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dadmonson

What is the Objectivist View on the Statement "It's not what you know but who you know"?

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The question is in the title...

I think that statement holds a bit of truth to it especially when one talks about the arts (The music industry in particular) but I don't like how it undermines the importance of hard work and/or talent.

 

If this topic or something similar to it has been discussed before can you please link me to the thread(s)?

 

 

Edited by dadmonson

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I have to say this before I respond to your post, Jon.  I think when I make threads like these (I play devil's advocate a lot) some members on here get automatically on the offensive and think I'm trying to troll them or that my motivation is bad/poor (evidenced by the fact that people rate me a one star and what not) but that is not the case.  This is a genuine question!  I'm not trying to be hostile.  I am on your side... I come in peace and with an active mind my brothers and sisters...

Jon:

The Fountainhead is fiction but I see your point.  Actually, I've read the Fountainhead twice, maybe it's time for another revisit.  Since I haven't completely comprehended and discovered all the nuances of Objectivist literature by now, like many of the posters on this forum seem to have, I do think something is wrong with my brain (need to get that checked out).  I do have difficulty with reading critically but I am working on my critical reading skills at the moment. I do agree most likely I missed (or forgotten) something.

 

I get that people who are rational will recognize a person's talent and/or hard work but from what people are saying around me it seems that in most industries irrational people are the ones calling the shots.  For instance, I hear people say all the time, that they know a person in some industry who was promoted over another person of superior ability just because the person who was promoted was related to some bigwig in the field and the other was not.  I realize that this is just what people are saying and should be taken with a grain of salt. They very well could just be influenced by today's dominant philosophy and that has swayed their perception of things.  However, I don't have much experience yet so that's pretty much all I can go by, I think.

I don't like the idea that hard work and talent are not the most important factors in determining someone's success in a field.  I can see the statement being sort of comforting to someone who is some sort of failure in life but I don't like the statement because it, to a degree, decreases my own motivation to want to work hard and cultivate my talents. This is why I asked this question on this forum. I'm not willing to say that all of what people say about success in their industry is bologna because it is certainly very possible that people can be irrational.  

Also while I'm at it... how about a field where the talent is so close that it is hard to differentiate based on talent alone... like in acting, or modeling?  Does the forgone statement apply even more so there?

 

Edited by dadmonson

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The Objectivist view on the statement is that is is bromidic, and should be thrown out without any consideration, whatever.

Unfortunately, on the contrary, the moral state of the USA today seems to typify the statement.  You've done a pretty good job in identifying why in your previous post.  But because that can seem to be the way things are, doesn't mean it is.  Objectivism doesn't hold the malevolent universe premise, but the benevolent universe premise--just because it seems to be the way things are doesn't mean that it's the way it ought to be or can be.  The projection of values and the achievement of happiness is possible, not only in theory but practically, and many people are living right now in a state of happiness--without sacrificing themselves to others or others to them.

I see you said that The Fountainhead is fiction, and it is classified as that today, but it could help if you considered it to be a philosophic dialogue like of the ancients (Plato, Xenophon, etc.), as in effect, that's what it is (and Atlas).

Edited by KorbenDallas

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