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49 minutes ago, anthony said:

Right, what I could call - someone meeting the resistance of reality (good and bad other people, in there too). There's a strong draw on a viewer/reader for a fictional protagonist when the odds are greatly stacked up against him/her, which defines most fiction. For me, most absorbing is the protagonist whom you can see in the process of volitionally creating his character qualities as the story progresses, as greater pressure on him mounts - iow, he is not 'a done deal,' his integrity and fortitude are tested and grow, he's having to make hard moral decisions as the plot unfolds, keeping you guessing which way he'll turn out, and succeed or not.. As we know, a prominent few of Rand's characters enter with a ready-made virtuous character; and she also shows others develop along the way. We want "heroes" to mentally/emotionally invest in, so it's critical  they are authentic, like us, and rising to bigger challenges than ours. They can do it, you can. Even people who scorn free will, evidently need a film hero who triumphs against adversity, going on nearly all the (although often over-physical) movie scripts one sees, which proves that realist romanticism is not completely dead. I think it's telling that most tacitly recognize their individual power of volition, needing to see demonstrations of it, while intellectually dismissing the idea.  

Any blow that does not break my back, makes me stronger....

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1 hour ago, BaalChatzaf said:

Any blow that does not break my back, makes me stronger.... 

Under your hypothesis, risk taking, sky divers, sea divers, mountain climbers, entrepreneurs, stock market investors, ignoring a "private property" sign, joining the military, poker players and gamblers everywhere, and even speeding would have the affect of making you stronger if the activity doesn't break your back. So, is there a rational reason to take risks? I want to be stronger so I will get the ladder and  . . .

Or are you just talking about happenstance and misfortune befalling worthy people? Sufferers of PTSD might also disagree, but  occasionally I hear or think a phrase like I wouldn't be the person I am today if XYZ hadn't happened. I think Ayn Rand would agree with you, but she might say it was the positive, personal mental state and philosophy of the persons who have bad things happen to them that makes your phrase come true.

I wish no bad things would happen to me. I was trying to remember if any Rand characters took "real risks" and the only one I can think of is Francisco, though I suppose founding or living in Galt's Gulch was taking a risk. Joke headline. FBI, ICE, and IRS raid mountain hideout of billionaire seeking illegals and tax evaders. Peter         

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6 hours ago, Peter said:

Under your hypothesis, risk taking, sky divers, sea divers, mountain climbers, entrepreneurs, stock market investors, ignoring a "private property" sign, joining the military, poker players and gamblers everywhere, and even speeding would have the affect of making you stronger if the activity doesn't break your back. So, is there a rational reason to take risks? I want to be stronger so I will get the ladder and  . . .

Or are you just talking about happenstance and misfortune befalling worthy people? Sufferers of PTSD might also disagree, but  occasionally I hear or think a phrase like I wouldn't be the person I am today if XYZ hadn't happened. I think Ayn Rand would agree with you, but she might say it was the positive, personal mental state and philosophy of the persons who have bad things happen to them that makes your phrase come true.

I wish no bad things would happen to me. I was trying to remember if any Rand characters took "real risks" and the only one I can think of is Francisco, though I suppose founding or living in Galt's Gulch was taking a risk. Joke headline. FBI, ICE, and IRS raid mountain hideout of billionaire seeking illegals and tax evaders. Peter         

Happenstance.  I am not out looking to receive non-fatal blows.

 

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On 6/24/2019 at 12:35 PM, Peter said:

Per your last sentence, consider kids who are born into privilege and wealth. Can too much "smart" be a detriment?

An occasional failure  can be the motivation for much success.  Failing now and again is good training for picking one's self up off the  floor and trying again.

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Remember back to the 50’s when Jean Marie "Jeff" Donnell played George Goebbels wife? If you search her name her picture comes up, and that’s when I remembered her but I don’t remember her being known as Jeff. The reason I mention her, I suddenly thought of George Goebbels line, “I’ll be a dirty bird.” Then I looked for Jean or Jeff and read the first couple of sentences and was very puzzled.   

Jeff Donnell, Actress: In a Lonely Place. A reliable featured player and occasional co-star, actress Jeff Donnell was born Jean Marie Donnell in a boy's reformatory in South Windham, Maine in 1921.

But if you read the whole paragraph you realize “Jeff” was not a transgender person.

Jeff Donnell, Actress: In a Lonely Place. A reliable featured player and occasional co-star, actress Jeff Donnell was born Jean Marie Donnell in a boy's reformatory in South Windham, Maine in 1921. The younger of two daughters, her father (Howard) was a penologist and mother (Mildred) a schoolteacher. Raised in Maryland, she took piano and dance lessons while growing up.

With too much time on my hands, Peter

From Wikipedia. Donnell was signed to a contract by Columbia Pictures while she was active with the Farragut Playhouse in New Hampshire, and she made her film debut in My Sister Eileen (1942).[3] She later had roles in some RKO films.

She was not a major star, but she did have a lengthy film and television career in various supporting roles, including the role of Gidget's mother, "Dorothy Lawrence", in Gidget Goes Hawaiian and Gidget Goes to Rome.[3] She also played Hannah Marshall in the Gidget television series. She portrayed Mrs. Bennett in the TV series Julia, and in 1966 she made five appearances on Dr. Kildare as Evelyn Driscoll.

For three seasons, she portrayed George Gobel's wife, Alice, in The George Gobel Show (1954–1957) on NBC-TV, and she played Ethel on the Matt Helm TV series . . . .

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I have always considered as more suitable, “non - observant” when the opposite is a social straight jacket as far as religion, patriarchy, matriarchy, or the malady of Rand-itis goes. Peter

Does a beggar contribute anything to a village? Hmmm?  Edited for severe clarity. Tradition, tradition! Tradition!

Who, day and night, must scramble for a living, Feed a wife and children, say his daily prayers? And who has the right, as master of the house, To have the final word at home? The Papa, the Papa! Tradition. . . . .

The Mama, the Mama! Tradition!

I hear they've picked a bride for me. I hope she's pretty. The son, the son! Tradition!

The daughter, the daughter! Tradition! Matchmaker, matchmaker, make me a match.

Find me a find, catch me a catch. You bring the groom, slender and pale. Bring me a ring, for I'm longing to be The envy of all I see.

For Papa, make him a scholar. For Mama, make him rich as a king. For me, well, I wouldn't holler If her were as handsome as anything.

Matchmaker, matchmaker, make me a match. Find me a find, catch me a catch.

Matchmaker, matchmaker, you know that I'm Still very young . . . . 

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Damn. President Trump is answering off the cuff questions as he waits to . .  .is that the noise from a helicopter? Maybe he just got off a copter. He didn’t appear to be sick. I always thought unless you were flying the copter you would get air sick.

An 

academic looking guy on Fox is saying the President’s candor is causing him sags in the polls. I truly enjoy his candor. He says, American are exhausted. I disagree. We are energized.    

Any better answers to these questions or theories? President Trump or his chief advisor Bob or anyone else, feel free to answer. Peter

The Big Bang theory demonstrates that the universe did indeed begin at some point in time. But have observations continued to support this theory?

The universe is eternal which means "outside of time." Time is *internal* to the universe. The universe as all of existence has never been static. There is constant movement so our present astrophysical state will change in the next second. Is there a local space/time bubble based on any of Einstein’s or anyone else’s theories or is that bubble idea passé?

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More Deep Thoughts. The axiom of consciousness? Feelings, desires, and other mental states exist in the universe.  Could there have been a time when no conscious entities existed, or will there ever be a future time when no conscious entities exist? Can anyone or anything reach a state of omniscience? Is it an impossibility? Is there any point of critical mass in the search for knowledge? I am grateful that the accumulation of knowledge continues and what was thought to be knowledge but isn’t will be eliminated from our biosphere. Well, I am still a fan of history, but falsehoods should otherwise disappear. Can anything truly disappear? Peter

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Ellen Stuttle wrote: “The only limit that can be applied appropriately to an individual's knowledge is the length of his lifetime; how long does one live to actually work at conceptualizing one's knowledge.   Cognition would be viewed as finite only if humans could reach a state of omniscience - which is never ever a commonsense claim - it's an impossibility.” end quote  

Could you download your consciousness to a self-fixing, long, long existing, mechanical device? We do it with voice, pictures, and pictures in motion. Sounds great.

From an ad on OL. Was Mueller out to get Trump? Perhaps his interview with Congress won't be a total trash job. 

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Which OTC pain medication do you use? I have occasional back ache and I have tried Advil, Motrin. and Aleve. I think Motrin is the best.   

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17 hours ago, Peter said:

Damn. President Trump is answering off the cuff questions as he waits to . .  .is that the noise from a helicopter? Maybe he just got off a copter. He didn’t appear to be sick. I always thought unless you were flying the copter you would get air sick.

 

 

An 

academic looking guy on Fox is saying the President’s candor is causing him sags in the polls. I truly enjoy his candor. He says, American are exhausted. I disagree. We are energized.    

 

Any better answers to these questions or theories? President Trump or his chief advisor Bob or anyone else, feel free to answer. Peter

 

The Big Bang theory demonstrates that the universe did indeed begin at some point in time. But have observations continued to support this theory?

 

The universe is eternal which means "outside of time." Time is *internal* to the universe. The universe as all of existence has never been static. There is constant movement so our present astrophysical state will change in the next second. Is there a local space/time bubble based on any of Einstein’s or anyone else’s theories or is that bubble idea passé?

All time is is a measurement of motion. There is nothing there except things that move. All space is is the distance between objects, also a measurement. "Space-time" is nothing as such.

--Brant

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6 hours ago, Brant Gaede said:

All time is is a measurement of motion. There is nothing there except things that move. All space is is the distance between objects, also a measurement. "Space-time" is nothing as such.

--Brant

Measurement of change.  Motion is change of position. There are other kinds of changes too.

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I second that motion. Science that has never happened? Time travel and going back in time might be a really bad idea unless it could avert a planet altering tragedy. And heads wiser than mine have said to never responding to a whisper from Alpha Centauri if we should hear intelligent conversation.

But should we listen and gather intelligence? Of course we will, unless someone here on earth blocks the signals. So, what is too risky to hear? What is too advanced to hear? If we could cease birth defects I would listen. If we could avert wars I would listen. If we could divert an asteroid from hitting earth I would listen.

“So, all you folks in the Delta Quadrant, just push the button on this hand held device and it will neutralize all the radioactive material used to construct atomic bombs.” I would listen and immediately alter it to neutralize everyone’s bombs but ours.       

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Some notes and my thoughts. Just don’t quote me. This is serious science. General cognitive ability. Proves achievement and learning is predicted by G. Problem solving in novel situations is G. Over a century several hundred studies say IQ is inheritable. Success is not 50/50 it is 80/20. Up to 80 percent of IQ and achievement is inherited. Though bad luck and the environment can be reflected in achievement too. Applying G to education techniques empirically, and scientifically has been lacking in Education Studies. This applies to the sciences and the language arts.

The Flynn Effect  has tapered down in the general population. Not good. What can we do to change that? The Flynn effect is the substantial and long-sustained increase in both fluid and crystallized intelligence test scores measured in many parts of the world from roughly from 1930 to the present day.

G g( Factor) Formally stated, “gis a statistical term that refers to the general intelligence factor that underlies all intelligent activity.

As another example of inheritability we can study obesity and weight. Weight inheritability is 67 percent. Because of evolutionary “hungry times” our brains and bodies tell us Fat is good.   

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From: "Greg Johnson" To: "Atlantis" Subject: ATL: Re: Re: Israel History Date: Sun, 14 Oct 2001 03:25:02 -0400

GJ: Nathaniel Branden posted, as an "historical fact," the claim that Israel became a nation in 1,312 BC, i.e., when God allegedly gave them laws at Mt. Sinai. I mocked him for treating this bit of religious mythology as a fact. Kirez Korgan responds as follows:

KK: "The western tradition of law and legal thinking began with the jews. Just as we recognize Aristotle for his foundations, we also must recognize this period and the jews for the foundations of talmudic law and the beginnings of literacy; the first alphabet, the origin of traditions of literacy and rule of law."

GJ: To the extent that any of this is clear, it is false. There were legal codes before the Jews, e.g. the Code of Hammurabi (reigned 1795-1750 BC), which is the record of a far older legal tradition. As for the core of the

Western legal tradition: It is Roman law, not Jewish law. The Jews were certainly not the first literate people. Nor were they the inventors of the first alphabetic script.

Kirez continues:

KK: "Trying to pin this on the fact that three-thousand years ago they believed in God and combined their legal argument for land-ownership with their claim to a unique monotheism, quite original at the time but really arising as a not-so-amazing innovation in the context of 'henotheism,' is pretty poor as an objection.

"Yes, it's a historical fact. It has a more sound foundation in the bedrock of western civilization than almost any other lineage."

GJ: Is it a fact? So did God really create the nation of Israel? Or is this just a piece of self-serving mythology. Somehow, I think we are talking past one another. Let us also recall the context of the assertion in question.

The implication was that, since Israel came before Islam, the Jews have a right to Palestine. How does that follow at all?

KK: The modern Palestinians and the Intifada claim justification by their long-term presence in the land, which was usurped by the foundation of Israel in 1948.  The Palestinian intifada ignores the much more justified claim to longevity and presence of the Jews.

GJ: The "longevity" and presence of the Jews in Palestine is due to the fact that they invaded the land and slaughtered the original inhabitants. Am I the only one who thinks it crazy that they should be rewarded for this ancient act of barbarism with the right to invade the land once more? It would seem far more reasonable, given the past behavior of the Jews, to prevent them from ever assuming political power again. Kirez answers this query as follows:

KK: "Their "ancient act of barbarism" was in fact a success about as just as one can possibly interpret any act of statehood in that period of history."

GJ: By what warped standard of justice is genocide just?

KK: "I am shocked by how stupid this objection is."

GJ:  . . .

KK: "Why are you so unobjective on this subject, Greg? This is one of those acts of ignorance that jolts one into realizing that the speaker is under the influence of some hugely emotional influence."

GJ: I am being lectured on objectivity and accused of being under the influence of emotions by someone who went to Israel at 16 to study in yeshiva and later joined the Israel Defense Force. What breathtaking insolence. I am not the one with an emotional attachment to Israel. I do, however, admit to a strong emotional attachment to the United States, and to the more than 6,000 people who died on 9-11 because so many American Jews think of Israel first, not America, and have dragged the United States into sponsoring Israel's utterly barbarous behavior in the Middle East--with completely predictable results.

KK: "Even in the statement you are responding to, there is mentioned the act of Arab (Palestinian) attempts to establish a state. The arabs repeatedly --- far more, and with greater barbarism and bloodthirsty --- besieged the jewish state. How can you be so idiotic as to ignore this and claim that the one successful establishment of a LAW-GOVERNED state by the Jews --- a successful republic, mind you --- is comparatively unjust?"

GJ: The Zionist movement in effect declared war on the non-Jewish people of Palestine when they announced their intention to create a Jewish state, a state in which they would be relegated to the status of second class citizens--or corpses. It is the Jews who were the aggressors, not that Arabs. This renders moot all squabbles about who started the war in 1948 or 1967, etc. These were just battles in a much longer war, a war started by the Jews.

KK: "I suppose you imagine the Muslim crusade to overrun the world, successfully overtaking all of North Africa and Spain as well as the middle east... this was an act of peace, of advancing civilization under the rule of law, so to establish their moral superiority over the jews? God you're daft!"

GJ: What is the possible relevance of this tirade? I wish that, after WW II, the people of Palestine had a chance to set up a society in which they were not second class citizens. That is all. What is the relevance of events that took place more than 1,000 years ago? And frankly, whatever their faults, the Islamic empire and its successor kingdoms did not engage in wholesale genocide.

KK: "Look how you buy into the ethnocentrism here!  If we leave ethnicity aside, and judge instead by the ethical standards of individualism, the jewish state was better justified than any government until the Magna Charta was written. Again, your statements are bloody idiotic."

GJ: Again, I fail to see how a state founded by a band of ethnocentric religious fanatics on the bones of the slaughtered natives is admirable by the ethical standards of individualism. Really, Kirez, your statements are so detached from reality and reason that I fear for your sanity.

There are much more plausible cases to be made for Israel, although none are ultimately convincing. Why cling to falsehoods and religious superstition?

Just wondering, Greg

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Great Britain is mostly responsible for the modern world including the Middle East mess and the terrorism spillover and the United States piled on with oil wars.

The US was sucked into the idiocy of WWI to save England's ass. This came out of nationalist hubris courtesy of Alexander Hamilton, the true father of this country. Those who didn't get that were put in their place by Abraham Lincoln with his uncivil war.

Today all it takes is one idiot President to destroy this country because of the accumulation of Federal power and modern technology. There's not much to be done about this basic construct and risk. The likes of Trump may prevent it but he won't be around and about all that long.

--Brant

may, may not, may, may not

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Brant wrote, “The likes of Trump may prevent it but he won't be around and about all that long.”

I started a topic yesterday about a Second Renaissance but no one seems interested in it and I have gotten no responses. Of course people would need to think about it. Peter   

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15 hours ago, Brant Gaede said:

Greg was/is wrong about present-day Israel, both factually and morally.

--Brant

There is none so blind as ... I hear this guy's ignorant, preconceived agenda sometimes from libertarians (sigh) and Objectivists (double sigh). 

Dont they realise that every condemnation of Israel, and Jews, generally, bolsters the case made by the early, prescient, Zionists? Seems they don't see the irony. The moral justification for the nation's existence, is born out ~further~ by every antagonism voiced against it and the Jews. 

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9 hours ago, anthony said: There is none so blind as ... I hear this guy's ignorant, preconceived agenda sometimes from libertarians (sigh) and Objectivists (double sigh). 

Lyrics from Ricky Skaggs. "No expirate, no refrigerate, you can’t hurt ham."

Sorry. I cudint hep myself. Them durn jews won't eat ham. I am for a Judish homeland, pork products, espechelly ham, sausage and scrapple, and Israel's continued existence. Thanks to Brant and Tony for their clear thinking. And thanks to Canada for thur fine Crown Royal. Hey, it's after midnight.

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Peter, Excuse me if I need to emphasize a point of injustice that is infuriating, one you well know from Objectivism and experience. What one sees all this (e.g. Israel, and much else)connecting with, is double standards, moral equivalence, hypocrisy, moral relativism etc. I imagine you know what it's like if a person who holds him/her self to high standards, ever briefly slips. He receives the most virulent criticism/mockery, whereas one who displays little or no qualities, and consistently behaves immorally/amorally, is forgiven, excused and sympathized with - i.e., 'understood'. iow, most everyone's 'standard of value' is greatly variable according to *whom* one is evaluating, not by one, objective standard.("Man's life", and what is proper to man). Israel, as a whole, and I see the USA, also, has always been condemned by such people for the mostly good, rationally self-interested and decent standards it holds itself to; other lesser countries get a free pass. (This is not anything an Oi'st - I assume - like "GJ" should accept). 

That, "the soft bigotry of low expectations" for many (implicitly stating - what can we expect from "them"?) morphs into the harsh bigotry of impossibly 'perfect' expectations, for a few.  

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