After reading 'Atlas Shrugged', which greatly inspired me, I am left with 2 questions I could not find a direct answer to.
1 - in explaining her philosophy based on the 'value of life', Ayn Rand emphasises human nature should be taken as it is (her 'A is A' statement). All those who claim morality/ethics should be based on self-sacrifice or the denial of human nature do not have any other reason for this than their simple wish that human nature should be different. Has Ayn Rand ever given (perhaps in other work) a detailed description of what human nature is like?
2 - All those not following a philosophy based on the value of life basically use a morality of death, according to Mrs Rand. Has she ever commented on the reasons why people follow or proclaim such a morality? (I remember from 'the Fountainhead' that Tooley's ultimate goal was power, and his believers simply didn't have the mental capacity to see through this. Are these the only human motives for not following the values of life, or are there other psychological explanations?)