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Doug Morris

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  1. Like
    Doug Morris reacted to KyaryPamyu in Great Description of Objectivist Metaphysics   
    EF, tell me if I understand your position correctly: 
    Apart from immaterial mind(s), there are only particles and maybe space. Some of these particles interact with your sense organs, leading to sensations. The immaterial mind (not made of particles) performs an act of thought through which sensations are integrated into percepts.
    Reason, integration, purpose etc. belong exclusively to the immaterial mind, and not to some body part.
    There are no rocks, trees, and butterflies, only particles. Rocks, trees and butterflies are mental constructs.
    The immaterial mind can directly interact with material particles in such a way that it directs the evolution of lifeforms.
    The faculty of reason has always existed. Induction is not a valid method of proof because you're inducing from your own integrations of sensations.
    If this is an accurate summary, could you clarify the following?
    1. There seem to be two clashing premises: a) the existence of sense organs or lifeforms, and b) the notion that there are only particles out there, not rocks, trees and butterflies. Which one is it? Does the mind merely integrate sensations, or does it integrate actual, material particles into sense organs, trees and butterflies?
    2. Does the immaterial mind have a physical origin? i.e. the nervous system leads to the immaterial mind, which has a nature of its own and can influence the material nervous system back.
    3. If ideas construct percepts, why do you use scientific experiments to validate your positions? For all you know, the ideas that construct the experiment-percepts could be bogus and not related to reality in any way. Are you counting on a pre-established harmony between what is true and what your innate ideas say?
    4. Whose mind directs evolution?
    Thanks.
  2. Like
    Doug Morris got a reaction from Boydstun in Economic Freedom's: Objectivists are working to save the world from tyranny--isn't that altruism?   
    The entropy of the entire system always increases, even when the entropy of parts of it decreases.  This is true whether the decrease of entropy in part of the system is due to purposeful, goal-directed, teleological action or to some other cause.
    Natural selection does not operate at random in the long run.  It is capable of producing low-entropy results in parts of a system whose total entropy is always increasing.  It is not purposeful and does not need to be.
    We do not yet know exactly how life began.  The appropriate reaction to this situation is to investigate and to find out as much as we can, not to arbitrarily say a purposeful being had to do it.
     
     
  3. Haha
    Doug Morris got a reaction from Jon Letendre in Russian invasion of Ukraine/Belief of Mainstream Media Narrative   
    No, you never understood or answered my question.
    What are your grounds for saying the "Azov Regiment" or "Azov Battalion" runs the government there?
    What are your grounds for saying President Zelensky is a puppet?
     
  4. Like
    Doug Morris reacted to AlexL in Russian invasion of Ukraine/Belief of Mainstream Media Narrative   
    You alleged that the Ukraine government “is run by a neo-Nazi gang”. I’ve asked you to prove it. I even suggested you a specific method: by naming the top government officials who are Nazis. Or you could list the specifically neo-Nazi policies of this government.
    You did neither of these. Neither have you done it in any other proper, i.e. rational, way. Evasions, misrepresentations and ad hominems are NOT arguments.
    Therefore: do you intend to prove that allegation? And make only claims you can prove?
    Otherwise it will mean that you intend to continue to contaminate this forum with putinist propaganda.
  5. Thanks
    Doug Morris got a reaction from AlexL in Russian invasion of Ukraine/Belief of Mainstream Media Narrative   
    No, you never understood or answered my question.
    What are your grounds for saying the "Azov Regiment" or "Azov Battalion" runs the government there?
    What are your grounds for saying President Zelensky is a puppet?
     
  6. Thanks
    Doug Morris got a reaction from AlexL in Russian invasion of Ukraine/Belief of Mainstream Media Narrative   
    "a Ukraine government run by a neo-Nazi gang (the Azov Battalion) with a puppet president (Zelensky)."
    What are your grounds for this accusation?
  7. Like
    Doug Morris got a reaction from AlexL in Russian invasion of Ukraine/Belief of Mainstream Media Narrative   
    What are your grounds for this accusation?
  8. Thanks
    Doug Morris got a reaction from William Scott Scherk in Russian invasion of Ukraine/Belief of Mainstream Media Narrative   
    What are your grounds for this accusation?
  9. Like
    Doug Morris got a reaction from The Laws of Biology in Objectivists are working to save the world from tyranny--isn't that altruism?   
    The crucial reason history has worked out so badly so far is that people have had too little in the way of good ideas to guide them, and too much in the way of bad ideas.   Ayn Rand has provided better ideas which, once they become widely enough known, will make better results possible.
    There is plenty of data about how people perform when the mysticism/altruism/collectivism axis of ideas dominates the culture.  How much data is there about how people perform when the reason/egoism/individualism axis of ideas dominates the culture?
     
  10. Like
    Doug Morris got a reaction from The Laws of Biology in Objectivists are working to save the world from tyranny--isn't that altruism?   
    It is not altruism to care about others.  It is altruism to sacrifice oneself for others.
    We should use reason alone to achieve knowledge and make decisions.  But in our reasoning we must consider every relevant part of reality, including our own feelings where relevant.
    There are irrational people in the world.  To the extent that they have power, it may be necessary to try to understand them for the purpose of judging what they are likely to do.  This is fully consistent with understanding that they should not be irrational.
     
  11. Like
    Doug Morris got a reaction from Boydstun in [W]hat is the objective basis of politics?   
    Should we be saying productivity or productiveness?  I understand the latter to refer to the virtue and the former to refer to measuring the amount produced or the rate at which it is produced.  A quick peek at the Ayn Rand lexicon indicates that this is how she uses the words.
     
  12. Like
    Doug Morris got a reaction from Boydstun in [W]hat is the objective basis of politics?   
    No, you still must produce what you need.
  13. Like
    Doug Morris got a reaction from Boydstun in That Kelley Creature   
    Peikoff's key point about Kelley is to class Kelley with those who "reject the concept of “objectivity” and the necessity of moral judgment" and "sunder fact and value, mind and body, concepts and percepts".  I'm not convinced that Peikoff was right to class Kelley in this way.
    It seems to me that Peikoff and Kelley are using the phrase "closed system" in different senses.  If we are to make an important issue of whether Objectivism is "open" or "closed", we need to carefully analyze what this should be taken to mean.  If we are to evaluate Kelley on the basis of this issue, we must make sure we correctly understand what he meant.
     
  14. Like
    Doug Morris got a reaction from Boydstun in That Kelley Creature   
    Here is what David Kelley said at the end of A Question of Sanction about "closed".
    Ayn Rand left us a magnificent system of ideas. But it is not a closed system. It is a powerful engine of integration. Let us not starve it of fuel by shutting our minds to what is good in other approaches. Let us test our ideas in open debate. If we are right, we have nothing to fear; if we are wrong, we have something to learn. Above all, let us encourage independent thought among ourselves. Let us welcome dissent, and the restless ways of the explorers among us. Nine out of ten new ideas will be mistakes, but the tenth will let in the light.
    It seems to me clear that he is saying that we should not stop with what Ayn Rand left us.  We should engage in ongoing study, learning, and debate.  He is not saying that the results of such ongoing study, learning, and debate will be part of Ayn Rand's ideas.  He is not addressing the question of how the label "Objectivism" should be used.  What is so terrible about what he said?
     
  15. Like
    Doug Morris got a reaction from Boydstun in That Kelley Creature   
    There seem to be a variety of definitions of "open" and "closed" Objectivism.  I did not see the original debate, but it looks suspiciously to me as though the distinction was badly defined from the beginning.  
    Given this and the point that the open/closed debate grew out of an argument about libertarianism, I thought I would throw out yet another possible definition for whatever it's worth for possible inclusion in the mix.
    The "closed" view holds that relatively concrete conclusions arrived at by applying Objectivist principles to what Ayn Rand and/or Leonard Peikoff and/or Peter Schwartz thought libertarianism was are part of the philosophy and/or a good litmus test of how consistently a person follows true Objectivism.
    The "open" view denies this and says that a person can disagree with what Ayn Rand and/or Leonard Peikoff and/or Peter Schwartz thought libertarianism was, and therefore come up with different conclusions applying Objectivist principles to it, and still be a good, consistent Objectivist.
     
  16. Like
    Doug Morris reacted to dream_weaver in That Kelley Creature   
    Rand's contention with the libertarians at the time dealt with the superficial use of terms, i.e., freedom applied as a floating abstraction to justify a whim. If memory serves, it was this in conjunction with selective quoting of her writings in an attempt to ride on the coattails of the credibility she had established for herself that drew the bulk of her ire.
  17. Like
    Doug Morris got a reaction from Boydstun in [W]hat is the objective basis of politics?   
    I see at least three concepts of politics here.
    The broadest, advocated by Grames and Boydstun, covers action coordinated among different individuals.  This requires at least two individuals.  "Coordination" here may be voluntary on the part of each individual or may be imposed by someone against someone else's will, as in rape and dictatorship.
    One somewhat narrower, advocated by Dream_Weaver, covers situations in which there is at least a potential for a party to interfere with, or govern, coordination between other parties.  This requires at least three individuals.
    The narrowest of the three, advocated by Eiuol, refers to cities in an Aristotelian sense and to law.  This requires considerably more people.
     
  18. Like
    Doug Morris got a reaction from Boydstun in [W]hat is the objective basis of politics?   
    Eiuol's approach raises the question, what are cities and law, do we need them, and why?  Can we answer this without referring to the other two approaches?
    All three approaches raise the question, what is coordination, do we need it, and why?
    (Here I am borrowing some wording from what Ayn Rand said about values.)
     
  19. Like
    Doug Morris got a reaction from The Laws of Biology in Unconditional love?   
    I agree.
    For this to be right behavior on her grandfather's part, there would have to be a very big difference between the father and the uncle.
     
  20. Like
    Doug Morris got a reaction from The Laws of Biology in [W]hat is the objective basis of politics?   
    This is determined in complicated ways.  But philosophy has a big effect, especially in the long run.
    To the extent that this is true, it is because religion is a primitive form of philosophy, and a primitive form of philosophy that is not too destructive tends to win over a purely implicit philosophy.
    This depends on what sort of atheism and what goes with it.  Stalin's atheism and what he had along with it was horribly disfunctional, and Khrushchev's and Brezhnev's were only a little better.  An atheist who embraces a morality of self-sacrifice is little different from a "mainstream" Christian.  An atheist who has little to offer beyond rejecting religion will be left floundering.
     
  21. Like
    Doug Morris got a reaction from Boydstun in [W]hat is the objective basis of politics?   
    Can a college campus be a city?  Can a city include surrounding countryside?
     
  22. Like
    Doug Morris got a reaction from Harrison Danneskjold in Is being anti mandate an accurate description of Objectivists?   
    If Webster's or anyone else did this, they are wrong.  There is a clear difference between being anti-vaccine and being anti-mandate.  Being anti-vaccine means holding that vaccines are bad and people shouldn't use them.  Being anti-mandate, in the context of vaccines, means holding that people shouldn't be forced to vaccinate.  This follows from the meaning of the prefix "anti-".
    I am anti-draft, but I am not anti-military.
    If you are talking to someone who is confused about this, whether because of Webster's or for any other reason, you may need to explain the difference.  If they are too irrational to listen, you won't be able to communicate with them.
     
  23. Like
    Doug Morris got a reaction from Harrison Danneskjold in Is being anti mandate an accurate description of Objectivists?   
    I think it's immoral to outlaw meth, heroin, cocaine, ...
    But I'm sure as hell not going to use them on principle.
     
  24. Thanks
    Doug Morris got a reaction from William Scott Scherk in Ayn Rand Fan Club podcast   
    Dangerous hyperbole.
    The officials running the election had to run as fair an election as possible during a pandemic which made it dangerous to vote normally.  This had to include giving people safer ways to vote.  It's about a century since the last time this happened.  There is evidence that some of them made mistakes.  There is no evidence of a stolen election.
    The claim of a stolen election is an arbitrary figment of Trump's need to prop up his pseudo-self-esteem.
     
  25. Thanks
    Doug Morris got a reaction from William Scott Scherk in Ayn Rand Fan Club podcast   
    World Business Markets Breakingviews Video More
            2020 CANDIDATE SLIDESHOWS SEPTEMBER 11, 20203:22 PMUPDATED 2 YEARS AGO Fact check: Clarifying Trump’s 80 million ‘unsolicited’ ballots claim
    By Reuters Staff
    9 MIN READ
    With 54 days until the Nov. 3 presidential election, President Donald Trump said on Twitter ( here ) and Facebook ( here ) on Thursday that 80 million mail-in ballots were being sent to voters who had not requested them, calling the situation “unfair and a total fraud in the making.” While certain states are automatically sending ballots to their voters for this election, in many others, these still need to be requested.
          U.S. President Donald Trump speaks during a campaign event at MBS International Airport, in Freeland, Michigan, U.S., September 10, 2020. REUTERS/Jonathan Ernst Voting by mail has a long history of reliability in the United States, serving as the primary method of voting in Colorado, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Hawaii, which automatically send registered voters mail-in ballots. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, California, Nevada, New Jersey, Vermont, and Washington, D.C. have introduced the same procedure for the 2020 vote ( here ) .
    Benjamin Hovland, commissioner of the independent, bipartisan U.S. Election Assistance Commission (EAC,  here , www.eac.gov/about-the-useac ) echoed to Reuters via phone that “in more states than ever, election authorities will automatically send a ballot to each registered voter.” 
    According to Reuters’ calculations, there are an estimated 44.2 million registered voters, or about half the number mentioned by President Trump, in the 10 states and jurisdictions automatically sending out ballots for the Nov. 3 election.
    Reuters found this number by adding up the latest available voter registration statistics for Colorado ( here ); Hawaii, ( here ); Oregon ( here ); Utah ( here ); Washington ( here ); California ( here ); Washington, D.C ( here ); Nevada ( here ); New Jersey ( here ); and Vermont ( here ). 
    “On the states where these ballots are sent automatically, those were state-legislated decisions to make those policies,” Commissioner Hovland said, adding that “those states have implemented security measures on their respective mail-in processes.”
    For the remaining states not sending out proactive ballots, Hovland noted “votes still require an affirmative request from the voter.” The millions of voters in these states would have to actively solicit or request a ballot.
      It is possible that Trump’s 80 million unsolicited ballot claim stemmed from an Aug. 14 analysis from the New York Times ( here ), which stated that experts predict “roughly 80 million mail ballots will flood election offices this fall.”  
    The president first mentioned this figure during his Labor Day press conference on Sept. 7, referring to “the issuance of 80 million ballots, unrequested” as “the dirtiest fight of all”  ( here ).
    Linking the high volume of “unsolicited” mail ballots to voter fraud, he said, “People are going to get ballots; they’re going to say, ‘What am I doing?’ And then they’re going to harvest. They’re going to do all the things.”
    The claim feeds into a narrative echoed by President Trump that mail-in voting, expected to nearly double due to the COVID-19 pandemic, will increase voter fraud ( here ).  
    After weeks of repeatedly raising concerns about mail-in voting, Trump on Aug. 4 called Florida’s election system “Safe and Secure, Tried and True” and urged voters in the Republican state to vote by any means, including by mail ( here).  
    Experts say that election fraud is very rare in the United States, where nearly one in four voters cast a mail-in or absentee ballot in 2016 (here).  
    There are multiple layers of security in place for mail-in ballots, also known as “absentee” ballots, including the Electronic Registration Information Center ( www.ericstates.org ) and adherence to the National Voter Registration Act’s list of maintenance procedures ( here , here). 
      The National Conference of State Legislatures provides information on home voting, including a section on security features in place here .  
    Measures to counter voter fraud include hand-marked paper ballots, signature verification, examining and processing ballots ahead of election day to allow for more verification time, up-to-date address information, security cameras during storage, and many more (see Security Features of Voting by Absentee/Mailed Ballots section here bit.ly/33vUvBA ).
    Further information on security measures to ensure ballot integrity can be found here .  
    Commissioner Hovland told Reuters these sort of unfounded claims “ignore the repeated calls of elections professionals, both Democrat and Republican, that say this is a safe, normal process with procedures in place to ensure the process upholds the integrity of an election.”
    The Reuters Fact Check team has previously debunked several viral claims linking the use of mail-in ballots to voter fraud: here , here , and here . 
    VERDICT
    False. 80 million “unsolicited” mail-in ballots will not be sent to voters ahead of the 2020 presidential election. Ten states and jurisdictions are proactively sending out ballots, some for the first time due to the coronavirus pandemic, for an approximately 44.2 million registered voters in total.
    This article was produced by the Reuters Fact Check team. Read more about our fact-checking work here . 
    Our Standards: The Thomson Reuters Trust Principles.
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    Quantum startup Sandbox AQ spins off from Alphabet, gains 'nine figures' in funding   Apps Newsletters Advertise with Us Advertising Guidelines Cookies Terms of Use Privacy Do Not Sell My Personal Information All quotes delayed a minimum of 15 minutes. See here for a complete list of exchanges and delays.
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