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Showing content with the highest reputation on 07/19/2009 in all areas

  1. What anchor, Xray? Everything is subjective, remember? Don't evade the question I asked, Michelle. Not everything is subjective, only values are. Aside from that, your comment was related to epistemology. You wrote: "Of course, this is again you revealing your anti-conceptual mindset. You cannot see beyond the concrete to the level of principles. A role-model is judged by the abstract nature of their personality." So if you would be so kind to explain to me the "anti- conceptual mindset", the "level of principles" and the "abstract nature of a personality". I'm not being dishonest. You are repeating Rand's words, that's all I know. Life as the standard of value does not apply to e. g. a nihilist, a buddhist or someone choosing to end his/her life. Nor does it apply to governments sending soldiers out to kill other people. So much for life as an "objective value".
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  2. Attributing value to this or that is always subjective. Even Rand critics succumb to the illusion of objective value. For example, in his critique of Rand's ethics, M. Huemer wrote: He quotes Rand first: "'Value' is that which one acts to gain and/or keep." His comment: First, just because someone acts to gain something, does not mean it has value. If an alcoholic acts to get another drink, it does not follow that the drink is valuable; " (ibid) http://home.sprynet.com/~owl1/rand5.htm#N_2_ Same blankout problem. If the alcoholic seeks the drink, of course it is valuable to him, regardless of the effects it has on his health. The objective nutritional analysis of the food has nothing to do with the act of attributing value. Good or bad refer to the evaluation of means in respect to a chosen goal. IF my goal is to work toward staying healthy, then eating vegetables is valuable. IF other values have more weight to me, jelly beans may be the food of choice. The exact opposite is the case: for the environmentalist's values are subjectively chosen too. My values are subjectively chosen as well. Where is the problem? Words strung together without anchor. What please is an "anti-conceptual" mindset? What do you mean by "abstract nature" of the personality? Abstracted from what? Who said anything of the sort? It was Rand who said Roark is "as man should be". Well, I'm afraid the opinions differ a bit on that, i. e. not everyone values what Rand subjectively preferred. Al Capone may have shared the same qualities. DT also stands for unbridled capitalism. Fictional heros always come in a complete package. "Should", "ought" - again it indicates your subjective preference. Your posts are pretty full of those "shoulds". And - why would one seek a role model at all? In short, they isolate from this figure what suits their individual purpose, blanking out the other words one can read in the Bible where he speaks of destroying his enemies, etc.
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  3. I think that's an overtly limiting definition of relationship, and not the context of relationship that Rand meant, or is your 'relationship' to your sig other merely a description of your i.e. height, weight, gonads, brests, etc? Perhaps if you were a taxonomist that kind of 'relationship' would be what was of most interest. Since the issue is about a volitional, valuing, human individual, "dfferentiating set of characteristics" is not limited to physical characteristics but implies psychological characteristics too. For example, when I think my of colleague Mrs X, my mind produces a mental picture combined of a set of characteristics (not only physical) which identify Mrs X by differentiating her from my other colleagues. The entity identity principle is of supreme epistemological importance. By entity identity, each individual is a volitional, valuing, goal-seeking entity. These characteristics imply 100% self interest and attributing value in correspondence with beliefs and personal preferences. There is only value to an entity identity; not value to an abstract, category or otherwise. Valuations (values) are by entity identity and therefore inherently subjective. Any and every thought or claim to the contrary is false. When the dust settles and source is easily seen, the values, i.e., attributing value, will ALWAYS be some individual flying under the false colors of "universal values." Ayn Rand made a giant leap toward the truth by e. g. pointing out that a term like e. g. "society" does not refer to a finite entity, but is an infinite abstract, which is why she rightfully refused to accept anything flying under the false colors of "for the good of society". But the term "man" Rand uses in "life proper to man" does not refer to a finite entity eiter but to an abstract category, in denial of the many individual human entities. Claiming a set of values existing for an abstract category is a fallacy. The entity identiy principle is a "radical" principle (derived from Latin "radix" (root)) in that it goes to the root, to the base. That's the whole ball game. With entity identity as the root premise thinking discipline, derivative conclusions will be alignment with an actual objective entity. Without it, base premises are a matter of feelings with derivative conclusions flying everywhere due to lack of anchor. It is the entity identity anchor which dismisses the illusions of categorical identity and the corollary illusion, objective value.
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  4. That's Xray speak. There is no real meaning in Xray-speak for objective other than what objective is not and maybe "consensus of experts." I believe the advertising concepts of "perceived value" as opposed to "real value" are totally lost on her. (Real value is objective value, of course.) Just imagine, if the world were made according to Xray-speak, we would not have television because there would be no commercials. Michael
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  5. That's Xray speak. There is no real meaning in Xray-speak for objective other than what objective is not and maybe "consensus of experts." I believe the advertising concepts of "perceived value" as opposed to "real value" are totally lost on her. (Real value is objective value, of course.) Just imagine, if the world were made according to Xray-speak, we would not have television because there would be no commercials. Michael If the world were the way Xray thinks it is, we wouldn't have tools anyway, because we'd have no concept of how they objectively function. Imagine how the invention of the wheel would've gone: Inventor: Because all points are an equal distance from the center, it will allow us to effectively increase the speed at which we can pull our loads. It'll save much time and energy! Xray: Says you.
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  6. And Michelle, I fear there is no room for passion and joy in that universe either. And that is a tragedy, subjectively and objectively. Excellent point about the countess and the binding that the written word gives us continuously over time. Adam
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  7. What anchor, Xray? Everything is subjective, remember? You said: "The objective nutritional analysis of the food has nothing to do with the act of attributing value. Good or bad refer to the evaluation of means in respect to a chosen goal. IF my goal is to work toward staying healthy, then eating vegetables is valuable. IF other values have more weight to me, jelly beans may be the food of choice." The standard of value is life. You know this. You're just being dishonest at this point.
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  8. I read physics papers too. I don't read very much psychology, which I consider a pseudo science. Ba'al Chatzaf
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  9. Xray, please give it a rest. You're too young to be this cantankerous.
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  10. Ginny: Thank heaven you are careful with your vowels typing. Adam
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  11. Xray, You cannot have a conceptual referent without observing the referent at some point. It's not either/or. It's both. (Thinking it can be either/or is probably the main fallacy in your entire approach.) Even if you are abstracting from abstractions, which were abstracted from other abstractions, and so on, if you trace those down to the premise level, you will find direct observation of some sort. Michael
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