"Atlas Shrugged" is based on the incredibly Liberal notion that ideas have value.
As a matter of fact, Galt's ideas to make money are worth more than mere human life. He and his merry band are spurning society because they refuse to compromise on their ideas for making money. Stupid, yes. Even stupider when they get to Galt's Gulch and realize they forgot the booze and toilet paper. And the toilet....
But that's a story for another 420.
The fallacy of the plot of "Atlas Shrugged" is that ideas for inventions are more important than reality. Inventive ideas are nothing without using someone else's labor and skills to build, maintain, operate and sell the real world version. Galt & Co. seem to think it happens by magic.
I've got a PhD in American Studies. Ideas fall out of my brain every day. I am poor. No one is paying me to blog. (Do I get an 'amen'?)
Here's our problem: If you have free market Capitalism, it only works when there is a balance between production costs and profit.
Capitalism demands that all resources be owned by the smallest number of people possible before the system collapses.
It can't help itself.
What Capitalism needs to be successful is the Capitalization of Labor. Otherwise known as: "there's no such thing as a free lunch. That includes you, Walmart."
Labor needs to leave the 'job makers' and their dreams in the train and go off to Galt's Gulch. Who will take us away from all this? US.
Under the blowing orange smoke......
Capital needs labor, or there is no profit. Except in the insurance business, and that is a cancerous tumor
Unorganized labor is easy prey for the corporate need for profit. They can't stop themselves. Unregulated business is like melted ice; no shape, form or organizing principle. Just a hunger for profit at any cost.
Because individuals are vulnerable to corporate appetite, they band together for the common good. Draw up rules, and refuse to play with corporations unless they play fair. America was colonized by trading corporations under charter to the King. Colonists were expected to produce goods for export, and to buy from chartered corporations. King George put corporate profit above the rights of citizens and denied colonists a voice in Parliament to protest. We seceded. He sent troops, we fought.
Loyalty is a 2 way street, George. Hear that, Papa John?
This is what the Founding Father's were thinking when they wrote the Constitution. How to keep business from using government to exploit individuals. Which is why our Liberal, elitist, ideas-are-Law founding fathers broke government into three parts. To stop businesses from buying our representatives and courts. To make a grand Union which valued Labor as well as the guy with the idea of the month.
Government IS the competition to private industry. They set the rules, and the companies pay to play. The toys do belong to us, collectively.
We ARE all members of the Union, and the government is our shop steward and Union boss. When businesses want to make money, the Union is supposed to shield us from feeding us to the profit dragon. When we broke the government union with Reagan, we destroyed the main method of resistance to corporate demands for cheap labor. We let the kid run wild and now we need to remind them they aren't the Teen Queen Bitch In Charge.
Like an overweight dog, corporations need someone to watch how much they eat. Like fire, they need to be contained. The government is our muscle for doing that. It's our hired gun fighter who keeps the corporate need for profit in check. Our very own Gary Cooper in "High Noon."
As individuals, unless we demand our government curb the vampire/vulture capitalist need for more profit, we're screwed. Piratizing and contracting already suck our tax investment return to near 0%. Because we handed over our life support systems to corporate profit seekers. Transit, air, water, hospitals and schools, roads and contract oversight. We used to own them. Now we pay to rent them back.
So let's all go Galt on the corporations. Demand our Union chiefs (Congress) fight for the Union, not businesses. We know they are afraid of voters. And they know they can be replaced easily, like Galt. There will always be someone else to take their place.
So shun the warehouse big boxes, and buy from a fellow Union member. Ask your Union rep to explain where your dues/taxes were spent and where they put our share of the return.
I know the economic arguments. But history, which unlike economics is based in reality, is clear. Either we put our collective foot down, or our children will be building barricades. Just like their great-grandparents did a century ago.
Now, let's hear those ideas!