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  1. Like
    JayR got a reaction from Harrison Danneskjold in Holy s*^%, I can't believe I just completed [....]   
    I quit drinking. Might not sound like much but that's a big deal for me.
  2. Like
    JayR got a reaction from JASKN in Holy s*^%, I can't believe I just completed [....]   
    I quit drinking. Might not sound like much but that's a big deal for me.
  3. Like
    JayR got a reaction from JASKN in Objectivism and homosexuality?   
    Gender roles are societal or cultural, and therefore not metaphysically given. Saying a man has a role in sexual reproduction, while true, doesn't make him duty bound or morally obligated to fill that role according to Objectivist ethics. Reproduction is not the standard.
  4. Like
    JayR got a reaction from bluecherry in Objectivism and homosexuality?   
    Gender roles are societal or cultural, and therefore not metaphysically given. Saying a man has a role in sexual reproduction, while true, doesn't make him duty bound or morally obligated to fill that role according to Objectivist ethics. Reproduction is not the standard.
  5. Like
    JayR reacted to Tyco in Osama bin Laden dead   
    It's regretful that there exists doctrines to lure young men into evil jihad, it's regretful that he planned terrorists attacks, it's regretful that countless lives have been lost trying to apprehend him, regretful that soldiers had to take up arms and extinguish a life at all. When the situation concludes (OBL dying is sort of the conclusion), my overriding impression of the entire affair is one of sadness.

    When you read the paper and you see that a murderer has been executed in a state prison, do you crack a big smile and feel the need to celebrate? I doubt it. When I read such things, I feel regret that justice needed to be done like this (even though it was fair), compounded perhaps with relief (that there's one less danger in the world) and quiet approval. But certainly not joy or delight.
  6. Downvote
    JayR got a reaction from 0096 2251 2110 8105 in Sam Harris Destroys Christianity 4 mins   
    Say what you will about Jesus, but Im not going to sit back and allow you to speak about Posiedon and Zeus that way!
  7. Like
    JayR got a reaction from ttime in Right and Wrong   
    It would take an international effort to refute such a comment.
  8. Like
    JayR got a reaction from Element in Epic Rap Battles of History   
    Productivity eh? oh well,
    I bomb atomically, Socrates' philosophies and hypothesis cant define how I be droppin' these mockeries...
  9. Like
    JayR reacted to CapitalistSwine in War Brutality (Warning Disturbing photographs)   
    Wouldn't be the first time.
  10. Like
    JayR reacted to Zoid in A Respone to nihlism?   
    Wow, this guy has the philosophy of... well, pretty much every Final Fantasy villain ever.

    First, I wouldn't say the person in the video he was responding to is a "moral nihilist" - as you said, he's a utilitarian who seemed to be advocating "the greatest good for the greatest number." In any case, Rand didn't write much about nihilism because there's not much to write about - it's not even a belief, it's the negation of belief. In a sense, the whole of her philosophy is her response to nihilism; by giving answers to the major questions about existence, knowledge, human nature, and choice, she shows that there are meaningful solutions to these problems.

    As for the claims made in the video, where do I start? It's difficult to count the number of terrible premises he's arguing from. To me, the four most egregious ones are:

    1. Ethics is about minimizing the suffering of the collective.
    2. Real happiness doesn't come with "a price," i.e. proper happiness is automatic.
    3. Life is the story of the "haves" exploiting the "have-nots."
    4. The fact that life is finite makes achieving values impossible.

    Of course, Objectivism rejects all of these claims:

    1. Ethics is a code of values to guide man's choices, with the goal of furthering his life. While to a rational man, the flourishing of other people is a value and the suffering of other people is a dis-value, neither is his fundamental concern. The existence of suffering does not eliminate the possibility of a happy, moral life (our friend would contest this, of course - see (2)). It's not hard to see, then, why the Objectivist ethics regards a man who would destroy all life in response to suffering as pure evil.

    2. Because life is a process, it requires effort. Thus, there can be no such thing as "happiness without a price tag." It's also not true that pleasure is solely the result of staving off suffering. I think everybody knows athletes who are already in excellent health who still enjoy working out, or an older man who hasn't retired because he loves his job too much.

    3. The world is not a pie over which people fight for fixed slices. One man's gain is not another's loss. This is the principle that makes benevolent interaction between human beings possible. This is covered extensively in "The 'Conflicts of Men's Interests" in The Virtue of Selfishness, so if you want an extensive rebuttal to this point I would read that, if you haven't already.

    4. While the observation that everyone and everything we value will be no more someday is depressing, it doesn't negate the achievement of values over the course of one's life. Again, life is a process, not an end result. We seek productive work, hobbies, and the company of friends for the time we will spend enjoying them, not because we expect them to be eternal. Making this argument is like saying that you can never enjoy a movie, because it will be over in two hours.

    The most disturbing thing about this video to me is how many up-votes it has. People are scary sometimes...
  11. Like
    JayR got a reaction from Dante in Can art exceed the beatuy of Nature?   
    Good thoughts here. Absolutely. Why should the objective evaluation of the beauty of nature be any different than than any other objective value judgement. The necessary requirements being the understanding of the absolutism of existence seen through a perspective that takes the nature of consciousness into account.

    more of my (probably subjective) thoughts:
    The first time I visited New York I was blown away. But for me at least, theres something about the natural world that has more effect on my sense of life. The only way I can describe it is this: New York city as beautiful and inspiring as it is, is already there. Once its known to me, theres nothing more it can offer. I already have my life to focus on, and theres nothing more I can add to it, or gain from it. It gets old. Theres something about the stars, or the wilderness that to me will always be new, a never-ending quest for understanding or contemplation.

    I realize this is all a "feel" that I get and probably completely subjective, but to have a sense of never-ending wonder, whether it be scientific/esthetic (my love for astronomy) or physical and challenging like sleeping in a tent somewhere, its a personal thing, and the only sense of immortality this athiest has found.
  12. Like
    JayR got a reaction from Grames in The Illusion of Free Will   
    Grames, you should write a book on Oist epistemology, Id buy it.
  13. Downvote
    JayR got a reaction from Jacob86 in The Illusion of Free Will   
    Grames, you should write a book on Oist epistemology, Id buy it.
  14. Like
    JayR reacted to Alfa in Amazing display of human potential in martial arts   
    Absolutley, I think he's one of those guys who make it look like and actual sport and not WWE wrestling. He seems to always be respectful and gracious. It's like...

    Outside the ring:

    And inside the ring:

  15. Like
    JayR got a reaction from dream_weaver in Validating Axioms with a Co-Worker   
    Chapter 6, paragraph 5, sentences 1, and 2.
  16. Like
    JayR got a reaction from Imogen in Raising Kids & Objectivism   
    Violence, even mild violence is not an objective method for dealing with children. What youre teaching them is that some activities are intrinsically wrong, and must be punished. Its no different than "teaching" a child that he cant eat pork because the "sacred tablets" say not to. Objectivity is the volitional adherence to logic, not refraining from activities for fear of painfull repercussions.
  17. Like
    JayR reacted to DanLane in Private property rights in natural resources   
    So the land is the fruit of the state's labor?
  18. Like
    JayR got a reaction from LoganCale in Luck   
    "Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity".
    I dont know who said that, but I like it. There are no mystical "forces" affecting anyone, no cosmic scale to be balanced, just free will and causality.

    added on edit:
    Apparently it was Seneca, a 1st century Roman (stoic) Philosopher.
  19. Like
    JayR reacted to 2046 in Discrimination...   
    I guess I have to get my shots in too.

    I appreciate your post too, but just to clarify, no, no one has suggested you're explicitly promoting a “liberal dictatorship” (that would really be a contradiction in terms, we Objectivists are ultra-progressive liberals, actually.) What I was trying to communicate, however, is that the interventionist premises you put forth logically reduce to totalitarianism (in other words, it was reductio ad absurdum.)

    Of course. But saying “we didn't mean it, we thought we were making the world better” when you wake up in a world of concentration camps and gas chambers is too little too late. Do you think historical dictatorships happened because some people woke up one day and went "Hey, let's take away all freedom because we're evil people. Yeah that sounds like a good plan."? All I'm suggesting is that you stop working toward goals that necessarily will end up as something completely opposite from what you claim to want.

    But what is “arbitrary?” Arbitrary means: without proof, or rational justification. Something that is not grounded in reality and logically derived and validated is arbitrary. Arbitrary laws are exactly what you advocate.

    Actually, “the people” are not the government. The government is not “us.” This is a clever phrase to throw ideological camouflage over the reality that the government is that apparatus of coercion in society. If “the people” are the government, and “we” are “the people,” then anything the government does is good and voluntary because it is only us doing it to ourselves. We are spending "our" money, and taxing "ourselves." The Jews in Nazi Germany must have not been murdered, but voluntarily committed suicide, since their government was democratically elected. If 51% of us decide to loot and kill the other 49%, then it is right because "we" decided and the "Will of the People" is sacred, the standard of value, being that it is right exactly because the majority decided it.

    But no man may vote away the rights of another man. And no representative can said to have rights which his constituent that voted for him does not himself possess. In short, what determines what is proper and improper for governments to do are, in essence, the same principles which differentiate the proper from the improper actions of the individual. Government has no more right to tax, ban discrimination, nationalize industries, and violate rights in the way you described than I do.

    Appeal to consensus.

    Objectivism does not posit that everyone will own their own private road. This does not even seem possible, at least not in this dimension. What Objectivism does posit is that transportation is a good and it is not somehow magically exempt from the laws of economics, by some undefined manner. Among the most absurd objections to the de-socialization of transportation, is that without government we would all just ram into one another. This is nonsensical because the reason we don't ram into one another is that that would be stupid, not because the government passed a law giving them a compulsory monopoly of all roads and highways to be funded by taxation.

    A second point, is that we do not posit or advocate that there “be no rules” on roads or otherwise. What is a more obvious initiation of force than ramming my car into your car? Road companies have a financial need to attract customers and thus to have safe roads. Your argument invoking the Congo is a strawman. You seem too smart for this. You really ought to familiarize yourself with some literature on the prospect of a free market in transportation before throwing up the usual fantasy objections like: “But what if the road owners made us all ram into one another, or what if they had some crazy rules like we all should drive in reverse, or what if all the owners never let anyone drive and we were all stuck, or what if there were a road from Maine to San Diego and they never let anyone on it and the country were divided in two!”

    It is only to the degree of and on the basis of individual rights that any society can have human decency. If you consider yourself a liberal and a humanitarian, then you cannot hold the collective or group above the individual. It's one or the other. Either the individual has a right to exist for his own sake, or he doesn't. Either he owns his own life and his own physical body and its product, or someone else owns him. Either he can control his life, body, and property, or someone else can. Either you believe that each individual man has value, dignity, decency, and certain inalienable rights which cannot be sacrificed for any cause, for any purpose, for any collective, for any number of other men whatsoever. Or else you believe that a number of men, it doesn't matter what you call it: a collective, a class, a race, or a State, can sacrifice an individual man for some collective good, whatever the group deems to be its “good,” it doesn't matter what you call it: a better distribution of wealth, equality, racial justice, “turmoil” of boycotts, whatever. Make a choice and don't fool yourself.
  20. Like
    JayR got a reaction from ToyoHabu in My Anti Gravitational Theory   
    How does this theory explain the moon orbiting the earth and affecting the tides?
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