Sunday, January 20, 2013

a response to David Sirota's Salon article "Ayn Rand is for Children"

Sorry, I really didn't like this column.  It's a lot like the very thing it is complaining about.

I read Rand in college like a good girl. It had huge impact on me, but not in the way David Sirota is assuming.  I embraced some of Rand's ideas, but rejected plenty of others.  I felt she confused the attributes of bureaucracy with "the state".  The state is not the only bureaucracy.  Her complaint is that excellence can get squashed by bureaucracy.  But her mistake, according to me, is being so black and white.  You can have excellence while working for a government funded organization.  Just like you can have incompetence in a privately funded organization.  I feel that David's response is equally black and white, assumes the worst about people, and equally a problem.

I am very much in favor of libertarian values when it comes to the "social" issues.  Some things just don't need to be legislated.  But some other things clearly, to me, do.  I vote Democratic 99.9% of the time.  And I think Ayn Rand valued excellence and didn't like seeing it tarnished.  I can understand that.  But to me, it seems a consequence of being human, not really about government per se. 

I'm posting this because Salon won't let me post comments unless I pay them. (And yes, I did login using Google, which is supposed to satisfy them but doesn't.)

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