Just as John Stuart Mill wrote that we trade “products for products”, money merely the lubricant or “ticket”, d’Anconia channels this same supreme logic that says money and the amount of it in our possession is a function of our individual effort, and the value placed on the latter by free markets. In a proper world, we all thankfully have unequal, and very importantly, quite different talents.
Money happily puts a measure of value on what we do, particularly if stable in value, and then we use a little or a lot depending on those talents to exchange what we produce for the produce of others. This is utterly lost on a hapless central bank establishment whose naiveté is crushing the global economy before our eyes, and one can only hope that Ben Bernanke and his other central bank cohorts watch the d’Anconia money scene over and over again.
The wedding scene is arguably the best in the film for d’Anconia’s money speech, not to mention an exchange between Dagny and the new wife of James Taggart. Fully deluded by the false notion of altruism that has captured her weakling of a husband (played well by Patrick Fabian), James’s wife tells Dagny that “I’m the woman of the family now”, to which Dagny responds, “That’s alright, I’m the man.”