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Everything posted by Nicky

  1. Nicky

    The Case for Open Objectivism

    Precisely because Objectivism is one of the few ideologies rational enough that there's no one at the door checking for emotional investment. All you need to be accepted by its proponents is Reason. Not devotion, not being a disciple, not emotional attachment. I can just live my life, and pop in once in a while, see if there's something interesting being discussed. Starting to feel like I'm out of luck today...but maybe not, I still haven't checked Gus van Horn's blog feed.
  2. Nicky

    The Case for Open Objectivism

    Everyone gets to decide it, obviously. And we have: everyone who favors closed Objectivism already decided. I don't. Never met her, she was never even alive while I was alive. She's just a historical figure to me. If you wanted to speak for other dead philosophers, I would've told you the same exact thing: don't. Speak for yourself. That goes for what you said about me, too. I'm not Ayn Rand's disciple, I'm an independent thinker. I have drawn a very clear line of separation between my ideas and Objectivism. I suggest you do the same, because you can't be a confident, self respecting thinker and a disciple at the same time.
  3. Nicky

    The Case for Open Objectivism

    That is in no way, shape or form true. Ayn Rand is not Jesus Christ the Savior, she was just a person, like the rest of us. Also, she's been dead for 37 years now. Stone cold dead. Not resurrected, not sitting on the right hand side of God, but buried in some dirt, and well on her way to decomposing. There's no Objectivist, in any faction, who would think that we all got done coming up with useful philosophy 37 years ago. Ayn Rand herself wouldn't have thought that humanity is all done coming up with useful philosophy, after she died. That's not what closed Objectivism means. Closed Objectivism simply tries to preserve her work for posterity, uncorrupted by people who claim to speak for her. She deserves that much. If you wish to come up with new philosophy, go right ahead. I'll read it if it's interesting. And if you think your philosophy has been influenced by Objectivism (the philosophy of Ayn Rand), go ahead and cite her as an influence. But that's all the level of familiarity you're allowed, as far as "closed Objectivists" like myself are concerned. You're not allowed to claim any kind of deeper connection than that, because, guess what: you don't have it. Objectivism is HER philosophy, and hers alone. Anyone who contributed only did so with HER direct approval. Anyone else, who claims to be adding to HER philosophy without her approval, is an interloper. The book on Objectivism closed when Ayn Rand died. The book on rational philosophy is wide open, you just have to earn your paragraph, page or chapter in it on your own, as a philosopher, without claiming any kind of magical connection to Ayn Rand.
  4. Nicky

    The family cannot survive without duty.

    Does it? You've been debating away for a week or so now, and you're yet to learn a single thing. How could you? You refuse to pay attention to what anyone says, you're too wrapped up in your "debate".
  5. Nicky

    The family cannot survive without duty.

    My mistake. I didn't realize we were having a debate. I'm not looking for a debate. I thought you were here to learn about Objectivism, and trying to clear up a perceived inconsistency. I would never participate in a debate against an anti-Objectivist. It's a silly exercise, and a total waste of time. By the way, please go back and re-read your very first paragraph in this thread...because, if your true purpose here is to debate Objectivists, that paragraph is a total lie.
  6. Nicky

    The family cannot survive without duty.

    My definition was in English. You asked a question, I answered. Now your role isn't to "translate" my answer, it's to understand it. Feel free to ask for clarifications, if what I wrote isn't clear enough. Since you raised the issue of the parent-child relationship, I'm gonna assume you are interested in what I think about it. I think it's a unique relationship, substantively different from other family bonds. The difference is that there's a biological (metaphysical) bond that doesn't exist in adult relationships. But there still isn't any duty involved. It's still a commitment based relationship: the parents CHOOSE to commit to raising a child. There's no duty to make that commitment, it's fine to not have children. I ignored the parent-child relationship for two reasons: 1. because Objectivists raise their children to adulthood, same as everybody else 2. because the parent-child bond in homo sapiens isn't a matter of tradition, it's first and foremost a matter of biology: human children, like most mammal offspring, are helpless without nurture from their parents, and parents are emotionally bound to their children. So you don't need tradition or "duty" to justify raising your children. It is beyond obvious that the only two rationally selfish courses of action are to either have children and care for them into adulthood, or to not have them at all.
  7. Nicky

    Abstract Surrealism

    The real twist would be if Banksy managed to draw something that's above the skill level of an eight year old...or, even better, said something more sophisticated than an eight year old.
  8. Nicky

    The family cannot survive without duty.

    While it is true that Objectivism is a rational belief system, and therefor doesn't assign any magical qualities to "blood", that doesn't mean Objectivists (and secular people in general, this isn't really an Objectivist position) don't differentiate between friendship and family. Secular people do form bonds that they expect to last for a lifetime...which is what the essence of "family" is, and what differentiates it from a mere friendship. That is how families start: two non blood relatives become friends and lovers, and then, eventually, their friendship and love deepens into a bond they commit to for a lifetime. Even heterosexual, same sex friends, once their relationship reaches a stage where they expect to have that bond for the rest of their lives, start referring to their relationship as family, the kids start calling them uncle/aunt XYZ, etc., etc. And legitimately so, because that is the essence of family: the expectation of a lifetime commitment. Only difference between the rigid, religiously prescribed (that's what conservatives mean by "traditional") view of family and the secular view is that secular people don't look at blood, and other arbitrary rules to define the concept...they look at the nature of the relationship as the essential attribute. P.S. By "lifetime commitment" I simply mean that one commits not to break that bond without sufficient justification. A deep enough betrayal of shared values IS justification to sever a family bond. One cannot commit to stand by someone fundamentally different than the person they used to know. But they do commit to not break that bond just because a nice job opened up in Tokyo. I would argue that a family defined this way is far more likely to provide comfort and fulfillment, than one where people stay together out of a sense of duty. What would be more illuminating is why you agree. Because this position doesn't follow from your premise that there are traditionally defined duties one must fulfill, to have a family. This is what the traditional definition prescribes, in most cultures through history. So what exactly is the problem with a girl fulfilling her duty, as prescribed by the traditions that define her family, irrespective of her rights or self interest? And sure, after the Enlightenment, the "right to the pursuit of happiness" became a thing, so young people who weren't born into extremely religious families started being able to date around and choose their own spouses. But that's a very recent development, and a very radical break from a long established tradition of imposed marriages. The majority of conservatives may think that it is congruent with their religion, but is it really? Would the main character in their favorite book really be okay with it? So why allow it? Why not go with the tried and tested tradition of arranged marriages?
  9. Nicky

    The family cannot survive without duty.

    Objectivism only rejects the "traditional" definition of family values to the extent that they impose rights violating and/or self interest violating obligations on individuals. A good example of a family value Oism rejects, and the most common family value in human history, in my evaluation at least, is the moral obligation of a girl to wed according to her father's wishes, and then serve and obey her husband faithfully for the rest of her life. Objectivism rejects this value both in cases when the girl is physically forced into such a marriage, as well as when she is merely psychologically pressured into it. Do you agree or disagree with that position, and why or why not? As for the family values Objectivism doesn't reject, that would be ALL the mutually beneficial bonds within a family that there are. Every last one of them. You name 'em, Objectivism likes 'em. Only time Objectivism has an issue with "family values" is when something like what I described in the first example happens: someone is sacrificed to further the interests of the dominant member of the family.
  10. Nicky

    How to analyze one's music taste?

    I don't have a complete answer, but I think preference for a genre should just be taken out of this equation completely. The genre is a non-essential, sometimes even arbitrary, attribute of any given piece of music, and picking favorites just means you're closing yourself off to music you might like, that happens to be classified in a genre you don't favor. Also, most modern "music" (including progressive rock, if by that you mean bands like Pink Floyd or Jethro Tull, possibly even Zeppelin) is a combination of music, poetry, visual art and performance art...not necessarily in that order. The poetry or the performance aspect of the art can sometimes be more important than the music itself. Some of the greatest musicians of the 20th century describe themselves as poets first. Which might mean having to limit your analysis to instrumental pieces and songs in languages you don't understand, to take the lyrics out of the equation. And of course, most people barely listen to that kind of music, they actually value the poetry and the performance art the most, when they claim to be "music fans". I'm one of those people, 95+ percent of my playlist is songs, not instrumental pieces.
  11. It's a mixed bag. Might actually be a net improvement over NAFTA.
  12. Nicky

    Why are men's clothing so boring?

    Can't address the contents, because I stopped reading. That's a personal policy of mine: as soon as someone starts re-stating what I said, I'm out...because people who honestly attempt to understand you would never do that. And you can't have a meaningful conversation without understanding the other person.
  13. A competition implies that the side with the lesser performance loses. The US Postal Service is not a competitor for private companies, it is an obstacle. The goal of private companies isn't to beat it in competition, it's to treat it like any other obstacle that can't be removed: work around it. Just like you would go around a mountain that's in your way.
  14. Nicky

    Why are men's clothing so boring?

    And that's better? My post is right there. Why would I need help finding out what's in it?
  15. Just so you know: the worst word you could possibly start your first thread with, on an Objectivist forum, is "need". You'd be better off going with "f#4k Ayn Rand". So change your pitch. Explain why this is a win-win proposal, instead of why you need things.
  16. Nicky

    Why are men's clothing so boring?

    Stopped reading, sorry. As fascinating as it would be to find out what I believe from a stranger who seems to be upset with me for some reason, I have a very important youtube video to watch. It has guinea pigs in it.
  17. Nicky

    Why are men's clothing so boring?

    In my experience (as an observer...I'm a man), a woman living up to the expectations of even just her middle class social circle, using cosmetics, beauty products, bathing products, various services she pays for, and clothing and jewelry she has to pick out and pay for, takes massive amounts of resources and know how, that is developed through painstaking practice (and learning from the time she is a young girl, from other women). And, on top of that, routine work...an average of 20-25 hours/month, easy, once you add it all up. And once it's upper class expectations, we're talking at least a couple of people drawing a salary from maintaining one rich woman's appearance. Meanwhile, I groom and dress to standards I'm expected to groom and dress to, and it takes maybe 5 hours/month. And it's basic stuff you can learn from a youtube video, like how to dye your hair (I'm prematurely graying), cut your beard, or shave your privates without slicing anything you (might) need off. So yes, it's a waste of resources that could be turned towards a far more useful hobby. While girls learn how to dress and make up, which is not a particularly useful skill in the workplace, boys practice leadership and team work through sports, learn musical instruments, work on buying and maintaining their first car, learn how to use and program computers, etc., etc., and, in my mind, this at least partially explains the pay gap between the genders.
  18. Nicky

    Korzybski vs. Rand

    I'm sorry, but I'm a little confused. So, the only question originally posed in this thread has been answered: no one here has heard about this Korzybski fella' before. Asked and answered. So that should've been the end of the thread. But fine, I guess it's not. We had a change of subject. I'm flexible, I'm fine with a change of subject...as long as someone points out what the new subject is. So what's the new subject?
  19. A simple way of doing what I suggested is having coffee with someone. It's a few basic steps: 1. you suggest to a person that you should have coffee together 2. walk to a coffee shop together (or separately, if you weren't together) 3. find a table and order coffee (or the other way around, depends on the place) 4. drink the coffee 5. say goodbye Are you saying that you find some of that daunting, or don't know how to do it? Which part?
  20. I didn't suggest you move on from anything. My advice, that you should improve your communication, interaction, dating and relationship skills through practice with whoever is willing to go out with you, has nothing to do with moving on. You should do that for the sake of becoming a better person, not for any other purpose. That's irrelevant. Rational people don't just do what they feel interested in (that is whim worship, entirely antithetical to Reason), they try to act on what they rationally determine is in their best interest. Do you agree that improving yourself in this area of life is in your best interest? If so, will you try and do it?
  21. Nicky

    Donald Trump

    A high ranking White House official wrote a little essay on the subject of this thread: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/09/05/opinion/trump-white-house-anonymous-resistance.html He didn't leave his name, which should only fuel Trump's paranoia about his subordinates undermining him. Best quote: Another quote: This is not a liberal. It's not a Democrat. This is a conservative Republican. One of many, sitting in a position of power, waiting for the right time to finally end this absurdity.
  22. Well, that is Trump's position. I doubt it was the position of these Republican voters before Trump entered politics, and it's unlikely that it will stay their position after he leaves. These people are simply followers, who cannot think for themselves, but are able to identify with a group (Republicans, because it's a far more white group than the other one, and, in the absence of abstract thinking, they need a concrete, obvious trigger for their affiliation...skin color works well for this), and take on the ideas of the loudest voice within it. I don't see much chance that this point of view will remain the loudest voice in the Republican Party, once Trump is gone. At that point, these followers will simply follow the next person to become the loudest voice...likely someone far more principled than Trump (who is the first, and hopefully last, entirely amoral President of the United States).
  23. What about the advice? Have you understood any of it (meaning, have you understood why it was given)? Have you tried any of it? Has any of it helped you in any way, so far? Just so you know: the most important, in fact I would say crucial, advice you received in this thread (you got it from multiple people, not just me) was to try and date others (without necessarily giving up on this girl)...because you don't seem very good at romantic relationships, and the only way to get good at something is through practice. Have you made any progress on that front? Have you tried? Do you intend to try?
  24. Nicky

    Life is the necessary value - but why is it sufficient?

    The fact that you haven't offered a convincing argument that there are. By all means, go ahead and do that: what values, independent of the pursuit of life, are there, and why.
  25. Just a reminder of what's going on...or at least what you said is going on: you cut off contact with this person without an explanation. You might want to start the process of re-establishing contact with an explanation for your bizarre behavior, instead of any questions. I would suggest a well composed, written explanation. One in which you assume full responsibility for everything that happened, without being overly dramatic. Good luck: it's a big hole you dug yourself into.