Ayn Rand, the amphetaphine-addled author of such blockbuster novels as The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged, made some real dick moves in her lifetime. If Ayn Rand were alive today, her exploits would eclipse all the egregious public displays of Britney Spears, Mel Gibson, and Michael Jackson combined. The following are, in the opinion of this This Blog Rules columnist, the top five most spectacular dick moves of Ayn Rand.
by Will Conley
5. Based the Hero of a Novel on a Real Child Killer
Not just the protagonist, mind you, but the hero. In 1927 a man named William Edward Hickman kidnapped a twelve-year-old girl, held her for $1,500 ransom in gold certificates, cut off her arms and legs, gutted her, and stuffed a towel in her body to soak up the blood. The Los Angeles Times called it “the most horrible crime of the 1920s”. In the notes for an unfinished novel based on Hickman's many virtues, Ayn Rand implied that the public outrage about the crime was hypocritical. That may be so, but dude. Ayn. Ayny buddy. Can't you base your hero on someone a little less, I don't know. Less stabby? I am frightened, Ayn. Hold me.
4. Made Alan Greenspan Her Bitch
Back in the 1950s, Ayn Rand hosted weekend discussions in her apartment in Manhattan, attended by writers, psychologists, and economists–including future Federal Reserve Chairman Alan Greenspan. In his 2007 autobiography, Greenspan cited Rand's uncompromising opinions about laissez-faire capitalism as “a stabilizing force in my life”. You know Greenspan. He's one of the main guys responsible for gutting government regulations on derivatives trading and sub-prime mortgage lending, leading to what respected economists refer to as the Holy Shit We're All Gonna Die Fuckstorm of 2008. Nothing against deregulation here, but Jesus Christ.
3. Pussywhipped Her Husband, Her Lover, and Her Lover's Wife Simultaneously
Another attendee of Ayn Rand's little tea parties was a psychologist named Nathan Blumenthal. But he changed his name to Nathaniel Branden so he could have “rand” in his name. And this might be a stretch, but the remaining letters, “ben”, mean “son of”. As in, Son of Rand. Which is fitting, because Branden was both Rand's head disciple and way hella younger than the eminent pseudophilosopher herself. Furthermore. Both Rand and Branden were married, but Rand actually worked it so that she and Branden could have a years-long love affair with the consent of both spouses. Seriously, Rand was a couger and a pimp. We at This Blog Rules are actually pretty impressed. High-five, Ayn Rand!
2. Instituted Mandatory Cigarette Smoking
Ayn Rand couldn't break her smoking habit, but because everything she did had to have some cockamamie “rationalism” to it, she came up with the awesome excuse that a burning cigarette in the hand is a symbol of “the fire in the mind”. Shiny! To further cover up the fact that she is just a screwed up human being like everybody else, she decided to make smoking not just acceptable among her gaggle of groupies, but actually mandatory. She later got lung cancer, which was, by all accounts, hilarious.
And the Number One Dick Move of Ayn Rand is…
1. A Six-Foot Floral Dollar Sign Was Placed Near Her Casket at Her Funeral
There is no punchline.