Mental exchange of the day:
CRITICS OF AYN RAND: "You have no children in your novels."
AYN RAND TO CRITICS: "Those authors you like so much? They have no heroes in theirs."
CRITICS OF AYN RAND: "Touche!"
AYN RAND TO CRITICS: "Checkmate, assholes."
Is this like shooting fish in a barrel, or what? :-D Man, if only the Left (and its comically-ignorant reddiot spawn) could mount a remotely respectable criticism of Ayn Rand of all people, a full half-century after the publication of Atlas Shrugged.... Instead, what we get today from them is mostly intellectually-childish imbecility. What we have here is a failure to integrate, and therefore a loss of great amounts of intellectual credibility for leftists. Viz.:
"The political aspects of Atlas Shrugged are not its theme. Its theme is primarily ethical-epistemological: the role of the mind in man's existence - and politics, necessarily, is one of the theme's consequences. But the epistemological chaos of our age, fostered by modern philosophy, is such that many young readers find it difficult to translate abstractions into political principles and apply them to the evaluation of today's events. This present book may help them. It is a nonfiction footnote to Atlas Shrugged." -Ayn Rand, "Introduction," Capitalism the Unknown Ideal, p. ix (pb).
I dare anyone to go find and someone who's read through Rand's corpus of writings thoroughly (it couldn't exceed a dozen or so volumes, could it? how effing hard can that be to do?), and engaged the secondary literature (including the spoken canon - in other words, the infamously excruciating mind-numbing drudgery of Leonard Peikoff lecture courses), and still come out talking the same shit - or anything remotely like that shit - about her. I effing double and triple dog dare anyone to do it. I think if there were such an individual, I'm pretty sure I'd have heard about her/him by now. (I consider myself to be pretty thorough/perfectivist about this kind of shit.) The only thing that the Left has got her on is her bad polemics, and the Left ain't no sweetie-pie itself in that department, all the academic resources at its avail notwithstanding. Anyway, the role of the mind in man's existence is key for Rand, and absolute independence of the mind (given the nature of the mind and its functioning) is thereby also key. None but poorly-trained intellectual imbeciles - like Donny, out of his element, like a little child wandering into the middle of a movie - would have a problem with that, right?
So. Where does that put our cultural discourse, going forward? Is it more intellectually-childish imbecility from leftist player-haters, or more in the way of heroes, the benevolent universe premise, sense of life, and such? Does this here blog more or less become Ground Zero for that cultural discourse in the near future? If so, why? If not, why not? Something to think about. Glenn Beck is already outdoing you leftist fools in the intellectual department, for crying out loud, and he's yet to even take a Peikoff course, or read Norton's Personal Destinies, or log thousands of hours of Howard Stern show listening, or Saganize his cognition, or memorize much of the film canon and then work to integrate it into a functioning mental unit for later processing. And yet, while Beck discusses Ray Kurzweil ("The Singularity Guy"), the media "progressives" focus instead on the latest cabinet nominee filibustering; do you see some effed-up priorities on someone's part here? If these fools can't tell by now that the theme of Atlas Shrugged is not empathy-disregarding capitalist ubermensch-ism (a chicken-shit strawman in any event), but the role of the mind in man's existence, that's Exhibit A right there that they're doomed as an intellectual and political movement. Exhibit B would be when they claim that the fundamental virtue for Rand is "selfishness" instead of the correct answer as to the chief Randian virtue: (Aristotelian) rationality. Such piss-poor comprehension of ideas! Whence does this pathology emerge and fester? By golly, I put it in the most extreme terms applicable and it's still 100% spot-on, as any objective truth-observant light of history shall document. Not too bad, huh?)
Also, you can't separate aesthetics from the rest of the philosophy. Just thought I'd throw that out there off the cuff for consideration. (Benevolent universe premise and heroism and sense of life - they being as much at the core of Rand's philosophy as her method of intellectual integration and her advocacy of reason as human beings' only absolute. Why does the Left hate all that so efffing much, or so it would appear?) Also, how does that principle integrate with the film canon, anyway? Anyway, the goal remains: a neo-Aristotelian utopia. Aristotle and Jefferson rolled into one, minus the slavery stuff and other imperfections. Doable. But how quickly? Keep in mind that Jefferstotle doesn't suffer fools gladly. Checkmate in 3...2...1...