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Mon Jun 24, 2013, 10:40 AM

Chris Kluwe: Here’s what’s wrong with Ayn Rand, libertarians

A world full of Ayn Rands would be a terrifyingly selfish place, writes the outspoken NFL star in his new book
BY CHRIS KLUWE


So I forced myself to read “Atlas Shrugged.” Apparently I harbor masochistic tendencies; it was a long, hard slog, and by the end I felt as if Ayn Rand had violently beaten me about the head and shoulders with words. I feel I would be doing all of you a disservice (especially those who think Rand is really super-duper awesome) if I didn’t share some thoughts on this weighty tome.

Who is John Galt?

John Galt (as written in said novel) is a deeply flawed, sociopathic ideal of the perfect human. John Galt does not recognize the societal structure surrounding him that allows him to exist. John Galt, to be frank, is a turd.

http://www.salon.com/2013/06/23/chris_kluwe_heres_whats_wrong_with_ayn_rand_libertarians/

(more at link)

62 replies, 7757 views

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Reply Chris Kluwe: Here’s what’s wrong with Ayn Rand, libertarians (Original post)
silvershadow Jun 2013 OP
think Jun 2013 #1
silvershadow Jun 2013 #2
SwankyXomb Jun 2013 #57
rhett o rick Jun 2013 #3
immoderate Jun 2013 #5
rhett o rick Jun 2013 #48
Hekate Jun 2013 #44
Pholus Jun 2013 #51
Botany Jun 2013 #4
silvershadow Jun 2013 #7
Botany Jun 2013 #13
silvershadow Jun 2013 #14
Hekate Jun 2013 #45
MindMover Jun 2013 #52
deafskeptic Jun 2013 #6
silvershadow Jun 2013 #8
Skittles Jun 2013 #34
Boomerproud Jun 2013 #42
one_voice Jun 2013 #9
meow2u3 Jun 2013 #10
rustydog Jun 2013 #11
silvershadow Jun 2013 #12
Enthusiast Jun 2013 #47
mtasselin Jun 2013 #15
zeemike Jun 2013 #16
Fuddnik Jun 2013 #17
zeemike Jun 2013 #18
nineteen50 Jun 2013 #23
zeemike Jun 2013 #30
Major Nikon Jun 2013 #26
zeemike Jun 2013 #31
SheilaT Jun 2013 #19
erpowers Jun 2013 #20
Iliyah Jun 2013 #21
Warren DeMontague Jun 2013 #27
OriginalGeek Jun 2013 #37
brett_jv Jun 2013 #22
ms liberty Jun 2013 #25
OriginalGeek Jun 2013 #38
brett_jv Jun 2013 #46
ms liberty Jun 2013 #56
Wolf Frankula Jun 2013 #24
Hydra Jun 2013 #33
Warren DeMontague Jun 2013 #28
opiate69 Jun 2013 #58
Warren DeMontague Jun 2013 #59
opiate69 Jun 2013 #60
Xyzse Jun 2013 #29
DinahMoeHum Jun 2013 #32
DonCoquixote Jun 2013 #35
DinahMoeHum Jun 2013 #36
Dr Fate Jun 2013 #39
DirkGently Jun 2013 #40
silvershadow Jun 2013 #41
demigoddess Jun 2013 #53
DirkGently Jun 2013 #61
novenator Jun 2013 #43
demigoddess Jun 2013 #54
toby jo Jun 2013 #49
tclambert Jun 2013 #50
rwsanders Jun 2013 #62
Apophis Jun 2013 #55

Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 10:46 AM

1. Perhaps punting wasn't Kluwe's true calling

Great editorial and rant...

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Response to think (Reply #1)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 10:49 AM

2. I think you are right. One can only hope he has future political ambitions. nt

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Response to silvershadow (Reply #2)

Tue Jun 25, 2013, 03:48 PM

57. Minnesota 6th is going to be open.

I think it would be great if he took BSC Shelly's seat.

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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 10:57 AM

3. I loved John Galt and Ms. Rand in High School. I even subscribed to her

newsletter. When I had to go to work and got into the real world, I saw how much fantasy she spouted.

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #3)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 11:20 AM

5. Did you get the ISI bulletins?

Those meant we were smarter than everybody else.


--imm

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Response to immoderate (Reply #5)

Tue Jun 25, 2013, 09:54 AM

48. Sounds familiar, but I dont remember. I underwent some Grey Goose therapy to help me forget.

I still have the newsletters tho. I went thru them recently to see if there were any articles by Alan Greensberg but there wasnt. I remember her association with him back then.

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Response to rhett o rick (Reply #3)

Tue Jun 25, 2013, 03:47 AM

44. There are two novels that can change a bookish 14-year old's life...

There are two novels that can change a bookish 14-year old's life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.
—John Rogers

Glad you outgrew it!

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Response to Hekate (Reply #44)

Tue Jun 25, 2013, 10:34 AM

51. My favorite quote.

Then again, watching a libertarian friend single handedly take on AND WIN IN COURT against Border Patrol checkpoint overreach makes me appreciate some of their issues.

But I guess the NSA metadata plainly shows that my associations are questionable from an establishment point of view.

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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 10:58 AM

4. "John Galt, to be frank, is a turd."



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Response to Botany (Reply #4)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 11:36 AM

7. LOL. Yep, I loved that line, too.

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Response to silvershadow (Reply #7)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 12:12 PM

13. I was made to read that book years ago

It was a big screaming nothing ... it made so little of an impression on me that
I don't remember if it was "The Fountainhead" or "Atlas Shrugged." All I
remember is that it was really long.

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Response to Botany (Reply #13)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 12:14 PM

14. Ugh. I couldn't stand it. No way I could read Rand. It would be a torturous slog.

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Response to Botany (Reply #4)

Tue Jun 25, 2013, 03:55 AM

45. Great line! nt

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Response to Botany (Reply #4)

Tue Jun 25, 2013, 11:09 AM

52. Libertarians ....


libertarianism-anarchy-for-rich-people

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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 11:29 AM

6. I've only read The Voice of Reason by Ayn Rand.

Ever since I read that book, I've always thought her philosophy was fit only for narcissists and sociopaths.

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Response to deafskeptic (Reply #6)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 11:37 AM

8. If her followers of late are any indication, I'd say you are right.

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Response to deafskeptic (Reply #6)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 02:17 PM

34. CORRECT

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Response to deafskeptic (Reply #6)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 09:37 PM

42. They're brain-dead too.

but since they are so clueless, they don't understand the garbage they believe in.

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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 11:45 AM

9. Who says jocks are dumb?

Nice read. I really like this guy!

He'll be a nice fit for my fantasy team...

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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 11:59 AM

10. Kluwe has a life after football

He has the makings of a good professor. Personally, I think he ought to enroll in grad school to get his Ph.D if he hasn't already.

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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 12:06 PM

11. Thanks for the post and link!

I have a co-worker who said last week that he thinks Atlas Shrugged is a masterpiece.
He is very intelligent, very conservative.

This opinion is an excellent rebuttal to his assertion. I'll use it next time he brings up Atlas Shrugged.

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Response to rustydog (Reply #11)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 12:08 PM

12. You are very welcome!

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Response to rustydog (Reply #11)

Tue Jun 25, 2013, 07:13 AM

47. Pat Sajak, of Wheel of Fortune fame, calls it his favorite book.

And Pat, as we know is the best, the very best.


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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 12:19 PM

15. great

Chris, if you read this and ever get the chance to play in Green Bay please come and play here. When your career is over please go into politics, I think you would have a great future, as far as Ayn Rand goes it says a lot about lyin ryan that he makes his staff read this garbage. Good luck this season, stay safe. I applaud you.

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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 12:23 PM

16. No, John Galt is not a turd.

Ayn Rand is the turd, and John Galt is just one of her farts.

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Response to zeemike (Reply #16)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 12:26 PM

17. John Galt is the punch bowl.

Ayn Rand is what's floating in it.

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Response to Fuddnik (Reply #17)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 12:39 PM

18. That metaphor works too.

cause Ayn Rand is what created the stinking.

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Response to zeemike (Reply #16)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 01:07 PM

23. No John is the prototype

of international CEOs

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Response to nineteen50 (Reply #23)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 01:53 PM

30. Yes, and that is not funny...n/t

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Response to zeemike (Reply #16)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 01:38 PM

26. A fart is nothing more than a turd honking for the right of way

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Response to Major Nikon (Reply #26)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 01:55 PM

31. ;)

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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 12:43 PM

19. Thanks for the link.

Nearly fifty years ago a slightly older friend had just read "Atlas Shrugged" and recommended it to me whole-heartedly. I tried to read it. Couldn't get past the first couple of chapters because it was so boring, so badly written, so completely unbelievable. I do vaguely recall something about the monumental selfishness and self-centerdness of the main character, but happily no details remain in my memory.

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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 12:45 PM

20. Because He Was Likely Based on a Terrible Guy

John Galt probably seemed like a sociopath because he was probably based on a sociopath. It has been reported that John Galt was based on William Edward Hickman. Hickman was a guy who killed a 12 year old girl. In addition, it seems that Ayn Rand liked sociopaths. Rand believed the ideal person was someone who did not care about other people.

http://www.nakedcapitalism.com/2012/08/mark-ames-paul-ryans-guru-ayn-rand-worshipped-a-serial-killer-who-kidnapped-and-dismembered-little-girls.html

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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 12:51 PM

21. Rand was also a atheist

Paul Ryan and others in the GOP party live by her writings and maybe thats why they don't give a shit about others especially the least of us.

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Response to Iliyah (Reply #21)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 01:44 PM

27. Oh, well, if she was an Atheist, she must have been a deeply flawed moral being, huh?

You know how "they" are.

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Response to Iliyah (Reply #21)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 05:57 PM

37. say what now?

Most of the atheists I know are pretty awesome people who care deeply about their fellow human beings. I do know one who cares less than deeply but he is an atheist and a teabagger republican. I'd say that not caring commonality is from the teabag side rather than the atheist side.

And isn't Paul Ryan a Catholic? Thankfully I know some wonderful catholic people too so I won;t throw them all under the bus just because Paul Ryan is one.

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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 12:53 PM

22. Proud to have this dude on my Oakland Raiders!

Not that he's better than Shane Lechler, but he's way more entertaining.

The only thing I read by her was Anthem, cause it was assigned in my Junior English class.

It just so happened I bought the album Rush - 2012 right after I read it, and after reading the lyrics to that song, I was like 'holy crap, this friggin song is a re-telling of the book Anthem!'. Then I noticed there's a note at the bottom that says 'Thanks to Ayn Rand' or some such.

I've heard Peart later clarify that he in no way subscribes to Rand's philosophies, he just got the idea for the song lyrics from that book.

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Response to brett_jv (Reply #22)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 01:37 PM

25. The album was 2112, but you are correct...

The story was a jumping off point for him, so to speak. In 2112, he created a world of religion based authoritarianism, which his hero struggled against. Throughout his career, he has shown great disdain for both religion and authoritarians, up to and including their latest CD, the masterful "Clockwork Angels". This post brought to you by a dedicated Rush fan, lol!

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Response to ms liberty (Reply #25)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 06:02 PM

38. Add me to the list

of dedicated Rush fans.

I also read Anthem because of the album. Hallalujah, it was a LOT shorter than Atlas Shrugged and that's about the only nioce thing I can say about it. That and it spawned a great album.

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Response to ms liberty (Reply #25)

Tue Jun 25, 2013, 04:28 AM

46. Of course, that was a typo ...

I could write out every word to the entire 22 minute song off the top of my head right now ... despite having heard it about 3 times in the last 20 years. So ... yeah. I know what it's called

BTW, I saw Clockwork Angels here in Phoenix a few months back. The way things went down, I ended up in the 5th row, center ... for free.

It was friggin awesome. I hadn't seen 'em since the early 80's when I saw the GuP and Power Windows tours.

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Response to brett_jv (Reply #46)

Tue Jun 25, 2013, 01:10 PM

56. Yea- I figured it was a typo, lol...

I saw the Clockwork Angels tour on May 3rd in Raleigh (best seats we've had so far!), and on October 30th in Charlotte and it was magnificent both times. I loved the string section, and the band has deliberately been looser on this tour than usual, which was an awesome treat. I saw the previous tour, the Time Machine tour twice too, when they performed Moving Pictures in its entirety, and were performing the two songs from Clockwork Angels that they had recorded by then, which was Caravan and BU2B. Because they were doing all of Moving Pictures, it was far more precise, although Alex went on an unplanned riff at the Greenville SC show which me and mr liberty caught immediately and really cracked up about! Ged and Neil gave him this quizzical look, like, dude - where you going?

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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 01:08 PM

24. I could never take Rand

Her biggest failing is her characters. They don't have conversations, they make speeches to each other. The villains are one dimensional cardboard cutouts, the heroes and heroines are impossible Randian. The situations are totally unbelievable and false. The action is flat, when it is not nonexistent. She was a bad writer, a bad playwright and a bad human being.

Wolf

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Response to Wolf Frankula (Reply #24)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 02:14 PM

33. Rand took a LONG time growing up

And her followers are pretty much the same. They whine, they wreck, they steal and they throw tantrums...and then later they get over it and pretend they weren't ever wrong.

Of course, there are some people, like Greenspan, who NEVER grow out of it, and wreck entire societies in the name of the "moralness" of capitalism(and yes, he did use the word "moral").

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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 01:44 PM

28. Here you go:

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #28)

Tue Jun 25, 2013, 03:55 PM

58. remdi95




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Response to opiate69 (Reply #58)

Tue Jun 25, 2013, 05:25 PM

59. Now i know how to find you, my darleeeng!

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Response to Warren DeMontague (Reply #59)

Tue Jun 25, 2013, 05:28 PM

60. snork!!

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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 01:44 PM

29. Nicely written

Succint and to the point.

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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 02:38 PM

35. Why is it, with all the intellectaul firepower on the left

It took an NFL player to cut Ayn rand clearly, simply, and down to size.

I hope this guy becomes a writer after soaking the NFL for every penny he can.

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Response to DonCoquixote (Reply #35)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 05:50 PM

36. He's in New York this week, discussing and signing his book. . .

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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 06:26 PM

39. Galt's Gulch is either in China or India.

Or both, depending on your portfolio.

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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 09:28 PM

40. The Fountainhead was the first book I put down without finishing.


And Rand did idealize sociopaths. She was fascinated by a real life gruesome, sadistic serial killer and gushed about him in her journals.

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Response to DirkGently (Reply #40)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 09:37 PM

41. Yep. And that's why people like Glenn Beck are so easy to disdain. He is either not very smart, or

?? Whatever the reason, he shows it by idolizing Ayn Rand, who idolized... Same for Rand Paul and the others. How he got elected not only puzzles me, but scares me as well.

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Response to DirkGently (Reply #40)

Tue Jun 25, 2013, 12:29 PM

53. The fountainhead was the first book I couldn't read

I read about half of it. It was so stupid and repetitive. And selfish. This guy thought he should be successful and admired just because he was new and he thought he was terrific. Self-centered trash with no plot that I could see so I pitched it back to the library. I was in Mississippi at the time. Do you think that tells us something??

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Response to demigoddess (Reply #53)

Tue Jun 25, 2013, 07:18 PM

61. Yes! I suddenly realized I just hated Howard Roark.


That was a weird moment for someone who had been reading fiction since elementary school. He was obviously the protagonist / "hero," but he was self-centered jerk. There was no suspending disbelief after a certain point.

I was in college in Florida (so I wouldn't be too hard on Mississippi) and gave the book back to the girl who loaned it to me. We stopped dating shortly after.

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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Mon Jun 24, 2013, 11:56 PM

43. Where libertarians lose it

I can't believe he actually wasted his time by reading Atlas. Libertarians that demand someone read that ugly propaganda piece have the same philosophy as religious proselytizers: brainwash by volume. Luckily, Chris Kluwe is a Viking at heart and managed to not get suckered into their simplistic cult.

Don't get me wrong, I share some views with libertarians: more open borders allowing a freer flow of people, ending marijuana prohibition, bringing the troops home, defunding the military-security complex, ending domestic espionage, restoring civil liberties, etc.

Where libertarians lose it is by focusing the majority of their efforts to unleashing corporate tyranny through their trickle down and deregulation economic hypotheses. They would take unprecedented wealth inequality and expand it so that 90% of us are suffering even worse so the oligarchs and plutocrats could live even more lavish lifestyles. No amount of "free market" fairy dust will ever satiate greed and cruelty.

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Response to novenator (Reply #43)

Tue Jun 25, 2013, 12:33 PM

54. not to mention that in history

whenever we have gotten to that point, the lower class usually finds a guillotine or something like it.

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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Tue Jun 25, 2013, 10:05 AM

49. Ayn Rand wrote from the shitpit of communism, that's what you hafta get about her.

So her reflections on life were of the mindless, heartless, the no-empathy zone. Her writings strike me as something being worked out, something ugly and lifeless. I can see why conservatives like it because the distractions of the human bonding, the nature of love, the complexity of human need is non-existent. All that is left is simplistic slogging through of push/shove I win you lose mentalities.

Conservatives have simple little minds, they can grasp simple little things.

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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Tue Jun 25, 2013, 10:28 AM

50. Little known fact: Afterwards, John Galt developed kidney disease and died

because he didn't believe in getting help from anybody else. He didn't have any insurance ('cause that's socialism), didn't belong to any church or other community group that might have helped him out, and, of course, didn't believe in getting organ transplants (or allowing anyone else to perform surgery on him). He considered doing dialysis on himself, but it requires a complex machine and as smart as he thought he was, he just couldn't make all the components from scratch by himself. He also thought about researching a cure on his own, but he couldn't bear the thought of allowing existing research performed by others to influence his efforts to master the subject.

He eventually decided the best he could do was to spend his last days high on weed he grew himself. So you could say he died happy. Selfish and stupid, but happy.

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Response to tclambert (Reply #50)

Tue Jun 25, 2013, 08:40 PM

62. The version I read said that Heracles and his 12 labor unions castrated Atlas and John Galt.

(Sorry I've posted this before, but I still make myself laugh with it).

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Response to silvershadow (Original post)

Tue Jun 25, 2013, 12:35 PM

55. He was an okay punter for my team (the Vikings), but he's better at discussing politics and

 

video games.

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