"I swear by my life and my love of it that I will never live for the sake of another man nor ask another man live for the sake of mine" Atlas Shrugged
"Do not hide behind such superficialities as whether you should or should not give a dime to a begger. That is not the issue. The issue is whether you do or do not have the right to exist without giving him that dime. The issue is whether you must keep buying your life, dime by dime, from any begger who might choose to approach you. The issue is whether the need of others is the first mortgage on your life and the moral purpose of your existence. The issue is whether man is to be regarded as a sacrificial animanl. Any man of self-esteem will answer no. Altruism says, yes." Philosophy: Who Needs It
"Now there is one word-a single word- that can blast the morality of altruism out of existence and which it cannot withstand- the word: Why? Why must man live for the sake of others? Whymust he be a sacrificial animal? Why is that good? There is no earthly reason for it- and ladies and gentleman, in the whole history of philosophy no earthly reason has been given. It is only mysticism that can permit moralists to get away with it." Philosophy: Who Needs It
"If you ask me to name the proudest distinction of Americans, I would choose, because it takes all the others, the fact that they were the people who created the phrase "to make money". No other language or nation had ever used these words before; men had always thought of wealthy as a static quantity- to be seized, begged, inherited, shared, looted, or obtained as a favor. Americans were the first to understand that wealth has to be created." For the New Intellectual
"America's abundance was not created by public sacrifices to the 'common good' but by the productive genius of free men who pursued their own personal interests and the making of their own private fortunes. They did not starve the people to pay for America's industrialization. They gave the people better jobs, higher wages, and cheaper goods with every new machine they invented, with every scientific discovery or technological advance- and thus the whole country was moving forward and profiting, not suffering, every step of the way" Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal
"Only on the basis of individual rights can any good- public or private- be defined and achieved. Only when each man is free to exist for his own sake- neither sacrificing others to himself nor being sacrificed to others- only then is every man free to work for the greatest good he can achieve by his own choice and by his own effort. And the sum total of such individual efforts is the only kind of general, social good possible."
"Throughout the centuries there were men who took first steps down new roads armed with nothing but their own vision. Their goals differed, but they all had this is in common: that the step was first, the road new, the vision unborrowed, and the response they received- hatred. The great creators- the thinkers, the artists, the scientists, the inventors- stood alone against the men of their time. Every great new thought was opposed. Every great new invention was denounced. The first motor was considered foolish. The airplane was considered impossible. The power loom was considered vicious. Anesthesia was considered sinful. But the men of unborrowed vision went ahead. They fought, they suffered, and they paid. But they won.
"No creator was prompted by a desire to serve his brothers, for his brothers rejected the gift he offered and that gift destroyed the slothful routine of their lives. His truth was his only motive. His own truth, and his own work to achieve it in his own way. A symphony, a book, an engine, a philosophy, an airplane or a building- that was his goal and his life. Not those who heard, read, operated, believed, flew or inhabited the thing he created. The creation, not its users. The creation, not the benefits others derived from it. The creation which gave form to his truth. He held his truth above all things and against all men.
"His vision his strength, his courage, came from his own spirit. A man's spirit, however, is his self. That entity which is his consciousness. To think, to feel, to judge, to act are functions of the ego.
"The creators were not selfless. It is the whole secret of their power- that it was self sufficient, self motivated, self generated. A first cause, a fount of energy, a life force, a Prime Mover. The creator served nothing and no one. He lived for himself.
"And only by living for himself was he able to achieve the things which are the glory of mankind. Such is the nature of achievement."
"The standard of value of the Objectivist ethics- the standard by which one judges what is good and evil- is man's life, or: that which is required for man's survival qua man. Since reason is man's basic means of survival, that which is proper to life of a rational being is the good; that which negates, opposes, or destroys it is the evil"