Jump to content
Objectivism Online Forum

Counterpoint

Rate this topic


Nyronus
 Share

Recommended Posts

From the Criticisms of Objectivism Wiki.

"Nozick is sympathetic to Rand's political conclusions, but does not think her arguments justify them. In particular, his essay criticizes her foundational argument in ethics—laid out most explicitly in her book The Virtue of Selfishness—which claims that one's own life is, for each individual, the ultimate value because it makes all other values possible. Nozick says that to make this argument sound one needs to explain why someone could not rationally prefer dying and thus having no values. Thus, he argues, her attempt to defend the morality of selfishness is essentially an instance of begging the question."

I have two problems with this statement. To begin with, I am not sure on this count, but I don't think Ayn Rand ever said you have to choose to live life, just that it was your choice, and here's how to do so, and that if it wasn't, leave the rest of us alone. Second, I don't think that he understands what she means when she says that it is the "ultimate value because it makes all other values possible." If I am correct, life is valuable, because it must come before all other things if you wish to exist. Why is this important, well, to use a layman's cliche "It's the only one you've got."

Any comments?

Link to comment
Share on other sites

From the Criticisms of Objectivism Wiki.

"Nozick is sympathetic to Rand's political conclusions, but does not think her arguments justify them. In particular, his essay criticizes her foundational argument in ethics—laid out most explicitly in her book The Virtue of Selfishness—which claims that one's own life is, for each individual, the ultimate value because it makes all other values possible. Nozick says that to make this argument sound one needs to explain why someone could not rationally prefer dying and thus having no values. Thus, he argues, her attempt to defend the morality of selfishness is essentially an instance of begging the question."

I have two problems with this statement. To begin with, I am not sure on this count, but I don't think Ayn Rand ever said you have to choose to live life, just that it was your choice, and here's how to do so, and that if it wasn't, leave the rest of us alone. Second, I don't think that he understands what she means when she says that it is the "ultimate value because it makes all other values possible." If I am correct, life is valuable, because it must come before all other things if you wish to exist. Why is this important, well, to use a layman's cliche "It's the only one you've got."

Any comments?

Yes, that's the whole point to do what you will as long as it does not impede on others.

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Join the conversation

You can post now and register later. If you have an account, sign in now to post with your account.

Guest
Reply to this topic...

×   Pasted as rich text.   Paste as plain text instead

  Only 75 emoji are allowed.

×   Your link has been automatically embedded.   Display as a link instead

×   Your previous content has been restored.   Clear editor

×   You cannot paste images directly. Upload or insert images from URL.

Loading...
 Share

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    • No registered users viewing this page.
×
×
  • Create New...