Conservatives Shrugged

Excerpt:  2007 marked the 50th anniversary of the publication of one of my favorite novels, Ayn Rand’s “Atlas Shrugged”. I first read it over a decade ago. It was then, and remains, one of the most influential pieces of literature in my personal and professional development. It’s the story of a small group of men and one woman who become influential members of society owing to their contributions in key areas such as business, finance and the like. Over time, they find they are the most successful and prosperous when they base their success on meeting the needs others have in their area of expertise. This personal value is turned against them when the people abandon their own responsibility for their well being and begin to make demands on this small group, not based on the need for their expertise, but on their personal need for security and success. Initially, the group tries to meet those needs despite the personal cost to them. Ultimately, however, they are convinced by one of their number, John Galt, that such behavior will surely destroy the people and it will destroy the group if they permit it. He argues the best course of action is to withdraw from an ungrateful and selfish society and take their talents elsewhere, leaving society to fend for itself. When they do, society crumbles. Hence the name of the book - “Atlas Shrugged”. When the one holding the world on his shoulders shrugs, what happens to the world he holds? Read More