Software Nerd

Friday, March 03, 2006

Let's get serious

When an Objectivist newbie said he didn't like poetry, I gave him a few good examples. He liked them and asked for more. So, in a chat room, a little later, I gave him and one other newbie (good guys, both) a poem with a simpler theme, about a dad taking a break to play with his daughters -- simple fun, no big message.

My paraphrase of their reactions: one asked "what's the point of such a poem?" The other thought it denigrated work and productiveness, comparing it to a scene in the Fountainhead about people trying to get away from work.

Now, from everything else I know, these are both good guys, very sensible. Also, when I said, "Come on guys, it's a dad taking a break to play with his kids... Life is such fun... etc." they agreed almost immediately, revising their first reaction. Neither moved to a positive evaluation, but seemed neutral.

This is one tiny example; but, I think it may be typical of some people who are still in the process of integrating Objectivism. This -- along with some more serious examples -- has got me thinking that there is an unfilled need in Objectivist literature: a self-help guide to understanding Objectivism, integrating it, avoiding common errors, and make the "passing stage" as short as humanly possible. [Dr. Peikoff's UO lecture is a good manifesto to start the process. I think much more detailed "workbook" style. case-study style examples from everyday life are needed.]


  • Leonard Peikoff said on some tape that he doesn't trust any Objectivist under the age of 40. The book you suggest would be useful, provided it was written by someone who understands Objectivism. A knowledge of psychology would probably help.

    By Blogger Myrhaf, at 12:35 PM  

  • Me me me!

    Okay, maybe I'm being a bit forward here, but I think I've really learned a lot over the past few years threading the shoals over at

    By Blogger Jennifer Snow, at 1:06 PM  

  • I think a good title would be "On-Topic Objectivism". Hmm, I could actually run this as serials on my blog, then compile it.

    Durn it, SNerd, you've got me thinking now.

    By Blogger Jennifer Snow, at 1:09 PM  

  • Good points made - but what I am wondering about with many Objectivists in these discussion forums are their almost pathological _need_ to convince and educate others in all of life's areas. I've never seen so many self-bloated experts as in these forums (The real experts are glaringly absent). It's like they, the "experts", are on a Mother Theresa mission, trying to stuff half-digested knowledge down the throaths of second-hand thinkers who will not be bothered to think for themselves. I say why bother? If people are honest and hard thinking they'll figure it out themselves, if not they'll ask intelligent questions and someone with an excess of spare time and benevolence will answer. Maybe many lay Objectivist's simply abound with good will for the poor lost souls in this world, I do not however. My motto is sod them, and get on with your own life.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 8:47 PM  

  • Starting with the idea that it is wrong to propogate half-digested knowledge, you conveniently extent that to the idea that it is wrong to propogate knowledge.

    That's faulty. You might have a point in there, if you can get it out of the intertwined thoughts and make it.

    By Blogger softwareNerd, at 4:05 AM  

  • That sounds like a *fantastic* idea for a book.

    By Anonymous Vicki, at 8:21 PM  

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