Mike11 Posted May 10, 2008 Share Posted May 10, 2008 Just a side issue not addressed directly here that I think deserves some consideration. Out of everyone here I'm furthest removed, I think, from Objectivism in both my personal beliefs and tribal affiliation. I've never dared to speak to someone face to face after learning Atlas was their favorite book and would not go to any Objectivist clubs. My knowledge of Objectivism is based on other sources and my own external observations of their online communities. Those disclaimers said I think this passage really explains why there is so much petty tribalism going on. However, like all my posts, don't expect this to be coherently argued....Roland Barthes traced the origins of the virtue of lucidity to the emerging structure of power, which used the means of law, in France. The idea that one must state, clearly and succinctly, what one believes was a way for the emerging State to understand and thus control its subjects. Now I'mot sure if this is true and I think in a legal context its obviously required but any power structure would demand this sort of thing.Whether Rand intended this passage to assist in the maintenance of the Objectivist hierarchy is beside the point, I believe it has come to function in this way and has become a major justification for it. We have, I think, all agreed Rand's instructions to be unrealistic or undesirable for various reasons. One can not be called upon to justify one's beliefs at the drop of the hat, especially not in the black and white ways Rand and the Roids seem to prefer. Because of this, in my mind, the lines become so blurred that any statement or lack of codified beliefs on any issue can be made either White as John Galt's Own Cigarette or Black as Toohey's Gallant Gallstone. Let me give an example of 2 equally likely conversations:Pope Lenny: What is your evaluation of continued beer bottle throwing along the Ontario/Quebec border?Young Roid: I don't know. I'm from there but haven't thought of it much.Lenny: *likes the cut of the Roid's jib* Well, surely the mind can not properly integrate Everything but what do you think on a preliminary basis?Young Roid: Well, it seems to me (or, "my feeling is") that Quebec has legitimate grievances.Lenny: *still likes the cut of his jib* I see your point young man. Have you read my book?.......Or, take 2:Pope Lenny: What is your evaluation of continued beer bottle throwing along the Ontario/Quebec border?Young Roid: I don't know. I'm from there but haven't thought of it much.Lenny: *Thinks the young roid is fat or reminds him of his mother* What!?! You mean you EVADE!?!?!?!?!?!?! Out with it man! What do you believe!!!Young Roid: Well, it seems to me (or, "my feeling is") that Quebec has legitimate grievances.Lenny: *Still thinks the Roid looks like his mother* Seems!?!?!? "Legitimate!?!?! The problem (since its the only thing Peikoff feels confidant thinking about and thus having this full description of his own belief on) is Quebec is a fundamentally mystical and altruist society! Would you have the Canadians immolate themselves on the fleurs-de-lis! You have done nothing but evade the issue and refuse to see the true cause of the dispute, not the mundane earthly dispute but the dispute of ideas! Now leave here! :frantics: k Joel...... cool it.....So that is how, and why, I think the idea is so powerful among the Roids.As a side note, notice I had Lenny's confidence in his ideas a factor. If having a codified belief, not actual truth and logic, is what determines one's possibilities of acceptance and expulsion than you will stick to what you know is the party line. In Peikoff's case you stick to what you "know" which is philosophy and will thus, because you're less likely to acknowledge truth outside of it, see the world only by what your capable of easily defining/regurgitating.I hope that post made sense and that it contributes. Link to comment Share on other sites More sharing options...
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