Sunday, 18 February 2007

A minor moral dilemma

Having got some spare ratty bookcases for the bedroom, I'm sorting out my collection and consigning all the old sf/general stuff out of sight. This will allow me to bury the occasional John Ringo, Ann Rice or even Piers Anthony embarrassment my pack-rativeness won't allow me to get rid of.

But then I came across a copy of Ayn Rand's "The Fountainhead".

I'm philosophically against burning or destroying books, but - Jesus. I think I got it cheap once just to see how bad it really was (answer "bad"). I don't wanna sell it or give it away on the grounds that it's toxic waste.

I guess I may keep it and use it to fuck up impressionable arrogant teenagers. I recall fondly one snotty Milton Friedman fan on a university BBS that I pushed towards "Atlas Shrugged" in the hopes that it would screw him up for at least five years...

9 comments:

Sarah in Chicago said...

I know how you feel ... I see people reading 'Atlas Shrugs' on the train to and from school each day and I want to run over and go "No! No! Don't do this to yourself! Life has so much left in it for you! You have so much to live for!"

I wish I were xtian sometimes so that I could believe in divine retribution for people like Ayn Rand ...

Phoenician in a time of Romans said...

Think of it as a self-selection process. Conspiciously reading Ayn Rand should serve as a great big neon sign to potential romantic partners that this person is smarter than average, but an opinionated, ignorant naif who might be worth something if and only if he/she ever grows out of it.

BTW - did I mention how sunny it is here, and how it's been this way for about a month?

"She's flying over / Wellington Harbour,
Oriental Bay gleaming there in the sunlight
And they're playing a tape for the landing:
'Speed, bonny boat / Like a bird on the wing'"...

Sarah said...

Oh you just HAD to tell me that, didn't you? We finally got over freezing as a high here on monday ... I bet Wellers looks gorgeous ...

btw, looks like both our dreams have come true (blog as part of a wider website on lesbians in entertainment):

http://logo-blogs.com/afterellen/2007/02/21/the-dr-addison-montgomery-show-best-spinoff-news-ever/

Phoenician in a time of Romans said...

Oh you just HAD to tell me that, didn't you? We finally got over freezing as a high here on monday ...

Naturally - teasing people is how I express friendship.

I bet Wellers looks gorgeous ...

I get very homesick away from this place, not that I've had much chance recently for comparison. I have a habit of taking the number 14 bus around the flank of Mount Victoria into work; the harbour and surrounding hills and sky in the morning are either blue on blue or white on white on grey. With respect to the Problem Aucklander, it's a much better harbour view than that of parts north.

One day you wake up and find it's part of your soul.

But you're not missing anything with the dawn chorus of cicadas given the warm weather - it is bloody IMPOSSIBLE to sleep in in the morning with every insect in the Lower North Island trying to attract mates outside your window.

JDC said...

Fuck, you think that's bad? Somewhere in my apartment is a copy of Dr. David Reuben's Everything You Ever Wanted To Know About Sex (But Were Afraid To Ask). Talk about toxic.

dr ngo said...

Just sloped over here from Pandagon to say I enjoyed your contribution on the "libertarian" thread there. I would be reading along, seeing all manner of fallacies from defenders of the faith (particularly on the matter of the "right to property"), and thinking "Someone ought to set them straight, but that sounds too much like work . . ."

. . . And then along you'd come and do the job. Neatly. Succinctly. Almost (dare I say it?) selflessly - acting on behalf of others, like me, too frail (selfish?) to act themselves.

Congratulations.

I don't know if we've actually crossed words before - I remember your "nom de net" (probably from Pandagon and/or Crooked Timber) and vaguely recall DISagreeing with some things you said on some forgotten topic, but I'm not sure if I ever put any of this into words. If so, I apologize for any harm felt; if not, well, it's nice to start out here with an expression of respect.

Good on ya, mate.

(I know that's proper respect to an Aussie, so please translate it into the trans-Tasman equivalent for yourself.)

Phoenician in a time of Romans said...

Selflessly?

Which part of the "I'm an asshole" concept don't you get? I *like* beating up on Libertarians...

(But thanks anyhow)

big mike said...

>consigning all the old sf/general stuff out of sight

I recently built some bookshelves especially sized for paperbacks. Later, I decided to cull most of the SF/F from my library. So, I'm left with plenty of empty shelves designed for mass-market sized paperbacks ;-(

I never read any Ayn Rand, but I do have a copy of Milton Friedman's Democracy and Capitalism leftover from my high school years.

Brendan McGinley said...

I hate Ayn Rand.
I love the assessments in this thread.
I love the Terry Pratchett quote.
I love Carthage (ergo, I love your screen name).
Cripes, I like this blog.