NYC Junto Newsletter – Dec 23, 2009

December 23, 2009

* NEW Junto’s meeting Jan 7, 2010
* Upcoming Junto meetings
* NEW New York City Ayn Rand Meetup
* NEW James Madison on our laws today
* NEW Commercialism Only Adds to Holiday Joy, US News
* NEW Source and Nature of Rights online seminar by Biddle
* NEW “Burn Notice”, a TV show with moral certainty
* NEW Why Ayn Rand Still Resonates
* NEW Objectivist Thanksgiving in Christian Science Monitor
* NEW Stossel’s weekly TV show on Fox Business Network
* NEW New York Times lists Rand bio as 2009 Notable Book
* NEW Objectivist essay on ObamaCare read by Limbaugh
* NEW Enterprise, space travel for everyone
* NEW Joel Turner, who used to sell books at Junto, obituary
* NYC Junto on Facebook
* NYCjunto site
* NYCjunto-discuss list
* About this newsletter
Junto is a group that shares information
and discusses current issues…
plus presents speakers to talk with us:
Tom DiLorenzo,
about his book
“Hamilton’s Curse: How Jefferson’s Arch Enemy
Betrayed the American Revolution–
and What It Means for Americans Today”

Thursday, Jan.7, 2009
Admission Free No reservation necessary

* We’ll socialize from 7:00pm.
* The meeting begins at ABOUT 7:30pm with
a discussion of current issues and events.
* The featured speaker is introduced at ABOUT 8:00pm.
* The meeting will continue to ABOUT 10:00pm.

General Society Library
20 West 44th Street, NYC
between 5th and 6th Avenues
near the Grand Central Terminal

4, 5, 6, 7, S to Grand Central — 42nd St.
B, D, F, V, 7 to 42nd Street — Sixth Ave. at Bryant Park
A, C, E, N, Q, R, S, W, 1, 2, 3, 7 to Times Square — 42nd St.
Bus: M6, M7, M10, M27, M42, M104

Please note:
Junto is not the usual sort of meeting with a long speech
followed by Q & A. Junto’s invited speakers give a short
presentation, and then are challenged to defend their assertions.
Discussions are intense, but polite. Participation by all
attendees is highly encouraged.

Junto has a meeting on the first Thursday of every month,
at the General Society Library, 20 West 44th Street, NYC,
between 5th and 6th Aves., near the Grand Central Terminal
Tom DiLorenzo will speak about his book “Hamilton’s Curse:
How Jefferson’s Arch Enemy Betrayed the American
Revolution–and What It Means for Americans Today”
It came out in paperback on Dec. 8, 2009. It’s also in
hardbound and Kindle.
Two of the most influential figures in American history.
Two opposing political philosophies. Two radically different
visions for America.
Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton were without
question two of the most important Founding Fathers. They
were also the fiercest of rivals.
Of these two political titans, it is Jefferson — the revered
author of the Declaration of Independence and our third
president — who is better remembered today.
But in fact it is — a legacy that has subverted the
Constitution and transformed the federal government into the
very leviathan state that our forefathers fought against in the
American Revolution.
How did we go from the Jeffersonian ideal of limited
government to the bloated imperialist system of Hamilton’s
Acclaimed economic historian Thomas J. DiLorenzo
provides the troubling answer in “Hamilton’s Curse”.
DiLorenzo reveals how Hamilton, first as a delegate to the
Constitutional Convention and later as the nation’s first and
most influential treasury secretary, masterfully promoted an
agenda of nationalist glory and interventionist economics —
core beliefs that did not die with Hamilton in his fatal duel
with Aaron Burr.
Carried on through his political heirs, the Hamiltonian
* Wrested control into the hands of the federal government by
inventing the myth of the Constitution’s “implied powers”
* Established the imperial presidency (Hamilton himself
proposed a permanent president — in other words, a king)
* Devised a national banking system that imposes boom-and-
bust cycles on the American economy
* Saddled Americans with a massive national debt and
oppressive taxation
* Inflated the role of the federal courts in order to eviscerate
individual liberties and state sovereignty
* Pushed economic policies that lined the pockets of the
wealthy and created a government system built on graft,
spoils, and patronage
* Transformed state governments from Jeffersonian bulwarks
of liberty to beggars for federal crumbs
By debunking the Hamiltonian myths perpetuated in recent
admiring biographies, DiLorenzo exposes an uncomfortable
truth: The American people are no longer the masters of their
government but its servants.
Only by restoring a system based on Jeffersonian ideals can
Hamilton’s curse be lifted, at last.

“What Hamilton Has Wrought”, by Thomas J. DiLorenzo
The current economic crisis is the inevitable consequence
of what I call Hamilton’s Curse in my new book of that name.
It is the legacy of Alexander Hamilton and his political,
economic, and constitutional philosophy. As George Will once
wrote, Americans are fond of quoting Jefferson, but we live in
Hamilton’s country….
Read the rest of this essay at:

Thomas J. DiLorenzo is professor of economics at Loyola
College in Maryland and the author of “The Real Lincoln;
Lincoln Unmasked: What You’re Not Supposed To Know
about Dishonest Abe” and “How Capitalism Saved America”.
He’s a senior fellow at the Ludwig von Mises Institute. He’s
the author or co-author of ten books, on subjects such as
antitrust, group-interest politics, and interventionism generally.
At his site you’ll find his daily article archive, his literature
archive, media (both audio and video) archive and his books :
You can read other essays by Thomas J. DiLorenzo at:
and at:
Junto focuses on libertarianism, Objectivism and investing.
Our founder and host is Victor Niederhoffer. Visit his site at:
* Read about past Junto speakers and people who attend often.
* Sign up to get the Junto e-newsletter.
Please email the above text to your freedom loving friends
who might be interested in Junto.
Feel free to use the above text to promote Junto among
libertarians, Objectivists and investors.
Come to Junto:
* Feb. 4, 2010, Ayn Rand’s 105th birthday celebration
* March 4, 2010, Greg Rehmke
* April 1, 2010, Ed Hudgins
* May 6, 2010, Alex Tabarrok
* Nov. 4, 2010, Amity Shlaes, author of “The Forgotten Man:
A New History of the Great Depression”.
* Month to be announced, 2010, Part 2: Douglas B.
Rasmussen, Professor of Philosophy at St. John’s U.
Showing the film “Billy Budd” with two Q&A’s related
to it’s demonstration of law, liberty and moral responsibility.

New York City Ayn Rand Meetup
Come on Sunday, Dec. 27, 2009 at 3:00pm.
Talk about Ayn Rand, her works, Objectivist life, challenges,
options, associations and knowledge. Give and take, open to
all, no charge, no reservations.
It’s at The Midtown Restaurant, 155 East 55 St., between
Third and Lexington Avenues, in Manhattan, free.
For those particularly interested in social gatherings see the
message board under the Objectivist Social Gatherings posted
and maintained by Lou Esposito.
Benny Pollack, Ayn Rand Meetup organizer says:
“Join our group of regular Objectivists for a lively discussion
on topics related to Ayn Rand and Objectivist philosophy
in general.
“Please join us. If you are already versed in the topic, want
to learn or just want to spend an intellectually stimulating
afternoon, please come. I hope to see you all there.”
The Ayn Rand Meetup is on the last Sunday of each month.
Learn more about it at:

Problems with laws we’re getting now
by James Madison, Federalist 62, February 27, 1788
“It will be of little avail to the people that the laws are made
by men of their own choice if the laws be so voluminous that
they cannot be read, or so incoherent that they cannot be
understood; if they be repealed or revised before they are
promulgated, or undergo such incessant changes that no man
who knows what the law is today can guess what it will be
“Law is defined to be a rule of action; but how can that
be a rule which is little known, and less fixed?”
(This was written to the people of the State of New York.)

Commercialism Only Adds to Joy of the Holidays
It’s the season for earthly pleasures,
and embracing the spectacle is no sin
by Onkar Ghate, 12/18/2009, U.S. News & World Report
I’m an atheist, and I love Christmas. If you think that’s a ‘
contradiction, think again.
Do you remember as a child composing wish lists of things
you genuinely valued, thought you deserved, and knew would
bring you pleasure? Do you remember eagerly awaiting the
arrival of Christmas morning and the new bike, book, or
chemistry set you were hoping for? That childhood feeling
captures the spirit of Christmas and explains why so many
of us look forward to the season each year.
You may no longer anticipate Christmas morning with that
same childhood excitement. After all, even if you still make a
wish list, couldn’t you just go out and buy the items yourself?
Yet the pleasure of exchanging gifts as a token of friendship
and love remains. Particularly when you receive (or purchase)
a gift that could come only from someone who knows you well
— say, a shirt that broadens your style or a new wine that
becomes one of your favorites — it serves as a material
reminder of a spiritual bond….
Christmas is a spiritual holiday whose leitmotif is personal,
selfish pleasure and joy. The season’s commercialism, far from
detracting from this celebration, as we’re often told, is integral
to it.
“The best aspect of Christmas,” Ayn Rand once observed,
is “that Christmas has been commercialized.” The gift buying
“stimulates an enormous outpouring of ingenuity in the
creation of products devoted to a single purpose: to give men
pleasure. And the street decorations put up by departments
stores and other institutions — the Christmas trees, the winking
lights, the glittering colors — provide the city with a
spectacular display, which only ‘commercial greed’ could
afford to give us. One would have to be terribly depressed
to resist the wonderful gaiety of that spectacle.”
The commercialism of Christmas reinforces our goodwill.
When you scour the malls in search of the perfect gift for a
loved one and witness the cornucopia of goods and lights and
decorations, you can’t help but feel that your fellow human
beings are not enemies to be feared or fools to be avoided but
fellow travelers and potential allies in the quest for joy. It’s no
accident that America, the world’s most productive country, is
also its most benevolent….
But whatever you do end up doing, don’t let the state of the
economy rob you of the gaiety of the season. Perhaps now
more than ever, we all need to remind ourselves that reaching
joy on this Earth is the meaning of life. Merry Christmas!
Onkar Ghate is a senior fellow at the Ayn Rand Institute
in Irvine, Calif.
You can read all of this essay at:

The Source and Nature of Rights, free online seminars
The video links below are the first two hours of “The
Source and Nature of Rights”, Craig Biddle’s six-hour seminar.
This first hour surveys the common theories of rights —
from God-given rights to man-made rights to so-called
“natural” rights. It explains why each fails to ground rights
in reality:
and in this section Biddle begins presenting the principles
of Ayn Rand’s ethics which give rise to her theory of rights:
Craig Biddle is editor and publisher of “The Objective
Standard”, a journal of culture and politics, and author of
“Loving Life: The Morality of Self Interest and the Facts
that Support It”.
He also writes in the Capitalism Magazine website. He’s
a member of the speaker’s bureau of the Ayn Rand Institute
and lectures on ethical and epistemological issues from an
Objectivist perspective.

“Burn Notice”, a TV show with moral certainty
At the Dec. Junto a fellow recommended this show.
I recommend it, too.
I’d learned about it earlier this year from an Objectivist
friend. You certainly don’t have to be an Objectivist to be a fan
of this show, nor will it appeal to all Objectivists. But there are
many elements that will be pleasurable for them and others
who enjoy seeing justice being done.
This is how the show is described on it’s own site:
“What is “Burn Notice”? When spies get fired, they don’t get
a letter from human resources. They get BURNED…
“USA presents the third season of Burn Notice, a sexy,
action-packed original series starring Jeffrey Donovan as
Michael Westen, a blacklisted spy. After coming face to face
with the group of people that burned him, Michael must figure
out his next move. All while staying ahead of anyone else that
may have him in their crosshairs. In the meantime, he
continues to use his unique skills and training to help people
in desperate need of assistance.
“It also stars Gabrielle Anwar as Fiona, a beautiful ex-IRA
(Irish) operative who happens to be Westen’s ex-girlfriend.
Bruce Campbell stars as Sam, Michael’s closest buddy in town.
Sam is a washed up military intelligence contact who is an
expert in tactical analysis, cutting through red tape, and
finding the quickest route to a cold Mojito. Also starring is
Emmy Award-winner Sharon Gless as Madeline, Michael’s
hypochondriac mother, who couldn’t be happier to have her
boy back in town.
“Created and written by Matt Nix, Burn Notice combines
intense action/thriller elements with surprising humor to create
an iconic new breed of spy.”
They don’t mention the look of the show. All the action
takes place in Miami. Every scene possible is shot in full
sunlight. Scenes that in other shows might take place in an
office or basement, or at night, in this show are on rooftops,
in sunny rooms and particularly on beaches at midday.
For me, part of the fun in watching the show is the way
we’re let in on how the spy business works. The hero will
describe what he’s about to do and why, in a voice over, but
then as the action unfolds it’s never what you’d expect…there’s
always a clever twist.
New shows begin on Jan. 21, Thur., at 10:00pm eastern and
9:00pm central. This is the winter half of Season 3, with the
first of seven all-new episodes. It has been renewed for a
fourth season.
It’s in repeats now, which include a New Year’s Marathon
beginning on Dec. 31 at 6:00am & continuing till Jan 1. 6:00am.
The regular reruns are on Jan. 7, 11:00; Jan. 8, 9:00am;
Jan. 14, 11:00pm and Jan. 15, 9:30am.
Plus on Jan. 17, 9:00am, 10:00am, 11:00am, 12:00pm.
All shows are on the USA network.
The show’s official site is:

Why Ayn Rand Still Resonates
by Onkar Ghat, 11/26/2009,
The key to Rand’s enduring popularity is that she appeals not
to the immaturity but to the idealism of youth.
From the pages of The New York Times to the signs of tea
party protesters to Jon Stewart’s “Daily Show,” Ayn Rand is
The Economist reported on the dramatic surge of sales of
“Atlas Shrugged,” likely to exceed 400,000 copies this year,
crediting the eerie parallels between Rand’s story and
governmental takeovers of the financial markets. But her
appeal reaches much deeper than politics….
Sadly, however, it remains all too common for a young
person to be told — as I was told in high school — that interest
in Rand is a stage he will (or should) grow out of. You may
have seen versions of this attitude in the many recent stories
about her. “It’s fine to believe in that now,” the refrain goes,
“but wait until you’re older. You’ll discover that life isn’t
like that.”
But when you actually consider the essence of what Rand
teaches, the accusation that her philosophy is childish
over-simplification stands as condemnation not of her ideas
but of the adult world from which the accusation stems.
The key to Rand’s enduring popularity is that she appeals
not to the immaturity but to the idealism of youth. She wrote
in 1969: “There is a fundamental conviction which some
people never acquire, some hold only in their youth, and a
few hold to the end of their days — the conviction that ideas
matter.” The nature of this conviction? “That ideas matter
means that knowledge matters, that truth matters, that one’s
mind matters. And the radiance of that certainty, in the process
of growing up, is the best aspect of youth.”
To sustain this youthful conviction throughout life, Rand
teaches, you must achieve a radical independence of mind.
Independence does not mean doing whatever you feel like
doing but rather forging your convictions and choosing your
actions rationally, carefully, scientifically. It is refusal to
subordinate your ideas or values to the “public interest,” as
liberals demand, or to the “glory of God,” as conservatives
demand. It is refusal to grant obedience to any authority,
human or divine….
What I tell my students is that they must never let that
world extinguish their dedication to, in “Atlas Shrugged’s”
words, “the best within us.”
You can read all of this essay at:
Dr. Onkar Ghate teaches at the Ayn Rand Institute’s
Objectivist Academic Center, and was a contributor to “Essays
on Ayn Rand’s ‘Atlas Shrugged’ “, edited by Robert Mayhew,
as well as other books on Rand’s fiction and philosophy.

Objectivist Thanksgiving essay in Christian Science Monitor
“Celebrate Thanksgiving the Ayn Rand way: Thank yourself
On Thanksgiving, we should thank ourselves and the other
producers who make the good life possible.”
by Debi Ghate, 11/ 25/2009, Christian Science Monitor
Ah, Thanksgiving. The word conjures up images of turkey
dinner, pumpkin pie, and watching football with family and
friends. It kicks off the holiday season and is the biggest
shopping period of the year.
Children are taught that Thanksgiving came about when
Pilgrims gave thanks to God for a bountiful harvest. It seems
we vaguely mumble thanks for the food on our table, the roof
over our head, and how lucky we are in spite of these hard
economic times. After all, our lives are so much better than,
say, those in Bangladesh.
But surely there is something more to celebrate, something
more sacred about this holiday.
What should we really be celebrating on Thanksgiving?
Ayn Rand described Thanksgiving as “a typically American
holiday” whose “essential, secular meaning is a celebration of
successful production. It is a producers’ holiday. The lavish
meal is a symbol of the fact that abundant consumption is the
result and reward of production.” She was right.
This country was mostly uninhabited and wild when our
European forefathers began to develop the land and then build
spectacular cities, shaping what has become the wealthiest
nation in the world. It’s in the American spirit to overcome
challenges, create great achievements, and enjoy prosperity.
We recognize that individuals free to produce create
enormous wealth. We uniquely dedicate ourselves to the
pursuit of life, liberty, and happiness. It’s no accident that
Americans have a holiday called Thanksgiving – a yearly
tradition when we pause to appreciate the bountiful harvest
we’ve reaped….We are the producers and Thanksgiving is
our holiday.
…morally, each one of us should reach for the sky.
Electricity, profits, and pie can only be truly earned through
individual production — giving each of us the right to savor
their consumption. Every decision, from which career to
pursue to whom to call a friend, should be guided by what
will best advance an individual’s rational goals, interests, and,
ultimately, an individual’s life. We should take pride in being
rationally selfish.
Thanksgiving is the perfect time to appreciate and celebrate
the fruits of our labor….We should thank authors whose books
made us rethink our lives, engineers who gave us the
BlackBerry and iPhone, and financiers whose capital has
helped build entire industries. We should thank ourselves
and those individuals whose production makes our lives
more comfortable and enjoyable — those who help us live
the much-coveted American dream.
As you sit down to your sumptuous Thanksgiving dinner,
think of all the talented individuals whose innovation and
inventiveness made possible the products you are enjoying,
even if the spread is a little smaller this year. As you celebrate
with your chosen loved ones, thank yourself for everything
you have done to make this moment possible. It’s a time to
selfishly and proudly say: “I earned this.”
You can read all of this essay at:
Debi Ghate is vice president of academic programs at
the Ayn Rand Institute, which promotes the philosophy of
Ayn Rand, author of “Atlas Shrugged” and “The Fountainhead.”

John Stossel’s weekly TV show on Fox Business Network, FBN
“Stossel” in on Thursdays at 8:00pm, repeating Fridays at
10:00pm, opposite his old program, “20/20” plus on the
He’ll be doing 44 shows on what he’s passionate about —
economic liberty. He’s experimenting with a studio audience,
inviting both friends, and people who will scream at him
and tell him free markets are evil.
If you’re in the New York area and you’d like to join his
audience on 48th St. and 6th Ave., please e-mail him at:
He’s planning a show Ayn Rand’s novel “Atlas Shrugged”
He hopes people will watch and tell him what he’s doing
wrong or right:

New York Times lists Ayn Rand bio in notable books of 2009
On Dec. 6, the Sunday Times “Book Review”, included the
100 Notable Books in 2009 — one of them was “Ayn Rand
and the World She Made” by Anne Heller. Anne has often
spoken at Junto and we expect to have her speak at Junto
at the Feb. Ayn Rand birthday celebration/

Objectivist essay on ObamaCare read by Rush Limbaugh
Robert Tracinski wrote an essay about ObamaCare in his
e-newsletter, TIA Daily (The Intellectual Activist). It’s posted
on RealClearPolitics at:
On Dec. 10th it was read, almost in its entirety, by Rush
Limbaugh on his radio show. Rush introduced it with this:
“What this does is take all the complexity that exists in this
plan and boil it down to its essence in an understandable way.
That’s what we do here, we make the complex understandable.
I admire it when it’s done elsewhere.” Rush has an enormous
radio and web audience — even bigger after nearly a year of
having Obama in office.
Robert Bidinotto, advocate of Ayn Rand’s philosophy, from
2005 to 2008 he was editor-in-chief of The New Individualist,
a magazine published by The Atlas Society.
He characterized the Tracinski piece this way:
“After months of manipulations and horse-trading, the Senate
version of ObamaCare is the monstrosity that Congress has
now come down to debating. Any compromise the Senate
reaches with the even-worse House version, in conference
committees, will only move the bill farther to the left, by
strengthening the “public option” and reintroducing taxpayer-
funded abortions.
If there is one article you need to read about ObamaCare,
and to circulate to your friends and family, this is it:
“In this article, Robert Tracinski presents a concise,
hard-hitting summary of the essential horrors in the Senate
ObamaCare bill. He cites three provisions we must focus
on, and they are:
(1) ‘guaranteed issue’ and ‘community rating,’
(2) the ‘individual mandate,’ and
(3) the government-run ‘insurance exchange.’
“These three legs of the ObamaCare stool will absolutely
bankrupt private insurers, eventually driving everyone into
socialized medicine run by the government:
* ‘Guaranteed issue’ and ‘community rating’ will compel
insurers to cover already-sick and high-risk individuals, which
will force them to raise insurance premiums sky-high for all
the rest of us. To avoid paying those soaring premiums,
millions won’t bother to buy insurance until they’re already
sick — which will reduce the number of people actually paying
for insurance, while simultaneously causing the number of
freeloaders to skyrocket.
* ‘The individual mandate’ will impose a tax on the uninsured
that is far less than the premiums they’d otherwise pay. This
means that millions will choose to remain uninsured, while
being forced to subsidize others with their penalty tax — that
is, until they get sick, at which time they’ll buy a policy, and
then milk the system themselves.
* ‘The insurance exchange’ will put an insurance dictator —
with the Orwellian title of ‘Health Choices Commissioner’ —
in charge of the content of every new insurance policy issued.
The exchanges will outlaw policies that offer low-cost,
high-deductible catastrophic coverage, instead forcing
everyone to buy high-cost comprehensive plans.
“In sum, the bill will eliminate health-insurance choices
and competition, raise premiums astronomically, and
encourage people to demand medical benefits that they haven’t
remotely paid for. This is a recipe for complete ruin. It will
crush our medical care system under a burden of millions
of patients who aren’t paying their way. It will destroy the
private insurance industry, push its former customers into
a government-regimented ‘single payer’ system — which
will be so deep in red ink that the government will then
slash payments to doctors and hospitals, while rationing
medical services.
“ObamaCare is a wrecking ball poised to crush our
medical system….”

Enterprise, space travel for everyone
This is from Robert Tracinski, in TIA Daily:
“…visionary entrepreneur, Richard Branson, who has financed
the development of SpaceShipTwo as the first of a fleet for
Branson’s space tourism company, Virgin Galactic. And in a
brilliant and inspirational stroke, Branson named the new ship
the Enterprise.
I have to admit to getting a bit of a lump in my throat when
I saw that particular bit of news. It’s one of those “welcome to
the future” moments: it is now possible to travel into space
aboard the Enterprise.
Not only does this evoke the most adventurous name in
science fiction; it is also especially appropriate for the world’s
first commercial spacecraft. Here’s an excerpt from an article
in the 12/7/2009 Wired magazine:
“SpaceShipTwo Christened VSS Enterprise,” by Jason Paur
“…With more than 300 future passengers already putting up
the $200,000 for a seat on SpaceShipTwo, there appears to be
a strong demand for the rides to the blackness of space. After
a few successful flights are broadcast to the world, more
people are expected to line up for a window seat on the first
commercial spaceship.”
Get a free one month trial subscription here:

Joel Turner, who used to sell books at Junto — an obituary
Publishers Weekly, 12/9/2009 — Joel Turner, who with his
brother Philip and sister Pam opened Under Cover Books in
Shaker Heights, Ohio, in 1978, died in his sleep over the
weekend at his home in Bostic, N.C. He was 58. For
reflections from the Turners on their brother’s life, read on:
Many of you will recall that we three siblings together
opened Under Cover Books, in Shaker Heights, Ohio in 1978,
on May 4 of that year, with the hard-working assistance of our
parents, Earl and Sylvia. From the original location at Van
Aken Shopping Center, our family-run independent chain grew
to occupy a location in the historic Old Arcade of downtown
Cleveland, and a shop that also featured the sale of record
albums and the then-new format of CD-Roms, in Chagrin
Falls, Ohio. Joel’s role in the bookstores’ success and the
good reputation we enjoyed in the book world was vital and
indispensable. He was always generating exciting new ideas
that drove our growth. Joel was a constant reader, a passionate
believer in books and the power of the printed word. He
derived tremendous satisfaction from selling books to the
devoted readers whose trade we cultivated in our bookstores.
We were fortunate to open our business at a moment when
throughout the country and particularly the midwest, much
book retailing was migrating from older downtowns to
suburban locales, as the book departments of long-established
department stores and old-line independents gave way to new
indies like us. Soon, we were being regularly called upon by
publishers’ sales reps from all parts of the industry, as
Under Cover Books became a go-to store for houses eager to
break out books on the national scene. Notable authors who
launched books at our stores included Mark Helprin (“Winter’s
Tale”), Richard North Patterson (“The Lasko Tangent”), and
Walter Tevis (“Queen’s Gambit”). The stores, indeed the
Turner family home, helmed by Sylvia’s extraordinary cooking
and hospitality and Earl’s gregarious nature, and Joel’s
energetic raconteurship, also became a favorite stop for
sales reps and authors.
By the early 1990s, competitive and economic pressures
had mounted, and Joel had the vision to reduce the brick &
mortar concentration of our enterprise and transform it into
an operation that served businesses, corporate libraries,
schools, and public institutions. As this shift occurred, the
name of the business became Undercover Book Service,
which soon also had an online presence, surely one of the
first online booksellers. He also developed a sideline in the
antiquarian and second-hand side of the trade. Joel was a true
bookseller, and also served the book industry through active
participation as an officer and board member of the American
Booksellers Association.
In this decade, he and Sylvia moved to a lovely part of NC,
where he helped her live very comfortably for the remaining
years of her life. After Sylvia’s death, he built for himself a
beautiful home on a scenic mountaintop in the town of Bostic,
Rutherford County, NC….
Plans for memorializing Joel are being considered as we
write this to you. For those wishing to mark Joel’s life with a
charitable donation we urge you to make contributions to the
American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression (ABFFE, or for medical research in search of
a cure for diabetes.
We write in sadness, but with fondness and appreciation for
all the years that we three Turner siblings and our parents were
recipients of your generous affection, respect, and consideration.
The bookstores gave all of us, and especially Joel, great
enjoyment and satisfaction, along with so many wonderful
friends. Feel free to send this message on to any of your
contacts in the book world.
Philip Turner ( and
Pamela Turner (

Ayn Rand and NYC history tours
Fred Cookinham does a series of tours related to both
Ayn Rand’s life in New York and her writing about the city.
His walking tours keep getting better, because his research
never stops. He’s often at Junto.
You’ll find his 2009 tour schedule at:
We hope his 2010 schedule will be there soon.
Highlights of 2008 and early 2009:
* Fred gave a special “Ayn Rand and Free Market Tour” to the
Mont Pelerin Society.
* You can hear Fred give his “Ayn Rand’s Park Avenue” tour
on BBC’s Radio 4 “The Right Stuff” on their site. It aired
* His 2005 book, “The Age of Rand: Imagining an Objectivist
Future World”, continues to generate attention in the
Objectivist blogosphere.
* He did a talk and book signing at the Queens County
Libertarian and Objectivist Party chapters.
* His 2006 interview on “Hardfire”– Ayn Rand Revealed,
continues to generate online hits. It’s for sale on Amazon and
many other places.
Fred answers questions about Ayn Rand’s life, loves,
philosophy, works, and influence. What are the differences
between helping a person and sacrificing for someone? When
is “volunteering” not voluntary?
Fred is interviewed by Joseph Dobrian, then Chair of the
Manhattan Libertarian Party.
You can watch part of it at:

NYC Junto on Facebook
At the April 2009 Junto Michael Hussey told us he’d
created a Facebook page for NYC Junto. He encourages
people to join.
The public URL for the group:
Would you like to volunteer to manage it? Respond to this
email to get more information.

Visit the Junto site at:
On this Junto site you’ll find:
* Links to Junto speakers.
* Kindred events, organizations, publications and sites
* Details about many people who attend regularly at:
* Junto’s origin and reason for being

NYCjunto-discuss list
Junto members can discuss Junto speakers, articles
from other places and other topics of interest on the
NYCJunto-discuss list.
You can read these posts at:
To post to this list you need to be a member of it.
To become a member visit:
or send an email to:

About this NYC Junto newsletter
Susan Rowe comes up with promotion ideas for the Junto
and the Ayn Rand birthday celebration.
Iris Bell moderates and writes this e-newsletter.
Alexander R. Cohen is the webmaster.
Don Slepian care for the email list, sends out this newsletter.
We’re looking for volunteers to help with Junto publicity.
Our founder and host is Victor Niederhoffer. Visit his site at:
This newsletter comes out twice a month. You might receive
an occasional extra email about a timely event.
To subscribe to this newsletter put “Junto list” in the subject
line and email your name and preferred email address to:
To unsubscribe put “Junto unsubscribe” in the subject line
and email your name and email address to:

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