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TheNewIntellectual

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  1. Your thoughts on this anti-Objectivist friend?

    neverborn, I'd reason that one of two things is true. Either your friend is some hippie liberal whose incredibly delicate sensibilities are offended by Objectivist principles, or he is perhaps an actual rational thinker who has come up against--or has read a lot of material from people who have come up against (dong made a good point about him letting others do his thinking for him)--too many "Objectivist" dogmatics (contradiction in terms, hence the quotes) who discount objectivism (little O intended) in order to mold "their" ideals around things Rand might have said in passing or that some other so-called "Objectivist" improperly misconstrued from her philosophy. The latter is an issue I've had to deal with first hand from participating on this forum. Ask that friend if his problem is with Objectivism, or with the lack of reason of so many who seek to label themselves "Objectivists." If the answer is the latter, tell your friend that he ought not crusade against Objectivism, but against irrationality. Tell him that he might need to read more of Rand's work and judge a little more for himself through reason (one of the fundamental principles of Objectivism). Tell him that true Objectivism is not about "believing" anything per se, but about knowledge through reason. Tell him that many supposed "Objectivists" have an inablity to divorce theory from practice (In other words, a self-labeled "Christian" who practices ritual human sacrifice, covets his neighbor's property, etc. is not much of a Christian, so his actions do not reflect on the religion). The same follows for Objectivism. Tell him that he would be wise not to make this same mistake if he is to make a rational judgement on the philosophy. Objectivism isn't a religion, but it is often treated as such, even by those who say they don't treat it as such. See what he says. Only then do I think you'll really know how to proceed on this matter. Also, I wouldn't mind hearing some of his specific criticisms, myself.
  2. Is Objectivism against drugs?

    That is exactly the problem. I must say, I know some people who use "these kinds of drugs" (a couple who do so frequently) who do not even begin to drift in that direction, let alone come even remotely close to that level, myself included (granted, I know more that do, but I am never really inclined to talk about people who fit the stereotype). I guess we don't qualify as stoners. We have no obligation to provide any "weird and complicated" context which refutes your position. We could, but you won't hear it anyway. No, we will simply choose not to go back and forth with someone who does not have the firsthand experience or ability to reason to understand the complexities of this issue, and we will be happier for not wasting our valuable time in this fashion: Whitewashed and glorified? "Wink wink, nudge nudge?" I dunno man, this depends entirely upon the circles and the company therein (Ahem, context?). As for the abstraction "culture," perhaps you'd like to expound on the defining characteristics of our "culture." Damn right it is.
  3. Is Objectivism against drugs?

    I assume you've done enough dope to make this judgement, or listened to enough music on dope. Either way, this is still a personal assessment. I'll be the first to agree that such a context is a somewhat rare occasion, and it is always a matter of debate; that's the point of being objective. However, I think you are a bit too reluctant to concede that a rational, intelligent, grounded-in-reality type of person can use a lot of drugs and still be within the realm of morality, or you are too focused on the lack of this type of individual. I don't want to make any assumptions, but people with your type of argument often strike me as having a hard time relinquishing the societal and/or personal prejudice that plagues the drug issue. You ought to be comfortable with the fact that no one can justify anything that is unjustifiable; one can only attempt to do so through rationalization (which ought to be replaced with a different word, since the process of rationalization often has nothing to do with rationality). What are the defining characteristics of a stoner, anyway?
  4. Is Objectivism against drugs?

    Correct, Mozart is dead.
  5. Is Objectivism against drugs?

    I don't know if you're being funny, or if you didn't catch that I was referring to listening to Mozart while on dope.
  6. Is Objectivism against drugs?

    Apparently, you've never heard Mozart on dope.
  7. Objectivism: "Closed" system

    I figure I left plenty of room for infallibility with "make their most concerted attempt." Simply because we as humans are not perfect does not mean that we ought not try to be. Also, it would sound as though you are suggesting that anyone who is not an Objectivist is equal to scum. I don't recall making any such connections. I think we are both basically referring to the same idea, that philosophy ought to dictate actions. I'm saying that if you agree with the tenets of Objectivism, but act like a Commie, I doubt it would be accurate to call yourself an Objectivist.
  8. Objectivism: "Closed" system

    Okay, I'll just post this before I read any on the "Who is an Objectivist?" thread. I would think the title of Objectivist ought to be reserved for those who always make their most concerted attempt to apply the principles of Objectivism and (for purposes of this thread) extrapolated Objectivism. Because of certain variables, it is possible that two people could come to different conclusions when applying the same principles. If one person understands the principles more thouroughly than the other, he is most often bound to apply them in a slightly different fashion. I would reason that complexity of the problem at hand would usually dictate just how differently two people might apply these principles. The degree of rationality of either application (assuming a rational philosophy) would depend on the person's ability to properly apply the philosophy.
  9. Objectivism: "Closed" system

    With regard to your first point, I'm definitely on the same page. What always got me was that many of the "miss Rand says" comments seemed to carry a connotation of "this is all the explanation you need." Perhaps I read a little too much into some of these remarks, but I am usually of the position that such references ought to be supported with rational explanation, and in the case of discussion (such as on this forum), further discourse. I just hate to see anyone's word (even that of such a great thinker as Ayn Rand) taken as gospel, that's all. I suppose I made the mistake of applying too much consideration to those who might not "get it." Because of my nature however, it sometimes seems like an impossibility to disregard someone who might be even remotely close to being a truly rational person, for although the fool will probably never reach the right path, the misguided simply have to see the right direction. Also, you're welcome, Burgess. I refuse to conciously fake reality or play games, and I owe at least the honesty of my position to any other honest, rational person who might be listening. However, I might actually be an Objectivist if certain things Rand said can be differentiated from elements of her philosophy. My mistake. When I said I have found a very few things about Rand's philosophy to be incorrect, I actually meant I have found a very few things she said to be incorrect. I may have construed them as part of her philosophy based on the level of support I've found for them on this forum, but that does not mean they are actually part of Objectivism. Given the fact that people who want to "play" Objectivist abound on this site, I could have been a bit more circumspect on this issue. In any case, David, I've thought about your comment about the name being unimportant, and it's something I should have realized thouroughly before. I have resolved to relinquish all of my focus on the name issue, as it is indeed inconsequential. The problem does not start with this, but rather with the lack of rational thought. Therefore, although I may not be an Objectivist, I am more than content to call myself an objectivist.
  10. Objectivism: "Closed" system

    Actually, you are correct in this regard. I aplologize, as I do realize these things. My focus is the fact that Objectivism is a closed system. I just had in the back of my mind the myriad of "miss Rand said this" and "miss Rand said that" comments that I've seen on this forum with lack of explanation and rational support. I guess I'm speaking moreso to the originators of such commentary. Don't get me wrong. By and large, I do agree with Objectivist philosophy. I just think the name is wrong, that's all. I will not mention the very few things about Rand's philosophy I have found to be incorrect, simply because I do not wish to enter into a debate regarding issues I have already argued over to excess. In fact, with regard to Objectivism, I am not nearly as concerned with my differences with Rand as with how her ideals are misconstrued, misapplied, improperly extrapolated, or otherwise perverted, or how many so called "rational thinkers" make so many of the same mistakes as the rest of the sheep.
  11. Objectivism: "Closed" system

    Actually, I think where my problem truly lies is, I consider the term "Objectivism" to be a misnomer. Ayn Rand may have been a strong proponent of objectivity, but she was just as fallible as some of us. It is impossible for a closed philosophy to take account of this. Given that this is my problem, I guess the paramount question ought to be: Did Rand herself establish Objectivism as a closed philosophy?
  12. Objectivism: "Closed" system

    JMeganSnow, I mean to indicate that one shouldn't adhere exclusively to a closed system. To adhere partially to Objectivism and determine through reason all other truths yourself sounds like a pretty good idea. However, I notice you failed to mention anything about discovering potential falsehoods of Objectivism and dismissing them. I do not mean to indicate that one should accept the unfinished and unproven as a guide to life. In fact, I accept less assertions, make less assumptions, and apply rational thinking more often than anyone I've met to date (so far as others have shown me, anyway).
  13. Objectivism: "Closed" system

    This was taken from the Objectivism Wiki: My question(s), if this entry is accurate, is(are): If there are philosophical truths which weren't incorporated into Objectivism, and one cannot assume without proof that everything in Objectivism is true, then why follow it? Why adhere to a closed system? Wouldn't such adherance be contrary to objective thinking, which Ayn Rand obviously found so important? I already know where I stand on this matter, but I'd really like to hear from some other perspectives.
  14. A Firearm For Home Defense

    Scott, Thanks for the link. I spent a good deal of last night reading about all of their tests. I especially liked the Level IIIA vest test, where you can see the hydrostatic shock effected upon the modeling clay. I'm not sure if this is the correct term, but it probably ought to be, since while the idea of a projectile moving through soft tissue creating a shock wave has many times been discounted as nonsense, the force transfered through a vest into such tissue is definitely not, as can be seen by the substantial craters in Old_Painless's modeling clay. Of course, with actual flesh the tissue rebounds, and rather than craters, you have considerable bruising (like being hit with an ultra-glorified paintball). Not that I am rejecting the notion of hydrostatic shock myself necessarily by the way, just that many claim that it violates laws of physics. In any case, it's a cool site. I'd love to see more in depth testing done so that we might draw more concrete conclusions about impact ballistics and penetration. Some tests on automobiles and brick or concrete (alone, as is more practical) would have been really nice. I wish he had tested more calibers, too. I would have liked to see the .30 Carbine's effect in all of the tests. I'd also love to see more 7.62x39mm, .22 Magnum, .38 Special, 7.62.54R, .50 BMG, .50 Action Express, .32, .380, and probably most of all 10mm. Oh, thanks for the FBI document as well.
  15. A Firearm For Home Defense

    Inspector, Thanks. I'm glad to have been able to provide you with some helpful information. I think psh is steering you in a pretty good direction. Reliability is paramount in a defense situation and for this, a wheelgun cannot be beat. Some autos these days do impeccably well, but with a revolver, I tend to think that a part would have to physically break for it to malfunction (assuming good ammo, of course). Also, fast, high-capacity reloads are good for combat, but in a home defense scenario, if it comes down to deadly force, it is generally over so quick and with so few rounds as to make reloads a relatively unimportant issue. Besides, you can always keep a full speed loader with the gun. Get some practice with one, and you should be quick enough to handle a situation that might otherwise warrant an auto. Finally, regarding variety of ammo, there is definitely the advantage of many revolvers to shoot more than one caliber, let alone different loads, as psh mentioned about the .357. Some revolvers are chambered specifically for pistol rounds such as .45 ACP, too, if you were perhaps inclined to get an auto of the same caliber later. I'm not 100% about its potential for home defense (it would probably fit the bill pretty well, but take a look at this one for variety of ammo: Tarus .45 LC
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