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Everything posted by studiodekadent

  1. Here's my opinion on the topic from reading the subject line. Dictators aren't altruists. They're profiteers from altruism. The majority of Rand's argument against altruism is that those who promote altruism are doing so out of a desire to parasite off other people. Dictators are "altruists" nominally, but parasites in action. Which proves altruism is really a control strategy rather than a moral principle.
  2. MSK, Speaking as a foreigner who recently did plenty of travel in the US, The TSA really don't add much to security and they do add quite a bit to annoyance. That said, US airports are FAR less intrusive than Changi airport in Singapore. Still, its f**king anoying. Really. The TSA hardly improves security and greatly increases inconvenience. Not only that, but why keep it? It only makes the US seem harsh and unwelcoming to travellers.
  3. As much as I am no fan of Carol's politics, I do have to thank Canada for the following things: 1) Maple syrup 2) Skinny Puppy 3) Front Line Assembly 4) Decoded Feedback
  4. I've heard of this book. It offers an interesting thesis. The simple fact is that both traditional masculinity and traditional femininity were basically sexually-differentiated altruism; men were expected to sacrifice themselves for King/Country/Career and women were expected to sacrifice themselves for Children/Family/Husband. The Betty Friedan style of feminism (which is methodologically and culturally individualist) encouraged women to reject the altruistic demands thrust onto them and care about their own satisfaction and happiness. Women were encouraged to pursue careers (although, unlike with men, they were encouraged to pursue careers as a means to personal fulfillment and independence). There is a small masculist/men's rights movement, but it hasn't nearly had the same effect on gender norms for men as the feminist movement had on gender norms for women. Men are where women were back in the 50's. Since altruism is bad, I honestly think Objectivists should show support to the questioning of traditional ideas of masculinity. Few of Rand's heroes ever got married or had kids, and they were intellectuals (and intellectuals are typically socially emasculated by traditional norms). And all of that said, traditional masculinity is based on Platonic Essentialism, which is pretty much the opposite of Objectivism on a metaphysical and epistemological level.
  5. Teacher's Unions collapsing is ALWAYS good news. Its like when I learned my high school Head Of House died in a car crash. The evil b**ch deserved it. I hope that the creature's death was slow and excruciatingly painful. Anything that makes teachers-of-children suffer makes me happy (exception for Montessori teachers and Economics teachers).
  6. My latest pieces of "anti-life" music arrived today: "AirMech" and "Echogenetic" by Front Line Assembly (my favorite band)!
  7. This is a ridiculous strawman and you know it. There is nothing wrong with voluntary unions, indeed IMO they are good things. But state-privileged unions, and particularly public sector unions, are a Public Choice time bomb. Please, actually look at some Public Choice Theory literature. You've been on these forums long enough to know that the critique being advanced against public unions is a far more sophisticated and nuanced one than your misrepresentation of it.
  8. I've recently laid down the vocals for my new song. Just need to add production, sample loops, horrible noises and maybe one new melodic component and its done.
  9. I listen to, and make, electro-industrial music. The genre was originally explicitly Marxist but dropped the ideology in time. Still, Rand would not approve of my preferences. I don't care. She's dead. I like my music.
  10. Because Sturgeons aren't cute. PETA only care about the kinds of animals which are common in children's fables or things like that. Extra points if they're endearingly cute. Sure, they may technically advocate all animals being liberated but most of them are emotionally driven and fixated on cute fluffy animals which they tend to anthropomorphize in their own minds. And marketing-wise it is easier to use animals like that than use animals like sturgeons.
  11. Adam, I understand that by "homosexual agenda" you mean "the political agenda which the large gay-rights lobbying groups advocate." This agenda includes items I agree with (such as civil marriage equality) as well as some items I do not agree with (like antidiscrimination laws which regulate private sector entities). The point I was making is that the phrase "the homosexual agenda" has many connotations attached to it, and as a result it doesn't mean (to most people) "the political positions advocated by the large gay-rights lobbying groups." Instead, when most people hear "the homosexual agenda" they take the phrase to be referring to the Christian-Conservative conspiracy theory that there are secret cabals of gay people aiming to destroy the heterosexual nuclear family and abolish Christianity etc. etc. I know you don't believe this conspiracy theory, and I am not accusing you of believing it, so if you thought I was then I apologize for my lack of clarity (after re-reading my post I can see why you interpreted it as a direct attack. Sloppy phrasing on my part). I know you aren't a Christian Conservative and I know you don't think "the homosexuals" are out to "destroy America." But I am suggesting that the use of the phrase "the homosexual agenda" will make other people instantly perceive you as a Christian Conservative, and thus will predispose them towards hostility when listening to you. They'll basically ignore the merits of what you say simply because you used what amounts to a "trigger phrase." My point is really one about communication strategy. Yes, I know on this forum we don't always have to be super-clear and precise and diplomatic, but I get frustrated at the common stereotype of Libertarians and Objectivists being crypto-Conservatives and as such I tend to find "Libertarians/Objectivists acting in ways which can be perceived as stereotypically conservative" to be a bit frustrating. Then again, I'm sure some of the more culturally conservative members of the forum would find my antics to be frustratingly counterculture. So it probably goes both ways. Anyone that claims to support small government yet supports criminalizing prostitution cannot truly claim to support small government. At best you can argue they support a smaller-than-the-current-government. A truly small government wouldn't make purely voluntary commercial exchanges illegal.
  12. When I read PETA asking me not to eat X, it makes me want to eat X more. Today, I ate Foie Gras and I love eating it. Foie Gras is illegal in California because of sanctimonious hippies like PETA. But back onto topic, when PETA tells me not to eat eggs, I start wanting to eat Eggs Benedict. Yummy.
  13. Adam, What exactly do you mean by "the homosexual agenda" exactly? To be blunt, that's a thought-terminating cliche used by those on the right to imply a Big Gay Conspiracy, and it automatically causes anyone that is concerned with certain causes often associated with the left to turn on you. I know multiple non-heterosexual people (including gay people). There's no homosexual agenda. It isn't like the second you come out of the closet you get sent a copy of a secret political agenda. I oppose state-enforced affirmative action. I also oppose any antidiscrimination legislation controlling the private sector. But "the homosexual agenda" as a phrase refers to the Christian Right's allegation that gay people want to burn all churches and mandate gay sex ed in pre school and other ridiculous things which the vast majority of gay rights advocates do not support. There is no "homosexual agenda." The phrase implies that being a dude-who-wants-to-fuck-other-dudes means that you MUST share a whole list of completely unrelated social-economic policy preferences with every other dude-who-wants-to-fuck-other-dudes. Ginny, Why not look at Ms Davis's website? You can find it at And Ms Davis is an anti-human trafficking campaigner who also runs a charity that combats human trafficking. So talking about child prostitution (which is by definition human trafficking) is just ridiculous.
  14. On the other hand, criminalizing prostitution is the archetypal example of an infringement on both personal and economic liberty. An entire sector of the economy, one which has existed since the dawn of human civilization, is made illegal for "moral" reasons.Supporting WHORES WHORES WHORES! is to endorse both the sexual liberty of consenting individuals AND the commercial liberty of consenting individuals. And no, "looking edgy" or "counterculture" isn't bad for political success.
  15. I wholeheartedly endorse Kristin Davis. She has more experience in financial management than Spitzer (Davis is a businesswoman who amongst her other careers also has experience as an hedge fund's senior Vice Prez). She isn't a corrupt-as-all-hell career politician. She read Rand and Mises and Hayek when she was in jail. She's truly socially liberal and believes in genuine free market economics. She's simply the best candidate for the job. Anyone who attacks her past enterprises doesn't deserve to be listened to. Prostitution, unlike politics, is an honest and productive industry.
  16. This is for all those on this forum who celebrate Independence Day. I may be an Australian but yes, I celebrate Independence Day too. So yes, Happy Independence Day! Drink up!
  17. Excellent article, Ed. The immigration thing is simple. You don't actually have to eliminate welfare programs first. Just make it easy to get a Work Visa. Work Visa's don't entitle their holders to welfare benefits. The holders of a Work Visa, however, do have to pay taxes I think... or at least some taxes (like sales taxes). I would prefer exempting Work Visa holders from tax but politically this would be a no sale. Plus, it would help fix the revenue situation without actually raising taxes one bit. Make Work Visas easy to get with only a disease check and a basic background check to make sure the applicant isn't an actual danger. Allow currently undocumented immigrants to get one too. If that were to happen, the amount of illegal immigration would plunge. Unfortunately, you'll get opposition from most unions (who don't want the competition), and quite a large number of persons that harbor "Nativist" sentiment (who are simply bigots). But it is a legally easy fix which is effective AND accomplishes things which both liberals and conservatives claim to want whilst avoiding the problem of increasing the number of dependents.
  18. You're assuming that the political class of California are rationally self-interested and care about making money. I think this isn't exactly a safe assumption.
  19. Purchase your ammo (and your foie gras) in Nevada instead then. Problem solved. Ahhh, California... it is a frighteningly fascist place. I wouldn't even describe it as socially liberal - it merely tolerates a trendy sliver of a few particular social freedoms (basically "Right To Buttsex" but nothing else).
  20. Lakoff does make a point re framing and metaphors and as such has some advice for people that are trying to make an argument. However, honestly, his thesis re. "the right" (which is treated monolithically) believing in a "strict father model" of government only makes sense if you exclude libertarians from the right. Of course he doesn't. He argues libertarians implicitly subscribe to a "strict father model" by framing "the market" as a singular omniscient infallible executive authority figure. Which shows either 1) he doesn't understand libertarian theory at all, or 2) he thinks most libertarians don't understand libertarian theory at all (i.e. that most people who accept libertarianism do so not by understanding the theory but because of accepting the "strict father model" and thinking of the market in this way). In my experience this is false. Libertarians in general are far more levelheaded and generally better educated than the population average - they're unlikely to be swayed by "strict father" framing effects, and given many libertarians have counterculture sympathies/attitudes they're probably more likely to be PUT OFF libertarianism by the "strict father" framing. At best, Lakoff might be explaining why some conservatives end up gravitating towards libertarian policies. But this kind of fusionism is not libertarianism. Or he might simply be tossing red meat to his progressive base by rationalizing their prejudices in high-minded language.
  21. I've found MBTI stuff to be very telling and quite useful. I'm an INTP, most of my friends are INTJs, Rand was an INTJ and libertarians are 80% NT... Objectivists are 85% NT. NT types are the rarest personality types in the general population.
  22. My drugs of choice aren't acid, so I can't really comment. More of a stimulants-or-booze guy here. That said, the idea of Bob on acid reminds me a lot of Velvet Acid Christ's song "Side-Ways Calculus."
  23. Actually, YOU started it by coming into that thread on Reddit and throwing insults. Yes, you apologized for the crudeness, but you're still the person that started it. Although if you're a determinist then saying either of us "started" it seems a bit strained.
  24. Okay, so why continue to discuss it, if you consider it meaningless?
  25. Alexei, By the same token, that quote renders determinism a pseudo-proposition as well!