Rebirth of Reason

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Monday, October 7, 2013 - 4:29pmSanction this postReply
I can appreciate the theme of the message. As usual, I ran a quick Google check on keywords including "scam" and got a couple of hits of questionable merit such as this one. I was simply so taken aback by the Objectivist-like message that I considered it worthy of posting as a news item for further discussion.

I have long contended that a self-improvement program centered on Objectivist ideals was sorely needed but whether this is the real deal (for men) remains to be seen.

The world could use one for women, too, as well as co-ed programs.

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Tuesday, October 8, 2013 - 4:02amSanction this postReply
His "Dream Lounge" blog shows the "Man with Glowing Ball" icon from Anthem. Except for the actual content, the style is exactly the same as any other hype for the ultimate exercise machine, the road to wealth, or - allow me - penis enhancement.

That said, I was even less impressed the the "Black Pill" expose. Black Pill talks about real estate scams being five to eight years old, but they go back much farther: Florida in the 1920s... Michigan in the 1830s.... John Law and New France ...

As for Anthony "Dream" Johnson, his program has the hierarchy wrong.

Exercise & Nutrition Ė> a manís relationship with his body
Male/Female Relationships Ė> a manís relationship to others
Self-Actualization Ė> a manís relationship with himself
Individualism Ė> a manís relationship to reality at large

And, frankly, I find all that man...man...man... stuff to be "in the closet" gynophobia, a denial of denial kind of denial. Your relationships with other people might be nuanced by sex and gender and orientation - as well as a hundred other cultural variables - but the fundamentals of communication and intimacy are constant across lines.

Luke, I understand and appreciate your looking for self-actualizing programs like Tony Robbins and Charles Givens and the classic Earl Nightengale and Dale Carnegie. And I agree that it suggests a medium and message where Objectivism brings important ideas. But I think that we just call that "Objectivism."

As for penis enhancement, I kid you not. A couple of months ago, I sent out emails to all the people I had business cards for, looking for work as a technical writer. One of them replied. He has another business entirely. He sells a device to exercise and massage your penis to make it longer and bigger. He paid up front. I charged him the same as any other corporate client. He paid for library research and website content writing. He and his wife have businesses of their own. They are half my age and just came back form Cancun. I cannot fault the guy. He said that while he wanted me to develop website content based on peer reviewed medical journal articles, he knew for a fact that the cruder the ads - simplistic words and fewer of them; just claims, no proof - the better the sales.

Anthony Dream Johnson seems to validate that.

(Edited by Michael E. Marotta on 10/08, 4:05am)

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Tuesday, October 8, 2013 - 7:46amSanction this postReply
Someone on a message board about high intensity training (HIT) pointed to a link on the subject site with a Drew Baye video about exercise. The discussion centered on the scientific merits of Baye's message but the main site caught my eye. So I posted it here for discussion. Thanks for the feedback, MEM. I basically agree with your analysis.

With all the reality show garbage I see advertised daily when flipping channels, featuring glorified blobs on center stage such as Here Comes Honey Boo-Boo, I find it refreshing to see someone extol honesty and effort and wellness as virtues worthy of pursuing.

Doug Bandler posts here occasionally and much more often on the SOLO Passion site. He has really taken The Game by Neil Strauss to heart and then some. Heated discussions about his apparent misogyny have erupted there on numerous occasions. Perhaps he can comment here on the merits of The 21 Convention if he catches this thread. As for Strauss, what I found most telling about his book was how his praxeology ran squarely against his original goal of becoming a husband and father, to wit:

This pickup thing had never been about sowing my wild oats. My oats are always going to be wild. And that's not necessarily something I relish. I'm screwing up my chances of being a cool dad. If I'd married my first girlfriend and had kids with her, they'd be, say, eight and ten now. And I'd be an excellent father, able to relate to them on nearly every level. But it's too late for me now. By the time my kids are ten, I'll be well into my forties. I'll be so out of touch they'll make fun of my taste in music and beat me at arm-wrestling.

Strauss, Neil (2012-05-01). The Game (pp. 180-181). HarperCollins. Kindle Edition.

So if I had to pick a single facet of The 21 Convention that immediately jumped at me as counterproductive, it would be the contradiction between cultivating "pickup artist" skills and cultivating "marriage and family" skills, with the former and the latter quite at odds with each other. Religious organizations will continue to hold a monopoly on social influence until secular ones address this profound market need. The harsh reality is that dating and marriage differ from each other profoundly to the point where relying on the former to achieve the latter can prove quite dangerous. Much more work is needed there.

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Post 3

Tuesday, October 8, 2013 - 8:53amSanction this postReply

Just a side note... Where Strauss said, "By the time my kids are ten, I'll be well into my forties. I'll be so out of touch they'll make fun of my taste in music and beat me at arm-wrestling." Being a good father is NOT the same as being cool, and being in touch is NOT about taste in music. No one could be a good father while trying to be a friend or peer to their kids.

I don't know anything about Mr. Strauss, so I'm not criticizing him, but rather making a comment on this attitude that is more and more common in our culture.

When a person's motivation is to be admired and thought cool, they should not be having children. Good parents let their kids learn how to relate to them, not the other way around. The kids are the ones learning how to individuate.

Funny how so much of our culture has gotten turned backward... with people catering to kids and frightened that the kids won't like them, instead of having clear, benevolent but firm expectations that the kids understand they must live up to... that guide them as they grow up.

He was saying that it is too late to start a family when he was in his thirties!!!! At the time he wrote that, he had no clue about parenting, but as he matures, he may catch on :-)

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Post 4

Tuesday, October 8, 2013 - 9:31amSanction this postReply
I confess to my leeriness about "expectations" parents impose on children. We already discussed this topic with the thread about that infamous bitch Amy Chua and her controversial book Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother. When parents start imposing optional values by force onto children such as compelling them to learn to play musical instruments at the expense of mastering other skills more in alignment with the child's nature, I want to smack the parents. I cannot really forgive my parents and especially my father for demanding that I take piano lessons when I had no interest in the subject, especially when it interfered with my mastery of other subjects more in alignment with my nature as a science geek. He can take his own fat fingers and missing thumb and learn it himself and leave me out of it. What? He lacks the skill and has other things he needs done? So have I! Humph!

As for other chores:

Parents, go forth now and mow your own damned lawns!

Of the numerous books I have read on raising children, the most convincing have been Montessori: The Science behind the Genius by Angeline Lillard and Parenting for Social Change by Teresa Graham Brett. Objectivists want to raise children to learn they are morally ends in themselves rather than the means to the ends of others. Why in the world have so many continued to treat their own children as if they are the means to the ends of the parents?

Meanwhile, so-called reality television shows the ugly reality of parents living vicariously through their children with shows like Toddlers and Tiaras where fat-ass bitch mothers send their poor little girls to be bossed by a fat-ass bitch teacher to perform antics for the benefit of the parents and the teacher at the expense of the girls' own happiness through limited options. These bastards and bitches need to stop living vicariously through their children and take a long, hard look in the mirror at their own pathetic selves. They could get to work on themselves and set excellent examples for their children. That would make everyone happier.

I caught a clip on another show of a father whom I gathered lives in Alaska. He expressed what I consider the right attitude about motives for parenting. He said he had children so they could participate together in the great adventure of life in ways that only parents and children can experience. He explicitly rejected the idea of having children so they could take care of him in his old age. Instead, he embraced the idea of adventuring with them as long as his mind and body could sustain the effort.

(Edited by Luke Setzer on 10/08, 9:43am)

Post 5

Tuesday, October 8, 2013 - 2:54pmSanction this postReply
Johnson does use many Objectivist key words such as "dichotomy."  The video I watched here included "self esteem", "romantic love", and "individualism."  I went to The Dream Lounge and entered "Ayn" in the Search box and got 61 hits.  So, I entered "Objectivism" and got 35 more.  So, we will have to see what comes of this over time.  He might go the way of "Star the Hater" who was here and here and ...  briefly.  

On parenting, I agree with both Luke and Steve. Their views are not contradictory, but complementary.  I was 30 when my daughter was born.  The only thing I learned too late is that parenting is about the parent, not the child. The kid will make their own choices, grow up, and leave. That's life. 

I understand about "teaching responsibility" and "teaching values" and all that, but it comes entirely from what you do and not much at all from what you say.  And not at all from what you make them do. And do whatever you want, the kid will draw their own conclusions.  You have no control over that. 

On dating and marriage, I agree, also that they are different, though, again, complementary.  Nothing like ten years of marriage to make a trip to the grocery store look like a date. We have these 24-hour hypermarkets now. You can eat, you can shop for clothes, shop for tools, have some ice cream and coffee, buy your groceries; and "your place or mine" is an easy question to answer. 

But as for Mr. Success, well, again, you know maybe times changed half a century ago, but Earl Nightengale's purpose was to inspire you, but he never touted himself.  He did not need to. The content of his broadcasts validated his status as someone with good advice. He never talked about himself. That is the difference between an egoist and an egotist. 

(Edited by Michael E. Marotta on 10/08, 3:03pm)

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Post 6

Tuesday, October 8, 2013 - 3:19pmSanction this postReply
When parents start imposing optional values by force onto children...
The key words in your sentence are "optional" and "force." Neither describe what I had in mind. Core values that are communicated, and expected are things like personal responsibility at a level commensurate with the child's age, treating others with respect, being honest, learning to persist... that kind of thing. And 'expectations' are delivered by leadership, not a whip or paddle! Anyone that is using force on a child isn't doing it right.

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