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Charles T.

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Everything posted by Charles T.

  1. I think South Park recently did a pretty good job of "deconstructing" Mormonism.
  2. Welcome, Zak. Sounds like you have a wonderful mother. What are some parts of Atlas that stand out to you the most? What really "grabbed" you and made you say, "Yeah! That's what I was thinking." CT
  3. Along the lines of what jfortun said (make an arbitrary assertion), tell your friend that you are God, and then demand that he disprove it. Then you can run them in circles the same way religious people do to everyone else and themselves. They might even insist that you do something to prove that you are God, and then of course you have them. "What, demand proof NOW, when I'm standing here in front of you? You never needed proof before, when you'd never laid eyes on me. What's up with that?"
  4. From IMBD: "Serpico is a cop in the early 1970s. Unlike all his colleagues, he refuses a share of the money that the cops routinely extort from local criminals. Nobody wants to work with Serpico, and he's in constant danger of being placed in life threatening positions by his "partners". Nothing seems to get done even when he goes to the highest of authorities. Despite the dangers he finds himself in, he still refuses to 'go with the flow', in the hope that one day, the truth will be known."
  5. I just saw "Serpico" again, starring Al Pacino. I had forgotten what an inspirational film this is, so dramatically and poignantly illustrating one man's integrity and dedication to attaining his goals without any dishonesty or self-deception, in the face of daunting intimidation and isolation. That it is factually-based makes it that much more inspiring.
  6. Did you get that, RadCap? Lots of material there for you. I saw a funny segment on The Daily Show recently, where one of the "reporters" went to the DNC and assembled a group to interview. He found a lesbian (question: why is it always referred to as the "gay and lesbian" community? Are lesbians not GAY women?), a Jew, a "gay-guy", a "black-guy", an environmentalist, an abortion-rights woman, an Arab-Latino youth (who was referred to as "Arab-tino" ), an Indian woman (Native American), another Indian woman (Indian-American), and many other individuals representing various "interest-groups", sat them all down and proceeded to allow them to look like the fools they are. By the end of the segment, they were all bickering with each other, and it was a perfect illustration of what the Democratic "party", or "the Left", has become: a motley collection of unrelated, unprincipled loose ends, each looking for their own "special" hand-out from the government. I was pleasantly suprised to see a segment that so clearly revealed the Left for who they are, on a program that tends to lean in that direction. Then, John Kerry was on the program a few days ago, and if that didn't serve to lower his poll-ratings two or three points, I don't know what could. The man has less charm than Al Gore.
  7. Here is a brief evaluation of Moore by Victor Davis Hanson: "Re: Michael Moore. Go back and look at Triumph of Will. He is the same sort of propagandist who snips and cuts, distorts and fudges for a “higher cause.” After 9-11 when he said there were mostly non-Bush voters in the WTC, when he recently said the killers in Iraq were Minutemen, when he said to the Germans that Americans were stupid, when he said we deserved our losses in Iraq, and so on—I mean when in contemporary pop culture have we seen such an odious figure? He combines the worst traits of an Oliver Stone, Noam Chomsky, Howard Stern, and Gore Vidal—and all wrapped up in one. His sad appearance, buffoonery, and childlike ignorance naturally draw on our sympathy, but he in fact uses that pity as well to earn a pass from censure. So yes, we have not seen anything quite like him in a while." I recommend Hanson's writings as much as I can recommend the writings of any Conservative. Here is his website: VDH
  8. Nice tribute, Betsy. The question jumps to mind: Do you know, was he familiar with Rand and her writings? I searched his foundation site, and could find no mention of her.
  9. I only just saw that response. Thanks for posting it. You're exactly right, and I totally misinterpreted the line in question.
  10. I never used a black marker for that very reason. I always used a regular pen, and intentionally scratched out the phrase in a manner that left the underlying message visible.
  11. Are you familiar with the Quent Cordair Art Gallery? Quent Cordair Gallery
  12. Benise sounds very entertaining. If you like that, you might like Jesse Cook, a flamenco guitarist who is less traditional and mixes his playing with more of a "world beat" sound, including a lot of mediterranean, middle-eastern influence. He's one of my favorites. Jesse Cook Another that comes to mind is a group called Esperanza. They mix their guitar playing with something closer to dance rhythms.
  13. Hence some of the satisfaction of "rebelling".
  14. The satisfaction of "rebelling" against something that is improper and unjust. But I have to admit, I ceased this practice about a week ago, after having done it "religiously" for about four years. I must have scratched "In God We Trust" off of thousands of bills, since I run a cash-oriented business. But I finally tired of it because, to be honest, nothing (apparent) came of it, except a few weird looks from bank-tellers. No interesting conversations, no provoked outbursts, nothing. I don't think anyone really cares that it's there, or even notices, for the most part. I'm not sure if that's good or bad. Probably bad, since any time someone tries to get rid of it, suddenly people seem to care that it's there, and religion goes on permeating our society. Although I wonder sometimes if, when one of those bills might have come into the hands of a young person, it might not be the first time in their life it occurs to them that the existence of God could be questioned. There has to be a first time, right? I might start doing it again.
  15. Hombre, starring Paul Newman. I thought it could have been written by an O'ist when I first saw it. And the ending is good for loads of discussion. Fantastic film. The great thing about it is that all of the wonderful selfishness of the hero is made explicit from incident to incident. Something will happen, someone criticizes him for not "helping", and he states his reasons. The hypocrasy of all the altruists is laid bare, again explicitly. It's unlike any other film I've seen. If you haven't seen this one, I highly recommend that you put it on your list. I still have it in my head to try and contact the screenwriter and find out exactly how much the script was influenced by Rand. The film is based on the book by Elmore Leonard, but the two are very different.
  16. Is your "friend" truly a Communist? Or, is this Communist truly your "friend"? I can't imagine befriending a true, dedicated Communist. If it was some foolish kid merely trying it on for size, I could understand that and tolerate it (for a while).
  17. The same kind of evidence it takes to convince me, or any rational person, of anything: regular old evidence. There's only one kind of evidence. Scientific, recreatable, demonstrable, rational, etc. You mean what would I say, and it's irrelevant. How one would respond if a God popped up and actually demonstrated/proved his existence would of course be a decision for each individual to make. I'd probably say, "Oh. Sorry. My bad." I don't understand the question.
  18. If you think that's true, then you do not correctly understand Objectivism. If someone could prove objectively that God exists, then every Objectivist would accept that truth. All it takes is sufficient evidence. But because there is ZERO evidence to support even the theory of the existence of God, Objectivists properly conclude there is no God. Or I should say, that's what I think can be the only rational conclusion. I have heard some Objectivists say that they just "don't know", but if they are to base their decision on what they do know, and on the utter lack of supporting evidence, I think the conclusion that there is no God is unavoidable.
  19. Three gilded balls (in a triangular arrangement, I think) are apparently a very old, traditional symbol for pawn shops. And the pawn shops in turn represent the trader principle, which is how all men should interact.
  20. Me too. A film that requires and rewards patient viewing. I thought it was one of Willis's best performances.
  21. "The jawbone of an ass is just as dangerous a weapon today as in Sampson's time." --- Richard Nixon" That's pretty clever. I wonder if he thought of it himself.
  22. I'm not interested in making it easier and more "affordable" for the gov't to rob me, and continue to pay for immoral programs I don't support (and stuff some of my money into their corrupt pockets to boot). Nor do I want it to be easier for them to persecute and prosecute anyone who decides to keep what rightfully belongs to them. The only tax reform I support is tax reduction, and the elimination of all those improper programs. Get rid of those first, and then I would be willing to "streamline" the system.
  23. "And as long as the tax system exists, we can't afford tax-evaders. They drive up the taxes for everyone else!" Boo hoo. Not that I believe that's even true to begin with. Do you really believe that? Our gov't takes so much money from us. The only reason we don't have vast surplusses of cash is because of incompetence and corruption. Have you any conception of how much money is stolen and/or wasted by gov't at every level? Not to mention the minor detail that the vast majority of it is spent on things the gov't has no right to be spending it on in the first place. Taxation is robbery, and anyone who has the courage to do so has the right to evade to whatever extent they want to try, and I wish them the best. I only wish we could organize enough people to stand up, band together, and explicitly refuse to pay taxes (specifically, income taxes). If we could get even 10,000 people (though 100,000 would of course be even better) to do so publicly, I think there'd be a good chance to effect some great changes in the country.
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