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Post 20

Thursday, November 11, 2010 - 8:48amSanction this postReply
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I think Peikoff sees it as modus tollens.
Mind your P's and Q's, please.

Post 21

Thursday, November 11, 2010 - 9:23amSanction this postReply
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More like P's and non-Q's, but I think Bill is asking what is the P and what is the non-Q?

Like this?....

P then Q = If something is a part of Objectivism, I would approve of it.
non-Q = I don't approve of it.
non-P = Therefore this is not part of Objectivism.

:-)

Post 22

Thursday, November 11, 2010 - 9:38amSanction this postReply
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Steve, your guess is something like mine.
P = X is a true Objectivist.
Q = X would give a glowing review of The Logical Leap.
In Peikoff's opinion and X = McCaskey, not-Q implies not-P.

(Edited by Merlin Jetton on 11/11, 9:39am)


Post 23

Thursday, November 11, 2010 - 9:59amSanction this postReply
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What I had in mind was for Peikoff to be reasoning thusly:
If Objectivism is true, then my theory of induction is true (since it follows from the Objectivist epistemology).
McCaskey says my theory of induction is not true.
Therefore, McCaskey says Objectivism is not true.

(Edited by Glenn Fletcher on 11/11, 10:02am)


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Post 24

Thursday, November 11, 2010 - 12:15pmSanction this postReply
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Thanks Glenn (and Steve and Merlin). Now why couldn't I have thought of something like that! I must not be a quick study.

If Bill were a quick study, he would have thought of it.
Bill did not think of it.
Therefore, Bill is not a quick study.

Damn that modus tollens!

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Post 25

Thursday, November 11, 2010 - 12:32pmSanction this postReply
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If I understand the Wikipedia article on modus tollens correctly:

P implies Q.
Q is false.
Therefore, P is false.

Objectivism implies The Logical Leap.
The Logical Leap is false.
Therefore, Objectivism is false.

Is this what you meant Peikoff seems to think, Glenn?

EDIT: Posted prior to seeing that a second page to this thread had started!

(Edited by Luke Setzer on 11/11, 12:33pm)


Post 26

Thursday, November 11, 2010 - 2:42pmSanction this postReply
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ARI on McCaskey's resignation:
http://www.aynrand.org/site/News2?page=NewsArticle&id=26109


Post 27

Thursday, November 11, 2010 - 4:13pmSanction this postReply
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Teresa wrote:
Peikoff isn't talking about the Amazon review. He's referring to private meetings involving individuals, professional to this technical field of study, where McCaskey made his concerns known about the book Peikoff sanctioned as part of official Objectivist thought.

Peikoff wrote:
To sneer in a public setting at an epochal Objectivist book qualifies, in my judgment, as harm. (my bold)

Merlin, that's how I see it to. By saying "public" I assume he means the Amazon posts.

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Post 28

Thursday, November 11, 2010 - 4:16pmSanction this postReply
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FYI - ARI has now responded:

http://www.aynrand.org/site/News2?page=NewsArticle&id=26109

the Board had the practical, moral, and fiduciary responsibility to avoid needlessly damaging our important relationship with Dr. Peikoff. Dr. Peikoff founded ARI, served as its first Board chairman, and has continued to provide ARI with moral, financial, and practical support over the 25 years of ARIís existence

Nothing more needs to said. Gun to head - do what I say.
(Edited by Jordan Zimmerman on 11/11, 4:24pm)


Post 29

Thursday, November 11, 2010 - 4:18pmSanction this postReply
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Read into it what you want, Merlin.

Post 30

Thursday, November 11, 2010 - 4:41pmSanction this postReply
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However, in early August 2010, Dr. Peikoff raised the question of whether Dr. McCaskey should continue to serve on ARIís Board. Dr. McCaskey had indicated that he did not and could not support a significant intellectual project funded by ARI and championed by Dr. Peikoff and ARIís Board. The project, David Harrimanís new book, The Logical Leap, presents Dr. Peikoffís ground-breaking theory of induction, and illustrates the theoryís essentials through an examination of the history of physics. In essence, Dr. Peikoff viewed Dr. McCaskey as having a serious conflict in this regard. The Board began a discussion of how to resolve the matter.
Doesn't sound very "public" to me.

In addition, the Board had the practical, moral, and fiduciary responsibility to avoid needlessly damaging our important relationship with Dr. Peikoff. Dr. Peikoff founded ARI, served as its first Board chairman, and has continued to provide ARI with moral, financial, and practical support over the 25 years of ARIís existence.
Emphasis on "financial," I'm sure.  

Yaron Brook is a great man, and I wish him all the luck in the world.

Now, can Craig Biddle resume his speaking engagements, which are conspicuously not mentioned?  


Post 31

Thursday, November 11, 2010 - 4:50pmSanction this postReply
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Doesn't sound very "public" to me.

The public is from LP's post, not ARI's.

Post 32

Thursday, November 11, 2010 - 5:15pmSanction this postReply
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ARI is attempting to explain (or rationalize) Peikoff's beef, though. McCaskey's "public" is completely cordial and reasonable to a rational individual.  Peikoff doesn't have to be reasonable or rational to make his case. He only has to make demands based on claims. 

Frankly, I think Peikoff takes great liberty with concepts like "private" and "public," and blurs the two. 




Post 33

Friday, November 12, 2010 - 2:39pmSanction this postReply
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Based only on the Amazon review (and nothing else he has written), I'd say that McCaskey isn't a great thinker (see my deconstruction of his Amazon criticism here). Based on a few books Peikoff has written, I'd say that Peikoff is a great thinker.

Being a great thinker doesn't guarantee that you are correct on a matter -- it only instructs others on how best to approach you when they have differences with you. You can't effectively sling mud at a great thinker. You have to knock out a "champ." You should not try to merely take pot-shots at a champ. That usually ends poorly -- as it did in this case.

Peikoff could have responded better and laid out his case better. I question the morality (read: productivity) of him allowing his private email to be published while at the same time abstaining from immediate personal comment or retort. What in the world was Peikoff thinking there?

Ed


Post 34

Friday, November 12, 2010 - 4:37pmSanction this postReply
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For McCaskey-ites:

Would "justice for McCaskey" involve letting him remain on the ARI board while criticizing finished ARI projects?

Ed


Post 35

Friday, November 12, 2010 - 6:02pmSanction this postReply
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Would "justice for McCaskey" involve letting him remain on the ARI board while criticizing finished ARI projects?

Yes. Board Members should criticize projects they don't agree with. That's their role. Note that McCaskey didn't not criticize publicly until after he was kicked out.

Post 36

Friday, November 12, 2010 - 7:17pmSanction this postReply
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Note as well that McCaskey thought so strongly about his point of contention with the book, he chose to resign from the board, but not his integrity. 


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Post 37

Saturday, November 13, 2010 - 10:06amSanction this postReply
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Would "justice for McCaskey" involve letting him remain on the ARI board while criticizing finished ARI projects?
Would justice for a member of the Supreme Court involve letting him remain on it if he expresses a dissenting opinion? Would justice for a member of the FOMC allow him to remain on it if he casts a dissenting vote? Would justice for the member of a company's board of directors allow him to remain on it, if he's not a "yes" man?

If whatever board member publicly disagrees with any aspect of an ARI funded project is no longer considered a member in good standing, then there will be pressure to remain silent in the face of disagreement. Observe that Peikoff refused even to discuss McCaskey's differences with him before the book was published, because he didn't think McCaskey was worth talking to. So, there was no attempt to resolve their disagreement to begin with. To be on the board, McCaskey was expected to agree publicly with every aspect of a book that receives Peikoff's blessing with no opportunity to explain his (rather mild) differences with it.

Remember, we are not talking about anything that Ayn Rand had written here. We are simply talking about a book produced by her supporters -- one that she herself might have disagreed with. So, it's not as if McCaskey was dissenting from Rand's philosophy itself. He was simply dissenting from a viewpoint of some of her followers. If there is no opportunity for this kind of mild disagreement even on an idea that is not fundamental to Objectivism, then Peikoff is simply dictating every interpretation of whatever is produced in the name of Objectivism and under the auspices of the Ayn Rand Institute. Is this a good profile for a reason oriented philosophy?

And what does it say about the future of Objectivism if ARI's Board of Directors is beholden to the views of someone who has declared publicly that the government should bomb the ground-zero mosque?!?



(Edited by William Dwyer on 11/13, 10:19pm)


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Post 38

Saturday, November 13, 2010 - 7:17pmSanction this postReply
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Or vote in a bunch of socialist, communist Democrats because he's terrified, and full of hate toward Christians?

Post 39

Sunday, November 14, 2010 - 10:40amSanction this postReply
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Okay.

You all make good points about the terrifying aspects of eccentric unilateralism. That's one aspect of this issue. But McCaskey still didn't make a good criticism. It was good-natured, but not good-minded. By good-natured, I mean that it was worded so that it wasn't overtly offensive. By good-minded, I mean that it wasn't very rational. See my link in post 33 for details.

Ed

(Edited by Ed Thompson on 11/14, 10:42am)


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