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Dennis Hardin

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Dennis Hardin last won the day on May 23

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    Dennis Hardin
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    An Objectivist since reading the PLAYBOY interview with Ayn Rand in 1964
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  1. Pencil sketch of Ayn Rand from Sunday afternoon, June 11, 1967, as she watched Nathaniel Branden lecture on romantic love at the Sheraton-Atlantic Hotel in New York City. As you can see, I did the sketch while taking notes. I was sitting two rows behind her. This was roughly a year prior to their break. The hotel is no longer there. It used to be adjacent to the Empire State Building.
  2. The point of course is that the movie should motivate people to buy the book. This movie will have the opposite effect. Very few people are going to read Atlas Shrugged because of this movie. If they do, then the poor quality of the movie will not matter. But some people—not a lot, but some-- may never read it because of this awful movie. As to being concerned with the film’s badness: I know it isn’t cool to make moral evaluations and explain why you make them. Atlas Shrugged is a supreme value of mine. I’m just not very cool when it comes to my values.
  3. I’ve often thought that Ayn Rand was wrong to condemn libertarianism for corrupting her philosophy. With all their faults, I have often defended libertarians, and obviously many of them are good, admirable people. After seeing AS3, though—which might be described as a libertarian perversion of Atlas Shrugged—I would have to say Rand was justified in her fears and misgivings. Part Three was the most important part of the trilogy because it was supposed to explain everything that happened in the first two segments. Instead, it obfuscates the story and totally sidesteps the real philoso
  4. According to The New York Post, the budget for AS3 was almost entirely raised through Kickstarter. It was around $447K, compared to 20 million for Part 1 and 10 million for Part 2. So perhaps Glenn Beck, Ron Paul and Sean Hannity bought their own cameos. And silence on the topic of religion. What the heck? Why bicker over some technical philosophical issue?
  5. It was a total disaster. The low point for me was the Glenn Beck cameo. Evidently the producers think Objectivism is perfectly compatible with Christianity. OMG I can't help but wonder what the producer of The Godfather--Al Ruddy--might have done with Rand's novel if she had not stood in his way. I guess now any hope for a film adaptation that truly honors the book is lost. This movie should be an embarrassment for everyone in any way responsible. What a travesty!
  6. I was present at Branden's lecture and heard him make this comment. I recall thinking that Binswanger was liikely the main person he was referencing, but since he didn't name names, that is obviously speculation on my part.
  7. At a lecture many years ago, Nathaniel Branden spoke about a few "Objectivist intellectuals" (the kind often referred to as pencil-necked geeks) for whom Ayn Rand expressed profound contempt. She had conveyed her true feelings about these individuals in confidence, and Branden indicated they never knew of her disdain. He didn't name names, but if you've ever seen Binswanger in person, there's little doubt about whom she was referring to.
  8. Harry Binswanger makes me feel embarrassed to call myself an Objectivist.
  9. I met Barbara in 1989 and had numerous lengthy discussions with her. I regarded her as a good friend. She was always an inspiration to me, beginning with her years at NBI in New York. I believe her numerous contributions to the Objectivist philosophy will eventually be given the importance she deserved. She will be missed.
  10. You're welcome, Tony. BTW, in his article, Biddle talks about Bryan Caplan, a libertarian pacifist. Caplan used to attend an intellectual srudy group for Objectivists which I ran back in the late 1980s in Los Angeles. He was a briliant youngster and we had numerous late hour discussions at coffee shops. Where oh where did I go wrong????
  11. Here is Biddle’s most recent comment on Objectivists associating with libertarians: “None of this is to say that radical capitalists and libertarians should never engage or work together. It can be perfectly principled for radical capitalists to engage with libertarians, so long as in doing so we do not blur the distinctions between the respective ideologies. If the goal of the engagement is morally legitimate—say, to educate libertarians as to the need of philosophy in defense of liberty, or to encourage people to ask their representatives to support the repeal of a rights-violating law,
  12. That may be true. But Objectivists, in my opinion, are not being consistent with rational egoism if they join the TV commentators and sing the praises of the eager bystanders. Their admiration seems based on their utter disregard of potential danger. It is not heroic to recklessly disregard potential threats to your own life. True courage does not involve recklessness.
  13. According to this article, following a terrorist bombing, emergency crews are actually trained to wait to see if there is a secondary explosion before rushing in to help. I did not know that. The Urge to Help Is Overwhelming This much is obvious: You are not going to be able to help if you are also dead. Beyond that, I would compare "rushing to help" in such situations to running into a burning building to help total strangers. I consider risking your own life for the lives of strangers in this sort of reckless manner to be immoral. I would wait a few minutes to see if there
  14. Another aspect of the Boston bombings, which perhaps should be addressed in the Ethics section, is the extensive praise being given to those who ran to help the victims of the first explosion, despite the well-known terrorist tactic of detonating a second bomb aimed at killing first responders. Announcers on Fox News, and probably other networks as well, have spoken of those people running directly into harm’s way as deserving of tremendous admiration for their bravery. One announcer spoke of such heroes as reflecting the greatness of Americans and our unique, instinctive courage in the face
  15. This passage reflects Kira's inner conflicts and mixed feelings about Andrei. Rand makes clear that Kira does have strong feelings for Andrei despite the fact that he's a communist. As an indivldual, Andrei does have some heroic and admirable qualities, so sleeping with him was not totally repugnant for her. At the same time, any enjoyment she experienced in Andrei's bed would amount to a "sacrilege" because of her intense love for Leo. Her pleasure would be clouded by feelings comparable to the guilt of infidelity. She does not want to enjoy sex with Andrei--but Rand the novelist is also
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