3. “[I]f this should lighten the toil of men . . . then it is a great evil, for men have no cause to exist save in toiling for other men.”
This opinion, which a member of the World Council of Scholars voices in Chapter VII, reflects one of the crucial tenets of collectivism. Not only must all decisions be made by committee, but all men must work not for their own profit but for the benefit of their brothers. If men’s lives are really aimed only at toil, then all pleasure, progress, and invention are barred to them, according to Rand, who believes that the kind of thinking exhibited by the World Council of Scholars leads to the destruction of all joy and technology in society. The result of this way of thinking, according to Rand, is that work becomes oppressive and ruins the lives of those conscripted to it. Rand calls this kind of work slavery and believes that it stifles all creativity and happiness. After this encounter with the World Council of Scholars, Equality 7-2521 comes to realize that work must be done for its own sake or because it benefits the individual, not because it can be of any assistance to society.