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I laughed till tears squirted out of my eyes, my vision dancing with engraved invitations and flabby buttocks. Reversalism, a Guide to the Perplexed?

I'm really glad because I've always told myself I should read Atlas Shrugged, and now I don't have to.

Think you should sell this somewhere, MP.

Ever hear of the play "Mozart Was a Red"?

Yes, I've read Murray Rothbard's one-act play - a Google search will turn it up, for those who are interested. I didn't think it was particularly funny, but it was certainly perceptive.

Of course, that has nothing at all to do with Cassandra Prune ...

Too easily mocked... but you have contributed nicely.

By contrast, Mary Gaitskill's descriptions of "Anna Granite" are heartwrenching.


I am an Objectivist (from Solo) and according to the more uptight, we are not supposed to laugh at parodies - but that was funny as all get out!


(that means laughing - until tears stream down)

Ya got talent, dude. Ever think of becoming a writer?


PS - One day, when I get some more time, and if you have the time, I might engage you on some of the Objectivist issues you write about. I think we can get to a different perspective - at least your writings against Rand are some of the most intelligent from the "other side" that I have seen. btw - I just posted a quote from you on Solo:

I congratulate you on a funny parody. But you know, it occurs to me you have to know quite a lot about Rand and her works to have done it. Obviously it's "got" to you somewhere!!
You say you are an author. Can you list some of your titles. Sorry, but I've never heard of you.

Thanks for the nice comments, Michael and Cass.

Yes, I was heavily "into" Objectivism from 1978 to around 1990. I read all the literature that was available at that time. Since then, I've looked at some of Rand's posthumous publications, but not all of them, and I've read several books critical of Objectivism (Jeff Walker, Gregory Nyquist, Scott Ryan, Albert Ellis, John W. Robbins) and looked at critical Web sites like Michael Huemer's and the apparently vanished, much-missed "Objectifism" site. During my Objectivist days, I also took various taped lecture courses like Peikoff's "Philosophy of Objectivism."

So, yes indeed, Rand "got" to me ... but I got rid of her, finally - with no regrets!

Cass, there's info on my books at . The list of titles I've published (under my current name; there have been others) is:

Comes the Dark
Stealing Faces
The Shadow Hunter
Last Breath
Next Victim
In Dark Places
Dangerous Games
Mortal Faults
(forthcoming in January)

By the way, a photo-illustrated version of my Cassandra Prune bio is available at


I caught this an old blog post of yours (April) on Google researching something else and just read it. It was you final Rand rant. I worte the following post to it before I looked at the date. So rathere than posting my comment there, I am posting it here.

You stated (in your April post):

"This is a good point, but my point is that Objectivism, as a movement, does not encourage this kind of independent thinking. The movement would be much, much better if it did - and perhaps some of Rand's mistakes would even be corrected."

This is precisely what we are trying to do on Solo - encourage independent thinking within an Objectivist context. What is weird is that many hardline Objectivist see Solo as an irrational repository of hedonism, unbridled invective and emotionalism. (We do have a tendency to not be very charitable towards Randroids.) You stated (and I posted the quote on Solo) that you are pleasantly surprised by the "intellectual seriousness and basic civility" of people from Solo.

I don't want to make you shudder, but when you see a contradiction, you have to check your premises.


I will be doing an article soon on Solo about turning the other cheek. Rand's works actually are full of this if you know how to look and what to look for. Her heroes do it all the time. Your hilarious lampoon on "Reversalism" got me thinking in this direction.

I fully agree with you that the cultish crap found in Objectivist movements to date has greatly impaired the good, solid ideas in Objectivism from becoming more mainstream. Still, much good has been done by Rand's works (Reagan, for instance, liked many of Rand's ideas, put several into practice - and some really good things happened, and Greenspan, in his own silent backstage way has been doing the same - for which Randroids have never forgiven him, incidentally.)

There's a whole lot more, but I don't want to mess in your old wounds. I would hate to see you stop discussing Rand, though. Even she loved kittens.


PS - That was written thinking you were going to stop. I am glad you have decided not to. Your research on the Ed Hickman thing alone was extremely valuable. I also think the comment about Rand appealing to the insecure young very astute (why they are insecure is a very good thing to think about, too). In short, I believe that Rand should be criticized (how on earth will things get better if her work is not put to the litmus test?) - and to see one doing it so intelligently as you are frankly is a relief by comparison to the normal fare.

Sorry about the typos in the preceding post - I hit post before revising.



Thanks very much for your comments. I'm glad you posted here, as I wouldn't have seen comments on a post from April. (Actually I never check any comments that aren't on the current page of my blog!)

I agree that SOLO is a breath of fresh air in Objectivism. It's good to see Objectivists who are intellectually serious and not merely interested in personal attacks. While I've come to disagree with most of what Rand wrote, I concede that she staked out some intellectual territory that had not been claimed before. And I do think The Fountainhead is a modern classic.

As for myself, though, I've become what Ayn Rand would have contemptuously described as a Witch Doctor. My worldview is not too different from Scott Ryan's, actually - I'm a panentheist (subtly different from a pantheist), I am convinced of the reality of paranormal phenomena, I think there is good evidence for life after death, I think the ego must be transcended in order to achieve spiritual growth, I see egoism as inextricably linked with narcissism and therefore with arrested development, and I think the quest for a utopian society (included a libertarian "utopia of greed") ignores basic human nature and produces more harm than good. (This latter conviction probably belongs to Attila, not the Witch Doctor.)

My favorite philosopher these days is William James - not because I agree with him on everything, but because he had the temperament of a philosopher, always open to new ideas, never rushing to judgment, giving credit generously, making every effort to understand and appreciate a contrary point of view. These qualities were not evident in Ayn Rand, at least in my reading of her.

Your mileage may vary, of course!

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