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Ayn Rand Interview (1959) Part 3 of 3

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That is not faith, that is a conviction. Yes..... I have no faith at all. I only hold convictions. Who are you Ayn Rand? When I say that, I would like to know just a little bit, of your vital statistics. You have an accent which is? Russian. You were born in Russia? Yes. Came here? Oh, about 30 years ago. And whence did this philosophy of yours come? Out of my own mind, with a sole acknowledgement of a debt to Aristotle, who is the only philosopher that ever influenced me. I devised the rest of my philosopy myself. Your parents did they die in Russia, or did they come here to the United States? No, I came here alone, and I don't know, I have no way of finding out, whether they died or not. You are married? Yes. Your husband, is he an industrialist? No. He's an artist. His name is Frank O'Conner. He paints. No, he's not a writer. Does he live from his painting? He's just beginning to study painting. He was a designer before. Is he supported in his efforts by the state? Most certainly not. He's supported by you for the time being? No, by his own work actually in the past. By me if necessary, but that isn't quite necessary. There is no contradiction here, in that you help him. No, because you see I am in love with him selfishly. It is to my own interest to help him if he ever needed it. I would not call that a sacrifice, because I take selfish pleasure in it. Let me put one specific case to you. Suppose under your system of self-sufficiency, one single corporation were to get a stranglehold on a vital product, or a raw material, uranium for instance, which might be vital to the national defense, and then would refuse to sell it to the government. Then what? Under a free system no one could acquire a monopoly on anything. If you look at economics, and economic history, you will discover that all monopolies have been established with government help, with the help of franchises, subsidies, or any kind of government privledges. In free competition no one could corner the market on a needed product. History will support me. There is a deposit of uranium in Nevada, it's the only one in the United States, and it's our only access to that, and for self defense we need this. Whereas, lets say in the Soviet Union, the state is able to command that. And kind of a strange man, of strange beliefs, got ahold of this uranium, and said, "I will not sell this uranium to my government." He should not be forced by the government (according to your philosophy) to sell that uranium? But you realize, that you are setting up an impossible fantasy. That is, if you are talking of any natural resource, that is vitally needed, it could not become vitally needed if it were that scarce. Not scarce to the point where one man could control all of it. So long as (I'm using your example) if a natural resource exists in more than one place in the world, no one man is going to control it. Alright, lets take another. How do we build roads, sanitation facilities, hospitals, schools? If you are not...If the goverment is not permitted, to force by vote, taxation, we have to depend upon the trickle down theory, upon the noblesse o'blige, the largess. I will answer you by asking you a question. Who pays for all those things? All of us pay for these things. When you admit that you want to take money, by force, from someone and ask me how are we going to build hospitals, or roads. You admit that somebody is producing the money, the wealth, that will make those roads possible. Now, you have no right to tell the man who produced the wealth, in what way you want him to spend it. If you need his money, you can obtain it only by his voluntary consent. And you believe in the eventual good will of all human beings, or at least that top echelon of human beings, whom you believe will give willingly... No good will is necessary, only self interest. I believe in private roads, private post offices, private schools. When industry breaks down momentarily, and there is unemployment, we should not be permitted to get unemployment insurance, social security we do not need. We'll depend upon the self-interest of these enlightened industrialists whom you so admire, to take care of things when the economy needs a little lubrication, and there are millions of people out of work. Study economics, a free economy will not break down. All depressions are caused by government interference, and the cure is always offered, so far, to take more of the poisons that caused the disaster. Depressions are not a result of a free economy. Ayn, one last question, we only have about a half a minute. How many Randists, you don't like the word, I beg your pardon. Objectivists. How many objectivsts would you say they are in the United States? It's hard to estimate, but I can tell you some figures. My best intellectual heir Nathaniel Brandon and psychologist, is giving a series of lectures on my philosophy in New York. He has received 600 letters of inquiry within the month of January. He is giving these lectures and attendance is growing in geometrical proportion. Ayn, I'm sure that you have stimulated a good many people, more people than you already have, to read your book Atlas Shrugged, and The Fountainhead, and I'm equally sure they will be stimulated for the reading, indeed, if they do not agree. Thank you. Thank you very much. I'll be back in a moment with my personal footnote to the story of Ayn Rand. As we said at the outset, "If Ayn Rand's ideas were ever to take hold, they would revolutionize the world." And to those who would reject her philosophy, Miss Rand hurls this challenge. She has said, "For the past 2000 years the world has been dominated by other philosophies, look around you, consider the results. We thank Ayn Rand for adding her portrait to our gallery. One of the people, other people are interested in. Mike Wallace...Good Bye.

Video Details

Duration: 7 minutes and 53 seconds
Country: United States
Language: English
License: Public Domain
Views: 550
Posted by: phobe on Apr 22, 2008

Ayn Rand Interview with Mike Wallace 1959 Downloaded from YouTube

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