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Post 20

Sunday, May 14, 2006 - 8:41pmSanction this postReply
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[Warning: this is called the "shotgun-approach" (to posting on threads) -- much of this may matter little to you]

Phil, do it if YOU benefit from it -- and don't if you don't (but you knew that!).

Jordan, don't bother getting out of bed for this one.

Bissell, sure, destruction of the good is always bad -- it's ALL about producing (but am I being TOO dogmatic for YOU, now??).

LW, you're right but, in this case, "closure" can be a "one-sided" thing (and anything else is collectivist).

Joe, cool-headed and balanced illumination of the pivotal, fundamental, essentials? And from YOU? Huh, what a suprise there [not!].   ;-)

Jeff, [what I said to Joe].

Reverend, alas, methinks they dost imbibe too much, as does ye.  ;-) [now THAT one was subtle!]

Bidinotto, yes, living well is the best revenge.

Campbell, I dig you (I really do) but I fear that you're using fire to fight fire (and I'm not sure that's going to be profitable).

WSS, you flippin' crack me up! If you say ONE MORE THING involving Mexican wrestlers -- I swear I'll puke from laughter (good points, too)!

Phil (again), "(the usual prizes will be awarded)" -- well, the "usual prizes" suck (so count me out).

Rodney, I can't wait for your upcoming contributions.

Ethan and Michael, it's good that you 2 are showing "restraint."

Ed, thanks for the "solution" -- rather than offering merely another characterization of the "problem."

In spite of my wily coyness (or is it coyly wiliness?), you guys -- ALL of you guys -- make me proud -- and I don't mean that in the condescending, patronizing way (ie. I mean what I'm saying).

:-)

Ed


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Post 21

Sunday, May 14, 2006 - 8:48pmSanction this postReply
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Sorry, Ed - not into drinking piss water.......

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Post 22

Sunday, May 14, 2006 - 9:24pmSanction this postReply
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Coates, with calm majesty, invites:

"Who can state most elegantly or precisely what is -wrong- and -logically fallacious- with Diana's seven points, even if they are all true, as an indictment of Chris (or anyone) as a dishonest and immoral person?"

(the usual prizes will be awarded)


-- I can't speak to the logic, being a dead-in-the-water logician, as demonstrated by my arrest and detention (and subsequent release) by the Logic Strike Force of the JLA. I can only venture, timidly, that the seven points of evidence seem vaguely united by fallacies of the Excluded Middle, amid the general swamp of ad misericordiam, ad hominem, ad nauseum.

(what dang prizes? Am I out of the running if I cain't answer the whole dang riddle?)

-- I can speak to the felt wrong, but this drifts into the realm of impressionism, which is probably not what Phil is after.

The tone is overwrought, full of stressed modal adjectives of denigration and repetitive epithets. This is not a call to reason, but a call to purgation, a call for cartharsis, a troubling distress call of a victimized once-friend, horribly, horribly, dare I say it, horrrrribly victimized by a horrrrrrible former friend . . .

But was she a friend? Where are the marks of friendship? What did she ever share with him but his support and her problems and upsets?What's with the bizarre promise -- a true friend refrains from engaging with the work of her scholarly colleague? Oi. What a clanger. What social world and sense of mind is that from?

Is she tone-deaf to the human symphony, and simply not 'hearing' that Chris is human and normal and acted normally?

Her seven bonging evidentiary claims simply do not knit together in sensible concord with what the world reveals of her source of anguish and betrayal. A distorted sense of proportion looms crazily into view. There is no 'convergence of evidence' except in the emotion-drenched rhetorical popcorn that pads out the 12,500 word bag of nasty.

This is Objectivist Takedown 2006, a minor tragic operetta in a long-running festival. What can anyone do but go "Ick"?

TRUE CRIME BIZARRE PUPPET SHOW MURDERS
"Diana called him Mother, and considered him Friend. Then Mother Turned on His BABY! . . .
"


WSS

_____

For Senor Erp:



Post 23

Sunday, May 14, 2006 - 9:29pmSanction this postReply
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Rev'rend,

You know they do that in certain African tribes, don't you (piss from younglings contains high amounts of anti-aging melatonin -- but I digress)?

Ed


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Post 24

Sunday, May 14, 2006 - 9:41pmSanction this postReply
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> I too have better things to do [Ed H]

I agree and certainly would not like to see you involving yourself in these side fights. Your job is uphill enough as it is. You need to be above squabbles. And you're not researching a book on thinking errors, as I have been, intermittently, for years (Diana represents a very common pathological syndrome for me).

> I donít agree fully with your evaluation of the effects of the Schwartz screed against libertarians; Cato, the Reason Foundations and a dozen other groups that can be described as libertarian are doing quite well [Ed H]

Ed, I should have clarified that I meant the Schwartz thing had a harmful effect on the thinking and alienation and isolation of Oists and on the willingness of the far large libertarian movement to treat Oists seriously...as opposed to any effect on the libertarian movement itself. ( Whoops, to correct myself on this last point slightly: I think it removed Oists from influence in that movement, which may have the libertarian movement it to slide downhill in many respects, made it more susceptible to capture by Rothbardians as the remaining strong, lively ideological subgroup.)

> I have a theory of how, for example, Diana Mertz Hsieh got herself into this mental mess...she may one day snap out of it. [Rodney]

I don't know Diana, having exchanged a few words with her at summer conferences over the years. So for her personally it would verge on psychologizing to say that what I'm about to say applies to her with absolute certainty (if it does it would be difficult to 'snap out of it', since the following is not a passing or minor issue of "mood"):


People who have very strongly committed to a deeply false point of view, as in Diana's case a decade or less ago -- with her antipathy and disrespect for Ayn Rand and her beginning to question and drift away from Objectivism and to overgeneralize and more or less consider everyone at ARI evil or at least deeply flawed, sight unseen -- is the type of person likely to make deep commitments with great certainty on insufficient evidence. They are also the type of person likely to swing violently into the opposite camp or into diametric opposites on each key point after a sufficient catalyst occurs. The reasons are epistemological and emotional. Epistemological, because the person has a mentality too often of lack of appreciation of complexity, or of the steps that must be taken or the contexts weighed (intrinsicism is not exact, but it's close to describe this prevailing mindset). This is a person who has learned to overstate or overgeneralize as a dominant mental process...

> what I donít understand is the rage, anger, name-calling and obsession with denunciations. [Ed H]

...Emotional, because the person is totally revulsed by his or her former positions, beats himself up about them, and is swept up with anger at them and at herself or himself whenever thinking about them...or their opposites...and so is apt to be emotionally swept up and emotionally biased or blinded when thinking about them. To get this, think of how lawyers in a trial on both sides spend a lot of effort trying to paint an emotional picture for the jurors. Once the emotional picture (like, don't like the defendant) is set, it colors everything. (Confirmation and disconfirmation bias, for example.)

The person who is thus epistemologically and/or emotionally "corrupted" is not necessarily a dishonest person; its a major cognitive-psychological-out of touch problem. He or she is simply a true believer who has lost a great deal of ability to be objective in the person's "hot button" areas. Objectivity is the gold standard. And it is hard, especially in dealing with the most complex phenomenon on earth:

A human being.

Yourself. And those you encounter.




Post 25

Sunday, May 14, 2006 - 9:47pmSanction this postReply
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> Coates, with calm majesty [WSS]

Willy, I got a huge laugh out of this one. If you've ever met me...

Post 26

Sunday, May 14, 2006 - 9:56pmSanction this postReply
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LOL Ed - my African got bleached out millennia ago.....;-)

Post 27

Sunday, May 14, 2006 - 9:59pmSanction this postReply
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Yes Rev' -- at root (and, from what I hear, 'roots' are what count) we're ALL African Americans (ie. we're all entitled to the NAACP benefits).

:-)

Ed
[an African-American, just like the rest of you are]

 


Post 28

Sunday, May 14, 2006 - 10:01pmSanction this postReply
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[an African-American, just like the rest of you are]

YUP.........


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Post 29

Monday, May 15, 2006 - 7:06amSanction this postReply
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I'll add a few more thoughts about the errors we find in on some of the anger sites. I gave a talk to Steve Nahm's group in San Francisco recently and discussed how the application of principles should be guided by 1) purpose and 2) context.

 

Let's say you're at the funeral of a beloved uncle and your aunt, who has always been kind and loving to you, is saying how God will look over us, how uncle is in a better place and the like. Is that the time to launch into a denunciation of religion, pointing out that your aunt's beliefs are without justification and have caused untold wars and horrors throughout human history?

 

What is your purpose in that situation? If it's to wean your aunt from mysticism, the context is certainly very wrong and you haven't got a chance. You're wasting your time and making your loving aunt more miserable. If your purpose is to inflict pain on someone who is mistaken in their beliefs but who has otherwise acted in a reasonable, loving manner to you all your life -- who helped you with your ABCs, who read books to you, who took you to the zoo, who was so proud of you when you graduated from school -- then your purpose is wrong and, unless there are some really particular circumstances, highly immoral. If your purpose is to make yourself feel good because your beliefs are correct and gain your sense of self-esteem from harming this poor woman for her mistakes, again, your purpose is wrong. Can you imagine Roark getting his sense of self-worth from doing such actions? True pride is not boastful.

 

The complex relationship between Roark and Wynand shows that Rand appreciated the importance of purpose and context -- indeed these are central to an Objectivist understanding of principles.

 

Context also helps establish the reaction to particular actions of others that one might consider wrong or unjust. Aristotle, for example, saw being good-tempered as a virtue, with the vices being too much anger (irascibility) and too little anger (inirascibility). He said "The man who is angry at the right things and with the right people, and, further, as he ought, when he ought, and as long as he ought, is praised." Just reactions by their nature need to be proportional to the alleged wrong. Does the reaction to Chris Sciabarra's alleged-- and I emphasize that word -- wrong's -- if Phil's summary is correct -- seem all out of proportion?

 

And yes, each case will require judgments that often aren't simple and clear-cut. That's why reflection and prudence are also virtues. They don't mean that you don't make value judgments; they do mean that you understand why you're doing so, how they are in your self-interest, what you're getting out of them and so on. That's why I see the situation with Linz as sad. He's often articulate, I've agreed with many of his insights and -- hey! -- he loves opera.

 

In summary, I see one aspect of the jihads on other sites as a failure to appreciated purpose and context. This can lead to the unbridled anger in one's soul and unjust actions towards other.

(Edited by Ed Hudgins on 5/15, 7:09am)

(Edited by Ed Hudgins on 5/15, 7:35am)

(Edited by Ed Hudgins on 5/15, 9:03pm)


Post 30

Monday, May 15, 2006 - 7:21amSanction this postReply
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Brilliant and concise post Ed!

Michael


Post 31

Monday, May 15, 2006 - 7:49amSanction this postReply
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(Edited by Ciro D'Agostino on 5/15, 7:51am)


Post 32

Monday, May 15, 2006 - 8:12amSanction this postReply
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Thanks Michael!

And Ciro, should I take your silence as assent?!


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Post 33

Monday, May 15, 2006 - 8:37amSanction this postReply
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Just want to chime in my support for Phil, who, from every post of his that I've read, seems to be a genuinely nice and well-intentioned guy.  I didn't feel like joining the fray for a couple of reasons: 1) I don't know Diana or Chris personally, so I don't think it would be right to defend either one of them, 2) I couldn't see how to comment on Diana's post succinctly, 3) I'm not sure anyone cares what I think anyway - I'm not some big-name in the Objectivist world, and 4) I am not sure what Diana expects us to do, given the contents of her post.  Am I supposed to throw away my copy of The Russian Radical?  Snub Chris on the street if I ever see him, which is highly unlikely?

Kudos to Ed H. particularly for Post 18 which sums up my position pretty well.  Also liked WSS's Post 22 -- "bizarre promise" indeed.  I'm a software engineer - imagine if I promised one of my co-workers/friends that "I will not reveal any bugs in your code out of consideration for our friendship".  It's just weird.  I wish there was some indication that Diana now knows that such a promise is wrong to make in the first place, not just that it's wrong to keep the promise once you are no longer friends!

All I can say is that Diana's big post has given me an understanding of how Chris feels and of how Diana feels.  It doesn't help me to judge who is "in the right" and certainly has no bearing on the academic work of either of them.


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Post 34

Monday, May 15, 2006 - 10:18amSanction this postReply
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No! Ed, I agree with everything you wrote.
At TOC,I think you are doing a superlative job.
You are respected by the media, and by many people who live in the Washington DC area.
I personally Knew Lyndon LaRouche, Louis Dupond, and many others. When in a previous post you mentioned this organization , I knew exactly what you meant--by saying that you don't even bother to listening to what they have to say. I know what people think about these weirdoes. Your approach in running your organization and in reaching people is a serious, and a  mature one. 
I think TOC is on the right track. Let others take the LaRouche approach.











Post 35

Monday, May 15, 2006 - 10:25amSanction this postReply
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"I will not reveal any bugs in your code out of consideration for our friendship"
Has Diana found a bug in the Russian Radical? I don't  understand the comparison.


Post 36

Monday, May 15, 2006 - 10:44amSanction this postReply
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Ciro, my point is that Diana's promise to not criticize Russian Radical would be similar to me promising not to criticize (point out bugs in) my friends' software, which I think is not something a friend should expect of you.  Diana hasn't indicated that there are "bugs" in Russian Radical, yet, anyway.

Post 37

Monday, May 15, 2006 - 11:25amSanction this postReply
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> how do you prove that someone is not immoral through and through?

Joe, on this point I'd say that what I'm doing is hammering the burden of proof principle and raising question after question - how do you know this? are you using hearsay? have you proven this is willful dishonesty?

They use sophistry, that's true, and I'm outnumbered...but again, I'm not addressing the ten of them but the other hundred readers who are reading every post I make...and seeing how lame or evasive Diana's and theirs are.

So am I winning -objectively- and in the long run, despite the many to one ratio of their posts or statements to mine? Yes, I think I am...or will be when I finish.

I'm even using Peikoff against them.

Post 38

Monday, May 15, 2006 - 11:42amSanction this postReply
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Yes Ciro, assenting is agreeing and I assumed you did! Just teasing you about the blank response box.

Did you actually go to any LaRouche meetings? I can usually figure out even extreme political opponents -- communists, White Supremists, Islamists -- but the LaRouche folks have no rhyme or reason. Their beliefs are a mixture of conspiracy theories with no theme or integrating principle. Very odd.


Post 39

Monday, May 15, 2006 - 12:24pmSanction this postReply
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Ed, during the eighties, many members of  LaRoche organization  used to have meetings at my restaurant. I remember that Louis Dupond, son of one of the founders of Dupond company, 
 had been declared   mental incompetent by his parents lawyers because he  gave most of his money to LaRoche. The money was used for political campaigns. He fought his father in court for this matter, at the end the judge ruled for,  to freeze all Louis's money, and to allow him  only 75.000$ a month for his personal expenses.
He talked with me of many things, which I thought to be BS then, but are very true today!

(Edited by Ciro D'Agostino on 5/15, 12:46pm)


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