As I write this, I am wearing an article of Lululemon clothing I purchased 8 years ago. Did I spend twice what I pay for other brands? Yes. But, Lulu’s product has lasted 4 times as long. Maybe reading Atlas Shrugged helped Chip Wilson make boxer briefs this good. If so, I thank both him and Ayn Rand from the bottom of my well-ventilated nutsack.
It has been quite the spectacle the past few weeks, observing the widespread reaction to Wilson’s decision to put four provocative words on Lululemon’s ubiquitous shopping bags. So far, I have not seen a single article, comment or quote referencing Ayn Rand, Atlas Shrugged or Objectivism that reflects even a rudimentary understanding of the fundamental ideas that they represent.
Aside from being a satisfied Lulu customer, I’ve been following this story with keen interest because of two facts: I’m both a yoga educator, and a publicly declared Objectivist of long standing. If I were to evaluate these two facts on the basis of the general response to the “Galt” kerfuffle, I’d have to judge them to be incompatible. Fortunately, I do not make judgements based on public opinion.
I have read Atlas Shrugged five times, Fountainhead four times, and all of Ayn Rand’s non-fiction. As far as her more formal work on philosophy is concerned, I have had the privilege of personally studying with two of the top Objectivist scholars in the world. I have been contemplating and applying Rand’s ideas in every area of my life and career for four decades, and I’m well aware of the hard work it’s taken to forge a consistent world view in which the principles of Yoga are compatible with those of Objectivism. It wasn’t easy, but I did it, and I owe whatever success I’ve had in my life to the effort I put in.
If you have made a similar effort to forge a consistent philosophy for yourself and have something RATIONAL to say about this issue, I’d love to hear from you.
However, if you wish to comment about “Who is John Galt,” I’ll give you the same advice issued by frustrated tech support when they are repeatedly assaulted with stupid questions that have already been answered by the people who have taken the trouble to write the operating instructions: “RTFM – Read The Fucking Manual.”
What I’m suggesting is that there is a very well-written manual for addressing all the injustices that both the Occupy Movement and the Tea Party are protesting. It is called “Atlas Shrugged.” So, before you bitch and moan about how society isn’t working for you, I suggest you “RTFN – Read The F-ing Novel.”
Then, we’ll talk.