I think the author totally gets it with his 'hiding in plain sight' observations.
But I'm starting to realize that some belief in a someday 'Galt's Gulch' as an actual, physical place is not fringe.
That kind of floor's me. Even as a 14 yr old kid, I interpreted that as a metaphor.
Surely...no, never start off an assertion in a world like this.
In AS, there was John Galt the 'oiler' who for most of the year "hid in plain site" not supporting a corrupt tribal cluster fuck with his best efforts. And for part of the year...a kind of 'vacation' from the world, a fleeing to hang out with like minded folks. In her romantic novel, a literal fleeing. In reality, at most, a figurative/virtual fleeing. Am I the only one who interpreted AS that way????
The Galt's Gulch of Rand's fiction never made the least bit of sense as an actual place. For one, it existed inside of an expensively maintained poltiical context. Safely tucked away "in Colorado" somewhere, far from those nasty borders and the rest of the world. As if, with a Hitler marching loose in the world, a tiny club of capable campers in the hills were going to stave off the Third Reich using wiggly air above their little valley. Perhaps Midas Mulligan would stop the advancing columns at the valley entrance and show them the deed to his land. Galt's Gulch as an actual, physcial place is an absurdity in this world, as it is, no wildernaess or frontier to be found. Was it some kind of well hidden secret that Rand was writing a romantic novel when she wrote AS?
But Galt's Gulch as a concept, including the vast majority og John Galt's year, as 'hidden in plain sight", is not an absurdity, and the definition of 'oiler' is subject to all kinds of imaginative interpretations in reality. The evidence of that is our economies, as they are.
When enough people lose faith in the economic game, what do they do? Of course they 'shrug.' There is no meeting necessary; there is no mysterious stranger knocking at the door. Jesus, if they were that much of an idiot to need to be told by some mysterious stranger at the door, then I'd really wonder about them. The knock at the door, if there was a knock at the door, was Rand's novel 60 years ago. Who in their right mind with even half a mind would need more then that as fair warning to open their eyes?
Thinking there needs to be a physical 'Galt's Gulch' is to me as absurd as waiting for an actual John Galt to come to the door and knock. Are we all really that literal in our interpretation of AS?
No, in the world as it is, there is no announcement; no knock at the door; no marking of the event. No trace at all. What never happens is not measurable or detectable, only realizable.
In another time, in another culture, there was a use for one set of skills and talent. In todays culture, it is entirely possible -- in fact, a necessity for those who love thier life and the living of it -- to make exactly 'enough' effort and no more.
As a value. As a satisfying value.
Obama is right; we didn't build that. We built something much, much smaller. Something big enough, and no bigger. That is the modern skill.
Now go tax the other thing, the thing we never built. Go find it first.
For as long as it takes. Not a problem.
The Obamas of the world have a theory; their theory is that some folks just can't help themselves but make Obama's world work for him.
It is a kind of inevitability.
The Hell, he says.
This isn't a cultural war without victims. I knew one, an acquaintance. Reformed radical liberal from the 60s. Went into construction, started small, built up his construction company for decades, struggled his whole life to make it bigger. Succeeded, almost, right up until the end. He did what he thought was 'rock solid safe' and had most of his pension assets in GM bonds.
Yes, that was 'stupid.' He lost nearly everything he had built upover decades in a single swipe of a community organizer's pen. See, that was his own fault; he should have realized, in this world, as it is, that 'risk' does not include just normal assess the health of companies risk, but risk of a politico scumbag effortlessly wielding a pen in DC and wiping him out. See, if he was 'diversified' in other fascist entities tied much closer to the guns of state, he could have at least spread that 'risk.' He was bitter for the last few years of his life and died almost penniless, rotted with hatred.
Well, let me tell you; the same applies to any of us out here with assets in any regulated pension plan; we are all one swipe of that same pen away from having that portion of our pension assets cleaned out, and it can happen at any moment, and dont' fool yourself for a second that this out of all control cluster fuck is beyond doing that; the massive pool of black ink that is funded pension plans has been burning a hole in the governments pocket since at least the mid nineties. This has been obvious for years; the formula is going to be, "If you've got it, you don't need it...until you don't have it, then we'll print more money and give you your alms from the state."