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Ayn Rand Quotes


Objectivist philosopher and author.
(1905 - 1982)

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...guilt is a rope that wears thin...
 

...observe that in all the propaganda of the ecologists-amidst all their appeals to nature and pleas for 'harmony with nature'-there is no discussion of man's needs and the requirements of his survival. Man is treated as if he were an unnatural phenomenon. Man cannot survive in the kind of state of nature that the ecologists envision-i.e., on the level of sea urchins or polar bears...
 

...the person who loves everybody and feels at home everywhere is the true hater of mankind. He expects nothing of men, so no form of depravity can outrage him.
 

A building has integrity just like a man. And just as seldom.
 

A creative man is motivated by the desire to achieve, not by the desire to beat others.
 

A crime is the violation of the right(s) of other men by force (or fraud). It is only the initiation of physical force against others- i.e., the recourse to violence- that can be classified as a crime in a free society (as distinguished from a civil wrong). Ideas, in a free society, are not a crime- and neither can they serve as the justification of a crime.
 

A desire presupposes the possibility of action to achieve it; action presupposes a goal which is worth achieving.
[Action]
 

A genius is a genius, regardless of the number of morons who belong to the same race-and a moron is a moron, regardless of the number of geniuses who share his racial origin.
 

A good novel is an indivisible sum; every scene, sequence and passage of a good novel has to involve, contribute to and advance all three of its major attributes: theme, plot, characterization.
 

A government is the most dangerous threat to man's rights: it holds a legal monopoly on the use of physical force against legally disarmed victims.
[Against]
 

A gun is not an argument.
 

A house can have integrity, just like a person, and just as seldom.
 

A leash is only a rope with a noose on both ends.
 

A private individual may do anything except that which is legally forbidden; A government individual may do nothing except that which is legally permitted.
 

A viler evil than to murder a man, is to sell him suicide as an act of virtue. A viler evil than to throw a man into a sacrificial furnace, is to demand that he leap in, of his own will, and that he build the furnace, besides.
 

Achievement of your happiness is the only moral purpose of your life, and that happiness, not pain or mindless self-indulgence, is the proof of your moral integrity, since it is the proof and the result of your loyalty to the achievement of your values.
[Achievement]
 

Achieving life is not the equivalent of avoiding death.
 

All the reasons which made the initiation of physical force evil, make the retaliatory use of physical force a moral imperative.
 

All work is an act of philosophy.
 

Altruism declares that any action taken for the benefit of others is good, and any action taken for one's own benefit is evil. Thus the beneficiary of an action is the only criterion of moral value - and so long as that beneficiary is anybody other than oneself, anything goes.
 


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