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Everything posted by Bowzer

  1. Another Subaru WRX driver here (sedan though). 230hp + all-wheel-drive = LOTS of fun in the Michigan winterland!
  2. Predicting the future "precisely" is not a problem in a rational man's mind since he understands that this demands a standard of cognition equivalent to omniscience. Trying to accomplish a feat of omniscience would certainly be a problem.
  3. As always, Dr. Binswanger epitomizes the purpose of philosophy by seamlessly traversing between concretes and principles. Anyone even casually following this election has a very difficult choice before them with thousands of concrete facts to sort through. To most people it is just an undifferentiated mess that cannot be coped with. That article is standing proof of the value of philosophy in your life.
  4. I would like to see a club there, Andrew. I did my college in Flint as well. It would be nice to have a club a bit further north of Ann Arbor and East of Lansing!
  5. I love my Dell Axim! It was significantly cheaper than comparable models from other manufacturers. I'm a Microsoft fanboy so PocketPC was a must for me. 62M of RAM plus 32M of fixed storage space has been plenty to suit my needs. If you have a wireless network then integrated wireless is also a great choice (I can sync and surf through my network anywhere in my house). Dell handhelds come with some nice proprietary software for application management and wireless networking. I would highly recommend the Dell handhelds.
  6. There are several Objectivist professors in universities across the U.S. I wouldn't worry about that right now; instead I would recommend getting involved with the Ayn Rand Institute's academic programs. The OAC helps their students plan their graduate studies. This includes working with you to determine what program will best suit your needs. Keep in mind that the field of academic philosophy is extremely competitive and that you may very well be encouraged to study at a top-10 program versus studying under an Objectivist professor. This will greatly increase your chances of getting a job in academia upon completing your PhD. You are embarking are a very difficult course (especially as an Objectivist) but it is a course that sorely needs to be traveled by more young people.
  7. I'll give you a hint and I'm not trying to be snide here: when Miss Rand titled her article, "Man's Rights," she wasn't just writing about healthy adult male human beings.
  8. Drive-up ATM's for the blind is probably just one more outcome of the atrocious "Americans with Disabilities Act" (ADA). Read Robert Tracinski and Thomas Bowden's articles on the ADA.
  9. Yep! It's a lively and interactive discussion of the issues surrounding children, their rights as human beings, and the responsibilities of parents.
  10. If readers want the Objectivist view of rights and children, listen to Dr. Andrew Bernstein on the Peter Mac Show here.
  11. Ayn Rand's ideals are codified in her philosophy, Objectivism. This term is preferable to "Ayn Randian ideals." There are several things available on this subject via The Ayn Rand Institute: Some words from Ayn Rand Don't Defy the United Nations--End It by Robert Tracinski Nations United Against Rights by Robert Tracinski Thinking It Alone by Alex Epstein Several great LTE's and Op-Ed's here
  12. I normally don't receive anything that interesting from my "Ayn Rand" alert, but last night I received two Ayn Rand citings from across the globe: one from India (a model mentioning what she is currently reading) and one from the Philippines (a favorable paraphrase in passing). It's nice to see her influence extending favorably worldwide. Just thought I'd share.
  13. I agree. In fact, studying the history of philosophy has helped my understanding of Objectivism (versus what I said above). Just as in any kind of writing, there are various levels of quality from good to bad to complete garbage. "Critiques" of Objectivism usually fall into the latter category whereas a Hume would fall into the "good" category. Even though he had terrible ideas, he was original and he communicated his ideas relatively clearly. There is a benefit to be gained from playing "Devil's Advocate," Michael, and if that's what you're seeking then I agree with A.West's suggestion.
  14. I’m not laughing. I hope that your lack of respect for people does not reflect the degree of your respect for rights. To march in here and to make absolutely baseless claims against someone who we obviously hold in great regard here is an egregious insult to Miss Rand not to mention those of us who hold her in very high esteem such as myself. I think she had very good, objective and timeless reasons to say what she did about Libertarianism. I doubt that you spent the time to read up on what she actually said but if anything—even if you “almost” agree with someone which is not the case here—you should have the common decency to withhold applying the proper noun which she designated to describe her viewpoints and those who agree with her to yourself. O, sorry, I forgot that you have advanced upon her thoughts and made them better…give me a break. I don’t care if you’re a Libertarian. I just don’t understand why people like you must call themselves “Objectivists” when you clearly have fundamental disagreements with the philosophy of Ayn Rand. You cannot just slither your way around this fact by claiming that a certain part of her philosophy was just her “prejudice.” As to the tone of my message, accord me some respect and you will get some in turn.
  15. I just want to make this clear for people unfamiliar with the Objectivist view of rights, this is not the Objectivist view of rights. Please take care to differentiate your personal opinions from the philosophy of Objectivism. If you are unsure of the Objectivist position then you should ask first to determine if your understanding is insufficient or if you are in disagreement with Objectivism. People might rightly assume that a poster is speaking for Objectivism unless stated otherwise since that is the premise of this BBS. Rarely do I see people back their statements about Objectivism with references. I'm not saying that "if Miss Rand wrote it, it's true." What I am saying is that if you claim to speak for Objectivism then you should give references as a matter of justice to the originator of the idea and as good writing etiquette. (I'm not trying to pick on the above poster since this seems to be a rather common practice. This one, in particular, stood out in my mind.)
  16. What's the point? Are you looking to raise doubts in your mind? For what end? Doubts are a normal part of learning and integrating a philosophy into your life. Even after years of study, there will at least be points that stand unclear in your mind. This is true of any philosophy. But questions should properly come from your first-handed grasp of the facts and the application of the facts using your own mind not from what someone else said in a book or a journal. I did read some "third-party" material when I was first learning Objectivism. But really, it didn't add to my understanding at all. I would recommend focusing on the positive aspects of Objectivism before researching its opponents. This will do a greater benefit to your understanding in the long run.
  17. Thanks to The Ayn Rand Institute, there are some freely available readings from Ayn Rand and other Objectivists concerning Libertarianism: Q & A from Miss Rand (this is probably new for most of you; I presume it comes from Dr. Gotthelf who is working on a compendium of Miss Rand's Q & A's) From the Objectivism FAQ Peter Schwartz's On Moral Sanctions Dr. Leonard Peikoff's Fact and Value (although it doesn't specifically mention Libertarianism it is entirely relevant) Realize that the repudiation of Libertarianism isn't just the opinion of a few people on this board, it is a part of Objectivism itself (read the Q & A with Miss Rand above).
  18. This is a perfect concretization of what Peter Schwartz wrote in On Moral Sanctions: Libertarians have to hold "liberty" as an axiom because none of them agree on the nature of rights and their source. But you cannot agree to disagree about the nature of rights and then proceed to build a political system from that. That would be like trying to build a skyscraper with a team of builders who disagree on the dimensions of the base of the tower and on what materials to use in the construction. The only result from this undertaking is an unsound structure that falls as the first person takes a step inside. Here's an example that clearly illustrates that when a Libertarian does take that step you see that what they mean by "liberty" has nothing to do with real freedom. Animals are not sentient? Neither is someone who can utter such an absurdity as this.
  19. I'm just an amateur musician and I'm not well-read at all on the subject but I seem to remember Seashore's book being worthy of a read.
  20. The Ayn Rand Bookstore just stocked this course on melody and composition. I know that's more than you want to spend but it gives you something to shoot for.
  21. Or better yet, don't refer to yourself as an "Objectivist" at all.
  22. BIG congratulations, Betsy! It's a great pleasure and a privilege to read your posts! You have been a beacon of rationality in my life for a long time now (since the early days of OSG).
  23. People like that were never Objectivists to begin with. They read some of Miss Rand's books, applied the label as if they had found some new "clique" and then dropped that label when the next wind blew westward. You find these people in any ideological movement but they're all social metaphysicists.
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