Matt Miklautsch

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  1. Response To Charges Against THE FORUM

    The moderator does not need to be a professional Objectivist intellectual for a discussion board to have value or to be able to learn from said board but when seeking answers to questions regarding Objectivism, having a moderator who actually knows the answers and is experienced explaining is certainly a plus.
  2. Response To Charges Against THE FORUM

    Sorry, the last sentence should include ..on the Tracinski *thread* and then quoted by him on this thread.
  3. Response To Charges Against THE FORUM

    Actually Mr. Speicher said, "we are well aware that there are those who would like Objectivists to unquestionably take them on faith and hate those who don't." This was originally stated on the Tracinski by Mr. Speicher and then quoted by him on this thread.
  4. Response To Charges Against THE FORUM

    "Can you cite sources for this?" Scrolling down I see Thoyd Loki's post and Vespasiano's. Do you want me to find more examples? "Does this mean that you can't find evidence to support what you stated was the theme of the thread..." I said "A theme" not "the theme". "How many discussion boards are moderated by a professional Objectivist intellectual..?" HBL for one. "And your point is what, that he can't criticize the statements of someone you regard as an expert?" No, actually that I think Mr. Boeckmann was wrong to imply that Mr. Speicher was not taking into account differences in the level of knowledge on the subject, between Mr. Mayhew and himself.
  5. Response To Charges Against THE FORUM

    A general theme in this thread regarding the recent discussion seems to be that Mr. Boeckmann and Mr. Mayhew (and others?) want their views to be accepted on faith. I have a hard time deducing that from anything that anyone has said. From what I gather, the arguments are instead: 1) Internet discussion boards are not the best places to learn about Objectivism. And discussion boards moderated by a professional(s) Objectivist intellectual are better discussion boards than ones not run by a professional Objectivist intellectual(s) to learn about Objectivism. 2) Before attacking essays by ARI intellectuals - especially if you proclaim support for ARI - you should at least read the article you are attacking, do some research on the topic, and keep in mind differences in knowledge about the subject matter. Regarding #1: I fully agree with Mr. Boeckmann. And holding this view does not imply the desire to accept things on faith. Rather it implies what I consider to be obvious (though I may be mistaken) that learning from people with more knowledge is generally easier and of more benefit than learning from people with less knowledge. Regarding #2: I think Mr. Speicher stated more than once that he was not an expert regarding Thales and the Greeks. However, before going into attack-mode you would think it proper for him to actually read the essay in question, rather than "skim" through it. Further, his "wondering" about "other possible errors" seems like nothing more than a smear against the scholarship of Mr. Mayhew when one would think being a recognized ARI intellectual would warrent better treatment from a proclaimed ARI supporter. Finally, I do not have the time to search for attacks against other ARI intellectuals in THE FORUM but one that stands out in my mind I did search for and could not find (it was removed?) was the thread that sought to discredit Dr. Peikoff's view on the election and the direction of the culture from the fact that he rarely read entire newspaper articles.
  6. Glenn Beck Show

    Radio. He's kinda like Rush.
  7. Rob Tracinski on "What Went Right?"

    The only moral obligation our government has is to defend the individual rights of Americans. Their means of production have been destroyed because of the actions of their government. This imposes no unchosen moral obligation on us. To claim otherwise would be purely altruistic.
  8. Tracinski on Editorial Page of Wall Street Journal

    Mr. Tracinski has not spoken at an ARI event nor wrote an article for ARI for a few years, although the addition to his articles on ARI's site stating the disassociation is new.
  9. Rights, moral claims, and immoral acts

    Central to your mini-essay is your claim that only an immoral person can violate someone's rights and thus be guilty of a crime. Are you really claiming that the guy that tripped over his shoelace is immoral? Ditto goes for my other scenarios. For my part, I will leave this discussion at that: Tony's view of rights depends on someone who trips over their shoelace to necessarily be immoral, otherwise it breaks down.
  10. Rights, moral claims, and immoral acts

    An almost infinite number of scenarios can be brought up, each showing that Tony's view would result in choas and lawlessness in practice: A teenager accidently hits the gas instead of the brakes and drives his car through someones house; A businessman misunderstands a contract and therefore violates it; A man walks along the edge of his property looking at his neighbor's newly planted flowers and trips over his shoelace and kills the flowers;etc. If only an immoral person can be guilty of a crime (violating someone's rights) then a teenager can drive through my house and not be responsible to pay for any damages, a businessman can not follow our contract without penalty, and my neighbor can destroy my property and simply go about his day.
  11. Rights, moral claims, and immoral acts

    That is the argument from Tony and the entire point of his mini-essay.
  12. Rights, moral claims, and immoral acts

    Stephen, If I am understanding everything correctly and I believe I am, that would clearly put you on "mine and Brian's" side of the debate.
  13. Rights, moral claims, and immoral acts

    When you trip you fall on your neighbor's property.
  14. Rights, moral claims, and immoral acts

    I think the issue can best be seen in this scenario: Suppose you are walking along your property line and you trip over your shoelace (which you didn't realize was untied). Brian can correct me if I am wrong but I think those on his side (including myself) are saying that you violated your neighbor's rights. Tony is saying that you have not violated his rights.
  15. Peikoff on the coming election

    Mr. Speicher, I will heed your warning and either take the time to read through the varies threads where this issue may have been discussed or not post on this topic further. I certainly understand that you would not want to go over the same issues again and again. Further, I will respect your forum rules. However, since I was responded to I hope you will not take offense to my brief reply before I disappear from this thread (at least for awhile - whether I am replied to or not). I agree that my definition was too vague as dictatorship is an essential characteristic of a theocracy and should therefore be included in the definition. Mrs. Speicher, The difference between the threat of theocracy today and that of the past involves how much Christianity is taken serious in the various periods, along with the strength of the various counter forces that were present. For example, the founding fathers generally believed in either a watered-down version of Christianity or deism. The counter forces were the ideas of the enlightenment which respected individual rights and reason. The founding fathers therefore did not want their belief in God to enter their politics and government, thus the seperation of church and state. Likewise, While I'm sure President Kennedy was influenced by Christianity I do not think it influenced his policies and defense of said policies as much as President Bush. And three strong counter forces come to mind regarding President Kennedy's era:The nihilism perhaps best seen in the hippes, Socialism/Communism, and Goldwater conservativism. President Bush and his ilk take Christianity seriously and are actively working to give these ideas political power. The counter forces of today (with the exception of Objectivism) are no where near as strong as in eras past. Goldwater conservatives are small in number and are much less vocal within the Republican Party. Much greater in number and influence are President Bush and his ilk. Communism and socialism, while still regarded by many as the ideal are rarely defended as practical probably mostly due to history. Instead, their ilk now advocates a mixed economy or like the nihilists are reduced to hugging trees and often openly admiting their haterd of man. I'm off for now.