No One's (Diana's ) "Hseikovian" email list

Kenny's picture
Submitted by Kenny on Tue, 2007-05-08 22:27

"No One" (the ex-SOLOist formerly known here as Diana Hsieh) is setting up a mailing list for Objectivist bloggers.

There is a requirement that "you refrain from supporting, endorsing, or associating with those who actively distort Ayn Rand's life and ideas, most notably David Kelley, Chris Sciabarra, and Barbara and Nathaniel Branden. Also, if you've treated Leonard Peikoff or other worthy Objectivist intellectuals with contempt in the recent debates about the election, please don't subscribe.

(Those criteria will exclude some people I regard as reasonable, intelligent, and decent folk from the list. So unless you already know that I hate your guts, please don't take your exclusion personally. If you're wondering, you're welcome to inquire!)"

Only Hsiekovians need apply! Smiling

Click here for the full article on "Noodle Food".

Edited to add (Wed, 9th May, 13.45 GMT)- I have just noticed Diana's name on the list of online users. She has deleted the "No One" handle and gone back to using her own name. Her photo has yet to re-appear.


( categories: )

Bull

JoeM's picture

Guy:
"Dismal tract records with friends, such as your’s, Diana’s, or anyone else’s, makes your judgment, in this regard, not worth shit."

By that logic, neither is Ayn Rand's. But I ain't buying it.
************************************************

Spaceplayer Sight and Sound

“Whatever you think of

Guy Thomas Stanton's picture

“Whatever you think of SOLO, it only requires that you never sell yourself out...”

Dear Joe,

You will find out that integrity involves more than oneself in a vacuum; there is one’s actions, as you mentioned, but there is also how one values their relationships. Dismal tract records with friends, such as your’s, Diana’s, or anyone else’s, makes your judgment, in this regard, not worth shit. You guys should be first to examine what mistakes you are making before you go anywhere near a moral judgement.

Guy

One more reason to go SOLO

JoeM's picture

Hmmm...I can't help but notice that Diana took a cue from my suggestion re "Sense of Purpose Objectivists":

"Just last night, I set up a mailing list for Objectivist bloggers on my otherwise unused OList.com domain. The list has no grand purpose: its only goal is to facilitate communication between Objectivist bloggers on issues like upcoming events, posts of interests, best blogging practices, and the like."

A grand purpose it doesn't have to be; every little bit counts, sometimes. But while I can understand the WHY of her exclusionary criteria, I just want to go on record as saying that THAT is not what I am calling for on SOLO. I am critical of open forums when they are purposeless, if open forum is the equivalent of "open minded." I'd rather not waste my time being baited and debated dishonestly. And I think that having goals, as opposed to exclusionary criteria, will do more in the long run to foster appropriate associations than exclusionary practices (since those goals will define the positive requirements as opposed to setting negative exclusions, a subtle nuance...Wink )

One of the criticisms of the SOLO picture policy is that pics can be faked. Well, so can loyalty oaths. So can allegiances. Actions speak louder than words. Commitment, not so easy to fake, though possible, either consciously or through a change in values. Even if one were to go through the motions with some contrary goal in mind, it draws a lot of energy from the deceiver to do so, and is probably not worth the trouble for them. But it's possible, all the same. For example, friendships. Even if Sciabarra is 100 percent right about Diana and Peikoff, he was guilty of false allegiance to friends, and truth itself by his actions. Two wrongs do not make a right. Diana requires allegiance to Peikoff; Sciabarra requires allegiance to JARS.

Whatever you think of SOLO, it only requires that you never sell yourself out (even if that makes you a suboptimal cauterwauling Wagnerian veganerian schoolmarm.) Better yet, it challenges you to judge for yourself whether or not you're happy with being such. And even better yet, if you are, it challenges you to stand up for it instead of repressing it.

(BTW, if you can catch the rerun, check out the latest episode of Penn and Teller's BULLSHIT!, which deals with patriotism and free speech, and features a live version of the bit featured on WEST WING with the burning flag and Declaration of Independence, one of the best things, they've done, IMHO.)

************************************************

Spaceplayer Sight and Sound

Diana Hsieh

Kenny's picture

Further to my addendum, Diana actually logged in to send me a friendly and explanatory email. It and my reply will remain confidential. However, I thank Diana for taking the time and trouble to write and repeat my hope that she will feel able to post here again.

Lindsay...

Ross Elliot's picture

..."Sneeringly awarding a chocolate fish to those who make it through the threads where it is being fought doesn't cut it. It's gutless pomowankery."

I can assure you, very few chocolate fish would have been awarded. The import of that thread was as obvious as the nose on your face, and required no stab by stab analysis to comprehend. The fact that I missed Diana's specific comment is immaterial.

And, to clarify, what exactly were you classifying as "gutless pomowankery"?

Suppose...

Guy Thomas Stanton's picture

Linz: “Suppose, however, Guy, I e-mail Heaps along the lines of, ‘Guy Stanton fucks goats.’”

No I don’t!

“‘But this is just between you and me—don't tell anyone.’”

Oh, that is nasty.

“Would you not hope that Heaps would be concerned enough to challenge me for evidence, and, when I failed to furnish any, check out the allegation with you, notwithstanding my injunction?”

I wouldn’t obligate Heaps–somehow, at this point I would smell a trap: a no win situation is forming. I would sit it out and see where Heaps would take it.

“And are you, when you hear what I've been saying about you, not entitled to be enraged enough to deny it publicly, since you can't know how many others I've said it to, all on the basis of ‘Don't tell anyone, but ...’?”

Public Relations is not my line of work, so I may not comprehend its significance. But, second-hand info, and the recognition of the dubious things people write in private would warn me not to engage in that battle. I am reminded of train station scene in which Lilian Rearden wants to surprise Hank, she has lost her equilibrium and she is disjointedly looking for the “one” among hundreds of passengers. She is at sea. If people let it, gossip could run their lives–like trying to catch so many slippery fish.

“And wouldn't you be doubly enraged if you and I had a history of close friendship and collaboration? And even if you did fuck goats, whom exactly would you consider to have dishonoured privacy here?”

Heaps! (Hypothetically of course.)

Didn’t the Spartans kill the messenger?

Guy

Guy and Heaps

Lindsay Perigo's picture

All things being equal, of course one should honour privacy. I would hope that goes without saying.

Suppose, however, Guy, I e-mail Heaps along the lines of, "Guy Stanton fucks goats. But this is just between you and me—don't tell anyone." Would you not hope that Heaps would be concerned enough to challenge me for evidence, and, when I failed to furnish any, saying only that I had it but wasn't at liberty to disclose it, make you aware that this was repeatedly being alleged by me, notwithstanding my injunction? And are you, when you hear what I've been saying about you, not entitled to be enraged enough to deny it publicly, since you can't know how many others I've said it to, all on the basis of "Don't tell anyone, but ..."? And wouldn't you be doubly enraged if you and I had a history of close friendship and collaboration? And even if you did fuck goats, whom exactly would you consider to have dishonoured privacy here?

We went through all this at the time, at some length.

When I confronted Sciabarra with what he'd said about me to Joe Maurone (not goat-fucking I hasten to add), his immediate reaction was ... to cease his friendship with Joe for breach of privacy in telling me! Well, I have a hard time seeing that Joe was in the wrong, or "KLASSless" on this! It was Sciabarra who showed lack of KLASS ... and KASS for that matter.

Linz

Private e-mail

J. Heaps-Nelson's picture

I don't think there's necessarily a philosophical justification for it, but as my personal policy I don't reveal private e-mail, period. I also don't use it very often as I'm usually comfortable saying in public what I'd say in an e-mail. Different strokes for different folks.

Jim

KLASSless

Guy Thomas Stanton's picture

Linz,

I see you’ve taken my comments to heart, and replied with a justification of sorts. You wrote: “With that sort of behaviour one forfeits confidentiality in my book.” Apparently Diana H. agrees as well. Doesn't that take all the fun out of private emails with notable people?

I think that private fun wins over public disclosure every time. Isn’t it KLASSless of a friend, lover, or ex not to honor confidentiality? What did Rand say about exception making and love? It’s an honor for me to receive emails from a friend who sputters forth with their brutal speculations, rants, and unverified gossip. Even if I were to fall out with him or her I would make it a point of pride to respect their privacy, no matter how manipulative or ill-judged they might have been. This is not an invitation for people to email me privately.

Guy

Guy

Lindsay Perigo's picture

Which reminds me of the Hsieh/Sciabarra and "Belly of the Beast" fiascos; in which the accusers, riding high and mighty, overlooked the small detail of the ethic of privacy.

Sadly, Chris had been hiding behind the veil of confidentiality to smear folk who had no idea what was going on until it was brought out into the open. The e-mails he sent to Joe Maurone about me, for instance. I couldn't believe my eyes when I first was shown them. And Chris had in effect been smearing the entirety of ARI with his "confidential" claims to Diana that sundry of its intellectuals were chomping at the bit to publish in JARS but were too terrified of possible reprisals to do so. With that sort of behaviour one forfeits confidentiality in my book. Clandestine lying about someone is surely no less an initiation of force because it's clandestine and the guy smiles to your face? In those situations, one should put up or shut up.

I don't think the "group-think" I've complained of here revolves around the current ARI, but rather, the hovering Old Guard. It's real, though, and it's cultish for sure.

Linz

PS—No One has morphed back to Diana. Damn! I was enjoying the "artist-formerly-known-as-Diana" jokes. Guess she'll have to be "The artist formerly known as No One" from now on. Smiling

> If she's setting up a

PhilipC's picture

> If she's setting up a bloglist with the purpose of advocacy of a set of positions, she may well want to focus on the advocacy without having to debate the positions...Now I can simply go read her website for an informed take on orthodox Objectivism and I don't have to read about some painful new fallout from her disagreement with this or that intellectual in Rand land.

Jim, I think there's a difference between saying I don't want people who disagree on X, Y, and Z to join and saying you can join but this is not a venue for debating X, Y, and Z.

Justice

J. Heaps-Nelson's picture

Phil,

While I disagree with many things Diana has done, this is not one of them. If she's setting up a bloglist with the purpose of advocacy of a set of positions, she may well want to focus on the advocacy without having to debate the positions. If so, why would someone who had a somewhat settled position in opposition want to join her blogroll?

Also, at this point I think people who object to ARI's policies can simply vote with their feet. If anyone uses Objectivism as a dominant pretext for forming friendships and social relationships then they might worry about it. Otherwise, they can simply opt out. In fact, I much prefer Diana's new approach. Now I can simply go read her website for an informed take on orthodox Objectivism and I don't have to read about some painful new fallout from her disagreement with this or that intellectual in Rand land.

I think that it is important for people to have it out about Objectivist movement issues and come to their own conclusions. However, if someone has clarified their position, is not going to change and sees little value in the alternate position(Drunk then they can reasonably set restrictions on email lists as she has done.

What I do not agree with is her years'-long campaign to exact personal vengeance on those she disagreed and associated with in the movement. It is both a waste of her personal time and a misplaced projection of regrets for the perceived loss of opportunities for not having taken another path.

I have a different perspective than Diana, perhaps 5% of my life, if that, is spent on Objectivist-related activities. Were it different, I would have to make tradeoffs in other areas of my life that I am unwilling to make. I allow for the fact that I have much to learn in some areas of my understanding of Objectivism and remain open to arguments in those areas.

Jim

Bullshit again

John Drake's picture

Damn you're full of it today.

I'm lazy because I'd prefer to spend my time thinking about and writing my dissertation rather than play your games.  As a matter of fact I actually did go back and review what you wrote and you still distort her when you paraphrase her, ignore her explicit statement contradicting your "logical implications", and mudding the waters by asking suprefluous questions.

But wait...Phil is not lazy because, why, he made bullet points?  Sorry you're going to have to do better than that. 

John Drake
<a href="http://trhome.blogspot.com/">Try Reason!</a>

See post I just made for

PhilipC's picture

See post I just made for more detailed analysis.

Go back yourself

John Drake's picture

Phil,

I'm not going to play your game.  If you have evidence to back your claim, present it.  If not, go back and grasp yourself. 

John Drake
<a href="http://trhome.blogspot.com/">Try Reason!</a>

Justice in one's Treatment of People

PhilipC's picture

To put this more positively, here is what a fair-minded and just person might have as a policy for setting up lists, associating with people, developing relationships, etc. [This is what someone like Diana might well have done, even given her views of Peikoff, Rand, Sciabarra, etc.]:

"I'm most interested in associating with those who are committed to Objectivism. I realize that there are many confusions and errors possible, especially with regard to judging individual people -- such as Ayn Rand, Leonard Peikoff and other prominent figures associated with this philosophy. And especially in those cases where many books have been written and counter-arguments made over the interpretations of events which happened decades ago and at which the readers were not present.

"People can be misled about these matters or simply more focused on the ideas than on knowing who, for example, who Chris Sciabarra is or what kind of person. Especially since they may not have much to go on besides one person's essay [mine] and most of them have probably not read the secondary literature such as his book, The Russian Radical.

"Likewise, many people have offered arguments and reasons for being contemptuous of Leonard Peikoff's position that you -must not- vote for Republicans if you are a good Objectivist. While I think he is right about Republicans, this is a complex factual issue regarding which many mistakes of assessment are possible. To disagree with Peikoff (and even overreact by being personally insulting toward him in the heat of anger) is not the same as abandoning Objectivism. In fact it is understandable that someone might be outraged or lose his temper from being told by Peikoff that he is incompetent in Objectivism if he doesn't understand the current state of political danger.

"And any similar differences in this recent debate, no matter how heated, are not a moral issue. Nor are they a measure of the long-term honesty or worth or potential of people on the other side who might be of value to me and to Objectivism.

"I should bear in mind especailly that many bloggers and posters are young. They are likely to be in early stages of even learning the actual philosophy itself, let alone developing emotional control or applying the philosophy correctly.

"Therefore it would be rather unjust of me to allow such differences in how one assesses major intellectuals in or around Objectivism to be a criterion for not associating with people who are committed to the philosophy itself. It's the ideas which matter and which are telling in the end, not the personalities or any mistaken assessment of individual people."

....

Note that I don't agree with some of the views of people in the above fictional quote, but it would at least be a policy marked by justice.

The most important thing is this:

If you are unjust in your treatment of people or too quick to discard honest and basically decent and honorable people, it will catch up with you in the long run.

> [You] distort what she

PhilipC's picture

> [You] distort what she says [John]

Go back and grasp which points are-> 1. a paraphrase, 1. which are a logical implication, and 3. which are a question.

Point taken

John Drake's picture

You're right Chris.  Point taken.  Consider what I said amended.

John Drake
<a href="http://trhome.blogspot.com/">Try Reason!</a>

It's not even that

Chris Cathcart's picture

John, re: point ii.

Losing all respect for anyone who associates with Kelley et el would not be consistent with what she said elsewhere in her post, i.e., that it still includes people she considers decent and intelligent. After all, she would include herself-five-years-ago in that category. She considers some of them honestly mistaken about certain fundamentally important things. She would rather have people in her group of bloggers that she thinks understand Objectivism well enough not to make this kind of mistake.

Linz's response looks characteristically emotionalistic in its over-reaction . . .

Disgusting

John Drake's picture

Phil, you are so full of shit, its disgusting!

i) She "focuses" on individuals???  Bullshit!  She makes exceptions based on who you support, but it was clearly about ones ideas, namely Objectivist ideas.

ii) she never says you can't associate with those people.  She merely says that if you do associate with those people, she loses all respect for you and would rather not associate with you either.  Its your choice.  Would you associate with someone who distorts or attacks your parents (or whomever you greatly respect)?  Would you associate with someone who supports those attacking those whom you admire and respect?  This is Diana's view.  She sees Kelley, Sciabarra, the Brandens, as distorters of the truth about Ayn Rand (or willfully ignorant).  Not only does she not want to sanction their behavior, but she doesn't want to sanction others who blindly or willfully support these distorters.  I can certainly understand her requirement.

iii) where has she EVER said this.  Rather, in that essay itself, she tells people to look at the evidence themselves and come to their own conclusions.

iv) She never implied anything of the sort.  Read what she read for christ's sake.  She clearly refers to treating Peikoff or other worthy Objectivists with "contempt".  You can respectfully disagree, as Jim Valliant has done.  Nothing wrong with that.  But your questions are totally unjustified.

To be clear, I don't agree with everything Diana wrote, but I do respect her enough not to distort what she says as you have done.  Phil, your hatred of Diana is quite telling. 

John Drake
<a href="http://trhome.blogspot.com/">Try Reason!</a>

Cultism is a strange

Guy Thomas Stanton's picture

...phenomenon to those who don’t experience life that way.

Linz made the following astute point: “...cultism and the philosophy that will save western civilisation have nothing in common, and those who display it in Objectivism's name subvert Objectivism.”

The American Family Foundation (1986, p.119-120) defined cults as:

"A group or movement exhibiting great or excessive devotion or dedication to some person, idea, or thing, and employing unethical manipulative or coercive techniques of persuasion and control...”

Which reminds me of the Hsieh/Sciabarra and "Belly of the Beast" fiascos; in which the accusers, riding high and mighty, overlooked the small detail of the ethic of privacy.

Linz: “The "group-think" that I chided the Hsiekovians for is real—and it should be exposed and resisted.”

I wonder at the nature of “group-think”; I used to think it was some kind of secret club, but now, after some experience, I think those people just “think that way” and they naturally gravitate towards each other. I have noticed that they get confused when they come across independent and action-orientated people--as if all of their mental constructs have no weight.

Guy

Sad ...

Lindsay Perigo's picture

Phil is right on the money here. His Point 2) is especially pertinent for me:

ii) you can't even -associate- with this list of people, which means they can't be your friends, you can't publish in JARS, you can't appear on a podium with them, etc.

No One initially told me, before she ever posted on SOLO, that she never would, because folk like Campbell, Sciabarra, Bidinotto, Hudgins et al posted here. Then, for whatever good reason, when those folk were still here, she did start posting, and mixed it with all of them. Often to devastating effect. Bidinotto, for instance, was reduced to spluttering about "guttersnipes" in a hilarious impersonation of a cornered rat. Diana No One demonstrated the value of fearless engagement vs. angry isolationism. Out of her comfort zone, she rocked. She KASSed. But with the fatwa she reverted to form, very quickly, as we all know, flouncing off in a hissy fit. Tragic. And cultist. The fatwa was Leonard's and she was going to be his loyal conduit, regardless of its merits (none) and regardless of the arguments against it. The guru-god had to be prostrated before at all costs. She would not forget, she assured us, those who showed him "disrespect" during the debate. Neither she has. In a grotesque emulation of Binswanger's loyalty oath, such reprobates are now barred from this new whatever-it-is of hers. Yes, of course, that's her prerogative—but it's stupid, anal-retentive, intrinsicist, counterproductive ... and a blight on the Objectivist landscape.

SOLOists, it's all very well to bemoan the time spent on this sort of internecine stuff, but I'll tell you something for nothing: cultism and the philosophy that will save western civilisation have nothing in common, and those who display it in Objectivism's name subvert Objectivism. Cultism must be fought tooth and nail. Sneeringly awarding a chocolate fish to those who make it through the threads where it is being fought doesn't cut it. It's gutless pomowankery.

Cultism is the sort of behaviour where one, commendably, compiles a list of books for Objectivist newbies which includes some of the works of some of the above-named heretics because they have merits that would render them newbie-useful—but one then, jellyfishly, withholds one's name as the author of the list when it's published for fear of angering the guru-gods! That is an example of cultism that has happened here. The "group-think" that I chided the Hsiekovians for is real—and it should be exposed and resisted. Note—the folk at KASSless were as guilty of it over PARC, genuflecting to their gurus the Brandens, as No One has ever been.

Part of SOLO's mission most emphatically is to present Objectivism untainted by cultism. And by Galt, we're doing it and will keep on doing it.

Linz

Ross

Kenny's picture

Diana wrote, in her email to Linz, that "My only reason for deleting my name was I was tired of seeing myself discussed as a lurker on SoloPassion."

Linz, correctly, pointed out in his reply "the only time you were discussed as a lurker (once) was by Kenny, who expressed the hope that you resume posting". I had seen her logged in but not posting so I said, with genuine sincerity, that I hoped that she would post again. In fact, it seems that she was livid that I had exposed the fact that she was visiting SOLO and had not "left" after all.

Diana has had a self-righteous, hissy fit and used it against Linz. She should have taken it up with me through the SOLO email system. That was sheer dishonesty from a woman who often throws that term around. Double standards and evasion!

I have lost all respect for Diana and can only take her past posts on David Kelley and Chris Sciabarra with a large dose of salt. She should grow up and take her own advice to "grow the fuck up".

Intolerationism - Taking a Further Step In that Direction

PhilipC's picture

> "To join the list, you ...must also be an Objectivist...it does require that you refrain from supporting, endorsing, or associating with those who actively distort Ayn Rand's life and ideas, most notably David Kelley, Chris Sciabarra, and Barbara and Nathaniel Branden. Also, if you've treated Leonard Peikoff or other worthy Objectivist intellectuals with contempt in the recent debates about the election, please don't subscribe. " [Diana]

For those of you are still supporters of Diana's views on non-toleration...or think that they are innocuous or not worthy of commetn, notice how sweeping this last part is:

i) it focuses primarily on one's view of or attitude toward -persons- (Ayn Rand's life, contempt toward Leonard Peikoff)
ii) you can't even -associate- with this list of people, which means they can't be your friends, you can't publish in JARS, you can't appear on a podium with them, etc.
iii) she expects that you would accept her essay condemning Chris Sciabarra -alone- as conclusive proof that you shouldn't even associate with him.
iv) if you are contemptuous of Peikoff's position on who not to vote for, does that mean you are supposed to be approving of it, supportive of it...or what is the opposite of being contemptuous of it?
v) who are the other intellectuals you are not supposed to be contemptuous of, is there a list?

[Please don't make the irrational reply that it's her list so her rules and she can have any rules she wants: One is entitled to criticize the irrationality of -choosing- a particular set of rules without denying one's "property rights" to do so, just as one would criticize someone who refused to rent apartments to or hire women or minorities.]

head spinning

Ross, I just tried to re-read it and my head started spinning. More electrons are wasted arguing about offense and umbrage then dealing with the issue itself.

Wm

Islam insofar as it is directed by governments, and as a measure enforced from above by any government, is to be done away with.

Oh, *that* thread

Ross Elliot's picture

Chocolate fish to *anyone* who kept up with it.

Sniping? I used it as an

Sniping? I used it as an opportunity to sign up. I was accepted in the time it took to post this.

Wm

Islam insofar as it is directed by governments, and as a measure enforced from above by any government, is to be done away with.

Ross

Lindsay Perigo's picture

Read Diana writes me a love-letter, and my reply.

And keep up! Smiling

Diana, if you're reading...

Ross Elliot's picture

...why *did* you change your handle to No One?

Chris C

J. Heaps-Nelson's picture

I'm happy to hear about Diana's progress. Graduate school can be a lonely place and the timetable isn't always definite. I remember taking 3 years to get my thesis M.S. ChE because two thesis projects fell through for lack of funding and I had to set up the lab and get the instrumentation working for my eventual thesis project. I hope she completes her PhD is the timetable she's set. We need more Objectivist professors.

My father took 8 years to finish his PhD in Latin American history, but he and mom traipsed around South America for 2.5 years of it Smiling.

Jim

While you're sniping about

Chris Cathcart's picture

While you're sniping about that (which raises an eyebrow but not enough to get me much worked up at this point), I was more interested in reading about Diana's admirable progress. This is a woman who's getting things done.

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