While not exactly a finance strategy or tactics book, Atlas Shrugged by Ayn Rand is a MUST read book for all investors. The book was written over 40 years ago but I continue to see parallels of her fictional world and our real world today.

Who is John Galt?

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Essentially, the book is fictional account of various entrepreneurial capitalist characters who find themselves being swallowed whole by a global socialist movement. In the text, the socialist movement begins in foreign countries with various announcements that various industries (mining, transportation, etc) have been nationalized by newly elected socialist governments. If this sounds familiar in our real world you might recall Bolivia recently nationalizing their gas industry, Mexico nationalizing the oil industry and Venezuela threatening to nationalize just about everything. In the book, the United States becomes the last bastion of free enterprise and capitalism in the world but it too slowly begins to slide towards the socialist doctrine with citizens demanding more and more social services often at the expense of business. Sound familiar?

I won’t give any more of the book away because there are interesting twists and turns but the first page of the book contains the infamous phrase, “Who is John Galt?” This question is at the core of the book and if you understand the answer then you’ll understand Ayn’s perspective of the world.

Side note: I understand this book is now under production by LionsGate. Rumors have it that Angelina Jolie will play the main character (Dagny).