Atlas Shrugged Part II: Amazing

I meant to go and watch Atlas Shrugged Part II on opening night. I had already been invited to multiple Atlas events. Unfortunately I was too busy and have been for the last two weeks. For some reason something just kept coming up and preventing me from going. When I went to the website on Wednesday, only two and a half short weeks after the movie coming out, I was shocked to see that none of the Cincinnati theaters were showing it any more, and that the only theater showing it was 50 miles away! I decided that I must see it before the last day of showing, but unfortunately the showing was at 12:55 and I didn’t get out of work until at least 3pm. So I decided to take a vacation day and make a day out of it.

I woke up around 8:30am Thursday Morning on November 1st and made myself some breakfast, I took the dog out, filled up his water and food bowls and headed out the door. I turned the ignition on my new jeep and stopped by the local gas station to fill her up and grab myself a cup of coffee. I headed from the gas station to the I-275 highway and proceeded toward I-75 making sure to salute the new Gary Johnson sign on the way up. The sun was out, shining brightly over a wind swept landscape which had finally cleared up after a week of Hurricane Sandy. I approached I-675 and drove past all the signs for The Wright Patterson Air Force Base. I approached the theater and saw that it was not open yet for the day as it was only 11am.

I decided to pass the time by going to the mall, I walked around and thought about all the stores, what the value of each one was, and what the current value of our currency is. I thought about the gold standard, I thought about communism, fascism and capitalism. I thought about the show I had watched the night before at my in-laws house. I thought about ‘The Men who built America’ and how the same men who built it, also sowed the seeds for its destruction. I thought about Joseph Campbell’s mythology of ‘the hero as the villain’ . It seems that many of the men who built America decided to convert from value to greed, and squeeze the life out of others instead of continuing to advance it through production of value.

It’s a very tricky thing Capitalism. Unbridled and unshackled it can produce the most amazing inventions, and carry forward the best in living conditions. When it is railroaded, it can be used for vile intentions. The latest Sherlock Holmes movie shows how countries are pitted against each other so that banks and arms manufactures can make massive profits off the bloodshed of others. It appears to have taken hold particularly in the 20th century especially during the first and second world wars.

I love capitalism and I love Ayn Rand’s Objectivism philosophy. There is a huge web of history, philosophy and facts that are left to be untangled, and political struggles to be broken until we can get back to a productive society with value at its core. Perhaps my wife is right, and next month the world won’t end, but perhaps it will have a great awakening instead.

I thought about all this as I ate terriaki chicken from one of the food vendors in the mall. I pondered the meaning of life, and what it meant to stand out alone as an individual. I watched as soldiers from the nearby army base stood in a collective group as they purchased Chick-fil-a. I felt sad that so many people form into a collective and allow others to dictate to them. I felt very alone in that mall, not because I was by myself, but because my thinking is purely individualistic. I do not think in terms of any collective. I think in terms of value. True value includes quality, cost, happiness, productivity and meaning. It is not just the cost of the items I looked at in the stores, it’s what they really mean. I’m not interested in most of the material clothing which only stands to make a statement. I’m more interested in the rugged ‘Columbia’ jackets which will hold out the cold on a freezing winter’s day. The items of value carry meaning to them. Meaning to the individual, not to the collective conscious of a brainwashed majority. I’m not out to impress anyone. I’m out to find happiness in life, and construct a better world for myself while respecting others rights to do the same.

My thoughts continued to flow as I walked outside and headed back to the Theater. At 12:30pm I walked into the recently opened doors and purchased one small individual ticket for ‘Atlas Shrugged Part II’.

I confidently walked by myself in a mostly deserted 20 screen movie theater toward the number five screening room, and took my seat at the very back, to wait and observe the magic of the new movie.

As the credits began rolling, an old couple tottered steadily toward their seats, then another couple, then an individual guy, then a lady, then another older couple. The total number of people in the theater including myself stood at 9. “at least I’m not the only one who showed up” I thought to myself.

The previews began airing, and my anticipation began to rise. Finally the movie began with an amazing airplane chase scene which actually reminded me of the opening of Star Wars Episode III: Revenge of the Sith. My heart rate rose slightly and I was drawn into the unfolding drama.

I was a little surprised to see that different actors played the parts of the main characters, but if anything I liked them even more. You could really see the actors bring the characters to life in a way that reflected exactly what you felt when reading the book. I thought Hank Rearden was bold headed and hard, and delivered his court speech perfectly. I liked how the movie tied in the tea party and occupy wall street movements, as well as the news segment featuring Sean Hannity.

The movie represented the world that Ayn Rand projected perfectly, and it was chilling to find a resemblance between the movie and today’s economic and moral plight. I sat at the edge of my seat through the entire film, and was flabbergasted at how well it had been made. You could really tell that the production company had put everything they had into the film, and had spent extra money on fine tuning it to deliver the message of the book.

I loved watching the first movie when it came out last year, and thought they did a good job for a low budget film, but the difference between part one and part two is night and day. Congratulations to the producers of the movie. You have my thanks. I wish I could have seen it sooner, and I will be sure to buy a copy when it is released on DVD. I am an active member of galts gulch online, and I will do whatever I can to help out with obtaining funding and promoting the third and final installment of Ayn Rand’s magnum opus.

Before I left the theater I sat through all the credits and read Ayn Rand’s warning at the end:

“When you see that in order to produce, you need to obtain permission from men who produce nothing – When you see that money is flowing to those who deal, not in goods, but in favors – When you see that men get richer by graft and by pull than by work, and your laws don’t protect you against them, but protect them against you – When you see corruption being rewarded and honesty becoming a self-sacrifice – You may know that your society is doomed.” — Ayn Rand, “Atlas Shrugged”, 1957

I walked out into the cool fresh air and fired up the jeep once more to return home, full of thoughts and ideas, concerned about the future, but glad that the diamonds are finally starting to shine through the rough.

Your economy

No matter what happens in the world around you. Your own self economy is the most important.

What have you done to reduce your debt? What can you pay off right now? Do you have a business? How do you make extra money? Do you diversify your income? Do you have any investments?

When I was 14 years old I read a book called ‘Rich Dad Poor Dad’. This book changed my life. Not only did it open my mind up to another way of thinking, it also got me thinking about how I should use and save money.

Now that I am in my twenties and have credit cards and vechicle payments, I think back on ‘Rich Dad Poor Dad’ and realise where I went astray.

A couple of days ago I was talking to a friend at work, who is about my age, and he was telling me about ‘Dave Ramsey’s Financial Peace’. Basically Dave talks about snowballing your debt, and creating an emergency savings account, and investing your money so that eventually you end up earning as much from your investments as you do from your job. This sounded very appealing to me, as my wife and I are already ‘snowballing’ our debt to be debt free by the end of this year. The teachings from ‘Rich Dad Poor Dad’ are starting to come back to me, and I am getting better at network marketing.

Now being a salesperson will not get you far if you are always trying to ‘sell’ someone something. Use something that will appeal to others without you having to ‘sell it’ to them.

I use a site called Peoplestring; it’s a free site that you can use to network market with other people. It’s sort of a dashboard for everything you do. You can use it for sending emails, creating your own widgets, or ‘insta portals’, you can use it to connect to Facebook and twitter. You can even use it to make extra cash with their ‘people dollar deals’. Like I said, I’ve been using it for two years now, and it’s free to join and free to use. They don’t spam you with mail, and it’s my homepage on every computer I use, because its so darn useful.

If you would like to find out more about Peoplestring, just copy and paste this link:

There are a whole range of options to help you become more financially independent.

My wife and I also have a photography company. We book a lot of weddings, and local photo shoots. This helps to subsidize our income, and is starting to make us independent of our jobs as our independent company grows.

Financial independence is important, it fully frees you from obligations to banks, government and other people.

We participate in the economy because it enhances our lives. We should never be forced to participate in it through necessity.

The farmers of the past moved to the cities to create better lives for themselves, because they were able to make more money and provide more for their familes. They willingly choose to do this.

“I swear by my life and my love of it, that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor have another man live for the sake of mine.” – John Galt, Ayn Rand’s ‘Atlas Shrugged’.

So what are you doing to enhance your financial independence?

Whether you snowball debt, or create a business, becoming independent, or at least less dependent on the system, will help you to maintain your own individual sovereignty.

The industries of the future will become (like they were supposed to be) more of a choice than a neccessity, with our own love of technologies and the enhancement of our lives at our core reason for working.

“America’s abundance was not created by public sacrifices to the common good, but by the productive genius of free men who pursued their own personal interests and the making of their own private fortunes.” — Ayn Rand