Free Market Revolution: How Ayn Rand’s Ideas Can End Big Government

Yaron Brook and Don Watkins. Palgrave Macmillan, $27 (272p) ISBN 978-0-230-34169-2
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In this lengthy but digestible tome, Brook and Watkins, of the Ayn Rand Institute, tackle the 2008 housing crisis, subsequent Wall Street crash, Bernie Madoff, and the healthcare industry through the lens of Rand’s principles. Their premise is that the “rational selfishness” of the players in a free market economy regulates the system, because it is not in their long-term self-interest to take advantage of consumers. The argument is predicated on a historically popular notion that human “rationality” is wholly separate from, and superior to, the “emotional” impulse, but fails to address modern neuroscientific arguments for the interconnectedness of the “emotional” and “rational” parts of the brain. The book challenges existing value judgments of self-interest, self-sacrifice, and the morality of business people, deeming them not selfish but heroic, saving less intellectually skilled workers from “starv[ing] in hopeless ineptitude.” Overall, the principles of smaller government, with no subsidies at all, will appeal to libertarians, who view both parties as too liberal and the promotion of a “government entitlement state” akin to socialist dictatorship. Agent: Laura Blake Peterson, Curtis Brown. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 07/23/2012
Release date: 09/01/2012
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Paperback - 288 pages - 978-1-137-27838-8
MP3 CD - 978-1-4708-4602-2
Ebook - 272 pages - 978-1-137-07934-3
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