The Other McCain

"One should either write ruthlessly what one believes to be the truth, or else shut up." — Arthur Koestler

Another Atlas Shrugged Moment

Posted on | September 13, 2010 | 16 Comments

While I was covering the rally in Washington yesterday, I spotted this poster in the crowd:

Recognizing the source of the phrase, I interviewed the lady with the sign, and that provided the lede for my latest column at The American Spectator:

Brianna Aubin stood in the front row of the rally on the West Lawn of the Capitol, holding aloft a sign hand-lettered in green: “Because my life is mine by right and will not be used to maintain a world that doesn’t know it.”
That slogan was paraphrased from a monologue spoken by Francisco d’Anconia in Ayn Rand’s classic libertarian novel Atlas Shrugged. “I read it in high school, but it wasn’t until the past year that I realized how accurate it was,” said Aubin, a 25-year-old who had traveled from Illinois to D.C. for the event.
Aubin was among the thousands who turned out for the second “9-12 Taxpayer March on Washington” organized by FreedomWorks. Liberal bloggers gloated that the attendance for Sunday’s event was significantly smaller than the previous year, but this year’s march came only two weeks after a crowd estimated at upwards of 300,000 showed up for Glenn Beck’s “Restoring Honor” event at the Lincoln Memorial. . . .

Please read the whole thing. I’m pretty sure I was the only reporter at the rally who caught the Ayn Rand allusion in Brianna Aubin’s sign. But certainly Kate Zernike of the New York Times deserves credit for spotting the health-care allusion in this sign slogan:

Down our throats on March 21st,” one sign said, “up yours on Nov. 2nd.”


16 Responses to “Another Atlas Shrugged Moment”

  1. Joe
    September 13th, 2010 @ 10:12 am

    Becareful, if you are quoting the character* Francisco d’Anconia, an Argentine, you might piss off Pat.

    I guess Pat missed the part about your daughter marrying an Argentine last summer (just like the Francisco guy).

    * Written of course by an Athiest Russian Jewish Immigrant.

  2. Joe
    September 13th, 2010 @ 10:17 am

    Stacy makes a good point in the tread below. Pat may not be Pat. Pat is ambiguous. “Pat” may be young4eyes/gg/waylay/Kejda.

  3. The 09-12 March: My Life Is My Own « The Camp Of The Saints
    September 13th, 2010 @ 10:57 am

    […] at his base HQ, Stacy has a picture of Miss Aubin and a few more […]

  4. just a conservative girl
    September 13th, 2010 @ 10:58 am

    There were reporters there? All I saw besides the conservatives outlets was one photographer from AP.

  5. Randy Rager
    September 13th, 2010 @ 11:21 am

    That Russian broad sure did turn out to be more prescient than anyone ever thought she would, didn’t she?

    Pity she got “read out” of the Conservative movement so early on…

  6. Joe
    September 13th, 2010 @ 11:51 am

    Randy Rager, are you referring to the dust up in the fifties and sixties between Ayn Rand and William F. Buckley Jr.? There was no reading her out of the conservative movement. Rand wanted religion out of politics (she was an athiest). Buckley disagreed. But people still quote Rand and still quote Buckley. Even NRO runs stuff on Rand occasionally (granted sometimes critical on some points, but to say she has been “read out” of conservatism is false). I know plenty of people who read the Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged (I prefer the former, but to each his own) who find inspiration from those works while not necessarily accepting Rand’s “Objectivism” hook, line and sinker.

    Here is an oldie but goodie.

  7. Joe
    September 13th, 2010 @ 11:55 am

    Ayn Rand was for no taxes other than estate taxes (which should be 100%). She thought people should all start from nothing and that life should be a pure meritocracy with the emphasis on the individual.

  8. BlogCon Day 3 « Nice Deb
    September 13th, 2010 @ 3:41 pm

    […] Another Atlas Shrugged Moment […]

  9. Brianna
    September 14th, 2010 @ 1:40 pm

    @Joe – Rand did not support 100% estate taxes and supported the right of inheritance based on the right of the deceased to do with his property as he chose.

    @Mr. McCain – Thanks! You worked in our brief interview really well, and I really enjoyed your article. There were actually a few others who noted my sign, but you were certainly the only reporter to do so.