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Tuesday, April 22, 2014

You Can't Have Freedom for Free: On Rush, Ayn Rand, and Not Compromising
9:54AM EST | comments (20) |

Reason Magazine posted an article adapted from FreedomWorks CEO Matt Kibbe's latest book Don't Hurt People and Don't Take Their Stuff: A Libertarian Manifesto earlier today. The article is titled You Can't Have Freedom for Free: On Rush, Ayn Rand, and Not Compromising and starts out by describing how Rush's 2112 helped turn Kibbe on to Ayn Rand and libertarianism.

In 1977, I bought my first Rush album. I was 13. The title of the disc was 2112, and the foldout jacket had a very cool and ominous red star on the cover. ... The moment I dropped that stylus, and that needle caught the groove, I became obsessed with Rush like only thirteen-year-old boys can get obsessed. I turned up the volume as loud as I thought I could get away with, and I rocked. Mom shut that jam session down real fast. So I turned down the stereo, sat down, and began to read the liner notes inside the album cover jacket instead. The text inside the cover read, "With acknowledgement to the genius of Ayn Rand." What an odd name, I thought. Who is Ayn Rand? ...

He then goes on to use Rush's struggles in developing 2112 after the relatively disappointing sales of their previous album Caress of Steel to exemplify his argument that true innovation comes from not compromising your ideals, despite external pressures.

... Peart penned the dystopian lyrics to 2112 thinking about his individual freedom. "I did not think of politics and I did not think of global oppression," he recalls. No, he was thinking: "These people are messing with me!" He and the rest of the band found their inspiration in Anthem, the same novella that had turned me on. "You can say what you want about Ayn Rand and all the other implications of her work, but her artistic manifesto, for lack of a better term, was the one that struck home with us," says the band's lead singer and bass guitarist Geddy Lee. "It's about creative freedom. It's about believing in yourself." ...

You can read the entire article online at this location and order Kibbe's book here. Kibbe was also a guest on NPR's Weekend Edition a few weeks ago and during the interview a snippet of 2112 was played while Kibbe described how Rush's 2112 inspired him; the transcript of the interview is available here. Thanks to Travis B for the heads up.

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Comments

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#20 - Posted 4/27/14 @7:41AM by jaeger [contact]

It looks like someone misses the days when companies could call in the police to defend private property at the drop of the hat. Those good old days make Alex´s Florida experience look like a day in Paradise.
#19 - Posted 4/25/14 @11:42AM by CraigJ [contact]

You can't have freedom for free...
#18 - Posted 4/24/14 @12:06PM by jiminseattle [contact]

Well put Snowdog. I doubt seriously that they even know these stories exist. They are cool cats not about to alienate anyone.
#17 - Posted 4/24/14 @11:46AM by Snowdog2112 [contact]

#13--I suspect Rush would be more inclinced to cringe if they thought their music was the inspiration for the Occupy crowd, but there's no doubt the boys play it down the middle these days as to not alienate themselves from the leftist crowd that burned them in their early days (Rolling Stone). And as Canadians, they don't have to pander to the Democrat/Republican mentality that so divides the US. Let's face it, both parties are terrible examples for free will. The hard core right and left will disagree, but Libertarian philosophy is the closest thing out there to true freedom. Unfortunately, not everyone wants to be free.
#16 - Posted 4/24/14 @11:38AM by joerock213 [contact]

Personally, I practice Rushism which holds that Rush is the greatest band in the history of the world and everything they do is beyond wonderful. At one point in time Ayn Rand had an influence on Rush's music, therefore I hold her philosophy in high regard, but you don't have to love everything about a person or be completely for or against someone. I agree with a lot of what she says. A lot of knee-jerk idiots like to bash her.
#15 - Posted 4/24/14 @10:42AM by rushevents [contact]

@anandrajan: It's not surprising to me that many conservatives dislike Ayn Rand as well as the liberals.

Her ideas irritate both the right and the left - The right dislikes her militant atheism and the left hate her stance on punishing the strong to prop up the weak.

Rand was not a Libertarian she was, as her movement is still called, an "objectivist". Objectivism states that the mind is the end-all be-all. The goal of human kind is to pursue personal happiness through a complete laissez-faire system of capitalism. Libertarians tend to like her more than most as well as most of what she wrote as it all leads to government out of our lives. But Libertarians are also self styled Conservative compassionists which flies in the face of much of what she wrote.
#14 - Posted 4/24/14 @1:04AM by joerock213 [contact]

Go back and listen to "Something for Nothing". Now, as they sit in the lap of luxury sipping the Macallan everyday being worshiped, I'm sure their ideas about reality have been warped and thus moved to the left. Nevertheless, I'm sure they enjoy the fruits of their labor.
#13 - Posted 4/24/14 @12:38AM by Pat R [contact]

I'm sure Geddy, Alex and Neil would cringe if they were told someone from the Tea Party was holding RUSH up as an inspiration!
#12 - Posted 4/23/14 @6:35PM by jiminseattle [contact]

Good call Craig but we have escalated just a bit. :)
#11 - Posted 4/23/14 @6:11PM by CraigJ [contact]

#9, I'd say since the 1920's personally.

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