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View Diary: The missing link: Discovered! (117 comments)

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  •  Wow ... honestly ... (4+ / 0-)

    I'd never heard that and it made me start searching.  From this interesting essay:

    The all-encompassing nature of the Randian line may be illustrated by an incident that occurred to a friend of mine who once asked a leading Randian if he disagreed with the movement’s position on any conceivable subject. After several minutes of hard thought, the Randian replied: "Well, I can’t quite understand their position on smoking." Astonished that the Rand cult had any position on smoking, my friend pressed on: "They have a position on smoking? What is it?" The Randian replied that smoking, according to the cult, was a moral obligation. In my own experience, a top Randian once asked me rather sharply, "How is it that you don’t smoke?" When I replied that I had discovered early that I was allergic to smoke, the Randian was mollified: "Oh, that’s OK, then." The official justification for making smoking a moral obligation was a sentence in Atlas where the heroine refers to a lit cigarette as symbolizing a fire in the mind, the fire of creative ideas. (One would think that simply holding up a lit match could do just as readily for this symbolic function.) One suspects that the actual reason, as in so many other parts of Randian theory, from Rachmaninoff to Victor Hugo to tap dancing, was that Rand simply liked smoking and had the need to cast about for a philosophical system that would make her personal whims not only moral but also a moral obligation incumbent upon everyone who desires to be rational.

    Blogging regularly at Get Energy Smart NOW! for a sustainable energy future.

    by A Siegel on Mon Jul 16, 2012 at 08:02:29 AM PDT

    [ Parent ]

    •  Wow... That's simply incredible. (2+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      A Siegel, FarWestGirl

      Thanks to both of you - A Siegel & Fickel - for that information.

      The things you learn on DailyKOS from day to day....

      The Randian replied that smoking, according to the cult, was a moral obligation.
      ...

      The official justification for making smoking a moral obligation was a sentence in Atlas where the heroine refers to a lit cigarette as symbolizing a fire in the mind, the fire of creative ideas.
      ...

      make her personal whims not only moral but also a moral obligation incumbent upon everyone who desires to be rational.

      One can wonder why they didn't just literally set their brains on fire!?  After all, Fire in the Mind is in the book - therefore, we must do likewise!

      Another cult of nuts.  Tragically for the world, powerful, influential people like Alan Greenspan are among them.

      "The law is meant to be my servant and not my master, still less my torturer and my murderer." -- James Baldwin. July 11, 1966.

      by YucatanMan on Mon Jul 16, 2012 at 10:13:14 AM PDT

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      •  Perhaps we could ask whether thinking would do (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        YucatanMan, FarWestGirl

        as a symbol for Fire in the Mind. But these are Randians. Never mind.

        Atlas Shrugged is not a book to be tossed aside lightly. I should be thrown, with great force.
        Dorothy Parker
        The mind is not a vessel to be filled, but a fire to be kindled.
        Plutarch, On Listening to Lectures
        If you build a man a fire you keep him warm for a night. If you set a man on fire you keep him warm for the rest of his life.
        Terry Pratchett, Jingo

        Hands off my ObamaCare[TM] http://www.healthcare.gov

        by Mokurai on Mon Jul 16, 2012 at 11:02:10 AM PDT

        [ Parent ]

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