Nick Gillespie on Ayn Rand's influence

Some choice quotes from Reason editor Nick Gillespie’s interview with NPR:

Let’s put it this way: Ayn Rand’s work, I think, is popular for the same reason Prometheus has always been popular with humans. It’s about somebody who dares to struggle against great odds and, you know, steals fire. …
Virtually every CEO of every major company will list Ayn Rand as a major influence. A bevy of Hollywood stars, ranging from Brad Pitt to Angelina Jolie to Vince Vaughn – a director like Oliver Stone, who is fond of Castro, says that Ayn Rand is one of the most important figures in his intellectual life. Martina Navratilova, Billie Jean King, Hugh Hefner – I mean, the reach of this author is pretty astonishing….
She gives egoists a positive case for why the world should revolve around them and around their efforts. If you are the person who is creating value, if you are the star, the sun really does revolve around you. And not only should it be that way, but that’s the moral order of the universe….
How many characters from Saul Bellow novels, how many characters from Don DeLillo novels, inarguably great writers, how many of them have penetrated the American cultural consciousness in the way that a Howard Roark or a John Gault [sic] has, to a degree where these are shorthands for an entire system of ideas?
I think that that speaks pretty highly of her power as a writer. She is a great author because she has a phenomenal audience, including a lot of people who go through a worshipful phase with her. And, you know, here we could be talking about Alan Greenspan, the former head of the Federal Reserve, as well as any number of pimply-faced adolescents who decide to grow beyond her.

Listen to the full interview (15 min) for much more.