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Everything posted by Cadence

  1. I have posted this thread because this discussion was brought up in an unrelated post, and I wished to continue the conversation. The original post was in regards to a Fiction Writing Course that a member is trying to sell - he commented that a professor wasn't interested in buying it because it may be "out-of-date." Another user commented that he would purchase it precisely because of its outdatedness. I replied this - "Take any modern writing course and you'll hear a bunch of junk about "the human condition" and honing in on your "muse." "Experimental" Fiction is all the rage of the typical professional "intellectual." I had to read a book called "A Thousand Acres," where all of the main characters were manipulative liars, and their dad - who was supposedly a hard-working farmer - raped them when they were young girls. Most of the main characters ended up dying/committing suicide. The author liked to go on rants for two pages about the contents of a drawer. I told the professor that I didn't like the story because the theme suggested that all humans were depraved and inherently flawed. He replied something along the lines of, "I've never met anyone who wasn't." By the way, this book won the 1992 Pulitzer Prize. I worked in the Writing Center of a public college for a year or so, and they call Ayn Rand a "second rate writer." One of them (an English professor) said that his life philosophy revolved around the statement, "Treat each other excellently, and party on dude." He was also a logic professor that attempted to convince me that reality was subjective, and that the creation of the rocket ship was an insignificant accident." Another user replied, who I welcome to repost his reply on this thread. In reply to his post: Those things used to bother me severely - I would argue with them for 30+ minutes in an attempt to convince them that they were wrong. I finally realized that it was a waste of my time and energy, and told them that I didn't wish to have any more conversations with them. Most of the people there absolutely disliked me because they knew that I was a student of Objectivism - one of my fellow student workers posted an article in the back room that proposed a sad excuse of a critique of Ayn Rand (lots of ad hominem, straw man arguments - an article from the 1960s) to harrass me. Another one of the tutors was talking about "arrogance," and snidely commented to me "What do you think about people thinking that they're better than others, CADENCE?" (They liked to poke fun at me because I changed my name recently; it was also a personal attack, because I wasn't "buddy-buddy" with them because I didn't have respect for them; I was just polite, whereas everyone else acted like they were all best friends). I said - "It depends on whether they deserve to." She replied angrily "ANYONE WHO ACTS LIKE THAT IS JUST HORRIBLY INSECURE AND HAS SOMETHING TO HIDE." I wonder if she realized that the only thing that that statement accomplished was revealing something very embarrassing about her character. Before I decided that I didn't respect him, the logic professor (he was quite a fraud, like a less intelligent Ellsworth Toohey) and I had a discussion/disagreement about art. I was not very articulate on the subject, but I said that I didn't like such and such poem because it had an ugly message. I said something along the lines of, I don't understand why someone would write with such a beautiful style, but have such an ugly message. He said something like - judging theme over style is elementary and amateur (he said it in a much calmer, more "nice" way - he always was concerned with trying to make people think that he was this calm, nice, open-minded guy). When I first started reading the Fountainhead (it was the first thing that I read by Ayn Rand), I asked one of the Writing Tutors what he thought about it (I had a certain level of respect for the before I started actually having standards to judge people). His reply was that she was a "fascist" (? I don't understand where people come up with this accusation) and a "terrible writer" (he liked William Faulkner - who I think has a hideous sense of life) The next conversation that I had with him, he ended up storming out of the room, telling me that I'd "learn when I get older." ANOTHER tutor, who happened to be a lawyer and a Harvard graduate (supposedly), claimed that he liked Ayn Rand once but eventually "learned" that "the real world" isn't "like that." It's like I was working with a bunch of immature teenagers with degrees. Does anyone have any thoughts about modern professional intellectuals, or any experiences to share? Why is this such a common attitude among alleged "intellectuals"? I find it ridiculous that I am more intelligent and integrated at 21 than 50 year olds who have been studying and reading for most of their adult lives.
  2. Best Type of Exercise

    I plan on taking 2 "Physical Education" classes next semester. I weigh 90 lbs and haven't really exercised for 5 years or more (other than walking/playing light tennis), but none of these activities were on a consistent basis. My question is: what would be the best exercise classes to take for me (given my body weight and lack of muscle/exercise)? Since I have not exercised for so long, I get sore really easily, so I don't want to take a weight training class (I don't think I could keep up). Instead, I plan to take a tennis class (for aerobic/cardiovascular exercise) and a Pilates class (for better flexibility etc.), or Kickboxing (for muscular strength, cardio, and endurance). If anyone has any better suggestions, however, I would love to hear them. I plan, in the future, to take up swimming (if you have any comments about swimming, please share), but my school does not have a pool, so I cannot take a swimming course.
  3. The Tea Party Movement A great article by Dr. Harry Binswanger. Please read, and please vote for "Tea Party" supported candidates this November!
  4. Happy Birthday to B. Royce

    I'm a little late, but happy birthday B. Royce. I enjoy your poetry; thank you for sharing it with all of us.
  5. The Philosopher President

    William James, John Dewey, Nietzsche, Thoreau, John Rawls? Disgusting.
  6. Best Type of Exercise

    Thank you Red and RayK for your responses. Glad to hear that it's normal and that it will go away eventually. I really dread exercising because it is so unpleasant, but I try to keep in mind that in the long-term it is very beneficial and necessary.
  7. UN Fails To Challenge Causes Of World Hunger

    Brad: Just saw your article published in The Bulletin! Also, it is currently included on's home page
  8. Best Type of Exercise

    I have been exercising once a week (I do not have weights; I can't afford them at this time) doing things like leg lifts while hanging, stepping up and down from a chair, straight leg lifts from the ground, pull ups, push ups, and ankle lifts (tucking one foot behind the other and lifting up on my ankle). I begin my exercise with jumping jacks until my heart rate is up. I find that my biggest problem is that at times I cannot do the exercise until muscle failure because I feel nauseated. I've noticed (I've only been doing these exercises for 3 weeks) that the cardiovascular aspect of the workout is the hardest part for me. After my 20-30 minute workout is finished, I feel intense nausea and tension in my chest area. Does getting used to the cardiovascular aspect of exercising usually take this long? Is there anything I can do to make it "better"?
  9. Thanks for sharing; I'm happy to hear this. I was personally getting kind of depressed seeing all of the attacks on Ayn Rand, but put into the context that you just offered, it becomes a bit more encouraging.
  10. Happy Birthday to RayK

    Happy Birthday, RayK, and thank you for all of your advice.
  11. Limited Vocabulary

    I have a pretty limited vocabulary, and it hasn't really improved much in the last few years. It definitely shows in my writing, and I don't like the way my writing sounds sometimes because of its blandness and repetitive use of certain words. Writers: What are the best ways go about integrating new words into your vocabulary? I understand that reading a lot likely contributes to a better vocabulary, but are there any specific methods used that speed up the process of remembering words or that are more effective than others? Thanks in advance.
  12. Favorite scenes in an Ayn Rand work

    and, why? Because they sum up everything else perfectly.
  13. Favorite scenes in an Ayn Rand work

    Mine are the last paragraph of the Fountainhead and the last page of Atlas Shrugged.
  14. An Introduction

    Laars: The Ayn Rand Institute offers a valuable Suggested Reading List for Ayn Rand's works. I suggest you read all of Rand's fiction first, as I have come across plot spoilers throughout her nonfiction works, and many references to the fiction that would best be understood by reading the fiction first. The Romantic Manifesto and The Objectivist Epistemology may be the nonfiction books that you actually read last, considering in the hierarchy of philosophy, aethetics is the highest level abstraction of philosophy (others, please correct me if I phrased this awkwardly or incorrectly). The Objectivist Epistemology, as I have heard, is fairly complex and abstract, and may be difficult to read if you are not already an objective reader (I have not read the book myself, this evaluation is based on what I have been told by others). I would suggest reading in accordance with the suggested reading list to the best of your ability. In regards to which books to purchase first, I would say, obviously, purchase all of them, as you suggested. However, under a limited budget I would suggest reading The Fountainhead, then We the Living, then Philosophy: Who Needs it.
  15. My New Computer

    I want that mouse!
  16. 401k Nationalization

    Good point. I also thought it was very odd that the Finance Bill got little to no media attention. A complete overhaul of Wall Street and giant bureaucratic agency and no one is that interested apparently.
  17. Spoof Article

    I have been reading the article "The Anti-Conceptual Mentality," in Philosophy: Who Needs It, and there is a very interesting issue in this article that you've written, that I could not name until now. If Barack Obama were to actually give this speech, he would be laughed at, because the *concrete*, scientific Laws of Thermodynamics are accepted as logical and factual. However, the conceptual, more abstract issue, the Laws of Economics, are equally factual and logical, but are *conceptual* facts. The fact that if he were to give this speech about the Laws of Economics, many Democrats/Socialists would rejoice and full-heartedly agree with him (however, many - due to the pragmatic nature of America, would say that he is being 'too extreme', but agree with him, *kind-of*). My point is that it is interesting to recognize a concrete example of the anti-conceptual mentality, and I (excitedly) wanted to point it out explicitly.
  18. Spoof Article

    Wow, this is very clever. It's almost as if he actually said this!
  19. My first letter to the editor!

    I wrote a letter to the editor in regards to this article written by Burgess Laughlin. The editor emailed me today to inform me that my letter will appear in their 10/20 edition. How exciting! However, after reading it today, it's a bit vague for my liking. Here it is: "To Whom it May Concern: I just recently came across this gem of an article, titled "Is Neoconservatism Dead?" by Burgess Laughlin. I consider it a gem, because it is crucial at this point, when so many ideas are battling for power, to expose the bad ideas for what they are. It is time for us citizens to attempt to understand those who are attempting to take control of our lives, and fight for the founding principle of the United States - the principle of individualism, and of freedom. Individualism is the idea that we, as citizens, must fight for; we must expose the collectivists as, not the proponents for "fairness" that they claim to be, but as only another statist group fighting for power over our lives. Thank you. ---- ------"
  20. Happy Birthday to Betsy Speicher!

    Happy birthday to you!
  21. The Tea Party Movement

    Yes, after observing these facts and relating them to my present fears (which I believe now are unfounded), I think you are right. Democrats certainly can do much much much much more damage, especially considering academia is fueling their movement. I had seen on some of the Republican websites that they were supported by an organization that wants to outlaw birth control. It made me afraid because I couldn't imagine living in such a world - but after thinking about it more, I definitely think you are right in regards to the "religious right" being an irrational fear.
  22. The Tea Party Movement

    "In the shorter term future the danger is not that the Tea Party will evolve into a theocratic movement and succeed in imposing it, but rather that those who espouse mysticism as the basis of freedom will discredit the whole movement without its rational basis ever being understood on a wide enough scale. This has already been happening in places like Maine where the political right is dominated by religious beliefs and social conservatism, which has been systematically exploited by the left to discredit the right there." Also a very good point. I hope that independent votes still stick with the Republican vote in November, regardless of religious differences.
  23. The Tea Party Movement

    I'm basing my anxiety about the issue on one of the major influences of the Tea Party, Sarah Palin, and on the major Tea Party candidates that are running for office: Joe Miller, Christine O'Donnell, Sharon Angle. I would still vote for them this November, however. I don't think that at this point they can do much politically in favor of the 'christian nation,' however, because overall I think it's pretty unpopular and Roe vs. Wade seems to be pretty set in stone... I think? My political knowledge is very limited.
  24. Your Life IS Your Own!

    For some reason, I never considered letters to the editor. That is a great idea. I also, when writing, adhere to the principles outlined in Ayn Rand's The Art of Nonfiction, which has helped me enormously. I plan, when I finally graduate this semester, to write much more.
  25. The Tea Party Movement

    That's really good to hear. Thanks for sharing.