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Tom K.

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About Tom K.

  • Birthday 09/02/1973

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    Albany, GA

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  • Country
    United States
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  • Real Name
    Tom Knighton
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  • Biography/Intro
    I came here less than 24 hours after reading Atlas Shrugged, a book that has literally changed my outlook on the world. As such, I'm interested in learning more about Ayn Rand's philosophy and how it can be applied to my daily life.
  • School or University
    Jacobs Technology
  • Occupation
    Inventory Control

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  1. Physically, I totally have to agree with you here. I LOVE to watch Kate Beckinsale. As for anything deeper than that, I obviously can't know more since I've never met her. Damn it!
  2. Tom K.


    What many people fail to understand is that skill only appears to be talent because the viewer doesn't see the effort taken to reach that point. They don't see the early sketches of the artist that were truly terrible. They don't hear the early compositions of the musician that are awful. They only see the "finished" product and argue it is because of talent. I love to use the example of Michael Jordan, who many feel is one of the greatest basketball players ever. He was cut from his high school basketball team as a freshman. He failed in a way many of us have. However, he worked his butt off and became one of the all-time greats in the game. Greatness doesn't just "happen".
  3. I know this is a couple of days old, but I've been away from the forum. First, no one dismissed the graph out of hand. Instead, they showed why is was flawed in many ways, not the least of which is that there's no citation of where this information comes from originally. According to the graph, the Great Depression lasted less than two years at most (as the scale is given in months for duration), despite the fact that it continued on for closer to ten years. This alone indicates that the information is wrong and therefore insufficient for proving your point. Also, the "unheard of success" had more to do with the large quantity of savings people had as a result of rationing during World War II which enabled them to purchase "big ticket" items than any of FDR's socialist policies. There has been ample arguments made elsewhere that FDR's policies actually prolonged the Depression. Of course it's not a coincidence. The Democrats scream about how it's someone else's fault and how they're going to save them by taxing the rich. People love the idea of problems being someone else's fault and that they're going to get part of the rich's money. Tell people what they want to hear, and you just about can't lose an election. That doesn't mean that people are right. Once upon a time, the majority supported slavery and thought the Earth was flat...so clearly the majority isn't always correct.
  4. I don't think it's possible to say, with any accuracy, that new = bad or new = good. The age of something is irrelevant. However, "good" is a subjective term that is difficult to accurately define. So far, there have been arguments about the complexity of music, but complexity isn't necessarily a sign of quality. A simple, but pleasant melody is far better in my mind than a complex but horrible sounding noise that can't be properly called "music". So, it's impossible in my opinion to answer a question of why smart people listen to "bad" music, since it's so difficult to define "good" and "bad" music. To those smart people, they'll probably tell you that they don't listen to bad music, just different music. Therein lies the problem.
  5. What is an objective standard for "good" music versus "bad" music? It would seem to me that these are relatively subjective standards anyways, so why is one person's subjective idea of "good" music more correct than others? How does complexity in a musical work somehow make it better than a more simplistic piece just because it's more complex?
  6. I noticed a while back that they did the same thing to films they re-edit for television. Damn is OK, but not when preceded by God. I mean goddamn! What the goddamn hell do these goddamn jerks want anyways? Complete and utter elimination of goddamn from the goddamn collective memories of every goddamn person who ever heard goddamn?
  7. Yes, that was a primary motivation, but since the Founding Fathers also had issues with a standing army, they intended for citizen soldiers to fight hostile foreign invaders as well. Even with a standing army, they couldn't fathom the American people sitting at home and not defending their nation. I'm well aware of who owned what, hence why I mention their intent. I only say probably simply because I wasn't there However, simply defending one's right to have arms against a potentially tyrannical US government is short sighted. There are plenty who would argue that the US government won't become tyrannical. Sure, they're deluded, but they also outnumber us. Laying out other situations, which I'm sure the Founding Fathers envisioned as well, is simply a tool I use when discussing matters like this.
  8. Thanks for clarifying the tax system in NZ. I have to admit being pretty ignorant of the laws over there. I see your point about eliminating the GST, and I'd have to agree with you. Not only would it simplify the tax code, but also increase individual buy power with strengthens the overall economy to some degree.
  9. I'm not expert, but it would seem to me that if the tax is paid by the businesses themselves on behalf of the customer, the business is responsible for calculating that percentage and forwarding it to the government. Right now, based on what has be written, it's a flat percentage on all goods. With this new system, while the it sounds like it will drive down prices on food, I'm not so sure. For instance, by complicating the tax system, even if they make it a blanket "all food is exempt", they're creating more overhead for the businesses to deal with. Overhead costs are always passed on to the customer. So, while the tax is no longer present, increased overhead charges will be there. Not only will the increased overhead drive up prices on food, but also on everything else in the store. The only variable I see is the amounts. If the overhead cost increase is equal or greater to the tax percentage, then there will be zero savings for the consumer. It's just that simple. As for more specifics, I couldn't tell you. This is just what ran through my mind as I read your post. I use absolutes like "will" and "always", but I'm not an expert so I could be way off on all of this.
  10. I was diagnosed at a young age with ADHD, so I have a pretty good grasp on what the condition is. The problem I have with the term "Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder" is that it paints an inaccurate picture of the condition. At it's root, it's more of an impulse control issue, versus a lack of attention. Most ADHD people have interests which they hyperfocus on. They can spend hours upon hours oblivious to all other stimuli with their hyperfocus, but with anything else they have a difficult time paying attention to it, due to the impulses distracting them. For example, a student in class with ADD/ADHD has the impulse to get up and look at something across the room. He does it, while another student without ADD/ADHD has the impulse doesn't do so. It's not necessarily bad parenting, because the parent can discipline the child every time he does such a thing but it doesn't do any good. Now, I will say that I suspect it has been grossly overdiagnosed in this day and age. When I was diagnosed, it was still pretty uncommon to hear about, but today every class has a few students who have it...or so it seems. Many teachers use it as a crutch, and many parents use it as an excuse for not disciplining their child (oh...he can't help it). However, it really hurts the students who really DO have such a condition, because there is doubt as to whether it exists since it IS treated as such. As for diagnostic criteria, here's the DSM-IV criteria (via Wikipedia...I don't have a copy of the DSM-IV myself) While many of these are subjective, it's not that different than any other psychological disorder where symptoms are subjective. Also, I'd like to point out that I don't think medications should be mandated (as I've heard they have been for some students in different school districts), nor should they be the primary treatment method. Instead, they should be a last resort. Therapy teaching an ADD/ADHD child should be attempted to instruct the patient on coping skills, rather than a reliance on chemical treatments. However, I'm also not a professional in this field. I'm just a guy who has lived with this for his 34 years of life, for whatever that is worth.
  11. Rule 7. I have a bad habit I'm trying to break of living in the glory days of the past, rather than focusing on the glory days ahead.
  12. I forgot about that. Also the television, the radio, and anything else I can turn on.
  13. I applaud your decision . Personally, I'd burn extra lights. I'd turn the oven on, take long hot showers, everything they're asking people not do. I see no reason to do without just so others can have instead.
  14. I've always preferred Batman to Superman. Mostly because there is very little that separates myself from Bruce Wayne, except things like money and dedication to his goal. His intelligence is high, but not super genius level. He's extremely athletic, but no super humanly so. In short, he's worked to make himself more than the average man. Not only that, but he's vastly more interesting. Superman is boring IMHO. He's practically invulnerable to anything except kryptonite (apparently the most abundant material in the universe sometimes, because all his enemies get their hands on it at some point). Batman is vulnerable to the same things you and I are, and he continues on. Better still is his motivation for fighting crime. He does it for himself, not some altruistic idea that the world should be made to be a better place. He wants criminals to pay, so he makes them pay. No bullshit about how it's noble to serve your fellow man. He does it because he wants to and, I think, because he likes it. Works for me
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