questions for Chris Sciabarra

Craven, Jim jcraven at
Thu Aug 26 12:51:06 MDT 1999

Well, I'm glad to see we have such driving curiosity here!  If this is my
greeting, what's the departure like?
The only thing I can say, James is this:  Take a look at my work before you
pass judgment on it.  Your response is no different than those in the
Randian cult who have dismissed me as a Marxist.  I have been as critical
of libertarians as I have of Marxists, but I have drawn from both
traditions, and have had fun with colleagues on the left and the right.


Well Chris, that is a fair comment if indeed I were commenting on your work
which I have obviously not read. But my comments were about the notion of
some kind of productive "ecclectic" synthesis of dialectics and
libertarianism (typically ultra-positivist, ultra-reductionist, linear);
further, my comments were about the possibility of some kind of productive
and honest "left libertarianism" which I categorically reject; further, my
comments were about the notion of anything positive about Ayn Rand whose
scribblings I have read extensively and find to be proto-fascist, elitist
and a bit anal-retentive; and finally, my comments were based on extensive
experience with self-described libertarians inserting themselves into lists
based on paradigms and forms/levels of activism they are clearly intent on
wrecking or diverting focus.

As for reading your work, well you know the concept of "opportunity cost". I
live and work in a world in which genocide is going on daily (Indian
Country) and we don't have much FUN; it is not much FUN sitting in an Indian
Health Clinic watching a mother, with a hollow and distant stare in her
eyes, holding a child going through horrible seizures caused by lead of
toxic waste poisoning, caused by a  company that has located on the
reservation, driven by Ayn Randist "axioms" and led by creatures totally
enthralled with the likes of Ayn Rand, so they can avoid nasty Federal Regs
and associated costs, and driven by the "Unkown Ideal" of ultra-capitalism.
No, Chris, I do not have much FUN nor do the victims of "The Virtue of
Selfishness" and "Capitalism the Unknown Ideal".

As for your work, your self-identification as a libertarian and
self-professed enthrallment with scum like Ayn Rand means that the
opportunity costs--diverted attention and reading time better spent on
matters of possible substance--of doing so are simply too much. As for your
approval or any need to review your work for some possible pearls, I just
don't need it.

As for your comment about having FUN with people on the left and right, well
as I said, those in love with their own rhetoric and postures/posturing and
who love to debate, build CVs and market-niches (very clever market niche I
must say) in academia, well have at it. But why mess with people who are
actually trying to DO something more than scribbling and CV building?

Have a nice life and please, do have FUN debating the esoteric.

Jim Craven

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