Atlas Wants To Shrug. Do It. We Dare You.
In the past few days these two articles have been flying around Internetlandia. In sort, both Glen Beck and some other group of people who don’t really matter that much are in some stage of “going Galt.” By “going Galt,” they mean maintaining American citizenship and all the benefits thereof, including the protection of the US military, because both plans involve staying in CONUS, while indulging in their fantasy of “rugged individualism” outside of society.
They want Atlas to shrug, a little bit.
Understandably, the reaction from the left has been largely to commence waving goodbye. while laughing uncontrollably
Let me clue you in on something, ridiculous Galt wannbes. Fiction is fiction. Atlas Shrugged is bad fiction that doesn’t follow its own internal logic, let alone function as some sort of real world manifesto. But you know what? There are people who believe themselves to be actual vampires and werewolves. I’m friends with these people. I’m not even going to pretend that fanatical devotion to fiction is odd in my world. I mock them too because there are times when I simply can’t help it but, you know, they are entitled to their fantasies, as are you.
The funniest part about this idiocy is the pure hubris upon which it is, and has always been, based. When you point out to them the fundamental illogical of any group claiming to be totally outside of society while still living within and benefiting from said society their response is some variation of “how long do you think that will last?” That is the sound of absolute conviction that society will collapse without them. That’s the basic premise of Atlas Shrugged, enforced by the last scenes of the book wherein the main characters watch the lights of New York go out and move on to their new lives.
They are convinced that this will happen, that without them the rest of society will rove itself unable to function. They anticipate watching us flail and ultimately fail while they sit safely in their compounds.
You know what I think will happen to them?
Yes, clearly that’s a fantasy but it’s one I think we should indulge. No really. Encourage them. Buy them a ticket or maybe a AK-47, whatever. That seems to be an appropriate housewarming gift for someone moving to All About Me Town. Be sure to mention that they should take the CEOs of Whole Foods and Papa Johns with them as well as the board of the company that owns Olive Garden and Red Lobster. Oh, and most of the Republican member of the House of Representatives.
“Good luck guys! We will look to you as a shining example of…stuff! Woe, we shall suffer without you!”
And then when they leave we put ten guys into every one of those millionaire’s positions. Really, any ten guys will do assuming they understand basic mathematics.
Never forget the most basic truth of capitalism. The elite need the masses far, far more than the masses need the elite.
Look the fundamental principle of Objectivism in general and Atlas Shrugged, specifically can be summed up in one quote.
“I swear by my life and my love of it that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine.”
Contrast that statement of principles with this one.
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
Those two things stand in opposition to each other. They always have been. These people stand in direct opposition to the fundamental values of our society and they want to leave. This appears to be an instance of a problem solving itself. Win/win.
While they’re building their gulch, we can do some work.