Archive | May 7, 2008

The Shroud of Aristotle

Whilst surfing for something else I happened across this description of Ayn Rand’s philosophy as “really nothing other than a Solipsistic ethical system thinly shrouded with Aristotle,” popular only because “a lot of college age kids want to hear … a philosophical rationalization for greed and selfishness.”

Ayn Rand I think one of the chief explainers of the divide between those who take Rand seriously as a philosopher and those who don’t may well be the interpretive divide between those who see her philosophy as a solipsistic ethical system thinly shrouded with Aristotle and those who see it as an Aristotelean system thinly shrouded with ethical solipsism. Obviously I’m in the latter camp.

So here’s a question for those in the former camp: if Rand’s ethics is just a rationalisation for greed and selfishness (in the conventional sense) and the Aristoteleanism is just a thin shroud, then what exactly is the contrast in The Fountainhead between Roark on the one hand and Wynand and Keating on the other supposed to be about? What is supposed to be wrong with Wynand’s and/or Keating’s modus operandi, from Rand’s point of view? If anyone can give a plausible answer that’s consistent with the view of Rand cited above, I’ll eat my conical hat. If not, then I’ll stick to my view that such readings of Rand are the product of a tin ear.

Moon of Kudzu

While I’m on the subject of hauntingly beautiful moon-related indie sf movies, the extremely low-budget Moon Europa project, which I was introduced to at Asheville’s Revoluticon in 2006, is one to keep an eye on. Check out the three trailers here, here, and here.

Moon of Ice

Iron Sky This trailer is beautifully done. So beautifully done, in fact, that I’m betting they put the bit with the dove in at the end just because they felt they had to make sure nobody thought they were out to glamourise the Nazis!

Anyway, I look forward to seeing more. (But since when do Germans drive on the left?)

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