11

FEE: Ayn Rand Predicts its Intellectual Bankruptcy

Posted by dbhalling 3 years, 9 months ago to Economics
86 comments | Share | Flag

FEE or the Foundation for Economic Education has proven to be intellectually bankrupt. For instance, their position against patents and Intellectual property shows that they do not understand property rights or rights generally. They also revere the work of the philosopher David Hume, who argued “cause and effect” does not exist, induction is just correlation, and that a rational ethics is not possible (the so-called is-ought problem). This means that Hume undermined reason, science and ethics. Despite this FEE thinks Hume is a great guy. FEE also promotes Matt Ridley who denigrates human achievement in science and engineering, calling Nobel Laurites in science and inventors frauds, for more click here.
SOURCE URL: https://hallingblog.com/2017/01/01/fee-ayn-rand-predicts-its-intellectual-bankruptcy/


Add Comment

FORMATTING HELP

All Comments Hide marked as read Mark all as read

  • Posted by $ Olduglycarl 3 years, 9 months ago
    Hmm..."conservatives as do-gooders"? Never understood why she would say that...before my time?, probably, but not how I was raised.

    Capitalism is moral if one wants to morally achieve one's ends and be truly successful "as a consequence". [as she states, morality is not the goal]-[to create and succeed is the goal]

    This quote struck me truly.

    "The root of the whole modern disaster is philosophical and moral. People are not embracing collectivism because they have accepted bad economics. They are accepting bad economics because they have embraced collectivism. You cannot reverse cause and effect. And you cannot destroy the cause by lighting the effect. That is as futile as trying to eliminate the symptoms of a disease without attacking its germs."
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
      Because conservativism is based on altruism which is evil.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by $ MikeMarotta 3 years, 9 months ago
        As much as I agree with the statement, I held back on the easy +1 because I look to reason and reality (or the lack of them) as the fundamental issue.

        Modern ("millennial") conservatism would be hard to typify except by statistical summaries of minority aggregates. I mean, for instance, the fact that many Tea Party members believe that social security and Medicare are good programs - because they get the benefits, or look forward to them. Some conservatives are "pro-life" themselves but say that they would not interfere with another woman's right to terminate her pregnancy. To me, that is a contradiction. The morass of immigration and security issues that cannot be resolved by self-identified "conservatives" stems from the fact that reality and reason and missing from the debate. They never get down to first principles.

        I agree that many (most?) self-identified "conservatives" probably do hold to altruistic morality and ethics. But, as OldUglyCarl pointed out, many do not.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by $ MikeMarotta 3 years, 9 months ago
      I agree that the quote you cited is cogent, perhaps a nice encapsulation of the entire letter.

      You question "conservatives as do-gooders." I do not know how old you are, but in my lifetime, Ayn Rand's philosophy has become a strong force within conservatism. You know that she was (and is) reviled in National Review, for instance. Nonetheless, whereas the "me-too" conservatives of the 40s and 50s embraced mere tradition, now "me-too" conservatives grab for various elements of Objectivism, though without admitted the entire truth. The spineless politician Paul Ryan is an example of that. He bragged about requiring his staff to read Atlas Shrugged.

      He was not alone in that. The Bush-Obama Bailouts pretty much shot Atlas Shrugged in book and film to the top of the cultural news of the day.

      So, ever since the "Reagan Revolution" many conservatives have become less squeamish about promoting self-interest. It is a strong current. Even so, many also are social conservatives who endorse the ethics of church and community service as primary virtues.

      This is starkest in matters of sexual morality (or immorality, if you will). It is least open to discussion concerning killing the unborn. A less contentious issue is the failed "war on drugs." But you still find many "law-and-order" conservatives who want to "stop the drug trade."

      That last issue differentiates libertarians from Objectivists. There, the issue is not whether or not they should be legal, but whether or not you should use them - and why people do. Libertarians end the debate with legalization. They are intellectually incapable of addressing the causes of drug use.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
  • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
    Written in February 1946.

    Rand was definitely one of the greatest thinkers of the 20th century. Her logic can not be disputed.

    I am not a laissez-faire economist---you all know that. But you notice Rand did not mention in this letter how best to use the study of economics to promote individualism. She even once admitted she was not an economist.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by $ MikeMarotta 3 years, 9 months ago
      Ayn Rand was most interested in basic principles. She sought to discover and invent a set of fundamental truths. That said, I do agree with you that it can be useful to argue back from a derived truth to a more fundamental one, to a principle or axiom.

      In this case, we could begin with the established fact that capitalism is a superior mode of production, abundance, and social good - childhood longevity, creature comforts, knowledge - and then look at why. Sometimes FEE does that. Occasionally, they publish essays on the morality of individualism, even extending down into the ethics of epistemology: you have no right to force me to contradict the evidence of my senses (granted that much of that goes on in the mind).

      A friend of mine who retired as a successful businessman (which I am not), said that in a world of laissez faire, economics would be a branch of accounting... and not much more...

      (I do not know what you mean by your not being a laissez faire economist. Do you believe that some government controls of production and trade are necessary?)
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
      • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
        No. I cannot say more now. But if dbhalling is into the protection of "ideas"; patents, copyrights, etc, he will understand.
        I can say this:
        I believe in the protection of property rights, and that extends to property "owned" by shareholders
        There is more than that, of course.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by jdg 3 years, 9 months ago
      I saw that, too, and to me it's a major if not show-stopping problem, kind of like trying to come up with the Unified Field Theory without first understanding quantum mechanics. Economics is the indispensable key to understanding human behavior.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
      • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
        The branching of comments on this thread, has me wondering what it is, exactly, you "saw". Not trying to be critical.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by khalling 3 years, 9 months ago
      I did not know that. Is there a comment or post on point you can direct me to?
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
      • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
        Her fallacy concerning laissez-faire economics is that she believed all businessmen make sound business decisions. Simply not true. And though market forces CAN regulate to a certain extent, it is not true in all cases.
        Did you see my topic "The Most Dangerous Game" ? That might explain what I mean.

        As you know, Greenspan also read Rand, yet was Fed chief for many years.

        I designate myself a "loose" Monetarist. But that is only a partial description.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
        • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
          I do not think Rand said business people are infallible. Where did you get that idea?
          Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
          • Posted by BeenThere 3 years, 9 months ago
            "...she believed all businessmen make sound business decisions."
            Also don't believe she believed that either.
            Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
            • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
            • -1
              Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
              If she didn't, then how do you explain her laissez-faire attitude to economics?
              Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
              • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
                What??????
                Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
                • -1
                  Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
                  There was a joke I came across while I was studying economics: How many conservative economists does it take to screw in a light bulb?
                  Answer: None. They all stand around and wait for the Invisible Hand to do it.

                  Don't get the idea I am a Keynesian economist from that post.

                  Instead of my explaining again why I believe she felt all businessmen made sound business decisions, maybe you can tell me where she ever said otherwise.
                  Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                  • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
                    You appear to be completely confused. Rand never talked about the science of economics only what economic system was moral and her position is unimpeachable and the only one consistent with the founding of the United States.

                    Unfortunately, there are no schools or sciences of economics that are right or consistent with Objectivism. I have developed one. My book Source of Economic Growth lays the foundation and I have a series of blog posts under the tag of "intellectual capitalism" that explain other aspects.
                    Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                    • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
                    • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
                      There is one more thing, db, and that is that I can not yet give any more explanation of how to improve global trade relations than I have done so far.
                      Only this; America will not be taking the leadership role in those improvements.
                      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                    • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
                    • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
                      Any so-called moral position is always unimpeachable by those holding it. But I am not, and have never, questioned the morality of capitalism, only that the practice does not always correlate with its theory. And haven't I, more than any other, been able to explain the morality of a capitalist economic system?

                      And of course she couldn't talk about the science of economics as she had no training in it.

                      Don't take this the wrong way, but I sometimes feel that Objectivists take everything Rand has said or written as Gospel truth.
                      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                    • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
                    • -1
                      Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
                      "Our" confusion, db, (and I do think there is more confusion on your side, than mine) results from the fact that in business and economics, more than in any other area of human endeavor, theory and practice are at odds.
                      For example, the course title of the master's class I took in global macroeconomics was "International Finance", the professor explaining it was a "pragmatic approach to global macroeconomic theory". A very intelligent friend of mine told me that that had to be an oxymoron.

                      I was referring to "intellectual capital", not intellectual capitalism, a phrase which seems meaningless to me.
                      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                    • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
                    • -1
                      Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
                      I only said that after my studies in insurance and economics, I realized that not all businessmen made sound business decisions, and that Rand believed they did, IF government "left them alone."
                      Before we commence an argument, we should define terms. For instance, you probably have a different interpretation of what a "sound business decision" is, than I do.
                      For example, running a business into the ground in order to either achieve rapid growth or perhaps "gut" the company, is not "sound". (Look up Billy Durant and the history of General Motors. Generally speaking shareholders, the actual owners of corporate property, should want to protect their rights, but rarely do. I would consider this a countervailing power to control by a directorate.)
                      John D. Rockefeller's "business practices" were neither "sound" nor moral, and resulted in MORE government regulation, not less.
                      Credit Mobilier of America, again, was neither "sound" nor moral.
                      Bernie Madoff was not interested in playing a game; he was a crook, pure and simple.

                      Can you give me a brief precis of your book, "Source of Economic Growth"?

                      Then we can establish "rules of argument".
                      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
          • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
          • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
            It's implied in her belief that laissez-faire economics was best, and that market forces could regulate any contradictory or inconsistent behavior on the part of businessmen. Unless I have misinterpreted that.
            Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
            • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
              And you point is what? That the market cannot do that and it needs to be regulated?
              Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
              • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
              • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
                That isn't what I said. I said market forces CAN regulate to a certain extent, in fact, a very great extent. Insurance itself is a regulator, and not dependent on government.
                I was a large commercial property and casualty insurance underwriter at one time; I started in a small mutual insurance company, then worked for AIG, in their commerce and industry wing. So I not only studied insurance, I also had hands-on experience.
                At any rate, the case is that market forces don't ALWAYS work.
                I understood business, in ways probably that Rand herself never could.
                Patent and copyright regulations wouldn't exist if there were market forces regulating them.
                Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
                  "At any rate, the case is that market forces don't ALWAYS work."

                  By what standard? What does that even mean?
                  Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                  • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
                  • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
                    You're correct. We need to define terms here. What, exactly, is a "market force" anyway? Maybe we can enlist Greenspan's help.

                    Reminds me of a conversation I had with an eminent physicist, and I asked "What is a quantum mechanical event anyway?" So he says, "Well, we don't really know that, Carol."
                    Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
                  Patents and Copyrights are property rights, they are not regulations.

                  What do you mean by market forces don't always work? By what standard?
                  Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                  • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
                  • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
                    Liberalism has mushed distinctions between so many "concept formations" that proper steps to insure property rights can not be installed.
                    Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                  • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
                  • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
                    What I'm saying, in effect, is that more thought and research needs to take place in this regard.
                    Once Liberalism becomes a dead idiotology, then we can start using "reason" in place of "feeling" to attempt adjustments.
                    Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                  • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
                  • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
                    You know, db, this might be the very time to bring up the distinction between "law" and "regulations".
                    I think that "laws" protect basic rights and provide remedies, whereas "regulations" help to make things run smoother.
                    Maybe someone can start a thread on that topic.
                    Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                    • Posted by khalling 3 years, 9 months ago
                      start a thread. Regulations do not have to pass the same "test" as laws. ultimately, regulations are not subject to the balance of powers. most laws are simply procedural.
                      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                      • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
                      • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
                        I may post a topic on my thesis: "Countervailing Powers" which I posted on OPP a couple of years ago, since you bring up balance (separation) of powers.
                        But I really have to go now.
                        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                      • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
                      • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
                        I might do that, but I think you would be better at it. Those are good points.
                        Law is "lex" in Latin; regulations come from the Latin word for king---"rex", so are arbitrary and vary over time.
                        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                  • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
                  • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
                    That's correct. I mischaracterized them. But it is in their effect that they are similar to regulations. I'm not that knowledgeable about the legal framework surrounding them, but it seems they are rights guaranteed by government, and thus subject to government oversight. I'm not really sure, but unless you can tell me, I know of no market "force" that can regulate those rights.
                    I'm pretty sure that those concepts are in the forefront of legal thought at this very time. Mainly because of computer programming and its development of intellectual capital. Compare Linux (free and open source software---had to look up that "concept formation") to Microsoft. And every shade of "property right" in between.
                    Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                    • Posted by khalling 3 years, 9 months ago
                      Open source is not capitalism. My point above. Property rights are straight forward. which property rights do you see as "shades"?
                      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                      • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
                      • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
                        I'm not saying I'm an advocate of "open source", I said it exists, in some people's minds, anyway. I don't know all the shades, but they are there, because intellectual capital is a fairly new "concept formation" and as such becomes vulnerable to all sorts of interpretation. Thus there needs to be "reasonable" means of ascertaining consequences, not just "feeling" your way. That is what is dangerous.
                        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                • Posted by khalling 3 years, 9 months ago
                  I wonder (but not putting words in your mouth) if you confuse capitalism with anarchism. Of course, any moral defense of capitalism starts with the protection of all property rights, which de facto means some form of government
                  Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                  • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
                  • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
                    I started thinking some more about what you called my "confusion"---I need to think it through more completely in order to explain it thoroughly, and I have to go out this afternoon, but I'll get back to you on it.
                    Capitalism, to work effectively, depends on man's competitive nature, which in turn is connected to that risk-taking attribute of man, and those are good things, without which there could not be evolution at all. But as in all those attributes of man's nature, it can be taken to an extreme. Humans sometimes aren't even aware of that fact of human nature. But as I said, I'll be thinking about that going forward.
                    Anyway, did you read my topic: "The Most Dangerous Game"? It is not greed that becomes obsessive, it is playing the "game". Becoming aware of that is a good first step.
                    Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                    • Posted by khalling 3 years, 9 months ago
                      I will read and comment. If property rights are respected, man tends to be good if left alone to pursue his goals. When we see people behaving in bad ways -it is always in a situation of altruism, all forms of socialism or dictatorship. "taking it to the extreme" is where I think you confuse capitalism with anarchism. You are not for it, but ignore that if property rights are protected (a valid definition of capitalism and by extension its moral premises) taken to the extreme does not have much of a meaning.
                      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                      • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
                      • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
                        I would say that the literary device Rand uses---Galt's Gulch---is probably removed from the nature of man, just as a socialist utopia is, but not to the same irrational extent. I say this because there will always be conflict, no matter what type of socio-economic-political system you can have. Conflict resolution is the challenge for man today. Objectivism provides the best philosophical framework for that resolution.

                        Look at it this way: Not even God can make all the people happy AND simultaneously.
                        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                      • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
                      • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
                        You put too much "good" into good men. A man can be good, and still be susceptible to extreme forms of behavior. It is not about property, it is not profits, it is not about "rights". Those are objects, or can even be considered goals. It is about human nature. The psychological means humans have to obtain objects, either material, emotional or spiritual. One other thing about risk-taking: it is that particular attribute of man's personality that leads to "pendulum swings" as well.

                        Risk-taking and competition are the means man uses to achieve goals, or objects, and are as important to him in his goal-seeking behavior, as the object itself.

                        You may not understand completely the nature of addiction, in so far as it becomes tied to man's competitive and risk-taking nature. Gambling is an addiction to a certain type of risk-taking. Power has a use and power-seeking is a driving force in man's nature, but it can become an addiction, and I still need to explicate the nature of that addiction further. Neurologically, addicts are said to be "chasing that high", but can never find it.

                        Where did you learn about human nature, kh?

                        See the topic I started: "Countervailing Powers", for help.
                        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                        • Posted by khalling 3 years, 9 months ago
                          more on rights as not objects, from Rand: "“Bear in mind that the right to property is a right to action, like all the others: it is not the right to an object."
                          Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                          • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
                          • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
                            I was abstracting, as did the American founders. An "object" can be more than something physical or tangible, just as a "vehicle" can.
                            I'm looking at a "right" as an achievable and praiseworthy goal. It is related to individualism, or the individual ability to attain "that which is necessary for a full life.,"
                            Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                            • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
                            • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
                              Leftist/Liberals have taken that "necessary object" to an extreme, wouldn't you agree? Homosexuals do not have the "right" to government sanctioned marriage; women do not have the "right" to choose to kill their unborn children. In those cases, "right" is not a praiseworthy object. Pot smokers do not have the "right" to legalized marijuana use.

                              The reason they do not have those rights, is because those "rights" endanger others, or society at large.
                              Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                          • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
                          • -1
                            Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
                            How do YOU define a right, kh?

                            I am saying "right" IS the object, not the right TO an object.

                            She in no way contradicts me: a right to action, then is the "object" required to carry out that action.
                            Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                        • Posted by khalling 3 years, 9 months ago
                          I don't need "help" I do not understand the point of all you are saying but I would reinforce for you that natural rights are not "objects" but they must be recognized. Men are inherently "good." We do not pass laws or limit natural rights based on flawed psychological illnesses or physical illness. "goal seeking behavior." are you a praxeologist? Of course, Rand rejected Libertarianism and its foundations, which are not rooted in philosophy but merely a political structure. "Power" and seeking it refer to lessening of someone's rights which is not the foundation of capitalism. I'm seeing a lot of "original" sin in your comments.
                          Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
                  • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
                  • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
                    Do you think I am against capitalism? I have said, elsewhere, that capitalism prepares for the future, whereas socialism depletes resources, and why I have called socialism a primitive coping mechanism.
                    I have no idea how you can possibly assume I am confusing capitalism with anarchism, simply because I stated that market forces do not always work as inherent regulators.
                    Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
      • Posted by $ Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
        I guessed that about her, after studying economics and insurance, but just a few years ago, I found a book anthologizing some of the essays she wrote, or speeches she gave, through the years, on Objectivism. And there she confirmed my own insight into her lack of training in economics.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by LarryHeart 3 years, 9 months ago
    Rand is right morality comes first. People do what they believe is moral. Show that the basis of Collectivism is immoral and Capitalism will be embraced

    The root of Marxism stems from the Catholic failure of moral clarity when it came to lending capital with interest.

    Marx , a Jewish convert to Catholicism, hated Capitalism because for almost 2,000 years the Catholic view was that engaging in usury, lending Capital with interest, is immoral. The Church, through the 10% mandatory tithe of all your assets. (read tax) would support the poor (but mostly itself, just like our government today) and be in control of all the dependents. Being poor became a virtue because it served the interests of the Church. Trades and guilds (unions) would flourish to protect scarce work and economies would stagnate as the Church siphoned off their wealth (Federal Reserve) . Only the Landed Aristocracy, Vassals of the Church and kings were rich enough to afford to engage in science. Hence the dark ages.

    Needing capital to create business, such as buying a ship and goods to trade was necessary so the Church found an out. Let the Jews do it. They are devils and immoral anyway. Let the sin be on them and we will take advantage.

    The Church decreed that Jews were abandoned by God to be downtrodden on earth and serve as a lesson to anyone who did not accept Jesus and the Church, The Torah, Pentatuach or Five books of Moses was demeaned as the "Old" testament and ignored.

    Then once the Jewish capital created economic prosperity - Re-distribution, e.g. Stealing from the Jews (today called "the Rich") and giving to the Church (government) was considered noble.

    Read Das Kapital on the Jewish question. Can someone who converts to Catholicism be considered to be a German Citizen? Marx answers, even a German is a Jew if he engages in Capitalism.

    Not until Vatican II and Pope John Paul did this view officially change. Once this moral stigma of Dirty Jew is removed from Capitalism and the Nobleness from re-distribution (theft from the Dirty Jew) then we might get some clear thinking about Capitalism without the mixed messages. .

    Shocked? Appalled that the world Collectivist/Socialist/Marxist culture is based on Jew hatred and Religious Doctrine based on the lust for control and power?
    The truth is like that.

    Roman Catholic and Islamic Religions had to demean the original religion of Israel to get converts away e.g. money, assets and women to make more soldiers to be used to conquer and get more money. control and power.

    That is the moral (or immoral) basis that must be revealed and corrected to gain acceptance of capitalism instead of focusing just on economics.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Comment hidden by post owner or admin, or due to low comment or member score. View Comment
    • Posted by Seer 3 years, 9 months ago
      If one's knowledge of historical facts is based on his reading of Marx, I might wonder about his ability and courage to face truth head on.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by term2 3 years, 9 months ago
    I challenge the proponents of the current monopoly-granting patent system to justify how it is fair to prevent a completely independent inventor from making something that HE (she) thought of just because someone else might have thought of it first.

    I say that the patent system actually impedes innovation, in that an inventor now has to find out if the government will permit him to actually sell his invention before he even invests in completing it.

    Not to mention that the system has produced a host of patent trolls, who just use the system to inhibit competition.

    I understand that there is a large swamp which makes money on the patent system as it is, and which will defend it to the death. But I just dont buy the arguments that a 17 year government granted monopoly to the first person that applies to the government is fair at all.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
      You ignorance know no bounds and you refuse to be learn and you ignore all evidence. WOW you make a perfect Austrian.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by term2 3 years, 9 months ago
        I did challenge you to answer my argument. I take it that your answer is that I am ignorant. I dont think thats a very rational answer. Perhaps some changes in the patent system will answer my objection. In the meantime, I dont think it helps inventors as you claim it does.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
        • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
          The very fact that you use the word patent troll shows you are either ignorant or just pushing propaganda. Based on your history I would choose PROPAGANDIST
          Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
          • Posted by term2 3 years, 9 months ago
            I can accept that you have a different view, but I still say you havent answered my argument. The word patent troll is commonly used to indicate persons or companies that simply file patents for the purpose of exercising government granted monopoly power over true inventors who intend to commercialize their inventions. The patent trolls do not actually make anything or commercialize their inventions, but seek to profit from the work of those who do courtesy of government monopoly powers.
            Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by $ WilliamShipley 3 years, 9 months ago
        You know, it's so sad that on the subject most dear to your heart, the one that you have the most experience in, your response to any disagreement is insult and name calling.

        You refuse to acknowledge independent invention which is the philosophical weak link in the property rights argument to the fruit of your own intellectual labor. Note, I am not saying simultaneous, simply independent.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by wiggys 3 years, 9 months ago
    How I miss her writing. There will not be another like her.
    DB much thanks for presenting this, I am going to send it to friends.
    Is there any information as to what he might have answered her?
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by ProfChuck 3 years, 9 months ago
    Ayn Rand's view of reality is closely related to what is known as "Classical Physics". The classical physics view includes Newtonian and Einsteinian mechanics and as such is deterministic and predictable. The predictability aspect is best illustrated by fact that the locations of the planets at any point in time in the past or future may be calculated to an arbitrary degree of precision. It is from this that the concept of a "Clockwork Universe" arose. Classical physics assumes that the universe is, at least in principal, completely knowable. There is no "hidden" or inaccessible knowledge". However, with the advent of quantum physics and the newer chaos physics we realize that while classical physics is not in the strictest sense wrong it is incomplete. The real world is much more complex and bizarre than the classical physics model would suggest. There are conditions where cause and effect become blurred and time runs backward and even sideways (what ever that means). Classical physics works most of the time but there are observable conditions where it does not. "There are things in Heaven and Earth that are not dreampt of..."
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by lrshultis 3 years, 9 months ago
      Classical physics is considered deterministic only to the extent that measurements are absolutely precise and for a system under analysis that all knowledge about the system is known. So it is only an ideal about how a system will evolve. As for the Universe itself, classically it cannot be predicted due to the lack of whether there is a gravitational aberration affect from gravitation propagating at the velocity of light. There is too much unknowable about the bodies within the Universe to even begin to classically determine much about the Universe.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by ProfChuck 3 years, 9 months ago
        I agree. That is precisely why classical physics is an illusion.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
        • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
          I think you are getting some of your illusions wrong. The Copenhagen interpretation is an illusion purposely pushed for philosophical reasons. It has lead to more and more nonsense, such as black holes are everywhere, dark matter, dark energy and other shims to prop up this failed interpretation of physics.
          Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
          • Posted by lrshultis 3 years, 9 months ago
            The Copenhagen interpretation of quantum mechanics is not how those proposed matter and energy things were predicted. They come from macroscopic physics which shows that the laws of gravity when applied give results which do not fit the observations in the case for the hypothesis that there is more matter than observable so some matter must not interact electromagnetically, so dark matter, and the Universe seems to be expanding in an accelerated fashion which would imply some form of new energy expanding space, thus dark energy, and the knowledge about electromagnetism and the force of gravity can be used to hypothesize objects which have overcome electromagnetic forces when a star has fused the supply of hydrogen and then helium to the point that there is not enough force to support the gravity of the star so that, if large enough, it will collapse to the point where the nuclear forces finally stop its collapse as a neutron star or even further to a quark-gluon substance, thus black holes are hypothesized and there is good evidence for their existences.
            The hand waving of Rand and Peikoff about modern physics and other philosophers is pathetic.
            Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
          • Posted by ProfChuck 3 years, 9 months ago
            One thing I have learned as a scientist, "All theories are incomplete." To the extent that the Copenhagen interpretation is a theory that holds. When a theory suggests a particular outcome for an observation and the observation is consistent with the theory it can be said that the theory is strengthened. However, strengthening a theory is not the same as proof. Without realizing it Newton predicted black holes. His equation determining the escape velocity of a celestial body can be reformulated to the Schwarzchild equation defining the event horizon of a non rotating black hole. Does this mean that black holes exist? Not necessarily. It does provide a testable set of criteria that a black hole must meet to be considered a real phenomena. It is my suspicion that reality is more complex than any theory can possibly be.
            Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by Ben45 3 years, 9 months ago
    FEE is not a monolithic organization. They publish articles from many sources and authors. Best not to have a collectivist mindset. Disagree with individuals.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by JohnConnor352 3 years, 9 months ago
    Yes, FEE says and believes some things that are dumb and illogical. But they continue to be one of the best and most prolific voices out there promoting (mostly) sound economic principles. I'd say they do more good than bad, which is not very common these days.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by Esceptico 3 years, 9 months ago
    I like FEE. FEE has many great articles daily. Some I agree with, so I don’t. All are interesting. Not bothering with tact, largely because I’m tactless, even if what you say is true (which I controvert), I ask the famous Ayn Rand Question: So What?

    Take a look at the much larger picture of what FEE stands for and you will find Objectivists will agree with 90% or more.

    The incessant Objectivist attacks upon friends is, I think, one of the many reasons AS is a failing organization. CEO Grossman described the problem in her December 31 email: “This year at The Atlas Society, we faced facts: Fewer and fewer young people were reading Ayn Rand, membership was declining, revenues were down, and we were struggling to attract fresh faces to The Atlas Summit. As Objectivists, we needed to admit that the old way of doing things wasn’t going to produce the results we needed to achieve our goals of promoting the values of reason, achievement, individualism, liberty and ethical self-interest.”

    FEE has those same goals of promoting the values of reason, achievement, individualism, liberty and ethical self-interest. This begs the question: with so many enemies around, why attack a friend?
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
      They are not my friends if they attack reason, which is what FEE does regularly.
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by Esceptico 3 years, 9 months ago
        First of all, your statement is not correct. FEE does not attack reason. Secondly, I suspect (from your vituperation) you are mired down in the dogma swamp, repeat the Objectivist catechisms. and do not seem to grasp there is a difference between fantasy and visualization.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
        • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
          Really, so celebrating David Hume is not attacking reason?

          So celebration Matt Ridley who thinks scientist, engineers, and inventors are frauds is not attacking reason?

          You need to reevaluate what is attacking reason.
          Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
          • Posted by Esceptico 3 years, 9 months ago
            Good grief, a discussion about Hume again? At least I know to whom you refer, but are you talking about this Matt Ridley as the one who hates reason? “When Matt Ridley, author of The Rational Optimist, is asked what he is worried about, he usually responds, “superstition and bureaucracy,” because superstition can obstruct the accumulation of knowledge, and bureaucracy can stop us from applying that knowledge in new technologies and businesses.” I don’t remember reading any articles in FEE by him, but the above is from an article in which he was quoted https://fee.org/articles/the-world-is...

            In any event, to me this is time wasted on counting the number of angels who can dance on the head of a pin when there are much larger issues to confront. If you want to fight with FEE, go ahead. I doubt you will amount to a fly buzzing around its head. If you want to fight friends rather than “spread the word” through education of the multitude of people who have no idea what free enterprise, atheism, and liberty are, then enjoy the fight. But it is my opinion time is better spent on more enjoyable and profitable endeavors. In the meantime I bid you adieu, for I have some trivial things to do which are far more important.
            Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
            • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
              The company you keep. Hume is evil and they celebrate them.

              Ridley is liar and denigrates human achievement. His argument is that no one inventor is important, it is a societal effort. That is epistemological collectivism and that is as bad or worse that political collectivism
              Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
  • Posted by $ MikeMarotta 3 years, 9 months ago
    Everything Ayn Rand said is true. However, FEE has been successful these 70 years.

    I believe that the reason for FEE's continued good works is that most people have limited interests. We all sort input through filters of understanding. Economics is easy to understand if only because gold coins are tangible. You can reduce economic arguments to Robinson Crusoe.

    On the other hand, philosophy requires broad and deep conceptual thinking across the fullest range of your knowledge. Just for instance, when I last read Introduction to Objectivist Epistemology I questioned what I read against everything I know. My only limit was my own range of knowledge.

    With economics, it all comes down to measures that we have in our hands. Economics does have "philosophical" arguments. In my last Econ 101 class (2006), on the first day the prof - a good market guy, but not laissez faire - disabused the class on the notion that there is a "fair" or "absolute" price. "Would you give up a dollar to get a quarter? What if you had to make a phone call and the only way to do that was with a pay phone?" So, again, the philosophical issue of "value" came down to everyday measurables.

    Philosophy is more abstract than that.

    And, if I may, I point out that if you are an economist, you can say that with a straight face. Tell people that you are a philosopher and they will look at your shoes to see if they are tied because you just said that you are not capable of doing it.
    Reply | Mark as read | Best of... | Permalink  
    • Posted by 3 years, 9 months ago
      The non-aggression principle is an attempt to short cut the hard work of philosophy
      Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  
      • Posted by $ MikeMarotta 3 years, 9 months ago
        +1 of course, but, again, I point to the fact that most people find it easy to understand and agree with.

        We can discuss whether non-aggression is a "principle." I suggest that is not a principle of ethics; it is of politics.

        (By analogy, the Pythagorean theorem, which is complicated and dependent on much, is accepted as a basic principle (an "axiom" as I was taught it) of Cartesian Geometry. Similarly, the First Amendment could be a principle of government, because if instantiated in classical Athens, it would have been revolutionary: they lacked that principle, following instead the principle of majority rule. We know that the First Amendment rests on more basic truths of ethics.)

        In any case, while I agree that NIOF is necessary but insufficient for a new culture based on reason, I am not loathe to accepting socially those who endorse it.
        Reply | Mark as read | Parent | Best of... | Permalink  

FORMATTING HELP

  • Comment hidden. Undo