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Sense of Life

Julia Duncan Brent - Another Rising Star
by Julia Brent

So what made you agree so readily to take on such a high-level position with  SOLO?

Evidence. The job-by-job accomplishments of the founders of SOLO are in keeping with their mission to spread joy and reason. I knew that applying my business experience to SOLOís dynamic projects would not be a misuse of my time or theirs.

Where did you come from? Tell us about yourself. The sizzling stuff, now, not boring CV material!

My family was so liberal we bled yellow dogs. At the governance of my mother,  feminism was used as a weapon to unload the pit of panic and corrosion that results from the inability to live on earth. Everything was high drama. Changing the video tape was harder than reverse mathematics, and the evenings erupted into extreme fights on school nights. I hid in my room, read books, and built my life. I lived in Bangkok (father was in the CIA), and went to college in Hawaii,  where I freaked out with the born-againers for 10 years. I did the first year of law school, and joined a reenactment group that fought with swords like Braveheart. With them, I constructed my own nomadic dwelling. Standing on a ladder, tying the thing together, I felt like I was at an uplift program for juvenile delinquent boys. Gaining my mind took, really, quite a lot. I read Atlas Shrugged first in 1991, and just kept reading it, Ďtil finally it sunk in. A girlfriend built a database called the Julia Brain Project to teach me how to build a knowledge base in a methodical way.

You stated recently that SOLO has lit Objectivism on fire. Explain, please!

Have you ever heard music so intoxicating you wanted to lift your arms and fall from a great height? That rich existence and honoring of beauty has been recognized by SOLO, and held up as valid. By combining reason and passion, do the founders of SOLO realize what a powerful thing they have wrought? It is all that is highest in humans made actionable.

What aspect of SOLO excites you the most? Take your pick from: 1) The Credo; 2) The men; 3) The women; 4) The KASS factor; 5) The NEM factor; 6) None of the above; 7) All of the above.

All, all, all. At SOLOC 4 I realized I had a crush on every man, woman and trans-gender individual there. Also, having men like Linz and Joe give me the nod to speak with my real voice, without hiding or erasing, is the ultimate KASS event.

How did you enjoy SOLOC 4?

By being myself and not lying, and indulging myself in as much sensory joy as possible. It was hands down, one of the best experiences of my life.

What was all that about "Wiccan"? Did you dance naked around a bonfire?

First, it is ĎWicca,í and no, Iím not a ĎWiccan.í The Wiccans Iíve met in the States are too formal, pretentious, and religious. Itís much more fun to invent your own spirituality as you go, I think. I make up my own mythology for enjoyment and delight, since itís amusing to think of a pantheon of deities around you. I ask them for advice. Some of them are real.

We made a bonfire, tried to get Luke to drink alcohol, and watched the dark shapes the wood makes when the coals are red with heat. Some of the men jumped over the fire. I didnít tell them thatís how their women get with child, according to the old ways. They didnít ask.

Were you pressured to do so by anyone other than Andrew Bates?

There was a lot of advice-giving, but not a lot of example-setting. Iíll see those people next year.

You share with me a detestation of Objectivist monologuers. Without naming names (well you can name names if you like!), explain what we mean by this & why it's a detrimental thing for our mission.

Detrimental to the mission?! Try a subsonic submarine blast with total hull integrity compromise! If one more person rolls into a spoken obsession with his own voice, Iíll give him a personal insult. Iím not holding back. Objectivism is about evolving oneís love for oneís own being. This is done by working hard to obtain what is truly valued. Thereís a lot of hammering and hard times and dust flying everywhere to make this happen. The result of the productivity is a glow and a golden joy that never manifests in rambling, sociopathic agenda-centered monologues, but rather in vibrant discussion and trading of ideas and warmth and humor.

Monologuing is savagely against life and a sense of life. Itís bad manners. I donít have to name names, because you know who you are. However, Iíll warrant you are too deep in your self-delusion to recognize the giant hole that festers in the place where your self-esteem should be blossoming.

Maybe Iíll get one of those electric rods. They would sell at the SOLO store -- ďBorer-Be-Gone,Ē a guru-shocking gunstuck for silencing solipsists.

What are your priorities as Director of Operations?

I have several projects in the pipeline that will earn money for SOLO, with the goal to put some of the staff on full- or part-time status. Also, Iím working on ways to involve members so those who would like to work with other Objectivists will have the opportunity.

In addition, I am looking to build on the success of the last SOLO conference, so, for all participants, SOLOC 5 will be an intensely pleasurable event.

What gets you out of bed in the mornings?

The joy of the pounding thought: I canít wait, I canít wait, I canít wait.


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