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Ellen:

Per your last point, I would also say especially Rand's willingness to put dynamite in Roark's hands, notwithstanding that blowing up Cortdlandt was in so many other ways as non-Objectivist as it could have been. The "dynamite" factor and its impact in Rand's writings can be seen today over on the Snowden thread, where not a small number of the thoughtful-Objectivish members of the forum have applauded Snowden's violation of his oath/contract/federal law for an ostensibly greater good.

There are a lot of things I admire about Howard Roark, but his sexual behavior and his fondness for dynamite are not among them.

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Ellen:

Per your last point, I would also say especially Rand's willingness to put dynamite in Roark's hands, notwithstanding that blowing up Cortdlandt was in so many other ways as non-Objectivist as it could have been. The "dynamite" factor and its impact in Rand's writings can be seen today over on the Snowden thread, where not a small number of the thoughtful-Objectivish members of the forum have applauded Snowden's violation of his oath/contract/federal law for an ostensibly greater good.

There are a lot of things I admire about Howard Roark, but his sexual behavior and his fondness for dynamite are not among them.

Ah, but would you change him? I wonder when Objectivists will learn that she never was an Objectivist. She embraced a philosopher to her core who ended up a crazy man. Probably when they learn they aren't Objectivists either. No one is, because a philosophy isn't as written, it's actually a combination of psychology and "philosophy" in each and every person, but the disciplines aren't integrated. That's why college courses on philosophy are mostly real life garbage. Real philosophy--philosophy in a person-- can be arduously modified, the younger the less arduous the needed effort all considered, and that's the real life value of the abstraction called "Objectivism" if you know what it really is. The "philosophy of Ayn Rand" is dangerous as such, it was especially so for her but hers it was, but "Objectivsm" would have set her tumbling from public sight. In fact, she never would have written her great novels.

As for Snowden, he's a twirp. When are supposed Objectivists going to get over their implicit worship of the monstrous American State?

--Brant

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Ellen:

Per your last point, I would also say especially Rand's willingness to put dynamite in Roark's hands, notwithstanding that blowing up Cortdlandt was in so many other ways as non-Objectivist as it could have been. The "dynamite" factor and its impact in Rand's writings can be seen today over on the Snowden thread, where not a small number of the thoughtful-Objectivish members of the forum have applauded Snowden's violation of his oath/contract/federal law for an ostensibly greater good.

There are a lot of things I admire about Howard Roark, but his sexual behavior and his fondness for dynamite are not among them.

Ah, but would you change him? I wonder when Objectivists will learn that she never was an Objectivist. She embraced a philosopher to her core who ended up a crazy man. Probably when they learn they aren't Objectivists either. No one is, because a philosophy isn't as written, it's actually a combination of psychology and "philosophy" in each and every person, but the disciplines aren't integrated. That's why college courses on philosophy are mostly real life garbage. Real philosophy--philosophy in a person-- can be arduously modified, the younger the less arduous the needed effort all considered, and that's the real life value of the abstraction called "Objectivism" if you know what it really is. The "philosophy of Ayn Rand" is dangerous as such, it was especially so for her but hers it was, but "Objectivsm" would have set her tumbling from public sight. In fact, she never would have written her great novels.

As for Snowden, he's a twirp. When are supposed Objectivists going to get over their implicit worship of the monstrous American State?

--Brant

No, I wouldn't change him. I would delete the rape scene and figure out a better way to gain justice for the Cortdlandt debacle.

I understand your point about the proper noun of Objectivism, but the reality is that a number of people, some on this forum, have self-idenitified as members of the system identified by the proper noun of Objectivism. And when they do, this tells us a lot about their views. Just as Jehovah's Witnesses are different than Mormons, so too are Objectivists quite different than, say Stoics--notwithstanding large areas of overlap.

Back in the old days, so to speak, the philosophically-minded person trying to live a life devoted to wisdom was merely called a philosopher. Thus, someone like Seneca was a philosopher, who happened to live according to Stoic principles. But he was philosopher first, and a Stoic second. And even though he was a Stoic, he did not feel the need to have an answer for everything.

This appeals to me.

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Back in the old days, so to speak, the philosophically-minded person trying to live a life devoted to wisdom was merely called a philosopher. Thus, someone like Seneca was a philosopher, who happened to live according to Stoic principles. But he was philosopher first, and a Stoic second. And even though he was a Stoic, he did not feel the need to have an answer for everything.

This appeals to me.

Agree completely.

Even when I was actively attending NBI in the '60's, that large clanking bell kept ringing in my mind.

"...he did not need to have an answer for everything."

Precisely, no rational mind, with a mild degree of perspective, history and critical thinking could.

One of the growing disappointments with the movement was it's insular path.

A...

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I'm comfortable with the scenes.

I don't know of a purely philosophical way to say, "Don't fuck with me," and have it mean anything to anyone.

Dynamite has its uses.

As to rape? In the context of Howard and Dominique, I don't consider it rape. If it were, she would have had the worst cast of Stockholm Syndrome in all fiction.

:)

Michael

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Ellen:

Per your last point, I would also say especially Rand's willingness to put dynamite in Roark's hands, notwithstanding that blowing up Cortdlandt was in so many other ways as non-Objectivist as it could have been. The "dynamite" factor and its impact in Rand's writings can be seen today over on the Snowden thread, where not a small number of the thoughtful-Objectivish members of the forum have applauded Snowden's violation of his oath/contract/federal law for an ostensibly greater good.

There are a lot of things I admire about Howard Roark, but his sexual behavior and his fondness for dynamite are not among them.

Ah, but would you change him? I wonder when Objectivists will learn that she never was an Objectivist. She embraced a philosopher to her core who ended up a crazy man. Probably when they learn they aren't Objectivists either. No one is, because a philosophy isn't as written, it's actually a combination of psychology and "philosophy" in each and every person, but the disciplines aren't integrated. That's why college courses on philosophy are mostly real life garbage. Real philosophy--philosophy in a person-- can be arduously modified, the younger the less arduous the needed effort all considered, and that's the real life value of the abstraction called "Objectivism" if you know what it really is. The "philosophy of Ayn Rand" is dangerous as such, it was especially so for her but hers it was, but "Objectivsm" would have set her tumbling from public sight. In fact, she never would have written her great novels.

As for Snowden, he's a twirp. When are supposed Objectivists going to get over their implicit worship of the monstrous American State?

No, I wouldn't change him. I would delete the rape scene and figure out a better way to gain justice for the Cortdlandt debacle.

The "rape" scene didn't have to be so bad. What was worst about it was the immediate aftermath. Dominique going into the bathroom and lying on the floor until morning was more rape victim than someone getting any sexual gratification. In real life such a person would likely have suffered a gross and life-long trauma. I only say "likely" because different people can process the same thing differently, so even a trauma like that one might cause the victim to outgrow it and transcend it. I wouldn't take any odds on that, though, not for rape.

Now, Rand didn't intend for it to be a depiction of rape, something more obvious in 1943 than today. It could have been done much better if only a little differenly. I'd defend the novel here in only one way: she was rushed to write most of it to its end in 1942.

As for Cortlandt, some things could be changed, setting up the blowing up better, eliminating any fraud Roark committed making him more of a victim, but take out that big BANG! and good luck replacing it and with any other climax and good luck remaking its movie post 9/11, leaving it in.

--Brant

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The "rape" scene didn't have to be so bad. What was worst about it was the immediate aftermath. Dominique going into the bathroom and lying on the floor until morning was more rape victim than someone really getting sexual gratification. In real life such a person would likely have suffered a gross and life-long trauma. I only say "likely" because different people can process the same thing differently, so even a trauma like that one might cause the victim to outgrow it and transcend it. I wouldn't take any odds on that, though, for rape.

Good points Brant and Dennis.

I have never been comfortable with the rape scene.

However, in the delusional scene wherein Howard can use dynamite...all by his lonesome...however, we do know he built it, so he knows how to destroy his work, and have the physical acumen to plant the charges where no one would be injured...ok, and which way to the tooth fairy?

In retrospect this meshes with the ubermann.

Most of us, in retrospect would also pass.

A...

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Ellen:

Per your last point, I would also say especially Rand's willingness to put dynamite in Roark's hands, notwithstanding that blowing up Cortdlandt was in so many other ways as non-Objectivist as it could have been. The "dynamite" factor and its impact in Rand's writings can be seen today over on the Snowden thread, where not a small number of the thoughtful-Objectivish members of the forum have applauded Snowden's violation of his oath/contract/federal law for an ostensibly greater good.

There are a lot of things I admire about Howard Roark, but his sexual behavior and his fondness for dynamite are not among them.

Ellen:

Per your last point, I would also say especially Rand's willingness to put dynamite in Roark's hands, notwithstanding that blowing up Cortdlandt was in so many other ways as non-Objectivist as it could have been. The "dynamite" factor and its impact in Rand's writings can be seen today over on the Snowden thread, where not a small number of the thoughtful-Objectivish members of the forum have applauded Snowden's violation of his oath/contract/federal law for an ostensibly greater good.

There are a lot of things I admire about Howard Roark, but his sexual behavior and his fondness for dynamite are not among them.

Ah, but would you change him? I wonder when Objectivists will learn that she never was an Objectivist. She embraced a philosopher to her core who ended up a crazy man. Probably when they learn they aren't Objectivists either. No one is, because a philosophy isn't as written, it's actually a combination of psychology and "philosophy" in each and every person, but the disciplines aren't integrated. That's why college courses on philosophy are mostly real life garbage. Real philosophy--philosophy in a person-- can be arduously modified, the younger the less arduous the needed effort all considered, and that's the real life value of the abstraction called "Objectivism" if you know what it really is. The "philosophy of Ayn Rand" is dangerous as such, it was especially so for her but hers it was, but "Objectivsm" would have set her tumbling from public sight. In fact, she never would have written her great novels.

As for Snowden, he's a twirp. When are supposed Objectivists going to get over their implicit worship of the monstrous American State?

--Brant

No, I wouldn't change him. I would delete the rape scene and figure out a better way to gain justice for the Cortdlandt debacle.

I understand your point about the proper noun of Objectivism, but the reality is that a number of people, some on this forum, have self-idenitified as members of the system identified by the proper noun of Objectivism. And when they do, this tells us a lot about their views. Just as Jehovah's Witnesses are different than Mormons, so too are Objectivists quite different than, say Stoics--notwithstanding large areas of overlap.

Back in the old days, so to speak, the philosophically-minded person trying to live a life devoted to wisdom was merely called a philosopher. Thus, someone like Seneca was a philosopher, who happened to live according to Stoic principles. But he was philosopher first, and a Stoic second. And even though he was a Stoic, he did not feel the need to have an answer for everything.

This appeals to me.

If anything should have been changed, it wasn't The Fountainhead, but Rand's aesthetic theory. Her art is great. A part of why it's great is that it doesn't comply with her Esthetics, and it's characters don't conform to her philosophy. They have flaws, and they behave immorally, which makes for greater art. The plots include some sleight of hand and irrational character behaviors. When the novels' aesthetic spells wears off, and one has time to dispassionately contemplate how realistic, or not, their "Romantic Realism" is, one may see all of the cracks and holes. But that's not important. What matters in art is the initial spell that was cast.

So, I say don't meddle with The Fountainhead, and also don't overpaint Vermeer's canvases with perfectly rational heroes joyously leaping about in factories, or otherwise being Objectively exuberant and completely non-contradictory. Instead, meddle with the Esthetics. Ditch the idea of art playing the role of illustrating its creator's philosophy. Lose the notion that art has the responsibility of acting as a moral guide, and that everything which is included in a work of art takes on "metaphysical significance." Drop the idea that if an artist creates a heroic character, then the artist is endorsing all of the character's actions and suggesting that they should be emulated.

J

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Ellen:

Per your last point, I would also say especially Rand's willingness to put dynamite in Roark's hands, notwithstanding that blowing up Cortdlandt was in so many other ways as non-Objectivist as it could have been. The "dynamite" factor and its impact in Rand's writings can be seen today over on the Snowden thread, where not a small number of the thoughtful-Objectivish members of the forum have applauded Snowden's violation of his oath/contract/federal law for an ostensibly greater good.

There are a lot of things I admire about Howard Roark, but his sexual behavior and his fondness for dynamite are not among them.

Ellen:

Per your last point, I would also say especially Rand's willingness to put dynamite in Roark's hands, notwithstanding that blowing up Cortdlandt was in so many other ways as non-Objectivist as it could have been. The "dynamite" factor and its impact in Rand's writings can be seen today over on the Snowden thread, where not a small number of the thoughtful-Objectivish members of the forum have applauded Snowden's violation of his oath/contract/federal law for an ostensibly greater good.

There are a lot of things I admire about Howard Roark, but his sexual behavior and his fondness for dynamite are not among them.

Ah, but would you change him? I wonder when Objectivists will learn that she never was an Objectivist. She embraced a philosopher to her core who ended up a crazy man. Probably when they learn they aren't Objectivists either. No one is, because a philosophy isn't as written, it's actually a combination of psychology and "philosophy" in each and every person, but the disciplines aren't integrated. That's why college courses on philosophy are mostly real life garbage. Real philosophy--philosophy in a person-- can be arduously modified, the younger the less arduous the needed effort all considered, and that's the real life value of the abstraction called "Objectivism" if you know what it really is. The "philosophy of Ayn Rand" is dangerous as such, it was especially so for her but hers it was, but "Objectivsm" would have set her tumbling from public sight. In fact, she never would have written her great novels.

As for Snowden, he's a twirp. When are supposed Objectivists going to get over their implicit worship of the monstrous American State?

--Brant

No, I wouldn't change him. I would delete the rape scene and figure out a better way to gain justice for the Cortdlandt debacle.

I understand your point about the proper noun of Objectivism, but the reality is that a number of people, some on this forum, have self-idenitified as members of the system identified by the proper noun of Objectivism. And when they do, this tells us a lot about their views. Just as Jehovah's Witnesses are different than Mormons, so too are Objectivists quite different than, say Stoics--notwithstanding large areas of overlap.

Back in the old days, so to speak, the philosophically-minded person trying to live a life devoted to wisdom was merely called a philosopher. Thus, someone like Seneca was a philosopher, who happened to live according to Stoic principles. But he was philosopher first, and a Stoic second. And even though he was a Stoic, he did not feel the need to have an answer for everything.

This appeals to me.

If anything should have been changed, it wasn't The Fountainhead, but Rand's aesthetic theory. Her art is great. A part of why it's great is that it doesn't comply with her Esthetics, and it's characters don't conform to her philosophy. They have flaws, and they behave immorally, which makes for greater art. The plots include some sleight of hand and irrational character behaviors. When the novels' aesthetic spells wears off, and one has time to dispassionately contemplate how realistic, or not, their "Romantic Realism" is, one may see all of the cracks and holes. But that's not important. What matters in art is the initial spell that was cast.

So, I say don't meddle with The Fountainhead, and also don't overpaint Vermeer's canvases with perfectly rational heroes joyously leaping about in factories, or otherwise being Objectively exuberant and completely non-contradictory. Instead, meddle with the Esthetics. Ditch the idea of art playing the role of illustrating its creator's philosophy. Lose the notion that art has the responsibility of acting as a moral guide, and that everything which is included in a work of art takes on "metaphysical significance." Drop the idea that if an artist creates a heroic character, then the artist is endorsing all of the character's actions and suggesting that they should be emulated.

J

If I agree not to meddle with The Fountainhead, may I at least have a woman with her exultant head thrown back in just one Vermeer, or two?

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Ellen:

Per your last point, I would also say especially Rand's willingness to put dynamite in Roark's hands, notwithstanding that blowing up Cortdlandt was in so many other ways as non-Objectivist as it could have been. The "dynamite" factor and its impact in Rand's writings can be seen today over on the Snowden thread, where not a small number of the thoughtful-Objectivish members of the forum have applauded Snowden's violation of his oath/contract/federal law for an ostensibly greater good.

There are a lot of things I admire about Howard Roark, but his sexual behavior and his fondness for dynamite are not among them.

Ellen:

Per your last point, I would also say especially Rand's willingness to put dynamite in Roark's hands, notwithstanding that blowing up Cortdlandt was in so many other ways as non-Objectivist as it could have been. The "dynamite" factor and its impact in Rand's writings can be seen today over on the Snowden thread, where not a small number of the thoughtful-Objectivish members of the forum have applauded Snowden's violation of his oath/contract/federal law for an ostensibly greater good.

There are a lot of things I admire about Howard Roark, but his sexual behavior and his fondness for dynamite are not among them.

Ah, but would you change him? I wonder when Objectivists will learn that she never was an Objectivist. She embraced a philosopher to her core who ended up a crazy man. Probably when they learn they aren't Objectivists either. No one is, because a philosophy isn't as written, it's actually a combination of psychology and "philosophy" in each and every person, but the disciplines aren't integrated. That's why college courses on philosophy are mostly real life garbage. Real philosophy--philosophy in a person-- can be arduously modified, the younger the less arduous the needed effort all considered, and that's the real life value of the abstraction called "Objectivism" if you know what it really is. The "philosophy of Ayn Rand" is dangerous as such, it was especially so for her but hers it was, but "Objectivsm" would have set her tumbling from public sight. In fact, she never would have written her great novels.

As for Snowden, he's a twirp. When are supposed Objectivists going to get over their implicit worship of the monstrous American State?

--Brant

No, I wouldn't change him. I would delete the rape scene and figure out a better way to gain justice for the Cortdlandt debacle.

I understand your point about the proper noun of Objectivism, but the reality is that a number of people, some on this forum, have self-idenitified as members of the system identified by the proper noun of Objectivism. And when they do, this tells us a lot about their views. Just as Jehovah's Witnesses are different than Mormons, so too are Objectivists quite different than, say Stoics--notwithstanding large areas of overlap.

Back in the old days, so to speak, the philosophically-minded person trying to live a life devoted to wisdom was merely called a philosopher. Thus, someone like Seneca was a philosopher, who happened to live according to Stoic principles. But he was philosopher first, and a Stoic second. And even though he was a Stoic, he did not feel the need to have an answer for everything.

This appeals to me.

If anything should have been changed, it wasn't The Fountainhead, but Rand's aesthetic theory. Her art is great. A part of why it's great is that it doesn't comply with her Esthetics, and it's characters don't conform to her philosophy. They have flaws, and they behave immorally, which makes for greater art. The plots include some sleight of hand and irrational character behaviors. When the novels' aesthetic spells wears off, and one has time to dispassionately contemplate how realistic, or not, their "Romantic Realism" is, one may see all of the cracks and holes. But that's not important. What matters in art is the initial spell that was cast.

So, I say don't meddle with The Fountainhead, and also don't overpaint Vermeer's canvases with perfectly rational heroes joyously leaping about in factories, or otherwise being Objectively exuberant and completely non-contradictory. Instead, meddle with the Esthetics. Ditch the idea of art playing the role of illustrating its creator's philosophy. Lose the notion that art has the responsibility of acting as a moral guide, and that everything which is included in a work of art takes on "metaphysical significance." Drop the idea that if an artist creates a heroic character, then the artist is endorsing all of the character's actions and suggesting that they should be emulated.

J

If I agree not to meddle with The Fountainhead, may I at least have a woman with her exultant head thrown back in just one Vermeer, or two?

If you promise to leave The Fountainhead alone, you can Objectivize one Vermeer, but I'll throw in dance scenes in movies: you can change as many as you like to tap dance since it's the most rational form of dance.

J

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If anything should have been changed, it wasn't The Fountainhead, but Rand's aesthetic theory. Her art is great. A part of why it's great is that it doesn't comply with her Esthetics, and it's characters don't conform to her philosophy.

Jonathan,

I'll buy that and give you change.

Michael

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No, I wouldn't change [Roark]. I would delete the rape scene and figure out a better way to gain justice for the Cortdlandt debacle.

Figuring out "a better way to gain justice for the Cortlandt debacle" puts the cart before the horse, imo. My point about the dynamiting of the housing project is that it's a device used in order to get Roark into a courtroom on a criminal charge. Rand wanted Roark in a courtroom, having done something criminal as set up to his delivering the speech. She had trouble thinking up a plot situation to accomplish the purpose. So it isn't as if first she had the Cortlandt idea and then thought up a way for Roark "to gain justice," but the reverse - she had the courtroom in mind and thought up Cortlandt as a way to get Roark there.

Here's an excerpt from Rand's notes for The Little Street:

[bold emphasis added]

Journals, pp. 23-28

The world as it is.

Show it all, calmly and indifferently, like an outsider who does not share humanity's feelings or prejudices and can see it all "from the side."

[....]

Show that the world is nothing but a little street. That this little street is its king and master, its essence and spirit. Show the little street and how it works.

[....]

Show that humanity has and wants to have: existence instead of life, satisfaction instead of joy, contentment instead of happiness, security instead of power, vanity instead of pride, attachment instead of love, wish instead of will, yearning instead of passion, a glow-worm instead of a fire.

[....]

Show that the real God behind all their high words and sentiments, the real omnipotent power behind their culture and civilization, is the little street, just a small, filthy, shabby, common little street, such as exist around the center of every town in the world.

Show them the real, one and only horror - the horror of mediocrity.

[....]

[William Edward] Hickman said: "I am like the state: what is good for me is right." That is this boy's psychology. (The best and strongest expression of a real man's psychology I ever heard.) The model for the boy is Hickman. Very far from him, of course. The outside of Hickman, but not the inside. Much deeper and much more. A Hickman with a purpose. And without the degeneracy. It is more exact to say that the model is not Hickman, but what Hickman suggested to me.

[....]

At the end, when his last appeal has been refused and the execution awaits him, he throws away all protective hypocrisy and shouts to his jailers and the newspaper reporters what he thinks of the world. It must be the essence, the very heart of the book: his wild, ferocious cry. It must be the strongest speech ever uttered in condemnation of the world. It must strike people like a whip slapping them in the face. It must be scalding in its bloody suffering, like the yell of an animal with an open, torn wound.

Roark's speech differs in its thrust from the proposed Danny Renahan speech. However, I think it is "the essence, the very heart of the book," in the respect that it's the statement Rand geared the plot toward having Roark deliver.

About the name of the discontinued work, I suspect that Rand got the name from one of the names of a Vermeer painting she disliked - see. (The painting is sometimes called "A Street in Delft.")

Ellen

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That Vermeer is exquisite. I don't want it though. I prefer Van Goof.

Hickman was a sniveling coward. Rand just took the name and some of his supposed story and made another person. The Rand-Hickman story is really about the terrifying focus Rand had on what she was doing--like a welder with a torch--to the exclusion of all else. It would make her a great novelist and ultimately a poor friend.

--Brant

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Ellen quoting Rand:

Show that humanity has and wants to have: existence instead of life, satisfaction instead of joy, contentment instead of happiness, security instead of power, vanity instead of pride, attachment instead of love, wish instead of will, yearning instead of passion, a glow-worm instead of a fire.

______________________

For me by far the best quote of the bunch. I can go out and use this.

--Brant

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Ellen quoting Rand:

Show that humanity has and wants to have: existence instead of life, satisfaction instead of joy, contentment instead of happiness, security instead of power, vanity instead of pride, attachment instead of love, wish instead of will, yearning instead of passion, a glow-worm instead of a fire.

______________________

For me by far the best quote of the bunch. I can go out and use this.

--Brant

Sounds like a good plan to minimize stress.

Ba'al Chatzaf

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Judd Weiss . . . . Why ever would a normal person attend a cocktail party put on by this fellow? Does he have money? David Kelley attended---good grief. . . . Perhaps most people there were pretty much in the dark concerning the character Judd Weiss and just came there to mix with others of more substance (and/or of big money).

Well, not so much in the dark as I when I wrote that. I have more internet light now, and I see Judd Weiss had been the photographer for the Atlas Society summer seminar in 2012, and he is going to be the photographer for the one coming up. Skill in photography would have been a significant element in Mr. Judd's acquaintance with David Kelley before the mixer above.

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Jerry,

Nauseating," is a word that comes to mind. .Why? David Harriman was the editor of The Journals of Ayn Rand and is responsible for the inclusion of material that Ayn Rand, herself, did not publish during her lifetime because she did not consider it to either be representative of her thought, badly written, or she did not approve for other reasons. , Harriman included material unknown even to exist by many members of Rand's Inner Circle (Nathaniel Branden, Barbara Branden, Henry Holzer, and Phyllis Holzer. - I know this from personal conversations with them. Think what that means! Material not even shared with her closest confidants) . I am referring to Rand's previously unpublished and unfinished short story, The Little House, and her notes about the horrendous torture and murder of a little girl. Rand's notes indicate some sympathy with the murderer Hickman, although in later notes she withdraws any admiration and did not finish or publish this story.

If Rand didn't want this stuff published at some point, she could have destroyed it.

My objection to Harriman is that, according to Jennifer Burns, he rewrote Rand's Journals and didn't tell his readers.

-Neil

Neil,

If, as you postulate, Harriman "rewrote Rand's Journals and didn't tell his readers," then how can you rule out the possibility that he added, deleted, or rewrote the very section of the Journals that I have doubts about? (e.g., altered Rand's story (which no one else has even verified, existed, or in what state of completion, "The Little Street").

As I originally said, that particular story is not mentioned in Barbara Branden's biography, and neither she nor Nathaniel nor other members of Rand's Inner Circle that I have directly inquired regarding this story, ever heard about its existence prior to the Burns and Heller biographies..I think that that is rather telling, her closest confidants never saw it. Rand was hardly a person that would exclude her written work that she was proud of, from her confidants.

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The fact that these people hadn't heard of The Little House strikes me as all the more reason to publish it. It's a genuine addition to what we know about Rand, and in saving it she tacitly consented to publication. Even if she'd destroyed her unpublished manuscripts (rather than keeping them in a climate-controlled warehouse) and you could somehow recover them, they'd still be worth disseminating. Authors are no more entitled to decide what the public knows than political figures are, least of all after their deaths.

Harriman's tampering with the text (which I've helped to document) is a separate question. I hope that eventually these papers will become available as online scans (not typed transcriptions).

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The fact that these people hadn't heard of The Little House strikes me as all the more reason to publish it. It's a genuine addition to what we know about Rand, and in saving it she tacitly consented to publication. Even if she'd destroyed her unpublished manuscripts (rather than keeping them in a climate-controlled warehouse) and you could somehow recover them, they'd still be worth disseminating. Authors are no more entitled to decide what the public knows than political figures are, least of all after their deaths.

Harriman's tampering with the text (which I've helped to document) is a separate question. I hope that eventually these papers will become available as online scans (not typed transcriptions).

"Authors are no more entitled to decide what the public knows than political figures are, least of all after their deaths".

Actually, an author's works are protected by U.S. copyright law until 70 years after the author's death, after which they are in the public domain. In the case of Rand, that would be until 2052.

She gave specfic approval to the heir of her estate, Leonard Peikoff, the rights to her published works. But it does not follow that her will also gave him permission to publish her unpublished works. Well, did she? Does anyone know for sure, (besides Leonard Peikoff)?.Has anyone seen this will?

Both Nathaniel and Barbara Branden have publicly stated that they did not believe that Rand would have authorized anyone to ever publish her unfinished works (such as what is contained in The Journals of Ayn Rand). Nathaniel added that Rand guarded her privacy and most specifically anything that she had written.

You and others are making an unwarranted conclusion that her not destroying her notes means that she wanted them published. That is a presumption for which there is no tangible evidence (unless it is stated in the will).

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Her not destroying her notes only means that who inherited them were free in the context of ownership--absent instructions--to do as they wished with them.

--Brant

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Actually I said in #11 that Rand's decision not to destroy her notes and her decision not to make any other provision regarding their posthumous handling (not just the former) are what convinces me that she assented to this. She had a lawyer and she knew the score. What NB and BB said is true about Rand's wishes during her lifetime but tells us nothing about what she wanted after her death. If the Brandens' recollections and her actual behavior contradicted each other (as they don't), the latter would take precedence.

I said in #94 that I don't care whether Rand wanted The Little Street in print or not. Our stock of knowledge about her literary and intellectual growing-up is greater for Peikoff's decision, and I'm glad he made it. Are you willing to state for the record that you wish we'd stayed ignorant?

(Rand may not have wanted word to get out about her fling with Branden, but that didn't stop NB and BB from publishing three books about it, plus part of a fourth, between them.)

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Actually I said in #11 that Rand's decision not to destroy her notes and her decision not to make any other provision regarding their postumous handling (not just the former) are what convinces me that she assented to this. She had a lawyer and she knew the score. What NB and BB said is true about Rand's wishes during her lifetime but tells us nothing about what she expected after her death. If the Brandens' recollections and her actual behavior contradicted each other (as they don't), the latter would take precedence.

I said in #94 that I don't care whether Rand wanted The Little Street in print or not. Our stock of knowledge about her literary and intellectual growing-up is greater for Peikoff's decision, and I'm glad he made it. Are you willing to state for the record that you wish we'd stayed ignorant?

(I doubt that Rand would have wanted word to get out about her fling with Branden, but that didn't stop NB and BB from publishing two books between them on the subject.)

Good work, Reidy. No slime too low for the public good.

"she is a textbook sociopath. In her notebooks Ayn Rand worshiped a notorious serial murderer... Back in the late 1920s, as Ayn Rand was working out her philosophy, she became enthralled by a real-life American serial killer, William Edward Hickman, whose gruesome, sadistic dismemberment of 12-year-old girl named Marion Parker in 1927 shocked the nation. Rand filled her early notebooks with worshipful praise of Hickman. According to biographer Jennifer Burns, Rand was so smitten with Hickman that she modeled her first literary creation on him. What did Rand admire so much about Hickman? His sociopathic qualities.

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Correction to #97: I helped to document Berliner's tampering with the letters, not Harriman's with the journals.

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