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Announcment - SoCal Objectivists

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Announcement - SoCal Objectivists

written by Jason Stotts Co-founder

Greetings and welcome to the SoCal Objectivists. We are an organization dedicated to taking a serious look at Ayn Rand’s ideas and how they apply to the problems of today. (Philosophically speaking, Objectivism is in the Aristotelian Eudaimonist tradition.)

I’m Jason Stotts and I’m one of the two founders of SoCal Objectivism. I found out about Objectivism in 2003, after my first year of college. I had taken my first philosophy class in the second semester of my freshman year and absolutely detested it. Not just a little bit, but passionately. I vowed to never take another philosophy class. That summer, I set out to read a lot of classic books that I had never read and one of those books ended up being Atlas Shrugged by a woman I had never heard of, named Ayn Rand. I was captivated. I read Atlas Shrugged from cover to cover in two days. I felt, for the first time, that this was the vision of the world that I had always been looking for: the clear sight of reason, backed by intelligence, and pushed forward by passion for life. I read all the rest of Ayn Rand’s published works that summer.

When I went back to school in the fall, I declared as a Philosophy and Economics major. That fall, I started the Denison Objectivist Club and made some amazing friends. The next summer I interned at the ARI. I continued the Denison Objectivist Club for the rest of my time at Denison. I ended up getting my BA in both Philosophy and Economics with honors. Not only that, I graduated as a Philosophy Department Fellow as an open and very vocal Objectivist (I have never been subtle).

After I graduated, I didn’t know what to do. My life changed momentously when my future wife and I were talking about masculinity and femininity and I realized the great depths of my ignorance about sex and sexual issues. I set about to correct that by learning from the wisdom of others, but I found that real knowledge on the subject was scarce. Thus, I set about to try to understand the issues and began writing a book on the subject. I’m still working on that book. A lot of my writing where I try out ideas is published on my blog Erosophia, which you can find at www.JasonStotts.com.

In 2009 I moved to Southern California with my wife, we had just recently married, so that she could start a PhD program in Philosophy. I realized that I missed the company of other people who shared my ideas and the value that one gains from interacting with rational people. I reached out to some fellow objectivists in the area, but no organization came of it.

After the success of the regional mini-cons and seeing the value they were gaining from their respective groups, I decided that it was time for me to have a group of my own to participate in. When Earl and I discussed it and he said that he, too, had been having the same ideas, we resolved to make it a reality.

I said in one of my early comments about the group, that there is a great value in being able to enjoy the company of those who share your ideas and we’re hoping to create a microcosm of this with SoCal Objectivists.

Won’t you join us?

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I founded and ran the Southern California Objectivist Association (SCOA) from 1987 - 1995. At its peak, we had a membership of 400 and a variety of regular social and intellectual events. If you're interested in what SCOA was like and how we did things, contact me for more information at betsy@speicher.com.

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