Add Comment

FORMATTING HELP

All Comments Hide marked as read Mark all as read

  • 12
    Posted by $ blarman 6 months, 2 weeks ago
    This isn't a cult of blind obedience. We have all read Rand, watched Rand (interviews, not just movies), and we enjoy the debate. If there is anything from Rand which is valued, it is her focus on the individual and not giving up one's individuality to sanction groupthink or group politics. As such, the vigorous debates on this forum, IMHO, are the greatest tribute to Rand which could exist. None of us live for another.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by jdg 6 months, 2 weeks ago
      I hope you're right. But it was noticeably cultish while Rand was alive. I'm thinking especially of her very public expulsion of Alan Greenspan from Objectivism. She did go through some disillusionments and learn from them, but sometimes she just wouldn't accept that she was wrong about something.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • 12
    Posted by mhubb 6 months, 3 weeks ago
    Henry Ford believe in paying his workers enough so they could buy his companies products

    we know more now about fetal development

    so Rand was wrong on a few things
    does not invalidated most of her work
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by NealS 6 months, 2 weeks ago
      I'd be more inclined to say, rather than "Rand was wrong on a few things", that "Ayn Rand had a differing opinion on a few things." Even between you and I, I'm sure we have a few different opinions even though we probably pretty much agree exactly or in varying degrees on most subjects. Different opinions too can be of varying degrees rather than being only the opposite. Anyway, that is just my opinion, I could be wrong.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by lrshultis 6 months, 2 weeks ago
      A fetus having human cells begets the question as to when a fetus can be considered as a person with a functioning rational self developing and thus be murdered. My brother-in-law believes that at the instant of the sperm and ovum combining, a person with a self comes into being. What new knowledge about fetal development counters Rand's opinion? When does consciousness with any awareness of self begin?
      Most of the answers to such questions here seem to be from those who were forced to believe that they are dependent for a god making them who they are rather than being in charge of creating their own selves as they mature after birth.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by chad 6 months, 2 weeks ago
        Met a nurse in an airport once who was waiting on a plane. She began the discussion stating that since the brain is still forming and developing for the first five years after birth that awareness of self is not possible until after this formation. Her reasoning was therefore since this was true if you didn't like how a child was turning out up that point getting rid of them would be okay.
        I am not aware of a study that incorporates the idea that there is a life force other than just the chemical reactions and electrical discharges sustaining life and enabling reason. I think there is more to life that just a biological function. What this is (religion likes to refer to it as a soul) is not understood. When does this life force enter the new being? I have no idea.
        Interesting that under the law if a woman wants the child and is murdered then it is two counts of murder. If the woman does not want the child it is okay to kill it. No discussion that this is another person not just a collection of cells.
        Difficult questions. Since the fetus resists the dismemberment and destruction is it self aware?
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
        • Posted by lrshultis 6 months, 2 weeks ago
          So self awareness is any resistance to harm ( seems a concept requiring some notion of possession). That would indicate that there is no difference for other members of the animal kingdom which fight to keep living against being dismembered which happens millions of times to animals. Fighting against harm is built into all life. Humans do painful actions against new born babies all the time, such as circumcision with the knowledge that until remembering self is mature enough, the pain is not harmful and will not be remembered. A fetus is incapable of consciously suffering from dismemberment. In the modern world the act of infanticide has been mostly stamped out. I would say that removing a potential should be a choice just as it is a choice to birth a baby. Life force is not a ghost in a machine but just the biological machine itself and nothing separable from it. When the machine dies there is no life left to exist, so don't fear ghost stuff or afterlife.
          Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
        • Posted by cranedragon 6 months, 2 weeks ago
          I certainly hope that nurse never goes into either neonatal or gerontology care. If awareness of self is a necessary precursor to a right to life -- such that the lack of such means that you could get rid of a child who wasn't turning out satisfactorily -- then does that extend to adults in comas? Adults with cognitive difficulties? The onset of dementia? Of course, it also begs the question of why a child wouldn't be turning out in an acceptable fashion -- poor or toxic parenting comes to mind.

          To a reductionist mindset, we are all just a clump of something, whether it be chemicals or cells. Myself, I cannot reconcile an objective formulation of individual human rights with a notion that an entire class of persons, easily the most vulnerable persons among the family of all humans, has their very right to any recognition being entirely dependent upon the whims of one female individual. We recoil in horror when a woman murders her child or allows them to suffer and die from neglect or from the violence of her boyfriend, but we shrug when she aborts a child because carrying a child to term would be inconvenient. I understand the rationale for the difference in reaction, but I do not agree with it.
          Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • 10
    Posted by $ Abaco 6 months, 2 weeks ago
    This question, at first glance, just looks like a troll. Of course people here have read Ayn Rand. Abortion is a debate that will never be solved.

    What Ayn Rand clearly wasn't in favor of is something a famous trader calls "Govopoly". Atlas Shrugged is all about that. I'm not in favor of the social media government complex. It's terrible. As is the pharma-government complex. These things aren't legit business. There corrupt and destructive. One has to be able to differentiate between these and legit capitalism.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by 6 months, 2 weeks ago
      It does sounds trollish. I just thought the discussions would be different than what they are if people were here because of their familiarity with her works.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by $ Abaco 6 months, 2 weeks ago
        That is why they're here. It's a common thread among a very neat group of people who have various takes on many things. Our appreciation for her work and philosophy is strong enough to make this a pretty unique online forum.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by lrshultis 6 months, 2 weeks ago
        You have to put up with a lot of politics, background religion, pseudo-science, and non-evidential medical stuff along with all other types of human beliefs with a bit of rational thought to make things point toward reality.

        I liked her ability to reason but had trouble with her personality, in particular with her drug usage. I could not see how she would be able to have nearly cultish followers in the 'collective'.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by 6 months, 2 weeks ago
      Are you saying (and I'm not trying to put words in your mouth, just to make sure I understand) that the involvement of the government in these complexes you've named makes them not legitimate capitalism? In other words, there is no real free market in these areas?
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by $ Abaco 6 months, 2 weeks ago
        Govopoly. This is basically what she describes in Atlas Shrugged with the purchasing of influence and how, ultimately, the government is the omnipotent decision maker. The creator of the term I'm using, Govopoly, just describes it as a natural stage of a society and something he excepts. I still struggle with that take, myself. I have seen the destruction of innocent people that results from it.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by Dennis55 6 months, 3 weeks ago
    I believe there are personal traits and then there are major philosophical issues. I am objectivist and capitalist to the core. Ms Rand was pro choice. I am pro life. She smoked. I don’t.
    I think the whole act of selfish has been redefined by the left and most religions to be a bad thing. We are conditioned from grade school to “give back.” I haven’t taken anything I didn’t work for -unless it was a ridiculous government handout like Covid money. I took it and pretended I was Ragnar.
    I believe the gulch leans slightly to the right because the lefts main issue seems to be redistribution of wealth. A mortal sin in my book. 20th Century Motors would be a good case study. I am equally against crony capitalism which is an oxy moron. It’s my money ( money= my talent, my work, my time, my best self) taken by looters and given to moochers. By force. (Pay taxes or be destroyed).
    Given all of the conditioning surrounding our every move we must always ask ourselves is my action benevolent, altruistic, forced. I’m benevolent. I am not altruistic. I’ll help my neighbor. I will not put my neighbor above self or my family. Selfish?
    Altruism is the ally of the left and religion.
    Ms Rand was atheist. There are a lot of believers in the gulch that want left alone in their belief, not get raped in their take home pay, and want to produce for the joy of producing. I’m a non believer. I’m pro life by choice. ( Ironic).
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by 6 months, 2 weeks ago
      I think this is the best description of her views I've seen on here. I think in her writings she took some of her views to an extreme that is not workable in practice. Perhaps that was her intention. But it sounds like you've taken her basic premises and made them workable. Unfortunately, I don't think most people feel benevolent any more, if they ever did.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by Tavolino 6 months, 2 weeks ago
        Correct principles are not extreme and the identification in the first three branches of philosophy (metaphysics, epistemology, ethics), is an either/or binary choice on individual issues. Their application in the real world is another issue, even with "ivory tower" Objectivists. There are many schisms in the movement for a variety of reasons, but does not negate her principled premises.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by lrshultis 6 months, 2 weeks ago
      I consider 'pro life' and 'pro choice' as dishonesty. They suck one into forgoing choice in the former and discarding life in the latter. Honesty would require something like 'anti-abortion' and 'pro abortion' along with detailed definitions of the terms.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by LibertyBelle 6 months, 3 weeks ago
    I can't say that I agree with abortion up until birth. As I understand it, when someone on life support is dying, the hospital personnel pull the plug when the brain waves have ceased, and if that applies at the end of life, it seems logical that the same should apply at the beginning: that it is a conscious being (and therefore human ) when brain waves begin, and that after that, abortion would be murder. (from what I have read, that is slightly short of three months along.)
    Also, I have read in The Ayn Rand Letter (a periodical she sent out for a while in the '70's), "one may argue about the later stages of a pregnancy, but the essential issue concerns only the first three months." (That's a memory quote on my part).
    I read a book once containing her "off-the-cuff" remarks, and one person asked her about that issue, and, as I recall, she waffled a bit, agreeing at one point that at a certain point that "it would be wrong to kill it"(the questioner's words), but after some discussion, she said it should be permitted up until birth. So it seems that she didn't say the same thing every time.
    I don't know just what she would say now, but I know what I think about the issue.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by $ jbrenner 6 months, 3 weeks ago
    Rand indeed was in favor of abortion. There have been many discussions on this topic, mostly very long ago. I can't say I like abortion, but I'll let people choose abortion and deal with the emotional consequences later.

    The problem with Rand's reasoning behind her abortion position is that it could easily be extended until a person was capable of taking care of himself/herself (at least up into the teenage years).
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by jack1776 6 months, 3 weeks ago
      Full disclosure, I think abortion after a heartbeat is murder. I think there is a place for it when young women become pregnant due to rape, incest and when she is unmarried but only as soon as possible; outside of this there is adoption. The problem I have with this is that its irrational and I understand that, but I don’t have an answer for that. I think she leaned towards the rights of the individual where I’m leaning towards the rights of the unborn, someone loses. Its not an easy answer…

      The ugly truth is Planned Parenthood is a non-profit enterprise (an oxymoron) that was formed with a hidden agenda of eugenics. Margaret Sanger was a racist and saw abortion as a way of controlling the black population. Try to square that with a compass… This should not be in anyone’s rational self-interest, unless you just hate people, including yourself.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by $ kddr22 6 months, 3 weeks ago
      I agree with you in premise. I do not like abortion, but I do not in general want to extinguish choice. However, I do not agree with third trimester abortions at all The only caveat I will say is that doctors in conjunction with patients should handle the exception choices in a personal dialogue that only extends to them.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by $ jbrenner 6 months, 3 weeks ago
        When my 38 year old cousin was born at 26 weeks of pregnancy, she was only 1.5 pounds, at that time the record smallest in Florida history. The doctors said that she would likely have numerous problems long term (which she didn't) and had a life expectancy of 30. I saw her mom and grandma this past weekend for the first time in over a year. The mom was recommended to abort my cousin because of the likelihood of complications.

        Going through something like that puts a little perspective on the issue.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by 6 months, 3 weeks ago
      I was really just kind of curious what draws people here when they don't seem to agree with her ideas. Honestly, I don't know why her writings appeal to me since I don't agree with her basic idea that selfishness is a virtue.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • 14
        Posted by $ jbrenner 6 months, 3 weeks ago
        What draws people Galt's Gulch Online is the desire to be around productive, thinking people, as opposed to the TikTok-driven drivel that passes for conventional media. I have some characteristics of many of the AR characters: Quentin Daniels, Hank Rearden, and Dagny Taggart. I am still learning.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
        • Posted by $ allosaur 6 months, 3 weeks ago
          An astute observation. Me dino is still learning too.
          Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
          • Posted by $ jbrenner 6 months, 3 weeks ago
            The day I quit learning is the day I start dying, probably of Alzheimer's disease that my dad, his dad, and his aunt all died of.
            Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
            • Posted by 25n56il4 6 months, 3 weeks ago
              I don't think Senility or Alzheimer's causes death. I would guess there was a co-morbidity. I'm not a doctor but I've worked in the medical field most of my adult life. My BFF had 8 siblings, 6 have died of cancer and she is a victim of cancer also. A couple of them had Alzheimer's also.
              Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
              • Posted by $ jbrenner 6 months, 3 weeks ago
                Alzheimer's has a strong genetic component, but can be managed somewhat by avoiding diabetes issues. Alzheimer's is sometimes referred to as Type 3 diabetes.

                All of those deceased ancestors spent at least 20 years in the hometown of Dow Chemical.
                Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                • Posted by 25n56il4 6 months, 2 weeks ago
                  In times past in Brazoria County Texas it was said people didn't bow to God, they bowed to Dow! Well, they built an entire city which is a very nice place to visit. I wouldn't want to live there. My father, like everyone else worked for Dow at one time and we lived of all places at a place called Camp Chemical. I started Kindergarten there and my report card was marked 'Inclined to Mischief!'
                  Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                  • Posted by $ gharkness 6 months, 2 weeks ago
                    I can remember when "chemical" was a name to be admired. Lots of (good) slogans around chemicals.... "Better living through chemistry," I think - is one of them. Now, "chemical" is a bad word, and people disavow any and every part of chemicals and chemical matters, even when it's been pointed out that they themselves are actually made of chemicals. And then, they get mad at the person doing the pointing.
                    Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                  • Posted by $ jbrenner 6 months, 2 weeks ago
                    I got a few A's for performance and U's for attitude, too, because I knew that I knew more than the elementary school teachers even then. ... and got paddled for it in Beaumont, TX (knowing that I would). Being the non-conformist was worth it. The teacher I remember had made three mistakes of 9 + 9 or less in two days.
                    Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                • Posted by LibertyBelle 6 months, 3 weeks ago
                  My late father died at 91. He had Alzheimer's, but I am pretty sure he had no form of diabetes, as skinny and muscular as he was. But he was depressed. and had been refusing to eat or drink anything.
                  Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
        • Posted by 6 months, 3 weeks ago
          I can see some of myself in those characters as well. I really like her emphasis on the value of the individual as an individual and the idea that striving for excellence is a value worth pursuing. I think she takes some of her ideas to their extreme and the natural result of most extremes is absurd and unworkable. I think she failed to see that with some of her ideas. For example, everyone doing what it is in their own best interests is not a recipe for utopia.
          Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
          • Posted by LibertyBelle 6 months, 3 weeks ago
            Rational best interests--which cannot include violation of the rights of others. Because when you wilfully violate the rights of another, you thereby destroy your own. (Addressed to CMBurton's comment; it seems that these machines never put my comments in the place where I type them, right after the comment I am answering.)
            Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by jack1776 6 months, 3 weeks ago
        With regrade to selfishness being a virtue, she always used the term, “rational self-interest”, which I would agree is an important distinction from simple selfishness; simple selfishness is not in your best interest, you’ll be ostracized and condemned. If I understand her correctly, which I believe I do, a society of people that practiced rational self-interest would be a health society, her catch phase the virtue of selfishness is simply to sell books, imho.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
        • Posted by jack1776 6 months, 3 weeks ago
          In contrast, altruism for the sake of not being selfish is bad for a society. It attracts the irrational selfish people and allows them easy targets to take advantage of others, this is our society today. Please show me a situation today where charity has not been without corruption, its very rare and fleeing. For example, a charitable enterprise is rarely truly charitable because they have a self-interest, which is not altruism, by human nature. A soup kitchen at a church is truly altruism but only because the people that run the soup kitchen receive something for their efforts, satisfaction in helping others, so in this light, they are also being selfish, which is a virtue. Would you agree?
          Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
          • Posted by 6 months, 3 weeks ago
            I think that makes perfect sense. That might help explain why I am attracted to her writings, even though I think that her ideals can be destructive when followed to their natural conclusions, as many ideals do. I struggle with idealism versus realism in myself. I do very much value individualism, but not at the expense of others, especially innocents.
            Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
            • Posted by jack1776 6 months, 3 weeks ago
              Furthermore, she respected others as individuals, for example her oath:

              “I swear by my life and my love of it that I will never live for the sake of another man, nor ask another man to live for mine.”

              Typically, selfish people are not concerned with how one's actions affect others.
              Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
        • Posted by $ Dobrien 6 months, 2 weeks ago
          I thought the term was ethical self-interest.
          Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
          • Posted by $ Dobrien 6 months, 2 weeks ago
            Rand's Ethical Theory: Rational Egoism — Rand's ethic of self-interest is integral to her advocacy of classical liberalism. Classical liberalism, more often called “libertarianism” in the twentieth century, is the view that individuals should be free to pursue their own interests. This implies, politically, that governments should be limited to protecting each individual’s freedom to do so. In other words, the moral legitimacy of self-interest implies that individuals have rights to their lives, their liberties, their property, and the pursuit of their own happiness, and that the purpose of government is to protect those rights. Economically, leaving individuals free to pursue their own interests implies in turn that only a capitalist or free market economic system is moral: Free individuals will use their time, money, and other property as they see fit, and will interact and trade voluntarily with others to mutual advantage.
            Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
        • Posted by $ gharkness 6 months, 2 weeks ago
          Although I agree with what you are saying.... I just can't true that up with her idea that it was "in her rational self-interest" - or anyone's, actually - to actively pursue and in doing so destroy the marriage of a man who was some 25 years younger than she, and then flaunt it as something to be proud of. (I realize that Nathaniel Brandon was complicit as well - she didn't do it by herself, but I doubt he would have pursued her, from what I've read about this topic).

          Also, the 25 year age difference is actually immaterial. She was married. He was married. They each should have ended their own marriages first, then had their affair for as long as they both wished to. I also read that the affair dragged on a lot longer than he wanted. I do know he won't speak about it now, because I actually heard him say that in person.
          Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by $ blarman 6 months, 2 weeks ago
        My personal experience is that we agree more than we disagree, but we don't agree 100%. In my opinion, that is valuable because it means that you have people approaching issues - especially moral ones - from different perspectives. We would be no better than the followers of a television evangelist if we were nothing more than slaves to Rand's ideology.

        I haven't found the kind of robust, intellectual debate anywhere else I can get on this forum. It doesn't matter whether I agree with the other viewpoint or not, the individuals on this forum are generally respectful in presenting their diverging opinions and back them up with with their best arguments rather than simply repeating tropes and talking points like elsewhere on the web.


        As to the selfishness thing, that, too, has been debated on this forum. Personally, I think Rand used "selfishness" to drum up attention and to directly pick a fight with Christianity - which she had a decidedly negative view of. (Just an aside, but I really can't blame Rand for her negative view of the Russian Orthodox Church given its ostentatious displays of wealth and involvement with the Russian mafia who run the country.) Her definition for selfishness has also been called self-interest which is a fairly descriptive word for the attitude she wanted to focus on.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by CircuitGuy 6 months, 3 weeks ago
        “I don't agree with her basic idea that selfishness is a virtue.”
        I think selfishness has two definitions. People commonly use “selfish” to mean dishonest. If you purposely trick an employee into providing something and you don’t pay him or if the employee takes the pay but doesn’t provide the work as agreed, people might call that “selfish”. That is not what Rand means, as least by my reading of it. I think she’s would call it selfish (in a good way) to fire an employee you don’t need anymore or for an employee to quit a job because he found a better one. The alternative to this selfishness is for the employer or employee to stay together because one feels sorry for the other, because they think it’s a virtue to be selfless, or because people with guns will come and take their stuff in the act of enforcing laws based on selflessness. People are motivated to create things either because it’s what is best for themselves or because they think it’s best for others. Working for your own interests is like working for money while working for others is a form of slavery. The Francisco d’Anconia money speech explains it way better.

        I think Rand intentionally used a word that commonly means dishonest because she really believed in living for herself and she was not willing to surrender a word that starts with “self” to mean something opposite of what she believes in.

        People don’t want a customer, employer, romantic interest, etc to stay with them out of pity. They want selfish (in Rand’s sense) arrangements that work for both parties.

        I found the book Virtue of Selfishness easy to read, and I recommend it if you haven’t already gotten to it.

        “I was really just kind of curious what draws people here when they don't seem to agree with her ideas.”
        I have no idea. The vocal fans of Rand seem to interpret it exactly the opposite of my reading of Rand in almost every way, from the obsession with reactions from others, focus on politics, focus on groups over individuals, fantastical conspiratorial thinking, mean-spiritedness, to the rejection of facts and reason. I think it would do a lot of good for the world if somehow people could be introduced to the books without knowing about the nasty fanbase associated with them.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
        • Posted by 6 months, 2 weeks ago
          "I think it would do a lot of good for the world if somehow people could be introduced to the books without knowing about the nasty fanbase associated with them."

          I agree. I dove into them mostly because one or another of them was on a list of distopian literature. I also ran across an article that said that a lot of conservative politicians who claim to be fans either have never read what she wrote or clearly didn't understand it.

          I tend to read books the way I see movies. I ignore reviews if the summary of the contents sounds interesting to me.
          Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
        • Posted by $ gharkness 6 months, 2 weeks ago
          You said: "The Francisco d’Anconia money speech explains it way better." Would I be a terrible traitor to John Galt if I said what's been on my mind for years..... Francisco's money speech is FAR superior to John Galt's end of book speech. And, truth be told, I thought Francisco's character was far more appealing than John Galt's, and I was disappointed that Dagny didn't stay with him. I realize that would not have served the narrative, but I don't have to serve the narrative; Ayn Rand did.

          Also, I'll have to say that I was very disappointed in the way Francisco's speech was handled in the movie series (barely at all), and I was not thrilled with the actors chosen to portray Francisco, either, among others. This is one of the downsides of reading a book and then watching a movie. It definitely did not fit with the movie already running in my head.
          Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
          • Posted by 6 months, 2 weeks ago
            I wonder why they split it into 3 movies? It seems like it would be rather jagged that way. Did the individual movies make any sense?
            Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
            • Posted by $ gharkness 6 months, 2 weeks ago
              Hard to say whether they made sense individually or not. Sometimes, once you know something, it's impossible to UN-know it. And thus, that makes it hard to assess fairly. As you know, it's a LONG book, and to tell the whole story was an enormous job. Trying to put it all into one movie would require them to omit more of the book than they already did. Many people think they did a horrible job of it.... I think they could have done better but it was an honest effort and they tried, against huge odds. They were trying to be as faithful as they could to the original book, but you know that's really hard to do, given that it's hard to get money for a project like that.

              One of the most jarring aspects was that the characters were not consistent through the three episodes. That's because, of course, the producers and financiers simply couldn't commit to the expense of hiring all those actors for three movies, and the actors couldn't wait around, hoping to pick up the next gig, mainly because they couldn't be sure there'd even BE a next gig.

              If you have Amazon Prime, the three movies are free to watch there. I saw them in the movie theatre, but I think you can get a real sense of them by watching them online or on your TV.
              Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by MikePusatera 6 months, 2 weeks ago
    I have had the same thought many times. As much as enjoy the site I think there is a lot more conservative sentiment than there is Objectivism. This country just does not have a political party to represent an Objectivist.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by Susanart19523rtf 6 months, 2 weeks ago
      This is in reply to MikePusatera, as comments usually don't match up.
      I agree Objectivists do not have a political party. Nor should they. Most just want to be left alone to pursue their rational self interest. I, myself, have "gone Galt" and have mostly disappeared. I choose with whom I discuss debateable subjects. I rarely comment. From what I can see here everyone is civil and can agree to disagree.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by MikePusatera 6 months, 2 weeks ago
        I agree that an Objectivist should not need a political party in theory. But we have two parties that do not believe in individual rights. I do agree that the site is very civil. That is why I enjoy it so much.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by 5 months, 2 weeks ago
        Susanart19523rtf it seems that things have taken a turn recently. I’ve seen a number of comments calling names, lots and lots of pro-gun posts, and some actually advocating violence. It’s disturbing, especially from a group that I expected to be in favor of reason and against initiating violence.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by brucejc04 6 months, 2 weeks ago
      What about Libertarians?
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by 6 months, 2 weeks ago
        The problem with Libertarians is that a lot of people see them as gun-wielding kooks (not saying I agree--I tend to fall into the Libertarian portion of the political spectrum). And right now the only viable political parties are Republican and Democrat. I expected the extreme end of the Republican Party splitting off into a third party when the Tea Party movement started, but it hasn't happened yet. Would be nice to see a viable third party. It's so frustrating not really fitting with either.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by DGood04 6 months, 2 weeks ago
    I have read her work. Don't agree with everything she says. Like I would say about many people other than her.

    I'm personally not anti-big business. Am anti-abortion, and don't believe she had things right on religion either.

    However, I believe we can agree to disagree.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by freedomforall 6 months, 3 weeks ago
    Check your premises and control your fear.
    I think a rational observer finds varied rational conclusions depending on the evidence and varied experiences.
    Anti-corruption, pro individual liberty, pro free markets are a common thread, imo.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by NealS 6 months, 2 weeks ago
      I like your expression of "varied rational conclusions" based on "varied experiences". I've been caught on fire as a kid, been shot at/rocketed/mortared as a combat soldier in Vietnam, I killed many in self protection and in mass with big guns (8" and 175mm), was spit at coming home, my home was burglarized taking over $100K, and recently I got hit from behind at a stop light in my brand new truck that I hadn't even put gas in yet (cellphone "accident"). Those "experiences" definitely had an impact on my rational conclusions. I learned from them. And now my latest experiences I am seeing from my government actions are forming some more opinions, perhaps not as rational as my other ones. It's overwhelming, but also fortunate that I'm too old do do much about any of it.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by $ AJAshinoff 6 months, 3 weeks ago
    What we are seeing isn't business. We are seeing force at work on a huge scale masked as business and masked as government.
    I've read several of Rand's works but by no means consider myself an authority.

    Rand's philosophy is a life/living ideology. Once Mitosis occurs within the female it is no longer the host genetically and has its own existence (it own unique DNA). Murder being force....
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by $ Markus_Katabri 6 months, 3 weeks ago
    The Gulch swings a little to the right as of late. Considering what happened in the past 2 years.....understandably.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by 6 months, 3 weeks ago
      I kind of expected the Gulch to be "you stay out of my rights and I'll stay out of yours." Not sure if that's really right or left.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by $ AJAshinoff 6 months, 3 weeks ago
        These days there is only one side for any reasoned person. There is no "you stay out of my rights and I'll stay out of yours" anymore. The other side isn't talking about natural rights, mutual respect and the boundary of others and the state into your life, they talk of compliance and forced acceptance. "Live and let live", "I'm okay, your okay" no longer exist to more than half the country as they gleefully tear down the Bill of Rights to enforce their dictates.

        At this juncture we're not splitting hairs over preserving natural rights. That other side gets both barrels should they "choose" to come.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
        • Posted by 6 months, 2 weeks ago
          I'm assuming (and forgive me if I'm wrong) that "the other side" is the left. But the right are who are trying to erode individual rights. In one fell swoop, SCOTUS is declaring that there is no right to privacy, which means that the government can justify any intrusion into your personal life that they want. I'm more afraid of that than pretty much anything else. I really just wish everyone would stay out of everyone else's business.
          Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
          • Posted by freedomforall 6 months, 2 weeks ago
            No, the SCOTUS has not said anything yet although the deep state controlled media want you to be distracted by this to gather votes.
            If the SCOTUS do reverse Roe v Wade, it will only return the control of the issue to the states and the people, as the US Constitution intended.
            With respect, I do understand your concerns.
            All governments pursue power and individuals must act to limit that power. The more powerful the government, the greater the danger. No government can be trusted to keep you safe.
            Don't let the media stoke your fears. You are a rational thinking person who must not be manipulated by fear into actually giving away your freedom for false political promises.
            Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by $ Markus_Katabri 6 months, 2 weeks ago
        Well the establishment parties have shifted as well since Ayn’s era.
        The “Right” used to be about imposing morality on people. Remember the “Moral Majority”?
        The “Left” was about staying in your own lane. And freedom of choice.
        The corporatists are playing both ends against the middle as they always have. But the middle is shrinking. Like a funnel. They’re going to have to pick a side sooner or later.
        The parties have swapped ends. I can see it in the clueless gerontocracy (boomers) that sees the WOKE morality being imposed and they don’t realize that THEY VOTED THAT IN.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
        • Posted by 6 months, 2 weeks ago
          Excellent points. I think younger people don't realize that they are frogs being slowly boiled alive because they've always had certain rights and can't imagine ever not having them.
          Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by $ jlc 6 months, 2 weeks ago
    Rand believed in the individual too, but most of the threads and comments thereon, for the last several years, have been anti-individual.

    I too have been watching this happen.

    Jan
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by $ Olduglycarl 6 months, 2 weeks ago
    We are AGAINST CORRUPTION (CRONY Capitalism) Not Honest morally ethical Businesses.

    Rand should have known better, Unless confronted with physical harmful intent, one does not have the right to kill another...can't get any simpler than that.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by 25n56il4 6 months, 3 weeks ago
    I believe Ayn Rand's writings had a dual purpose. One to call attention to what was happening, and one that was personal. It isn't necessarily mandatory that one adhere to both!
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by $ DriveTrain 6 months, 2 weeks ago
    I've read all of Rand's work except for a full read-through of all the articles in The Objectivist and The Ayn Rand Letter. 'Also had the opportunity in the 1990s to take Leonard Peikoff's taped 1976 "Philosophy of Objectivism" lecture course twice, and read his OPAR and a number of works by other Objectivist thinkers, as well as attend a number of their lectures in person. So I have a good understanding of her philosophy, though I won't claim to be a philosopher, or an "expert" on her philosophy, and as a standard disclaimer "I do not claim to speak for Objectivism," [There, donkey properly covered.] I urge every one of you to similarly explore Rand in depth, because her work is easily the most important philosophical advance since Locke hammered out his theory of rights and the American Founders created this nation. (Sorry Howie. Well actually I'm not.)

    I have "chewed," understand, and for many years agreed with, the Objectivist position on abortion, but in recent years I've come to the conclusion - a conclusion possibly in error philosophically but which I believe is a line of thinking we must explore in any case - that Rand herself and all of the Objectivist community have made and are making a catastrophic error on abortion. I say "catastrophic" because if we've been wrong, we've been condoning murder on a massive scale. To put it in less inflammatory terms: We had better be right on this because human lives are literally hanging in the balance.

    I won't try to present a thesis or treatise here - I would definitely hit the character-limit for this form 1/10 of the way in and I simply don't have the time or the formal expertise. But as briefly as possible, I think it's an error on two elements of metaphysics: causality and the nature of man.

    In a nutshell, or the "standing on one foot" version:

    Along with its epistemology, Objectivism correctly derives from the metaphysical fact of existence (reality) as an absolute, and of man's nature (as rational and individual,) as an absolute as well. All subsequent branches in philosophy's hierarchical structure - ethics, politics, aesthetics - stand atop that foundation and depend on it. In this particular context the relevant point is: man's individuality.

    I submit that pregnancy, though a temporary condition, comprises a secondary metaphysical state of man that is utterly separate from, but no less factual than, individuality. It is a condition in which man becomes - again temporarily, but literally and factually - a duality rather than an individual; the only condition (aside from permanently-conjoined twins,) in which two human beings are physically part of one another, albeit briefly. The issue of the rights of mother vs. embryo must therefore be formulated not on the basis of individuality but rather on the metaphysical fact of duality.

    So moving into ethics (and acknowledging the need for a lot of intermediate material to hash out 'twixt the two areas): As a duality, neither of the two has a right to kill the other for any reason (not that the issue of that decision ever comes up for the embryo, except for Embryo Chuck Norris,) any more than any individual has the right to kill any other individual.

    The related, supporting metaphysical position (within Objectivism,) that "a potentiality is not an actuality and therefore cannot possess rights in any degree" I think is an error on causality.

    The first analogy I thought about is that if someone is holding a ball made of chalk and drops it, by the laws of physics the ball will certainly hit the ground at some point; the fact that someone could take a bat, strike the ball halfway to the ground and disintegrate it into a cloud of dust that dissipates in the wind in a million different directions, does not invalidate the fact of the ball's initial existence or of gravity or of the laws of physics. It's not a perfect analogy, so another: If there's a nest of utterly helpless and defenseless baby birds screeching for food, and I capture the chicks' parents and lock them in a cage until the chicks die, it doesn't invalidate the fact that the chicks were, in fact, birds that would eventually have grown, learned to fly, and become 100% self-sufficient. To bring it to the physical connection element: If I remove an egg from a bird and cook it up for breakfast, does it somehow obliterate the egg's factual nature as a bird, albeit a bird at a very early step in its development?

    The fact that an embryo is "a mass of protoplasm" that is "a potentiality" does not alter the biological fact that the nature of those protoplasmic cells is, in fact, that of human embryo cells right down to their DNA, or that those cells, invariably and inevitably, will in fact grow to a fully-formed human being - as a natural, causal process under normative conditions. The fact that that process is not complete and can be forcibly interrupted, cannot just magically wipe out - "Nothing to see here folks, move right along" fashion - the very nature of the entity itself. Or obliterate the causal fact of its ultimate development - or the fact that its nature remains its nature, A is A fashion, regardless of at which point in that process the entity happens to be sitting while being evaluated by others.

    To put it a little more concisely, I do not agree with the idea that the mere fact of an entity - which exists and which has a particular, factual nature - being situated at a very early stage in its development, can thereby negate that entity's factual nature altogether. A thing is what it is, by its factual nature, no matter where it sits on the timeline of its existence.

    / 0.2¢
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by 6 months, 2 weeks ago
      I love this response! Well said and well reasoned. This is the type of discussions I think people on both sides of the abortion issue should be having with each other. I think there is more common ground than people realize because they get emotional and entrenched and won't talk to each other.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by $ mshupe 6 months, 2 weeks ago
    For what its worth, the Austin Objectivism Club started a study group several weeks ago on The Foundations of a Free Society. Its not a page turner though. Last week ARCUK started a study group for Ominous Parallels. Join it. Next week Shoshana Milgram starts a study group for The Fountainhead.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by $ skidance 6 months, 2 weeks ago
    Yes. All of her fiction, and most of her non-fiction. Multiple times. I appreciate your having asked this question.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by 6 months, 2 weeks ago
      I haven't delved into her non-fiction, but I'm getting ready to.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by FelixORiley 6 months, 2 weeks ago
        Wow! You are in for a treat.
        The Return of the Native
        Philosophy, who needs it
        Capitalism, an Unknown Ideal.
        We the Living
        The Virtues of Selfishness (clears the air on altruism)
        Objectivism
        The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged is so close to today's reality, I almost consider them non-fiction
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
        • Posted by Tavolino 6 months, 2 weeks ago
          Don't forget "The Voice of Reason" and "Return to the Primitive." Both have many great essays. Then you can read "Introduction to Objectivist Epistemology," and Peikoff's "Objectivism: The Philosophy of Ayn Rand." That should keep you busy and you might enjoy the nonfiction essays and their relevance over the novels.
          Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by term2 6 months, 2 weeks ago
      People seem to think that the outcome in atlas shrugged is fiction. Perhaps they should watch the current news to see just how fictional it is. I do think that the only way people will accept that a change is needed is for their to be a collapse of the current system. What happens after that is dependent on a degree of rational thought, however.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by brucejc04 6 months, 2 weeks ago
    My body, my choice! You say!
    Of course!
    Yes, but what is the proper choice?
    The proper choice is to protect your body from an unwanted pregnancy!
    Make that choice before you take your clothes off!
    To fail to make that proper choice is to be personally, grossly irresponsible!
    Exceptions apply when the pregnancy is due to rape or incest and, in those
    cases, earnest attempts should be made to achieve an embryo transfer or
    an adoption to a woman seeking a child. Another exception would be in the
    case where the embryo is not viable.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by $ Olduglycarl 6 months, 2 weeks ago
      Most never think of the Body inside of them...it has no choices...how would they like their outcome, their life, their future decided for them. When pregnant...it's not Just their Body...
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by BostonTEA 6 months, 2 weeks ago
    Big Business - are people on here anti-big business, or are they anti-crony capitalism (what I prefer to call crony socialism). Government being bought by businesses for their benefit, versus capitalism, is the difference between James Taggart and Dagney Taggart.

    Abortion - times have changed, as has birth control (e.g. morning after pill). Abortion to 8 months and 29 days (or post birth, just letting the infant die, as was recently de-criminalized in MA) is extreme. Contrast that to abortion in the first trimester.

    The former is probably abhorrent to most here, while the latter is probably palatable to most here (my assumptions).

    Again - MY assumptions / attempt to frame the question/response - I'm not a very "frequent flyer" here.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by Eyecu2 6 months, 2 weeks ago
    I have read some of Rand's works and am reading others as it fits into my readings.

    While I agree with quite a lot of her positions, I do not agree with her completely and I personally believe that she would have approved of this position. I don't think anyone should slavishly agree with anyone.

    As to big business, I believe that the Government should mostly stay out of the way and only interfere rarely and then with great reluctance.

    As to abortion, I abhor it; yet, I believe that it is better for it to be legal than illegal, as this is a service that some desire.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by salta 6 months, 2 weeks ago
    My understanding is her reasoning is based on rights. The rights of the individual take precedence over the non-viable potential individual.
    We know the fetus becomes viable before full term birth because we have healthy premature births. So using purely Rand's logic, the date of acceptable choice for abortion moves to earlier date anyway, and will change with technological developments.
    Personally I would want to see the limiting acceptable date much earlier than "viability" anyway. But fully banning abortions has no more reasonable logic than todays proposals (eg. Maryland) to allow "abortion" up to 28 days after birth. At least Rand had reason on her side, even if you don't agree with her conclusion.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by term2 6 months, 2 weeks ago
      True comment that premature babies are also viable is true, to varying degrees with outside help. It seems to me that abortion is most cases is just a low rent way to solve a self created problem. Much better to solve it either before its conceived or very shortly after.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by $ Dobrien 6 months, 2 weeks ago
    I read Atlas Shrugged twice and Fountainhead once. I tried to start We the living and found it pretty depressing and thought I know where this is going (not good) so I didn’t finish it.
    Regarding Big businesses my take is that with lobbying and large cash donations from big business , regulations are used as a weapons to be used to stifle competition and hurt small business ability to exist. For a few decades at least the US has become fascist. Big business partnering with the Con-gress has enabled the
    ceo’s To make absolute fortunes on the back of the laborers. Many CEOs had nothing to do with starting the co.s that they run and now more than ever they partner with Government to the detriment of the citizens. It’s often a good old boy network attempting to rip off the shareholders and exploit the work force. I think all here respect any whale who built a business and thrived. Regarding the abortion issue ,I was surprised that Ayn Rand did not put a bit more responsibility to the pregnancy on the copulaters.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by CaptainKirk 6 months, 2 weeks ago
      Copulation feels good. for one reason. It ensures the race procreates! Consider how internal this urge is. We wrap societal rules around it. But just applying the rules of nature. The body chemistry of pregnant women. Their glow. The direct impact on a man. Yes, he could just leave them. But for EONS he usually did not. and if he did, 2 things happened. Either his family/offspring DIED for lack of support. Or they survived, being raised by a mom or a village. And that CHANGES the offspring (as we see in young boys raised by moms. They can have SIGNIFICANT changes in both directions of Testosterone. Raised in a loving/caring environment, their testosterone drops. Raised in a Poor/Cruel/Painful environment, their Testosterone cranks higher. It takes a man to TAMP that down, usually).

      Anyways, we, as society wrapped rules around this crap. Our rules are half-baked and full of superstition. But also designed to ensure the largest group of people survive into the future.

      And that is the fundamental difference between the 2 sides in my opinion. The left believe we have too many people, and too few resources, and we should give to people based on their NEED. The more enlightened realize that EVERY PERSON on the earth today could easily fit in a 3ft square in Texas alone. Let that image sink in. The vast majority of this country and most countries are open land. A handful of cities hold the majority of our population. Their cognitive bias is skewed. And manipulated.

      People today will answer this question: "Where does Electricity Come From?"
      With: "The Wall and/or The Electric Company" (and thus missing the point that we CREATE it with Energy/Fuel)

      Dob, I COMPLETELY agree that the Large Companies use the law as a barrier to entry for their competition.
      The FDA shouldn't APPROVE drugs the way they do (and then go to work for those companies), despite the science.
      I would be happy with the FDA being reduced to LABELLING.
      - This is DANGEROUS/ADDICTIVE
      - This May work for Pain
      - This drug requires 1,000 people to take it for 1 person to get the benefit

      Imagine... Meanwhile, let me harp on Vitamin C. We are told that High Dose Vitamin C does nothing to help colds, etc.
      YET, Linus Pauling had plenty of evidence to the contrary... They REFUTED his studies by using PALTRY amounts of Vitamin C, but others later showed EVEN AT those amounts there was an OBVIOUS BENEFIT. Of the 2 sets of studies, which one do you think they published? Yep. The one that WRONGLY refuted Pauling (a 2 times Nobel Laureate).

      Furthermore, there are a ton of Claims that High Dose Vitamin C was used to defeat Viral infections like Polio and Cancer. This was REALLY high dose stuff, given as an IV... Which allows 200 times the blood concentration (in line with what animals who produce their own C will produce).

      Don't worry. That study was REFUTED with High Dose ORAL vitamin C. 30 years AFTER it was known that Oral Vitamin, regardless of the dose, can only raise the blood levels to a specific (200 times LOWER) range.

      As an ENGINEER who wears a CGM. I took 6G of Vitamin C for a virus recently, and it spiked my glucose for 85 to 145. [This is FALSE. Vitamin C and Glucose are SO SIMILAR, that the CGM confuses one for the other! The MFG warns you of this]. Keep in mind that my actual Glucose (as measured with a blood stick) did not move.

      Using this knowledge. Would a better study not consider using the Delta in the CGM value as a way to measure how much vitamin C was stored interstitually? (Which, FWIW, becomes a CONTINUOUS Source to replace the Vitamin C in the blood), and as my glucose dropped back down to NORMAL on the CGM... I could TELL I needed another Vitamin C dose.
      ==

      Maybe it's just me. But I feel 80% of the problems we face are simply so easy to fix. It's not that we don't understand how to fix them. It is simply TOO PROFITABLE for a few, to payoff our "RULERS" to not let us get this level of information/education out to the people.

      Our "Rulers" are captured by $ and re-election and corruption. The Captors are the biggest/wealthiest groups in the world.

      And then there is us... We The Living... That are left... Depressingly so...
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  

FORMATTING HELP

  • Comment hidden. Undo