Friday September 25th, 2009

Ralph & Ayn

only-the-super-rich-can-save-usThe other day, browsing at the local B&N, I came across an alarmingly thick novel written by Ralph Nader, and now the New Yorker takes a closer look at this development. The book — Nader eschews the term novel for it; prefers the hilariously oxymoronic “a practical utopia” — is called Only the Super-Rich Can Save Us! (The exclamation point is a part of the official title and “super-rich” is even underlined on the front cover, leading me to believe the novel — sorry, the practical utopia — may have been ghostwritten by an 11-year-old girl.)

This is, as far as I can tell, the final step in Nader morphing into the left’s Ayn Rand. For instance, the naming department: Not cowed by the difficulty of beating Rand’s Ragnar Danneskjöld, Nader’s stand-in for the real world’s already-goofily-named Grover Norquist is “a conservative evil genius named Brovar Dortwist.” (The magazine deserves a major prize for coaxing this from Norquist: “I have warm fuzzies for [Nader] on a number of levels.”) But surely Nader can’t match Rand’s imagination when it comes to outlandish blueprints for ideological wish fulfillment? Well, check out this sentence fragment: “Yoko Ono, who in the book invents a logo called Seventh-Generation Eye that causes millions of people suddenly to shed their political apathy . . .”

Oh, my. The book is ranked 166 on Amazon as I write this, so it appears people are actually reading it.