Growing up, I was never introduced to Ayn Rand. I went to a private Catholic grade school and college-prep high school (2 hard working parents both busted their butts to send me there) and later attended a California state university where I got my Bachelor’s Degree, while working full-time and taking night classes. In all those classes and years of “education”, not one instructor, in my recollection, ever mentioned her name or any of her novels. Over the years, I was forced to read many a novel that I had no inclination to, and many I can scarcely recall the subject matter, and mostly because I felt no connection to the author or the subject. Not surprisingly, most of my instructors were of the liberal mindset and probably never read Rand’s novel, and would not dare read it based on what they knew of it, and most definitely would never require their students read it.
I lived my life never having heard of Ayn Rand, until very recently when a coworker and I were discussing the dismal state of affairs in our society, and she likened it to the world in Atlas Shrugged. The blank look on my face betrayed my ignorance of what she spoke. She briefly described the subject of the book and Ayn’s personal history, that of growing up in Russia prior to the communist revolution, and Ayn’s seeing firsthand the destruction brought by the communists when they took power, and how that experience had shaped Ayn’s thinking and writings.
My coworker’s description of the book intrigued me, but being a working stiff with three young kids and many other time consuming obligations, I currently find myself with little free time to read, and could not commit myself to reading a 1200 page novel. That being the case, I convinced the wife to sit with me one might and we watched the recent movie, Atlas Shrugged: Part 1. I was amazed by the similarities I saw between the society in the movie and our current society here in the US. What further intrigued me is how accurately Rand predicted many of the aspects of that decay, especially when you consider she began writing Atlas Shrugged nearly 60 years ago. That first movie installment of her epic novel made me want to learn more about her and the book, so I watched a documentary on the subject, a documentary I highly to recommend anyone who is concerned about current state of affairs in this country, called “Ayn Rand & the Prophecy of Atlas Shrugged” (available streaming via Netflix or from the documentary’s own website).
What I realized in watching both of those movies (Atlas Shrugged: Part 1 and the documentary) was that things I could clearly see happening with my own eyes, Ayn Rand predicted so many years ago. Now the problem I have is trying to figure out what to do to change our course before it is too late.
In addition to my many other hobbies, I am a computer nerd. In my many years of fooling with computers, I have learned that despite all the safeguards you can put in place, inevitably the operating system (OS) gets bogged down with old drivers, invalid registry entries, bloated code and files randomly become corrupted. You eventually begin to encounter the occasional, dreaded “blue screen of death” (BSOD). This happens naturally, not necessarily through any wrong doing on the user’s part, and without any malicious intent. It just happens as the computer goes through changes over the years, with installation and removal of new and old software, with the changes in settings and installation of new upgraded hardware. Over the years, I have tried many different software programs that are designed to go through and fix these problems, but none of them are ever 100% effective. I have found that the best way to deal with these problems is a complete operating system re-install. It sucks losing some of your settings and changes you made that you like, but in the interest of a smoother running system, you make that choice. Dump the old, broken OS and start with a fresh install, even if it is a fresh install of the same exact OS. It is amazing how much smoother a fresh install runs.
Seems to me, our government has become that broken, corrupted, bloated OS. The runaway, burdensome, destructive out of control government Ayn Rand wrote of. There are some people in our system that I truly like, but unfortunately, the entire system is failing us ALL (not just republicans or democrats), and we are encountering ever increasing government BSOD’s. It seems to me the time has come for a fresh operating system install. It’s time to derail our out of control train. For the sake of our country, and to avoid the inevitable self-destruction that we are currently hurtling down the rails toward, let’s install a whole new OS; a new group of people in every single public office. Let’s wipe our hard drive of these career politicians, who generation after generation have driven us to where we are, and let’s get back to what the Founding Fathers intended, a government of the people, by the people, and for the people.
On a side note, I will be making time to read Atlas Shrugged. If you are like me and have not read it, or are not familiar with it, take 90 minutes and watch the documentary I talked about above. I think you will want to get the book as well.