1049: "Bookshelf"

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1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby jpk » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:10 am UTC

Image

Secondary joke: I had a hard time with Ayn Rand because I found myself enthusiastically agreeing with the first 90% of every sentence, but getting lost at "therefore, be a huge asshole to everyone."


I never had a hard time with Ayn Rand. Just her readers.

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby rhomboidal » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:11 am UTC

I've been tempted to read it, but I think I'll just see the terrible movie instead.

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby meat.paste » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:17 am UTC

Save us, industrialists! We're too stupid to live!
Huh? What?

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby Djehutynakht » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:18 am UTC

I'm confused. In the last panel, is he putting it back and escaping the critical room, or is someone else on the other side locking him in the room in a BHG-esque attempt at getting rid of everyone who doesn't share his literary tastes?

EDIT: Due to the lack of another "rumble", I'm inclined towards the second.

This should be a fun bookstore. I wonder what happens if someone picks up Twilight...
Last edited by Djehutynakht on Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:22 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby kleingordon » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:20 am UTC

How long before the political philosophy flame war begins?

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby Flynn777 » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:22 am UTC

Randall, I defy you to name another philosopher that you agree with 90% of the time. If you reply "Aristotle" then you haven't read enough of his material.

"You have terrible taste" is a disappointingly lazy reply.

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby SecondTalon » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:23 am UTC

Djehutynakht wrote:I'm confused. In the last panel, is he putting it back and escaping the critical room, or is someone else on the other side locking him in the room in a BHG-esque attempt at getting rid of everyone who doesn't share his literary tastes?

This should be a fun bookstore. I wonder what happens if someone picks up Twilight...

Neither. The click is the bookshelf returning to it's original position. Our Hero hasn't moved, likely in stunned surprise/shock/WTF-ery.
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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby honorious » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:24 am UTC

the problem with ayn rand, of whose writings i was an enthusiast for a spell and still hold in a tentatively high regard, is that while her logic is sound, despite being set in an idealistic world of her own devising and therefore making the application of her ideals impractical in the real world, is that the sound logic is discolored by her deep seeded resentment issues, leading to randall's alt text punchline "therefore be an asshole to everyone"

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby blowfishhootie » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:25 am UTC

Flynn777 wrote:Randall, I defy you to name another philosopher that you agree with 90% of the time. If you reply "Aristotle" then you haven't read enough of his material.

"You have terrible taste" is a disappointingly lazy reply.


"Agreeing with 90 percent of every sentence" is not the same thing as "agreeing 90 percent of the time." More than 10 percent of Ayn Rand's message is summed up with "be a huge asshole to everyone."

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby brazin » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:26 am UTC

Randall, I defy you to name another philosopher that you agree with 90% of the time. If you reply "Aristotle" then you haven't read enough of his material.

"You have terrible taste" is a disappointingly lazy reply.


Could not have said it better myself.

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby jpk » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:28 am UTC

Flynn777 wrote:Randall, I defy you to name another philosopher that you agree with 90% of the time. If you reply "Aristotle" then you haven't read enough of his material.

"You have terrible taste" is a disappointingly lazy reply.


Agreeing with 90% of each sentence doesn't imply agreeing with her 90% of the time, does it?

[Curses! blowfish sneaks in before me!]

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby Flynn777 » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:31 am UTC

blowfishhootie wrote:
Flynn777 wrote:Randall, I defy you to name another philosopher that you agree with 90% of the time. If you reply "Aristotle" then you haven't read enough of his material.

"You have terrible taste" is a disappointingly lazy reply.


"Agreeing with 90 percent of every sentence" is not the same thing as "agreeing 90 percent of the time." More than 10 percent of Ayn Rand's message is summed up with "be a huge asshole to everyone."


It's not? Then what, pray tell, is it the same thing as? I suppose one could say that every sentence consisted of 9 variants of "2+2=4" and then concluded with "Jesus died for your sins." But, having bothered to read Atlas Shrugged, I can say with certainty that this is not the case.

Rand did a profoundly better job expressing her philosophy in fiction, where her characters aren't particularly assholes in any way that the average XKCD reader isn't totally condescending to everyone else in his or her life, than in her non-fiction, where she was attempting to rationalize the difference between her vision and her personal behavior.

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby SecondTalon » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:34 am UTC

Flynn777 wrote:
blowfishhootie wrote:
Flynn777 wrote:Randall, I defy you to name another philosopher that you agree with 90% of the time. If you reply "Aristotle" then you haven't read enough of his material.

"You have terrible taste" is a disappointingly lazy reply.


"Agreeing with 90 percent of every sentence" is not the same thing as "agreeing 90 percent of the time." More than 10 percent of Ayn Rand's message is summed up with "be a huge asshole to everyone."


It's not? Then what, pray tell, is it the same thing as? I suppose one could say that every sentence consisted of 9 variants of "2+2=4" and then concluded with "Jesus died for your sins." But, having bothered to read Atlas Shrugged, I can say with certainty that this is not the case.

Rand did a profoundly better job expressing her philosophy in fiction, where her characters aren't particularly assholes in any way that the average XKCD reader isn't totally condescending to everyone else in his or her life, than in her non-fiction, where she was attempting to rationalize the difference between her vision and her personal behavior.
Agreeing 0% of the time, which is also unlikely.

If I were to write "The sky is certainly a lovely shade of green today" and you agree with 90% of that statement - that is, that the sky is a lovely shade of a color today, and simply disagree with me on the particular color (in this case, you insist it's blue), then you are not in agreement with me. You are in disagreement.

... that's not nearly condescending enough. I have failed my stereotype.
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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby Gedankenwelt » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:37 am UTC

Djehutynakht wrote:I'm confused. In the last panel, is he putting it back and escaping the critical room, or is someone else on the other side locking him in the room in a BHG-esque attempt at getting rid of everyone who doesn't share his literary tastes?

EDIT: Due to the lack of another "rumble", I'm inclined towards the second.

This should be a fun bookstore. I wonder what happens if someone picks up Twilight...

My interpretation is that a second person with a "terrible taste" shows up, and will get trapped while freeing the first person. Not sure if that makes sense, though...

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby honorious » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:37 am UTC

what randall seems to be saying is that he agrees with her rationale but not the hostile attitude that drove it

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby glasnt » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:42 am UTC

I assume it's clicked back into place, since it's a new click (top corners of shelf), as opposed to a book click.

Also, Atlas Shrugged is one of those that I'd assume you'd have to read yourself. Like Catch 22 and 1984. I purchased a heap of similar novels for cheap on Book Depository, and I'm yet to complete them all. I didn't rate Catch 22, doesn't mean it's not good.

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby Flynn777 » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:43 am UTC

SecondTalon wrote:
Flynn777 wrote:
blowfishhootie wrote:
Flynn777 wrote:Randall, I defy you to name another philosopher that you agree with 90% of the time. If you reply "Aristotle" then you haven't read enough of his material.

"You have terrible taste" is a disappointingly lazy reply.


"Agreeing with 90 percent of every sentence" is not the same thing as "agreeing 90 percent of the time." More than 10 percent of Ayn Rand's message is summed up with "be a huge asshole to everyone."


It's not? Then what, pray tell, is it the same thing as? I suppose one could say that every sentence consisted of 9 variants of "2+2=4" and then concluded with "Jesus died for your sins." But, having bothered to read Atlas Shrugged, I can say with certainty that this is not the case.

Rand did a profoundly better job expressing her philosophy in fiction, where her characters aren't particularly assholes in any way that the average XKCD reader isn't totally condescending to everyone else in his or her life, than in her non-fiction, where she was attempting to rationalize the difference between her vision and her personal behavior.
Agreeing 0% of the time, which is also unlikely.

If I were to write "The sky is certainly a lovely shade of green today" and you agree with 90% of that statement - that is, that the sky is a lovely shade of a color today, and simply disagree with me on the particular color (in this case, you insist it's blue), then you are not in agreement with me. You are in disagreement.

... that's not nearly condescending enough. I have failed my stereotype.


That's an interesting proposition. It may well be the intention of the author, but if so, it's a really bad argument. If I say "2 + 2 is certainly a lovely expression of 5 today" and you say "I agree with 90% of that sentence" then we know that both of us are completely wrong. Adding adverbs and adjectives to a syllogism does not affect it's truth value. When someone says "the sky is green" or "2+2=5" then there is 0% to agree with, no matter how many modifiers are in the middle of the sentence.

Of course, it's unlikely that Randall actually meant to drill down to the individual sentence level. He probably meant something more like "I agree with 90% of her propositions." Or, more accurately, he probably really meant "I agree with 90% of her arguments, and disagree with the 10% of her writing that is conclusions."

That's just a guess. But I think it's a fair one when you understand that she was really good at metaphysics and epistemology, but she completely cheated on ethics, and that lead her to a weak explanation of politics. The inner contradiction tormented her for her entire life, just as her fictional characters claimed it would.

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby stardek » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:45 am UTC

All I can think is that if "therefore, be a huge asshole to everyone" represents 10% of each sentence then she probably has a problem with run-on sentences.

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby StClair » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:55 am UTC

stardek wrote:All I can think is that if "therefore, be a huge asshole to everyone" represents 10% of each sentence then she probably has a problem with run-on sentences.

You have no idea.
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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby jpk » Mon Apr 30, 2012 4:58 am UTC

Flynn777 wrote:
Of course, it's unlikely that Randall actually meant to drill down to the individual sentence level. He probably meant something more like "I agree with 90% of her propositions." Or, more accurately, he probably really meant "I agree with 90% of her arguments, and disagree with the 10% of her writing that is conclusions."

That's just a guess. But I think it's a fair one when you understand that she was really good at metaphysics and epistemology, but she completely cheated on ethics, and that lead her to a weak explanation of politics. The inner contradiction tormented her for her entire life, just as her fictional characters claimed it would.



Finding that someone has got their premises right and their conclusions wrong is pretty much disagreeing with them on everything, in my book.
You could start with "for every integer i, which may be odd or even, there is an integer 2i, which is necessarily even" and go to "therefore, if we allow infinite sets to exist, we'd have a case where there are just as many even integers as there are integers" and we'd still be in agreement, but if you then said "therefore, infinite sets, being paradoxical, cannot exist" we'd not be in agreement any more. We would not be in 66% agreement.

For my part, I find Rand tedious, and not much of a philosopher, since she starts with her conclusions and shapes her premises to fit them. This is lovely if you happen to agree with her conclusions to begin with, but not convincing if you're not already there to start. I have no idea if Randall would agree with this, though. He might dislike her for other reasons, good ones or bad ones. Since he doesn't produce an argument, it's silly to argue with him.

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby TheGrammarBolshevik » Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:10 am UTC

Flynn777 wrote:Randall, I defy you to name another philosopher that you agree with 90% of the time.

Uh, like anyone?

I'd guess John Searle and Daniel Dennett agree on 90% of things. They just get paid to talk about the parts where they disagree.
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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby Zanmanoodle » Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:12 am UTC

I admire and have taken a lot of inspiration from Rand, and actually enjoyed both Atlas Shrugged and more so the Fountainhead. I particularly admire the parts about not being pulled around by guilt. Really, I never saw it as "therefore, be an asshole" but rather "therefore, don't let other people tell you to be or not to be an asshole."

Still, I am far from a perfect Objectivist. Don't agree all the time.

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby mmmcannibalism » Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:19 am UTC

When did xkcd become a repeat of the most tired cliche of Rand that exists?
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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby Steeler » Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:31 am UTC

mmmcannibalism wrote:When did xkcd become a repeat of the most tired cliche of Rand that exists?

Yeah, I want some concrete examples of this supposed asshole behavior in the Rand novels. The closest thing I can think of is blowing up Cortlandt, but there's an actual non-asshole motive behind that, which is very clearly described in the novel. I think more likely Randall, like most Rand bashers, just got his Rand knowledge from second-hand sources.

Zanmanoodle wrote:I admire and have taken a lot of inspiration from Rand, and actually enjoyed both Atlas Shrugged and more so the Fountainhead. I particularly admire the parts about not being pulled around by guilt. Really, I never saw it as "therefore, be an asshole" but rather "therefore, don't let other people tell you to be or not to be an asshole.".
You've got it. Also, I prefer the Fountainhead too... I think the Fountainhead's sales success clouded Rand's perceptions by the time Atlas Shrugged came around, and she started to correlate being a profitable businessman and being a fantastic person more and more. Whereas in the Fountainhead, Roark spends most of the novel poor but fantastic anyway--and his market share is irrelevant to his greatness and happiness, except that he enjoys having more projects.
Last edited by Steeler on Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:36 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby mmmcannibalism » Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:33 am UTC

Steeler wrote:
mmmcannibalism wrote:When did xkcd become a repeat of the most tired cliche of Rand that exists?

Yeah, I want some concrete examples of this supposed asshole behavior in the Rand novels. The closest thing I can think of is blowing up Cortlandt, but there's an actual non-asshole motive behind that, which is very clearly described in the novel. I think more likely Randall, like most Rand bashers, just got his Rand knowledge from second-hand sources.


I'm not concerned about the accuracy of the critique right now, I'm just tired of seeing the same 3 jokes about Rand that lack any sort of good commentary even if you agree with them.
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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby Steeler » Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:37 am UTC

mmmcannibalism wrote:I'm not concerned about the accuracy of the critique right now, I'm just tired of seeing the same 3 jokes about Rand that lack any sort of good commentary even if you agree with them.
xkcd seems consistently phoned in recently, and this is just part of that pattern. It's kind of sad. Romney Quiz and Constraints were decent, though.
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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby CorruptUser » Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:40 am UTC

My problem with Rand is not her villains nor her heroes; those people exist, and she carves them out in all their disturbing truth. No, the problem is she has virtually no one in between. Either you are the paragon of pure introverted goodness, or you are a parasite determined to destroy the world. The few characters who are just normal people or who only have a few talents but still want to do something meaningful with their lives tend to suffer horribly.

Peter Keating wasn't actually completely worthless; had things been different he might've been a decent painter. But no, he has to live in misery because of his pushy mother and everyone else around him. Though I suppose that was one of Rand's points, that not being able to listen to yourself prevents you from doing what you desire, and you end up miserable.

Steeler wrote:
mmmcannibalism wrote:I'm not concerned about the accuracy of the critique right now, I'm just tired of seeing the same 3 jokes about Rand that lack any sort of good commentary even if you agree with them.
xkcd seems consistently phoned in recently, and this is just part of that pattern. It's kind of sad. Romney Quiz and Constraints were decent, though.


I don't know about you, but I loved the snake, the chart of depths, constraints, approximations; hardly phoned in at all.
Last edited by CorruptUser on Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:45 am UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby thelastholdout » Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:43 am UTC

I understand that this is a comic, but "you have terrible taste" seems to be unnecessarily harsh.

Rand didn't advocate being an asshole to people, she advocated living for oneself and not assuming that self sacrificing is a moral ideal, because to do so is to give in to the statist bullies and religious assholes of the world.

I mean, hell, if you got an actual sense of fulfillment out of helping others, I don't think she'd stand against it.

Her book is a showcase of extreme examples, but the "everybody" who her characters are "assholes" to are pretty goddamn evil, bleeding the world dry because they have nothing of value to offer it, while pushing this idea that people MUST give of themselves to anyone who has sufficient need.

I won't go so far as to say that she was right about everything (she wasn't) or that her writing was flawless (it wasn't) or that a lot of people who publicly announce they're fans of her work aren't complete dicks who shouldn't be allowed to make any world changing decisions (they are) but I think there could have been a much more clever and nuanced critique that could have been a lot funnier.

I mean, really, Randall, you get ranty over smaller issues; why not get ranty over this?

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby Steeler » Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:44 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:My problem with Rand is not her villains nor her heroes; those people exist, and she carves them out in all their disturbing truth. No, the problem is she has virtually no one in between. Either you are the paragon of pure introverted goodness, or you are a parasite determined to destroy the world. The few characters who are just normal people or who only have a few talents but still want to do something meaningful with their lives tend to suffer horribly.

Peter Keating wasn't actually completely worthless; had things been different he might've been a decent painter. But no, he has to live in misery because of his pushy mother and everyone else around him. Though I suppose that was one of Rand's points, that not being able to listen to yourself prevents you from doing what you desire, and you end up miserable.
Gail Wynand is a good neither-villain-nor-hero character, and one of the most interesting characters in the Fountainhead. And I think you come around to the reason there aren't more intermediates yourself... Rand writes them all as being destroyed by the evil of the villains. Which may not be particularly realistic, but it works as fiction.
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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby CorruptUser » Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:47 am UTC

Steeler wrote:Gail Wynand is a good neither-villain-nor-hero character, and one of the most interesting characters in the Fountainhead. And I think you come around to the reason there aren't more intermediates yourself... Rand writes them all as being destroyed by the evil of the villains. Which may not be particularly realistic, but it works as fiction.


I thought he was a disillusioned hero, who because of Roark finds his passion again, and returns to being a hero? The sculptor was more of a neutral, if a bit extreme. Though Rand seemed to like him because he knew evil when he saw it.

I mean, you saw the occasional neutral guy, like in Atlas, the former motor factory guy who reveals what "Who is John Galt" is all about.


Also, should we spoiler this?

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby gormster » Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:50 am UTC

Flynn777 wrote:
blowfishhootie wrote:
Flynn777 wrote:Randall, I defy you to name another philosopher that you agree with 90% of the time. If you reply "Aristotle" then you haven't read enough of his material.

"You have terrible taste" is a disappointingly lazy reply.


"Agreeing with 90 percent of every sentence" is not the same thing as "agreeing 90 percent of the time." More than 10 percent of Ayn Rand's message is summed up with "be a huge asshole to everyone."


It's not? Then what, pray tell, is it the same thing as? I suppose one could say that every sentence consisted of 9 variants of "2+2=4" and then concluded with "Jesus died for your sins." But, having bothered to read Atlas Shrugged, I can say with certainty that this is not the case.


It's more like saying 2+3=10, ten times. 2 is a number, 3 is another number, addition is a thing you can do to numbers, the result is usually designated by an equals sign, but 10 is very much the wrong result.

Or for perhaps a less contrived example, "The light rays from the sun, which are made up of a wide range of wavelengths, are scattered according to their wavelength on contact with the Earth's atmosphere in an effect called Rayleigh Scattering, which is why the sky is green."

You can say something that is 90% right a hundred times and still be wrong.
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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby thelastholdout » Mon Apr 30, 2012 5:54 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:My problem with Rand is not her villains nor her heroes; those people exist, and she carves them out in all their disturbing truth. No, the problem is she has virtually no one in between. Either you are the paragon of pure introverted goodness, or you are a parasite determined to destroy the world. The few characters who are just normal people or who only have a few talents but still want to do something meaningful with their lives tend to suffer horribly.

Peter Keating wasn't actually completely worthless; had things been different he might've been a decent painter. But no, he has to live in misery because of his pushy mother and everyone else around him. Though I suppose that was one of Rand's points, that not being able to listen to yourself prevents you from doing what you desire, and you end up miserable.

Steeler wrote:
mmmcannibalism wrote:I'm not concerned about the accuracy of the critique right now, I'm just tired of seeing the same 3 jokes about Rand that lack any sort of good commentary even if you agree with them.
xkcd seems consistently phoned in recently, and this is just part of that pattern. It's kind of sad. Romney Quiz and Constraints were decent, though.


I don't know about you, but I loved the snake, the chart of depths, constraints, approximations; hardly phoned in at all.


Rand was very much about making a lot of points in every one of her works. Given her background, it's easy to see why; her family was middle class before the Bolshevik Revolution and subsequently lost everything. She saw firsthand what Communist philosophy did to Russia (leave all arguments about whether Soviet Russia was "true" Communism at the door, please). Therefore, it stands to reason that she would develop a "Never Again" reactionary attitude.

Her characters all served to tell a story, which in of itself served to tell her point of view of the world, where it was headed, and what needed to be done to stop it. The opposite ends of good and evil were the strongest characters, and the books were about their battles, so they were featured the most. And the terrible things that happen to them were all to illustrate the cost of the evil characters' victories; they were supposed to serve as a tragic underscore to the points Rand was making.

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby CorruptUser » Mon Apr 30, 2012 6:06 am UTC

I think the 90% has to do with her observations, not her conclusions. Her philosophy's foundations aren't really that terrible; don't ask me to believe anything without proof, I only exist because I can reason that I exist, etc. Her observations about regulatory capture have some truth to them, though I'd argue that regulatory capture is not inevitable. Her views on sex aren't abhorrent.

My main complaint about Rand is that she never had to raise kids, and so doesn't have the experience of having to care about someone else that literally can not fend for itself.

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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby Eternal Density » Mon Apr 30, 2012 6:08 am UTC

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Invisiblemoose
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Joined: Mon Apr 26, 2010 6:15 am UTC

Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby Invisiblemoose » Mon Apr 30, 2012 6:10 am UTC

Wow, this could be the most un-subtle troll Randall's ever done. Not going to bite.

babble
Posts: 40
Joined: Thu Dec 15, 2011 2:13 pm UTC

Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby babble » Mon Apr 30, 2012 6:15 am UTC

Djehutynakht wrote:I'm confused. In the last panel, is he putting it back and escaping the critical room, or is someone else on the other side locking him in the room in a BHG-esque attempt at getting rid of everyone who doesn't share his literary tastes?


doesn't BHG live by the maxim 'be an arsehole to everyone' all the time? If that is what Rand advocates - I have not read her books because life is way, way too short - black hat man would be her biggest fan. But yeah. I think the lack of grey walls and the return to the left hand side of the panel must indicate that the stickman has returned to his original position.

I'm really sorry to do this but I have to. This comic needed an editor. An editor would say 'hey this 90% thing's not really clear - you probably don't mean at sentence level, do you? perhaps we could recast the text to say something like '90% of her propositions'? Let's discuss this a bit so we can work out a better way to express what you want to say. Because you know your readers are just going to say, 'that's really slack, coming from the same source that complains about comparisons between millions and billions and about all sorts of misleading and/or inaccurate statements.'

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CorruptUser
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Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby CorruptUser » Mon Apr 30, 2012 6:16 am UTC

If you think Randall is doing a terrible job, make your own webcomic and do a better job.

lly
Posts: 48
Joined: Mon Jul 12, 2010 5:43 pm UTC

Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby lly » Mon Apr 30, 2012 6:18 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:If you think Randall is doing a terrible job, make your own webcomic and do a better job.


If you think Twilight is terrible or the early Southern Vampire novels need a continuity editor, why don't you become a published novelist and show how it should be done?

thelastholdout
Posts: 14
Joined: Mon Mar 16, 2009 6:24 am UTC

Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby thelastholdout » Mon Apr 30, 2012 6:20 am UTC

lly wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:If you think Randall is doing a terrible job, make your own webcomic and do a better job.


If you think Twilight is terrible, why don't you become a published novelist and show how it should be done?


I don't get this whole attitude that one must be talented in a field in order to be able to criticize a work in that field.

Case in point: I'm a terrible singer, and I can't play worth a damn, but I know an awful band when I hear them. And I am entitled to rage at the injustice when an awful band is pushed as a good band.

Jazztastic
Posts: 1
Joined: Mon Apr 30, 2012 6:08 am UTC

Re: 1049: "Bookshelf"

Postby Jazztastic » Mon Apr 30, 2012 6:23 am UTC

CorruptUser wrote:My problem with Rand is not her villains nor her heroes; those people exist, and she carves them out in all their disturbing truth. No, the problem is she has virtually no one in between. Either you are the paragon of pure introverted goodness, or you are a parasite determined to destroy the world. The few characters who are just normal people or who only have a few talents but still want to do something meaningful with their lives tend to suffer horribly.

Peter Keating wasn't actually completely worthless; had things been different he might've been a decent painter. But no, he has to live in misery because of his pushy mother and everyone else around him. Though I suppose that was one of Rand's points, that not being able to listen to yourself prevents you from doing what you desire, and you end up miserable.

Steeler wrote:
mmmcannibalism wrote:I'm not concerned about the accuracy of the critique right now, I'm just tired of seeing the same 3 jokes about Rand that lack any sort of good commentary even if you agree with them.
xkcd seems consistently phoned in recently, and this is just part of that pattern. It's kind of sad. Romney Quiz and Constraints were decent, though.


I don't know about you, but I loved the snake, the chart of depths, constraints, approximations; hardly phoned in at all.


Rand uses two different extremes to show their impact on society. Often similar situations are given to both heroes and villians in Atlas Shrugged and Rand uses these situations to illustrate her beliefs. She shows what she believes to be utter corruption and absolute purity. The heroes in Atlas Shrugged really are larger then life, because they need to be. They allow her to share her philosophy.

I find this comic in general to be a really unrefined attack on something Randall probably hasn't read. Atlas Shrugged is, at face value, a novel, to be read for entertainment. It is a fantastic story, one of my favorite in literature. Atlas Shrugged is not boring, by any meaning of the word.

Usually Randall gives off the impression he has done his research but it doesn't appear so this time. He just lost a lot of credibility to me.


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