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  1. NIcky -- Federal gov't powers, at least in theory, are famously "limited and enumerated". City and state gov't powers are neither.
  2. Earlier today the fascist and tyrannical New York City city council passed a law banning cigarette sales to those under 21 [thanks, Dormin111]. No doubt the fascist and tyrannical mayor Mike Bloomberg currently has a wide grin: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/politics/council-oks-raising-smoking-age-18-21-article-1.1502047 Has anyone else observed that while the U.S. Federal Government has a libertarian Bill of Rights and a fairly pro-freedom Constitution it must adhere to, the cities and 50 states of America have virtually no such thing? Although state constitutions are fairly pro-freedom, the overall power of the 50 states and their constituent cities to create fascism and socialism is mostly unlimited. That's why RomneyCare passed easily in Massachusetts while ObamaCare had to jump through many legal hoops to finally get passed. I'm disgusted and terrified to see how tyrannical the cities and states of America are today, both in theory and in practice. The Federal Government, by comparison, is almost a model of gov't restraint and libertarianism.
  3. Grames -- I think you're right, and I thank you for correcting me. Maybe the term I want is neutral-looking, balanced, fair-minded, or honest. But right now it seems best to delete it (in paragraphs 1 and 6).
  4. Miley's beauty and erotic appeal have really gone downhill these last few years. She did it on purpose I know, to leave behind her childhood image, which is good is some sense. But not the way she did it. And she's evidently a stunningly phony and empty person and singer -- as most pop stars are. She doesn't seem to have a single good or original thought in her head, personally or musically.
  5. When trying to describe, define, explain, analyze, and evaluate a foreign society, culture, or civilization the desideratum is to be completely objective and neutral. To be fully accurate and just. To see, understand, tell, and explicate the real truth or true truth. And to be wholly and infinitely rational and scientific as you do it. But everyone is morally imperfect. We all naturally have moral failings, as do our societies. We're born biologically defective, and we acquire errors along the way, both of which are exacerbated by our flawed personal and social background and envirornment. Or own weak society, culture, or civilization makes it hard for us to accurately and justly define and evaluate other such alien collectives and societies. The reality is all individuals -- all observers and judges -- are are at least somewhat biased and warped. Thus Marx is slightly right when he says: "The philosophers have only interpreted the world, in various ways; the point is to change it." [emphasis added] And the postmodernists are slightly right when they say: All descriptions and analyses of culture are merely "text", based on a biased and warped individual's interpretation of his and others' societies. [emphasis added] Even feminism and Orientalism -- such false, evil, and prejudical belief-systems, generally -- have a bit of truth to them. The fact is that even an objective and neutral viewpoint -- a strictly rational and scientific one -- is a personal and subjective viewpoint of sorts. It's derived from, and reflects, a kind of bias and warp -- a sort of individual prejudice. However, this is emphatically the best bias to have. It's the one most likely to yield and encompass real truth or true truth about how 1) reality and 2) various individuals and 3) different social groups and institutions actually are. It is, at least potentially, fully accurate and just. And the best bias of all -- the most unbiased bias -- is the Western liberal one, which aims at reason, individualism, liberty, justice, goodness, greatness, beauty, happiness, etc.: all perfect things of infinite value which all proper, healthy, and ideal individuals and societies aspire to.
  6. Reidy: You read my post in about as hostile and unjust a manner as possible. We live in a Welfare State -- not a libertarian utopia. When it comes to immigration, human quality counts. What do you think of the Immigration and Nationality Act of 1965, which abandoned most elements of seeking high-quality immigrants? This changed America radically. Was it for the better? Similar immigration policy changes took place throughout Western Europe. Did these states profit by it? Will the amnesty-and-legalization immigration bill just passed by the US Senate uplift America? Is seeking "the cream of the crop" for new citizens truly so evil and anti-Objectivist as you make it out?
  7. Immigration is generally beneficial. It usually adds to a nation's economic wealth and military strength, and even to its intellectual power and cultural riches. Unfortunately, everyone in the world today lives in a Welfare State. This is a kind of 'moderate', collectivist tyranny, which could also be described as semi-lawlessness, featuring a permanent civil war between residents, or a Hobbesian "war of all against all". Theft from, and coercion of, one's neighbors is rampant. Big Brother is everywhere nowadays. So it matters how predatory and efficaciously warlike any potential new immigrants will be. Competent parasites and powerful civil warriors aren't desirable. Thus today only the good people should be allowed in to a high-quality nation. Only the cream of the world's crop. The bad people, in turn, should be assiduously kept out. Indeed, the good would-be immigrants should be positively recruited. Maybe even rewarded or bribed for coming over. "Good" means those who enhance the quality of life of the nation. Those who add to the material wealth and raise the level of civilization, etc. Specifically, immigrants to a superior country should be workers -- especially hard and smart ones -- and not thieves/criminals or welfarist beggars. Any such social parasites and nation-destroyers should be disallowed and deported -- even those of long-time citizenship. The highly religious, self-sacrificial, and welfare statist should also be forbidden. People of bad philosophy almost always undermine a nation's culture, lifestyle, and spirit, among other things. "Good" also means the healthy, wealthy, comely, intelligent, well-educated, virtuous, rational, individualist, and freedom-loving. Also those who will quickly learn the language, adopt most of the culture, and become a patriot. A proper, good, and wise immigration policy will forthrightly forbid or expel all traitorous, bigoted lowlifes back to the primitive, corrupt, socialist hellholes whence they came.
  8. First off, I think the terms "moderate" and extremist" are mistaken. I think these terms and concepts constitute philosophical surrender to the forces of evil. Better to call the Muslims "activist" and "non-activist", or else "sincere" and "hypocritical". But yes, the Muslims are morally obligated to "prove themselves", just as are Christians and Jews are, whenever atrocities are perpetrated in the name of their obviously false and evil ideologies. Even if they are "regular joes" they're obligated -- by simple human and moral decency -- to publicly reject jihad and sharia. To publicly reject all the jihadi groups worldwide. But they never do. Thus it is largely "their fault that extremists exist." These average, normal Muslims support jihad and sharia (the essence of Islam) intellectually, morally, and financially. To say that they're innocent is like saying that the average, normal Germans of the early 1940s were innocent of what the hideous Nazi philosophy was doing to the world.
  9. Eiuol -- Islam is a religion or, more accurately, a philosophy. It isn't a race. Assuming I'm a bigot against Muslims, shouldn't I be called a "religionist" or "philosophyist"? I find the ideology of Islam, both currently and historically, to be wildly false and evil. I think human freedom, progress, prosperity, and happiness just dies under islam. I'm a proud Islamophobe. All Objectivists should be. I assume you understand that almost all Muslims worldwide support jihad and sharia, intellectually and morally. But maybe I'm wrong here...? As for financial support, Muslims are obligated to give 1/40th of their income to charity, and most do just that. This almost always means monies to support jihad and sharia. The recent Holy Land Foundation court decision in 2008 proved that. Observe that the Muslims involved were the most civilized Muslims on earth, i.e. Americans, and that their charity group was the most mainstream and popular in the country. And yet a US court of low education and perceptivity -- and of high political correctness and multiculturalism -- nevertheless still found that they were a Hamas-supporting jihadi group.
  10. Tadmjones -- Exactly. There's no such thing as an organization called Muslims Against Jihad or Muslims Against Sharia. That would be absurd. Average, normal Muslims LOVE jihad and sharia, and they support it emphatically worldwide. Except for unbelievably tiny and isolated groups -- which regular Muslims hate -- there's no such thing as a movement of Muslims who are ashamed at all the terrorism and enslavement found in Muslim societies, both historically and currently, Whenever the latest Muslim atrocity happens in the West, there's no wringing of hands or public display of shame -- as Christians, Jews, and Mormons would do -- as a result of what their evil philosophy has wrought. As long as innocent Westerners die, Muslims either don't care or they actively support the slaughter. Most Muslims in the world today are NOT good people.
  11. Harrison -- Are average Muslims really so harmless? Would you feel comfortable living in a community of normal Muslims where it was known that you were a non-Muslim -- what they openly call an "infidel" and "enemy of god"? Would you be safe there?
  12. Almost all Muslims worldwide are monsters. They intellectually, morally, and financially support Islam. This means they help a lot to inflict jihad (war) and sharia (slavery) upon all of us. Now it's true that most Muslims are non-activists and hypocrites. But they're a continuous threat to become active and sincere in their beliefs -- to very violently embrace jihad and sharia. Meanwhile, even if very quiet about it, they intellectually, morally, and financially back these ideals without let-up.
  13. Islam has declared war on America. Muslims worldwide mean to destroy us, conquer us, and terminate our way of life. Our Western liberal philosophy is to be replaced with their Islamic one. All this is to be done in the name of bringing us "civilization" here on earth, and "paradise" in the afterlife. The United States desperately needs to fight and defeat the Muslim nation and Islam. But we're only maybe halfway fighting back against the Muslim people, and perhaps not at all against the ideology of Islam. We're now mostly relying upon the gov't to protect us. And they, in turn, are mostly involved in spying upon Americans. The FBI, CIA, NSA, and several other terrifying "black" organizations we don't even know about yet are very busy violating our right to privacy and brazenly running roughshod over our 4th Amendment protection against "search and seizure." Evidently the federal gov't is monitoring every bank and financial transaction whatsoever, and tapping every phone call, and reading every email. And all without probable cause or judicial warrant. On the one hand, organizations such as Al Qaida, the Taliban, Hezbollah, the Muslim Brotherhood, etc. are true enemies of the US. But on the other hand, so too are the freedom-hating, freedom-destroying FBI, CIA, NSA, etc. The difference is the Muslims are very weak; they're a disorganized, temporary threat, mostly from the outside. The federal gov't, however, is immensely strong; they're a well-organized, permanent threat, from deep within. Only one group is a true menace to our liberties, way of life, and happiness. One one group poses an existential threat.
  14. I wouldn't at all say most American veterans "deserve only contempt" for their military efforts -- but I don't think they merit all that much respect, either. They're mostly fighting for their (randomly assigned) country, and not for freedom or morality, in my judgment. They're evidently mostly obeying the law and following orders, like a "good German," circa 1941. As for the nature of the American people, I think it's the best. But I also think it's overwhelmingly derived from the thinkers, especially those of the Enlightenment, and not from the workers or the obedient patriotic soldiers. As for my tribute to intellectualism and philosophical freedom-fighters somehow being "a surrender to the world of evil" or "disgusting," I find that gibberish. America is the freest nation on earth today due to her intellectuals -- not her soldiers. They deserve to be acknowledged, remembered and saluted on Memorial Day.
  15. An interesting development. Serious scholarship is important to any intellectual movement. I don't know what their level of high-quality thinking and writing will be, but I wish them well!
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