Paterson and Ayn Rand
By the late 1930s, Paterson led a group of younger writers, many of them other Herald Tribune employees, who shared her views. One was future Time magazine correspondent and editor Sam Welles.
Another was the young Ayn Rand. From their many discussions, Paterson is credited with adding to Rand's knowledge of American history and government, and Rand with contributing ideas to The God of the Machine. Paterson believed Rand's ethics to be a unique contribution, writing to Rand in the 1940s, "You still don't seem to know yourself that your idea is new. It is not Nietzsche or Max Stirner... Their supposed Ego was composed of whirling words–your concept of the Ego is an entity, a person, a living creature functioning in concrete reality."
Paterson and Rand promoted each other's books and conducted an extensive correspondence over the years, in which they often touched on religion and philosophy. An atheist, Rand was critical of the deist Paterson's attempts to link capitalism with religion. Rand believed the two to be incompatible, and the two argued at length. Their correspondence ended after they quarreled in 1948. During a visit to Rand at her home in California, Paterson's remarks about writer Morrie Ryskind and abrasive behavior toward businessman William C. Mullendore, other guests of Rand, resulted in Rand's disillusionment with "Pat."
Similarly, Paterson had broken with another friend and political ally, Rose Wilder Lane, in 1946.
As a sign of the political tenor of the times, The God of the Machine was published in the same year as Rand's novel The Fountainhead and Rose Wilder Lane's The Discovery of Freedom. Writer Albert Jay Nock wrote that Lane's and Paterson's nonfiction books were "the only intelligible books on the philosophy of individualism that have been written in America this century." The two women had "shown the male world of this period how to think fundamentally... They don't fumble and fiddle around – every shot goes straight to the centre." Journalist John Chamberlain credits Paterson, Lane and Rand with his final "conversion" from socialism to what he called "an older American philosophy" of libertarian and conservative ideas.
Famous quotes containing the words ayn rand and/or rand:
“Mans unique reward, however, is that while animals survive by adjusting themselves to their background, man survives by adjusting his background to himself.”
—Ayn Rand (19051982)
“Hard times accounted in large part for the fact that the exposition was a financial disappointment in its first year, but Sally Rand and her fan dancers accomplished what applied science had failed to do, and the exposition closed in 1934 with a net profit, which was donated to participating cultural institutions, excluding Sally Rand.”
—For the State of Illinois, U.S. public relief program (1935-1943)