I hope you don’t mind if I call you Anne instead of Ayn, which I’m pretty sure isn’t a real name. I know you’re dead and all, but I didn’t want that to stop me from letting you know how much I enjoyed The Fountainhead--not the philosophy espoused therein, which I found utterly impractical--but I found the story rather compelling. I may even read Atlas Shrugged someday even though the premise strikes me as downright stupid.
Hey, do you remember that nerdy guy, Allen, who used to hang around your place, studying your philosophy and hitting on all the girls? Funny story, he grew up to become the chairman of the Federal Reserve and one of the most influential people in the world. He actually managed to put many of your ideas into practice, including de-regulating the banking system, and you’ll never guess what happened. It sank the world economy! I bet you didn’t see that coming! It turns out your philosophy of Objectivism was as flawed as Karl Marx’s vision of communism. So, you’re in good company, right? I wonder if you two are up in Heaven together right now, shooting a game of pool up and talking about where you went wrong. Oh wait, neither of you believed in Heaven. Hell then. Anyway, I think the moral of this story is you should have stuck with writing fiction.
This brings me to the reason I’m writing you this letter. You’ll be happy to know that I’ve come up with my own objective philosophy to replace your failed one. It’s called Insectivism. The central tenet of Insectivism is that man cannot exist independently of insects, and that the central purpose of life is to strive toward the happiness, not of the individual, but of the individual insect. In fact, as soon as I finish writing this letter, I’m going to fix a thimble full of hot tea for my pet cockroach, Ryan. (You don’t want to know what I’m going to fix for my dung beetle.) You can’t imagine how much better I feel now that everything does not have to be about me, me, me, and I feel great comfort in the knowledge that there is something out there greater than myself--like a swarm of locusts! I wanted you to know that even though your philosophy was a complete failure, you still managed to inspire something great. And for that, you are very welcome.
See also: Review: A Bug Story
More Open Letters: An Open Letter to Jack Kerouac, An Open Letter to Tom Wolfe, An Open Letter to Dave Eggers, An Open Letter to JK Rowling, An Open Letter to Cormac McCarthy, A Recent Interview with Jack Kerouac, An Open Letter to Gabriel Garcia Marquez An Open Letter to Stephanie Meyer An Open Letter to Philip Roth An Open Letter to Thomas Pynchon