Tuesday, February 09, 2010

Why does Ayn Rand get so much abuse from the Right?

As I am a mere 37 years young, I was not around during the great National Review vs. Ayn Rand battle royale launched by Whittaker Chambers' review of Atlas Shrugged back in 1957. So when I talk about it, I am entirely talking out of my posterior.

But in a larger sense, the continuation of the Ayn Rand/National Review schism mystifies me now that Mr. Buckley has shuffled off this mortal coil and people of my generation are running National Review. Didn't any of THEM read Atlas Shrugged in college?

The latest flap is The New Criterion's article supposedly reviewing a recent biography of Ayn Rand. The comments to that article, and the comments to editor Roger Kimball's article about the comments, are fascinating. I have to say that as an admirer of both Ayn Rand and National Review, and not particularly invested in Ayn Rand (not being a card-carrying Objectivist), I have to say that the Ayn Rand defenders have the better argument. Or, I should really say, I have the better argument.

Which argument I made in the comments to Roger Kimball's piece here.