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General Bogosity => General Discussion => Topic started by: MrBogosity on October 07, 2013, 07:24:35 PM

Title: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: MrBogosity on October 07, 2013, 07:24:35 PM
It seems that more and more Ayn Rand's badly written and overlong Atlas Shrugged is, sadly, becoming the face of Libertarianism fiction. It seems to me that there are plenty of novels out there that are a) much better written and b) better at demonstrating libertarian principles without all the Objectivist baggage. I thought I'd make this thread to archive them.

These are novels, so please don't add nonfiction like Economics in One Lesson or The Road to Serfdom.

Catch-22 by Joseph Heller (http://amzn.to/2ghTjaW): Not only a fantastic anti-war novel, but one covering other issues as well. Listen to the 7 October 2013 podcast where FSBlueApocalypse and I quoted from it. It's really funny—if you like The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, this is the same style of humor—while still leaving you with the impression of how dark and ugly war is.

For that matter, The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy (http://amzn.to/2gdFoRz) and its sequels (as well as the radio series, TV series, and movie) by Douglas Adams. Apart from great quotables like "No one who wants to be president should under any circumstances be allowed to have the job" and "If they didn't vote for a lizard, the wrong lizard might get in", the whole thing starts with bureaucracy destroying the Earth and goes on to feature incompetent homicidal police and why the most evil race in the universe are civil administrators.

The Moon is a Harsh Mistress by Robert Heinlein (http://amzn.to/2gdHL6B): The Moon rebels against Earth and wins independence, setting up a libertarian government. But how long can they keep it? Lots of great ideas and quotes.

The Hunger Games (http://) (and its sequels, Catching Fire (http://amzn.to/2foNvNp) and Mockingjay (http://amzn.to/2fPdpKP)) by Suzanne Collins: Okay, I know, they're pop teen novels. But they're excellently written with libertarian concepts running all the way through as the people of the Districts slowly grow their revolution against the Capitol and its tyrannical President.

No such list would be complete without Brave New World by Aldous Huxley (http://amzn.to/2foMFAr).

Of course I should also add 1984 (http://amzn.to/2gHShse) and Animal Farm (http://amzn.to/2foKr3U) by George Orwell.

Along the same vein as 1984 and Brave New World is The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood (http://amzn.to/2fmJLcc).

And if we can add graphic novels to the list, of course there's Alan Moore's V for Vendetta (http://amzn.to/2gz8jUn).

What else should we add to the list?

From nilecroc: The Probability Broach by L. Neil Smith (http://amzn.to/2gjhAwR)
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: tnu on October 07, 2013, 07:53:47 PM
If we're doing Graphic novels I have to mention, at the very least, the latter portions of Alan Grant's run on Anarky which admittedly DOES have basis in Neotech, an offshoot of objectivism.
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: Travis Retriever on October 07, 2013, 08:44:26 PM
Any Anarcho-Capitalist ones?  Well, ones that aren't V for Vendetta, I mean.
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: tnu on October 07, 2013, 09:43:29 PM
Like I said Anarky. Neotech isn't reallyt hat different a philosophy. In the lit department though I hear good things about L Niel Stephanson. Though where I really feel we're under reperesented is in video games to be honest.
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: nilecroc on October 07, 2013, 10:21:39 PM
Like I said Anarky. Neotech isn't reallyt hat different a philosophy. In the lit department though I hear good things about L Niel Stephanson. Though where I really feel we're under reperesented is in video games to be honest.
Fallout New Vegas
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: tnu on October 07, 2013, 10:29:07 PM
Yeah we have New Vegas and "sort of" BioShock though that just seems to be a strawman. But yeah I love New Vegas. I've been working on a sort of Superhero chracter for that lately.
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: Skm1091 on October 07, 2013, 10:31:38 PM
Robin Hood?
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: tnu on October 07, 2013, 10:38:42 PM
More of a mix between V, Anarky, Batman, and Zorro
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: nilecroc on October 07, 2013, 10:40:29 PM
Yeah we have New Vegas and "sort of" BioShock though that just seems to be a strawman. But yeah I love New Vegas. I've been working on a sort of Superhero chracter for that lately.
Ever notice how the NCR resembles the U.S. gov.
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: nilecroc on October 09, 2013, 10:37:20 AM
The Probability Breach

http://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Probability_Broach
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: Lord T Hawkeye on October 14, 2013, 06:09:35 PM
Can you link me to V's speech you talk about in the podcast?  It sounds familiar but I need my memory refreshed.
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: MrBogosity on October 14, 2013, 06:40:14 PM
Can you link me to V's speech you talk about in the podcast?  It sounds familiar but I need my memory refreshed.

V: Hello, dear lady. A lovely evening, is it not? Forgive me for intruding, perhaps you were intending to take a stroll, perhaps you were merely enjoying the view. No matter, I thought that it was time we had a little chat, you and I. Ahh... I was forgetting that we are not properly introduced. I do not have a name. You can call me V. Madame Justice, this is V. V, this is Madame Justice. Hello, Madame Justice.

Justice: (V provides her lines) Good evening, V.

V: There, now we know each other. Actually, I've been a fan of yours for quite some time. Oh, I know what you're thinking... "The poor boy has a crush on me... an adolescent infatuation." I beg your pardon, Madame. It isn't like that at all. I've long admired you... Albeit only from a distance. I used to stare at you from the streets below when I was a child. I'd say to my father "Who is that lady?" And he'd say "That's Madam Justice." And I'd say "Isn't she pretty?" Please don't think it was merely physical, I know you're not that sort of girl. No, I loved you as a person, as an ideal. That was a long time ago, I'm afraid there's someone else now...

Justice: What? V! For shame! You have betrayed me for some harlot, some vain and pouting hussy with painted lips and a knowing smile!

V: I, Madame? I beg to differ! It was your infidelity that drove me to her arms! Ah-ha! That surprised you, didn't it! You thought I didn't know about your little fling, but I do! I know everything! Frankly, I wasn't surprised when I found out. You always did have an eye for a man in uniform.

Justice: Uniform? Why, I'm sure I don't know what you're talking about. It was always you, V. You were the only one...

V: Liar! Slut! Whore! Deny that you let him have his way with you, him with his armbands and jackboots! Well? Cat got your tongue? I thought as much. Very well. So you stand revealed at last, you are no longer my Justice. You are his Justice now, you have bedded another. Well, two can play at that game!

Justice: Sob! Choke! Wh-Who is she, V? What is her name?

V: Her name is Anarchy. And she has taught me more as a Mistress than you ever did! She has taught me that Justice is meaningless without Freedom. She is honest, she makes no promises and breaks none. Unlike you, Jezebel. I used to wonder why you could never look me in the eye. Now I know. So goodbye, dear Lady. I would be saddened by our parting, even now, save that you are no longer the woman that I once loved. Here is a final gift. I leave it at your feet.

(He puts a heart-shaped box at her feet and walks away. The Old Bailey explodes, taking her with it.)

V: The flames of Freedom, how lovely, how just. Ahh, my precious Anarchy... "O beauty, 'til now I never knew thee."
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: tnu on October 16, 2013, 10:28:17 PM
does Gravity's Rainbow count? It includes a philosophy called Sado--Anarchism proposing the BDSM lifesytle as a means to curb humans desires for dominance and submission.
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: MrBogosity on October 17, 2013, 06:21:10 AM
does Gravity's Rainbow count? It includes a philosophy called Sado--Anarchism proposing the BDSM lifesytle as a means to curb humans desires for dominance and submission.

I'll definitely have to reread it. Another one I haven't read since my '20s.
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: Dallas Wildman on December 02, 2013, 09:50:05 PM
On a side topic Great Libertarian Mangas/Animes:

Library Wars
Attack On Titan

Okay maybe with libertarian/libertine themes in them but if anyone more ideas.
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: tnu on December 29, 2013, 01:44:16 AM
On a side topic Great Libertarian Mangas/Animes:

Library Wars
Attack On Titan

Okay maybe with libertarian/libertine themes in them but if anyone more ideas.

While we're on that subject how about Trigun, Rurouni Kenshin, and Akumetsu?
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: Travis Retriever on December 29, 2013, 02:04:27 AM
Or One Piece?
Or Anarky (comic book character)?
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: Dallas Wildman on December 29, 2013, 05:20:33 AM
Or One Piece?
Or Anarky (comic book character)?
While we're on that subject how about Trigun, Rurouni Kenshin, and Akumetsu?

I'm curious now what would be the libertarian/liberteen themes in these series?
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: Travis Retriever on December 29, 2013, 09:00:39 AM
I'm curious now what would be the libertarian/liberteen themes in these series?

One Piece:  http://libertarianlonghorns.com/2010/10/07/a-brilliant-libertarian-series/  D's been watching the series and told me he noticed it was rather...an-cap/libertarian.  D did disagree about their points on inflation though.  They have shown paper money.  Which, given the amount of war and stuff is most likely being devalued.

As for Anarky, I'll let him speak for himself:  http://travis-retriever.deviantart.com/journal/A-few-words-from-Anarky-275841851
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: AnCap Dave on December 29, 2013, 09:05:42 AM
One Piece:  http://libertarianlonghorns.com/2010/10/07/a-brilliant-libertarian-series/  D's been watching the series and told me he noticed it was rather...an-cap/libertarian.  D did disagree about their points on inflation though.  They have shown paper money.  Which, given the amount of war and stuff is most likely being devalued.

As for Anarky, I'll let him speak for himself:  http://travis-retriever.deviantart.com/journal/A-few-words-from-Anarky-275841851

Yeah, there was a scene where the Straw Hats exchanged their actual gold that they obtained for paper money. I suppose in an anime about pirates, the consequences of paper money probably doesn't interest that many viewers.
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: tnu on December 29, 2013, 02:34:10 PM
Trigun is mainly due to much of its premise following two insurance agents who serve as a sort of defense force on a frontier world and then there's the other main protagonist, a legendary outlaw who is actually a pacifist tothe extreme.
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: MrBogosity on August 02, 2014, 09:27:15 AM
Haven't read it yet, but it comes highly recommended by Reason's Nick Gillespie: The Blithedale Romance by Nathaniel Hawthorne (http://reason.com/blog/2014/08/02/why-an-1852-novel-by-nathaniel-hawthorne).
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: SideProjectJim on October 25, 2014, 11:48:26 PM
A very funny novel by my friend James Peron, "City Lights." Funny, very libertarian themes that are pro-gay,plus an excellent sequence where they pull a sting on a TV preacher.
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: SideProjectJim on October 26, 2014, 05:29:47 PM
May I also add Anthem?  Although that is more of a short story...
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: MrBogosity on October 26, 2014, 05:58:34 PM
May I also add Anthem?  Although that is more of a short story...

TBH, I was trying to avoid Ayn Rand altogether...
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: Travis Retriever on October 26, 2014, 06:27:45 PM
TBH, I was trying to avoid Ayn Rand altogether...
Speaking of Ayn Rand...whenever I listen to her writing from her novels, I get this weird impression that I'm listening to her equivalent of a fangirl's fanfiction/wank material.  You also get the feeling reading her stuff?
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: MrBogosity on October 26, 2014, 07:22:26 PM
Speaking of Ayn Rand...whenever I listen to her writing from her novels, I get this weird impression that I'm listening to her equivalent of a fangirl's fanfiction/wank material.  You also get the feeling reading her stuff?

I've read TONS of fanfic that's better than Rand...
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: Travis Retriever on October 26, 2014, 07:36:44 PM
I've read TONS of fanfic that's better than Rand...
Her work is THAT bad? O.o Holy shit.
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: Ibrahim90 on October 28, 2014, 12:38:24 PM
does Gravity's Rainbow count? It includes a philosophy called Sado--Anarchism proposing the BDSM lifesytle as a means to curb humans desires for dominance and submission.

will only read if the sadistic scenes are better than 50 shades of gray (I know, low standard, still).
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: MrBogosity on October 28, 2014, 02:55:30 PM
will only read if the sadistic scenes are better than 50 shades of gray (I know, low standard, still).

I don't know about better, but they're DEFINITELY weirder! (And I say that having not read 50 Shades; topping the weirdness of Gravity's Rainbow is a daunting task to say the least.)
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: MrBogosity on February 09, 2015, 05:56:21 PM
I have to say, I'm REALLY loving the North American Confederacy series by L. Neil Smith (of which The Probability Broach is just the first)!
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: MrBogosity on June 04, 2015, 04:53:47 PM
I have to say, I'm REALLY loving the North American Confederacy series by L. Neil Smith (of which The Probability Broach is just the first)!

I only have two left in the series to read! I just started Brightsuit MacBear, and after that I have Taflak Lysandra.

Here's the order I read them in--it's chronological (not the order he wrote them in), and it works:

The Probability Broach
The Nagasaki Vector
The American Zone
The Venus Belt
The Gallatin Divergence
Tom Paine Maru
Their Majesty's Bucketeers
Brightsuit MacBear
Taflak Lysandra
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: libertarian__revolution on January 16, 2016, 12:43:36 AM
Can I list non-fiction books?
If so:
1. Organized Crime by Thomas Dilorenzo
2. Nation, State and Economy by Murray Rothbard
3. The Economics of the Colour Bar by William H. Hutt
4. The Vampire Economy by Günter Reimann
5. Economic Controversies by Murray Rothbard
6. Austrian Macroeconomics:
A Diagrammatical Exposition by Roger Garrison (great because Austrians are often accused of having no macro theory
I could list more but I have so many I could list u would be reading this forever
What u can do if u have an iPhone is this: get the ePub reader app, then search for the Mises institute books and click ePub at the top where it says filter. Then u can copy the link to the ePub of each book u want (that's available on ePub) and put the link in the browser for ePub reader and it copies the whole book into your files.
Problem:  there are SO MANY ADS on the app
What is more advantageous is to copy each book to iBooks by pressing and holding on the respective cover of each book, and I suggest turning off your internet connection while doing so in order to not receive ads, especially if you are copying many books at once. This process allows u to basically get HUNDREDS of dollars in books for FREE, except for maybe the slightly excruciating pain of watching mobile strike ads with Rob Gronkowski every 5 SECONDS!


Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: MrBogosity on January 16, 2016, 06:03:29 AM
Can I list non-fiction books?
If so:
1. Organized Crime by Thomas Dilorenzo
2. Nation, State and Economy by Murray Rothbard
3. The Economics of the Colour Bar by William H. Hutt
4. The Vampire Economy by Günter Reimann
5. Economic Controversies by Murray Rothbard
6. Austrian Macroeconomics:
A Diagrammatical Exposition by Roger Garrison (great because Austrians are often accused of having no macro theory
I could list more but I have so many I could list u would be reading this forever
What u can do if u have an iPhone is this: get the ePub reader app, then search for the Mises institute books and click ePub at the top where it says filter. Then u can copy the link to the ePub of each book u want (that's available on ePub) and put the link in the browser for ePub reader and it copies the whole book into your files.
Problem:  there are SO MANY ADS on the app
What is more advantageous is to copy each book to iBooks by pressing and holding on the respective cover of each book, and I suggest turning off your internet connection while doing so in order to not receive ads, especially if you are copying many books at once. This process allows u to basically get HUNDREDS of dollars in books for FREE, except for maybe the slightly excruciating pain of watching mobile strike ads with Rob Gronkowski every 5 SECONDS!

I use Aldiko as my ePub reader, but I don't know if it's available on iPhone. No ads.
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: libertarian__revolution on January 18, 2016, 01:01:23 AM
Thanks I hate that part of the app I have
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: libertarian__revolution on January 20, 2016, 04:28:09 PM
In my PUBLIC school's lit class, we're reading Anthem by Ayn Rand. I guess there's hope after all. I guess not ALL of the state's actions are anti-liberty
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: MrBogosity on October 13, 2016, 04:18:02 PM
I have to say, I've become quite the L. Neil Smith fan. I've read the two Ngu Family Saga books so far, Pallas and Ceres, and I'm looking forward to the others when they come out. I liked Hope, although it more stopped than ended; hopefully a sequel is in the works. Sweeter Than Wine is the only vampire/romance novel I actually like (unless you count the original Dracula by Bram Stoker, of course); not so much libertarian philosophy there, but the main vampire has found a way to do what he does consistent with the NAP.
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: MrBogosity on November 22, 2016, 05:19:55 PM
I can't believe it never actually occurred to me to add the Hitchhiker's Guide series before now!

A blog post explaining why: https://hessenflow.wordpress.com/2011/05/27/655/
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: Travis Retriever on November 30, 2016, 08:32:44 PM
I can't believe it never actually occurred to me to add the Hitchhiker's Guide series before now!

A blog post explaining why: https://hessenflow.wordpress.com/2011/05/27/655/
I really need to read that book one of these days.
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: evensgrey on February 16, 2017, 10:30:01 PM
I can't believe it never actually occurred to me to add the Hitchhiker's Guide series before now!

A blog post explaining why: https://hessenflow.wordpress.com/2011/05/27/655/

I think he misunderstands part of the mindset of Howard Roark, though.  Howard does alter his work to fit the market, or at least the employer he is force to make do with for a time.  He absolutely LOATHES doing so, but he does, until he meets the client who will make his career by buying precisely what Howard wants to supply.  Very few people are lucky enough to get to that stage, but he's a fictional hero, so it's perfectly fine that he does.  At the end, he's building a public housing project and loving it because he's able to do it the way HE wants, which is presented as the ideal way to work.
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: MrBogosity on May 31, 2017, 08:37:26 AM
I'm greatly enjoying Hulu's adaptation of The Handmaid's Tale. If you don't want to read the book, at least watch this series. Margaret Atwood is a consulting producer, and they've actually fleshed the world out a bit more than Atwood did in her original book. The book was just from Offred's point of view, but the series is starting to branch out into things she couldn't have known about, and is also fleshing out the back story quite a bit.
Title: Re: Great Libertarian Novels That Aren't Atlas Shrugged
Post by: evensgrey on October 23, 2018, 05:57:44 PM
I've read TONS of fanfic that's better than Rand...

Rand learned to write, such as she did, writing Hollywood screenplays in an era where the best films being made were really mediocre by modern standards.  Combine that with being from Russia, where the novel writing tradition is to write these kind of over the top political things that are really just better written versions of the kind of political novels she wrote...

Seriously, when did Atlas Shrugged turn into a GREAT novel?  I read it 30 years ago when I had no taste and still knew it was bad.  IMPORTANT, but BAD.  (I read The Fountainhead as well, and I still really don't see why they decided that was a good name for the adopted homeworld of the Nietzschians.  It also isn't really any better.  And you actually need the omnipotent narrator to explain that no, Howard Roark is not a monster.  Seriously, who would write a hero who acts in such a way that only avoids being monstrous because of entirely incidental facts?) 

(Unfortunately, the only way to come to appreciate great films is to watch great films, and the only way to learn how to make great films is to make great films, so the early decades of any movie industry are going to be nothing but junk.  Seeing some great films from outside will help a bit, but not a whole lot.)