emb021

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Posts posted by emb021

  1. If anybody else would like to share their favourite books, I would enjoy hearing them (I'm hoping to live for a long time... :)

    Don't be too disappointed if you DON'T like Heinlein. Some people actually don't, I being one of them. His fans tend to be men and his detractors tend to be women. Personally, I think he hadn't a clue what goes on inside the female brain, and that his women are all examples of what men WISH women were like. That said, "Moon" is one of his better books. Don't even consider "The Number of the Beast".

    ...

    Heck, I didn't even like "Number of the Beast." Actually I think Heinlein pretty much "lost it" after the late 60s.

    Have to agree. Heinlein is one of a dozen or so authors I *really* got into and read just about everything he wrote. I couldn't get into NOTB or most of his later works.

    His 'juvenile sf' series are some great reads, btw.

    "Moon" is a great work as well.

  2. As for the food presently flying at SOLOP, I was greeted with jeers and catcalls when I predicted that it would end this way:

    http://www.solopassion.com/node/881.

    Hard to believe it's been just one year...

    I just read your above posting, and the responses.

    The general feeling I was left with was sort of... did these people read the same thing I did?

    I liked how their responses to your 'hate-filled posting' was basically hate-filled comments. pot-kettle-black.

    On a slightly different example, there was a thread on SOLOP commenting about a newspaper article on the recent anniversary of Atlas Shrugged (they gave the link). While a decent article, it had the usually quotes from people who don't get it.

    And who was the first to comment about this article??? Valliant with a brief note on how 'refreshing' (his words) that Branden wasn't mentioned.

    My thought was 'how is this relavent'???

    Linz soon responded with an agreement.

    Sigh.

    Valliant strikes me as a 'one trick pony'.

    I noted on a recent thread a comment by Linz to "Hsiekovians". Is this a reference to a break down between Linz and Hsieh??? I guess I missed that.

  3. So, where does everyone get their news from? I get mine primarily from the drudgereport, littlegreenfootballs, instapundit, Michelle Malkin, and Daniel Pipes.

    I do not consider any those as 'news sources'. They are all commentors on news. I prefer to get my news from a more direct source, ie newspapers/tv. I usually check out cnn.com and one of my local paper's websites daily, read the weekend editions of another paper.

    I will check out similiar sources to above, but more for a perspective of what's going on.

  4. I haven't listen to LP's 15 hours of lecturing (the mere thought makes my skin crawl)...but, at first glance the whole idea appears to be little more than a giant truism simplistically applied as somekind of broad theory of everything (in terms of the epistemology of mind).

    Grand Unified Theory of Everything?

    On a different point, I've found it interesting some of the comments regarding the lack of (or low numbers of) published works from the "Official Objectivist" camp. Its something I've noticed of late. Sorry, I just don't feel that recorded lectures are a replacement for published works, whether they are essays, monographs or the like (I'll buy a book or monograph long before I buy a tape or CD of a lecture). How much has LP really published? 2 books (one based on a lecture series), and what, a handful or so essays (plus written versions of some lectures).

    How many original works have ARI published vs, say, TOC?

    On yet a different note, I've sometimes wondered if anyone has done a compare/contrast of NB and LP works on Objectivism? Which is a better work or better expression of Objectivism: NB's Basic Principles of Objectivism or LP's Objectivism, TPOAR? (and in my more twisted imagination, I sometimes wish there could be an 'Objectivist Throwdown'. NB vs LP point/counterpoint lecture on Objectivism. Never happen, tho.)

    [above edited a little, with minor additions]

  5. Rothbard certainly had less of a popular following than Rand. There was no organized Rothbardian movement, unlike NBI. Books on economics and political/ethical theory don't generally sell as well as novels. But "Mr. Libertarian" Rothbard was quite influential in the libertarian movement. He was active in the early Libertarian Party and was a founder of the Cato Institute.

    Comparing Rand to Rothbard in terms of 'followers' or the like I think is incorrect.

    As noted, there never was any organized Rothbardian movement. One speaks of Objectivists or 'Randians' or even 'Randoids' or the like. I've never heard of anyone referred to as a 'rothbardian' or the like.

    Now, Rothbard did have a big influence, but one that I think many [lL]ibertarians may not be aware of. He was involved with many libertarian magazines/newsletters/journals, establishing several himself. He was involved in establishing several libertarian groups, not just Cato, but the Center for Libertarian Studies, the von Mises Institute, and maybe others, and was involved with several groups as well. His "For a New Liberty" has been cited as an important work in the libertarian world, which probably influenced many people.

    There were some conflicts. He had a big falling out with Cato. I think he also got disillusioned by the direction of the LP.

  6. Also a long-time fan.

    Long heard of it, and was thrilled many years back with the local PBS station started to carry the Tom Baker episodes. They later did the Jon Pertwee (a close second), Peter Davison, some of the first and second Doctors, Colin Baker, and later Sylvester McCoy (but was having problems seeing all his episodes).

    Taped the Paul McGann movie.

    And I've been watching the new series on SciFi Channel. Waiting for them to start the next series of the David Tennent Doctor.

  7. While raised Christian, I am more a deist.

    For me, while I 'celebrate' Christmas and Easter with my family, to me its more important as a time of gathering with the family, and all that that entails. The chance to see relatives you may not see except at xmas/easter, etc.

    We usually gathered at a relative's home, had a lot of the family over for a big spread, had easter egg hunts, etc. There was always an Easter basket with goodies, always lots of candy (lots of it more 'traditional' easter fare: chocolate bunnies, eggs, jelly beans, etc). Maybe some small gifts (a book or two, nothing like at xmas or birthdays).

  8. Hmmm.

    Not sure if this adds to the conversation.

    I recently order a bunch of books from the Ludwig von Mises Institute (taking advantage of their 25% off books they published if ordered in March). One of them is the "Essential Rothbard". I was skimming thru it, and came upon a section where Rothbard was assessing Hayek's "Constitution of Liberty" (a book that I have yet to obtain or read, but want to). Rothbard was apparently incesed (sp?) about some of the concepts Hayek put forth on Rationalism, which Rothbard viewed (similiar to Rand) as an attack on reason. Rothbard's conclusion was the book was an 'evil book'. I was frankly quite surprised by this, as it seemed more of a reaction I would have expected from Rand, not Rothbard.

  9. Barbara:

    ~ Re SFiction, try some 'short' stories rather than novels; 'anthologies' is where to appreciate actual 'SF'. Trust me on this; THIS is where SF originated its mark; the 'name' authors (Heinlein, Asimov, Clarke, etc) have their real 'classics' here. Contemporarily, I think there aren't any of those anymore. I'm talking 'the classics' (Rand ref'd Frederick Brown, if I remember. 'Short' ones is all he did; like Serling's TWILIGHT ZONE [which used many of SF 'short' stories] stuff.) --- Appreciating any novels (then or now) requires an established 'fan.'

    ~ As far as reading things I couldn't finish, hasn't happened yet (that I can recall!). Tolkien's Ring trilogy was a slogfest, and, it was quite a while ago. I decided 'never again'; like movies, I'll check the reviews, book-blurb, author-familiarity, hype, etc. 1st. --- Re Shakes' 'comedies', my wife says that the plays are to be seen, not read.

    SF has many good novels and epics out there. But like any other area of fiction, there is a lot of garbage. There are many excellent short stories, mostly classics from the past. Sadly, the venues for such works has been drying up for decades. But you can usually get collections of the good stuff.

    LOTR is not for everyone. I read it in spirts and still conceder myself a fan. I keep thinking about re-reading the whole series, but there's too much new stuff I want to read.

    If you think LOTR is daunting, try Peter Hamilton's Night's Dawn 'Trilogy'. 3 thick hardbacks which were reprinted into *6* thick books (in the US. Other countries split each book into 3 or 4 paperbacks!). I was afraid to get into it, as the first part of the first book is setting up all the various characters/groups (about a half dozen) so we got to know them before things really got started. Thankfully I got past that 'hump' and went straight thru the rest of the trilogy. (I got the books because I was going on a 2 week trip that I'd knew I'd have quite a bit of free time I need to 'fill' with something, and there was no tv, etc. A couple of really thick books is good for keeping me going.

    Hamilton has another big 2-part series that I'm waiting for the second one to come out in paperback before I jump into it. I don't to finish the first and have to wait for the second.

  10. Funny.

    Valliant is crowing over on SOLO that Cline (author of the Sparrowhawk books, which, btw, LFB sells) has read PARC and pretty much as accepted it as the 'true story'.

    Its also interesting that they again point out the silence of the Brandens on PARC (sort of 'they must be guilty because they haven't responded' kind of thing). They point out a couple of responses, including Neil's 'nitpicking', as if they can just ignore his points.

  11. A different aspect, one of contract, is involved for the essay collections in books. The selections were made by agreements between Rand (alone or with Nathaniel Branden) and the publishers. Those couldn't be changed without mutual consent. New American Library / Signet, et al., agreed to publish the whole package for, say, CUI, not one that excised Greenspan, Hessen, and the others, and paid accordingly.

    All bets are off, however, with a new publisher, such as Oliver Computing, which produced that CD-ROM, and clearly had to conform to the Orthodoxy's whims.

    Hmmm.

    I had read the statements by Rand after the break that said that all pre-break works by the Brandens were officially 'ok' and part of Objectivism. Hence the reason, I assume, of their works still continuing to be in her collections.

    From your comments, one could suspect that this declaration was more to coverup why AR didn't remove their works from her collections.

    With the CD-ROM, considering the owner's anti-Branden stance, one could understand the remove of non-Rand materials (except leaving in Peikoff). Personally, this makes the CD useless to me.

  12. My favorite comedy of all time; Office Space.

    I believe you have my stapler!

    Yeah. And I need you to come in on Saturday.

    At a recent conference I was at, I was chatting with another attendee. He was telling us that his major in school (some HR field) was basically to be a "Bob". It was the best way for him to explain his career. He was going to be doing the same basic thing as the "Bobs" in Office Space (in a positive way, not a negative way. I think.)

  13. Ayn Rand and the other Objectivists were very proud that NBI was in the Empire State Building. The Empire State Building was the tallest building in the world with all the symbolism that statement implied. There was also the added benefit of having all operations in one place including the lecture hall. It was a great step of moving Objectivism from the cult status. There were no complaints about being in the sub-basement in 1967.

    FWIW.

    When I first got into Rand back when I went to college in the early 1980s (but missed the denouncement et all of the Brandens, thus I had no problems getting their works), I had little idea at the time of what NBI was.

    It only be fairly recently (within the last year) that I've learned what NBI was, and even more recently where it was. I think I read a few comments about NBI's location in the ESB that seem to give an impression of a put down that it was in a sub-basement. Sorry, can't cite that. But obviously, this was from post-split, anti-Branden attitudes.

  14. Actually, the book I was surprised to see on the list was the Harry Potter book!

    Come on! Not to put down Rowling, but the HP books are mainly aimed at children (tho, like the best of 'children's literature' can be enjoyed by adults as well). As such, the writting is clear and easy. I read all the ones so far, and am hoping to get the next and last one to read on my flight to England this summer (the last book was supposed to be my airplane book as well, but I wound up reading it before I left on my trip).

    So, IMO, for someone to say they had problems reading it, I have to wonder about the reader (more so then the writter, as I would with other books).

  15. Due to the cost of going to the movies, I get a bit picky in deciding what, if anything, I'll go see. Is it a movie I *must* see in a theater, vs seeing it on tv, vs not wasting my time on.

    The last movie I saw was "300".

    It does have some themes I think do speak to us today. And, hey, if its success p*sses off Iran, so much the better. (if Iran thinks this movie is about them, frankly, it makes them look that much worse). People need to keep in mind that while, yes, the basic story IS based on history and much of the dialogue comes from the Greek historian Herodatus (so, no, they weren't funded by the US Government), much of the vision of the movie comes from the artist Frank Miller. And its clear that what we see is due to the telling and embellishment of Dilios.

    Some great lines:

    Xerxes (in the words of many tyrants): Cruel Leonidas demanded that you stand. I require only that you kneel.

    Leonidas: A new age has come: an age of freedom. And all will know that 300 Spartans gave their last breath to defend it.

    Dilios (after telling the story of the 300 to those preparing for the Battle of Palatea): This day we rescue a world from mysticism and tyranny, and usher in a future bright than anything we could imagine.

    Also when I saw it, several people cheered and clapped when Queen Gorgo took care of Theron.

  16. There are a few authors I keep an eye out for their next work (Cussler, Asprin, Rowling, F Paul Wilson, a few others).

    Wilson! Yeah! I've been reading his stuff since "The Keep" kept me up all night in the mid '80s. He's got a new Repairman Jack novel coming out soon. I get the "Gauntlet Press" newsletter by e-mail; they send out info on his forthcoming stuff, and you can get limited edition copies ordered in advance. Can't wait....

    Repairman Jack is great! I had gotten his LaNague Chronicle works several years back (I keep an eye out for libertarian sf). I got into RJ due to the HPL connection, BION!

    For me, I don't get into limited editions or HB, unless I can't avoid it. They cost too much. Less money to spend on more book!! So I wait for paperback. Which has been frustrating with RJ (and a couple of others!!), as they wait waaay too long to come out. It should be six month, a year TOPS when the PB should come out! Have to wait until August for the next paperback (Harbingers). (unless I happen to find a used HB, like I did with Gateways).

    Uh, for those who don't know what the h*ll we're talking about, go here: http://www.repairmanjack.com

  17. Don't forget, Rand's personal likes are not necessarily a part of Objectivism.

    The problem is that I understand that, and many Objectivists understand that (I think most on this board would), but many DON'T.

    Too often Rand presented her personal likes/dislikes as tho they were part/parcel of Objectivism (which caused a few permanent riffs). Sort of 'you must like X kind of music if you are a true Oist' (which was basically the music she liked, when it came down to it), etc.

    Plus, it appears to me that many of Rand's poor behavior characteristics seem to have been picked up by many Objectivists (usually of the ARIan crowd).

    Furthermore, some non-Oist are turned off by how Rand behaved (componded by Oist that act the same way) and thus condemn Oism.

  18. Neil has posted his recent PARC comments on SLOP, where Valliant hangs out.

    James Valliant on TARC

    James Valliant on Nathaniel Branden as Objectivist Heretic

    What tickles me is that he is not being refuted at all. Phil Coates has a post mentioning why. The contempt these people hold for their own audience is awe-inspiring. I think it blinds them to the fact that some of their own convinced ones will think:

    The second one is the most... interesting in its responses. Phil make a good posting pointing out the poor responses to Neil's stuff. (I seem to recall the Phil had struck me as one of the, uh, rational few on SOLO).

    I like the claim by 'wngreen' (who had posted several useless comments) that Neil has been refuted by several. Hmmm, unless I missed something, I don't recall any such thing. Unless I have a different concept of refusion...

    Its just this sort of cr*p that while I will take a look at what's going on at SOLO, I have NO desire to comment.

  19. I consider myself more of a libertarian (more l then L) then an Objectivist. I have read much of her work, and like many, I like a lot of her philosophy.

    I think my likes/dislikes are similiar to others here.

    Like: rational, individual-based philosophy based on reality.

    Dislikes: Rand personal likes/dislikes taken as Objectivist canon, and Rand's negative attitudes/behaviors being pertetuated by certain Oists.

  20. I've always been a 'book nerd' (you should see my condo...).

    when growing up I always had a book I was reading. Usually SF (that's science fiction. NOT to be abreviated sci-fi), sometimes fantasy, rarely something else. I'd read in bed before going to sleep. I'd read on the bus going to school. I'd read in between classes and at lunch. Sometimes in class if class was borrying and I could get away with it.

    Every so often I had a book I couldn't get into. Usually had problems the first couple of chapters. I'd usually put it aside. Sometimes I came back to it and was able to get into it and finish it. Some I never did. I was also in the habit of getting into a particular author, getting most (if not all) they wrote, and reading everything. Ex: Burroughs (except Tarzan), Heinlein, Niven.

    Some authors (very rare) I would get so into that I get books about the author, etc. Ex: Tolkein, Lovecraft, Rand.

    Sadly, I'm not as big a reader as I used to be. More, because there is less out there I like. There are a few authors I keep an eye out for their next work (Cussler, Asprin, Rowling, F Paul Wilson, a few others). I find my reading to be SF, some techno-thrillers, some mysteries, some horror.