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JJJJ
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old collectivism = the individual is unimportant. The nation/class/race/religion is mans highest cause. A much more consistant collectivism, where the collectivist both practice and preach their collectivism in a higher degree. Examples: nazis, communists, fascists

new collectivism = pretty much subjectivism. The individual isnt per se unimportant, and the nation/class etc. isnt mans only cause. Instead its just "something in between", murky, grey, unprincipled and most importantly contradictory. A mix between individualism in some things, and collectivism in others. Examples: enviromentalists, social democrats, multiculturalists.

How are those groups individualists? I don't know much about the social democrats, but multiculturalism as I've experienced tends to say that you (i.e. as an individual) can not pass judgment on a culture's practices, no matter how innane, barbaric, or simply irrational/illogical they may be.

And environmentalism actually calls for people to sacrifice their well beings, and in some cases even their lives (or at least the lives of others) for the betterment of the environment (occasionally, they'll mention society, but that's few and far between).

Point being, both sets - "old" and "new" collectivists - still place some form of a collective over the individual. More importantly, anyone who thinks as an individual is decidedly evil.

Nothing, if you are "extreme" about something good. But its better to be a mix of good and bad(like todays collectivists), than to be extremely bad(like the collectivists of old).

If you mix milk and poison, the poison will still kill you, or at least make you very sick.

The final result of mixed premises can never be good; in a compromise between good and evil, evil wins. Period.

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How are those groups individualists? I don't know much about the social democrats, but multiculturalism as I've experienced tends to say that you (i.e. as an individual) can not pass judgment on a culture's practices, no matter how innane, barbaric, or simply irrational/illogical they may be.

And environmentalism actually calls for people to sacrifice their well beings, and in some cases even their lives (or at least the lives of others) for the betterment of the environment (occasionally, they'll mention society, but that's few and far between).

Point being, both sets - "old" and "new" collectivists - still place some form of a collective over the individual. More importantly, anyone who thinks as an individual is decidedly evil.

Youre creating straw men here. Sure, consistant multiculturalism and enviromentalism is that, but that is not what the vast majority of people are, hence, why i called them a mix between individualism and collectivism. I have a lot of friends who are fairly rational, and live productive lives, who at the same time think that its their duty to help those in most need, that the rich should be taxed more than the poor and that we should keep our compulsory military/civil service for all finnish men and that its not really our place to say whether western life is better than tribal africa. We all know people like this. To compare them with marxists and fascists of the early 1900's is a total joke.

If you mix milk and poison, the poison will still kill you, or at least make you very sick.

The final result of mixed premises can never be good; in a compromise between good and evil, evil wins. Period.

This has more to do with sanctioning the mixed premises, and not with my actual point. Yes, if you refuse judgement on a person that has mixed premises, the bad premises will eventually win. But its not the case here. Im not sanctioning the bad, im simply making the distinction between extremely bad people(communists, fascists) and the mixed people that make up most of the western people nowadays. We all have friends that have collectivist traits, but im not going to compare them with Hitler just because they "kind of" think taxes are good.

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"It is absurd to make this connection between pre-nazi Germany and the US/Europe."

I know it's not popular to say this, but I think Peikoff's thesis was on the right track. I don't expect it to play out down to the detail, but in its essence. Absurd? We're already heading for the hyper-inflation. Absurd? I think it is a failure of imagination NOT to see the possibility (again, in principle, not in exact details.) Absurd? It's absurd to stick your head in the sand as the "ominous parallels" grow more apparent every day.

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"It is absurd to make this connection between pre-nazi Germany and the US/Europe."

I know it's not popular to say this, but I think Peikoff's thesis was on the right track. I don't expect it to play out down to the detail, but in its essence. Absurd? We're already heading for the hyper-inflation. Absurd? I think it is a failure of imagination NOT to see the possibility (again, in principle, not in exact details.) Absurd? It's absurd to stick your head in the sand as the "ominous parallels" grow more apparent every day.

But the one thing lacking is the support for totalitarian ideas. What we have is a lack of support of any ideas, and the denouncement of ideas as such. Yes, this would leave the door open for all kinds of totalitarianism, but there are really no such movements with any support in the west.

Could you please break down the parallels, and give the real world examples of the pre-nazi era vs. todays west, so i can better know what you actually see that is so ominous.

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If you ask me to label a specific person, then yes, chances are that they are not the horrible, philosophical love-child of Hitler and Stalin.

But I was not analyzing my friend Bobby Joe, I was making a remark about the philosophies behind those ideas.

You don't need everyone to be a hardcore, died-in the-wool Socialist, Marxist, Collectivist, etc. If the ideas are there, you can eventually and slowly slip in the plans that will make the terrifying ideals of those philosophies a reality. It doesn't even have to be an intentional change - save until that one last man sees his chance for power, and takes it.

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If you ask me to label a specific person, then yes, chances are that they are not the horrible, philosophical love-child of Hitler and Stalin.

But I was not analyzing my friend Bobby Joe, I was making a remark about the philosophies behind those ideas.

You don't need everyone to be a hardcore, died-in the-wool Socialist, Marxist, Collectivist, etc. If the ideas are there, you can eventually and slowly slip in the plans that will make the terrifying ideals of those philosophies a reality. It doesn't even have to be an intentional change - save until that one last man sees his chance for power, and takes it.

But once again: Who is it that is going to "slip in" these plans, when there really is no one who is supporting those plans(communism, fascism or even consistant collectivism). This is THE key difference with pre-nazi Germany and todays west. In the past, you actually had fascists and communist movements, you didnt have the "lets not judge" collectivists that we have today. So once again, how are totalitarians going to take over, when there really are no such groups with any sort of influence?

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The same way it is always done - empty promises, double talk, and lots of well-spoken, well-delivered speeches.

Specifically? No idea. Hopefully, there's enough a philosophical revolution in this country to keep that from happening.

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The same way it is always done - empty promises, double talk, and lots of well-spoken, well-delivered speeches.

Specifically? No idea. Hopefully, there's enough a philosophical revolution in this country to keep that from happening.

I think it will be resisted(and not even thought about) because unlike in the 1920's, fascism and communism hadnt yet been tested in reality. Even though people lack the philosophical understanding of why communist and fascist states fail to deliver what they promise, they at least know that they do[fail] simply by looking at what happened before.

Sadly, these same people also think that capitalism has been shown to fail, hence why all this middle-of-the-road and "the truth lies somewhere in between" crap. But the people that denounce that principles matter, arent suddenly going to choose principles, not the bad, and sadly not the good.

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I think it will be resisted(and not even thought about) because unlike in the 1920's, fascism and communism hadnt yet been tested in reality. Even though people lack the philosophical understanding of why communist and fascist states fail to deliver what they promise, they at least know that they do[fail] simply by looking at what happened before.

Sadly, these same people also think that capitalism has been shown to fail, hence why all this middle-of-the-road and "the truth lies somewhere in between" crap. But the people that denounce that principles matter, arent suddenly going to choose principles, not the bad, and sadly not the good.

JJJJ, I think environmentalism and multiculturalism are potentially worse than Nazism or Communism, if that is possible. Ever heard a post-modernist professor gleefully promote a virus to painfully wipe out the population of the world and get applauded by hundreds of people at a university talk? I mean, these ideas are out there and being promoted, and they are incredibly dangerous.

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But the one thing lacking is the support for totalitarian ideas. What we have is a lack of support of any ideas, and the denouncement of ideas as such. Yes, this would leave the door open for all kinds of totalitarianism, but there are really no such movements with any support in the west.

Could you please break down the parallels, and give the real world examples of the pre-nazi era vs. todays west, so i can better know what you actually see that is so ominous.

Real-life experience tells me otherwise, sad to say.

And, with no disrespect, I will not break down those parallels for you. They are well-presented in Leonard Peikoff's Ominous Parallels. If you haven't read it, I'd highly recommend it; and you'd be better going to the source than dealing with my paraphrasing.

This is not directed at you per se, but I am also tired of defending this book with people who have a knee-jerk reaction simply because it is Peikoff, and I have yet to see a rebuttal to his thesis which has convinced me otherwise. (Nor have I seen a rebuttal that does not attack it without the critic's disgust of Peikoff showing through.) In any event, world events are, to my eyes, showing that book to be prophetic, so I'm not so concerned about proving it. Indeed, if this book had NOT been ignored/trashed for so long, today's events wouldn't be so shocking. A is A, and the parallels are as clear as the sky on a sunny day. And I'll leave it to those who can't see it to prove Peikoff wrong.

Edited by spaceplayer
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I actually "love" Peikoff, and reading and listening to him has been the biggest key in me understanding Objectivism. I havent read his book, and its on my reading list, but i'd still appreciate it if you would give a short breakdown of the parallels he identifies. It shouldnt be that hard, if you claim to support his view.

And to Thales, about enviromentalism. Yes, consistant enviromentalism is heinous, but at least over here in Finland i dont see really anyone of importance advocating anything close to that, and dont see any major support for those ideas. We have a guy named Pentti Linkola that has spouted his crap for decades here, and he has remained on the absolute fringe, as an intellectual.

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I actually "love" Peikoff, and reading and listening to him has been the biggest key in me understanding Objectivism. I havent read his book, and its on my reading list, but i'd still appreciate it if you would give a short breakdown of the parallels he identifies. It shouldnt be that hard, if you claim to support his view.

And to Thales, about enviromentalism. Yes, consistant enviromentalism is heinous, but at least over here in Finland i dont see really anyone of importance advocating anything close to that, and dont see any major support for those ideas. We have a guy named Pentti Linkola that has spouted his crap for decades here, and he has remained on the absolute fringe, as an intellectual.

You have to look at the underlying premises. Are the underlying premises being accepted? Because that tells you whether or not an idea will spread. If the underlying premises are rejected, then we will be okay, but I see lots of people who accept the idea that man is an unwelcome, impure intruder into nature. Environmentalism is HUGE today. It used to be barely noticeable as a movement just a few short decades ago. It's clearly growing and getting more intrusive in our lives.

And remember, hundreds of people applauded this guy at a Texas university. I mean, you have to take that seriously.

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JJJJ: "I actually "love" Peikoff, and reading and listening to him has been the biggest key in me understanding Objectivism. I havent read his book, and its on my reading list, but i'd still appreciate it if you would give a short breakdown of the parallels he identifies. It shouldnt be that hard, if you claim to support his view."

It's not a matter of being "hard" or "easy" but a matter of how I spend my time. If you seriously are interested in the breakdown, you can do a google search. And though I am not surprised that you haven't the book, and appreciate your honesty about that, I am disappointed that you'd say that the thesis is "absurd" without having read it, so I hope you can understand my hesitance to discuss it with you. But here is a link to a site dedicated to the book, http://www.leonardpeikoff.com/op/interview.htm, where Peikoff himself states the thesis and claims of the book. I'd rather you explore it on your own, directly from the source, rather than engage in arguments. If the book (and the author himself) doesn't convince you, I doubt I'll do much better.

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  • 1 month later...
It is not exaggeration to note the final consequences of a given trend, and with economies it tends to run along getting marginally worse for a long time then crash spectacularly and finally as the feedback loop suddenly ties into itself. (It's like a bunch of minor traffic jams suddenly achieving Gridlock.) Obama has done several things that aren't just proceeding along the trend but are hurrying that crash along very quickly, as evidenced by estimates of incredibly horrific inflation in the next 5 years if his "stimulus" gets put into effect.

Its the slippery slope as you pointed out (and the unintended consequences): What I think people also need to look at is New Zealand today and compare it to what it was like 12 years ago.

When the Labour party came to power they talked about a 39% tax hitting the top 5% of the population and it would never hit the middle class; this tax was going to be dedicated to reforming the health system. It promised that they weren't going to a cycle of a money grab and that any money raised was going to be spent frugally. Fast forward 12 years and now up to 20-30% of the NZ population are being hit by the 39% tax rate, the money is being used for more than just the health system, and there has been encroachments into the lives of people under 'caring for people'.

It is the old story - give a Socialist an inch and they'll take a mile. We only need to look at the US even under Bush; spend, spend, spend, borrow, borrrow, borrow - which is just as bad (if not worse) than tax, tax, tax, spend, spend, spend.

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It is the old story - give a Socialist an inch and they'll take a mile. We only need to look at the US even under Bush; spend, spend, spend, borrow, borrrow, borrow - which is just as bad (if not worse) than tax, tax, tax, spend, spend, spend.

Unfortunately President Obama is making Bush look like a fiscal conservative. The spending is now even more out of control and our deficits have quadrupled overnight compared to what they were under Bush. We are going to be repaying this debt for years to come with lower standards of living and less economic growth.

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I think that on this current path, we are heading something for very bad. However, I think the path will be inevitably averted.

I do think some posters are being alarmist, but their alarms aren't totally unwarranted given the nature of Obama and the powers that be now, and the powers that were for 8 years prior.

How will the path be "inveitably averted" if people don't raise the alarm?

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When the Labour party came to power they talked about a 39% tax hitting the top 5% of the population and it would never hit the middle class; this tax was going to be dedicated to reforming the health system. It promised that they weren't going to a cycle of a money grab and that any money raised was going to be spent frugally.

Anyone who believes that wealth taken by force will be spent frugally is a bigger fool than the thief.

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Anyone who believes that wealth taken by force will be spent frugally is a bigger fool than the thief.

Of course, but we are talking about Joe and Jane Average who believe that 'politicians know best' - yes, I've actually seen people on the left who have stood up and explicitly stated that if the politicians think that something should be done - that they should follow it without question.

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