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Spiral Architect

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  1. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from whYNOT in Applications of Philosophy -- Objectivism in Daily Life   
    You are putting way to much thought into what is largely a toss away comment that was a fun jab at those who claim a person who gets a sex change is mutilating their body. She doesn’t look mutilated to me and she certainly doesn’t look like a man.

    I have to disagree however with your claim that I’m just mindlessly bound to act through some evolutionary desire; I have free will and can choose to focus on my life at will. I’m not a billiard ball getting hit into the corner pocket of procreation determinism. My wife and I get another version of this all the time from family and friends because we don’t have children. Everyone seems to think that we are supposed to have kids because God or Mother Nature said so. They don’t seem to get the concept of “Because we choose to” as if free will was alien to them.

    “Nature”, which is existence, does not have a conscious mind let alone the ability to set goals. Only rational living entities can conceive of values and the goal directed action to achieve them. Evolution is the process of non-rational life conforming to its environment to insure its survival. Man adapts nature to him to survive since he is rational and he uses that tool to alter his environment for his survival. Nature asserts itself on animals, man asserts himself on nature. Mindless animals conform to their environment, a process that is a death sentence to humans. Yes, the universe must be understood according to its nature (i.e. identity) as existence is a primary but beyond conceptual understanding nature is ours to command. Animals reflexively fear and obey nature while man makes nature sit obediently at his side while he reads his Sunday paper and drinks his morning coffee.
  2. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from aequalsa in Marriage, Fantasy, and Lies   
    There is nothing wrong with “Fantasy” or other activities with someone, but this also assumes that you are both participating. What you seem to be describing, is that only you are doing this and further you are doing it to pretend your wife is someone else without her knowledge.

    Well, my question is simple: If you wish to have sex with someone other than your wife then why are you not having sex with the other person instead? Who do you really want to be with?

    You can’t have the other person because you are married? Then you may need to analyze your marriage at that point. Because you can’t have the other person? So you recreate the encounter you can’t have through someone else? What does that tell you? You have some soul searching to find out where the split is coming in and why other people seem more interesting than the women you married. You married her so she should be your ultimate desire. That is the point of sex to begin with! You deserve to have that answered and so does your wife.
  3. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from softwareNerd in Marriage, Fantasy, and Lies   
    There is nothing wrong with “Fantasy” or other activities with someone, but this also assumes that you are both participating. What you seem to be describing, is that only you are doing this and further you are doing it to pretend your wife is someone else without her knowledge.

    Well, my question is simple: If you wish to have sex with someone other than your wife then why are you not having sex with the other person instead? Who do you really want to be with?

    You can’t have the other person because you are married? Then you may need to analyze your marriage at that point. Because you can’t have the other person? So you recreate the encounter you can’t have through someone else? What does that tell you? You have some soul searching to find out where the split is coming in and why other people seem more interesting than the women you married. You married her so she should be your ultimate desire. That is the point of sex to begin with! You deserve to have that answered and so does your wife.
  4. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from softwareNerd in Galt's Gulch had no government?   
    Atlas Shrugged is first and foremost art, which means it is a representation of the author’s ideas. It’s a mistake to look to it as a complete treatise on philosophy and there is plenty of the author’s non-fiction to do that (which is why Rand later focused on it). Yes, this art was intended to dramatize Ayn Rand’s philosophy but its primary role was the dramatization of reason. The majority of the book focuses on what happens when people don’t use reason and those that do use reason stop carrying the rest forward. The valley dramatizes what can happen when all of the great thinkers gather in one spot and don’t need to contend with the looters. This is not a political statement but a representation of the producer’s ethics to contrast with the predominant one demonstrated through the rest of the novel – The looters world and what their morality causes. Thus, the novel moves from “hell” as Wyatt calls it to Atlantis.

    It’s worth noting that the valley was owned by Midas so his property rights is also primary and they did appoint the judge but never needed him, both facts subtle points to also dramatize the ideas at work. But they are not worth to much political commentary since that was not the purpose – The purpose was to artistically demonstrate two world views and how one causes people to be in conflict while the other causes people to live in harmony.
  5. Like
    Spiral Architect reacted to JMeganSnow in Applications of Philosophy -- Objectivism in Daily Life   
    And don't forget the Liger.

    In any case, proper respect for Ayn Rand and Leonard Peikoff (and anyone!) does not require you to agree with all their statements. I disagree with Ayn Rand on homosexuality and the whole "woman president" thing. I disagree with Dr. Peikoff on a number of topics. If Dr. Peikoff is going to be publicly rude while expressing what he thinks, I don't have any problem with people reacting as though he's behaving like a rude jerk, because, well, he is. Rudeness isn't in itself immorality. Like politeness, it's a type of behavior which has certain consequences. If he's fine with those consequences, that's his business.

    As for me, I wouldn't call anyone an Objectivist who doesn't stand 100% on their own judgment when it comes to applying principles to particular cases. I don't care WHO said WHAT. I use my OWN reason.
  6. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from brian0918 in Natural Monopoly Question   
    I got this question when I took a night class on Econ years ago and I got a laugh out of the whole class with this:

    "So what you are telling me is that the free market can place satellites in geosynchronous orbit, do microscopic surgery with lasers, or even allow me to pay anyone anywhere in the world instantly from my bank account with plastic, but it cannot run a wire into my house? Really?”

    Also this is not a natural monopoly. Natural monopolies occur without the Government forcing them. Utilities are regulated and restricted by Government fiat so are coercive monopolies. This is simply an excuse to let the Government restrict access to privileged members (people who pay for bridges to well connected groups).

    Challenge the professor, or the people in class, as to how they would do it if they owned a Utility and had to run it on the moral principle of free association. What if they had to actually think about solving the problem to get people’s business? Ingenuity is a wonderful thing and certainly a better fuel for advancement then “I don’t know so the government should pick the most connected business to do it.”

  7. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from hernan in Earned Success and Learned Helplessness   
    If you mean a hair dresser or mechanic working for cash out of their home, outside if having a permit or some such in addition to being untaxable, then yes is can be very practical and neccessary. It is also alredy happeneing. "Going on strike" was of course a drama to essentialize the principles involved but it could also be pratical or moral. It depends on how far society has gone to the dark side. It is also worth noting that AS did make small references to that to in demonstrating that men of virtue would be forced to become criminals to live in such a State. When is using the "underground" moral? When is the point one should "opt out"? Interesting subjects indeed.
  8. Like
    Spiral Architect reacted to whYNOT in On Transgender / Transsexualism   
    No, I'm not interested in legality, and don't know how you got the notion.
    Morality, through metaphysics, is all I emphasize here.
    Perhaps, I should explain the "conservative" reference.
    It is the religious, conservativist element that opposes any intervention in the
    human body, based on their metaphysics of 'God's Plan'(roughly.)
    Objectivist metaphysics of Man contains no supernaturalism, or fatalism.

    Rational, autonomous, self-generating and directing, fallible and a-mystical.
    Just to remind you,there is no place for gender or sexuality in our metaphysics.

    Now, if Dr Peikoff had called the operation a "physical assault",then he'd have had
    a point - but less of a moral argument.

    Whatever the neuro-science or DNA composition that determines the transgenderist,
    and there certainly is more for professionals to learn, the opposition to it on
    moral grounds is surprisingly "conservativist" coming from him.
    He doesn't know enough, and nor do I - but what makes anyone believe that this
    is all that rare a phenomenon in the first place? or, that it is not an
    extremely powerful "urge" - for a gender change, primarily, with sexuality secondary?

    Judging the surgical procedure as "immoral" might well condemn a person to a lifetime of misery.
    Now THAT is irrational.

  9. Like
    Spiral Architect reacted to CrowEpistemologist in On Transgender / Transsexualism   
    Let's talk about another philosophical subject: evasion.

    I think it's obvious to everybody that LP (and his idolateurs) knows nothing about biology despite the fact that he felt the need to talk about it at length.

    Now, it's not above any of us, I think, to talk out of our ass occasionally. You oversimplify a subject based on only a smattering of knowledge, make a bunch of assumptions that turn out to be wrong, and end up in a place that's completely and utterly disconnected from reality. Often this is driven by a narrative of disconnected abstractions telling you what the reality must be like in order to coincide with that narrative.

    In this case, the floating abstraction is, "transgenders are immoral", then "facts" were brought in to support this narrative--including facts from various and complex areas of science including physiology and biology.

    Now, the more honest among us would simply fess up and say, "sorry, talking out of my ass". The less honest simply keep digging a deeper and deeper hole...
  10. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from DonAthos in Inevitability of death   
    It is not the fact that you should live assuming death is "never outside of your control". The point is that you should live assuming that your life is yours to control and the good is to live it. You only get one shot at life so live it. Live to the best you can with the time you got. Death is a metaphysical fact no one can avoid. I'm sot sure I would want to even call that a bad thing since the option of death is what moves us to live. Don't focus on the negative fact we will someday die, but focus on the fact that we need to live.

    Now, how this plays out for someone who is later in life moving close to joining the choir invisible is contextual. One thing is very certain however, one should live by one's own standards and death only needs to be the last thing you do.
  11. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from Boris Rarden in Is the Objectivist view of sex flawed?   
    Sex is treated in two different ways in our culture due to the mind-body dichotomy. The mystic versions (i.e. religion) sees love as “sacred” or “profane”, with the sacred pertaining to the spirit and the profane being the body. With sex being a pleasure of the body you get the classic hostility over sex as evil but compromised later to only being available to marriage for the necessity of procreation. Thus it was a necessary evil.

    The modern version of this is the other side of the coin with the collectivist view realized in the modern materialist mentality that considers the mind irrelevant. You can find this philosophic and political theme dancing across the news. The modern mentality considers conservative taboos on sex dated and wrong but largely agrees with their opponents that sex is still a physical act. The only difference is they see man as an animal and treat sex as they would for any other animal. In fact they consider all human acts, when you get down to it, animal functions since the role of the mind in men’s lives are disregarded. They are just more honest about it when it comes to sex.

    To quote “The Basic Principles of Objectivism”:

    “Such are the two alternatives that men have been offered – A choice between the spiritualists and the materialists, between those who believe in values without pleasure, and those who believe in pleasure without values. The spiritualists preach that man must pursue moral values, but must not expect any pleasure from them. The materialists preach that man may pursue pleasure, but must not pretend that it involves any moral values. Both accept the premise that pleasure and values have no relation to each other.”

    There is an interesting analogy later that explains the decisions one makes on sex is not determined in the bedroom, but in the study. By the thinking you have done (or not done). This goes back to the fundamental premises a man holds all the way through his ethical choices later.

    The point that is crucial to this topic is that when one integrates the mind and body, you don’t lose sight of the fact sex is a physical act (and an intense one at that) but you must realize that you have the choice to let it run on automatic pilot of its own will or make it be a tool of your own mind, just like any other act for which man should take responsibility.

    Further, ask yourself this, if it is simple physical pleasure you want, frankly you could just masturbate. Or if you are heterosexual you could easily solve your physical desire by taking a partner of the same sex since no mental consideration is necessary. It is only physical, right? You only need to provide the stimulus and let your mind wander through a fantasy, right?

    There is a reason you don’t, however, and that is the truth you need a partner to do this – One of your choosing. Even in autopilot your mind fills in the minimum it wants.

    So the choice is do you accept the minimum happiness in your life, or do you take responsibility for your life and happiness and set about maximizing it. Do you learn the values you want to gain or keep, and then get out there any realize them in a partner?

    Which sounds like a better Friday night?

    There is nothing wrong with “one night stands” by the way, as long as they are made by not compromising your values (which include honesty with your partner). In fact it might be practical for two rational adults that can handle such a mature arrangement, arguably sounding not practical today simply because of the way the majority of people treat this subject.

    I hope that helps clarify the subject better.

    Edited for clarification
  12. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from softwareNerd in Checking Premises . ORG Statements and My Position   
    First, thank you. Next, sorry I was vague on my own critique. I didn’t mean to call out this site (even if the issue has popped up a few times). I joined this site because it was the first I found that is like you said. I like the focus here and the people are well informed, making it great to read or participate.

    My post was about some of the other sites I found. Checking Premises is one but before I even started here I bumped into other forums that seemed really bad, plus I have read some blogs including noodlefood where I found that author gleefully ripping into Objectivists. The later of course makes it ironic since she ended up on the receiving end of the same treatment but the whole situation is a shame.

    It’s disappointing to see so many Objectivists eat their own. It’s disturbing to see what a sport it can become.

    Like I said, I hope I’m wrong and this is a case of suffering from limited exposure or the wrong exposure. That is why I finally had to ask.
  13. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from Craig24 in Obama's Birth Certificate   
    I’m sure all of us could sit down for a drink and pound out a hundred reasons Obama has to go. But four years of this birth certificate business is enough and not worth the effort. It was worth a look four years ago when it was new but now it’s covered ad nausea. Further, its common sense – There is no way that if this was true the Clinton political machine wouldn’t have exploited it during the primaries four years ago. The DNC would have vetted this too since their primary job to keep or gain political power and the last thing they would do is let something this basic destroy a shot at controlling the Presidency. Finally, and most importantly, the Republicans would have been all over this for political gain if it was even remotely possible. I’d bet the first round they tried like no one’s business to see if this was true. Remember they impeached Bill Clinton for breaking the law – They would have had a field day with a documented Constitutional violation.

    So I’m to believe that the one thing all the political brokers in Washington can do right – smear people for political gain – has been ignored for years until some unknown journalist wanders in the back door to discover it? No, I don’t. I’ll focus on disputing those 100 things we can identify and endeavor to change people’s minds with reasoned arguments.
  14. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from DonAthos in The Law of Identity and God   
    Well at least someone else got the joke.

    And I am adding the Pope part to future renditions. That is GOLD!
  15. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from SapereAude in Abortion   
    An important point in all of this is to consider the consequences of something you assert, or to paraphrase Rand – Take it serious and follow through on its implications. In this case, the idea is that a fetus at conception has rights as a human being. OK, let’s take that at face value – A fetus has human rights, which means in this context it has political rights which need to be protected. This leads to many consequences:

    Does this make a fetus a citizen of the United States?
    Does a fetus get a Social Security Card?
    Do parents have to name the fetus despite no identifiable sex so this human life can be registered for that SSC or other Government identification?
    Can a parent claim a fetus as a dependant upon their taxes?
    Does the US Census now have to count pregnant women as two people?
    If the mother’s life is threatened by some medical condition from the fetus, can the mother take criminal action against the fetus?
    Can the family make a civil suit against the fetus?
    Can the fetus file a civil lawsuit against the mother for drinking or smoking during the pregnancy?
    If I accidently kill a pregnant woman in a car crash will I be charged with two counts of manslaughter?
    If you say “no” to any of the above then are we giving fetuses special group rights that places them above normal individual rights?
    Since a women is now forced to care for the unborn citizen against her wishes, does this mean she has more rights before she is born than after she is born?
    Re-read that last one because there are some really scary consequences in it.

    Do I need to continue?
  16. Like
    Spiral Architect reacted to Dante in An argument with an intelligent design advocate/anti-evolutionist   
    The argument simply points out a contradiction in the design argument. If complexity implies design, and the designer is a complex sentient being, then he needs a designer himself, and so on. You don't need to go to the data when an argument is self-contradictory. That's how logic works.
  17. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from Jacob86 in A is A?   
    I understand, I think, unless I'm misunderstanding I answered your question. Or Branden did actually in that quote - You perceive an axiom but validate it later after you have fully formed the idea of Identity. I don't see an argument in the fact the axiom validates itself. It's supposed to.

    Well, first I need to preface by saying I can't speak for all Objectivists. While I've been a long time reader that studies ideas, Objectivist or otherwise, I've only recently gotten involved in online discussions in Objectivist circles. What I can tell you from my own reading and use of axioms is that axioms are perceptual but require the Laws of Logic to validate since non-contradictory identification is the method of validating. That is why Identity is listed at the top with Existence and Consciousness versus being a corollary of them.
  18. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from dream_weaver in How would you spend $1,000,000 to spread Objectivism?   
    When it comes to convincing people nothing talks louder than success, simply because demonstrating something explains it better than talking about it. So with a million dollars I’d:

    1. Invest it/Start a business in something for which I’m passionate
    2. Codify it’s rational principles in a value and mission statement
    3. Hire the best minds as needed
    4. Promote it internally and externally for it's ideas
    5. Make no apologies for it’s virtues
    6. Make money (ROI)
    7. Let the example stand for those who see your success/happiness
    8. Have an outreach program for those who want to learn more

    Incidentally - I’ve done steps two through seven on a department and division level and have had success. Naturally I couldn’t promote Objectivism since it was not my business but using the values to create leadership principles then working with people on those principles can be very rewarding and the results amazingly.

    Taking it to the corporate level then opening the discussion further would be tremendous.
  19. Like
    Spiral Architect got a reaction from EC in A is A?   
    Well, I wish I read that before I wrote that long post. I gave this more thought than it deserved.

    “An axiom is a proposition that defeats its opponents by the fact that they have to accept it and use it in the process of any attempt to deny it.”

    Or to put it bluntly, your demand that “Objectivism can’t prove that at some point in the future there might be one instance of A equaling non-A” is completely dependent upon arguing with the tools of that axiom.

    You are counting on the axiom being true at a future point to prove it isn’t.

    You need A to equal A to do this, which is exactly what Objectivism does in fact say about axioms and logic. You couldn’t even argue the point if contradictions existed.

    You need the Objectivist definition to argue against the Objectivist definition.

    Or to put it more elegantly than I did:

    Beautifully succinct.
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