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White Eurocentric Male

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  1. John Galt studied science and philosophy. He understood thought systems. I think he had knowledge of the evolution of ideas/concepts in his society. I think the changes in the Twentieth Centery Motor Co triggerd something with him. He suddenly realised how many ground some concepts already had or was confronted with the fruits of collectivist mentality trough what was going on in his company. It is said laws are un unperfect expression of how a group of people sees a perfect society. If an idea or ideology has a strong foothold, law will change in accordance.
  2. Chained because she couldn't live her own life. We are talking 50's and 60's here. Jewels where part of the attributes of an railroad tycoon's daughter. The tought of a woman wearing diamonds she bought with the money she herself owned didn't come up in that era. Dagny with the diamond bracelet = Dagny the Taggart-heir, society figure. Dagny with the bracelet of Rearden metal = Dagny the CEO who recognizes and appreciates innovation and progres = the real Dagny.
  3. I'm pretty used to hijabs too and it doesn't bother me being served by or working together with women who wear them. However in the case I mentioned, safety comes first and this can't be considered as a violation of a womans rights to express her faith.
  4. One more rule: Lab classes require you respect safety regulations. Your attire should be such that it presents no risk of getting caught in machinery, come into contact with an open flame or soak up harmfull substances. However should your religion or ethnic background impose such clothing, exception will be made and one voucher shall be deposited in your account for every lab class you attend. In a chemistry lab, loose clothing that could come in contact with a flame or soak up dangerous substances is prohibited. This is the case for the veil of moslim women. A moslim woman in Belgium sued a university because she considered this policy diminished her changes of becoming a pharmacologist. Some universities accept any clothing as long as it not inflammable, but this university said it didn't want to waste precious class-time by inspecting veils before the start .
  5. I think Plaintext is right on the spot. Because there are people who use violence against others, use of violence to prevent such actions is entrusted to policemen who work for a government chosen by the people. Assaulting a police officer is assaulting the premesis that you should bare the consequences of your violent behaviour. If you live in a society based on law, you should always try to change the law.
  6. Why are you all bashing at a law that so morally UPLIFTING? Don't you want to protecte the very BACKbone of society?
  7. Same sentiment I described in my OP, the joy of discovering aesthetic elegance in functional elegance. Notice how almost objects mentioned are tributes to crafstmenship and/or engeneering. Coincidence? The pocket knives are getting more and more meaning to me. In the old days, it where faithfull companions. Gentlemen would carry it in their pocket to cut their food while on travel because knifes at the inns where usualy of bad quality or not available(forks didn't even exist then). Sheperds used it for all cutting purposes: to cut their bread, cheese and meat, to carve their initials in their tools, to cut the branches to repair their baskets, if needed to do some surgery on their sheep and of course for self defence. Some knive makers even put croses on the handle so it could be used as a portable chapel. Seems to me like a symbol of the fate of man. You're out there, alone on your mountain. Although you've got many tools, there's one most important, one that never leaves your side: your mind. If you protect it from rust and keep it sharp, it will serve you wel. If it becomes blunt, it maybe dangerous to use.
  8. It all started just before christmass. At the christmass market a the local shopping mall, there was a cutler. He designs and makes all the knives himself. I like thing of beauty especially if they are of original design and hand-made. I really appreciated his designes and liked to watch the video where you saw him at work. My mother noticed my interest and bought me one of his folding knives for christmass. That was all it took, a new collectors craze was born. I bought my first languiole yesterday. The most elegant of all folding knives. I like knives because they are probably the first engineerd and designed tool of mankind. I like the idea of possesing an object made by someone who tought about the practical use of his creation, who looks for the best steel, who tries to get the most of of that steel, who combines the blade and the materials of the handle in an aesthetical union and who combines elegance of use with elegance of aspect. What's your pet object?
  9. I came up one day on Objectivst essays on how to survive college. It where articles explaining how relativist views influenced much of what was tought in college from physics to social sciences. I can't seem to find the link again. Can anybody put me in the right direction?
  10. I think Ayn Rand wanted to show the implications of altruism on all levels from personal life of her heroes, to the economy of a nation and the social tissue of a community. Willer is the portrait of the good men of women all over the world. Willer is the millions of people who believe in hard work, being friendly to your neighbour and sending your children to a good school. Someday they wake up and see their life savings have been stolen by the James Taggerts and Wesley Mouches of this world. It’s the scores of employees who wrote accurate reports and can justify every penny of their account who lose their jobs because top-management was less scrupulous. Willers is the thousands of soldiers who believed ‘this war will put an end to all wars’. Look around you for the Eddy Willers of this world. Look what happens to them at the office, at your local community, in college, in society. Look what happens as politics regulate more and more of our lives, as lobbying is becoming the most lucrative business. Who’s picking up the tab? The Willers of this world. Eddy Willers fate is essential to understand the personal suffering of millions of people as society gets based on relativistic morals.
  11. Seems the evidence self. Prices for plastic surgery will rise 6% in New Jersy, people will go to neighbouring states to have their surgery done. + when you have a tax you need people to collect the tax, an administration keeping account, inspectors, legal procedures against people who don't pay etc. Seems somebody wants to go to a lot of effort to collect peanuts. Maybe the whole will have a negative return.
  12. Constitutional republic or monarchy. Countries like the USA, UK, Western-European countries. Everywhere where there are free elections, free speach etc. In common language these are called democracies. I didn't know this had another meaning in Objectivism.
  13. I bought the CD box because Queen is already part of the great legends of music. It seems strange they would start again without Freddie. How would they call it? Diet Queen? Queen light? I don't know if there is a market for this now. A lot of music now seems like average price wine: it appeals to everyones taste, without hights or lows. You don't dislike it but it's not extraordinary either. I intend to make some playlists for different purposes, working out, relaxing, positive affirmations. Some song of Queen will definitly be used for work-outs.
  14. I bought the CD-box The Best of Queen. There are some songs that could be qualified Objectivist. We Are the Champions reminded me of Dagny and Rearden at their moment of glory. Especially the words : "I consider it a challenge before the whole human race And I ain't gonna lose". This characterizes Rearden's mindset while working on his metal.
  15. In any democratic country their is an ongoing debate between judgement by a a jury of the people or of professionals. I didn't give much consideration of it but I think jury by the people for certain cases is a means of democratic control. Instuting professional juries for all cases would lead to the creation of an select group that have power over others lifes. If this group would adopt false metaphysical premises, there would be no way to correct it. With jury duty you have juries from all parts of life, with both feet on the ground, not just from some ivory tower in a law school. So I think an Objectivist society would have jury duty to make sure justice stays reality-driven.
  16. A swastika is an old symbol, meaning to be a crude representation of a solar disc or a spiral. It's common in ancient Indian and Buddhist art. Hitler just borrowed it. There's also the matter of the sense of the swastika. The way the outer branches are turned, clockwise or counter-clockwise. I cant remember how it goes, but most swastikas are the the reverse of Hitler's and where considered a good luck charm. If the swastika's you are talking about where turning. Even if they where Hitler type swastikas they would form an exeption because of their historical nature.
  17. I had a dual boot system linux - windows at home for about 3 years. I tried to learn programming on my own and a linux environment was the best to do this. Since my ADSL-modem doesn't work in linux, had to have a dual boot. Now I've realised my interests shifted. I mainly use my PC for surfing on the web and for e-mail. It seemed a waste to have a part of my hard drive reserved for a system I seldom use. If you look around, there enough open source and cheap programs in windows. I think the genius of Bill Gates lies in his visonary insights in the computer market. He knew DOS was worhtwile and a window environment was the way to go if you wanted to sell computers to the masses. Maybe his imperium is based on the ideas of others and maybe there are better programmers, but he has the talent to see the comercial value. Since he got his wealth by using and developping this talent, he deserves respect. This reminds me of what happened with video tapes. Philips company had the first idea and developped it with others like Sony. At the beginning of the age of the video-cassette, you had 3 systems: VHS, Betamax and V2000. V2000 was Philips own system and technically the best by far. However, Philips main shareholders are very, very devout chrisians. They banned all sales of their equipment to studios for porn-movies. This was a desastrous marketing decision. Should we critisize the others who didn't make that mistake. Should Philips get money because their system WAS the best? Should we praise Philips because they COULD have become the biggest, PROVIDED people don't watch porn? This is just an example; I'm not saying MS is porn for geeks.
  18. I voted Ragnar and Kay. There's not much information about their couple. But it seems the most stable couple. Dagny and John Galt maybe the perfect couple, the hero and heroine meeting (and mating ) but their romance is still young. At first Ragnar and Kay's relation seems a Hollywood parody. A pirate and an actress, like the gangster and gangster girl friend. Then you discover their real character. A philosopher and a very talented actress. It's the love they have for each others intelligence and talent that holds them together, not the glamour of most sho-bizz couples.
  19. You forgot Austria. Greece could be South Europe or Balkan. Balkan = Greece, Albania and all the former republics of Yougoslavia. For Europe + Medditerranean you didn't mention Cyprus and Malta. Don't they have decent world-maps in the USA? For your poll you should decide how to chop up the world. Geographically or culturally. Geographically you should use the proper denominations like Western, Central and East European, Central, South, North Africa, above or below the Sahara etc. For cultures you should refer to language families: germanic, anglo-saxon, latin (= Spanish, French, Portugese), arab, ...
  20. I did a lot of meditation in the past and made a lot of errors due to meditation. I think I can make a contribution to this debate. Sorry if it’s a long post, but my experience can’t be summed up in a few lines. There are different meanings to the word “meditation”. The old, western meaning we see in dictionaries is based on Christian meditations. These are thought-experiments or exercises of contemplation. Meditation now also refers to a lot of eastern techniques. The eastern forms of meditation are characterised by calming the mind, concentration and awareness. Meditation is a subtle mix of inward concentration and awareness or mindfulness. Any technique that stops the mind from wandering but leaves room to be aware (to simply observe what happens) is meditation. These techniques can be visualisations, mantras, counting or consciously following your breath or even concentrating on having a perfect posture, like zazen. I would qualify the consciousness in meditation a state of relaxed (calm, quiet) concentration. The mind is undisturbed by random thoughts but not absorbed in concentration. To illustrate the difference between meditation and concentration we could compare it to biking. Learning to ride a bike demands hard, voluntary concentration. The same would be true for specific training like improving maximum speed for the final sprint or learning the best way climb. At that time the minds attention is fully occupied by one or two actions. The cyclist is conscious of what he is doing, he tries to do something very specific (e.g. maintain a certain rate of pedal strokes per minute or give a maximal push with every stroke). The meditative state would be more a race while in perfect physical and psychological shape. The mind of the cyclist is free from anything not connected to the race and the pre-race nerves are gone. His attention flows freely from on aspect of racing to the other: from the distance of his competitors to the state of his body, from his pace to his race strategy, from the shape of the dangerous curb ahead to the movement of his arms…. The cyclist is not conscious of what he is doing, i.e he’s not thinking now I’m doing this, now I’m doing that. As an Objectivist, you should ask yourself why you want to meditate. What are you hoping to gain from it? It is also important to determine what amount of effort and time you are willing to trade for what result over which period of time. Churchill liked to paint and smoke cigars. This was all his mind needed to lead his nation trough WWII. Meditation would probably have had negative effects for him, diverting too much of his time away from his real task. Psychologists talk about a state called flow, athletes and sports coaches call it being “in the zone”. Any activity that creates flow enhances your mental and physical health. Once you find these activities, stick with them and consider them your meditation practice. This should work for almost everybody. If you want to try some ancient form of meditation: APPLY EXTREME CAUTION DO NOT look for a guru or a meditation teacher! If you want to learn some form of meditation, go to westernised teachers of some form ancient low impact work-out (yoga, tai-chi, chi-kung) or martial arts. Look for teachers who see meditation as part of their art and not as something superior or a next stage. The more materialistic their teachings, the better. They will understand you’re doing meditation to further your personal goals and will be happy with that. Be willing to pay the price. Asking a fair price shows the teacher knows the real benefits of his teaching and is willing to trade it for material benefits, without any strings attached. You talked about revamping the subconscious. True. So be careful, a lot of teachers are not in it for the money. They want to help humanity, help others realize their true (divine) Self, bring peace to the world etc, etc. Of course they want nothing in return, just the odd gift to pay the heating bill or get bread on the table. This kind will always try to revamp your subconscious according to their ideology. Meditation creates a lot of strong sensations and feelings. There is a big risk you will attach too much importance to these sensations, sacrificing reason to meditation-induced sensations. At that moment you are lost. You have lost you ability of free choice and are dependent on the intuition of the guru and surrounding group thinking. Meditation also creates a sense of non-self. The part of your brain dealing with your sense of identity, your place in space and time, your relation to others goes into relaxation. In Zen-Buddhism there is talk about the practice doing practice, without a someone to practice, doing just happening by itself, without a conscience that does the doing. All the Eastern philosophies that rely on meditation see this purely neurological phenomenon as evidence of a metaphysical truth. This truth, they say, can only be understood by abandoning conventional reasoning. I guess everybody on this board can work out the consequences of these metaphysics. So anybody here wanting to start meditation, examine the philosophy and motivations of the teachers before going to their class.
  21. From personel experience: Try a club that has body-pump classes http://www.lesmills.com/main/classes/bodypump.aspx
  22. In my high school years the attitude to Latin was the same as during aturners youth. I chose Latin and was very lucky to have a philosophically inclined teacher. We read Cicero’s work on Greek philosophy and some letters from Seneca. This was about the only philosophical education this school gave, apart from the novels of Sartre and Camus in French-class. Latin and Greek had a reputation of being brain-exercise. Latinists had a reputation of doing very well in universities, regardless which science. Latin was supposed to enhance insight in languages and linguistic intuition, methodical thinking and problem solving skills. I would highly recommend it to young people for this reason + it puts in touch with some of the best philosophers in history. As to study the classics at a later age, when you have family and professional obligations, BrugessLau summed it up nicely. Don’t forget you can combine pleasures for example; you can study the classics or Ancient history to enjoy more your trips to Italy or Greece or to appreciate Renaissance art. It is also great to see how different people applied their philosophy to life. I would like to point to a misunderstanding. The interest of European lawyers in the classics has nothing to do with old legal text still written in Latin, but with Roman law. A lot of things that seem self-evident in law, come in fact from Roman law. For example “finders keepers” comes from a Roman principle that if you found a good and the owner didn’t claim it after a year and a day, you where entitled to keep it. The notion that a “home” is more than living quarters also comes from Roman law. When lawyers have to plead about those self-evident things, they refer to Roman law.
  23. The Incredibles finally decide to use their powers, even if society wants them to blend in the masses. That's the Objectivist theme. I see it like Rearden believing in his metal, even if public opinion is against him or Dagny creating the John Galt line. The fact the Incredibles powers are innate and not developped is not of the matter. In Atlas Shrugged we don't know how the heroes got their talents. We don't know if Dagny's determination was there from birth, if she developped it or got it from education. Galt was a brilliant inventor, I suppose he would be a briliant kid in his youth. In a society where briliant kids don't get a chance to develop their full potential because every kid has to be special, the Incrdibles are a breath of fresh air.
  24. Confucius would say "man who throws pebbles at others must prepare to have head smashed by large stone". And man are you throwing pebbles!!! Most of your remarks have been countered already by collectivists and socialists. Cuba is under embargo from the US, Korean, Soviet and other socialisms are not socialism as Marx intended etc. Those may be lame arguments, but it's what leftist intellectuals will be throwing at you. I don't understand why you say European countries combine socialism and capitalism. European countries have more state welfare plans, hence more taxes but otherwise we are capitalist. Switzerland, Lichtenstein, Luxembourg, Monaco, Jersy are in Europe, so a smart European capitalist probably has it easier to evade taxes than his US counterpart. As for the politic parties of the US, your stance is everything that's not pure Objectivism is bad. Finally don't forget egoism and altruism have a different meaning for non-Objectivists. They hear egoism, they think of a short-sighted hedonist, not someone who follows his rational self-interest. You should devot more time giving exact definition of some basic Objectivist concepts and explain the basic tennets before attacking non-Objectivists.
  25. I started at high school with 2h/week classic history at age 13 and continued with 4h/week latin at age 14 to 18. In Europe, young kids having potential would be encouraged to choose the latin-greek, latin-mathematics or latin-science during high school (age 13 to 18). Things changed when it was my turn. Trough education reforms, Latin, Greek etc became optional courses. I mainly chose them to get out of art and music classes but the more I learned the more I liked it. Making the classics optionnal was the worst mistake ever in the history of education. It's cutting young people from the bedrock of our civilisation Fortunatly there are people like Aurelia who go against the flow.
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