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  • Posted by Eudaimonist 5 years, 3 months ago
    Atlas Shrugged is a complete story with an ending that suggests that no sequels are needed. No, AFAIK she had no intentions of writing a sequel.

    I would not have encouraged her to write a sequel, but I would have loved to have seen her write another novel.
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    • Posted by ewv 5 years, 3 months ago
      The Journals of Ayn Rand, edited by David Harriman, p. 704, quotes from a 1961 interview:

      "I don't know whether I will ever write fiction again. The difficulty is that Atlas Shrugged was the climax and completion of the goal I had set for myself at the age of nine. It expressed everything that I wanted of fiction writing. Above everything else, it presented my ideal man fully. I can never surpass Galt. More than that, I now have four variants: Roark, Galt, Rearden, and Francisco. There is no point in multiplying them. What worries me about my future in fiction is that the motor of my interest—the presentation of the ideal man and the ideal way of life—is gone. It's completed, fulfilled ...."

      "If and when I see an aspect of my sense of life that I have not covered, then I will write another novel. One can't exhaust the sense of life; it is not like philosophical problems."
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  • Posted by term2 5 years, 3 months ago
    I think it was a pretty complete story actually. If there was to be a sequel, it should be on the subject of how you bring back a civilization from the destruction of socialism. This is what Venezuela and Greece need today- and not some high handed intellectual work. Practical stuff is what they need.
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  • Posted by Timelord 5 years, 3 months ago
    When I describe Atlas Shrugged to people that don't know about it I call it the greatest book ever written, but not the greatest literature that was every written.

    People constantly complain about flat characters and naive actions, and I remind them of Rand's intent when writing the model and that she used archetypes, or at least narrowly developed characters, because that's the best way to explain her philosophy.

    It has been suggested to me that if I knew her I might not have liked her. I have no clue on that point because I haven't read any of the books that describe her and her life. That is separate from her philosophy and those books are low on my reading list.

    My first reaction to the question was, "Yes, of course!" Then I read the first post and changed my mind. AS, in spite of its completeness, is a difficult and confusing book for many people. They're either not equipped to understand what's being said or they're unwilling to understand it. So then I thought of her non-fiction, such as The Virtue of Selfishness or Capitalism: the unknown ideal, and how they are a collection of mostly short essays that address one aspect of Objectivism or how Objectivism applies to a certain area of life.

    It's fine to have a philosophical system but not always apparent how it applies to driving down the road. For instance, people ask me to describe libertarianism at it's most basic level. I think the defining nugget is "non-initiation of force." But that's too basic for a layman, so I usually go with, "I should be allowed to live my life in any way that I see fit as long as I don't infringe on the right of my neighbor to do the same."

    That statement is hard to disagree with, but how does it, or the non-initiation of force principle, explain why welfare, public housing, social security, food stamps, the FDA, the EPA, the CDC, the minimum wage, etc are all very, very bad things? All of that stuff exists specifically to protect us, right? Are we going to allow the children to starve? How heartless and cruel!

    Many of you are currently wondering, "Why does Timelord write so damned many words? I wish he'd get on with it!" An Objectivist would have to ask, "In my hierarchy of values, is reading all of this going to lead to a payoff that's worth it?" I hope so.

    My recommendation to Ms Rand, if she would have tolerated my input, would be to write short stories or shorter novels that presented a more narrow issue and the Objectivist reaction or solution.

    The above was the payoff. I hope I didn't overexplain my reasoning in the preceding monologue.

    The 2nd payoff begins now. Ms Rand has left us, an occurrence which was ill-conceived since I believe she had a lot more important fiction and non-fiction that should have been written for her benefit and ours. However, we have two brilliant writers who have taken up the task, and those are the Hallings.

    Their Hank Rangar (that's "Ranger," with an A) novels are well written, have characters who are developed, have great plotlines, suspense and action. There's even, shudder, ROMANCE! The protagonist, Hank Rangar (that's "Ranger," with an A), has ample opportunities to discuss why the central issue of the novel is immoral and he addresses it while both following Objectivist principles AND giving us a hell of a ride in the process. If I believed in the initiation of force I'd make every person in the country buy those novels and read them.

    (D and K, you may now do the dead drop of the agreed-upon amount at the agreed-upon location. Turn the coyote skull to face directly east when you've done it.)
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    • Posted by khalling 5 years, 3 months ago
      ah, I'm blushing. timelord, you also need to check out straightlinelogic's the Golden Pinnacle and Aj's Shadows Live Under Seashells. Both inspired by Rand. :)
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    • Posted by 5 years, 3 months ago
      "That statement is hard to disagree with, but how does it, or the non-initiation of force principle, explain why welfare, public housing, social security, food stamps, the FDA, the EPA, the CDC, the minimum wage, etc are all very, very bad things? All of that stuff exists specifically to protect us, right? Are we going to allow the children to starve? How heartless and cruel! "

      Timelord why are these things bad? They are the implementation of Marx's From each according to his ability, To each according to his need. Rand thought that the ownership of earned property by individuals should be absolute. Karl Marx wrote "...In this sense, the theory of the Communists may be summed up in the single sentence: Abolition of private property..."
      You may give all of your property to the poor - no one will stop you. Please stop demanding the right to give my property away.
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      • Posted by Timelord 5 years, 3 months ago
        Hi j_IR1776wg, you misunderstood what I wrote, please see it again. I was arguing that welfare, public housing, etc ARE BAD.

        First, a shortened version of the first sentence in that paragraph would be, "That statement is hard to disagree with, but how does it ... explain why [this list] are all very, very bad things? " Then I wrote a rhetorical question. THEN some of the text that was in my brain got trapped and never made it to my fingers and thence onto the screen!

        I had MEANT to follow that paragraph with a brief restatement of two paragraphs above, something like "brief descriptions of the basic tenets of Objectivism are insufficient for the majority of people because it's not an intuitive leap from non-initiation of force to 'free healthcare for sick kids is immoral.' That requires an explanation of a logical chain of statements that end with 'forcing my neighbor to pay for my sick kid is immoral.'" I'm sorry I left that out.
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  • Posted by zzdragon 5 years, 3 months ago
    Yes to the sequel. Start with the bridge dropping in the river and rebuild the USA with a tougher constitution and more iron clad rights!
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    • Posted by $ Temlakos 5 years, 3 months ago
      No, no, no. Start with a Daniel Boone-type character happening on the unconscious form of Eddie Willers, slinging him over his horse, and heading into the mountains and his already-planned rendezvous with the Apache or Hopi or Havasupai Beringians. Who by now will have left the reservation and resumed The Old Ways. Let them now have a debate on whether to cooperate with John Galt--and if the latter, how do they find them? And on their way, they meet up with Chief Ouray the Second, the Big Chief of the Ute Nation. Who has a problem: Mulligan's Valley is actually the Uncompahgre Valley, and that is ancient Ute land! Now see what...!
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  • Posted by Herb7734 5 years, 3 months ago
    Atlas was not intended to have a sequel and even those minor alterations in the movie in order to bring it up to date jarred a bit. I don't think she needed any urging to write as writing was, no doubt, her life. I think she would have loved writing with a computer or tablet and she'd probably turn out work faster than it could be published. That leaves it up to the inheritors of her works.
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  • Posted by blackswan 5 years, 3 months ago
    There should have been a sequel, showing how the Gulchers rebuild society. They were all working on correcting the mistakes of the past. The only conclusion would be to find out if those solutions could work in a new world, free of the moochers.
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  • Posted by wiggys 5 years, 3 months ago
    What Ayn Rand told the world is that in order for prosperity to exist we must have businesses of all sizes and no interference from government. As we see and have seen for over 100 years in the usa is the creeping of government into businesses which is a copy of what has happened in europe and where has it left the europeans; in the sewer, that is where and we are following suit. I suggest that those of you who have thus far not read all of her writings do so and you should ultimately begin to understand that she said it all. There is no more that could be said after AS.
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  • Posted by $ Technocracy 5 years, 3 months ago
    For the first question, I have no idea.

    For the second question, I say no.

    What sort of sequel could she write? AS left us with the start of total collapse. So a sequel would either continue through the collapse and to rebuilding after, or jump to the rebuilding straight off.

    In either case, what philosophical point of Objectivism would she be illustrating. All her writing in and around AS were to use the story to illustrate the philosophy.

    The underlying question really comes down to.
    What philosophical points does she still want to make?
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    • Posted by 5 years, 3 months ago
      Re-writing the Constitution according to her Objectivist principles.
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      • Posted by $ Temlakos 5 years, 3 months ago
        Already done in a few lines. Judge Narragansett took care of that.
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        • Posted by 5 years, 3 months ago
          Would and will take more than a few lines.
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          • Posted by $ Temlakos 5 years, 3 months ago
            To put it in detail, yes. But I hardly envision that taking a hundred thousand words. The Constitution itself doesn't. And remember: total collapse. Once a Government of the United States re-emerges, it will have a new Constitution. And the issues leading up to that Constitution, to paraphrase GA Douglas MacArthur, will have been decisively settled and will not be subject to discussion or debate.

            The story is not so much the rewriting of the Constitution, but the eventual amalgamation of wilderness militias into one co-operative fighting force that defeats the last remnants of the robbers.
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  • Posted by coaldigger 5 years, 3 months ago
    I am still trying to digest Atlas so a sequel would just put me farther behind. I read AS when I was about 27-28 having never read anything she had previously written. An intern that had been with me all summer handed me a copy as he was saying goodbye and suggested that I might like it. I was well into the book before I realized what was going on. Viewed as a work of fiction, it did not seem to be realistic to me. The characters were extreme and I did not understand them and I could not identify with their larger than life personalities. Frankly, I didn't get it and didn't think it was very good.

    Slowly I began to see how the "story' was related to real life and the book was a teaching tool and it became more interesting. I was a little busy at the time designing control systems for steel making processes and I had just finished grad school. In addition, my wife and I just had twins so it took several weeks for a first reading. Somewhere along the way, the Penn Central went bankrupt which was the largest failure in US history at the time. Rand's story suddenly seemed real and the message of the book took on more significance to me.


    I was still confused by the characters and their meaning. There was considerable discussion at that time about "The Great Man Theory" and it seemed that she was pushing that idea but not everyone can be great and great things can be accomplished by ordinary men if properly focused. I was involved in a book discussion group, led by our CEO but he dismissed AS in the usual way as a fantasy philosophy for immature adolescents. I was not willing to accept that but didn't have anyone to discuss the ideas presented. Before the internet, searching for information was much more difficult and time consuming so my development as an Objectivist came very slowly.


    After many readings and the addition of her other writings, I have a completely different view of AS and the characters. I think she used the fictional story to present her ideas and did a very complete job of it. I am much more impressed with the philosophy than the fiction and am satisfied that she completed her task so I would not encourage her to write a sequel to find out if Dagny and John lived happily ever after.
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  • Posted by dbhalling 5 years, 3 months ago
    I have often thought a follow on book that told AS from Ragnar's point of view would have been interesting. I believe She also was supposedly working on another novel when she died.
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  • Posted by johnpe1 5 years, 3 months ago
    with her mental horsepower, she could have described
    the formation of the New U.S.A. incorporating objectivist principles,
    and we could use it for our future!!! -- j

    p.s. to your questions:: no, I don't think so,
    and yes, according to the comments above.
    .
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  • Posted by Ellen_L 5 years, 3 months ago
    No and no. From what has been said she had started another book dealing with unrequited love. Never finished. Ideal is a novel version of a story she made into a play.

    I also felt that Eddie needed better treatment, but he was written as a person of integrity but not a genius and his fate would be undecided. He is part of the group like Cheryl Taggart and Tony (the Wet Nurse) who could not survive without a better world. Most of us fall in that category, we would not exist without the geniuses who created our technological world.

    Would you trade a few masterpieces like her books and her non fiction for a lot of wonderful shorter stories? she was a great story teller but there are a lot of those in the world and too few great thinkers.
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  • Posted by cjferraris 5 years, 3 months ago
    If there ever was a sequel, it would probably about how someone discovered the Gulch and tried to raid it and bring forth people in it to "justice" for shirking their "duty to help their fellow man" gleaning the advances that members of the Gulch had made and mandated that it reproduced for the masses. The government while seeming benevolent to the masses, actually using this as a means of control and trying to sell it to Gulchers as being in a partnership. Gulchers, on the otherhand, see right through what the government would do with any newly acquired power/resources that they attain, and do not cooperate. Inevitability, the heavy fist of the government will do whatever they can to destroy any admiration/credibility the Gulchers have with the masses. The outcome becomes predictable.
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    • Posted by $ Temlakos 5 years, 3 months ago
      I'd go along with that except for one thing: there is no "Washington" in the old sense. The Taggart Bridge is gone. No government can re-establish itself without regular commerce across the Mississippi River. Until then, all you have are regional militias.

      Now maybe I would imagine that the chief of the Ute Beringians (who once owned the region we call the State of Utah and some lands beyond it) would find the Gulch hidden away in the old Hot Springs River Valley his people once owned, and might try to fight them for it. Of course he would go head-to-head with Ragnar Danneskjöld. But at the end, he would smoke a peace pipe--literally!--filled with tobacco from the Mulligan Tobacco Company. How's that for irony?

      (Historical note: Chief Ouray, then Big Chief of the Ute nation, sold the Uncompahgre Valley to some miners who had discovered silver in the mountains. The town at the center of the real Uncompahgre Valley bears this chief's name.)
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  • Posted by $ Temlakos 5 years, 3 months ago
    Atlas Shrugged needed no sequel. The last scene made clear: the residents of the Gulch were making definite plans to return to the world. Richard Halley was going to début his Fifth Concerto, Kay Ludlow intended returning to the silver screen, Ragnar was preparing to teach philosophy in a university setting (and likely run the department), Midas was getting set to invest in different companies in large cities, Judge Narragansett was preparing a thoroughgoing revision to the Constitution, Francisco was finishing his design of a smelter, Hank Rearden was looking forward to getting Rearden Steel going again...and John Galt and Dagny Taggart climbed all the way up to the lip of the valley, looked down at the lands below, and said, "We're going back."

    That said, this book could use a sequel. I would envision several novels, each complete in itself, making a longer story arc. Start with a "Quest for Atlantis," in which an independent scout--a concept that really will give Eddie the willies--will stumble upon Eddie, pick him up, and set out to take Eddie to a place where Eddie can thrive again. And in the process come to terms with his own state.

    For you see, Ayn Rand never once treated the case of the independent scout, one of several who first entered the Old West and made their living trapping furry animals, killing them, skinning them, then bringing the pelts to "trading posts" to buy supplies to sustain their total lone-wolf existence. If Eddie despaired when he saw a wagon train, let him see an independent scout, the first "white presence" in the Wild West. Better yet, let him see a tribe of Apache or Ute or Arapaho who have, in the great collapse, walked off the reservation and resumed The Old Ways!
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  • Posted by woodlema 5 years, 3 months ago
    Nope, no Sequel we KNOW how it ends.

    The world burns to a cinder, the Gulch survives as a utopia where genius and value reigns supreme, then expands after the rest of the human race has killed itself off in anarchy or starves from its ignorance.
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    • Posted by zzdragon 5 years, 3 months ago
      I believe that you have added to the end of the book. We don't know that the human race has killed itself. There has to be millions of good men and women that are still out there. Not everyone is in the Gulch. Those in the Gulch need to lead in the rebuilding the world from the ashes.
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      • Posted by 5 years, 3 months ago
        I want to agree with you but I have this sinking feeling that if John Galt were to sell the plans for his motor to the outside world, the looters would seize and live off of the profits selling and taxing what they had not earned. This sounds alot like the beginning of Atlas Shrugged.
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        • Posted by wiggys 5 years, 3 months ago
          in order for profits made by companies they have to exist. as the world is moving backwards there is a reduction of companies so there is a reduction of profits. the looters just don't get it. they think that the productive people will simply continue to serve them. but that will come to an end in my opinion in the not to far future like maybe 20 years. then we will be left with a sad world that no amount of objectivists will be able tover come because our government education system has failed to educate. the failure to educate the population has been in the works since the late 60's in my opinion. if you look around at what is taking place all over the country you can't help to notice the daily breakdown specifically in the black neighborhoods. but they are not alone because they are being joined by whites and hispanics. the only group that seems to want to better itself and be productive is the asian people. AR said as much as she could to warn us and that was followed with the writing of Leonard Peikoff. our world is doomed as we presently know it.
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  • Posted by $ Technocracy 5 years, 3 months ago
    Another reason for no sequel is that it restricts the new work. You are expected to use some of the same characters and have them act consistent with the previous works. AR would not want restrictions like that on her writing. Her focus was Objectivism, the story was always secondary to that.
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    • Posted by jabuttrick 5 years, 3 months ago
      Actually, I think I remember her saying that she was a novelist first and a philosopher second. She expressly denied that the purpose of her fiction writing was to teach, rather it was to present a story which demonstrated principles in action. Anyone else remember what she said about that?
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      • Posted by zzdragon 5 years, 3 months ago
        That would be part of the fight to rebuild the world correctly. But how do you keep the looters out?
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        • Posted by johnpe1 5 years, 3 months ago
          the declaration for the new u.s.a. would have
          an oath leading off, from John Galt:::

          I swear that your life is yours to love, and if you attempt to fake reality
          by taking my life or the products of my effort, you will be stopped
          and prevented from asking anyone to live for your sake.
          The "Prime Directive:" Never Fake Reality.

          just an idea. == j

          p.s. the enforcement of this prime rule would require that
          everyone be armed and empowered for self-defense --
          and Galt The Inventor would have a Zippo-sized "gun"
          which would stop someone in their tracks for one hour,
          allowing them to resume their life afterwards. . those
          not using their gun for 24 hours would be impervious
          to its effects for a single "hit" and the "gun" could only
          be fired once per day. . just an idea.
          .
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