Jump to content
Objectivism Online Forum

Reblogged:Blog Roundup

Rate this topic

Recommended Posts

A Friday Hodgepodge

1. Since the Islamist atrocities of October 7 started the war in Israel, the Ayn Rand Institute has been producing excellent content at an astounding pace, to the point that even those of us who pay attention are having trouble keeping up.

Recognizing that problem and the need for more clarity on that issue, ARI has produced a landing page of ARI's Resources on Israel, Palestine, and the Middle East.

By coincidence, the first one listed, a podcast (embedded below) on "Why Iran Fuels the Mideast War" happens to be the latest of their offerings I've listened to.

I am glad Nikos Sotirakopoulos, a relative newcomer to Objectivism, participated in the discussion, because I am sure many thoughtful people are as perplexed as he was (at first) by ARI's longstanding contention that Iran is the main driver of the problems in the Middle East. His raising of the issue sets up the explanation very well.

2. It's only one of three posts Brian Phillps took to address everything that was wrong with an editorial, but "A False Premise not Supported by Law" takes to task a very common misconception:
The author cites zoning, density restrictions, road standards, height limits, and more as examples to support his position. He wants us to believe that such laws are proper and just. Why? Because they are the law and the courts have upheld them.

The fact that a law exists does not make it proper, just, or moral. Slavery was once legal, but that did not make that vile institution proper, just, or moral. The Nazis exterminated Jews and other "undesirables" in accordance with the law, but that did not render mass murder proper, just, or moral.
The example of slavery reminds me of a favorite strawman that anti-capitalists like to bandy about: slave markets.

The fact that that an institution or practice -- like selling people on a market -- has some of the trappings of capitalism does not mean it is, in fact, capitalism.

Indeed, Ayn Rand's definition of capitalism blows the whole slavery-as-capitalism narrative out of the water for anyone who gives it a moment's thought: Capitalism is a social system based on the recognition of individual rights, including property rights, in which all property is privately owned.

Laws permitting slavery are not capitalistic because they violate the rights of the enslaved, and slave markets are no more capitalistic than markets in, say, stolen goods for the same reason.

3. Jaana Woiceshyn argues that "If we want peace, we need capitalism," drawing on Ayn Rand's definition of capitalism as stated above:
Hamas and the Palestinian Authority don't want a Palestinian nation that is capitalistic: free, enterprising, and prosperous. Because their goal is to destroy Israel, they don't want to give up their dictatorial powers to condemn their people to poverty and to sacrifice them while channeling the international aid for the elimination of Israel (and pocketing part of it).
Woiceshyn recognizes, but is not deterred by the near-universal opposition capitalism faces in the cultures of the West and the Middle East today.

4. Having to move this December and drawing a blank on what to do next one day, I found a post at Thinking Directions in which Jean Moroney advises mitigating stressful events by alleviating something she calls "crow overload.".

Not to take anything away from the stressors she lists, but I was recently told that moving tops them all. I don't know if that's true, but I can see it...

In any event, that short post led to another about her efforts to make the term crow -- from early attempts to gauge the metal capacity of those relatively intelligent birds -- part of the vernacular:
Here's how the slang term works: When you are overloaded, you can say, "you're overloading my crow," or "my crow hurts," or "I can't fit another thing in my crow," or "I don't have enough crow space to deal with this." When you hear or read something that is easy to take in, you say, it's "crow-friendly." If it's mind-busting, it's "crow-unfriendly."

This simple word not only helps us name the situation easily, it also subtly reminds us that unlike crows, we have a remedy when we are overloaded.
I find crow space the most natural of these, myself. I agree that a one-syllable term is needed for what she's discussing. Read the whole thing both for that longer term and a brief description of those early crow experiments.

-- CAV

Link to Original

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.

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.

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

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