Arkadi

do Germany and France live under socialism today?

172 posts in this topic

BTW, a friend just forwarded to me this message from his employer: "This weekend we celebrate Memorial Day to honor the men and women who lost their lives serving our country.  The weekend will be filled with picnics, and celebrations, marking the unofficial start of summer.  When you’re enjoying time with your family, and relaxing, please take a moment to honor the men and women who paid the ultimate sacrifice for our wonderful country. I will never forget the brave men and women who forever bleed RED, WHITE, and BLUE! "  It resonates with me. And I would consider piggish warding this feeling off by something like "it was not a sacrifice at all."  

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That was well said about Memorial Day. Actual summer starts June 21 but to me this holiday “seems” like summer’s beginning.

In Ocean City, MD we had Cruisers Week last week and the locals were fed up with the noise and rowdiness on day one. The Classic car, Cruisers used to be better a little better behaved and better tippers but they have gone downhill. Someone I know had two cruisers in front of them and their engines were so loud windows needed to be raised.  The local police are not enforcing the noise ordinances just to keep the tourist money flowing in.

Soon it will be Biker Week, with a decent number of weekend warriors whose day jobs include doctors and lawyers. As the song goes, “They’re (not) bad. Babababad to the bone.” There used to be more “hot mamas” riding on the backs of bikes, holding onto their rough, tough he-man but now more women ride their own bikes. Did you know that in audi Arabia, women cannot drive?           

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One needs to go to the Internet to really figure things out--assuming you already have some serious education.

To see the current problem in old clothes read The News Twisters by Edith Efron. Back then mainstream media were in control and not in a gross state of fulmination.

--Brant

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4 hours ago, Arkadi said:

BTW, a friend just forwarded to me this message from his employer: "This weekend we celebrate Memorial Day to honor the men and women who lost their lives serving our country.  The weekend will be filled with picnics, and celebrations, marking the unofficial start of summer.  When you’re enjoying time with your family, and relaxing, please take a moment to honor the men and women who paid the ultimate sacrifice for our wonderful country. I will never forget the brave men and women who forever bleed RED, WHITE, and BLUE! "  It resonates with me. And I would consider piggish warding this feeling off by something like "it was not a sacrifice at all."  

Those guys did more for me than I ever did for them....

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14 hours ago, Arkadi said:

Greg--I do not watch TV...

Good... neither do I. :)

I get my news off the internet from sources I choose as alternatives to secular liberal statist network TV news.

Greg

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The Greek Philosopher Arkadi wrote in 400 BC: It's a puzzle to me what Rand could possibly make of it.

Rand Yoda wrote: “Do. Or do not. There is no try.” She would say all the ladies should give them a big smooch and a hug. Thanks to all who served or are now serving in our armed forces and in our Police and Fire Departments ALL across America.

Peter

Here are some inspirational words from the Genius and Motivator, herself. (An address given to the graduating class of the United States Military Academy at West Point on March 6, 1974.) I wish I had been there to hear it.

". . . In conclusion, allow me to speak in personal terms. This evening means a great deal to me. I feel deeply honored by the opportunity to address you. I can say - not as a patriotic bromide, but with full knowledge of the necessary metaphysical, epistemological, ethical, political, and esthetic roots - that the United States of America is the greatest, the noblest and, in its original founding principles, the ONLY moral country in the history of the world. There is a kind of quiet radiance associated in my mind with the name West Point - because you have preserved the spirit of those original founding principles and you are their symbol. There were contradictions and omissions in those principles, and there may be in yours - but I am speaking of the essentials. There may be individuals in your history who did not live up to your highest standards - as there are in every institution - since no institution and no social system can guarantee the automatic perfection of all it's members; this depends on an individual's free will. I am speaking your standards. You have preserved three qualities in character which were typical at the time of America's birth, but are virtually nonexistent today: earnestness - dedication – a sense of honor. Honor is self esteem made visible in action.

You have chosen to risk your lives for the defense of this country. I will not insult you by saying that you dedicated to selfless service - it is not a virtue in my morality. In my morality, the defense of one's country means that a man is personally unwilling to live as the conquered slave of any enemy, foreign or domestic. THIS is an enormous virtue. Some of you may not be consciously aware of it. I want to help you to realize it.

The army of a free country has a great responsibility: the right to use force, but not as an instrument of compulsion and brute conquest - as the army of other countries has done their histories - only as an instrument of a free nation's self-defense, which means: the defense of a man's individual rights. The principle of using force only in retaliation against those who initiate its use, is the principle of subordinating might to right. The highest integrity and sense of honor are required for such a task. No other army in the world has achieved it. You have.

West Point has given America a long line of heroes, known and unknown. You, this years graduates, have a glorious tradition to carry on - which I admire profoundly, not because it is a tradition, but because it IS glorious.

Since I came from a country guilty of the worst tyranny on earth, I am particularly able to appreciate the meaning, the greatness and the supreme value of that which you are defending. So, in my own name and in the name of many people who think as I do, I want to say, to all the men of West Point, past, present, and future: Thank you. end quote

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Quite right Peter. "I will not insult you by saying [your life is] dedicated to selfless service". So it's no puzzle what Rand thought, consistent as ever. For someone to *risk* thelr life in a country's defence is not given that they will lose it, and far from it in any free-ish country. Just for taking that potential risk alone, for the high value they perceive and choose to protect, they indeed deserve other citizens' appreciation. (And if there happened to be any serviceman who makes it clear he intends to *give* and wilfully "sacrifice" his life for his country, he should rightfully be discharged on psychological grounds. By his lack of selfish value, I'd say he's the last type of soldier that a rational commander wants).

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Peter--You're kidding me. I know this address given by Rand very well, as well as quite a few other texts by her. Anthony is right, she is not calling anybody to sacrifice. On the contrary, "I will not insult you by saying that you dedicated to selfless service."

 

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Anthony--"Just for taking that potential risk alone, for the high value they perceive and choose to protect, they indeed deserve other citizens' appreciation." (1) Is appreciation the same as gratitude?  (2) What does it mean to "appreciate" someone who does not any longer exist?

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48 minutes ago, Arkadi said:

Anthony--"Just for taking that potential risk alone, for the high value they perceive and choose to protect, they indeed deserve other citizens' appreciation." (1) Is appreciation the same as gratitude?  (2) What does it mean to "appreciate" someone who does not any longer exist?

To appreciate someone is to recognize and acknowledge their virtues.  You can appreciate someone without necessarily liking that someone. 

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I doubt that one can be grateful to anybody if one believes that all the actions of the others from which one has benefited were performed either out of sheer self-interest or because of brain-washing.

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19 minutes ago, Arkadi said:

I doubt that one can be grateful to anybody if one believes that all the actions of the others from which one has benefited were performed either out of sheer self-interest or because of brain-washing.

Excellent point.

It's good to have concern for others. There's no need for that concern for others to eclipse your own unless you understand beforehand that acting on that concern improves your moral character. Only then is it in your own best interest to do so.

 

Greg

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Gred--But why would gratefulness to the dead possibly make one's moral character better from Rand's perspective?

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1 hour ago, Arkadi said:

Gred--But why would gratefulness to the dead possibly make one's moral character better from Rand's perspective?

Recognition of the way someone's doings and existence  have made YOUR life better is paying homage to the concept of virtue  and it is recognition of a fact. Recognizing the facts you are aware of and their value (or disvalue) to you is simply  partaking  of truth.  Recognizing truth  and acknowledging a gift  is simply good manners.  

I believe Rand put exercise of good manners and the value of good manners  into one of the characters she created.  Francisco d'Aconia  in Atlas Shrugged.

I am not a Follower of Ayn Rand  and I have received value from her literary works.   It was a free gift.  In a sane and just society  free gifts  are flying about.  The lesser person is made richer by the doings of the greater person.  I think Rand made this  point several times. 

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6 minutes ago, Arkadi said:

Acknowledging virtue for whatever reason is NEVER  EVER hypocrisy.  Check your premises.  Perhaps something more than an acknowledgment is appropriate  but there is no hypocrisy in it. 

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By "hypocrisy" I mean any show of attitude which one does not really have in oneself. You may pick a more appropriate term for this. I am not arguing about words.

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13 minutes ago, Arkadi said:

By "hypocrisy" I mean any show of attitude which one does not really have in oneself. You may pick a more appropriate term for this. I am not arguing about words.

In that case genuine recognition of virtue  is not hypocrisy.  I think our business on this issue is concluded. 

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5 hours ago, Arkadi said:

You are saying hypocrisy is bad manners. No?

--Brant

ad hominem this; ad hominem that

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19 hours ago, Arkadi said:

Anthony--"Just for taking that potential risk alone, for the high value they perceive and choose to protect, they indeed deserve other citizens' appreciation." (1) Is appreciation the same as gratitude?  (2) What does it mean to "appreciate" someone who does not any longer exist?

Arkadi: Appreciation is better given to the living I think (I'm strange that way!). If and when a soldier, unknown to one personally, dies in action, that general appreciation by one 'in memory' of such a person's values wouldn't end. It will then have further added emotions - sadness, etc. and I assume for most people, make one doubly thankful these men and women with conviction, resolve and action exist. To me, the thing is to resist feeling he 'gave' his life for you, taking on any guilt - or - particularly, mis-identifying his loss to be a selfless and dutiful self-sacrifice for 'others'. This is not the reality. Even though most people subjectively like to believe so, altruism is that insidious. His most selfish values, one assumes, consisted of the large abstraction of the virtues held by a free country, individually refusing to exist under an enemy, and in protecting the specific lives of people he cared for. We, the general public, although ultimate beneficiaries of his rational, selfish choices, were not his prime motivation.

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Tony wrote: If and when a soldier, unknown to one personally, dies in action, that appreciation by one in memory of his life wouldn't end. It will now have further added emotions - sadness, etc. and I assume for most people, make one doubly thankful such men and women with conviction and action exist. To me, the thing is to resist feeling he 'gave' his life for you, taking on any guilt, or - particularly, mis-identifying his loss to be a selfless and dutiful self-sacrifice for others. end quote

Well said. I am proud I served even though I was drafted. I used to think about putting my old Army uniform on but eventually I threw it out after my “reserve” years were over. As the Viet Nam war drug on, I was worried I would be called back into service but that did not happen. Why does a person want to put their old uniform on? It isn’t just a desire for people to admire you, nor like a kid putting on a Halloween costume. It just meant so much to me. I wonder if any other veterans on OL still put on their uniforms?

My Dad was career military in the Navy and he kept his uniforms his whole life and used to wear them at Veterans of Foreign Wars events. He became the Delaware State Commander of the VFW and had row after row of medals including two purple hearts for wounds in action, and he always griped he should have gotten one for the Viet Nam war after he broke his tail bone aboard a ship when he dived for cover from small arms fire. When another ship was sunk during WWII he acquired those third degree burn scars on his chest from burning oil as he floated in a life jacket in the Pacific.   

I get any medications, checkups, etc., from the Veteran’s Administration and that is a nice payback for my service. I used to pay three dollars for a ninety day supply from the VA, but during the Obama administration it went down to zero for a 90 day supply.

Peter

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