The Journal of Ayn Rand Studies begins a new era this year: a collaboration with Pennsylvania State University Press, which will manage all aspects of design, production, distribution, and subscription fulfillment, while leaving the Editorial Board in full charge of the intellectual side of this grand adventure. As I state in the "Editor's Introduction: Change and Continuity," which appears in the new July 2013 issue: "In embarking on this new arrangement, the journal unveils a new look, but retains its commitment to introducing new writers to the ever-expanding world of Rand studies." And what a new look it is!
Check out the Notablog entry here.
Today at Notablog, I posted an announcement of the new issue (Volume 12, Number 1, Issue 23, August 2012) of The Journal of Ayn Rand Studies. Check out the Table of Contents and the Contributor Biographies. As I state on the JARS site:
Since 1999, The Journal of Ayn Rand Studies (JARS) has published over 250 essays, written by over 130 authors, working across scholarly disciplines and specialties. Starting in 2013, with Volume 13, Number 1 (Issue 25), the JARS Foundation will begin a collaboration with Pennsylvania State University Press (PSUP). PSUP will manage distribution and subscription fulfillment for print and online editions, while the Editorial Board will focus exclusively on journal content. Extensive digital dissemination and preservation of the journal is guaranteed through PSUP partnerships with JSTOR and Project Muse, and the dark archiving of all journal back issues at Stanford's CLOCKSS. Read about this exciting collaborative project here.
The Journal of Ayn Rand Studies was first published in the Fall of 1999; our Fall 2008 issue (running just a little late) is now out, and marks the beginning of our Tenth Anniversary Celebration.
The abstracts for the newest issue appear here; the contributor biographies appear here. There have been a few changes over at the JARS site... and more are coming. New indices for the Table of Contents and the Contributor Biographies are now on the site. Also, JARS has recently been picked up by the indexing service, Scopus.
The newest issue includes the following articles:
Mind, Introspection, and"The Objective" - Roger E. Bissell
The Peikovian Doctrine of the Arbitrary Assertion - Robert L. Campbell
Economic Decision-Making and Ethical Choice - Kathleen Touchstone
Reviews and Discussions
Re-Reading Atlas Shrugged - J. H. Huebert
Plato, Aristotle, Rand, and Sexuality - Fred Seddon
Reply to Fred Seddon: Interpreting Plato's Dialogues: Aristotle versus Seddon - Roderick T. Long
Rejoinder to Roderick T. Long: Long on Interpretation - Fred Seddon
Reply to Peter E. Vedder,"Self-Directedness and the Human Good" (Fall 2007): Defending Norms of Liberty - Douglas J. Den Uyl and Douglas B. Rasmussen
Rejoinder to Douglas J. Den Uyl and Douglas B. Rasmussen: Difficulties in Norms of Liberty - Peter E. Vedder
Cross-posted at Notablog.
This morning, President George W. Bush announced further"unprecedented and aggressive steps" that will help to"shore up" financial institutions and the U.S. economy during this time of crisis. He's delighted that globally, governments are moving to"strengthen" market institutions by providing more"liquidity," that is, by"purchasing equity" in major banks worldwide. The Federal Government will now purchase equity shares in this country's banks as part of its"$700 billion financial rescue plan." Oh, the banks will be able to buy back these shares with money from"private" investors when they get back on stronger financial footing. And, in addition to stepped up efforts by the FDIC, the Federal Reserve Bank will become a"buyer of last resort for commercial paper."
Inflate, inflate, inflate! And let's coordinate this on a global scale, if our national efforts are too puny!
Finally, Bush said that his economic advisors, led by Treasury Secretary Henry Paulson, will provide further details on how this"rescue plan" will take shape:
They will make clear that each of these new programs contains safeguards to protect the taxpayers. They will make clear that the government's role will be limited and temporary. And they will make clear that these measures are not intended to take over the free market, but to preserve it.
Up is Down. Right is Left. Freedom is Slavery. We come not to bury the"free market," but to save it... just the way FDR saved capitalism!
But, to paraphrase another Savior of the Free Market, who enacted wage and price controls to save" capitalism" from itself..."Let us make one thing perfectly clear": There is no free market. And the" capitalism" they are"saving" has nothing to do with"free markets." Call it"state capitalism," or" corporatism," or"neofascism." Call it whatever the hell you want... but don't call it a"free market."
As I argued recently, the state and the banks are virtual extensions of one another, two aspects of the same structure, a"state-banking nexus," if you will. The effective nationalization of financial institutions in this country is just a continuation of a long history of government intervention.
Cross-posted at Notablog.
I have just published a rather hefty tome on my Notablog, entitled"A Crisis of Political Economy." Lots of links therein, and thanks especially to some of my colleagues here at L&P who gave me so much from which to draw!
Comments always welcome.
The Democratic National Convention began last night, providing a few high moments for the party faithful. But I got a few chuckles while catching up on my reading last night.
Michael Moore tells the New York Daily News:"At this point, we need to try anything---and Obama is anything. And if he doesn't do the job we can throw the bum out in four years." (Just don't forget the old maxim: the job of the new president is to make the last president look good. Granted, a President Obama would have to go a long way to achieving that goal.)
Oh, and in a very interesting NY Times magazine article on"Advanced Obamanomics," David Leonhardt calls Obama a"free-market loving, big-spending, fiscally conservative, wealth redistributionist." A study in contradiction. What else is new? The article contains this classic howler:
The government has deregulated industries, opened the economy more to market forces and, above all, cut income taxes. Much good has come of this---the end of 1970s stagflation, infrequent and relatively mild recessions, faster growth than that of the more regulated economies of Europe. Yet, laissez-faire capitalism hasn't delivered nearly what its proponents promised. It has created big budget deficits, the most pronounced income inequality since the 1920s and the current financial crisis.
Laissez-faire capitalism? Laissez-faire capitalism?
It's a fairly typical exercise by contemporary political pundits; every so often, just"free-up" the mixture of regulation and market forces in the everyday see-saw of mixed economic policies and then blame laissez-faire capitalism for the mess.
Anyway, after some truly rousing Olympics in Beijing, the real political Olympics have only begun; pass the popcorn.
Cross-posted to Notablog.
Today, I posted another installment in my SITL series; I discuss a new book by John F. Welsh, entitled After Multiculturalism: The Politics of Race and the Dialectics of Liberty. Though today's entry is a detailed review of sorts, I had provided a blurb for Welsh's book, which appears on the book's back jacket. I wrote:
John F. Welsh provides a comprehensive survey of libertarian and individualist thought on race and multiculturalism. Examining such thinkers as Ayn Rand, Murray Rothbard, Lysander Spooner, Albert Jay Nock, and Max Stirner, Welsh's provocative book demonstrates the analytical power of dialectical-libertarian perspectives. Exploring multiple, interconnected levels, Welsh offers a fundamentally radical critique of racism in all its guises, while challenging current models of thinking on this volatile subject. This is truly a much-needed addition to the growing scholarly literature.
To read my larger discussion, take a look at Notablog.
For several years now, I have been going on and on about the continuing growth of the religious right in conservative circles. My antipathy to theocratic conservatism had been at fever pitch long before I wrote my essay,"Caught Up in the Rapture," which, with its sister essay,"Bush Wins!," predicted a Bush victory a good six months prior to the 2004 election.
In this context, a recent Jonathan Rauch essay,"America's Anti-Reagan isn't Hilary Clinton. It's Rick Santorum," has been making the rounds all over the blogosphere; it's a dissection of Pennsylvania Senator Rick Santorum's anti-libertarian philosophy.
What one will not find in Rauch's essay, however, are two words:"Bush" and"Iraq." In my view, Santorum's new book, It Takes a Family: Conservatism and the Common Good, is only the newest manifestation of a religious conservative movement, whose titular head is George W. Bush. Whereas the religious conservatives wish to remake the culture and politics of this country, the neoconservatives wish to remake the culture and politics of the Middle East. Together, these tendencies make for one very potent anti-libertarian, anti-individualist politics.
What hope does a religiously based conservative administration have to inspire secular, liberal democracies in the Middle East when it is at war with both secularism and liberalism at home?
I discuss these themes in greater depth at Notablog.
I have posted a few reflections on the collapse of Rudy Giuliani's campaign at Notablog.
So much more 2008 political theater to come...
I've authored an entry on Ayn Rand's philosophy,"Objectivism," which appears in the new International Encyclopedia of the Social Sciences, a 9-volume, 4000-page work published by Macmillan Reference USA, edited by William A. Darity, Jr. (Detroit: Macmillan Reference USA, 2008). The article can be found in Volume 6: Oaxaca, Ronald - Quotas, Trade, pp. 6-8, but the people at Gale / Cengage Learning have been kind enough to give me permission to post the PDF of the article on my home site.
You can access the essay as a PDF document here.
Cross-posted at Notablog.
There are several essays out there discussing the forthcoming 50th anniversary of Ayn Rand's novel, Atlas Shrugged. One such essay, written by A. J. Vogl, editor of The Conference Board Review, was just published in the magazine's September-October 2007 issue. (Vogl interviewed me, among others, for his article, and a summary of my own comments appears here.)
There will be more on the golden anniversary of Atlas in the coming weeks, so stay tuned.
Cross-posted at Notablog.
This year, as part of my ongoing annual series,"Remembering the World Trade Center," I have posted the newest installment, a Notablog exclusive:"Charlie: To Build and Rebuild."
It tells the story of Charlie Pomaro, who, as a young man, helped to build the Twin Towers, and who, in 2001, helped to pick up the shattered pieces.
An index of previous installments in the series is available in today's Notablog entry here.