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Everything posted by Who_Is_GV?

  1. For the record, I no longer agree with the sentiments I expressed above in 2004, but am prohibited by forum rules from giving a proper explanation.
  2. First time I heard that I glanced over at my bookshelf and my copy of AR's VOS. You're right, his opposition to individualism in this regard could not be more 'clear.'
  3. Who_Is_GV?

    Renee Olstead

    Thanks for posting. I like pop & jazz from the 20's through the early 50's. Got turned on to a lot of it by "Dismuke," who posts on this forum. GV
  4. Thanks, softwareNerd. I'd been to the site but had not noticed the audio. That's great!
  5. Thanks for posting, David. Private space flight is one of my interests, so I'm glad you found this. GV
  6. Taking inspiration from Diana Hsieh, I sent the following email to Google today, after viewing their "turn the lights out" campaign. Below my email is Google's page that was the impetus for my email. To whom it may concern: I propose you stop this foolishness immediately. The goal of supposed "environmentalists" is--and has always been--the destruction of Western ideas, values, and progress, and indeed the end of individual rights to life, liberty, private property, and the pursuit of happiness. Sacrifice is NOT a proper value. Free individuals and companies trading with other individuals and companies--for example, an electric company selling me the power to cool or light my house for my rationally-selfish desire for comfort and health--is not immoral. And if it is not immoral for 23 hours per day, I assure you logic dictates that it is not immoral for the 24th. I claim the right to complain about your participation in this movement against human life as a long-time customer of Google. I spend, via my company, over one-thousand dollars per month in pay-per-click advertising. I pay you because you are the best at what you do. You exist because of the industrial revolution--do not spend your social and financial capital assisting in its destruction. Best regards, George V. ======================================================================= Google users in the United States will notice today that we "turned the lights out" on the Google.com homepage as a gesture to raise awareness of a worldwide energy conservation effort called Earth Hour. As to why we don't do this permanently - it saves no energy; modern displays use the same amount of power regardless of what they display. However, you can do something to reduce the energy consumption of your home PC by joining the Climate Savers Computing Initiative. On Saturday, March 29, 2008, Earth Hour invites people around the world to turn off their lights for one hour – from 8:00pm to 9:00pm in their local time zone. On this day, cities around the world, including Copenhagen, Chicago, Melbourne, Dubai, and Tel Aviv, will hold events to acknowledge their commitment to energy conservation. Given our company's commitment to environmental awareness and energy efficiency, we strongly support the Earth Hour campaign, and have darkened our homepage today to help spread awareness of what we hope will be a highly successful global event. Why did Google choose this specific organization? We believe in doing our part to help combat climate change, and found the Earth Hour initiative to be a timely, important event. Further, we think the "lights out" idea's individual-centered nature is something that millions of people worldwide can participate in. In short, we really like it. So we did something about it. How can I get Google to do something similar for my organization or project? We welcome your ideas on how we can become more socially and environmentally responsible. Although we can't guarantee either a placement on the Google homepage or even a response to every query, we do read every email we receive and welcome your ideas of organizations that you believe we should feature. If you'd like to submit a proposal, please send it to us at [email protected]
  7. I've had this on my desktop for weeks, and can't get enough of looking at it. Everyone that walks in my office comments on it and stares for a while. The towers appear to rise endlessly into the sky. FYI- It's the Petronas Towers in Malaysia. http://www.thewallpapers.org/view.php?wallz=num6545
  8. Here's where I'm getting my information (my apologies for not including it in my earlier post): http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/artic...-2005Mar22.html
  9. I have heard no one else in the country take my position. I am a bit disappointed that I did not see it here in an Objectivist thread. An individual's right to life is not a right to be provided life by one's brothers--it is the right to freely do the the things required to maintain one's own life. It IS possible to fail at living. In this case, everyone is looking at broad abstractions, when we can easily deal with a concrete. Neither Terri Schiavo, nor any of her relatives, can afford these medical services. Her feeding tube is being paid for by Medicaid (money taken from you and me by threat of force). As an Objectivist, I know that her need does not constitute a claim on my life. Rush Limbaugh, and others, keep stating that she has a right to life. Based on the facts I presented in the previous lines, my life--and the lives of all who are reading this post--are the lives (portions of lives) at stake here. Roark says in the courtroom, "I came here to say that I do not recognize anyone's right to one minute of my life." The situation for Ms. Schiavo is unfortunate, but when one runs out of the material resources required to sustain his own life, and none of his brothers volunteer to provide those resources, no government has the right to force his brothers to surrender their property. -- George
  10. I was listening to Neal Boortz today (nationally-syndicated Libertarian radio talk show host). He took a call. Aparently, Neal had suggested that one of his callers read the ingenious book, Atlas Shrugged. The caller indicated that he loved the book, and that it has really changed his outlook. While he was previously a solid Republican, now he's much more open to the Libertarian philosophy. He also said he'd love to see a movie of Atlas made. He and Neal joked that Hollywood would certainly destroy the message of the book by making a movie. The caller then offered up a "perfect" director: Mel Gibson! Neal Boortz was in complete agreement. I had to wonder which copy of Atlas Shrugged these guys picked up. Mel Gibson's dramatic portrayal of the most famous sacrificial animal, Jesus, would make him the "perfect" artist to project John Galt (?!), the first man to explicitly define (and live) a profound love and reverence for one's own life. I was so excited to hear Ayn Rand's name and her book come out over the air. It was such a brief instant, then I was let down. The Libertarian thing didn't bother me too much. Most people don't become Objectivists in one reading of one AR book. There's a transition for most people if they continue reading. I cannot fathom the Mel Gibson part, however. Cliche as it may be, reading Galt's famous radio speech changed my life...immediately. My philosophical convictions were always his (actually, AR's, of course), but my life was changed by knowing others existed who understood the importance of life. I'm sorry this guy just took it as an interesting point of view compatible with The Passion. Unbelievable. -- George
  11. C.O.D.- I don't know where you stand in your study of Objectivism. What the posters here are attempting to do is change your focus. After reading Ayn Rand's fiction, and then her non-fiction, your entire focus, or paradigm, will change--if you are honest. Objectivism is A PHILOSOPHY FOR LIVING ON EARTH. Each INDIVIDUAL MAN must CHOOSE to exist or to perish. As "A is A," man can either decide to be man or to be nothing. There is no other choice. If he decides to be man, his ONLY tool of survival, happiness, and fulfillment, qua man, is his MIND. I have neither the disire nor time to argue the technical aspects of evolution with you here, but what you, C.O.D., are attempting to do is DESTROY THE INDIVIDUAL, namely yourself. You inherit NOTHING. The men of 2,000 years ago have absolutely nothing to do with you. The origin of the universe--other than as a philosophical premise--has absolutely nothing to do with you. Objectivists are not sitting around waiting for the species to evolve. That would be an animalistic form of collectivism. Each of us knows that he exists--as an absolute--and that is ALL that matters. I exist, I can perceive reality, and I choose to exist as a man (as an end in himself), for the purpose of MY own happiness and fulfillment. You will spend your entire life on some sort of mission to determine its origin, and then you will die. What you will miss by your choice of non-existence is life, and all of its benefits. The answer to the question, "does God exist?" is: IT DOES NOT MATTER. To your life, it does NOT matter. Religion cannot, by force and history and seniority, preempt all of metaphysics, epistemology, and ethics/ morality. It cannot assert itself as the starting point. That for their entire history, men have forced others to answer the "God question," does not make the question important. The only question that matters is: "does life exist/ do I exist?" (please note that Objectivists are not agnostic--I'm only giving you the non-technical/ "sense of life" starting point to leave this forum and read Ayn Rand) You are young, and some day you you will--you should hope--see this clearly. Trust me, you will regret every minute you spent apologizing for living; every minute you spent arguing the historical accuracy of a man named Jesus or Job or Saul; every minute you chose to non-exist instead of using your mind in productive undertakings. You will know that the sum of all virtues is not humility, with rewards for that humble, sad non-life obtained from that wonderful time when your lifeless body enters the grave, but rather pride, and a radiant reverence for your own life. You still have a chance. Don't let it go. - George
  12. I was going to respond as follows (see below), but David's post is much more on point and gets to the sinister nature of these political games. Great call, David! I'd love to see the IRS eliminated, but I am not very optimistic of it getting through the Congress. To be cynical, it's probably a tool of the Republicans to fire up the base before November, knowing full well that it won't happen. There are plenty of precedents. The 1994 plan to eliminate the federal Department of Education is a good example. Not only has it not been eliminated, the budget for that department (under Republicans) has more than doubled! --George
  13. conan: Most of us here have read all of Ayn Rand's novels, and a great deal of her non-fiction articles and essays. There is no way I can see to casually consider some of Ayn Rand's ideas and discuss them in this particular forum. Her philosophy is complete and comprehensive, and she herself described many times just what is involved in adopting an entirely new philosophy. If you're like I was, a taste of Ayn Rand's philosophy makes you want to get to the end immediately, but, like so many things, there's no shortcut. George
  14. Elle: Did you hear this past weekend that Kerry now says life begins at conception? I don't have a source, but it was all over the radio earlier this week.
  15. Today I would like to salute the noblest republic ever produced by rational minds. May its current and prospective citizens ever remember the REASON for its success.
  16. Have you read Ayn Rand's Romantic Manifesto, or, more specifically, "The Goal of My Writing?" It appears to me that you have not. If you have, I am interested to know why you would phrase the purpose of her novels so differently than she.
  17. When I first heard of F-9/11, I immediately thought of AR's statement that art must be "an end in itself." This piece is most certainly the means to an end (or ends). It's analogous to the difference between a painting of a man versus the painting of a man on a red poster stamped CCCP. --George
  18. Regardless of the author's intent, this could have been taken straight out of We The Living. Maybe I should stop before the hole I'm digging gets any deeper...
  19. Certainly the entire topic was started half in jest. But these lyrics, as a piece of art which is an end in itself, were interesting, considering the source. And, don't worry, I'm not a Rastafarian.
  20. I was listening to a local left-wing (public) radio station last night. The program was basically a racist "black power" show of some sort. When they went to break, they played Bob Marley's "Get Up, Stand Up." Maybe the hosts should have listened a little closer. As I listened to the lyrics, I was shocked. Being that he wrote it sometime in the sixties, I assume, does anyone think he was a closet Ayn Rand reader? I have to admit I'm not aware of Marley's body of work, but I wouldn't have expected these thoughts. Here's a selection of the lyrics. You can find them complete online. Most people think, Great God will come from the skies, Take away everything And make everybody feel high. But if you know what life is worth, You will look for yours on earth: And now you see the light, You stand up for your rights. Jah! Get up, stand up! (Jah, Jah!) Stand up for your rights! (Oh-hoo!) Get up, stand up! (Get up, stand up!) Don't give up the fight! (Life is your right!) Get up, stand up! (So we can't give up the fight!) Stand up for your rights! (Lord, Lord!) Get up, stand up! (Keep on struggling on!) Don't give up the fight! (Yeah!) We sick an' tired of-a your ism-skism game - Dyin' 'n' goin' to heaven in-a Jesus' name, Lord. We know when we understand: Almighty God is a living man. You can fool some people sometimes, But you can't fool all the people all the time. So now we see the light (What you gonna do?), We gonna stand up for our rights! (Yeah, yeah, yeah!)
  21. I'm negative about gambling in general. Most people I encounter gamble out of an irrational quest to get rich without creating value by their minds, being productive, etc. My high school girlfriend's father spent all his money on the lottery and chose his lottery numbers every week by throwing darts. This is the behavior of a primitive savage. Certainly Betsy, Vern, et al, are correct that free, rational men are entitled to diversions, but the literally-interpreted concept of gambling surely has its roots in wishes and mysticism. This keeps me from gambling in life. If I'm to be a millionaire, it won't be from the lottery or a casino. My statements above are, I think, in line with Ayn Rand's statement in the Romantic Manifesto that one should "judge, and prepare to be judged." As to the original question "is it moral to own a casino" (not a direct quote), it certainly IS...so long as the participants are not made to gamble by force or by fraud. George
  22. In my opinion, there is no sense in agonizing over national, general elections. The next president WILL be George Bush or John Kerry. For me, personally, George Bush is the clear choice. I find so many things wrong with what he says and does. And I share the concerns of Objectivists in voting for people with whom one disagrees. But my mind is made clear by a few things. 1. Ayn Rand certainly despised trickery, games, and the like. Voting for candidate A so that hypothetical candidate U will have a better chance 4 years from now seems almost Machiavellian to me. One has to make straight-forward decisions. Any freedom-loving, moral person must see George Bush as the obvious choice. Though his morality technically comes from an irrational source, the net result in his personal life is generally where a moral Objectivist would end up. We all know Thomas Jefferson believed the rights of man came from God (nature's God, Providence, etc.), but none of us would struggle over whether or not to vote for him, or George Washington, in a contest against, say King George III. 2. Read Benjamin Franklin's various comments about the ratification of the U.S. Constitution (i.e. his disappointment with much of the compromises, but his guiltless confidence that anything decided by a committee of men will be less than any individual man accepts--the Constitution had to be passed). He certainly had ideals--many very close to those of Objectivists--but was also a practical man. Ayn Rand's novels project IDEAL MEN, but men have to function in a world filled with irrational men. If the Founding Fathers were completely unyielding to irrational ideas, would we live in this republic? 3. I trust my gut. I am a graduate of UT Austin. While George Bush was the governer, I saw him at football games, basketball games, etc., all the time. He wasn't there to make a show--he was there because he likes sports! He doesn't scheme and plot (though his handlers surely might) on how to increase his personal power. I know this is not a sophisticated analysis of the man, but my point is he's a regular guy. He is not a communist. He does not want to see Americans die. He does not want to dishonor the office of the president. This is about as good as it gets in a NATIONAL, GENERAL election. 4. Along these lines, when he was running against Al Gore, CNN showed the two of them on split screens. They were both returning home from a debate, I think. Al Gore got out of his SUV and nodded to his secret service to pick up his bags (as if they were his servants). George Bush got out, walked to the back of his SUV, grabbed his duffle bag, slung it over his shoulder and walked toward the governer's mansion. Bush is an independent man with respect for other men. Kerry is cut from the same mold as Gore, however--that should be clear to anyone who even casually observes. He speaks French at home, makes NO decisions or committments as a legislator (he has never sponsored one bill in the Senate--he can't produce in the capitalist world and cannot even be a "producer" in government!), and generally acts like royalty. None of this should cause anyone to doubt that I am an Objectivist. But I fear anyone agonizing over the presidential election. I certainly want to see something change in this republic so that we don't have to vote like this, and that's one reason to try and advance Objectivist principles. On the margin, however, when it comes to the election in November, abstaining from voting, or voting strategically is not logical. Ask yourself if Thomas Jefferson would have stayed home on any election day? Respectfully, George
  23. --Les Miserables SPOILER-- Stephen's correct. I've been reading a bit of Victor Hugo--prompted by Ayn Rand's praise for him--and he's obviously Christian and an altruist. But, upon reading Les Miserables, I have begun to realize why Ayn Rand enjoyed Hugo. For instance, Jean Valjean is a former convict who changes his philosophy and becomes a producer. In fact, he becomes one of the most successful factory owners in France. This is over-simplified, and I am no student of literature, but apparently Hugo's themes were historically unique. George
  24. kesq-- Glad you mentioned that group. Is that on Google? I went searching on Google early on and found that group (I think). It was apparently controlled almost completely by irrational haters of Ayn Rand! I couldn't figure out why they were so interested in bashing her (considering that bashing objective reality is futile). I'm glad to see (so far) that this forum is not threatened by those savages.
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