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About jcbaduk

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  1. Recommended TV series?

    I liked "Yes Minister", which is a British political satire. I think any student interested in politics should watch it.
  2. vote none of the above

    Well I am from Canada and we do not have "none of the above" as a choice on the ballot. The reason why I'm more interested in US politics is because if there is a more effective way of improving the voting system, it should start in the US. Canada and other western countries would most likely see this as a viable option and follow suit. However, I think simply not going to vote versus going to vote and telling them you're not satisfied with the candidates are very different. In canada, we vote for the party, rather than the individual candidate, so it's probably more urgent for us to do something about it (i.e. we vote for the candidate from our region, and this candidate votes for the party leader on our behalf). Hence, if we like our prime minister who's conservative, but the conservative candidate from our region is incompetent, we have no choice, but the difference in voting system is another issue. I would like to know if anyone thinks that this campaign is heading in the right direction. One thing I was ambivalent about was the fact that this campaign wants to add this option as an amendment to the constitution. I'm not such a big fan of adding amendments, because it would most likely confuse the matter even more. One of the biggest argument that socialists always like to use is to use bill of rights as a document that enumerates the rights that citizens may only have and nothing more. Of course, this contradicts the original intent of the founding fathers.
  3. vote none of the above

    Go to I'm hoping that there is enough support for this. Why should we be stuck with two bad choices between religion and socialism? I think the refusal to vote is bad, but voting for someone because someone else is worse won't make things better. I went to this site after reading Scott Powell's blog. Any suggestions? It certainly saves a lot of debates on which party is worse, and reflects a lot more on the sentiments of the public and why there is such a low turn out in the ballots.
  4. Gun Control

    I have a question about using guns as self defense, perhaps some of you can get rid of some of my confusions. From OPAR, pg 363 under "Government as an Agency to Protect Rights", 4th paragraph, Peikoff implied that it's alright to use gun for self defense in an emergency, and I agree. However, in the next paragraph, he suggested that we shouldn't walk around with guns. Firstly, how are we suppose to prepare for an emergency if we don't walk around with guns? It seems hard to believe that it's okay to use guns in an emergency yet we're expected to walk around without it. Secondly, I don't really understand the connection between having guns and forming gangs. Thanks for the reply
  5. Ron Paul

    I agree with Jack wholeheartedly especially about the war. I think we should fight the war, but can anyone tell me which candidate is willing to finish the war anytime soon? Like Duke said, they did a sloppy job. It seems like most of the politicians want the US army to stay there and not finish the war. So how can we base our vote on this issue, alebit an important one? Also, please educate me on this, but foreign aid doesn't seem like a minor issue, especially when it rarely gets to the poor people which the liberals always talked about; whenever we give foreign aid to those countries like iran or north korea, it indirectly funds terrorism. Furthermore, most people make the dangerous assumption that gun control means gun regulation; most laws when referring to gun control means strict prohibition from owning, whereas regulations talks about whether you are allowed to have machine guns or grenades in public. I agree that guns should be regulated in light of the above example, but Jack is right that it is a litmus test to how politicians view individual rights.
  6. Student Group Wants More Guns on Campus

    Good call, I just remembered. Some guy did the same thing and got suspended from his college for making that statement. Worse, he was told that in order to go back to school, he must take a "psychological assessment" first. Censorship anyone? Well, good thing is that now the FIRE (freedom and individual rights for education) hired lawyers to represent him. I don't remember his name, but darn I hope these students aren't put on the black list or the terrorists' list in the government.
  7. Ron Paul

    Simply saying that these politicians are engaging in active evasion of reality is not enough. Most people are aware that most politicians are like that. I think we all know that there's no difference in principle between the "right" and "left". However, it is refreshing to hear Ron Paul dared to even mention pulling US out of UN for so long, maybe this is the 1st move towards improving US foreign policy? Even the attempt to abolish the federal reserve sounds like a start. I think we all know that none of them have any rational principles. Does anyone have suggestions about who else may even try to do anything other than more compromises other than Ron Paul? I seriously doubt he is a white supremecist, I've read most of his blogs, and it seems he's just a plain orthodox religious conservative. If there's any inkling of "connection", it's probably the John Birch Society. He was also one of the few who tried to introduce a bill that forces the legistlative branch to show that a new bill is constitutional before letting it pass. He's also against public schools, so don't worry if his christian friends wants to brainwash your kids about "intelligent design". I know libertarians are unprincipled, but I think he is off to a good start.
  8. Ron Paul

    Hey, as much as Ron Paul is a christian and libertarian, don't you still want to vote for him? He made some strong promises that were very attractive: 1) Pull US out of UN 2) eliminate federal reserve and gradually go back to gold standard 3) stop foreign aid 4) repeal gun controls 5) pull US out of war Ron Paul also opposes abortion, but choosing from the "lesser of two evils", the first two on the list is pretty important. I think we can still educate people about the difference between a potential human and an actual human, but the economy is really problem. I know Ayn Rand wasn't very comfortable with guns (I still think people should have the right to have guns to protect themselves, the government is simply inadequate). I think the ARI wants US to keep fighting the war in Iraq, and I agree we should end the war quickly and decisively, but with all the money wasted and no sign of establishment of republic (with a constitution that protects individual rights), why don't we just let them rot like we should at the beginning before 9/11? The way how the US government is conducting this war, it's counterpurposeful. It's futile, and seriously I don't think Israel is that weak. I think the reason they look so weak is because US is suppressing the israeli government from making any "rash" decision. Also, has anyone watched Alex Jone's video "Endgame"? I think he made some misinterpretations of the facts he had collected (misintegrations?). But facts are facts, can anyone comment on the bilderberg group, is it okay for politicians to meet in private (secret is too strong a word)? Often times, most people say that socialists are just naive and misguided, like the ones in UN, but from the video, it seems that these socialists are really committed to enslave us. Is this an exaggeration? The video seems to suggest a conspiracy, but we all know that socialism is not a conspiracy, UN is a symbol of socialism full of elites. They openly admit to implement UN into a global government. Is the eugenics program still going on as Alex jones said? What about Dr. Pianka who advocated spreading Ebola worldwide to limit population growth and the carbon tax suggested by Al gore in the name of saving the world? They are all pretty consistent with the socialists' philosophy. Extremists are always the ones who propel the movement to the next level. Now a lot of christian fundamentalists believe they're the stewards of the earth and need to get rid of global warming. Are all these just exaggerations, or should we really worry? Also, is the CIA really just another form of secret police as he had suggested? What about the Rockefeller that alex jones talked about? Was D Rockefeller really misguided, or did he support socialism intentionally by donating so much money to the eugenics program? He seems to imply that most of these billionaires didn't earn their money under the free market but from using government pull. I don't think Alex Jones is envious of rich people, otherwise he would do a show on wal mart like the liberals and noam chomsky always do. Again, this is another reason why individual rights should be respected and capitalism protected. I just hope that our attempts to educate people about individual rights aren't as futile as some pessimists believe.
  9. on axioms

    From the John Galt's Speech in Atlas Shrugged, "An axiom is a proposition that defeats its opponents by the fact that they have to accept it and use it in the process of any attempt to deny it." Does that mean that any statement that fits the above criteria must be necessarily an axiom? For example, for a statement such as "Nothing is Absolute", in order to show that it's a contradiction, one must first accept the statement "nothing is absolute" as absolute in order to see that it isn't absolute anymore and hence we've used the very statement needed to deny it. I apologize for pulling this out of context, but I wanted to understand this correctly.
  10. Math and Physics Books

    Right, I read only one book by Bertrand Russell (Meaning and Truth), and all I got after reading was definitions are "circular" (i.e. no connection with reality, words in terms of other words). I took a year course in symbolic logic. My big question is: what is the significance of "showing" 1+1 =2 using symbolic logic (i.e. more than 600 pages)? Perhaps I shouldn't waste time reading this "proof"? It amazes me that arithmetic can even be described using symbolic logic when we can just simply count. Once again, ewv, thank you for pointing out the post about Russell. The reason why I got interested into this book was after reading a book on Godel (i.e. Godel Escher Bach). Would the statements such as "THis statement is false, this statement is not provable, UTM will not print this result (referring to turing machine) be declared as invalid because they are used to undermine the hierachy of concepts that brought this statement to being? That being said, what was Godel's achievement? Because as far as I know, saying that there will always be more truth than you can prove isn't any newer than Ayn Rand saying that there are axioms, and it presupposes proof, existence exist. Although the analogy is not a strong one because one is mathematical and the other is philosophical, I still don't see anything significant from Godel's work. Wouldn't Godel have based his work on his own implicit philosophy?
  11. Math and Physics Books

    Has anyone read "principia mathematica" by whitehead and russell? Would anyone please comment on this book in light of ITOE? Are they compatible philosophically?
  12. Thank you evw for the reply. It makes things a lot clearer. From what I understand, it seems that there's no such thing as infinite precision. Thus, while it would be possible to construct a triangle with 1, 1, root 2 as its side as an abstraction, it is not possible to construct them in practice. However, doesn't that imply that what's possible in theory (i.e. abstraction), is not possible in practice (i.e construction)? Is this a false dichotomy, or am I using a stolen concept? The "unbounded finite universe " article says that it's not necessary to talk about the "size" of the universe since universe came before size. Since existence exist finitely, the universe is finite. It goes to show that since we don't have to talk about its size, the universe does not need to be bounded while being finite. Similarly, on the concept of precision for numbers, parallel to the concept of "size", since precision comes after numbers (is this wrong?), Would it be wrong to ask for precision when "constructing" numbers like root 2? Shouldn't we accept the decimals of root 2 as "unbounded"? What makes it impossible to construct numbers like root 2? We don't have to measure root 2, we just simply construct it by drawing that triangle. This is an analogy I thought of immediately. However, it still bothers me to see why it's okay to lose "precision" in abstractions like root 2 but not when you construct them. Perhaps precision is only a valid concept in measurement? Thanks for telling me about the thread on countable sets. I'm still reading it. I would really like to find an algorithm to enumerate all lengths constructible using a compass and ruler using the discrete units of delta, where delta approaches the limit of 0.
  13. Sorry, let me clarify. The reason why the points you choose on the line must be terminating is because there is no such thing as infinite decimals. Irrational numbers like (root 2)/2 are exceptions because they can be physically constructed. Also, in light of the article "The unbounded, finite universe", why can't we similarly say that these "infinite decimals" are finite numbers with unbounded decimals?
  14. Hello everyone, I'm new to this forum. I hope I can learn a lot from discussing ideas with serious people. Especially ideas in math and physics, I am so glad that there are Objectivists interested in this area (sorry, but the guys in my campus club only talk about art and history, and I rarely participate because the meeting time conflicts with my classes). I have been looking through this post, and a question came up to me. In light of cantor's definition of countable and uncountable sets, Objectivists Epistemology book made it clear that zero and infinity are only concepts of method. The question is : If I randomly pick a point between 0 and 1 on the number line, the point must always be a terminating decimal (i.e. no unending decimals, except for 0.333333... and others that are rational numbers) or even irrational numbers (i.e. (root 2)/2 that can be found by bisecting the hypotenuse of a right angle 1 x 1 triangle) or any that can be constructed physically with a compass and a ruler. Thus, all numbers picked on the number line must be countable? Of course I twisted the definition of "countable" (i.e. by accepting irrational numbers). Basically, as long as it can be physically constructed using a compass and ruler, it should be "counted". What do you think of this definition? However, numbers like pi/3 will never be located on the line, or would it? I have some doubts as to whether "point", "random" are valid concepts.