The Relevance of Ayn Rand

 Posted by on 10 August 2009 at 11:01 pm  Activism, Objectivism
Aug 102009

The New York Times published an excellent letter from Daniel Schwartz in response to its article on Ayn Rand and BB&T, Give BB&T Liberty, but Not a Bailout. It reads:

Re “Give Me Liberty, but Not a Bailout” (Aug. 2), which described how the chairman of BB&T, the banking company, is a proponent of the Objectivist ideas of Ayn Rand:

The article quotes one of Ms. Rand’s detractors as calling her “irrelevant.” Given that Ms. Rand described Objectivism as “a philosophy for living on earth,” this claim is ironic indeed. No other philosophy is as focused on dealing with the needs of real people. This is clear from the case of BB&T. Could Plato or Kant take credit for the success of a business in the way that Ms. Rand could take credit for this bank’s success?

Objectivism, as a philosophy which upholds rationality, honesty, justice, and pride — not as duties, but as tools for success — is very relevant.

Daniel Schwartz

San Diego, Aug. 3

The writer is a graduate student in philosophy at the University of California, San Diego.

Nice! The other published letter was offensive, in that its basic point was to suggest that Ayn Rand’s political views were the product of her experience with the Soviets. Yet even that could have been worse.

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