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    • Michael Stuart Kelly

      New upgrade with simpler interface   05/13/2016

      Once again, the fine folks at IPB made a new upgrade and things might not be where you started to learn they were. However, this is one time where I think they actually improved things for navigation. There are only a few big buttons: When you click on one of those buttons, some other stuff opens up, depending on which button you click. (Later Note: These only appear when zoomed in or in the mode for smartphones/tablets.) I'm learning this as you are, so I suggest you do what I am doing: click on these big buttons, see what they open and fiddle with the software some. Ironically, you will find there is a lot that is intuitive. That's what I'm discovering. (Later note: I just discovered that I was viewing the site zoomed in too far to see the normal view. The menus are still there with the old buttons, but when I zoom in too much, they disappear and the new buttons appear. I believe this zoomed in way is what the site looks like on mobile devices. I'm going to mess with it some more, then maybe make some explanations.) Sorry for the inconvenience. Still, over time, I hope you end up liking these changes. Michael
Neil Parille

The Passion of James Valliant's Criticism, Part V

477 posts in this topic

Ted K,

If I decide the email is a hoax, I will post the whole thing here.

Robert C

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I still haven't heard back, either from the email address of the alleged sender, or from leonard@peikoff.com.

I am therefore assuming that the email is bogus, so the sender, whoever he or she actually is, has no right to confidentiality.

Robert Campbell

X-Sieve: CMU Sieve 2.2

X-pair-Authenticated: 75.71.203.159

From: "Leonard Peikoff" <usrbsbv0i AT peikoff DoT com>

To: <jwales At wikia DoT com>

Cc: <campber At CLEMSON DoT EDU>

Subject: Wikipedia removing references to "The Passion of Ayn Rand's Critics"

Date: Fri, 29 May 2009 16:13:36 -0600

Thread-Index: AcngqrZXUzffHRDlRESzG5cXwAMqDw==

X-Proofpoint-Virus-Version: vendor=fsecure engine=1.12.7400:2.4.4,1.2.40,4.0.166 definitions=2009-05-29_10:2009-05-27,2009-05-29,2009-05-29 signatures=0

X-Proofpoint-Spam-Details: rule=notspam policy=default score=0 spamscore=0 ipscore=0 phishscore=0 bulkscore=0 adultscore=0 classifier=spam adjust=0 reason=mlx engine=5.0.0-0811170000 definitions=main-0905290178

Dear Mr. Wales,

I learned recently to my astonishment that while books by Nathaniel and Barbara Branden, attacking Ayn Rand and her personal life, enjoy the status of reputable references in Wikipedia, a book disputing their claims and presenting the opposite viewpoint has been removed from your list as non-reputable. I refer to The Passion of Ayn Rand’s Critics by James Valliant published in May 2005. On its face, this is a policy of egregious injustice on your part.

As Ayn Rand’s executor, heir, and longtime personal friend, I will testify in any forum to the accuracy of Mr. Valliant’s book. I do not pretend to know every detail of the clash between Rand and the Brandens, but I do know firsthand the essential truth of the Valliant book. I leave aside here my own personal observations and discussions on this issue with Rand, because the book itself contains lengthy excerpts from her own personal notes, which completely bear out Valliant’s thesis in her own words. I released these notes only after a 20 year wait, because in Valliant I found at last a writer who would give her personal viewpoint a rational hearing, neither hostile nor worshipful.

My understanding, which may not be correct, is that one of the instigators of your new policy is Barbara Branden, one of the two persons identified in the Valliant book, with substantial corroborating evidence, as hostile to Ayn Rand. Surely such an individual and her claque have a transparent motive to kill this book. Can you justify removing one side of this dispute, the one endorsed by someone with my credentials? Do you describe as “reputable” only enemies of Ayn Rand?

There are those in the academic world who question the objectivity of Wikipedia. I hope that your action on this matter will prove that they are wrong.

Sincerely yours,

Leonard Peikoff

Executor, Estate of Ayn Rand

Edited June 4 to disable email addresses.

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Robert,

There is a real warning sign with the email name: usrbsbv0i.

That kind of hash is usually used by hackers, phishers, etc.

Yup.

All the Valliant supporters have left is fraud, fraud and more fraud to try to get PARC taken seriously.

Michael

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Michael,

The rhetoric is Peikovian, but there are a couple of stretches that don't sound right to me:

"I will testify in any forum to the accuracy of Mr. Valliant’s book"

Really? Up to now, Dr. Peikoff has done nothing of the sort. Does he now want to answer questions about the book, or respond to criticisms of it?

"I found at last a writer who would give her personal viewpoint a rational hearing, neither hostile nor worshipful"

Would Dr. Peikoff say "worshipful" in this context?

And is he in the habit of referring to "the Brandens"?

Of course, if either Mr. Valliant or one of his few remaining allies is behind this, how do they expect Leonard Peikoff not to find about it?

Robert Campbell

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It gots stank on its hang-low.

On the other hand, points and a gold sticker for the swanky use of the word "claque," where lesser men would use "clique." But that could be a typo.

Edited by Rich Engle
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Rich,

You know, I did use the word claque on SOLOPassion a while ago. Even called Fred Weiss a claqueur.

Couldn't have given anyone an idea, could it?

Robert Campbell

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You know what I like about this kind of fraud when it gets exposed? Validation of the first impression.

When PARC first appeared, it looked like a big rat.

"That looks like a big rat," everyone said.

"I'm not a rat," it squealed.

"That's not a rat," some supporters squealed.

"I'm really a guard dog," it squealed.

"That's really a guard dog," the supporters squealed.

Now the self-proclaimed guard dog has stumbled and landed belly-up.

What does the underbelly look like?

Why, a big rat, of course.

Michael

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My scrutinously thorough psychological and forensic investigation of the evidence has once again led us into dark waters.

You know, I did use the word claque on SOLOPassion a while ago. Even called Fred Weiss a claqueur.

Couldn't have given anyone an idea, could it?

Robert Campbell

I'm watching you, buddy... :P

Signed,

Professor Gurgler

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What's really weird about the Peikoff hoax is that he does not explicitly endorse PARC anywhere in public (at least the last time I looked). Not on his site. Not in interviews. Not anywhere.

But he would endorse PARC in an email CC'd to a stranger?

That does not fit the pattern in a big way.

There are some other major holes, too.

The perpetrator needs some learning to become truly competent at this.

Michael

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I'm just now looking over at the thread on SLOP and the speculation about the hoax's author has practically turned into a parlor game.

Unbelievable.

This is starting to make the conspiracy nutters look rational by comparison.

But since it looks like there is a speculation (between the lines of course) that I might have done it to make Objectivist Liar Lindsay Perigo and acolytes look foolish, let me take the covers off the insinuation. And even if I was not the target, now there will be those who think so.

For the record, I did not.

Further. If I had done it, I wouldn't mind saying it.

For that matter, fuck Perigo and the horse he rode in on.

I've certainly done worse in life and, as noted, I have Internet competence (at least I might have for that... I really haven't tried to hack into email accounts). But forgery is not the way I operate. When I tangle, I like things out in the open in people's faces.

Like for instance my judgment that Ellen kisses Perigo's ass.

Just in case my public stance was not clear to those who think I need to resort to such tactics (and incompetently at that), I really really really don't like Objectivist Liar Lindsay Perigo.

I firmly believe he needs no help from me (or anyone for that matter) to look foolish. He does that competently all by himself.

If that wasn't clear before, I hope that's clear now.

Michael

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Rich,

You know, I did use the word claque on SOLOPassion a while ago. Even called Fred Weiss a claqueur.

Couldn't have given anyone an idea, could it?

Robert Campbell

Is Fred Weiss alive and well? I haven't seen hide nor hair of him for some time.

Ba'al Chatzaf

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I firmly believe he [Objectivist Liar Lindsay Perigo] needs no help from me (or anyone for that matter) to look foolish. He does that competently all by himself.

I want to add a thought. Let my put James Valliant under this particular umbrella.

If the 1300+ edits to Wikipedia plugging his book, and being told a boatload of times by the editors to stop, did not make him look foolish, I don't know what could. He certainly needed no help to look foolish. 1300+ boneheaded edits competently does the trick. The Peikoff thing is merely icing on that cake.

Michael

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Here's some real irony for a change:

New Zealand rated most peaceful, U.S. 83

By Jennifer Harper

The Washington Times

June 3, 2009

Americans pining for a peaceful existence might consider moving to New Zealand, the most peaceful nation on Earth, according to the 2009 Global Peace Index released Tuesday by an Australian-based research group that counts former President Jimmy Carter, Ted Turner and the Dalai Lama among its endorsers.

So NZ is rated "the most peaceful nation on Earth."

Hmmmmmm...

This must be due to the influence of Solo Passion and Perigo...

:)

Thinking about all those bombastic headlines on Solo Passion, at least we have an indication of Perigo's true impact over there, which is apparently nothing at all except the fringe.

Michael

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I'm just now looking over at the thread on SLOP and the speculation about the hoax's author has practically turned into a parlor game.

Unbelievable.

This is starting to make the conspiracy nutters look rational by comparison.

But since it looks like there is a speculation (between the lines of course) that I might have done it to make Objectivist Liar Lindsay Perigo and acolytes look foolish, let me take the covers off the insinuation. And even if I was not the target, now there will be those who think so.

For the record, I did not.

Further. If I had done it, I wouldn't mind saying it.

For that matter, fuck Perigo and the horse he rode in on.

I've certainly done worse in life and, as noted, I have Internet competence (at least I might have for that... I really haven't tried to hack into email accounts). But forgery is not the way I operate. When I tangle, I like things out in the open in people's faces.

Like for instance my judgment that Ellen kisses Perigo's ass.

Just in case my public stance was not clear to those who think I need to resort to such tactics (and incompetently at that), I really really really don't like Objectivist Liar Lindsay Perigo.

I firmly believe he needs no help from me (or anyone for that matter) to look foolish. He does that competently all by himself.

If that wasn't clear before, I hope that's clear now.

Naw, nobody over there thinks it's you, Michael. It's obvious who Perigo thinks it is. He and Ellen apparently exchanged a private email on that then Ellen said she didn't think that person either except as some kind of collaboration. No names mentioned. If it's a forgery I'm pretty sure who but I haven't exchanged emails with anyone about it. No evidence so my lip is zipped. And it's not Robert Campbell nor Jonathan: both are in your face people who don't sneak around like that. Regardless, this is like a cancer and should be stopped in its tracks.

I do believe the digressions on that thread are essentially a smokescreen to divert attention away from Valliant's Wikipedia activities on Rand and Objectivism, especially PARC interjections. I said that there and I'm going right back there now and say it again.

--Brant

PS: Now that Ellen has stopped posting on musical esthetics, she's stood up to Perigo on some things.

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Naw, nobody over there thinks it's you, Michael.

Brant,

Gosh darn it, anyway. There went my claim to fame.

Hmmmmmph!

PS: Now that Ellen has stopped posting on musical esthetics, she's stood up to Perigo on some things.

Well... different strokes for different folks.

Who am I to stand blocking the path of another's happiness?

(I swear by my life and my love of it...)

Michael

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Well, we have some nice, fresh, rhythm going.

Who's up? We'll time it to your favorite bmp...

rde

Hear my non-airbaton samples at digstation.com . TV Glare

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Rich,

You know, I did use the word claque on SOLOPassion a while ago. Even called Fred Weiss a claqueur.

Couldn't have given anyone an idea, could it?

Robert Campbell

Is Fred Weiss alive and well? I haven't seen hide nor hair of him for some time.

Ba'al Chatzaf

Ba'al; I think he is still running his Paper Tiger Book Service. I assume he has a day job.

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Yeah, NZ, the hostess with the most-est.

I think Brant is right on the other thing.

Perigo isn't even good at karaoke, much less even decent vauldville.

He is a coward. The gesticulating kind of one, you know, you've seen 'em.

r

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Ellen made a statement on SLOP about Peikoff and PARC that should be clarified (it was in response to Objectivist Liar Lindsay Perigo's comment that Peikoff "applauds PARC"). She stated (here):

Linz, are you on record ~providing evidence~, documented, written evidence from Leonard Peikoff (beyond, if I recall right, a very early statment shortly after the book was published)?

Typos aside (for the "statment"), below is a quote from an earlier article of mine that provides Peikoff's opinon: Why Nobody Takes PARC Seriously Anymore

At the time of publication, this book received the endorsement of almost the entire orthodox Objectivist community. This was fueled by the fact that Leonard Peikoff, Rand's heir, had granted Valliant the right to publish Ayn Rand's journal entries from the time of the break, going from the end of 1967 up to the middle of 1968. Peikoff also heartily endorsed the book by claiming the following*:
Jim Valliant... is one of the few people that knows what he's talking about when he says something.

I admit I also think of Valliant sometimes as a "that" and not as a "who." I also admit that this is not very important, but there it is. This quote was posted by the Chicago Objectivist Society in their announcement of Valliant's talk on April 15, 2006.

* NOTE ON MAY 20, 2008: Valliant just revealed that this quote is from the video jacket of Ideas in Action, which, according to him, was published 10 years earlier than PARC. I just documented this in a post. As you can see in the full context in the Noodelfood post reproduced below, there is a strong insinuation that Peikoff wrote this to plug PARC.

Peikoff had made a much earlier statement about something else and it was transposed to publicity for PARC.

This is the only public statement I know of from Peikoff endorsing PARC, and it does not endorse PARC.

Michael

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If it's a forgery I'm pretty sure who but I haven't exchanged emails with anyone about it. No evidence so my lip is zipped. And it's not Robert Campbell nor Jonathan: both are in your face people who don't sneak around like that. Regardless, this is like a cancer and should be stopped in its tracks.

I suppose it makes sense that my name would come up, since I like to create visual and verbal parodies, but if anyone thinks that I may have sent an e-mail pretending to be Peikoff, they're wrong.

I've posted online under pseudonyms in the past, and sometimes for humorous purposes, but when I've done so, it's always been under a fictitious name, and never the name of a real person or organization. I've never attempted to give anyone the impression that an e-mail that I sent came from a real person other than myself, or that it originated from a different location from where I was posting. I would consider my or anyone else's doing so a form of forgery/fraud/identity theft.

Aside from that, even if I were to write a parody of Peikoff, I wouldn't write anything like following paragraph from the letter that Robert received:

"As Ayn Rand’s executor, heir, and longtime personal friend, I will testify in any forum to the accuracy of Mr. Valliant’s book. I do not pretend to know every detail of the clash between Rand and the Brandens, but I do know firsthand the essential truth of the Valliant book. I leave aside here my own personal observations and discussions on this issue with Rand, because the book itself contains lengthy excerpts from her own personal notes, which completely bear out Valliant’s thesis in her own words."

First of all, I haven't gotten the impression that Peikoff would be willing to testify to the accuracy of PARC. I doubt that he'd be willing to discuss or debate the lack of quality scholarly research of PARC. Peikoff doesn't come across to me as someone who issues "I'll fight for it anytime, anywhere" proclamations. In fact, he seems to be quite the opposite -- rather frail and needing to be surrounded by weak acolytes rather than strong opponents -- so if I were to parody him, I wouldn't make him sound strong and confrontational, but evasive and cloistered.

Second, I didn't think that Peikoff had had "discussions on this issue with Rand," and therefore wouldn't mention leaving them aside. It's my understanding that Rand went to her grave allowing Peikoff to go around defending her by claiming that she and Branden had never had an affair, and that it was absurd to even suggest that someone of Rand's caliber would even think about having an affair with someone as low as Branden. I can't see Peikoff wanting to imply that his "personal observations and discussions" with Rand, if not left aside, would validate PARC's thesis. If I were to try to imitate Peikoff, I wouldn't cite alleged conversations about aspects of Rand's private life about which Peikoff was apparently quite cruelly left in the dark.

J

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Jonathan,

In addition to the perceptive comments you made, there are two other things that should be said about you, but maybe it is best left to another to say them. So I will.

1. Competence. Everything I have ever seen you do displays a high degree of competence—much higher than the forged email shows. You are a person who comes across as holding reverence for human competence. People like that hardly ever do incompetent things on purpose because it irritates them on a primal level.

2. Character. You are a person of high integrity. I have had public and private communications with you and I have always had the gut feeling of "what you see is what you get" in your comments about others. People may agree with you or disagree with you, sometimes contentiously, but I know of no one who can validly claim that you lied on purpose about a known fact in order to slander someone. That's just not you.

I hold very high regard for you because of your competence and character.

Michael

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I totally second that, J.

Abso-effing-lutely.

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Amy Peikoff has now jumped in at SOLOP

http://www.solopassion.com/node/6242#comment-72092

It reads like a legit e-mail to me, and is consistent with what I know of Leonard's position on this. I'll get verification.

He's unlikely to ignore her request for verification.

To be continued...

Robert Campbell

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Robert,

If it is true that Peikoff is unlikely to ignore a request for verification from Ms. Amy, now he will be forced to say something about PARC.

Even if he denies the email, I don't see how he would be able to avoid mentioning PARC in public anymore.

If this was a hoax (which I believe) and was the reason the hoax was perpetrated, it was well done. Of course, to be well done, it would have to depend on the participation of someone close to him like Ms. Amy (or whoever) to guarantee a public statement from him.

I speculate, I know...

Michael

EDIT: From Ms. Amy's post:

Might be good to disable Leonard's e-mail address in that post, even if it is a randomly computer-generated one, just in case, so his e-mail server doesn't get overloaded by spam.

Who is she speaking to here?

Who should "disable" Peikoff's e-mail address? Isn't it supposed to be Peikoff's?

If so, it should be him who "disables" it. Who else could?

(scratching head...)

EDIT 2: Opps. I just realized that "disable" means "delete" in Ms. Amy's post. She is requesting that the email be deleted. I understand "disable" to mean shut down and not let it work anymore.

Ain't that something? Even I can make a mistake.

But even so, I disagree that there would ever be a "spam" attack over this issue. The idea of that is pretty funny...

:)

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Objectivist Liar Lindsay Perigo now bleats (to Ellen):

What you're not facing up to is that no one on the SOLO side would do such a thing; everyone on the O-Lying side would.

The truth is that there is no SLOP versus OL contest going on. There is nothing to win.

What does exist is that I intensely dislike Objectivist Liar Lindsay Perigo and a few of the people around him for distorting everything Rand ever stood for and attacking productive people—and I say so in public. People who feel the same also speak out.

The reason is not because there is a SLOP war to be fought. The reason is that I simply pull the credibility teeth out of the efforts of a bully. He attacks productive people in the Objectivist and Objectivism-friendly subculture and I simply say he's full of it. All he is doing is bullying and trying to make a personality cult.

Objectivist Liar Lindsay Perigo's efforts only have impact in our little subculture, anyway. As I mentioned here, New Zealand won first place in the 2009 Global Peace Index of the Institute for Economics and Peace. This research group has many of the world's heavy-hitters on board so it is not just a fly-by-night organization. It is also located in Australia.

This indicates that the efforts of Perigo and his acolytes to inflame his own countrymen to fight for this or that are not at all effective. NZ is the most peaceful country on earth.

Sometimes I wonder what I am doing wasting my time on a loser like that, anyway. I think it might be because I am embarrassed that my public writing voice started at his place (the old SoloHQ) and that he keeps up a silly kindergarten-like tirade against Barbara as a response to her rejecting him. This extends to a few others.

If anyone is seeking an inter-subcommunity war beyond this kind of thing, he will be sorely disappointed. There is nothing really important to the world going on in the back-and-forth. Nothing at all.

Michael

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