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  1. 2 points
    I never understood how sex can be a topic for philosophy to make such statements on in the first place. This is a highly concrete and specialized issue that depends on an individual's concrete values, psychology and physical constitution. Who is to make statements about what your own concrete and objective values are? What values to look for in another person? How abstract they are to be? And in order to fulfill which actual needs of interaction with them and to what extend? And knowing that Objectivism enters into this topic, I typically detect certain ideas surrounding and relating to it, that I find rather strange: A ) Limitation of the need of "physical attraction" to a purely physical pleasure. No such thing in my opinion. Every physical feature you identify is an aspect of a conscious living being that perceives itself and this world through exactly those physical features of its body, and hence in that very form. And you know this, and only knowing this gives meaning to that attraction. Simple introspection tells you that. You like a particular form in which he or she exists as a perceptually conscious being (with certain implications even for some of its conceptual values). What you like is a form that physically best facilitates your contact to the reality of another human beings' existence. Of his or her existence as a conscious living entity. You cannot like "just his or her body", without demanding and knowing that it is the body of a conscious living being that you are liking. And you cannot like "just the aspect of his or her being alive and conscious" without it being so in a particular form that appeals to you. You are seeking some specific conceptual knowledge here, and you want it to manifest itself in a specific perceptual form. That's to a degree of 100% a mental, as well as of 100% a physical need, you cannot separate the two. Individuals may vary, but how one would exclude that this alone might form to certain individuals an indispensable prerequisite, possibly even a highly important value in and of itself, is incomprehensible to me. Just think of how you prefer watering certain plants only, and like to have certain animals as pets only. Now, how much more exciting is the case of a particular form of a human being?! It already starts with only wanting a particular sex to begin with. Not to talk about all the other physical features, of which there are numerous. B ) Sex as valid only in romantic love celebrating achievement. Well, what about things like "puppy love" among human beings? Love driven by infatuation? I can conceive of it as being an immense pleasure and source of mental energy. Certainly enough so, to be valuable. Something to want to keep living on for in order to enjoy. I find the idea of suppressing it repulsive, if not disgusting. Unless you can conceive of something more fulfilling. And assuming of course, the person in question is not harmful. I think I heard or red Ayn Rand say in some documentary that her sisters were into puppy love, while she was the only hero worshiper. And that she never really understood how that could be enough for them. Whether she outright condemned it, I don't know. But I'd rather doubt that she approved of it, given her demands for "appropriate sex". C ) The frequent emphasis that your enjoyment needs to be about your achievement. I find this mind boggling. There can be a million things I could value without having achieved them. Many of them come naturally (like beautiful landscapes I see in nature). Others were built by other people (like the sight of impressive Skylines). I certainly would like to keep them in reality, whether achieved by me or not. In some cases, I might even not want to know in detail how they came about (You certainly wanna eat the steak, but that doesn't mean you wanna meat the cow ). Identifying the fact that me or other people had to - or didn't have to - achieve those things to put them into this world is not what makes my enjoyment of them possible or impossible. My enjoyment stems from my need to survive, which requires having certain experiences that make it worthwhile. Knowing that "I build this" can be a pleasurable add-on, though. Achievement is also not the psychological root of the motivation. In order for me to say "oh, there's something I want to achieve", I must first say "oh, there's something I want to enjoy". All this tells me that values (realized or not) are considered values independent of their achievement, but rather due to the valuing, the prospect of their enjoyment. But achievement is very often necessary to realize them - whether on my own or on other people's part. Since other people cannot be my slaves and shouldn't, I recognize the need to engage in a certain amount of my own achievement. While recognizing also, that I benefit from the achievements of all the other people as well. Together, we're all better off, plus the free riding. The rest is done by mother nature. And due to all those achievements, the amount of daily achievement necessary to maintain a desired degree of enjoyment becomes less and less. Nevertheless, you must always maintain some level of achievement, to keep your brain active so you can figure out how to best enjoy. Or to prepare yourself in case some new idea happens to come about some time on what next to realize. Psychologically, this means that achievement is a means to the end of enjoyment. But it needn't be focused on explicitly. It's simply an implicit part whenever it is required. I would rather separate the means from the end this way, while still recognizing they're both necessary.
  2. 1 point
    MisterSwig

    The Royal Family of Nominalism

    In the November 1966 issue of The Objectivist, Ayn Rand wrote: It might be said that fifty years ago nominalists self-identified as "non-binary definitionists." True and false pertained to propositions, but not definitions. A proposition suggests mere possibility, but a definition suggests actual certainty. And certainty implies knowledge of reality. If the goal is to enslave people's minds, then you certainly don't want to encourage them to pursue knowledge of reality. Fast forward fifty years to today, and the nominalists' appetite for slavery has turned to the social-political realm. Now they self-identify as "non-binary genderists." Male and female pertain to propositions, but not definitions; the mind, which possibly reflects reality, but not the body, which certainly reflects reality. If the goal is to enslave people's bodies, then you certainly don't want to encourage them to pursue knowledge of reality. Slavery is about controlling people's minds and bodies. Nominalism is a philosophy of slavery. A nominalist wants to be a master, a ruler of humans. And so he places himself above normal humans, both mentally and physically. Mentally he is a "non-binary" word-maker, whose speech must not be questioned. And physically he is a "non-binary" entity, whose very identity must not be questioned. When he says he is this or that, then he is this or that. And if he orders you to call him she or they, then your duty is to call him she or they. For he is the master, and you are the slave. He is a member of the "non-binary" royal family. And you are part of the lowly, unenlightened "binary" or "cisgender" class. If Rand were alive, she might say that nominalism has managed to reach an even deeper depth than anyone ever imagined possible. Verbal and sexual aberrants are being crowned as intellectual and moral superiors. And we, the normal ones, are the tolerated clown jesters of the circus kingdom. Drag queens and miladyboys. Bow down to your new rulers!
  3. 1 point
    Difference is, you don't need to build a gulch, to opt out of Venezuela's economic system. You just need to leave the country. Over 2.1 million people left already. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bolivarian_diaspora And, unlike with Mexico and some Central and South American countries (where it's the poor emigrating to the US, seeking menial jobs), this is the upper and middle class, leaving and settling in pretty much every country in the world, outside maybe Africa and some of the bad parts of Asia. That's actually one of the reasons why the crash is happening so quickly, compared to other communist states. These idiots forgot to build a giant wall, guarded by men with guns and attack dogs. So all the productive people just packed their bags and took a plane out of there. P.S. the third stage of the migration is actually whoever is left...lower middle class and the poor, crossing the border into Colombia (some staying, some making their way to the US through smuggling routes).
  4. 1 point
    splitprimary

    The Royal Family of Nominalism

    -at all these steps, there is possibility of error in the identification. you're trying to translate a really basic, gut-level awareness and bring it up to the level of a conceptual statement. it's very hard to pinpoint what's wrong and people misattribute all the time. this is just introspection! in any instance of this, even a much more trivial one, it can take a wrong turn and yield an answer that’s off, which you might not realize for a long time. i might feel vaguely bad.. manage to trace it back to this morning.. realize it’s centered somehow around my sister.. eventually land on it being a certain comment i made in the conversation at breakfast.. and determine that i feel awful because i was overly critical of her. it could seem like the right answer because i’m getting close, so i might settle there. but with even further investigation and discrimination, it could turn out to have been a different emotional shade completely: i thought it was guilt for what i said, but actually it was regret that i hadn’t spoken up back when the honesty could have made more of a positive difference to her. or alternately, it could be that i snapped at her defensively, i got hurt by something she said just prior to this and the part of the conversation i'm fixated on is a decoy- the negative feeling actually coming from whatever insecurity she managed to brush against. i really like your description, that you start to try to put it into words, getting more precise: from “bad feeling” to “something wrong” to “this is somehow related to sex”.. eventually way down the line maybe you come to something like “i don’t identify with my biological sex, but with the opposite gender” that feels true. but that has been derived, there is so much that has gone into reaching that conclusion. it's not beyond challenge, and that’s what someone is doing when they express skepticism about the claim. they’re not automatically right making a call from the outside via observation or from their armchair of course, but this person doing the introspection is not necessarily right either just because they're up closer to it. friends and therapists help people disentangle and get to the root of what they’re actually feeling all the time; there is no rule that says the subject is always understanding themselves correctly.
  5. 1 point
    MisterSwig

    The Royal Family of Nominalism

    Then you are at odds with a phantom, because that's not my position at all. I don't hate nominalism because it says concepts are man-made, I hate it because it says man-made concepts have no basis in reality because only particular concretes exist.
  6. 1 point
    dream_weaver

    BitCoin

    I wasn't thinking in such terms. I'm thinking of it in terms of being rational about everything . . . 'cept this one thing. "If I can keep this one arbitrary setter of value, I'll be a rational valuer in all other things." It cedes permission to the mind that being a rational valuer in all things is not required. Exception one is eventually followed by exception two . . .
  7. 1 point
    This would be a good point at which to raise questions: I don’t understand what you mean by “physical force”. Let’s consider two other kinds of rights-violations: punching a person in the face, and stealthily taking cash from their home (let’s say, unbeknownst to them, though this could also be with them seeing you do it, if that matters). I presume that you would consider the former to involve physical force, but if not, please clarify. How about the latter? In what way is ‘physical force’ involved? What about a friendly handshake, or accidentally touching a person on a crowded subway. Is that “initiation of force”? And finally… back to the punch in the face: suppose we’re talking about boxers or stuntmen in a movie. Are they initiating force and should they be imprisoned? If not, why not (don’t just say “they agreed to it” – you haven’t shown that agreeing has any bearing on what force is). You ask how a person can properly defend himself against breach of contract and fraud (“how can a person … properly defend himself against it”, where it can only sensibly refer to “fraud (n)or violations of contract”). If you are asking “how do you prevent this from this happening to you”, the answer is caveat emptor. If you are asking how you restore your property rights, that is what the legal system is for. You assuredly do not have the right to poke the guy with a knife, as you would if someone were actually beating you. The problem I see is that you’re attempting to put things under the umbrella of self-defense that have no business there. For one, it simply is not true that “self-defense must be implemented via a government”. If a man attempts to beat me or steal from me, I may quite rightfully defend myself forcibly, without the intervention of the government. It is however correct that such a use of force must be placed under the objective control of the law – every jurisdiction has laws permitting self-defensive force. Self-defense pertains to the immediate situation that arises when the government cannot intervene, i.e. when someone is beating on you right now and the cops are not there, or someone is taking your property right now. When it’s not right now, it’s not self-defense. Where you say “It is improper for anyone to use physical force or the threat of physical force to prevent or respond to that which another has the right to do”, I have two objections. First, “use physical force or the threat of physical force” is redundant, in fact whenever a principle is stated in terms of “A or B”, that should tell you that the principle is misstated. The mind does not deal well with arbitrary lists. Second, “prevent or respond to that which another has the right to do” misses the point, which I think is amply made in Rand’s writing, that the principle is about “forcing a mind”, and not the complex list that you set forth. I take the following two sentences from Peter Schwartz’s essay “Free markets and free minds” as the clearest explication of “force”: It is my judgment that if you were to focus on what “force” is (and basically accept Schwartz’s sentences, although I highly recommend the whole essay), many (though not all) of the issues that you are facing would go away.
  8. 1 point
    human_murda

    The Royal Family of Nominalism

    I was referring to syntax.
  9. 1 point
    human_murda

    The Royal Family of Nominalism

    Neither. Such statements are normative. Gender and sex identify metaphysical characteristics but ideas like "a rational woman cannot want to be President" are different. For example, it is incorrect to say that "human beings are selfish". It would be correct to say that "humans should be selfish". In a similar way, it is incorrect to say that "girls play with dolls". It would be correct to say that "girls should play with dolls". I'm not sure what word I would use to denote such normative characteristics. Perhaps, "feminine" and "masculine" would be good terms. In popular usage, "feminine" may denote some characteristic that is "becoming of a woman" (woman qua woman). It is normative. For reference, Cambridge Dictionary defines "feminine" as "having characteristics that are traditionally thought to be typical of or suitable for a woman". The "suitable for a woman" part is normative. Of course, other dictionaries define things differently, stressing qualities traditionally associated with women, but that definition may be derivative (derived from the traditional standards of society). These 2 words come the closest. I think this is also the way AR used the words 'feminine' and 'masculine'. In this sense, these two words do not identify characteristics that humans universally possess. They refer to virtues (in the same way that "selfishness" refers to a virtue everyone need not possess). They refer to characteristics that one must possess. Femininity and masculinity are treated as virtues in popular usage (validating their usage as normative concepts. By comparison, gender isn't treated as a virtue. It is a metaphysical concept). However, the dictionary definitions aren't very good. So new definitions: male = male animal; female = female animal; man = male human; woman = female human (of a certain age); feminine = characteristics that are becoming of a woman; masculine = characteristics that are becoming of a man. Male/female are sexes. Man/woman are genders. Feminine/masculine are virtues. Sometimes, the term "manliness" is also used to denote the corresponding virtue. Virtues aren't arbitrary. (Again, disclaimer: English isn't my first language. I don't even know what a subjunctive is. I can only talk about the simple, obvious meanings of these terms)
  10. 1 point
    dream_weaver

    The Snowflake Conjecture

    Just in case clarification need be made here: I would have to conclude the the truth or falsehood of the two propositions can be reached. My question is are the propositions demonstrably true, or can it be be shown to be demonstrably false? Here are two citations attesting to the falsehood. Using a controlled environment: Who Ever Said No Two Snowflakes Were Alike? And from Guinness World Records: First identical snow crystals. This article is found at Forbes: Ask Ethan: Could You Have Two Perfectly Identical Snowflakes? drawing these two particular attested falsehoods into question.
  11. 1 point
    MisterSwig

    The Law of Identity

    That's hilarious. You'll accept whatever gender someone wants to be called, but you won't accept whatever screen name someone wants to be called.
  12. 1 point
    human_murda

    The Royal Family of Nominalism

    I completely agree with this. They usually provide two (mutually contradictory) justifications for why nobody can contradict them: 1) From evolutionary psychology: the idea that this "feeling" (actually: identification) of who they are is obtained through genes or some means other than perception. Such inheritance can be random, is not derived from reality and may eventually be discovered to be in conflict with physical reality. They may claim that they are physically a man but their brain comes with the identification that they are a woman. Since the identification is obtained through means other than perception and "cannot be helped", they claim that these identifications (of themselves as male or female) are as valid as a person whose genetic consciousness is "cis" (people who get a transmitted consciousness which identifies their biological sex correctly but don't have a choice in their identification either, since that part of the consciousness [which identifies their own biological sex] is transmitted genetically and is not derived from perception). 2) The idea that gender has nothing to do with biological sex and is a social convention. Under this paradigm, gender is a man-made concept. Hence, it is arbitrary. Hence, they're all equally valid. The concepts are considered to be derived from reality but in a loose sense: through social agreement. What is considered is "normal" or correct is also part of this agreement and has no basis in reality and must be fought. The latter argument can also be applied to all concepts: all concepts are man-made (true) and hence, arbitrary (false) but are given meaning and made "real" by society (false). Both justifications cut off consciousness (identification) from reality (one says identifications are hereditary; other says they are arbitrary.) and they contradict each other. There are still more (less important) arguments. Definitions: sex and gender are two different concepts but your sex determines your gender. Some heuristic definitions can be given: sex: biological sex of all animals gender: biological sex of humans male sex: male & animal female sex: female & animal male gender = male & human female gender = female & human man = male & human & 18+ boy = male & human & 18- woman = female & human & 18+ girl = female & human & 18- For example, a cow is female but not a woman. A bull is male but not a man. This is the only distinction between sex and gender. Humans can be referred to by their sex as well as gender. Your biological sex and the fact that you are human (and hence your gender) are determined by your physiology and is not an arbitrary choice open to debate. Note: saying something like "that female offered me candy" is a bit dehumanizing so the latter is more preferred [gender contains the implication that you are human]. But both are correct. This doesn't mean that gender has any additional special non-physiological attributes. Gender is preferred over sex (when referring to people) for the same reason that "those gay men are playing in the field" is preferred over "those gays are playing in the field". The only thing gender adds to sex (and "gay men" adds to "gays") is personhood (the fact that you are human). The addition (of personhood) makes sure that you are not reduced to your biological sex or sexual orientation while somebody else is referring to your biological sex or sexual orientation. It is a respectful way of addressing people (but it is not a title or indication of social status as some "constructionists" would want you to believe). There is no mystical undefinable element. Gender is a respectful way of referring to a person's biological sex by including the fact that they are human. The same thing happens with "gay men" or "gay person" as opposed to just "gays". Both sex and gender refer to biological sex but for different classes of species. Sometimes the word "man" refers to all humans emphasizing the personhood and getting rid of the biological sex. This is more evidence that what the words man/woman add to the table is the concept of being human, not some BS social convention. Also, English isn't my first language, but this is how I understand these words (male, female, man, boy, woman, girl). It seems extremely simple to me. But pretty much all native speakers seem to have some problems with this. I don't understand what their objections are to this (I have heard some say that since gender roles are made-up and different throughout the world [eg: marumakkathayam in Kerala], the concept of gender is false. That's faulty logic. Gender and gender roles are two separate concepts. The validity of gender roles has no implications for the validity of the concept of gender). To summarize: gender is a different concept from sex (which is broader) but if you are human, your sex determines your gender.
  13. 1 point
    Nicky

    What's Going On Here?

    When someone doesn't laugh at your joke, there are at least two possible explanations.
  14. 1 point
    MisterSwig

    The Royal Family of Nominalism

    The first step toward full-blown physical bondage, is mental bondage. And the first step in mental bondage, is accepting that someone else is inherently, mystically superior to you in some way. "Non-binary" people claim to have knowledge unavailable to "binary" thinkers. They know of a third "gender." Their "gender." And their "gender" class possesses this special knowledge via feelings. They simply feel (or somehow know) it in their souls. They divine it from somewhere. They can't tell you where. It just comes to them. It's been there since childhood. They don't know why. But it's a fact. If you don't feel this fact, this revealed truth, then you are spiritually inferior and should defer to their experience, their feelings, their knowledge, their belief system. You should rewrite your biology books, alter your language, and update your legal system, all in accordance with the feelings and demands of the superior class of "non-binary" diviners of essential truth. That is mental slavery. It is you surrendering your mind to someone else's feelings. It's only a matter of time before you surrender your body too.
  15. 1 point
    MisterSwig

    The Royal Family of Nominalism

    Is there something about the Rand quote or the first couple paragraphs with which you disagree? I'm mostly relying on Rand and Wikipedia for my understanding of the subject, but if you want to point me elsewhere, that would be great. I think nominalism is essentially the rejection of universals, and the idea that words have no basis in objective reality, they are merely names for categories of particular concretes. This is expressed in "non-binary" gender theory by applying the rejection of universals to concepts of "male" and "female." There is no "male" or "female" concrete thing in reality, therefore they don't really exist and are socially constructed concepts. Hence: "non-binary" which is just a six-dollar word for "not male or female."
  16. 1 point
    Nicky

    The Royal Family of Nominalism

    Anything "might be said". I think you just proved it.
  17. 1 point
    softwareNerd

    Top 10 Life Tips for the Young You

    Thanks for explaining. Something that's extremely common and universal is praising kids for some attribute while also implying that it is what they are, and not something they achieved. People will praise a say "you're so intelligent" and imply this is something in-born and praise-worthy. But, if it is really in-born, then it isn't praise-worthy. Many kids thus conclude that showing they do not know something is an admission of a weakness. This carries through to other aspects, not just "intelligence". Even something physical like being "pretty" is often not just about features one is born with, but about what one does with it. Praising in-born traits implies the relative devaluation of subsequent action/processes to change. Yet, that change and those processes are the really praise-worthy things.
  18. 1 point
    Boydstun

    The Law of Identity

    Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy -- Process Philosophy --Johanna Seibt (2017) The Activity of Being --Aryeh Kosman (2013) / From the publisher: “For Aristotle, to ask “what something is” is to inquire into a specific mode of its being, something ordinarily regarded as its “substance.” But to understand substance, we need the concept of energeia―a Greek term usually translated as “actuality.” In a move of far-reaching consequence, Kosman explains that the correct translation of energeia is not “actuality” but “activity.” We have subtly misunderstood the Metaphysics on this crucial point, says Kosman. Aristotle conceives of substance as a kind of dynamic activity, not some inert quality. Substance is something actively being what it is.” / This book from Kosman is not an argument over what is true in the matter, only over what Aristotle thought true in the matter. As for true in the matter, I think Aristotle (under this interpretation of him) was wrong, although one doesn’t have to go back to Plato or Parmenides and pals to get things right. And I take Rand as by her philosophy to agree with me in all that. I’d like to add to the other thought in this thread that on the mere face of ‘A is A’ one can say ‘change is change’ even while ignoring ties of change to stasis or to other categories of existence, such as entity (in the Randian sense of that term). But one is then saying much less than one who is saying ‘change is change’ while keeping those ties in mind. At Metaphysics 1030a25–27, Aristotle allows ‘nonbeing is nonbeing’. But he takes such a statement to say far less than were one to say ‘substance is substance’. Those of us who, like Rand, take ‘A is A’ to be making an assertion about existence of A, take A to have ties to other things (counting its own parts as one type of other thing), to have a nature, to have identity (in Rand’s broader sense of the term). For us, saying ‘nonexistence is nonexistence’ is only a sameness of words, a metaphysical zero.
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