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Spiral Architect

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  1. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from thenelli01 in What is ARI's current explicit view on "libertarianism"?   
    2046 has valid points.  When I started to hunt around for websites to check out I bumped into Objectivist sites that were pretty brutal in tone and judgment.  You'd think that Libertarians, and some Objectivists in fact, were worse than Obama or Bush if measured by the tone (not to mention the real-estate spent denouncing them).  
  2. Like
    Spiral Architect reacted to 2046 in Formal proof of Capitalism's prosperity?   
    I'm still not getting the non-economic, politics-level question. Does this economy produce these kinds of results is a question of descriptive science, and the question of "how do we know" is related to the methodology of economics. The science of economics indicates the probable effects of certain policies, while ethics determines what one should do. Given certain truths of economics, ethical judgments will then suggest themselves at the level of philosophy. Someone, eg., who accepts the Austrian view of the effects of minimum wage laws will be unlikely to be a committed advocate of this measure if they wish for the opposite consequences. It is known that Rand read and was persuaded by the Austrian economist Ludwig von Mises, who wrote a book on the methodology of economics, Human Action.
     
    If I may try to interpret what you are saying, is it something like this "I disagree with Rand/Mises conclusions on economics, in fact, I think it's inconclusive, so I can't be sure the consequences of a market economy would be good, therefore I can't recommend it." In that case, I still don't understand your question, if the OP asks how can Rand advocate capitalism, then your disagreement is over the likely results of market economies, ie., is an economic disagreement, and can be settled by sufficing to say that neither Rand nor Mises believed the evidence of economics to be non-conclusive. Your quest for proof of capitalism's prosperity would still only be settled by studying economics and not by philosophy in any event.
     
    If I can interpret your question as something more like this "How can Rand come to the conclusion that capitalism would have the best economic consequences if capitalism never existed?" Or something "At best, Rand can say mixed economies are better than socialist ones, but since free market economies never existed, we can't say anything about them. We cannot test them empirically, because they have never existed."
     
    Not all concepts have to refer to actually existing things, of course. There are unicorns and all sorts of counterfactual concepts that we can create, these are called "ideal type" concepts and are created by differentiation and integration from actually existing referents, the same as anything else. Whilst it is true that Rand's conception of capitalism is that of not-yet-existing (hence the "unknown ideal"), Rand's concept of capitalism is created by abstracting liberal referents from historical economies, while disregarding nonliberal factors that have been internal to every state in history. The same way, economic science is not simply examining "socialist economy" as a blob, and "mixed economy" as a blob, but can abstract from the consequences of liberal policies and nonliberal ones. Mises' assessment of economics as a praxeological and not empirical science, where economic laws are not "tested" as in the physical sciences, is what distinguishes Austrians from current mainstream positivist schools. If you are interested in economic proofs derived from first principles, then you might be interested in Mises because in Human Action he attempts to derive the whole of economic theory from generally recognized propositions.
  3. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from Harrison Danneskjold in Objectivism and homosexuality?   
    You are conflating what a right is and what a benefit is.  A benefit is something positive that you get above the minimum you were expecting.  A right is something that defines what is required for you to live according to your nature as a rational human being, and is usually defined in negative terms like “Initiating force is bad”.  It is the minimum requirement needed to live as a man.  I do not need the Medal of Honor to live as a man.  I need freedom of speech to live as a man. 
     
    A medal of honor is a benefit and affects no one but the person getting it, largely a windfall that adds in some way to their life but is not required for their life.  The government’s protection of the right of association affects everyone and is required for people live and interact in a free society.  If the Government stops giving approval metals out no one is hurt.  If the Government picks and chooses who can receive a right you end up with the collectivist pressure group warfare which the gay marriage issue is one example.  The fact that both sides are acting as irrational collectivists is just proof of concept.   
     
    The bottom line is that it’s the government’s job to protect my rights.  Two people getting married does not violate my rights.  Why I would need the Government to forcefully stop or punish the happy couple when they do not affect me in any way simply does not make sense.  
  4. Like
    Spiral Architect reacted to Nicky in Objectivism and homosexuality?   
    What's fundamental is to advocate for individual rights on principle, rather than pick and choose what we personally find important.
    Yelling and screaming about economic freedom, while at the same time sanctioning religious thugs' desire to impose their morality on others through the government, is an exercise in futility. Gay marriage is just as fundamental as any other issue. Maybe more so, given the motivations and fanaticism of the people opposing gay marriage.
  5. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from softwareNerd in Paul Krugman on Detroit   
    When many cities across the Country are doing the exact thing Detroit is doing, you can draw a conlcusion. The princle stays the same and observation verifies it in action.  Detroit is the biggest city to fail, but not the first, and it is the biggest example of a city to run a deficit for contracts it cannot pay, but not the first.  If I toss an apple into the air in LA, it will fall to the ground.  If I toss an apple into the air in Detorit it will fall to the ground.  Now just change the apple to bad contrcts no one can pay for and the fact we are waatching it hit the ground in Detroit.  Basic principles linked to even more basic observation.
     
    So yes, when basic  observation and an elementary thought process shows the similarities, then you have the essence of the situation. 
     
    I give up the Socialist thing.  I don't know why you insist on dragging it into the coversation again. 
     
    I am blaming the peole that did it.  We are not talking about them, we are talking about Krugman sanctioning their actions. 
     
    He is the specialist that the people that did do this will look to for a sanction of their policies, his article will give them the means to keep doing what they did to get here.  They did nothing wrong - It's no big deal!  See? Kruman said so.  There are no principles - Just an isolated insident.  Facts are castles in the sky and what happened in Detorit will stay in Detorit so we can keep on doing what the same thing here in LA because an economist said so.  They will not even need to know who he is, only the bad justification he set forth and thus we perpetuate bad ideas. 
     
    Krugman knows better than to take a local economic problem and sum it up with other local problems to white wash it away with a national comparison. A little old lady in Arizona is not linked to Detroit, as the little old lady can easily tell you (but evidently Krugman will not).   He also knows better than to treat this as an isolated incident unrealted to econimic principles when you can esily see it happening elsewhere.  And he of all people knows better so that is why he is the guiltiest man involved.  There is plausability that the idiots that ran the city into the ground simply don't know better because they made the mistake of listening to an economic expert that sanctioned their behavior.  They should know better and they deserve blame but as I said they get a slim margin for moral tolerance (compared to Krugman) because they have been fed bad economic ideas from people whose job it is to know better.  The Krugmans of the world are the one's feeding those bad ideas and that is why he is the guity one here. 
     
    I don't think I can make this any clearer than that. 
  6. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from Devil's Advocate in Christianity and Objectivism. Are these compatible in America?   
    It reveals that the poster looks as concrets with elementry observation and can see that reason, let alone Objectivism, is not represented in arts and entertainment.  A scoiety's cultural output is indicitive of the ideas it has accepted, even if implicitly.  While I disgree with him on religion it is no small stretch to see he is right on this point.  If you disagree channel surf for five minutes.   Philosophy to arts today can be somed up simply as Garbage In - Garbage Out. 
     
    People will not accept reason until they want to and as DA points out they are not passionate to do so as reflected in the choices they make. 
  7. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from Harrison Danneskjold in Christianity and Objectivism. Are these compatible in America?   
    OK, we can ditch the epistemological argument - I get were you are coming from but I do want to point out that is the reason I was saying that is because it demonstrates the systems are incompatible.
     
    Socially, I'd say the systems can be compatible in the context of America today if two things stay consistent: 
     
    1.  We have a common enemy, and that is the progressive movement. 
     
    2.  Religion is "Westernized" for lack of a better term as Augustine's influence declined pre-Enlightenment. 
     
    American's have ala carte style discarded religious teaching when they were incompatible with reason and living.  Thus, the Deism that was popular with the founding fathers.  To the extent that exists there is compatibility since reason is still the guiding force of thinking and a common ground to interact. 
     
    The issue here is what would happen if the Progressive Movement losses the culture war and recedes into a minority influence.  Objectivism and Religion would cease having the common enemy and policy would then have to be determined by either reason or the dictates of a Book based on faith.  19th Century Religion could do it since  the trend was toward reason.  Today's trend is less positive as religion today is increasingly accepting the same style of thinking of the progressives, and the Augustine influence is returning and in come cases alarmingly so (Bachman, Westboro, etc.)  And while they are admittedly extreme cases they are also influential cases and the question is when progressive thinking recedes will reason suddenly insert itself or will people switch to a different philosophy that has enough similarities to progressivism. 
     
    The lack of reason wholesale in education today tells me that if the progressive movement recedes another non-reason movement will take it's place.  Medieval styled religion is similar enough to progressivism, just substitute God for society as the justification for the "public good" and you can see how that would not be compatible with Objectivism. 
     
    So I guess my answer is that yes, they are compatible as along as religion is similar to the one used by our Founding Fathers.  Considering how quickly modern Christians are trying to rewrite the ideas of those men as a product of faith and not reason, color me skeptical of the trend however. 
  8. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from mdegges in Going on a mission trip   
    Believe it or not I say go for it and have fun.  If you do it for good reasons that are important to you then you should go for it instead of living with the dreaded "what if" your whole life.
     
    As Snerd said experiencing other cultures like that can be very rewarding.  Once upon a time I drove truck and it was very satisfying to experience so many fascinating places, music, food, and people.  And that was only America!  More importantly, as my wife says, don't be a  tourist so this would let you experience the world as it is, not as it is sold to travel agencies. 
  9. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from Harrison Danneskjold in Christianity and Objectivism. Are these compatible in America?   
    I should have considered resurrection
     
    They are hardly “Generalized Interpretations”.  When I say essentials I mean just that – Remove the concretes and integrate the common essentials.  Religion, as a type of mysticism, has common essentials to it.  Kelly and Peikoff do not dispute the essentials of Objectivism, like the idea of knowledge being objective, but dependent abstractions that come later in ethics (objective judgment) for example, much like religion disputes interpretations.   
     
    Appeals of authority are certainly not exclusive to religion but they are an essential factor of religion, defined by religion itself, since individual knowledge is impossible at best or a corruption at worse. 
     
    Christianity goes out of its way in fact in the very first book of the Bible to claim man is bad because he gained knowledge instead of being a passive obedient animal in God’s private garden. 
     
    Nor is that a parable since the whole point of the crucifixion is to claim Jesus died to atone for the sin of me having knowledge and disobeying God. 
     
    As for revelations, religion does require revelation, not necessarily that from the God(s) but still an outside source effectively revealing knowledge somehow since man is not to understand existence but merely observe like a passive mirror and reflect what is given to him.  At last if he wants to be good he has to do this.  Thinking = bad while obeying = Good.  Whether it is a voodoo priest rolling the bones to predict the future or a priest telling me that I cannot think about the Bible but just “believe it on faith”, it is a revelation since the source is something above nature, above me, and above my mind. 
     
    I hope that clarifies the point. 
  10. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from Harrison Danneskjold in Ayn Rand thinks like a man?   
    Liberalism is a feminine philosophy while the conservative is a masculine one... THAt is totally absurd. Seriously, I reread this thread because I couldn’t believe moralist said that.

    This completely invalidates the concept of free will – The idea that people are products of predetermined genes or physical nature. I seriously doubt the Founding Fathers found themselves talking ideas with Elizabeth Warren or Feinstein. I mean, really?

    Second, modern day liberalism is in place because of some very prominent men, Wilson to Rawls come to mind.

    But wait, let’s look at the conservatives with a few quick examples:


    1. Agree with liberals on restricted freedom of speech, they choose a different subject to point the gun at (like porn or the internet).

    2. They believe in government control of property (just replace guns with drugs for the easy example)

    3. They agree on guilt as a social contract to force people to work together (slave restitution versus the idiotic original sin is an easy example)

    4. Duty to the collective (socialism versus nationalism)

    5. Perpetuation of the welfare state (George Bush committed one of the largest increase in government social programs in history until Obama came along – Think No Child Left Alone and the Prescription plan)

    6. A priori supernatural beliefs - materialism versus God(s)


    Perhaps liberals and conservatives share so many similarities that you should quantify them as transgender. Gender confused is even better.

    But one more thing. This nonsense doesn’t even pass the basic common sense scratch and sniff test. My wife didn’t vote for the egalitarian and I didn’t vote for the inflatable doll, and my wife is certainly as female and last time I took a shower I was a male, so much for that.
  11. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from mdegges in Why capital punishment is immoral.   
    I'll phrase the answer this way - My life LOVES to tease me and say "Life is grey" since she knows I despise the moral sloppiness of the "grey argument" to ethics. She doesn't believe that, however, she says that because people accept mixed ideas or get caught up in events where the lines run up against each other so she uses the issue to tweak me. Most cases are clear but the drama is in the times where you have to sort out the ideas that entangle people or the specific events they allow themselves to get mixed up in.

    The point here is that why we have investigative detectives (and reporters) as well as trial by jury so people can bring cases before their peers and sort these odd cases out. Morality without the context of real life is dogma and useless. Context is king and the purpose of a trial is to allow for context to have its say.

    As for the movie, it was designed to make you see the murder and put the dilemma for a loophole in the system to be exploited. You were supposed to feel the injustice as it set up the rest of the story. Movies are not documentaries and are designed to invoke ideas and emotions to move you through the conflict. In this case the idea was justice and it sounds like it hit it’s mark.

  12. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from Madhavi in Why capital punishment is immoral.   
    Great quote from the movie Unforgiven: “It's a hell of a thing, killing a man. Take away all he's got and all he's ever gonna have.”
    That is what a killer does – He takes away everything the other person had, and the whole life they could have had. This also does not count the victims loved ones who lost someone too.
    When a person has violated the rights of someone else to the point he has permanently taken away all of their values through the most precious value of all, his life, the killer’s life is forfeit. I agree the burden of proof should be high and I would rather let a guilty man go free than an innocent man be wrongfully killed, but the Jeffry Dahmer’s of the world have no business soaking up tax payer money so they can live off the victims the stalked in life. Who does that reward and who does that punish? He did it, yes we know he did it, and we invest Government with a monopoly on force to protect us from exactly that kind of person.
    Mercy rewards the criminal at the expense of the victim. Justice is the concept at work here and Justice demands each person is rewarded or punished for what they have earned.


  13. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from Dante in Question about Nathaniel Branden   
    Am I the only one who honestly doesn’t give a rat’s ass about the whole thing?

    I obviously love Rand’s work. I love Branden’s work too as his material in TVOS and CTUI were some of my early favorites and his later work was solid too. TVAR is my go to source for looking up basic objectivism facts as a matter of fact. Their material stands on its own and can be judged on its own.

    Perhaps it’s because I spent the 90’s reading all of their material oblivious to the whole mess, outside of a simple non-descript message in one of the books, and thus just kept reading without the baggage of the whole thing, but I don’t see it affecting their work. As for the affair, it sounds like two people had a passionate affair and not surprisingly when they broke up it was also passionate. Branden was young and apologized for his party while Rand was angry. That isn’t surprising since she is an older strong personality with the mind of the century. It most have been a real blow and hell have no fury of a women who feels scorned.

    So I just look at the work and judge their ideas, since that is the value I get from them anyway.

    Just my two cents.
  14. Like
    Spiral Architect reacted to softwareNerd in Was the strike, a purge?   
    It is not just off the mark, it is the *opposite* of the book. If you want to keep the metaphor, ... ... to say "I'm stepping out of this gas chamber that you are filling with gas, and in which you are trying to force me to remain" is the *opposite* of saying "I am going to build a gas chamber and force you in".
  15. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from moralist in going Galt...   
    If I read you right, you are looking for how someone might reduce it to essentials as a principle to be applied in life, which is a little problematic since as Nicky said it well defined in the book as a dramatization of the novel’s central conflict. But to distill it down into essentials then integrate it as a principle I would say “Going Galt” would be the negative of the trader principle:
    Refusal to trade your virtues for other’s vices.
  16. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from moralist in The bad guy won. The fight continues.   
    I have actually contacted the local Tea-Party group here in West Michigan. I was happy to see none of the fundamental religion issues that would have been a no sell. There are certainly some religious people but the group is about economic and Constitutional issues, not social. More importantly it got me on some e-mail listing for current events in Michigan and I cannot understate how much additional information has been made available. Listings for State Congressmen, phone numbers, emails, their votes on current subjects, Bill and vote updates, etc. I thought I was informed but this blew me away.

    As an example, last week the House Committee that was supposed to pass the exchange for Obamacare here in Michigan, which would have sent it to the floor then into law sense our Senate already passed it and our Governor has said he would sign it, well that got blocked because enough people turbo called and emailed the offices of key politicians on that committee. Story floating around is that there was a lot of pissed off Lobbyists in Lansing that day. I’m happy to say I was part of that.

    I’ll be honest, I was wary since I had strong suspicions when contacting the group but after the election I decided to try something new. At worst I would lose soem time then move on. I’m glad I did. We’ll see how it goes but for now if I can at least help block some nonsense then it is worth being on a few mailing lists. If it goes well then I'll get more involved.
  17. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from softwareNerd in The bad guy won. The fight continues.   
    I have actually contacted the local Tea-Party group here in West Michigan. I was happy to see none of the fundamental religion issues that would have been a no sell. There are certainly some religious people but the group is about economic and Constitutional issues, not social. More importantly it got me on some e-mail listing for current events in Michigan and I cannot understate how much additional information has been made available. Listings for State Congressmen, phone numbers, emails, their votes on current subjects, Bill and vote updates, etc. I thought I was informed but this blew me away.

    As an example, last week the House Committee that was supposed to pass the exchange for Obamacare here in Michigan, which would have sent it to the floor then into law sense our Senate already passed it and our Governor has said he would sign it, well that got blocked because enough people turbo called and emailed the offices of key politicians on that committee. Story floating around is that there was a lot of pissed off Lobbyists in Lansing that day. I’m happy to say I was part of that.

    I’ll be honest, I was wary since I had strong suspicions when contacting the group but after the election I decided to try something new. At worst I would lose soem time then move on. I’m glad I did. We’ll see how it goes but for now if I can at least help block some nonsense then it is worth being on a few mailing lists. If it goes well then I'll get more involved.
  18. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from softwareNerd in Philosophic cycles   
    As a complete aside, my wife once elegantly made a comment about Vampires (she likes the classic genre) that I loved, “They took a dark romantic predator that gave women the excuse to engage in uninhibited sex, in an age of repression, and turned him into an emo that sparkles.”

    I always thought that was a rather uniquely interesting take on things and pretty much summed up the corruption of ideas in modern terms.
  19. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from dream_weaver in Is the Federal Reserve a private organization?   
    Hmmm...

    The Federal Reserve System is the perfect symbol of the mixed economy then.
  20. Like
    Spiral Architect reacted to Jonathan13 in Why Objectivism is culturally backward.   
    I don't think that it's an issue based in people being white and/or male. I know of many women and non-whites who place more importance on economic freedom in today's world than on the abortion issue. The reason they place more importance on it is because government intrusion into economics is having a real and serious effect on their lives, where abortion is not. Basically, most people will never need to have the option of having an abortion, and the legality of abortion isn't currently threatened. Even if Romney had won, abortion would have remained legal. So those who vote for economic freedom over abortion freedom are simply voting against the real loss of their economic freedoms rather than against the potential but highly unlikely loss of your abortion freedoms.



    I disagree. I think that your condemnation of others -- because they vote (or abstaining from voting) for the purpose of choosing to fight against the real government intrusions which affect them most, rather than choosing to fight against the merely potential and unlikely intrusions which affect you the most -- is what is morally corrupt. Your expectation that they surrender their interest in their freedoms in the name of yours is what is morally "monstrous."

    J
  21. Like
    Spiral Architect reacted to Grames in walling people into their own property   
    No, it does not reference that. What is to be done about the encirclement problem in property law (easement) is a deduction that comes way later than the concept of a right.

    A right is a normative abstraction describing how one should act toward others and how others should act toward oneself. A normative abstraction pertaining to human action is also known as a moral principle. Moral principle is the genus of the definition of right given by Ayn Rand:



    That a man's right to his own life is fundamental is important here because what is fundamental is the essential defining characteristic of the concept by the rule of fundamentality. Any and all construing of the limits of property rights are subordinate to the right to life, which can be considered as forming the context for those specific rights.


    The actions required by man the rational animal crucially include interacting with others: above all learning from them, and also listening to and speaking to them, and trading with them for material values, and generally contracting with them. "Man is not a lone wolf and he is not a social animal. He is a contractual animal." -Ayn Rand There cannot be a right to so greatly interfere with the necessary actions of life man qua man even if subsistence survival were possible on the isolated plot.

    Not 2 months ago there was a thread on this identical topic. See Trapped Man Problem

    Two years ago Craig Biddle wrote in defense of Immigration and Individual Rights. Poster 2046 referenced it in the thread Ayn Rand & "Open Borders". Since freedom of movement is a similar feature between the immigration question and the trapped man problem there is a parallel argument to made in both cases.

    I quote the most relevant portion of Biddle's case (footnotes and links omitted from the original):

    Claiming a right to trap a man on his property violates rights by making it impossible generally for the trapped man to act on his judgement, and so is an assault on his life and initiation of force.
  22. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from JASKN in Life DESPITE politics   
    Debt as a percentage of GDP is not as high as Greece and we have more banking flexibility since we are not restricted to an outside Reserve System (aka EU centralized banking). Further, we are not at their level of mixed economy or entrenched looter class. I agree America is in rough shape and we are going there fast (as someone from Michigan I’m predicting riots in Detroit and Flint burning this decade) but it is not as bad as Greece. Yet. What is alarming is that we are heading that way.

    Obama's re-election is disappointing, no so much because he won but because his "victory" is forcing us to see the trends for what they are. Today is no different from last week. But life is good and the good is to live it so we should not lose perspective on the good even when we need to take stock of the bad, and when needed prepare rationally for the ugly.
  23. Like
    Spiral Architect reacted to 2046 in Is Objectivism Hopelessly Naive   
    Right so there's a lot in there. Why don't we try to capsulate it further into a single point or two and see if we can untangle it and make things more clearer. To Rand, humans are not "perfectible" in the sense you mean, e.g. Christian ethics holding something impossible to reach as the standard, then condemning men for failing to live up to it. Rather, to her, morality is based on man's nature and thus a realistic ethics has to consist in behavior possible to man. Where no choice is even possible, morality cannot be said to apply. Thus to her, and most other virtue ethicists in history, perfection means something more like doing one's best to act virtuously. It is something more like "moral ambitiousness."

    Now that we've rescued Rand from the charge of moral utopianism, there is the political aspect that I think you also get wrong in a few crucial ways. You seem to think that the goal of political organization is to get man to act in accordance with objectivist ethics, that this would require substantial regulation, and thus, even if it's not utopian and impossible, it will be more than the minimal government that Rand envisioned.

    Well hold on. The goal of political organization is to allow man to act morally, not to turn him into an objectivist, or even to make him moral. But more crucially, this isn't possible through politics. Central to the objectivist conception of morality is independence and autonomy. In seeking one's values, something that was foisted upon you through coercion cannot be of benefit to you. This is why Galt refuses to become dictator of America. He knows it's pointless. Every person needs to pursue is his interests from his own point of view, and that is why the non-aggression principle of a capitalist society is designed to protect the marketplace of ideas, to allow people to pursue even conflicting values in search for what will benefit our lives. Since human nature is capable of both good and evil, a free society, by not establishing such a legitimated channel for theft and tyranny, discourages the criminal tendencies of human nature and encourages the peaceful and the voluntary. Thus liberty and the free market are necessary to discourage aggression and compulsion, and encourage the harmony and mutual benefit of voluntary interpersonal exchanges, economic, social, and cultural, etc.

    But now we come to the heart of what I believe is a pretty common conflationism, especially among those on the left. You speak of "'men of the mind' such as robber barons" and, as my previous post point out, you fear that Rand assumes the rich and powerful elite will act ethically instead of rapaciously. But I think this is mistaken because it treats those undesirable features of actually existing and historical capitalism as though they constituted an objection to the free market. This view relies on believing the free market and corporatism are in fact one in the same, whereas those features you point out actually follow from governmetal privilege and, in many cases, the exact regulatory and interventionist measures you yourself (and other leftish inclined people) advocate.

    The last point is in regards to your prescriptions. Since your goals seem to be somewhat appropriately anti-corporatist, rather than achieving them through free market means, you prefer to achieve them through broadly (though not what you consider an extreme or authoritarian) statist means. But if the corporate elite uses their wealth and influence to enhance their position in society, why would you expect increasing the power of government over society will do anything other than increase the ability of the wealthy and powerful elite that controls the government to increase their position of privilege. Isn't that truly a naive view? What if those very same "left" goals could be achieved only through market means? Would that make you support the free market instead?

    So how much legislation is necessary to ensure adherence to objectivist ethics? Well none, since that's not even possible. But how much legislation is necessary to enforce private property rights? My view is that legislative law itself is unnecessary to protect private property rights. Regulation certainly isn't necessary, and is designed for a different purpose. As far as regulatory agencies go, the FDA is a mass murdering organization that is responsible for countless deaths and should be dismantled completely (cf. Higgs). The EPA is useless, since the general law the protect private property is sufficient to combat pollution. But the EPA was designed not to do that, rather to protect large industries from pollution claims and smaller competition (cf. Coase, Rothbard, and Block.) In a similar vein, anti-trust was put over in the name of protecting the public against monopolistic firms, but actually was organized and passed through by these big businesses themselves, and used to smash each other with (cf. Kolko.) I implore you to look over some of the history of these things.
  24. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from John Link in Who gets your vote on Tuesday?   
    The Quantum Candidate all the way - Mit.

    Michigan since the Doctor is right in that I'd be voting for Johnson in any other year.
  25. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from Grames in Is Objectivism Hopelessly Naive   
    As a complete aside (and it’s been a while so please bare with me here) but it is important to note that Socialism versus Fascism really is the story of Left Socialism versus Right Socialism. Hegel popularized the idea of zeitgeist which had more to do with the inevitability of the race. Marx put “Hegel on his feet” by making socialism an international issue of class then added in his theories. This fundamental difference eventually would flow through others (Lenin and Heidegger if I’m not mistaken) to become (Left) Socialism through State action for the working class and (Right) Socialism for the race/nation. Thus National Socialism that was fascism is simply Right Socialism that was a form of collectivism centered on the race and nation versus the international worker struggles of the left version of collectivism. They simply argued over whom the collective was and the consequences. From there certain particulars formed from the division, for example Left Socialism is about State ownership of production while National Socialism “allowed” people to keep the means of production as long as the completely submitted to the Nation’s central planning.

    It is important to point out that both forms did apply centralized planning and a gun awaited those who did not obey the public good. The only difference was that the public good was either the Proletariat or the Nation and both did demonize individual rights. The German’s even put it on their money: “The Common Good Goes Before The Interest Of The Individual.”

    In the end, Stalin and Hitler were simply brothers of a different mother.
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