied, "What if I went on strike? What if all the creative minds of the world went on strike?" What if...or what if they already have?
It is interesting in the context of today's current political and economic situation. Give it a read.
And, you'll find out the meaning to the question "Who Is John Galt?"