Re: ART: What Art Is

From: Technotranscendence (
Date: Sun May 28 2000 - 00:20:23 MDT

On Saturday, May 27, 2000 6:39 PM E. Shaun Russell
> >It's sad that Rand wasted such a brilliant mind on
> >such a defeatist, "mental-masturbatory" philosophy...
> >
> >and, before I get flamed for that statement, I realize
> >we all share her ideals of independence. Nonetheless,
> >as one who has studied her work thoroughly, I feel
> >confident (though, granted, not infallible) in saying
> >that she turned a golden ideal into an empty
> >rhetoric...
> I won't flame you, but I will disagree. Despite the direction Peikoff has
> taken the Objectivist Institute in recent years,

Correction: Peikoff is with the Ayn Rand Institute. The Institute for
Objectivist Studies is its rival and has been renamed The Objectivist

Peikoff's stance has always been -- not just in recent years -- very
orthodox and inflexible.

> philosophical Objectivism
> still has merit. Very few who have been influenced by Rand's philosophy
> have revoked that influence...most still try to attain the ideal. I have
> often suggested that Extropy is the next logical step to Objectivism:
> the acknowledgment of individual ability proferred by Rand's philosophy
> uniting it with a focus on future progress.

I'd like to see how this is so, especially given the deeper aspects of
Objectivism's view of man and ethics. I think there is a lot to be gained
from studying both views, though I do think there are some differences.

> I will agree that her personal life (as cited in her biographies) did not
> always match her philosophical offerings, but I would be hard pressed to
> think that any of her ideals (or those in her books) can be considered
> rhetoric.

I would say they are rhetoric, but not empty rhetoric. I agree that Rand's
life and the life of her followers (especially the soulless ones:) should
not be used as an indictment of Objectivism as a philosophy. That would be
nothing more than a simple ad hominem attack. (And even flawed people can
be right.)

See my site for some of my criticisms/refinements of Objectivism.


Daniel Ust

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