Author Topic: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer  (Read 2871 times)

Chris Pascale

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Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« on: January 19, 2022, 08:25:37 PM »
I know we have an Atlas Shrugged thread in the Books section, but I just watched Part 3 of the movie, and it's so damn hilarious, but what stood out to me is the end.

While John Galt is being tortured, Dagny Taggart arrives on a roof via helicopter and walks right up to a guard and points a gun at his face.

She and the guard talk. He doesn't go for his weapon, or try to apprehend Dagny, or reach for a radio. What he wielded were the words I'm just following orders. And for that, he gets a bullet in the head.

When she gets to Galt he's flat lined, but she revives him by saying the words in the pledge of their childless paradise - something like "I won't live for anyone else, and won't ask them to live for me" but much longer. Please note that she wants him to live at that moment. Also, the torture device was the harnessing of electricity, which the character in the movie is outraged that it's being used by the government in this way, but in real life Thomas Edison invented the electric chair (much like how in The Fountainhead Hoard Rourke is based on Frank Lloyd Wright, but Rourke's houses always come in under budget).

Oh! and the paradise place has like 2 kids, the children of a mom who has a food truck (a fucking food truck!!!!). She didn't want her kids being told what to think. Well, now their not being told anything. They were just sitting on a bench like a couple doofs. One was strumming a guitar she couldn't play and the other was just smiling like someone who doesn't know what a song is.

Something really incredible about the paradise place is that they aren't coming up short on anything. Parsley? Rice? They probably got it. There's even a montage of Dagny and John Galt hanging out and they are in a restaurant. What? Is someone going to tell me that Galt recruited someone who was like "Yeah, I'm not putting up with giving my all and getting so little in return" and then became a busboy for these guys?

I AM NOT recommending it. But if you want to watch something enormously stupid, this would be a good one.
« Last Edit: January 20, 2022, 05:41:28 AM by Chris Pascale »

SpeedReader

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #1 on: January 21, 2022, 01:37:37 PM »
Thanks for the chuckles!

I read Atlas Shrugged many years ago.  I felt compelled to read it again when the GOP pols made such a fuss over it, to see if it was as bad as I remembered.  It was. 

SwordGuy

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #2 on: January 21, 2022, 04:06:37 PM »
I find it a truly useful book.   Anyone with a "Who is John Galt?" bumper sticker or who loves the book is very likely a selfish, self-absorbed person -- or on a clear path to becoming one.

It's a useful marker for "person I won't trust" in circumstances where it might inconvenience them.

AMandM

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #3 on: January 21, 2022, 07:45:52 PM »
I was assigned to read Atlas Shrugged in high school and write a report on it. The last line of my report was, "I'm sorry this report is so long and boring, but so was the book."
It had an intellectually formative side-effect, though. My mother saw me reading it and commented, "I hate that woman. She has such a materialistic philosophy." That opened my eyes to the idea that that just because a book got assigned in school didn't mean what it said was right.

StarBright

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #4 on: January 21, 2022, 08:11:59 PM »
I read Atlas Shrugged way too young, skipped all the philosophy sections (like skipping the bits about sewers in Les Miserables, or the whaling stuff in Moby Dick), and basically thought it was a disaster novel.

I loved it!

I told people I loved it!

I reread it in my early 20s and was absolutely mortified.

But I maintain that it is a fun story if you take out all philosophy stuff: Impossibly hot and competent woman falls in love with three different and amazing impossibly hot men, while trying to save the country from collapse. About on par with "Armageddon" :)  It is the only way to read it.

Kudos to you for watching the third movie! I started the first and couldn't finish.

aasdfadsf

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #5 on: January 21, 2022, 08:38:39 PM »
Something really incredible about the paradise place is that they aren't coming up short on anything. Parsley? Rice? They probably got it.

Haven't seen the movie(s), but in the book, they have freshly squeezed orange juice in Galt's Gulch. This is a valley in the middle of the Colorado mountains. And the entire country's supply chains have gone completely to shit. I can believe parsley (you can grow that anywhere) but orange juice?

aasdfadsf

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #6 on: January 21, 2022, 08:48:03 PM »
I should note that if anyone wants to read a very lengthy but very good critique of the book, Adam Lee went through the whole thing (movies too!) and he does his best to be fair and thoughtful, but (spoiler) he thinks it's horribly wrong in all sorts of ways. I read the book when he was doing his series because I wanted to know and understand it and follow his posts.

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/daylightatheism/series/atlas-shrugged/

Adam Lee is a fan of MMM and I actually first found this place because of his recommendation.

Chris Pascale

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #7 on: January 21, 2022, 09:08:29 PM »
I should note that if anyone wants to read a very lengthy but very good critique of the book, Adam Lee went through the whole thing (movies too!) and he does his best to be fair and thoughtful, but (spoiler) he thinks it's horribly wrong in all sorts of ways. I read the book when he was doing his series because I wanted to know and understand it and follow his posts.

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/daylightatheism/series/atlas-shrugged/

Adam Lee is a fan of MMM and I actually first found this place because of his recommendation.

Saved for later. Thanks!

Chris Pascale

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #8 on: January 21, 2022, 09:09:33 PM »

I reread it in my early 20s and was absolutely mortified.



You're smarter than me. I was 23 and thought it was really good. Sometimes, I'm such an idiot.
« Last Edit: January 21, 2022, 09:18:43 PM by Chris Pascale »

aasdfadsf

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #9 on: January 21, 2022, 09:43:15 PM »
I should note that if anyone wants to read a very lengthy but very good critique of the book, Adam Lee went through the whole thing (movies too!) and he does his best to be fair and thoughtful, but (spoiler) he thinks it's horribly wrong in all sorts of ways. I read the book when he was doing his series because I wanted to know and understand it and follow his posts.

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/daylightatheism/series/atlas-shrugged/

Adam Lee is a fan of MMM and I actually first found this place because of his recommendation.

Saved for later. Thanks!

When you get around to it, don't miss out on some of the blog comments. It takes awhile before it really gets going, but at some point several posters join in who themselves were former Randians who had broken away from the cult, and they have a lot of fascinating things to say. And then there's Cobra Commander...

LD_TAndK

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #10 on: January 22, 2022, 05:07:16 AM »
I described myself as a libertarian for couple years in college, then I read atlas shrugged and it broke the spell. I realized how awful a libertarian world would be and how na´ve I was about how societies work.

It's ridiculous people take that goofy tome as a rallying cry.

Zamboni

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #11 on: January 22, 2022, 08:38:37 AM »
I've been told I need to rewatch the movie Jaws as a comedy, and it sounds like this is the same idea.

As a scientist, I always get a kick out of "discovery" in post apocalyptic novels. In actual science it seems like someone is always trying to take credit for something someone else discovered or figured out anyway! So I found the re-invention of electricity in Anthem interesting when I read it, just as I found it interesting in A Canticle for Leibowitz, which is a much better novel.

Obviously Ayn Rand was a selfish asshole, but I can also see the appeal that these books have. Totalitarian societies where "the individual" doesn't matter if it's inconvenient for the powerful (and there are plenty on Earth right now) are absolutely terrible. The only thing that is likely worse is Anarchy, which is more along the lines of what Ayn Rand's "the individual is all that matters" ideals would land. Which reminds me of my promise to myself to re-binge the Mad Max movies.

In the post apocalyptic novel genre, my favorites are probably Where Late the Sweet Birds Sang by Kate Wilhelm and The Postmortal by Drew Magary (which is more appropriately in the "Ending of Society" genre, and please just look past the unfortunate stereotypes . . . bc it's scifi, so stereotypes are allowed I guess, and the novel is highly entertaining.) 

StarBright

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #12 on: January 22, 2022, 09:31:13 AM »

I reread it in my early 20s and was absolutely mortified.


You're smarter than me. I was 23 and thought it was really good. Sometimes, I'm such an idiot.

FWIW - I think there is a lot which is appealing in Atlas Shrugged (I still have a copy of it). But I was, and am, a religious, very liberal, arts person and I was telling folks "oohhh read this book, it is so much fun!".  And then I re-read it and was like, "oh no- this is like the opposite of what I believe." But 13 year old me thought it was the bomb!

Also my ex husband was like deeply into Ayn Rand (I married him when I was practically a baby - the downside of religion :) ) and he wanted some Rand passages for our wedding readings. I wish I had reread her before I got married. The two of us were a really, really bad match!

Chris Pascale

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #13 on: January 22, 2022, 10:34:41 AM »
I should note that if anyone wants to read a very lengthy but very good critique of the book, Adam Lee went through the whole thing (movies too!) and he does his best to be fair and thoughtful, but (spoiler) he thinks it's horribly wrong in all sorts of ways. I read the book when he was doing his series because I wanted to know and understand it and follow his posts.

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/daylightatheism/series/atlas-shrugged/

Adam Lee is a fan of MMM and I actually first found this place because of his recommendation.

Saved for later. Thanks!

When you get around to it, don't miss out on some of the blog comments. It takes awhile before it really gets going, but at some point several posters join in who themselves were former Randians who had broken away from the cult, and they have a lot of fascinating things to say. And then there's Cobra Commander...

I was reading it like a list, and not realizing these are blog posts to click into.

Go and do that. See if it makes sense at all. I'm just scrolling through like this is good content.

So glad I can laugh at myself.
« Last Edit: January 24, 2022, 12:49:09 AM by Chris Pascale »

AMandM

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #14 on: January 22, 2022, 02:36:08 PM »

I reread it in my early 20s and was absolutely mortified.



You're smarter than me. I was 23 and thought it was really good. Sometimes, I'm such an idiot.

A political philosopher friend thinks that's a good age to read it at, because he characterizes it as "a good book to grow out of."

SwordGuy

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #15 on: January 22, 2022, 03:57:03 PM »
The only thing that is likely worse is Anarchy, which is more along the lines of what Ayn Rand's "the individual is all that matters" ideals would land. Which reminds me of my promise to myself to re-binge the Mad Max movies.

You might want to read some more about Anarchy.    The general public has been taught by the establishment that Anarchy and Chaos are synonyms.   They aren't.

"Anarchy is a society being freely constituted without authorities or a governing body. It may also refer to a society or group of people that entirely rejects a set hierarchy. ... Anarchy is primarily advocated by individual anarchists who propose replacing government with voluntary institutions."

Our society is chock full of Anarchy.   We have clubs, charities, and voluntary associations of all sorts in which people voluntarily organize to get something done that they want doing.

Anarchists were some of the most effective fighters against the Fascists in the Spanish Civil War, too.   

It's a very interesting political theory and there are aspects of it that we can learn from to our benefit.   And aspects of it that will never work, of course.


SwordGuy

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #16 on: January 22, 2022, 04:00:01 PM »
One of the most succinct book reviews I've ever read, and it's spot on.


SpeedReader

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #17 on: January 23, 2022, 11:35:06 AM »
"The other involves orcs."  Perfect!

stylesjl

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #18 on: January 24, 2022, 01:51:54 AM »
I should note that if anyone wants to read a very lengthy but very good critique of the book, Adam Lee went through the whole thing (movies too!) and he does his best to be fair and thoughtful, but (spoiler) he thinks it's horribly wrong in all sorts of ways. I read the book when he was doing his series because I wanted to know and understand it and follow his posts.

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/daylightatheism/series/atlas-shrugged/

Adam Lee is a fan of MMM and I actually first found this place because of his recommendation.
Funnily enough he is also the same reason I found MMM. In fact it was precisely because I searched for an Atlas Shrugged review that I found this guy.

I also did read Atlas Shrugged, back in 2015. I found it not too bad in terms of the quality of the writing, but the philosophy (ideology, really) is pretty garbage. Just strawman after strawman argument and the characters remind me of someone with some kind of autism, i.e an inability to communicate normally with other humans.

Just Joe

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #19 on: January 26, 2022, 02:18:18 PM »
I gave up on AS and read the Cliff's Notes. I kept hearing that this was an important book but I couldn't find the value in it before my interest in it faded.

More recently I tried the movies. I think I watched most of the first one. Gave up on the second one about 20 minutes in.

Also started "A Canticle for Leibowitz". Not sure what I think of it yet.

GuitarStv

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #20 on: January 26, 2022, 02:30:31 PM »
I remember reading Atlas Shrugged in jr. high and liking it.  It wasn't all that well written, but definitely exposed me to a very different way of thinking that made me re-examine many of my closely held beliefs.  While there's a lot (a LOT) that eventually fell apart under closer examination, there were some nuggets of value buried in there.

AMandM

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #21 on: January 26, 2022, 07:39:18 PM »
Interesting that two people have mentioned A Canticle for Leibowitz, which is one of my favorite books ever and so wildly different from Atlas Shrugged that I'm surprised to see them talked about together. I'd love to know both your thoughts, especially if you are not Catholic.

Hall11235

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #22 on: January 28, 2022, 11:08:49 AM »
My father adores AS. Listens to the 30 hour audio book every year.

As a self-styled soft Libertarian, I tried it, but could barely get through it. Galt's radio diatribe on money and government was absurd (70 PAGES!!!). Also, Dagny basically kills her right hand man, ol' Eddie Willard, because he is not a producer.

It amazes me that Rand had any friends at all.

GuitarStv

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #23 on: January 28, 2022, 01:12:43 PM »
It amazes me that Rand had any friends at all.

Turns out she didn't really.  It's kind of sad.

At the end of her life she was broke and sucking on the government teat that she railed so hard against because she didn't have friends/family to take care of her and was broke.

ender

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #24 on: January 28, 2022, 02:28:18 PM »
I enjoyed the book for the sake of reading but it's insanely idealistic at best.


aasdfadsf

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #25 on: January 29, 2022, 12:15:56 AM »
I should note that if anyone wants to read a very lengthy but very good critique of the book, Adam Lee went through the whole thing (movies too!) and he does his best to be fair and thoughtful, but (spoiler) he thinks it's horribly wrong in all sorts of ways. I read the book when he was doing his series because I wanted to know and understand it and follow his posts.

https://www.patheos.com/blogs/daylightatheism/series/atlas-shrugged/

Adam Lee is a fan of MMM and I actually first found this place because of his recommendation.

Saved for later. Thanks!

When you get around to it, don't miss out on some of the blog comments. It takes awhile before it really gets going, but at some point several posters join in who themselves were former Randians who had broken away from the cult, and they have a lot of fascinating things to say. And then there's Cobra Commander...

I was reading it like a list, and not realizing these are blog posts to click into.

Go and do that. See if it makes sense at all. I'm just scrolling through like this is good content.

So glad I can laugh at myself.

That's pretty funny! I didn't even think about that.

I'm afraid that you and I are not Randian super-humans who can never do anything wrong, not even by accident. And no one is, and that's why we're all here.

aasdfadsf

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #26 on: January 29, 2022, 12:47:43 AM »
At the end of her life she was broke and sucking on the government teat that she railed so hard against because she didn't have friends/family to take care of her and was broke.

She was a life-long heavy smoker who extolled the virtues of smoking in Atlas and promoted it to her cult-like followers. And, wait for it...she got lung cancer.

She eventually decided that it was okay to accept Medicare because she had already been forced to pay for it against her will through her taxes. I mean, say what you will about that belief, but just accepting that it's perfectly fine to pay into a socialized insurance program before you actually get sick ends up getting you to the same place without being an ass about it.

js82

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Re: Dagny Taggart: Cop Killer
« Reply #27 on: January 31, 2022, 06:15:07 PM »
Thanks for the chuckles!

I read Atlas Shrugged many years ago.  I felt compelled to read it again when the GOP pols made such a fuss over it, to see if it was as bad as I remembered.  It was.

Still one of the most painful books I've ever read cover-to-cover.

There are large (50+ pages at a time) stretches of the book where Atlas Shrugged ceases to be a novel, and becomes nothing more than Ayn Rand's libertarian manifesto where she's ranting endlessly about the lazy worthless socialists.

If she wanted to write a manifesto/work of political/economic theory, she should have done so.  The result of trying to mix the two genres was just.... painful.
« Last Edit: January 31, 2022, 06:17:10 PM by js82 »