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Posts posted by iflyboats

  1. I've just about come over all the way to the Peter Schiff TSWHTF school of economics. As such, I've had to reevaluate a lot of what I thought I understood about economics.

    If I'm right, and TSHTF, then a whole lot of everyone else will too.

    I'm terrified, really, that the most common reaction will be similar to this:

    <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/dr-jim-taylor/economists-are-irrational_b_352421.html">People are Irrational</a>

    The trend has been to blame the current crisis on the failure of markets and market actors to be rational. It's not even self-interest that's being criticized, but the inability to even pursue it. Mental impotence.

    This sort of criticism is typical for the left. By attributing ethical crises to mere brain dysfunction or psychological disorder, any critique can remain morally neutral. The academic left has no need to accept any rational code of ethic whatsoever, and can thus employ vain materialist deductions to draw moral conclusions. Dysfunctional brains on Wall Street = grumbly tummies on Main Street. There's no argument.

    In the context of what the next year and onward may be like (catastrophe), however, this line of thinking is very dangerous.

    I love the delightful irony of what Atlas Shrugged represents everytime I'm confronted with the possibility of facing a future ruled by these people. It's my only comfort really. Atlas Shrugged is so harshly criticized for have cardboard-cutouts as characters. I used to think as much, for the villains. "The mind is impotent" seemed to be a rather half-hearted refutation of collectivist morality. After all, in 2007 (when I first read it, but I could say 2010 too), the arguments are nuanced, the opposition is intelligent. Academia is studied, rigorous, how could anyone there say that they would believe, "the mind is impotent"?

    I discovered that such things have been said verbatim in the past, but the article I posted references the sentiment rearing its head today.

    Naturally, the answer is top-down control over individuals. The ethical reasonsing is so convoluted and so repeated and well-known here I won't bother with it.

    Instead, I wrote all this so that I can offer a pre-emptive response to the 'human irrationality' argument.

    It is this: humans are neither automatically rational or irrational, but any enduring value they produce will be the product of rationality.

    This is the cheapest of paraphrasings of something Ayn Rand said a hundred times over. It's not rocket science. In the realm of economic science, the ethical implication is that when man desires wealth, he must be rational. The purpose of economic science is to provide man with a tool to obtain wealth. Irrational men have no need for economic science, therefore.

    That is a simplification, but it is in contrast to the fantasy of the leftists: that economics is a tool to allow irrational men access to the benefits of being rational.

    THAT is the surest of any explanation I can see for why we're in this mess. THAT is the paradigm for economics we've been pursuing.

    So ENOUGH with this 'turns out we're all irrational' BS!!!

    I'm sick of these people. Yet they never go away, and they're always the same.

    This is why I think we are really in for a crisis of civilization. This is not primarily an economic collapse, but an intellectual collapse.

  2. This question may only be answerable by someone who understands computer science. I'm taking an introductory Java pogramming course and noticed a connection between Rand's theory of concepts and object-oriented computer programming. I understand an object to be an entity that has both behavior (essential characteristics) and data (meaasurements of those characteristics). When you write code for an object class, you're basically writing a blueprint for something that has some distinguishing characteristic(s) and can be used an infinite number of times with any number of possible measurements. Therefore, it seems that the field of computer science, without realizing it, applies the Objectivst theory of concepts as the basis of programming. Am I right about this?

  3. Thanks for all your replies, especially dream_weaver's quotations. I'm still on the hunt for a quote on whether Rand explicitly opposed (or did not oppose) being a sports fanatic, particularly when it comes to supporting one's school or local team over against other schools and teams.

    Leanord Peikoff said in a Podcast that Rand was a fan of Muhammad Ali.

  4. I wouldn't assume that everyone rejects Objectivism for the same reason, but I think one major reason is that they have a socially oriented view of reality ('social metaphysics') and therefore take its dimissal by acadmemic philosophers as proof of it being wrong. Their standard for whether something is right or wrong is the proportion of experts who believe it. If something is unpopular among academic philosophers, they reason, then it must be wrong because "society" considers professors in universities to be presigious. And, of course, it is ultimately the collective "mind" society that determines what is right and wrong. They don't actually identify their reasoning process as such, but that's how I think it goes.

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