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Thread: Ayn Rand

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    Quote Originally Posted by Elfboy View Post
    Ayn Rand is the epitome of INTJ. personally I love her, while I consider myself only a moderate Objectivist, she makes many compelling and logical arguments.
    PS: she's not saying community service and helping people are evil, she's saying that putting others needs before your own is evil and leads to low productivity and ultimately to both parties being less well off.
    Please don't insult INTJs that way. Thanks.

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    Senior Member ZPowers's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elfboy View Post
    PS: she's not saying community service and helping people are evil, she's saying that putting others needs before your own is evil and leads to low productivity and ultimately to both parties being less well off.
    In a way, she is. Putting effort into something that you do not see any return on is directly in defiance of strict rational self-interest. There are zero social obligations. The only sin is something that loses you something, the only good something that gains you something. Ergo, murder or rape are not inherently evil, but are only evil if you get caught. If you do it and gain nothing from it, it is a neutral or a waste of time, and if you gain something it was good. Helping the downtrodden or acting with altruism costs time and/or money, and using your own resources like that without recouping something in return is really only logical evil in this ideology.

    This is, after all,

    A) a woman who claimed Immanuel Kant was the evilest man who ever lived. Recalling that Immanuel Kant's moral philosophy essentially stated that kindness and altruism are categorical imperatives and treating others, even those you dislike, with those attitudes should not be an option but a personal obligation of the best kind of human being and contrarily

    B) a woman who said the best summation of a real man's morals and ideas she has ever heard was "what is good for me is right," a quote attributed to William Hickman, a man who kidnapped, murdered and dismembered an 12-year-old girl while defending his actions. She seemed to admire the man even attempting to base a main character in one of her novels after him.

    So when you have an ethical system that says Immanuel Kant is pure evil and a guy who murders 12-year-olds is right on the money, something is seriously wrong with your ethical system in my book.

    It's also pretty much the ethos that caused the recent economic collapse, for example. You'd be hard pressed to argue Goldman-Sachs, who knowingly defrauded even it's own customers to make more money, didn't do absolutely everything with a cost/benefit analysis aimed at maximum profit where regard for the well-being of other human beings was absolutely moot (they didn't really dislike anyone, but they didn't care. If helping people were found to turn a bigger profit, they'd've done that in a heartbeat).

    Yeah, not a fan.

    PS

    I also find her origins as fighting against the sort of thing she saw in Russia as a child pretty ironic. Really, Josef Stalin was probably a pretty good Randian. A lot of what he did was to increase his power at the cost of his people's well-being, which fits the the objectivist view fairly well. That and the fact that it was recently discovered she used Medicare and other government programs near the end of her life under a different name. It also seems a little short-sighted: this revolution messed my childhood up, even though it helped out many others suffering in Russia before the revolution. If her life had been, by pure chance, made better by the revolution, would she have been a lifelong communist?
    Does he want a pillow for his head?

  3. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Savage Idealist View Post
    Her basic philosophy is that altruism and assistance of the community are evil, and that individualism and completely acting in the most selfish/rational method possible is good. This is evident in her door stopper novels, which from what I've heard aren't really that good.

    For some, her philosophy is good for them, if they despise weakness and desire power. Thus in such economic times, someone who follows Rand would abolish everything in the way of government assistance, taxes, and the like; capitalism in it's purest form.
    The first time I read Ayn Rand, It was interesting, but surreal as it was missing something...like Fi users for instance. She has the only enfp in atlas shrugged commit suicide by throwing herself off a bridge. So when young, it was like part of society just wasnt there...When I reread about two years back, it was amazing as the jungian themes in behavior are very obvious.

    Ayn Rand was an INTJ who saw the very, very worst sort of Fe ideologies in communism as a child and then decided to wage a philosophical war against it. She describes some very interesting descriptions of how she sees altruism-she saw people insisting on giving to another while simultaneously despising the other as a piece of garbage-not something Fi tends to do, She also saw how giving to others, without kicking them in the ass to make them work, actually hurts them. It is better that they go hungry and learn to work than they never learn to work due to handouts. She also described what the Fe-Ti political games can look like from a Te perspective very well. She also excels at capturing the Ni to Se drive in the INTJ.

    politically I am quite liberal and am a fan of socialism, but Rynd did a superb job of observing Jungian cognitive functions in play, even though she had no idea what she was observing.

    Her flaw was over generalization due to not having an underlying categorical model and in judging what she saw: Fe and Ti cognitive mechanics, on her own Te and Fi scales thus misunderstanding it terribly and creating a totally fucked up system in which altruism appears as "evil" because she could not understand the mindset of the Fe folks she was observing-it was just too different from her own. Tert Fi fail..

    Her philosophy would only succeed if the world was made up of Te and Fi users only. It would actually be incredibly detrimental to allow the TPs to embrace this sort of philosophy.

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    Quote Originally Posted by ZPowers View Post
    B) a woman who said the best summation of a real man's morals and ideas she has ever heard was "what is good for me is right," a quote attributed to William Hickman, a man who kidnapped, murdered and dismembered an 12-year-old girl while defending his actions. She seemed to admire the man even attempting to base a main character in one of her novels after him.

    So when you have an ethical system that says Immanuel Kant is pure evil and a guy who murders 12-year-olds is right on the money, something is seriously wrong with your ethical system in my book.
    This is exactly what is wrong with her logic. "What is good for me" could involve rape, child molestation, burning down people's houses, murdering, pillaging, et al.

    I actually don't consider her to be a very rational person at all. I think she was a disturbed INTJ with Ni/Fi paranoia, and she had a particular fear of authoritarian gov't due to exposure to early Soviet communism. The bitch was batshit crazy. (Note that I'm not saying this happens to all people exposed to Soviet communism. I'm just saying it influenced her perception of the world. I actually had a Russian INTJ math professor who called Ayn Rand "crazy Russian woman.")

    Also, she was obsessed in an erotic context with the idea of men working. She thought it was smexy. There's nothing wrong with that, I can see her point of view, but I don't see how that's relevant to an ethical system.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Orobas View Post
    Her flaw was over generalization due to not having an underlying categorical model and in judging what she saw: Fe and Ti cognitive mechanics, on her own Te and Fi scales thus misunderstanding it terribly and creating a totally fucked up system in which altruism appears as "evil" because she could not understand the mindset of the Fe folks she was observing-it was just too different from her own. Tert Fi fail..
    Is it strange that I actually agreed with many of her descriptions, because I thought it was true they probably came/come across that way to many, and in really entrenched-filled-with-red-tape-and-protocol organizations, it can become a reality? And, too, there are certainly individuals such as she caricatured who are hypocritical and who are rather as she portrayed them; I think you're correct though that she's disregarding or unaware of their core/actual motivations - and how they're quite different from her own. She's just viewing from the outside and judging from her own lens; but, doesn't mean in some cases her lens isn't more accurate than not.

    I agree her generalizations were very skewed, but I also think there is truth in her vision/view; which is why I was so intensely bothered by it. I think it was this underlying truth that made me so horribly depressed while reading both books; well, I should say that I remember really liking The Fountainhead (as did my infj friend), and agreeing with a lot of her premises. It didn't bother me. However Atlas Shrugged (which isn't so much a novel as a repetitious expounding of her philosophy such that you could easily remove 500 pages of repeated rants) ... Atlas Shrugged threw me into a terrible multi-month funk. I'm not kidding. It just depressed me so much, having to figure out the nuggets of truth in her premises and the sheer falsehoods where she was blind to/ignoring certain things, or just plain... skewed and projecting -- as you say, Orobas.

    In the end it's her own vision/perception of reality; some of it is true, or there are kernals of truth that need to be woven into a more complete vision. The rest of it? I had to purge from my system so that it didn't leave mucky residue within me.
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    Originally posted by Orobas
    The first time I read Ayn Rand, It was interesting, but surreal as it was missing something...like Fi users for instance. She has the only enfp in atlas shrugged commit suicide by throwing herself off a bridge. So when young, it was like part of society just wasnt there...When I reread about two years back, it was amazing as the jungian themes in behavior are very obvious.

    politically I am quite liberal and am a fan of socialism, but Rynd did a superb job of observing Jungian cognitive functions in play, even though she had no idea what she was observing.
    Perhaps she had some knowledge of Jung and purposely impemented it into her writing?

    Ayn Rand was an INTJ who saw the very, very worst sort of Fe ideologies in communism as a child and then decided to wage a philosophical war against it. She describes some very interesting descriptions of how she sees altruism-she saw people insisting on giving to another while simultaneously despising the other as a piece of garbage-not something Fi tends to do, She also saw how giving to others, without kicking them in the ass to make them work, actually hurts them. It is better that they go hungry and learn to work than they never learn to work due to handouts. She also described what the Fe-Ti political games can look like from a Te perspective very well. She also excels at capturing the Ni to Se drive in the INTJ.
    I agree that she is INTJ. But her whole philosophy is largely reactionary, taking a completely opposite stance to communism in general. And while I agree that individualism is good in that can encourage people to be independent, there is little reason to embrace it the way she did.

    Her philosophy would only succeed if the world was made up of Te and Fi users only. It would actually be incredibly detrimental to allow the TPs to embrace this sort of philosophy.
    I doubt it. I'm a Fi-Te user and her philosophy is not something that I could live by, and I imagine many other Te-Fi users would agree.

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    Senior Member Santosha's Avatar
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    I really like most of Rands work, and think she raises very interesting ideas with altruism. I'd reccomend her in the way I'd reccomend Vonnegut. But as mentioned before, she was a fictional writer, and many of her ideas have been challenged. I'll throw this little nugget into the mix.. only because I was pretty shocked when this came out.

    http://boingboing.net/2011/01/28/ayn...ok-govern.html

    However, Rand addresses this exact issue in one of her essays, which says it is perfectly acceptable to reclaim the money govt. stole from you to begin with. The fact that Rand did this is really not inconsistent with her ideas, at all.
    Man suffers only because he takes seriously what the gods made for fun - Watts

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    Quote Originally Posted by Orobas View Post
    Her philosophy would only succeed if the world was made up of Te and Fi users only. It would actually be incredibly detrimental to allow the TPs to embrace this sort of philosophy.
    I disagree. I don't think Te/Fi users would even accept her system as a matter of course. I frankly feel that damaged Ni/Fi had much more of an influence on her thinking. I don't even think she had "Fi fail." She had LOTS of Fi...just really fucked up, childish Fi.

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    Rand herself I cant read, her novels are bad and her philosophy reads a little worse than Lenin in its myopia but Samuel Brittan, a UK hardline capitalist who supported Thatcher but also has interesting perspectives on Keynes too, made a good case in one of his books for reading Rand because she provides, almost in characture, a counterweight to much cultural and literary attack upon selfishness.

    As I understand it Rand doesnt simply rage against communism, which is only the latest incarnation of what she hated, but religion also, the idea of self-sacrifice was anathema to her and the very best, which I would suggest is too generous, you could say about her ideas is that she wanted to create a world without sacrifice.

    I believe that everyone has a vision of the good but problems arise when they are myopic or blinkered and Rand was acknowledgely and deliberately so.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Marmie Dearest View Post
    I disagree. I don't think Te/Fi users would even accept her system as a matter of course. I frankly feel that damaged Ni/Fi had much more of an influence on her thinking. I don't even think she had "Fi fail." She had LOTS of Fi...just really fucked up, childish Fi.
    I'm inclined to agree that it was primarily NiFi -- perhaps almost exclusively Ni? Perhaps that's why I was so alarmed/affected by her World/Vision. I mean, her writings kept reiterating it over and over again - building and weaving this complex Ni vision. I was caught in her Ni web and felt dirty, but also totally followed the thought patterns and how and why she believed what she believed.

    In essence, I rather agreed with her notion of the Individual - which is why I liked The Fountainhead. I had major problems with her application & extension of her notion of the Individual to Society - which is why The Atlas Shrugged had serious issues and blind spots/weaknesses. (I suppose that's why I'm INFJ and she's INTJ! )
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