Sunday, November 04, 2007

Jim Valliant Unplugged

Jim Valliant recently "went acoustic" on (registration required, even to view).

Among other pearls of wisdom, Mr. Valliant explained that didn't impugn the motives of the Brandens in throwing (or in his version, merely attending) the surprise party for Rand in honor of the publication of Atlas Shrugged.

This is Mr. Valliant yesterday on

Of course, PARC attributes no such malevolence to them for throwing a party.

Mr. Valliant said something quite different in PARC:

Rand was not seeking to 'control' anyone’s context here but her own. It was the Brandens who were part of the effort to 'control' Rand’s context through deception—Rand was merely objecting to the deception. (We shall see that this will not be the last time they will attempt to do this, merely one of the less important times.)

Mr. Valliant even claimed that no one had ever found a misquotation in PARC. Since numerous misquotations have been pointed out by me and others, this was quite a claim to make.

I responded with the following:
Here is Barbara Branden:

He retained his studio in the apartment building where he and Ayn lived, and continued to spend his days there. And each week, when Ayn’s housekeeper went to the studio to clean it, she found no new paintings but, instead, rows of empty liquor bottles.

Here is Jim Valliant:

As her sole corroboration for these sources, Ms. Branden refers to the “rows of empty liquor bottles” in O’Connor’s studio which Rand’s housekeeper is said to have found there after O’Connor’s death.

The response? As someone used to say, "Blank out."

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