- I can’t bring myself to give a shit about the “schism” between Ayn Rand and the Brandens. The NBI fiasco was, what, 1968? Plus, all of the original participants in the aforementioned fiasco are dead — except for Leonard Peikoff, of course. Quite frankly, I have always had some suspicion that Peikoff takes his “legal and intellectual heir” bullshit seriously primary because he didn’t get to “tap that ass”. Acting as “guru”/puppet-master of what is, effectively, a “clone” of NBI (the “nathaniel Branden institute”) was probably the only thing capable of giving him “wood”, over the last several decades. 🙂
- I can’t bring myself to give a shit about the ARI/Atlas society drama. This basically means that I also refuse to take part in the endless proliferation of “factions” resulting from that kind of bullshit:
The main “Objectivist” discussion forum in which I initially participated was initially sympathetic to/affiliated with Atlas Society, to the point where Barbara Branden herself was an active participant on the board, for some years.
Then, James Valliant’s book The Passion of Ayn Rand’s critics was published, and everything went to shit. As is SOP among “Objectivists”, there was a vast up-tick in “discussion” rehashing the Rand/Branden/NBI bullshit, which then mutated into an ARI Vs. Atlas Society squabble, as to which organization was comprised of “True” Objectivists.
This resulted in:
- The two individuals who had co-founded the original board each withdrew their “moral sanction”, and started competing “forks” of the original board (which, ironically enough, initially contained a fairly large swath of participants in common).
- At the same time, two other “factions” (comprised initially of pissed-off board participants, rather than “leaders’) created boards of their own. EACH of the four boards tended to tacitly regard the other three as having a “flawed understanding of the Objectivist principles”, or as having “betrayed Ayn Rand’s legacy”, or suchlike phrases.
(The whole thing was eerily reminiscent of the kind of Denominational shit-slinging which is endemic to (some variants of) Christianity.)
I’ve never really been able to become interested in further “participation” of that kind, since then.