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Everything posted by jasonlockwood

  1. Cheyenne's Event Center: "Time To Pull The Plug"

    It's what I notice, too. What I also notice are the things one can get here that I suspect are a result of those freedoms. All over Sydney, shops and cafes of every type and catering to every interest thrive. In America a lot of these types of things have been regulated out of existence, and the onerous zoning laws have made it nearly impossible to mix business and residential neighbourhoods. Not so here. I live in an ostensibly residential area of the city, and yet there are all kinds of little businesses interspersed throughout. Downstairs from me is a cafe and a pizza shop next to it. Down the street is a little tax office, and then further on two friends of mine run a thriving photography studio.It's true real estate in Sydney is very expensive, but without crippling regulations forcing banks to lend to the unworthy, people who buy properties actually can afford them. In the past several years there has been nary a mention of foreclosures in the press and I know of no houses anywhere near me that are in foreclosure. Another set of friends of mine down the street saved for TEN years to buy their house. I also reckon that credit debt is far lower here, but I cannot say that with certainty right now. I couldn't have picked a better time to move here. I do make pretty regular trips back to the US, but I always feel like this is my home. After a long trip away, that glance out the plane window as the Sydney skyline comes into view always gives me that calm sense of home, of having chosen a wonderful place to live.
  2. Cheyenne's Event Center: "Time To Pull The Plug"

    I did notice that. It's refreshing and I find politics less overtly dishonest than back in the US. That isn't to say things are great, but never do I get the impression that we have a disaster brewing.Happy to be corrected if I'm wrong, but those are my observations since I arrived a couple years ago.
  3. Fat and glucose vs. fructose

    But why would you need to, if the goal is simply to lose some weight? I didn't cut out anything; I just reduced the amount I ate. Now, I was never big eater of sweet things, but I do enjoy a bit of dessert on occasion. One trick that has worked well for me is to use smaller plates and bowls. Something to consider, if portion size is an issue.
  4. Happy Birthday to Alon Tsin

    Happy belated birthday from down under.
  5. Cheyenne's Event Center: "Time To Pull The Plug"

    I wonder if the same kind of pernicious nonsense goes on in Australia. I don't mean to say things don't get subsidised - they obviously do - but rather do stadiums and sports teams get money from the state? Arnold: do you know if this goes on here?
  6. You're very welcome. As a side note, I put the weight in kilograms only because Australia is metric and therefore that's what the scales use.
  7. My reply here comes many months after the last post, but I've followed this discussion and debate about diet for a decade or so now. Years ago I tried the Atkins diet and I did lose weight. Big deal. I may have lost weight on it, but I was rather miserable due to all the restrictions in what I was 'allowed' to eat. For years I maintained my weight for the most part and added occasional weight training to the mix. One thing that changed about three years ago was I had a relationship end, which sapped me of my motivation for some time. I was not a particularly happy guy for quite some time, and I let myself go a bit. The one major positive over two years ago was my relocation to Australia, which was the best thing I could have done for myself. Early in 2009 I decided to resume my exercise regimen, but this time I hired a personal trainer to assist me. With her I have made very good improvements but also kept Ray's advice in mind when selecting a trainer. I made it clear I had no intention of working out five days a week or any such nonsense. She actually agreed with me and respected that I'd done some reading on my own. My workouts with Alison last about 30 minutes per session. I also take time off from the gym on occasion to allow myself to recover. More recently, I decided to lose the last bit of weight I had intended to, but didn't three years ago due to my unhappy state. Again, I took Ray's advice to heart. I reduced the size of my meals and stopped skipping meals. I didn't change WHAT I ate, just how much and how frequently. Since May of this year, I've lost approximately 8 kg. I intend to drop another 4 kg or so over the next couple months, at which point I will have reached my goal weight. Some time ago, Ray expressed dismay on this forum for all his tireless arguing in favor of actual science, as opposed to the pseudo science we see pushed by proponents of various diets. I got the sense he felt demoralized. One reply said just because he wasn't reaching one person directly didn't mean there weren't many other people reading his posts and getting value from them. I am one such person. Therefore, I want to thank Ray publicly for his insights and his indefatigable spirit in fighting on the side of the facts. I have personally benefited from his advice and couldn't be happier for it.
  8. Happy Birthday to jasonlockwood

    The best thing about living in Australia: I get two birthdays every year. ;-)
  9. Happy Birthday to jasonlockwood

    It's a whole week's worth of celebration, so I consider late to be next week. ;-)
  10. Happy Birthday to jasonlockwood

    Thanks everyone! I had a great birthday.
  11. We Three Kings (Merritt Fury) [Kindle Edition]

    I am really happy this is available for the Kindle. I've begun reading it just this weekend and so far I'm hooked!
  12. Classical Music's New Golden Age

    Really enjoyable! Recently, I had my own experience that says something about the appreciation of music at least in Sydney. I attended a performance of Sondheim's A Little Night Music at the Sydney Opera House. Granted it's historically new, but what struck me was how loyal it was to Sondheim's original run decades ago. The audience was transfixed AND it was of mixed ages and nationalities. In short it was not only a magical night of theatre, but also heartening to see so many different types of people enjoying it.
  13. Eichler Homes

    I can personally attest to Betsy's house being movie star quality.
  14. Happy Birthday to Joss Delage

    For my part I will say: Joyeux anniversaire !
  15. Sorry, it is. I should have been clear I didn't mean it literally or - better still - left that off my post. I realize I made my point without saying something like that. Feel free to remove the posting.
  16. This entire long-running episode reminds me of a long friendship of mine and highlights the difference between those who seek followers and those who seek the truth. My old friend Ann from high school has been a leftist for as long as I've known her. She is well aware of my views as I am aware of hers. I have never had the inclination to hide what I believe and you can bet we have had heated arguments over the years. Ann is enormously misguided in her views. I can see it in her speaking manner and in the way she writes. And yet, when I give detailed replies to her incorrect knowledge, she typically disagrees with me, but she never vilifies me. She even compliments my courage and thoughtfulness. She has said publicly on Facebook that she knows no-one else as well read as I on the topics of philosophy and politics and no-one more forcefully adamant about my views. It is clear to her that I care deeply about ideas and values. What makes this an interesting contrast is Ann and I hold completely opposite ideas, and yet our disagreement has never been cause for nastiness between us. Now, I must state that because she holds such terrible political ideas, I have to keep her at some arm's length, but considering she lives in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and I in Sydney, Australia, it's pretty easy. My 30-year friendship with Ann has weathered many storms, but we respect each other's values enough to remain polite, even when we disagree. Contrast that with disagreement with Mrs Hsieh over just about anything, INCLUDING things as innocuous as what kind of diet one should follow. Have a plate of spaghetti and suddenly one has become an enemy of Objectivism. I consider that a MASSIVE 'tell' about that character of someone who claims to be an Objectivist.
  17. Indeed. Personally, I don't care really, aside from having an odious person I have to avoid if I attend a future OCON. Still, that's pretty easy given there are plenty of people who do go I would want to associate with.I reckon some people would think this sullies Objectivism, but I'm of the opinion that the people who fall away eventually aren't missed and the philosophy would never suffer because they were poor representatives, anyway.
  18. I wonder how long it will be before she falls away from Objectivism. I see plenty of photos on Facebook of her smiling face at OCON this year, but I can't help thinking more and more people will figure her out and back away.
  19. Self-Reliance: A Better Understanding

    I admire Bradley's determination greatly. In a certain way, I have done a similar thing in moving to a part of the world where things aren't dire in the way they are in America right now. I won't claim the political situation in Australia is great, but the country isn't rushing headlong into collapse the way the US is currently. There has been no runaway spending or nationalizing of industries down here. There is no such thing as Fannie/Freddie and consequently no real estate collapse. I decided soon after the US elections that if it came to it, I would renounce my US citizenship. It is not a done deal, to be sure, but I am prepared to do anything to protect myself.
  20. Mao's Last Dancer (2009)

    It's available on DVD in Australia, but of course if you order it from here you'll need a multi-region DVD player. Here's a link: http://www.jbhifionline.com.au/dvd/dvd-gen...t-dancer/485824
  21. Drug Addiction: The Torture Of An Atrophied Mind

    I remind myself of this every day. I look around me and see a lot of confused people - and this in a country like Australia that has a quite good sense of life overall. Fortunately here, the political situation isn't dire like back in America, but it isn't great. The new Prime Minister is going to try to ram through the same unpopular policies that got Kevin Rudd ousted, so once again we have that to deal with.The overwhelming benefit I get from my two decades of studying and integrating Objectivism is the inner calm I enjoy in living my life. Other people take notice and marvel at how well grounded I am and how I live my life without guilt.
  22. Get Out Of Their Way

    You may all be amused to hear that in Australia, if you accuse someone of having a public school education (meaning state school), it's considered a high insult.
  23. Drug Addiction: The Torture Of An Atrophied Mind

    Then why didn't you simply say those of us with good families and backgrounds? I will admit I sometimes write something that could be taken with offense, but I make sure I edit appropriately so I get my point across without insulting my readers. The term "silver spoon" is one of those old slurs that we should avoid, in my opinion. Anyone with a healthy upbringing is not guilty of anything. The expression implies there is something unfair about it. Apology accepted.
  24. Drug Addiction: The Torture Of An Atrophied Mind

    The hits keep coming. Silver spoon? This marks maybe the 10th time I've found what you have written highly offensive, Henrik. I have to wonder what moves you to write such things here of all places.It is one thing to acknowledge that you suffered hardships and overcame them. But what can be the possible reason for adding a sneering phrase to it? I am not going to guess your reason. I would rather you tell us.
  25. Drug Addiction: The Torture Of An Atrophied Mind

    Bravo again, Brad. What I like so much about this piece is you make no excuses and you don't offer 'recovery' as an end in itself. You quit the drugs and the important part is getting on with your productive endeavors. I have an old high school friend who got deeply involved with drugs as a teenager and decided to stop all of it at age 19. Since that time (now 25 years ago) he got educated, married a lovely woman, has two young kids and a career he's proud of. While he and I don't correspond much these days, it is always a pleasure to see him when I get the opportunity. Another interesting thing about my friend is he got clean and started going to AA meetings and such, only to find that it was a crutch for weak minded people - in his view. He didn't find it compelling or even interesting to be around chain smokers and nervous coffee imbibers, so he ditched the sponsor and the meetings, much to the chagrin of everyone around him. Everyone thought he would relapse into drug use again. He never did. He realized at a young age that he had to take control. No amount of 'I'm John (not his name) and I'm a drug addict' in front of a crowd of the same would change his life. He's not an Objectivist, but he is rational enough to have understood the essence of what you wrote about.