: and our "self-made" American capitalists such as the oil, railroad, automotive, telephone & telegraph, computer, and air travel industries were heavily subsidized by the government.
All of them? utter bull and you should know it. To compare the hopeless and corrupt 'big four' of california whose second rate endeavours were supported by the force of coercive laws with JJ Hills railroad built without govt assistence is to throw the good in (deliberately) with the bad in the hope of tarnishing all.
: After all, only a centralized industry could have had the resources and coordination available to create a massive communicative and transportative infrastructure such as exists in the U.S.
A shockingly common myth. read 'the myth of the robber barons' (Folstrom).
: Also, I feel that Rand's experience with Russian Communism is a crucial influence that makes her react negatively to any collective effort, even by those who do not intend to enslave or be enslaved.
Name a collective effort where the produce of one man is not to be split with others - whether the producer likes it or not.
: A side note: Rand also thought the then-Govenor Reagan was a wonderful example of an individualist "no-government-interference" kind-of-guy.
She changed her mind very quickly about reagan, and then promptly died in 1981!