View unanswered posts | View active topics It is currently Thu Oct 19, 2017 12:59 am



Reply to topic  [ 36 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4  Next
Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term 
Author Message

Joined: Thu Aug 21, 2008 12:40 pm
Posts: 537
Post Re: Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term
James Gifford wrote:
Uh, slipping bogus factoids into WP is hardly an admirable act. Especially when your cite is a bogus claim you yourself are questioning.


I freely admit that I am probably not adding to the mass of scholarly content that is Wikipedia with my edit. But neither am I trolling -- by Wikipedia's rules, it is a fair addition (not proven, but citable). And maybe someone will come up with the source of the original statement because it is on WP, and in the comments of the original blog.

And I don't believe it has been established that the cite is a "bogus claim"; just undocumented. Even you note that it is "barely possible".

It would probably be more likely to generate a response if I had posted it in the article about Hubbard, rather than the one about LL. But I don't know if I want to get involved in anything that close to Dianetics.


Mon May 18, 2009 2:43 pm
Profile
PITA Bred
User avatar

Joined: Wed Apr 09, 2008 12:17 pm
Posts: 2401
Location: The Quiet Earth
Post Re: Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term
Bill, the image of a kid flicking matches at a can of gasoline comes to mind.

You really don't do "research" by posting questionable claims as fact and waiting for someone to correct them. That WP permits such things - cites on the flimsiest of bases - is at the very heart of my disgust with the institution.


Mon May 18, 2009 5:35 pm
Profile

Joined: Thu Aug 21, 2008 12:40 pm
Posts: 537
Post Re: Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term
James Gifford wrote:
Bill, the image of a kid flicking matches at a can of gasoline comes to mind.


Poking a bear with a stick is probably more precise -- less collateral damage.

Quote:
You really don't do "research" by posting questionable claims as fact and waiting for someone to correct them. That WP permits such things - cites on the flimsiest of bases - is at the very heart of my disgust with the institution.


Fair enough. What I did wasn't "research", by any scholarly standards (or any standards at all). But within the sandbox I was playing in (Wikipedia; which you have established elsewhere is a slipshod excuse for reference), it was a legitimate, acceptable edit. It is linked to the source from which it came, and anyone who reads the comment there can see that there is reason to doubt its veracity. Anyone who is interested in it from a scholarly POV can trace it backwards, and draw their own conclusions as to whether it is true or not (as any scholar would/should do with non-primary sources).

No way would I have presented it as a statement of fact in an article in The Heinlein Journal, nor in a peer-reviewed format; nor would I have presented a similarly-sourced statement in legitimate scholarly research I did in grad school or as I do at work.

I haven't done much editing at WP, but my previous edits were good-faith, and on the whole, I believe they were accurate statements of fact as I understood them (in addition to meeting the WP standard of being traceable to verifiable references).

But in the interests of not misinforming someone who blindly and uncritcally takes what he reads in WP to be gospel truth, I've modified my edit to the LazLong article so that it (hopefully) reflects the consensus here, in addition to the statement of fact made on the original blog.

Jim, I know you've got problems with WP -- goodness knows you aren't alone in criticizing them. But better to light a candle, etc.


Mon May 18, 2009 9:25 pm
Profile

Joined: Thu Jun 04, 2009 2:24 pm
Posts: 6
Post Re: Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term
Meta-comment: GMail isn't acceptable because "accounts are being abused," but Hotmail is? That's certainly new and different.

Since I've already been quoted at full-post length, here's my post explaining my reasoning in thinking LL may be modeled on LRH:

Lazarus Long Revealed!
Jun. 24th, 2005 at 7:13 PM

Well, I'm probably going to regret this, because it'll prolly generate e-mail once it hits Google, but... I was reminded of this earlier this week, and thought I'd share.

Return with me now to those thrilling days of yesteryear... Circa mid 1980s. I was still getting around LA by bus. There was a big court case going on with the Church of Scient*logy (hereinafter S-Church, for Google reasons). The S-Church, being the media mavens that they are, decided one way to get their message out was to plaster RTD's buses with billboards. Not a bad plan, as RTD used downtown as a hub, so that would mean all these pro-S-Church billboards going right by the County Courthouse.

I already knew that the L. in L. R0n stands for "Lafayette". So I would have conversations in my head, in that familiar way I have, that would begin, "Lafe, let me tell you about these followers of yours. They just don't get the joke!"

But... But... Waitaminnit. "Lafe Hubbard". I'd heard that before.

Indeed, I had.

I refer the interested reader to pg. 11 of Heinlein's Time Enough for Love, wherein one finds, among the many other names of the Senior, that he sometimes went by the moniker Dr. Lafe Hubert.

I submit the distance from Hubbard to Hubert is not far at all. Especially with "Lafe" as an off-ramp.

But it gets better.

Let's go to page 20, where Justin Foote the 45th is writing his nominal introduction to Lazarus Long's memoirs. Heinlein is sometimes criticized for not describing his characters physically, but check this out:

"As may be -- If today I see a man with sandy red hair, a big nose, an easy disarming grin, and a slightly feral look in his gray-green eyes, I always wonder how recently the Senior has passed through that part of the Galaxy. If such a stranger comes close to me, I put my hand on my purse. If he speaks to me, I resolve not to make wagers or promises."

With that in mind, look at this picture:


Lazarus, arise!

Image

This second picture was the one the S-Church used on the billboards I'm talking about:

Image

Heinlein is sometimes critiqued for writing endless variations of himself. And I can see that, somewhat. You want to tell me that the characters Jubal Harshaw, or Prof. de la Paz are variations of Heinlein... Hey, I have no problem with that.

But Lazarus is different. Lazarus is crooked in a way that I just can't see Heinlein as viewing himself... even if he's crooked in a rapscallious, rogueish, semi-admirable way.

Also, look at the basic plot of the set-up of TEFL: Group of "descendents" kidnap the ol' scamp, for his "wisdom". They don't allow him to "abandon" them -- regardless of his own wishes. He eventually becomes reconciled to this, but...

And remember how L. R0n went into "seclusion" beginning in the 1970s, just as TEFL was written.

All circumstantial, to be sure... but Ph.D. theses have been written on less.

UPDATED TO ADD, 2007-02: Another "coincidence" recently occurred to me: "L. Long" vs "L. R0n." Hmm...

UPDATED TO ADD, 2009-05: In "The Tale of the Man Who Was Too Lazy to Fail" section of TEFL, the main character described is a member of the US Navy. The standard reading of this is as a nod to Heinlein's own time in the Navy. But L. R0n had a thing for the Navy as well, as anyone familiar with the existence of the Sea Org within the S-Church should realize.


Thu Jun 04, 2009 2:45 pm
Profile
PITA Bred
User avatar

Joined: Wed Apr 09, 2008 12:17 pm
Posts: 2401
Location: The Quiet Earth
Post Re: Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term
hbobrien wrote:
Meta-comment: GMail isn't acceptable because "accounts are being abused," but Hotmail is? That's certainly new and different.

It has nothing to do with either mail service. Faux GMail addresses are quite the vogue with our cousin Ivan this season. By blocking GMail addresses, I've cut my abuse account maintenance tenfold. Sorry for the inconvenience, but I have to do what I can to limit my admin time wastage.

Quote:
All circumstantial, to be sure...

Er, yes. I think you're reaching here, and finding too many "Lincoln/Kennedy" matches. You could put any two men of the time and place together and find such minor coincidences and apparent influences.

_________________
"Hier stehe ich. Ich kann nicht anders." - Luther
In the end, I found Heinlein is finite. Thus, finite analysis is needed.


Thu Jun 04, 2009 5:59 pm
Profile

Joined: Thu Jun 04, 2009 2:24 pm
Posts: 6
Post Re: Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term
Quote:
Er, yes. I think you're reaching here, and finding too many "Lincoln/Kennedy" matches.


If we were dealing with random phenomena, I'd agree. But fiction, unlike reality, has a guiding hand.

Quote:
You could put any two men of the time and place together and find such minor coincidences and apparent influences.


OK. Milton Caniff, of Steve Canyon and Terry and the Pirates, was born in the same year as Heinlein, and died in the same year as Heinlein. Please cite the pseudonyms of LL that fit him; the physical descriptions of LL that fit him; the jobs of LL that fit him; and the plot aspects of TEFL that fit him.

Jacques Barzun, born the same year as Heinlein, in the US since 1919, published before Heinlein was, and still alive, ditto. Cab Calloway, born the same year as Heinlein, outlived him by a few years, ditto.

This should be fun.


Thu Jun 04, 2009 6:53 pm
Profile
PITA Bred
User avatar

Joined: Wed Apr 09, 2008 12:17 pm
Posts: 2401
Location: The Quiet Earth
Post Re: Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term
hbobrien wrote:
If we were dealing with random phenomena, I'd agree. But fiction, unlike reality, has a guiding hand.

Certainly, and Heinlein certainly has a history, like most authors, of using what's around him. But there's a difference between, say, his description of a fictional bar with a magic mirror show (based on reality) and writing too much into what influences might have gone into a characterization. Heinlein was fascinated with redheads before he met Virginia; Lazarus being a redhead does not mean all that much.

I don't believe there's any evidence that LRH was all that strong an influence on Heinlein; he was merely one of many men of some note that Heinlein interacted with in the 1936-1950 era. Certainly he was no major influence on the character's name. Other than that he was a redheaded man Heinlein knew, there's just not much of substance to connect the two. Influence-hunting so easily goes astray; I speak from abashed experience.

Quote:
Quote:
You could put any two men of the time and place together and find such minor coincidences and apparent influences.


OK. Milton Caniff, of Steve Canyon and Terry and the Pirates, was born in the same year as Heinlein, and died in the same year as Heinlein. Please cite the pseudonyms of LL that fit him; the physical descriptions of LL that fit him; the jobs of LL that fit him; and the plot aspects of TEFL that fit him.

*Sigh*. I did not say any random contemporary could be a model for Lazarus. I said you could find Startling! Similarities! between almost any two men of the era. It's a matter of finding what you seek.

_________________
"Hier stehe ich. Ich kann nicht anders." - Luther
In the end, I found Heinlein is finite. Thus, finite analysis is needed.


Thu Jun 04, 2009 8:18 pm
Profile
Centennial Attendee

Joined: Fri Apr 11, 2008 4:57 am
Posts: 134
Post Re: Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term
hbobrien wrote:
[...] I already knew that the L. in L. R0n stands for "Lafayette". [...] I refer the interested reader to pg. 11 of Heinlein's Time Enough for Love, wherein one finds, among the many other names of the Senior, that he sometimes went by the moniker Dr. Lafe Hubert.
[...] "As may be -- If today I see a man with sandy red hair, a big nose, an easy disarming grin, and a slightly feral look in his gray-green eyes, I always wonder how recently the Senior has passed through that part of the Galaxy. If such a stranger comes close to me, I put my hand on my purse. If he speaks to me, I resolve not to make wagers or promises." [matching image of LRH deleted] [...]
Heinlein is sometimes critiqued for writing endless variations of himself. [...] But Lazarus is different. Lazarus is crooked in a way that I just can't see Heinlein as viewing himself... even if he's crooked in a rapscallious, rogueish, semi-admirable way. [...]
UPDATED TO ADD, 2007-02: Another "coincidence" recently occurred to me: "L. Long" vs "L. R0n." Hmm...

I noted the L. Long/L. Ron match as soon as the thread brought up the possibility, but not the matching physical description, which is spot on.
However, the business about Lazarus' non-Heinlein-like dishonesty has always bothered me (much as I like some aspects of the character, at some phases in his arc). I think you might be on to something here. If Lazarus is based, even partially, on the OTHER SF religion founder, it makes his shadowy dealings much more 'in character.'
An interesting possibility, whether proven or not.
Edit: I don't mean to imply that Heinlein intended to found a religion.

_________________
"There are three sides to every story: yours, mine, and the truth." (Robert Evans)


Last edited by freesharon on Fri Jun 05, 2009 10:48 am, edited 1 time in total.



Fri Jun 05, 2009 7:44 am
Profile

Joined: Thu Aug 21, 2008 12:40 pm
Posts: 537
Post Re: Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term
I, for one, appreciate Mr. O'Brien stepping into the discussion. I think that whether or not LL is based on LRH is unproveable, short of some hitherto undiscovered written evidence from Heinlein's or Hubbard's files. But it's certainly interesting to speculate (as it was interesting to read the correlation between Heinlein character names and his classmates at the USNA).

A little more in support of the theory (all quotes from TEFL):

Lazarus was a preacher of a religion in which he (apprently) did not believe:

[Intro, listing his various names]
"His Serenity Seraphin the Younger, Supreme High Priest of the One God in All His Aspects and Arbiter Below and Above"

[While listing prior professions]
""....Priest --" I had to interrupt again. " 'Priest'? Lazarus, you said, or implied, that you had no religious faith of any sort." "Did I? But 'faith' is for the congregation, Ira; it handicaps a priest." "

[at the start of "The Tale of the Twins who Weren't]
"The caper in which I moved from slave to high priest was forced on me. . . But the only route from field hand to freedom lay through the church and required meekness all the way, so that's what I gave 'em."

[later on, while marrying Estrellita and Jose]
"I preached 'em a sermon ...lifted from the only church they knew, the established religion of Blessed -- easy for me, having been a priest there myself..."


I would also note that both LRH and LL seemed to enjoy getting lots of tail.


Fri Jun 05, 2009 10:11 am
Profile
PITA Bred
User avatar

Joined: Wed Apr 09, 2008 12:17 pm
Posts: 2401
Location: The Quiet Earth
Post Re: Attempt to Forge New Heinlein-Inspired Political Term
Far be it from me to discourage discussion. I'll note, from very long experience, only that it's easy to infer too much from too little. Faint chance similarities are often just that - faint, chance similarities. You can only make so much stew from one oyster, as a wise man once said.

I'll also note that this thread has diverged from the original topic and the LL<LRH stuff really should split off for further consideration - I prefer to see topics separated into individual threads rather than having long threads that ramble here and there and back again. (I'll be happy to split the relevant recent posts to a new thread if the participants ask.)


Fri Jun 05, 2009 10:48 am
Profile
Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Reply to topic   [ 36 posts ]  Go to page Previous  1, 2, 3, 4  Next

Who is online

Users browsing this forum: No registered users and 2 guests


You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum

Search for:
Jump to:  
cron
Powered by phpBB © 2000, 2002, 2005, 2007 phpBB Group.
Designed by STSoftware for PTF