Interview on Edwin Newman’s Speaking Freely
In this wide-ranging 1972 interview, NBC’s Edwin Newman interviews Ayn Rand about the connections between philosophy and contemporary culture. Singling out the influence of 18th-century philosopher Immanuel Kant, Rand explains why we live in “the age of envy,” characterized by hostility to man’s rational faculty and independent judgment. She also identifies connections between Kant’s thinking and the nascent ecology movement.
Rand answers questions on a variety of other issues including the proper role of government, pollution control laws, the validity of maximum-hours labor laws, the relation between labor legislation and unemployment, the historical record of capitalism, the philosophical ideas that destroyed capitalism, the scientific method, her conception of utopia, mysticism throughout mankind’s history, the one word she would want engraved on her tombstone, the importance of separating church and state, the incompatibility of faith and reason, how Barry Goldwater’s 1964 presidential campaign displayed the “bankruptcy of conservatism,” how the Women’s Liberation movement instituted a “sex war” in America and how the modern drug culture is a symptom of a greater cultural problem.