Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Timely Meditations for the Very Vigilant

On the argument of the necessity for showing a "united front" at the ARI, the Hsiehs also say that
The range of views that ARI should support under its "one consistent position" policy is a separate question. We regard this policy as wholly proper for Objectivist principles and their public policy applications. Diana has serious concerns about applying it to new philosophic or other scholarly work, however good, including The Logical Leap.

Well, as far as principles go, there is the "metaphysical" and the "man-made," or,
objective principles versus Objectivist principles. I certainly wouldn't want to hear the ARI supporting voodoo and communism, but then...well, here are some salient quotes from the "reason for the season" herself...

If you want to influence a country's intellectual trend, the first step is to bring order to your own ideas and integrate them into a consistent case, to the best of your knowledge and ability. This does not mean memorizing and recitingslogans and principles, Objectivist or otherwise; knowledge necessarily includes the ability to apply abstract principles to
concrete problems, to recognize theprinciples in specific issues, to demonstrate
them, and to advocate a consistent course of action.
But what about the need for an ARI in the first place?

Above all, do not join the wrong ideological groups or movements, in order to “do something.” By “ideological” (in this context), I mean groups or movements proclaiming some vaguely generalized, undefined (and, usually, contradictory) political goals...The only groups one may properly join today are ad hoc committees, i.e., groups organized to achieve a single, specific, clearly defined goal, on which men of differing views can
agree. In such cases, no one may attempt to ascribe his views to the entire
membership, or to use the group to serve some hidden ideological purpose (and
this has to be watched very, very vigilantly).

Why does this even need to be reiterated among Objectivists? But I guess they can't have anarcho-vigilantes running around, second-guessing intellectual heirs...

And so, I

Open Thoughts on "Closing Thoughts"

After being chastened by Yaron Brook, the Hsieh's at Noodlefood have concluded their "fact-finding" mission regarding "Anthemgate":

Now that ARI has explained recent events and its future policies, we do not regard further debate on those matters as fruitful.

Exactly! "It doesn't fit the plan." After all, they are the priests of the Temples of Syrinx. We need solidarity here. What is not done collectively cannot be good. After all, many men in the Homes of the Scholars have had strange new ideas in the past, but when the majority of their borther Scholars voted against them, they abandoned their ideas, as all men must. I mean, should it be what McCaskey claims of it, then it would bring ruin to the Department of Induction. Induction is a great boon to mankind, as approved by all ARI. Therefore, it cannot be destroyed by the whim of one. I mean, that would wreck the plans of the council, and without the Plans of the Council the sun cannot rise. It took years to secure the approval of all the councils...this touched upon thousands and thousands of men working in scores...we cannot alter the Plans again so soon...You thrice-damned fools...

Whatever; I think the Ph.D with a Podcast should have told Peikoff, Brook, and co. to piss off, personally. If I wasn't going to submit to
Operation: Mindcrime from diabolical dialecticians, I certainly don't need no re-education in the form of "loyalty oaths" and conference calls from fearless leader. (While two wrongs don't make a right, it, admittedly, does lend credence to the claims made by Chris Sciabarra, Neil Peart, and countless others about Orthodox Objectivism.) If we're talking about scientific inquiry, we're talking about free scientific inquiry...which was supposed to be redundant...

Anyway...Say what you want, but, to be fair to the Hsiehs, they do stand by their initial criticisms (in a guarded manner, anyway), and, whatever their motives for their apologies, they do make the point that "Donors, students, and intellectuals can and should decide for themselves the nature and scope of their future support for and involvement with ARI based on their individual context of knowledge and values."

Yes, they should. So as the Hsieh's close their thoughts (and blog) on the matter, let that not be taken as
the final word. In the ever-ringin' true words of Isabel Paterson, "Leadership is obliged to justify itself daily."