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Everything posted by Cmac19

  1. ahh I see your disagreement now. the legal definition of justice is incomplete. in that way I agree with you. nevertheless, I would still usually point to the legal definition of justice since that is the one which proponents of "social justice" are much more likely to respect. as much as I do hold objectivism's definition of justice to be much more complete it is still not very often accepted in a debate, regardless of it's validity. and unfortunately, i do not have time to go into an extensive discussion on objectivist ethics with every person who i wish to disagree with on social justice.
  2. Perhaps my understanding of induction is off kilter, but i was taught that induction was a form of logic by which one made predictions, not truth statements? if this is not the case please explain it so that i will understand the discussion
  3. Definitely, any chance you could send me a copy of the JPG? the email is [email protected]
  4. I'm with Grames on this one. Rights are indivisible from the beings who possess them. When we prevent a murderer from exercising his right to freedom of movement we do not take away that freedom, we simply refuse to respect it.
  5. I find that almost every criticism of objectivism contains some form of misrepresentation or context dropping or just outright lies. I have only heard one possibly acceptable criticism of objectivism, and it was really more of a pseudo-scientific argument against the existence of free will. still, it was interesting to hear
  6. Then perhaps I am misunderstanding Objectivism's definition of justice. the way justice has been described to me in my classes deals with the respect of people's rights and the principles of proportionality (ie, giving people what they deserve) and integrity (not giving into the whims of random emotions)... these are very similar principle's to those which are described in the Objectivist definition of justice unless i am misunderstanding it.
  7. Thank you, my argument was not that that is not a main focus of objectivism. my argument was that a) that is a horribly misrepresented and badly explained version of the law of identity and.. that while the law of identity is the basis for objectivism it is not the entirety of the philosophy
  8. My guess is that there will be a revolution much like the Bolshevik revolution in Russia.. the political situation will create so much tension in society and the government will continue to appropriate private property until even moderate supporters of the democrats realize what is happening and the majority turns against them, at that point I predict a military occupation of most of America by its own military... this is only a prediction however, and is entirely based on my cynical views about the state of current society.. perhaps things are not truly as bad as I believe
  9. I grow tired of asking this so it will be the last time... Why are we talking about this?.. I mean.. Where is the rebel base?
  10. I believe the two most obvious answers to this debate, and I apologize if these have been stated already, are the innovative nature of American health care, and the QUALITY of American health care... while it is true that American's did not previous cover all of their population and spent a great deal more, they delivered a much greater quality of health care then any other nation. In Canada, even during a pandemic, such as we had for H1N1, you would need to spend upwards of 8 hours waiting in a clinic room simply to see a doctor and be DIAGNOSED. forget being treated for your illness, you have to spend all day in a waiting room just to be diagnosed. then you have to wait 6 weeks for the doctors calendar to free up, and if you do manage to get an appointment, you will probably either have recovered on your own, or died, by the time that appointment arrives. In America you can, or COULD, be diagnosed and begin being treated the same day you realized the seriousness of your symptoms... that is why socialist health care seems so efficient.. I'll bet Ford would look more efficient too if they started turning out cars before they were finished, however in that case, most people would be smart enough not to buy them.
  11. I understand that, however I am merely stating that in a law textbook you will most likely find a definition of justice very close to the objectivist definition (ie, based on proper moral conduct) whereas in a sociology textbook you would find a definition of social justice which deals strictly with economic and social equality.. my point was only that justice (as understand in law and objectivism) is very different than "social justice"
  12. Cmac19

    Labor Laws

    This is entirely true.. The British government outlawed child labour in the 1800's and this made it impossible for children to work in honest, reputable institutions. I dont even understand how the government could not have seen the results of this law coming.. did they think people would just let their children starve? or stop having children altogether? The fact that politicians schooled in the application of laws could be so stupid infuriates me beyond measure
  13. The symbol is not an indication of any sort of "membership" in a "club or fraternity" it is merely a way for people to express their approval of certain views.. I find that it is very difficult to find people in my own social circle (or classes) who have similar views to me and it would be very convenient if i met someone wearing an objectivist "labeled" piece of clothing because it would circumvent the long process of us having to become comfortable enough with one another to being espousing our philosophical views and would most likely immediately result in strong camaraderie
  14. This is possibly one of the least logical, and most insulting, criticism's of objectivism I have ever heard.
  15. Excellent symbol.. purple and gold have always been regal colours.. in fact at one point they were worn by the Praetorian guards in Rome, the first republic... well done!
  16. does anyone know where the Canadian institute is going to be located? I would assume it will be in BC so that it will be close to the ARI in California... just wondering
  17. Looking to start a local forum for objectivists in the Toronto area... any takers?
  18. The Objectivist Mirror We Propose A Better Way Colin MacDonald & Robbie Holtam If you are reading this paper then you may already know what the content will be explaining. If you do not then you are about to take your first steps towards the renaissance of your mind. The objectivist mirror is a paper in which we will use the only true “philosophy for living on earth” to investigate and explain the issues which plague our society. However, in order to properly examine these issues first you will need a brief understanding of the philosophy which we will be using. Objectivism is a philosophy which was originally created by Russian-American author Ayn Rand. Ms. Rand proposed a philosophy that ignored the supernatural and did not deal with abstract, unrealistic concepts, but which dealt only with the proper way for humans to live in reality. Her philosophy is based on two fundamentals. These foundations for her philosophy are so obviously true as to be indisputable: the Law of Identity, and the Absolute of Reason. The Law of Identity, originally proposed by Aristotle, holds that things are what they are, that reality exists, and that you cannot change reality simply through willpower. You may now be thinking to yourself that this idea cannot possibly be indisputable since the concept of existence has been questioned many times before. However, if you examine any dispute over the existence of existence you will always find the same answer. The most famous example of this debate is Descartes’ Meditations. In this book Descartes attempts to prove the law of identity by assuming that nothing he can doubt is truly existent. He arrives at the conclusion that he cannot possibly doubt his own existence, since in order to doubt his existence; there must be a being to do the doubting. In this way Descartes proves, for us, Aristotle’s law of identity. The second foundation of Objectivism is the absolute of reason, which holds that as human beings our most important attribute - the one to which we owe our progress, our civilizations, and our very survival - is our cognitive function, our ability to reason. As human beings very little is given to us freely. We are given digestive organs, but not food to digest. We are given hands to manipulate the environment, but not the knowledge of how to use them. Likewise, we are given a brain capable of logic, but the process must be learned; it is a matter of choice. If you would question the importance of logic, and many of you will, consider this experiment. Go into any wilderness, be it a forest, desert or jungle, away from all civilization, with no companion and no supplies, and completely abandon reason. Refuse to think rationally in any way; assume that food will magically fall from the sky, assume that shelter will build itself and assume that someone else will do the work of surviving for you… and see how long you last. Although philosophy will be the main topic of this paper, philosophy is practically useless if taken simply as an abstract discussion of concepts. Without being able to apply philosophy to real life, it would be worthless. For that reason we will examine a major societal issue which, although it may not be explicit, has deeply affected all of us. The issue in question is the general acceptance of a primitive philosophy throughout our society - the practice of altruism. It has become a standard of morality. Altruism here is defined in its most correct form, as a doctrine through which service to others is seen as the highest moral achievement. This is a principle which refuses to acknowledge productive achievement, which refuses to acknowledge individual happiness, but instead proposes that self immolation and self sacrifice are the only true path to proper living. Take a step back from your daily routine and examine why you are unhappy with life. Is it because a select few have the majority of the wealth? Is it because you are being too selfish and are not looking out for other people? Is it because you posses more Apple products than the children of Africa? Do you feel guilt and anger at such injustices? If you do, you must take this instant to look inside and examine the roots of these feelings. Ask why you allow yourself to be tortured by thoughts such as these. You may not like the answers you come to but if you truly consider them, with rationality as your only guide and logical, deductive arguments as your only absolute, you will find that you can solve the problem of the gray nagging feeling inside you which demands the impossible… something for nothing. Like a seed planted in a field of abundance, the thought of altruism is put in place from birth. A child in its early years hungers for knowledge about the world. It absorbs any information it can come across in its quest for definite answers. For this reason it is up to the parent to teach the child how to reason objectively, without the irrational bias which is created by our culture. The parent has an obligation to take care of the new mind. It is in their best interests, as a successful child will undoubtedly provide strong security for the parent’s uncertain future. However, since most childrearing requires a considerable amount of energy and intelligence, and since many parents were never taught the proper way to raise a child (they themselves probably being the product of lethargic and reluctant parents), the guardians will stumble through a terrifying ordeal of trying, and ultimately failing, to prepare the child for its departure into the real world. This failure will eventually result in the dominance of a school of thought which has been systematically destroying civilized society for thousands of years; altruism. Without the knowledge to judge situations objectively and hold itself and its interests as the sole concern of its actions, the child will begin to grow in an environment of give and take, of what’s yours is mine what’s mine is yours, of which nothing you earn can be deserved because you are taking it away from those who need it more than you. This sentiment is placed in the minds of the young in order to make them compliant to the ones who have figured out how to manipulate the weak. They do this using the simplest form of manipulation; the turning of one against one’s self. From the starting gate, the child will already be unfit for the environment it was thrust into, and, without the ability to adapt quickly, will fall prey to the parasites who have adapted and evolved in such a way that they can subsist upon the good intension of others. You may be wondering what kind of “parasites” can do this, why they would perpetrate such an evil against man if man is equal and in nature good. The fact is that humans are not equal, and that altruism is only a tool used by the ones who know how to buck the system in such a way that they can trick the people around them into giving them what they desire most – something for nothing. As you are most likely on your way to work, school, or the downtown shopping complex, an example will belligerently scream in your face. These people plead with you, appealing to your apparent sense of right and wrong, to help aid the endangered pandas of Indo-China or pestilence ridden children a world away. You feel it is right to help these causes, that it is a noble thing to do and that you have made the world a better place by donating. You walk away feeling like a martyr, with a weight lifted from your heart and from your wallet. These organizations have succeeded in gaining from you everything while giving you nothing; they have successfully peddled you altruism. You walk away only with a false sense of righteousness, based on a false ideal. The money you donated does not wholly go to the charity. It is irrational to think so. The charity is a company, just like a franchise or a bank, which must pay its employees somehow and most importantly of all, must turn a profit after all such expenses. Furthermore, these street-altruism-peddlers only represent the charity in question. Another middleman for your money to go through means another division of its value. Even less is now going to the orphans of the natural disaster in a place you've never heard of, but all that matters is that you've done your part, right? In a similar vein, take the example of the boy and the beggar. A boy and his friend walked by the same pan-handler on their way to and from school. They both gave the man a quarter each day, each way, and he smiled affectionately, "thanks bud". The boy felt a shining sense of goodness and honour, that his action had helped his new friend out, but his friend felt different, hearing from his mother than these "hobos" sometimes use this money to buy rubbing alcohol in order to get a cheap drunken buzz. He did not know what this meant, but it has been instilled that this was a bad thing. He becomes wary, but still he feels that helping one in need is good. The boy, on the other hand, needed more of a fix of philanthropy, and gets a brilliant idea into his head; the more he gives the peddler, the more "goodness" the boy will receive! Before school, he ran up to his room and raided his piggy-bank, taking the one hundred dollar bill he got for his birthday. On their way to school, the boy tells his friend his plan to bestow a great blessing upon the man. The friend reluctantly humours the boy, but is struck with a binding sense of mistrust and derision at the motives behind such an act. What does it really gain the boy? He loses everything while this man gains it all for nothing. As the boy gave the panhandler the money, the friend could only look on with distended apprehension as the man hooted and hollered how grateful he was for the generosity, a look of feral greed in his eyes. The boy felt great, but the friend felt terrible; he had just witnessed the greatest evil in our world at work, the plague of altruism. There was no trim, changed man waiting on the store front stoop with his newly acquired life owed wholly to the boy, waiting to repay him for the pure moral goodness of his deeds. In fact, the boys never saw the man again after that day. The man's scam had worked and he achieved his fix. In all likelihood, it was his last fix. Maintaining a worldview such as the one of altruism will only set one up for disappointment because the one’s begging for alms will never stop, and all funds given (whether mental or physical) will have the same effects as if they were thrown down a hole. This is not to say that the ideal of good will among others is a waste of one’s life. It must be understood, however, that the ideal of altruism as we know it is impossible to achieve. To give away all of your being, your essence, your soul to someone else at no gain to yourself is illogical. At very least, you will gain a sense of happiness in your deeds. As long as you consciously realize that you are donating your time and money to those in need because it makes you happy and not simply because society tells you that you need to donate, it is morally acceptable to live this way, because you will be looking after your number one virtue: your happiness. If we are to correct the savage mistake our societies have been making all these years there are two fundamental beliefs which we must first accept. The first is one of the foundations of Objectivism, the supremacy of reason. This fundamental argument is the basis for all other knowledge, and therefore, is the first premise you must accept if you are to undo the damage altruism has wrought on your mind. The second premise, which will ultimately destroy altruism, is the moral standard of rational self-interest. To use rational self-interest as a standard for morality is the only logically correct way to apply morality in an objective and consistent way. Morality, in its true and proper form, can be defined as whatever is proper for the rightful life of a rational human being. This essentially means that anything which can be morally justified as providing some benefit to your life, without infringing upon the rights of any other person, is a morally justified action. If we are ever to throw off the shackles of our altruistic slave drivers and achieve true happiness it is these principles that we must accept and this way of living which we must embrace. MacDonald & Holtam
  19. I think this issue is easier to understand when we stop using the word "men" to describe fully rational beings, and instead use the term "persons". A severely retarded man is still a man, in the technical sense, however he no longer meets the objectivist concept of "personhood" which is essentially a rational thinking being which is capable of "self motivated self generating action" even though a baby may not be able to go out and hunt for its food, it is capable of recognizing food and choosing to eat it, it is capable of learning, of identifying objects in the world around it and, in the later stages, of simple forms of communication. the ability to learn is the distinguishing feature in this case, which distinguishes a human baby from any other animal on earth. however, a person who no longer has all of these abilities, even if they lost them in an accident, they lose their identity as a "person" and all of their rights are transferred to their next of kin... essentially they become property, much like a pet
  20. The main issue here is how much value you place in the person who you would be saving. if you like your administrative assistant then it is moral to save them and immoral to allow them to die. if you dont value the catholic priest, and indeed if you find them contemptable, then it would be immoral to save them and moral to let them die.
  21. I'm sorry, was that last question rhetorical? haha, I'm a little confused
  22. I agree, one's self and one's life are inseparable, for that reason anyone who value's their self, even at a very minor/subconscious level is placing value on life itself. the concept of value is not possible without the concept of life. the value of life is axiomatic.. you cannot dispute it without first accepting the premise.
  23. i agree with this entirely, and in this case that makes sense. however once again i would argue that you have no moral obligation to apply the heimlich, it is merely in your best interests. however, as most objectivists believe that to refuse to act on your own best interests is a failure of morality i can see why you would make this argument.. however it is possible for the same person to have two interests which conflict with one another, and in that case he must choose which is more important. for instance, i may be able to help someone without significant cost to myself, however, if that action, while not costing me anything, would interfere with one of my other goals, then i have committed no moral breach. now if you will make the argument that any time you have a conflicting goal then you are incurring a cost and the hypothetical states that there must be no cost, or negligent cost to you i will respond by stating that there will be almost no cases in which you will not have the option of helping someone conflict with one of your goals/interests. Also there is the issue of gain to onesself to be analyzed in this argument. while it is almost impossible for a case to arise where you incur no loss at all, it is also very likely that in any situation in which you help someone you will incur some sort of gain. even if this gain is merely emotional it is still important to raise the possibility that if you incur an insignificant loss by helping someone but a significant emotional gain, then it would be a good idea to perform the action
  24. I still have issue with the fact that while one does not act to gain life, one still acts to keep it. if you are given something (ie, you do not act to gain it) but then act to keep it, does that thing not have value?
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