Washington Metro Objectivism Discussion (WMOD)

                           January 21, 1997 Meeting

      "Building Bridges Between Objectivists and Libertarians"

                                  A Talk by 
                        Robert James Bidinotto
               Director of Development and Special Projects 
                       Institute for Objectivist Studies

What kind of moral-philosophical base does political liberty require -- if 
any? Are there profound and irreconcilable philosophical differences 
between Objectivists and libertarians? Or do the two ideological groups 
share enough basic premises that they can make common cause for political 

These are among the provocative questions that Robert James Bidinotto 
will address in this important talk. For years, heated clashes among 
principals of libertarianism and Objectivism  have left bad blood between 
the two movements. But more recently - and virtually alone among 
Objectivist organizations - the Institute for Objectivist Studies has 
been cooperating with leaders of some libertarian organizations, in 
order to advance shared values of individualism, freedom, and capitalism. 

Bidinotto - a veteran Objectivist author and lecturer, and an 
award-winning investigative journalist - will revisit the long-running 
feuds between Objectivists and libertarians, and assess the grounds 
for continuing and expanded cooperation. He will explain the reasons 
for the Institute's policy of "building rather than dynamiting bridges" 
between the two movements, and outline the basis of a strategy for 
advancing the free society. 

Robert Bidinotto's challenging presentation offers a vital message 
for all who are concerned about the long-term prospects for individual 
liberty. It is a talk no libertarian or Objectivist will want to miss.

Robert James Bidinotto is an award-winning author, journalist, and 
lecturer. For more than 30 years, he has specialized in cultural and 
political analysis from an Objectivist perspective. He is currently 
Director of Development and Special Projects for the Institute for 
Objectivist Studies in Poughkeepsie, New York.

A recognized expert on crime, he is perhaps best known for his 
article "Getting Away With Murder" in the July 1988 Reader's Digest. 
That investigative piece stirred a national controversy about crime 
and prison furlough programs during the 1988 presidential elections, 
and helped make convicted killer Willie Horton a household name. The 
Almanac of American Politics 1990 called Bidinotto's article "the most 
influential piece of journalism in the whole campaign." It was honored 
by the American Society of Magazine Editors as one of five finalists 
for Best Magazine Story of 1988 in the "Public Interest" category.

His other writings on crime include investigations for Reader's Digest 
on parole and probation abuses, sex criminals, secrecy of criminal 
"rap sheets," and lavish prison conditions. Some of these exposes have 
inspired federal and state legislative reforms. In 1995, Bidinotto 
edited Criminal Justice? The Legal System Versus Individual Responsibility 
(Foundation for Economic Education), a book acclaimed by scholars, 
American law enforcement, and victims rights groups. More recently, he 
authored Freed to Kill (Safe Streets Coalition, 1996), a compendium 
of horror stories about the failures of the U. S. criminal justice 
system. During the National Victims' Rights Week ceremony in New York 
City on April 21, 1991, a coalition of 22 victims' groups presented 
Bidinotto their 1991 Media Award, "for sensitivity and fairness in 
reporting victims' issues." In 1996, he was given the media award of 
the Philadelphia Coalition of Crime Victim Advocates. 

Bidinotto's many writings on environmental issues include investigative 
articles for Reader's Digest on global warming and the 1989 Alar scare. 
The 1991 Media Guide praised Bidinotto's global warming article as "a 
big story...with important information." His Alar article was singled 
out for editorial praise by Barron's business weekly, by The American 
Vegetable Grower, and by Priorities, the journal of the American Council 
on Science and Health. His highly praised analysis of the radical 
environmental movement and philosophy, The Green Machine, was published 
as a monograph by the Institute for Objectivist Studies.

In addition to Reader's Digest, his many articles, columns, book and 
film reviews have appeared in Writer's Digest, Success, The Boston 
Herald, The Freeman, The American Spectator, Reason, The Intellectual 
Activist, The IOS Journal, City Journal, The LEAA Advocate, and many 
others. Bidinotto's wide-ranging work also has been reprinted or 
cited in major media outlets such as The Wall Street Journal, U. S. 
News & World Report, The New York Times, The Los Angeles Times, The 
Washington Post, The Washington Times, The Boston Globe, The Detroit 
News, The Miami Herald, Advertising Age, Forbes, Liberty, The Spectator 
and The Guardian in England, The Alberta Report in Canada, Free Radical 
in New Zealand, and in other publications and anthologies.

In 1985, the Free Press Association awarded Bidinotto its prestigious 
Mencken Award for Best Feature Story, for an article on the dangers 
of government regulation of broadcasting.

In addition, he is a popular lecturer at Objectivist and libertarian 
events, and has also appeared as a guest on scores of radio and 
television talk shows, including "The Rush Limbaugh Show," "Geraldo," 
CBS radio's "Crosstalk," CNN's "Sonya Live," "The Bob Grant Show," 
"The Lowell Ponte Show," CNBC's "Rivera Live," National Empowerment 
Television, and the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation radio network.

Bidinotto lives in Poughkeepsie, New York, where he is at work on 
a variety of projects for the Institute for Objectivist Studies, 
a new book on environmentalism, and a long novel of ideas.
For further information, contact Robert James Bidinotto c/o the 
Institute for Objectivist Studies, at (914)471-6100, or by 
e-mail:  bidinotto@compuserve.com

                    November Meeting

Thanks to Bob Hershey for his stimulating talk about his book "How 
to Think with Numbers." at the November 19, 1997 WMOD meeting.
As usual, the debate raged on until the restaurant kicked us out.  

         When and Where is the WMOD Meeting?

Join us on Wednesday January 21.  Anyone who is interested in
rational discussion of Ayn Rand's ideas is welcome. Note that we have a
NEW MEETING LOCATION that is Metro accessible.  You can either
join us for dinner at 7 pm and/or for the talk (free) at 8:15 pm at the
Lighthouse Tavern in Rosslyn, VA just across the Key Bridge
from Georgetown.  The street address is 1901 North Fort Myer
Drive, but the front door of the Tavern is actually on 19th Street.  
If you come by Metro, get off at the Rosslyn Metro Exit and the
Tavern is only a block away. Take the street
exit on N Moore Street (across street from Roy Rogers/Burger King),
go out of Metro and take left on block to the intersection of N Moore
and 19th Street, and the Tavern is directly across the street.  There
is a blue awning over the door and a sign for the lobster special on the
wall. If you drive, there is a Colonial Parking Garage on N. Moore that
offers free parking after 5:00 if you get your ticket validated at the
Tavern. WMOD has arranged for a $15 fixed price dinner (including
tax and tip).  Or you can order from the menu.  Please RSVP
to WMOD at (703) 820-7696 before noon Wednesday 1/21 so that
we can tell the restaurant how many tables to set up and how many
to expect for dinner.  For more information, call the Tavern at 
(703) 351-6100, or call David Saum at (703) 820-7696 (W) or (703)
671-5119 (H).  If you have transportation problems, give us a call.

                                   Future Meetings

WMOD meetings are generally held on the 3d Wednesday of each month.
We are always looking for new stimulating meeting topics related to
Objectivism.  Please contact WMOD if you have suggestions for
meeting topics and locations, or if you can volunteer some time to
arrange meetings. Thanks to Jennifer Mar for helping to set up this

                   WMOD Contact Information

The WMOD newsletter is $10/yr,  email newsletter is free.

  Dave Saum
  PO Box 8007
  Falls Church, VA 22041
    Email: DSaum at infiltec.com
    Phone: (703) 820-7696
    Fax: (703) 671-9350
    Web: http://www.infiltec.com/wmod.htm

----------- "Sapere aude" (dare to know) -------------------

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