October 2nd, 2006

eyes black and white

Ayn and I

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I pay homage to Ayn Rand, for how she helped me live better. Not just me, but millions of readers. She was not my prime inspiration: my first libertarian author was Hayek, and my favorite was and remains Bastiat, through another lover of which I discovered Ayn Rand. But my! an inspiration she was, in the literal meaning: not so much for ideas that I already knew, though she certainly helped me articulate them like I wouldn't otherwise have, but more so for the lofty ideal of the self to which she raised me. How glad I am she wrote what she did write! I never ascribed Rand any kind of infallibility, and I see no reason why she should be either held or rejected based on such an absurd standard, even though she may have claimed such a standard for herself amongst her followers. I admire her, and that doesn't require me to follow her blindly. Actually I think you can't fully appreciate an author if you're unable to partake in that dynamic critical conversation with her work, by which you see her deep failings as well as her lofty genius, that only appears greater by contrast.