I ranted about the prosperity “gospel” last November in “Prosperity” Revival?! Why not just teach voodoo?, and also posted this very funny parody found on YouTube:
In my judgment, Ayn Rand is a very important intellectual voice in America today and must be seriously reckoned with if for no other reason than the wide readership her novels continue to receive. But there are other reasons. Since first reading Atlas Shrugged and especially the speech of John Galt, which Rand says is the briefest summary of her philosophy,25 I have been continually provoked to deeper and clearer perception and thought. I do not share the undifferentiated condemnations against her fiction, which is the most enthralling I have ever read, or her philosophy, which as O’Neill says is at least “refreshingly abrasive.”26 But even more, Ayn Rand is right on some fundamental issues. The reason I write this essay is to distinguish between some of the basic truths and errors in her teaching. Or to put it another way, I want to ferret out why I am both attracted and repulsed by her philosophy. I choose to focus on her ethics for two reasons: first, because as Toffler says, “Her philosophy . . . encompasses more than economics or politics. Primarily it sets forth a new kind of ethics . . .”27 Second, because her essay, “The Objectivist Ethics,” is the best distillation of her philosophy I have read.