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Everything posted by Mindy

  1. I don't think this is true. Avoiding the irrational responses that the randomn person makes--such remarks as, "Ayn Rand was a fascist!" is not wrong. If you sneeze, and someone says, "God bless you," are you required to reply that you are an atheist, that there is no God, and that by making that remark, they are proving that they are superstitious and irrational? I just say, "Thank you." There are important people, whose negative opinion counts, and who deserve to know the truth, but these are the minority. Specifically, you do not owe it to Objectivism, or ARI, or the future, etc., to represent yourself as an Objectivist. Mindy
  2. You are, I think, considering only the epistemological category of subjectivity. That amounts, roughly, to prejudice in one's thinking. The metaphysical category of subjectivity is the fact that a mind is a subject of experiences, that cognition pertains to an organism designed to receive and process information. Reasoning, objectively judging, factual people are not epistemologically subjective, but they are metaphysical subjects. They exist as subjects. They have nervous systems, brains, sense-organs. That is what makes them metaphysically "subjective." One of the things a subject has is a point of view. Your point of view limits what you can see at a point in time. What you see when you move is due to another point of view. What you saw was different, though each time it was objective. It was different because of the subjective factor, point of view. The range of electromagnetic energy that we call "visible light" is a subjective category. Also, the rate at which the phone information service reads out phone numbers differs by what part of the country you are in. That represents an objectively-measured, subjective factor in the business goal of providing "411" services. It is worth the trouble to get these concepts clear, both to understand philosophical questions, and to be able to analyze situations and problems about which you must make decisions. Mindy
  3. Do you moderators consider yourself editors? Or almost? That's not a satisfactory arrangement to me. Isn't it a violation of copyright for you to do editing on people's posts? Secondly, (with disregard for my prime project of enamoring myself with the powers that be...) Your parallel between deleted posts and "trash around the house" lacks one critical basis, which is that the trash can in your kitchen contains whatever has been deliberately thrown away. You, as a moderator, on the other hand, are trashing what someone intended to keep, and which they value. The resulting error your metaphor reveals, from this, bears an odor of officiousness that offends me. Mindy
  4. It should be possible to draw a focus down to one particular argument in a thread, or one statement, etc. Being "reminded" that the more important question is so-and-so is pointless and fruitless when that is the case. Not every post is about the OP's overall question. Mindy
  5. I happen to have a horse AND a child, and I think your attitude is thoroughly wrong on both counts. Mindy
  6. However unlikely the event is, I must come to your defense. Normal sensory-perceptual processing, even at the automatic level, can be interfered with by situational factors. A person sky-diving for the first time might not be able to say, afterwards, if the sun went behind the clouds as they fell, or not. Their attention was "maxed out" by fear, excitement, kinesthetic feelings, etc. Their experience was subjective as compared to the instructor's, who jumped with them. His familiarity and confidence let him notice his surroundings as much as the average person. That's the epistemological sense of "subjective." When you say that objectivity is a method employing subjective experiences, you are changing to the metaphysical meaning of "subjective." Metaphysically, experience is subjective because it is only subjects that have experience. (Though, in fact, you ought not have written, "subjective experience.") All knowledge comes from experience, and in the metaphysical sense, from what is subjective. The unlikely conclusion we ought to draw is that the subjective (metaphysically) may or may not be subjective (epistemologically.) A less puzzling way to put that is that both objective and subjective cognition are metaphysically subjective. Mindy
  7. It's just possible that you and I live in the same neighborhood. Either way, welcome to Objectivism Online. There are definitely factions here. Mindy
  8. The person who put that question used it to abuse the OP. The writer of that question chided the OP for "leaving Objectivism" when his valuable philosophical ideas were owed to Rand. The OP had said he had found many basic ideas of Objectivism elsewhere in philosophy. The question was a challenge to that, since the OP agreed with most or all of Objectivism. The question is not the tool, logically, that the abusive writer tried to make of it. I pointed that out in the interests of logic. I seem to be in a distinct minority when it comes to respecting the interests of logic, but that remains the case. Now, you want to know whether it isn't more important what one believes than where one got those ideas from. Wildly out of context here. What you've said isn't outright false, but it is contextually retarded. Mindy
  9. The point is that how is one to know that a post has been removed at all? Do you expect readers to peruse the trash can? Mindy
  10. Why is there not a note in a thread from which an individual post has been removed and trashed, noting that fact? The give-and-take of the discussion becomes distorted when a response is silently "disappeared." Mindy
  11. That may be what "source" sometimes means, but it isn't what "ideas" or "philosophy" means, and, more importantly, it is not what you meant to ask!. You said, "the source." This is abyssmal, scurrilous rationalization. Mindy
  12. How does the OP know who was the source of "his philosophy" if all he knows of philosophy is that Ayn Rand says "A is A?" If he doesn't know what Aristotle said, but he encounters Aristotle's ideas as incorporated in Rand's system, all he can say is that he heard of some ideas from reading Rand, who gives non-specific credit to Aristotle for some of the ideas she expresses. How can he know, until he reads Aristotle? Alas, I am beset with irrelevancies, as here. Mindy
  13. The problem is that Rand is the source of most Objectivists' knowledge of philosophy. They don't know if she is the source of the ideas themselves until they study philosophy itself. Mindy
  14. . I find this argument interesting. The principle of property rights is formulated so that whatever a person produces is his, independent of anyone else's appraisal of its value or benefit. One's purposes, goals, tastes, and existential context contribute to the desirability, the valuation, the fact of and the degree of benefit of what one produces. As they say, one man's trash is another man's treasure. When the violation of property rights is defended because someone has decided the creator cannot obtain any benefit from his product, principles are being broken in favor of someone's presumed omniscience as to what the inventor/creator might presently, or in any future scenario, find of use in his own product. Whatever the poster's purposes, this argument is an attack on principles per se. Mindy
  15. I grew up in the Georgia public schools, and evolution was, indeed, taught, and there was no hint of any religious alternative. That was before today's college students were even born, though. I would suggest that such failures in the public schools are not special to Georgia. Mindy
  16. What, specifically, is this alternative? Where is there an "enumerative/academic approach to those same tenets?" Can you give one or two examples of the specific alternatives you are choosing over? As to "why one should stick with a collected system rather than the alternative," that is, I'm afraid, a no-brainer. Why prefer something more complete over something less so? Why prefer something integrated over something less so? You get the point. Being known to be an Objectivist while in academia is bothersome, no doubt. A personal warning, if I may: take yourself, your education, your path, very seriously. Mindy p.s. What in anarchism is seeming sensible--it isn't a very sound idea about society.
  17. So, do you take responsibility, yourself, for Obama's health care bill? Wouldn't that follow from your logic, above? And what default is there for the millions of sensible people who did not vote for government growth? I don't understand how you can miss this. Mindy
  18. Let me try again. Subjectivity (in your sense) means that prejudice, rather than logic, directed you to reach your opinion or conclusion. When we learn to talk, we begin to follow procedures in forming our beliefs and opinions. (Grammar itself is a very early such procedural discipline.) From simple sentences, we learn the methods and rules that lead to knowing the truth, forming logical conclusions, etc. Then, we either follow those methods, as a matter of personal choice, or we violate them, take short-cuts, bias the evidence, jump to conclusions, etc. If we do not follow those methods, we are being subjective. If we do not choose to follow those methods, we are unlikely to arrive at the truth. Being subjective almost always means error. "Subjective" is roughly synonymous with "prejudiced." Sorry I pontificated instead of being specific. Mindy
  19. The variable contributing to the extent of one's self-esteem is not related to one's IQ, level of education, professional-level career, or such considerations. The variable that sets one's self-esteem pertains to that aspect of your personality that chooses to face facts, no matter the cost. Living qua man is living as the most intelligent sort of animal on the planet, but the key to that is the fact that reason requires a self-imposed discipline. Whatever one's IQ, knowledge, experience, etc., we all face exactly the same challenge to observe the primacy of existence over our wishes, preferences, fears, past commitments, etc. Your self-esteem is based on your intellectual honesty, not your intellectual power. Mindy
  20. Fascinating to hear of your past and your present enterprises. Welcome. Mindy
  21. You're right, but in this case the technical classifications, etc., have a purpose. The University ought be populated by uhh, life-forms(?) that are intellecually mature. They fail that miserably. The contrast between the sophisticated terminology and the base evolutionary and intellectual nature of the people at the university is a clever technique to mark that. Well, that's my interpretation. Mindy
  22. Let me guess--nobody who has posted above has ever earned much money, have you? You haven't paid the many, many tens of thousands of dollars in Social Security taxes that those senior citizens have. You haven't had to do without, decade after decade, with only the dwindling hope of governmental integrity that you will ever enjoy the delayed fruits of your efforts. These seniors just want to get someone else to pay their medical bills? They have paid their medical bills AND social security. They have had to forego investments that would have matured to significant savings by now. There is just one word for the attitude expressed in this thread: stupid. Mindy
  23. First, I am not bothering to respond to what I see as many errors in several of the preceding posts. It is only in the relationships that produce knowledge that some objects become, also, subjects. That means animals with sensory organs, basically. Being a subject, being a mind, is wholly an objective phenomenon. As Rand so brilliantly emphasized, the mind, too, is an existent with an identity. Bats hear things we can't, so their subjectivity is objectively different from ours. A deaf person's subjectivity is different from a hearing person's. Note that even these differences are definite, categorical. They make a difference in the range of knowledge, or the sort of knowledge an individual is capable of, but they do not invalidate anything. This is the metaphysical nature of the subjective nature of some life forms. Subjectivity involves processing. Some of that processing (senosry-perceptual) is automatic, and what is automatic is error-free. Some is deliberate, reflective, methodological, normative, and thus chosen (logical processes.) It is in the realm of the deliberate processing of knowledge that "subjective" in the pejorative sense arises. Divergences from the norms of conceptualization, propositional thinking, and reasoning (that is, being unreasonable or irrational,) are due to some subjective factor. Externally-produced subjective factors that interfere with applying the norms of thought and reason include over-stimulation, such as occurs under emergency conditions, extreme fatigue, illness, intense emotions related to situational factors comparable to emergency conditions, etc. The most common factor that produces subjective rather than objective results is prejudice. Pre-judging an issue means ignoring the evidence in order to get a result that is more desirable. There are many different specific things that underlie prejudice--guilt, fear, convenience, denial, etc., but the way they all subjugate cognitive processing is the same. It is crucial to identify the arena of thought in which the term "subjective" is used. The Lexicon gives several entries of these different arenas. In metaphysical contexts, subjectivity is simply another fact. As thinkers, subjectivity in the metaphysical sense is of the upmost importance and significance to us. In an epistemological context, it is usually negative, but not if external factors are responsible. It is critical to realize that a knee-jerk response to the word as meaning false or self-indulgent, is a mistake. Mindy
  24. Great. If you're not big on water, you might not know that the wake always trails the object moving through water, so that meant to me that you were leading the others... just a detail. Eager to hear more. Mindy
  25. Voounteering? I thought OO. was hiring moderators. Mindy
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