the objectivist mind

Something that has always intrigued me is when folks who embrace an objectivist frame of mind come into contact. In particular, how some can establish this initial rapport when their ideas are similiar. But, sooner or later, one of them will argue something that the other does not agree with.

And, so, while they may be in near alignment on most everything else, one of them invariably comes to insist that the other must agree with the whole package. Theirs.

Before you know it the cordial comraderie of the initial exchange has started to crumble. And, until one of them concedes that the other is right, the exchange can then devolve into a truly vicious quagmire of insults and accusations.

Call it, say, the Ayn Rand Syndrome. All of her followers [particularly those in the “collective”] had to agree with her on almost, well, everything.

Now, at first, she would patiently try to explain to them the error of their ways. And then, if they conceded her point, they were welcomed back into the fold. But, if they did not concede, they could literally be excommunicated and shunned. You know, like the Amish.

And that, in my view, is why an authoritarian, ideological, objectivist mind [anchored in Reason] is barely distinguishable at times from religion

And it all revolves further around the psychological tendency of most objectivists to find some belief system that they can anchor “me” too. It almost doesn’t make any difference which one it is. That’s why over and over again you read about one or another new “cult”. You listen to their own rendition of the objective truth and wonder: How in the world can anyone actually believe that!

But they do. And they do because such objectivist contraptions amount to little more than a psychological defense mechanism. And, at times, on a truly grand scale.

Or so it seems to me.

Objectivism is subjectivism made practical.

But what does this mean “out in the world” of human interaction? It’s too abstract. Something is objectively true [for me] when we are able to establish that it is true for everyone. In other words, that it transends the personal opinions embodied in dasein. And that it involves knowledge we can all share whereby conflicting goods are not a factor.

Again: that crucial distinction between “Mary had an abortion” and “Mary’s abortion is immoral”. The distinction between mathematics, the physical laws of nature [including human biology], empirical facts, logic, things that are true by definition etc. and something that revolves instead around moral and political value judgements, around “I”, around the existence of God.

Which is to say, around the question, “how ought I to live?”

Now, there may well be an objective moral and political truth “out there”. There may well be an existing God. But to what extent are those who claim to believe this able to demonstrate that this is true beyond what they merely construe to be true “in their head”?

When you discuss your own faith here, I am always thinking: “Okay, he believes this is true. Existentially, all of the variables in his own unique life have predisposed him to believe this. But why should what he believes is true about the existence of God be something that others believe too?”

Why is this important?

Because, with The End looming ever larger and larger, what can a believer tell others about God pertaining to, say, Judgment Day? How does his/her own understanding of God relate precisely to the question of how one ought to live in order that immortality and salvation might become more tangible?

And what [in relationship to God] could be more practical than that?

I have been thinking about the person who needs objective goals and thinking.
The world seems, seems, to be divided up by those who need security and those
who need freedom. Those who are objective minded, are ones who need the
security of god, of the police state, of the whole objective apparatus.
Those who are subjective favored, once again seems, to be about freedom.
those who favor subjective seems to be more of the roll with the punches
types. They seem to be more flexible and able to adapt to changing conditions.
They aren’t as fixed in time and space as those who favor objective thinking.
Rules for the subjective person are far more flexible than rules for the objective type.
For the subjective person, there are more than one way to accomplish any given goal,
whereas for an objective type, there is only one goal and one means to accomplish
that goal. Situational ethics are an subjective person forte, not an objective person.
of course, you get those clowns who say, I am not that way and thus your whole premise
is wrong and my answer is, generally, generally speaking this is true for the objective
and the subjective person. There are of course exceptions to every single case I can present.
that doesn’t void the premise.


Amazing characteristic, so different from people who are not objectivists. Non-objectivists do not disagree with eachother or find the actions of other ones something they want to struggle against. Non-objectivists either do not argue with eachother or, I assume, argue in a special way that is not really disagreement, but something like competing qualification.

A: I cannot be sure, but it seems to me if one wants to improve the situation of women one would need to…
B:One cannot objectively determine if what you suggest is correct, but I seem to note that when women…
And then one votes Democrat and the other votes Republican and stuff happens just like after discussions between objectivists, real stuff happens, out in the real world.

But of course non-objectivists hate only objectivists so the world they would make, they seem to think but cannot be objectively sure even if they really think this, would be a subjectively better place for them they think, because people would seem to get along, or at least not seem to be disagreeing very clearly, which is pleasant or would seem to be if it were, since everyone would acknowledge they everyone had only opinions except this opinion and that objectivists are bad. Even lions would stop hunting.

Again, for me, it is not that one person is an objectivist and another is a subjectivist [or a perspectivist, or an existentialist, or a deconstructionist, or a nihilist etc]; rather it is the extent to which one is able to persuade others that what they believe to be true “in their head” is something that, in fact, all rational human beings should believe in turn.

And then how what is deemed to be true rationally can be translated into a moral or a political narrative that revolves either around a deontological approach to human behavior or a consequentialist [utilitarian] approach.

But: Not a discussion that takes place entirely “up there” in the world of definitions and deductions. The world of Will Durant’s “epistemologists”. Rather, a discussion in which those definitions and deductions are integrated into the world of actual human interactions that come into conflict over moral and political value judgments.

As I noted to K above, I try to make the distinction more between that which we can demonstrate objectively and that which seems beyond the reach of an objective truth. That which we believe by and large only “in our head”.

When I call someone an objectivist here it revolves around those who insist that, with respect to conflicting value judgments and human identity, we can encompass an objective truth the equivalent of those embedded in math and science and logic and empirical fact.

And, sure, maybe someone can. Maybe these truths are out there. All I can note is that I have myself never come upon an agrument [of late] that convinces me of this. Although in the past [as I have noted a number of times] I did subscribe to one or another religious/political agenda which [at the time] I construed to be objectively true.

Here at ILP, we have any number of folks who argue for any number of “objectives truths” – truths revolving around any number of narratives that revolve around differing [conflicting] Gods and differing [conflicting] secular, ideological systems said to be grounded in Reason.

Not sure what your point is here. All I am arguing is that any particular point of view regarding gender relationships will be rooted in dasein, conflicting goods and political economy. In other words, neither Republicans [conservatives] nor Democrats [liberals] have provided me with the objective truth here – an argument such that I would agree that anyone who claims to be a rational human being must subsribe to it. Instead, I am confronted with political arguments rooted in historical, cultural and experiential assumptions.

Arguments like these for example: … to-society

But, again, that is of late. I once did embrace various moral/political convictions regarding gender roles – values that I deemed to be objective. I just don’t think that way anymore.

On the other hand, I would be completely contradicting myself if I insisted I never will again. I just situate my own agenda here and now [as a moral nihilist] in what I call my “dasein dilemma”.

This is entirely too abstract for me. Pick a value judgment in which there are conflicting moral and political agendas and let’s discuss our views here as they relate to actual human interactions that do come into conflict over value judgments.

I don’t really there is a clear cut distinction. However one thing may be said of objectionsits’ they are far more fearful of others’ opinion, whereas subjectivist are prone to ignore any critique of their point of view, and deny those. Such denial may become noticeable at the point of separation, or even create it, thereby alienating themselves. As a consequence of that, they will redouble their efforts at the blame game.

Again, too abstract.

Instead, let’s bring this down to earth. Let’s discuss “objectivism” and “subjectivism” in the context of actual human interactions. What are we able to reasonably establish as true objectively for all and what instead will tend ro revolve more around personal opinions [prejudicies] that have come into conflict as a result of subjective points of view.

You can choose the existential context.