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Articles: Boydstun, Stephen


Tuesday
March 19, 2013
Objectivism
Beauty, Goodness, Life
by Stephen Boydstun
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Literary Arts American Heritage Dictionary defines art as “the conscious production or arrangement of sounds, colors, forms, movements, or other elements in a manner that affects the sense of beauty; specifically, the production of the beautiful in a graphic or plastic medium.” The types after the semicolon are ... (Read more...)
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Wednesday
April 29, 2009
War for Men's Minds
Intelligence, Animality, and Machinery
by Stephen Boydstun
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In the first section, I articulate what definitely does not possess intelligence. In the second,

what definitely does possess intelligence and what intelligence, if any, might be reasonably ascribed to animals and machines. (This paper was written in 2000.) (Read more...)
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Friday
January 25, 2008
Objectivism

Rights, Games, and Self-Realization - Part II
by Stephen Boydstun
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[Editor's Note: Stephen long ago posted parts 2 and 3 of his essay in the discussion area of part 1 http://rebirthofreason.com/cgi-bin/SHQ/SHQ_FirstUnread.cgi?Function=FirstUnread&Board=2&Thread=1912 I'm adding them both now so that they come up if one searches for his articles.] Property rights are now taken up, first for two in isolation, then with wider social surroundings. Property rights in land, in the general economic sense of the term land, are center stage. (Read more...)
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Friday
January 25, 2008
Objectivism
Rights, Games, and Self-Realization - Part III
by Stephen Boydstun
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[Editor's Note: Stephen long ago posted parts 2 and 3 of his essay in the discussion area of part 1 http://rebirthofreason.com/cgi-bin/SHQ/SHQ_FirstUnread.cgi?Function=FirstUnread&Board=2&Thread=1912 I'm adding them both now so that they come up if one searches for his articles.]  The concept land state is reached as the core of all political states. The possibilities for justice in that core and its extensions are discussed, including the just forms of financing. (Read more...)
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Monday
September 10, 2007
Objectivism
Rights, Games, and Self-Realization Part 1
by Stephen Boydstun
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In Part I we shall uncover, for two socially isolated people, some semblance of rights against personal injury and some semblance of rights to liberty. (Read more...)
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Wednesday
August 29, 2007
Objectivism
Rights, Games, and Self-Realization
by Stephen Boydstun
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Individual rights are those moral claims of one person upon another for which enforcement is morally permissible. The question of whether the use of deliberate force is morally justified turns upon the value to be secured and the strategic implications of resorting to force. What value could justify the use of force and in what circumstances? A short answer would be that only the defense of individual freedom can justify the use of force, that freedom can only be abridged by force, and that, therefore, no one has the right to initiate the use of force against another. The initiation of force becomes the hallmark of the violation of a right. In this essay, I offer an answer closely related, but informed by game theory and reaching a new view of rights in land and the nature of government. (Read more...)
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Thursday
May 11, 2006
News
Ayn Rand Society - 2006
by Stephen Boydstun
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The topic of the Ayn Rand Society this year will be Tara Smith's new book Ayn Rand' Normative Ethics: The Virtuous Egoist. This work was published this year by Cambridge University Press. The ARS meeting will be held in conjunction with the APA Eastern Division meetings in Washington DC, at the Marriott Wardman Hote... (Read more...)
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Wednesday
February 1, 2006
Objectivism
The "With-Measurement" Program
by Stephen Boydstun
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In our family, the young people have taught us the proper way to read your fortune cookie when we go for Chinese dinner. Each person is required to read their fortune aloud, followed by the words “in bed.” The added phrase puts the fortune in a whole new light. To the fortune “You will soon be sitting on top of the world,” you must add . . . (Read more...)
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Tuesday
January 17, 2006
Objectivism
Ayn Rand Society 2005 - Paper 3
by Stephen Boydstun
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Rand thought that Aristotle’s ethical system was merely a carving of accepted ideals. He failed to answer:  Do humans really need a code of values? What for? Is there a noncircular basis of the good? Rand said that Aristotle “based his ethical system on observations of what the noble and wise men of his time chose to do, leaving unanswered the questions of: why they chose to do it and why he evaluated them as noble and wise.” (Read more...)
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Monday
January 9, 2006
Objectivism
Ayn Rand Society 2005 - Paper 1
by Stephen Boydstun
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Professor Lennox first presented Rand’s views on axiomatic concepts, then Aristotle’s view on axioms and their validation. He then briefly compared their views in this area. (Read more...)
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Monday
December 12, 2005
Sense of Life
Pride of Place
by Stephen Boydstun
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"It is my eyes which see, and the sight of my eyes grants beauty to the earth. It is my ears which hear, and the hearing of my ears gives its song to the world. It is my mind which thinks, and the judgment of my mind is the only searchlight that can find the truth." Those are the words of the hero in Rand's Anthem (194... (Read more...)
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Saturday
November 26, 2005
Objectivism
Vegetative Robots and Value
by Stephen Boydstun
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Thought experiments are notorious for pre-packing the point to be demonstrated into the setup to be contemplated. In an essay in The Philosophic Thought of Ayn Rand (1984), Charles King raised just that sort of objection to Rand’s robot gedanken: "if the robot neither knows nor cares [what happens to things around it], the example seems uninteresting." I do not agree that the robot gedanken is without interest if the robot is devoid of thought and feeling. I will here extend Rand’s gedanken in such a way that it can inform the concept of purely vegetative value. (Read more...)
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