Excerpt: "'Atlas Shrugged' is a fantasy ... the book is a perennial favorite among adolescent boys. Most boys eventually outgrow it. Some, however, remain devotees for life."
Portrait, New York Times columnist Paul Krugman, 06/15/09. (photo: Fred R. Conrad/NYT)
Ryan's Ayn Rand Devotion
24 August 12
So far, most of the discussion of Paul Ryan, the presumptive Republican nominee for vice president, has focused on his budget proposals. But Mr. Ryan is a man of many ideas, which would ordinarily be a good thing.
In his case, however, most of those ideas appear to come from works of fiction, specifically Ayn Rand's novel "Atlas Shrugged."
For those who somehow missed it when growing up, "Atlas Shrugged" is a fantasy in which the world's productive people - the "job creators," if you like - withdraw their services from an ungrateful society. The novel's centerpiece is a 64-page speech by John Galt, the angry elite's ringleader; even Friedrich Hayek admitted that he never made it through that part. Yet the book is a perennial favorite among adolescent boys. Most boys eventually outgrow it. Some, however, remain devotees for life.
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