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Everything posted by DavidMcK

  1. Leni Riefenstahl (sp) weren't fictional movies, they were documentaries (chock full of propaganda) and yes they probably had an effect. The China Syndrome was released just as 3 Mile Island had its problems so which was more influential...the movie or the event? The Nazi propaganda movies wouldn't have been as influential (or influential at all) if the Nazi's weren't already in power. In my mind movies are most influential on an individual. They can provide us with models of behavior and standards, and it would be hard to measure that influence but it is still there.
  2. I bought the Ruby and lost interest somewhere in the first chapter. The Joseph is a classic and Rand's more concise statement of causality as the application of the law of identity to motion comes from his chapters on causality. I even toyed with the idea that he anticipated chaos theory in the chapter on causality. I read Joseph many years ago when I was young and more abstract. I don't seem to be able to maintain that level of abstraction now-a-days but I remember how impressed I was with his level of seriousness and knowledge. As to why you would teach a basically logical person logic..for the same reason you would teach Mozart counterpoint (when he was young) or Michael Jordan to shoot hoops..because logic is a skill that you can get better at even if you are basically oriented in that direction.
  3. That issue was raised and dealt with in H.W.B. Joseph's Introduction to Logic in which he pointed out that the study of logic informs the logical person what thinking logically consists of (explicitly).
  4. Its obvious (and controversial) that a defense is for selfdefense, not the defense of the whole world. As a libertarian and an advocate of intelligent self-interest I am against the actions of the U.S. military in Libya and Irag as well as this attack on an Iranian nuclear power facility. The situation in Afghanistan is more justified since we were attacked; but notice that people who have no concept of what a military is for, or who believe it is for anyone at anytime don't seem to be able to execute a justified war efficiently.
  5. From CNN: Here’s what Gingrich said at Cornerstone Church on Sunday evening, according to Politico: "I have two grandchildren: Maggie is 11; Robert is 9," Gingrich said at Cornerstone Church here. "I am convinced that if we do not decisively win the struggle over the nature of America, by the time they're my age they will be in a secular atheist country, potentially one dominated by radical Islamists and with no understanding of what it once meant to be an American." So which is it: a secular atheist country or a radical Islamist country?
  6. Welcome! A fascinating story. I've always wondered how someone from a Socialist country would react to Atlas..especially the story of the 20th Century Motor company with Ivy. Dagny asks Ivy if she knows what the area around the old 20th century plant looks like now and Ivy signals her awareness that things weren't so good for a lot of people (in her own way). Loge is the demigod of fire and is used in Das Rheingold (Wagner).
  7. I've been visiting Watts up with that? website (http://wattsupwiththat.com/) the past few months and I've been impressed with how well informed the contributors are about global warming (or the lack thereof). This website was voted best website this year for the science category and there is a widget that can link visitors to the Watt website as well as give information about the state of the climate. Please consider. Here's the code for the widget: <a href="http://wattsupwiththat.com/widget/"> <img title="Click to get your own widget" src="http://cache4.intelliweather.net/wcw/world_climate_widget_sidebar.gif" alt="Click to get your own widget" width="166" height="223" /></a>
  8. Asking for a complete mathematical treatment of a competing and still-forming theory is ridiculous. It would be like asking Copernicus why he doesn't have a formula for gravity. Why don't you give us a complete and unequivocal math for dark matter and energy?
  9. Hard to believe isn't it? Three wars by the winner of the Nobel Peace prize. Wonder where the fourth is going to be.
  10. Off Subject: ND which version of 'Invasion' do you prefer, the original with Kevin McCarthy or the excerpt you posted with Donald Sutherland (I like the original btw)?
  11. Thanks George, much belatedly since 9/11 was almost 10 years ago. This article said a lot that needed to be said. Also thanks to ND for posting the appropriate excerpt of an interview with Tom Snyder; it is still an inspiration to see how well she explains her ideas.
  12. If you follow the links there is more detail and it seems very interesting and worthwhile (if you have the extra money). Edit: Oops that was the 2010 conference with the details.
  13. Queens (Elmhurst), NY, NY
  14. Reading online I discovered it takes 5 to 6 days to cool down after a SCRAM (safety control rod axe man...i.e. the man at the first self-sustaining reaction whose job it was to cut the rope holding the control rods with an ax if things got out of control).
  15. I have to say that I don't know why everyone gangs up on Phil, his posts are sometimes interesting and he and whynot have good points about the lack of civility on here. I know: it is more entertaining to see a good cat fight than to learn something but some of us are here more to learn than to be entertained. My .02.
  16. It is also interesting that because of an inability to calculate every decision by a central authority is regarded as right because who can prove otherwise? In other words (to use the example from above) since building a railway from point a to b benefits at least someone, and since everyone knows that we need more railways, food etc. then every railway is justified without economic calculation. Of course in reality the railways are built often from motives that aren't exactly economic but that never bothers the advocates of central authorities.
  17. This is also interesting in light of the news stories that the military attempted to use 'psi ops' for visitors to Afghanistan (which is illegal to use on American Citizens) as reported in Rolling Stone.
  18. It is interesting that the revolution has spread like wildfire in the Mideast; everyone seem inspired in a positive way by this. I would describe my attitude as optimistic with a dose of pessimism.
  19. I live in the U.S., was exaggerating (I hope).
  20. Sounds like a good plan, maybe they need to come here and implement some of the same ideas.
  21. It is much easier to unite people against something (or someone) than to get on the same page for an idea (or someone who represents an idea). Now Egyptians have to figure out what should be the next step.
  22. Notice that everyone is assuming the billionaire is male...if it is female I would like to submit to the position of boy toy...I'm not really a boy, and maybe not much of a toy either but I can try. David
  23. I agree Michael, and it is hard to see how anyone could die from finding out that Karzai (the head of Afghanistan) is getting rich from drug smuggling...except maybe Karzai.
  24. War is God's way of teaching Americans geography.--Ambrose Bierce
  25. Here's another, I hope I didn't cut and paste it from here or it will be old news to some: A practical observation on the risks of stupidity was made by the German General Kurt von Hammerstein-Equord in Truppenführung, 1933: "I divide my officers into four classes; the clever, the lazy, the industrious, and the stupid. Each officer possesses at least two of these qualities. Those who are clever and industrious are fitted for the highest staff appointments. Use can be made of those who are stupid and lazy. The man who is clever and lazy however is for the very highest command; he has the temperament and nerves to deal with all situations. But whoever is stupid and industrious is a menace and must be removed immediately!"