Quote of the week...please share your favourite line from Ayn Rand's writings

“Happiness is that state of consciousness which proceeds from the achievement of one's values.”

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

The Morality Of Abortions

In the 2010 state ballot in Colorado, the 62nd amendment will appear which states that the term ‘person’ shall apply to every human being from the beginning of the biological development of that human being”. It would mean the “sanction” of full legal rights to embryos. It wishes to eliminate abortion and all sorts of contraceptives.

Abortions, it is often argued, would break up the natural order and balance in the ‘society’. No one cares to ask the question- ‘Natural order’ and ‘balance’-For whom? The inanimate matter doesn’t have any rights; nor does a ‘fictitious body. What would it mean to state that it is not the individuals as such that matter, but it is the interacting individuals -‘Society’-that matter? If the individuals doesn’t matter one way or another, & the interacting individuals do matter, it can only imply that it is the interactions that matter. Or else, it could mean that the benefit derived by some of the interacting individuals takes precedence over the rights of others.

Let’s have a look at the implication of those arguments from morality. Let things be as it is. Let the parents suffer. Let the child suffer all her life. Let the ‘society’ suffer as a result.-And let the interactions be preserved-Based on a false theory, a contradiction which has no justification whatsoever. As Ayn Rand observed: “The task of raising a child is a tremendous, lifelong responsibility, which no one should undertake unwittingly or unwillingly. Procreation is not a duty: human beings are not stock-farm animals. For conscientious persons, an unwanted pregnancy is a disaster; to oppose its termination is to advocate sacrifice, not for the sake of anyone’s benefit, but for the sake of misery qua misery, for the sake of forbidding happiness and fulfillment to living human beings.”

Morality is not a spoon that hangs on your roof. It’s a set of rules to live consciously and self-responsibly. We shouldn’t forget that the legalization of abortion in the many parts of the United States brought down crimes unbelievably. Steven D Levitt and Stephen J Dubner informs us: “What else might we look for in the data to establish an abortion-crime link? One factor to look for would be a correlation between each state’s abortion rate and its crime rate. Sure enough, the states with the highest abortion rates in the 1970s experienced the greatest crime drops in the 1990s, while states with low abortion rates experienced smaller crime drops. Since 1985, states with high abortion rates have experienced a roughly 30 percent drop in crime relative to low-abortion states.” Even if common good is the standard of morality, the arguments in support of abortion still hold.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Nietzsche and the Nazi’s

The recently published “Nietzsche and the Nazi’s A Personal View” by Stephen Hicks, an Objectivist is a brilliant analysis of the philosophical roots of Nazism.

Hicks tells us how philosophy plays a dominant role in shaping history. The part I find particularly impressive is the section in which Hicks deals with Anti-individualism and collectivism. He points out that the National Socialists were collectivistic and anti-individualistic in a horrible sense. They rejected the idea that men are ends in themselves. Hicks reaffirms Ayn Rand’s contention that Nietzsche’s individualism is largely overstated. While I don’t find the idea of individuals creating themselves from scratch quite plausible, we are by and large responsible for our own destiny. Nietzsche believed the exact opposite, and such determinism can never be an adequate foundation for Individualism.

The counterfeit individualism of Nietzsche is evident in this passage:
“Nietzsche believes that most individuals have no right to exist and—more brutally—he asserts that if they were sacrificed or slaughtered that would be an improvement. In Nietzsche’s own words: “mankind in the mass sacrificed to the prosperity of a single stronger species of man—that would be an advance.”And again: “One must learn from war: one must learn to sacrifice many and to take one’s cause seriously enough not to spare men.” It is hard to see as an individualist

Thursday, October 14, 2010

'Ayn Rand - India' features among "30 Best Blogs for Exploring Objectivism"

A website called "Accredited Online Colleges" has posted an article on the best blogs for exploring Objectivism. Our blog features in the list at number 14.

ARI announces first ever 'Atlas Shrugged' Video Contest

  Contest entry deadline: December 8, 2010.     
Atlas Shrugged Lights. Camera. Activism. Enter the Atlas Shrugged Video Contest. Get Details.
  Here's your chance to speak out on how Ayn Rand's epic story relates to current issues of the day or in your own life. Enter the Atlas Shrugged Video Contest.

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Each entry will be judged on originality, creativity and persuasiveness. Prizes of up to $5,000 or an Apple iPad will be awarded by the Ayn Rand Institute.

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