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Knight Attrition

"Native Americans"

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I thought you had rejected all collectivist conclusions. Or does your individualism only extend to atrocities by Indians?

I think it's fair to say that neither side (settlers or Indians) were fully committed to the principles of individual rights.

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I think it's fair to say that neither side (settlers or Indians) were fully committed to the principles of individual rights.

Fair to say indeed.

If I can ask then, consider European history.

If the settlers (and yes since while I know the names of some of them I do not possess first hand knowledge of their intent so I am naming them as a group) came to North America and found a thriving culture different from theirs yet equivelent in individual rights (not Europe's strong point either) do you really believe they wouldn't have exterminated the current occupants and taken their land just the same? Given the histories of witch trials, inquisition, conquest & brutal religious atrocities is there any basis to believe that European settlers had peaceful intent when they found indigenous cultures living on land they had a purpose for?

You believe that if they found a culture equivelent to their own, with written histories and land ownership concepts and such the settlers would've said... "well lads.... looks like this spots taken, best be moving on"?

Since one of the basic premises of Objectivist morality is anti-force, anti-coersion, anti-murder and pro-property rights I'm assuming that's what you're saying.

I find it nearly impossible to believe this from what I know of history but the right back up facts could convince me.

Edited by QuoVadis

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If the settlers ... came to North America and found a thriving culture different from theirs yet equivelent in individual rights (not Europe's strong point either) do you really believe they wouldn't have exterminated the current occupants and taken their land just the same?
It is almost certain that they would not have done so. We can consider the British rule in other places in the world, and see the range in the type of control they took in various parts of their empire. As for "extermination", that's simply bull anyway. Edited by softwareNerd

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It is almost certain that they would not have done so. We can consider the British rule in other places in the world, and see the range in the type of control they took in various parts of their empire. As for "extermination", that's simply bull anyway.

Poor choice of words with extermination as it perhaps implies genocide. Apologies.

When I think of "extermination" I think of getting rid of by any means necessary, expediant and convenient whether the getting rid of included death or displacement (I work in restaurant s so..you know.. :) ) which I think we can agree is what happened.

Neither am I saying that the "atrocities" of the settlers haven't been exaggerated or blatantly lied about.

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If the settlers

...

came to North America and found a thriving culture different from theirs yet equivelent in individual rights

...

do you really believe they wouldn't have exterminated the current occupants and taken their land just the same?

I really believe they wouldn't have. I base that on the fact that they encountered a culture that was inferior to theirs in terms of respect for individual rights, and even then did not exterminate them and take their land. So if you present them with an even better hypothetical culture, I see no reason to assume that they would suddenly act worse. In fact, I think it's entirely plausible that because the Indians were religious non-entities (simply pagans), they did not suffer from the religion-inspired persecutions that e.g. Protestants in France enjoyed.
You believe that if they found a culture equivelent to their own, with written histories and land ownership concepts and such the settlers would've said... "well lads.... looks like this spots taken, best be moving on"?
I assume you're familiar with the Indian Intercourse Act, or Article I Section 8 of the Constitution. Or the treaty with the Wyandotte, Ottawa, Chippewa, Munsee, Delaware. Shawnee and Potawotami. I'm only speaking of matters properly involving the US, free from British rule.

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I think it's fair to say that neither side (settlers or Indians) were fully committed to the principles of individual rights.

True. But, I think that one has to accept the fact that we (as a species) are on a trip towards what could be and ought to be; the settlers were further along that journey, and it's good that "they" won.

I placed parenthesis around the "they," because, as I already said, human beings--as a whole--are on a trip towards what is right and rational. When viewed from this perspective--the correct perspective--it's easy to see that individuals who can proclaim indian ancestry are better off in every relevant and essential way, and so too are the descendants of the settlers, who evolved into those who created the Constitution of the United States. Now, if one would believe that their individual self-esteem might be improved by knowing that a collective of indians "won" the war for North America, then, such a person would be a fool, as are any people descended from european settlers, who proclaim racial superiority for the same reasons.

True, I would agree, that the settlers were savages in their own right (if viewed holistically and collectively), however, within their ranks and amongst their minds; even amongst some "indian" minds at that time, there were the seeds of an idea: freedom; which, is an idea or ideal that has yet to be realized; however, we are moving closer and closer. Ayn Rand and her ideas are the next step and much needed philosophic guidance for the journey ahead.

It is up to us all; those who grasp, understand, and love the ideal of a nation of free men and women, to take things where they need to go such that the story of human beings goes on towards greater heights, and not lapse into chaos. The crossroads we have arrived at will make this determination; whether or not we choose freedom; whether or not we choose life; whether or not we go as 98% of all species that have existed on earth so far have gone: extinction; is up to us.

Time is of the essence! Let's not let the deaths and lives of all of humanity past and present go in vain. Let's take the next step forward; instead of looking behind for "fault." If there is any "fault," it is probably in the mirror, as you allow imminent domain to go unchallenged. If there is any "fault," then, it is probably in the mirror, as you allow the government to take more of your hard earned money. If there is "fault," then, it is probably in the mirror, as you allow the government to play "proxy-looter" for any fantastic idea that some "genius" in Washington comes up with. Essentially, there is little difference between what our government has become, and what the Indian Chiefs 200 years ago were, except that the hypocrisy wasn't there.

Let's commit ourselves to take back our freedom, otherwise, then, the fact that the indians were displaced WOULD be a moral atrocity, for there would be no existential justification for it.

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I think it's fair to say that neither side (settlers or Indians) were fully committed to the principles of individual rights.

That's a close to accurate statement, with one exception of course, but it would be extremely unfair to use it to characterize the two groups (divided by race), their differences and common attributes. For one it's not two sides: it's many Indian tribes, with different allegiances, and many white governments and groups, over a huge continent and several centuries.

And one of those many sides was very close to fully committed to individual rights.

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And one of those many sides was very close to fully committed to individual rights.

Alas, "close to fully committed" simply won't do, will it?

I'm reading a book called "Disrobing the Aboriginal Industry: The Deception behind Indigenous Cultural Preservation." It raises interesting points about the root cause of problems: the neolithic nature of Indian peoples compared with the much more advanced industrial and technological productivity of the European explorers and settlers. As for present-day issues, its central point is that the main impediment to indigenous people's development is the industry that has developed which claims it wants to help, yet actually is only interested in preserving itself. Vast sums are expended with nothing to show for it. The book also broaches the fact of a near-total taboo on discussing the real nature of the problems for indigenous people, both historically and present-day (e.g., any attempt to describe such issues being branded as "racist.")

However, before you rush out to get your copy of the book, be warned. The writers (Frances Widdowson and Albert Howard), while good at identifying major impediments to progress, have only the same old tired socialist pablum to offer as a "solution":

Addressing the [apparently irreconcilable conflicts that plague human societies] requires socializing ownership so that goods and services are produced not to obtain profits but to satisfy human need.

It's the age-old problem for all socialists. They create a false dichotomy between "obtaining profits" and "satisfying needs," obliterating the fact that earning profits goes hand in hand with satisfying needs. With the entire discussion muddied and thrown off course, we emerge with only one group's needs being satisfied: the socialists', and invariably to the detriment of those on behalf of whom such planners stood up to champion in the first place. So the writers it would seem are interested in instituting an Anti-Aboriginal Industry Industry, which will simply put funding into different planners' pockets, and still won't solve any of the core problems.

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Alas, "close to fully committed" simply won't do, will it?

That depends on where you're standing. If you're at the foot of the Empire State Building, it did pretty well. If you're standing in the US Senate, watching them debate the new Health-care Bill, it didn't do what it was supposed to, no.

Still, compared to all the others, it did great, while it lasted.

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