Monday, July 1, 2019

Ayn Rand Friedrich Nietzsche and Martin Heidegger

Rand's Nietzsche vs. Heidegger's Nietzsche

Two versions or interpretations of the famous German philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche exist: the Objectivist Nietzsche or the Atheist Existentialist Nietzsche, what can also be called Rand's Nietzsche vs. Heidegger's Nietzsche. The Existentialist interpretation of Nietzsche is widely known, while the Objectivist Nietzsche is virtually unknown, thanks in part to Ayn Rand explicitly rejecting him and denying his obvious and extensive influence upon her. The purpose of this article is to present a summary of the Objectivist Nietzsche.
Ayn Rand was in Nietzsche denial, saying throughout her adult life that Nietzsche did not influence her and that she owed him no debt – an outright lie, both historically and ideologically. Historically it is known that Ayn Rand read Nietzsche as a teen and went through a phase of explicit fandom (see for example the biography The Passion of Ayn Rand by Barbara Branden). Ideologically, the heroes of Rand's novels are the Overman and Objectivism is the new code of values called for by Nietzsche in his plea to replace Christian morality with something new. What is Objectivism? It is Ayn Rand doing what Nietzsche had said needed to be done, a half century earlier. Rand's criticism of altruism is based on Nietzsche's critique of what he called the Slave Morality, but before we explore how he influenced her, let us look at what Heidegger said and how it misled Nietzsche scholars.
Heidegger's Nietzsche says there is no absolute truth, there are no ideals, there is no such thing as knowledge or eternal principles, reason does not discover the truth, the Rationalism of Descartes and Kant is a fraud, there is only the ever-changing physical world in which we know nothing, we are all mere beings in time with no access to timeless truths or immortal ideals. Christian ideals are empty and meaningless, and God is dead, leaving behind a void, literally a nothingness, for us to believe in. It is in this sense that Existentialism is really Nihilism: Nietzsche removed God as what to believe in, so Existentialist Atheism believes in nothing.
Contrast this with Rand's Nietzsche, who says that Kant, Descartes, and Christianity are wrong, but, instead of a void left by their absence, we need something new to replace them, a new idealism of the physical world to believe in: we need “new values on new tablets,” to quote him, in other words we need a new morality, not no morality at all, to replace Judeo-Christian ethics. There is eternal truth, knowledge, and ideals, it is just that the Christian school of thought got them wrong. Nietzsche called for a new morality and Ayn Rand answered his call with the philosophy of Objectivism. Nietzsche predicted a Zarathustra-like sage to find new truth, and Rand's “Atlas Shrugged” created a brand new morality which did everything Nietzsche had said a new morality must accomplish. Ayn Rand is not a Nihilist, despite rejecting God: she gives us something to believe in, namely, the human ego, our ability to succeed and triumph and our potential for greatness. Her Nietzsche contrasts Roark's temple in “The Fountainhead,” a celebration of how high we can go, with Toohey's Stoddard Temple as religion, something whose greatness and grandeur makes us feel small and weak in comparison to it. That Randian attitude towards religion is deeply rooted in Nietzsche's books.
Nietzsche did not specifically predict Rand's ego as ideal or reason as means of knowledge. But he did anticipate her moral vision. Consider this statement, which summarizes one of his ideas: Slave Morality is used to manipulate the strong into being the slaves of the weak by making them feel guilty for being healthy. Now consider this as a sum takeaway of “Atlas Shrugged”: Altruism is used by the poor to manipulate the rich into being the slaves of the government by making them feel guilty for making money and being productive. Do you see how obvious and undeniable is the influence of Nietzsche upon Objectivism?
It is true that Friedrich Nietzsche opposed reason and knowledge, but it was reason and knowledge as defined by Descartes and Kant, reason as a non-physical disembodied thought gaining spiritual knowledge arising from an eternal deity, like reason transcending the world of empirical perception. Given that Kantian definition of the words “reason” and “knowledge”, Ayn Rand also opposed reason and knowledge, just like Nietzsche did. Whereas Heidegger's Nietzsche says reason and knowledge are empty illusions, Rand's Nietzsche clears a path to a new reason and knowledge based on empirical experience and the physical world. Rand thought of Descartes and Kant as champions of religion whereas Nietzsche thought of them as champions of reason, but the answer to the question of what enemy is Objectivism opposed to is the same if one defines both Rand and Nietzsche as philosophers of Objectivism.
This concludes a brief account of why Friedrich Nietzsche should be considered an Objectivist philosopher, given a plausible alternative to Heidegger's interpretation. For more details about what is Objectivism see my book explaining it.

Sunday, June 9, 2019

A New Theory of Investing

Here is a new theory of investing, inspired ny the libertarian belief that all government intervention in economics fails: try to guess where the market would have been, and then invest on that. In theory, eventually every government runs out of Other People's Money: the Fed can't drop rates below zero, there is a limit to how much money can be printed before inflation renders the currency worthless, they can only tax so much before a revolt. When the government fails, in theory your investment will make money. In an economic boom fueled by artificial manipulations, invest in a recession, or vice versa. Two objections can be raised: the government won't run out of money before you do betting against it, and your guess can only be mere conjecture with no proof in real financial data (because the "real" data comes from the Fed-manipulated economy). Both true. But for growth investors seeking a competitive edge against the efficient market, this a path--a risky path with no guarantees, but a new path, one which most other investors will shun. A government cannot create artificial prosperity forever, the only question is when the hammer will drop and on what, to correctly target your short sales and put options.

The Propertarian Solution to Climate Change

If climate change is real and is not a hoax (and that is a very big "if") then there is a distinctly libertarian solution. Imagine this world: all of the world's oceans and seas, and every cubic acre of air space in the sky, which right now are unowned, are put into lots and sold at auction. Then the sky and the sea are not public, instead they are privately owned. Each sky owner could post a drone sentry in his lot of air to monitor it. Now what would this mean for the pollutor who wants to dump poison into the air? The process would not be to lobby politicians and get a permit from the EPA. Instead, if a pollutor emits pollution into a privately owned lot of sky without permission, that is a violation of the rights of the owner. The pollutor must buy the right to pollute. And if the owner firmly decides "no", then that is the end of pollution in that air space, with no cost-benefit analysis weighing death against profits. If a robber wants to rob a home owner, we do not conduct a cost-benefit analysis to judge whether to issue a permit to the criminal, so why do we for pollution? This system would curtail pollution, and, if the rich liberals buy air, could end all climate change carbon emissions completely. A separate but related theory holds that if you breathe in or drink pollution you should have a legal cause of action for having your privately owned body poisoned under propertarian theory; this is probably true but the climate change argument is conceptually different. If we can license wavelength spectrum or govern ownership of lots of land, which we can, then auctioning and administering sky and sea lots should be logistically viable.

Monday, May 21, 2018

The Golden Wand Trilogy

Lord of the Rings Meets Game of Thrones Plus Dungeons & Dragons

A chance encounter puts a young thief named Zandrew in possession of a mysterious magic wand. Zandrew's life is torn apart when kings, demons, monsters, and armies come after the wand, which holds the secret to winning an ancient war between the Lord of Light and the Lord of Darkness.

In the golden wand, Zandrew sees the opportunity to seek revenge for the murder of his parents, who were killed by followers of the Lord of Darkness, the Dark God Vladius. Zandrew embarks upon a brave quest to use the golden wand to defeat Vladius, joined by valiant companions such as Rellora the noblewoman, Gennis the knight, Sheila the ninja, and Tyrona the sorceress. Standing in his way lies the many servants of the Lord of Darkness, including the insane, evil Magician-King named Deathly, the devious, manipulative dark Queen called the Eliminator, and the powerful, arrogant Emperor Kindahl Laum. In the end, after countless battles against soldiers, wizards, and all sorts of monsters, Zandrew and his friends will face the Lord of Darkness Vladius himself, with the fate of the Living World hanging in the balance of their final duel.

This swords and sorcery dark fantasy epic trilogy will delight fans of fantasy novels and please readers looking for a fun, action-packed experience. Included in this box set are all three novels in the trilogy: The Golden Wand, The Shadow of Heaven, and The Castle in the Sky. Get ready for an exciting adventure!

"Lord of the Rings meets Game of Thrones plus Dungeons & Dragons. If you like Terry Goodkind, Forgotten Realms, R.A. Salvatore, J.R.R. Tolkien, George R.R. Martin, Robert Jordan, Mercedes Lackey, or Glen Cook, you will love these novels! Sort of like a Final Fantasy RPG video game in the form of a trilogy of novels, where a group of heroes fights through dungeons to slay foes and accomplish a heroic quest. And they have a subtle sense of humor too, like Tolkien and Terry Pratchett and Piers Anthony and Douglas Adams did. Everything you love about fantasy novels, but done a lot better than your typical fantasy novel." Learn more at http://russellhasan.com

The Prince, The Girl and The Revolution: A Science Fiction Fairy Tale

Fans of Romeo and Juliet, The Hunger Games, 1984, Animal Farm, Brave New World, and Dune, will Love this Novel...

Chapter One: Prelude


An eternity ago, the human race spiraled out of control into wars between the nations of planet Earth. Genetically engineered super-soldiers were created to fight these wars. Eventually missiles were fired by many nations at each other, and a nuclear apocalypse brought about the collapse of human civilization into a wasteland of barbarians.
Now, centuries later, the world is comprised of independent city-states ruled by kings, and science is a forgotten memory. In the city-state of Aimsburg, the heirs of the genetically enhanced soldiers, now named the Elite, rule over the human population, called the Base.
Kevin, the Prince of the Elite, has been sent by his father the King on a dangerous mission. But Prince Kevin does not know that, instead of finding the secret society known only as the Rev, which he has been sent on a mission to destroy, he will discover the love of his life, and his empty, hollow existence will be given meaning and value, and a light of fire will be ignited within him that will make him see the world in a bold new way. He also does not know that, in his newfound love, lives the only hope for Aimsburg to escape from a war that is coming. For, just as war rocked the world ages ago, a new war, just as deadly, is brewing, and this war could destroy Prince Kevin and the love he will find....
Learn more at http://russellhasan.com


Golden Rule Libertarianism: A Defense of Freedom in Social, Economic, and Legal Policy

Gain Insight into Libertarian Politics and Free Market Economics. If you are interested in Ayn Rand, Murray Rothbard, Ludwig von Mises, Milton Friedman, Robert Nozick, or Ron Paul and Rand Paul, you should read this book!

An insightful mixture of political philosophy and policy advocacy, this book justifies libertarian politics using the Golden Rule of ethics to achieve a provocative new political theory called GOLD. GOLD defends the libertarian position on antiwar, drugs, prostitution, civil liberties, abortion rights, and gay marriage, GOLD explains why free market capitalism is necessary for freedom, and GOLD proves that capitalism helps the poor and racial minorities.

A sophisticated theory of GOLD economics is explained, which sheds light on the nature of money, prices, trade, supply and demand, inflation, and many other topics. The book also presents a bold new libertarian legal theory interpreting the United States Constitution and the common law. The book is organized into four parts, covering social policy, economic policy, legal policy, and the structure of government, and each part contains many different essays, with each essay analyzing an issue from the GOLD point of view.

Essential reading for libertarians and for everyone who wants to learn more about libertarian ideas.

Learn more at http://russellhasan.com