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DataPacRat

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  1. TT, If I don't otherwise reply, then I'd at least like you to know that I'm saving a copy of everything you've written here to refer to when I do the rewrite.
  2. The central region of the setting is divided among the "Sephirotic Empires", which are more like regions of a similar philosophy containing a number of individual polities, comparable to the idea of 'Christendom' or 'the Islamic House of Peace'. The Objectivist Commonwealth is, approximately, as powerful as the combined Sephirotics, and is also unusual compared to them in being a (nearly) unified polity. These last three items are meant to refer more to how the Commonwealth interacts with other polities, rather than how individuals interact. That is, how the country/nation/governmen
  3. I have a basic understanding of the principles of present-day Objectivism, such as are described at http://www.importanceofphilosophy.com/ ; while a number of the fine details escape me, I at least know the basics well enough to argue for or against them. Given that the setting is around 10,000 years from now, all the terms in use in the website are translations into present-day English from whatever future language is being used. My current thought is that the 'common' in the name comes more from the common defense - that is, Objectivists believe that everyone has the right to us
  4. That's the existing article, which was in place before I joined the OA project; it's what will form the basis of any revisions, so is certainly a good place to start. One note - the setting assumes the existence of 'transapients', sometimes called 'posthumans', which are capable of thinking useful thoughts that a human brain is literally incapable of thinking. (There are various levels of such transapients, the higher levels able to think in ways that the lower ones can't.) The page describing the setting's basic rules about any conflict between different levels is at http://www.orionsarm
  5. I'm part of a collaborative writing project, "Orion's Arm", http://www.orionsarm.com/ , a science-fiction, transhumanist space opera universe set around 10,000 years from now. So far, one collection of short stories in the setting has been physically published, and more ideas are on the way. One of the polities in the setting is called the "Objectivist Commonwealth", which is supposed to be based on something approximating present-day Objectivist philosophy. While I disagree with certain of the conclusions of Objectivism, I seem to /know/ more about it than any other OA member, and so I've
  6. I'm glad to hear you say that - it seems to be quite close to my own recent insight about comparing different philosophical systems to Euclidean vs non-Euclidean geometries. That 'as long as' seems to have been the tricky point, at least in the last thread; according to some of the posters, believing that some sorts taxation may provide more good than harm (when used to fund certain specific life-saving systems) is, practically by definition, 'advocating the initiation of force in society', and thus people who "believe in taxation" do not fall under your "as long as" clause.
  7. I've read a few posts, here and elsewhere, in which the posters seem to imply that someone who has learned of Objectivist philosophy, but still disagrees with their interpretation of any given Objectivist principle, is necessarily therefore somewhere in the spectrum of irrational to immoral. I'm not talking about monsters who think the entire world should be enslaved for their benefit; but much smaller disagreements, such as between an Objectivist and a secular humanist who disagrees with the Objectivist about various political issues. If you present an argument based on Objectivism's axiom
  8. I apologize that in my desire to maintain my privacy, I have allowed myself to be so unclear that I have failed to communicate very well, allowing for this misinterpretation. I will now try to clarify. I have what I suppose we can call my Chronic Condition, which is what limits my earning potential to its present level. In addition to that, I have had several, and expect to have more, Acute Episodes, requiring modern hospital care for my life to continue. The former is what limits my income to its present level; the latter is what, if I had to directly pay my own medical bills, would have requ
  9. It appears that we've reached the point where we're simply going to start repeating our assertions at each other, possibly interspersed with "Sez you" level sniping at the other's claims. As I said just above, either you accept my claim that I require medical care beyond that which I can afford to pay for in order to simply stay alive, or you don't. If you do accept that, then the rest of my argument follows. If you don't, if you believe that I'm lying about my medical needs, then ask yourself this: what possible benefit could I get from making such a lie? And, even moreso, could any possible
  10. I'm aware of that belief. And, as long as I maintain my privacy by not publicizing certain details about my situation, you will continue to lack the evidence that would change your mind, and so it will be quite reasonable for you to disbelieve me on that point. However, consider this: I am the one and only DataPacRat in the world, and so my posts here under that name are tied to my whole online identity. I consider the benefits of having a reputation for never trying to deceive another to be worth a great deal, and so I do my best to never lie, and, whenever I discover I am mistaken about s
  11. That is why I added the caveat about wiggle room for that classic dilemma. When there /are/ third choices, in which it's possible to survive without violating anyone else's rights, then of course that would be the preferred option. I believe some previous posters in this thread disagreed with the point about whether the standard is all lives, or one's own life, so I trust that you won't mind that I won't take your word on that issue being settled. I'm used to being called weird by ordinary folk; I find it amusing that I'm so far off the charts that even Objectivists (who, re
  12. Precisely. And, in my posts above, I have described the circumstances that are required for me to continue to live - and, outside of those particular circumstances, the way I choose to go about living, my morality, is very close to the Objectivist system. I'm all for reducing government, getting rid of what taxes are possible, and generally avoiding interfering in anyone else's life, and pretty much any other aspect of Objectivist philosophy you'd care to describe... /after/ my survival needs are met. The main argument going on here seems to be different assumptions on what is required to s
  13. I find that statement interesting, given that I acquired the idea of survival being a pre-moral choice... from Rand's own philosophy. From http://www.importanceofphilosophy.com/Ethi...alStandard.html : "To every living thing, there is one primary choice, and that is to live or not -- to engage in the action required to further its own life or to engage in action that destroys its own life. The only other alternative is death. Choosing life as your standard of value is a pre-moral choice. It cannot be judged as right or wrong; but once chosen, it is the role of morality to help man to live t
  14. Responding directly to your questions: Were I to be without modern Western medicine, I would die. With it, I would live. If I had to pay any significant amount of cash for insurance or individual treatments, I would not be able to afford it, and thus would not receive the health care, and thus I would die. Responding to your non-questions, I plan to live forever, or die trying. Reason is one of the greatest tools for helping me survive, and the better I can hone my reasoning abilities, the more likely I will be to survive. I am hear to learn what I can; and thus, even if I'm not persuaded t
  15. Given that you have previously demonstrated a lack of understanding of a point I raised, I do not expect that you will understand my reply to this question, let alone agree with it. However, I've found it quite useful to re-examine my beliefs every so often, and have gained the occasional new insight from doing so, so I'm writing this post more for myself than for you. And, who knows, maybe I'll manage to communicate something to you - it's said that you don't truly understand an idea unless you can describe it to your grandmother. I'm going to make a differentiation between "needs", that w
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