Friday, 12 December 2014

QUOTE OF THE DAY: Perigo on Nathaniel Branden

“One of the cleverest con-men ever. Glib and plausible to a fault. On the level? Not remotely. Ayn Rand's biggest mistake, with no other mistake coming close. Guilty of all the things he accused her of, including intellectual bullying. (Told Tibor Machan for example their friendship would be over if Tibor kept posting on SOLO.) An ignoble liar, whose systematic, conscientious deceitfulness screams from the pages of Rand's journals, where we know more in hindsight than she knew at the time. An extraordinarily angry man who made anti-anger a virtue and legitimate rage a vice. Boorishly judgmental while damning judgmentalism as the world's worst sin. One of the great disarmers of the good.
    “No loss at all to anything decent.”
- Lindsay Perigo, comment on post 'Nathaniel Branden, 1930-2014', SENSE OF LIFE OBJECTIVISTS



  1. He's our own hateful, witless version of Gore Vidal, isn't he? Only bitchy.

  2. Desperately smearing Branden because he had a falling out with Rand (after she both destroyed both their marriages) is petty and childish in the extreme.

    And the obvious lack of character shown by people like Perigo smearing him again as soon as he died show his observations about Rand's cult were pretty much spot on.

  3. What is the point of that post. Could not care less. Woman's weekly anyone?


  4. Sorry Dave, you're wrong. So much wrong in so short a comment.

    Nothing desperate about it, it's very considered.

    Not a smear: it's fully based on fact.

    Not because he and Rand fell out, but because of who he falsely purported to be -- and al teh consequences thereof.

    Not because he destroyed both marriages -- her's was not destroyed, his was already destroyed.

    So ... if someone's being petty and childish ...

    Anyway, it was neither a smear, nor said as soon as he died. He was invited to comment, and he did, and some days after he died. And he simply commented by affirming what he'd said many times before, in very considered fashion, including directly to him when he was alive.

    And Branden's observations about a "cult"? If they are spot on, as you suggest, then so too is his admission that he himself was most instrumental in making it that way.

  5. @Dinther, you ask: "What is the point of that post?"

    The point is that the accounts by the two Brandens of what amounted to self-serving deceitful relationships with Rand have been used by nearly everyone with an axe to grind to accuse Rand falsely of all manner of things, many of those accusations being wheeled out again in the last fortnight, and to lionise the two people responsible for the deceit. IMHO the comment was both topical and necessary.

  6. "Not a smear: it's fully based on fact" Yes as long as you consider Ayn Rand's journals to be gospel.

    "his admission that he himself was most instrumental in making it that way" Notice how Branden is a liar until he says something that corresponds with what you want to believe? I think I've made my point.

  7. "Yes as long as you consider Ayn Rand's [diaries] to be gospel." Well, no, other independent accounts also back up her diary notes. Just as other independent accounts also back up Branden's statement that he was most instrumental in making a "cult" of NBI.

    A basic principle of any statement made by a Branden is to seek independent confirmation before filing it under 'probably true. If independent confirmation doesn't exist, it's probably not true. In the absence of any independent confirmation, distrust even their words 'and' and 'the.'

  8. I agree with Perigo in that Branden was "boorishly judgemental"' and agree he was deceiful. However I do think many of his books have some merit, especially the early ones.

    It's rather strange that so many folk are still obsessed with Rand's romantic and sex life. Had she had been male no one would have cared less I'm sure.

  9. @Ruth: Yes, agree with you on both.

    It's been said he essentially spent his career rewriting those early books, but the first four especially were good books.

    And, yes, bizarre.


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