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  1. I have not read or heard of this essay until today. I know nothing about its provenance other than what I copied from the website below. from To All Innocent Fifth Columnists By Ayn Rand Note: To All Fifth Columnists is an open letter written by Ayn Rand around the beginning of 1941, when she was encouraging conservative intellectuals to form a national organization advocating individualism. She desired for the letter be issued by such an organization. You who read this represent the greatest danger to America. No matter what the outcome of th
  2. Two long and involved articles that touch -- if only briefly -- on Randian ideas in culture. The first features Arthur Robinson (of interest to our intrepid Brant Gaede) and the second drags its hooks through 'right wing' science-fiction. Although I am familiar with some of Arthur Robinson's activities, the article on him has dug up a lot of detail, and is fairly well-written -- despite its bias. The 'right-wing' science fiction article has a case of over-reach, but as with the Robinson article, digs up some material that might be of interest to OLers, if only to encourage critical atten
  3. - The hero blows up a building because it doesn't conform to his standards. - Hero brazenly enters the room of a woman, has passionate sex and leaves. Then barely remembers it the next day. - Hero calls a strike, gathers only his closest friends and waits out total disaster. Not a single f*ck is given as the world burns. - The hero is being tortured, during the process gives the torturer instructions on how to do his job. Not shedding a single tear. Stunning examples? They are all scenes of either Howard Roark or John Galt in their respective novels taking action. A clear p
  4. A letter from Wolf DeVoon to a friend I've been active here for some years. It's one of the few places I enjoy, although I've had to take time away for reasons that I've forgotten. Recent discussions prompted me to write an essay for Brant Gaede. He's been exceedingly kind to me in book reviews, uniquely so. But there's some space between us on questions of the first order. Perhaps I've failed in the past 500,000+ words to express what I think of Rand's legacy. I'll try again. I have nothing to say about Ayn Rand as a student in Russia, or her experience in America. It was contemptib
  5. Where Ayn Rand Learned a Lot of Philosophy I just came across a very interesting tidbit. According to Leonard Peikoff in a podcast, Ayn Rand got a lot of her notions of philosophy from a text he used when he was in college. He claimed she read the thing cover to cover. The podcast: Is It Necessary To Read Kant In Order To Denounce Him? btw - He says the requirement is different (I think he means something like common sense requirement). He says reading Rand is a breeze and reading Kant is excruciating, so if you get a fair overview of Kant's thinking, that works. He claims when he was you
  6. Following Wolf's link to Helen Mirren as Ayn Rand, gave me this: Five of the ten films are about Nietzsche. Also, despite the actual ideas of most of these, I found it typically sad that their "official" review of The Passion of Ayn Rand was such a slur: Take Socrates… In The Clouds, he is satirized as offering "wrong logic" that can be used to disprove obvious truths. In The Clouds, the father of the wastrel youth wants Socrates to teach him "wrong logic" so that he can argue away his creditors. Meanwhile, So
  7. Ayn Rand has the best moral philosophy ever invented. Karl Popper has the most important breakthrough in epistemology. Most Objectivists seem to think that Popper and Rand are incompatible, and Popper is an enemy of reason. They have not understood him. These lists are intended to help explain my motivation for integrating Rand and Popper, and also to help highlight many similarities they already have. Points Popperian epistemology and Objectivist epistemology have in common. In Popperian epistemology I include additions and improvements by David Deutsch and myself: - opposition to subject
  8. There was an interesting article recently by a woman who attempted to start an all female production company. That was her utopian dream. Unfortunately for her, it turned into a nightmare. In my view her failure stands as an object lesson. One should not, of course, jump to conclusions based on a single example. Perhaps the women that worked at the author's company were unusual in some way. Perhaps they were mostly young and immature, though their ages are not given in the article. However, it seems to me that it highlights a feature of the female personality that is often ignored. Wome
  9. On May 12, 2015, at Georgetown University (Washington, DC), at an intellectual symposium on eradicating poverty, President Barack Obama spoke of: Notwithstanding the contemptuous amusement of that brain-dead, empty-souled room of baboons, Ayn Rand is the greatest philosopher that ever lived during the past two thousand years. She knew far more about politics, government, and the law -- let alone about enriching the poor -- than everyone at that conference combined. Thus the hopeless nitwits and pitiful lowlifes at that symposium need to read Ayn Rand and learn from her -- not chuckle at some
  10. Obama Speaks about Ayn Rand I'll find a video later to embed (non is available yet), but here is what Obama said today at Georgetown University: Go here to see the video for now. The video is from C-SPAN3. Since Obama just now talked openly about Ayn Rand, I predict he will keep doing so for the rest of his term. Ditto for his minions. Boy did he screw up. These folks will give a lot of publicity to Rand, then scratch their heads in wonder about why her ideas are spreading. Other than that, let's see if his presidential muscle can stand up to her. Michael
  11. Unable to attend the Memorial program in Los Angeles, I took advantage of the "streaming" online version. I don't know how the acoustics were in the hall, but on streaming it was abysmal. David Kelley was at times inaudible, and speaking just right - if you were standing right next to him!. Some of the speakers were not announced. One presenter, (couldn't get his name,...a Judge something) tried to play a portion of Nathaniel's lecture on Ayn Rand and Romantic Love, but instead of using a recorded version on CD or tape, he attempted to play the excerpt by sticking his wife's iPhone next to th
  12. An interesting short story I just ran across. God knows who wrote it or why:
  13. The following announcement was posted on Facebook. If you plan to attend, click on the eventbrite link to register.
  14. The Atlas Society is sponsoring a Memorial Event for Nathaniel Branden, in Los Angeles, Feb. 22. Below is a partial screen capture of the details of the event. If interested, you must register as soon as possible. See the direct link to the "Eventbrite" announcement in my post in the "Nathaniel Branden" section. Please join us for a memorial gathering to honor Nathaniel Branden and celebrate his life and achievements, sponsored by The Atlas Society, John and Danis Fickewirth, and Nathaniel's family. The gathering will be a cocktail-style reception, with brief remembrances by those who knew
  15. Ayn Rand Died? Sometime the folks who clown around with Randian satire, both friend and enemy, come up with some crazy-ass stuff that is so quirky, I gotta laugh. I don't care for pure quirky (read weird for this one) without much humor, for example The Floating head of Ayn Rand. This has been around for ages and I still haven't figured it out. I suppose it's funny to people who want to mock Rand and Objectivism. But the following (which is more foe than friend), in my view, crosses all boundaries. It is so quirky, benign and LOL funny, I have to share it. Ayn Rand Dead in Gloucester Snows
  16. Fun with Ayn Rand and a Headline Generator I came across an automatic headline generator that the owner calls: Portent's Content Idea Generator If you are in the mood for a fun time-waster, give it a spin. I did. I plugged in the name, Ayn Rand, and got some cool results. I spun the tool a dozen times for this post and the results are below. But I admit. I played with it more than that. How Ayn Rand Made Me a Better Person How Did Ayn Rand Become the Best? Find Out. How to Build an Empire with Ayn Rand What Jezebel Should Write About Ayn Rand How Ayn Rand Killed Kenny Why Ayn Rand is the Key
  17. FINALLY! The Amazon Kindle eBook edition of "The Vision of Ayn Rand: The Basic Principles of Objectivism," by Nathaniel Branden is NOW available ( Amazon site listing. Price $9.99).Downloadable, of course. The original NBI course from the 1960s, given by tape transcription in over 80 cities (and a Polaris submarine!), worldwide. Published in print in late 2009, by Cobden Books, but difficult to obtain in the cloth and hardcover edition. With a New Preface by Barbara Branden, "The Dawn of Objectivism," and an Epilogue, by Nathaniel Branden, "Benefits and Hazards of the Philosophy of Ayn Rand"
  18. The following message from Duncan Scott was received a short while ago. Project Update #8: "Dangerous Woman" update Posted by Duncan Scott ♥ Like Dear Kickstarter Supporters, Here’s a new update on our documentary, The Most Dangerous Woman in America (previously titled Inside the Mind of Ayn Rand): We resumed work on Dangerous Woman several months ago (following the completion of my work on Atlas Shrugged, Part 3). The main focus has been finalizing the shooting script for the documentary. As you can imagine, since we are presenting the spectrum of Ayn Rand’s ideas, and the controversy thos
  19. When I come up with a question on Objectivism this website is super quick to respond so I am sorry if I am seem like I am going posting crazy. My question pertains to pornography and the Objectivist stance on it. For what I gather the idea is to do things out of self interest which watching porn would be, however, watching porn is purely body and doesn't seem to involve the mind though I may be wrong, and Ayn Rand doesn't believe in the split between mind and body, there in lies my question. Thanks, David C.
  20. I am currently in a philosophy class at St. Johns University and we never learn about people such as Ayn Rand, so in trying to learn her myself, I have a question that is troubling me. Does Ayn Rand believe in absolutes, or does she just believes in the absolute of reason. If she does just believe in the absolute of reason why does she write that a speck of dust in an absolute, is it because we learn that it is a speck of dust through reason. This leads me to another quick question, can't reason be wrong at times or flawed, how do we know our reason as a person is right? Thanks, David
  21. Well, there it is, Galt's Speech. Parts of it read and emphasized by Ted Cruz on the Senate floor, today See the C-Span link A first? Probably not the last! Watch MSNBC go ballistic!
  22. In Peikoff's podcast for August 26th (number is not given), which is primarily devoted to the NSA domestic spying, Peikoff takes a diametrically opposed position to that of Harry Binswinger, who minimized its importance in an op-ed in Forbes [i think]) and the end of the pod cast he starts talking about the former NSA document leaker, Edward Snowden. Snowden is a great hero to him for revealing the NSA's electronic eavesdropping. He dismisses any damage that might be done by Snowden revealing defense secrets to Russia. In my mind, if Snowden has done this or is likely to do it, that makes him
  23. Here's a very amusing (and unintentionally revealing) collection of 23 "slides" depicting how liberal/progressives view, (more accurately, mis-characterize), the current libertarian movement (including, of course, Objectivism and Ayn Rand). Contains the usual exaggerations, distortions, "strawman" arguments, etc..,etc. But the fact that they even bothered compiling this list shows that they're watching - and concerrned. so why bother looking at it ? Well, several of the frames you'll love, including some very good photos of A.R. and several surprises, and what they apparently think is the "c
  24. These tests cover Chapter 7 through Chapter 19. Enjoy! The Virtue of Selfishness Test 03 The Virtue of Selfishness Test 04
  25. Link to an article in the London Telegraph, comparing Ayn Rand's depiction of Starnesville and Detroits economic collapse. Not identical, but some interesting paralells.