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  1. Aloha

    I always liked that option. Some folks started a ferry service between the islands a couple of years ago. Modern catamaran design rather than balsa logs, I'm afraid, but the venture sank in the high waves of political intrigue. As for Mr. Heyerdahl's theories, DNA testing shows that sweet potato originating from S. American ended up in the mid-Pacific.
  2. Aloha

    Obvious typo: 11+ => 1.4+
  3. Aloha

    I apologize if I have offended. That was certainly not my intention. Let me try to disambiguate the situation, from the top. I freely admit that this whole affair started off with my taking offense... at a popular novel that has a particularly nasty attitude toward Objectivism. I enlisted the assistance of several Websites in publicizing my negative review of that book, including 4aynrandfans. Betsy encouraged me to announce my presence on this forum, and so I did so, with the hope that I might encounter an interesting rugged individualist or two. In the course of conversation, I indicated that there were few prospects for fellow Objectivists in my local area. Now the definition of "local" appears to be getting in our way. For someone who lives in a major contiguous metropolitan area, a drive to the "local" university is no big deal. But "local" to someone on the Big Island means here on the Big Island. In case it had escaped notice, the state of Hawaii (with its 11+ millions) is not comprised of just one island. The main population center is on Oahu, which also hosts the main campus of the University of Hawaii. We live on an "outer island" called "Hawaii" and known as the Big Island... big for its land mass, not its population, which is relatively small, and not particularly intellectual. One can travel between islands by air, but the plane fares are relatively steep and the inconvenience significant. After car rental, hotel and meals, and airport parking or taxi to and from Kona Airport, a trip to Oahu costs us a little under a kilobuck. That is not chump change for us. Nor is the time and energy expenditure for such a trip at our age. Certainly this is not something to consider doing frequently. You are quite right that we could expend that effort and resources in the hope that there might be persons of interest there with whom to make contact. And campus groups offer wider contacts. But the result of that contact would be that those folks would be on Oahu, and we would be on the Big Island, and continuing contact would likely devolve to emails. At which point the fact of they're being in-state would become a distinction without a difference from any mainland contacts I might have. The original reason I expressed my multiyear dismay at the infrequency of intellectual encounters on the Big Island, is that I had hoped to meet some interesting people via a mechanism of much lower cost... this forum! While it might serve the greater good for us to invest in regular travel to Oahu, it is much easier for me to make my presence here known and see who responds. I have my own inimitable way to expressing myself, which serves to attract some and not others. If you are not attracted, that's fine. If no one there is, then it was still an effort worth making. In any case, I wish you well.
  4. Aloha

    Breathing is a prerequisite to life. Objectivism is a prerequisite to living well. But then there's the living well, the stretching of those psychoepistemological muscles, the accumulation of experience, and the development of personality. We are individuals, with our distinctive characters, with no guarantee that equivalence of outlook on one of life's many prerequisites is sufficient to satisfy the fractal chemistry of attraction. I am at that certain stage of life where I am attracted to folk with some piquant flavors evolved over at least a few decades of self-examination and experimentation, most likely beyond the purview of students in a collegiate club, no matter how well founded. I have grown into a multihued iconoclast, sparked as much by spark as doctrine. Forgive me if I do not fit into easily managed categories...
  5. Aloha

    True love and friendship won't succumb to statistics or incredulity.
  6. Aloha

    You may not realize, this is a really small "Big Island", so individuals with truly intellectual prospects are extremely few and far between. Been looking for awhile now (20 years).
  7. It was a snarky attempt to defame the name of Objectivism, without utilizing any real arguments whatsoever, so that if the YA reader ever encountered the term again, they'd have a negative bias toward it. As for false alternatives, I'm fully versed. As I said, it was a content-free slander job. Guilt by association with the mass murdering vaguely money grubbing antagonist. Low brow, but effective enough for a YA audience, I fear.
  8. The antagonist is, in several places, associated with an "Objectivist Club". The antagonist goes back in time, founds a "religion". It promotes wealth (without any attendant understanding of what Francisco's money speech covers so brilliantly) and makes its followers wealthy by parceling out hints about which stocks to buy, based on information obtained via time travel. Near the end (and yes, I read far too much of this book), it is revealed that the religion does not promote belief in an afterlife, but that only believers will survive some coming cataclysm (that the founders of the religion are about to perpetrate on the world)... in a thin athiest analog of motivating religious believers by the coming end of life. It is stated that billions will die, hence my freedom in tying in Mao, Pol Pot, etc. There's no false alternative; the religion says you will either believe or you will die soon. Saves the author from messy metaphysical issues.
  9. Aloha

    Cost of living is indeed higher. We often refer to the "Paradise Tax", and that can contextually mean anything from the price for shipping to/from the mainland, to the onerous business environment. As for what the local Tea Party was advocating, they are here dominated by religious conservatives, for whom the abortion issue dominates all other concerns. (To be fair, the state has a huge health bureaucracy, which has frustrated them for many years.) But try to find common ground in the economic disaster, and they pay lip service, but really want to exclude anyone not sharing their view on abortion. Generalizations don't apply equally to all, of course, but I found the atmosphere at their meetings stifling. They don't really want to learn. They want to take action, but really haven't much clue as to how to go about influencing folks in this island culture. I've tried, believe me I've tried. And the problem is very deeply entrenched in the local culture. E.g., there's one (count him!) Republican in the state senate. He's a pretty exceptional Republican, but you get the idea...
  10. Aloha

    Aloha Paul, It's "cold" enough here (for someone accustomed to the tropics), with this North Wind we're having. [see] But I can't compare my huddling in sweaters in the low 70's to what everyone on the mainland is suffering through in the New Global Warming Climate. I once had a "long leash" to Silicon Valley, but presently am working on an iPhone/iPad application. So, there are still few good jobs in Paradise, unless you bring your job with you. And the political climate here (Obama kinda came from here, you know?) isn't going to generate many new ones anytime soon. As for local interest in Objectivism, when I went to my local Tea Party meeting, and said what my philosophical orientation was, they looked at me like I was some strange kind of fish they'd never heard of before. And when I started talking Austrian Economics, their eyes glazed over. Sigh...
  11. Aloha

    I guess I qualify as an Olde Timer to Objectivism, though I'm brand new here at 4AynRandFans. As you may have noticed, I was drawn here to post in Current Events about a nasty popular fiction book that warps and twists Objectivism. But aside from that, I'm glad to make contact with fellow travelers. Born and raised on the West Coast, but mostly in the SoCal desert farming community of Indio (25 miles and a world away from Palm Springs, at least back in those days), I remember my mother reading Atlas (in our family we didn’t call it Shrugged) to my father at night, especially the scene where she lands in the valley. Later, I became a close friend of Karl Bray in LA back when I went to undergrad at Harvey Mudd College. I ran Stanford Libertarians when I went to graduate school there. I married a great gal who actually was the youngest person to attend the Nathaniel Brandon Institute in the basement of the Empire State Building in NYC back when Miss Rand was lecturing there (Barbara Brandon got it wrong in her book, as we told her). I met my wife at one of Nathaniel Brandon’s Intensives in LA. So I've got some history with Objectivism and its cultural side-effects. These days I mostly shake my head at the world, and work on my software projects. I reside in Hawaii, which is about as Socialist as you might imagine, but the weather's fine. So a warm aloha to you all.
  12. I just finished reading "Timebound" (aka "Time's Twisted Arrow: The CHRONOS Files") on Kindle. This fiction book has won a major award from Amazon, and its sales are climbing. (SPOILER ALERT) It has, at its core, a manifestly evil "Objectivist". This antagonist is nothing like an Objectivist. His name is "Saul Rand" and he has used time travel to establish a fake religion, with plans to kill billions of people who do not agree with him, thus making him an order of magnitude worse mass murderer than Hitler, Stalin, Pol Pot and Mao combined. I wrote a scathing review, and I would greatly appreciate lots of "YES (this review was helpful to me)" clicks to ensure that the truth about it comes to the top. (I apologize for knowingly lumping Objectivism under libertarianism in my commentary, but I thought it the easiest way to explain to the Amazon audience.) Here is a link to my review... I hope you find this mission of dissing disinformation compelling. If so, please pass the word... we need the clicks.