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  1. 3 points
    Lo and behold, just days after Berman's being taken out, SDNY's case against Jeffrey Epstein's child victim procurer Ghislaine Maxwell finally proceeds after having been sat on for years. https://jonathanturley.org/2020/07/02/epstein-confidante-maxwell-arrested-in-new-hampshire/
  2. 2 points
    Bolsonaro showing the world
  3. 2 points
    Dr. Death out there slaying the false narrative that fewer corpses is somehow good.
  4. 2 points
    There is no impact. It is a typical bad cold. They tell stories that indicate otherwise. Lasting impacts stories. Lies. Shutting down has had enormous negative impacts, but those were not caused by too many old people dying, they were from intentionally shutting down economies, which were political calculations having nothing to do with the new cold.
  5. 2 points
    Remember the people who said Hydroxychloroquine will kill you? That its efficacy was merely anecdotal? Remember the pharmacists who refused to fill Doctor's prescriptions? The Democrat governors who interfered with supplies, hoarded, hid, supplies of the drug? Premeditated Conspiracy to Commit Mass Injury and Death.
  6. 2 points
    Jon, Just for the reader, here is a bolded headline to that link and some excerpts: Epstein Confidante Maxwell Arrested In New Hampshire [Updated] Here is the indictment if anyone is interested. Also, a video right out of the oven of the official press conference about Maxwell's arrest. This case shows AG Bill Barr's method of working. Re investigations, he's a plodder and keeps a tight ship on leaks. When the time comes he and his staff believe they have an air-tight case, they clean the path (like getting rid of Berman through political channels), then swoop in and arrest bad guys who have no idea what hit them. I bet there are a lot of Deep Staters who are observing this very process and, suddenly as their arrogance turns into bile and goes down their throats with a big-ass gulp, are contemplating a move to another country that has no extradition treaty. And, as you keep reminding readers, the people who disparaged as a conspiracy theory and a sign of warped non-Objectivist epistemology the idea that elites controlled other elites through pedophilia-connected blackmail are silent about this. Reality doesn't fit the story they keep telling themselves where they are the superior good guys. From their words and deeds, they are protectors of science and reason and defenders of decent people of prominence who don't deserve to be smeared. That's the story they tell themselves. In reality, as the investigations are now proving and later prosecutions and jail will prove, many of their public heroes are pedophiles and have been blackmailed for years because of it. Some way to do philosophy and epistemology if it blinds people that much, huh? Let's just say I'm enjoying the show. Michael
  7. 2 points
    The WHO has outdone itself in corruption. They recently started a trial of the drug hydroxychloroquine, intentionally giving patients a near lethal dose so as to – obviously – make the drug look dangerous. Meryl Nass and others saw what they were doing and exposed it. Only then did WHO stop the trial. The following articles are by Dr. Meryl Nass. Even worse than 'Recovery,' potentially lethal hydroxychloroquine study in patients near death WHO and UK trials use potentially lethal hydroxychloroquine dose--according to WHO consultant 1. In the UK Recovery trial, and in WHO Solidarity trials, HCQ is used in a non-therapeutic, toxic and potentially lethal dose. 2. HCQ is furthermore being given, in clinical trials, too late in the disease course to determine its value against SARS-CoV-2. 3. Collection of limited safety data in the Solidarity trials serves to protect trial investigators and sponsors from disclosures of expected adverse drug effects, including death. 4. It appears that WHO has tried to hide information on the hydroxychloroquine doses used in its Solidarity trial. Fortunately, the information is discoverable from registries of its national trials. 5. The conclusions to be drawn ... ... a) WHO and other national health agencies, universities and charities have conducted large clinical trials that were designed so hydroxychloroquine would fail to show benefit in the treatment of Covid-19, perhaps to advantage much more expensive competitors and vaccines in development, which have been heavily supported by Solidarity and Recovery trial sponsors and WHO sponsors. ... b) In so doing, these agencies and charities have de facto conspired to increase the number of deaths in these trials. ... c) In so doing, they have conspired to deprive billions of people from potentially benefiting from a safe and inexpensive drug, when used properly, during a major pandemic. This might contribute to prolongation of the pandemic, massive economic losses and many increased cases and deaths. How a false hydroxychloroquine narrative was created, and more
  8. 2 points
    Cockroaches rolled over by cop car ...
  9. 2 points
    I don't know where to put the following so here is as good as any place. To me it's hilarious. I'm still laughing as I post this... LOL... Michael
  10. 1 point
    Just what did he die of since the virus is not a disease? Notice how they used the plural when talking about one person? So how many people at the party died? The cause of death from the virus is supposedly pneumonia. Did he die from that? --Brant boy, am I tired of all the un-scientific gobbledygook that these people feed the public and themselves
  11. 1 point
    Peter, But so far, this thing with Roger Stone is making all the right heads explode. It is signaling to the Deep State its lack of efficacy. And that is infuriating them. People as infuriated as they are make many mistakes. The best person to sum up the Roger Stone case to date is Jesse Waters. President Trump liked his recent opening statement so much, he pinned the video to the top of his Twitter feed. Here is President Trump signaling his like: And here is the video of Jesse Waters: The Exploding Heads Now look how heads are exploding. After Mueller's disastrous July 24, 2019 appearance before two House committees, has anybody heard from him? No. Why? Because he's losing his mind in an old-age kind of way. So he's stayed silent. Until now. Robert Mueller breaks his silence and condemns Trump for commuting Roger Stone's sentence Obviously someone wrote the WaPo op-ed for him. (My vote is for Andrew Weissmann, the nastiest piece of work from his former team--and, boy, is Weissmann hopping mad, see here.) Lee Smith, author of the best and bestselling book on the Deep State operation against President Trump, The Plot Against the President: The True Story of How Congressman Devin Nunes Uncovered the Biggest Political Scandal in U.S. History, agrees with me: There is a huge risk in dragging Mueller out. If he gets interviewed or ambushed by a reporter, he's going to make Biden sound coherent. Yet they are risking it because Roger Stone is more of a symbol to them than a case. He is a symbol of their weakness, of the public exposure of their weakness, and that eats them alive inside. Tinseltown Take a look at these beauties from Hollywood (on Breitbart). Hollywood Erupts After Trump Commutes Roger Stone’s Sentence: ‘Treason’ If you are into schadenfreude, reading all that is deeply satisfying. They are howling in impotent rage because they claim to be able to strike fear in the hearts of anyone, especially someone like Roger Stone who they want to see dead, but they are powerless and the whole world sees it right now. They can't even nail an inconsequential reprobate (to them) like Roger Stone. This may not seem like much, but in the story-wars department, it is moving the Overton Window a couple of notches. Don't forget, we have an election in 4 months and the Overton Window is more important during this time than it is at other times because it impacts voting habits. Never Trumpers Look at the anti-Trump Republicans: Romney blasts Trump's Stone commutation: 'Historic corruption' Others like Pat Toomey, Mark Sanford, Bill Krystol have come out in public against President Trump for commuting Roger Stone's sentence. Imagine what the anti-Trumper Republicans are saying behind the scenes. Here is an indication from The Lincoln Project (a group of never Trump Republicans who now support Biden--they are led by Kellyanne Conway's boneheaded husband, George Conway and others, see here). There's a hidden message in that video. The Deep State framed most of those "felons" or entrapped them with legal minutia. The hidden message is: Do not oppose us or this is what we will do to you. And Trump's time is coming... It isn't, but dogs have to bark, pigs have to grunt, snakes have to hiss and so on. Poor things, they can't help it... Final thought for this post If Roger Stone is not that important, why are all the heads of these famous people exploding? I say, in addition to hating President Trump, every one of them wants the power to jail someone they don't like simply because they don't like him or her. In other words, when you look favorably at any of these creeps, make sure you do not get on their bad side. They are vindictive spiteful snakes. They play much dirtier than Roger Stone ever did (and he played plenty dirty). They will turn on you in a fraction of a second if they think this will help them get back their lost power. I mean that literally, too. If they take a disliking to you, and I mean you Peter, for whatever reason and it gets strong enough, regardless of legality, they will throw you in jail and make up some kind of bullshit reason for it. Wielding that kind of power is what gives them meaning to themselves. It's like crack cocaine to them. I, for one, like sticking it to them. That is one of the reasons I like Roger Stone and particularly the news of his commutation. It makes them crazy. So that's my final thought about Roger Stone for this post... But not my final thought about Roger Stone... Michael
  12. 1 point
    Got anything on how a bill becomes a law?
  13. 1 point
    Reptilian pea-brain Jon falls for a hoax. He shows a graph – obviously contrived and slapdash-- with fake numbers of human trafficking arrests for the Trump years. The graph’s numbers for 2018 and 2019 are more than triple and near triple, respectively, the official counts given by the ICE division which reports human trafficking arrests. (The numbers shown for the Obama years match the official ones.) The wishes of the Trump-infatuated don’t magically transform fake numbers into accurate ones.
  14. 1 point
  15. 1 point
    Interesting. Then everyone who pushed it is suspect, starting with RFK, Jr., I believe, who would know the updated info all along.
  16. 1 point
    Beginning to test the people's responses to tyranny. Do those in the buildings resist? Do citizens not subject to this lockdown intervene? Learning and practicing for when they release the next bug as pretext for total police state? Food rationing. Necessary? Or normalization of it for near future, much more intense, false flag mass imprisonments?
  17. 1 point
  18. 1 point
    btw - Scott has a bug up his ass about President Trump's Mount Rushmore speech being called "unifying." He thinks there are many who don't feel unified by American history, so presenting American history is not effective persuasion. He doesn't see the erasure of history as a bad thing. And he thinks statues have no value at all, symbolic or otherwise. I think I got all that right from the recent videos of him I've watched. It's one of his weirder positions, seeing how he claims to be an expert at persuasion. Michael
  19. 1 point
    The enemy that coordinated the mass casualty event is in control of most of the systems that generate data about the world that we mistakenly accept as base-level facts.
  20. 1 point
    When he says, "Why are the press running medicine?" it makes me wonder how many leftists will even comprehend what he's saying. I think a lot of people are literally that far gone that they wouldn't even recognize the risks, let alone the blatantly corrupt actions, of this informal hierarchy of "legitimate" information. I wonder is you asked a leftist, "When has the media EVER agreed with Trump?" and if they would even know what the point of the question was. If they agreed with Trump very rarely, you'd have some evidence that it wasn't purely politics, but if they NEVER agree with Trump? It's truly shocking what they've been able to get away with.
  21. 1 point
    Social media was alight with excited progressives mistakenly thinking this is a change away from how elections have been conducted for generations now. Reactions make clear they think popular vote over electoral college was in some way promoted by the ruling. I really do feel bad, because being them, it must hurt, over and over and over and
  22. 1 point
    Big win in the Supreme Court for the Electoral College today. And it was unanimous. Supreme Court rules against 'faithless' electors Here's another article. Supreme Court: Electoral College Must Vote For Their State’s Popular Vote Winner They played games with this in the appeals courts, but the Supreme Court Justices were having none of it. To repeat, unanimous. That's probably why the reporting in the fake news media about this were CYA articles that got little prominence. The Democrats can't game this rule to cheat anymore. That form of cheating, at least, is done. Over. Finished. This is a big deal. Probably the biggest deal that happened in government on this day. It is kinda funny, though. In one of the two cases involved in this Supreme Court decision, three members of the Electoral College were supposed to vote for Hillary Clinton, but instead voted for Colin Powell. Whaaaaat?!!! Yup. Colin Fucking Powell. Michael
  23. 1 point
    " "Coronavirus" is a wider category than the types of coronavirus which produce common cold symptoms. Severe acute respiratory syndrome, which COVID-19 produces in susceptible people, is in a different league of bad from "a bad cold." " I disagree. It looks to me like every other bad cold I saw in my over fifty years. The bad ones killed the old peope like it was the plague. The rest of us got it and called it a bad cold. The kids got it and didn't slow down. Same as today. Bad cold. Indeed, "bad cold" is exaggeration for 9X% of the population. Worldwide hundreds of millions of us have likely already "had" it and it didn't even make us feel sick. Yes, the 2020 Scamdemic is also mass murder on the grounds of keeping people electively out of hospitals which will result in delayed cancer discoveries, for starters, and deaths (2020 Scamdemic murders.) And their emptiness and the layoffs demonstrate that the nation's resources were never going to be stressed by covid, have not even been challenged in the slightest by covid. All their front line stories are bullshit. The staffs at all the hospitals spent the time making Tik-Tok videos and went home with layoff slips.
  24. 1 point
    A quip? You believe his remark was witty or clever? Gimmee a break. , ye of unlimited faith in your messiah and your mind-reading. As usual, Jon is clueless, confusing a test for SARS-CoV-2 with a test for antibodies, plus other confusions.
  25. 1 point
    Trump's "slow the testing down" remarks in context: Merlin's tag line: "I expect attack ads aired by Democrats for the 2020 election will exploit Trump's inane remark." I think Michael is likely right about quippage-- and that Trump was riffing, and that he probably does not care a whit about 'attack ads' from the Democrats. On the other hand, the Lincoln Project (a passel of nasty anti-Trumpist operatives who supposedly retain loyalty to Republicanism) have been banging out ads for months. See their YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/c/TheLincolnProject/videos The Lincoln Project ad including the remarks ... it's hard to know if the Democratic Party ads will rise to this level of emotive reasoning/loaded language ...
  26. 1 point
    My bad. He already signed it on July 3. Just to emphasize the Executive Order, here is another link to it. Executive Order on Building and Rebuilding Monuments to American Heroes There is one hell of a booby trap in this Executive Order for a "National Garden of American Heroes" (the official name given). It is scheduled to be opened in 2026. This means after President Trump leaves office. The booby trap is that it ensnares the president who follows him with a huge project celebrating American history. I predict that the next president will be an American patriot and not an anti-American agent of change, so that is not really a booby trap. But should a leftie or other person with an ideology against American values be elected, this measure ensures a media shit-storm if such person tampers with it. Another interesting thing is the definition of historically significant American. Although some names were mentioned, the number of statues will be vast. Just to be a smart-ass, I bolded something. Also, this National Garden will have a central place to exist, but there will be much more all over the country. The list of people President Trump provided as examples of American heroes made me jump for joy. I think this list was provided specifically because some of these individuals have been attacked or erased from school history books. (My bold.) On a Personal Note I have been bitching about the erasure of Daniel Boone from American history books since 2010. If felt so damn good to hear President Trump say Daniel Boone's name in the Mount Rushmore speech and see his name in this Executive Order. I bet there are a hell of a lot of Millenials scratching their heads and asking, "Who?" Michael
  27. 1 point
    Text: https://www.whitehouse.gov/presidential-actions/executive-order-building-rebuilding-monuments-american-heroes/
  28. 1 point
    What lie would they not tell? Who would they not hurt? ... to continue their hate against Trump? Previous Ambassador and Acting Director of National Intelligence Richard Grenell asks if thousands of Americans are dead only because we still tolerate a media hellbent on deception.
  29. 1 point
    Small correction, Forbes, every business leader should be very concerned. Jul 3, 2020,01:55pm EDT QAnon Is Disrupting America — Every Business Leader Should Be Concerned https://www.forbes.com/sites/sethcohen/2020/07/03/qanon-is-disrupting-america/amp/?__twitter_impression=true
  30. 1 point
    Here is a pic of Ghislaine and a victim with Prince Andrew: Here is a pic of Ghislaine at Chelsea Clinton’s wedding.
  31. 1 point
    Pedo Schiff was soooo upset when pedo-protector Berman was taken out: Then Pedo Ghislaine Maxwell got arrested today, just days after Berman was taken out — funny how all of that worked out. https://jonathanturley.org/2020/07/02/epstein-confidante-maxwell-arrested-in-new-hampshire/
  32. 1 point
    The Left can’t stand that our President won’t escalate their precious bloody foreign adventures. It drives them crazy that we finally have a moral President who starts the long process of cleaning the blood we have on our hands, instead of drenching us in more.
  33. 1 point
    Here's some really weird news about O-Land. There is a Facebook group called Ayn Rand. It leans hard ARI, which means it leans anti-Trump. A guy I never knew before named William Swig posted the following meme there. He created it. They banned him from the group. He posted a quote by Ayn Rand and did not take it out of context, yet they banned him for it. Actually, it's a shortened and paraphrased quote from a Q&A from Rand's Ford Hall Forum Lecture: "Censorship: Local and Express." It is in Ayn Rand Answers. Here is the direct quote from Rand as published in that book: "... even though Nixon’s behavior has been contemptible—he’s not the most corrupt president, but he’s probably the most contemptible—I’d still vote for him over George McGovern or Ted Kennedy." btw - I think I'm going to like this Swig guy. He pisses off the right people. Here is his Facebook account. And here is another meme by him. Michael
  34. 1 point
    No one. Emotions are not things. They may be electrical / chemical / and psychic? in a good way. I was thinking about that "independence." What if you were a human or a lower animal for that matter, and you got bit by an ant? What would that entity experience? Pain . . . OUCH~ but then something emotional attached to the sensation of pain, which requires a consciousness to respond, in ANY way.
  35. 1 point
    I suspect a Gates connection. Hunch, so far, maybe wrong. A tidbit I found: https://medium.com/@jonathanferguson_72851/i-didnt-know-you-were-on-medium-curtis-yarvin-eab1266ae581 Here's a link to a Feb 2017 Verge piece about Yarvin's internet project "Urbin": https://www.theverge.com/2017/2/21/14671978/alt-right-mencius-moldbug-urbit-curtis-yarvin-tlon Ellen
  36. 1 point
    D, Socialists tell their stories to a captive audience during their formative years. Over and over and over. Rand wrote "The Comprachicos" and focused the entire essay on the conceptual mind. But notice that she did start with a story... She also quoted an old saying about Jesuits: I say this applies to storytelling even more than concepts (although I don't dismiss or degrade conceptual development--it's very important). What's more, it carries with the same deadly effect all through education. After a decade and a half or so of growing up listening to the same stories saying who the good guys are and who the bad guys are--with peer pressure and all kinds of other covert nudges to get you to accept those stories as real life, it becomes a horrific challenge to think independently based on one's own observations. You will never reason a person out of that with reason. You have to tell a better stories--ones they resonate with. And you have to tell these kinds of stories over and over and over until they break down the inner resistance of the audience to looking at the world based on independent observation. Only a story can beat a story in the human mind. And a core story is why (for the most part) a person will engage his or her reason in the first place. Michael
  37. 1 point
    Quick pep talk: Remember when I said that toilet paper becomes king during societal disruptions and two weeks later all the stores ran out of toilet paper? You need to think hard about ways of expanding your stay-home ability. There is great likelihood of trouble in the coming year, but at least through Trump's January re-swearing. Don't try to predict the trouble, just focus on being able to stay inside, not going out into public, for longer than you can now. It's Sunday. Medication refill needed this week? Get it tomorrow, and don't get so close again. (Skip doses to build the pad if they won't advance you the next one, and never waste a day obtaining the next one upon eligibility, if they are dicks like that.) Be weeks away from the next thing that will push you outside, instead of hours or days. Can you make light at night if electricity goes out? Can you preserve and prepare the food you have after electricity goes out? How many cases of water do you have for after the water stops running? What can you do about people coming through your door with bad intentions? You do not want to be outside with masses of desperate and angry people, so extend your stay-in-ability now.
  38. 1 point
    Seventy years ago Harry Truman involved the U.S. on the Korean peninsula. Since then the U.S. has been at war with North Korea. Many people don't understand this. We are still legally at war, only a formal cease fire is in place and we have kept some 30,000 - 50,000 troops on the peninsula since 1950. John F. Kennedy did not resolve it and get us out. Richard Nixon did not. Gerald Ford did not. Jimmy Carter played with his nuts. Ronald Reagan did not resolve it and get us out. George H.W. "Poppy" Bush murdered JFK and ran the opium operations in Afghanistan. Bill Clinton pleasured a barely legal intern with a cigar in the Oval Office. George W. Bush initiated two more wars. Hussein expanded all the wars and the use of drones, including on U.S. citizens abroad. Trump was the first U.S. President invited inside North Korea. He is making peace, resolving a dangerous situation and finally correcting a grave moral failing on our part that has gone on for way too long.
  39. 1 point
    Wow. This is the most I have learned about AG Barr from his own mouth. The Deep State really is going down under his execution of his job. And Social Media giants will start feeling some real pain in about 3 or 4 weeks or so. Michael
  40. 1 point
    You might also want to check out Harlow's monkeys: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harry_Harlow Harlow was briefly mentioned in the Atlantic article ...
  41. 1 point
    You might also want to check out Harlow's monkeys: https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Harry_Harlow Ellen
  42. 1 point
    Folks here will likely remember something of the plight of those in Romania's "child gulags." A new Atlantic article offers a deep dive, which some might find useful to discussion: 30 Years Ago, Romania Deprived Thousands of Babies of Human Contact | Here’s what’s become of them
  43. 1 point
    Yeah Michael, I did fall for the “story line” that he wanted to kick them out, so thanks for setting me straight. In the following he is pushing some buttons. I really don’t think he is goading the lowlifes to disrupt, but that may be the effect of the message. President Trump: Any protesters, anarchists, agitators, looters or lowlifes who are going to Oklahoma please understand, you will not be treated like you have been in New York, Seattle, or Minneapolis. It will be a much different scene! end quote If there are violent protesters, I hope they are arrested quickly, but does Oklahoma have the capacity to “store” hundreds of rioters? It sure does! Perhaps the hottest, driest, and most remote Indian reservations will be available for storage? Hmmm? How much will they charge per “scalp?” Peter Notes. Oklahoma Indian tribes: Cherokee, Arapaho, Chickasaw, Choctaw, Creek, Wyandot Kickapoo, Apache, Comanche, Kiowa, Osage, Pawnee, Seminole, Wichita, Shawnee, etc. From Wikipedia. Department of Defense Indian Incentive The Department of Defense (DoD) Indian Incentive Program, part of the Office of Small Business, provides a 5% rebate to a prime contractor, based on the total amount subcontracted to an Indian-Owned Economic Enterprise or Indian Organization To qualify, the organization must be at least 51% owned by an entity (or tribal member) of a federally recognized tribe. end quote
  44. 1 point
    Did someone say Branden? I hope nothing got double clicked, and repeated. I saw it happened once. Oh, and Nathaniel Branden stopped typing in capitals when someone told him it seemed he was yelling, Anthony. Peter From: Nathaniel Branden Reply-To: brandenn To: "R. Christian Ross" < CC: atlantis Subject: ATL: Re: Reason Date: Wed, 21 Nov 2001 07:21:38 -0800 I would say, and I am confident Rand would agree, that what is inherent in our nature is the capacity to reason, assuming we go through normal stages of development (an infant can't reason, obviously). The great student of cognitive development, Jean Piaget, maintained that if, during teen-age years, a person does not develop high level of cognitive abilities ("formal operations"), it is virtually impossible to develop them later in life. If this is true, then the world is full of people whose reasoning ability is not absent but severely limited. Reason as a process is, of course, epistemological, but as a capacity, inherent as a potential in our nature, it is, if you wish "metaphysical." I put the word in quotes because, strictly speaking, metaphysics addresses only the fundamental nature of reality, not such things as the attributes of man or lower animals. And, finally, in calling man "a rational animal," Rand meant (a) that we humans have a capacity to reason that differentiates us from lower animals (genus and differentia), but also (b) that that capacity explains more about our behavior than any other trait or attribute. Nathaniel Branden From: Nathaniel Branden Reply-To: brandenn To: RogerEBissell CC: atlantis Subject: Re: ATL: Re: Reason Date: Wed, 21 Nov 2001 21:18:50 -0800. THE REASON WHY THERE IS SOME CONFUSION ON THIS POINT, I SUSPECT, IS THAT RAND SOMETIMES USED "METAPHYSICAL" TO MEAN "PERTAINING TO REALITY (USUALLY EXTERNAL REALITY), AS CONTRASTED WITH PERTAINING TO CONSCIOUSNESS, AND YOU WILL SEE THIS USAGE AMONG SOME HER FOLLOWERS. HOWEVER, PHILOSOPHICALLY, IT IS NOT PRECISE BECAUSE "MAN'S NATURE" IS AN EMPIRICAL, SCIENTIFIC ISSUE NOT A PHILOSOPHICAL ONE, ALTHOUGH IT OBVIOUSLY HAS PROFOUND PHILOSOPHICAL RAMIFICATIONS. NATHANIEL BRANDEN From: Nathaniel Branden Reply-To: brandenn To: atlantisSubject: ATL: Objectivist metaphysics Date: Fri, 23 Nov 2001 13:55:08 -0800. In response to my earlier post in which I explained that the definition of human nature is not part of metaphysics, I have been asked to elaborate on what is included in the domain of metaphysics. It's an important question because it touches on one of the most important and distinctive features of Objectivism. Rand rightly dismissed "cosmology" as not part of philosophy, insisting instead that it was the province of science. She argued that metaphysics deals only with the most fundamental features of existence as such. She set forth what has been called correctly "a minimalist metaphysics"--fundamental truths that no scientific discovery could disprove and that all scientific discoveries presupposed. This came down to Aristotle's laws of logic, which (as she and others have observed) are also laws of reality (Brand Blanshard's "Reason and Analysis" is great on this point), and also the law of causality. In other words, metaphysics is concerned with that which is true "of being qua being." By this definition, the particular attributes of man or other animals are in the domain of science, meaning they are not "metaphysical." However, as I observed in a previous note, Rand sometimes used the term "metaphysical" more broadly to mean "pertaining to reality" as contrasted with "pertaining to consciousness"--, on other occasions, as meaning "pertaining to that which is given in nature" as contrasted with the "man-made." I hope this clarification is helpful. Nathaniel Branden From: Nathaniel Branden Reply-To: brandenn To: Michael Hardy <hardy CC: atlantis Subject: ATL: Re: Objectivist metaphysics Date: Fri, 23 Nov 2001 18:29:38 -0800 Michael Hardy wrote: >Nathaniel Branden <brandenn@pacbell.net> wrote that Ayn Rand set forth what has been called correctly "a minimalist metaphysics" --fundamental truths that no scientific discovery could disprove and that all scientific discoveries presupposed. This came down to Aristotle's laws of logic, which (as she and others have observed) are also laws of reality (Brand Blanshard's "Reason and Analysis" is great on this point), and also the law of causality. >I for one would have said the laws of logic belong to epistemology rather than metaphysics. Can anyone explain this classification? Shouldn't the nature of free will also belong to metaphysics? Mike Hardy THE LAWS OF LOGIC ARE, QUA LAWS OF THOUGHT, EPISTEMOLOGICAL, AND, QUA LAWS OF REALITY, METAPHYSICAL. NATHANIEL BRANDEN From: Nathaniel Branden To: ATLANTIS Subject: ATL: ONE MORE THOUGHT Date: Fri, 23 Nov 2001 18:33:38 -0800/ If one accepts that metaphysics is concerned only with being qua being, then one sees that volition is not "metaphysical." Such at any rate was Rand's position, which I share. Nathaniel Branden From: Nathaniel Branden Reply-To: brandenn To: Michael Hardy <hardy CC: atlantis Subject: ATL: Re: free will & epistemology Date: Sat, 24 Nov 2001 15:51:10 -0800 Michael Hardy wrote: > Nathaniel Branden <brandenn@pacbell.net> wrote: > If volition does not belong in metaphysics, where does it belong among the branches of philosophy? Good question. I would venture to say...epistemology. >The argument you wrote that appeared in _The_Objectivist_, and which was also put forth by miscellaneous philosophers before that, and by me when I was in 12th grade, could be summarized by saying "epistemology presupposes free will", and Leonard Peikoff did put it in those words in his 12-lecture course he delivered under Ayn Rand's supervision in 1976. It has also been observed, by a much larger number of philosophers and others, that *ethics* also presupposes free will. To say that ethics presupposes free will does not mean that ethics is the branch of philosophy in which the nature of free will belongs, and the same is true of epistemology. > Nathaniel, in your 20-lecture basic course at NBI you said philosophy is the attempt to answer three questions: (1) What exists? (2) How do you know? (3) So what? Epistemology deals with the second question. Why is free will a part of the answer to the second question? Saying only that epistemology presupposes free will fails to answer this unless you also want to say epistemology is a part of ethics. -- Mike Hardy IF SOMEONE WANTS TO EXPAND THE MEANING OF METAPHYSICS TO INCLUDE "THE FUNDAMENTAL NATURE OF MAN," SO BE IT, NO ONE IS GOING TO ARREST HIM (OR HER); NO ONE IS EVEN LIKELY TO GET EXCITED ABOUT THE QUESTION, ONE WAY OR THE OTHER. I SUGGESTED THAT VOLITION BELONGS AS PART OF THE FOUNDATION OF EPISTEMOLOGY, IN THE OBJECTIVIST SYSTEM, BECAUSE THAT FOUNDATION HAS ALWAYS STRESSED THE NON-INFALLIBLE, NON-OMNISCIENT NATURE OF HUMAN CONSCIOUSNESS, AND THE SIGNIFICANCE OF VOLITION IN THIS CONTEXT. I DON'T KNOW HOW TO MAKE MY VIEWPOINT ANY CLEARER, SO I AM GOING TO STOP AT THIS POINT. GO IN PEACE, EVERYONE. NATHANIEL BRANDEN From: Nathaniel Branden Reply-To: brandenn To: "R. Christian Ross" atlantis Subject: ATL: Re: Reason Date: Wed, 21 Nov 2001 07:21:38 -0800. I would say, and I am confident Rand would agree, that what is inherent in our nature is the capacity to reason, assuming we go through normal stages of development (an infant can't reason, obviously). The great student of cognitive development, Jean Piaget, maintained that if, during teen-age years, a person does not develop high level of cognitive abilities ("formal operations"), it is virtually impossible to develop them later in life. If this is true, then the world is full of people whose reasoning ability is not absent but severely limited. Reason as a process is, of course, epistemological, but as a capacity, inherent as a potential in our nature, it is, if you wish "metaphysical." I put the word in quotes because, strictly speaking, metaphysics addresses only the fundamental nature of reality, not such things as the attributes of man or lower animals. And, finally, in calling man "a rational animal," Rand meant (a) that we humans have a capacity to reason that differentiates us from lower animals (genus and differentia), but also (b) that that capacity explains more about our behavior than any other trait or attribute. Nathaniel Branden From: Nathaniel Branden Reply-To: brandenn To: ATLANTIS Subject: ATL: ONE MORE THOUGHT Date: Fri, 23 Nov 2001 18:33:38 -0800 If one accepts that metaphysics is concerned only with being qua being, then one sees that volition is not "metaphysical." Such at any rate was Rand's position, which I share. Nathaniel Branden From: Nathaniel Branden To: atlantis Subject: ATL: one more Date: Tue, 27 Nov 2001 13:27:05 -0800 Oh, yes, one more. Anyone who thinks AR provided rational grounds for her assertion that no rational woman would want to be President of the U.S.--doesn't understand Objectivist epistemology. Nathaniel Branden From: BBfromM To: atlantis Subject: ATL: Man-woman relationships Date: Sun, 2 Dec 2001 19:11:10 EST I once read something that still has me laughing helplessly whenever I think of it. It was a book written by a raging feminist, and nowhere was there a hint of the possibility that any woman might react differently than she did -- except once. One turned a page to see another page that was blank except for one bold-faced line: EVERY WOMAN LOVES A FASCIST. There was no explanation and no reference to the line in the rest of the book. I thought it hysterically funny, and I knew exactly what she meant. Barbara
  45. 1 point
    S, In one sense your friend is right and in another he is dead wrong. It all depends on what you are looking at. Objectivism as a sum of all the correct philosophical principles of mankind is incomplete and, of course, it is incomplete. No system is complete in that sense. Even as a summary of all the fundamental philosophical axioms that exist, it is incomplete. However, as a mental structure and anchor (and even weapon) to deal with the onslaught of all the different tugs, nudges, slams, intimidation, boneheaded thinking, true paradoxes and dilemmas, and so on in the modern intellectual world, it is totally complete. You can use Objectivism as a lens to evaluate anything--and generally from a frame different than the one you are being presented with--and your evaluation will make sense. I cannot stress how important this is for high-quality independent thinking. Even where some items in Objectivism do not make sense, you have a structure for correcting it. In that sense, Objectivism is about as complete a system for organizing your thoughts about your mind, society, the meaning of it all, life, and so on as any religion or philosophical system out there. Also, where Objectivism is right, it is really right. Existence does exist and that is more than a tautology. It is a lived experience, which the people who yell out "tautology" when they mock Rand like to blank out of the equation. (That generally comes with a sneer and asking how do you know you experience anything at all? Or something like that. And, as perfect dorks, they can't see they have to exist to even do their monkeyshines.) As for completeness, you don't get more complete for a human being than hammering existence into place as the foundation of everything else. Rand did not deal with Jung and so forth except to dismiss him, but I have found that I can build Jung into the thinking habits I learned by grounding it on axiomatic concepts and so on. I can talk about neural pathways and networks and add that to Rand's theory of concepts, even as I have to make a few corrections in her theory to align better with reality. (This is not debunking, it's more like an alignment.) Rand did not cover much about family, but I can navigate the confusion of where family is toxic and where it is nurturing and extremely high value using an Objectivist structure of thinking and evaluating. And so on. In a lot of cases, I can't make room for Objectivism, or any body of thought that changes the framework like Objectivism does, using these missing elements as the frame. But I can use an Objectivist frame to fold them into my thinking and worldview. (Oddly enough, the O-Land "closed system" fundies say the exact contrary. Man, do they like their power and unearned prestige. ) So as a frame, in my way of thinking, Objectivism is complete. And it's mostly right. And where it is not right, it can be corrected. I'm not speaking about publishing a book or something and then correcting Objectivism for everybody else. I'm talking about using this philosophy as a personal structure in my own life. War At this stage of my life, I am no big fan of Rand's approach of making everything a battle. But I can tell you, during my growth, without that framing, I probably would have not arrived at the wisdom of "existence exists." That emotional (storytelling) frame gave me permission to use my mind to the best of my ability and take responsibility for it--as an independent thinker. It cut through the bullshit of politically-driven power-mongering manipulations that have been present since the beginning of human history. I found this extremely liberating. The bad news is that this approach, the nonstop bellic metaphors, soon becomes a system of think-like-we-do or you are our enemy when it is used as glue for social cohesion. That's where Objectivism shows faults--as a collective philosophy. But then again, Objectivism is for individuals, not collectives. This was Rand's often stated intention. And this is where you have to make a decision with Objectivism if you liked it a lot at first. You have to decide to keep the frame and let go of details and make a mental box for that, or you start to nitpick the details to death, then come to the conclusion that Rand was, at least at times in important ways, full of shit, especially since she was constantly certain and quite rude about it. And you put her work into that box. I am talking about serious thinking. There is a third way, too. You can primarily focus on the bellic emotions Rand used and turn Objectivism into a life-long struggle for power, which I think is mostly mental masturbation. When I first started writing about Objectivism, I once wrote a series of articles called "The Ayn Rand Love-Hate Myth." It's early writing, so it's probably not that good (I haven't reread it in a while), but my intent, even back then, was elevated. I did not want--as my life's purpose--to save the world in the name of Objectivism (or Ayn Rand), or save the world against the poisonous dragon of Objectivism (or Ayn Rand). But the people who fall off into this myth--they line up on one side and that's all they do from there on out. (I admit, I had my phase of this, too.) The good guys Look around our society. Look and see who openly likes Ayn Rand. And look beyond these power-struggle people to those who take ideas serious enough to probe them. There is one group that only gets mentioned in passing at times, but they are the most important group for me--the high-end achievers. There are oodles of them. For just a paltry few examples, look at the people around Richard Branson, marketers and marketing gurus like Joe Polish and Dean Jackson (and the ton of high achievers they interview), and so on. Even President Trump to a certain extent. Or look in the past at people like Steve Ditko, one of the co-creators of Spiderman. There are countless numbers of these Randian heroes out there. These people acknowledge their adherence to the ideas Rand wrote about and Objectivism, but they rarely argue about it. They are too busy being awesome and changing the world for that. For them, Objectivism was complete enough to clear the intellectual and emotional garbage out of their path and it gave them a frame-like structure for using their minds without guilt--each to the extent and manner that suited their own values in life. And, frankly, they didn't have time for anything else, especially the bickering. So when I think of completeness, I think, what more could a philosophy for living on earth achieve? Syllogisms for academics to argue about? Screw that. Philosophy for individuals Objectivism is a philosophy for individuals, not collectives. When a collectivist ideology goes wrong, look what happens. How many piles of bodies does it take for people to realize that communism is evil? Rand's work is one of the driving forces standing in the way of collectivist ideology from dominating the earth. It's working, too, so it's complete enough to be an effective obstacle. I could go on about this stuff all day, but life calls. What you have above is a few comments on how I have thought through these things. And I'm happy to share these thoughts. But for your life and that of your friend, you guys have to do it your own way. Do your own thinking and I am sure you will both come to a good place for your lives. I don't want to be a rule-giver. I'm far more content to witness great achievements. So go out and achieve... I want to see it... Michael
  46. 1 point
    I think this quote was supplied by REB and I think I once posted it about 10 years ago on OL. Peter Some Aspects of Prenatal Parenting by Thomas R. Verney/ Many people think of birth as marking the beginning of a person's life. To them a baby is not alive until he takes his first breath and utters his first cry. If you stop to think about it, you quickly realize how false this popular notion really is. We need to understand that one hour, one day or several weeks prior to birth, a child is not significantly different mentally from what she is at birth. The mental apparatus of a baby is not suddenly thrown into gear with birth. All the complex tasks associated with living outside the womb--like breathing, sucking, swallowing, touching, smelling, looking, listening--are the end result of mental work begun long before birth. Prenatal Mental Development We know that by the fourth month after conception, the fetus will suck if his lips are stroked. If a bitter substance like iodine is introduced into the amniotic fluid, he will grimace and stop swallowing liquid. At the same age, if a bright light is shone on the mother's abdomen, the baby will gradually move his tiny hands up towards his eyes, shielding them. At five months, if a loud sound is made next to the mother, the unborn child will raise his hands and cover his ears. By the sixth month, the hearing system of the baby is perfectly developed. Because water is a better conductor of sound than air, the baby in the womb can hear very well, although with distortions. Recordings of the baby's brain waves at the beginning of the last trimester demonstrate that during sleep the baby exhibits REM (Rapid Eye Movement) motions. In adults REM sleep is almost always associated with dreaming. It follows, therefore, that babies must be dreaming by the seventh month. Studies of expectant mothers show a correlation between their feelings about their pregnancies and the ease of their labor and delivery. The health of their newborn infants is also connected to their attitudes towards pregnancy. Because the unborn child is a feeling, sensing, aware and remembering being from the sixth month after conception (if not before) and because of the intimate connection between her and her mother, everything that happens to the mother also, in a sense, happens to her baby. Extensive studies leave no doubt that interaction between mother, father and the unborn, with all the consequences that has, for personality development, begins well before birth. Fetal Perception and Memory Anthony DeCasper, professor of psychology at the University of North Carolina, has been researching fetal perception and memory for the past ten years. DeCasper has demonstrated that newborns can pick out their mothers' voices from among other female voices (DeCasper and Fifer 1980). Infants were tested with a non-nutritive nipple, hooked up to a tape recorder, to see if they preferred listening to a taped maternal heartbeat and a taped male voice. (By changing rhythm of their sucking, the babies could switch the taped sounds.) The majority of babies favored a tape recording of the heartbeat (Kolata 1984). A group of pregnant women was asked to tape record their reading of two different children's stories. During the last six and one half weeks of their pregnancy, half of the group was asked to read story "A" twice a day, the other half story "B". When their babies were born, the researchers offered the infants a choice between the two stories. Within a few hours after birth, eleven of the twelve newborns adjusted their sucking rhythm to hear the familiar story as opposed to the new one. This data provides the first direct evidence that not only does the newborn hear and recognize his mother's voice but also, surprisingly, remembers the words! What does this research mean for expectant parents? Simply this: they should talk to their unborn baby as much as possible, whenever they feel like it, in a soft voice. Partners and other members of the family can join in since what they say is not so important as how they say it. They should feel free to read children's stories, nursery rhymes or poems, avoiding violent subject and overly dramatic readings. After the birth of their child, they can experiment to see if their newborn, like those in the study, prefer the familiar tale to a story never before heard. Prenatal Touch By the seventh week after conception, the baby responds to tactile stimulation. At twelve weeks he can kick, turn his feet and curl his toes. At sixteen weeks he begins to suck his thumb. This sense of touch is necessary to the well-being of the baby. He uses it to explore his aquatic universe as well as to comfort himself. Thus, thumb-sucking not only calms the baby but also helps him develop coordination and strengthen jaw and cheek muscles. Like all living beings, babies like to be touched. Expectant parents can discover this for themselves after their baby grows big enough for mom to feel her kicks. At this point, by stroking the abdomen gently from underneath the naval, moms will quickly observe that their baby will stop kicking and relax. By about the seventh month of pregnancy, the expectant mother will know the positions of her baby's head and feet. She can be encouraged to stroke firmly and repetitively from baby's head toward her toes, which is thought to accelerate the development of the baby's peripheral nervous system. More importantly, this massage helps the pregnant woman (and her partner) to make contact with the baby, enhancing the baby's feeling of being loved. Music in the Womb Mothers have known about the effect of music on unborn children for generations. Scientists, however, are just beginning to discover it. Experiments with animals and human fetuses have clearly shown that sound is transmitted through body walls and amniotic fluid with about a thirty decibel loss in intensity (Armitage, Baldwin and Vince 1980; Bench, Anderson and Hoare 1970; Bernard and Sontag 1947). Human infants respond to sound by six months after conception, because babies move in rhythm to the music and their pulse rates react. Hundreds of women have told me about their experiences with music during pregnancy. The one common denominator to these accounts is that the songs played prenatally provoked a very positive reaction in their babies after birth. The familiar music seemed to capture the attention of the infants and relax them, particularly when they were cranky, over tired or feverish. Donald Shetler, professor of music education at the University of Rochester, has been studying the effect of music during pregnancy on infant development. He has found that infants exposed to music while in the womb show a remarkable ability to imitate sound and respond to it after birth, in comparison to babies who have not had "prenatal musical stimulation" (Shetler 1985). Pregnant woman can be encouraged to play music that they like during pregnancy, music that is calming rather than exciting. The only types of music that should be avoided are hard rock, acid rock, heavy metal, etc. Childbirth educators can urge expectant mothers to establish a daily routine of listening to music ten minutes or so twice a day, making sure they are sitting comfortably or reclining in pleasant surroundings. They will enjoy a number of benefits. First, by reserving two ten-minute periods for doing "nothing but listening to music," they will have planned time for relaxation, enhancing the stress relief that good music brings. A second benefit is that it will stimulate the baby's mind. Lastly and most importantly, the music serves as an emotional bridge between the mother and her unborn child. This occurs because while she listens to the music, the pregnant mother will try to "see" the baby and will accompany this picture with thoughts or spoken wishes for the health and well-being of her unborn child. With each day she will grow closer to her baby. You can also recommend that the women play their tape of pregnancy music during labor to help them and their birth attendants relax. After the baby is born, they can continue to play the music to him when they want to calm him at bedtime, for example. Conclusion / In summary, the scientific evidence is now overwhelmingly in favor of and shows a new appreciation for the mental and emotional development of the unborn child. The evidence indicates that the unborn baby certainly, from the sixth month of intrauterine life on, is a sensing, feeling, aware and remembering human being. Consequently he or she is eager and in a rudimentary way quite capable of responding and benefiting from prenatal parenting communication. Tom, MD, D.Ppsych, FRCP(C) is author with John Kelly of The Secret Life of the Unborn Child (available from the ICEA Bookcenter). He is president of the Pre and Perinatal Psychology Association of North America and editor of the PPANA Journal. His latest book is Parenting Your Unborn Child, published by Doubleday Canada.
  47. 1 point
    A visual homage, yes exactly, and yes, they know it. His murder was a ritual and the knee now is a replaying of the ritual. They believe their god rewards them for ritualized murder and for creating mayhem, chaos, pain, death and suffering. These people really are, not metaphorically, but really, seriously sick and evil.
  48. 1 point
    Why is comparing the coronavirus situation to a past pandemic nonsense? Did you regard Ellen's comments as nonsense? My first post on this topic was not a gotcha. Yet that is what you took it to be. Why did you so often feel the need to play one-upmanship and be so snarky?
  49. 1 point
    MSK is psychologizing again. After stating a mortality rate without saying what the denominator is! Oh, my.
  50. 1 point
    Okay, you forced my hand. Sex has nothing to do with children or evolution. I've created a lot of fictional characters over the years, many of whom I liked and respected. A few were modeled on people I knew, supporting characters whose personalities were frozen -- well, that's a bit harsh, let's say inflexible, unable to transform. It happens in life to most people. Their formative battles were fought long ago, and it shaped how they think and live. All of them deserve honorable mention to acknowledge their strengths and sorrows. It's important always to treat a character with respect, even the tawdry ones, the bit players and stock figures -- tailors, waiters, uniformed cops, cab drivers. Little glimpses need to be three-dimensional and real. It's never wrong to be honest about where they are in life, how they move, talk, think, hide themselves from others. Characters who transform, undertake challenges and put their future at risk, are "principal players." There is no story without such people. Some of them are heroic men and women, some are dangerous villains. It's possible to see virtue in a villain, no different than a hero with inner conflicts and limitations. I'm speaking mostly of male characters. Women seldom deliberately do wrong, although it's good to see the extreme and exceptional. One of my favorites was a film star -- Ophilia Opfir -- always outrageous, mercurial, a comic figure. Now that I think of it, all of my women were wonderfully complicated. The Good Walk Alone had several female characters, no two alike, vital to the story line. In Mars Shall Thunder, Wendy and Emma Churchill played pivotal supporting roles, far more important than the men. Leading ladies are important to me. Sorry, that's an understatement. The Good Walk Alone is Janet DiMarco's story. Mars Shall Thunder is Laura Oak's story. Chris is nothing until he meets Peachy in A Portrait of Valor. Chris and Peachy are the subject of this essay. For the rest of my remaining days as a writer, I will author stories about them, as they mature in life as a married couple. It's interesting how they emerged in a tutorial of screenwriting on Zoetrope, to explain a method of organizing and creating scenes. Movies usually have 40 scenes. It's not important to start at Scene #1. Scenes can be written out of sequence, if you have a good outline, each scene with a unique dramatic action, no two scenes alike. The method of organizing a movie using Scene Cards is something that I was blessed to get from a profoundly talented mentor a long time ago. It's explained in Screenwriting Form & Structure, and there's a video on Vimeo that shows how Scene Cards are useful in story rewrite, to identify and resolve problems. To demonstrate Scene Card logic, I offered to write a screenplay out of sequence. Members of my private office at Zoetrope could pick a number, any number, from 1 to 40 in a story outline, and I'd write that scene to a budget of pages for that particular scene. Some were simple and quick, others were long dialogue scenes, or tense action, or lonely monologue. No two scenes alike, remember? The result was a completed screenplay called The Case of The Empty Case, and it introduced Chris Cable, private detective, and Mary Blount, Ph.D., a spectacularly stunning babe he orders to scram, go away, while he's dealing with a suitcase bomb parked in front of his office door. He doesn't know her name, calls her Peachy. It wasn't supposed to be a good story. It was a practical demonstration of a movie structure, how to conceive and execute individual scenes. Years later, at a watershed moment in my writing career, I thought of Chris and Peachy again. They deserved a series of novels. I risked everything to do it -- personally, financially, artistically. I don't regret it, although I doubt that Chris and Peachy will be well received by readers. I'm writing purely for myself, something I felt drawn to do after 30 years of storytelling, some of which was work for hire, a polite term for prostitution. It became important to give Chris and Peachy a voice of their own, in honor of their exceptional lives and exceptional challenges. A narrative novel is supremely expressive. Every word matters. I cringe whenever a typo or an ill-chosen word appears in print, self-published. It's humiliating to be self-published; I do it to archive the work. Others can make Kindle or POD successful. I can't. Please don't offer suggestions about marketing, or writing popular material in well-grooved genres. Chris and Peachy matter more than money. Christopher Cable, P.I., is a better man than I am, far more complex, far more courageous. He was an only child born into a military family. His birth took his mother's life. His father was a stern naval officer who became a powerful member of the Deep State, if you know what that is. Chris was raised by colored servants, if you know what that is. He went to Ivy League prep school, a sprig of privilege. He spent summers in New York with show people, his mother's clan of Broadway actors, dancers, musicians. When he was 18 years old, he was accepted in Marine Corps Officer Candidate School to honor his father and follow in his footsteps. Combat changes people, always, and Chris fought with courage that could not erase sorrow and guilt and revulsion. He hated killing. As an officer, his duty was ever-present and clear, ordering men to their death and dismemberment. Rising to the rank of Captain, partly on merit, partly because his father pulled strings, Chris couldn't continue. He resigned, changed his name, and fled to Los Angeles -- a disgraced black sheep who abandoned his duty and his father's iron sphere of influence and expectations. Ex-military is where most of our cops come from, and Chris had friends in L.A., ex-Marines who went into law enforcement, well-paid private surveillance, and medicine. None of those jobs were right for him. Chris couldn't deal with fussy paperwork or take orders, especially an order to do nothing, to drop a case, let the guilty skate because they had political pull. When the story opens in A Portrait of Valor, he's alone, lonely, miserable, age 38, jailed for killing a man, which he regrets but was compelled to do, to save a crowd of laughing drunks and doped-up chicks at a Hollywood nightclub. Terrible karma. The man who hates killing, forced to kill as a licensed private eye, working alone, financially strapped, hardened to life, expecting nothing but trouble. Not handsome, covered in battle scars, Chris cleans up every night and tries to be cheerful, drinks in nice nightclubs and dinner joints, hoping to meet a single woman his own age or thereabouts. He's ignored, night after night, year after year. Enter Peachy. I don't think I want to talk about her, a truly exceptional woman among women, beautiful, brilliant, elder daughter of a billionaire nuclear physicist (a horrible father), turned her back on wealth and made her own way in the world, a Stanford Ph.D. plugged into Silicon Valley. Wonderful couple who saved themselves for each other, wouldn't settle for less than ideal romance, astounding sexual chemistry, risking their lives for each other repeatedly. This is the glory of heroic fiction, to paint the beautiful. What other people write doesn't matter.