War Philosophy and Current Events

Jason Quintana's picture
Submitted by Jason Quintana on Sun, 2006-07-16 04:43

These last couple of weeks have been quite turbulent. The world is a volatile place at the moment. North Korea is purposely starting trouble with Japan, America and South Korea. Israel has been attacked by state sponsored terrorists on various fronts and of course the Europeans have their heads in the sand as usual.

Recent Comments:
Win the war of ideas — by Kenny on Sun, 2006-07-23 22:08
I don't know what exactly — by Aaron on Mon, 2006-07-17 13:12
It's not that serious — by Scott Wilson on Mon, 2006-07-17 10:58

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Homeopathy Is a Load of Voodoo Shit!!!

Marcus's picture
Submitted by Marcus on Sat, 2006-07-15 14:27

NZer Jamie Whyte, criticises the stupidity of the British nationalized "alternative" health system that advises tourists that "Homeopathy" medicine can prevent Malaria based on no evidence at all!!!

Recent Comments:
Lindsay please call me Greg... — by Greg Mullen on Wed, 2006-07-26 17:44
And also . . . — by Lindsay Blair on Wed, 2006-07-26 01:04
Mr. Mullen: — by Lindsay Blair on Wed, 2006-07-26 00:52

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Poverty and Terrorism: Debunking the Myth

jtgagnon's picture
Submitted by jtgagnon on Sat, 2006-07-15 13:59

For years, individuals of varied political backgrounds have promoted the general notion that poverty is the root cause of war. The most recent incarnation of this idea is that poverty is the root cause of terrorism. Thus, proponents of this idea advocate a seductively simplistic solution to the problem of terrorism – assist impoverished nations in combating poverty. The means for achieving this end – usually put forth as substantial increases in foreign aid – is typically cast as the responsibility of the wealthy, particularly those enjoying the fruits of living in modern, technologically-driven, industrialized nations.

Recent Comments:
I agree with your comments John, — by Sandi on Fri, 2006-08-11 18:20
JT, LW, and Daniel — by Mark Dow on Mon, 2006-07-17 06:15
jt — by LWHALL on Sun, 2006-07-16 22:52

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Today's Reprise—Are Some SOLO Objectivists Secretly Hosperians?

Ross Levatter's picture
Submitted by Ross Levatter on Sat, 2006-07-15 08:49

In the latest (August, 2006) issue of Liberty magazine, an article by philosopher John Hospers appears, entitled "Remembrance of Things Past." Hospers, in 1990, had two articles in Liberty discussing his conversations with Ayn Rand. The current article relates further, as yet unrecorded discussions (or so says Hospers; for myself, I felt on reading the article that sense of deja vu that suggested I'd heard at least some of these stories before...)

Recent Comments:
Hospers and Rand — by Kenny on Sun, 2006-07-16 09:24
Aaron — by Ross Levatter on Sat, 2006-07-15 23:58
2) Draft - Hospers is wrong, — by Aaron on Sat, 2006-07-15 21:10

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Take The Moral High Ground

Ross Elliot's picture
Submitted by Ross Elliot on Sat, 2006-07-15 05:32

[Reprised from the SOLO-HQ archive, in small part, to provide succor to those poor SOLs sorely tested by that prehistoric reptilian species, Ignoramus Rex]

Ever get into one of those situations where some statist sympathiser is pontificating about the failure of the market, slamming individual choice and demanding some "corrective" action from government? And, you sigh inwardly, your eyes (and your mind) glaze over, and you think: Oh, dear, here we go again.

How many times have you avoided conflict by making some harmless observation, by moving away to freshen your drink, by turning the conversation to a less contentious subject? By remaining silent?

We’ve all done it. Some of us have even turned it into an art-form. But, remember what Edmund Burke said: All that is necessary for the triumph of evil is that good men do nothing.

Recent Comments:
Glad you enjoyed it. — by Ross Elliot on Sat, 2009-08-29 04:01
Ross — by 0 on Fri, 2009-08-28 23:32
Hi Marnee, I see where you — by Jon Coster on Tue, 2006-07-25 22:15

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Barry's picture
Submitted by Barry on Fri, 2006-07-14 04:30

Hello, my name is Barry. I'm fairly new to Objectivism, and I do think I have a very good understanding of it. But I certainly want to learn more, and so that's why I'm here.

I have spent the last month (off and on) reading the intellectual posts covering a diverse array of topics and it’s been very fascinating reading. I'm very excited to be here. I certainly hope to hold up my end in exchanging ideas and discussions. As to that, I do have a background in philosophy and history. But I don’t want to start my first post by flashing my credentials. Smiling

Recent Comments:
"Barry" — by Kenny on Sun, 2006-07-16 19:15
Perhaps if Victor read more — by wngreen on Sun, 2006-07-16 13:40
Good Lord! — by Lindsay Perigo on Sun, 2006-07-16 10:18

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Hats off to Alex Epstein

Submitted by wngreen on Wed, 2006-07-12 12:39

Hats off to Alex Epstein from ARI. His editorials can be found at CapMag.com and I find them well worth my time.

Recent Comments:
ARI, "hawks" & Saddamites — by Lindsay Perigo on Sun, 2006-07-16 09:39
George -- We would be happy — by Jason Quintana on Thu, 2006-07-13 17:52
Alex Epstein offer — by George H. Smith on Thu, 2006-07-13 10:57

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Microsoft fined 280.5 mln eur

Submitted by wngreen on Wed, 2006-07-12 12:22

The European Commission fined Microsoft Corp a further 280.5 mln eur for continued non-compliance with a 2004 antitrust ruling. Apparently MS has yet to fufill "obligations to divulge information that allows non-Microsoft work group servers to achieve full interoperability with Windows PCs and servers." While in fact they have already been forced to release source code to competitors (!) and tried to take many other arbitrary actions put forth by the 'trustie' (thug holding the EUs club). They now face a 3 mil eu a day fine starting on July 31 if the commission feels so inclined.

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The Passion of Ayn Rand Movie

atlascott's picture
Submitted by atlascott on Tue, 2006-07-11 22:44

I finally stooped way down and added this to my NetFlix queue.

I watched it.  What horror.  What horror.

Ayn Rand is depicted as calculating and delusional.  And rather a sex fiend.

Recent Comments:
Helen Mirren — by Kenny on Sat, 2006-07-22 23:03
You are right Casey — by Kenny on Sat, 2006-07-22 23:00
Good point Brant. — by Landon Erp on Fri, 2006-07-21 03:04

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Worse than 1984

Submitted by wngreen on Mon, 2006-07-10 22:02

The new poll on North Korea as well as the heated discussion on the principles of foreign policy have motivated me to gather more information on just what we are dealing with in North Korea. It is hard to imagine when reading through the material the depth of the evil on display. North Korea is a slave state.

Recent Comments:
Rex — by eg on Tue, 2006-07-11 21:49
Exellent indead — by Rex Wilkinson on Tue, 2006-07-11 18:35
I was listening to an — by Jason Quintana on Tue, 2006-07-11 02:52

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Mid-Michigan Objectivists--July

Tenyamc's picture
Submitted by Tenyamc on Mon, 2006-07-10 05:12

Below is the announcement of the July MMOC meeting from Chairman, Chris Evleth:

Greetings from on high!

It is once again time for the MMOC to gather at the home of Jack McHugh and regail each other with tales of our own genius. July's meeting is on Tuesday, July 18th. Social hour begins at 6, and the meeting will start around a quarter after 7. The topic is as follows:

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Taken in by a con-man

Duncan Bayne's picture
Submitted by Duncan Bayne on Sun, 2006-07-09 04:15

Well, well, well - what an interesting weekend.

Recent Comments:
. — by 0 on Fri, 2012-03-30 07:27
Same Story — by 0 on Tue, 2010-10-05 23:45
More info on Ogle ... while — by Duncan Bayne on Tue, 2008-01-08 04:08

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"The Big-Bang Story of U.S. Private Business"

JulianP's picture
Submitted by JulianP on Sat, 2006-07-08 19:10

Tax cuts good. So says Lawrence Kudlow in a RealClearPolitics article:

The Big-Bang Story of U.S. Private Business

By Lawrence Kudlow

Did you know that just over the past 11 quarters, dating back to the June 2003 Bush tax cuts, America has increased the size of its entire economy by 20 percent? In less than three years, the U.S. economic pie has expanded by $2.2 trillion, an output add-on that is roughly the same size as the total Chinese economy, and much larger than the total economic size of nations like India, Mexico, Ireland, and Belgium.

Recent Comments:
Thats easy, becuase Bush — by wngreen on Thu, 2006-07-20 13:41
Greg — by Kenny on Wed, 2006-07-19 22:49
National Debt clock - this — by albertkint on Mon, 2006-07-10 17:22

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Summer Fun: What's your "Tiddlywink" music?

JoeM's picture
Submitted by JoeM on Sat, 2006-07-08 18:23

It's summer, time to take a break from the gestalts, the Barenboims, the Mozart effects and enjoy the music!

Something different than the traditional "what's your desert island disc" selection, since now we'd be stranded with iPods that would hold our entire collections.

Recent Comments:
summer music — by jdlimber on Thu, 2006-08-10 04:55
In the Mood — by JoeM on Tue, 2006-08-08 05:49
My tiddlywink list — by Peter Cresswell on Tue, 2006-08-08 05:47

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Linz & James Valliant

JulianP's picture
Submitted by JulianP on Sat, 2006-07-08 08:06
Linz & James Valliant

Taken during Linz's July 2006 visit to California.

Recent Comments:
Linz wore an elegant red shirt — by Casey on Sun, 2006-07-09 08:09
California dress codes — by Craig Ceely on Sun, 2006-07-09 07:50
RSS - attn Jason — by Kenny on Sat, 2006-07-08 08:40

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My Answer to Brandroids: In Praise of Objectivist Rage—(Valliant Book-Signing Event, Borders, Orange, July 6, 2006)

Lindsay Perigo's picture
Submitted by Lindsay Perigo on Sat, 2006-07-08 06:37

28:21 minutes (4.06 MB)
Recent Comments:
I review 100 Voices: An Oral History of Ayn Rand — by Neil Parille on Sun, 2013-01-06 18:27
Clown Prince Valliant — by Neil Parille on Tue, 2012-12-25 21:11
Brings Back Memories — by Neil Parille on Tue, 2012-12-25 16:31

Atlas Shrugged and A Bombs

Ross Levatter's picture
Submitted by Ross Levatter on Sat, 2006-07-08 06:10

Over on JT Gagnon's blog on "Rand on Force and Foreign Policy," now running to over 250 responses (many of them actually substantive), I posted the following "literary challenge" relating to Atlas Shrugged. It didn't draw much response there, I suspect because it got lost in the flame war. So I thought I'd see if it interested anyone as a separate blog item.

Recent Comments:
Bombing American cities — by Kenny on Wed, 2006-07-19 22:34
I make it up as I go along, — by Fred Weiss on Sat, 2006-07-15 08:50
George — by Ross Levatter on Sat, 2006-07-15 08:16

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Alan Duff rips into dole bludgers

JulianP's picture
Submitted by JulianP on Fri, 2006-07-07 22:40

Alan Duff, author of 'Once Were Warriors', rips into the touchy-feely and wrong-headed culture of welfarism in a brilliant interview with bFM's Simon Pound.

He also eviscerates John Tamihere's proposal for another level of nanny-ing bureaucracy when it comes to handing out the dole.

His solution is just to get rid of the dole completely. He says that other people are not entitled to your money, just "for existing". Right on Alan!

There are so many good parts, I don't even know where to start. Just listen. Smiling


Score one for common sense!

Recent Comments:
Gov't and the Mentally ill — by Landon Erp on Mon, 2006-07-17 01:36
Rex, It is not the — by wngreen on Fri, 2006-07-14 12:15
Dole or jail? — by Rex Wilkinson on Fri, 2006-07-14 03:56

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Game theory - moral theory connection

John Drake's picture
Submitted by John Drake on Fri, 2006-07-07 18:59

Many months ago, while reading Viable Values, I had scribbled on the bottom of p. 36 "Game theory = contractarianism."  As I was re-reading that chapter recently, I couldn't remember what exactly about that section triggered the game theory connection.  Today, however, I found that it was dead on the mark.  Morals by Agreement, written by Gauthier and quoted by Smith as a prominent Contractarian philosopher, has a chapter on Bargaining and Justice where he base's his arguments for justice on game theory.  There it is, in black and white, the connection between the two.  Part of me is just tickled that I was able to pick up on that connection without having it explicitly spelled out for me.  The other part wants to give major props to Dr. Smith for her wonderful analysis and dead-on description that allowed me to reach that conclusion.

Recent Comments:
Like to see you try — by Rick Giles on Mon, 2006-07-17 10:27

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Anniversary of London bombings

Scott Wilson's picture
Submitted by Scott Wilson on Fri, 2006-07-07 08:17


 That is what terrorism is about. The murder is simply the means to that end. Today exactly one year after I have posted this, 3 bombs went off within 50 seconds of each other here in London. One each on two Circle line trains, going off between Liverpool Street and Aldgate, and another at Edgware Road. A third bomb went off on the Piccadilly line between Kings Cross and Russell Square. A fourth went off an hour later on a bus in Tavistock Square. I catch that third line regularly, as my alternate route to work. The location where the bus bomb went off is also the location of the bus route I sometimes catch as well, if the tube is closed. This morning I took the usual convenient tube route that was not bombed, but I still thought about it.

Recent Comments:
"Our true enemies" — by Tim S on Mon, 2006-07-17 09:05
Our true enemies — by Kenny on Sun, 2006-07-16 19:23
Fuck them — by Tim S on Sat, 2006-07-08 16:59

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A Request about PARC

DianaHsieh's picture
Submitted by DianaHsieh on Fri, 2006-07-07 04:43

As I wrap up my comments** on the various false friends of Objectivism, I have a request.

Over the past year and some, many people have substantially revised their judgments of Nathaniel and Barbara Branden upon reading Jim Valliant's The Passion of Ayn Rand's Critics. I've been delighted to read various statements from various people on various corners of the internet. I would like to collect some of those comments, but I'd have a terrible time attempting to find even a substantial chunk of them. I'm also interested in any new remarks that anyone might have, whether brief or lengthy. (I'm not seeking to arouse further debate about the book, although I've no objection to that.)

Recent Comments:
Integrated — by James S. Valliant on Sat, 2006-07-15 21:19
Integration — by R. Christian Ross on Sat, 2006-07-15 18:50

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Islamic Propaganda for Children

Duncan Bayne's picture
Submitted by Duncan Bayne on Thu, 2006-07-06 02:01

This video is a shocking example of the hateful, mind-destroying propaganda that is fed to Iranian children by their theocratic Government.

Recent Comments:
I have a collection from my — by wngreen on Mon, 2006-07-10 22:26
Thanks for the advice - I'll — by Duncan Bayne on Sun, 2006-07-09 23:23
Screenshot Windows Media — by gone on Sun, 2006-07-09 22:29

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"I'm so ronery..."

Ross Elliot's picture
Submitted by Ross Elliot on Wed, 2006-07-05 23:29

North Korean dictator, Kim Jong Il, is at it again.

The vertically-challenged, voluminously-coiffured, Marxist funny-man, has launched a small phalanx of missiles into the Sea of Japan. Nothing important was hit but several bruised & pissed-off whales have been seen protesting on the surface. Someone call Greenpeace.

It's obvious that Kim Jong Il—or as some like to call him, Menta Lee Il—is feeling very left out of things. What with the Iranians & Al Qaeda stealing all the headlines recently, he must be feeling very... ronery.

Recent Comments:
Why Kim Jong Il is throwing missiles out of the cot — by Scott Wilson on Fri, 2006-07-07 08:25
Another Cox and Forkum fan! — by Duncan Bayne on Fri, 2006-07-07 05:20
Thoughtful Gift — by Kyrel Zantonavitch on Fri, 2006-07-07 00:53

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No Fourth of July Celebration at The New York Times/Pravda

George Reisman's picture
Submitted by George Reisman on Wed, 2006-07-05 22:15

The New York Times does not mention Independence Day on its editorial page. And there is no word of celebration of it on its Op-Ed page. What is present on the Op-Ed page is a further demonstration of that newspaper’s hostility to the fundamental values on which the United States was built.

One article, titled “Spinning the Revolution,” seeks to undercut the value of the American Revolution by presenting it not as the kind of great world-shaking event that it was, signifying for the first time in human history the establishment of a government dedicated to the protection of individual rights, but as a matter of mere “spin,” manufactured by a collection of writers and pamphleteers. In the same vein, it belittles the value Americans have rightly attached to the Declaration of Independence and the United States Constitution by sarcastically describing those documents as being viewed as “sacred scripture."

Recent Comments:
Traitorous — by eg on Sat, 2006-07-08 07:19
If — by Richard Wiig on Sat, 2006-07-08 06:03
"It is an alien publication..." — by Ross Elliot on Thu, 2006-07-06 01:55

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My copy of The Free Radical arrived ...

Duncan Bayne's picture
Submitted by Duncan Bayne on Wed, 2006-07-05 21:25

You know how you'll pick up your average newspaper or magazine, leaf through it, and be pleasantly surprised if you find a single well written, rational, passionate, informative article? How you'll take that article and show it to friends, family and colleagues, pleased that someone has addressed an important issue with a level of care and thought rare in modern publications?

Well, my copy of the 71st issue of The Free Radical arrived in the post yesterday evening - and each and every one of the 72 pages is just like that - gripping, informative, and well reasoned.

Recent Comments:
It does look great. — by Casey on Wed, 2006-07-12 05:02
:-) — by Peter Cresswell on Wed, 2006-07-05 23:08

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Fred Weiss' Objectivist Credo

Ross Levatter's picture
Submitted by Ross Levatter on Wed, 2006-07-05 05:39

With apologies to Pastor Niemoller...

First they came for the drug users,
and I did not speak out much because, although clearly a rights violation, drug users really aren't rational people. And besides, we still had the right to protest in this country.

Recent Comments:
Kenny — by Ross Levatter on Sun, 2006-07-16 17:46
Wrong order — by Kenny on Sun, 2006-07-16 09:35
Yeah, Brant — by Landon Erp on Wed, 2006-07-05 23:54

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Today's Reprise—What TV shows did you enjoy as a youngster?

Duncan Bayne's picture
Submitted by Duncan Bayne on Tue, 2006-07-04 03:47

Wisely, my parents postponed the purchase of a television until I was around 10 (and my brother 7). Nonetheless, we still watched a fair bit of television when visiting friends or relatives, and a fair bit more once we had access to our own set.

Recent Comments:
robin of sherwood was a — by michael fasher on Thu, 2007-05-24 07:04
i was just looking up the — by michael fasher on Thu, 2007-05-24 06:56
I think you'll find it was a — by CVert on Mon, 2007-05-21 19:40

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Reflections From New Orleans On Independence Day

jtgagnon's picture
Submitted by jtgagnon on Tue, 2006-07-04 01:35

Andrei Codrescu, the famed New Orleans author, once wrote: "It's so hot in Louisiana now that if you met an alligator he wouldn't even lift his head to scare you." Every time I read that line I'm convinced he must have written it in July. There's nothing quite like July in New Orleans. A sauna-like heat crawls over your body, dragging you into a slumberous haze. And if you're not used to it, you stay inside dreading the moment when you will be forced to head out into the vaporous mystery that is New Orleans.

Recent Comments:
Sounds sweet ... — by Lindsay Perigo on Wed, 2006-07-05 03:34
Hell Yeah! — by Jon Coster on Tue, 2006-07-04 12:17
Happy 4th — by Lanza Morio on Tue, 2006-07-04 07:05

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"...our Lives, our Fortunes, and our sacred Honor."

Ross Elliot's picture
Submitted by Ross Elliot on Tue, 2006-07-04 01:28

So pledged the Founding Fathers.

And, they meant it.

The fifty-six signers of the Declaration of Independence had everything to lose. They were professional men. Wealthy men. Landowners. Many with close ties to Britain. Many with families dear to them. Young like Edward Rutledge, 26, or older like Ben Franklin, 70.

Recent Comments:
Ever upward — by Kyrel Zantonavitch on Sat, 2009-07-04 16:57
"...our sacred honor..." — by Ptgymatic on Sat, 2009-07-04 06:54
Correction! — by Ross Elliot on Sat, 2009-07-04 06:32

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Book signing and discussion

JulianP's picture
Submitted by JulianP on Mon, 2006-07-03 23:08

Look what showed up in the book calendar of The Orange County Register:


Recent Comments:
It's not much exaggeration — by Matt on Sat, 2006-07-08 04:54
Linz knocked it out of the park — by Casey on Fri, 2006-07-07 10:53
Details! — by Lanza Morio on Fri, 2006-07-07 08:55

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