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Eddie Willers

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  • 7 years later...
On 3/8/2004 at 9:40 AM, Ragnar said:

 

The point is not that Eddie was an avearge, the point is that he never wanted to be greater than that. IIRC, his last words to Dagny were of the sort, "You could start a railroad anywhere you go, I couldn't."

 

The truck driver didn't always want to remain a truck driver. And therein lies the difference.

 

Instead of being a contradiction, this is one of the starkest examples of the pitiless justice of Galt. He is a man who doesn't fake reality in any manner whatsoever. Taking Eddie in would have been one. He was an avearge man, he wasn't a prime mover.

I'm pretty sure the truck driver also showed up elsewhere in Atlas Shrugged, as a character of merit. I'm not sure where though. I vaguely remember a conversation at a diner?

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1 hour ago, Pidge said:

I'm pretty sure the truck driver also showed up elsewhere in Atlas Shrugged, as a character of merit. I'm not sure where though. I vaguely remember a conversation at a diner?

A quick search for "truck driver" brought back 4 references.

The first was the diner she went into after telling the driver to stop in a not so good section of town.

"The stories they tell you when you're young—about the human spirit. There isn't any human spirit. Man is just a low-grade animal, without intellect, without soul, without virtues or moral values. An animal with only two capacities: to eat and to reproduce."

His gaunt face, with staring eyes and shrunken features that had been delicate, still retained a trace of distinction. He looked like the hulk of an evangelist or a professor of esthetics who had spent years in contemplation in obscure museums.

She wondered what had destroyed him, what error on the way could bring a man to this.

"You go through life looking for beauty, for greatness, for some sublime achievement," he said. "And what do you find? A lot of trick machinery for making upholstered cars or inner-spring mattresses."

"What's wrong with inner-spring mattresses?" said a man who looked like a truck driver. "Don't mind him, lady. He likes to hear himself talk. He don't mean no harm."

The second was a reference to Midas Mulligan by Lee Hunsacker to Dagny Taggert.

She sat up straight. "Midas Mulligan?"

"Yea—the banker who looked like a truck driver and acted it, too!"

The third was the individual in the valley.

The roughneck was watching them from above, listening with curiosity. She glanced up at him, he looked like a truck driver, so she asked, "What were you outside? A professor of comparative philology, I suppose?"

"No, ma'am," he answered. "I was a truck driver." He added, "But that's not what I wanted to remain."

Interesting to note that the man in the diner, Midas Mulligan and the man Dagny observed were stated to have "looked like a truck driver." Aside from Lee Hunsacker's voicing the evaluation, the other two evaluations were privy to the reader. The man in the valley only stated he was a truck driver after he was asked if he was a professor of comparative philology.

 

 

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