Robert3750

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  1. Thank you Michael. I like what you said about Objectivism being a starting point rather than an end point. I'm reminded of a well known book in libertarian circles titled It Usually Begins with Ayn Rand. After rereading PAR and seeing some Youtube videos of Barbara, I wish I had had a chance to meet her. Hers was not a perfect life, but neither is anyone else's. PAR helps me understand who Ayn Rand was better than any other book, and I'm grateful to her for that. BTW, I've never heard of VDare. Robert
  2. I'm aware of ARI, and I've watched a number of Yaron Brook's lectures on Youtube. I think he does a fine job of explaining Rand's philosophy to people, although it does get repetitive hearing him use the same talking points in all his lectures. I've also listened to Peikoff's appearances at the Ford Forum. I liked his address concerning socialized medicine. However, I find Peikoff to be very unlikeable, and some of his statements along the lines of "if you don't agree with my conclusions about everything, you are objectively evil/irrational" etc. make him not worth listening to. I also think his treatment of the Brandens is inexcuseable and unforgiveable. ARI is not some oracle of flawless Objectivist wisdom, even though they sometimes act like they are. They tend to violate the idea that one should think for oneself.
  3. Thanks Mark, but internecine conflict at ARI doesn't really interest me. I'm just happy knowing that there are people interested in Objectivism who don't swallow the idea that everything must revolve around what ARI thinks or says. I like the idea of treating ARI the way Howard Roark treated Ellsworth Toohey when Toohey demanded to know what Roark thought of him.
  4. Sorry to post on a very old thread, but I only recently found this forum. I'm thinking of this statement from Jon Galt's speech in AS: Whatever may be open to disagreement, there is one act of evil that may not, the act that no man may commit against others and no man may sanction or forgive. So long as men desire to live together, no man may initiate—do you hear me? no man may start—the use of physical force against others. It was always made clear by Rand and others that morality doesn't change due to numbers, ie if it's wrong for one man to rob another, then it's wrong for 10, 100, a million men to rob one man or group of men. Therefore, it's as wrong for government to initiate force as it is for one man to do so. With regard to gun registration, on what basis could the government compel it? Simply purchasing a gun does not initiate force. The purchase is a purely voluntary act involving no force or fraud. Therefore, the registration is not a retaliation against anything. It is, in fact, an initiation of force. Therefore, registration violates the principle of non-initiation stated by Galt (Rand).
  5. Nice to feel welcome, Brant.
  6. Hi all, I discovered this site recently after Google searches prompted by rereading PAR, which piqued my curiosity about Rand and the Brandens. I must say that this forum is a breath of fresh air, after getting the idea for so long that Objectivism is defined by the grim authoritarian stance of the people at ARI. My initial exposure to Rand was in my mid 20s. A libertarian friend told me about her, and I ate up TF and AS. In subsequent years, I watched the Italian We The Living film, and read shorter Rand books such as Introduction to Objectivist Epistemology, Philosophy Who Needs It, Capitalism The Unknown Ideal, For The New Intellectual, and The Virtue Of Selfishness, so I have a good grasp of What Objectivism is all about. I've never really thought of myself as an Objectivist, because Objectivist "apostles" constantly reiterate that it's a closed system, the totality of which MUST be accepted, at least as they define it. That's always been off-putting to me. Over the years, I've been exposed to plenty of other "individualist" thinking--Reason magazine, Murray Rothbard, Tibor Machan, Von Mises, Hayek, Hazlitt, Albert Jay Nock, and others. I do think Rand made the best moral case for capitalism. Even though I hesitate to call myself a big O Objectivist, I've always viewed life in objectivist terms. I became a mechanical engineer partly because it deals with objective reality. If one tries to ignore objective reality, the bridge will fall down, the motor won't start, or the rocket will explode. In the world of audiophiles, I've always been firmly in the objectivist (as opposed to subjectivist) camp. Fictional works where reality is shaped at will by consciousness annoy me. And so forth.