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Atlas Shrugged: Why is this so bad?

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Posts

  • DeebaserDeebaser At the corporate garage sale This is cheap and plentifulRegistered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Nice. :)

    The Atlas Shrugged Trilogy is amazing.

  • Xenogear_0001Xenogear_0001 Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Heh, I remember reading Anthem in AP English and was struck by how poorly written it was. Didn't realize that was Rand, though--that explains some things.

    It seems, though, that what occurs in Anthem is something she wouldn't exactly be in favor of. So if that's the end result of the events set into motion in Atlas Shrugged, wouldn't that undermine the core values of all her Randian followers?

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  • enlightenedbumenlightenedbum Ann Arbor, MichiganRegistered User regular
    edited July 2010
    It's a joke, read the end of the post. The argument is that the only way a society like the one portrayed in Anthem would ever develop, to the point of banning the first person pronoun is if someone was such a tremendously selfish asshat that they destroyed civilization in the name of selfishness. Rand obviously did not intend to this to be the message.

  • nescientistnescientist Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Drez wrote: »
    So I rather think you've proved my point for me. The point is: Atlas Shrugged isn't terrible because Ayn Rand is terrible, but that Atlas Shrugged is terrible because Atlas Shrugged is terrible.

    I was with you entirely on this post until this last bit here. Clearly, if Ayn Rand were some kind of angelic fucking bodhisattva with impeccable values, Atlas Shrugged would just be a clunky piece of mediocre fiction instead of "terrible." However, she is a terrible person with terrible values which she put to print in a terrible book. Thus, to say that Atlas Shrugged is terrible because Ayn Rand is terrible is not necessarily an abrogation of death-of-author, if the justification for Ayn Rand's terribleness is based solely on the text, which provides ample evidence of such.

    However, if we are discussing the philosophical merit of Objectivism rather than the literary merit of Atlas Shrugged, then bringing in Ayn's words and other works is just fine. It's still a very weak criticism to bring in ad-hominemy minutiae like her speed habit, but it isn't totally irrelevant (it is pretty irrelevant though) either. The trouble with this, of course, is that if one poster is discussing philosophical merit (a valid topic in this thread given that the novel in question is a polemic in support of Objectivism) while another is concerned with literary merit, there will be conflict over whether non-AS sources are valid; the solution to this, in my opinion, is for the literature majors to either chill out or step up to the plate and mount a defense of AS as literature.

    Otherwise you're just bitching about a valid line of discussion for this thread which happens not to be a valid line of discussion in a literature class.

    Carl Sagan wrote:
    The sky calls to us. If we do not destroy ourselves, we will one day venture to the stars.
  • Xenogear_0001Xenogear_0001 Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    It's a joke, read the end of the post. The argument is that the only way a society like the one portrayed in Anthem would ever develop, to the point of banning the first person pronoun is if someone was such a tremendously selfish asshat that they destroyed civilization in the name of selfishness. Rand obviously did not intend to this to be the message.

    I must be losing my mind. I didn't get that he was linking Atlas Shrugged and Anthem, originally supposed to be unrelated, via a fictitious second book. Or rather, I did get that he was making up details about a second book, but did not understand that the two were never supposed to be linked in the first place. Still, that is pretty weird that she never made that connection herself--it's a natural fit.

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  • OptimusZedOptimusZed Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    It's a joke, read the end of the post. The argument is that the only way a society like the one portrayed in Anthem would ever develop, to the point of banning the first person pronoun is if someone was such a tremendously selfish asshat that they destroyed civilization in the name of selfishness. Rand obviously did not intend to this to be the message.

    Oh, I thought he said that he was making up the part about the second book. I didn't realize he was full of it regarding Anthem, too. But yeah, that makes more sense now.
    Well, he's got the plot of Anthem pretty much right. It's just that his interpretation of what came before is likely very different from the author's.

    We're reading Rifts. You should too. You know you want to. On Hiatus!

    Any gamers in the Danville, PA area? PM me if you're interested in some tabletop gaming.
  • DrezDrez Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Drez wrote: »
    So I rather think you've proved my point for me. The point is: Atlas Shrugged isn't terrible because Ayn Rand is terrible, but that Atlas Shrugged is terrible because Atlas Shrugged is terrible.

    I was with you entirely on this post until this last bit here. Clearly, if Ayn Rand were some kind of angelic fucking bodhisattva with impeccable values, Atlas Shrugged would just be a clunky piece of mediocre fiction instead of "terrible." However, she is a terrible person with terrible values which she put to print in a terrible book. Thus, to say that Atlas Shrugged is terrible because Ayn Rand is terrible is not necessarily an abrogation of death-of-author, if the justification for Ayn Rand's terribleness is based solely on the text, which provides ample evidence of such.

    However, if we are discussing the philosophical merit of Objectivism rather than the literary merit of Atlas Shrugged, then bringing in Ayn's words and other works is just fine. It's still a very weak criticism to bring in ad-hominemy minutiae like her speed habit, but it isn't totally irrelevant (it is pretty irrelevant though) either. The trouble with this, of course, is that if one poster is discussing philosophical merit (a valid topic in this thread given that the novel in question is a polemic in support of Objectivism) while another is concerned with literary merit, there will be conflict over whether non-AS sources are valid; the solution to this, in my opinion, is for the literature majors to either chill out or step up to the plate and mount a defense of AS as literature.

    Otherwise you're just bitching about a valid line of discussion for this thread which happens not to be a valid line of discussion in a literature class.

    I'm only talking about the quality of the text itself. When you talk about Objectivism, bringing Rand (and the books) into the discussion makes sense. Objectivism is a philosophy, it isn't any specific text.

    The drug habit thing is kind of a tangent but generally I'm not in favor of dismissing people over something like that either. I guess it's a causation/correlation issue. I'm not sure I believe Ayn Rand formed Objectivism the way she did because of her drug habit. Maybe. And it's plausible to discuss that. But to dismiss it BECAUSE of her drug habit or her upbringing is wrong. You can investigate and try to draw conclusions there but the way Ender was throwing it out there was like "hey, she was a druggie, don't listen to her." I think that's a pretty bad attitude in general, literature or otherwise.

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  • nescientistnescientist Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Drez wrote: »
    Drez wrote: »
    So I rather think you've proved my point for me. The point is: Atlas Shrugged isn't terrible because Ayn Rand is terrible, but that Atlas Shrugged is terrible because Atlas Shrugged is terrible.

    I was with you entirely on this post until this last bit here. Clearly, if Ayn Rand were some kind of angelic fucking bodhisattva with impeccable values, Atlas Shrugged would just be a clunky piece of mediocre fiction instead of "terrible." However, she is a terrible person with terrible values which she put to print in a terrible book. Thus, to say that Atlas Shrugged is terrible because Ayn Rand is terrible is not necessarily an abrogation of death-of-author, if the justification for Ayn Rand's terribleness is based solely on the text, which provides ample evidence of such.

    However, if we are discussing the philosophical merit of Objectivism rather than the literary merit of Atlas Shrugged, then bringing in Ayn's words and other works is just fine. It's still a very weak criticism to bring in ad-hominemy minutiae like her speed habit, but it isn't totally irrelevant (it is pretty irrelevant though) either. The trouble with this, of course, is that if one poster is discussing philosophical merit (a valid topic in this thread given that the novel in question is a polemic in support of Objectivism) while another is concerned with literary merit, there will be conflict over whether non-AS sources are valid; the solution to this, in my opinion, is for the literature majors to either chill out or step up to the plate and mount a defense of AS as literature.

    Otherwise you're just bitching about a valid line of discussion for this thread which happens not to be a valid line of discussion in a literature class.

    I'm only talking about the quality of the text itself. When you talk about Objectivism, bringing Rand (and the books) into the discussion makes sense. Objectivism is a philosophy, it isn't any specific text.

    The drug habit thing is kind of a tangent but generally I'm not in favor of dismissing people over something like that either. I guess it's a causation/correlation issue. I'm not sure I believe Ayn Rand formed Objectivism the way she did because of her drug habit. Maybe. And it's plausible to discuss that. But to dismiss it BECAUSE of her drug habit or her upbringing is wrong. You can investigate and try to draw conclusions there but the way Ender was throwing it out there was like "hey, she was a druggie, don't listen to her." I think that's a pretty bad attitude in general, literature or otherwise.

    Definitely agree with you re: speed. It's an incredibly weak argument, I just wanted to point out that within the context of discussing her philosophy it isn't necessarily out of bounds, the way death-of-author would imply for literary criticism. And actually rereading my post I sound a little more derogatory towards the lit-crit angle than I really intended; I just don't want to invalidate other avenues of discussion prematurely, is all.

    Carl Sagan wrote:
    The sky calls to us. If we do not destroy ourselves, we will one day venture to the stars.
  • TaramoorTaramoor Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    The idea in anthem is interesting, that society would never have advanced past hunting and possibly gathering if individual accomplishment or ambition were actively stifled and the group were all that mattered.

    Of course, almost all invention and development has come as a result of trying to ensure the survival of your group over other groups and is usually done to improve the lives of yourself and those around you.

    Also, none of her ideas work if the selfish bastard hero character isn't ALSO the smartest most capable guy in the goddamned world.

    "I'm going on strike, and taking all the other brilliant minds with me. I've written a manifesto."
    "Dude... you spelled Brilliant with a six."

  • N1tSt4lkerN1tSt4lker Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Thought this look at the increased popularity of Rand among Tea Partiers should go in here. Spoilered for length.
    Spoiler:

    The comments are interesting as well, esp. when the Objectivists/Libertarians get involved.

  • PeccaviPeccavi oh... oh my!Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Shales suggests that sales of Atlas Shrugged correspond to increases in the tax burden. She states that it is “interesting” to “compare sales of ‘Atlas Shrugged,’ provided by the Ayn Rand Institute, to Internal Revenue Service distribution tables.” She provides two-and-a-half data points to support this thesis:

    In 1986, a year when “Atlas Shrugged” sold between 60,000 and 80,000 copies, the top 1 percent of earners paid 26 percent of the [federal personal] income tax. By 2000, that 1 percent was paying 37 percent [of the federal personal income tax], and “Atlas Shrugged” sales were at 120,000. By 2006, the top 1 percent carried 40 percent of the burden [of federal personal income tax].

    YES! Two data points is clearly enough to run a regression. Let me just pull up Stata and put this data in...

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  • tbloxhamtbloxham Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    Peccavi wrote: »
    Shales suggests that sales of Atlas Shrugged correspond to increases in the tax burden. She states that it is “interesting” to “compare sales of ‘Atlas Shrugged,’ provided by the Ayn Rand Institute, to Internal Revenue Service distribution tables.” She provides two-and-a-half data points to support this thesis:

    In 1986, a year when “Atlas Shrugged” sold between 60,000 and 80,000 copies, the top 1 percent of earners paid 26 percent of the [federal personal] income tax. By 2000, that 1 percent was paying 37 percent [of the federal personal income tax], and “Atlas Shrugged” sales were at 120,000. By 2006, the top 1 percent carried 40 percent of the burden [of federal personal income tax].

    YES! Two data points is clearly enough to run a regression. Let me just pull up Stata and put this data in...

    Clear evidence that the taxes on the rich are growing! There can be no other conclusion! Well, I mean I suppose it could be the case that the top 1% of earners in the country control an ever increasing amount of the wealth, and in fact are being taxed less on a per dollar basis... But how likely can that be with that communist Obama in the white house

    Your puny weapons are useless against me
  • poshnialloposhniallo Registered User regular
    edited July 2010
    cloudeagle wrote: »
    Drez wrote: »
    cloudeagle wrote: »
    I am of course assuming the eight or so professors I studied under while getting my MA in English weren't constantly lying to me.

    What is it that they told you?

    That there are numerous ways to analyze literature, and there's no one true way to look at it.

    That is, it's fine to take a "death of the author" approach, but insisting that it's the only one, true way to look at ANY book only serves to make you look like an asshole.

    This is an incredibly important point re: Death of the author, Atlas Shrugged=tract, etc etc

    'Death of the author' is one approach among many. The popular version of literary criticism is that now the author is dead and no-one pays any attention to the author any more. That this 'philosophy' is the current one, having defeated all others.

    This is not the case at all.

    The 'New Criticism' which had some people saying we should ignore the author and anything else not on the page has many opponents, and many who neither oppose nor support it, but simply find it one way of approaching a text. One way among many.

    One of the criticisms of this method has been that it is 'ahistorical' - that all texts have a historical context, all people write within a cultural and political situation, and that pretending they didn't - 'just taking the words on the page' - means that actually we then look at the text from our own cultural, political and historical perspective while (hypocritically) ignoring this.

    We believe ourselves to be ahistorical, acultural, apolitical and somehow different from any other culture in the world - cf. Francis Fukuyama's bullshit.

    An incredibly simple example of this would be if a British person used the word fag and an American read it. The text can only be seen through the lens of culture. The interactions between culture and text that go into a long complex text are myriad, pervasive and extremely important.

    Rant:
    Spoiler:

    tl;dr? Death of the author is NOT what literary critics all believe and is NOT a monolithic approach.

    I figure I could take a bear.
  • DuffelDuffel Registered User
    edited August 2010
    What would a pure "Death of the Author" approach take to a book like Gulliver's Travels, which absent the historical background in which it was written is more or less nonsensical?

    I personally think it's important, even vital, not to subscribe to some tyrannical notion that, through close enough analysis of an author's life and background, we can somehow discern the "true" meaning of the text exactly as the author intended. Anyone who's done any creative work knows that your vision changes as the work goes on, and endless dissection of an author's biography, statements and what have you in hopes of finding the Holy Grail of interpretation is a fool's game.

    But this idea that a text somehow exists in a vacuum and that any outside information vis a vis the author, their experiences, their beliefs, and the historical setting in which the work arose is unimportant is just as useless, IMO. Pretty much any text - even the most out-there stuff like Finnegan's Wake - arose as part of some literary tradition and has outside influences on it. Creative works are not born ex nihilo and it seems pretty silly to act as though they were, and it seems even more ridiculous to blatantly tell an author (as has been done) that they have the "wrong" interpretation of their own work simply because somebody else reads it in a different way.

    But then, I swapped my comp major for a lit minor, so what do I know?

  • Santa ClaustrophobiaSanta Claustrophobia Ho Ho Ho Disconnecting from Xbox LIVERegistered User regular
    edited August 2010
    In defense of Death of the Author, it's a good point of view to have when trying to measure like or dislike of a work. But it really shouldn't be applied to analysis. Everything is, more or less, a product of its time.

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  • Apothe0sisApothe0sis Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    It's my understanding that Death of the Author has been radically misused within the thread.

    Death of the author has nothing to do with the perceived quality of the work (as in "We should judge the book independently of the distastefulness the author") but instead regarding the meaning of the work and what the work is saying.

    As far as I know, no one is disputing that the Atlas Shrugged is a tract in favour of Ayn Rand's nonsense. The true Death of the Author position would be maintaining that what it was REALLY saying was something radically different to the clear authorial intent. This would be no great feat - we're part of the way there already, everyone's already pointing out that the story rests upon breaking the laws of thermodynamics and magic - it's a short trip to extrapolating this to "Atlas Shrugged is in fact a cautionary against the fact that Libertarianism is an unworkable ideal with horrific consequences should it be enacted in the real world."

    Or the somewhat less readily apparent "Ostensibly it's about the tyranny of the majority keeping down the great, but really, it's an allegory about vampires."

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  • override367override367 Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    You know, I saw that you could get a pretty decent scholarship writing a dissertation on Atlas Shrugged when I was getting ready to go to school a few years back.

    So I checked the book out with the intent of doing so, got about 200 pages in, found it to be a distasteful bit of agony, and entirely fucking boring, and the entire intent of the scholarship was indoctrination in objectivism. Cute.

    We had read an abridged version of "Anthem" in high school, and it sucked. I should've known better.

    Is it just me or is an Objectivist scholarship hilarious

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  • LoklarLoklar Registered User
    edited August 2010
    Apothe0sis wrote: »
    It's my understanding that Death of the Author has been radically misused within the thread.

    Death of the author has nothing to do with the perceived quality of the work (as in "We should judge the book independently of the distastefulness the author") but instead regarding the meaning of the work and what the work is saying.

    As far as I know, no one is disputing that the Atlas Shrugged is a tract in favour of Ayn Rand's nonsense. The true Death of the Author position would be maintaining that what it was REALLY saying was something radically different to the clear authorial intent. This would be no great feat - we're part of the way there already, everyone's already pointing out that the story rests upon breaking the laws of thermodynamics and magic - it's a short trip to extrapolating this to "Atlas Shrugged is in fact a cautionary against the fact that Libertarianism is an unworkable ideal with horrific consequences should it be enacted in the real world."

    Or the somewhat less readily apparent "Ostensibly it's about the tyranny of the majority keeping down the great, but really, it's an allegory about vampires."

    I haven't read Atlas Shrugged but bolded always makes me lol. It's a story for heaven's sake. You're supposed to allow for some things.

    In King Lear, Cordelia tricks Lear into believing life is worth living by blindfolding him and pushing him off of a small hill. He believes that god saved him. Jesuschristthat'ssounrealistic, stupid Shakespear.

    Anyways I now want to read Atlas because of the raeg it makes people feel. It's not in the iBook store though..

  • QuidQuid The Fifth Horseman Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Does anyone point to that example as a valid reason to believe in God?

  • LoklarLoklar Registered User
    edited August 2010
    Quid wrote: »
    Does anyone point to that example as a valid reason to believe in God?

    The question you should ask is: Do objectivists believe in perpetual motion?

    Because they don't. It's just a device in a book.

  • IsidoreIsidore Registered User
    edited August 2010
    You could at least have used The Tempest, Loklar. That has a bona fide wizard in it.

    To imply that those currently at the top - the Warren Buffets and Roman Abramoviches of this world - are the very best, the ne plus ultra of humanity, is a kind of hate speech toward the species. Dignity demands that we refute it.
  • LoklarLoklar Registered User
    edited August 2010
    Isidore wrote: »
    You could at least have used The Tempest, Loklar. That has a bona fide wizard in it.

    Wizards are real though.

  • QuidQuid The Fifth Horseman Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    A book that was meant and is often used to show how objectivism could work, despite the fact that the only way it "works" in the book is with the creation of a perpetual motion machine.

    So yes, using the book as a an example for anything workable is as stupid as pointing to King Lear as an example as to why people should believe in God. Good job Loklar.

  • LoklarLoklar Registered User
    edited August 2010
    Quid wrote: »
    A book that was meant and is often used to show how objectivism could work, despite the fact that the only way it "works" in the book is with the creation of a perpetual motion machine.

    So yes, using the book as a an example for anything workable is as stupid as pointing to King Lear as an example as to why people should believe in God. Good job Loklar.

    I'm really itching to read this book now.

    Okay, so an inventor creates an impossibly-powerful device and can then bend society to his will. Maybe this means if an inventor creates a very-powerful device and can then have lots of influence on society.

    That's my laymen interpretation. I've never heard anyone argue anything about creating perpetual motion. It's just a science fiction element that haters grasp onto. Atlas Shurgged isn't a documentary.

  • Kipling217Kipling217 Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Loklar wrote: »
    Quid wrote: »
    A book that was meant and is often used to show how objectivism could work, despite the fact that the only way it "works" in the book is with the creation of a perpetual motion machine.

    So yes, using the book as a an example for anything workable is as stupid as pointing to King Lear as an example as to why people should believe in God. Good job Loklar.

    I'm really itching to read this book now.

    Okay, so an inventor creates an impossibly-powerful device and can then bend society to his will. Maybe this means if an inventor creates a very-powerful device and can then have lots of influence on society.

    That's my laymen interpretation. I've never heard anyone argue anything about creating perpetual motion. It's just a science fiction element that haters grasp onto. Atlas Shurgged isn't a documentary.

    I have said it before(on page 65) so I will say it again:
    The thing is that the perpetual motion machine would undermine the capitalistic system as it is in effect free energy. This would remove a lot of the scarcity in our society and therefore reduce the need for a market economy.

    The Machine also didn't belong to Galt, it was made while he was under contract at a car company to develop it. By refusing to tell his employers how it was made(or making them aware of his invention), he was stealing their intelectual property(look at BRATZ case for an example of this). Galt was looter himself.

    She was too stupid to realise that she had her main Hero ruin her entire argument.

    Thats why we keep latching on to the perpetual motion machine. Note the last line especially.

    Communicating from the last of the Babylon Stations.
  • LoklarLoklar Registered User
    edited August 2010
    Quid wrote: »

    Okay, so I read what you linked and.... what does that have to do with perpetual motion, or reading things too literally?

    @Kipling217 - Thank you for an answer.

    I'd have to read the book respond, probably. But I don't think a free-energy (or more realistically ultra-cheap energy) would undermine capitalism. It would change society tremendously and lift everyone's standard of living, but people would still need to be employed for building the products that work off of this cheap-energy.

    But I guess since so many bad things happen in the book it might be worth investigating. Thanks again though.

  • SchrodingerSchrodinger Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Loklar wrote: »
    Quid wrote: »
    Does anyone point to that example as a valid reason to believe in God?

    The question you should ask is: Do objectivists believe in perpetual motion?

    Because they don't. It's just a device in a book.

    Libertarians frequently deny Malthusianism and zero sum games, and the idea that resources are finite. It's one of the reasons they aren't particularly concerns with things like peak oil and the need for renewable resources, deforestation, recycling, endangered species, sustainable wildlife, etc.

    http://www.realclearpolitics.com/articles/2010/04/21/myths_about_capitalism_105250.html
    Medved's second myth is that when the rich get richer, the poor get poorer. This is the old zero-sum fallacy, which ignores that when two people engage in free exchange, both gain -- or they wouldn't have traded. It's what I call the double thank-you phenomenon. I understand why politicians and lawyers believe it: It's true in their world. But it's not true in business.

    "If you believe that when the rich get richer, the poor get poorer, then you believe that creating wealth causes poverty, and you're an idiot," said Medved. "One of the things that I hate is this term 'obscene profits.' There are no obscene profits ... . (The current economic downturn shows) "that when the rich get poorer ... everybody gets poorer."

    Bolded for idiocy.

    Keep in mind that he wrote that in 2010, well after the economy took a nose dive because people on Wall Street decided to gouge the system out of billions. It's not like rich people went bankrupt, and then the economy crashed due to a downturn in the yacht industry.

    Ironically, these same people who insist that there is no such thing as zero sum games are also pushing a return to the gold standard, so that the money supply stays stagnant even when we have economic growth.

  • Kipling217Kipling217 Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Loklar wrote: »
    Quid wrote: »

    Okay, so I read what you linked and.... what does that have to do with perpetual motion, or reading things too literally?

    @Kipling217 - Thank you for an answer.

    I'd have to read the book respond, probably. But I don't think a free-energy (or more realistically ultra-cheap energy) would undermine capitalism. It would change society tremendously and lift everyone's standard of living, but people would still need to be employed for building the products that work off of this cheap-energy.

    But I guess since so many bad things happen in the book it might be worth investigating. Thanks again though.

    Actually it would, Capitalism is a distribtution method of scarse resources. Its the shortage of resources compared to buyers that drives the economy.

    With free energy the cost and difficulty of aquiring resources would plumet, as would the cost of refining it into usable goods and transporting it to market. There would no shortage of resources, meaning every person would get what they want. You would have a post capitalistic economy.

    It would even work with agriculture. Much of todays agriculture need fertilizer, water and transport. All of which require energy in some form.

    Communicating from the last of the Babylon Stations.
  • The Black HunterThe Black Hunter Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    But effort and resources would still need to be found and distributed, it's just the energy consumption would go down. Life would probably get a lot easier and cheaper for everyone, but a capitalist system would still exist.

    A newfound ease of creation would either mellow everything out, or would allow maniacs to fuck everyone alot easier

    sig-1.jpg
  • electricitylikesmeelectricitylikesme Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    But effort and resources would still need to be found and distributed, it's just the energy consumption would go down. Life would probably get a lot easier and cheaper for everyone, but a capitalist system would still exist.

    A newfound ease of creation would either mellow everything out, or would allow maniacs to fuck everyone alot easier

    Free energy changes a lot though. If energy is effectively free, you can get other resources in completely different ways. I mean, it becomes practical to just ionize random chunks of dirt into their constituent elements to get whatever you want - who cares - the energy to do it is free.

    Dis' wrote: »
    Cancer is when cells stop letting the body mooch off their hard work - clearly a community of like-minded cells should isolate themselves and do the best job each can do, even if the rest of the body collapses!
  • Tiger BurningTiger Burning (poster is a bear)Registered User, SolidSaints Tube regular
    edited August 2010
    Apothe0sis wrote: »

    Or the somewhat less readily apparent "Ostensibly it's about the tyranny of the majority keeping down the great, but really, it's an allegory about vampires."

    Atlas Shrugged is a better vampire book than Twilight. Or so I hear.

    “You could tell by the way he talked, though, that he had gone to school a long time. That was probably what was wrong with him.”
  • LoklarLoklar Registered User
    edited August 2010
    But effort and resources would still need to be found and distributed, it's just the energy consumption would go down. Life would probably get a lot easier and cheaper for everyone, but a capitalist system would still exist.

    A newfound ease of creation would either mellow everything out, or would allow maniacs to fuck everyone alot easier

    Free energy changes a lot though. If energy is effectively free, you can get other resources in completely different ways. I mean, it becomes practical to just ionize random chunks of dirt into their constituent elements to get whatever you want - who cares - the energy to do it is free.

    Well it changes a lot and it's also not possible. It's fun to think about though.

    We'd probably eventually redirect our economy to be exclusively doctors, athletes, entertainers, scientists. Eventually materials would be free (once we got energy -> matter down) so all would be left is knowledge and services. We'd divorce our animal needs.

  • Kipling217Kipling217 Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    A knowledge economy would be like communist Socialist utopia without greed or poverty.

    And we owe it all to John Galt.

    What a public benefactor he was!

    Communicating from the last of the Babylon Stations.
  • TastyfishTastyfish Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Loklar wrote: »
    But effort and resources would still need to be found and distributed, it's just the energy consumption would go down. Life would probably get a lot easier and cheaper for everyone, but a capitalist system would still exist.

    A newfound ease of creation would either mellow everything out, or would allow maniacs to fuck everyone alot easier

    Free energy changes a lot though. If energy is effectively free, you can get other resources in completely different ways. I mean, it becomes practical to just ionize random chunks of dirt into their constituent elements to get whatever you want - who cares - the energy to do it is free.

    Well it changes a lot and it's also not possible. It's fun to think about though.

    We'd probably eventually redirect our economy to be exclusively doctors, athletes, entertainers, scientists...Salesmen, Landlords, Marketeers and Bankers Eventually materials would be free (once we got energy -> matter down) so all would be left is knowledge and services. We'd divorce our animal needs.

    So pretty much now you mean.

    Pretty sure for the most part in the West the raw materials are the smallest element of the cost of most things (apart from food - but I'm taking a massive leap in assuming the machines can just make that out of energy).

  • electricitylikesmeelectricitylikesme Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    They pretty much can. Food production is limited by available sunlight. Ridiculously cheap power would just let us surrogate it with artificial light and build farms in 3D.

    Although we could also do that now, just with satellites around the sun.

    Dis' wrote: »
    Cancer is when cells stop letting the body mooch off their hard work - clearly a community of like-minded cells should isolate themselves and do the best job each can do, even if the rest of the body collapses!
  • GaddezGaddez Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Seriously Loklar, the whole premise of the gulch is absurd. In order to function, we need to have galts wonder motor, a Hologram projector, and a force field machine. This of course also chooses to politely ignore that the people headed to the gulch are not exactly the kinds of people that are able to grasp how basic subsistence agriculture works.

    No wait, I forgot. The strikers are collectivley a band of ubermenchen who are perfect at absolutley everything. Seriously.

    Spoiler:
  • enc0reenc0re Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    Gaddez wrote: »
    Seriously Loklar, the whole premise of the gulch is absurd. In order to function, we need to have galts wonder motor, a Hologram projector, and a force field machine. This of course also chooses to politely ignore that the people headed to the gulch are not exactly the kinds of people that are able to grasp how basic subsistence agriculture works.

    No wait, I forgot. The strikers are collectivley a band of ubermenchen who are perfect at absolutley everything. Seriously.

    Why does it need Galt's Motor? Wouldn't a traditional power plant work just as well? I'm with you on the hologram. Not that it needs one per se, but the fundamental problem is hiding your society from the rest of society. I think the Bioshock dome is more realistic than trying above ground.

    Force field? I don't remember that. Refresh my memory.

  • LoklarLoklar Registered User
    edited August 2010
    Gaddez wrote: »
    Seriously Loklar, the whole premise of the gulch is absurd. In order to function, we need to have galts wonder motor, a Hologram projector, and a force field machine. This of course also chooses to politely ignore that the people headed to the gulch are not exactly the kinds of people that are able to grasp how basic subsistence agriculture works.

    No wait, I forgot. The strikers are collectivley a band of ubermenchen who are perfect at absolutley everything. Seriously.

    Ahh, it's my fan.

    Hi Gaddez. Sup dude?

  • JuliusJulius Registered User regular
    edited August 2010
    enc0re wrote: »
    Gaddez wrote: »
    Seriously Loklar, the whole premise of the gulch is absurd. In order to function, we need to have galts wonder motor, a Hologram projector, and a force field machine. This of course also chooses to politely ignore that the people headed to the gulch are not exactly the kinds of people that are able to grasp how basic subsistence agriculture works.

    No wait, I forgot. The strikers are collectivley a band of ubermenchen who are perfect at absolutley everything. Seriously.

    Why does it need Galt's Motor? Wouldn't a traditional power plant work just as well? I'm with you on the hologram. Not that it needs one per se, but the fundamental problem is hiding your society from the rest of society. I think the Bioshock dome is more realistic than trying above ground.

    Force field? I don't remember that. Refresh my memory.

    A regular power plant wouldn't work, but a very efficient super plant harvesting a nearly infinite form of energy could technically work. Like a hyper-advanced solar-powered plant. Still would't be the same as free energy though.

    And I dunno about the hologram. The rest of society is clearly too stupid to do a lot of very basic stuff. I think just setting up a very advanced defense-mechanisms around the Gulch would solve it already.

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