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  1. 2 points
    Sad life? One that is someone else's fault? If only they would get out of your way... But, alas, you are doomed to constant punishment for virtues lesser souls can't even dream about as you rant, "The bastards! The bastards! The bastards!" in impotent solitude... (How am I doing so far? I can do this with my hands tied behind my back because I've been there. Never produced a goddam thing when I was in that state. Heroism is not only fighting others, it's fighting your own self-destructive urges that are seasoned with self-pity and a growing taste for laziness--and actually producing something. That's not psychobabble. Suicide is a dangerous idea to cultivate. It eventually transmutes on its own from idea to reality. It starts with a shrug...) Reality is wonderful, even with idiots in it. Brush them aside and build. Besides, how can you win a world you haven't produced? What have you actually won by pretending? A feeling? You can't lose what you don't have. Most of all, stop looking down at others. Paraphrasing Nietzsche, when you look into the abyss, the abyss looks back into your soul. You become what you gaze upon. Michael
  2. 2 points
    Heh. That's a "TANTRUM"? And that's a "real" interviewer with "difficult" questions? Mr. Shapiro, I've selectively misinterpreted some fragments of your past statements to mean what I want them to mean. I gotcha. Defend yourself against my accusations. Pro Boss Real Interviewer right there. Is he the male Cathy Newman? J
  3. 2 points
    I haven't looked at the article yet, but the statement made in the title strikes me right off as false. The globalist elitists are parasitical. They require people who aren't like them to feed on. Consider a comparison to thieves. If everyone were a thief, who would be producing the goods for thieves to rob? Ellen
  4. 2 points
    Brant, Yes they do. That's what you are not seeing. They are using the Matt Drudge model of journalism: presenting headlines of news articles in a certain order and including only those that tweak their agenda. Notice that Drudge shows predominantly pro-progressive headlines one day, headlines that are chosen to get people riled up (threats, offensive things, etc.), then he presents the conservative knockout headlines the next day, including lots of headlines that put conservatives on the moral high ground. That's just one form of doing that. The tech giants learned it and added a gazillion others, especially through micro-targeting. Take a good look at their news feeds some day. Or the items they say are "trending." Or take a look at the same ads that keep showing up everywhere you go on the Internet. This is called "retargeting" and is mostly commercial stuff, but pay attention to the political things. You will see mostly easily debunked fringe things when conservative issues show up in these retargeted ads, and plenty of uplifting-like message ads from Dem establishment people like Kamala Harris. btw - Just for people to know, retargeting happens when a pixel of an image is placed on your harddrive with instructions embedded in it. You don't give permission for the pixel to be placed there. It just happens when you visit certain sites and interact with something on them. My joy and hope stem from the current stupidity of the social media giants. Instead of keeping to their covert stuff, they have gone full-on authoritarian and think they will persuade by persecuting certain individuals at a cartel level (notice Alex Jones was eliminated from a bunch of places all within the same 24 hour period). You can do that and be persuasive in a dictatorship where people will show up in the middle of the night, drag your ass out of bed and either put you in a political prison or kill you. You persuade thus by fear. But when you do that to Americans, they get really pissed and some strange alliances pop up to stand up to the bullies. Look at this authoritarian urge showing its ugly face with the midnight raid on Roger Stone by a large number of law enforcement people armed to the teeth. The fake news media was right there covering it all in real time. And the news feeds showed nothing but that for a time. They want nightime arrests of political opponents. They want their political opponents silenced and punished by the state with jail or worse. They salivate at the image and take joy in it. These people are enemies of individual rights, not victims of the state when they are restricted from doing harm to the individuals they wish to target for political differences. This is the press, you say? Not social media? The truth is, they are in bed with social media giants right now, sharing the same advertising sponsors. That is their leverage. Social media giants and the fake news media know what each other is doing. They are colluding. Michael
  5. 2 points
    Brant. It is exactly the contrary. There is a lot under the hood and I think you don't believe much in it because it's new and you aren't familiar with the extents and proofs. Look at it this way for just one angle. The NYT is constantly struggling to stay alive financially. And without Bezos, WaPo would have folded. The amount of money these companies generate and need to operate is very small compared to the financial world of the social media giants. It's the elephant and mouse thing. What's worse, but more of an indication of the influence of these giant Internet companies, they made their billions and billions in the last ten years or so from practically nothing. That's not much time at all. Besides, neither NYT nor WaPo convince anyone of anything these days. They don't change hearts and minds. They sing to a small diminishing (but loyal) choir while resting on their reputations from years past. The social media giants are based on behavioral science at the root. Once you learn what they do, how they do it, and see the results according to split testing, you really get creeped out. (Look up growth hacking sometime if you are curious.) The only reason traditional media is still relevant financially is because of old connections with old advertising models. Once the ad world wakes up, they will leave traditional media and chase bigger payoffs for their clients elsewhere. This is already starting to happen. I could go into a lot of detail, but I don't have time. I believe Obama started the deep corruption of the tech giants. He (and his COBS people) helped them engineer the Arab Spring and they began to believe they could partner with political power to topple dictatorships and remold the world. These are nerds and that kind of power went to their heads. Once tasted, that kind of power is more addictive to nerds than their algorithms. Obama also put lots of his folks into Google while putting lots of Google folks into the government. I could go on and on about all this. Michael
  6. 2 points
    Brant, Nah... Ignoring the problem--and what caused it--is the back door to fascism. Principles operate in contexts. For example, the principle of private property was practically useless when the Titanic was sinking. As were all the principles of good seamanship. And those are great principles. The problem was the ship was going down. Once there are no people and no ship, principles mean what? Nothing, that's what. Would you have fought the different Communist takeovers of the different countries last century with syllogisms and principles? Many people did and look what it got them. What about that big pile of bodies, millions and millions of them, from Communist purges? Do dead people use syllogisms? In today's world, allowing government protected communication cartels to skew the next election toward an authoritarian elite because of a principle that doesn't work with government protected cartels is playing with that kind of fire and, frankly, it is a foolish way to enforce individual rights against a hightech cartel (one that is protected by the government) that is starting to run amok. Go on and let fascists win by cheating, then see how they act. Hell, just look what they did when they didn't win by cheating. For over two years they tried to ram a big fat lie down the public's throat that could have started WWIII had it worked and grown in the wrong direction, and they misused the intelligence forces and legal system to do it. (Not to mention all that blackmail due to pedophilia and other misbehavior of powerful insiders). In other words, we will not drift into fascism by recognizing a commons where private Internet companies can operate, but includes the protection of individual rights on that commons. The current social media giants are already practicing fascism there. Most people don't realize how much money and resources they received from the government and the extent of the secret contracts they have with the government, including massive surveillance contracts, facial recognition contracts, and so on. There is another issue. These Internet companies want to have the legal protections of private platforms, but want to act like publishers in operating their platforms. You see, publishers can choose the slant of their content. They can choose who they publish or not. But they are also legally liable for what they publish. Platforms are not legally liable for what is published on them. They want the powers of publishers, but the legal situation of platforms. This is a question of the law not catching up to technology while mixing in a lot of government money and legal cartel-oriented protections. Note: these companies are not de facto private companies. They have the shells of private companies, but they have the substance of something more like the Federal Reserve. They are intertwined with the government on many, many different levels. And now they are going fascistic. This problem of fascism is not something in the future to avoid. It is something in the present and we have to deal with it now, especially since it is still at a size we can deal with it. After it grows to a tipping point, we will no longer be able to deal with it through peace and law. Look at what they are doing--what they are doing right now and right here--and see if growth of that to a dictatorship by technocrats that will have no use for individual rights can be ignored. I, for one, have no intention to ignore it while cautioning about virtual back doors. I mean, who needs to worry about a back door when the fascists have already come in through the front door? Michael
  7. 1 point
    Re Conspiracy Theories and Conspiracy Theorists, as the title says: Yup: I've been thinking about writing songs again. These days, I've been thinking about the title of my first in a long time. How about this? I Wanna Be Big Brother Michael
  8. 1 point
    Actor who accused Spielberg found dead. https://thefederalistpapers.org/opinion/actor-accused-spielberg-colbert-pedophilia-found-dead
  9. 1 point
    the sad truth is i already won the world
  10. 1 point
    With all due respect, bullshit. The reality is you were born at the exact right time to be here now. I get you that the world is awful at times and people are a mess. But if you wallow in defeatism because of them, who won? You? Hell no. Snap out of that shit. You have a world to win. Or feel sorry for yourself and leave it to them. Your choice and your life. You won't get another so you can change your mind after it's gone. If you don't value yourself, nobody else will except those who pity you. Michael
  11. 1 point
    A, I'm glad you don't want to argue because an argument is not an achievement. But it's a hell of a great excuse to not expend efforts at achieving. As to territory, the lack thereof did not stop Trump. I'm serious. His buildings and real estate projects are magnificent. They are all over the world. Trump left his mark in one place after another all around planet earth. At those iconic points, he changed the planet into his own image and name. He made the planet better. My unsolicited advice is to stop feeling sorry for yourself, stop making excuses, and get next to someone like that and learn everything you can from him. Or his assistants. Or whoever around him will talk to you. Ask him how he solved the territory problem. Rand won't tell you (she'll tell you many good things, just not that), but he sure will. Then do the friggin' work. If he can do it, you can. One of the most precious words I ever learned is "transmute." It means turning one substance into another (like lead into gold). An idea is an abstraction. Having great ideas is a great start, but ideas are worthless if you do not transmute them into concrete things and actions. A building does not exist by itself in reality. A building is a transmuted idea at root. The idea--an abstraction--is where it came from. Without that idea, it could not exist. Transmuting takes practice. It's hard. But it's, oh, so worth it. Michael
  12. 1 point
    Monsanto is getting its ass kicked so hard that they gotta clear their throat to fart. https://www.brighteon.com/603709449100
  13. 1 point
    Besides, how loony do people have to be to think they can give standing ovations for "post birth abortions" without a backlash? Michael
  14. 1 point
    William, Maybe that they are evil? Unspeakable? Immoral? And so on? Then nothing, of course, would happen. Just like mocking these people, pretending they don't exist, and showing up only during election-time to cheat them into candidates and positions that they don't really support will not change their minds. Let's turn this around. What do you say? Do you complain? I know you don't respect these people. Do you expect respect from them? How? Why? Just because? Or is just cheating and coercing them--when you (or people who agree with your ideas) can get away with it--enough for you? After all, they are subhumans in your view, right? Here's some practical advice. If you ever need an abortion one day, don't try to get it in Alabama. Michael
  15. 1 point
    Probing the Mueller Probe and the Obama Administration Here's a transcript and video of Rush Limbaugh today. Limbaugh: Comey, Clapper, Others "Very, Very Nervous" Of Durham's Investigation Of Russia Probe (Sorry, you gotta go there to see the video.) There's a lot to say, but I just want to highlight one main point for the opening post of this thread. I learned today from that Rush segment that Mueller let four innocent men--that he knew were innocent--languish in jail for decades in order to protect the reputation of the FBI (he didn't want people to know Whitey Bulger was an FBI informant, seeing that Bulger was continuing to commit crimes). Two of the innocent men died in jail. The other two and their families got rich from damages the state had to pay. But a man who can do what Mueller did, keep innocents incarcerated, is the man the Dems used to take down President Trump. That he failed speaks volumes about Trump's legal squeaky-cleanliness, not to mention Mueller's depraved indifference to the pain and suffering of innocents caused by a legal abomination he was part of. The man who took down the obscenity of having four innocent men incarcerated and top law enforcement people like Mueller knowing about it was John Durham. This is the same John Durham that AG Bill Barr just appointed to look into the origins of the Trump-Russia probe. (Did I hear a gulp somewhere? ) I have no doubt that when Barr, Durnham & Co. finish probing the Trump-Russian probe and some elitist assholes duly go to jail, they will look into the flawed investigations of Hillary Clinton's email misbehavior and related issues. Bad times coming for the Dems. Good times coming for good old fashioned American justice where nobody is above the law, not even elitists from the former Obama administration. Michael
  16. 1 point
    What a joy to listen to Roseanne now that the dust has settled. She thinks there is going to be a paradigm shift in Hollywood after some of the elites who created the anti-Trump hoaxes land in jail. And she says that with a lot of pent up satisfaction. I think she's right and I hope she enjoys every moment of schadenfreude that emerges in her soul when it happens. I loved her comment to Lionel when he asked her about the Democrat candidates as he rattled of the twenty-something names. He asked her what they had in common, what was their common platform for the Democratic party... Immediately and without blinking she said: "We hate Jews who love Israel." Dayaamm! Boy, did that nail it. Every goddam one of those candidates show signs of that. She has even eschewed the term socialism. She said what they are doing now in the culture has nothing to do with what she meant before by that word, which was basically not letting anyone go hungry and live in the streets of America. (My comment: Back when she was touting her working class leftism, you could hardly find any people like that. Now they are common in America's cities. Thanks Obama & Co.) She said President Trump is doing a lot of what she wanted done. One last one. When she was in a wheelchair, she said they would not let her smoke in some building or other, not even with the window open. Lots of tut-tut-tutting about their morally superior position. But when she went out on the street, she had to navigate around human feces. Michael
  17. 1 point
    Tony, I think you're perceptive and eloquent about "globalism" as a religion and the way it works "[quoting you] collectively in the mass of minds." But I think that you miss something about the instigating role of persons whom Michael and Jon and I call "global elitists." Those persons aren't just responding to popular desire as it were in order to take advantage of it. They're cynically manipulating in order to produce the mass phenomenon. They aren't themselves actually believers in the religion they're fomenting. Brandon Smith, whose articles Jon featured in starting this thread, thinks that the ringleader elitists subscribe to their own "Luciferian" religion. I'm doubtful about specifics of Smith's views. My current belief is that the history behind today's global elitists hasn't been so organized and unified an effort as he thinks it was. However, there has been an occult history which has laid groundwork for the machinations of today's international-power-seeking elitists. Ellen
  18. 1 point
    Kneel before Zod! Everything? No, they haven't yet tied in the Freemasons, the Elders of Zion, or most vitally, the Knights Templar. It's "a fundamental axiom: The Templars have something to do with everything." See Foucault's Pendulum, chapter 65.
  19. 1 point
    One does not even need any math to resolve the paradox (explain the apparent contradiction). It was resolved at the beginning. It only takes a little thought and a discovery of the fallacious assumptions in the statement of the "contradiction." One can state things in mathematical terms afterwards, but that is not necessary. The thread is useful only in showing how screwed-up a mind can be, and still seem brilliant (and perhaps be such, in certain quite limited aspects).
  20. 1 point
    So, you're saying you love Hitler? J
  21. 1 point
    William, This is the danger of legislating from the court, even the Supreme Court. Roe vs. Wade is a legal abomination. Abortion aficionados would be well advised to spend some quality time learning how law is made in the USA. Then do that instead of trying to cheat all the time. For the understanding challenged, this means pass a bill in both chambers of Congress and have the President sign it into law. Obama had this in his hands and could have done it with the snap of a finger, but he and his people were too arrogant to even consider it. The result? I guess abortion aficionados will have to develop a taste for hoisted hair. Either that or stage a coup, install a dictatorship and change the nature of the US government. Michael
  22. 1 point
    About a year ago, on May 22, 2018, Q asked Who is Ed O’Callahan? Then Q wrote "Acting" 1439 Q!CbboFOtcZs22 May 2018 - 3:29:23 PM UNITY NOT DIVISION. Last post was simply for IDEN_reconf. http://www.foxnews.com/politics/2018/05/22/fbi-doj-to-brief-lawmakers-on-handling-russia-probe-on-thursday.html📁 Who is missing from the scheduled meeting? [RR] Who is Ed O’Callahan? "Acting" [Ed] DECLAS_ Pain. Enjoy the show. Q Today, AG Barr announced his new Acting Deputy Attorney General, Edward O'Callaghan.
  23. 1 point
    I don't think they, for the most part, see themselves as "monstrous" so they aren't afraid of being seen as such. They simply don't want to be challenged. Then they go nutzo. But what they are fighting is basically human biology. Ironically they aren't even addressing ten percent of the world's population. It's Western Civilization they are after, which is a runabout way of trying to overcome human biology. They can only win battles. They can't win--they won't win--the war. The more they are exposed the weaker they'll become as the "sanction of the victim" is withdrawn. --Brant not to fight evil is to sanction it
  24. 1 point
    Jon, I've read the Brandon Smith article now, and I think you're right in your understanding of his meaning. Interestingly - re my calling global elitists "parasites" - he says in the third paragraph: He refers to their parasitism a number of other times also. What he's talking about as their "ultimate goal" is a goal which he recognizes they couldn't achieve but which they aim toward so as to make life safer for them. Some excerpts: Ellen
  25. 1 point
    "If all 'Christian Objectivists' mean is that they are people who loosely follow the Bible and loosely follow Objectivism, I say go for it. They don't do me any harm and they are certainly no threat to me. May they go in peace. I won't be joining them, but I won't be throwing stones at them, either." The question wasn't about whether to harangue "Christian Objectivists" but about the meaning of words. Objectivism is a primacy-of-existence philosophy. Any form of meaningful religious belief assumes the primacy of consciousness. Confusions about the proper metaphysics may be manifested in a zillion ways, but you can't hold as a primary both that existence comes first and is independent of consciousness and that you start with a consciousness or consciousnesses that somehow created and sustain existence. An awful lot of people who may be very nice and responsible are wrong about various fundamental things. Should we beat them up for being wrong? No. Are they wrong about the things that they are wrong about? Yes. Is "Christian Objectivism" a contradiction in terms? Yes.
  26. 1 point
    Bartenders should not attempt to lecture anyone about oil. I've heard Sean Hannity shout it at least a hundred times, that America is energy independent! We have more oil and gas than any other country in the world! We can push Putin into bankruptcy by exporting U.S. oil and gas to our allies in Western Europe! Jeez. Item One. Domestic production of conventional crude has been in slow decline since 2005. Horizontal shale fracturing in North Dakota is not a profitable business at $50 a barrel. We do not have the world's largest oil reserves. Not second, third, fourth -- or even tenth largest. It would be nice to drill offshore California, but that's politically verboten. We import oil from Canada, Arabia, and (oops) Venezuela. America is not the world's largest producer. We're the largest consumer, over 20 million barrels a day, about 1/4 of all worldwide oil production. Item Two. Natural gas is not oil. Same situation. U.S. conventional production is in decline. Horizontal gas fracturing is upside down financially, roughly $100 billion in debt. Most of the sweet spots have been drilled and exhausted, with the exception of the Marcellus Shale in Pennsylvania. New York and California banned shale drilling. World class conventional gas reserves are in Siberia and offshore Persian Gulf (shared 50/50 by Qatar and Iran). Item Three. France, Germany, and Britain are not allies. They are beggars, no oil or gas in the ground. Britain drilled the North Sea to death, depends on Holland for natural gas, and was forced to import LNG from Qatar in frozen winter, when the Dutch pipeline failed. Norway is exploring their northern Arctic shelf for a reason. Europe is screwed, after exhausting all the low-hanging fruit. European oil leases in Africa have always have been difficult to produce. Corruption, crime, and tribal wars are constant threats. Drilling rigs have been attacked. Item Four. The price of oil is rising because Venezuela and Libya have been destroyed, plus U.S. sanctions against Iranian exports. When the price of oil goes up, demand goes down. We stop driving. No fancy dinners out. We make decisions like that as individual citizens in a free society. Others are less free. Japan and South Korea have no oil or gas, totally dependent on imports. 600 million people in Europe and the Far East are supplied by a fleet of supertankers from Kuwait, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE. Our 4th, 5th, and 7th Fleets usher Middle East supertankers through the threats and guns of adversaries and pirates. The world's grisliest conflicts including both World Wars were fought over oil. Item Five. The one and only U.S. energy resource worth talking about is coal. If our future is firetrap electric cars, then coal-fired power plants are the only hope of affordable electricity generation. Wind and solar are subsidized show pieces that require costly maintenance and replacement of unreliable parts made in China. However, abundant coal power is not a full solution to our energy needs. We have a huge fleet of diesel tractors, harvesters, bulldozers, dump trucks, and big rigs that are NOT going to work with batteries. Commercial passenger aircraft need jet fuel, and our military is the largest consumer of refined products on Earth. Bunker fuel powers oceangoing container trade, tankers, tug boats and barges. Every pump, engine, elevator, and axle needs lubricants. Poor Hannity, a big oaf who can't dance and needs a radio script and staff to function at all. Sean could be right about oil -- we could ship supplies to Europe -- if we suffer severe global warming, no need for winter heat, and a ban on all air travel, mining, beef cattle, road traffic, and industrial production. That's not going to happen. Solar Cycle 24 has been quiescent and the trend is tilting toward global cooling again, just like the 1970s, when Royal Dutch Shell funded East Anglia's Climate Centre to study the dire threat of everybody freezing to death, because global oil and gas reserves were small. They still are. We've already consumed half of the world's proved oil endowment. Cars are more fuel efficient today, particularly hybrids. Governments wasted hundreds of billions of dollars on "renewables" and mass transport, especially in oil-starved Western Europe and Japan. Adequate U.S. electricity in the future can be generated by cheap, abundant coal. It's not rocket science to scrub emissions squeaky clean and make inert construction materials from ash. We'll need it to deal with mountains of nuclear and biohazard waste. Poland has big coal reserves to keep shivering Brits and Krauts warm in winter. The only thing goofier than Sean Hannity posing as an oil analyst is the BBC. Last night, they broadcast a program on "Saving The World" by refilling empty shampoo bottles, plastic water bottles, fizzy drink bottles, etc. Screwballs in England are carrying empty plastic bottles to a guru with 25-liter tubs of generic shampoo and dishwashing liquid. Evangelists are pitching UK retail chains to install nonexistent vending machines that would dispense name brand products to refill empty plastic bottles. Messy aisles in the grocery store. Consumer product companies would have to cooperate to supply uniformly shaped bulk competitive brands for a monster vending machine, to be designed, built, and serviced by somebody (?) as a public service. Shredding and recycling plastic bottles isn't good enough for BBC. Meanwhile, little Greta from Norway told cheering crowds in London that the world will end unless governments shut down oil production. She's leading a global boycott of education. I grieve for the folly of true believers in climate change. It's an article of faith at BBC that we have to abandon internal combustion engines, kill coal and liquid fuels, walk to work or use an electric scooter in winter, in a thunderstorm, or on a blazing hot summer day, no way to carry groceries and jugs of milk home to feed a family of five. Silly me. Plastic bags and jugs will be outlawed, no refrigeration at home or in the store, no air conditioning, no big rigs to stock a dimly-lit WalMart, no dairy or meat, no mechanized agriculture. Childbirth will be dangerous, medical care filthy, and surgery a rigged dice roll without one-time-use plastics. No utility pumps to push water over the mountains in the California Aqueduct. No sewage treatment or garbage trucks. No fire engines, buses, or digital server farms. That's what solar power implies. A couple of LED lamps at night while you charge your electric scooter. Mistakes of this size are not made innocently, as Miss Rand used to say. The only difference between an industrial society and savages squatting in mud huts is a portfolio of high voltage power distribution, heavy equipment, and widely available refined petroleum products. Whether it's Sean Hannity or Greta Thunberg or the IPCC climate change fakirs, none of them know what it takes to successfully explore for, discover, engineer, lift, separate, transport, refine, and deliver a gallon of diesel, gasoline, engine oil, or cubic foot of natural gas. The "Oil Patch" is a vast pyramid with academic centers of excellence like Texas A&M, Colorado School of Mines, and UT, tens of thousands of geophysicists, geologists, reservoir engineers, seismic processors, software developers, oilfield tool designers, rig manufacturers, semi-submersible deepwater platforms with GPS positioning thrusters and service boats, highly skilled "toolpushers" and drillers, welders, helicopter pilots, safety managers, executives, and lawyers to deal with an infinity of permits, state and Federal reports, and SEC filings. And worse, 80% of all proved oil and gas reserves are owned and operated by Third World "national oil companies" -- hissing snakepits of hereditary princes, bureaucrats, and thieves. They hire contractors and oil service companies to do the actual work of production, field development, reservoir management, secondary recovery (water injection) and processing. Major international oil companies like Exxon, Chevron, BP, and Shell compete against each other to exploit 20% of global reserves. Russian oil companies offered joint ventures and raped all four of the aforementioned majors. The same thing happened historically in Iran, Mexico, Venezuela, and Saudi Arabia. US-UK brains discovered oil. It got expropriated. All this financial pain and toil and risk is so you can have a car, a fleet of 18-wheelers, bumper crops in farmers' fields, oceangoing trade, tens of thousands of scheduled passenger flights, and stupid shit on TV, backed by a million soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines equipped to defend you with missiles, carrier battle groups, stealth fighters, bombers, and artillery. To hell with the Green New Deal or whatever else the politicians cook up. Vote for rational self-interest and a prosperous industrial society that the men and women of "Big Oil" make possible. They are your neighbors and benefactors, many of whom work for small companies called "independents," over 18,000 of them operating in 32 U.S. states, drilling 94% of U.S. oil and gas wells, responsible for direct and indirect employment of four million workers. Another six million Americans work for international majors and the oil service companies operating offshore in deep water, in overseas deserts and jungles, U.S. ports and refineries, storage facilities, pipelines, specialist steel tube producers, and dependable distribution of diesel, gasoline, jet fuel, heating oil, natural gas and LPG delivered to every city and village, every factory, farm, shop, and construction site, every school and university from coast to coast. You open the refrigerator door, adjust your thermostat for comfort, eat well, drive to work, board an airplane, check into a hospital when necessary, confident that you, your wife and children will survive and thrive, because American oil companies fuel prosperity and highly mobile emergency first responders. Forget about Europe, Sean, unless you plan to move there, which you won't. .
  27. 1 point
    No, from Saudi Arabia. He had you, though, didn’t he? How long have you thought that? Didn’t make all those billions in oil, either, so how did he make all those billions? Who Owns The New York Times? Who Is Carlos Slim? Is he 'from Saudi Arabia,' or are the two discussants above thinking of someone else?
  28. 1 point
    No sooner than I say something like this, I run across it in the media. First, where I got the article from. I just now, at this very moment, watched the following video by Tim Pool. Incidentally, I am quickly becoming a huge fan of Tim's. He mentioned this article by Will Chamberlain. Platform Access Is A Civil Right. From the article (my bold): I left out the smart-ass ending of the last two sentences because, as a rhetorical device, it works, but cognitively, it's misleading. (For the record, here is what was written: "Conservative objections to this plan are “peacetime” objections. And we are not at peace.") The last sentence in the quote means "they can" not in the sense that might makes right, but, using the context of the article, it means that some states are politically constituted that this legislation is viable, while in the federal government, it isn't just yet. As to the part I bolded, the idea is that since the federal government paid for a huge chuck of of these platforms and a commons in the hands of a few giant companies developed as a result, the "public domain" concept comes in. Notice, this is not the same as a private company doing the whole thing as would happen under a laissez-faire system. This is a de facto public-private partnership where the law has not yet caught up with the technology. Normally, when the federal government pays for something, the product goes into the public domain or the public has access to it (unless there are public safety concerns like with classified documents). That the government paid for these companies, but still allows them to exist as private, is reward enough to compensate their own initiatives. That said, they should not be allowed to take money by force from people they refuse to serve (i.e., taxpayers). And since they did--and still do--take that money, they need to provide public access to their platforms as a civil right. Under this thinking, they still have the right to moderate and ban users, but only as concerns legal and illegal activity. Not political agenda, religion or anything else protected under the First Amendment. Michael
  29. 1 point
    Products of entrenched crony–statism are not private companies, they are products of entrenched crony–statism. A return to freedom necessarily involves the destruction of the propaganda monopolies created and controlled by the crony statists for their retention of power.
  30. 1 point
    President Trump just weighed in on the recent bans of conservatives on social media, especially Facebook. (I wonder what Farrakhan thinks about being the Token Black among that group? ) Good. President Trump needs to kick their asses hard. In our neck of the woods, the immediate kneejerk is that these social media giants are private companies and the government has no business telling them how to run their businesses. However, ALL of the tech giants enjoy--and have enjoyed--massive injections of government money, both in exclusive contracts and outright subsidies. That means taxpayers fund these things, at least in a significant part. So it is unreasonable--and probably illegal in the hands of a good attorney--to ban people from platforms they themselves helped to fund--and still fund--on the basis of their ideologies and religions. If people in O-Land and l-land want to use the "private companies" argument, it would be a good idea if they talked about actual private companies, not elitist crony corporations actively setting up a government-protected cartel and busting their asses to influence elections through covertly manipulating their users and banning voices they disagree with politically. If they don't want the government involved, then they should not take government money in such massive amounts. The "private companies" principle really dilutes as a principle when it is used to defend elitist government cronies over the citizens who are forced to pay for them through taxes. Michael
  31. 1 point
    Someone left that cake out in the rain. I don't know if I can take it, it took so long to bake it and I'll never have the recipe again... oh no......
  32. 1 point
    From Time: Israel Marks Holocaust Remembrance Day Amid Rising Wave of Anti-Semitism Worldwide, By ISABEL DEBRE / AP May 1, 2019 (JERUSALEM) — Israel on Wednesday began commemorating its Holocaust Remembrance Day in honor of the 6 million Jews killed by the Nazis, as leaders voiced concerns about a rising wave of anti-Semitism around the world. In emotional addresses to an opening ceremony at Israel’s national Holocaust memorial, the country’s ceremonial president warned the government against getting too close to far right parties in Europe, while Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said that last weekend’s deadly synagogue shooting in San Diego was the latest reminder of growing anti-Semitic hatred. The 24-hour remembrance period began at sundown with the main ceremony at Jerusalem’s Yad Vashem Holocaust memorial, and came just hours after Israeli researchers reported that violent attacks against Jews rose significantly last year. This spike, highlighted by the San Diego attack, was most dramatic in western Europe. President Reuven Rivlin warned of anti-Semitism in Europe, which he said “is once again raising its head, fueled by waves of immigration, by economic crises, and by disillusionment with the political establishment.” In veiled criticism of Netanyahu, he urged the government to be cautious about forging alliances with the far-right parties in Europe. “Every country and society has the legitimate right and even the duty to choose its policy and to protect its identity. Not every right-wing party in Europe that believes in controlling immigration or in protecting its unique character is anti-Semitic or xenophobic,” Rivlin said. “But political forces where anti-Semitism and racism are part of their language, their legacy or their ideology can never be our allies. No interest and no consideration of realpolitik can justify a dishonorable alliance with racist groups or elements who do not acknowledge their past and their responsibility for the crimes of the Holocaust,” he added. Rivlin did not identify any particular countries. But Netanyahu has come under criticism for embracing a string of eastern European leaders who have offered strong political support to Israel while promoting a distorted image of the Holocaust. A slew of former communist nations whose leaders recently visited Israel and paid their respects at Yad Vashem, such as Hungary, Lithuania and Poland, are swept up in a wave of World War II-era revisionism that seeks to diminish their culpability in the Holocaust while making heroes out of anti-Soviet nationalists involved in the mass killing of Jews. In Israel, established in the wake of the Nazi genocide of 6 million Jews, many say Netanyahu is cynically betraying the victims’ memory. Netanyahu, meanwhile, warned of rising anti-Semitic extremism as well. He said that the extreme right, extreme left and radical Islam agree on “one thing: their hatred of Jews.” He noted the deadly synagogue shootings in San Diego last weekend and in Pittsburgh last October as well as vandalism at Jewish cemeteries. He also took aim at a recent political cartoon in the New York Times’ international edition, saying that even “respected newspapers” have gotten swept up in the trend. “We’re not talking about legitimate criticism of Israel,” he said, “but of systematic, poisonous and shallow hatred.” Holocaust Remembrance day is one of the most melancholy days on Israel’s calendar. Places of entertainment and cafes are closed. TV and radio stations broadcast Holocaust documentaries and interviews with survivors or somber music until sundown the next day. Israelis come to a mournful, two-minute standstill to remember the dead Thursday morning when sirens wail across the country. Pedestrians stop in their tracks. Cars pull over on roads and many people exit their vehicles to stand still in contemplation. The names of Holocaust victims are read out in parliament. Contact us at editors@time.com. I ain't sure why those spaces showed up. Peter
  33. 1 point
    Maslow’s theory of motivation claims that first motivators are physiological factors like food, shelter, etc., after that safety factors like rule of law and insurance(protection in general), then meaningful social relationships, then social status and reputation, and finally an individual’s need to find himself or herself. The final one being self-actualization. From OEFO perspective, not a chosen few, but all adults are or should be motivated by self-actualization (OEFO refers to my book “Organizational Ethics from Objectivism”, from which the snippet is taken). The Central Purpose of Life (CPL) in Objectivist Ethics is quite similar to the concept of self-actualization. Other needs in Maslow’s model, ranging from physiological, safety-related, social, and emotional should be inferred and adjusted based on the CPL. For example, a CEO of an organizations will need a bigger social circle than a scientist(generally speaking), since the latter focuses more on in-depth study, and the former more on collaborative actions for building products and services. Safety is a negative factor and should not be the primary motivation. E.g., retiring early without having any clear CPL is not right. Also, the emotional part of the self should be fuelled using art or sports, such that one is sufficiently motivated to move towards their CPL. The same criteria is true for personal and other relationships. The contribution of each relationship towards the CPL should be evaluated. True, there are adults who have very destructive CPLs. Communism in Soviet Russia and elsewhere, Socialism in Nazi Germany, or many Socialist intellectuals and politicians of the Indian Left are a few of the examples of those having destructive CPLs. Also, among millennials, the non-productive purpose of enjoying as an ultimate end is popular. However, this too is not right as a Central Virtue, because it’s not derived from the Virtue of Productivity: The creation of products and services as a priority. These CPLs can be contrasted from the CPLs of Steve Jobs, Bill Gates 1.0, the founding fathers of America, Walt Disney, Narendra Modi, etc. Overall, irrespective of the value or the disvalue of CPL, the fact remains that humans are, or should be motivated by purpose.
  34. 1 point
    What is faith, anti-reason, from the start and eventually must cause a rift in a mind of one who espouses Objectivism. Brant, certainly, one can be Christian and a fine scientist since science is not a philosophy. And certainly, a Christian can conceptualize abstractions and grasp reality as well as anyone if, like anyone, he sets his mind to it, although he's always up against that basic self-contradiction. In fact, I notice that Christians are the better realists and thinkers in the West nowadays, compared to the "left" (who are so much anti-reason, neo-mystics and juvenile fantasists, themselves, they don't set much of a standard). I've heard and read several Christians who extoll "objective facts" , "truth", mental concepts, etc. As result, It's as important that they mostly have a firm hold of 'value' (life, family, culture, country etc.) unlike many anti-value secularists. By whichever means (odd, but there it is) they arrived at good, rational virtues from the self-effacing Christian virtues, there exists more integrity, independence, self-reliance and individuality among them, which indicates higher personal volition. You ~never~ hear of the criticality of one's "character" from Leftists (except when they are trying to impugn someone else's). The concept appears to have been written out of progressive narratives.
  35. 1 point
    Yes, it is an oxymoron. Christianity and Objectivism are two completely different systems. In Objectivism, reason is an absolute and rejects all forms of mysticism (belief in the unknown). Also, it is pro-selfishness, in Christianity you can't do something simply because it makes you happy, you have to do because it makes God happy. To call yourself an Objectivist or a Christian or a Socialist, etc., you have to follow the core principles. That being said there are people who call themselves Christians and believe in God, but also rely heavily upon reason as a guide in their lives and agree with many aspects of Objectivism.
  36. 1 point
    And to get rid of other people. Although "stopping climate change" is often pushed as necessary to avoid human extinction, there are those among the advocates of draconian methods who know that the result of those methods would be many human deaths and who want that result. Ellen
  37. 1 point
    Scott has misidentified the problem. The actual problem is people wanting to control and punish other people. Gen 4 doesn't solve that problem, but removes some of the excuses and satisfaction. So, in order to make Gen 4 palatable, they'll have to find a way to make it include more control and punishment -- and more costs -- more than what they've been advocating and proposing in regard to old energies and technologies. How can Gen 4 be used to reverse the concept of merit? Until there is a good answer to that question, it will face strong opposition.
  38. 1 point
    Jennifer, Welcome to OL. I hope you have a good time here. Lots of great people who are interested in Rand. Now you are a great people interested in Rand, too. Michael
  39. 1 point
    Hi, I'm new here and I thought it'd be good to introduce myself. My name is Jennifer and I've been learning Objectivism for about 2 years now. I have read three of Ms. Rand's books so far: Atlas, The Virtue of Selfishness, and Anthem. Many times when I have searched for my questions a thread from this would be suggested, so I've decided to stop spying and become a member. 😂 Plus, I don't really have many outlets for discussion with others and able to feel very comfortable so why not give this place a shot. 🙂
  40. 1 point
    The belief that one cannot be Christian and objectivist presupposes: that all gods require human sacrifice; that Jesus Christ was merely human; that anything else "under the sun" is practically closer to God than the individual human being; and that 'faith' and 'reason' are antonyms. Even as Jewish faith is based on what specific people experienced: a deliverance from slavery in Egypt, the Christian faith is based on the witness of specific people who walked up close and personal with Jesus Christ both before and after his death from crucifixion. Even if how to interpret this experience was revealed to them, the interpretation made more sense than any other attempt to explain the phenomena.
  41. 1 point
    The gist of her screed comes down to the primacy of existence. Mysticism, primacy of consciousness: it is so because I feel it to be so (and I don't wish it to be so, therefore it isn't), is of course not limited to religion and faith - you find it in every sphere (politics, science, ethics and the arts, for just a few).
  42. 1 point
    Brant, Can of worms time. Right now I can't delve into making a case about the value and nature of mythology and religion in terms of human evolution (see Darwin's Cathedral: Evolution, Religion, and the Nature of Society by David Sloan Wilson for one scholar's quite reasonable presentation of that), so I will simply quote a few pertinent thoughts about religious stories and some tangential but related thoughts. Let's just say that most people hold major religious events as coming from (or informed by) a realm different than everyday reality. Rod Sterling called it the "realm of the imagination." Christians call it Heaven and Hell. Either way, this different realm has been a concern of humans ever since recorded history. And even when there are odd happenings in the stories using only everyday reality as a standard, like the Virgin Birth, it's not pure 100% unadulterated everyday reality. It's a mixture with this other realm. There is always a mythic element to it--myth meets and mixes with physical reality so to speak. That, to me, puts these stories in a different class of mental event that deserves more thought than simply sniffing in superiority and calling all of mankind stupid for believing in them. I mean, one can do that if it rings one's ding-a-ling, but pointing at people and saying, "See how stupid religious people are? I'll never understand how they can believe all those crazy stories..." doesn't explain reality and, frankly, doesn't explain people. All it does is scratch a vanity itch. It's like Person A asking Person B what the meaning of life is and Person B responds by complaining about the flavors of chewing gum available. Person B is totally clueless about the issues at stake, but highly interested in something that tastes good. To use another analogy, a fish isn't aware of the water it swims in until there is no water. If the human mind were not constructed to swim in story, it would not have to create other stories (like the big bang) to replace the ancient ones when people begin to find them silly. And, frankly, as a foundational story, the big bang is a piss-poor story. It does not come with the ability to be used as social glue, for instance. No one will get married or buried in its name. And that's just one shortcoming. There are a slew of them. (A foundational story helps integrate the different modules of our highly modular brains so we--as individual members of a species--can behave in a manner where we survive and reproduce with relative success.) If people wish to sever their own beliefs from ancient foundational stories (and I'm not saying they shouldn't), they at least need to replace such stories with something that fills in the human life gaps left over when the old stories are removed. For those who laugh at people's current beliefs in myths and religious stories, I have yet to hear a single merrymaker explain why religious foundational stories have survived ALL of human history. Just saying people are stupid is a piss-poor excuse for thinking about that issue. Now a few quotes. I could--and probably will--write a whole book about this. I just looked and did find it in her Journals. Quoting Ayn Rand: Rand's metaphysics is essentially the axiomatic concepts. No stories of why and how things work. Just that things are and that things work. Done. Notice her phrase: philosophy is primarily epistemology. This means that she has no response to the big questions of philosophy like: What is the meaning of life? Why do we have to die? Why is the universe so infinitely large and infinitely small at the same time while we are so limited in scope? And so on. Rand did not even attempt to answer these questions. She essentially implied that people who ask these things are stupid to ask them. And if that thought bothers you to disagree, then let's just say she blanked out that people ask these questions and why they ask them. How can a philosophy spread when it leaves out such a big chunk of the human soul? It's not like you can't observe people mulling these questions over in records in all societies throughout all history. I can't resist the following entry as a playful gotcha to Barbara. (I wonder what she would have thought about my current conclusions. ) At one time--I don't remember where and when, I think it was in her apartment, I mentioned to her that philosophy was like an instruction manual on how to use your mind. She had a fit on me. She said that philosophy dealt with the fundamental nature of the universe. Period. End of story. But thus spoke Rand... None of this has anything to do with writing techniques, but it's interesting as all get out--to me and I bet to many readers. That's the nature of discussion forums, I guess... OL is OL. Michael
  43. 1 point
    Here is a link to my song "Ave Maria (Ellen's Prayer)" as performed March 10 in Minneapolis. The singer is Christina Christensen, mezzo-soprano (https://www.facebook.com/ccmezzosoprano) and the pianist is Emily Urban (https://www.facebook.com/emilylurban). (I am not sure how long this link will remain active; I will post a permanent link later. However, the audio file can be downloaded from this link.) https://drive.google.com/file/d/1MXQSi8JqBFqXL4CszL7I38c4jEsLaQhZ/view
  44. 1 point
    People used to call Monsanto critics cranks and conspiracy theorists. Mockery with tin foil hats and so forth... Where did the smug superiority go all of a sudden? Michael
  45. 1 point
    Here is a second-tier actor who probably just trashed his career. Maybe his life. If he dies soon, I, for one, will use that as an indication he was pissing off the wrong people for the right reasons. His name is Isaac Kappy. He was an actor in Breaking Bad, Thor, Fanboys, Terminator Salvation, and other movies and TV shows. He's also a writer and musician. He dropped some heavy names as pedophiles (Spielberg, Tom Hanks, Clare Bronfman heiress to Seagram's--who just got arrested, usual suspects like Kevin Spacey, etc.) and is daring people to sue him. In fact, he mentioned a lot of names. He said everybody in Hollywood knows what he knows, but everybody is scared to say anything. He also talked about the blackmail angle behind it all and defended some people he said were falsely accused as pedophiles, like Michael Jackson. He won me over when he said Stephen Colbert is a pedophile and trashed John Podesta (Colbert's bud). I can't believe all his says at face value without more evidence, after all, he talks about some fringe sites among the more credible stuff, and I know he is an actor and actors act, but my gut reaction to this video is that he fully believes in what he is saying and he's scared. I like to go with my gut. So that tells me this may not be the fire, but it is credible smoke. This topic needs to stay alive in the public to make sure lots of formal investigations are performed by lots of different law enforcement agencies. This crap has gone on for way too long. Michael
  46. 1 point
    Samson, if you said specifically what you think the point is, I missed it. Or perhaps didn't understand it. Brant may have come close, but I often don't understand him. Since I missed the point, I will belabor it. It could be said that the farmer doesn't even have full ownership of his crop. There are rules about the disposal of harvest "by-products" just like there are rules about restaurant food that was prepared in advance but not sold. Even if the producers of those goods wanted to give them to the poor, they often can't.
  47. 1 point
    http://en.wikipedia....ical_appearance Reacher is a giant, standing at 6' 5" tall (1.96m) with a 50-inch chest, and weighing between 210 and 250 pounds (100–115 kg). He has ice-blue eyes and dirty blond hair. He has very little body fat, and his muscular physique is completely natural (he reveals in Persuader, he has never been an exercise enthusiast.) He is exceptionally strong but is not a good runner.[3] Reacher is strong enough to break a man's neck with one hand (Bad Luck and Trouble) and kill a villain with a single punch to the head (61 Hours) or chest (Worth Dying For). In a fight against a 7 foot, 400 lb steroid-using thug (Persuader), Reacher was able to lift his opponent into the air and drop him on his head. So his description is basically Daniel Craig (5’ 11”) plus half a foot. If they casted Craig, no one would be complaining. But Tom Cruise (5’ 7”) just can’t make it to the top shelf. Terrific actor, but no Reacher, however much he stretches and gets up on his tippee toes. http://www.filmbug.com/db/258/height http://www.filmbug.c...b/262655/height
  48. 1 point
    Phil C and Bob K, I've read them all and I strongly recommend them. Killing Floor and Bad Luck and Trouble are particularly good. Robert C Reacher Creature
  49. 1 point
    My wife, who is an avid reader of detective stories, police procedure novels and such like, thinks that Child's series is the best she has read. I might even try reading the first of the series. Ba'al Chatzaf
  50. 1 point
    Hi Bradley, I can’t buy that one is a Christian who never turns to faith in contradiction of reason. I can’t buy that one is a Christian who never turns to mercy opposed to justice. I can’t buy that one is a Christian who pursues monetary riches for himself. I can’t buy that one is a Christian who never sacrifices his own judgment to a higher-than-human intelligence in the universe. I can’t buy that one is a Christian who in no way believes he and his loved ones will arise from the grave and live forever in happiness in the presence of Jesus Christ (the son of God and savior of the world) in the kingdom of God. A Christian can’t be any those five ways. An Objectivist must be all those ways, except the third is elective in degree. An Objectivist may elect to pursue monetary riches for herself, provided she understands the rightness of it. One cannot be a Christian and an Objectivist. Stephen