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Charles J. White





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PostPosted: Thu Jul 24, 2008 9:33 pm    Post subject: Objectivist Epistemology Reply with quote

I find it rather peculiar that a section listed as "ethics" has no posts on Objectivist Epistemology. The answer my friend is found in Objectivist Epistemology. We have the power of reason, rational thought, and logic. Use the mind and ethics can be understood. Ayn Rand could help a great deal of so-called “conservatives” understand that ideas matter, not just - “more of the same”…
FF_Canuck





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PostPosted: Fri Jul 25, 2008 5:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In my experience, objectivism is even less popular as a philosophy than libertarianism. Any philosophy that totally rejects any form of altruism, even on a personal and voluntary level, is a hard sell. All the same, I encourage you to post on it - I don't think we've ever actually had a discussion on it here.
Charles J. White





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PostPosted: Sun Apr 26, 2009 8:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

FF_Canuck wrote:
In my experience, objectivism is even less popular as a philosophy than libertarianism. Any philosophy that totally rejects any form of altruism, even on a personal and voluntary level, is a hard sell. All the same, I encourage you to post on it - I don't think we've ever actually had a discussion on it here.


Why would it be a hard sell? How is peronal happiness a bad thing?
Bleatmop





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PostPosted: Mon Apr 27, 2009 5:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Charles J. White wrote:
FF_Canuck wrote:
In my experience, objectivism is even less popular as a philosophy than libertarianism. Any philosophy that totally rejects any form of altruism, even on a personal and voluntary level, is a hard sell. All the same, I encourage you to post on it - I don't think we've ever actually had a discussion on it here.


Why would it be a hard sell? How is peronal happiness a bad thing?


Why is it a hard sell? Do you really need to ask? A system that encourages selfishness over altruism? Do you really need to ask, especially when it's critiques can sum it up like that, fairly or not?
Jason Kauppinen





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PostPosted: Mon Jul 06, 2009 9:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

FF_Canuck wrote:
Any philosophy that totally rejects any form of altruism, even on a personal and voluntary level, is a hard sell.


If a person voluntarily chooses an action it follows that they've found some value to be gained from it and therefore it isn't altruistic. There are at least three or four instances of productive people in Atlas Shrugged choosing to act charitably that I can think of off the top of my head.
Mattman





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PostPosted: Tue Jul 07, 2009 4:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

FF_Canuck wrote:
In my experience, objectivism is even less popular as a philosophy than libertarianism. Any philosophy that totally rejects any form of altruism, even on a personal and voluntary level, is a hard sell. All the same, I encourage you to post on it - I don't think we've ever actually had a discussion on it here.


Depending what definition of altruism you're considering.
If you define altruism as not allowing any personal benefit, I don't believe that altruistic acts happen.
If you define altruism as benefit to others, but still permitting personal benefit, sure that exists.

No person decides to act except to some personal benefit. It may not always be apparent to you (or even themselves) but it is there.
FF_Canuck





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PostPosted: Tue Jul 07, 2009 8:18 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

That comment of mine was made almost a year ago ... and I hadn't even read Atlas Shrugged at that point. Having done so, and having had the time to reflect, I largely agree with both of you. There's nothing wrong with enlightened self-interest, which will often involve acts of charity or similar things.
Edmund Onward James





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PostPosted: Thu Jul 23, 2009 2:50 pm    Post subject: My experience with Ayn Rand's Objectivism Reply with quote

Charles White, and a few others are also on the Free Dominion forum www.freedominion.com, on which I posted the following about Ayn Rand, Objectivism, and two of her sycophants. Of course they defended her theories, which she abused because she had the riight, since she was Queen of Objectivism. Plus the fact her books sold and were made into movies.

My experience with Ayn Rand's Objectivism
Objectivism: based on Metaphysics (Objective Reality); Epistemology (Reason); Ethics (Self-interest); Politics (Capitalism).

"My philosophy, in essence, is the concept of man as a heroic being, with his own happiness as the moral purpose of his life, with productive achievement as his noblest activity, and reason as his only absolute." Ayn Rand

I read this posting "Is Ayn Rand Relevant" by Yaron Brook in Free Dominion (The Voice of Principled Conservatism) and posted a reply. But first an intro from the Wall Street Journal, followed by a piece by Robert Fulford of the National Post and University of Toronto. Then my little connection.

Ayn Rand died more than a quarter of a century ago, yet her name appears regularly in discussions of our current economic turmoil. Pundits including Rush Limbaugh and Rick Santelli urge listeners to read her books, and her magnum opus, "Atlas Shrugged," is selling at a faster rate today than at any time during its 51-year history.

There's a reason. In "Atlas," Rand tells the story of the U.S. economy crumbling under the weight of crushing government interventions and regulations. Meanwhile, blaming greed and the free market, Washington responds with more controls that only deepen the crisis. Sound familiar?...

I skip to the end of the article: "Is Ayn Rand Relevant" http://online.wsj.com/article/.....inion_main

Rand also noted that only an ethic of rational selfishness can justify the pursuit of profit that is the basis of capitalism -- and that so long as self-interest is tainted by moral suspicion, the profit motive will continue to take the rap for every imaginable (or imagined) social ill and economic disaster. Just look how our present crisis has been attributed to the free market instead of government intervention -- and how proposed solutions inevitably involve yet more government intervention to rein in the pursuit of self-interest.

Rand offered us a way out -- to fight for a morality of rational self-interest, and for capitalism, the system which is its expression. And that is the source of her relevance today.

Dr. Brook is president and executive director of the Ayn Rand Institute.

The grim mob whose fountainhead is Ayn Rand by Robert Fulford http://www.robertfulford.com/Randians.html

When I was in Los Angeles, a few years back, studying acting with the great Michael Shurtleff (who discovered talent when he was a casting director) and trying to get a grip of reality, that I was not suited for the profession, an elderly woman introduced me to Barbara Branden, an ex-wife of Nathaniel Branden, Dr. Nathaniel Branden, (psychotherapist specializing in self-esteem) who had an ongoing affair with Ayn Rand in front of Ayn Rand's husband. I read his book "Psychology of Self-Esteem" before I even met Barbara Branden or heard about all this tragic nonsense.

Barbara wrote a book about Ayn Rand and asked if I had read any of her works or was interested in Objectivism. I didn't read Rand's books but did see the old movie "The Fountainhead" with Gary Cooper. Barbara told me about Rand's life and the affair which crushed her, but still she had high regards for Rand, whose husband sat in the living room while Nathaniel and Ayn went into the bedroom.

Then Barbara gave me her book to read: The Passion of Ayn Rand. Which I did... and never saw Objectivist Barbara again. Enough troubles in my life.

The Passion of Ayn Rand‎ by Barbara Branden - 1987
Author Barbara Branden, who knew Rand for nineteen years, provides a matchless portrait of this fiercely private and complex woman.

The Official Web Site of Dr. Nathaniel Branden
Welcome to the Official Web Site of Dr. Nathaniel Branden. Discover some of Dr. Branden's most inspirational and informative work, as well as details about ...www.nathanielbranden.com/


Ayn Rand Mike Wallace Interview 1959 part 1 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v.....re=related

Ayn Rand Mike Wallace Interview 1959 part 2


http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pMTDaVpBPR0
She believed in objective reality, with a morality based on logic that is true and necessary, a standard of value. Man's reason is his guide for pursuit of happiness. She believed in "laissez faire" government, literally meaning "let do". It is a doctrine that states that government generally should not intervene in the marketplace. She was a libertine, but she had no sense of humour.

Free Dominion (The Voice Of Principled Conservatism)
http://www.freedominion.com.pa.....p?t=114628

Some organizations and forums are enlightening and fun, others are questionable. And authors are far from being as good or as evil as their characters. But when an organization is formed because people start believing the writer is as grand as the protagonist or their theories are superb, then it's time to be cautious. An example is Scientology and perhaps the Rand Organization.

Of course, I believe in Democracy, Entrepreneurial Spirit, Freedom (to a point) Definitely freedom of speech. And as I age gracefully I become more practical, invoke common sense.

However, I recall a political science professor from University of Toronto once said to me: "Yes, Edmund, practicality may work in society but does it work in theory? Academics prefer the latter."

http://onwardjames.blogspot.co.....ivism.html
potan





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PostPosted: Fri Jul 24, 2009 1:32 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Mattman wrote:
FF_Canuck wrote:
In my experience, objectivism is even less popular as a philosophy than libertarianism. Any philosophy that totally rejects any form of altruism, even on a personal and voluntary level, is a hard sell. All the same, I encourage you to post on it - I don't think we've ever actually had a discussion on it here.


Depending what definition of altruism you're considering.
If you define altruism as not allowing any personal benefit, I don't believe that altruistic acts happen.
If you define altruism as benefit to others, but still permitting personal benefit, sure that exists.

No person decides to act except to some personal benefit. It may not always be apparent to you (or even themselves) but it is there.


There is no such thing as an unselfish act, at least for 90% of humans.
chrisreid





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PostPosted: Fri Jul 24, 2009 4:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

potan wrote:

There is no such thing as an unselfish act, at least for 90% of humans.


I think you are right, and that is my understanding of Ayn Rand's philosophy. I don't think she was creating a new concept philosophy, but explaining the underlying motivations of people, and wanting people to face it opening and objectively to deal with it.
The reality is, everyone is motivated by self-interest. The debate comes down to, how is it best to persue one's self-interest? One can either persue their self-interest by dealing voluntarily with others, and mutually agreeing on something, because obviously the other person has a self-interest as well.

The other option, is to use the state to achieve the outcomes of an individual's or groups self-interest. Which means denying the the right of another individual to persue their self interest.

When people want government to do something about a problem, which they cliam is about helping others, its really about helping to alleviate their feeling of guilt over the problem.

I don't know all of Ayn Rand's philosophy, I read her book "capitalism: the unkown ideal" which is a great book, and is as relevent today as 40 years ago (she really cuts into the concept of pragmatism"), but I know she isn't against people doing good things, but her argument seems to be good things come out of pursueing their own self-interest, so long as it is reasoned, and a free marketplace is the best mechanism for determining what is reasoned.
Edmund Onward James





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PostPosted: Fri Jul 24, 2009 2:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wouldn't you rather look up to those who live or lived the life of decency, wisdom, intelligence, concern for society, most of the time... such as... Winston Churchill, Ronald Reagan, Margaret Thatcher, even Raymond Alan Zebulon Leigh Munro instead of someone who wrote grand fiction, but could not live up to it.

Most of us have some faults, flaws that prevent us from being perfect, but then again most of us are not of the libertine, disposable societies that shroud their characters.
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Objectivist Epistemology

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