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About Vernunft

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  1. It's so very, very wonderful seeing raving lunatics who have not even attempted to read and understand Kant. Is it any wonder that you give off the air of arrogant, yet dull, dogmatists? I'm sorry, my arguments do not take the form "Ayn said so; q.e.d." Kant was an Enlightenment thinker heavily committed to rationalism (too committed, to hear critics of Kant today), who thought that reason could establish morality completely a priori, without relying on the senses and CERTAINLY not on altruism (that's David Hume; I can see how they are confusing, what with one being a skeptic and the other not at all). He also claimed, through the critique, that natural science could be established a priori. The fact that experience is generated by subjective conditions matters not at all, since in that experience, each person can only speak through objective language signifying objects with determinate laws. Ethics and science are objective for Kant. They are universal, as well. Ethics derives its force, as I said, purely from reason, without any influence of the inclinations. This is covered in any undergraduate course in ethics, and I am shocked to see you so ignore it utterly. Having read the second Critique recently, I've only become more aware of how Kant's ethics is rational and dedicated to the Enlightenment. Since Objectivism is, essentially, a revival of the Enlightenment, I fail to see how Kant could be the Evil One for you. If you can't digest Kant's work, and some of you have not even tried (I am beginning to doubt that you have reason anything he wrote, since it's entirely clear that he is not what you say he is), at least read the short and rather easy to grasp "What is Enlightenment?" Tell me what in there is nihilist, subjectivist, and sentimentalist. You seem to imply that I am being brainwashed by my professors. If you studied philosophy at all, you might find that Kant is rather disliked today, so that really makes not a damned bit of sense. I've read Kant on my own and interpreted him on my own. I know this is foreign to you, but SOME PEOPLE THINK FOR THEMSELVES. THEY DO NOT QUOTE AN AUTHORITY AND PRETEND THAT HE (or - gasp! - she) SAID THE LAST WORD ON EVERYTHING. And even if you believe everything Ayn Rand said, DEFEND IT. EVER. Goodbye, good luck getting your heads out of your asses. I thought the liberal academics had the monopoly on secular fanaticism, but I see that blind, belligerent dogmatism knows no ideological lines. If your minds weren't wired shut, I might tell you to open them, despite Bloom. I don't think he ever intended this degree of closing.
  2. I have never seen a clear statement of why objectivism and Kantianism are so diametrically opposed. Perhaps you can enlighten me. To hear you say it, it sounds like you're an advocate of Sartre. If the absolute freedom of the transcendental self is insufficient to establish the kind of freedom you believe in; if the moral law itself is too binding; then perhaps you believe that the human is free to choose whatever laws he will? I think Kant's conception of the human will as legislating for itself, while still bound by an objective moral law, is at least not diametrically opposed to objectivism, and can perhaps be reconciled with it. I'm also disappointed to see that dogmatism showing through. It's assumed at the outset that I am wrong and that objectivism is right. You assume that I am wrong and that you will simply show me how. Perhaps you might want to consider that someone other than you may know the truth, or some part of it at least (however small), better than you do. You may learn something. Actually, what I said is that I am a "sympathizer" and I am "not unsympathetic" to objectivism. The most common way the word "sympathizer" is used is to denote someone who agrees with or supports a certain movement, person, ideology, etc. The sense in which I used it springs immediately to mind, and I am unsure why you feel the need to "correct" my perfectly sound use of the language, incidentally consistent with common usage. I grant that I am just starting philosophy, but I have actually read and understood Kant. From what I hear from objectivists, most of them have not. Kant may claim that reality is only known through the subject, thus "subjectively" and not objectively, but he also believes that all minds are constructed with precisely the same innate categories and forms of intuition for organizing experience. The experience that is thus created by these forms of thought is still universal. Since this is what the value of objective knowledge is in the first place (universality), it seems quite irrelevant on this point that Kant believes experience to exist only in the minds of subjects.
  3. Judging is perhaps called for, but prejudging? I hardly said anything and I was instantly branded a likely troll; not to mention I am a dogmatist (news to me). Perhaps I ought to have said that I agree with much of what Kant says - I certainly did not mean that I am a dogmatic Kantian. Why would I decry dogmatism if I were guilty of it? If you believe me to be at fault, I can understand. You hardly know anything about me. However, I always considered it civil to give a man the benefit of the doubt; you may have no reason to believe I am particularly enlightened, but you also lack any substantial evidence that I'm a mouth-breathing troll. I've been careful not to presume too much myself, so I'd appreciate the favor's being returned. You miscontrued the meanings of the words "sympathizer" and "(un)sympathetic." I meant not that I pity objectivists but that I hold with many of your beliefs, or, perhaps more accurately, that many objectivist positions are agreeable to me. I support the ideas of freedom, whether it be freedom of the mind, free markets, free speech (especially on campus and in the face of the feel-good fascism of academia), and so on. I believe strongly in personal responsibility. If this sounds like common sense, well then perhaps that is why these objectivist points appeal to me so much. If only common sense were truly common... I've made it a point thus far to say exactly what I mean. I do not intend to insult anyone, but I also do not intend to back down in the least.
  4. I am, quite frankly, insulted and disgusted at the tone of that post. I came here to debate intelligently, and I can only hope that your sentiment is anomalous. You didn't even give me a chance. Will my treatment by others be any better, or ought I just to leave now?
  5. Hello. I am twenty-two years old and I am an undergraduate pursuing a degree in philosophy. I'm not unsympathetic to many elements of objectivism, though I tend to view it with distaste when it is held dogmatically (an affliction all too common in my experience). I'm a Kantian, or something approaching it, in both epistemology and ethics. That's really all you need to know.
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