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Donovan A.

Objectivism: General Knowledge Test 01

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MIkee, thanks for the correction.

Brant, sorry for the oversight. My apologies in reply to your forgiveness - though we must be cautious about forgiveness, eh? But in any case, I was just over-tired. I typically come here (or to RoR), either to warm-up or relax. Last night, I was online here after working a day guarding a high-rise. We' are still near 100-F here and it's a full day. So, I just was out of focus, and I missed the context. You meant that you had no time to go back and critically review the test which you took.

I also spend most of my day - as I hope we all do - being polite (sometimes overly so) to others. It is only online with the social distances that I can dare to be blunt. You and I get along fairly well here and I did not mean to stress our tenuous relationship. Again, my apologies.

No problemo.

Believe it or not what you did will age well--that is, after a year or two or three to read it will make us all laugh.

At least you didn't have one of those "senior moments" I've been waiting to appear like Godot.

--Brant

nutz--now I can't do the Kill Bill thingy as I verbally wade through forum after forum, thread after thread leaving intellectual death and destruction in my wake until I finally find you holed up in Mexico in a room full of computers spreading your hate and venom throughout the world and I wipe you out with a burst of EMP!

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I posted a defense of my test on RoR.

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Thanks for that, Randall. We can now start to publish league standings.

Name Score
Brant Gaede 75
Bill Scherk 72
Joe Maurone 66
Ethan Dawe 72
William Dwyer 87
Michael Marotta 86
Mike Erickson 69

Test Score Range:
0-60: Minimal understanding (Low) – Basic study needed
61-69: Moderate understanding (Low-Mid) – Basic study needed
70-80: Good understanding (Intermediate) – Basic study review needed
81-90: Competent (High-Mid) – Proceed to more technical studies
91-100: Advanced (High) - Proceed to more technical studies

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Objectivism: General Knowledge (01) Update: 09-09-12

I would like to thank all of the participants who took the very first version of this test and provided valuable feedback – feedback which contributed to the improvement this test. Eight questions have been slightly revised and eight questions have been replaced. The questions have been numbered and references have been added to each question so that testers can easily review the source materials.

Reference Key:

OPAR: Dr. Leonard Peikoff, Objectivism: The Philosophy of Ayn Rand

VAR: Nathaniel/Barbara Branden, The Vision of Ayn Rand (The Basic Principles of Objectivism)

ET, NB, L9: Efficient Thinking (guest lecture by Nathaniel Branden), Lecture 9

VOS: The Virtue of Selfishness

CUI: Capitalism: The Unknown Ideal

ARC: The Ayn Rand Column

LPP (02-27-12): Dr. Leonard Peikoff’s Podcast (02-27-12)

OPAR: 64 Questions

VAR: 21 Questions

ET, NB, L9: 1 Question

VOS: 4 Questions

CUI: 7 Questions

ARC: 1 Question

LPP: 1 Question

OPAR + VAR: 1 Question

Like this Test: Please Make a Donation to The Culture of Reason Center

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Got an 89%. More on this later. Again, I just took the test and did not use the books. I appreciate your offering the citations, but does that not encourage an open-book test? As an instructor myself and a lifelong learner, an open-book test is not for multiple guess or T/F, but for essays or complex problems such as in engineering, where the goal is to think things through and you grant the subject the references rather than penalize memory lapses.

Anyway, thanks, again for your hard work. I appreciate the opportunity to learn.

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I took both multiple-choice tests, straight through, no backtracking. 90 and 93.

There were more items about politics and fewer about epistemology than I was expecting, and hardly anything about aesthetics. On the other hand, they were drawn from a wide variety of sources. It was a relief to see all the citations to The Vision of Ayn Rand.

Robert Campbell

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Secondly, requiring test takers to submit their completed exam for scoring (rather than providing a method for self-scoring) will strike some as an attempt as a "loyalty test." It does not matter that your intent was for no such thing. The fact that you are not using it for this purpose does not mean that it could not be used in this manner. And that will be the accusation.

Nonsense! I took the test and submitted my name and email without an internal regard for their opinion of me qua me as an Objectivist qua Objectivist. I think you are wussing out. Be a man qua man and take the test qua test.

Michael, you smooth talker, you!

Flattery will get you nowhere.

Actually, and perhap accidentally, what I was predicting would happen has already started from an unlikely source: er, you. You are baiting me to take the test by imp[ying that failure to do so so means that I am a coward. The implication here is that I must be afraid that my scores would be released. That's strange, because the test results are confidential, according to its developers. So, I am afraid of,...what?

Note also, that the discussion has gone off (beyond the issues of what is in the test) onto what are, and are not, "official" or canonical, Objectivist documents. This has a religious (or cultish) sound to it. Suppose Tibor Machan or David Kelley or Chris Sciabarra have written from the same Objectivist foundationand have aded or explained concepts that even Rand had said needed further development? In the case of David Kelley's Evidence of the Senses, we have just such an elaboration. Is it Objectivism? Yes, said Peikoff when it was first presented at their summer conferences. No!, said Peikoff after expelling Kelley for daring to speak at a libertarian gathering, and not because of any ideological error in his book..

Objectivism is not an ideological organization or party (at least, not yet!), One can certainly say that Rand originated Objectivism , and that the Brandens, and the Peikoffs have added to it, at least in the sense of refining or elaborating on some of its doctrines and implications.

But can one stop there (as the ARIans would have you)? That would mean that no one else has really understood Objectivism, and are qualified to comment on it or to expand on its concepts.

Any examination of intellectual history of religious and ideological movements will show how ridiculous and futile such attempts to "close the door" on any particuar doctrine has been. Comte didn't want anyone messing with his revealed truth. The same with Marx and with Freud.Look wat happened to them.

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You are baiting me to take the test by imp[ying that failure to do so so means that I am a coward. The implication here is that I must be afraid that my scores would be released. That's strange, because the test results are confidential, according to its developers. So, I am afraid of,...what?

I just meant that you are afraid to discover that you do not know as much about Objectivism as you thought you did. That was my fear. The rest of it is your own.

Note also ... "official" or canonical, Objectivist documents. This has a religious (or cultish) sound to it. .... David Kelley's Evidence of the Senses, ... No!, said Peikoff a... Objectivism is not an ideological organization or party ... and that the Brandens, and the Peikoffs have added to it ... Any examination of intellectual history of religious and ideological movements ...

You forgot to throw in the kitchen sink. So, rather than take an algebra test, you argue that it does not specify the number base: decimal? octal? hex? Is offering a self-test on the Constitution an example of Joe Stalin Communism?

Jerry, someone who cared put a lot of work into creating something of value that you might find useful... or maybe not... I printed off mine, made a separate file of my wrong answers and set them aside to look up later. Ain't much more to it than that.

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You are baiting me to take the test by imp[ying that failure to do so so means that I am a coward. The implication here is that I must be afraid that my scores would be released. That's strange, because the test results are confidential, according to its developers. So, I am afraid of,...what?

I just meant that you are afraid to discover that you do not know as much about Objectivism as you thought you did. That was my fear. The rest of it is your own.

Note also ... "official" or canonical, Objectivist documents. This has a religious (or cultish) sound to it. .... David Kelley's Evidence of the Senses, ... No!, said Peikoff a... Objectivism is not an ideological organization or party ... and that the Brandens, and the Peikoffs have added to it ... Any examination of intellectual history of religious and ideological movements ...

You forgot to throw in the kitchen sink. So, rather than take an algebra test, you argue that it does not specify the number base: decimal? octal? hex? Is offering a self-test on the Constitution an example of Joe Stalin Communism?

Jerry, someone who cared put a lot of work into creating something of value that you might find useful... or maybe not... I printed off mine, made a separate file of my wrong answers and set them aside to look up later. Ain't much more to it than that.

Michael,

I am beginning to think that either my points have been mis-construed, or that I did not make them clear enough. :unsure: I was composing a detailed reply when it dawned on me that we are arguing at cross-purposes, so I think that I will just drop it.

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