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“Atlas Shrugged”

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Atlas Shrugged is a 1957 novel by Ayn Rand. It was her longest novel, the fourth and final one published during her lifetime, and the one she considered her magnum opus in the realm of fiction writing.[1] Atlas Shrugged includes elements of science fictionmystery, and romance, and it contains Rand’s most extensive statement of Objectivism in any of her works of fiction. Rand described the theme of Atlas Shrugged as “the role of man’s mind in existence”. The book explores a number of philosophical themes from which Rand would subsequently develop Objectivism, including reasonproperty rightsindividualismlibertarianism and capitalism, and depicts what Rand saw as the failures of governmental coercion.

The book depicts a dystopian United States in which private businesses suffer under increasingly burdensome laws and regulations. Railroad executive Dagny Taggart and her lover, steel magnate Hank Rearden, struggle against “looters” who want to exploit their productivity. They discover that a mysterious figure called John Galt is persuading other business leaders to abandon their companies and disappear as a strike of productive individuals against the looters. The novel ends with the strikers planning to build a new capitalist society based on Galt’s philosophy.

Atlas Shrugged received largely negative reviews, but achieved enduring popularity and ongoing sales in the following decades. The novel has been cited as an influence on a variety of libertarian and conservative thinkers and politicians. After several unsuccessful attempts to adapt the novel for film or television, a film trilogy based on it was released from 2011 to 2014, and two theatrical adaptations have been staged.
Atlas Shrugged Part 3

Atlas Shrugged is set in a dystopian United States at an unspecified time, in which the country has a “National Legislature” instead of Congress and a “Head of State” instead of a President. The US appears to be approaching an economic collapse, with widespread shortages, business failures, and decreased productivity. Writer Edward Younkins said, “The story may be simultaneously described as anachronistic and timeless. The pattern of industrial organization appears to be that of the late 1800s—the mood seems to be close to that of the depression-era 1930s. Both the social customs and the level of technology remind one of the 1950s”.[2] Many early 20th-century technologies are available, but later technologies such as jet planes and computers are largely absent.[3] There is very little mention of historical people or events, not even major events such as World War II.[4] Aside from the United States, most countries are referred to as “People’s States” that are implied to be either socialist or communist.[2][5]
Atlas Shrugged Part 1

Dagny Taggart, the operating vice-president of Taggart Transcontinental Railroad, keeps the company going amid a sustained economic depression. As economic conditions worsen and government enforces statist controls on successful businesses, people repeat the cryptic phrase “Who is John Galt?” which means: “Don’t ask questions nobody can answer”;[6] or more broadly, “Why bother?”. Her brother Jim, the railroad’s president, seems to make irrational decisions, such as buying from Orren Boyle’s unreliable Associated Steel. Dagny is also disappointed to discover that the Argentine billionaire Francisco d’Anconia, her childhood friend and first love, is risking his family’s copper company by constructing the San Sebastián copper mines, even though Mexico will probably nationalize them. Despite the risk, Jim and Boyle invest heavily in a railway for the region while ignoring the Rio Norte Line in Colorado, where entrepreneur Ellis Wyatt has discovered large oil reserves. Mexico nationalizes the mines and railroad line, but the mines are discovered to be worthless. To recoup the railroad’s losses, Jim influences the National Alliance of Railroads to prohibit competition in prosperous areas such as Colorado. Wyatt demands that Dagny supply adequate rails to his wells before the ruling takes effect.

In Philadelphia, self-made steel magnate Hank Rearden develops Rearden Metal, an alloy lighter and stronger than conventional steel. Dagny opts to use Rearden Metal in the Rio Norte Line, becoming the first major customer for the product. After Hank refuses to sell the metal to the State Science Institute, a government research foundation run by Dr. Robert Stadler, the Institute publishes a report condemning the metal without identifying problems with it. As a result, many significant organizations boycott the line. Although Stadler agrees with Dagny’s complaints about the unscientific tone of the report, he refuses to override it. To protect Taggart Transcontinental from the boycott, Dagny decides to build the Rio Norte Line as an independent company named the John Galt Line.

Hank is unhappy with his manipulative wife Lillian, but feels obliged to stay with her. He is attracted to Dagny, and when he joins her for the inauguration of the John Galt Line, they become lovers. On a vacation, Hank and Dagny discover an abandoned factory with an incomplete but revolutionary motor that runs on atmospheric static electricity. They begin searching for the inventor, and Dagny hires scientist Quentin Daniels to reconstruct the motor. However, a series of economically harmful directives are issued by Wesley Mouch, a former Rearden lobbyist who betrayed Hank in return for a job leading a government agency. Wyatt and other important business leaders quit and disappear, leaving their industries to failure.

From conversations with Francisco, Dagny and Hank realize he is hurting his copper company intentionally, although they do not understand why. When the government imposes a directive that forbids employees from leaving their jobs and nationalizes all patents, Dagny violates the law by resigning in protest. To gain Hank’s compliance, the government blackmails him with threats to publicize his affair with Dagny. After a major disaster in one of Taggart Transcontinental’s tunnels, Dagny returns to work. On her return, she receives notice that Quentin Daniels is also quitting in protest, and she rushes across the country to convince him to stay.

Ouray, Colorado was the basis for Rand’s descriptions of Galt’s Gulch.

On her way to Daniels, Dagny meets a hobo with a story that reveals the motor was invented and abandoned by an engineer named John Galt, who is the inspiration for the common saying. When she chases after Daniels in a private plane, she crashes and discovers the secret behind the disappearances of business leaders: Galt is leading a strike of “the men of the mind”. She has crashed in their hiding place, an isolated valley known as Galt’s Gulch. As she recovers from her injuries, the strikers explain their motives, and she learns that the strikers include Francisco and many prominent people, such as her favorite composer, Richard Halley, and infamous pirate Ragnar Danneskjöld. Dagny falls in love with Galt, who asks her to join the strike.

Reluctant to abandon her railroad, Dagny leaves Galt’s Gulch, but finds the government has devolved into dictatorship. Francisco finishes sabotaging his mines and quits. After he helps stop an armed takeover of Hank’s steel mill, Francisco convinces Hank to join the strike. Galt follows Dagny to New York, where he hacks into a national radio broadcast to deliver a three-hour speech that explains the novel’s theme and Rand’s Objectivism.[7] The authorities capture Galt, unsuccessfully attempt to persuade him to lead the restoration of the country’s economy, and torture him when he refuses. The government collapses, and the novel closes as Galt announces that the strikers can rejoin the world.

Many employing the wisdom of our Abba Father have departed the city in preparation for the coming storm for family & friends. The wisdom of the world pales in comparison to the wisdom of Jesus Christ and few see what’s in store.

“In the name of the best within you, do not sacrifice your sense of life to an enemy that would claim your precious mind…Do not let your fire go out, spark by irreplaceable spark. Do not let the hero in your soul perish in lonely frustration for the life you deserve, but have never been able to reach. The world you desire can be won, it exist, it is real, it is possible, it is yours”…John Galt

John 8:32

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