The Chief wrote:Has absolutely nothing to do with any "ethics".
It was/is totally contrary to the original ideal and the entire concept that the OP mentions. These dudes did what they did to remove themselves from all and any of these types "sponsorship" monetary establishments. Walter Bonatti speaks of these ideals repeatedly in this ever so Classic and my most favorite book:
As did Tom Patey , Joe Brown and Don Whillans here:
And Batso here:
These dudes called it the "Essence, Soul & Spirit" of Climbing.
Those guys were amazing
. And I apologize for any implication that they sought "sponsorship," clearly, they never did.
But they did become heros, and like it or not, it's human nature to try to emulate heros. Like it or not, it's also human nature to cash in on opportunities. Their heroic and occasionally philosophical books were the leading edge of an exposure that ultimately, after mixing in some good old fashioned capitalism and the needs of an increasingly urban population, led to the state we have today, where climbing is "mainstream," and has thereby lost it's countercultural properties.
Chief I think you are right to point back to these books, as they represent the original vision, that should indeed be judged as more significant and worthy of praise than many things we hear about today (retro-bolted live-facebook-updatin'-etc). I just take an issue with a lot of griping about "these kids today" without any sensitivity that the situation grew organically from the previous heroic age.