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Atlas Shrugged VS Tai-Pan

James Clavell's Tai-Pan is an excellent book. One of my favorite reasons for liking his book is that it shows Capitalism as it is.

Ayn Rand's Atlas Shrugged is also an excellent book, but it does not show Capitalism as it is, it shows a stilted moral universe, a universe that Miss Rand felt was showing its moral ideal, as it should be.

Both create worlds of movers and shakers in the world of business, but only Clavell gets it right. For this reason, I think readers of DP may be interested to go back and find this most excellent book.
Once this reality based vision of Capitalism is understood, then understanding today's situation will come much easier. From Rands point of view, the following would be nonsensical. Yet from Clavell's point of view, it would be expected.

http://www.williambowles.info/ini/ini-0295.html

I welcome your comments, especially if you have read both books.

In Peace & Liberty,
Treg

++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
PS

IN Just 200 pages into Tia Pan you will find the hero, the Scottish Capitalist, Dirk Straun, wheeling and dealing with:

1) The Chinese

2) The British Navy, its cannon-bomb thirsty Captain Gleesing along with their naive "ambassador" who does not speak or understand the Chinese nor wants too.

3) The British Banks (of which there is a run on one, making him bankrupt and staring down at loosing everything in 30 days!)

4) The Tea & Opium Traders (His competition from America, Portugal, Spain, & the world wide Empire of Great Britain

5) Dealing with the Monopoly Giant: The East Indian Tea Company

6) Cholera, the Plague, lice, rats and the "Got rotten weather"

7) The death of his wife and most of his children & what it means to be Christian.

8) His Chinese lover May May (a cat of amazing social skills & opinions)

9) Transporting five refrigerator size crates full of bars of silver along with seven Chinese boat men in the dead of night who want to kill you for it. Just one bar of silver would make a man's family rich for two centuries and rumors abound that its near, somewhere. Yet its not even his! Dirk has it all on Loan to start his "Nobel House" of trade on the Island of Hong Kong. (you might say that Chinese Capitalists started Hong Kong thru their trusted British Capitalists).

10) Pirates, oh yes, lots of opportunistic pirates, thieves on boats.

In just the first 200 pages during this time you will learn that our Hero Capitalists "Dirk Straun" has opinions on ....
the Power of Money,
Free Trade,
Importance of Family,
God & Gods,
Heathen Chinese,
sex,
marriage ....

and the reasons why Europeans should learn from the Chinese to "wip ur arse an wash ur hands"....and "take a bath once a week".

(paraphrasing from memory, not verbatim)

As he explains to his son Collum,

"You will do as I say and take a bath once a week. The Chinese don't stink, I don't stink, and your Uncle Robb don't stink. The Chinese think sickness and dung have something to do with each other and you will wipe ur arse & warse ur hands lassie. You will bath hot like the Chinese do. You shall drink hot tea, na water, tea. You shall get new clothes and wash them too once a week. And Got willin, you shall see 3 score and ten like me (age 40). We do not drop like flies with sickness like the other sailors on European merchants ships do. Aye, its Chinese ways, Heathen ways, but its keepen me alive. I got no lice, I don't stink and neither will you Collum."

Collum to his father Dirk, the Tia Pan (Biggest Capitalist trader of them all) --

"Everyone's got lice. You are born with lice and die with lice. Its just a scratchen. Everyone stinks. You are going back to London, they all stink and got lice. You bring your China ways there and they'll be laughing at all us Strauns"

Dirk--
"Lass, it was just 70 years ago that Captain Cook listened to the islanders, now we all take limes and as much fresh vegetables to sea as we can. I've seen the scurvy and if limes can stop that, then washin ur arse may do something too. You'll do as I say or I'll have you tied and drug in the water behind thy ship China Cloud til you good n clean."

What is most amazing is the amount of REAL business in the novel. From Banking, Notes, borrowing, debt, the value of someone's word all tied to ones character. Trust and luck plays a huge part in business success. Unlike Rand's Capitalist hero and simpleton, Hank Rearden, Dirk Straun is the real McCoy, savy, wise, and smart enough to know that he is not so dam smart he can't learn a thing or two from the "heathen Chinese". Like Hank, Dirk is sure of the physics of the world, that its reliable, testable and a good thing, but Dirk also knows that nature throws us curve balls and operates in strange ways. Like Hank, Dirk is also confused or unsure about the people world around him and finds their institutions strange and perplexing and at odds and, (unlike Hank) to be bent and manipulated like Hank would bend his teal green metal to his own purpose. Unlike Hank, Dirk can use and manipulate those people and institutions around him enough, just enough, to continue on his own selfish purpose. If Hank Rearden and Dirk Straun was to do real business in the real world, I would put my money on the Scotsman Dirk Straun hands down.

And that.... is in just the first 200 pages. By the time Miss Rand finishes with the first 700 pages, the wonderful novel about the 1880's opening up of China via Hong Kong, is over. Dam those Capitalists are fast.

In Peace & Liberty,
Treg

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Thanks for the heads up!

Thanks for the heads up!

Atlas srugged is not just

Atlas srugged is not just about capitalism it's about people dealing with each other honestly and expecting the same of others. Sure humans aren't perfect and there will always be looters and parasites that have to be dealt with but there is nothing wrong or unrealistic with Ayn Rands ideal in Atlas Shrugged. It's a goal to shoot for however even in the book she does not portray everything as perfect.

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Ahh.... but is even her described Ideal ...perfect?

I submit to you that Rand, while she championed capitalism, did not truly understand it. I think she knew enough for her own purposes but no more and that shows up in the novel. I doubt she read Human Action or The Road to Serfdom or even later books like Capitalism & Freedom, Free to Choose, Wealth & Poverty, or How the World Works. It seems to me, after reading Isabella Patterson, that is where the young miss rand cut her eye-teeth and stayed. Patterson's influence seems to me, all over the work of Miss Rand.

In Peace & Liberty,
Treg

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And what is you think she

And what is it you think she didn't understand about capitalism?

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Only dead fish go with the flow...

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End The Fat
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Capitalism requires morality

When you say "James Clavell's Tai-Pan ... shows Capitalism as it is," do you mean that it portrays it as an imperfect system?

Though I have not yet read these books, I'm interested in what Clavell says about capitalism. Despite being a fan of the capitalism, I don't share the idealistic view known by Ayn Rand. Capitalism is not a perfect system in and of itself.

The reason is that capitalism is based on human behavior, and human behavior is either moral or corrupt. Throughout history, it has been victim to corruption.

And the problem obviously, is how are we to stamp-out corruption?

But the idea that pure capitalism can improve humanity is wrong. Humanity must be improved first in order to improve the success of capitalism. Otherwise, the flaws of humanity are only further realized by capitalism.

This differs from freedom however, which improves humanity by demanding personal responsibility and respect for our selves and our property. In any form of economics however, the motivation is profit. And like any addictive pleasure, the love of money corrupts the weak.

So long as we have corrupt individuals, the capitalistic system opens a door that at least a few will go through, in pursuit of power, fueled by avarice. And as we witness today, their power runs deep enough to open the door even wider, to corruption that runs so deep that it seems unstoppable.

Of course there never actually has been a real, 'pure' capitalism. Which makes my argument seem folly. But my point is simply that capitalism is not the antidote.

So long as human behavior is corrupt, so will be capitalism. Therefore I dispute the idea that "if only we had the right economic system... things would work out."

First we must find an end to the cause of corruption, which is generally those who are already corrupt and in power. If we are to have a truly free, productive, capitalistic society, we must first establish a renewed sense of morality.

That is my point of view.

...

"Talk all you can about all you know all of the time."

How do you stamp out corruption?

That is the problem in government first, before economics, because government (anarchy notwithstanding) seizes a monopoly on violence by force.

So do you look to the first great experiment, a divided constitutional republic, that our founders intended? Or Marxism or Fascism?

Who guards the guards? Who regulates the regulators of the economy?

"But the idea that pure

"But the idea that pure capitalism can improve humanity is wrong. Humanity must be improved first in order to improve the success of capitalism. Otherwise, the flaws of humanity are only further realized by capitalism."

I have to disagree. Pure capitalism makes it much more difficult for parasites to leach off of the producers and weeds them out quickly by forcing people to live on their own merits or starve.

If you wait for humanity to improve before you insist others deal honestly or not at all you will wait in vain!

-----
Only dead fish go with the flow...

Get Prepared!

-----
End The Fat
70 pounds lost and counting! Get in shape for the revolution!

Get Prepared!

Government, chief of parasites

Well, yes, you're right. However, the only deterrent from "parasites" and "leach(es)" is the force of government. So, what about when the government is corrupt (as it is, and virtually always is)? Then protection is weak, parasites thrive, and capitalism fails to achieve the goals you describe. This is what we suffer from.

I'm saying that we must prevent government corruption, and to do that requires a vigilant and moral people. Only then could such an ideal economy be truly successful.

Installing pure capitalism will not create a moral government. It will only work the other way around.

...

"Talk all you can about all you know all of the time."

"install villigant and moral people" you say?

That is a silly but common dream/goal/idea...

Man is Man.... He is honest, good, bad, nice, kind, a cheat, a liar, a thief, a rouge, a friend, an enemy, a kind person, a mean person, vindictive, smart, stupid, brilliant, dumb, unkind, sweet, loving, wonderful, dishonest, contrite, nasty, puritanical, spiritual, calm, emotional, ......and on and on it goes.

This means that if you know or have just one person in your life you are looking at someone who is all of the above, all at the same time, and all rolled into one person. To deny parts of yourself, is to not know yourself.

In Peace & Liberty,
Treg

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Agreed, Rand's novels are idealist and Romantic but consider...

What she wrote about Romanticism (Romantic Genre) in:

"The Romantic Manifesto" ch.10 "Introduction to (Victor Hugo's) 93"

"Modern readers, particularly the young, who have been brought up on the kind of literature that makes Zola seem Romantic by comparison, should be cautioned that a first encounter with Hugo might be shocking to them: it is like emerging from a murky underground, filled with the moans of festering half-corpses, into a blinding burst of sunlight. So, by way of providing an intellectual first-aid kit, I would suggest the following:
Do not look for familiar landmarks—you won't find them; you are not entering the backyard of "the folks next door," but a universe you did not know existed.
Do not look for "the folks next door"—you are about to meet a race of giants, who might have and ought to have been your neighbors.
Do not say that these giants are "unreal" because you have never seen them before—check your eyesight, not Hugo's, and your premises, not his; it was not his purpose to show you what you had seen a thousand times before.
Do not say that the actions of these giants are "impossible'' because they are heroic, noble, intelligent, beautiful—remember that the cowardly, the depraved, the mindless, the ugly are not all that is possible to man.
Do not say that this glowing new universe is an "escape"—you will witness harder, more demanding, more tragic battles than any you have seen on poolroom street corners; the difference is only this: these battles are not fought for penny ante.
Do not say that "life is not like that"—ask yourself: whose life?
This warning is made necessary by the fact that the philosophical and cultural disintegration of our age—which is bringing men's intellect down to the concrete-bound, range-of-the-moment perspective of a savage—has brought literature to the stage where the concept of "abstract universality" is now taken to mean "statistical majority." To approach Hugo with such intellectual equipment and such a criterion is worse than futile. To criticize Hugo for the fact that his novels do not deal with the daily commonplaces of average lives, is like criticizing a surgeon for the fact that he does not spend his time peeling potatoes. To regard as Hugo's failure the fact that his characters are "larger than life" is like regarding as an airplane's failure the fact that it flies.
But for those readers who do not see why the kind of people that bore them to death or disgust them in "real life" should hold a monopoly on the role of literary subjects, for those readers who are deserting "serious" literature in growing numbers and searching for the last afterglow of Romanticism in detective fiction, Hugo is the new continent they have been longing to discover."

Rand isn't writing about how reality is, but how reality ought to be, can be, and the philosophical positions of hero and villain.

Ahh.... but is even her described Ideal ...perfect?

I submit to you that Rand, while she championed capitalism, did not truly understand it. I think she knew enough for her own purposes but no more and that shows up in the novel. I doubt she read Human Action or The Road to Serfdom or even later books like Capitalism & Freedom, Free to Choose, Wealth & Poverty, or How the World Works.

It seems to me, after reading Isabella Patterson, that is where the young miss rand cut her eye-teeth and stayed. Patterson's influence seems to me, all over the work of Miss Rand.

In Peace & Liberty,
Treg

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I suspect the same

She probably was a bit ignorant of architecture and physics too. Few can by polymath geniuses. She stated here mission was to portray man as he aught to be, not as he was. I think she excelled at that.

I'll have to check out

I'll have to check out Tai-Pan. As for Rand...I just finished her other genius work, "The Fountainhead." I didn't realize her books top 700 pages when I ordered it...but it didn't matter because I couldn't put it down. Just great stuff that inspires you to never settle for the mediocre.

Will get it

Thanks for bringing Tai-Pan to light. I've read Shogun and found it pretty good so I have high hopes for this. Everyone talks about Hong-Kong as one of the most free-market places on earth. I've never read the details of how Hong Kong was started with the British so this could be good.

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Thanks for posting

and certainly enjoyed the comments below.

For those who read both, is there anything, other than entertainment, in Tai-Pan?

I think there are plenty of life's lessons to be learned...

and in particular, read about Banking, The British Empire, and how Capitalists did and do use the System to their own advantage as best that they can.

The USA empire is one built, not upon Opium, Tea, & Silver as was the late British Empire, no. The US Empire is built upon Oil and Banking (one world currency is the dollar). Like both empires, both seek to have an over arching Military to "facilitate trade". Unlike the British Empire, the American Empire is one where things go OUT and do not come IN. Such was the power of raw Capitalistic invention and business, for a time. Now the weight of what the empire was/is built upon is crashing down.

Look for Solar production to decentralize to the masses, rather than centralize under a few companies, and if it does, the future of America and the rest of the world is very bright, bright as the shinning sun indeed. The ripple effects of this one thing is quiet literally, a fundamental shift in Man to Nature, and thus Man's power over Man, and thus shattering for top heavy social systems.

In Peace & Liberty,
Treg

Yes, please BUY this wonderful libertarian BOOK! We all must know the History of Freedom! Buy it today!

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Buy it Here: http://www.amazon.com/dp/05211820

You said, "the American

You said, "the American Empire is one where things go OUT and do not come IN"

Don't you mean it is the other way around?

...

"Talk all you can about all you know all of the time."

No, things go OUT and do not come IN.

In past empires, such as the Chinese, the Egyptian, the Roman Empire, the British, etc ...... the all powerful central government exacts tribute, gold, silver, goods, lands, people, servants, slaves, soldiers, etc from the outside territories. Wealth came IN to past Empires.

The American Empire is different. Wealth goes OUT. We American tax payers subsidize one way or another our subdued countries and buy them off. We buy off the Orient such as the Philippines, South Korea, Taiwan, Japan, and pay them to have our military bases there. We even pay off when we don't have a military base there such as in the middle east such as Jordan, Egypt, Pakistan, India, and our latest addition Iraq as well as the number one foriegn aid recipient Israel. Then of course there are all the European Countries all bought off with NATO and various welfare strings since WWII, and of course various South American Countries such as Colombia and Panama and Chile.

So what countries are not bought off and under the US Empire "umbrella of welfare with strings attached?"

Iran, Russia, North Korea, and China.

There are plenty of "friendly countries", that is countries that the Empire does not have to directly buy off, such as Canada, Mexico, Brazil, Argentina, Australia, and of course Great Britain herself (now called England since its empire past on and over to the US).

Case in point. Take a look at Iraq's oil. Despite our invasion, it is not "ours", nor has it been taken as "reparations" for us "saving" and "liberating" them. No, the oil will stay and Americans (taxpayers) will pay....as has been the ongoing theme of the American Empire since WWII. A few American multinationals may get inside and favoring oil deals, but we taxpayers pay, we do not gain. The Power of Washington expands and grows.

Take a look at the "banana Republics" in say Panama or Costa Rica or Nicaragua, or Guatemala, ...etc. The point here is that American firms get their cost of doing business directly subsidized by getting Congress to have its military overtly and covertly do the companies bidding. The history on this is well written and not too controversial. Or take a look at America's "special relationship" with Colombia. The only real American Company doing business there is Occidental Petroleum oil giant who has rights to draw all of Colombia's oil and the "legitimate" government gets a "cut" and if trouble arises, Have Bill Clinton send 4 billion in military aid (for whom?) why Occidental of course. The "illegitimate" government makes its money on Cocaine "tax". As you may know Colombia has been in a 40 + year civil war.

Now, I am not saying that they should be made to pay and that American's should benefit, like Germans benefited from Hitlers campaigns or Caesar's campaigns benefited average Romans, no. I am saying it is unusually strange in the history of empires. And I am not the first to notice this fact of life.

Northcom, which divides up the world into sections, has as it goal to unite its strength and forces and influence under one command. So in a myriad of ways, the advance to world control happens, weather or not the individuals themselves want or wish or try to make it happen. The master structure is set, in place, and functions towards that goal. NeoCons just ideologically happen to be its cheerleaders. Americans its unwitting cattle to be milked regularly towards its ends. And the bankers also follow the structure they know and so seek to advance that system as well on any scale, (see IMF).

But the world is dynamic, full of individual actors following their own self perceived self interests and mother nature loves to through curve balls. Furthermore, Man himself throws himself curve balls with each new (cost reducing or cost increasing) technology and tool he invents. And always, always, the key component to changing society is the COST of Power over Others. So technology has a HUGE influence over this cost. The cost can go up as it did during the great Empires of the past, or it can go down, extremely low as it did during the times when the great Empires all broke apart. I submit we are in a period of rapid price decline. That is the Cost of Power over Others is declining. That causes structural changes inside societies, and it even causes them to break apart.

The Drug War is an interesting War. It has been going on since the Opium Wars and the China Tea Trade. The dynamics on how it works to the advantage of the Colonial powers is interesting. On the one hand it creates profits for its enemy, yet on the other it gives itself "reason to exist" and of course expand its powers over more and more people and places. The War on Drugs and as well as the War on Porn (or child porn) gives all governments the excuse they need to meddle directly into our lives. And as longs as there are plenty of people who think there SHOULD be meddling, then Government will have a reason to exist. Take for instance travels into China. Chinese federal agents look through your bags, and if they see a tape, such as a VHS tape, they confiscate for it "could be porn". I submit that Porn will become as essential a tool for the reason of government existence as was and is the current Drug War. Indeed, if the Drug War ended today, all Drugs legal, then they would still have the Porn/Prostitution War as excuse enough to "Be" and thus get into our civil liberties.

Look for two things on the horizon... The Cost of Power decreases to the individual level and a place where both Drugs and Porn/Prostitution are fully legal activities. The second will follow the first. It will be that place where true free market capitalism arises using trusted gold and silver. Just as Hong Kong became the place of pure Capitalism in the Orient for 100 years, so will this new place.

Currently China is expanding the Yuan. But these are interesting times. Should trade take hold using not government fiat, but gold and silver, then that may be the future place of freedom.

In Peace & Liberty,
Treg

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IN Just 200 pages into Tia Pan

and you will find the hero, the Scottish Capitalist, Dirk Straun, wheeling and dealing with:

1) The Chinese
2) The British Navy along with their niave "ambassor"
3) The British Banks (of which there is a run on one, making him bankrupt and staring down at loosing everything in 30 days!)
4) The Tea & Opium Traders (His competition from America, Portugal, Spain, & the world wide Empire of Great Britain
5) Dealing with the Monopoly Giant: The East Indian Tea Company
6) Cholera, the Plague, lice, rats and the "Got rotten weather"
7) The death of his wife and most of his children & what it means to be Christian.
8) His Chinese lover May May (a cat of amazing social skills & opinions)
9) Transporting five refrigerator size crates full of bars of silver along with seven Chinese boat men in the dead of night who want to kill you for it. Just one bar of silver would make a man's family rich for two centuries and rumors abound that its near, somewhere. Yet its not even his! Dirk has it all on Loan to start his "Nobel House" of trade on the Island of Hong Kong. (you might say that Chinese Capitalists started Hong Kong thru their trusted British Capitalists).
10) Pirates, oh yes, lots of opportunistic pirates, thieves on boats.

In just the first 200 pages during this time you will learn that our Hero Capitalists "Dirk Straun" has opinions on the power of Money, Free Trade, Family, God & Gods, Heathen Chinese, sex, marriage and the reasons why Europeans should learn from the Chinese to "wip ur arse an wash ur hands"....and "take a bath once a week".

(paraphrasing from memory, not verbatim)

As he explains to his son Collum,

"You will do as I say and take a bath once a week. The Chinese don't stink, I don't stink, and your Uncle Robb don't stink. The Chinese think sickness and dung have something to do with each other and you will wipe ur arse & warse ur hands lassie. You will bath hot like the Chinese do. You shall drink hot tea, na water, tea. You shall get new clothes and wash them too once a week. And Got willin, you shall see 3 score and ten like me (age 40). We do not drop like flies with sickness like the other sailors on European merchants ships do. Aye, its Chinese ways, Heathen ways, but its keepen me alive. I got no lice, I don't stink and neither will you Collum."

Collum to his father Dirk, the Tia Pan (Biggest Capitalist trader of them all) --

"Everyone's got lice. You are born with lice and die with lice. Its just a scratchen. Everyone stinks. You are going back to London, they all stink and got lice. You bring your China ways there and they'll be laughing at all us Strauns"

Dirk--
"Lass, it was just 70 years ago that Captain Cook listened to the islanders, now we all take limes and as much fresh vegetables to sea as we can. I've seen the scurvy and if limes can stop that, then washin ur arse may do something too. You'll do as I say or I'll have you tied and drug in the water behind thy ship China Cloud til you good n clean."

What is most amazing is the amount of REAL business in the novel. From Banking, Notes, borrowing, debt, the value of someone's word all tied to ones character. Trust and luck plays a huge part in business success. Unlike Rand's Capitalist hero and simpleton, Hank Rearden, Dirk Straun is the real McCoy, savy, wise, and smart enough to know that he is not so dam smart he can't learn a thing or two from the "heathen Chinese". Like Hank, Dirk is sure of the physics of the world, that its reliable, testable and a good thing, but Dirk also knows that nature throws us curve balls and operates in strange ways. Like Hank, Dirk is also confused or unsure about the people world around him and finds their institutions strange and perplexing and at odds and, (unlike Hank) to be bent and manipulated like Hank would bend his teal green metal to his own purpose. Unlike Hank, Dirk can use and manipulate those people and institutions around him enough, just enough, to continue on his own selfish purpose. If Hank Rearden and Dirk Straun was to do real business in the real world, I would put my money on the Scotsman Dirk Straun hands down.

And that.... is in just the first 200 pages. By the time Miss Rand finishes with the first 700 pages, the wonderful novel about the 1880's opening up of China via Hong Kong, is over. Dam those Capitalists are fast.

In Peace & Liberty,
Treg

Yes, please BUY this wonderful libertarian BOOK! We all must know the History of Freedom! Buy it today!

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In Leonard Peikoff's book

"Letters of Ayn Rand", Leonard Peikoff presents a series of letters Miss Rand sent to fans and famous people. Many letters are questions and comments from people concerning, "Atlas Shrugged". In one letter she explains that there are four kinds of people whch her charactors play the roles. John Galt is the winner who knows he's a winner. Hank Reardon is a loser who knows he's a loser. There is also the winner who thinks he's a loser and the loser who thinks he's a winner.

In another letter Miss Rand explains to a fan that the difference between communism and fascism is fascists employ God as a reason, Communists don't. If given a choice between communism and fascism, Miss Rand claimed she would choose communism (because one can not reason with those who claim God as the reason).

I see the black market as the only capitalism in existance on earth.

Try to read other things than Rand

Now that you have the moral theory and justification for Capitalism that she wanted to convey, read what others are trying to show you about Capitalism.

I knew a guy who read George Orwell's 1984 twice in one year. That is all he talked about. He knew it backwards and forwards. He even knew comments that Orwell wrote after writing 1984. The whole world was tied into 1984. Thoughtspeak, doublespeak, etc was everywhere and in every newspaper. I suggested that knowing the evils of totalitarianism is great, like being a Freshman is great. But being a Sophomore is better. I said to him that it was time he move up a grade and read others and see what they have to say.

In the same way, IMO, Rand is great, like being a Sophomore is great. But being a Junior is even better. Time to move up a grade and read others and see what they have to say.

In Peace & Liberty,
Treg

Yes, please BUY this wonderful libertarian BOOK! We all must know the History of Freedom! Buy it today!

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I read Rand in the 70s

I simply thought I'd point out to you that she wrote Reardon was a loser...

I'm a reader, not a writer. Furthermore, I believe Ayn is for artists and con artists. Not that you asked my opinion, but I didn't want you to think I read Ayn Rand and stopped reading.

That's good to know..

Enjoy... http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RWsx1X8PV_A

In Peace & Liberty,

Treg

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What about Atlas Shrugged vs. Moo Goo Gai Pan?

Wasn't Tai-Pan some novel they made into a Richard Chamberlain movie or something?

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Rand was 100% spot on with her depiction of what Capitalism really is or more accurately Facist Capitalism. It shows what happens to a society that takes from the productive and gives to the non-productive, where incessant greed causes societal neglect to the point where everything collapses and beneficial technology is suppressed to maintain the bottom line. People must be kept poor so they will be forced to toil at jobs which make Capitalism profitable to a super elite select few. Reading Atlas helps piece together the timeline of Capitalism in this country from the mid-1960's until now.
With that in mind I will have to disagree with your assessment.

reedr3v's picture

I don't see how you think the British Empire

at the time of Clavell's Tai Pan represents free market capitalism. At the time of Atlas Shrugged, the fictional America she portrays is moving away from a crippled form of crony-capitalism to a much more fascistic state.

Good point

I disagree with Treg's assertion that "Rand doesn't show capitalism as it is."

Well wouldn't that be impossible? Doesn't showing something as "it is" necessitate that the thing in question exist? And has capitalism (as Rand defined it) it ever existed?

Clavell is a great author.

Not sure why it's got to be a MMA match however???

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"I've abandoned free-market principles to save the free-market system, to make sure the economy doesn't collapse."
- G. W. Bush

Ron Paul "Sign Wave Across the USA" -- November 5th!

Quite aside from comparing Clavell and Rand...

Tai-pan was a great read as well as part 2 called Nobel House, which was set in the 60s+ (if I remember correctly) ....also a great read.
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Can you shed some light on how his version of ...

"capitalism" differs from Rands? Since you're familiar with him!