This year it’s not only Atlas Shrugged’s 60th anniversary; it’s also the 55th anniversary of The Objectivist Newsletter, Ayn Rand’s first periodical. With essays on topics such as the evil of antitrust laws, the totalitarian nature of nonobjective laws, the application of the Objectivist ethics, the history and morality of capitalism, and others, Rand’s newsletter provided a penetrating philosophical dissection of the events and ideas dominating our culture.
Some of Rand’s essays that were originally published in The Objectivist Newsletter, are nowadays available for free online:
- “Introducing Objectivism”: Ayn Rand’s introduction to her philosophy.
- “Doesn’t Life Require Compromise?” Why compromising on basic principles represents “the surrender of that which is true and good to that which is false and evil.”
- “How Does One Lead a Rational Life in an Irrational Society?”: On the evil of moral agnosticism and the need to pass moral judgment.
- “What Is Capitalism?”: Why capitalism is the only moral social system because it is the only system which is consistent with man’s nature as a rational being and therefore the only system that protects his ability to engage in the kinds of productive activities that his life and happiness require.
- “Man’s Rights”: Why the widely misunderstood and often distorted concept of individual rights is the key concept to creating a society consistent with man’s nature and the freedom he requires to live, think and flourish.
- “The Nature of Government”: Why government is necessary to secure and protect the rights of the individual — and why government is legitimate only when this is its sole function.
- “Racism”: A thoroughgoing condemnation of racism across several dimensions — philosophical, moral, psychological and political — as the “lowest, most crudely primitive form of collectivism.”
- “Patents and Copyrights”: Why intellectual property — patents and copyrights — is “the legal implementation of the base of all property rights: a man’s right to the product of his mind.”
- “The New Fascism: Rule by Consensus”: How “government by consensus” — pressure group warfare unconstrained by individual rights — is slowly moving America toward de facto fascism.
Do yourself a favor and buy your own hardcopy collection of The Objectivist Newsletter, and you will also get access to many essays that are only available in this format.