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bert

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bert last won the day on April 28 2013

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  1. I saw and liked the movie also. I liked how they showed the presidents' personal relationship with a black person (the butler) influenced how they felt towards different laws. However, I didn't like the end making a big deal of Obama's election as if it was good he got elected because he was black regardless of his policies. The goal should be to not see colors at all and never let a person's race be a relevant factor in such issues.
  2. Yep - even in the case where the women is sincerely interested in being your friend.
  3. I don't see a connection between sex between two people and one person eating food. One deals with relationships, judgments of others, and giving and receiving pleasure while the other is purely a physical pleasure. Having sex with another is a massive indication of approval - you WANT them. This is why I think its obvious (and Ayn Rand hits on this in Atlas Shrugged) that a lot of casual sex is driven by the need for approval coming from a lack of self-esteem. Its not that "players" find lots of girls they truly, personally want - they just need approval and seek it from this particular form. If I don't like someone, I don't want to be near them let alone have sex with them. The only way this would happen would be to withhold any judgement of them while pretending to like them to escalate towards sex. Why put on an act to fake your judgements to be very close and intimate with someone you don't like? I would say the minimum requirements for a beneficial sexual relationships would be for both to know who the other person truly is and for both to truly admire, in some personally important way, the other person. Sex is the physical act that expresses this mutual admiration (or in the best case, love). I'm pretty sure this is in line with the Objectivist view.
  4. I've always thought of "Randroids" as the more cultish type who don't think for themselves but rather try to follow Objectivism unquestionably. Characteristically pointing out the negatives shouldn't be equated with such a criticism.
  5. These lectures are now really cheap at https://estore.aynrand.org/search?q=objective+communication so I don't know if you'll have any luck.
  6. Did you feel this way prior to your introduction to Ayn Rand? If you've recently read her books, would you say some of the things you wrote about, especially your "view" has been influenced by them? Rand's fiction is extremely stylized showing the very bad and the very good. This can be helpful as one can grasp ideas more clearly. However, look closely at the things you are criticizing making sure you are not just seeing the world through a falsely stylized lens. Your view is a negative over generalization ignoring the various counter examples which show this is not a malevolent universe as you seem to believe. It seems like you have some interests of sorts - focus on those and whatever else is the good in your life.
  7. I'd say productivity in an Objectivist context has to have a physical element. The idea that productivity is a virtue comes from the fact that, in a general sense, human survival depends on physical results. Knowledge by itself is pointless. Now, in a division of labor society, some can do the less physical aspects and let others take it from there - for instance, discovering knowledge, publishing it (the physical aspect), then letting others find ways to use it. I'd say one criteria for a productive purpose is: can this activity support my life in the environment I live in. This is my understanding of how Ayn Rand became a writer: Imagining fictional stories was a great pleasure to her. She decided to become a writer when she found out that is basically what a writer does. So she found an activity she enjoyed then a way to support her life that integrated this activity. So in your case, if you really enjoy learning languages, you just have to find an activity that both integrates learning languages and provides some product or service. I'd say you have to be capable of achieving values that are both personally meaningful and supportive of your life.
  8. I was originally trying to comment on this part of your response: All I meant to say was even though I agree that being excellent at arguing your beliefs in a social situation where one is "on the spot" is not crucial outside some professions such as you mentioned, there are benefits in having a moderate skill at it.
  9. So every time I hit the "Quote" button, a quote bubble is pasted in the "Reply to this topic" box at the bottom of the page. Then I just carefully edit the bubble to get what portion I'm addressing. The OP asked for advice for explaining and defending Objectivism. He obviously had troubles in this situation and I was defending him seeking advice by adding to your point - "Unless you happen to be a politician, or TV/radio personality, having a razor sharp wit and the ability to win any argument on the spot would in fact earn you nothing in life" - that there is something to be earned from being moderately good at explaining and defending your beliefs outside of these professions. Well I wouldn't call it inappropriate - perhaps futile given the other person seems sort of close minded towards Objectivism. Still, as mdegges mentioned, engaging with others is a good tool for learning - in this case the OP is likely thinking more about the points he could not address. To the OP - I don't think people who truly understand Objectivism could really think it is evil. With this is mind, the best tool discussing Objectivism people who think it is evil (yet are still open for discussion) is the truth. I like the approach of asking "why is Objectivism evil" as one poster suggested and then trying to address their misconceptions. The issue with having talking points to give them is it doesn't adjust to their misconceptions which are really what is driving their belief it is evil.
  10. Though I don't think being amazing at polemics is a necessity, I do think that being able to articulate your beliefs in a social setting is an effective way to attract like minded people and repel others. For instance, if the person who started grilling the OP had been a more open minded individual and the OP could have articulated his beliefs well, he could have potentially began a relationship based on ideas and Objectivism. On the other hand, if you can't articulate well, you will not want to discuss your beliefs with others making it harder to find like minded people.
  11. Not trying to sidetrack the thread but I'm not completely clear on the distinction. Would an example of horizontal integration be relating "all men are mortal" to the mortality of other organisms? I think I remember hearing this somewhere. When one deduces Socrates is mortal, isn't that an example of this? Isn't it integrating new knowledge (Socrates is a man) with a familiar context (All men are mortal)?
  12. Right - this was more of a rhetorical question geared towards moralist who seemed to imply one couldn't make mistakes without being immoral.
  13. It is a choice to pursue what you think is right. I can think going to work today is right yet not do it. If morality deals with defining the correct actions to choose to further one's life, surely choosing to pursue what you've concluded as right is a moral issue. Yes, what one believes is right could in fact be hurtful to their life. However, choosing to disconnect one's mind from their actions by choosing not to pursue what they think is right is equivalent to choosing to not use your tool of survival - seems like a moral issue. So if one makes a mistake in their evaluation, they are immoral?
  14. Only what you pursue matters? Not that you pursue it? What you love comes from what you evaluate as right. Isn't pursuing what you evaluate as right called integrity regardless of whether it is in your rational self interest - do you mean to say this is amoral?
  15. Wow some of those comments are bad - glad to see some good defense also though. This is a pretty popular magazine with a circulation around half-a-million according to the Audit Bureau of Circulations so good to see.
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