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Objectivism Online Forum
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    Objectivism Is The Everyman's Philosophy

    In the universe, what you see is what you get,

    figuring it out for yourself is the way to happiness,

    and each person's independence is respected by all

  • Rand's Philosophy in Her Own Words

    • "Metaphysics: Objective Reality"Nature, to be commanded, must be obeyed/Wishing won’t make it so." "The universe exists independent of consciousness"
    • "Epistemology: Reason" "You can’t eat your cake and have it, too." "Thinking is man’s only basic virtue"
    • "Ethics: Self-interest" "Man is an end in himself." "Man must act for his own rational self-interest" "The purpose of morality is to teach you[...] to enjoy yourself and live"
    • "Politics: Capitalism" "Give me liberty or give me death." "If life on earth is [a man's] purpose, he has a right to live as a rational being"
  • Objectivism Online Chat

    Public Interest Monopolies

    MasterScowler
    By MasterScowler,
    I am curious as to any thoughts on this topic; e.g. is it unethical to legislate against monopolies where public interest is a prime factor; is it foolish not to? To wit: I live in the Chicago suburbs, and in Illinois, the phone giant SBC has been directed to lease out its networks to competitors at greatly reduced prices. I am not fully aware of the details of the matter, but that is semantic anyway. As I see it, SBC built the networks, and as such, despite that it benefits me directly, I disagree with this policy. Compete or crumble. However, this gives me pause to consider the flipside. If SBC did control 90% or more of the telephone business (a veritable monopoly), how would this affect the individual? With no competition, customer service becomes a non-factor, prices become arbitrary. There are some who may not conisder phone service a public interest, but I dare any of them to survive in the contemporary world without one for a month. Worst-case scenario, 911 is not available. Furthermore, what of other services, such as natural gas, electricity, medicine? While I can appreciate the Objectivist stance on individual deserts, I can't resolve for a dismissal of life in its stead; e.g. no human being should be deprived a life-saving surgery due to financial constraints. While a rational, ethical individual could responsibly manage a monopoly, I think it presumptuous and foolish to afford such a berth; to disregard the practices of Kenneth Lay and his constituents, for example, is to deny reality. So while I do not support the concept of legislating monopolies ethically, I cannot refute the practice rationally. Is this due to an error in my own logic? What is the implied "ought" to this "is"?

    Morality of accepting government funds or employment

    carriew7
    By carriew7,
    Hi everyone!! I have a scenario that I would like your feedback on! A woman is studying Objectivism, and wants to implement it into her psycho-epistemology. Her goal is to go to University, and integrate Objectivism into whatever career she chooses. She is starting out with nothing, no help from her parents. She wants to save up for it, but realizes, that it will take, probably many years. She also wants to move into her own apartment. The only feesable way to University, is if she applies for OSAP (government funding). And she is eligible for that if she is a full -time student. Which means she can only work on weekends. She has an option of staying in "subsidized" housing, and being transferred to an appartment of her own. It is based on "rent geared to income" therefore her rent is much cheaper. Is it immoral or unethical of her to take this offer up, when it's nearly the only way she can go to school???? -carrie

    Income Tax

    dondigitalia
    By dondigitalia,
    Income taxes make me and I owed $3000 this year. All of the checks just cleared. My balance is hideously low. It sickens me to know that my productivity is going to provide for welfare and medicare recipients across the country. I can't think of a single use I personally make of the taxes I pay. I don't recieve welfare. I don't recieve public health insurance. I don't collect social security (and will probably never be able to). I don't drive, so my use of the roads is minimal. It's disgusting. Ok. I'm done. [/rant]

    Greetings From Kentucky

    redfarmer
    By redfarmer,
    Hello, my name is Chris Rothbauer. I'm 23 years old from Louisville, Kentucky. I discovered Ayn Rand's book in January and, so far, I've read all of her non-fiction books (except for a few essays from The Voice of Reason) and am in the process of reading Atlas Shrugged (it's such a complicated book that it has taken me since January to get through it but I'm almost there). When I discovered Ayn Rand, I'd been struggling with depression since my teenage years. You see, I had been an active Christian since 6th grade and believed I had been "called" by God to be a minister. The church's teachings, however, conflicted with something I had been hiding all of my life: the fact that I am gay. When I discovered the rational ethics of objectivity, my mind was complete chaos. I believed many things and didn't know why I believed them. My beliefs often changed from day to day and I could never be sure of myself. Objectivism and rationality gave me an anchor. I know I still have a long way to go before my mind is completely rational but I am on my way. I actually discovered this forum by accident and look forward to posting in it. Yours, Chris

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