Saturday, May 12, 2007


One of the most notable turning points in my life came about when one of my closest friends gave me a copy of "The Fountainhead", by Ayn Rand. I still recall the day. It was a late afternoon in early December of 1996. We were sitting in the cafe area of Barnes & Noble on Apalachee Pkwy in Tallahassee, FL having some coffee. I was preparing to move to Cincinnati, and this was to be one of our last long chats together.

Right before it was time for us to depart, he excused himself for a moment and walked back into the store area. Within a few minutes, he returned with a newly purchased book: a parting gift, and gave it to me saying "This is my bible."

Michael Chiang changed my outlook on life that day.

It wasn't a matter of developing a new way of thinking, exactly... more accurately, it was an experience in which you find yourself reading things that echo your own thoughts. Thoughts and opinions I'd held in a very disorganized internal fashion were explored and defined. Rand's philosophy of reason, rationality, and the innate truth that man has the intrinsic right to exist and live for his own well-being are beliefs which drive every day of my life.

I've experienced a similar feeling recently, upon reading this: the first chapter of Freedom Under Siege, by Ron Paul. Find a few spare minutes this weekend. Pour yourself a cup of coffee or open a bottle of your favorite beverage, and read 27 pages of brilliance.

In previous posts, I've focused on the shortcomings of some of the Republican candidates for President. Now I present to you something different: the views and opinions of a man who does not say things to acquire votes, but instead says what he believes.

Stay tuned.


Anonymous said...

Hey, we agree on something.
I'm marking this date in my calendar.

Mike @ MidwesternBite said...

I just finished Atlas Shrugged for the second time a few days ago. I read the whole thing in five days and it's the only book that I finished the last page, put it down, said, "Wow", and immediately turned to the first page and started over in one sitting.

It's set to start shooting for a movie this year. Link

Just when I thought I couldn't be attracted to Dagny anymore, they go and pick Angelina Jolie to play her.

I just received The Fountainhead as well as Objectivism: The Philosophy of Ayn Rand last week. Can't wait to start them. Guess I'll start with Fountainhead.

Mike @ MidwesternBite said...

Oh, and have you been to the Ayn Rand Institute's page yet? There's all kinds of good info, including these video lectures on the basics of Objectivism.