When I was a graduate student, I read “Atlas Shrugged”. It was interesting. It’s a viewpoint not normally mentioned in State brainwashing centers.
The ideas of “Atlas Shrugged” are a precursor to agorism. It isn’t realistic for all the skilled workers to hide in a bunker somewhere. You need to control some land, to grow food. No matter how good your defenses, you cannot withstand an assault by the State military.
In a sense, productive workers are giving up. In many jobs, it makes no difference if you are highly skilled. In many jobs, workers do the minimum effort to get by, rather than trying their best. That’s a type of “shrugging”. When lots of people do that, it’s a huge drain on the economy.
While I was in grad school, there was an “Ayn Rand” discussion group on campus. I thought “Atlas Shrugged was an interesting novel. I should go to the Ayn Rand discussion group.” I mentioned it to one of the other students, and he said “Don’t bother. They’re a bunch of fruitcakes.” He was correct. They were a bunch of fruitcakes. It was a crazy religious cult.
In an Internet discussion forum, whenever someone is named after an Ayn Rand character, they almost always are pro-State trolling.
When you base your philosophy on a dead person, that’s a serious problem. Your ideas are frozen, based on what the idol said. Ayn Rand is dead. I can’t ask her what she thinks of agorism. Even if she were alive and ridiculed it, that doesn’t mean it’s a bad idea.
I had the same problem on mises.org with the Austrian economists. They said “Mises and Rothbard never wrote about the Compound Interest Paradox. Therefore, the Compound Interest Paradox is false.” They’re quoting the authority figure, rather than thinking for themselves.
Ayn Rand is also misquoted. She said “All charity is evil.” She may have actually believed this. The correct answer is “State charity is evil. Via taxes and State welfare, you force me at gunpoint to contribute to a charity. It’s OK to contribute to charity, provided you do it voluntarily with your own money.” Charity is evil, when the donation comes at the threat of violence. Charity is OK, if you do it voluntarily.
Ayn Rand says “All charity is evil!”. Ayn Rand says “The Welfare State is evil.” Therefore, everyone who criticizes the Welfare State is cold and heartless. It’s a classic logical fallacy.
Agorism is a natural extension of Atlas Shrugged. That answers the question of “How do productive workers stop supporting evil, while still earning a decent living for themselves?” Instead of retreating to a bunker, agorists develop an underground economy. Free from the burden of taxation on regulation, they should be very productive. Novels like Alongside Night and A Lodging Of Wayfaring Men are stories about agorism.
Many freedom activists get stuck in an intellectual trap. They mindlessly follow an authority figure, without thinking for themselves. These authority figures are Ayn Rand, Mises, Rothbard, Ron Paul, and others. These people are attractive leaders. They’re more in tune with the truth than most mainstream media personalities. However, they still have flaws. By religiously following an authority figure, you also can’t progress past their errors. I read lots of different people, and combine the best ideas. That’s the best way to think for yourself.