I am Andrew Ryan, and I'm here to ask you a question. Is a man not entitled to the sweat of his brow? "No," says the man in Washington, "it belongs to the poor." "No," says the man in the Vatican, "it belongs to God." "No," says the man in Moscow, "it belongs to everyone." I rejected those answers; instead, I chose something different. I chose the impossible. I chose... Rapture. A city where the artist would not fear the censor; where the scientist would not be bound by petty morality; where the great would not be constrained by the small! And with the sweat of your brow, Rapture can become your city as well.
I once bought a forest. The Parasites claimed that the land belonged to God, and demanded that I establish a public park there. Why? So the rabble could stand slack-jawed under the canopy and pretend that it was paradise earned. When Congress moved to nationalize my forest, I burnt it to the ground. God did not plant the seeds of this Arcadia; I did.
Even in a book of lies sometimes you find truth. There is indeed a season for all things and now that I see you flesh-to-flesh and blood-to-blood I know I cannot raise my hand against you. But know this, you are my greatest disappointment. Does your master hear me? Atlas! You can kill me, but you will never have my city. My strength is not in steel and fire, that is what the parasites will never understand. A season for all things! A time to live and a time to die, a time to build... and a time to destroy!
A man chooses. A slave obeys.
We all make choices, but in the end, our choices make us.