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prosperity

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  1. I want to buy any (ultimately all) of these lectures. Please tell me the price you will sell them for. Preferably CD, but if tape is all ya got I'm open to that as well: Understanding Objectivism Objectivism Through Induction Principles of Grammar Philosophy of Education Objective Communication The History of Philosophy Introduction to Logic Judging, Feeling and Not Being Moralistic
  2. I have been at this for a long time and it wasn't until recently that I decided to take a different approach to learning Objectivism because I am not satisfied with my level of understanding of it. I think that it's tough to say you fully agree with Ayn Rand's philosophy until you've learned it through induction. Likewise, it's easy to say you disagree with certain aspects of Objectivism while misinterpreting them or not fully understanding them. One could say, "I disagree with this aspect of Objectivism insofar as I understand it". Problem is, if it wasn't learned through induction, how strongly are you willing or able to defend your disagreement? Likewise, when you agree, are you able to show how you arrived at your conclusion? Or, have you merely memorized what you read out of the many books on the subject? In this example, do you really understand the nature of rights in the role and function of Government? That's not meant to be insulting. I think it actually happens frequently that Oists have some grasp, and may even have a very good grasp, of an Objectivist principle but perhaps have not "nailed it". David
  3. That's awesome! I'll take quality over quantity any day Hmmm, seems like with professors and intellectuals, you'd end up with students and other activism starting to form. It's exciting to hear the word "emerging" as opposed to "dying".
  4. I am kicking up an old post I will be in the area from 10/14/10 to 10/16. Checking out places to live. But, always interested in meeting fellow Objectivists. If anyone in the area has some free time and would like to meet up, let me know! David
  5. I suppose "service" (performing a service) would be a way to invest one's time?
  6. Assuming investing is a subcategory of savings, which I think it is, how can you invest time? That is, investment requires that you invest out of savings. Or to say another way, investing requires something produced in excess of consumption that becomes available for future production. How do you create "savings" in regards to time? I realize people use phrases like "investing my time" or "free time" or "extra time", but in a literal sense it doesn't seem to make a lot of sense (at least as far as my understanding of the concept). If I am to assume that time is the measurement of motion, I guess another related question would be how do you produce and consume it? Does it apply to all forms of measurement? Can you consume and produce pounds? Or inches? If so, can you invest miles or kilograms?
  7. Thank you everyone for your input. I am more convinced that "investment" is a subcategory of "savings". That things like "time", for example, cannot be invested because "time" is a measure of motion. Investment implies that you have something to invest. To invest, you would need there to be "extra" or "excess" over what is being consumed. But time, in this example, is not really subject to "excess". It's not produced, it simply is. The same could be said for land, or gold, or any other metaphysically given fact of reality I suppose. But, this would create an interesting situation in that while land would not be "investable", a real estate business could be, simply because of the rents one collects. But the investment is the business of renting, not the real estate as such. Does this entire argument hold up? One question I have is what accounts for the value of art? Because, art is often seen as an "investment". Yet, I'm not sure if it actually has any real appreciation. Sure, the socially objective value of some pieces of artwork amounts to more than others. Some artists are also worth more than others in terms of skill and ability. But, what accounts for the price of the Mona Lisa vs the price of a local artist selling a portrait of a woman for $200?
  8. ...well, stocks do not represent full fractional ownership. They represent partial ownership with limited liability. Always have. Remember that corporations themselves are set up with limited liability in regards to all of the owners, officers, etc. This translates over to stockholders, creating another layer of limited liability. It also creates restrictions on what partial owners can and cannot do. I think they're still investments. This is why you can't go down to the business's office and just start walking out the door with a chair or a ream of paper. Likewise, if the business goes bankrupt, the creditors can't come after your personal assets. Limited liability is a key feature for stocks. If that element didn't exist, then I don't know as if anyone would invest in stocks. As to the definition, I'm not sure that that Graham captures the essentials-his abilities as a stock analyst notwithstanding (and I do thing he is probably the best there is when it comes to stock analysis). I think I would tend to agree with what I know about the concept of investing based on what Ayn Rand had to say about it. She seems to have a good explanation for it. ******** @ khaight, thank you for bringing this up. The opposing argument to mine focused on, and I am paraphrasing, putting up any amount of capital, for any purpose, in the expectation of any profit. To me, putting up any amount of capital, for any purpose, in the expectation of any profit doesn't really capture the essentials either. I don't want to focus on, or even mention the individual that brought up the other side of the argument, because I don't think it's important. I do want to address only the substance of the argument though, because it is a common argument that is made, I think. Here is the exact, word for word, argument in opposition to my definition: However, it sounds like you are saying that the essential or defining characteristic of "investment" is the financing of future production. Or is it financing of the needs of production? (is there a difference?). Do I understand you correctly?
  9. It might be helpful to read some of the work done by Objectivist psychologists, like Dr Hurd, or Dr. Kenner. They seem to have a good explanation as to why emotions represent automatized thoughts. Not thoughts directly, but thoughts that have been automatized (in their verbiage).
  10. Yes, I am familiar with RDPD and motley fool and a lot of other financial-related books and sites. What I'd like to explore is the formation of the concept "investment" (perhaps this should have gone into the "epistemology" section of the forum????), what are the essentials, an objective definition, etc.. I think if I said "stocks are an investment", no one would disagree. Some might argue over whether they were good or bad investments, but everyone would agree that they constitute an investment. What I am looking to "chew" over is the concept "investment" and then how it relates to "residential real estate" or "owner-occupied real estate" or however you wish to phrase it.
  11. Yes, exactly! This is why I wanted to make a distinction between owner occupied and commercial or "business" oriented real estate. So, on being a landlord and running a business, I could be swayed to think of that as "investment".
  12. A recent debate I've been having brought up the question in my mind of what actually constitutes an investment. This is something that I assumed that I knew having learned what I know from various textbooks, taped lectures, etc. etc. that I needed for my career. However, I'd like to "chew" on this concept with other forum members who are much better with epistemology, specifically definitions, than I am. My own understanding of investing is some asset or some thing which you can contribute money, time, etc. to, and you have an expectation of reasonably predictable appreciation and income in the future from that thing you are investing in. I'm not sure if that captures the essentials though. It's been a while since I've listened to it, but I also think I am generally in agreement with the definition presented by Yaron Brook in a taped lecture I listened to a few years ago on investing. A quick search online brought up Ayn Rand's understanding of the concept "investment": The last paragraph is of special significance to me because over the past 5 or so years, it has led me to some interesting ideas (at least to me). One of them being that real estate, when purchased as an owner-occupied residence, is not actually an investment because it doesn't generate income and as I understand it, it doesn't appreciate in real terms or wouldn't if there was no government intervention into the market. Though, the common perception of all real estate purchases is that real estate is an investment. Note that I'm not talking about whether owner-occupied real estate is a good or bad investment, but whether it constitutes an investment at all. I also want to express that I think commercial real estate seems to be an investment, or a quasi-investment, simply due to the rents being generated...though it may not always be a great or even a good investment. As far as I understand real estate, it seems to preserve wealth more than creating it as such. It also seems like, to the extent that real estate does appreciate, it is due to government intervention in the housing market through entities like the FHA creating artificial demand, low interest rates, etc. etc.. I've often wondered if, left on a free market, real estate in any given area would increase in value until leasing became cheaper/more economical in that area and then real estate prices would even out and remain relatively stable, neither appreciating nor depreciating very much. Or, maybe they would gently swing back and forth depending on whether it was a buyers or renter's market. In any case, what I'm wondering is if anyone wants to help me work through capturing the essentials of the concept "investing" and WHY those essentials are the essentials? In particular, the only issues I seem to be having is where to place "real estate", though at this point and for quite some time, I've never thought of owner-occupied as a true investment. It's interesting that even financial planning textbooks, and books on investing, often have somewhat open ended definitions for these terms and opt to define them ostensively.
  13. I said emotions are automatized thoughts. You are not really providing any clarity to the definition, though what you are saying is still true. Finish your sentence...evaluations of reality based on what? ....on thoughts. Or, if you prefer, on ideas. If they weren't automatized thoughts, then one could not introspect and one could not solve emotional problems because one would have nothing to introspect about.
  14. I am surprised that no one is saying introspection. It's a tough skill, but if you practice it, it's incredibly powerful.
  15. I think where Grames is correct is in saying that if you were to say "this is what I mean by anger", it would be difficult because you have to be able to "point" to it saying "here, this is anger". I was hoping my example of what I meant by "definition" would have cleared up any confusion, but it did not. And, they can be defined in the way I did, otherwise introspection would be impossible. So, let me rephrase, because apparently I did not communicate my idea clearly enough. Emotions are automatized thoughts. I'm looking for the ideas underlying a wide range of emotions. I have some, but want to know if anyone can help me out with more complex emotions not listed. Any help would be very much appreciated. Thank you. Thanks Hairnet. I think though that what I'm finding there is the same issue I'm having with the dictionary.