Speaker 0 00:00:00 Hello everyone, and welcome to the 132nd episode of the Atlas Society asks, my name is Jennifer Anju Grossman. My friends call me Jag. I'm the c e o of the Atlas Society. We are a nonprofit organization introducing young people to the ideas of a rand in fun, artistic, creative ways, such as our animated videos and graphic novels. Today we are joined by Andrew Bernstein. But before I even begin to introduce our guest, I wanna remind all of you who are watching us on Zoom, on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube. Go ahead, cue up and, uh, type your questions into that chat and we will get to as many of them as we can. So, our guest today, Andrew Bernstein, holds a PhD in philosophy from the Graduate School of the City, university of New York. And he taught philosophy for many years at Morris College. He is a lifelong objectivist who frequently writes for the objective standard and speaks at events sponsored by Students for Liberty, the Foundation for Economic Education, and the Institute for Human Studies among others. Uh, professor Bernstein is also the author of numerous essays and books, including the Capitalist Manifesto, objectivism in One Lesson and his latest book, why Johnny Still Can't Read or Write or Understand Math and What We can do about It. Andy, thank you so much for joining us.
Speaker 1 00:01:43 That's great being here, Jack. Thanks for having me on.
Speaker 0 00:01:46 So, uh, as mentioned, you are certainly an icon of the Objectivist movement. Uh, you have a lot of fans among, uh, the, uh, the younger people, uh, of all ages here at the Atlas Society. Um, but I'd love to talk about, uh, and I've got to talk about your latest book, but also about your origin story. Where did you grow up and what sparked your interest and philosophy and how did you come to discover Rams works?
Speaker 1 00:02:19 Well, an origin story, it's like being a superhero, you know, <laugh>, and I didn't realize I was an icon Jack. That's heavy pressure to, to live up to. But, uh, um, you know, I was born and raised in, in Brooklyn, New York. People didn't, don't realize that they hear me talk. They think I'm from Louisiana, but they're all
Speaker 1 00:02:37 <laugh> I'm not. But, um, I was, uh, I was very lucky in high school. The one thing, the one thing I, I went through the government school's K through 12. Uh, so I can't say that I was lucky overall, but the one thing I was lucky. Yeah, yeah, they're terrible. They were terrible then and they're worse now. But, um, I, I had a, uh, teacher named Jay Hyman, I'll mentioned his name cuz he was a great guy. And, um, I'm not sure if he's still alive. He'd be in in his eighties now. I hope. I hope he is. But he was a great guy. He was a PE teacher and he had taught a hygiene class, went through the hygiene curriculum very quickly, and then, you know, discussed, uh, iron Rand an objectivism. And this was, you know, in late 1960s, the war in Vietnam was raging the riots on college campuses.
Speaker 1 00:03:23 And yeah. And, uh, he discussed I Rand's ideas and their application to these topical issues. And it just made so much sense to me. I mean, I was just hooked right away, cuz I mean, I grew up in a crazy family in a, in a crazy world, and this just absolutely makes sense. And I went that summer and I, and I read all of I Rand's novels, and I knew right away this was the most important thing in the world. And, uh, you know, the more I've learned since then, the more that's validated my and vindicated my judgment that this is, I Rand's books and ideas are the most important things in the, in the world. So I thank you to Jay Hyman, you know, for, you know, for introducing me.
Speaker 0 00:03:58 Can you think there was something about, uh, being raised in a, in a somewhat dysfunctional or chaotic environment that, um, made you all the hungrier to try to find some principles that helped you make sense of the world?
Speaker 1 00:04:13 Yeah, you know, that's an interesting point, Chad, because some people, you know, there's no getting away from volition in in human life, right? Some people brought up under craziness just become crazy, you know, <laugh>, uh, and, you know, I did to a certain extent, I certainly had had issues, but, but I was trying to make sense out of it all. I was always on that premise, and I was always very inductive, you know, that I was always observing the facts and then trying to explain, you know, find the principles. I would explain the facts. So when I read, and I was always a humanities guy, I was never gonna be a, a scientist. Uh, I was always a, you know, a literature philosophy, history guy as I read Iran's novels. And then the, the novels are just literally magnificent. I mean, I think the Fountain had an atla shrug to the two greatest novels ever written.
Speaker 1 00:05:01 You know, I'll stand by that judgment until the day I died. The fountainheads my all-time favorite book period. You know, literal, you know, fiction, non-fiction or, or whatever. But also, of course, as a vehicle to express Ironmans philosophy, especially outta the shrug. Uh, yeah, it just made so much sense to me. It explained, uh, history, you know, social events and explained metaphysical reality are all in one brilliantly comprehensive philosoph packets. I was, I was, I don't wanna say addicted, but I was hooked right away. I'd be, yes. This, this explains, this explains so much. Right. I knew that
Speaker 0 00:05:37 Right way. I can relate as I'm sure Ken, many of our viewers. So I wanna get to this book. Uh, you are a longtime educator with many Teacher of the Year awards. Uh,
Speaker 1 00:05:48 Well, 2, 2, 2. Anyway,
Speaker 0 00:05:50 <laugh>, uh, from two CO and from two colleges, right? Yes. So, um, what inspired you to write why Johnny still can't read or write? Um, and Yeah.
Speaker 1 00:06:02 Well, you know, I was a few years ago, I, you know, I I've always been a hero worshiper, and, and I always wanted to write a book on heroes, and I did, it was published, what, what year was that? 2019 maybe? Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. And I was doing the research, excuse me, a few years ago. Uh, and, and if you, you notice the hero book is done very inductively. I start with certain people and pulled the principles out of them. Ria Montessori was one. And, you know, I contrasted people who did great things like she did with every day, you know, every, every day Hardwork and hon Honest people, um, and bad guys and, you know, and look for, well, you know, dis look to distinguish, you know, integrate and differentiate as we learn from the objectiveness epistemology. So I was doing research on Rio Montessori and, you know, Jack Ironman's theory and epistemology of, of the spiral theory of Knowledge.
Speaker 1 00:06:56 That knowledge isn't necessarily linear. You know, you learn something, you understand it at a decent level. You go on in your life, you learn more, you come back to that earlier point. You come back at a de at a, with a deeper awareness of it. I was doing the research, um, Maria Montessori, and it just hit me. And the progressives, you know, as soon as, as soon as she started to become known in the United States about 1912, the progressive educators, William h Gilpatrick, they immediately attacked her. And a and a dawned on me at a deeper level, I think something I'd always known, but it just hit me at a deeper level, Jack, they did it on purpose. They, they, they didn't just wreck the educational system. They did it on purpose. They stunted the minds of millions of, of kids. They did it on purpose, and it hit me, yeah, you couldn't mess something up this bad by accident. This has to be done on purpose. And it was, and I realized, wow, wow, this needs, uh, you know, there's a lot of good books on how bad the schools are, but this needs a treatment from, from an distinctively objective perspective. And I,
Speaker 0 00:07:57 Yeah, it's so, it's so well written. It's so, um, accessible. I mean, and, you know, you manage to say it all and, and give recommendations and, um, it's, uh, it's a relatively, uh, quick and easy read. It's not overly academic. Um, but I was really fast and I used to be director of Education policy at the Cato Institute, and I, and I worked with Andrew Colson, who you mentioned in, in the book,
Speaker 1 00:08:26 Ah, I love his book Market Education. It's terrific.
Speaker 0 00:08:28 Yeah, absolutely. And, and, and his history of, uh, of American education. Most people don't realize that this country was founded on private education, not government schools. So, uh, let's talk a little bit about ways in which the dismal academic performance of today's schools traced back to the progressive education movement in, in the late 19th century, early 20th century. And, um, in what ways, you talk about this in the book, in the book, did, uh, the brewing socialism of that time and even the eugenics movement influence this departure from traditional American education?
Speaker 1 00:09:13 Yeah, that's a good point, shag, because prior to Right, right around the time of World War I, you know, give or take a few years, American education was superb. You know, even after the, they imposed government schooling in the mid 19th century. The, the sch the, the schools were much more responsive to the parents. The parents ge generally than, and now want, the kids have this funny idea that kids learn how to read, you know, and, and write effectively and have basic, you know, skills in mathematical calculation and, and, uh, no history and so on and so forth. So the schools taught academic subjects, and the, the kids did. Well, it was in the early 20th century, uh, with the rise of like, like you mentioned, the, the, the progressives. And of course, you know, I mentioned in the book, if we were gonna write a historical novel on this topic, the, the, the demise of the American school system, John Dewey, would be the, would be the novels filled, you know, world class philosopher
Speaker 0 00:10:06 Dewey would be the Dewey.
Speaker 1 00:10:07 Yeah, exactly. Dewey. Dewey the Dewey. Yeah. I like that. Uh, he was a world class philosopher. Not that I recommend reading Dewey. He's, he's, he was influenced by Hael. He's very difficult to, but I mean, he had the reputation of being a world class philosopher, and he, he brought the I informa of, you know, of lofty philosophy to the progressive movement. And their main idea, William Hurt Gilpatrick, who, you know, Dewey was a philosophy professor, Columbia University philosophy Department for many years, or early, I think 19 0 5, 19 30, William Hurt Kirkpatrick is leading disciple headed, the philosophy of education department at Columbia University Teacher College, which was the leading teacher college, you know, at, at that time. And their idea was that, um, we don't, the, the, you know, oh, you mentioned eugenics. Um, you know, we couldn't, in a free country. They, they wanted to sterilize the, the people who were not the, you know, the, the, the less intelligent people.
Speaker 1 00:11:06 As a society in a free country, you can't do that <laugh>, right? Uh, so the next best thing was the, the IQ test, which has just come in, in the early 20th century. The Stanford, when they test you iq, everybody IQ test all the kids, you know, at a very young age, and the best, the best and the brightest. How, how platonic is this for anybody who knows? You know, the, the theory of the philosopher king in, in the republic, you know, the best in the brightest get the full academic program. You know, they'll get math and history and literature and science and everything. They're going out to college. They'll be society's future leaders in the classroom and in the legislature. The rest of us, we don't need that much academic training. You know, we need practical skills, you know, like driver ed or sex ed hygiene, things like that.
Speaker 1 00:11:47 And of course, vocational skills, metal shop, wood shop for the kids in the city, you'll gimme factory workers, agriculture for the kids in rural areas, it's gonna be farm workers, et cetera. We don't need much, uh, in intellectual training. Uh, the, uh, the goal for the, their goal for the overwhelming majority of the population was that, one, we should be good at our jobs. And two, we obey the wise rules of the state, the socialist system that they, that they want to impose. And not for nothing, as they might say in my native Brooklyn <laugh>, where did Dewey and kill Patrick and some of these other guys from Columbia University, uh, teach a college pilgrimage two in the 1920s to find the kind of educational system they wanted. They went to the Soviet Union, check, Soviet, I mean, I can't even say this with a straight face.
Speaker 1 00:12:38 They, they came back with glowing reports about Soviet education. Cause the Soviets obviously as good communists taught the kids that they can't, you know, live egoistically. They can't pursue their own happiness. Everything have to live for the state. The state comes first, foremost. And always, there's the Shabi secret, you know, behind progressive education and the, and the, and the reason to dumb down the, the school system. You don't want the kids asking too many questions. You don't want them having too much knowledge. You don't want them, you know, questioning the wise rulers of, of the state. Just do your job, obey the state, and everybody lives for the state. And we'll have a beautiful collectivist, socialist world. That's the mentality.
Speaker 0 00:13:16 Yeah. Yeah. And, and, uh, the imposition of government schooling, as I understand it, was also influenced by, uh, the, the Prussian model. Yeah. That, uh, they wanted to yes, cultivate good factory workers and soldiers. Um, who
Speaker 1 00:13:33 Right. Would, but you go back, go back to the 19th century people like Harris Mann, you know, one of the early advocates of government schooling, you know, people today, the, the leftist today, they, the, their propaganda is they had to impose government schooling because Americans were illiterate. Uh, you know, before that, that's just a lie. There's a lot of proxy data shows how, how high the American literacy levels one, and I, I, you know, I mentioned a lot of it in, in the book, the one that really gets me, Jack, is that, you know, in the, in the late 18th century, the essays of The Federalist was a really, you know, sophisticated political theorizing were largely, you know, written by Madison, Jay and Hamilton to, you know, to, uh, to promote the gratification of the Constitution. Those were largely newspaper editorials written for, you know, every man.
Speaker 1 00:14:21 And, and everyone <laugh>. My my college students really struggled with those today. But there's a lot of proxy data shown how high American literacy levels, levels were. But no, the real, the real reason for imposing going in schools, uh, one, what, what you mentioned, Harris man and his ill journey to Germany, they were appalled by the individualism of American society. The selfishness of a, you know, you, you're rugged individualists, you're living for, you know, you're living for your own wellbeing and your families and everything. They wanted the kids to grow up to, you know, serve the state. And they went to Germany where the German schools taught exactly that. And they came back, you know, with, uh, the German, the Germanic approach to education. That's what they wanted. Government. That was the one, one of the two main reasons why the government school system was imposed to, to indoctrinate service to the state rather than individualistic life amongst American kids.
Speaker 0 00:15:14 Yep. So your book starts off with the title, why Johnny Still Can't Read, by the way, I know we have a lot of Audible fans in the audience, uh, and the audible version of this is excellent. So we're putting those links into all of the chats, but let's talk to specifically why Johnny, uh, still can't read and the adoption, um, of this looks, say whole word approach and the, uh, abandoning of phonics. What was that all about?
Speaker 1 00:15:49 Well, yeah, you know, people, a lot of people in in the audience probably recognize my title as a, as a take on Rudolph Flesh. Rudolph Flesh in 1955 published a famous book title Why Johnny Can't Read. And it was a brilliant defense of phonics against the whole Word method. That was, you know, that was dominant. That, well, why John Dewey, again, the philosopher of, of the, of this movement, uh, put in so many words. There's, um, I don't remember the exact quote, I have it in the book, but it's to the effect that, you know, there's, there's no social gain in kids learning to read early or gaining knowledge. There's, you know, that, that, that kind of, uh, individualistic activity where you, you know, you sit, you sit by yourself and read a book, and you, and you read it well, and you learn from it very naturally and easily passes into selfishness.
Speaker 1 00:16:39 Do we, do we sit, you know, you want the kids working in groups. You want them learn to cooperate and to conform, you know, to the, to the consensus of, of the group. So, um, the, the progressives will, uh, and know what, you know, what reminds me of, of Jack, um, the great Chinese philosopher Confucius said a long time ago that the beginning of wisdom lies in calling things by their right names. Mm-hmm. <affirmative>. So, I, I, I never call leftist liberals. They're not supporters of liberty. I'm a liberal, they're not progressives. Socialism is regressive. It's not, it doesn't, doesn't promote progress. But, you know, but anyhow, the, the, these guys, these guys want these, you know, they're, they're leftists, they're socialists. Uh, they want, they want people to serve the state, and they, they don't want kids reading. Well, at an early age. It's, it's just, it, it, it makes a kid much more independent, could think for himself or herself, not inclined to conform to the group or obey the wise rulers of the state. So they, they used the word method, not because they thought it was a better method to teach reading, but because they knew it was worse. This is just makes you hair stand up here. They crippled, they, they deliberately crippled the ability of millions and millions and millions of American kids, uh, in, in the, you know, their, their ability in the most important cognitive skill of all in Reed. They did it on purpose. They're not just wrong. They're evil.
Speaker 0 00:18:04 Let's talk about, uh, social studies. I didn't realize till I read your book that this was done to replace history and, and other, uh, studies. How did that come about?
Speaker 1 00:18:20 Yeah, it's more than a hundred years ago. It was, it was around 1918. I was right around the end of, of World War I. They did away with history, uh, and, and replaced it with social studies, which is a mongrel hybrid of, you know, of topics that sometimes includes some history, but not very much, you know, and, and, and my poor, I'll give you an example. I mentioned it in the book. My, you know, poor kids. I won't mention any, any names here, but I had a, this is a logic class. This is right before the pandemic shut us down. So it would've been two and a half, three years ago. Um, 20. The arithmetic here is simple. The 20 kids in a college level logic class. And, you know, logic is really abstract. So I try to give a lot of, in instances, you know, in an observable reality to tie, you know, to tie it to, to facts.
Speaker 1 00:19:08 So I was, I had, I don't even remember the context anymore, check, but, um, I wanted to mention James Madison. I think that's pretty safe. People, people, American kids must know James Madison. Well, it turns out it wasn't so say 10, 10 or 20 American college kids born rear school tier, never heard of them. They never heard of James Madison. Uh, 10 out 20 heard of them. They knew, they knew he'd been pot. They'd be, they'd been president of the United States, but not one in 20, not one in 20 knew that he was the lead author of the US Constitution, and virtually the sole author of the Bill of Rights, not one, they don't teach much history. They teach much less history than they should. And social studies is this, you know, this mongrel grab bag that could mean different things to different school districts, to different principals, to different teachers. And, and often does in social studies today, a lot of times they don't teach history, but they'll teach how manmade warm news destroying the planet, or how, uh, white people are all racist. And, and, uh, you, and, and, you know, uh, an America's still systemically racist country like, like it was during Jim Crow here, any, anything goes in the, in the social studies classes. And there's very little history taught anymore.
Speaker 0 00:20:21 So, uh, to what extent is teacher training part of the problem? How, how are these teachers being trained?
Speaker 1 00:20:29 Oh, yeah. That's, that's a good question. That's, can I, can I start by telling a story? I told it in the book, please. So, the year was, uh, 1999, 2000, right on, right around this time of year. And, um, Cliff's Notes got in touch with me to, to write, you know, the study guides for every, I, I imagine everybody knows what Cliffs knows are, you know, study guides for great works of literature. And they wanted, they want to hire me to write the study guides for three Iron ran titles for Anthem, the Fountain Head and Atlas Shrugs. I said, sure, yeah, great, let's do it. Uh, and the, the chief editor at Cliff knows, I still remember his name. He's really very honest guy. He said to me, when Cliff's Notes, Cliff's Notes first started out 1950s, 1960s, their demo, their main demographic was high school and college kids.
Speaker 1 00:21:13 Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, some were too lazy to read the book, you know, and some, someone, Cliff's notes helped them understand the book. Cause Cliff notes are usually pretty good. The thing I always liked about Cliff's Notes is they're very grounded in the story. They don't float away just dealing with, you know, interpretations of symbols and stuff. They focus on the story and then, and then place the interpretations, uh, you know, in, in the facts of the story. So it's very observation oriented, very, it's very rational. Uh, and so he said by then he said, but by 1999, 2000, a lot had changed. He said, not a, our main demographic is high school English teachers who wow. Either who, who either have never read the books they're assigned to teach, or worse, they don't understand that. So they need, they, the, the, the English teachers need to read the cliff notes.
Speaker 1 00:22:00 And the reason for that is, you know, as they discuss in the book, to, to be a high school teacher in, I think in, in, in all of the 50 states today, you need to, your, your, your college training needs to focus in the field of education. So you're taking many education courses, which in my judgment, you know, fortunately I never had to take any. But I see from the outside, look at the curriculum and the syllabus and everything. For the most part, I think they're worthless. Uh, and, um, so they're taking a lot of education courses, which means the, the future math teachers are taking fewer math courses than say, just to go on a variety of math, major, major in college course. He or she has to take all these education courses. And similarly, for the literature teachers and history teachers and so on.
Speaker 1 00:22:45 So, the, to be brutally honest, they don't know much, uh, content. They don't, they haven't been trained in content. They've been trained more in method. Uh, so that's, that's the reason why, why so many teachers simply don't know enough to teach high school classes that an English teachers don't know enough literature to, to teach Jane Air, let's say. Or, you know, uh, uh, tale two cities without reading the, you know, the cliff notes. So, I, I, I said in the book, Jack, teacher training should be easy. First of all, train the future teachers in content. The math teachers should be taking math classes, not education classes, and so on. And if the, if those, if those students, those college graduates now really know their subject, whether it's literature or science or you know, or history or math, whatever, it's, I could teach them. I, I'm a pretty good teacher.
Speaker 1 00:23:38 I could teach them how to teach in one course. Well, it doesn't take four years. I could teach them, you know, know in, in, in one quote. If they know their subject, if they know the content, I can give 'em a whole bunch of tips on how to communicate. Especially give examples, induce tell stories. You'll pull the principles right out of the stories of the examples, tie it to reality, be enthusiastic, yell if you after, not, if not an angle, but just to mod, you know, to modulate your voice. Walk around the room, don't sit on the desk. There's a whole bunch of things. But above all, tell stories, give examples, pull the principles out of the examples on the stories tie to reality. These are the, these are the hallmarks of a good communicator. So, so, but you gotta know the subject to start with.
Speaker 0 00:24:20 So one of the things I thought was most interesting about your book, uh, is that even, let's say if you're not interested in how we got here, or the history, uh, and you're just a parent or a grandparent, or you're thinking about having a family someday, and you don't want to subject your children to, uh, to government schools, um, cuz you see what the results are, you can find there are a lot of practical, uh, suggestions that you, that you, uh, have in here. And in part because you talk about, uh, this interlocking directorate of, of unions and, um, bureaucrats and teacher training schools. And, and that in some ways, it's kind of an impenetrable fortress, right? But you've say, we might not be able to overcome it. Maybe not now, but, but there is a way to out flank it. And you give all of these different, uh, examples of, of homeschooling, which a lot of people find intimidating or hybrid schools, micro schools, tutors. So if we could just get into to some of those, those suggestions and solutions that you offer in the book. But by the book, folks,
Speaker 1 00:25:37 <laugh>, thank you. Thank you Chick. Yeah. There's a lot of things parents can do, uh, to help their kids. A lot of parents, you're right, intimidated by it, they say, they say, we're not teachers, you know, we don't have the train to be teachers and or we work hard all day. We're tired by the time we get home from work. Which, you know, is un is understandable. One of one of my responses, uh, you right up front is, how could a teacher do you have to be to do a better job than the government schools, uh, uh, are doing? And the answer to that is not, you don't have to be, you don't have to be very good. But, but, but anyhow, uh, yeah, there's a lot of options. First of all, the single point out, the single most important cognitive skill is reading. And it's easy to learn how to read.
Speaker 1 00:26:19 You know, anybody who's not brain damaged can, can learn how to read easily. So what I recommend, I, you know, do with my, my daughter, when she was like two, it's like, you know, we, we'd go out to the park to play and, and everything, do all kinds of fun things. And p part of the fun things we would do is we would go to the library or the bookstore and, and, and she'd pick out a book. It's important for the child to pick out the book because you want something that appeals to him or her <laugh>. Anybody who knows my daughter Ben, she's always, she's 19 now. She's always been a very, very careful shopper. So it standard in, in Barnes and Noble. And, and it takes an hour for her, you know, to pick out the books she wants. But all right, it's gotta be, it's gotta be the one she wants.
Speaker 1 00:27:00 She sits down on a floor, pass the floor next to her, you know, she says, sit down daddy and read to. So I would, you know, and it was usually some goofy story about dogs that could fly, or kittens who thought the full moon was a bowl of milk. But that's not the point. The point is, you want the child to re to realize the books are fun. And once the, once the kid realized books are fun, then she's motivated. Well, he, you know, is motivated. And by the time you get to four or five, you don't have to wait till the kid's six years old using systematic phonics, teaching the kids the, the, the letters of the alphabet, the sounds, the letters make the sounds, the combinations of letters make. You can teach a motivated child to read a matter of weeks. Weeks. It's easy.
Speaker 1 00:27:40 Its as easy as riding a bike. It's not this tortuous process. You know, the schools have made into most important, the kids now know books are fun and they're motivated to read, and they're on their way to be lifelong readers. And the whole world of knowledge is open to them at that point. That's the single most important thing. And any parent could do that. Uh, so I, I want, I want 'em, I wanna emphasize that. Uh, but also homeschooling. Yeah, I mean, the homeschoolers, there's a lot of people since the pandemic especially, have been moving towards homeschooling. And I was glad by buddy Brad Thompson, Dana Clemson pointed out to me really good news. The leading demographic of people moving to homeschooling the Black Americans who've had it with the schools, you know, with the, with the government schools. And that's great. You know, that's great to see.
Speaker 1 00:28:25 And homeschool kids generally, you know, test pretty much the same as private school kids. They're much better than the kids in the, in the government schools. So a lot of people move to homeschooling. Cause it's one reason, it's a safe, you're in the, you're in home with mom, you know, with dad. In some case, you're not in the government. Schools where you're dealing with drugs and crime and bullies. Bullies, yeah. Yeah. Big problem. Yeah. It's, yeah, a lot of parents understandably concerned about that. But also, uh, for parents who, uh, you know, just don't have the time. Um, there's homeschool co-ops mm-hmm. <affirmative> where parents get together, you know, and in the, in the real leftist states, they, they make it hard for you to do that. And the more you know, uh, redneck places, you know, the more conservative places, uh, and, and let's, you know, you know, give propers to the, uh, religious conservatives.
Speaker 1 00:29:14 It was mu it was largely, uh, Christian conservatives who pushed in many states to get homeschooling legalized. Uh, so, you know, you know, so good for them. But in, in, in a lot of conservative states, they put fewer hoops in, in your way. You have homeschool co-ops where parents pool their resources and take turns teaching the kids. You know, so one, one kid's mom is an MD and she teaches, you know, a class in biology. Another kid's father is a, you know, engineer. He teaches, you know, the kids mathematics. And, you know, one, one parent is a really avid reader, and he or she teaches literature, you know, and, and, uh, I, and it's often, it's, it's generally very effective. Tutors, uh, I think should be discussed. But even before you get to tutors, yo, Jack, I think the single most exciting development in American education today is what they call micro schools.
Speaker 1 00:30:06 Mm-hmm. <affirmative>, which are really just small community schools, because there's still a lot of good classroom teachers in the, um, you know, in the government school system, they have to fight against the stifling bureaucracy. And you see, more and more often they opt out of the system. And sometimes with a few families, they'll start a small school in one of the families', your rec room or base, you know, set up a whiteboard and some chairs and everything. And with four or five kids, you'll start a, start a school. And these are usually the teachers who really wanna teach and, um, and are most frustrated, you know, teach phonics, teach academic subjects, and they're frustrated with the, with the bureaucracy. So, uh, the micro schools are becoming so prevalent that a year or so ago, Forbes Magazine was a business magazine, did a story, you know, on, on, on the micro schools. And one writer called it the return of the one room schoolhouse. And I think this is the future, you know, of, of American education. One, one teacher, few families, of course they could grow, but, you know, Marvin Collins started out that way in the 1970s and grew it into, into Westside Prep. Um,
Speaker 0 00:31:09 There, there could be so many business opportunities, uh, the, the Uber or the Airbnb of, of teachers, um, people kind of picking and choosing. Right now, I'm gonna get in trouble with my audience if I don't get to some of these dozens of questions that are, uh, piling up here. So I still have plenty of my own, but I'm gonna take a pause on that and, uh, turn to some audience
Speaker 1 00:31:33 Questions. So, well, well, we don't want you to get in trouble with
Speaker 0 00:31:34 You, <laugh> right here, right here on Zoom. Uh, Phil Coates is asking you, um, if there is was only one change, uh, one thing you could change about education, what would it be?
Speaker 1 00:31:51 Uh,
Speaker 0 00:31:52 Privatized schools.
Speaker 1 00:31:54 Yeah. Oh, yeah. Yeah. That would be, that would be huge. Uh, unfortunately it's not viable today, although I think it can be, you know, in the future, I think we're moving in the right direction. Uh, um, eliminating the teacher's colleges would, would be one. And then have the teachers study content, uh, rather than method, I think that, but also phonics, phonics, phonics, phonics, phonics all the time. Marvin Collins used phonics. She was a master teacher, and I strongly recommend the movie made about her. The Marvin Calm story with, uh, was it Cicely Tyson and Morgan Freeman? She used phonics in her math courses. Reading the math textbook. Sound out the words how, you know, phonics, phonics, phonics. And did I say phonics? Once you teach the kids to read, the whole world of knowledge is, is open to them. So I would say two things. Phonics, teach, reading. Uh, eliminate the teachers colleges, uh, and, and make the, make the future teachers study content rather than method. And ultimately moving towards privatizing the school system.
Speaker 0 00:32:53 All right. On Facebook, Carol Sands is asking about school choice. Is it a solution? Uh, or does it open the door for governments to get involved in private schools as well?
Speaker 1 00:33:08 Um, yeah. School, uh, school choice is, is certainly, um, better than what we have now. We, you know, and, and that's why I think a lot of Black American families are moving towards homeschooling. Cuz if, if you're, you know, not all black Americans live in the hood, obviously, but, but some do. And if you're in a slum neighborhood, and, you know, Baltimore has got the, you know, the reputation for just being terrible these days. Uh, they see the project Baltimore, the, the, the, the scores. All these kids in high school who are reading at a first grade level. I mean, like a lot of them, uh, it's just, it's just heartbreaking. So you can see why a lot of, uh, the, the black families are take pulling their kids out of the government schools and, and homeschooling. I think that's a, a a, a better option.
Speaker 1 00:33:52 School choice is better than what, than what we have, but that's damn it. With fame praise, I think homeschool homeschooling is a lot better hiring tutors for your kids, uh, homeschool co-ops, micro schools, you know, you want, you want as little government involvement in the child's education as as possible. So that, that's why I think, uh, your school choice is still, you know, if, if you, you, you are having these kids move from the, the public school in your district to a public school in a better district, it's, it's better. But you, you're still dealing with the government schools much better to, to keep the government out, out of the school as much as possible.
Speaker 0 00:34:32 All right. Uh, here's a philosophical question for you, Andy. Zach Carter on Facebook asks, considering the state of public education, is there a moral judgment that should be made towards people who knowingly continue to send their kids there?
Speaker 1 00:34:49 Knowingly is the, is the key word there? Yeah. Oh, I mean, a lot of parents, I think they were shocked during the pandemic, right when they were, you know, they were watching online, uh, to realize, one, how little academic training goes on, and two, how much propaganda, how much in indoctrination. I saw a recent survey, uh, you know, a poll right around the time my book came out in August of parents, who, what do you want for the kids? And their answer was very simple. More academics, less, less political vaccination. Uh, so if, if parents know that, if they're know knowing is the key point there, and they continue to send their kids into these indoctrination factories, then yeah, I, I would, I would condemn them. I would, I would, yeah, I, I would, would do it in a, uh, respectful way. I would say, no, I, I know it's hard to homeschool, but this is your child's education that's at stake. They're not gonna learn much in, in the government schools. They're gonna get indoctrinated with leftist propaganda. You need to find some way to pull them outta the schools. Yeah. Manage it, manage it some way so that you could, they could be educated at home or in a, you know, with tutors or, you know, whatever. Right.
Speaker 1 00:36:01 But yeah.
Speaker 0 00:36:02 And acknowledge, you know, it is, is an important factor in making a moral judgment. And, uh, you know, also our knowing about the reasons of any particular parents and what, what their decisions are reminds me of some of, uh, the discussion of sacrifice that you had in your book on heroes, right? So if you had parents that were like, well, they don't care, you know, they're saving money and, and, um, they're not interested in it. They prefer to, uh, to spend it on, you know, having a nicer home or something. That's maybe where we could start, um, entering into moral judgment. But I think more than judgment, what, um, what these parents need as help and practical information, uh, and understanding, and that's what this
Speaker 1 00:36:52 Point, yeah. Let me, let me just say something about TUDAs for just a minute. Uh, JAG because, um, especially with the rise of the internet and the Zoom technology, the tutors, for instance, for instance, generally have a, have a bachelor's degree in the content subject. Let's say you wanna hire a tutor to teach a kid math, and you live in Michigan and you, you know, you, they're go out varsity tutors.com or a LinkedIn, and you find the grad student on's, say University of Oregon, he halfway across the country, but he's got a bachelor's degree in math, not in education, and he's working on a PhD in math. So he's taken all these math classes, he knows fastly more math than high school teachers do, and he's a graduate student, so he is generally starving. He doesn't have a full-time job. You can get him cheap, you know, and it's in his or her self-interest, because now you can make money in your expertise, right. In your living room and in your dorm room, you know, tutoring a kid across the country in math or whatever your, your, your specialty is. So it's in everybody's self-interest. The, the parents can get good tutors much more knowledgeable than their, than the school teachers generally are, uh, and get 'em cheap because in, in grad school, you know, they don't have full-time jobs, so they're struggling.
Speaker 0 00:38:02 Right. All right. YouTube, we got a question from Scott asking, should parents going to school board meetings just pull their kids or keep trying to fight to make, uh, the public schools better?
Speaker 1 00:38:17 Yeah, that's a really good question. Um, the good news here is parents, a lot of parents now realize just, you know, that the, the government schools are propaganda mills more than they are educational centers, and they're rallying against the school boards. Uh, the bad news is they haven't, I think a lot of them haven't yet, and they're being labeled domestic terrorists by the D O J because they have this funny idea that they want the kids to know how to read and write. But, um, uh, the bad news is I don't think they realize that their battle is, is, is futile. Uh, uh, what's his name from the University of Virginia? Uh, Hirsch Ed, uh, ed Hirsch in 1996 published, you know, the schools we need and Why We don't have them. And he labeled the school system an impregnable fortress. He's right. It it can't be changed.
Speaker 1 00:39:07 They won't be changed. They won't be reformed to, to think it, it's, it's an in a scenario, but it's still an error. We, yeah. The parents think that the schools, you know, the powers that be behind the schools, the teachers colleges, the State Department of Education, and the Federal Department of Education, those are the, the powers that be here, uh, the interlocking directorate are the best to call the parents think innocently that the powers that run the school system want the kids to get an education. And so we, if we, if we yell at them enough, we can reform it. They need to realize the powers that be, don't want the kids to get an education. Hmm. They want, they want the kids to be indoctrinated and serve the state, and, you know, and push us towards not just socialism anymore. I think towards communism, that's the goal. So then they're not a bashed that the kids do so poorly on tests. It doesn't, it doesn't affect them in the least. You're not gonna change them. That's why Hearst is right. It's an impregnable fortress. But the good news is it can't be, uh, it can't be conquered, but it can't be circumvented. And, and that's why you hire tutors, homeschool, homeschool, co-ops, you know, uh, uh, micro schools and, and so on.
Speaker 0 00:40:17 And I think, you know, that kind of approach of, of flanking, of, of using capitalism to find ways to create another system on top of the sales system is, is a good approach to all kinds of, um,
Speaker 1 00:40:30 Yeah. And in this case, yeah, in this case, the private schools you're talking about, or the, the private tutoring and education you're talking about mm-hmm. <affirmative> is all based on the premise that we want the kids to get an excellent education. And not on the premise that we want the kids uneducated and vaccinators. So they obey the state and they only ask too many questions.
Speaker 0 00:40:48 All right. Here's a question that, um, shift's topics, but it's one that I am also very curious too, here. Your, your answer, Anthony Marquette on YouTube asks, professor Bernstein, how did you make the transition from writing nonfiction to fiction? And what difficulties did that transition incur, if any? Uh, also, do you have any tips or processes, uh, suggestions for aspiring writers?
Speaker 1 00:41:22 Um, from the time I was a little kid, I wanted to be a writer. I never wanted to be anything else. Always wanted to be a writer, and primarily a fiction. And so when I finished grad school, noticed the, the first book I published was a novel, was Hard of a Pagan. So I didn't move from non-fiction to fiction. The first book I published was a novel. Uh, and, um, but I think the, uh, the key thing, if you want, if you wanna write whether it's fiction or non-fiction, that I think the key advice that anybody could give to you is very simple, right?
Speaker 0 00:42:01 <laugh>,
Speaker 1 00:42:02 You need to write every day, even if it's a four o'clock in the morning, cuz you're waiting tables, uh, you know, the, the rest of the day, James, Mitch knows a very successful novelist, said famously, the most first novels are written at three o'clock in the morning for exactly that reason. Some you're not known as a writer. Yes. So, so, you know, you work at some job I was teaching, but somebody could be driving for Uber or whatever, uh, and you're tired, but, you know, I understand. But if you wanna be a writer, you gotta write fiction, nonfiction, whatever it is. You're right. And did I say right? That's the way you become a writer and you make time. Now, I know people are married, they have kids, they have a job, they have all kinds of responsibilities. I know, I get it. But I also though people have free will.
Speaker 1 00:42:45 And if something is really important to you, make time. You talk to your spouse, you work it out, you negotiate, you make time for, because this means, this is like, this is like architecture is to Howard Rock, you know, you love it. Uh, I mean, you may not, I don't, you don't have to be a genius like he is to love it. And so you make time. You, you make time. A friend of mine who's very successful hire than me, the two of him in philosophy, I know the long hours he worked, and I said, I said, you have time to study philosophy. And he gave me a brilliant answer. Another forget. He said, Andy, he said, I don't have time. I make time. There's wisdom. There's
Speaker 0 00:43:23 Wisdom. We're staying on this topic for for a second. Uh, let's explore, um, how you started writing, uh, in particular your Brooklyn stories. Tell us about that idea and how it came about.
Speaker 1 00:43:39 Ah, now you, now you're talking, you know, things that, things that I really love because there's some stories in that collection that I'm very proud of. Um, but, you know, I grew up in Brooklyn and it's, you know, it's, it's got the reputation of being a very colorful place. And, and, and very often it lives up to its reputation. Sometimes it's too colorful. I can't, you know, I can't even use the language he <laugh>. But you know what,
Speaker 0 00:44:03 Well ask my father. He grew up there too.
Speaker 1 00:44:05 Oh, did he? <laugh>? Yeah. Well, um, but, um, there's a whole d there's a, the diversity of it, I mean, in not just ethnically or ethnic diversity definitely, but diversity in every way. Intellectual diversity, ethnic diversity, you know, diversity of different kind of jobs, opportunity schools. And I mean, I used to play, you know, I was a always a basketball player. I was playing in the schoolyards in Brooklyn and, you know, I was a graduate student studying philosophy. And one of the guys I'm playing with buddy of mine was a, a bus mechanic. You know, another, you know, another, you know, another guy was a drug dealer, you know, another guy was, you know, all you rubber elbows with all, you know. So I remember guys coming on, on, on a courts, you know, with, with with pistols, you know, in the waistband of their, of their cutoffs, you know, in the, in the summer. I remember saying to one of these guys, wisen off to him, I, oh, you, you're doing, you, you plan on doing some shooting today, you know, <laugh> cause you, you playing on the words of shooting a basketball. And he, he just, fortunately for me, he thought it was funny. He laughed,
Speaker 0 00:45:05 <laugh>, and you're still here to tell the tale. Yeah,
Speaker 1 00:45:08 Yeah. Well, that's good. I'm not like, uh, 50 cent
Speaker 0 00:45:11 <laugh>.
Speaker 1 00:45:12 What's his claim to fame that he survived nine gunshot wounds?
Speaker 0 00:45:15 Oh, goodness. Yeah.
Speaker 1 00:45:16 Something, something like that. Curtis, Curtis Jackson. No, my claim to fame is, and I grew up in a good neighbor. He grew up, he grew up in the hood. But my claim to fame is on the few occasions where there was any gunshots, I ducked. I never got <laugh>. I never got wounded. But there's, there's a, there's a, there's the diversity of, of stories there. You know, some are about tough guys, you know, uh, criminal types and a crime story. There's, uh, you know, story, there's a love triangle. There's a story about a, a graduate student who has to, you know, um, deal with his Jewish mother and his, you know, to, to marry, uh, his, uh, girlfriend who's a Catholic, you know, and, and the gradu and his, uh, dissertation committee who have opposed to his dissertation promoting egoism. There's a whole range of stories, crime stories, love stories, you know, stories that take place in the universities or professors or, or grad students. There's a, there's a, there's a, a whole range of them. So, you know, I'm very proud of some of, some of those stories.
Speaker 0 00:46:20 Well, great. Well, we're gonna put the, the link to those, uh, in the chats on platforms as well. So, um,
Speaker 1 00:46:26 Yeah, the title, the title is the Brooklyn Stories. You get it Easily from Amazon.
Speaker 0 00:46:30 Fantastic. Um, another title by Professor Bernstein is Heroes Legends Champions, why Heroism Matters. Uh, reading it, I have to thank you gave me the subject for a future Draw My Life video. I thought, well, we should do, my name is Maria Montessori, because I didn't realize how dramatic the elements of her life were. So thank you for that. But, uh, maybe just tell us psychologically, spiritually, why do human beings need heroes?
Speaker 1 00:47:05 Well, I've always been a hero worshiper, you know, from the time I was a little kid. Yeah. I was fortunate growing up in the 1960s, especially in the early sixties, everything, everything started to change in the country in the, in the, in the late sixties, you know, with the drugs and the new left and the hippie movement and just the anti-Americanism and the anti-capitalism really, uh, took over on the college campuses. But, um, early sixties when I was growing up, I mean, John Wayne was still making movies. So I used, I used to go to movies, see all these great John Wayne westerns and everything, and what, you know, and, and all these, you know, all these, uh, movie stars, Derek Cooper, Clark Gable, you know, they're all, all these, all these hero, these, these heroic types and, and get real strong female leads, you know, with whether, whether it was Barbara Stanwick or, uh, I loved Heti Lamar and I, I loved her even more when I found out she was a genius, you know, who, uh, was a, was a brilliant inventor.
Speaker 1 00:47:59 But, um, the, the, so I, you know, grew up watching these, you know, these western movies and, you know, and, and everything. And, but I was always a hero worshiper. And, um, uh, a few, a few points. First of all, uh, we need heroes in a practical sense. You know, who, who, and Iron Ranch shows us this. And, you know, Howard walks by all time favor, hero heroes stand up very often, you know, for, for what they know is right against all kinds of opposition, that they're, they're life, life may be threatened or their career, or their, or their lover or their family or their home, some value that they treasure is threatened and heroes stand up, you know, and, and in, in very practical terms, they promote human life and, and, you know, they build, uh, these brilliant buildings, or they come up with theories and science that society rejects, whether it's Copernicus or Pastura or Galileo.
Speaker 1 00:48:55 But they stand, you know, they stand for the truth, or, or sometimes they have to physic, you know, they, they sometimes they're warriors. One of my favorite novels is Shane and Shane's a gun fighter. He's not a, he's not a brilliant intellectual, like Howard Ro, he's a gun fighter, but he protects the best people against the bad guys, you know, and he's, and you know, and he saves their lives. So he, in many, in, in many different forms, uh, heroes provide practical value in, in, in human life. And then secondly, like you said, they provide inspirational value because Shane does, for Bobby Star, uh, they pro you. They, they show us that that human beings can be both good and effective. That human beings aren't necessarily, you know, villains or, or hapless victims, but that the, the, the good can be strong and the strong can be good. And they motivate us. They inspire us to be the best version of ourselves. So I think for both those reasons, we need both the practical and the inspirational benefit. We need heroes.
Speaker 0 00:49:55 Why do you think that anti-heroes or flawed heroes are more in fashion these days? I'm thinking of like John Dutton, the Yellowstone, or James Lee Burke's, Dave Robes show. What does this say about contemporary culture and the philosophical premises that underly it?
Speaker 1 00:50:14 Yeah, see, I don't watch tv, so I don't know those specific characters, but I, but I know a little bit about the show. I assume these guys are flawed heroes. That they're a
Speaker 0 00:50:22 Heroic, yeah. Yeah. I mean, you know, I, I grew up watching, um, uh, star Trek and, and then, you know, the modern kind of version of that is Battlestar Galactic. It was really great series, but you and everybody in it was just, they, they, they certainly weren't a, uh, a Captain Kirk. You know, they, they all had their, these flaws and foibles, and it just made it harder to, I don't know, really get inspired by it.
Speaker 1 00:50:52 No, I understand. And I have a chapter in the hero book on flawed heroes. I have won on anti-heroes. Uh, I used Thomas Jefferson as my example of, right, flawed hero, you know, who did, who did a lot morally, did a lot of bad things in his life, including Neil never freeing his own slaves, but still was a towering hero in so many ways. And especially writing lead, author of the Declaration of Independence. So heroes can be flawed, but you know, we selectively focus on their, you know, on their, on their achievements, rather, you know, we acknowledge their flaws, including their moral ones, but we focus on the achievements because it's the good that promotes life that's most important, not the, not the evil that that harms it, that's what we should focus. But the anti-hero mentality is the idea that if, if heroes are generally greater than every man, you know, like smarter say, like, I always love Sherlock Holmes, you know, he's always the smartest guy in a room, and he always uses his genius to foil crime, never, never to, to ferment it.
Speaker 1 00:51:55 You know? So in some way, the hero is greater than everything. He's smarter, or he is, he's more determined, or, you know, physically more, uh, has greater prowess. Like Shane, the, the antihero is lesser generally than, than every man. It's kind of a nebbish, you know, it's just kind of a, uh, it's kind of like timid and, you know, and it lets himself be pushed around. Woody Allens made a fortune in kind, portray in that kind of character in, in comedic roles. But the reason why the anti-heroes been so popular for the last hundred years is, you're right. What you said is philosophically, one is Freud's influence that we, you know, we all come out of dysfunctional families and we're all troubled, and, you know, we're, we, we never, we never, we never resolve our problems, which is, which is the literary world's take on Freud.
Speaker 1 00:52:43 And I have to say, it's unfair to Freud because as crazy as Freud was, he d he, he saw psycho-analysis as a way that we could solve our problems, you know, the rid the problems. But the literary world took it as they, they, they, they just pushed aside the, the positive aspect that says, you're all, we we're all riddled with edible complexes or whatever. And so, you know, leading examples of that, well, you know, it's like Eugene O'Neill, uh, uh, mourn become a lecture is a perfect example of that, that version of the anti hero. Everybody's just riddled with these inner, these inner conflicts, and they're just sick. Oh, fork's, novels, fork. This, I don't know if Faulkner was actually influenced by Foy, but he writes like he was, you know, his, his characters are just demented and deeply disturbed. And it's like, it has a, Faulkner has a certain power because it's like you're in the loony bit and it's not boring.
Speaker 1 00:53:34 Being around psychopaths or crazy people is not boring, but, but it's not, it's not very uplifted either. That's true. And I think the other influence here, Jake, is Marks, you know, and the idea that capitalism crushes us and we're helpless play things of the capitalist system. Arthur Miller's a good example, you know, Willie Lowman and Death of a Salesman. He's bamboozled by the American dream and he's driven to his, his, his own destruction. Uh, and so they put those two together where, where either way, you know, we're sick, we we're neurotics, and we don't have the moral strength, the standup to our family or whatever. Or we're just crushed by the capitalist system. John Steinbeck's another example of that. Grapes A Wrath, for example. Uh, so, uh, yeah, the, the, the, the philosoph, the intellectual influence of Marks and Freud, I think is, is what led to the anti-human mental dominating modern literature.
Speaker 0 00:54:29 Well, we have about five minutes left. Many questions from both our audience and my own that, uh, that we're not going to get to. Um, I did have one, uh, about an essay that you wrote about two years ago. The, which was called The Left, is vastly more Evil, uh, than Religious Conservatives. I couldn't agree more, but that is not a universal view, even among objective, even on our own faculty here at the Atlas Society. So, uh, do you think it's more or less true two years later?
Speaker 1 00:55:07 Well, after the Biden administration tried to put in a, a division of disinformation at mm-hmm. <affirmative> at Homeland Security, which is very, very opposed to freedom of speech, you know, I, I just reread 1984 and I'm writing an essay on it for the objective standard. I immediately speaking Ministry of Truth. So I think, you know, which all well named very nicely. So I certainly think, you know more so the left is, is more dangerous than the, than the right. But I should point out by the way, cuz what you said is right, it's this, this is a very contentious point amongst objectiveness. And I don't know if I, I ran might disagree for all I know because I can, I'm old enough to a member in 1980 when she very strongly oppose Reagan. Uh, she, she know, she urged her supporters not to vote for Reagan.
Speaker 1 00:55:51 I love Ira. There's nobody in the world I respect more than I ran, but I voted for Reagan on the simple grounds like that. I thought, you know, Carter and the Democrats were worse. Oh my God, wouldn't I have loved to have Reagan around today to Oh yeah. To be able to, to vote for him. But yeah, I think two things here on this way. I think this first two points. First of all, I think the ultimate goal of the left is communism. And I don't even mean socialism anymore. I mean full communism. And the ultimate goal of the conservatives is, uh, theocracy. So, but you know, if I put it this way, way, I think the, the, the leftists are much more advanced towards communism than the conservatives are towards theocracy. That's one, one point. Uh, you know, uh, and, and, and the, uh, the opposition, the freedom of speech is a smoking gun.
Speaker 1 00:56:37 It's a red flag. If I can, you know, play on yeah. Words here. It's not the conservatives pushing it, it's the lab. Uh, and two, and I think the most controversial point is I think communism and national socialism are both more evil than religion, especially Christianity, than, uh, they're both in, in an absolute sense. I think collectivism is more evil than religion in an absolute sense, especially Christianity. I'm, I think I would even argue that communism or or Nazis was even worse than Islam. So if I had, if I had to live in Iran, right, or China, I would take, I, I would take Iran. If I had to live in Afghanistan or North Korea, I would take Afghanistan as the lesser of
Speaker 0 00:57:21 Interesting,
Speaker 1 00:57:21 Lesser, lesser of two wheels. But Christianity has, for all of its evils and all its horrors, I'm not gonna defend Christianity. It's the, you know, to say it's less evil that communism is, uh, you know, is damn it with faint praise. But they have a respect for the individual soul that the, the communists and the Nazis just do everything they can to kill individuality. The Christians have some respect. Islam doesn't, Christianity does, you know, the, the individual soul. And it, it, it christianity's not a lot of evil, but it, the, the evil it's done, I think is limited by, you know, the respect for the individual soul and the free will that comes with. The Christians generally gave, uh, their enemies a brutal choice, convert or die, which is brutal. It's horrible. It's evil. But you could save your life and your kids' life by converting Nazis never offered the choice. Yes. You, you and me are families as, as Jews. Yeah. Well convert to national socialists. That doesn't matter, which,
Speaker 0 00:58:21 There's
Speaker 1 00:58:22 No choice.
Speaker 0 00:58:22 No choice. That's, that's true. Yeah. No, I, I I think that's interesting. The, the framing that you gave it to say that, uh, the, the Marxists, um, have made more progress towards totalitarian communism than, uh, religious conservatives have made towards theocracy. Um, and I also think if you look at what's happening right now, people are becoming less religious. And in fact, uh, young people in particular are increasingly becoming more socialists. So it's, it's not just the, you know, absolute progress. It's, it's the relative, uh, rate of acceleration. Yeah,
Speaker 1 00:59:01 Yeah. And, and, and
Speaker 0 00:59:03 Directions of it.
Speaker 1 00:59:04 True. And there's a whole group of people who call themselves Christian objectives or Jewish objectives. They're influenced by their religious, but they're influenced by Iron Rand. I'm looking around for the Marxist objectives. Yes.
Speaker 0 00:59:15 <laugh>. Yes. No,
Speaker 1 00:59:16 That's true. I don't see
Speaker 0 00:59:17 Any, I, that's, uh, one of the reasons I wrote, um, my Wall Street Journal, op-Ed, can You Love God and Iran, which was not to imply, uh, and I think I made it quite clear that there was, uh, that objectiveism and, uh, Christianity or any kind of, you know, supernatural, uh, belief or belief in an o other worldly, um, system or, or using faith over reason that that wasn't compatible. But there's a lot of Christians, I know quite a few of them who are enormous Ayn ran fans. Yeah, absolutely. Um, I have, uh, a lot more hopes and I've demonstrated, um, progress towards reaching young religious people enough.
Speaker 1 00:59:58 Absolutely. Right.
Speaker 0 01:00:00 Young Marxists, forget about it. That's
Speaker 1 01:00:02 Not gonna happen. So with, with most leftists, there's a few, I know moderate leftists who read I Rand, but the overwhelming preponderance of leftists hate Iron Rand and they either ignore her or they denounce her, whereas religious people, you know, some, some hater, some
Speaker 0 01:00:17 Buckley
Speaker 1 01:00:17 Did, and, and Coulter does, but there's a lot of religious conservatives. Oh, you'd be surprised. <laugh>, right? Mark Levi. There's a lot of the religious conservatives that respect Iron Rand quota and everything.
Speaker 0 01:00:31 I love it. All right, well, this is, um, fantastic. Uh, appreciate the time, appreciate your talents, and again, folks, this is the book. Go out and buy it or get the audible again, I can highly recommend that. And, um, thank you, thank you for this time and for all you do, Andy.
Speaker 1 01:00:53 Well, this has been a lot of fun, Jack. Thanks for having me on. And at some point in the future, maybe we can reprise this.
Speaker 0 01:00:59 I would love to because much questions, questions, questions, <laugh>. Yeah. Um, and I wanna thank everyone who is watching us today. Thank you for all of your great questions. If you enjoy this video, if you enjoy the other work we do, or graphic novels, animated videos and the like, hey, do you know what time of year it is, consider making a tax deductible donation to the Atlas Society. And, um, hope to see you next week. We're gonna be returning to, as all of you know, one of my favorite themes, uh, talking with journalist Jean Lenr, um, particularly about some of the, uh, psychological devastation and collateral damage of some of the authoritarian interventions during Covid. So hope to see you guys next week. Thank you.