“ATLAS SHRUGGED,” A NOVEL THAT PREACHES THE FERENGI CONCEPT OF OBJECTIVISM AND THE EVILS OF ALTRUISM AND HANDOUTS, WAS MADE INTO A TWO-PART FILM. PART ONE WAS SUCH A FINANCIAL FAILURE THAT THE PRODUCTION TEAM TURNED TO KICKSTARTER TO ASK FANS TO DONATE THE FUNDING FOR PART TWO. THEY REFUSED TO SEE THE IRONY IN THIS.
‘The Objective Individual’ is a musical horror-dramedy starring Patti LuPone as Ayn Rand, famed creator of Objectivism, and her struggles with her life as an individual, a woman, a writer, a philosopher, a capitalist, and a brunette.
Mandy Patinkin will star as the ghost of Karl Marx, pestering Ayn with arguments against capitalism; with Aaron Lazar as the personification of Rand’s character in her first novel ‘The Fountainhead’, Howard Roark, who is oddly strutting about while shirtless; Glenn Close, as the ghost of Aristoteles, whom Ayn Rand mistakably summons from a bust and tries her best to impress; and Carol Channing, as the ghost Rand’s Great Babushka, who forces her to eat borscht and tells stories of when she was an entertainer/bublitchki peddler in the Crimean War.
ISFJ:historicism, the belief that some event(s) or period(s) in history has/have had a pivotal role in the way humans have developed (e.g. believing that the fall of Rome was the turning point of human history) ESFJ:antipositivism, the belief that human social life does not follow definite laws the way the natural world does ISTJ:stoicism, the belief that bad and destructive emotions come from poor judgment and that one is most free when they are free from anger, jealousy, and envy ESTJ:pragmaticism, the belief that practical topics (topics that have real-life applications) are the most relevant topics ISFP:romanticism, part of which holds that intense emotions like apprehension, awe, horror, and fear are the most beautiful things that humans can experience ESFP:empiricism, the belief that knowledge either only or primarily comes from sensory experience ISTP:objectivism, the belief that reality exists as purely as ever even without conscious creatures observing it but that humans have a connection to reality through their senses ESTP:critical realism, the belief that some of the senses provide accurate versions of reality, while others do not INFJ:neohumanist universalism, the belief that extending your love to all living and nonliving beings in the universe allows you to see the ultimate truth ENFJ:epicureanism, part of which holds that making friends is essential to living a happy and satisfying life INTJ:solipsism, the belief that the only thing that you can be absolutely sure exists is your own mind ENTJ:transhumanism, the belief that advanced technology can and should be used to enhance humans’ physical and intellectual abilities INFP:idealism, the belief that reality as we can know it is purely mental and does not exist outside of our minds ENFP:ethical egoism, the belief that an ethical deed is, by definition, one done in self-interest, so long as you do not knowingly hurt others in the process INTP:logical positivism, the belief that all of your decisions, conclusions, and beliefs should be rooted in scientific discovery and evidence ENTP:structuralism, the belief that human social life functions as a large, overarching system or process
In your video about The (SJW) Shadow in Razor vs Comics, you talked about The Shadow being probably the 1st objectivist hero in the comics with and how Rorschach and The Question are in the same vein in Objectivism. My question is what makes an objectivist hero?
In strictly academic terms, this means ‘a hero who enacts or employs the philosophy of objectivism in achieving justice.’ If a mere Objectivist is someone who believes in the philosophy and observes it, at least until it would infract upon the province of the Law…? An Objectivist vigilante is one who holds their own personal definition of justice and is willing to break the law to attain it.
“I need no warrant for being, and no word of sanction upon my being. I am the warrant and the sanction.”
“You must choose one side or the other. Any compromise between good and evil only hurts the good and helps the evil.”
“A is A.”
The villain’s pleas fall on deaf ears for the Objectivist hero. He only has ears for the victims. Such is The Shadow.
Objectivism, more than a mere repudiation of Subjectivism, is the idea that there is right and wrong, good and evil. That antiheroes and sympathetic villains corrupt heroism and the moral composition of humanity’s collective ideals in general.
That’s The Shadow to a T. He isn’t an antihero. I’ve seen him described as such, often by appalling comic writers actively attempting to dismantle his legacy and import for the sake of ‘modernization’. The hilarious part is: The Shadow - in our present, morally conflicted and confusing sociopolitical climate - is more contemporary than ever. It’s no accident The Shadow was born during the Prohibition Era. A time where the government’s moral certitude was in doubt and the public (and press) were tacitly rooting for the villains, even as Capone ordered mass shootings in the public square. There was a prevailing sentiment that police were ineffectual and had to play by the rules… while the baddies could flout the Law with impunity, protected by the Courts.
Enter The Shadow. Clad in black. The garb of evil. Employing the skills of subterfuge, stealth, and guile more commonly associated with villainy… but utterly binary in his morality. Good is good. Evil is evil. And the Shadow knows exactly what evil lurks in the hearts of men. Because he’s utterly rejected it, and exterminates it, in all its myriad manifestations. An excerpt from ‘The Shadow: In The Coils of Leviathan’ (Dark Horse, 1993) written from The Shadow’s perspective, illustrates my point:
This was the secret to The Shadow’s success in the ‘30s. He was panacea to a powerless public, witnessing the erosion of law, order, and the moral good.
Which is, further, why The Shadow’s victories are moral ones. He punishes a corrupt banker by robbing him of any and all possessions, leaving him destitute, to ultimately commit suicide. He defeats a multi-headed criminal organization called ‘The Hydra’ by creating a personal ‘Hydra’ organization of his own, using his agents to gun them all down in unison. (In a further fulfillment of the Hydra myth, he decapitates one of their agents with a guillotine)
The Shadow doesn’t serve the Law. He serves Justice. And on occasions when the Law has run afoul of it, he’s been unafraid to turn his twin .45s on them as well. He serves a binary morality. And while he will make an effort to redeem the legitimately reformed? (He even has an agent devoted to the reformation of former criminals) Once someone has shown themselves beyond redemption, their fate has been assured. It isn’t always destruction (in many cases, he leaves enemies to the police, or leaves them in an even more elaborate personal Hell) but it’s always just, and invariably of philosophical importance.
More than anything else, that’s what Si Spurrier’s atrocious Shadow comic lacks. In today’s age of gray morality? All he’s done is add touches of gray to a character who, today, would be far more interesting… the LESS ambiguous he is. These flourishes of pseudo-complexity come across as stilted and forced, because that’s precisely what they are.
Imagine the controversy, the outrage, and the SALES… if The Shadow was in a modern comic… willing to execute a corrupt or racist police officer… and… a BLM/New Black Panther activist who crosses the line to murder, as the Dallas shooter did? If he did so without personal conflict, asserting his moral prerogative, and giddily cackled of the evil in their self-righteous hearts all the while? This is a character who could have a profound relevance today, but instead, Spurrier’s dated attempt to ‘update’ the character… have left The Shadow somewhere around the year 2006.
The Shadow gets more contemporary, the closer he is to his original incarnation.
“Ikigai” is a Japanese concept meaning “a reason for being”.
Everyone, according to the Japanese, has an ikigai. Finding it requires a deep and often lengthy search of self.
The term ikigai is composed of two Japanese words: iki, referring to life, and kai, which roughly means “the realisation of what one expects and hopes for”.
In the culture of Okinawa, ikigai is thought of as “a reason to get up in the morning”; that is, a reason to enjoy life. In a TED Talk, Dan Buettner suggested ikigai as one of the reasons people in the area had such long lives.
I’ve been trying to put my finger on why I dislike Zack Snyder’s movies so much, and this honestly explains most of it. He has a sincere disdain for altruism, which is why he didn’t understand Watchmen as a deconstruction of the superhero genre, but as a critique of altruism as a whole .
It’s why he doesn’t like the idea of a Superman that is good to other people because it’s the right thing to be. He’s deliberately reframing both Superman and Batman as Objectivist heroes who are not constrained by society’s rules or mores. It’s why the conflicts in his movies seem forced and unnatural: Almost everyone is either a direct mouthpiece of some objectivist talking point, or suffering because they are not objectivists. That’s the point pa Kent sacrifices himself to make: you don’t owe anybody a gd thing. That’s why Superman and Batman kill and torture and don’t care about civilian bystanders. It’s why they’re uncompromising and mercurial, and it’s why they are so similar compared to other incarnations of the pair: because Zack Snyder wants both of them to be sympathetic and both of them to prove Rand’s social views, they can’t honestly be very different. At least when Frank Miller wrote this story, he made Superman out to be a Government Stooge. Zack Snyder has to make movies about Superman though, so he doesn’t have the option of making Clark his antagonist. That’s why these movies feel so forced and removed from my image of the characters: Zack’s using them all to make the same point I disagree with.
Man of Steel and Batman V. Superman have thematic throughlines. It’s just that I think Randian values are destructive, contradictory and unsympathetic. They are incompatible with the things I like about superheroes, and highlight the reasons that Superheroes are really terrible people if you think about them in a realistic context.
I can’t believe it took me this long to figure out my fundamental criticism of Snyder’s creative vision.
[Edit: I confused Scott Snyder and Zack Snyder, so I went back and fixed it. thanks @4thwallnarrator]