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While You Were Sleeping, the GOP Entered the 21st Century

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Calling all true-blue conservatives! In the name of Ayn Rand, won’t you please be more charitable?

If you think the statement above makes sense, you either don’t know who Ayn Rand is or you’re already aware of the most supremely ironic story of the week. And it’s all about everyone’s favorite Russian-born Queen of Free Market Capitalism!

See, the world has already been graced with the first two installments of the film trilogy adaptation of Rand’s 1957 magnum opus, Atlas Shrugged. And the producers of the 3rd installment would have you believe that the world has been waiting, breathlessly, for an interminable entire year for the final film. The public must be satisfied!

Except it turns out… the public is more than satisfied already. The first two movies, though they cost a combined $30 million to make, took in a paltry $4.6 and 3.3 million, respectively, at the box office. In the world of Free Market Capitalism, that’s called a bomb.

It wasn’t Atlas who shrugged, it was everyone else.

Now wait. Before you find your lily-livered liberal self tempted to go, “Aww, poor Ayn,” know this: Surely the self-proclaimed atheist who worshipped nothing but the Good Ol’ Market would, were she alive, have accepted the judgment of the public and left it at that.

What she wouldn’t have done — we’ll bet our first edition copy of The Communist Manifesto on this — is sat out on a street corner with a tin cup begging for $$$ to get the 3rd part of her movie made.

Or kicked off a Kickstarter campaign. To Ayn, that would have been exactly the same thing.

Yet: There it is, the crowd-funding Ayn Rand campaign. OK, now you can say — this time, with real feeling — “Aww, poor Ayn.” It must be exhausting, spinning in your grave like that.

Don’t get us wrong. There’s nothing wrong with Kickstarter. Or Indigogo, or the rest of ’em. But there IS something seriously wrong with a crowd-funding campaign that tries to raise money for an Ayn Rand project that can’t raise cash through the, uh, more usual, more old-fashion, more capitalist routes. Seriously. Use crowd-funding to raise money for your project to, say, drop a piano on a pyramid of champagne glasses. Or to legalize gay marijuana. Or to publish a book of your 50 favorite test patterns. Whatever. But leave poor Ayn Rand out of it. She’s endured her book reviews; should anyone be forced to endure more?

Yet endure we must. And adapt. Which makes us wonder if we’re simply just missing something. Is all of this just a sign of an adapting conservative? Is there really such a thing?

We’ve all heard the GOP promise — for years we’ve heard this promise — that, truly, everything is different, come back under our big tent, we’ve changed! This ain’t your father’s GOP!! We’ve never believed it, for the simple reason that there’s never been any evidence of actual change.

But a Kickstarter campaign for Ayn Rand? Damn. If that’s not evidence of radical change, what is?

Our only conclusion is that this must be proof that the GOP is at least trying, in its awkward way, to make good on its promise to no longer be out of touch. What’s the next thing a conservative will do to prove the GOP is adapting to the 21st Century? What do YOU think?

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This week’s selection from the “Do it at Home, America!” Series:
SEA MONKEYS!

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