VIDEO: Socialism’s Legacy – Alan Charles Kors

Following the collapse of the Soviet Union, many optimists claimed that the world was now somehow “after socialism.” There are reasons, however—structural, political, moral, and intellectual—why the collapse of Communism did not entail the end of socialism. This talk will explain why there can be no “after socialism” until the West comes to ultimate terms with the catastrophic legacy of international communism.

ALAN CHARLES KORS (B.A., Princeton; M.A. and Ph.D., Harvard) is the Henry Charles Lea Professor of History at the University of Pennsylvania, and he is a co-founder of the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE). He is the author of numerous books on European intellectual history and American higher education. Dr. Kors has served on the National Council for the Humanities, and been honored with many awards, including the National Humanities Medal and the Bradley Prize.

Learn more at: clemson.edu/​capitalism

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Video: The Doctor Cog in the Obamacare Washington Machine

Health Care Reform: Setting Doctors Free [Livestream]

Dr. John David Lewis: Obamacare is a moral assault on free people, and an attack on human life itself.

Government medicine treats doctors as cogs in a giant machine, run from Washington, as if treating patients required no independent thought or action. Twenty-eight states have filed suit against Obamacare, claiming it is unconstitutional. But it is much worse than that. It is a moral assault on free people, and an attack on human life itself. John Lewis has a unique perspective on this issue, both as an advocate for individual rights and as a cancer patient. Don’t miss this hard-hitting lecture on the deepest evil of government medicine.

John David Lewis is a Visiting Associate Professor in the Philosophy, Politics, and Economics Program at Duke University, and a senior research scholar in history and classics at the Social Philosophy and Policy Center, Bowling Green State University. He has taught at the University of London and Ashland University, and is a fellow of the Anthem Foundation for Objectivist Scholarship. He has a PhD in classics from the University of Cambridge. He is an outspoken proponent of free market medicine.

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Event: The History of Ancient Greece — The Early Fourth Century

From John David Lewis Ph.D.:

I will be doing a three-day course on Greece in the early fourth-century: The History of Ancient Greece: The Early Fourth Century.

The fourth century BC is often seen as the decline of the Greeks, a process that began with the defeat of Athens by Sparta in the Peloponnesian War. But this gives short-shrift to a vital period. At this time the Athenians achieved a stable government under decent legal processes, the Greeks developed nascent federal political systems, markets thrived, orators brought forth groundbreaking ideas, and the philosophical schools of Plato, Aristotle and others were established. In bloody clashes the slave society of Sparta was neutralized, and freedom greatly extended. This course focuses on the defining political events of the first half of the century. Emphasis is placed on the political and military events that set the stage for the rise of the Macedonians under Alexander the Great.

The course draws in part from chapter two of Dr. Lewis’s book, Nothing Less than Victory: Decisive Wars and the Lessons of History.

Check it out here–and sign up!

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RPR Interview with Dr. John David Lewis (Audio)

RPR has an insightful Interview with Dr. John David Lewis on Islam and
the war on terror. Dr. Lewis talks about the left vs the right: who
presents a bigger threat? Is Marxism a religion? Why is America’s
education system so bad? How is President Obama doing on foreign policy?
Just how bad is Obamacare? and much, much more. Definitely worth a
listen. [Link]

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What is The Best Single Book To Learn About Ayn Rand’s Philosophy of Objectivism?

Ayn Rand’s philosophical ideas are spread through hundreds of fiction and non-fiction works, radio addresses, taped and untaped lectures, seminars, and discussions.

Until the publication of Leonard Peikoff’s magnum opus Objectivism: The Philosophy of Ayn Rand, there was no single book, the interested student of philosophy could turn to, that presented Rand’s philosophy as a single integrated whole.

Thanks to Dr. Peikoff this is no longer the case.

Leonard Peikoff’s *Objectivism: The Philosophy of Ayn Rand* covers every philosophical topic that Ayn Rand held as important–from the objectivity of concepts and the metaphysical nature of man, to the virtue of selfishness and the purpose of art, this book covers it–and more.

Whether you are a scientist seeking to ground the principles of physics in reality, or an artist who wishes to understand the nature of art, or a philosopher puzzled over the problem of universals, or a teenager wondering about the meaning of life, or a historian wishing to grasp the link between the events in Nazi Germany and Ancient Greece, or a journalist seeking to grasp the cause of the slaughters in Bosnia and the cause of the slaughters in the schools of America, or a mother who wants to teach her child when one should and should not lie, or a businessman engaged in the virtue of making money, or a psychologist wishing to understand the relationship between the emotions and thought, or a college student in search of earth shattering ideas for a graduate thesis, or a teacher wishing to understand the way the mind works, or a priest searching for a rational basis for morality — Leonard Peikoff’s Objectivism: The Philosophy of Ayn Rand will have something of immense value to offer you — intellectually, morally, practically, and personally.

It is clear (Peikoff is a lucid writer), organized (the book presents Rand’s philosophy from the ground up, thus showing how her philosophical statement that capitalism is the moral system is inseperably tied to the metaphysical observation that A is A), and tightly written (Peikoff focuses only on essentials).

If you ever had any questions on the philosophy that Ayn Rand presented in her novels, or on the subject of philosophy in general (college students take note), this book has the answers you are looking for.

You may not agree with everything in the 494 pages this engrossing book. You will agree that it was worth reading.

Highly recommend. Required reading for all individuals interested in understanding Ayn Rand’s ideas.

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John Lewis Nothing Less From Victory

New look and new information on Dr. Lewis’ site.

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Sneak Preview Film Screening Event: Dystopia Now? The World of “Atlas Shrugged”

From Objectivist Summer Conference 2011:

Sneak Preview Film Screening Event: Dystopia Now? The World of “Atlas Shrugged”
Saturday, July 2, 2011; 9–10:45 PM 

Come join us for a sneak preview of the soon-to-be-released feature documentary Dystopia Now? The World of “Atlas Shrugged.” Producer/Director Chris Mortensen will screen his controversial 90-minute film on the genesis, impact and continued relevance of Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged.

This extensively researched film includes enlightening interviews with Rand biographers, scholars, prominent businessmen, journalists and others, as well as never-before-seen footage of Ayn Rand. Don’t miss this chance to see the almost-completed film before this fall’s official release. Registration information for this event is available on our Registration Options and Pricing page.

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Objectivist Politics Podcast: Patriot Act Provisions

Download Amy Peikoff’s latest podcast on current political issues from an Objectivist perspective at Don’t Let It Go…Unheard #15. Topics covered include: The Patriot Act provision extensions, Rand Paul’s proposed amendments to the Patriot Act, and the main-stream media’s coverage of it all; The Trade Adjustment Assistance Program; Egypt reopens its border with Gaza; and more.

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How to Save Israel

From Ron Pisaturo:

This call for 1967 [border] lines, along with the qualification about swaps, illustrates the absurd extreme to which Obama will push his evil premise … that the solution to the problem between Israelis and Palestinians should be based on “the needs of both sides.”

For Obama and a long line of American Presidents before him, right and wrong, good and evil, earned and unearned are irrelevant considerations; what counts is need. Since Palestinians need just as much land and wealth as Israelis do, and since Israelis currently have more of these things, it is Israel that must make concessions.

See the full post at Ron’s blog.

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I Am John Galt Reviewed in Capitalism Magazine

Professor Harry Binswanger gives his thoughts on I Am John Galt over at Capitalism Magazine:

Given the book’s title, and given that the authors are not known Objectivists, I expected pretentiousness and ignorance. I was wrong; I’m pleased to say it is neither. Despite its shortcomings, the book has two great virtues: 1. it exhibits a far better understanding of Atlas Shrugged and Objectivism than I can recall seeing from anyone outside “the movement,” and 2. the writing is supple and first-handed, gliding you comfortably along a 300-page journey. 

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Salsman: Kill The Un-American Patriot Act

Richard Salsman over at Forbes.com in Kill The Un-American Patriot Act: makes the case for repealing this monstrous act:

[…] The misdirection and dishonesty so emblematic of the Act is dramatized
by its acronym, “USA PATRIOT,” which stands for “Uniting and
Strengthening America by Providing Appropriate Tools Required to
Intercept and Obstruct Terrorism.” No law that so violates Fourth
Amendment rights can be said to “unite” or “strengthen” America. The Act
effectively jettisons that long-cherished principle of civilized
criminal law and American jurisprudence: that one is presumed innocent
until (and unless) proven guilty. Under the Act we’re all assumed to be
guilty unless we prove our innocence
. What could be more un-American than that?

[…] Americans have been made no safer since 9/11, even though the PATRIOT
Act has dramatically enhanced the prerogative and power of the CIA, FBI,
DHS, DEA, IRS, ATF, TSA and the police to search phone records, e-mails
and medical documents, or to issue search warrants absent judicial
pre-approvals. The Act also has expanded the Treasury’s power to invade
financial privacy and transactions.

The Act has significantly broadened the arbitrary discretion of law enforcement and immigration authorities to detain and deport even legal immigrants suspected of terrorism-related acts or financing. With the TSA, perfectly innocent American travelers are subjected to horrible and invasive treatment which if experienced at their workplace would be deemed unlawful sexual harassment. In the end, absolutist governments are staffed by officials just like these – those who operate above and beyond the law which others must abide.

That quintessential American, Benjamin Franklin, wrote correctly, in 1759, that “those who would give up essential liberty to purchase a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety.” Indeed, without liberty we must lack the prosperity and righteousness needed to defend our security. These principles are embodied in the U.S. Constitution, specifically in its Fourth Amendment, which is supposed to ensure that “the right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.” The PATRIOT Act and its auxiliary measures work slowly but surely to eviscerate the Fourth Amendment.

[…] By definition, anyone who dares to oppose the PATRIOT Act is presumed to be “un-patriotic.” In fact, by opposing it we oppose an American police state. That’s precisely where this horrid Act inexorably moves us, especially given the open-ended nature of the so-called “war on terrorism,” which is an unwinnable war aimed at a tactic which involves no specific end date yet also no specific place on earth where it might not occur. This irrational, self-defeating scheme of “security” entails an eternal and ubiquitous state of emergency – a setting which only empowers government to impose “extraordinary measures” to curb and quash our rights and liberties, without end or limit. It’s well known that today’s conservatives care little for our Fourth Amendment rights, but what about those hypocritical civil libertarians, who were right to protest and fight when Mr. Bush violated rights with the Act, but now stand by silently as Mr. Obama does the same thing?

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If Obamacare is so great, why do so many people want to get out from under it?

Writes Michael Barone at the Washington Examiner:

[…] If Obamacare is so great, why do so many people want to get out from under it? More specifically, why are more than half of those 3,095,593 in plans run by labor unions, which were among Obamacare’s biggest political supporters? Union members are only 12 percent of all employees but have gotten 50.3 percent of Obamacare waivers.

[…] Punishing enemies and rewarding friends — politics Chicago style — seems to be the unifying principle that helps explain the Obamacare waivers, the NLRB action against Boeing and the IRS’ gift-tax assault on 501(c)(4) donors. [Obama skirts rule of law to reward pals, punish foes]

 

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