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Vernunft

Objectivist sympathizer here

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First of all, when you declare your Kantianism in the second sentence of an introduction, you let everyone on a philosophical forum know the most important things about you.  <Snip> You offered a character analysis of yourself when you proclaimed your "Kantianism" as well as your distaste for "Dogmatic Objectivists," in other words people who hold reason as their means of understanding and don't sometimes use emotion and whim so that they seem *friendlier* or more approachable (i.e. compromising and therefore principleless).

That's really great fanofayn.

Now, time for Rand's razor.

State your terms, please, Vernunft.

Tell us what precisely Kant said and what you agree with and why.

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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.

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Vernunft,

Don't take the first couple of responses to your post in an internet forum as indicative of Objectivism. I have found that many people hear rumors about Objectivists and become prejudiced against the philosophy and its followers without studying it very much--and then they warp every little negative encounter they have with Objectivists to fit that prejudice. There are some dogmatists within the Objectivist movement, there are some rational Objectivists who have some mistaken notions about judging other people, and there are also many, many absolutely BRILLIANT, honest, pleasant Objectivists.

And some of Objectivists have read Kant; some haven't. Some who have not read him pretend to know everything about him; most do not.

If you care to continue a discussion of Kant, let's keep our arguments rooted in facts--not in critiques of anyone's personality. That ought to apply to both sides in an argument.

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Vernunft---I'd be really interested to hear how you reconcile your agreement with pieces of both philosophies if you'd care to stay and discuss it. Given Rand's basic hatred of his views, I've been thinking of going back and reading some of his stuff lately. (Haven't read any since college and they didn't make much sense to me then :) But I think it's worth investigating if only to know what I'm dealing with.

With that in mind, it would be interesting to see how you think the two are compatible. I really don't think they are compatible at all from what I remember of his work, but wouldn't mind hearing other viewpoints.

There's a Kant thread in one of the other folders if you've got something relevant to say in it, or you could obviously start another one.

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Vernunft claims that we cannot digest Kant; while ignoring his ethics use of duties. Then accuses our minds of being shut; while ignoring my repeated statements that I want to hear what he has to say. Then he says that Kant's ethics are objective; while ignoring that Kant was the inventor of Transcendental Idealism, and that his ethics are in keeping with his metaphysics. The he says, in caps (is he yelling at us?), that we are dogmatists, that we believe what Rand said only because Rand said it; while ignoring that no one has even mentioned what Rand said about anything in this thread.

While I agree that there are many people who are misguided, but may be reasoned with, this person was never interested in hearing about objectivism. And so it is a waste of time to try to tell him about it.

To help make everyone clear about Kant... yes, he did often make arguments that are logically correct (hence the consistency of his system). However, the premises of all of his arguments are rooted in transcendental idealism, and so most--if not all--of his conclusions are incorrect.

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Smug mode!

I spotted the troll straight away.

Practice your philosophical detection and you will be able to spot these kind of people the same way I can.

Watch out for people who have nothing to say in favour of anything. Even those who say that they do favour sdomething but can't give details just like Troll McTroll did here.

You would not debate with a Marxist, the antipode of Objectivism's economics.

The same should hold true of Objectivism's antipodes in epistemology and ethics.

And get your Rand's Razor in as soon as possible. It gets rid of trolls faster than chucking a golden ring into the fires of Mount Doom.

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I think you are just in Troll-Mode from all the trolls at Capmag forum Black Sabbath. I'm not reading any threads that are started by people with less than 10 posts anymore ( just in case ).

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True.

What you may have had in mind was Gandalf, with, and talent with throwing one's voice.

Nope.

Some trolls can withstand the sun if Sauron's will endures.

I've finished the Lord of the Rings as well as the Hobbit.

And I spotted the Kantian Troll first.

Kant makes Sauron look like Santa Claus by comparison.

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I see nothing in Vernunft's posts that indicates that he was a troll. This sort of response is utterly shameful. He was angry in his last post, and rightly so. He made a serious inquiry about ideas, and was attacked for doing so.

What about Vernunft's posts makes you all think he's a troll? That he likes Kant? Maybe he interprets Kant differently than Objectivists usually do. God knows that's possible, given how Kant writes. Maybe not, but you won't find out by calling him slime. Is it that he said he doesn't like dogmatic Objectivists? What, do YOU? Or do you wish to claim that there aren't any? (Good luck -- there are plenty, though I'd like to think there aren't any here. I'm becoming rather uncertain of it.)

Bravo to those who were willing to conduct a civil discussion with him. It's unfortunate that they were outnumbered.

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I see nothing in Vernunft's posts that indicates that he was a troll.  This sort of response is utterly shameful.  He was angry in his last post, and rightly so.  He made a serious inquiry about ideas, and was attacked for doing so.

What about Vernunft's posts makes you all think he's a troll?  That he likes Kant?  Maybe he interprets Kant differently than Objectivists usually do.  God knows that's possible, given how Kant writes.  Maybe not, but you won't find out by calling him slime.  Is it that he said he doesn't like dogmatic Objectivists?  What, do YOU?  Or do you wish to claim that there aren't any?  (Good luck -- there are plenty, though I'd like to think there aren't any here.  I'm becoming rather uncertain of it.)

Bravo to those who were willing to conduct a civil discussion with him.  It's unfortunate that they were outnumbered.

Sorry Matt, but I stand by all of what I said.

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Hmm. How would you define "troll"?

Incidentally, I disagree that you wouldn't argue with somebody who has beliefs quite opposite of Objectivism. Well, maybe you wouldn't, but I disagree that nobody ought to. There's no point in debating evaders, but you don't know that somebody is an evader just because they're wrong.

For what it's worth, I'm in pretty good company on this one. Rand reportedly once spent a month discussing philosophy with a young Marxist whom she regarded as intelligent and honest. As I recall, it worked.

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MinorityOfOne... I agree, BlackSabbath jumped the gun with the original troll call. Vernunft's first post was enough to give heavy suspicion, but not enough to make an outright accusation. This said, Vernunft, in his more recent posts, was evading. He used, as defense for his position, a baseless claim that Objectivists are incapable of understanding Kant. Then goes on to accuse the entire forum of being dogmatists, again giving (and, indeed, having) no justification for the claim.

And don't give me any of this "he was angry" nonsense. This dogmatism stuff stared in his first post; its reintroduction as a baseless claim is, certainly, enough proof that he was uninterested in talking rationally.

And by the way, I don't think anyone here believes that one shouldn't debate with someone who disagrees with Objectivism (anyone who does believe this, please correct me). What I believe is that one should not take part in--i.e. there is no point in taking part in--an argument with someone who rejects reason.

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Halley, he didn't accuse anyone here of being a dogmatist in his first post. He said he had ran into people who held Objectivism as a dogma before, and that he disliked it. That's perfectly reasonable; as I said, there certainly are such people, and they tend to be a real pain. And I don't see any reason to think Vernunft rejects reason. Maybe he does, but there's nothing in his posts to indicate it.

(For the record: if it's possible for somebody to be mistaken about free will - a topic we've discussed at length on the forums without this sort of personal attack - it's certainly possible for somebody to be honestly mistaken about Kant.)

Joe, I wish I could remember where I heard that. I poked around for a while but I couldn't find it... I think it might have been in some lecture I listened to a long time ago, but I have no clue which one it might have been. I know I heard it, but since I don't know what the source was, I can't vouch for its reliability... so probably best to pretend I didn't say anything. ;-)

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He had dogmatism on his mind coming into the discussion, there is no doubt there. As soon as the discussion reached a point where he had to give answers to real questions, he fell back on his dogmatism (he actually ignored promps for the reasoning behind his beliefs for quite some time before coming to this point).

What would he have done if, immediatly after his first post, someone would have said "Kant and Rand are opposites in almost every way," and given their reasons? He would have done as he ended up doing, accusing them of dogmatically accepting every word from Rand's pen. He may or may not have accused them of being unable to understand Kant, as he ended up doing.

The point is: Dogmatisim was his fallback defense, and he laid the foundations for that fallback in his first post.

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Also, I remember hearing at least one story along the lines of MinorityOfOne's. I'm not sure about the details, but MinorityOfOne is right in saying that when someone doesn’t reject reason, doesn’t evade, there is no reason one should refuse to debate with them.

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For the record the guy left of his own volition, he wasn't banned like most trolls. So its my opinion he was not a true pain in the rear troll that will continue to blindly spout mantra until they are banned. He was a half-troll that didn't want to have his beliefs questioned at this time and is so young takes everything on an internet forum too personally. So one guy rubs you the wrong way. It happens on forums all over the world. He may be back once he cools down a little.

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Vernunft's reaction, though mistaken, is perfectly understandable given the responses he received. First, he was insulted and judged without any evidence on which to base a judgment. Richard Halley indicated that judging was called for--yet nobody ever gave Vernunft any grounds for our having a negative judgment. If you're going to say something negative about someone for appreciating Kant, you'd better be prepared--not down the road, not tomorrow, but at the same time as the judgment--to give sufficient evidence. Otherwise, the likely reaction on the part of the person being judged is to see you as a nutcase, as Vernunft ended up doing. I think Vernunft actually put up with you people for an admirable amount of time.

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"I think Vernunft actually put up with you people for an admirable amount of time."

That's funny. Were I in charge, ol' "Vern" wouldn't have had the chance to post a second message, let alone "put up" with us for any amount of time.

His first post was obnoxious, condescending, and confrontational, and he was the quintessential troll, simply seeking to argue and irritate.

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