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    Brooklyn, NY by way of Gothenburg, Sweden

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    Christian Wernstedt
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    VoIP and Networking Consultant

GiveMeLiberty's Achievements


Novice (2/7)



  1. This whole line of reasoning that says that since Ayn Rand (allegedly) couldn't learn how to drive a car, she suffered fear of mechanical objects, and therefore she had a problem mastering physical reality, is so crazy and arch-rationalistic that I don't know if I should laugh or cry. Miss Rand came from a country where cars were not commonplace, and she was well into her twenties when she tried to learn how to drive. I know from personal experience that it is pretty hard to learn how to drive if you don't do it in your teens, and it becomes increasingly harder the older you get. I also want to object to the idea that it could be considered a flaw of character to not want to learn to drive. I guess those who entertain this idea would rather have Ayn Rand use her time in a driving school than at her desk writing the Fountainhead. In any case, even if granting that there were some psychological problems leading to her "disability" at the wheel, it is simply outrageous have this imply generalities like "inability to master physical reality." /CW
  2. Hi Soulsurfer! I am from Sweden myself -- I just recently moved to the US. You might want to know that every year since 2000 (if my memory serves me right) there have been Objectivist conferences in Oslo, and this year in London. Most participants have been from Norway, Sweden, and the UK. These conferences have been overwhelmingly attended by *real* Objectivists. (The compromising, Ayn Rand-hating types generally stay away form these events.) More importantly, the Europan conferences have been *excellent* values in terms of content. Another good thing about these events is that one can choose how much social activities one wants to participate in. The events are structured in such a way that it is purely optional how much one wants to mingle with other people. The primary focus is always on the lectures. So when you feel ready to get your feet wet meeting other Objectivists in real life, I would recommend going to one of these conferences. (Or to the US conferences, of course, but those are usually 5-10 times more expensive to attend for someone from Europe.) Best regards, Christian Wernstedt (Goteborg, now New York)
  3. Burges, Interviewing people seems like a good idea. Can you tell something more about how these interviews are carried out? For instance I wonder what things you pay attention to beyond the person's answers to the introductory questions on your site. /CW
  4. I'm just moving to Dyker Heights, Brooklyn. This neighbourhood is well known for its exuberant Christmas decorations on private homes. That fact seriously entered into my decision to move there. (Google on Dyker Heights Christmas) Besides this, I can't wait to see the decorations on Manhattan's 5th ave along with the gigantic Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center. Wonderful times ahead!
  5. I think it is proper to make a distinction between those who call themselves libertarians or "small-o"-Objectivists, as opposed to those who say they support the Libertarian party or The "Objectivist" Center. In my experience, the former group often includes sincere but confused newcomers. I was myself once such a person, calling myself a "Libertarian" before I fully understood Objectivism. Looking back, I am certain that I never evaded anything during that pre-Objectivist period, and more importantly in this context, I refrained from activism, or supporting Objectivism's enemies. However, those who *actively* support organizations and individuals who promote libertarianism, toleration, or Ayn Rand-bashing, is a different beast. I think this category should be thrown out as a matter of strict policy, because a line must be drawn at the point where bad ideas turn into demonstrably harmful actions. The best of them might be considered to have the same status as Dagny when she first discovered Galt's Gulch: It was evident that she was not an evader, yet still she wasn't welcome until she stopped supporting the looters. There is not reason to grant those who vote Libertarian -- a party that can't even make a distinction between the US and a dictatorship -- more sanction than Galt granted Dagny.
  6. Recent great reads: Edward Cline*: "Sparrowhawk I-III". (Terrific historic novel series about the ideas and events of the United States' founding. There will ultimately be five parts, if I remember right.) Rawicz : "The Long Walk". (About a group of men's heroic escape to freedom from the Siberian gulag -- I absolutely couldn't put it down.) Mickey Spillane: "The Mike Hammer Collection" vol. I and II (hardboiled detective stories with surprising plots.) *Ed Cline, BTW, is one of the few authors who have succeeded, through years, and years of relentless hard work to achieve his own independent style as a romantic-realist author inspired by Ayn Rand. It's a truly heroic effort, and the result is wonderful literature.
  7. To me the key words here are "young" and "basic stage", and if that is the category we are discussing, yes, then I agree.
  8. Even though there may be horrors going on in a place like the mentioned channel, in my experience, when people are turned away from Objectivism because of, real or fake, Obectivists' treatment of them, the problem, in this respect, is 100% with the those who are "turned away". Those with a sincere interest in understanding the Objectivist philosophy, and applying it to their own lives, will not be deterred by other people's hostility. Instead, they will try to seek a first hand understanding of Ayn Rand's ideas (particularly by reading *her* writings), and go from there. Those who are indeed turned away from *Objectivism* (not from certain Objectivists), are in my opinion most likely out to join a group or clique, and not to seek the truth. (This is not to imply in any way that the newly introduced member is such a person -- Hi, BTW! I just think this is an important issue, because I have seen it come up again and again over the years I have been participating in Objectivist activities.)
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