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  1. Boydstun

    Existence, We

    (Click on image.) This image displays the title and subsection titles of my paper to be published in The Journal of Ayn Rand Studies this July. I developed the metaphysics debuted in this paper over a period of about five years, working on it in the morning hours of each day, beginning before sunrise. An apt name for the resulting philosophy would be Resonant Existence. The image is a pre-dawn look out back at our place, a look to the east. On my way to coffee, I glance out as I’m saying to myself words from the Rig Veda: “So many days have not yet broken.” To those words, I import t
    2 points
  2. But your own philosophy, which you live by every day, certainly is. And if one must arrive at precisely each conclusion Rand ever put into writing (including, as the OP'er pointed out, homosexuality) then there has only ever been one Objectivist and I doubt there will ever be another one. On a purely personal note I find the "student of Objectivism" or "admirer of Ayn Rand" terminology extremely self-deprecating and sad. It's one thing if you can't bring yourself to actually LIVE the philosophy, but if you're doing everything you can to live up to your own ideals then I think you
    2 points
  3. Boydstun

    Form v. Matter

    George Walsh - “If you talk about the glass merely in terms of the macroscopic level, then don’t you need some concept of ‘dispositions’?” Rand - “In what way? How?” Walsh - “Because the glass is not acting now, it’s not breaking into pieces.” Peikoff - “Well, what’s wrong with the Aristotelian concept of ‘potentiality’? An entity has the capacity to act because of its nature.” Walsh - “Well, the reason I was bringing this up was because I thought you rejected the concept of ‘potentiality’.” Rand - “No. . . .” Walsh - “I have memory or a misremembrance of someone
    2 points
  4. People interested in how a leading religious (Jewish) conservative thinks can watch Dennis Prager chat with Craig Biddle. They cover some hard topics and find common ground. I hope more Objectivists get on more conservative shows like this.
    2 points
  5. This discussion has been rather far removed from the fundamental principles regarding man’s rights, and has focused instead on notions of aggression, spreading (versus other means), sensory inputs, affecting a person, doing damage to body or property including creating a risk of same. It has included the idea that one can accidentally initiate physical force. The problem has been (for over a half century) that we (not exclusively Objectivists, referring to people who take the concept of “individual rights” to be an essential concept that must be understood) are constantly playing whack-a-mole
    2 points
  6. I took my girlfriend to the mountains to see Neowise. We saw it with the naked eye and through binoculars. She even got a decent photo of it with her phone's camera. Sometimes I watch Bob the Science Guy on YouTube. He does amateur astronomy and posted an educational video on Neowise. He even mentions the sort of professional-amateur collaboration that was done with data from the NEOWISE space telescope to find new objects and create maps.
    2 points
  7. I selected a Bushnell 18-1561 as a gift option for 10 years of service. Shortly after receiving it, Jupiter and Saturn were available for viewing prior to midnight's. After considerable effort, the telescope was aligned to take in my first personal sight of 4 of the moons of Jupiter. My disappointment came shortly thereafter with the need to re-align the instrument every 2 minutes to maintain an active view. Not long thereafter, Saturn was available for viewing. The "smudge" I was rewarded with came with the realization that to pursue the activity in any meaningful way would require a bet
    2 points
  8. In 2016 I was still teaching. Just after the election one of my students asked me if I voted "for Satan or the orange". I said that actually Satan was Immanuel Kant, not any politician. I overheard him ask some of his fellow students "Who??".
    2 points
  9. If there's any one thing Rand would've supported, I'm sure it's mob violence in the name of lies at the behest of an authoritarian against democracy...
    2 points
  10. The assumption seems to be: 1. Western culture is "unattractive" 2. People are magnetically drawn to Islam 3. Muslims are not into survival qua man 4. They come here because they hate us But: 1. Western culture is far more attractive to the young than Islamic tradition. After Several Generations, there is "tendency" to separate from their origins 2. People are not drawn to Islam, they are mostly born to it. There is no strong tendency to join. 3. These are people who want to flourish like anyone else, with the same desires and inner conflicts as any of us. Their fundam
    1 point
  11. I've actually tried that, and it's surprising how often it is that the most fundamental disagreement is in metaphysics. Too many people believe in the primacy of consciousness.
    1 point
  12. Never you mind about that. But I agree with the point.
    1 point
  13. There's a world between starting armed conflict and Trump's actual relationship with not only Kim Jong Un, but Modi, Erdogan, etc., etc. Trump had clear admiration for "strong men" and the liberation that tyranny affords a leader, and this had practical influence on his foreign agenda. But honestly, I wouldn't care so much about his relationship with North Korea if Trump were not so damaging to democracy in America.
    1 point
  14. Social media, mainstream media, and the concentration of power in big data are creating a crazy left-wing suppression of anything ... well sane. "Aunt Jemima" is no more. The syrup itself will not change and will be just as delicious, but it will be sold under a new logo and name. (By the way, if sales TANK, this might turn out to be a perfect example of how brand name recognition actually... duh... IS important) Now buying Aunt Jemima in the past never meant I endorsed the so-called racial stereo type... if anything I liked the idea of a friendly smiling person provi
    1 point
  15. You start with yourself and let others manage themselves. It would not be an Objectivist case. It would only be an objective case were I so inclined. Consider, too, the role compulsory education contributes as an obstacle going forward. If you're still intent on changing the world (or even just standing up for America) consider the advice provided in the hidden comment by William McRaven:
    1 point
  16. Empirical psychology is not exactly a part of philosophy, but the Objectivist writings make several assertions in this field without providing more than intuitive or anecdotal evidence: Personality predicts sexual attraction. Sexual attraction predicts personality. Artistic taste predicts personality. Personality predicts artistic taste. Childhood literary exposure predicts adult character. Philosophical training and belief predict intellectual efficacy. This is not to say that one couldn't test these claims, only that I haven't seen such tests.
    1 point
  17. The 65-Year-Old Helping to Un-Deplatform Parler Jeffrey Wernick is not your typical tech investor. When Wernick came to Parler late in 2019, he understood that his involvement would be more than financial. Matze, he said, “was looking not just for money but for mentorship.” Parler was getting little traction, and one of Wernick’s first suggestions was to not renew the contracts of the influencers the site was paying to attract users, except for one: Dan Bongino, the Secret Service agent turned lib-owning podcaster. Parler had its best download days when Bongino read its ads on his show.
    1 point
  18. 2046

    Form v. Matter

    That's because any sarcasm was accidental and not essential to our discussion on hylemorphism. While we're on the subject of Gotthelf, his festschrift Lennox and Bolton (2010) is also a good source of information about teleology, namely the first chapter by Sedley. This brings up a great point: that there is not even one "thing" called teleology. There are all sorts of versions and interpretations of it, and even in Aristotle he does not always consistently speak of teleology or the causes or form in the same way. Another good source on the connection between the four causes and hylemorph
    1 point
  19. merjet

    Form v. Matter

    Gibberish to some people. Are you one of them?
    1 point
  20. I proffered: Collectivism; determinism; mind-skepticism; sacrificial altruism. Primacy of consciousness, too. Are those "non-essentials", do you think? Always debating with you, you ignore the most relevant essentials I say in order for you to dismiss what I say. Bernstein actually and correctly enters from the characteristics, of things, events and people, seen and heard in reality, which is the objective approach to forming identifications and making evaluations. Binswanger predominantly takes the top-down approach, more pleasing and acceptable to rationalists. And you could look into
    1 point
  21. 2046

    Form v. Matter

    There are two main arguments for hylemorphism: the argument from change and the argument from limitation. (And a whole bunch of secondary arguments around these.) The argument from change follows this basic form: If change is real, then matter and form are real. Change is real. Thus matter and form are real. The argument from limitation is much more complicated, but is more similar to what Peikoff describes in that passage. It follows from the more general act-potency distinction applied to unity and multiplicity. Any universal pattern like roundness is only made actua
    1 point
  22. It can be the difference between life and death here and now if you are ever caught outside the city with a failed vehicle. Which way is north? One of the direct applications of astronomy in the 18th and 19th centuries was establishing local lines of latitude and longitude in order to draw the borders on maps. Here and now, any certified training in surveying for real estate begins with knowing how to establish your local position without a pre-existing map. Again, the practical applications are secondary to your own eudaimonic gains. All of these arguments apply also to that other
    1 point
  23. Boydstun

    Form v. Matter

    In his dissertation, Leonard Peikoff runs through various ways (compatible with each other) in which an Aristotelian can understand the following syllogism representing particulars in two different ways in its two premises. All A is B. (major) This is an A. (minor) Therefore, this is B. One of those ways is to see the major premise as about form separated from the particulars and to see the minor premise as about form in the matter of a particular. “This apprehension of form in matter which FOLLOWS the apprehension of the separated structure, is to be disting
    1 point
  24. Impulsively , no. Examining every emotion, no matter how fleeting and superficial, would be a profound waste of time. To examine fleeting and superficial ones is not faking reality, but focusing on more important things.
    1 point
  25. Never. The fact of danger may itself be sufficient to say that a person has initiated force. The fact of creating an appearance which can reasonably be interpreted as danger may itself be sufficient to say that a person has initiated force. The fact of fear never is.
    1 point
  26. Eiuol

    Spinoza and Rand

    I've always thought of Keating as someone that is superficially successful but exudes little confidence or makes minimal claims about their superiority. And he lacks the emotional intensity of the person that feels reality itself is under attack when you question that they may have made a mistake about anything. I'm trying to describe a person who is unable to handle an implication that they've done something wrong and shift all moral blame to other people. Now, it might seem like I'm describing a very specific person. But I would bet that more people are like this in reality than you mig
    1 point
  27. "Leaving South Korea after a wonderful meeting with Chairman Kim Jong Un. Stood on the soil of North Korea, an important statement for all, and a great honor!" -DJT and more: https://web.archive.org/web/20190411191505/https://www.whitehouse.gov/briefings-statements/remarks-president-trump-president-moon-jae-republic-korea-bilateral-meeting/ "Kim Jong Un has been, really, somebody that I’ve gotten to know very well and respect, and hopefully — and I really believe that, over a period of time, a lot of tremendous things will happen." Not worse than sanctioning death camps, no
    1 point
  28. I know this continues a sidebar from the main topic, but I just wanted to thank Harrison for the link to that Bio on Youtube. That is pretty remarkable for only 20 minutes. I've three minor complaints. The use of photo scenes were a big plus, but the photos of Rand herself were sometimes out of synch with the period the presenter was talking about. Secondly, the medium does seem to allow for a way to tell the sources of one's biographical information in the presentation point-by-point, so on some particulars, I'm left in the cautionary grain-of-salt mode. Lastly, the rise in success of Rand's
    1 point
  29. Oh, boy. Did you know that when Kim Jong Un first rose to power he called all his top aides to a meeting in which he disassembled a machine gun and force-fed the pieces of it to several dogs (who presumably had a very rough time of passing said machinery through their digestive tracts) to convey what he intended to do to anyone who wasn't 100% loyal? Also he has no butthole; he doesn't need one (since he DOES NOT excrete that way) so he was simply born without one. That story I'm slightly more skeptical of but anyone in North Korea who's caught contradicting it is simply exec
    1 point
  30. The Psychology of The Fountainhead Characters Psychology is not one of my strong suites. It is conversations like the several here linked to that provide insights into this novel that otherwise would have alluded me. The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged are two distinct works of art. These assessments are primarily of The Fountainhead, and also provide a parallel between Ayn Rand and Dominique, as Ayn on a bad day. Another comparison is parallelled between Catherine Halsey and Cherryl Brooks as well as the young man on the bike and Richard Halley These are produced by the Ayn Ran
    1 point
  31. BURNS' CENTENARY, by Charles Murray(1864-1941) "I'll be more respected a hundred years after I am dead than I am at present."—R. B., 1796. "My fame is sure; when I am dead A century," the Poet said, "They'll heap the honours on my head They grudge me noo"; To-day the hundred years hae sped That prove it true. Whiles as the feathered ages flee, Time sets the sand-glass on his knee,
    1 point
  32. I will grant you that the left leaning pundits have a dominant position in the media (TV radio). But I will not grant you that the left is widely accepted SERIOUSLY. If it were, South Africa, with a communist constitution would have already outlawed ownership. If it were, Europe would have had actual socialist medicine as in no private institutions. Leftist ideas may be in fashion but the majority of the world do not want communism. Even leftists will attack communism. Meanwhile, there is no laissez fair capitalism in the world, only different degrees of crony capitalism i.e. some d
    1 point
  33. So which group do you fall into?
    1 point
  34. Took the opportunity to review both the commentary and the movie this evening. Both of you expressed the aspect of determinism. The movie is portrayed as a somewhat past tense narrative. Yet, it was the recollection of a future event that provided the general's private phone number and words that would change his mind. She chose to make the call to avert the events unfolding before her. The phone number and the words to say were provided 'before their occurrence'. Determinism implies it could not have happened otherwise. Unlike a dice roll in a Jumanji movie where the pla
    1 point
  35. This edited passage from The Roots of War comes to mind: "So long as . . . some men have the right to rule others by force, and that some (any) alleged “good” can justify it—there can be no peace within a nation . . ." When government officials sanction (by not stepping up to the plate) what groups like Antifa and BLM orchestrated, it is not much of a stretch to suggest a proxy extension that some (Antifa and BLM) have the right to use force in order to convey their pseudo freedom of speech.
    1 point
  36. Nah. That's what life with automatized reactions is like. Life without the non-initiation of force principle would have been you smashing that old man without apology or remorse.
    1 point
  37. Thank you! I will read this. His reasoning will be of much interest to me. I have always thought, leaving aside the inherent mysticism, that in its volitional, practical and psychological effects, ¬ knowing¬ one owns a Soul would be a serious responsibility compared with owning a deterministic brain...
    1 point
  38. Ah, something we can agree on. I also think it's a bad idea to take Trump's word about election fraud. Fraud is not the basis for my beef with the election, which is why you don't see me participating in that debate. But if you ever want to discuss voter requirements or mail-in ballots, that's my focus. You picked two subjects of which I have very little interest. I certainly don't take Trump's word about them. I have an extremely rosy image of Rand, and I don't take her word at face value either.
    1 point
  39. No, I'm not saying that because the media said so. I gave my reasoning much earlier about why I think the people who broke into the Capitol were insurrectionists and traitors. It doesn't matter if they were organized or not - besides, some of them were. There were also 5 fatalities, by the way. Are you trying to call me a Leftist? Are you saying that the media has manipulated me to believe that this mob attacked the Constitution, America itself? If you want me to expand on my position, fine, but don't presume to know why I believe what I believe. My reasons are independent of what the media sa
    1 point
  40. The mere existence of germs, poison, fire, etc. does not constitute physical force on anyone's part. Imposing them on another is physical force. Spreading germs can easily do physical damage to a person's body. Spreading ideas does not do physical damage. If the ideas play a role in a person's choice to do physical damage, that is the responsibility of the person taking the physical action. I considered "physical aggression" to be a reasonable shorthand for the initiation of physical force. I was substituting "aggression" for "the initiation of force". I am sorry if this c
    1 point
  41. But the congress collective does deserve it, therefore a mob "should" deliver what they deserve ... said the anti-collectivist collectivist.
    1 point
  42. I'm confident many could articulate a better political ideal than the Founders, whose flawed "ideal" led to civil war.
    1 point
  43. That's why I mentioned the abusive father comparison. They probably truly believe their behavior is an act of adoration for the country, but their actions amount to hatred for most people looking from the outside. It's not just a comparison, but a version of the same mentality as abusive people. It's hard to point out, because most people see evil as an evasion of truth, or deliberately calling something good which you call evil. This is a case of evil where people are deliberately calling something good which you also call good, but their conception of good is distorted and twisted yet don't
    1 point
  44. Boydstun

    Atlas Shrugged

    Cast of Production “An oncoming freight train hid the view, filling the windows with a rushing smear of noise. In a sudden break above the flat cars, the passengers saw distant structures under a faint, reddish glow in the sky; the glow moved in irregular spasms, as if the structures were breathing. . . . “The passengers could not grasp the complexity of what seemed to be a city stretched for miles . . . . They saw towers that looked like contorted skyscrapers, bridges hanging in mid-air, and sudden wounds spurting fire from out of solid walls. The saw a line of glowing cylinders moving t
    1 point
  45. How is it that a year ago it was much more common to feel derision toward germaphobes and hypochondriacs? Humans die without contact, I wouldn't trade anything for my 4 year old niece jumping my lap and giving me a kiss on the cheek with her booger face. I get a tissue, clean up her face and tell her she is adorable. A germ or virus is nothing compared to human consciousness. Why teach children to feel overwhelming helplessness in the face of something you absolutely have the intelligence to adapt to?
    1 point
  46. "Past actions discredit your argument". Some variations. A. You cannot hold that violent rioting is bad since you violently rioted (/justified violent riots) yourself. B. You believe that rioting is good/justifiable when it's in your cause and bad/unjustifiable in anyone else's. C. You did such and such therefore I can do the same. I think the point being that a person can be objectively correct: initiating violence is bad... And subjectively wrong or vicious: ...[but] when I choose it it is good. So the first necessary effort is to separate the argument from the indiv
    1 point
  47. Look around your home. Is there anything there that gives you energy? Validates your consciousness? Reminds you of the unique manifestations of your identity? Any song, book, film, tactile object that resonates with the possibility of a goal worth aiming toward? Is there something you could put on your wall that will add a spring to your step, or release the tense confusion of a recent argument because it resonates with a problem solving mindset? As one works toward building a solid foundation in reality, aesthetics is where humanity has a chance to evolve creatively through the con
    1 point
  48. Most certainly, the second. "...forming all kinds of concepts". The reason we find art, all art, valuable is that it yields to one's mind the meeting between reality and man's consciousness--as typified by a specific artist. We catch an insight into his re-created world, a particular view of existence which is supremely significant to he/she. Whether one is in metaphysical accord or not with their depiction, one gains and takes away from their creation for one's own purposes (by conceptualization). Here is a corrupt or bleak or impotent or petty view of life and man's mind - there is the antit
    1 point
  49. I read the article. People will see what they want. To give the context this is what I said: She was a cook for advertising purposes, as I have said, not a black person. The conceptual and subconscious content of the brand which is effective, is not about race, unless you want to imagine the general modern population as literally being white supremacist (consciously, subconsciously, whether they know it or not) getting a kick out of the fantasy of having a black-slave cook. This simply is NOT true, and I would suggest you stay away from the leftist
    1 point
  50. semm

    Abortion

    Note: Please familiarize yourself with the Objectivist position on abortion before participating on this thread. A good starting point is the Abortion article on the Objectivism Wiki. - GC I find the views of certain members of The ARI, such as Peikoff and Brook, on the topic of absortion to not be rational. I will brefly here present my pro-life, objectivist standpoint and invite anyone who cares to to try and find a contradiction in my arguement. The views of Peikoff, and likely many other objectivists, is that people are only endowned withe rights of a human beings after they
    1 point
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