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About pkrembs

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  • Birthday 12/08/1979

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  • Gender Male
  • Location San Francisco, CA
  • Interests Science, history, philosophy, traveling, running, golf, beer, wine, cheese, good friends
  1. It is a sweeping indictment, because implicit in that statement was the judgment that everyone who is shy is controlled by a fear of what other might think of them. That's just....incorrect. I do not care what others (strangers in social situations) think about me, as a general rule. However, I have anxiety problems (which are the result of biochemical functions). These manifest themselves in many different ways for many different people, including a worry about situations or objects that have nothing to do with others negative evaluations of you. Nor is it a matter that many people can just "get over." Many people with this condition are quite rational and functioning, but because of other factors either have difficulty overcoming anxiety or are completely crippled by it.
  2. That's quite a sweeping indictment of something that is very nuanced and could be based on a whole host of an individual's personality attributes or psychological condition. Are you a psychologist?
  3. I guess we just have differing perspectives on Objectivist involvement in electoral politics.
  4. New DDT Threat

    Aww, jeez...not this crap again!
  5. My point was that it is precisely why Objectivists act in a principled way that we must explain these actions and conclusions in a practical, concrete way to non-Objectivist voters. I am certainly not suggesting abandoning our principles. But you have to realize who your audience is: voters who may not have heard of Ayn Rand; voters who hate Ayn Rand; or voters who have no conscious interest in philosophy. The suggestion about reading conservative thought and placing yourself in those shoes was to get a feel for how conservatives communicate their politics to an electorate, because, often, free-market conservatives who want to privatize social security, for instance, are accused of being cold hearted brutes. How they respond is worth examining. That's all I'm saying.
  6. I agree with your friend. If I were to ever enter politics or run for office, I would do so as a Republican. Their platform is so vague and their membership so diverse in opinion, that it would not matter. I would only enter politics to push for individual freedom in policy making-- and *not*, as Libertarians do, to educate people about liberty. That is the job of Objectivist professors, philosophers, teachers, etc. So in that sense, an Objectivist could certainly enter politics without having to proselytize or "convert" members of a political party or voters to his/her philosophy. I think it would be important for an Objectivist politician to be pragmatic about addressing the "bread and butter" issues: crime, taxes, health care, etc. What I mean is: don't lecture voters about the metaphysical and epistemological reasons why state-run healthcare is bad. Give them concrete examples of why it *is* bad in practice (there are plenty out there). This is difficult for Objectivists to do, in my opinion, because we tend to think in terms of ultimate causes and not proximate causes. We see that capitalism is moral because it is consistent with rational individuals living as rational indiviudals...not because it maximizes the greatest good for the most people. If you're going to get into politics, you have to at least be willing to put yourself in the shoes of a Utilitarian and familiarize yourself conservative thinking. They may be wrong, but that is the reality of the anti-philosophical political system in which we live.
  7. My own view is that this is analogous to the "trophy wife" mentality of middle-aged straight men. I don't deny that lover 20+ years apart can have things in common, but I doubt Although, I think there is another element at work here which reaks of the type of pederasty practiced in Classical Greece or perhaps even early Gnostics, whereby the knowledge and experiences, particularly of living as a gay man are transferred to an insecure, less experienced man as a result of living in a society which, for the most part, disapproves of homosexuality.
  8. I also love the "collective wisdom" bit. If that's the case, then apparently I've had custody of the collective brain for the past 28 years
  9. If my parents ever made there way onto Facebook, I would be taking cover from the gigantic asteroid about to slam into the Earth...
  10. Rick Wilson, a sociology instructor at Marshall and head of the West Virginia Economic Justice Project, says that Rand's philosophy, objectivism, is based on the view that selfishness is the only moral value. "[Objectivism] goes against the collective wisdom of the human race, I think, pretty much everywhere," says Wilson. "I think it's a curious interpretation of philanthropy to use corporate money to promote, really, an extreme philosophy." Those who can, do. Those who can' sociology. Is this the best NPR could find to offer an opposing view on Objectivism?...someone who is either (1) lying or (2) has never even looked up Objectivism on Wikipedia, much less picked up a book by its author.
  11. But, back to the topic of sex, dominance, and sexual orientation instead of the causes of sexual orientation itself. JRoberts raises some interesting points on why the hetersexual/homosexual models of dominance, though fundamentally similar, are quite different in the details and how those are manifested physically.
  12. I agree. I did not mean to completey discount the "nurture" part of it; from what I've read, it's a combination of both. Anecdotally, I know what many gays and lesbians come from "broken" homes where at least one parent was out of the picture during important stages of childhood development. As for my own case, my parents have been married 30+ years and couldn't be happier, nor I with the pleasure of knowing them as adults. From a very early age, I recall an attraction to the same sex. How much this had to do with my parents, I won't speculate except to say that I had a very safe, loving childhood. As I understand it, a massive study of identitcal twins is under way to perhaps shed some light on this very issue.
  13. Reason.TV

    Thanks for posting! How asinine these regulations are.
  14. I do not agree with the implication that homosexuality is "unnatural." A minority inclination, perhaps, but it is still a result of naturalistic forces that an appreciable group of humans on every continent (and animals on all) have a biochemistry that predisposes them to same-sex attraction. I was aware that Rand had in mind heterosexual relations when she wrote those works, but I still must admit that even if I were straight, her model would still not appeal to me, although, to clarify: I never said that aspiring to Rand's ideas on sex was wrong; it's just not something that particularly interests me.
  15. Male, gay, no interest in this type of scenario whatsoever. Sex is a great physical and emotional experience, and it's also a very personally nuanced one. I have zero inclination in aspiring toward Ayn Rand's model of sexual roles. I find the greatest satisfaction (and indeed this may be different for homosexual relations) in sex when it is approached as willing (heh, sometimes more than willing) partners.