Essay on Why Money Is A Powerful Thing

1176 Words Oct 23rd, 2015 5 Pages
What is the meaning of money to James Taggart? To Francisco D’Anconia? How do these character’s views relate to the events of the story? Money is a powerful thing. It can make or break a person morally, spiritually, and mentally. The absence of it stifles life and the abundance of it does the same. On the other hand, the ability to make money through the shedding of blood, sweat, and tears is empowering. The idea that Francisco d’Anconia speaks on page 412 is very relatable to the world’s inhabitants: “Let me give you a tip on a clue to men’s characters: the man who damns money has obtained it dishonorably; the man who respects it has earned it.” Francisco d’Anconia’s view of money is perfectly clear, but James Taggart’s is somewhat cloudy. When Mr. Taggart was thinking on page 866, he says that he “tried to force himself to enjoy it”, believing “Wasn’t that what they all were after, the Wyatts, the Reardens, the d’Anconias?” To use one of James Taggart’s favorite phrases, it seems to me that Mr. Taggart really didn’t understand money. He wanted it, but only because “it was easier to pay than to think” (867). James Taggart complains of “unbridled competition” as a “blight” (46). Competition by definition is unbridled, and if tamed, is not competition any longer. My sixth-grade teacher told a story about competition that stuck with me through the years: Her parents owned a gas station, and across the street was another station. She talked of the ‘gas wars’ that ensued…

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