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Wow, a Rand roasting at the NYT this week

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It's not bad, the worst is "Giving up her royalties to preserve her vision is something that no genuine capitalist, and few popular novelists, would have done." And that's not really even a condemnation, either. It's about Ayn Rand anyway, not Objectivism specifically.

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It's not bad, the worst is "Giving up her royalties to preserve her vision is something that no genuine capitalist, and few popular novelists, would have done." And that's not really even a condemnation, either. It's about Ayn Rand anyway, not Objectivism specifically.

It seems to me that situation is analogous to Roark forfeiting his fee in order to correct the dissatisfying west wing of the Sanborn house.

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That's always the fallacy with anti-capitalists... they think that capitalists pursue money for money's sake. The whole idea of 'value' is something that escapes them completely when 'value' isn't defined by a monetary sum (and then THEY say that we're the base materialists!)

It seems to me that situation is analogous to Roark forfeiting his fee in order to correct the dissatisfying west wing of the Sanborn house.
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This royalty thing is a red herring, regardless of how you look at it...

Rand could have gone to another publisher and tried to negotiate more favorable terms, but she made an economic decision - to lose a small amount of her per-copy royalty - in the belief that her total royalties would be far greater because of higher sales of the book. Her publisher believed the Galt speech added no value to the book and would have been an unnecessary cost incurred on his business. His request that she cover that cost was perfectly rational, from his point of view, and her decision to agree was also rational, given her belief that Galt's speech was, quite literally, worth more than the paper it was printed on. When she turned out to be right, she didn't quite out-smart her publisher - he increased his profit margin through the expanded printing of the same book - but she showed herself to be a shrewder judge of value. Had Atlas Shrugged not included Galt's 75-page monologue, it would have been greatly diminished, as I think most would agree.

That "contradiction" of Rand's, as Kirsch describes it, ended up making a huge amount of money for Miss Rand, in spite of Kirsch's judgment of its inherent economic irrationality. Sucks being proven wrong by your own argument, but what do you expect from poet and critic "of some distinction," as his wiki page generously describes him.

Here's an interesting exercise in infinite regression, written, unwittingly, by the critic. A latter day Toohey, if ever there was.

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