Another erroneous statement about JARS


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Another false statement about the Journal of Ayn Rand Studies has cropped up on SOLOPassion.

In this comment

http://www.solopassion.com/node/1129#comment-11091

Mr. Maurone says of one of his essays (note especially the passage I've put in bold):

The essay in question attacked Rand and Objectivism as dogmatic and fascist, and calls for serious reforms in Objectivism. The point of view of the essay was that of a Jungian perspective, which is essentially a Kantian inspired psychology with elements of mysticism dressed up in pseudo-science. (To those who claim that Rand set up Kant as a strawman, take note.) It appeared in print in JARS alongside Slavoj Zizek's work on Rand, who also mentions the Fascist implications of Rand's work, and who he considers "not worthy of serious study" and "ridiculous." Diana saw the essay on line, attacked the idea of Objectivism as Fascist, and said it was symptomatic of "false friends of Objectivism."

Mr. Maurone is confusing an article of his that was published in JARS:

The trickster icon and Objectivism, Journal of Ayn Rand Studies, 3(2), 229-258 (Spring 2002)

(yes, in the same issue with Slavoj Zizek) with an item that appeared only on his now-defunct Jungian Objectivism website, and was never submitted to JARS.

It's the latter item that made the charge of Fascism, and that was singled out by Ms. Hsieh as the work of a "false friend of Objectivism." Ms. Hsieh has never referred to "Trickster Icon" on her blog.

How an author can mix up two different essays of his, neither of which is more than 5 years old, is best left to Mr. Maurone to explain. Maybe after a born-again experience, all of one's past sins seem drearily alike... But Mr. Maurone's statement is obviously false, and needs to be corrected.

Robert Campbell

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Here is my own gossipy opinion.

I believe that Maurone's beef with Sciabarra was personal back when it happened and had very little to do with intellectual matters. The thing about Perigo and Hsieh were pretexts to fight.

Maurone then played right into the hands of the current tribal faction. He's now in a bind. He has to go along with them because the rest of the Objectivist world thinks he's a rat. He's got no where else to go. That is what makes him more vehement than he has ever been before (see his previous posts and articles).

A little detail about whether he published an article or not is nothing at all in that context - after all, he has published almost nothing, so it's easy to get confused...

Michael

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He has to go along with them because the rest of the Objectivist world thinks he's a rat. He's got no where else to go. That is what makes him more vehement than he has ever been before (see his previous posts and articles).

I don't know who this Muarone is, but if this above sentence is true, then the problem seems to be that he cares what the Objectivist world thinks.

As for critique and attack: when I was doing my art major, a critique was where your peers went over what was well done or not about your work. Perhaps you did something well (a technique), but the colors were "off". Perhaps you expressed something well, but the piece was too big, too contrasty, or sloppily done. So there were positive and negatives in terms of one piece of work, and everyone went through it no matter if you were studio, film, digital, or photo. Everyone got something to work on, and everyone was complimented.

An attack was if someone said "It's stupid" or "You're an ass" or some similar thing--- an attack was a unjustified, unsubstantiated comment that had nothing to do with the argument, the technique, or the work. An attack was viewed as personal. Fortunately, most of us 18-22 year olds knew the difference and knew how to critique, and not take it personally. If not, we learned. As far as I know, the most balanced scientists don't take critiques personally either.

So, as far as I've read of JARS-- and I have about 8 volumes-- none of the articles in them were what I consider an attack. They were all critiques, and none of them seemed personal (to me). And if a critique is a review with sharper teeth, it doesn't mean it's personal. If someone sees something wrong with something, why the hell is it considered an attack? Maybe, just maybe, that something needs some fixing up.

Therefore I'm confused as to how anyone who has gone through any university setting and know about publishing articles can think of a critique as an attack.

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Jenna,

You bring up an important point in relation to what ARI considers as attacks on Objectivism vs the TAS/TOC view that the philosophy will grow stronger because of the critiques which they allow.

I hope Chris Cathcart didn't mind, but I lifted this from SOLO when he was explaining the difference in the two organizations"

1. TOC (now TAS) takes the view that as a matter of strategy in arguing for Ayn Rand's ideas is one of outreach -- which is, to put Objectivist ideas in terms that can have wide appeal to the culture at large. The driving idea is that Objectivism can have a friendly and tolerant face and that through dialogue, we can discover a way to communicate ideas in a way that are mutually engaging. People will be receptive to your ideas when you give them an open hearing. The aim is one of mutual understanding, with the recognition that some people may come to understand Objectivism quite thoroughly and still reject it, which is to say: anyone from either side of the debate could come to see that -- that reason and logic could persuade a current Objectivist that Objectivism is in error, and thereby abandon Objectivism as a philosophical system. IOW, through dialogue, where the aim is truth, Objectivism might well be disproven from being true.

I found the part which I put in bold to be especially interesting in it's concept. I am not trying to disprove Objectivism, just the opposite, but neither will I accept any part of it if I do not believe it to be factual and truthful. The very reason I was drawn here was because of a belief in looking at the facts, but some times it takes a lot of work to sift through all of the information and arrive at a conclusion and I sure as the heck am not going to allow anyone to bully me into accepting something I am not in total agreement with just because they say so.

I made the statement to Fred W on SOLO that Ayn Rands philosophy would fall or stand on it's own merit annd his reply was 'to tell them something they didn't know'. However I am not really sure that some of them want to know or even give any thought to the truth of that statement because they are so convinced ( or so it's seems) that everything about being objective is already include in Rand's writings and there is no possibility of any other views which might in the least not fall in with their party lines. The critiquing of which you speak should be welcomed, not avoided.

This type of thinking I have ran across many times in my life and it has a scary ring to it.

One of the better quotes which I have used in my life to keep me with an open mind comes from Herbert Spencer.

"There is a principle which is a bar against all information, which is proof against all arguments and which cannot fail to keep a man in everlasting ignorance-that principle is contempt prior to investigation."

L W

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One of the most valuable things that Carl Jung did was to explore at length (in "Psychological Types") the various ways that people could cause themselves psychological harm by repressing or disowning integral aspects of their personalities -- such as a thinking type repressing his feelings (or vice versa). Peikoff devoted an entire lecture about 10 years ago to exploding the false dichotomy of emotionalism vs. repression in making personal decisions, so this issue is not the arcane obsession of a "subjectivist" or "mystic."

One of the most valuable things that Nathaniel Branden did was to explore at length (in The Disowned Self the various ways that people could cause themselves psychological harm by repressing or disowning integral aspects of their personalities. Various would-be successors to Nathaniel have attempted to help people deal with these problems, but none (in my judgment) has come close to him in the clarity and usefulness of his approach.

In the face of the monumental achievements by these great thinkers, Joe Maurone's response is to disown them and their seminal ideas. Not just to correct the errors he might have made in interpreting and applying Jung's ideas to a character evaluation of Ayn Rand, but to jettison the very fruitful project of infusing Objectivism with Jungian insights.

And as frequently happens when people throw away their best and most creative ideas and insights, they have nothing to fall back on but the politics of personal denunciation and character assassination and other destructive pasttimes. Nathaniel elsewhere referred to these as "defense values." That's a very polite way of putting it.

REB

P.S. -- I'm thinking of doing up a little post soon, "channeling" Carl Jung as he might write about the Objectivist movement from the aspect of the hyper-judgmentalism and dogmatism and slice-and-dice character assassination that we have seen way too much of lately. His description of unbalanced extraverted thinking types seems right on the money to me. But I'll let you all be the judge. You can either read the relevant section of his essay "Psychological Types" or patiently wait for me to slip into my mystic-subjectivist robe and hat and peck out this little piece I'm threatening to write. :-)

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A quick word on this business of attacks versus critiques -- and on Joe Maurone's two articles, the one which appeared in JARS and the one which didn't.

There are articles which I'd say are properly described as "attacks" on Objectivism. They're attempts to slash Objectivism, to rip it to shreds, to cast it in the most unflattering light, generally written by people who don't understand the philosophy. This is different from a "critique" which -- though critical -- approaches from at least an attempt (a) to understand the philosophy and (b) to engage in constructive dialogue.

Joe's Trickster article in JARS I wouldn't describe as either an attack or a critique, but instead as an attempt to view some of Rand's characters from the standpoint of a Jungian "lens" (as Paul would say), to interpret in terms of a Jungian framework of archetypal patterns. I think there's a tremendous amount interesting about Rand's characters and novelistic methods which could be written from this perspective, and I look forward to the day when Jungians begin to get wind of what they might find in her novels. (Few Jungians I've met -- and I've met quite a number -- have ever even read one of her novels.)

The article on Joe's website which Diana talked about in her blog post, on the other hand, judging from what I've heard about it, probably qualified as an attack. I never read the article, and haven't yet had time to read Diana's remarks about it. I was aware that Joe's website existed but I never looked at it because I knew, from things he'd posted on Atlantis and from some snatches of email exchange I'd had with him, that his basic understanding of Jungian theory was poor; and I thought his attempts at integrating O'ism and Jungianism weren't working well. I felt that probably my reaction to reading the stuff on his website would be exasperation, and I spared myself finding out -- until too late. (He went through this big change, firming up as an Objectivist, when he read PARC, and he then took down the site.)

Ellen

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The stance I'm coming from is that if I wrote an article that I knew wasn't an attack (in my experience, an attack is out-of-context, all negative, and no positive) then I wouldn't really care what certain people thought. Because first of all, for me to care what pepole think, I'd have to respect them in the first place.

Joe's article doesn't sound like an attack from the description of it, as I don't see how trying to interpret Rand's characters in a Jungian perspective as an attack, even if the approach was not completely understanding Jung's work. It doesn't even sound like a critique, either, not like I knew critiques in college. It's more interpretory, but then, I'd have to read the actual article.

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Jenna wrote:

Joe's article doesn't sound like an attack from the description of it, as I don't see how trying to interpret Rand's characters in a Jungian perspective as an attack, even if the approach was not completely understanding Jung's work. It doesn't even sound like a critique, either, not like I knew critiques in college. It's more interpretory, but then, I'd have to read the actual article.

Jenna, a detail you seem to be overlooking is that Joe wrote two articles pertaining to a Jungian slant on Objectivism. It's the other article, the one which appeared only on Joe's website, which I think (given the comments about it) might have been actually an attack. Joe himself seems to think it was (but at this stage he's descrbing the Trickster article as an attack, too).

The stance I'm coming from is that if I wrote an article that I knew wasn't an attack (in my experience, an attack is out-of-context, all negative, and no positive) then I wouldn't really care what certain people thought. Because first of all, for me to care what pepole think, I'd have to respect them in the first place.

I understand the stance you're coming from, but it's a different stance from where Joe is coming from. My assessment of Joe's psychology is that he's always in search of a strong guru. Currently a certain group of people are the ones he's looking to and the opinions of those people carry weight with him.

Ellen

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I have read both articles, but this was a while ago. As I remember them, they were comparisons of some of the similarities between Jung and Rand's thinking - especially regarding archetypes - and very little else.

Well, Michael, then I'd say that for sure you aren't correctly remembering one of those articles, the Trickster article. ;-)

Here is the introduction to that:

(All ellipses are in the original.)

There is a character called the Trickster who plays a crucial role in much of the world's mythology and folklore.  The Trickster has many incarnations; he is, in the words of Lewis Hyde, "the adept who can move between heaven and earth, and between the living and the dead...he is sometimes the messenger of the gods and sometimes the guide of souls, carrying the dead into the underworld or opening the tomb to release them when they must walk among us" (Hyde 1998, 6).  The Trickster is usually found at boundaries or crossroads, sometimes navigating them, sometimes creating them.  He is a mischievous troublemaker, simultaneously attempting to help and hinder.  He is said to be both clever and a shameless fool.  And he goes by many names, including Coyote and Wakdjunkaga in Native American stories, Loki in Norse mythology, Prometheus and Hermes in Greek mythology, Brer Rabbit in the folklore of the United States, Monkey in Asian stories, and Eshu, Thlokanyana, and Legba in African stories.

I would like to add Francisco d'Anconia, Kira Argounova, Howard Roark, Equality 7-2521, and John Galt to this list...and possibly Ayn Rand herself.

Rand, I think it's safe to say, would not have approved of a large percentage of what's said in the article. But this doesn't make the article a critique of Objectivism (though I suppose, on re-examining it, that it could be considered, especially in the last sections, a critique of Rand herself -- more in a subsequent post). Rand strongly objected to Atlas Shrugged being called "an allegory," for instance. (One of the complimentary early reviews described it as an allegory.) But her not liking the description doesn't make the description critical. (I think in fact that "allegory" is exactly the correct category in which to place Atlas.)

And I wouldn't describe Rand as having done any thinking about archetypes, in the Jungian sense. It's hardly as if she had some sort of competing theory of archetypes to Jung's. She described "Attlia" and "the Witch Doctor" as "philosophical archetypes, psychological symbols and historical reality." But she didn't have a theory of archetypal psychology.

Added note: I earlier, mistakenly said she'd described "Attila" and "the Witch Doctor" as "psychological archetypes," as well as...I couldn't remember the rest, and said I'd look it up. What she said was philosophical not psychological archetypes. Here's the full paragraph:

These two figures--the man of faith and the man of force--are philosophical archetypes, psychological symbols and historical reality.  As philosophical archetypes, they embody two variants of a certain view of man and of existence.  As psychological symbols, they represent the basic motivation of a great many men who exist in any era, culture or society.  As historical reality, they are the actual rulers of most of mankind's societies, who rise to power whenever men abandon reason.

[This is the paragraph which is footnoted in the original essay with a statement of credit to NB:

"I am indebted to Nathaniel Branden for many valuable observations on this subject and for his eloquent designation of the two archetypes, which I shall use hereafter: Attila and the Witch Doctor.]

Ellen

corrected a couple typos

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Jenna,

Adults are supposed to know the difference between a critique and an attack. Most (though not all) scientists do. Those scientists who persist in treating critiques as attacks are widely understood to have some kind of character flaw or ego problem.

In the orbit of the Ayn Rand Institute, however, a critique of Ayn Rand's ideas and an attack on Ayn Rand the person are one and the same thing. Both Mr. Mazza (on his old blog) and Mr. Weiss (on SOLOP) have equated critiques of Ayn Rand/Objecivism/ARI with attacks on all three lumped together.

The rest of us try to distinguish critiques from attacks (or so I would hope).

Joe Maurone's "Trickster Icon" article (which I've read) is not an attack on Ayn Rand the novelist, or on her philosophical system, let alone on her character. Some might interpret it as a critique because the trickster persona isn't fully congruent with Rand's self-presentation, but the point is debatable. I thought he made some good points in the essay.

The essay on "the American hero" that used to be on his website I read part of... not the whole thing... after I heard that Ms. Hsieh had denounced it. It was definitely meant as a critique, and it used the word fascist--without doing much to back that characterization up, in my opinion. Frankly, I thought "Trickster icon" was better written and better argued.

I guess Mr. Maurone lumps the two essays together now because he now accepts the equation of critiques with attacks, at least when they pertain to "Ayn Rand/Objectivism/ARI." The thought has also crossed my mind that by conflating the two essays, he can give the zealots (who are unlikely to actually read the journal) further assurance that the Journal of Ayn Rand Studies is essentiallly in the business of "attacking" Ayn Rand.

My idea of an attack on Rand is an ill-informed, purposely unscholarly hatchet-job--I took Mary Midgley to task in print for writing about Rand that way in one of her books. Jeff Walker's book, if the reviews I've read are accurate, qualifies as an attack rather than a critique.

But to the zealots, the mere fact that JARS is run by unapproved scholars, publishes the work of still other unapproved scholars, and sometimes publishes critiques of one or another aspect of Rand's work is sufficient to "prove" that, from beginning to end, the entire journal is nothing but an attack on Rand. (Remember that to an ARIan, no one on the outside really understands Objectivism, and no one on the inside ever critiques it--so any critique must be the product of misunderstanding or malice.)

Robert Campbell

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My idea of an attack on Rand is an ill-informed, purposely unscholarly hatchet-job--I took Mary Midgley to task in print for writing about Rand that way in one of her books. Jeff Walker's book, if the reviews I've read are accurate, qualifies as an attack rather than a critique.

I do view the Jeff Walker book as more of an attack than a critique. It is primarily negative and has no positive feedback (from what I've read in the library). His book is just as boring to me as people who continually adulate.

I'm glad you take people to task for the presentation of articles; I enjoy JARS very much.

But to the zealots, the mere fact that JARS is run by unapproved scholars, publishes the work of still other unapproved scholars, and sometimes publishes critiques of one or another aspect of Rand's work is sufficient to "prove" that, from beginning to end, the entire journal is nothing but an attack on Rand.

"Unapproved"? Approval nor unapproval is not the issue when one is writing for a journal. In science, I don't seek approval of one organization to publish my ideas. I seek my approval, and I seek the advice of an advisor, but I do not have to do what he/she says.

The issue is whether open inquiry can occur, over a particular topic, to elucidate positives, negatives, other perspectives, and in-betweens relating to the topic. Disagreement is not an attack, either. It is a sad situation that this vibe I'm getting-- just by reading articles here and there from different places and forums-- is such that herd mentality and insecurity can be so strong.

(Remember that to an ARIan, no one on the outside really understands Objectivism, and no one on the inside ever critiques it--so any critique must be the product of misunderstanding or malice.)

I've heard that argument before, from Christian fundamentalists about Christianity and the Bible. Contextually verbatim. I'm *not* going to say all those who are affiliated or buy from or whatever with ARI do this-- as I know people who do and are really cool--, or that TOC doesn't-- I have had contact and they are cool to me as well--, as I look at what individuals write, but so far up to this point, the *few* people I've judged primarily negatively via internet and written content were all affiliated with ARI while TOC have basically either been open to discussion for the intent of learning something new and-- this is important to me-- quite free in that they do not mind disagreeing with Rand or their organization.

Yes, one of my criteria for judging whether a writer or philosopher or whatever is worth my time is if they are truly free to vocally disagree or do some hardcore testing of the ideas of those they hold in esteem. If they can't disagree, and/or won't test, then I'm looking at a sheep. Basically, eventually it's easy to tell if someone memorizes and regurgitates.

I can love Charles Darwin for what he did, but I do not have to agree with all his ideas, especially if new evidence falsifies one, or three, theoretical details.

You can have role models and disagree with them. I know if I read what all my role models have written, I will disagree with them about at least one thing. And that's a-ok by me. :) And I think the people who think it's not okay to disagree, even with their role models, need to get a little self-esteem and really own their own minds.

In any case, I will try to find and read these articles. I'm sorry if I mistook one article for two, or vice versa, as I wasn't sure if it was one article with two parts, etc. And I'm not sure of the background, but I'm not as interested in the background (sounds like more of the same approval/disapproval crap) as much as I am with what's in the articles themselves.

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Well, in re-examining the Trickster article, I see why Diana would call it -- and Joe today would also call it -- an "attack." It's because of his comparing Randian characters, and Rand herself, to Trickster figures. The Trickster is ambiguous, light/dark, as the name indicates "tricky," not easily classifiable. The Trickster is intimately connected with the shadow (the not-in-consciousness aspects, not necessarily bad aspects, though possibly bad aspects, of the psyche). The Trickster leads from shadow to light, from light to shadow, and can shift before your eyes. None of which is how Objectivists -- by which I mean real Objectivists, by which I mean persons like, for instance, Fred Weiss, a very noticeable for instance currently posting on SoloP, and others, such as Diana -- see Rand's characters or Rand.

Joe concludes his article with two sections which would obviously be offensive to the real Objectivist: "When the Trickster Aspires to Godhood" and "Whither Trickster?: The Future of Objectivism."

He writes:

If the Trickster is a symbol for cleverness, he is also a symbol for the fool who finds himself in humiliating situations, a victim of his own pride.  And though Rand's archetypes are never presented as humiliated fools, there are too many testimonials to Rand's character that portray her as a casualty of her own hubris.

[....]

Like the Trickster, Rand was embroiled in deception and contradictions partially of her own making, needing to atone for a situation that she herself "had helped to create."  But Rand was not blessed with "the gift of shame," and this brought down any self-aspiration to godhood.

Still, there may be a positive side to all this [if] instead of thinking about the "Ayn Rand who might have been," as Jeff Walker (1999, 342) does, [we conclude that] it may be necessary to accept Ayn Rand as a "package deal," a lightbringer who simultaneously casts a shadow.  The future of Rand's legacy will depend on those who accept the reality of the shadows, while moving into the light.

Whither Trickster?: The Future of Objectivism

The portrait of Rand as a Trickster becoming a god gives us pause as we analyze the backlash against her, exemplified by those who condemn her as the leader of a cult.  As the details of Rand's earthly dirt are made apparent, her humanity knocks her off the godly pedestal on which her sycophants have placed her.  But she can be brought back to us--and we to her--if she is resurrected in the role of Trickster.  This will enable us to separate the idea from the thinker, the message from the messenger.

[....]

[....] The paradox here is that some of Rand's actions conflicted with her philosophy.  Hyde remarks that "n one Native American story, the Great Spirit speaks to Coyote about the coming of human beings.  'The New People will not know anything when they come, not how to dress, how to sing, how to shoot an arrow.  You will show them how to do all those things'" (8-9).  Rand's failings mark a "space" for the possible appearance of new Tricksters, who will move Objectivism beyond its residual dogmatism.

Or will they?

Ellen

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The quoted sound very interpretive to me, with some critique thrown in. I'd say the criticisms are valid:

1) "The future of Rand's legacy will depend on those who accept the reality of the shadows, while moving into the light."

2) "But she can be brought back to us--and we to her--if she is resurrected in the role of Trickster. This will enable us to separate the idea from the thinker, the message from the messenger." (I took this to mean separate the philosophy from the philosospher [also from the student of the philosophy]).

It's an interesting comparison, with good points. I still don't see this article's contents as an attack. There is nothing personal in the words quoted. Why would he change his stance anyway? Even if you wrote something a while ago, then learned something new, why not think of past work as signposts of growth, learning, and progress, and still be proud of your work?

People do shift from "light" to "dark" in terms of moods, emotions, paths, behaviors, etc. Even our conceptual framework contains fuzzy boundaries. The old classical view of everything is hardlined, with strict boundaries and neat little categories-- that's old news. Reality is more complex, and while the classical views still hold in some cases, it does not hold in all cases, especially when it comes to human thinking and human nature. Ambiguity is part of reality. To force everything (humans, things, concepts) into little boxes only serves to frustrate, because it is forcing reality into what it is not.

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Why would [Joe] change his stance anyway? Even if you wrote something a while ago, then learned something new, why not think of past work as signposts of growth, learning, and progress, and still be proud of your work?

Speaking for my own psychology, I see no reason whatsoever why I wouldn't think of past work as described. If you're asking for an analysis of why Joe feels he has to repudiate the earlier work, my thoughts on that are ones which I consider inappropriate to say more about in a public forum than I've already said.

I'm glad you thought the article sounds like it's making "an interesting comparison, with good points." I was expecting that you would think so.

Ellen

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Whew!!!!

Maurone finally owned up to making a mistake about which essay Hsieh quoted. He has fully learned the Randroid two-step* though.

Campbell and Stuttle would like to defend JARS in the name that the piece Diana quoted was not JARS quality, and that is admirable in itself, so yes, the quotes from Diana are not in JARS. However, despite this error, it is besides the point.

Better than nothing, I guess.

* Randroid twostep: This is a rhetorical maneuver executed when a Randroid is inescapably wrong and it becomes publicly ridiculous to maintain the error. He admits he was wrong, usually with some half-assed qualification, then says it doesn't matter and is not important anyway. He plays down his mistake as if doing so will make it go away.

There are continuations of this. There is the Randroid twostep pirouette. If nobody lets him get away with the twostep, he assumes a pose of piety and states that admitting his error was a display of his impeccable integrity.

And there is also the Randroid twostep flying leap. In this case, the Randroid wants to attack someone so he admits that he was wrong about everything good he said about that person before. (He will never own up to having made a a moral error, i.e., an error of different values. He will always say that he was previously deceived by the person he is attacking so it was an honest mistake. That makes it not only OK to have been wrong, it was noble.)

btw - A person does not have to be an official Randroid to do the twostep or any of the variations. I see people dancing all over the place.

"I was wrong. Sorry." This phrase is really outdated. Too old-fashioned and corny for our dear Randroids and second string imitators. It shows lack of moral enlightenment or sumpin'...

Michael

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Joe's discussion of the two articles, linked in MSK's post above, was polite, and informative as to his current views on the articles, Jung, Rand, Objectivism.

I answered him here.

This is what I said:

Brief reply to Joe M.

Joe, I'm glad to have it straightened out about which article was which, and which was the one Diana quoted.

At this stage your and my views on life, Jung, Rand, and the Objectivist movement have diverged to such an extent, I would see no point in our debating the issues and I don't suppose that you would either.  You're correct in saying that "In the time of [your] interest in Jung, [you] solicited debate and dissent, which was almost non-existent."  I would have been probably the best qualified person to offer dialogue (including constructive agreement as well as "debate and dissent") because of my being well familiar with both Jungian theory and Objectivism.  I sometimes felt bad about not attempting a dialogue, but I didn't have the time for what I expected would be a long and complex process.  I never even got around to looking at your website, more's the pity I suppose since now I'll never know the details of what you were saying.  

I thought from the small amount of exchange we did have that there were errors in your understanding of Jung.  Two of those are touched on in your post:  your describing the "Collective Unconscious" as "a Kantian premise" and your describing the Jungian archetypes as "ideas."  The latter is and was a common misunderstanding of Jung, one he went to pains to try to correct, though the language in which he tried to correct it could itself mislead because of his reference to the Platonic "Forms."  The subject would be a long one to get into.  And at this stage, it is past the point of relevance in terms of your views.

At any rate, I still consider the Trickster article -- which I re-read just yesterday -- a good one, and a step in a direction I'd like to see further trod.

Ellen

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Ellen,

Maurone was polite with you, but evasive (in a manner similar to Valliant's normal answers to direct questions) [...].

Actually, Michael, I don't agree with your evaluation of that reply, but let's just agree to differ on it.

He posted a further response here.

He says at the end that he thinks "the divide between the methods of Jung and Rand provide a grand canyon that will be difficult for much exploration of the matter."

I think he's right in this assessment. Indeed, it's even along the lines of a note I wrote to him back whenever it was he was becoming interested in Jung and he was wondering about Jung's and Rand's respective views of "self."

My summary view is that in some aspects Jung and Rand can be integrated; in other aspects they can't be, and that amongst those aspects, Rand's right on the metaphysical issue (where Jung is rather Kantian is in metaphysics), but Jung is right (or at least much more right) on psychology.*

I haven't time for any in-depth discussion of all this now. But I just wanted to indicate that Joe and I are actually pretty similar in our views of Jung compared to Rand, although we have the opposite evaluations.

Ellen

* Edit: Getting the exact nuance I mean in comparing the two on psychology is difficult, especially when trying to be brief. I think that Rand is mostly poor on psychological issues, though then that gets tricky because, yes, there are respects, even important ones, in which she was insightful. What I was trying to indicate was just that I don't think Jung any more than anyone else was 100% correct. And, yes, I include myself in the "anyone else." Whatever errors I make aren't ones I'm aware of -- I'd correct them if I were aware of them -- but I don't doubt that there are some.

___

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Ellen,

For the record, I might be a little hard on Maurone, but that is because of two things:

1. I HATE evasive answers of the type:

Q: Do you prefer blue or red?

A: I like colors.

In his case with Robert Campbell, it was

Q: Which essay was actually quoted by Hsieh, the one published in JARS?

A: My essays dealt with the same theme.

This is pure bull to me. (And there are oodles of this kind of stuff from Valliant.) At least he did not post to you that way.

2. I still am very angry at him for turning over his e-mails from Chris to the vultures and sanctioning publication.

Michael

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I agree with Ellen on her respective evaluations of Jung and Rand in regard to metaphysics and psychology.

And I agree with Michael on his assessment of Joe Maurone's way of responding to Robert Campbell.

REB

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