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How NOT to promote Ayn Rand & Objectivism

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posted on Sep, 3 2010 @ 10:23 PM
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reply to post by Annee
 





Well I actually consider her a fraud.


You consider her to be a fraud, or you consider objectivism to be a fraud? I understand by your next remark that you are focusing on the character of Ayn Rand herself:



A completely self-centered person - - - using philosophy to justify her right to be completely self-centered.


But, you speak little to her philosophy. What you are doing is attacking the messenger. Your attacks are ad hominem attacks, and not even supported by any credible evidence to justify the attacks. You consider her to be a fraud, but you avoid speaking to any specific event or historical account that would support this attack, and as such, at this point, they remain baseless ad hominem attacks. In fairness to you, given the title of this thread, you are well within the boundaries of the topic, but even so, you are demonstrating that the fallacy of ad hominem attacks are precisely how NOT to promote Ayn Rand & Objectivism.




The FOLLOWERS of those who start an idea (or "philosophy excuse") - - - often take that idea and make it a legitimate philosophy - - - because THEY are the true believers.


Okay, now it appears as if you want to attack the philosophy, but you have thus far failed to offer up one argument that speaks directly to her philosophy and have merely relied on generalizations.




As in any idea/philosophy - - - there are Extremists - - - and there are those who see some merit - - and take that merit incorporating it into their way of life and beliefs.


Including ojectivism.




The Ayn Rand group certainly have their Extremists.


The Ayn Rand detractors, as is evident in this thread, certainly have their extremists as well.




posted on Sep, 3 2010 @ 10:26 PM
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If I wanted to be a person of "bad manners" - - I could just as easily create a philosophy to justify those "bad manners".

It is what it is.

Do many things continue to develop after they have begun? Yes.

Sometimes for the better - sometimes not.



posted on Sep, 3 2010 @ 10:40 PM
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reply to post by Annee
 





If I wanted to be a person of "bad manners" - - I could just as easily create a philosophy to justify those "bad manners".


If you wanted to be a person of "good manners" - - You could just as easily adhere to accepted norms to show those "good manners":


Speak with respect to and of others by avoiding negative or insulting remarks. Avoid expressions or theoretical examples implying disrespect, degradation or that invite people to imagine offensive scenarios, like "What's up your butt?" or "How would you feel if someone..." followed by a description of violent or degrading acts. You may not intend this as offensive, but it is. General rule: if you don't want someone to speak about you that way, then don't speak this way to others.





It is what it is.


Indeed it is. Facts are facts, and A is A.




Do many things continue to develop after they have begun? Yes.


Are you suggesting that those who have incorporated objectivism have not developed beyond the initial tenets Rand developed?




Sometimes for the better - sometimes not.


Long, long, before Ayn Rand developed objectivism, there was a man by the name of Aristotle. Rand adored Aristotle, and in fact, her insistence that facts are facts, and A is A, is a distinctly Aristotlean thought. Aristotle also wrote on ethics. In his writings on ethics, he began by suggesting that the greater good is that which all things aim. He is suggesting we all aim towards the greater good. Some hit that mark, others don't, but we all do aim towards the greater good.

Aristotle spent a great deal in his writings on ethics by describing the actions of the people he knew and believed to be ethical. Such anecdotal accounts can have its value, but perhaps it is instructive to also analyze the actions of those who don't hit the mark of ethical behavior, and assuming their aim was to do so, discern why, or what it was, that caused them to miss the mark. Why, in your opinion, do you think people miss the mark of the greater good?



posted on Sep, 3 2010 @ 11:58 PM
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reply to post by Jean Paul Zodeaux
 


J-P, have you ever read Judgment Day by Nathaniel Branden?

While I agree with Nietzsche that a philosopher should serve as an example, I also do think that my conduct is separate from my ideas...I can add up our bar tab correctly even if I'm stealing the money that I use to pay for it...



posted on Sep, 4 2010 @ 12:29 AM
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reply to post by nine-eyed-eel
 


I have not read anything by Brandon. In fact, it has been years since I have really read anything by Rand. I have a copy of Atlas Shrugged sitting on my desk, and I have been meaning to re-read it just for kicks. I guess I should give Brandon a shot first.

I agree that the messengers behavior need not, nor should it, affect the message. You use the example of adding correctly a bar tab that impliedly so could easily be paid by stolen money. I would like to suggest, in terms of separating the messenger from the message, that the myth of Jesus is a good example of how the converse has obscured the message. For most Christians, Jesus is perfect, and indeed, inhuman.

This deification of Christ, seems to undermine the message of the four myths of the New Testament. It seems, upon my reading and understanding of those texts, that the message was that we should all, as humans, live in a particular way. Live as Jesus lived is the message. However, when we ascribe perfection and deification to him, while insisting that any such attainment of perfection and deification of ourselves is sacrilegious, the how convenient it becomes that we "all fall short of the Glory of God." How easily we can let ourselves off the hook when we fail to "turn the other cheek". After all, we are only human, and Jesus was...well, not human.

The message gets lost and replaced with idolatry. I suppose to some degree that this is what Annee is getting at with some of her posts, and while I know of no person who actually deifies Rand, I have heard the tales. Indeed, I read years ago, a letter Rand had written to a fan of hers asking if rape was okay, because of her creepy simulated rape in The Fountainhead between Howard Roarke and Dominique. It was appalling, and clearly Rand while responding to this man was appalled as well, that people would take that encounter as an endorsement of rape. That said, the sex scene in the Fountainhead is odd, and I am not clear on why Rand thought this was a good choice in how to portray their passion for each other.

In truth, it is, in many ways, an obvious choice, as Dominique is hell bent on raping Roarke's position and opportunity, and she is desperate for a life where she is not surrounded by weak kneed, fearful men who only want to destroy and not create. As I stated earlier, Rand is not famous for her subtlety. Of course, I do not think philosophy should be subtle either. It is not an easy task to novelize a philosophical ideal, and for the most part, Rand pulls it off, in my opinion, with panache and entertainingly so.

If there is anything "fraudulent" about Rand's philosophy, it is that there are "followers", which contradicts her assertion and firm belief in individualism. Indeed, Alan Greenspan is often cited as being a "follower" of Ayn Rand, and objectivism, but how can this possibly be? He was the Chairman of the Federal Reserve for Christ sakes! He is the physical embodiment of Wesley Mouch. In truth, I am doubtful that he was truly a fan of Rand's, and was more akin to Ellsworth Toohey of The Fountainhead, and only pretended to be an adherent of objectivism to better destroy its credibility.

I will in the next few days look around for a copy of Judgment Day and read it.



posted on Sep, 4 2010 @ 12:35 AM
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reply to post by nine-eyed-eel
 


I don't believe I've actually stated any great objections to the philosophy.

However - I do believe there is responsibility in being human. Once SELF is taken care of -- what more is needed? How much is enough?

What would make someone worthy enough that Ayn Rand would offer them charity?

The only answer I can come up with is: if there was something in it for her.

I do not consider Charity a virtue or moral duty either. Actually I'm sick of the word moral. Its probably the most over used word since Bush took office.

But - as said - - I do believe there is responsibility in being human.



posted on Sep, 4 2010 @ 06:34 PM
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What the hell what is the point of that it's not like her books or philosophy is new or even that intresting, so this dude drove that far for what?


"One man drove 12,238 miles and across 30 states in the U.S. to scrawl a message that could only be viewed using Google Earth. His big shoutout: "Read Ayn Rand."

"The main reason I did it is because I am an Ayn Rand fan," he says. "In my opinion if more people would read her books and take her ideas seriously, the country and world would be a better place - freer, more prosperous and we would have a more optimistic view of the future."

What a waste of time especially since most people read her books, I read her books when I was 15 or something and was not that impressed. All in all you can deduce much of how people are from there words needs want's and wishes, and most importantly by how they think the world should be...I can't remember which book it was but the main character's were some dude who was a architect, and the female was a, well I cant remember what she was in the story but basically it was a avatar for the writer ayn, and the whole book was pretty boring, buch of talking, buch of parties attended, and something abouth blowing up some building, for some silly ideal or ideal. And it's pretty clear by her avatar character that this ayn was a spoiled well to do girl, who was jumping from one central power to another when it's time was up, hence she was attracted to the architect dude. Just like in her reall life I take it, when the old elite's in the old order, got replaced she went to the land of opportunity looking for a new elite/elites....If her real world was anything like in her book, the architect character would be the last person she would be attracted to, after all he was in a real struggle, and no matter what she believed, she can't handle the heat, time to migrate.
Take everything you read an hear with a grain of salt, especially physiology's, after all many people talk and say abouth doing many things, but it's all talk. Ayn Rand was a well to do girl who was attracted the the powers that be...that is to say, she was normal. Infact I need to re read her books, but im afraid im not 15 no more and her plots and physiology's, would seem the same as that show on MTV the hills.



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