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Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term
http://www.heinleinsociety.org/thsnexus/viewtopic.php?f=8&t=261
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Author:  beamjockey [ Fri May 15, 2009 9:30 am ]
Post subject:  Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term

One Hal O'Brien, blogging on the Talking Points Memo site, uses a little-quoted passage from Heinlein to coin a term for conservative opponents of Florida Governor Charlie Crist.

http://tpmcafe.talkingpointsmemo.com/talk/blogs/hbobrien/2009/05/the-gops-dead-jackal-wing-and.php

Robert Heinlein once wrote the following definition of a gentleman: Someone who would rather be a dead lion than a live jackal. He had a character, Lazarus Long (who was strongly modeled on Heinlein's friend, L. Ron Hubbard), say that he'd rather be a live lion, so he didn't qualify.[...]

Crist, who supported John McCain loudly and vigorously during the presidential campaign, is condemned by some for having the temerity to act in the best interests of his state and country by supporting Obama and the stimulus plan. [...]

So they're supremely worried that someone who puts policy, morality, legality, and ethics ahead of the in-group out-group tribal dynamics of today's Republican party might... might... win an election, or something equally offensive to their delicate sensibilities.

So, now we finally have a label for these faux "conservatives," who wish to conserve nothing, and are far more radical than anything else:

The Dead Jackals.


I presume it would have amused Heinlein to see writers mining his prose for new figures of speech. In politics, yet.

Author:  JamesGifford [ Fri May 15, 2009 10:36 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term

Where on earth did he get the notion that Lazarus was modeled on Elron?

Author:  beamjockey [ Fri May 15, 2009 10:45 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term

James Gifford wrote:
Where on earth did he get the notion that Lazarus was modeled on Elron?


I don't know-- have never heard that one before-- but I kind of like the idea. Fast-talking red-headed adventurer. It probably doesn't stand up to much analysis.

Author:  JamesGifford [ Fri May 15, 2009 11:46 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term

It's just barely possible if you accept that RAH took the inspiration before he figured out that LRH was light on his feet like anything else full of hot air. There is a letter in Grumbles ca. 1943 where he talks about Elron visiting and "all crippled up from having four ships shot out from under him" - but I think his awareness of the truth didn't take much longer than a year back in LA.

All that aside, I have never heard that LRH -> LL. I even checked Wack-O-Putzia to see if someone had slipped that factoid in there. (Nope.)

As for the primary point, I'd say these parties are Disney Lemmings rather than dead jackals. His Noodly Majesty knows the airwaves are full of live jackals right now, in a rush to break their chens and rove all over the new landscape.

Author:  BillPatterson [ Fri May 15, 2009 6:18 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term

James Gifford wrote:
Where on earth did he get the notion that Lazarus was modeled on Elron?

That is a bizarre notion, innit?

But, you know, "L. Ron Dianetic" was going to be an important character in Between Planets -- until he started taking over the story.

Author:  BillMullins [ Fri May 15, 2009 6:52 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term

James Gifford wrote:
I even checked Wack-O-Putzia to see if someone had slipped that factoid in there.


Done. Let's see if anyone re-edits it to the former state.

I also wrote the author of the original link asking where he heard that Long was based on Hubbard (in the comments of the blog). Maybe he'll respond.

Author:  beamjockey [ Mon May 18, 2009 8:58 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term

James Gifford wrote:
It's just barely possible if you accept that RAH took the inspiration before he figured out that LRH was light on his feet like anything else full of hot air. There is a letter in Grumbles ca. 1943 where he talks about Elron visiting and "all crippled up from having four ships shot out from under him" - but I think his awareness of the truth didn't take much longer than a year back in LA.


Just after the war, LRH roomed at Jack Parsons's house, as did the Cornogs (between 1945 and 1947) and Alva Rogers. George Pendle says Heinlein visited Cornog there and Hubbard and Parsons joined the discussions: http://books.google.com/books?id=X4j95BpvT5AC&pg=PA255. So Heinlein was still pretty friendly with Hubbard around then.

This was before Parsons's girlfriend and his kilobucks disappeared over the horizon along with Hubbard.

At what point, if ever, did Heinlein become estranged from Hubbard? He seemed lukewarm about Dianetics, but not opposed to it.

Author:  JamesGifford [ Mon May 18, 2009 10:05 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term

Bill will no doubt ring in here, but IIRC Hubbard kept up a steady stream of letters to Heinlein, which were answered with decreasing frequency until the last few decades' were filed unopened.

I am less certain but believe that the estrangement was all but complete by the early 1950s. The hysteria and then collapse of Dianetics probably had the most to do with it, as well as RAH becoming aware that LRH's war record was, ahem, overstated.

Author:  JamesGifford [ Mon May 18, 2009 10:08 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term

Bill Mullins wrote:
James Gifford wrote:
I even checked Wack-O-Putzia to see if someone had slipped that factoid in there.

Done. Let's see if anyone re-edits it to the former state.

Uh, slipping bogus factoids into WP is hardly an admirable act. Especially when your cite is a bogus claim you yourself are questioning.

*sigh*.

Author:  JackKelly [ Mon May 18, 2009 11:16 am ]
Post subject:  Re: Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term

James Gifford wrote:
Bill will no doubt ring in here, but IIRC Hubbard kept up a steady stream of letters to Heinlein, which were answered with decreasing frequency until the last few decades' were filed unopened.

I am less certain but believe that the estrangement was all but complete by the early 1950s. The hysteria and then collapse of Dianetics probably had the most to do with it, as well as RAH becoming aware that LRH's war record was, ahem, overstated.


I believe the last known letter from Heinlein to Hubbard was in December 1980, after a hiatus of about three decades during which the correspondence was strictly one-way.

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