American homes on the fourth Thursday in November will fill with more than the aroma of turkey and pumpkin pie. Also in the air will be the joy at the start of the holiday season running from Thanksgiving to Christmas to New Year’s.
Early in her career, Ayn Rand worked in Hollywood as a screen writer. Her first film scenarios were never produced, and some have been lost. However, she later wrote several successful screenplays, and several of her own works were (or will be) produced for the screen.
There are holidays and days of commemoration stretching from New Year's to Independence Day to Christmas. A new one should be added to the calendar - informally rather than by government decree: Human Achievement Day -- July 20th, the date in 1969 when human beings first landed on the Moon.
After each new suicide attack, as innocent blood flows in the streets of Baghdad, London, Madrid, or Tel Aviv, there is a surge of speculation about what motivates terrorists who are willing to give up their own lives for their cause.
Perhaps Newsweek did get it wrong; an American interrogator did not flush a copy of the Koran down a toilet in order to get information from a detainee at the Guantanamo Bay detention facility in Cuba. But apparently there were abuses of Islam's holy book, some intentional, some accidental. Many Muslims have strict rules concerning its handling.The Bush administration angrily denied the flushing charge and lambasted Newsweek for its negligence. It certainly didn't endorse desecration. In fact, the reason there were opportunities for abuse is that the administration bent over backwards to make sure that the terrorist fanatics held at Gitmo whose goal it is to kill Americans all had copies of the texts they use to justify their murderous ways.Muslims around the world had assumed that abuse of the Koran was another case of infidel America's war on Islam, as was the Abu Ghraib prison scandal. At least fifteen people were killed in violent anti-American riots in Afghanistan and protests have taken place in Pakistan and elsewhere. The government of Afghanistan says that Newsweekshould be held responsible for the death and damage.Continuing news coverage of this story has focused on administration policies toward detainees. But the real story concerns the nature and danger of religious fanaticism.By definition all religions have some or many tenets that must be accepted on faith, not on rational or objective, philosophical grounds. Thus each religion has many interpretations. In the case of...


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