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The Most Dangerous Game

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"Who is John Galt?"

Miss Rand opens her novel with a catch-phrase that she strategically uses throughout the book. In asking about the phrase, stories of an adventurer with a vast fortune discovered Atlantis while on his yacht, or a man who found the fountain of youth and discovered it could not be brought down from whence it was found, a variation on the myth of Prometheus, and even an intricate tale of a factory worker. According to John Galt, they were all true, the latter concretely.

In Philosophy: Who Needs It? She indicates briefly how philosophic catch-phrases get used at large, without much of a second thought.

After introducing the motor found in the abandoned factory, the secondary mystery is introduced that sets into play a search for the inventor of the motor. Following every lead from the record house, a mayor of a small town, one of the principals of a defunct incorporation, a retired deceased engineers widow, to a roadside diner run by a striking philosopher the answer to both mysteries turns out to be one in the same.

Richard Connell wrote The Most Dangerous Game. It is a short story about a sportsman who grew bored with the "excitement of the hunt" of big game, and reintroduced it by finding a prey he thought worth hunting, in short, the rational animal.

In Selfishness Without A Self, she indicates the target the crosshair of the scope of specific philosophers listing in place of the mindless brute: reason, intelligence, ability, merit, self-confidence and self-esteem. It would seem that the most dangerous game is philosophy, having brought the world to state she observed during her visit.

After finishing Atlas Shrugged, did she go to sleep in the "most excellent bed" having earned a good night's rest?

Edited by dream_weaver
sp- 'principal'

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Heralded as A Philosopher-Priest's Warnings for 21st-Century America, it was a provocative enough title to warrant a click.

After reading the article, this paragraph from The New Intellectual came to mind.

Thus they come to need each other. Attila feels that the Witch Doctor can give him what he lacks: a long-range view, an insurance against the dark unknown of tomorrow or next week or next year, a code of moral values to sanction his actions and to disarm his victims. The Witch Doctor feels that Attila can give him the material means of survival, can protect him from physical reality, can spare him the necessity of practical action, and can enforce his mystic edicts on any recalcitrant who may choose to challenge his authority. Both of them are incomplete parts of a human being, who seek completion in each other: the man of muscle and the man of feelings, seeking to exist without mind.

Skimming back over it, this is what struck to the heart of the above:

Do the men and women we know, each of us in his own field, strike us as people conscious of their responsibility for what is happening in the world? Does their sense of responsibility affect their public as well as their private lives? Do our rulers impress us as people who know what their duties ultimately involve and who tackle them accordingly? Is every public servant’s measure of power counterbalanced by strength of character, adequate understanding of human existence, and a fitting moral attitude? Has an ethic of power evolved from a real coming to grips with the phenomenon of power? Are young people (and older ones too as far as possible) being educated to the right use of power? Does such education form a substantial part of both of our individual and our public endeavors?

The Witch Doctor worships the power of Attila, and seems to know the reliance Attila has on what he, as the Witch Doctor, can provide.

What stood out is the reversal of ethics and power. This puts power in the drivers seat of both. Both seek it. Yet Ayn Rand recognizes not just the power of power as such, but the power of morality as the greatest of all intellectual powers. She goes on to say, in Faith and Force, "mankind’s tragedy lies in the fact that the vicious moral code men have accepted destroys them by means of the best within them."

So while this article was published March 6, 2018, its power emanated from the pen of Romano Guardini (1885-1968). Clearly it was not written in disappearing, or invisible, ink (which has been known of since the 4th century BCE.)

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The depths of the ocean. The summits of the mountains. Two metaphors for two perspectives. Plunging to the depths of, or rising to the heights of a profound understanding of something.

In these particular two scenarios described, John Galt did not return. One provided a sight, such, that he could no longer wish to look at the rest of the earth. The other provided the realization that what he wanted to bring down to men couldn't be brought down.

The variation on the myth of Prometheus provides another clue, albeit one partially withdrawn.

"John Galt is Prometheus who changed his mind. After centuries of being torn by vultures in payment for having brought to men the fire of the gods, he broke his chains and he withdrew his fire—until the day when men withdraw their vultures."

There's either an equivocation, a faux pas, or another alternative going on from between  the 'fire of the gods' to where he 'withdrew his fire'. Grant you, a precedence for altering myths was, indeed,  previously established in an earlier chapter:: "The Immovable Movers."

[Richard Halley] had changed the ancient Greek myth to his own purpose and meaning: Phaëthon, the young son of Helios, who stole his father's chariot and, in ambitious audacity, attempted to drive the sun across the sky, did not perish, as he perished in the myth; in Halley's opera, Phaëthon succeeded.

Gotta love the stuff enigma's can be forged from.

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