Monday, November 24, 2008

The American Spirit in Microcosm

This letter, whether real or apocryphal, is fascinating because it shows both the best of the American Spirit (the individualist "can-do" attitude) and its fatal flaw, i.e. the attempt to justify the good on altruistic grounds (e.g. justifying his existence by the jobs he created and the charity he indulged in). When Americans can simply say, "I create" or "I produce" and that is why I'm good, the battle will be won. It's up to us to show them why that's true.

The Bright Side

After watching the election, and the general populace's seeming need for a dictator/messiah, it's sometimes hard to stay positive and motivated. So with that in mind, I'd recommend checking out this post at NoodleFood detailing all they've accomplished in the last few months. It's rather inspirational, particularly when you consider that, as Paul says:
All of us at FROG are amateurs with regular day jobs, writing in our free time with a budget of zero dollars. Hence, no think tank in Washington DC can claim a better output-to-expenses ratio!

We all wrote on topics of our own choosing, based on our personal interests. We covered a broad range of topics, including the financial crisis, health care reform, abortion, church-state separation, and various state and local ballot initiatives, all with the purpose of applying Objectivist ideas to issues of importance to ordinary Americans. Each of us participated as little or as much as was appropriate within the full context of our busy lives, in a non-sacrificial fashion, according to the principles discussed by Debi Ghate and Tom Bowden in their 2008 OCON special workshop, "How to Be An Agent of Cultural Change".
I'd also mention that I'm quite encouraged by the fact that there are 14 students (including myself) completing the OAC this year, most of whom I think are eager to begin applying our new systemic understanding of Objectivism to cultural issues.

Finally, fwiw, during the period for which Paul reports the FROG tally, I had two (1,2) editorials published, and one shot down as essentially incomprehensible. I hope to increase my output in the first quarter of this year...

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Freedom of Speech

Diana has a good post raising the question of how free is speech currently, and how long will it remain so. I urge everyone who feels they have a stake in keeping the world free to accelerate both their own personal education and their activism. As much as it's important to live your own life and not simply be a martyr for a cause, sometimes world events don't afford us the luxury to work in the time frame we'd prefer...

Monday, November 17, 2008

Peter Schiff Was Right

I'm posting this clip from a sense of justice to Peter Schiff who was scorned and ridiculed by all the moronic talking-heads on CNBC and Fox. Yet he was right and they were abysmally wrong. Even if you're not interested in economics, watch it to see how pseudo-intellectuals use intimidation rather than thought to advocate their views. HT Rational Capitalist

Friday, November 14, 2008

Why The Republicans Lost Support

Paul Hsieh has had an excellent editorial of his published in which he explains to the Republicans why they lost his vote. It's a message they need to keep hearing as the secular and religious elements within the party vie for control.

ARI on Gordon Liddy Show

This should be good!

Saturday, November 08, 2008

The Value of Art

Joseph Kellard has a good post on Ayaan Hirsi Ali and the vital role that Western art played in her life.