More of an actual "proof" there is no (transcendent) God

Chris Cathcart's picture
Submitted by Chris Cathcart on Sat, 2006-05-13 00:19

This ties into a couple recent SOLO blog posts, one titled The proof there is no god and another on Spinoza on Freedom, Ethics, and Politics. The thoughts here are those occurring to me as I've been recently coming down quite hard on Kant's metaphysics on HPO. I won't speak to the apparent naturalistic pantheism of Spinoza; rather, I'm concerned here with a non-naturalist, transcendent God, the kind which Kant held out a metaphysical possibility for.

Recent Comments:
>>"How would that [the idea — by Utility Belt on Sat, 2006-05-13 21:13
Probability — by Chris Cathcart on Sat, 2006-05-13 21:03
Metaphysics — by Rex Wilkinson on Sat, 2006-05-13 20:50

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The proof there is no god

Rex Wilkinson's picture
Submitted by Rex Wilkinson on Fri, 2006-05-12 16:22

I believe the proof is all around us.Our history is full of proof there is no god and no proof there is.How long can we never find god for,before we have to conclude that there is nothing to find.Every test we want to perform will have the same result ,no god appeared,no god appeared and never has.There have been a few claims of seeing god but people claim some amazing things and one individuals a

Recent Comments:
OK there seems to be some — by michael fasher on Sat, 2007-04-28 23:46
my 10 cents worth — by 0 on Sat, 2007-04-28 12:37
You can't deny that which you cannot discern — by Ed on Thu, 2006-05-18 07:01

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Off to China

Jason Quintana's picture
Submitted by Jason Quintana on Fri, 2006-05-12 16:19

Ok guys -- I am off to Shanghai. I will be back in two weeks. Everyone behave while I'm gone. Smiling

- Jason

Recent Comments:
Snap off a big one, Jase! — by Ross Elliot on Fri, 2006-05-12 23:44

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Spinoza on Freedom, Ethics, and Politics

younkins's picture
Submitted by younkins on Fri, 2006-05-12 14:22

If one mentions the name Spinoza, he is likely to get a response something like “Oh, wasn’t he the pantheist philosopher who lived around the time of Hobbes and Locke?” Of course, he was but he was also much more than that. Baruch (Benedict de) Spinoza (1632-1677) promulgated a deductive, rational and monist philosophy that exhibited a mathematical appreciation of the universe and that held that things can only be understood when viewed in relation to a total structure. Spinoza’s thought is still extremely relevant to 21st Century thinkers in areas such as methodological individualism, value theory, ethical naturalism, self-perfectionism, and political philosophy. For example, many of Spinoza’s ideas are reflected in the works of contemporary philosophers such as Douglas Den Uyl, Douglas Rasmussen, and Tibor Machan.

Recent Comments:
Thanks — by Peter Cresswell on Sun, 2006-05-21 03:14
Comments on interview with author of book on Spinoza — by mcohen on Fri, 2006-05-19 15:04
Aquinas and Spinoza — by mcohen on Wed, 2006-05-17 03:18

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The New Philosophy of Chatons and J-thons

wsscherk's picture
Submitted by wsscherk on Fri, 2006-05-12 14:06

Oops, don't have one, just a musing, and a mental image of kittens (chatons, Fr., kittens):

-- doesn't it seem to some of you, oh chin-on-fist, palm-on-mouse, angina-tablets-at-hand readers who have yet to post, that the chatbox is a different form of forum? a more kittenish place, as opposed to the "Gladiators and the Lions" main SOLO battle arenas?

Recent Comments:
No, I won't, Will, and it is — by JoeM on Sat, 2006-05-13 14:23
"I met Chris Sciabarra" — by wsscherk on Sat, 2006-05-13 07:56
"ps did it strike you at all — by JoeM on Sat, 2006-05-13 00:25

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A golden belch in NZ

Marcus's picture
Submitted by Marcus on Thu, 2006-05-11 22:45

Article about Science in NZ from the New Scientist.

There is a side-splitting part about flatulence research.

Under the heading, "Belching Cattle".

"EIGHTY million cows, sheep and deer burp their way into a major methane headache for New Zealand, which has the unique distinction among developed nations of having methane as its major greenhouse gas. About 90 per cent of the country's methane emissions come from ruminant belches.

Recent Comments:
Ha. — by Olivia on Mon, 2006-05-15 21:45
Still? — by Marcus on Mon, 2006-05-15 16:51
Hokey ole NZ — by Olivia on Sun, 2006-05-14 23:42

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The Romantic Manifesto - Chapter 2: Philosophy and Sense of Life

Julian Pistorius's picture
Submitted by Julian Pistorius on Thu, 2006-05-11 20:19

There are some brilliant insights in the discussion of the first chapter. Thank you guys! Smiling Especially to Marcus - very inspirational - even though you cheated and skipped to chapter 2. Eye

Right, let's all move on to chapter 2 then.

Would anybody like to lead the discussion?

I have a question to start it off. Ayn Rand wrote that you can improve your Sense of Life (SOL). How would you kick-start this process? Once you have this bad SOL, any exposure to great and uplifting art would not have the same wholesome effect, or would it? You would prefer the unclear, the murky, the dark, surely?

Recent Comments:
Yikes. — by Prima Donna on Mon, 2006-05-29 13:46
"I'm just glad I picked up — by JoeM on Sun, 2006-05-28 02:11
Linz: Except I know damn — by wngreen on Sun, 2006-05-28 01:43

Iran Declares War?

jtgagnon's picture
Submitted by jtgagnon on Thu, 2006-05-11 19:44

Lest you think my previous rants about Iran were without substance or support, I urge you to read and consider the following editorial. That we continue to follow a policy of inaction with Iran is not only despicable - it reveals that America has become a spineless giant, a shadow of its former self...and this is a fact that should worry all individuals who value freedom.

- John

NEW YORK SUN | Editorial

Recent Comments:
Iran declares war — by Sandi on Sat, 2006-05-27 02:07
Indeed — by jtgagnon on Sat, 2006-05-20 04:00
Islam at war — by Rex Wilkinson on Mon, 2006-05-15 05:51

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Michael Novak and Edward Younkins: Economic Personalism and Flourishing Individualism

RicoSuave's picture
Submitted by RicoSuave on Thu, 2006-05-11 18:47

Dr. Edward W. Younkins and Michael Novak are both well educated in philosophy and economics. They seem to have similar conclusions, but adopt different methods or premises to reach a free society. The biggest of these differences would lie in whether or not faith should be foundational to our political and economic system. For one to compare these insightful men, one must consider their writings, their influences and whom they influence in turn.

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Jennifer's a star!

Casey's picture
Submitted by Casey on Thu, 2006-05-11 10:14

So I was scanning SOLO for the latest and as the television is on in the background I suddenly hear the sultry voice of Prima Donna and look up and there she is on television in a long commercial talking about the Gilded Fork! I can't even remember which web service it was advertising -- the commercial was all about Jennifer and her new food philosophy business! I kid you not. What a strange experience.

Recent Comments:
And if you're ever in Indiana... — by Landon Erp on Mon, 2006-05-15 02:30
Well... — by Prima Donna on Mon, 2006-05-15 02:25
hmm.. — by Adam Buker on Sun, 2006-05-14 08:20

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Gasoline at 10 Cents a Gallon and Falling

George Reisman's picture
Submitted by George Reisman on Thu, 2006-05-11 05:11

Does gasoline at 10 cents a gallon and falling sound impossible in today’s world?

Well, if you think it’s impossible, you’re wrong. Because that’s where gasoline actually is, and it looks like it’s going even lower.

Recent Comments:
risk premiums? — by Chris Cathcart on Thu, 2006-05-11 15:10
Supply and Demand — by Jason Quintana on Thu, 2006-05-11 14:00
General inflation or relative price increase? — by Tim S on Thu, 2006-05-11 08:17

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Cover the Uninsured

SnowDog's picture
Submitted by SnowDog on Thu, 2006-05-11 00:11

This group

is now running national TV commercials on some of the news channels, and wants Congress to cover all those in the US who have no health insurance. They honestly believe that they are on the noble side of morality and are being left unchallenged in the arena of ideas. I think we should challenge them wherever we can. I wrote them an email.

I think we need to point out that free people are responsible for their own lives and should take responsibility for their own health insurance. Health insurance costs less than housing, food, and transportation, but few Americans would really want the government to furnish them with a house, food, and a car. Yet many of these same people want the government to furnish them with health insurance, or they want the employers of the country to do so.

Recent Comments:
That danged Hippocratic Oath — by wsscherk on Thu, 2006-05-11 14:39
Chris, you may be right, but — by SnowDog on Thu, 2006-05-11 11:08
The tragic part about this — by Chris Cathcart on Thu, 2006-05-11 02:59

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White Guilt and the Western Past

Submitted by wngreen on Wed, 2006-05-10 19:08

I've been out of the loop a couple of weeks and just playing catch up so if there has already been a discussion on this piece I'm sure I'll find it soon. If not, check out this article by Shelby Steele from Opinion Journal. In it he discuses why America is so delicate with our enimies citing guilt over 'white power', slavery and past imperialism as the reason the US is so minimalist in our execution of military power. Our military is the best trained, strongest and has some of the best equipment in human history. Terrorists, be they insurgents in Iraq/Afganistan or pot belly dictator thugs like Iran and N. Korea are no match for us.

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Letter from Mahmood Ahmadi-Najad to George Bush

Kyrel Zantonavitch's picture
Submitted by Kyrel Zantonavitch on Wed, 2006-05-10 17:30

It's hard as holy hell to locate a copy of the recent letter from the Iranian dictator to the US president. The garbled and perhaps truncated copy below, from the Parisian daily Le Monde, is the best I can do:,40-0,50-769886,0.html

Recent Comments:
Declaring War — by Dan Edge on Fri, 2006-05-12 15:38
>There seems to be little or — by PhilipC on Fri, 2006-05-12 05:30
Re Lawless America — by Capitalist on Thu, 2006-05-11 22:12

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Our pathetic addiction to big government - The Australian

Julian Pistorius's picture
Submitted by Julian Pistorius on Wed, 2006-05-10 02:22

Janet Albrechtsen from The Australian makes some very good points in her article "Our pathetic addiction to big government" today:

WHAT is it with this country's budget obsession? Newspapers devote entire sections to tracking the winners and the losers. Being rather canny, presumably editors know what readers want. But the "what's in it for me" obsession is matched only by that other obsession that rarely gets any attention.

Recent Comments:
Interesting ... — by Lindsay Perigo on Wed, 2006-05-10 06:40

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Laurel leaves

Rick Giles's picture
Submitted by Rick Giles on Tue, 2006-05-09 03:03
Power corrupts, and absolute power corrupts absolutely
- Lord Acton, British historian
I have never agreed with that, and for various reasons. But it does have a grain of truth pertienent to this post.
Laurel leaves are the most potent of poisons
- Annon, as far as I know

When I showed the following cartoon to my Hamiltonian mate, Manda, she thought it was about my girlfriend "Laurel" leaving me. Manda's not too bright sometimes (I can say that, she'll never read this.)

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Today's Reprise—'Architecture is the scientific art of making structure express ideas'

Peter Cresswell's picture
Submitted by Peter Cresswell on Tue, 2006-05-09 00:15

"Architecture is the scientific art of making structure express ideas." A friend asked me recently just what the hell that quote from Frank Lloyd Wright actually means -- and to answer him, I had to go all the way back to the Middle Ages.

Recent Comments:
Peter, just like Lindsay's — by Ross Elliot on Thu, 2006-05-11 05:47
Beautiful, PC! — by Lindsay Perigo on Wed, 2006-05-10 07:03
Thanks — by wngreen on Wed, 2006-05-10 02:51

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Islamofascists lose defamation suit against critic

Duncan Bayne's picture
Submitted by Duncan Bayne on Mon, 2006-05-08 20:26

CAIR, the Council on American-Islamic Relations, is an anti-semitic organisation that supports and is partially funded by terrorist organisations.

When Andrew Whitehead, the hero behind Anti-CAIR broadcast the truth about CAIR on his website, said Islamofascists brought a defamation suit against him.

That defamation suit failed, and FrontPage Magazine has an interview with Reed Rubinstein, the attorney responsible for the successful defense.

The Whitehead case has counteracted the tactic of using U.S. courts to stifle free speech by demonstrating that the blowback from a defamation lawsuit – properly defended – is generally far worse than the harm caused by the original statements themselves. Defamation plaintiffs that take on a defendant with a good legal team often lose in two ways: First, the act of filing suit results in the original statements becoming more widely circulated. Second, anything less than either a plaintiff’s verdict, a retraction or a correction, is quite rightly perceived as an affirmation that the challenged statements are in fact true in all respects. Because U.S. laws reflect respect for robust free speech, filing a defamation suit to chill criticism is a very risky tactic, and can work only if the target refuses to fight back. Mr. Whitehead fought back.

Sometimes reading the news cheers me up Smiling

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“Price Gouging”: Setting the Record Straight

George Reisman's picture
Submitted by George Reisman on Mon, 2006-05-08 17:38

The Washington Post reports that the House of Representatives this week overwhelmingly passed a measure imposing severe penalties for “price gouging,” an alleged phenomenon it was unable to define and has left to the Federal Trade Commission to define. Once the Federal Trade Commission figures out what price gouging is, it is authorized to impose fines of up to $150 million for wholesalers and $2 million for retailers. Two year jail penalties for both retailers and wholesalers are also authorized, though presumably imposition of jail time would still require a jury trial in an actual criminal court, not a mere hearing before the FTC.

Recent Comments:
Ross, economics, and starter books — by Craig Ceely on Fri, 2006-05-12 04:36
Well, there are plenty of — by Ross Elliot on Fri, 2006-05-12 02:53
Not reading Reisman? — by Craig Ceely on Fri, 2006-05-12 00:48

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Multi-Page Threads

PhilipC's picture
Submitted by PhilipC on Mon, 2006-05-08 16:46

As someone who's been posting a lot recently, I've noticed some annoying glitches on second and following pages of threads which really slow one down and make one flip through unnecessary already-read pages upon every posting and every reading:

For a thread in which you want to follow the "flow", it makes more sense to look at it in chronological order, i.e., select "oldest first". However, if you do that,

1. After you post or when you enter a thread you are always taken back to the first page not the most recent. It takes a lot of time for this page to load and you have to wait for it to load before you select a later page, because the selection (1,2,3, first page, next page, last page) is on the bottom which loads last.

Recent Comments:
GT 90 posts — by Rick Pasotto on Mon, 2006-05-08 20:05
Yeah, I'm having this issue — by Lanza Morio on Mon, 2006-05-08 18:57
Work in Progress — by Jason Quintana on Mon, 2006-05-08 17:01

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What if Ayn Rand had been a man?

wsscherk's picture
Submitted by wsscherk on Mon, 2006-05-08 13:39

None of her ideas and philosophy would be different, since her philosophy was not and is not gender-bound.

But what of her personal life and the facts of the Break?

-- Mr Ayn Rand
-- Mrs (Frankina O'Connor) Rand
-- Mr Robert 'Bob-Ra' Branden
-- Mrs (Nathania Blumenthal) Robert Branden
-- Mr Patricio Gullison

Recent Comments:
Ayn Rand -- parent, novelist — by wsscherk on Sat, 2006-05-13 08:12
Mother — by eg on Sat, 2006-05-13 06:20
"Unspeakably disgusting" vs "Woman Worshipper" — by wsscherk on Thu, 2006-05-11 04:04

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Support the Fine Arts

Duncan Bayne's picture
Submitted by Duncan Bayne on Mon, 2006-05-08 05:15

I saw this t-shirt for sale today, and immediately thought of Lindsay. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if he was one of their first customers Smiling

Support the Fine Arts

Recent Comments:
Sadly, we're more limited — by Duncan Bayne on Sun, 2006-05-14 21:02
Nice choice for the weapon, — by Andrew Bissell on Fri, 2006-05-12 07:52
I've bought the lot! — by Lindsay Perigo on Mon, 2006-05-08 07:28

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The new James Bond

Casey's picture
Submitted by Casey on Mon, 2006-05-08 01:46

Probably the best movie trailer since the Gladiator teaser trailer with the Conan music. Ladies and gentlemen... the new James Bond:

Recent Comments:
> The way to make a — by PhilipC on Fri, 2007-07-13 21:02
Dynamic Characters — by NickOtani on Fri, 2007-07-13 20:38
For example, he would — by PhilipC on Fri, 2007-07-13 18:47

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Fiendish Brain Researchers [was Theoretical Neuroscience]

wsscherk's picture
Submitted by wsscherk on Sun, 2006-05-07 07:00

(the last slide of 30, from The Oregon Health and Science University) -- for those interested in Computational/Theoretical Neuroscience, some very intriguing depictions . . . for those not interested, inanity.


Recent Comments:
To be fair to Rick — by wsscherk on Fri, 2006-05-12 13:35
Marching orders from Emperor Norton II — by wsscherk on Sun, 2006-05-07 15:08
Hey! — by Rick Giles on Sun, 2006-05-07 07:41

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The Chinese

Rick Giles's picture
Submitted by Rick Giles on Sat, 2006-05-06 05:56

I thought Trevor Loudon was being a bit over-cautious about letting the Chinese have part-owership in Port Lyttelton. But now it turns out he thinks any trade with China is a security risk to New Zealand! Now that's going way too far, Trevor.

Recent Comments:
Now, Jason, *don't* equate — by Ross Elliot on Sun, 2006-05-07 01:07
Americans Are Insane — by Lindsay Perigo on Sun, 2006-05-07 00:23
NZers are nuts — by Jason Quintana on Sat, 2006-05-06 20:40

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You want fairness, you pay up

Marcus's picture
Submitted by Marcus on Fri, 2006-05-05 18:51

NZer Jamie Whyte strikes back again in the Times.

This time against state health and education.

Recent Comments:
NHS — by Tim S on Sun, 2006-05-07 09:10

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May Update

Jason Quintana's picture
Submitted by Jason Quintana on Fri, 2006-05-05 16:28

I’m a bit late with this month’s update, and due to end of the semester pressures I haven’t been as active in participating and managing SOLO as I would like.  Rest assured that this will be changing soon.   One thing I want to make everyone aware of is that I will be traveling to China on May 13, and I will be returning from the trip on May 28.  I will probably be speaking to some of you privately about keeping an eye on Lindsay while I’m gone Smiling If you have any SOLO related issues during this period please contact the webmasters and of course if there is anything serious you can contact Lindsay.

Due to the recent problems we’ve had with the company hosting the SOLO website we’ve had to disable several site functions including chat.  These problems are being worked on and we should have solutions soon. 


The first announcement that I want to make is that SOLOC 5 is on hold.   Lindsay and I have decided not to have the event on the dates of July 7-9, which was our original plan.   Our decision is based on the fact that we just don't have enough pieces of the puzzle in place to move ahead with it on such short notice.  Since Lindsay is flying over that weekend it is a shame that this didn’t work out, but as things stand now we believe that it is best to postpone the conference.  We tried our best to make this work but unfortunately we came up short. Lindsay will still be in Los Angeles during that weekend and a dinner is in the works for those who will also be in L.A. and would like to meet up with him and others.  Look for announcements about this during the next month.  I apologize to anyone who may have made plans around a July SOLO Conference.

Recent Comments:
Note!! — by Lindsay Perigo on Mon, 2006-05-22 22:38
Wow. — by Prima Donna on Sat, 2006-05-06 00:45
Hey! Cut it out, already! — by Ross Elliot on Sat, 2006-05-06 00:06

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"Gaddafi Superstar" The Opera

Jason Quintana's picture
Submitted by Jason Quintana on Fri, 2006-05-05 13:34

Yes, it seems the prestigious English National Opera is doing a "Gaddafi" opera. The lead character is none other then Libyan dictator Maummar Gaddafi.  "'Gaddafi,' which opens in September, will feature Asian beats and rap in place of arias and romance, and the title role will be performed by a 39-year-old Irish-Indian nightclub MC called JC-001."

Recent Comments:
ENO — by Kenny on Sun, 2006-05-07 09:49
Vicious Circle Jerk — by JoeM on Sat, 2006-05-06 02:26
Just a guy named Maummar. — by Landon Erp on Sat, 2006-05-06 02:17

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O-blogs & O-lists

wsscherk's picture
Submitted by wsscherk on Fri, 2006-05-05 00:04

Image sourced from the fabulous Perfectly Imperfect blog . . .

I copied the source from the current Wikipedia entry for
'Objectivism, online groups, and blogs' -- seems a little out of date. I also checked out the listing at SOLO and RoR. What's missing?

Recent Comments:
The're HERE...and more COMING! — by Rowlf on Mon, 2006-05-08 02:52
Spot on, Mark — by Kenny on Sun, 2006-05-07 09:46
Understatement — by Mark on Fri, 2006-05-05 03:17

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Will medics' qualms kill the death penalty?

Marcus's picture
Submitted by Marcus on Thu, 2006-05-04 21:53

I applaud the ends, but are these means worthy of the moral argument against the death sentence?

This method reminds me of Shakespeare's "Merchant of Venice", whereby the winning argument against Shylock is - you can't take your pound of flesh without drawing blood.

"The goal of death-penalty opponents is to get a court order that says that lethal injections can only be administered by licensed professionals, because the ethics of medical professionals prohibit them from participating."

Nature 441, 8-9 (4 May 2006) | doi:10.1038/441008a

Will medics' qualms kill the death penalty?

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