Two Mentions

 Posted by on 3 September 2005 at 8:20 am  Uncategorized
Sep 032005

In an article on “Fighting Despair” posted on NRO yesterday, William F. Buckley wrote: “Ayn Rand wrote an imaginative novel based on a society suddenly finding its members at liberty to seek out individual gratifications. From that fable, her anthem was born.” I hate to even ask, but just what Ayn Rand novel is that supposed to describe? It’s definitely not We the Living. It’s obviously not Anthem. It’s not The Fountainhead either. Nor is it Atlas Shrugged. I strongly suspect that WFB does intend to describe the last, but that’s just freaky! Moreover, the mention doesn’t even make sense in the context of the surrounding paragraphs.

More happily, I also found this news story on the supposedly forthcoming Atlas movie by Scott Holleran:

It was supposed to be a light column about this and that, with a brief update on a movie adaptation of my favorite novel, Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged, which Miss Rand began writing here in the San Fernando Valley in 1946. It is the story of man’s mind on strike. Whether one agrees with Miss Rand’s radical philosophy, Objectivism, laid bare in the book, it is an unforgettable masterpiece with grand cinematic potential–a fact recognized by the producer of last year’s Oscar-winning Ray, Howard Baldwin, who tells me that he is closer to bringing Ayn Rand’s epic to the screen.

For those who remember the novel, the aftermath of this week’s hurricane puts a pit in the stomach that sits there; it is eerily similar to what Miss Rand envisioned. While it is too soon to pinpoint the particulars, the anarchy in the Bayou is undeniably related to the widespread irrationality–the refusal to think–that Miss Rand dramatized so powerfully in Atlas Shrugged.

The hurricane alone did not reduce New Orleans to a city in ruins; the storm–which was not a direct hit–had been widely tracked and reported, and its citizens were warned to leave. The tragedy of New Orleans, from incompetent bureaucrats who collected taxes to pay for levees and pumps that were not maintained to National Guard combat brigades unavailable to enforce law and order in America–because they were sent in the name of sacrifice to Iraq–is a stark reminder that, as Miss Rand wrote, ideas matter.

The article includes some fascinating and hopeful details on the producer’s vision for the movie.

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