2) Rand, the inventor of the philosophical system called Objectivism, never missed an episode of Charlie’s Angels. She was such a Fawcett fan, in fact, that she sought to cast the actress as the lead in a planned TV miniseries version of her best-known work, the gargantuan novel Atlas Shrugged. (NBC later scrapped the project).
3) Rand, perhaps better than anyone else, helped Fawcett understand her place in American culture.
How do I know this? Because just months before Fawcett’s death, I had an email exchange with her about Rand.
Fawcett comes across as quite thoughtful in the email exchange, btw.
Um, we should care about this why?
Or is this an open thread….
“I mean, here was this literary genius praising Angels.” – Farrah Fawcett
You consider that “thoughtful”?
why does this not seem implausible to me?
Bill E Pilgrim
So now we know that Ayn Rand, in addition to everything else, was the Camille Paglia of her generation.
Well, I have to say this just changed my mind about Farrah. I used to think (and even argued this with people) that Farrah was smarter than she came across on tv or on that horrible Letterman show.
Now that I know she had an affinity for Rand and her characters and that she calls Rand a literary genius, I now know that she was as stupid and shallow as everyone else told me she was.
Because of our obsession with all things Rand-related.
Did you time the “John Galt Gifts” banner to go with this story?
I was an Objectivist in my youth (actually, for a very short time — I didn’t understand why all the people who were Objec’s were so peculiar and I didn’t like them) — the idea of Farrah Fawcett as Dagny is just too weird. Ayn Rand must have been even stranger than I thought.
Man, it must be nice to be praised by the same “author” who praised the nature of convicted child murderer William Hickman.
“Recently I was rereading Scott Ryan’s fascinating, albeit highly technical, critique of Ayn Rand’s philosophy, Objectivism and the Corruption of Rationality, and getting a lot more out of it the second time, when I came across a fact culled from a posthumous collection of Rand’s journal entries.
“In her journal circa 1928 Rand quoted the statement, “What is good for me is right,” a credo attributed to a prominent figure of the day, William Edward Hickman. Her response was enthusiastic. “The best and strongest expression of a real man’s psychology I have heard,” she exulted. (Quoted in Ryan, citing Journals of Ayn Rand, pp. 21-22.)
“At the time, she was planning a novel that was to be titled The Little Street, the projected hero of which was named Danny Renahan. According to Rand scholar Chris Matthew Sciabarra, she deliberately modeled Renahan – intended to be her first sketch of her ideal man – after this same William Edward Hickman. Renahan, she enthuses in another journal entry, “is born with a wonderful, free, light consciousness — [resulting from] the absolute lack of social instinct or herd feeling. He does not understand, because he has no organ for understanding, the necessity, meaning, or importance of other people … Other people do not exist for him and he does not understand why they should.” (Journals, pp. 27, 21-22; emphasis hers.)
“‘A wonderful, free, light consciousness’ born of the utter absence of any understanding of “the necessity, meaning, or importance of other people.” Obviously, Ayn Rand was most favorably impressed with Mr. Hickman. He was, at least at that stage of Rand’s life, her kind of man.
“So the question is, who exactly was he?
“William Edward Hickman was one of the most famous men in America in 1928. But he came by his fame in a way that perhaps should have given pause to Ayn Rand before she decided that he was a “real man” worthy of enshrinement in her pantheon of fictional heroes.
“You see, Hickman was a forger, an armed robber, a child kidnapper, and a multiple murderer.
“Other than that, he was probably a swell guy.
“In December of 1927, Hickman, nineteen years old, showed up at a Los Angeles public school and managed to get custody of a twelve-year-old girl, Marian (sometimes Marion) Parker. He was able to convince Marian’s teacher that the girl’s father, a well-known banker, had been seriously injured in a car accident and that the girl had to go to the hospital immediately. The story was a lie. Hickman disappeared with Marian, and over the next few days Mr. and Mrs. Parker received a series of ransom notes. The notes were cruel and taunting and were sometimes signed “Death” or “Fate.” The sum of $1,500 was demanded for the child’s safe release. (Hickman needed this sum, he later claimed, because he wanted to go to Bible college!) The father raised the payment in gold certificates and delivered it to Hickman. As told by the article “Fate, Death and the Fox” in crimelibrary.com,
“‘At the rendezvous, Mr. Parker handed over the money to a young man who was waiting for him in a parked car. When Mr. Parker paid the ransom, he could see his daughter, Marion, sitting in the passenger seat next to the suspect. As soon as the money was exchanged, the suspect drove off with the victim still in the car. At the end of the street, Marion’s corpse was dumped onto the pavement. She was dead. Her legs had been chopped off and her eyes had been wired open to appear as if she was still alive. Her internal organs had been cut out and pieces of her body were later found strewn all over the Los Angeles area.’
“Quite a hero, eh? One might question whether Hickman had ‘a wonderful, free, light consciousness,’ but surely he did have ‘no organ for understanding … the necessity, meaning, or importance of other people.’
“The mutilations Hickman inflicted on little Marian were worse than reported in the excerpt above. He cut the girl’s body in half, and severed her hands (or arms, depending on the source). He drained her torso of blood and stuffed it with bath towels. There were persistent rumors that he molested the girl before killing her, though this claim was officially denied. Overall, the crime is somewhat reminiscent of the 1947 Black Dahlia case, one of the most gruesome homicides in L.A. history.
“But Hickman’s heroism doesn’t end there. He heroically amscrayed to the small town of Echo, Oregon, where he heroically holed up, no doubt believing he had perpetrated the perfect crime. Sadly for him, fingerprints he’d left on one of the ransom notes matched prints on file from his previous conviction for forgery. With his face on Wanted posters everywhere, Hickman was quickly tracked down and arrested. The article continues:
“He was conveyed back to Los Angeles where he promptly confessed to another murder he committed during a drug store hold-up. Eventually, Hickman confessed to a dozen armed robberies. ‘This is going to get interesting before it’s over,’ he told investigators. ‘Marion and I were good friends,’ he said, ‘and we really had a good time when we were together and I really liked her. I’m sorry that she was killed.’ Hickman never said why he had killed the girl and cut off her legs.”
“It seems to me that Ayn Rand’s uncritical admiration of a personality this twisted does not speak particularly well for her ability to judge and evaluate the heroic qualities in people. One might go so far as to say that anyone who sees William Edward Hickman as the epitome of a “real man” has some serious issues to work on, and perhaps should be less concerned with trying to convert the world to her point of view than in trying to repair her own damaged psyche. One might also point out that a person who “has no organ for understanding … the necessity, meaning, or importance of other people” is what we today would call a sociopath.”
This amused me. For all the libertarian talk of reason and “objectivism” the idea that sharing a birthday would lead to having other things in common seems awfully superstitious.
Oh, thanks. Another fond childhood memory destroyed – now I’ll see Dagny Taggart when I think of The Poster.
Worst post ever.
Of course, upon reflection, I acknowledge that an artist’s appreciation for very bad novels really shouldn’t overly impact our views of the quality of their actual work.
See, e.g., “With acknowledgement to the genius of Ayn Rand” – liner notes to the Rush album 2112 (1976)
[I’m just sayin’ that there are other reasons to hate on Rush or Farrah Fawcett.]
so, then, a serious question: can anyone think of a similar cretinous credo introduced through pop culture that just will not die? i don’t mean a political saying like any of saint ronnie’s; i mean a whole system of zombie claptrap.
I remember a few years back nearly getting into a fistfight with an Objectivist I know after I referred to Atlas Shrugged as the Satanic Bible. Good times.
Michael Jackson isn’t dead, he’s gone Galt.
Horatio Alger Jr.’s magic bootstraps?
“Wow, I got praised by the same literary genius who modeled one of her heroes on a convicted child killer who probably raped his victim! What an honor!”
@Scruffy McSnufflepuss: Yeesh. Quite a story.
I’ve always believed that Ayn Rand was damaged goods. While she reacted against Stalinism to the point of pathology, she was nonetheless a product of her environment. As a result, her visceral reaction to the forces of despotism took the form of despotism itself. Not a healthy foundation for any philosophy, let alone one that’s supposed to be humanistically oriented.
@SGEW: yes! you know, that had burrowed itself so deeply into the american ummm mindset that i’d disconnected the product from the source. great catch!
perhaps this means that Rand will occupy a similar unmoored place in the psyche in the near future (if she doesn’t already).
I can think of plenty. Any time the cretinous credo is supported by some sort of institution or public movement it will get these legs that keep it going long after its fraudulence is obvious.
Suggested examples- Dianetics, the sanitation of the antebellum South via Margaret Mitchell, the Awful Disclosures of the Hotel Dieu Nunnery of Montreal, the Protocols of the Elders of Zion (not really pop culture, but having a life of its own long after it was revealed to be propaganda), Hal Lindsey’s “Late Great Planet Earth” which spawned a generation of millenial Christianism. I am sure there are others…
OMG! John Cornyn was born on February 2nd. It just gets weirder and weirder.
@SGEW: Ohh! good catch on Horatio Alger, who had his own problems with sexual ethics, too.
My first thought was astrology.
It would be interesting to see a nation run by the “principles” of Objectivism. My supposition is that it would make Somalia seem like a pleasant place to live in comparison. I suppose there’s an isolated Objectivist enclave off the coast of California now, but that, to me, seems like dishonest cheating. Mooching, if you will. A truly independent island of Galtism should moor itself somewhere near Somalia, so that they can deal with pirates without the protection of the US Coast Guard.
I am sure this is absolutely riveting for the Randians, who tend to be fanatics. Greenspan may find a new fascination with the art of Farah Fawcett. Fawcett didn’t respond to the questions that tried to find out whether she was a Randian. She doesn’t sound like a Randian, so who knows? Seems to me an actor can respond to the theatrical possibilities of an adaptation of a work without buying into the theory behind it. To put it crudely, Rand was offering to get her an interesting and “serious” gig that would up her cred as a artist. So, I don’t think this says anything about Whether Fawcett was a Randian.
@Scruffy McSnufflepuss: Don’t miss this, of course. A few hundred Randians going Galt on an offshore oil platform – what could go wrong?
@Xenos: hmmm, Mitchell i would put in the box labeled historical revisionism and the others strike me as political tracts that introduced falsehoods that will not die because people want to believe them. that’s a bit different, imo.
dianetics, well, that’s like the bible. so i suppose you got me on that one, except that i’m not sure what elements of it are generally accepted. would you say that is also be true of the mormon creed?
i think there’s a difference between saying something is extant (protocols) and saying something is part of the air in the culture. Alger’s ethos is much more what i was thinking of. in other words, something that has made the transition from sect to general acceptance. Rand’s notions seem rather close to achieving that level, though that may not be true over the long term.
Well, yes, but that’s precisely what Objectivism is: the worship of sociopaths and sociopathology.
To quote my own self:
The dictionary defines “power” and “liberty” in very different terms. Power is construed positively, as the ability to do or accomplish what one wishes; liberty is construed negatively, as the absence of constraint. On reflection, though, they are near synonyms, or at least overlap substantially in denotation. Liberty is a precondition for power, obviously; one way to lack power is to be constrained. But we are constrained as well by our inherent limitations: power is equally a condition for liberty. It is absurd to say that I am at liberty to play in the NBA, so long as I do not have the power. I could show up for a tryout, I suppose, but they wouldn’t take me.
Power in general is not a zero sum game (or a constant pie, as the political scientists absurdly say). I can increase my power without reducing yours. Indeed, I can augment your power along with mine. For example, if I succeed in finding ways of making physician-patient collaboration more effective, you might end up feeling more powerful, even as I grow more capable in my field and perhaps better paid. (Just dreaming, of course.)
Where disputants often stumble is over not noticing that power over others is a special, and distinct case. Power’s sibling liberty has precisely the same inflection point. It is an entirely distinct matter when one person’s liberty infringes another’s.
It is astonishing how often people miss the obvious in pondering the question of liberty. Homo sapiens derives its unprecedented power as a species precisely from its socio-cultural accomplishments: the accumulation and dissemination of knowledge and technology over generations, the immense achievements made possible by division of labor and organized enterprise, the availability of support and assistance in time of need. The powers which are preconditions for our liberties do not arise from us as individuals, but our created for us by society.
As a microcosmic example, when we go to the doctor, we want that doctor to be very powerful: highly intelligent, stuffed full of the latest information, equipped with special legal authority, resourced with high technology equipment and whole teams of specialists. We want the doctor to have all sorts of powers we do not have. At times, we surrender completely to the physician, allow her to render us unconscious, cut us open, dissect out body parts; bombard us with radiation; or pump our veins full of toxic chemicals. We depend on this extraordinarily powerful individual to preserve our own capacities and secure our own liberty to live independently, perhaps to work or pursue our relationships and avocations.
It can all go wrong, of course. We can end up feeling infantilized, be manipulated, exploited, abused, or just let down. The asymmetry of power can end up constraining our liberty, but it can also expand it. The only solution to that dilemma is to make rules and regulations: requirements for physician licensure, restrictions on the choices physicians can make, ethical norms for the practice of medicine. And that arguably restricts our own liberty to choose doctors who don’t measure up and can’t get or keep a license. It makes us pay more for physician services. But without such rules we would not be at liberty to surrender ourselves to the potentially empowering power of physicians with any confidence that our choice would succeed.
And here I think is the essential distinction between liberalism and libertarianism. We’re all for “liberty,” hence the shared etymology. But liberals understand that liberty is not the creation or possession of individuals. It is created and bestowed upon us by society. We need society, we need in fact constraints on our own liberty and that of others, in order to create and preserve the greatest possible measure of liberty, or any liberty at all for that matter. Society can also fail us in this regard, so liberals are deeply concerned with what kind of society we have, committed to using their own individual power and liberty to struggle toward a society that creates and defends liberty. Libertarians think they’ll be free if society goes away. That is a fundamental, absolutely fatal error.
so rand’s ideal is…psychopathy?
I see the link so clearly now.
Painting with your ass is a good summary of Atlas Shrugged.
In my extensive studies of Rand and Objectivism, the following quote is by far my favorite:
i’m guessing they both saw their shadows when they crawled out of their objectivist holes and scurried back in.
I think Fawcett did have an intelligent perception of the unique angle Rand had towards literature and theater. I almost wrote pros and cons, or opportunities and limitations, but I might be reading my own opinion of Rand’s “art” (which is very low) into the interview.
Anyway, if this similar evaluation were about, say, the pros and cons of Racine (Classic French playwright, and well-known ideological and fanatic weirdo in art and religion), Fawcett would be considered all high toned and sophisticated in her evaluation.
So, Fawcett came off smarter and more perceptive than I would have thought.
Now, that this was posted, Balloon Juice owes its audience a definitive answer to the gripping question “Was Fawcett a Randian”. Get cracking on that, OK?
@jl: Yeah, she seems like any other actress giving an interview– treating Rand with respect but not being fawning. And if I was an Angel back in the day, I too would have been flattered to be admired by any ‘serious’ author. (Note how she talks about the ‘comfort TV’ thing.)
I’m a big fan of Batman. Hopefully, no one paints me as a plutocratic vigilante local despot with daddy-issues and a penchant for hanging around young athletic boys in short-shorts.
Sometimes a cigar is just a cigar.
Thanks, I followed the link to the Alternet article. That had a lot of laughs in it.
Very true. But I still wish this William Edward Hickman stuff got wider publicity. As sociopathic as the “philosophy” itself is, the worship of the ethos of a child murderer is still somewhat astonishing.
Thanks for the post, Doug.
Since Rand clearly has present-day influence, good to know that “going Galt” for her consisted of settling in for an episode of “Charlie’s Angels,” which, let me remind one and all, was a program deliberately aimed at younger end teens. That the made-up world of Charlie and his angels struck Any Rand as either imaginative or romantic tells us all all we need to know about Randian taste.
I’ve always wondered how anyone ever gets through the entirety of either “Atlas Shrugged” or “The Fountainhead:” I couldn’t, even after several tries.
Kudos to Mr Pilgrim @#4, and yes, I’ve always thought of Camille Paglia as a sort of Ayn Rand manque, and this may be a stretch, ( in the direction of an excess of generosity), but does anyone else see Ann Althouse as a Paglia manque? (There is supposed to be an accent on that last “e,” but I have no idea where that’s hidden on my computer keyboard, all suggestions on how to find it are welcome.)
Pretty much, yeah. If you want something, take it. If that means raping little kids and killing them, fine by her. The fact that you rape little kids and kill them just goes to show that your morality transcends the morality of the “sheeple,” who frown on such acts out of feeble collective cowardice.
Heroes ransom little kids and then kill them. Weaklings decry such actions. That seems to be Rand’s essential message, here. I wonder if Fawcett knew about any of this?
(Disclaimer–14 years ago when I was an arrogant 19-yro I thought Ayn Rand was hot sh1t. No longer.)
That’s always the practical argument I make with people I know who are Objectivist or Communist or some such. People often have philosophies based on certain inviolable principles. Libertarians have a strict Rights-based approach, communists have a strict Responsibilities-based approach etc. At some point I started asking, “Principles are fine, but how’s this actually play out in the real world?” And damned if I don’t look around and see that every society worth living in is a system of regulated capitalism, where some economic freedom is mixed with a decent-sized public sector to correct for the places the market fails.
@sparky: How come you can never find an English major when you really need one?
My understanding of the 19th century novel is that it often had an underlying program of one kind or another that it was trying to both address and promote in the larger culture. Thus, a book like ‘Uncle Tom’s Cabin’ that catches fire and helps lead to a tipping point in the culture and politics of the country. OF course ‘Uncle Tom’s Cabin’ was not sui generis, but was part of a genre of anti-slavery novels, which were informed by black captivity narratives, which follows on Indian captivity narratives from the 18th century.
Rand seems to be attempting something similar – long novelized tracts that will awaken a wide readership to a particular social evil. Since we were in a protracted cold war against totalitarian communalism her books caught on. Just like a lot of Stowe’s beliefs about race were obnoxious and are repellent, Rand had a twisted notion of human nature that made monstrous characters virtuous in order to advocate for a particular set of virtues.
Reublicans accuse liberals of treating African Americans the same way Stowe did – as quaint stereotypes that are deployed to demonstrate the moral superiority of liberals. Tom Wolf (who also tries to make his novels into touch-points for social debate and reformist movements) argues as much in ‘Radical Chic’. While liberals would not admit that paternalism even if some practice it, there seems to be no sense of distance between Objectivism and Rand herself. So we get to ridicule them a bit more easily.
BTW, it’s been a few months now, I think we should have a coordinated effort to demand of the “Going Galters” that they explain why they didn’t actually carry through with it.
I expect a bunch of weaselly answers, like “Well, It’s more important right now to oppose Sekrit Mooslim Hussein” or “I did Go Galt, I changed the oil in my Chrysler last week myself instead of giving the gummint any tax money by paying Jiffy Lube to do it, and that is simply Extreme Galtiness.” But it would be nice to see one or two “Upon further reflection, I realized that Going Galt doesn’t actually make any goddam sense.” responses.
Greatest John Rogers comment evar:
“There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.”
So can anyone tell me why Fawcett was flying to the socialist hell hole Germany for cancer treatment? Under Randian theory, the doctors in Germany would be so overtaxed that it wouldn’t be worth saving her life, and the doctors here in America would be a gazillion times better.
Weird post-Millennial tendency to lard the cultural right with hotties and classic rock hits, part whatever. Next: Patti Connors’ post-Playboy correspondence with Jimmy Carter about his Middle East diplomacy.
What is this Daily Beast site anyway? I didn’t think anybody actually read it. I keep seeing these links like “Buckley at the Daily Beast…” or “This article at the Daily Beast, Tina Brown’s new venture…” which are the kind of sentences I could’ve sworn would’ve had most online news enthusiasts vomiting K-cupped Green Mountain Sumatran Reserve into their generic Dell keyboards. I mean an email exchange with Farrah Fawcett about Ayn Rand. How could they not label that premium content. I ask you.
This proves that Ayn Rand is an even bigger horses’s ass than I had previously thought possible.
It also reminds me of some other pairs of strange bedfellows
Cheryl Ladd and Judge Richard Posner
Jaclyn Smith and Allan Bloom
Tanya Roberts and Jeane Kirkpatrick
Shelley Hack and Mary McCarthy
Kate Jackson and Midge Decter
Lynda Carter and Gertrude Himmelfarb
Lindsay Wagner and Lillian Hellman
There’s no denying that Fawcett was very attractive, but I still find the big fuss over her death unjustified. The circumstances of her death were tragic, but I honestly don’t believe her body of work merits much praise. I think her most significant project was the documentary detailing her illness. I saw her serious projects The Burning Bed, Extremities, Nazi Hunter, and Poor Little Rich Girl and didn’t see anything especially impressive or memorable about those performances.
One of the sillier comments I’ve heard over the last few days came from Larry King and others expressing disappointment that Michael Jackson’s death denied Farrah Fawcett the full scale tribute she deserved.
Good luck with that!
I got the impression from that interview that Ayn was simply hott for Farrah (join the club), and Farrah either didn’t get it or chose not to.
@Leah: interesting notion about Althouse, who i gave up on a number of years ago. they do seem to have ended up in the same or similar places, but that’s because the vapidness of their positions (faux contrarianism) leaves them with little else than a fan club of people who mistake witless contrarianism for deep thought. i think Althouse was envious of Reynolds and realized that if she did a fem version of heh indeedy she’d get some traffic. the most daring thing Althouse ever did was drunk vlogging and that was an accident. Paglia is more willing to be a buffoon, and so i’d say she might be the precursor to Ann Coulter.
@JK: You know, you actually had me going until you got to Kate Jackson and Midge Dector. LOL, at myself.
Exactly. Any system can work perfectly on paper. It’s when the idea confronts reality that the problems seem to arise. Hybridized forms of capitalism/soc ialism seem to work best, at least to my reading of history.
@Xenos: maybe they’ve gone Galt and joined MBA programs?
yes, i agree that one thread of the novel in the US was uplift, and that one’s been pretty constant. but that’s different from ideology, and it seems to me that the novel simply doesn’t play the same role in the US that it does in Europe. or did, perhaps. the US just doesn’t seem to have as much of a tradition of idea works in fiction. dad-blame Puritans….
i agree with your insight about Rand: the context in which she wrote, which explains her “novels” has been lost, and we are left with the detritus. to me, that seems the fundamental distinction. her detritus still floats, while books like Uncle Tom’s Cabin have sunk beneath the waves of history. i suppose i should say it’s a bit perplexing that sociopathy should be popular, but then social Darwinism has always retained its popularity too. handy to have a justification for one’s anti-social impulses, especially if you have killed off your jealous [g]od.
@JK: alsome! do you have video of the Wagner steel-cage match with Hellman?
Did Jackson or Decter once make disparaging remarks about the other?
You were doing well here until you posit “society” as an entity that “bestows” or does anything.
Humans are social animals. Big deal. This doesn’t mean that we always have to submit to the community’s consensus or that the collective will is always right, good and reasonable. Liberals can be as authoritarian as anyone else.
Michael Bay should direct a version of Atlas Shrugged starring Megan Fox. Lots of explosions and jiggle. And not a single idea in sight.
It’s an actor bragging about a famous fan, it happens all the time.
Hey, that could open up some heavy sequel possibilities, like “Atlas Buggered”, or “Atlas Shrugged, and Then Somebody Buggered The Smug, Self-Satisfied, Narcissistic Son-of-a-Bitch”.
Sadly, I do not possess such a video.
She was also a huge Mickey Spillane fan. And anything that didn’t fit her understanding of “romantic realism” as an aesthetic was evil or something.
I was trying to find a quote from her about Spillane, because I remember her saying something really hilarious. I came across this site: http://www.noblesoul.com/orc/misc/read.html
My favorite is the quote they include from her regarding Babbit: “The theme of Sinclair Lewis’s Babbit is the characterization of an average American small businessman.” Um, thanks for that pearl of widsom?
Oh, I would also like to say that I saw an old dude driving a pickup truck yesterday with both a “Who is John Galt?” bumper sticker and a handicapped parking tag. Like they would ever let your crippled ass into Galt’s Gulch, motherfucker.
More like, Camille Paglia wishes she could be her generation’s Ayn Rand. But Paglia never had the balls to step away from the safety net of tenure and fully embrace her inner sociopath, so she’s ended up as the academic equivalent of Clarence Thomas — sullen, increasingly incoherent court jester to a coterie of people who will never stop despising her for the traits she was born with.
Given this revelation, perhaps we should rename Objectivism as Objectificationism.
It’s a darned shame Rand didn’t live long enough to see Jeffrey Dahmer’s moment of fame. Man, what an Objectivist hero he would have made!
Man, what a loss to history. Farah Fawcett and a host of late 1970s TV actors in a miniseries of Atlas Shrugged. It would have been awesome!
By “awesome,” of course I mean a bigger train wreck than the one that claims all those moochers and second-handers in the tunnel halfway through the book, and the basis for a drinking game every bit as epic as the one for “I. Claudius,” (Google it already).