A reminder that we're still at war with barbarism

Peter Cresswell's picture
Submitted by Peter Cresswell on Sun, 2006-04-09 20:44

Death to Marxism! Death to Fascism! Death to Islam! Death to all forms of tyranny over the minds of men! And shame on those who would appease or apologise for the evils these disgusting and barbarous ideas represent.

"All that is necessary for evil to triumph is for cowards to appease it - and Islam is the locus of evil in the contemporary world." If that statement from The Free Radical's Lindsay Perigo is not true, then the death and destruction of September 11 did not happen; then Theo van Gogh was not murdered; then the Danish cartoonists are not in hiding in fear of their lives; then hordes of stone-age barbarians did not take to the streets in reaction against those cartoons to say "Europe, you will have your own Holocaust soon," "Behead those who would insult Islam" and "God Bless Hitler"; then Bali, Madrid and London were not bombed by maggots who show those threats need to be taken very seriously indeed.

It's still not clear to some people that war was declared in the name of Islam some five years ago by representatives from the dark ages who hate the West for its wealth, for its happiness and for its material success. This post is yet another reminder for those people.

Recent Comments:
I'm all ears — by Rick Giles on Sun, 2006-04-16 04:20
Spoon Feeding, Rick Giles — by Wayne Simmons on Sat, 2006-04-15 18:27
Muslims from your "Muslims" — by Rick Giles on Sat, 2006-04-15 03:10

Perigo smeared

Peter Cresswell's picture
Submitted by Peter Cresswell on Sun, 2006-04-09 20:44

A local blogger has attacked Lindsay Perigo's 'Death to Islam' editorial as "bigotry" and "hate speech."

Recent Comments:
Well it's obvious the real — by gregster on Tue, 2007-07-10 04:52
Wow — by Andrew Bissell on Mon, 2006-04-10 01:55
You have at best — by Utility Belt on Mon, 2006-04-10 00:45

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Binswanger on Immigration

AdamReed's picture
Submitted by AdamReed on Sun, 2006-04-09 20:32

Harry Binswanger has posted to his blog a superb clarification of the ethical and legal issues in immigration. In view of the unhealthy reticence with which this issue is treated by many "libertarians" and wanna-be-"Objectivists," here and elsewhere, go read.

Recent Comments:
We already have open immigration... — by atlascott on Mon, 2007-08-13 16:24
A hypothetical question — by Erik Christensen on Mon, 2007-08-13 03:28
Actually, the Atlasphere Isn't an "Affiliate" of Anyone — by Joshua Zader on Thu, 2006-04-13 19:51

A Libertarian Critique of the Interim Constitution for Iraq

Duncan Bayne's picture
Submitted by Duncan Bayne on Sun, 2006-04-09 01:09

I wrote this critique prior to changing my mind regarding the liberation of Iraq, but my analysis is still perfectly valid, and unfortunately, events have since proved my fears regarding the Interim Constitution well grounded.

It is entirely possible that the people of Iraq, being liberated from Hussein's yoke, may well yet vote themselves into the hellish nightmare of an Islamic theocracy - with the full support of their new Islam-based Constitution - and the Interim Constitution set the scene for that.

Recent Comments:
Sandi, Islam is a religion — by Kenny on Thu, 2006-04-13 17:25
Islam is a Mafia. — by Sandi on Wed, 2006-04-12 03:22

The Ghost of Thomas Jefferson (reprised for Thanksgiving)

Ross Elliot's picture
Submitted by Ross Elliot on Sat, 2006-04-08 10:14

[The Ghost of Thomas Jefferson first appeared on SOLOHQ & in The Free Radical.]


President John Thomas Jefferson Smith turned to his uneasy secret service agents and waved for them to go away, outside, back into the night. He wanted to be left alone, in this dimly lit memorial, in this quiet place.

Recent Comments:
Have you ever tried to get — by Duncan Bayne on Wed, 2006-04-12 05:01
Whoa-eth! — by Prima Donna on Wed, 2006-04-12 04:59
Ah! — by Lindsay Perigo on Wed, 2006-04-12 04:26

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Aquinas and Kant on Masturbation

seddon's picture
Submitted by seddon on Sat, 2006-04-08 02:04

A spectre is haunting the philosophy of sex in the writings of Aquinas and Kant. It is curious, very curious, that Aquinas, Rand’s second favorite philosopher, and Kant, Rand’s least favorite philosopher (he was after all the most evil man in the northern part of southeast Koenigsburg) share a position (no, not the missionary)—masturbation. They’re against it. And there arguments are almost identical. Sex is made for procreation and no matter how good you get at wacking off, you’re not going to procreate. That’s the hard truth. Be erect, and take it like a man. Masturbation is a no-no.

Recent Comments:
Gavin — by seddon on Tue, 2008-08-12 14:29
Gilson — by Gaven on Tue, 2008-08-12 13:14
Gavin — by seddon on Mon, 2008-08-11 15:25

Kant on Belief in God

seddon's picture
Submitted by seddon on Sat, 2006-04-08 01:21

On pp.2-3 of Manfred Kuehn's book KANT: A BIOGRAPHY we read,
"Scheffner [an old friend of Kant's] was only too much aware of Kant's belief that there was nothing to be expected after death. Though in his philosophy he had held out hope for eternal life and a future state, in his personal life he had been cold to such ideas. Scheffner had often heard Kant scoff at prayer and other religious practices. Organized religion filled him with ire. It was clear to anyone who knew Kant personally that he had no faith in a personal God. Having postulated God and immortality, he himself did not believe in either. His considered opinion was that such beliefs were just a matter of "individual needs." Kant himself felt no such need."

Recent Comments:
Neil — by seddon on Mon, 2006-04-10 02:17
Fred — by Neil Parille on Sun, 2006-04-09 23:57
Jefferson — by PhilipC on Sun, 2006-04-09 21:35

Machan's Musings—Teaching versus Preaching

removed's picture
Submitted by removed on Sat, 2006-04-08 01:08

After having taught college for nearly forty years, I can report that a great many teachers use their class rooms to preach, not to teach. (The same is reportedly the case in secondary schooling but I am not qualified to speak to that.)

In the tradition of liberal education, which is what is supposed to guide the profession of teaching, when professors enter the classroom, they are supposed to present to their students facts about the subject matter and, where appropriate, the variety of viewpoints that have gained prominence concerning it. The former approach is mainly associated with the natural sciences, the latter with the humanities and social sciences. Of course, facts are involved in both and even where there are different viewpoints afoot, it doesn’t mean they are all equally sound. But because they have all gained respectability, the professor is not supposed to take sides. He or she is supposed to familiarize students with these prominent perspectives and leave it to the students to decide which position is the most reasonable.

Miniskirts: The Fashion of Freedom takes on Progressive Education

Marnee's picture
Submitted by Marnee on Sat, 2006-04-08 00:40

What does the fashionable and freedom loving girl wear to a protest? Well, take a lesson from 10 year old Zoe Hinkle of Pittsburgh.

This little Dagny Taggart is making a bold fashion statement about her freedom to make choices. But the oh so Progressive School Board says no!

Recent Comments:
Im not advocating young — by Richard Wiig on Sat, 2006-04-08 07:58
Progressives & My Hyperbole — by Marnee on Sat, 2006-04-08 06:02
I know Gene. It was a great — by Jody Gomez on Sat, 2006-04-08 04:53

Open vs. Closed System Theory

Dan Edge's picture
Submitted by Dan Edge on Fri, 2006-04-07 20:32

Open vs Closed System

I am an advocate of Objectivism as a "closed system" of philosophical thought. I've considered this issue from many different angles and degrees of complexity over the years, but now the answer seems surprisingly clear to me. Several years ago, I asked myself the questions: "If I view Objectivism as an open system of thought, then how exactly do I define the term 'Objectivism?' What are the referents of 'Objectivism' in reality?" Based on the open system theory, I found these questions to be unanswerable.

One must have epistemological precision with his concepts, particularly in the study of philosophy. I have found that one of the best ways to deepen my understanding of a subject is to go back and more precisely define concepts relating to that subject. The closed system perspective makes this possible with respect to Objectivism. Assuming a closed system, I can define exactly what Objectivism is, and what its referents are in reality. Objectivism is the philosophy of Ayn Rand.

Recent Comments:
Mike_M said: Imagine that, — by ValueCritic on Sun, 2010-04-11 17:11
'names', Proper-names, and concepts — by Rowlf on Sun, 2006-04-16 05:51
ok then! — by Mike_M on Wed, 2006-04-12 05:06

Linz on Radio & TV

Lindsay Perigo's picture
Submitted by Lindsay Perigo on Fri, 2006-04-07 03:42

Radio Live: Fri April 14, 10am - 2pm; Sunday April 16, 12pm - 4pm; Monday April 17, 2pm - 6pm; NEWSFLASH!! - every Sunday thereafter, 12pm - 4pm!

TVNZ, Eye to Eye: Saturday, April 22, 8am, against Hone Harawira, MP, on his proposal to ban smoking altogether!

Recent Comments:
"Well you did poke her ..." — by Lindsay Perigo on Wed, 2006-04-26 14:08
Well, you *did* poke her — by Ross Elliot on Wed, 2006-04-26 11:16
Did the cameras .. — by Lindsay Perigo on Wed, 2006-04-26 08:59

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Is This What They Teach at the Ayn Rand Institute?

Robert Campbell's picture
Submitted by Robert Campbell on Thu, 2006-04-06 15:01

Since Diana Hsieh is remarkably quick to impugn the scholarship of her "detractors," I thought it might be worthwhile to go through one of her own recent public statements about Objectivist scholarship, to see what standards it actually meets.

Recent Comments:
See my new blog entry — by Robert Campbell on Mon, 2006-08-07 15:07
Generally speaking — by eg on Sat, 2006-08-05 00:47
Two Inaccuracies — by DianaHsieh on Fri, 2006-08-04 21:34

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First, Witchcraft Trials; Now, Impending Health Insurance Fiasco: Massachusetts Leads the Way

George Reisman's picture
Submitted by George Reisman on Thu, 2006-04-06 14:09

Having just read today’s New York Times’ lead page-one article titled “Massachusetts Sets Health Plan for Nearly All,” I think I know what it must be like to live in some place like Caracas and participate in a popular celebration of the joyous wonders wrought by La Revolución. That’s certainly the spirit of the article.

Recent Comments:
From within the fiasco — by Stephen K. on Tue, 2006-04-11 04:12
This won't fail. It won't be — by Ross Elliot on Fri, 2006-04-07 04:47
I hope this is seen as a failure very quickly. — by Jason Quintana on Thu, 2006-04-06 14:39

Barbara Branden and TOC

William E. Perry's picture
Submitted by William E. Perry on Thu, 2006-04-06 13:50

I think that the invitation of Barbara Branden to speak at The Objectivist Center summer seminar was inappropriate based on her recent conduct. I attempted to stop the invitation based upon judgment of her by the standards of David Kelley in _The Contested Legacy of Ayn Rand_. Although my views on judgment are far different than Kelley’s I was attempting to function within the context of the organization and its views.

Recent Comments:
Ciro, — by Casey on Wed, 2006-04-12 08:05
Ciro — by eg on Wed, 2006-04-12 05:04
Mr. Valliant, what if BB — by Ciro D Agostino on Wed, 2006-04-12 04:39

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Vote for BBC "Moving Words"

Scott Wilson's picture
Submitted by Scott Wilson on Thu, 2006-04-06 07:59

On the BBC website there is a poll for the most Moving Words quoted in English for all time. The poll is here:

The results so far are:

Results so far:
1: Woody Allen: To you I'm an atheist; to God, I'm the Loyal Opposition
2: Dalai Lama: You can't shake hands with a clenched fist
3: Sir Isaac Newton: If I have seen further, it is by standing upon the shoulders of giants
4: Saint Augustine: Better to have loved and lost, than to have never loved at all.

Recent Comments:
Of Those Listed.... — by Dan Edge on Sat, 2006-04-08 02:46
~~ Since 'The List' doesn't — by Rowlf on Sat, 2006-04-08 02:40
Yeah! — by Fraser Stephen-Smith on Fri, 2006-04-07 15:35


Rick Giles's picture
Submitted by Rick Giles on Thu, 2006-04-06 03:23

Click here for their homepage Click image for link to Frontline's website

We don't know how lucky we are. We don't know how proficious are the circumstances, Kiwis.

I know that since I've been away Paul Homes left TVNZ, and for a while there were three post-news current affairs shows. But thankfully we in Enzed have not yet devolved to the state of presenting and consuming tabloid news shows among ourselves.

Recent Comments:
Ain't no doubt — by Rick Giles on Fri, 2006-04-07 04:43
Frontline was brilliant. As — by Ross Elliot on Thu, 2006-04-06 06:29

One more nail in the ID "theory" coffin.

Jody Gomez's picture
Submitted by Jody Gomez on Thu, 2006-04-06 02:20

Though as we know, ID is a modern euphemism designed to make creationism more stealth-like, so I'm not sure if nailing the coffin shut will ever silence this living-dead creature.

transitional life forms

The Bigger the Better?

JulianP's picture
Submitted by JulianP on Wed, 2006-04-05 23:23

No, this is not for SOLO Thrust... Smiling It's an interesting study recently published by Swiss researchers:

The Bigger the Better? Evidence of the Effect of Government Size on Life Satisfaction around the World

This paper empirically analyzes the question whether government involvement in the economy is conducive or detrimental to life satisfaction in a cross-section of 74 countries. This provides a test of a longstanding dispute between standard neoclassical economic theory, which predicts that government plays an unambiguously positive role for individuals' quality of life, and public choice theory, that was developed to understand why governments often choose excessive involvement and regulation, thereby harming voters' quality of life. Our results show that life satisfaction decreases with higher government spending. This negative impact of the government is stronger in countries with a leftwing median voter. It is alleviated by government effectiveness - but only in countries where the state sector is already small.

Recent Comments:
If this is true, then look — by Pete L on Wed, 2006-04-05 23:59

Getting no (musical) satisfaction?

Peter Cresswell's picture
Submitted by Peter Cresswell on Wed, 2006-04-05 01:02

Reading a puff-piece the other day about the Rolling Stones' impending world tour, a piece of research was quoted that suggested our 'cultural choices' (or some such phrase) are all made between the ages of fifteen to thirty, following which we all apparently seek to recapture and reprise the thrill first felt in the first flush of adulthood.

This, said the journalist about the research, explains such phenomena as the constant repackaging and re-selling of CDs and albums of arthritic rockers, the $umpteen squillion Jimi Hendrix Rock'n'Roll Museum in Seattle (paid for with Paul Allen's Microsoft winnings), and the bland dreck played on expensive sound equipment emanating from the car windows of too many highly-paid middle-aged middle executives - 'life in the fast lane' - 'I can't get no satisfaction' - 'all in all we're just another lame-brain in the wall' - bleecch.

Recent Comments:
James V:I "hear" sincerity, — by Lanza Morio on Wed, 2006-04-12 07:45
Sincerity — by James S. Valliant on Sat, 2006-04-08 13:40
Hey James... — by Lanza Morio on Sat, 2006-04-08 05:02

Why Gareth Morgan is wrong to give his money away

Peter Cresswell's picture
Submitted by Peter Cresswell on Wed, 2006-04-05 00:59

Gareth Morgan is wrong to give his money away. Here's why.

There are some people who are so productive they almost can't help creating wealth. These aren't just wealth creators, they're walking machines of production, able to turn a dollar into ten, into a hundred, into a thousand, into seven hundred million... purely on the basis of a good idea, a lot of hard work, and an understanding of the way the world works.

Gareth's son Sam Morgan is such a man.

Recent Comments:
Yikes! — by Rick Giles on Wed, 2006-04-05 12:17
As was said elsewhere:Have — by Capitalist on Wed, 2006-04-05 07:14
Wrong? — by Rick Giles on Wed, 2006-04-05 03:48

Suppressing information. A challenge to free speech?

Peter Cresswell's picture
Submitted by Peter Cresswell on Wed, 2006-04-05 00:57

The use of suppression orders in recent New Zealand trials has come in for much debate, not least in two trials involving and alleging gang rape, the latest being the suppression orders from the Louise Nicholas/Clint Rickards (et al) trials just finished, and currently being informally challenged. A commenter here asked for my opinion on the various breaches of the suppression order in the recent rape trial: "PC," said Yalnikim, "I'm looking forward to your thoughts on "free speech versus information suppression." So here they are.

NZ's water problems cured by property rights?

Peter Cresswell's picture
Submitted by Peter Cresswell on Wed, 2006-04-05 00:55

Water has become an issue here in Godzone - dirty lakes in Rotorua; falling lake levels in South Island hydro lakes; rising demand for limited river water for agricultural irrigation.

All of these problems have been caused either largely or in part by a lack of sufficiently clear property rights in water -- a Tragedy of the Commons problem, and one recognised even by the Clark Government who has spent the last three years putting together a scheme for tradeable water rights, and by Rotorua Maori who are just beginning to talk about property rights as a means of protecting water quality in local lakes.

UNdesirable - Why You Shouldn't Support the United Nations

Duncan Bayne's picture
Submitted by Duncan Bayne on Wed, 2006-04-05 00:51

This article is reprised from my personal homepage, which I am shutting down.

The United Nations (UN) is a socialist organization with fascist leanings. The purpose of this article is to highlight existing problems with the UN and its policies, and to lead the reader to question whether membership or support of the UN is moral, or even pragmatically desirable.

These problem areas are:

  1. Property Ownership
  2. Firearm Ownership
  3. Corruption and Coverups
  4. Intervention in Lawmaking
Recent Comments:
Gregster — by Kasper on Tue, 2008-07-08 01:44
Freedom without property rights Man!? — by gregster on Tue, 2008-07-08 01:32
UNinvolved — by Luke H on Mon, 2008-07-07 22:58

On Prayer and Science

jtgagnon's picture
Submitted by jtgagnon on Tue, 2006-04-04 18:30

Recently a study was done exploring the efficacy of prayer. I've included the Reuters report about it to provide a contextual backdrop. Following the media's presentation of this study, the J-List, a discussion group of which I am a part, entered into a debate about it. I, being the opinionated person I am, joined in and began an interesting debate with a fellow J-Lister named Lynn. Here is part of that discussion (preceeded by the news article) for your perusal:

CHICAGO (Reuters) - A study of more than 1,800 patients who underwent heart bypass surgery has failed to show that prayers specially organized for their recovery had any impact, researchers said on Thursday.

Recent Comments:
Rex is telepathic powers — by Marnee on Thu, 2006-07-06 03:24
My telepathic experience — by Rex Wilkinson on Mon, 2006-07-03 21:34
Hypnosis now too? — by Landon Erp on Fri, 2006-06-30 21:28

the Web 2.0 and capitalism

dvo's picture
Submitted by dvo on Tue, 2006-04-04 02:58

Everyone is talking about the "Web 2.0", or the "Living Web." The idea that everyone has recognized is that if you want to make a website with a lot of great stuff (but perhaps don't have many resources to start with), then set up a website where users can create their own content, and organize it, all by themselves. Wikipedia, Myspace, Flickr, etc. are great examples of this.

It occurred to me that this is analogous to the idea that makes capitalism so successful. If you want to set up a country that has a lot of great stuff, then you can either: A) Have the government provide all the content; or B) set up a system where any individual user (well, citizen) is free to add whatever content he thinks would be good. The spirit of the "Living Web" would tell you to go with the second option.

Recent Comments:
Daniel, the web is the — by Ross Elliot on Tue, 2006-04-04 05:35

New knife

Duncan Bayne's picture
Submitted by Duncan Bayne on Tue, 2006-04-04 00:42

My latest purchase has just arrived in the mail (shipped to me at work; everyone here is used to me by now).

Recent Comments:
Different schools — by Bill Sipes on Thu, 2006-04-06 02:52
Bill, — by Duncan Bayne on Wed, 2006-04-05 21:21
Noodle about in Pax Baculum. — by Wes on Wed, 2006-04-05 16:24

Email address changing ...

Duncan Bayne's picture
Submitted by Duncan Bayne on Mon, 2006-04-03 06:33

As of now, my email address has changed from to I'll be checking my Ihug address less & less frequently in the coming weeks, & probably switching to GMail exclusively in about a fortnight.

Heidegger on Aristotle

seddon's picture
Submitted by seddon on Mon, 2006-04-03 01:22

There is a lot to hate about Heidegger. The Nazi bullshit is enough to put one off one’s food. And even if you can get past that, there is his lousy writing style. When I teach Existentialism I do Heidegger right after Nietzsche and even the dullest student is aware of the difference. So why this entry? I think I have found something of value in Heidegger and thought I would pass it on. Rand loved Aristotle and Heidegger wrote quite a bit about him. And his approach to Aristotle attracted the attention of Jacob Kline, long associated with the Great Books program at St. John’s College in Annapolis and whose influence can now be witnessed in a wonderful series of translations of Aristotle by Joe Sachs. Specifically he has translated the METAPHYSICS, PHYSICS, ON THE SOUL, NICHOMACHEAN ETHICS, ON MEMORY AND RECOLLECTION, AND THE POETICS. But back to Heidegger.

Recent Comments:
Greekless — by seddon on Tue, 2006-04-04 20:09
Greekless... — by PhilipC on Tue, 2006-04-04 19:23
That's Brave — by seddon on Tue, 2006-04-04 18:56


William E. Perry's picture
Submitted by William E. Perry on Sun, 2006-04-02 12:57

I am no longer employed by, or affiliated with The Objectivist Center. Nor will I be attending their summer seminar. There are several exceptions to this. First I am technically a member of TOC under its rules until sometime in August due to previous donations. Second I wrote an article about Terry Goodkind which should appear in an upcoming issue of the magazine. (I wrote the article in October.) If there are any letters to the editor concerning the article I may reply. Finally I have agreed to answer questions from the center about work I did, as well as the location of files in my former office and on my computer. I have also agreed to forward any e-mail I receive regarding TOC to the appropriate person there. I have specifically not agreed to give any advice about any matter.

Recent Comments:
Photo please Roderick — by Lindsay Perigo on Tue, 2007-04-17 01:00
"Abstract Particulars" — by Fifth of November on Mon, 2007-04-16 23:07
TOC — by eg on Thu, 2006-04-06 17:56

( categories: )

April Update

Jason Quintana's picture
Submitted by Jason Quintana on Sat, 2006-04-01 21:47

It has been an interesting month watching things develop here on SOLO. As I initially noted, I was surprised when Lindsay tapped me to run things here, but I decided that the challenge he was offering is one that gives me an outlet to focus on things that are important to me. Objectivism is important to me, discussing ideas is important to me, and advocating freedom is important to me. The goal that Lindsay and I share is that we both want to develop the best Objectivist community on the Internet. While SOLO is certainly my personal favorite Objectivist community I recognize that a lot of work needs to be done before we can once again claim this title. My first goal in this process is to build a strong team of people to help me run different aspects SOLO. A lot of what I write in my initial monthly updates will be aimed at attracting people to help with different projects. This month I have three such projects that I want to mention.

Recent Comments:
contra Jennifer — by Jody Gomez on Tue, 2006-04-04 03:21
Error in Dates — by Jason Quintana on Mon, 2006-04-03 22:36
Kenny — by Jason Quintana on Mon, 2006-04-03 19:56

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