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Pop culture obsessives writing for the pop culture obsessed.

The Ayn Rand Institute took a PPP Loan, which is rich

Illustration for article titled The Ayn Rand Institute took a PPP Loan, which is rich
Photo: Julius Shulman (Getty Images)

Well, readers, here we are: After decades of increasingly deregulated capitalist policy, we find ourselves in an administration now straight-up telling us to suck it up, accept a deadly virus as simply a new facet of our lives, and get back to work as kindling for the economic furnaces—all while the rest of the world bans us from traveling to them because they apparently just can’t handle our wonderful American freedom. Hey, at least the people at the top telling us to get out there and brave the viral elements for a paycheck are living by their own credo, right?


Of course they goddamn aren’t. Thanks to The Wall Street Journal’s Pat Fitzgerald, it turns out the Ayn Rand Institute, the official organization “devoted to applying Rand’s ideas to current issues and seeking to promote her philosophical principles of reason, rational self-interest and laissez-faire capitalism,” got itself a government handout in the form of a Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) loan somewhere between $350k and $1 million following the COVID-19 pandemic fallout. 

Let’s pause to savor this sweet, sweet irony by watching a clip from the abysmal adaptation of Atlas Shrugged: Part One (of goddamn three!), in which we are expected to root for the uber-wealthy railroad baroness forcing workers to toil in hazardous conditions out of economic necessity, shall we?

Ah, that’s that good ol’ fashioned capitalist gumption in action. If the knowledge that Ayn Rand’s legacy organization is following in her hypocritical footsteps isn’t enough to drive home that this whole “unfettered late capitalist greed” thing isn’t a great philosophy, here are some more groups and people who scooped up much-needed welfare funding, from Kanye West and the Koons studio to the Church of Scientology.

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Andrew Paul is a contributing writer with work recently featured by NBC Think, GQ, Slate, Rolling Stone, and McSweeney's Internet Tendency. He writes the newsletter, (((Echo Chamber))).