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GWDS

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About GWDS

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    Brantford, Ontario
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    Reading, rock climbing, some writing, history, philosophy, being dreadfully boring.
  1. An interesting tactic, I doubt it will be successfull though. Even if it does pass the complications resulting from it will make it obsolete in short order.
  2. That's correct, the Red Army would have been a fierce opponant in Europe and its true Europe would have been pounded back to the Dark Ages, but we would not have had to deal with the stanglehold Communism had over half the planet for five full decades. A net gain.
  3. Trtosky said in his history of the Revolution the Russian landscape favored an agrarian, non-industrial society. The infinite bounty of Mother Russia discouraged industrialisation whereas the finite and harsher environments of Egnland, France, and Germany demanded it. For Marxism to have existed at all it needed to be done in the West, not in Russia so saying it failed there, or the other preindustrial societies it started in is nonsense.
  4. I think the point behind the Soviet comment was given thier Atheism the Soviets were not likely to accaept total nuclear annilhilation. The radical muslims, according to this article, would stomach it as a way to kill dhimmi and unbelievers while at the same time making it into heaven. As for the rest of the post the ARI position is Iran was basically bhind 9/11 and therefore did attack the US and they hate us not because of our meddling but for "hating the good because it is good" and such.
  5. You guys may find this of some interest, from the article - "In a provocative experiment with patients suffering from an unusual form of epilepsy, researchers at the UC-San Diego brain and perception laboratory determined that the parts of the brain's temporal lobe -- which the scientists quickly dubbed the "God module" -- may affect how intensely a person responds to religious beliefs. People suffering from this type of seizure have long reported intense mystical and religious experiences as part of their attacks but also are unusually preoccupied with mystical thoughts between seizures."
  6. -----> That kind of unpravoked personal attack is exactly what I am talking about. I note and thankyou all for your opinions and ideas pertaining to Ayn Rand and Objectism. Good luck to each of you in all constructive endeavours you undertake in the future.
  7. Okay, I'm getting sick of this. With a few notable exceptions, learning anything about Objectivism from this board has been like trying to get water from a rock. If you don't like me you can choose to ignore my posts or get a moderater to ban me. Either way, stop the cheap shots. edit for clarification
  8. thanks for the replies, I have a good idea as to where Objectism stands.
  9. 1984 - very bad questions to ask around here Very bad
  10. GWDS

    VOS Chapter 1

    What I needed was a word for a productive activities - a scientist doing math, a worker making a pot, a novelist writing a book etc. It was this that is first seen lacking in our playboy character but not in the characters I think Rand likes - Rearden, Dagny, the composer, the engineers who do their job correctly etc
  11. GWDS

    VOS Chapter 1

    Richard - I went to dictionary.com, turns out 'labour' is not as broad as what I needed. Production however is defined as follows - The creation of value or wealth by producing goods and services. I'll be more carefull in the future
  12. GWDS

    VOS Chapter 1

    The following is in response to Steve Carlson's post - 1. Let he who is without MP3's cast the first stone. Also, frankly, her work is not available where I am - I got Atlas Shrugged and that was luck. If my choices are either obeying a copy right law no one else does and learning a brand new philosophy, guess which I pick? 2. Her veiw is simplistic to say the least; poorly thought out to say the worst. In her defence however, she is talking about ethics, not animal psychology. As for animal learning, I agree with you. The problem is not one of intellegence per se, but of collective memory. A chimp can be smart enough to make a crude intrument but has no way of passing that knowledge down for improvement. It's almost like watching a culture whose members die at age four. Again, the hypothetical brute survives in the same way a parasite survives. But, I get what you're saying, and it is a rather irrlevant point I brought up anyway. I wasn't really trying to say Rand was dead wrong, but that she overstressed the relation between reason and will. Sure, when it comes to our higher order decisions, we must choose to reason over emotion/impulse/whatever But in her wording she seems to say that Every use of reason must be an act of will, that I was challenging. Most aspects of thought require no will whatsoever. Do you really have to convice yourself that turning a switch turns the light on? No, you just do it and think if something goes wrong. When balancing on a bike do you rationally think out your actions or just 'balance yourself' without thinking - despite the calculations involved? If I showed you seven red sheets of paper and then through down a yellow one you would blink, why? because you had subconciously concluded they would all be red, you would not conciously form the rule. That was what I meant. If you want you can show me how the half dozen arguements I laid out about how Objectivism and Marxism start with many similar bases is flawed. Although saying 'redeemed marxism' may have really thrown you guys off. Yah, that was sloppy wording on my part. As far as my reading the book, I am still early in and have been told by others some major relationships in the plot will change drasitcally (although I wonder what can change the horrible people Rearden lives with). Again, in the style of her writing Rand seems to say the playboy is flawed not because of his riches but because he is squandering them Dagny and Rearden are wealthy aswell, (the fact that there is a difference in the wealth doesn't really change this) but since they are productive Rand paints them in a positive light. It is this emphasis - not on wealth but on labour - that makes me think she has another thing in common with Marx aswell. I apologise for not being clear on this point, but I was not talking 'class' but 'labour'. Thanks for replying. Edited for spelling and all that other jazz.
  13. GWDS

    VOS Chapter 1

    Daniel Shrugged - 1. On the bilological purpose of life - Most of this is definitions. Take a 'virus' for example, its the 'lowest' form of life I suppose, but it has no other ability outside reproduction. It then continues up the ladder, from a mouse to whale, the vast majority of biologists beleive that reproduction is the ultimate 'goal'. Its the engine of evolution, either a species passses on its genes or it dies out. Now, its not a really black and white issue either i suppose. We have instances of rats choosing a stimulated pleasure center over food, humans can choose not to reproduce etc. But I beleive reproductive success is the general rule. Aswell, and this has to be said, who is 'Harry Binswanger'? Is he a biologist, by any stretch? If not, how can he comment with any authority? As I recall, Rand was arguing that a brute simply can not survive, that it needs reason. From this she argued that since you need reason to survive it is the highest human trait. I have just argued otherwise, whether these societies were tribal or feudal or statest or whatever is a side note. The fact is, when you are at the top, you don't need reason as the primary trait, what you need is force. The people below you might need reason, but that is doubtfull aswell. We survived for thousands of years on an animalistic level - hunter gatherers - not qualitativly to far from wolves or baboons. Then, from this she talks about what you need in a more advanced type of nation, but again the problem remains. Was Hitler rational? Stalin? Paris Hilton? Reason can help survival, but it seems maniacs and hedonists can survive aswell. I should point out I'm not criticizing 'man qua man' but her arguement that brutes do not survive from which the rest of the arguement grows. NC - are you going to argue the point or just talk about how burning MP3's is an evil. You know, I've only seen this kind of opposition to free information once - www. answersingenises.org Also, drop the 'hmm's and say whatever it was youwere implying.
  14. The article can be found here- http://www.jeffcomp.com/faq/wrong.html#dishonest A relevant qoute from said article - " Concerning the question of judging the intellectual honesty of others, Peikoff and Kelley give two very different answers. Peikoff puts forth his position in his essay, "Fact and Value". According to Peikoff: "Just as every 'is' implies an 'ought,' so every identification of an idea's truth or falsehood implies a moral evaluation of the idea and of its advocates." In other words, according to Peikoff, as soon as we identify an idea as true or false, this immediately implies a moral judgment of the person who is advocating the idea. In this context, 'moral judgment' means we are trying to determine if this person is being honest, or dishonest. If the idea is true, we assume that he has sought the truth. However if the idea is false, then we must decide if he has committed an honest error, or has engaged in evasion. In other words, we must determine the person's state of mind. Peikoff offers a simple test to make this determination: "The general principle here is: truth implies as its cause a virtuous mental process; falsehood, beyond a certain point, implies a process of vice." In other words, if your idea is false, and the falsehood goes beyond a 'certain point,' then you cannot simply be guilty of an honest error in your thinking. Rather, you must have engaged in evasion, which is the root of all evil."
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