• Content count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Everything posted by ewv

  1. Turning NSA back on illegal government

    Lawsuit Seeks Damages From EPA, ‘A Toxic Waste Dump of Lawlessness’ July 25, 2014 - 10:36 AM Full article
  2. Turning NSA back on illegal government

    More government stonewalling: Rep. Stockman: Still Waiting for NSA Metadata on Lois Lerner's Emails
  3. Objectivist Culture

    The "Objectivist movement" has not "disintegrated", Ayn Rand's books have not "survived by luck", and she did just fine in explaining her ideas and the importance of ideas in the formation of a culture. Her philosophy does not need to be rewritten in the pandering terms of how to win friends, influence constructive relations in the name of replacing Ayn Rand's alleged lack of understanding, and all getting together in the "same place at the same time" to dance in a circle while joining hands and singing Kumbaya.
  4. I think it is considerably less than the bare minimum required for this topic. There has been a lot of discussion in more detail here on the Forum, of varying interest and quality, primarily in 2010 and 2011 in: The Logical Leap and criticism Induction, generalizations, and causality Several topics brought up in those threads were left hanging because so much was going on at once in the threads. I myself started to write responses to several serious posts which I still have in draft form but didn't finish and post, intending to return to them, but didn't got back to for several reasons. If the Forum becomes inactive it won't happen at all, but there is a lot left in those threads to continue discussing in the context in which it appeared.
  5. Objectivist Culture

    You are harping back to your previous repetitive and long ago refuted posts falsely claiming Ayn Rand had no political philosophy and that she didn't ask why we need it as you continue to confuse political philosophy with political activism, and continue to ignore the central role of ideas in the evolution of a nation's political system as you promote "personal relations" as the base of it. Now in the name of "personal relations", of all things, you harangue us with repetitive denunciations of a bad "culture" in terms which you yourself repeatedly illustrate in your own behavior that you accuse others of. Your notion of "personal relations" evidently does not allow you to see the irony.
  6. Bad, bad, bad writing

    With Bill Ayers back in the news with his slippery, unrepentant interviews on Fox News, it is enlightening to see how articulate he and his comrades were in the prose explaining their "off the pig" terrorism (necessitating further clarification by louder noises of bombs). from "You Don't Need A Weatherman To Know Which Way The Wind Blows", New Left Notes, June 18, 1969, by Karin Asbley, Bill Ayers, Bernardine Dohrn, John Jacobs, Jeff Jones, Gerry Long, Home Machtinger, Jim Mellen, Terry Robbins, Mark Rudd and Steue Tappis.
  7. You are right that understanding IOE is essential and that it is necessary to "go by facts", as opposed to a rationalistic following along, but the four sources you are relying on do not accomplish that. Any detailed study of how induction has been accomplished in particular cases, the conceptual nature of the general principles established, and the general philosophical principles of what is required for induction requires a detailed knowledge of the facts of particular examples in physics (as well as more elementary examples from pre-science), and a detailed knowledge of concept formation and their use in propositions. Summaries claimed to be sufficient as the "solution to the problem of induction" because they are said to be the "essentials" are not enough. The first two chapters of IOE do not explain levels of abstraction and how it works, and do not even distinguish between first and higher level concepts. "Levels" of concepts are not mentioned until the 3rd chapter on "Abstractions from Abstractions" and the distinction between first and higher levels is not thoroughly explained until the appendix. (Search for it on Phil's CD.) The types of abstraction from abstractions are not described until chapters 3 and 4. That and much more is essential before trying to understand induction, which is not possible without higher levels of abstraction. You need all of IOE, including the appendix. The first chapter of The Logical Leap is stated to have been taken almost verbatim from parts of Leonard Peikoff's last lecture series on induction. It includes a very brief and condensed summary of concepts, and the lectures from which it was taken themselves stated that they presuppose IOE. It is not a substitute for the whole of IOE. The account of concepts there also crucially misconstrues the meaning of first-level concepts as defined and explained in IOE, and argues from vague analogies with concept formation to claim "axiomatic" induction through passive perception and only "first-level" concepts as a strict requirement -- with none of the examples restricted to first level concepts. It confuses the nature of generalization in concept formation with generalization in induction claimed to be "conceptualization" by the same process, and ignores that Ayn Rand explicitly rejected at the epistemology workshops the notion that scientific induction is the same as the generalization in her theory of concepts. It did not give detailed examples or explanation of how it is supposed to work, leaving it in the form of analogy and with a sweeping, unexplained claim of integration with all of one's knowledge, thereby relying on coherence (in an unexplained process) as the basis of the truth of generalizations. You can't understand all this without a very thorough understanding of IOE, including the workshop appendix. The parts of Leonard Peikoff's lectures on the History of Western Philosophy on epistemology would also be very helpful. On the complementary side of the subject is the matter of the facts of physics and the way in which specific generalizations were historically made. The Logical Leap describes the essentials of what some scientists did in specific cases, and those summaries serve to illustrate how specific generalizations were in fact successfully made. But it is not nearly enough to formulate or evaluate a philosophical theory of what is required in general. There have been detailed historical accounts and analyses which reveal serious matters in the thought processes that must be explained in detail. The scientists succeeded in the end (sometimes in the form of formulations made much later), but all the steps must be analyzed in formulating and validating the general principles required. In validating a proposed method it must in particular be illustrated through all the steps, which requires knowing the details of what was scientifically done. But there isn't enough of that in The Logical Leap to do that, and in fact the book did not attempt it. Nowhere was there an explanation of even one scientific case history that showed even what the concepts were in the hierarchy, let alone how the theory of omitted measurements worked to establish essential similarities. And there was no attempt to explain how the inductive generalization by "conceptualization" claimed in the first chapter applied to what "omitted measurements" and how they cohered with all the pre-existing knowledge held by the scientists to establish an inductive conclusion. The book did a lot to explain how induction was successful in particular cases of science before modern physics, but the first chapter was unintegrated with the rest of the book, which did not contain the detail necessary to even attempt showing a general philosophical "solution to the problem of induction". The "facts" required in your study therefore require much more material in the history of science, at least for a couple of cases, than you will find in the book. And once you have that, the real philosophical analysis is just beginning.
  8. Don't shutdown the forum!

    Keeping it functional would also require that the Forum software be installed to interact with the database. That can be avoided in a read-only mode by mirroring the links as html pages as it was archived if the local links are remapped. There would still have to be a lot of testing, e.g., to ensure that the links across threads, through members to posts and topics, etc. are functional. 9.7GB is almost twice the size of a normal, low cost DVD.
  9. Conservative immigration collectivism

    I do it more peacefully by stopping listening for awhile.
  10. Mark Levin's radio show has been ordinarily been excellent in describing the threats and damage from Obama's illegal "open border immigration" policy in which anyone can slip into the country for any purpose -- and they often do. (The exception is those who are more individualist like eastern Europeans but restricted by artificial quotas.) But Levin often fails badly on many topics when it comes to fundamental justifications: He relies on destructive or useless conservative, religious, 'states rights' arguments, avoiding the rights of the individual as a moral basis, even while sometimes appealing to what he calls "unalienable individual rights" but construed in religious terms or economic terms said to be granted by 'society'. We know that conservatives frequently, but not always, object to open border immigration on grounds of an unjustifiable (morally and economically) economic protectionism in addition to the very real problems justifying its control. The legitimate concerns range from terrorism, to disease and criminals or gangsters, to exploiting and expanding entrenched welfarism, to mass importing illiterates who predominantly vote for collectivism in what amounts to a takeover of government by invited invasion. But none of that justifies keeping out honest people who understand the basis of our political system and who seek to independently pursue their own dreams. Yet when accused of being opposed to immigration as such the conservatives quickly deny it while insisting that they are only opposed to "illegal immigration" -- but remain vague about what they think legal immigration should be like and what principles it should be based on. Now we have this revealing collectivist statement from Mark Levin justifying the suspicions: 06/27/14 00:01:15 - 00:01:41 http://www.marklevinshow.com/common/page.php?pt=podcasts&id=191&is_corp=0
  11. 100 Years Ago, today - 6/28/14

    The tribalism, but not the worldwide war of World War I. But give them time
  12. 100 Years Ago, today - 6/28/14

    To some, that sounds like so much fun that they want to do it again. And your excerpt didn't even get to the climax.
  13. They are all "related" to it, but they are not "objectivism websites". Some of them are little more than gossip, and malicious gossip with even less objectivity. And there are differences in intent to accurately present Ayn Rands ideas versus those who borrow, weakly repeat, steal, reject, or rewrite them for motives of their own, whether claiming to by sympathetic or by contradictory eclectics (including anarchism, conservatism, and religion). But neither is there any such thing as an "official Objectivism" website. No one can honestly claim to speak for Ayn Rand. She is gone and isn't channeling anyone. There are only differences in quality, knowledge, understanding, objectivity, and honesty. This applies to her philosophy and other writing as well as the ability to apply it today, especially in circumstances not directly encountered by Ayn Rand in similar events.
  14. Don't shutdown the forum!

    What crawler did you use?
  15. Don't shutdown the forum!

    What did you use to traverse all the links completely and non-redundantly? Did wget work? How big was the resulting collection of files?
  16. Don't shutdown the forum!

    Tor is slow because of the additional networking and are harder to use because commonly used plugins and a growing need to turn javascript on would defeat the security purpose. A lot of foreign exit nodes are also blocked by some sites (like the Forum). There are other proxy systems but they aren't as secure.
  17. Don't shutdown the forum!

    Yes and there are more than two, but the volume is filled with garbage. One purporting to be a "Galt's Gulch" of discussion among those of like mind who are fans of Ayn Rand is filled with ignorant religious and anarchist proselytizing along with counter-culture political obsessions, ignorantly dogmatic misrepresentations of Ayn Rand, and bizarre philosophical tangents misapplying Ayn Rand and other knowledge (such as a recent claim that "patents are the basis of all rights" and those who don't go along with patents for "applied mathematics" including Newton's invention of calculus and/or a similar sweeping version of software patents don't understand that "software is a way of wiring electronic circuits" -- all accompanied by personal polemics against those who disagree as "not understanding computers"). It proves only that "you can't tell a valley by its ray screen". Who needs that in greater volume? Better to have fewer posts in higher quality discussions. "Social media" of course does not create that either, and makes it harder because of poor structure.
  18. I didn't mean that you should run your own proxy server. ixquick and startpage act as proxies that protect and do not retain your local IP address or the results when they return the search results, and if you choose, when you go to the results pages (click the proxy option). Startpage acts as a proxy to google and ixquick uses more than google. They use the 'host' filtering qualification the same way the original google 'site' works, e.g., search for objectiscan host:4aynrandfans.comat https://startpage.com I don't know if you can make that transparent the way the google custom search box works.
  19. You call the whole site: "The search engine for all things Objectivism" for what you called "a search engine that provide results only to objectivism websites". The filtering buttons at the top don't have definitions or descriptions, but with or without that the site is still returning search results for other than "objectivism" to different degrees. Also, the "privacy policy" does not account for what Google is doing to track and save searches tied to IP address and then connected to who knows what databases. You could use secure proxy searches such as ixquick or startpage to protect against google, at least as an option.
  20. Don't shutdown the forum!

    That does not solve the problems with either privacy or content organization on facebook. They track IP addresses and content, and correlate it with other sites you visit. The "privacy" settings do not change that and facebook has a history of making sudden changes to its "privacy" policies as Zuckerberg "experiments" with what he can get away with. Try setting up a completely anonymous account, "lock down" the privacy settings, and watch how quickly tailored ads begin to appear when you log on.
  21. You put a lot of work into tracking down about 4 dozen sites to include in searches, but they shouldn't all be promoted as "objectivism websites". They vary greatly in quality -- with some from underneath the bottom of the barrel and everything in between. It is often said that the establishment no longer dominates the media because anyone can easily internationally publicize anything he wants of any quality or lack of quality. And they do. Ayn Rand has been gone for over 30 years and no one can 'officially' speak for her. Anyone is free to represent or misrepresent her ideas and sense of life, subject only to other discussion and evaluation which may or may not be read. But we don't have to help them. Reputation matters.
  22. Happy Birthday to jacassidy2

    So where have you been?
  23. Don't shutdown the forum!

    This is the classic Zuckerber mentality, beginning when he was starting Facebook as a Harvard student: http://venturebeat.com/2010/05/13/zuckerberg-dumb-fucks/ But that is only part of it now. It is disorganized chaos suitable (maybe) for the epistemology of a crow. There is no substitute for the Forum, in many ways.
  24. Turning NSA back on illegal government

    The seriousness of the EPA illegal stonewalling is becoming more public: The IRS is Not the Only Government Agency Hiding Documents from Congress The Blaze, June 25, 2014 by Pete Kasperowicz Full article But then what? DOJ's Holder and IRS's Lerner have already been found in contempt of Congress and nothing has been done about it. All of these agencies treat the citizens like dirt, issuing bureaucratic decrees and making demands with no practical defense possible. When they are caught themselves, they arrogantly thumb their noses. How dare anyone question their absolute authority and arbitrary discretion to do what they want.