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RichardP

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    Dominique Poirier
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    Ayn Rand and Orwell reader, between many others.
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    Paris - France
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  1. That’s all right, Jake. I apologize to you and to everyone for the third person thing. I guess I explained why I acted that way, and you know it. Now, the news on my previous post is quite something. A lot of folks are interested in it. Dom... ooops, sorry, I mean, The Dude.
  2. While checking when a French translation of Atlas Shrugged will be available today (oooooold story)I was taken aback on my chair when I found this: The Internet Archive - Community Books Am I dremaing? Is it true? Are we supposed to understand that it has an official existence? Does ARI gave its approval to it? Any idea, anyone, please?
  3. Luck was on my side at some point, when some people made an incredible blunder, a few days ago. I managed to find and retrieves proofs – I weight my word when I choose to say “proof” instead of evidence – showing that a group of Frenchmen who acted anonymously plotted to kill my book and my reputation, in France as in every French country where French language is commonly spoken. It’s even much enough to bring the case before a justice court as the sales of my books on Amazon.com grinded to halt since a couple of weeks, now. That is to say, when my book and myself began to be attacked here and there on the Internet. All those people act under the guidance of one man only, interestingly enough. One of those persons happens to be the same who is challenging the validity of the Wikipedia page on Grandoria, (see the discussion index of this page) and I hold a written statement from him saying that his aims were to prevent my book, Grandoria, from being read. The proprietors of the two mainstream French forums on sci-fi literature are personally involved in this conspiracy too. I will add a link soon on this thread directing to a document exposing the whole conspiracy and its perpetrators, as the the English translation of the conversations I retrieved is a painstaking task.
  4. OK, Thank for the lesson. From now on, I’ll know that if no one can talk about a book or anything else on the media in a given country, as if everyone knew what this book or this item is, then it means “hostile reception”. The good news is that since Grandoria, and Atlas Shrugged were greeted with hostile reception, then it means that each and every French journalist, webmaster, blogger, etc., and all their readers as well, do know what these two books say. Therefore, there is no need to say anything else about it, or even to put these books for sale anymore. Good epistemology, but quite unexpected in America, and on an Objectivism forum. Now , yes, my name is Dominique Poirier, and yes it means I’m the author of Grandoria, indeed, since I knew from experience that one is never given any credit when attempting to defend oneself. As a result, it didn’t change anything anyways, and it made my attempt to speak out the only receivable fault in the eye of all, among everything has been said on this thread – the whole of the rest doesn’t deserve any further consideration, or is pure imagination coming straight out of a mad mind. Problem solved. Good night.
  5. Small world, says my personnal brain integrated syntaxical-behavioral analyzer, William Scott Scherk ! I hope this book will survive over progressism the way you are picturing it - as no one but you could do it - even if it's not mine. See you, then, and pray for Dominique Raymond Poirier and me in the meantime, please.
  6. That's fine, William Scott Scherk, then I know that you just come to realize what is at stake right now. I didn't expect less from an Objectivist.
  7. By the way, As I was perusing the thread on this forum - Culture SF - I stumbled across a thread the guy named “Hilare” posted on October 2, and it was not about Dominique Raymond Poirier and Grandoria. Instead, the title is, my translation from French: "Who ever read Atlas Shrugged?" ("Qui a lu Atlas Shrugged?") Then the guy ads further explanation about the Ayn Rand’s novel and calls for opinions. Guess what? No one ever answered anything as yet, even not a “who is this author, actually?” or a mere “could you elaborate a bit about this book”, as you and many other did on this thread. Please, don’t tell me it’s all about French cultural peculiarities!
  8. William Scott Scherk, On this thread, the person named “Hilare” has just been treated with contempt and be answered unclear allusions I cannot understand myself: The Culture SF discussion That’s also where it is said at some point that “Grandoria, along with Atlas Shrugged , are works of libertarian propaganda”. Now, on this other thread, The Actu SF discussion you will find no less than five pages of posts which are nothing but wanton collective mockery, insults and the like directed this time, both, against another person wrongly accused of being Dominique Raymond Poirier, and Dominique Raymond Poirier himself who appeared later on this discussion. Sorry, but it’s too long to paste all this on a comment, as you can see. Myself, I couldn't bear a quarter of the pails of manure these two persons were thrown in the head! Moreover, even the Wikipedia page about Grandoria is now the object of a claim, just after I posted this thread today, sent by a Frenchmen posing with an English name, and who clumsily introduced himself as a person in direct connection with those who treated “Hilare” and “Grandoria” with contempt. Let's quote this other person talking on the Wikipedia discussion index relating to Grandoria: “Everybody on culture-sf is agree to think that Hilare is a false-name and, in fact, the author of this "fabulous french sci-fi book". As everyone can read it, groundless accusations and scorn are present in this claim supposed to be objective. Now, if all I said in this thread and all the author of Grandoria explained, plus the aforesaid latest attempt to censor Grandoria and his author even on Wikipedia, proof in hand, is still disputable in your own opinion, then let’s burry our head in the sand. But seriously, at this point I believe that the question is no longer whether Dominique Raymond Poirier attempted to self-promote his book or not - which is not a crime, after all, if ever he did it - but why in Hell are those people attempting to make him and his book disapear ?
  9. O.K. I elaborate about it. It all began about a couple of weeks ago, when a fan of the book attempted to talk about the author on one of the main French sci-fi websites. At first, some members teamed up to claims, as if in a concert effect, that this visitor truly was the author himself attempting to self-promote his book. But coincidence made that the man in question was the webmaster of a website on sci-fi novels and sci-fi history, and he could prove it. Then they changed their mind and said he was his brother... From then on, the webmaster reported to the author of Grandoria about the incident, and the former registered to this forum so as to introduce himself and fix the problem. But contrary to all expectations, several members of the forum harshly insulted the author instead of acknowledging they were wrong, on the ground that the author of Grandoria would be homophobic. So, Grandoria's author attempted to explain that such a claim was fair exaggeration, and he posted some excerpts of the book showing that this accusation was groundless – to no avail. It didn’t change anything; forum's members insulted the author, fiercely this time, for no clear reason. They just said Dominique Raymond Poirier was, I quote, "a troll", without explaining what they means exactly. A week later, another person experienced very similar problems on another of the three most popular French sci-fi forums, but those who harshly and contemptuously treated him appeared to be other peoples; the accusation shifted to “self-promotion” from the author and “libertarian propaganda”. This other person reported about it to Dominique Raymond Poirier too, and he equally reported that all his comments about Grandoria, or the book's author, posted on some other forums and websites were systematically deleted, without further explanation. At this time, two peoples only openly said why Grandoria and his author are unwelcomed on French forums and websites, and I previously quoted them in my threadhead. Beyond this, it is true that no French official ever said that Grandoria is banned in France, and as a matter of fact, no French official ever openly claimed a book was banned, when it was in effect, indeed. That’s the way things go on when such an issue arises in France. But now, if ever one of you talks a bit of French language, then he will quickly realize that his attempts to talk about Grandoria on any French literary website will meet with contempt and hostility or, at best, with similar accusations - unless those people happen to read this thread and cautiously decide to change their attitude, which would put a good end to this story. By the way, from personal experience, anyone trying to talk about Ayn Rand, and Atlas Shrugged more especially, will have to face the same hostility in France. I did it, and I can tell you that it’s true but in any other French speaking country - talking about Grandoria or Atlas Shrugged on Candian websites is not a problem, for instance. Dominique Raymond Poirier, Grandoria’s author published everything about this affair today - in French, of course - on his Facebook page, which I often read. And he added the links where anyone can read everything I'm reporting about in here.
  10. Grandoria, a French objectivist novel and a dystopia, written by the author Dominique Raymond Poirier and published earlier this year, is now banned on nearly all French literary forums, websites and media. When explicitly formulated, justifications supporting this ban range from “libertarian propaganda” to “far-rightist literature”. One among the most explicit negative criticisms stated: “Along with Atlas Shrugged, previously named, Grandoria is a work of libertarian propaganda (…)” (“Tout comme Atlas Shrugged qui a déja été cité, Grandoria est une oeuvre de propagande libertarienne (...) Written in French language only, Grandoria remains publicly available in North America in hardcover and ebook Kindle versions on Amazon.com, and it continues receiving positive criticism from French-speaking U.S. and Canadian readers. (see Wikipedia for more on Grandoria) Grandoria (dystopian novel)
  11. Hello, Scribulus, Below is my answer and contribution to the subject you bring upon, which is my translation of a part of “Grandoria”, a French objectivist thriller I talked about in a previous comment earlier this month (or in May maybe). Let’s precise that my perception of the unconscious is not Freud’s; it is based upon works in behavioral biology previously undertaken by researchers such as Dr Paul D. McLean and Dr Henri Laborit (see Wikipedia for more information on these two scientists). Paul D. McLean’s theory of the “triune brain” has been later challenged by observations of the brain activity thanks to “Magnetic resonance imaging”. However, the triune model continues to hold interest to many psychologists, psychoanalysts and even psychiatrists, in United States where behaviorism enjoy more interest than anywhere else in the world, more especially. From my own observation, recourse to the triune brain model never fail to provide correct explanation to said-to-be irrational behavior (such as the case of the nice and quiet guy who unexpectedly kill his whole family before killing himself, as example.). Okay… Let’s start. “A brain's function is not thought, but action. Evolution is a conservationist. So, in the animal brain, we find very primitive forms. There is a "first brain". Paul MacLean calls it the reptilian brain and so it is. It triggers immediate survival responses without which no animal can survive. Drinking and eating, by which it preserves its structure and copulation by which it reproduces. Then, when we get to mammals, a "second brain" is added to the first. McLean and others call this the “affective brain”. I prefer to call it the “memory brain”. With no memory of what is pleasant or unpleasant, there is no question of being happy, sad, anguished, nor of being angry, or in love. We could almost say that a living creature is a memory which acts. Then a "third brain" is added to the two others. It's called the cerebral cortex. In humans, it has become highly developed. We call it an associative cortex, meaning that it "connects". It connects the various nerve paths which have retained traces of past experiences. It connects them in a way that is different from the way they were imprinted by the environment at the moment of the experience. In other words, it enables us to create, to be imaginative. In humans, these three brains still exist, superimposed. Our drives are still primitive, coming from the reptilian brain. These three layers of the brain must function together. Therefore, they are linked by nerve bundles. One nerve bundle we might call the “reward nexus”. Another, the “punishment nexus”. This one will lead to “escape” or to “combat”. A third one will cause the “inhibition of action”. For example, a mother's caress for her child, the medal that flatters a soldier's self esteem, applause for an actor. All this release chemical substances in the reward nexus and result in pleasure for the object of the attention. I spoke about memory but we must understand that at birth the brain is still immature. Therefore, during the first 2 or 3 years of existence, a human being's existence of his surroundings will be indelible. It will play a very important role in the evolution of all his future behavior. Above all, we must come to recognize that what affects our nervous system, starting at birth, perhaps even in the womb, the stimuli acting upon our nervous system come essentially from others. We are others. Only others. When we die, these others, interiorized by our nervous system, these others who have formed us, formed our brain, and filled it... are going to die. Let’s say that I do no mean “others” in the political sense of word, of course, but in the “intellectual” sense, if I may put it thusly. That’s why our brain holds, from the very day of our birth (and earlier, possibly, as I said), elementary bits of information very important to our survival, that are used under the form of what we call “drives”, and some bits of information which, as drives too, connect us to others - to our likes. However, this does not mean that those later bits of information connect us to other in the affective sense of the term. I’m not meaning “camaraderie”, “brotherhood” or “love”, but about care for us as a species. For, there is a drive originating in our reptilian brain that gives us the order to preserve our species (the need for copulation stems from the same drive, truly). Well, this is a reality that looks much less romantic than what we use to hear about. When we pretend to care for others, for their needs, we are truly anxious to preserve our species, which is quite a different need from the universal love in which many would prefer to believe in (angst gets us to go toward others). So, our three brains are there. The first two function unconsciously beneath our level of awareness and drives socially-conditioned reactions. The third furnishes an explanatory language which provides reasons, excuses and alibis for the unconscious working of the first two. Somehow, we can compare the unconscious to a deep sea, and what we call consciousness is the foam that appears sporadically on the crest of the waves. It is the most superficial part of the sea, buffeted by the wind. The unconscious part of our brain may perform tasks underneath the conscious part of it, and unbeknown to us, as it may chose to continue performing a task we previously undertook conscientiously (problem solving), because this task appears to us as very important (survival concern). The best known example of unconscious working is that of driving our car while we are lost in deep thoughts about something totally unconnected to driving or going to a place from another. Also, we may go to bed we an unsolved problem in mind, then wake up the next morning with the solution in mind, “ready to consume” if I may say so. In the case of a person with mental disorders, the inner parts of our brain may lead it to function improperly and to do things that appear as crazy to others (this is about chemical substances releases and exchange, in most instances, or about the way neuronal connections were established during our infancy). I hope it helps. I’ll answer further questions about all this, should the need arise.
  12. Hello, David, It’s very hard to reason people who believe in things like that. To some extent, they belong to the “true believer” category as it is described by Eric Hoffer. It means that they have a need to believe in something, be it rational or not, as long as it is not too complex, in their case. The only sure way to convince them that conspiracy theories as they conceive it do not exist, is to provide them with something else (this is the reverse of my previous explanation). Let me use the following historical parallel for a while as a way to explain what I mean. During WWII, it was not that difficult to convert a deeply committed Communist into a Nazi, and Joseph Goebbels claimed that this could be done in about one month, and that the reverse was possible as well (these two political commitments are extremists, and somewhat close, after all). It is understood that I am talking about commitment and not just belief, of course. However, and in my opinion this time, I believe that both are rather close as seen under a purely psychological angle. I mean in this sense that a sincere and deep commitment is the same thing as a strong belief, especially when it turns out to be a myth or even something completely irrational. For it claims something akin to a strong will to firmly believe in something irrational – a will to believe. So, why? Whence come such a will? Still in my opinion, this strong will to believe or to commit oneself steams from angst, which itself steams from fear as a visible feature of the “drive to survive” that originates in our “reptilian brain” (as described by Dr. Paul McLean and Dr. Henri Laborit). When fear arises within us, we have an alternative with three options only: “escape behavior”, “combat behavior”, and “inhibition behavior” when neither escape nor combat is possible. In the case we are debating about, our believers are overwhelmed by a situation too complex to be analyzed. As those believers feels they cannot escape this perception of their immediate surrounding (social surrounding in this instance) that frightens them because it is gives them “vertigo” as an abyss would do, they struggle to find an explanation, a justification (I prefer to call it an “alibi”) that is conceived, built, by the part of their brain called “cerebral cortex”. This alibi may be God, the “little green men”, a big and fanciful conspiracy theory, or anything pertaining to the same category of irrational beliefs. Why irrational? Because we are entering at this point a realm in which rationality claims above-the-average intelligence. One cannot expect that everyone is entitled to analyze how the whole world works from an economic, social, political, strategic, and technological standpoint, all at the same time. Those whose can’t can still turn to irrationality, which is another realm that is satisfying because it provides ready-to-consume and simple-to-explain descriptions. The recourse to irrationality is to be put into the category of "escape behavior" –“this is much too complicated for me and I do not have the brain to get it, so I can get away from it in choosing a much simpler irrational option.” This process does not occur as clearly as I’m roughly describing it – as it is not as clear too when someone escape a situation in choosing to drink. Our subconscious does this work for the conscious part of our mind which, in turn, converts it into an explainable and acceptable “alibi”. But we cannot exert control over the unconscious part of our brain that is a collection of experiences we all start from infancy. And we all had a different infancy, a different social middle with very different experiences. If your parents were professors in a university, there is much chance for that your perception and your understanding of our social surrounding be very different of this of another person whose parents were farmers. Well, I would be glad to push the matter farther (about behaviorism and brain), but it would make my answer a bit long (I’ll do it in a next answer, should the need arise). But I believe that I went far enough at this point to explain why our believer can give up his belief in a conspiracy theory only if you can provide him with a substitute. Joseph Goebbels (sorry to quote twice such a person) knew too that it was much harder to convert to Nazism an indifferent, a passive person without opinion. This does not mean that an atheist is an indifferent, not at all. The atheist will need to believe in something too, anyways. We, who are reading this forum, are often atheists, but we believe in Objectivism, we believe in something nonetheless, because Objectivism, in our particular case, provides us with arguments that fit our perception of our social surrounding and of our analysis of the situation. But what is going to happen to you and to me if ever the set of value and premises of Objectivism are taken out of our consciousness? We would be a bit unsettled - lost maybe. So let me assume that many among us would probably find refuge in Republican Conservatism. That’s what would happen to our believer in conspiracy theory if we ask him to get rid of this other premise. He would be unsettled, lost. And he would instantly seek refuge in "something else". I let you with the choice to fill this other void.
  13. This best reflects my answer to this thread. Let's add, as an example on how fast such damage can occur in reading on the Stockholm syndrome (see Wikipedia). Some victims of this interesting phenomenon (which is tantamount to a very fast braninwashing) never fully recovered from it.
  14. Hello, There is a chapter in an essay on the writing of Atlas Shrugged that talks about this point. It is an interesting interview of Mary Ann Sures, who was hired by Ayn Rand in the fall of 1956 as typist and proof reader. It would be too long to write it in this answer, but I can tell you that Mary Ann Sures worked the whole day with Ayn Rand in her appartment in New York. Marry Ann Sures worked a lot on the rewriting of the John Galt' speech, between other things. So I give you the useful references you are looking for. Essay on Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged, edited by Robert Mayhew, Lexington Books, 2009, ISBN 978-0-7391-2779-7, Chapter 5, titled Working for Ayn rand: Selection from Facets of Ayn rand, Mary Ann Sures, pages 113-123.
  15. The answer I suggest to this question is that the human brain dislikes doubt and uncertainty. It refuses to accept the idea of an infinite universe, for example. For, we, human beings, have been taught since infancy that everything knows an end. Our brain, that is to say our perception of the surroundings in which we evolve is shaped thus way; this explains why religion and belief in irrational invariably took place in all past civilizations all around the world. So, in a time when religion and the belief in a supreme being providing an explanation for everything goes over our understanding has been seriously challenged by science since some centuries, already, there is a need for a substitute: a solution or a scenario providing an explanation to a world too hard to understand from a rational standpoint to the average brain. For wants of a supreme being there is still the recourse to a solution introducing itself as a bunch of bankers, tycoons, politicians and other Saint-simonians wise men who would secretly lead the world unbeknown to everyone, the whole thing borrowing to History some brotherhood attempts such as the Illuminati, the Knight Templar, the Freemasons and the like, including UFO for the most enthusiastic, so as to give it the credibility of age. Yet, those believers are well aware that such a thing is impossible since cultural and racial differences forbid its happening – even Chinese and Russian communists proven unable to get along in order to conquer the whole world. But without such beliefs, our modern world would be a scary and unpredictable pandemonium, a concept which arouses an unbearable angst. And a bunch of “secret masters” regardless of their aims and goals, be they spirited by evil thought, capitalism, altruism or anything else, is still preferable to the fog of the unknown for the most anxious among us. On another plane, conspiracy theories, as a narrative, or as myth a Sorel describes it, serve also the aims and goals of the left, particularly in European countries and in Russia, in order to convince people that a bunch of nasty and selfish capitalists are accountable for the rise of unemployement and poverty everywhere unemployement and poverty arise - in this last case the conspiracies involve the Trilateral, the CFR and the the Bilderberg Group. However, conspiracies exist at the lesser scale of a single state, indeed. In this last case, it consists in holding the political and economic power thanks to the use of local secret societies, political polices and intelligence services.
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