Topic: Atlas Shrugged Part I, the movie. Reactions favorable and unfavorable.
If you were unable to attend live and would like to hear this week’s webcast/podcast, click here, or you can access it, either later today or tomorrow, via iTunes (link on the right-hand side of this web page >>>>>> ).
Thanks to all who participated live in this week’s webcast. Use the comments portion of this post to leave comments, and to suggest topics for next week. Also, if you are enjoying the podcasts, don’t forget to “Like” the show’s page on Facebook (link on the right-hand side of this web page >>>>>), plus leave ratings and reviews in iTunes.
If you would like to register to attend next Sunday’s webcast live, click here.
I imagine that most readers of my blog will be heading out to see the Atlas Shrugged movie this weekend. If you would like to share your thoughts on it, add a comment here, or register to participate in my live webcast this Sunday, when we will be discussing it.
We will also be discussing some of the media attention Rand and her ideas have gotten recently as a result of the movie’s release. An example brought to my attention today: this hit piece in which the author asserts, apparently drawing upon something Jennifer Burns mentioned in her biography, that Ayn Rand was a big admirer of serial killers. Phew! Now no one needs to actually address the content of Rand’s ideas, or her arguments for them, because we all know that upholding a philosophy that rejects self-sacrifice is equivalent to being a serial killer anyway.
In fact, the author of the article recommends, at the end of the piece, that Rand’s followers should be dealt with in the same way one deals with serial killers. They should be “run  the hell out of town and out of our hemisphere.” Lovely.
Inspired by the tremendous bravery of Ann Barnhardt:
I decided to lead a Koran reading group. Is Islam a religion of peace that’s been hijacked by a small minority of extremists, as we’ve been told repeatedly by both liberals and conservatives? Or is there something essential to Islamic doctrine that inspires and purports to legitimize acts of terrorism, as we’ve heard from people like Wafa Sultan, Robert Spencer, and Geert Wilders? Find out for yourself. Start by reading the Koran.
Beginning on May 10 we will meet weekly (Tuesdays from 5:00 to 6:00 or 6:30, PST), via the same platform I use to conduct my live webcasts, to discuss sections of the Koran. The platform allows for interaction via text-based chat, but also by voice using either a USB mic connected to your computer (VoIP) or telephone. We will read approximately 20 pages of the Koran per week, along with the corresponding commentary published by Robert Spencer. We’ll take the week of July 4th off, which will allow participants to celebrate the Declaration of Independence — the reason I am able to organize a reading group such as this — in the manner of their choosing. We will finish on September 6, several days before the 10th anniversary of the September 11, 2001 attacks on America. This will allow us a few days to plan an appropriate commemoration of that day, armed with our newfound knowledge.
The version of the Koran I plan to use is this relatively inexpensive one. Should you want to join the group, you will need to buy a copy of the Koran, plus pay a small fee ($20) to help me cover the cost of using the platform for the meetings. Space is limited, so if you would like to reserve your spot, click here to register.