Everybody is reviewing Anne Heller's Ayn Rand and the World She Made, and Jennifer Burns' Goddess of the Market: Ayn Rand and the American Right.
Capitalism magazine has a roundup of reviews, but leaves out GQ's purgative anti-Rand rant (sample line: "Fuck you for turning some of the most open and interesting people I ever met into utopian dickheads"). Quoted in the piece—along with Reason contributor Todd Seavey and BB&T chairman John Allison—is our very own Nick Gillespie, who may have swiped some of Momma Rand's amphetamines before he talked with the reporter:
"In terms of literary influence, only Kerouac compares," says Nick Gillespie, editor-in-chief of Reason.com and Reason.tv…Pointing out that Atlas Shrugged and On the Road were both published in 1957, he adds, "Kerouac has had a more diffuse influence on American culture. He created a broad-based conception of what was cool and hip. Rand hasn't brushed the culture as widely. She touches individuals—immensely and deeply. It's useful to think about her impact in terms of Catcher in the Rye, another novel of individuation. Everyone agrees it's beautifully written, but it's losing its grasp on the public imagination. Same with Catch-22. Yossarian was a perfect antihero for the '60s generation, but does anybody give a shit about him now? Or about Portnoy? A few days ago, I was watching an old clip of Andrew Dice Clay's stand-up act from 1987. He made a joke about jerking off into a liver, and no one in the audience knew what he was talking about. Think about that. You can still make Howard Roark jokes that play, but it's been at least twenty years since you could do that with Portnoy. Portnoy's dead. Philip Roth is a great writer, but his signature character has had far less purchase on the collective imagination than Galt or Roark. No matter what you think of Rand, there's no denying that the woman just swings a really big dick."