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Old January 3, 2013, 09:01 AM   #26
zukiphile
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Join Date: December 13, 2005
Posts: 1,654
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Originally Posted by 44AMP
Lots of excellent commentary, but a clarification is needed, for me....

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her literature aptly describes the danger of mobs who display poor analytical ability.
I am unable to think of any mob that displayed good analytical ability....

If there is (or was) such, then I am misunderstanding the defintion of at least one of the terms. Clairification, please?
It was not my intent to imply that history has ample examples of mobs with excellent analytical capacity. Instead my comment was directed to what Rand well described: a mob with a Jacobin spirit, a consumption with a bloody hatred for better than average people, and a thuggish propensity to turn that hatred into action. She spends considerable time describing that sort of fault.

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Originally Posted by Dr Big Bird Phd
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Unfortunately, she adopts the metaphysical substrata of the Marxist materialism and appeals to objectivity that destroyed her father's world.
While her philosophy's roots are pretty clearly grounded in rationalizing her personal history as unethical, I wouldn't agree that she adopted anything Marxist. If there was one person she hated more than Kant it was Marx. She attempts to induce ethics through the concepts of Life vs. Death being the ultimate positive and ultimate negative. Anything you interpret as "materialism" is merely a misinterpreted building block of her epistemology.
To reject her conclusion that a Right to Life equates an inherent Right to Property, is to reject the other deeper concepts in her ideology.
I do not deny her antipathy for Marx. However, an antipathy for Marx did not keep her from a recurrent, and I would say ultimately empty, appeal to a false objectivity that rests at the core of materialism. (" Materialism"used here is the assertion that material objects enjoy existence independent of perception, and constitute the entirety of reality.)

Rand's tireless ridicule of the ideas and traditions that compose our social sphere are also consistent with this materialism.

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Originally Posted by Dr BB
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This is reflected in Binswanger's writing which is littered with the gratuitous use of the word "objectively". Remove that word from his piece and it loses none of its persuasive force. Indeed, Rand used the word as a talisman to sidestep the epistemological absurdity of her process.
Having gone through the piece, the author does not define what is "objective" very clearly. I don't see how you can denounce Rand's entire methodology of thinking though. In fact, I can hardly believe how one can rationalize a small government, individual rights, and the RKBA without agreeing with a large chunk of her conclusions.
Rand's writing is ideological and radical in a way that reflects the influence of the French Enlightenment. It arises a priori from her ideology and a very continental way.

Early Americans were products of the English Enlightenment, which was far more moderate and pragmatic. Its ideas and temperament distinguish it from what would sweep the continent over the next two centuries.

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Originally Posted by Dr BB
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I will take a look at that, though having suffered through Galt's unending speech I do consider myself to have already done considerable randian penance.
Hahaha. Did you read the speech separately of reading the book or not? The speech is much easier and enjoyable to digest if you read the book start to finish.
I read the entire book, and read the speech in context. It isn't that the speech was difficult in its content; it is that it was repetitive, self indulgent, and tiresome. She is the Wagner of authors, and that speech is her Ring Cycle.

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Originally Posted by Dr BB
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I read every last miserable word of Fountainhead. I confess that I do not understand the enthusiasm many people have for her literature. Her characters are archly cartoonish and most of the dialogue is thinly veiled philosophical exposition.
I could get into a long discussion about this, but in my opinion it serves the book better to keep the characters in such a manner. Her point wasn't to create someone real, but to imagine the best possible a man could be. She highly respected Romanticism and the Greco-Roman virtue ethic.

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As literature, I think it is amongst the worst I've read.
I wish I could have a more in depth conversation of it with you, the Fountainhead is the most inspirational piece of literature I've ever read.
I pushed through to the end hoping the book would redeem itself. I cannot deny that my philosophical differences with her may have colored my assessment of her book as literature. However, I find that many fans of her literature have the habit of fans of Nietzsche; they have an ability to look past the ugliness and skim off something useful or admirable.

That isn't a bad ability to have, but it explains how a syphilitic moral terrorist can write "whatever doesn't kill you makes you stronger" and have it printed on a million T-shirts.

I don't begrudge anyone the inspiration they draw from her text.

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Originally Posted by Dr BB
I am curious to read his thoughts.
I've not read it for a few years, but his national review piece from 1957 is linked below. I have taken some liberties in abbreviating your name and addressing a couple of your points out of order; no slight is intended.

http://www.nationalreview.com/articl...you/flashback#

Last edited by zukiphile; January 3, 2013 at 09:37 AM.
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