Comment: Your definition of self reliance is too limited

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Your definition of self reliance is too limited

Rand's world is not all about doing everything yourself, and be damned if you can't. Her argument, in Atlas, centers around the role of the mind in creating the society we live in. She demonstrates, rightly I believe, that we ALL owe a debt of gratitude to the people who put their minds to problems and make our lives easier. Remove the mind, and creativity and productivity, from society and we have nothing.

She was arguing against the predominant intellectual philosophies of the time (and today!) that the people who have created our society with their inventions (and got rich) are capitalist parasites, and the people who push buttons, pull levers, and sweep floors (and make little money)are the only ones who produce anything. Rand says there is a place in society for both, but let no one deceive themselves about which came first. Thought or industrialism. Her novel demonstrates the answer.

In a way, Rand predicted Obama. "You didn't do that" could have come out of the mouths of one of her villians.

I did not vote you down. You are mistaken in your understanding of free societies and how they function, but you are grappling with the issues and I think that's good. There is a lot of information available, from many different libertarian perspectives, on how a society of free individuals would cooperate to provide schools, roads, libraries, etc., without the necessity of taxes and the violence of governments. Let me suggest "For A New Liberty" by Murray Rothbard. It's a good place to start, though certainly not the only place.