this is my problem: My philosophy teacher keeps going on about Wittgenstein, Quine, Davidson and Rorty and those guys. I’ve tried to explain to him about the tenets of Objectivism, but he was dismissive and called your immortal work “a hotchpotch of confused ideas and bad reasoning”. I thought higher education was supposed to teach me about reality, and not merely theories. Also, my contemporary lit teacher called you “a hack”.
Philosophy studies the fundamental nature of existence, of man, and of man’s relationship to existence. As against the special sciences, which deal only with particular aspects, philosophy deals with those aspects of the universe which pertain to everything that exists. In the realm of cognition, the special sciences are the trees, but philosophy is the soil which makes the forest possible. At least — that is what philosophy ought to be. The word means next to nothing outside the realm of Objectivism. The universities are doling out watered-down substitutes its place, as your letter shows. The Logical Positivists you name are the worst examples of this Kantian corruption, which is as blatantly immoral as it is irrationally unscientific. Knowledge, they say, consists, not of facts, but of words, words unrelated to objects; thus knowledge is merely a matter of manipulating language. My advice to you is to leave the evil sophists to themselves to crawl in their misery of delusions, to change your course plan, and focus on the special sciences, like engineering. The word-play games of these subhumans will not further the development of a car that turns static electricity into kinetic energy. Leave them alone to wither, confident in your moral condemnation; for there has only been one contribution to philosophy after Aristotle, and that is my work.
All thinking is a process of identification and integration,