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Everything posted by flyboy2160

  1. ...and I suspect he got this idea from Miss Rand. I worked with Uncle Burt in the mid 90s* during a project for which Scaled Composites (his company) was hired by the company I worked for. After he spouted off a few things like the quote above during some brief off-engineering times, I asked him if he had heard of or read Miss Rand. He said yes, but then gave a series of "Yes, she's right about this, but wrong about that..." These were not minor issues like whether stamp collecting is a great hobby, but significant issues. After briefly and politely trying to correct his errors, I gave up in the face of his intransigence - but still got along famously with him. And he's still a great American. *This was his asymmetrical design and walking-around-with-his-parrot-on-his-shoulder era. We got into a fun argument about how many access panels to have on the aircraft - he wanted far fewer than I did. He pointed to the parrot and said something like "He only has X openings." To which I immediatley quipped, "Yes, but he has holes so that at least everything that goes in can come back out!"
  2. I did not go to see this in a theater based on my agreement of your assessemnt of the acting just from what I saw in the trailers. I was frankly apalled by the acting in the trailers. (As I'm apalled by the acting in The Fountainhead.) The day after I reviewed the traiilers (for a second time), I happened to be in a dentist's chair with an episode (April 14) of the soap General Hospital playing on A TV stuck in front of me. At the end of the epsisode I thought "Every single actor in every single scene was better than every single actor in every Atlas trailer. No thanks, I'll watch Atlas on DVD. And don't take any guff from the people who may claim that your disappointment with the technical aspects of Atlas movie somehow makes you less of an Objectivist. Flyboy 2160
  3. A rationalist error made in several Objectivist threads concerning property rights is to claim that a property owner can exclude others from crossing his property because the right to property is some kind of absolute, devoid of context. The correct explanation of the property owner's rights regarding those who wish to cross his property was first given, as I recall, in a very early English King's Bench decision in which all of a property owner's neighbors decided to not allow him to cross their land to get to his property. The court correctly decided the right to property did not allow such exclusion; the property owner had the right to cross his neighbors' land in a "reasonable and customary" manner to get to his property. What this phrase meant in a given case, especially as the land and technology developed, obviously was the source of much legal haggling. This right of passage is commonly now formalized in the property deed as an "easement." It would be hard to argue that a police "hot pursuit" is not reasonable and customary.
  4. the movie left out a few details that makes the story make a little more sense (but doesn't change it's bad sense of life): cigurgh (and his crew, not shown in the movie) are on a mission to show a big gangster (also not shown in the movie) that the gangster's money and dope couriers are incompetent, lazy, and not to be trusted. while, his, cigurgh's boys, can be trusted to get a job done as planned. this explains why cigurgh kills the 2 gangsters who show him the massacre in the desert. cigurgh aims to be the 'best' of his profession. to show that he is a 'master', he allows himself to be captured by the highway deputy just to see if he can get out of the situation. at the end of the book, he returns the money to the big gangster to show his competence; the ganster and he then agree to do business.
  5. My 1-26-2009 review originally posted elsewhere: I don't recommend this film. It is a perfect example of Eastwood's and America's seriously mixed philosophical principles. (Mystic River almost swore me off any more Eastwood movies; this one did it.) Just when you think you're going to see a man of action reject religion in favor of decisions and actions here on this earth, you instead see that man cave in to the 'truth' of the mystic yammerings of, literally, a bone throwing witch doctor. After saying that he only went to church to please his wife, he relents and goes to confession when he is about to die… Although you see a man who does have some standards for judging that are not based on race, all his speech indicates otherwise. He mixes really derogatory speech with 'kidding' with his friends. You see a seriously mixed representation of serving in the American military. The courage under fire and pride in fighting for what America stands for - as depicted by the medal - is completely undercut with the 'baby killer' style confession. Is this guy proud of his fighting for America or not? You see a man without the full, proper understanding of what it is to 'be a man'. Is it courage under fire, standing up to tyranny, and working to support himself or knowing how to recite the typical brain-dead day-to-day banalities, including lying about your ability to get a job. A few witty lines ("And keep your hands off my dog."………"We eat cats.") and some resistance to thugs aren't enough to save this film for me. There are better representations of both without the undercutting flaws of this one. Once again I just have to wonder "What could someone with this talent have done if he had the correct philosophy?" *********sigh*******
  6. Are you able to render this as smoothly surfaced instead of tessalated with just a touch of a button?
  7. The hostile military force "they" were worrried about was the one from a tyrannical U.S. govenrment. The Second Amendment would have to be rewritten to not allow the citizens to own the weapons to oppose the the U.S. government or the intent of the Founding Fathers would have to be ignored. I'm not in favor of either. These weapons were allowed in private hands. I've long advocated applying a basic principle of tort law to this case: an injunction against an activity that could cause irreparable harm. Granted, for instance, against your 10-foot-away neighbor filling his open topped swimming pool with gasoline. But not granted if he fills it in the middle of his 2-mile-on-a-side ranch. This is going to be a controversial subject, especially given the irrational, bizarre, "competive government" position of the Libertarians, but I'm with the Founding Fathers: the citizens should have arms as a check against the potential tyranny of their government. LOLOLOLOLOL So, what was that used tank website again?
  8. The Atlas citation I gave above is in the underground train station scene between Dagny and Galt. The paragraph begins "Then she was conscious...." In the edition I have this paragraph begins on page 887 and continues onto p888. In the Centennial Edition Trade Paperback, the paragraph begins on p956 and continues into p957. And sorry, yes, it's Muttnik. Branden, not me, is the one who elevates this principle's importance by claiming it is the primary psychological reason for having friends and romantic partners.
  9. Please read posts more carefully before responding. What part of the citation above didn't you understand? Let's see: -Brandens's article was published in HER magazine -Dagny the mentions of the principle on page 888 of the 35th Aniversary Edition of Atlas in a most positive manner. This is never presented as error, like some of those made by Rearden, that is later corrected. I leave it to you as an excercise on your way to becoming less of a "fan" and more of a "student" to find the other mention in Atlas. Did you know it was there before firing off you missive? -She acknowledges it's application to her on p252-253 of Valliant's book. I leave it to you as an excercise on your way to becoming less of a "fan" and more of a "student" to find the other mentions Valliant's book. Did you know it was there before firing off you missive? Therefore, ALL the evidence available points to her accepting this principle. I'm only going to discuss this with those who, at the very least, care enough about the subject to read Branden's article. Well, who anointed you King of the Forum? If you don't like my post, report it. You need to check your premises, their connection to your emotional responses, and DO YOUR HOMEWORK before you spout off emotional puffery like this. What makes you think I'm NOT and admirer of Ayn Rand? (For over 20 years, I've been an Objectivist who knows that Miss Rand has performed the finest thinking ever done....) DID YOU EVEN READ Branden's article before firing off your missive? Do you think that Ayn Rand has never made a mistake and that every word of hers should be taken as Gospel and not considered before acceptance? One of the reasons I've been reluctant to post on this on this forum is that there is too much unchecked Rationalism here and too many posters who haven't done their homework before posting. I posted in answer to N's question "what are the reasons for having friends....." because the answer is not obvious from the literature, because Branden's article is wrong, and because this is an important issue. One needs to know exactly, precisely, what one is getting out of friendships and romantic partners. My if-then response to N was to ensure that he first read the "official" background on this subject and because I didn't want to deal with the shoot-off-at-the-mouth-before-doing homework bunch, like you. If serous students of this issue post here, I'll post here, but I'm not going to waste time with those who haven't bothered to do their homework.....
  10. One of the standard official Objectivist positions on the reasons for having friends and romantic partners is found in the article "Self Esteem and Romantic Love" by Nathaniel Branden in the December 1967 issue of the Objectivist (p369.) He claims that the principle psychological reason (which he discovered) for having such relationships is what he calls the "Muttnick principle": one can only see one's self as a "complete entity" by seeing the reaction of another person to one's self. He calls the other person your "mirror." Miss Rand apparently agreed with this, since it is mentioned twice in Atlas and several times in her personal diary entries as quoted in the recent book "The Passion of Ayn Rand's Critics." Edith Packer also agrees with this. Nonetheless, this principle is complete wrong and is a good example of the pyscho-epistemological error known as Rationalism. I suggest you read Branden's article for starters, then PM me, if you wish, for my further thoughts on the proper reasons for having friends and romantic partners; they exist, but they are not Branden's.
  11. I agree!! He's disgusting. (Imagine a vomiting smiley here.) Dr. Brook made some excellent points, but I was disappointed that he even mentioned bringing democracy to Iraq by bringing it's culture to it's knees, like we did with Japan after WW II. It would be too easy for a listener to assume that we need this as a reason to reduce them (and Iran) to dust. Being consistent with the concept of fighting in defense of the United States by removing a threat to it doesn't necessarily require the emergence of democracy in Iraq after the war, just the removal of the threat. Bringing the "democarcy after the war" notion into the discussion smacks too much of the old "white man's burden" argument used to justify the British colonies and of Bush's altruistic attempt to turn Iraq into Missouri.
  12. This topic has been thought provoking in the past. I hope it proves so here. The first major question is whether the traditional preemptive injunction (a court prohibition of certain action because of the potential for damage) is a valid concept? For instance, if your neighbor announces he will drain the water from his pool and store gasoline instead, without a cover, 20 feet from your house, do you have to wait until it explodes to stop him from doing it again or can you rightfully ask the court to prohibit this activity before he even starts? Traditionally, the answer properly depends on the context: the answer will be different between a pool 20 feet away and one in the middle of your neighbor’s desert lot that is mile on a side. If one grants that this concept is valid, a floodgate of possible applications opens. Can one validly ask for proof that a new style of construction used on a 200 story building about to be built next to yours is sound? (I’m assuming through all these examples a rational court process, properly based on individual rights, in a constitutional republic, not the subjective mess we have now.) Can one validly ask a court to prohibit your neighbor from operating his back hoe 5 feet from your house while he is under the influence? From driving his car up the driveway next to your house under the influence? Driving next to you on the road under the influence? Flying his airplane over your house under the influence? The next major issue is whether these indidual instances can properly be codified into a universally applicable law. For instance, if a number of court inquiries factually determine that a certain level of blood alcohol results in serious motor skill impairment, could the legislature properly prohibit anyone driving with a blood alcohol level above a certain amount? I’ve heard the arguments that this is restricting the rights of someone who can hold his liquor and that any restriction based on a “potential” is invalid. Ok, debate is on!
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