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|Sunday, February 3rd, 2008|
|Friday, August 5th, 2005|
A solid refutation of Objectivism...
...has been kindly provided by d2david90
, commenting on my previous post
that has nothing to do with history and i do not intend to bring history into my beliefs or principles, because they exist independently of history.
all in all, screw history. lets debate philosophy!
So, according to a philosophy whose corner-stone is ostensibly "Objective Reality", what that objective reality actually is
is irrelevant. Screw history.
No, I don't think it's just d2david90
, either. zompist
Distaste for facts isn't merely a habit of a few Internet cranks; it's actually libertarian doctrine, the foundation of the 'Austrian school'. Here's Ludwig von Mises in Epistemological Problems of Economics:
As there is no discernible regularity in the emergence and concatenation of ideas and judgments of value, and therefore also not in the succession and concatenation of human acts, the role that experience plays in the study of human action is radically different from that which it plays in the natural sciences. Experience of human action is history. Historical experience does not provide facts that could render in the construction of a theoretical science services that could be compared to those which laboratory experiments and observation render to physics. Historical events are always the joint effect of the cooperation of various factors and chains of causation. In matters of human action no experiments can be performed. History needs to be interpreted by theoretical insight gained previously from other sources.The 'other sources' turn out to be armchair ruminations on how things must be. It's true enough that economics is not physics; but that's not warrant to turn our backs on the methods of science and return to scholastic speculation. Economics should always move in the direction of science, experiment, and falsifiability. If it were really true that it cannot, then no one, including the libertarians, would be entitled to strong belief in any economic program.
This is no accident but the consequence of essentialistic thinking. The idea that things have "natures" is, at bottom, an excuse not to bother with reality. Why keep experimenting with something if you've already discovered its "nature"? But in real life, no matter how many times an experiment has done the same thing, there's always the possibility it might do something else later on. Let's suppose that things do
have unchangeable "natures" so what? Now we have to ask: what makes us think we've discovered their "nature"? What's to stop us from having made a mistake? Even Ayn Rand knew we had to "check our premises"; in the real world, "checking our premises" must be done over and over again. There could always
be something we didn't know about, waiting out there to be found. That's what science is an endless checking of premises. That is the only way to approach the truth. Rest content with anything else and you are guaranteed to believe a falsehood. Current Mood: objective
|Tuesday, August 2nd, 2005|
Laissez Faire and Genocide
Laissez Faire is not anarchy. Why would anarchy or mass mayhem result from the government withdrawing laws to regulate business? It's like arguing that without car insurance we would all be doomed like those people in Rahwanda, or whatever.
Also, Objectivists not wanting to save those people in Africa. To whoever is arguing this point, why don't YOU go help those people? You seem to be in a perfect position at your seat in front of your computer to condemn people for not caring.
This is my fundamental problem with altruism: it is easy to preach, but not so easy to practise. It just seems so unnatural to put another person's life (or million lives) above your own.
|Monday, August 1st, 2005|
To d2david90: Do we judge by ideals or by results?
True Marxism has never been accurately practised. It has only been used as an excuse to appropriate resources for oppressive bureaucrats.
Since the ONLY system advocated by Marxism has NEVER been practised, it is logical to state that Marxism cannot be negated on historical grounds.
It has been preached and inserted into economics, but not practised accurately.
Socialism can exist in various forms. Bolshevism, which is the only Socialism that has ever been practised, is NOT, I repeat NOT, the Marxist standard of Socialism.
Marxism IS AGAINST any form of Socialism that is not Democratic. All the horrendous results of Socialism in history were NOT results of Marxism, thus Marxism CANNOT be negated on a historical basis, because its standard of Socialism has NEVER been practised.
Can someone refute that???
The true Nietzschean doctrine of the Übermann has never been accurately practised. It has only been used as an excuse to harrass Jews.
Since the ONLY system advocated by Nietzsche has NEVER been practised, it is logical to state that Nietzsche cannot be negated on historical grounds.
It has been preached and inserted into economics, but not practised accurately.
Fascism can exist in various forms. Nazism, which is the only Fascism that has ever been practised, is NOT, I repeat NOT, the Nietzschean standard of Fascism.
Nietzsche WAS AGAINST any form of Fascism that is not Merit-based. All the horrendous results of Fascism in history were NOT Nietzsche's fault, thus Nietzsche CANNOT be negated on a historical basis, because his standard of Fascism has NEVER been practised.
Can someone refute that???
True Christianity has never been accurately used to run a country. It has only been used as an excuse to stir up violence and intolerance.
Since the ONLY system advocated by Christianity has NEVER been practised, it is logical to state that Christianity cannot be negated on historical grounds.
It has been preached and made into a religion, but no government has ever been truly Christian.
Religious Politics can exist in various forms. Crusades, Witch-Hunts, and the Religious Right, which are the only Religious Politics that have ever been used to run a country, are NOT, I repeat NOT, the Christian standard of government.
Christianity IS AGAINST any form of Religious Politics that is not Peaceful. All the horrendous results of Religious Politics in history were NOT results of Christianity, thus Christianity CANNOT be negated on a historical basis, because its standard of Politics has NEVER been practised.
Can someone refute that???
You see, d2david90
, it's always easy to defend a political or social movement based on its ideals
; and it's always easy to attack it based on its results
. And trying to evade the "results" attack by saying "that wasn't real
________ism" is a cop-out, plain and simple. It is, in fact, a particularly naïve form of the "fire/phlox" problem that I mentioned in my previous post
's essay on libertarianism
has been updated since I recced it earlier
If an ideology is really better than others at producing general prosperity, then following it partially should produce partially better results. Jonathan Kwitny suggested comparing a partly socialist system (e.g. Tanzania) to a partly capitalist one (e.g. Kenya). (Kenya looked a lot better.) If the tests are partial, of course, we'll want more of them; but human experience is pretty broad. Current Mood: serene
It's the libertarians, not me, who stand in the way of such accountability. If I point out examples of nations partially following libertarian views we'll get to this below I'm told that they don't count: only Pure Real Libertarianism Of My Own Camp can be tested.
Again, all-or-nothing thinking generally goes with intellectual fraud. If a system is untestable, it's because its proponents fear testing. By contrast, I'm confident enough in liberal and scientific values that I'm happy to see even partial adoption. Even a little freedom is better than dictatorship. Even a little science is better than ideology.
An untested political system unfortunately has great rhetorical appeal. Since we can't see it in action, we can't point out its obvious faults, while the ideologue can be caustic about everything that has actually been tried, and which has inevitably fallen short of perfection. Perhaps that's why Dave Barry and Trey Parker are libertarians. But I'd rather vote for a politician who's shown that his programs work in the real world than for a humorist, however amusing...
...Pinochet was a dicator, of course, which makes some libertarians feel that they have nothing to learn here. Somehow Chile's experience (say) privatizing social security can tell us nothing about privatizing social security here, because Pinochet was a dictator. Presumably if you set up a business in Chile, the laws of supply and demand and perhaps those of gravity wouldn't apply, because Pinochet was a dictator.
|Saturday, July 30th, 2005|
Capitalism as advocated by Objectivism has never been practised...
objectivism does not equal capitalism.
laissez faire capitalism (the only one advocated by objectivism), was never accurately practised. it was only used as an excuse to grant favors to certain businesses. i can site this info for you. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Laissez-faire
since the ONLY economic system advocated by objectivism has NEVER been practised*, it is logical to state that objectivism cannot be negated on historical grounds.
*it has been preached and inserted into economics, but not practised accurately, as the first paragraph of the article explains.
In case of any misunderstandings, let me also recap a bit: Capitalism can exist in various forms. Government regulated Capitalism (mixed economy), which is the Only capitalism that has ever been practised, is NOT, i repeat NOT, the Objectivist standard of Capitalism.
Objectivism IS AGAINST any form of Capitalism that is not Laissez Faire. All the horrendous results of Capitalism in history were NOT results of Laissez Faire, thus Objectivism CANNOT be negated on a historical basis, because it's standard of Capitalism has NEVER been practised (sited in the link above).
Can someone refute that??? Current Mood: anxious
|Friday, July 29th, 2005|
Interesting Side Note
Ayn Rand published We The Living in 1936. She had already been married for years. And prior to her marriage she had been working in Hollywood, California. She lived with her relatives for a short time.
I also just remembered that in her novel Anthem, it is written that Ayn Rand's husband and his brother encouraged her to write We The Living. She had been taking care of herself with odd jobs at the time and was not in the care of relatives.
Care for a reconciliation?
I understand that most people in this community hate. I respect the few who hate me and don't lose control or make up irrational lies in an attempt to make Objectivism evil.
I like Objectivism because it is based on a reality that is objective to the perceiver, that cannot be created or changed by conciousness. I have no reason to believe that psychic phenomona is true or that magic and praying changing anything about reality.
And please understand that when one argues rationally, one advancing a positive claim and must provide proof for that claim.
I have been confronted with members saying that Objectivism is would create all sorts of atrocities and monstrosities, and then told ME to disprove it. This person did not present any evidence to support the blight of Objectivism, but expected me to present defensive evidence in counter to his lack of evidence.
Come on, I want some good debates, people. If you believe that reason is important when debating, then lets not debate in an arbitrary manner.
I have every reason to believe that Objectivism, in its fundamentals (not the way Ayn Rand preached the derivative claims), is a philosophy true for living on earth. I believe that things have identities that can, when isolated and examined, that can define a consistent nature.
I believe this because ideas and materials have always been consistent with their apparent nature since I can remember and if someone doesn't believe in the Law of Identity (introduced by Aristotle), then how can one believe in reason or logic? What use would they be applied to a nonabsolute reality, where nothing can be sure.
I mean no offense. I only to debate. But I cannot debate with anyone properly because they present claims with no evidence and expect me to disprove the non existent evidence of their claims. Current Mood: accomplished
|Thursday, July 28th, 2005|
I think it is an insult to everyone in this community (even though I can't stand the idea of an anti objectivist community) when members start ranting about the horrors and monstrosities that Objectivism will cause with no proof, or even reason to believe it.Not really. They're both incredibly destructive, but Marxism at least burns itself out fairly quickly. The total lack of interest in anything beyond the self that is taught by Objectivism as the animating spirit of free-market capitalism is capable of much more massive, much more systemic destruction and tends to dehumanise and isolate much more efficiently.
I won't say the name of the member who stated this, but I am utterly shocked that intelligent people are claiming such assertions.
Objectivism has been a philosophy for over fifty or sixty years and so far I have seen no damage wreaked, or slavery wrought or anything of the such. Plus, a lot of people think that we live in a pure Capitalist society in USA, which we don't.
Mixed Economy, fellas.
Anyway, hope you enjoying advancing claims of the Armeggedon that's going to be caused over a philosophy that most people hate, even some of it's former members. Current Mood: aggravated
Just Out of Curiosity
Why is Objectivism a philosophy worth not liking? If it is wrong, what makes it different then the philosophies of Aristotle, Kant, Neitzche, Hume, Emmerson, Plato, Socrates.
Not all of those philosophies could have been right, so I just wonder why Objectivism is getting so much heat? If none of these philosophies can extend real proof of the claims they assert, then why is Objectivism SO much worse that this community exists?
And don't tell me its because Ayn Rand thought or claimed to have proven anything. She never did. She asserted the principles of what she beleived in. Besides, most other philosophers had a lot of conviction. You can't tell me that Ayn Rand is bad because she had conviction in her ideas, or else you would basically have to hate all other philosophers on that same premise.
Anyone in here like Marx? Current Mood: curious
...I think I'll leave it, actually
why Ayn Rand's concept of things having "natures" would be "ridiculous". "An apple is food and is eddible, metal is hard and unyeilding unless brought under fire, a computer computes." The reason was figured out long before Rand, by a guy called David Hume. It's called the Problem of Induction, and it goes like this. The laws which we observe at work in the universe gravity, electromagnetism, and so on describe the way things have happened up until now
. There is no logical reason why they should stay that way. For all we know, they might change without warning at any moment. The following is not a valid argument:
- Fire burned the day before yesterday.
- Fire burned yesterday.
- Fire burned today.
- Therefore, fire will burn tomorrow.
...and no amount of additional past observations will make it valid. We might answer, following Rand, that fire burns "by nature". If it doesn't, it isn't really fire. Fine, but now we must ask: are the flickering red tongues in the hearth really fire, or do they just look and sound like fire? Let’s call them phlox
, which we'll define as "something that looks and sounds like fire". We now have the following chain of logic:
- Phlox burned the day before yesterday, and so proved to be fire.
- Phlox burned yesterday, and so proved to be fire.
- Phlox burned today, and so proved to be fire.
- Therefore, phlox will burn tomorrow, and so prove to be fire.
This is no more valid than the first version. Adding the "nature" of fire has told us precisely nothing.
In practice, this isn't a problem because we don't actually rely on philosophical proofs
that fire will burn, apples will be edible, metal will be hard, etc.; we simply base our expectations of what will probably
happen on what has happened every time before. And for this kind of thing, "every time before" adds up to a truly impressive number. If we do suddenly encounter an exception, we simply add the exception itself into the bag of "what happens"; as d2david90
has added "...unless brought under fire" to the description of metal as "hard and unyielding". But it does mean that any logical argument based on the idea of things having innate "natures" is well and truly out the window.
Take Rand's famous pronouncement "Man is Man." At face value this is logically self-evident, and she therefore castigates her political opponents for denying it. But consider what Rand means by it: "Man", human beings as they actually exist, is "Man", Rand's particular philosophical conception of the rationally self-interested being. That is not self-evident at all, and in forcing the issue by using the same word for both, Rand is simply cheating. Current Mood: empirical
|Wednesday, July 27th, 2005|
My Two Million Cents, My Common Sense- Take it or Leave It
I am currently reading Ayn Rand's fiction and non fiction books. I am not an objectivist, but do admire the works of Rand. I believe that she was the only rational person who had the guts to tell people that everoyne has a right to their life and not to any other person's life.
I have been reading some of the heated debates in this forum. I notice a breach between principles and practising them for many people.
For instance, someone made it clear that they find it ridiculous that Ayn Rand said that everything has a "nature". You know, an identity. An apple is food and is eddible, metal is hard and unyeilding unless brought under fire, a computer computes.
This doesn't seem so irrational to me and it doesn't seem as if any intelligent person in the world thinks this is irrational. Most people expect to wake up in the morning and their ceiling to hold above their head because the architect who built their house or apartment was using things that don't break easy to build it. Most people go to work and expect the chair to be soft when they sit at their desk, or the phone to ring when they have an incoming call.
Somehow, people believe that Ayn Rand needs to provide extensive proof for the existence of identity, which anyone who would argue its existence quite clearly relies upon that existence.
Also, people who say "That doesn't make sense," in response to things they find arbitrary. But if you believe that reality is subjective, or at the least, not absolute, then everyone would have their own sense, their own way of dealing with a non static reality. No one would or should have to conform to another's sense.
Of course, if you believe that reality is absolute, then you can claim "That makes no sense" honestly and with conviction of something that you dont believe makes sense, and you can expect other people living in this reality to understand that.
My only problem is that people want to argue things that they practise (things have "nature" and "absolute reality"). What gives? If you don't believe in identity, then stop expecting things to maintain their identities and if you dont believe in a static, absolute reality, then don't expect things to make sense, because, by that standard, sense is relative to the observer. Current Mood: amused
|Thursday, June 9th, 2005|
Maybe Objectivism Isn't so Bad
The problem with Objectivism is that it causes people to move to my area of the world, become polyamorists, go to Harbin, and take their clothes off a lot.
The problem with communism is that it causes people to kill other people a lot.
Living in Northern California, the results of immersion in a tepid bath of Randian "philosophy," and even worse, that of her demon hellspawn Heinlein seem really atrocious until I talk to my neighbors, who survived the Cultural Revolution. Then it just seems annoying.
|Tuesday, March 29th, 2005|
Hello, I've been a member of this group for a few weeks and thought it would only be polite to introduce myself. Currently I'm a graduate student in a different field, but my bachelor's was in philosophy. Every time I tell someone that, there is always another person lurking nearby who jumps in the conversation with a comment on how The Fountainhead or Atlas Shrugged changed his life (I have yet to have this happen with a woman, but I believe it possible). That's not what I studied, I focused mostly on logic and continental stiff (Kierkegaard is a favorite). Anyways, that's how I came to dislike Objectivism, because of so many rude people interrupting my conversations.
|Wednesday, March 2nd, 2005|
|Tuesday, February 8th, 2005|
My main problem with Objectivism (and a lot of philosophies) is the metaphysical conclusions they end up coming too. Notwithstanding the morality/immorality of any of the conclusions, I was just wondering. Ayn Rand comes to a boatload of moral absolutes. My friends and I, despite reading her work "know thine enemy," have never been able to find the place where she actually reasons through logic and explains her steps to find her absolutes. Like the meaning of life being a sort of egoism/hedonism, I hear her saying that a lot, and a lot of people nodding along to it, but I've never actually heard it justified.
Like I'm a utilitarian, but I read way too much nietzsche for my own good, so i recognize intellectually that my own moral code is fairly arbitrary, but does rand do the same? From what I've seen it seems like she concludes that she has absolutely found the answer to everything, and I just don't understand how she does that.
(not to say my favorite philosophers don't tend to make leaps of logic, I just kinda ignore those points if I can't follow what they're saying)
|Sunday, January 23rd, 2005|
can we at least gracefully admit that Objectivism is spectacular in theory?
|Thursday, January 20th, 2005|
Neal Peart and the Anti-Philosophy Connection
Was Neal Peart an Objectivist? And if so, will my playing improve if I read The Fountainhead again?
I always thought that Ayn Rand's grip was tenuous and highly conditional at best, but I had some friend's who were extremely into her philosophy - all drummers. I'm a drummer too, but I'm lousy and never practice.
Truth be told, I was a Cure fan... lousy players, lousy vocals, whiney themes. Good music for whiney liberals and do-nothings who only served to try and hold back the successful, hardworking people in society.
We actually had Rush vs.The Cure wrestling bouts in the backyard - that's how young we were. I lost all the time because it was two-on-one and I never gave in, even though I secretly knew that my band sucked, that The Cure could never rock even the simplest Rush tune. The Cure were just cooler. Check out their cover of Foxy Lady. They can't quite play Hendrix, but they can make it cool.
What was I writing about? Oh yeah....
The problem with Objectivism is that it depends on other people who hold the "genius" back in order to have someone to resent. It needs the half-hearted competition of slothful, lazy people to blame for the world's troubles.
Unlike communism, objectivism isn't really a philosophy at all - it's created as an answer to communism... so it's an anti-philosophy.
Some people like The Cure, some people like a technical, uncool band like Rush just because it's NOT The Cure.
|Tuesday, January 18th, 2005|
Well, this is an interesting spectacle. All of 8 individuals, gathered together, to form an anti-objectivism cult. Sounds pretty comical, actually.
You want to get to know your enemy? Here I am.
However, unfortunately, a group who is held together only by their hatred of a philosophy (which they most likely know very little about), is not the ideal place to have a rational discussion about ANYTHING, especially a philosophy. If I had to guess, I'd say this bunch is not likely to be open minded about much of anything to do with Objectivism.
So why bother?
You people aren't worth trying to talk to, or defending my philosophy (yes, not a cult).
Speaking of which, you all might benefit from knowing exactly what a philosophy is:
n. pl. phi·los·o·phies
1. Love and pursuit of wisdom by intellectual means and moral self-discipline.
2. Investigation of the nature, causes, or principles of reality, knowledge, or values, based on logical reasoning rather than empirical methods.
3. A system of thought based on or involving such inquiry: the philosophy of Hume.
4. The critical analysis of fundamental assumptions or beliefs.
5. The disciplines presented in university curriculums of science and the liberal arts, except medicine, law, and theology.
6. The discipline comprising logic, ethics, aesthetics, metaphysics, and epistemology.
7. A set of ideas or beliefs relating to a particular field or activity; an underlying theory: an original philosophy of advertising.
8. A system of values by which one lives: has an unusual philosophy of life.
1. A religion or religious sect generally considered to be extremist or false, with its followers often living in an unconventional manner under the guidance of an authoritarian, charismatic leader.
2. The followers of such a religion or sect.
2. A system or community of religious worship and ritual.
3. The formal means of expressing religious reverence; religious ceremony and ritual.
4. A usually nonscientific method or regimen claimed by its originator to have exclusive or exceptional power in curing a particular disease.
1. Obsessive, especially faddish, devotion to or veneration for a person, principle, or thing.
2. The object of such devotion.
6. An exclusive group of persons sharing an esoteric, usually artistic or intellectual interest.
I don't know what you've been reading, but Objectivism goes like this. Number one rule is think for yourself. That pretty much rules out every meaning of cult you can think of. Notice, a philosophy is *not* a religion.
That is all. Next time you want to bash something, at least learn a *tiny* bit about it first. It makes you look a little smarter.
|Thursday, December 23rd, 2004|
|Wednesday, December 22nd, 2004|
Thought you might like this.
ROBOTIC AYN RAND
Need advice about your latest megalomaniacal scheme? If only you could ask history's greatest megalomaniac, "novelist" and "philosopher" Ayn Rand. Too bad she's dead. But wait! In 1963, a secret cabal of Objectivists intent on taking over the Student Union at MIT built the first robotic Ayn Rand, and now you can own a Randroid® based on their original design. Comes with stock phrases such as "Morality ends where the gun begins," "Pity for the guilty is treason to the innocent," and "Nathaniel! Bring me another gin and tonic!"
Price: US$50,000 includes software*
*software tends to be rather buggy. For instance, your Randroid may oppose immigration, yet be an immigrant herself. She may oppose infidelity, yet cheat on her husband. She may espouse individuality, yet believe that only those who follow her are individuals. She may oppose the control of individuals by organizations, yet laud corporate power. These bugs can not be repaired.