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Everything posted by Pericles(MBA)

  1. I doubt he will get far with religion. There are already opposition groups that formed in response to the little he did with respect to religion. I still think that Bush's lean toward religion is just a payoff to his constituents. He thinks that is what they want. I think if Bush did not have to worry about elections he would react to whomever makes the most noise in popular culture. If there is a lot of noise from liberals, then you may see a more liberal Bush in his second term. That may sound pretty sucky, but consider that it also means Bush can be influenced by Objectivists. I don't know about the rest of you, but I get more inspired every day I hit my dropdown of recent sites to go to this forum. I have seen a better quality of Objectivist writing during this election than ever before. Some of my favorite all time Objectivists like Dr Hurd, Betsy Speicher, etc, have done some of their best material this year. The biting humour, and unescapable logic are on our side. I have a feeling that a re-elected Bush may start to feel the impact of Objectivist culture during his next administration. Given the amount of penmanship on the topic of religion on this site alone, he had better watch his step! I've been meaning to take up the pen again on the topic of religion. I am holding a section of my old website to devote to some religious humor. But as much fun as it is to poke fun at the bad ideas in religion I also enjoy trying to convert the better religious people to my side. I had a Jehovahs Witness kid knock on my door recently, his parents were at a safe distance down the street. He was 14 years old and a bit geeky. I talked to him about dating girls and how religion would undercut his confidence and his field of potential dates. I got the impression that he was only doing his evangelizing because of his parents. He talked to me for a while even though I had told him up front that I was an atheist and would have no interest. I also told him to expect to meet other good people outside of his religion . I don't know how far I got thru to him, but I haven't seen that family come back to my neighborhood since.
  2. I thought this quote from a recent Dr Hurd article would be relevant to this thread. The rest of the article can be found here.
  3. I was concerned when I heard this as well. I not heard any commentators mention that it might not be a good idea to have the government allocate flu vaccines.
  4. There were lots of complaints during the Clinton administration of tax money going to churches. There was a movement to repeal the money going to faith based charities but it failed miserably. I seem to recall there were also allegations of improper use of tax money to directly fund religious propaganda, which the Clinton administration ignored. As far as prayer in govt goes, that was done during Reagan and Jimmy Carter administrations also. Carter held public discussions on his faith and invited his favorite ministers to the White House. It is naive to think that a populist president would not have some homage to religion. Americans enjoy their freedom too much to let it get carried far. Only after much loss of freedom and heavy suffering could Americans choose to look the other way when it comes to heavy-handed religion. But hey, if John Kerry wins we may just experience that kind of suffering!
  5. I agree, I noticed also how the attacks have worsened as the public criticism has increased here. Terrorist know how to play to the news media. I also understand where you are coming from Janet. I think people who have been in the military appreciate much more how important it is to have a president that has a proper foreign policy since the military is fhe first to suffer when we don't. If Kerry does win I doubt many Americans will know fully what damage he is doing to our military in terms of lost talent and cancelled programs. They will only feel the affects later, when we are threatened again with imminent destruction. But I have noticed that many of the general public do have a better understanding of foreign policy than the news media gives them credit for. I think lots of Bush supporters know that Kerry is the wrong man, because of his bad ideas about foreign policy. It is frustrating to watch Bush try to explain foreign policy on TV, when he often does poorly explaining why we need to go after terrorists. It is only now in the last days of the election that he is fully explaining the need for an offensive war. Bush should have been explaining more fully what he was doing with our programs and overseas actions all thru his presidency. His best speeches on foreign policy were right after 9/11, and during the convention. How unfortunate for us all he is not a better spoken man. But the actions of his cabinet speak for themselves. And it is good to see that many people are coming forward who do understand the issues and speaking up. Some of us do get it. BTW, my personal life has been too busy lately to participate much in these forums. But I do enjoy reading all these posts!
  6. Hmm... I do think Prof Lewis has an interesting point. I would concede that there is a measure of Straussian Platonism in the Bush administration, just as there is a measure of religion. Does that measure add up to anything that I find threatening? Not really. Consider this: under Bush we have had an unprecedented re-arming of the military. Regardless of whether the military has been used to go after Iran or N Korea, we are prepared, and being prepared is the larger part of the battle. Can you say the same for a Kerry presidency? Kerry already has promised to kill our most effective weapons against North Korea. We need the missile defenses and bunker busting bombs if we are going to have any sway against the Koreans. Other than re-arming, Bush has taken action in Iraq and against Al Qaida. A genuine Strassian would have just sat and talked, but never taken action. Of course I agree that Bush should be doing more, but given the political climate it is easy to understand his hesistancy. I'm not excusing, just pointing out. Secondly, and this supports my argument for the pragmatism, I think given enough public pressure (and it won't take that much) Bush will support a war against Iran. A few spokesmen doing media interviews to put pressure on Bush and he will have to answer. I am certain that Kerry would dismiss such pressure on his presidency as "conservative whining". I actually suspect that the reason Iran is in the news is because of Objectivists. I am not saying this as a mere novice. I have a degree in journalism and have becoming very familiar with how the news media filters and accepts content. Other than Objectivists nobody was talking about Iran just 2 years ago. Objectivists also helped launch the career of Daniel Pipes. Pipes has been instrumental in getting Iran in the news. Middle East Commentator. Daniel Pipes has many ears in the Pentagon. How far up his influence reaches I cannot say for sure. But visit his website and see that he is no Straussian. Would you rather trade our current Pentagon for one staffed by people that do not listen to Pipes? In a defensive war there is no need to listen to Pipes, or have the ARI speakers visit Wright-Patterson to speak directly to the military. Under Bush the ear is open. BTW, It is funny how Iran is now being used against Bush by John Kerry. Its typical of the complete hypocripsy of Kerry's arguments to use examples of things he would never support, to attack Bush on foreign policy. Kerry also attacks Bush for not taking enough action in the War on Terror, even while his stated platform is focus on a defensive war, while doing nothing overseas. Kerry is willing to accept the mantle of virtue just long enough to use it as a debate tool. Iran and North Korea are just empty words to John Kerry. Somebody else put them in the headlines, so they become his tools of argument.
  7. This is a reply to the headlining argument by Prof John Lewis on Capmag located here: Opposing Platonic Conservatism The main problem with Prof Lewis' argument is that it presupposes those who plan to vote for Bush are doing so because of a sense of shared values with conservatives. I know I do not share values with religion. I was mainly planning on voting for Bush because of his foreign policy. I do want to point out that I get the impression that most Objectivist with college level teaching positions are accustomed to arguing and winning over liberals. I do not think they are very familiar with environments where religious conservatives dominate. That is unfortunate because there are a good number of Objectivists who do come from religious backgrounds, myself included. There are times when I notice that many Objectivists in leadership positions are not familiar with the psychological issues relating to religion, and therefore downplay the idea that religious people can be won over to Objectivism. I have also noticed that people spending a lot of time around liberals, will occaisonally pick up on their paranoia about religion. Some liberals believe religion is the end all evil. Religion is bad philosophy, among the host of bad philosophies out there, but no more evil than environmentalism in my book. Perhaps that is why the idea of a leader who throws some token crumbs to religious constituents, is not threatening to me. Also we are talking about a centrist Bush, not an ultrareligious Buchannan or Alan Keyes. But I digress from my main point: Bush has made his re-election foreign policy platform about continuing an offensive war against terrorism, as opposed to Kerry's defensive plans. Kerry would boost Border Patrol, Homeland Security, National Guard, etc. Bush would spend money on hi-tech weapons and an overseas military. On the point of the Straussen Platonism, I would say that I cannot agree that is what Bush is doing on foreign policy. I would need a lot of more evidence of this argument. Simply using the example of North Korea and Iran is not enough. I believe that Bush's philosophy is primarily pragmatism. He did not go after North Korea or Iran yet because with the nation focused on Iraq and the election, pragmatically, the timing was not right. I would ask those who favor Prof Lewis' argument to consider this: If Bush says he will wage war offensively against terrorism, how do you expect this will play out? Do you really think he will do nothing? My major concern with Kerry is that he will withdraw the US so much from using our military overseas, that he will cripple us. His ideas about increasing border security will also have an extremely negative effect on commerce, doubling the cost of doing business outside of the US. Plus if Kerry does prevent the building of bunker buster bombs, we will not be able to face off against North Korea because that country has made a major investment in underground military. If we get involved in a ground war with Iran or N. Korea, and do not have the Bush-Platonic technology, then loss of life in our military will be massive.
  8. I hope they do reply Janet. You have some good points, again. I have to admit I was thinking of doing a thread just such as this. Actually I was planning a reply to John Lewis who has the opening article on Capitalism Magazine. I won't hijack this thread but will put my arguments on a new thread.
  9. Glad to know you are not the preacher type. There is nothing more boring than someone who thinks every opposing word is an anti-Objectivist conspiracy.
  10. The Crucial Distinction Kerry's Solutions Dr Hurd's comments, (from two months ago), about the possibility of Bush losing were right on the mark. Bush is trying to make everyone happy, and doesn't know how to defend his side. Part of debate skills to understand the side you are arguing. We know Bush would build bunker-buster nukes (and other advanced weapons), but when attacked for it in the debate he had nothing to say. His energy was entirely focused on sending the message that he was a populist. Do you think the president fully understand's why advanced weapon systems are important? Do any of you think Bush knows what he is defending against? Bush's presentation style of "everybody wins" pragmatism are making him as unpopular as Neville Chamberlain. The difference is that this time Bush has all the best people on his side and is going to let them down.
  11. I don't think the President is guided primarily by altruism so much as pragmatism. He reacts to whomever screams the loudest. The liberals have traditionally had a much more altruistic foreign policy: Vietnam, Haiti, Somalia. When Pres Bush talks about rebuilding Iraq and foreign aid, it is a holdover from the Wilsonian foregn policy ideas that neither political party has ever questioned. Bush has been much less altruistic than a liberal president would be. A liberal would never have invaded Iraq or questioned Iran and its nukes. I don't think that someone who listens to Colin Powell with one ear, and Donald Rumsfeld with the other is an altruist. The correct definition for that person is a pragmatist. I especially objected to Prof Lewis' comments that Kerry would be unfettered by religion/altruism. Kerry would have his environmental and anti-American groups that he would be beholden to. Kerry would also be open to influence from Muslim groups and foreign governments in a way that Bush is not. We have already seen some of this in his election supporters.
  12. I disagree with your assessment of the election. I disagree with your assessment of Bush. Apparently you have not been reading this thread or others. Your arguments have already been refuted here.
  13. I hate to reply to my own post before others have had a chance to read it, but.... I was out on a bike ride and realized that I should point out that the cynicism of the public toward the news media is also an opportunity for Objectivists to make inroads. Learn from people like Betsy Speicher and Dr. Hurd about how to communicate the right ideas. Even some Objectivists don't fully appreciate the insights of those two. With any luck we'll have Objectivists getting jobs writing for Fox news in another 10 years.
  14. I made the mistake of turning on CNN the other day and saw that CNN is in the process of interviewing any possible person with some connection to the military in hopes of finding disagreement with Bush's foreign policy. They are running stories on how National Guard troops are privately frustrated, and alluding in stories that the military may not be in the Bush camp when it comes to the election. There are lots of stories of US deaths and worsening conditions in Iraq. Most of the major networks seem to be running the same stories as CNN. Contrast that with stories on Fox news which polls the military as being almost entirely in favor of re-electing Bush. Fox is somehow exempt from a lot of the politicizing. This reminded me of my journalism classes in college. I remember once I told a female instructor in a Mass Comm class that I thought that the news media should cover more stories that took into account the values of Americans. My instructor was happy to educate me that the word "values" was an emotionally laden term used by the religious right. She thought me naive that I did not understand what her years of work in the field had shown her. It is news media mentalities like my communications instructor that are the reason so many Americans turn away from the media as a source for understanding of current events. It is unfortunate because the news media should function as a tool for helping people understand such complicated circumstances as a long-term war. Instead, in their motivation to assist John Kerry in the election, they are further increasing the cynicism of the American mind.
  15. The following is a copy of the letter I sent to the RNC email addresses provided by Dr. Hurd on his website: ------------------------------------------- According to Fox News, President Bush is ahead in the polls for the first time since the primaries. Fox credits the raise in the polls to the 'Swift Boat Veterans for Truth' revelations about Kerry's false war medals and testimony against US marines in 1970. Yet for some reason President Bush is threatening to use legal force to shut down the free speech of the Swift Boat Veterans. This controversy highlights a discrepancy between the supporters of the President, and his political adivisors views on his re-election campaign. The best money on his campaign is his value as a wartime leader defending against terrorism. The American people have made Donald Rumsfeld's biography a bestseller, and shown a willingness to support the War against Terrorism. However, the president keeps highlighting a Christian agenda as the convention approaches. I am writing this in hopes that there are other Republicans who are concerned about the election strategy that President Bush is using. I am hoping to see speeches at the Republican Convention highlighting the victory in Iraq, and most importantly the need to continue our vigilance against Iran and WMD. I am also hoping that President Bush will allow Viet Nam veterans to speak out against John Kerry. I am not interested in hearing the President's views on God or marriage. I want to see a Republican convention that tells me how the President is going to protect me against militant Islam. I want to see Dick Cheney, Donald Rumsfeld and Condaleeza Rice. I want foreign policy by the Goldwater Institute and Ayn Rand. I hope the president appreciates the veterans that are spreading the truth about John Kerry's views of the American military. Consider the words of TIA columnist Jack Wakeland as he writes about the importance of the Swift Boat controversy: ------------- "The men of John O'Neill's Swift Boat Veterans for Truth got pissed off, got organized, and got into the presidential campaign because John Kerry ran for his Party's nomination and is running for president as a "war hero." Mr. Kerry was not much of a war hero. He was no Audie Murphy, no Alvin York. He was a regular guy who simply fought with the rest of them, doing his job like the rest of them...sort of.... well... actually... not really. It turns out that Lt. Kerry was an irritatingly self-promoting medal hunter (all wars have them). And when he had enough medals he bugged out -- after only 4 of the normal 12 months of combat duty -- using the long-established rule that three purple hearts earns you the right to opt out of combat. At least two of his purple hearts were fraudulent. In a reference to the fact that Lt. Kerry frequently had people take pictures of him with his movie camera when he was off duty, some of the sailors on the boats joked that John Kerry left as soon as he had enough footage to run for office. When John Kerry got back to the United States, he jumped into the anti-war campaign -- choosing to become the top spokesman of one of the New Left's anti-American groups, Vietnam Veterans against the War. This is where Swift Boat Veterans for Truth’s other argument comes in -– their real argument; the argument that is not ‘a personal attack;’ the argument that motivates all of their arguments with John Kerry; the argument the Left-of-Center press does not want to cover. The VVAW's argument against the war was that it was a gigantic crime against the people of Vietnam. They asserted that America had for decades trumped up false ideological charges against communism -– claiming that it was a homicidal ideology that was so evil that it had to be met with armed force –- and then attempted to prove the charge by sending the U.S. Armed Forces out to meet a communist movement…in Vietnam. However, according to VVAW spokesman, John Kerry, when the American troops got to Vietnam they realized that what had been fearfully, jingoisticly labeled ‘communism’ was actually, “an effort by a people who had for years been seeking their liberation from any colonial influence whatsoever.” (John Kerry’s April 1971 testimony before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee.) John Kerry went on to explain that issues of liberty and tyranny were meaningless in a place like Vietnam, “[W]e found that the Vietnamese whom we had enthusiastically molded after our own image were hard put to take up the fight against the threat we were supposedly saving them from. We found most people didn’t even know the difference between communism and democracy. They only wanted to work in rice paddies without helicopters strafing them and bombs with napalm burning their villages and tearing their country apart.” The centerpiece of John Kerry’s Senate testimony, was that American soldiers were committing atrocities –- war crimes -– and that the crimes were, “not isolated incidents but crimes committed on a day-to-day basis with the full awareness of officers at all levels of command.” John Kerry then went on to use words that -– 33 years later –- he would say were “honest but…a little bit over the top.” He summarized the findings of the VVAW’s “Winter Soldier Investigation,” a show trial in which over one hundred men claiming to be Vietnam Veterans -– at least one of whom wore what appeared to be a necklace of human ears –- tearfully admitted horrendous crimes and atrocities to a New Left panel of judges: “They told the stories at times they had personally raped, cut off ears, cut off heads, taped wires from portable telephones to human genitals and turned up the power, cut off limbs, blown up bodies, randomly shot at civilians, razed villages in fashion reminiscent of Genghis Khan, shot cattle and dogs for fun, poisoned food stocks, and generally ravaged the countryside of South Vietnam in addition to the normal ravage of war, and the normal and very particular ravaging which is done by the applied bombing power of this country.” Coming from a man who had only seen innocent civilian die as the result of the speed and confusion of combat, John Kerry’s words were not honest. Years later, B.G. Burkett and Glenna Whitley demonstrated in their book, _ Stolen Valor_, that nearly every single war-crime claim during the Vietnam War was false. Armed forces records showed that most of the ‘perpetrators’ never saw combat, and the ones that did, weren’t deployed at the places and times of their ‘crimes.’ Because of all the attention -– and the VA disability checks for ‘post-traumatic stress disorder’ –- paid to atrocity claimants, false claims of war crimes were common. A war that America was taught to be ashamed of, became the first war from which men returned home to tell ‘war stories,’ not to fake heroism and valor, but to fake criminality and perversion. The anti-Kerry campaign of the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth is not muddying the water with mere personal attacks. They have go hold of the essence of the Democratic Party’s presidential candidate –- a man who want’s to be the commander-in-chief of the U.S. Armed Forces while the nation is at war. The Swift Boat Veterans for Truth have demonstrated the whole reason why John Kerry is running as a war hero. It is a militant evasion; an attempt to pre-empt the truth that during a shooting war with international communism, he worked to undermine America’s moral legitimacy and self-confidence. Does it matter, 33 years later, that John Kerry was once the front man for a radical anti-American agenda? Yes. It matters because the agenda for which John Kerry fought succeeded. One of the reasons why it succeeded was because, at a key moment, the 27-year-old former lieutenant put a credible face on incredible claims by the New Left that that American soldiers routinely committed war crimes and, by implication, that the entire Vietnam War was a war crime. Once these unwarranted claims became credible (in a political culture poisoned by altruism), conventional second-handed politicians -– from the Old Left and the Old Right -– became very reluctant to use American military force ever again. They were terrified that any small military misstep might, once again, subject America to accusations that it is morally debased. False claims of widespread American atrocities, false claims that communism is not a mortal danger to mankind, and conventional politicians who are sufficiently second-handed that their confidence in America’s unique morally upright standing in the world can be easily shaken -– these are the three legs of the Vietnam Syndrome. The Vietnam Syndrome was a debilitating form of American national self-doubt that prevented any use of the armed forces for national defense anywhere for over a decade and prevented the United States from going to war for any reason until after the collapse of the Soviet Union. The moral-political-military self-doubt of the Vietnam Syndrome produced two extraordinary craven acts: After the American withdrawal from South Vietnam, Congress made certain that there could be no re-insertion of American troops to assist the South ever again. They immediately cut off all military aid and placidly watched while too many terrified Vietnamese tried to claw their way onboard too few helicopters to get out before a reign of terror fell on Saigon. After Iranian ‘students’ invaded the American Embassy in Tehran – sovereign American soil that was not defended because the Marine guards were not issued live ammunition – and took its diplomatic staff hostage, the President of the United States chatted away on television for 444 days…and did absolutely nothing. When he left office President Carter had achieved the goal proudly articulated for his presidency in his second State of the Union address, “I’m grateful that in the past year, as in the year before, no American has died in combat anywhere in the world.” The Vietnam Syndrome, unfortunately, still lurks under the surface of the American political culture. Over the past year, America has begun laboring under self-doubts about the use of military force in the Islamic World. Here and there throughout the political system, every aspect of the Vietnam Syndrome is threatening to re-surface regarding the war in Iraq. The first sign that the Left’s opposition to American self-defense was going to re-surface was when, one week into the invasion of Iraq, the forces halted on the ground. Leftist reporters and politicians, re-enforced by a cadre of retired generals, immediately descended on the White House and the Pentagon. ‘Was the force overextended? Was this the beginning of the unraveling of the whole invasion? Shouldn’t the Armed forces be more cautious? Shouldn’t they take a defensive posture?’ Two weeks later Baghdad was liberated, Saddam Hussein’s regime was gone. The disloyal Left shut up…for a while. This spring the Left saw their first clear opportunity to invoke the Vietnam Syndrome and stop the war. They were so horrified by the photographs of Iraqi prisoners being sexually humiliated in the Abu Griab prison they nearly danced in the street. It wasn’t the “Winter Soldier Investigation,” but it would do. When Sunni and Shi’ite militias rose up in Falluja, Najaf, and other cities across Iraq the disloyal opposition here in America whispered so loudly among themselves, the rest of us could hear it. ‘Was this an Islamic Tet?’ they asked worried expressions on their faces, while trying to suppress a smile. ‘What about that policy of no exit strategy, now?!’ was a question they had the urge to throw in the President’s face. ‘Exit strategy’ is, of course, another word -- the Left's word -- for retreat. The civil war that began inside America during the Vietnam War has not ended. American’s are still divided over whether or not their nation should be defended -– whether or not it is _worthy_ of being defended –- against foreign aggression. In this the deepest public debate of the election season, the Swift Boat Veterans for Truth are showing us exactly what we need the most to see. They are unmasking John Kerry as the ultimate war time anti-hero; the last man we want to have in charge of our national security at the moment our nation has begun to waiver in its commitment to fight Islamism." -- Jack Wakeland (Jack Wakeland is a columnist for the Intellectual Activist.) http://www.intellectualactivist.com RNC official, Thank you for reading my letter of concern, Carl Snyder
  16. This is the first time I think I have really understood why so many Vietnam Veterans are so opposed to Kerry. Once again Jack Wakeland has the key points. It also highlights another important issue. John Kerry granted a degree of legitimacy to the Winter Soldier Investigation, which in turn psychologically undermined our ability to use military defense for the past 40 years. How strange that a science fiction movie about a Manchurian Candidate is currently playing, while we have a real story of such a person here. Mr. Wakeland your material is more valuable to me than PJ O'Rourke, Michelle Malkin, and Walter Williams put together. Or to put it in the form of an Objectivist Student equation: JW1 > P'OR2 + MM1 + WW2 Looking forward to more.
  17. I think you either misunderstood my comments or Dr Hurd's article. I am a qualified Bush supporter, because of the War on Terror and his foreign policy team. Dr. Hurd's comments were that Bush was failing to adequately defend his side against unfair attacks. To say that it is a 'win' that Bush is making such a mistake would be akin to saying we should cheer when Rearden is altruistic and gets punished for his mistakes in Atlas , or we should cheer that Bill Gates is penalized when he tries to use utilitarian arguments to defend his company, or that Martha Stewart is in jail because she did not hire Thomas Bowden. I do not think Objectivists are yet convinced of the virtues of the Bush foreign policy team. This is a group of people that turned things around. We went from attacks on our home soil in 2001 into one of our more brazen enemies, bereft of his supporters, cowering in a hole in the ground in 2003. There was a lot of work in between those events that history will record correctly. The problem is that the American people need to appreciate the Bush team now. I am sure that had we not had Team Bush, then there would be a lot more dead in Israel and India from attacks. I would even venture to say that the secular cities of Turkey would now be Holy cities under Muslim control. While our military did not directly intervene in those areas, you cannot discount the power of backbone that our examples in Afghanistan and Iraq provided to the free nations in that region. Would Israel have finally cracked down on the leaders of Hamas without our example to follow? Would India and Pakistan be cracking down on terrorism without having U.S. advisors to assist them? Would we know the names of the leaders of the student movements in Iran that are hoping to end their nations theocracy? There were many activities behind the scene that need to be credited to the work of heroes like Cheney, Rumsfeld, and Rice. BTW, it is easy for Kerry to criticize the Bush team for having unresolved issues. But our middle-east problems took a long time to develop and won't go away in a four year period, even under the best foreign policy team. Unfortunately those who know of the virtues of team Bush are slow to speak, or do not have large audiences. You cannot say it is a positive that the president does not have advisors who are capable of presenting the virtues of our foreign policy leadership. They need someone like Jack Wakeland on their team to tell it like it is. Hopefully there are enough voters who have the objectivity to weed thru the misinformation, understand the issue, and vote accordingly.
  18. See the article Bush: Playing to Lose. Do you think Bush needs help with his election strategy? I am hopeful that he will come up with something good for the convention that will present why occupying Iraq is important. I'm more than a little concerned that his strategy will be me-tooing Kerry. I recommend everyone write to the Republican committee url at the end of the article. I'm going to send Hurd's comments to them and also Jack Wakeland's (if that is ok Mr Wakeland?). http://www.gop.com/ContactUs/Default.aspx
  19. I agree, and it also supports my argument that the industry needs to unite to work against the negative barriers imparted by government. Genetics is so life-giving, I cannot believe it does not have its own lobbying movement. Perhaps that would be a good job for me to transition myself into.
  20. I have not heard any quality free market arguments originate from him. He seems better at rehashing material written by other people. I look for new material when I look for interesting spokesmen on the right. Capmag has been good at getting some of the non-Objectivist writers material linked on their forum if you want to see some examples of good material. Keyes is pretty strong on the religious stuff. I hope he never becomes a serious candidate for president.
  21. I was following a discussion between Betsy and Argive99 in the Current Events forum and their points on the speed at which new ideas move thru a culture got me thinking.... I have in the past contacted a few bioscience companies about jobs. Although they expressed interest, they also warned that bioscience was not growing as quickly as many people thought. I thought that reply was strange, and then I saw it again in the media in the form of a quote about 'the bioscience bubble' being similar to the 'tech bubble' of the 90's. It seems that many people think that bioscience cannot grow very quickly because there is not enough interest in it. But when you look at all the lost opportunities in the bioscience world, you have to wonder what kind of difference could be made if there were an alliance between committed companies. For example, any health problem has an answer in bioscience but if you browse thru the health section in a bookstore there are few books that address this. Also there is little work being done to market the current breakthrus in bioscience. On the contrary you often see things like food manufacturers putting labels on food assuring the public that they do not use genetic engineering (as if g.e. is somehow bad). An alliance between companies could do things like boycott companies that badmouth genetics. It could also sponsor scholarship on the possibilities of bioscience (A scholarship for students would be a very good idea). How about industry awards for the best bioscience publications? I have to wonder how bioscience companies expect markets to form, if they do not start getting the public excited about bioscience. As I see it the amount of money that flows into bioscience is a pittance compared to what we could see. For example, how many people spend large amounts of money on spurious products like Coral Calcium and other alternative medical cures? With better information that money would be spent on products that actually do improve health. There are huge markets out there for the entrepreneur with the right skills in spreading his ideas.
  22. For those of you protesting against Bush's concessions to religion may I present the next Senator from Illinois: Mr Alan Keyes One Nation Under God This is the guy who once said that opposition to abortion was the hallmark of his run for the presidency in 1996. Considering the real chance that he will be a Senator perhaps there should be some concern over handing him a bully pulpit from which to preach? I feel sorry for voters in Illinois. BTW, since Republicans are pitting him as 'The Future of Republicans' running against 'The Future Democrats', I wonder what future Republicans we can expect to run for president if the Bush team goes down to defeat? If you think Bush is religious there are far worse in the wings.... On the positive side, I could see Rumsfeld making the transition to VP candidate in 2008 very easily if his name stays in the public eye. Often members of a successful presidential cabinet will make a run for Presidency. But if the Bush team only gets 4 years, will the public remember them in 2008? Or will media hounds like John McCain steal all the thunder?
  23. By "real Republican" I meant actual people that have influence in the Republican party, as opposed to their depiction in the news media. I've met a good amount of rank-and-file Republicans, and a few in leadership positions here in Arizona. Many are Objectivist sympathizers. From my activist days I also know of organizations such as: Republicans For Choice, The Goldwater Institute, etc. I am concerned that people are getting skewed ideas about how religious Republicans actually think. Very few of them are concerned about abortion or gay marriage as a major issue. Most of them are just people with good values who happen to have a very undeveloped sense of philosophy. When presented with important choices, however, they do know how to make decisions. That decision making process does not usually involve religious authority. I've had some interesting experiences with Mormons and their respect for reason/education. Mormons are very politically astute, but the Mormon church will never come out and publicly endorse a candidate. I had a Mormon friend once tell me that a lot of Mormon church leaders were "privately" pushing for Dick Cheney early in the 1996 presidential race. That surprised me since Cheney was not religious and was up against candidates like Bill Bennett and Pat Buchanan. Also the head of the Goldwater Institute is a BYU educated Mormon, and that has not affected his political career in the least. (I've also heard that Mormons have a great deal of respect for the Jewish faith and view themselves as a variant of that faith. I'd be curious to hear from former Mormons on this board, if their experiences support that.) America does have a religious influence. We are not Canada. We do have the quirk of religion taking the place of philosophy among the poorly-educated Dewey graduates. I liken religion to the slavery movement in early America. It is a passing anomoly that will be gone in 150 years, when Objectivism will finally reign. Children will say "Were there really that many religious people in America?" Until then, we have the in-between stage where religion is a reality.
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