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Saturday
January 31, 2015
Commentary
The Left and Intentions
by Joseph Rowlands
Sanctions: 24Sanctions: 24Sanctions: 24 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article
To understand the political left, the role of intentions in their ideology needs to be understood clearly. It informs their entire perspective. It is the foundation of their understanding of the nature of politics, opposing views, and the explanation for various consequences. ... (Read more...)
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Friday
January 23, 2015
Commentary
Faith in Free Markets
by Joseph Rowlands
Sanctions: 23Sanctions: 23Sanctions: 23 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article
Free markets are well known to be efficient, to drive down costs through competition, and to increase the total amount of wealth produced. Unfortunately, people often treat free markets as some kind of magical process, guaranteeing efficient results no matter the circumstances. Anarcho-capitalists treat free market thi... (Read more...)
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Thursday
January 15, 2015
Commentary
Conservatives Are Not Friends of Freedom
by Joseph Rowlands
Sanctions: 18Sanctions: 18Sanctions: 18 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article
The reasons why people support an idea or institution determine how far and what context they are willing to support it. This is particularly true of the conservative friendliness towards free market. ... (Read more...)
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Friday
January 9, 2015
Commentary
Is Altruism Practical?
by Joseph Rowlands
Sanctions: 18Sanctions: 18Sanctions: 18 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article
Conservatives and liberals, for lack of better names for them, have major ideological differences. At the same time, they share some fundamental premises. I believe the differences and similarities rest on a single question. Is altruism practical? ... (Read more...)
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Thursday
January 1, 2015
Commentary
Progressivism and Paternalism
by Joseph Rowlands
Sanctions: 6Sanctions: 6 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article
The political left is often viewed as a homogenous group sharing roughly the same vision of the proper role of government and valuing the same set of policies. While individuals will always vary, it often appears that there is little actual variance. However, there are really two entirely different worldviews that happ... (Read more...)
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Thursday
December 25, 2014
Commentary
Fair Share
by Joseph Rowlands
Sanctions: 11Sanctions: 11Sanctions: 11 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article
One of the most common, and most poisonous, ideas in politics is the idea of paying a fair share. Politicians, particularly leftist politicians, repeated this phrase over and over to justify ever greater taxes and government intervention. The claim is that they only want the rich to pay an appropriate amount, and that ... (Read more...)
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Thursday
December 11, 2014
Commentary
Trust and Betrayal
by Joseph Rowlands
Sanctions: 18Sanctions: 18Sanctions: 18 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article
One of the most significant means of achieving values is through cooperation with others. We rely on others in all kinds of ways. We gain information from them so we can act in an informed way. We get second opinions from them, so we can add some assurance that our analysis is correct. We rely on them in business or ot... (Read more...)
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Wednesday
December 3, 2014
Commentary
White Lies
by Joseph Rowlands
Sanctions: 18Sanctions: 18Sanctions: 18 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article
One variant of dishonesty comes in the form of so-called 'white' lies. These are lies told in order to make someone feel better or not be confronted with a painful truth. You might tell someone that you like their cooking, or that they look good in that dress, or that they haven't gained weight. These are lies that use... (Read more...)
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Sunday
November 23, 2014
Commentary
Standard versus Goal
by Joseph Rowlands
Sanctions: 22Sanctions: 22Sanctions: 22 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article
There's a longstanding debate on Objectivist forums over what is the proper standard of morality. One view, taken by Rand, is that survival is the standard. Others are unhappy with this and promote flourishing as the alternative. Which is the better standard? ... (Read more...)
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Thursday
November 13, 2014
Commentary
Moral Landscape Review
by Joseph Rowlands
Sanctions: 12Sanctions: 12Sanctions: 12 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article
The Moral Landscape by Sam Harris is a book with a theme I entirely agree with. He attempts to make the case that morality can be objectively defined, and consequently can benefit from scientific investigation and the determination of facts. In contrast, far too many people see morality as entirely disconnected from fa... (Read more...)
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Wednesday
November 5, 2014
Commentary
Defining Anarchy
by Joseph Rowlands
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One of the problems with discussing politics with "anarcho-capitalists" or "libertarian anarchists" or whatever they go by, is there is so rarely a definition given for what they are promoting. They will often claim to be for a society without a government, but that's not clear. It's a negative description, and one pos... (Read more...)
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Tuesday
October 28, 2014
Commentary
Religious Excuses
by Joseph Rowlands
Sanctions: 6Sanctions: 6 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article
Reality exists and behaves regardless of our desires or beliefs. If you act on faulty information, your action will likely fail. If you think an old bridge should hold your weight, and you try to walk across, you may find out the hard way that believing something doesn't make it so. ... (Read more...)
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Sunday
October 19, 2014
Commentary
Religion and Tolerance
by Joseph Rowlands
Sanctions: 6Sanctions: 6 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article
I recently heard stories of atheists living in deeply religious communities. They were having problems being open about their disbelief because of the probable backlash. One mentioned telling his family that he was an atheist, and they were horrified and demanded that he not tell anyone else, since they might all be os... (Read more...)
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Thursday
October 9, 2014
Commentary
Incompatibility of Altruism and Egoism
by Joseph Rowlands
Sanctions: 6Sanctions: 6 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article
A question that comes up often is whether it is possible for an action to be both altruistic and egoistic. Is a morality of self-interest always in conflict with a morality of altruism? Or is it just some choices that conflict? ... (Read more...)
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Wednesday
September 24, 2014
Commentary
Bottom-up View of Government
by Joseph Rowlands
Sanctions: 12Sanctions: 12Sanctions: 12 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article
There are two ways of approaching the topic of government from the perspective of justifying it. Ayn Rand used a top-down perspective. She recognized the need for individual rights to be protected, and asserted the need for some group or organization to exist that defends those rights. The group or organization is gove... (Read more...)
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Thursday
September 18, 2014
Commentary
There is no John Galt - and that's worse
by Michael E. Marotta
Sanctions: 17Sanctions: 17Sanctions: 17 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article

What you tax you get less of; and what you subsidize you get more of.  The brightest people in the world are making video games; and no one is on the Moon.  It did not take a genius to figure this out: it is a universal law of human action.  There is a destroyer loose in the who is shutting off the motor of the world, slowing the engine of creation, tapping out the extra power of invention.  But it is not one person whose name is a question.  

 

(Read more...)

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Thursday
September 11, 2014
Intellectual Ammunition
Doubting One’s Mind
by Tibor R. Machan
Sanctions: 18Sanctions: 18Sanctions: 18 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article

A central topic of philosophy throughout the ages has been whether human

beings can trust their minds, including their sensory awareness and
thinking. Skepticism about this has been a major challenge and many from
Socrates to such recent and current thinkers as Ayn Rand and John Searle
have responded with more or less elaborate arguments defending our
capacity to get things right about the world.

(Read more...)

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Saturday
September 6, 2014
Commentary
Winners and Losers
by Joseph Rowlands
Sanctions: 12Sanctions: 12Sanctions: 12 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article
There's one conversation I've had over and over with different people. There are many starting points, but the ending point is the same. They present a belief that if the world had a large number of much smarter people, the people who are currently doing well would end up paid less and in more menial jobs. The basic fe... (Read more...)
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Tuesday
August 26, 2014
Commentary
Changing One Thing
by Joseph Rowlands
Sanctions: 12Sanctions: 12Sanctions: 12 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article
A very common mistake that people make is that they imagine a world where one thing changes, while everything else stays the same. They don't realize how connected things are, and how making a change can have significant, and sometimes undesirable, consequences. ... (Read more...)
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Tuesday
August 19, 2014
War for Men's Minds
The Statists' Continued Folly!
by Tibor R. Machan
Sanctions: 5Sanctions: 5 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article

          Krugman has a regular column in The Times, so he can discuss what he chooses to discuss so why is he fussing, as he did in a recent column, that others have other topics they wish to discuss not the ones he likes? Must we all take the lead of Krugman? What conceit!

(Read more...)

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Wednesday
August 13, 2014
Commentary
Rare Position
by Joseph Rowlands
Sanctions: 23Sanctions: 23Sanctions: 23 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article
There is one idea in topic of morality that I think is essential for people to recognize and understand. It is the idea that there are many different moral systems in the world. The prevalent belief is that there is some universally recognized thing called morality that describes a very specific set of policies or valu... (Read more...)
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Thursday
August 7, 2014
Commentary
Playing the Auction House
by Joseph Rowlands
Sanctions: 17Sanctions: 17Sanctions: 17 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article
I played World of Warcraft a few years back. One of the most interesting features of the game is an auction house they created. Players can put stuff that they find throughout the game up for sale. Other players can search for items, place bids on them, or buy them outright. Items can be placed for sale for 24 to 48 ho... (Read more...)
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Thursday
July 31, 2014
War for Men's Minds
Precious Metals Dealers Embargo Minnesota
by Michael E. Marotta
Sanctions: 6Sanctions: 6 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article

Effective July 1, 2014, anyone who wants to sell any coin of more than 1% precious metal content must pay 10% of their estimated annual gross income to the state of Minnesota.  Like all bad laws, this one achieves the exact opposite of its stated intention. Rather than making Minnesota "safe for bullion" they are preventing all coin sales to anyone from Minnesota.

(Read more...)

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Friday
July 25, 2014
Commentary
Taking Charity
by Joseph Rowlands
Sanctions: 6Sanctions: 6 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article
I once wrote about how certain situations can punish the just and benefit the unjust. One scenario I described was when someone offers upfront to pay for your lunch. An unjust person would delight in taking advantage of the situation and ordering more expensive food or more of it. They would be willing to be wasteful. ... (Read more...)
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Friday
July 18, 2014
Commentary
An Analysis of Egoism and Altruism
by Merlin Jetton
Sanctions: 12Sanctions: 12Sanctions: 12 Sanction this ArticleEditMark as your favorite article
  ... (Read more...)
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