virus: Is Objectivism a Meme? per Rosdeitcher (long)

Reed Konsler (
Mon, 3 Mar 1997 13:09:50 -0500

>From: David Rosdeitcher <>
>Date: 03 Mar 97 03:02:13 EST
>Subject: virus: RE: Is Objectivism a Meme? per Rosdeitcher (long)

I would first like to note that this post was, on the whole, civil. I
appreciate that.

>I'd say the Santa Claus myth is a good metaphor for Level 3 and beyond in the
>sense that it is purposefully propagated. But while parents can take the
>off to admit it is an illusion, Level 3 is a speculation without evidence based
>on contradictory concepts. I think a better analogy for Level 3 was
>presented in
>a recent post by Tad that explained how, in Poland, people were told that
>Socialism was better than Capitalism, but it must be experienced to be
>understood. And that Communism was beyond Socialism, which also must be
>experienced. Another analogy is Zen masters implying a state of nirvana.

Such a state may exist. I have not experienced it, but to limit ones
conception to what one currently imagines possible is not effective. You
are disabling your ability to perceive.

>My impression is that Richard is presenting a position that many models,
>including objectivism, can be held by the mind at one time and that
>like other models, may be "useful". So, it appears that he is benevolently
>tolerant of objectivism, while I may appear to be fanatically intolerant
>of that
>which is not objectivism since I say that Objectivism cannot be discarded
>by any
>valid model, (which I explain below). What does Richard mean by Objectivism's
>"explanations of certain phenomena (propagation of memes) have gaps or
>inaccuracies in them"?

This is very clearly put. Your perception and Richard's perception are not
in agreement. Which is vaild? What if I were to say that I didn't agree
with either of you? Do you recall arguing with other Objectivists? Why
were you arguing, considering you all professed to believe and follow the
same doctrine? In those agruments, who's vision of Objectivism was (is)

>>My question for you, David, is : do you allow for the possibility of
>>understandings that exist either independently or separately from
>>Objectivism, that may have equal validity for describing objective
>No! Objectivism is based on the notions of 1)existence, exists, 2)I am
>consciously aware of it, and 3) A is A or things have their own identity.
>If you
>start with the idea that existence does not exist, then there would be nothing
>to understand. If you start with an idea that we are not conscious of
>then there would be no understandings possible. All subsequent positions from
>non-Objectivist premises would be self-refuting.

Also clear. I disagree. Buddhism uses the same words but does not come to
the same conclusions. Buddhists, especially in Zen, are very insistent on
comming to grips with "reality" and in knowing the "facts" of existence.
Centuries of philosophy have brought them to an extremely complicated and
subtle understanding of the way in which things have their own identity,
what the nature of this identity is, etc.

This is a single philosophy. You assert that Objectivism is basic. I
disagree. Richard asserts that Level 3 is basic. I disagree with this
also. The thing is, Richard can see things from my perspective. He laughs
at himself. He thinks, "ha, ha...I think I know what is going on...that's
an obvious delusion..." Richard can disagree with himself.

You cannot disagree with yourself. You cannot look from outside your own
ideology at yourself. As a result you are taking this all WAY TOO
SERIOUSLY. I'm not speaking from any position of superiority, and Richard
(in his moments of lucidity) isn't either. We are all susceptible to
ideological certianty.

>Yes, but within that basic acceptance of existence, consciousness, and
>an infinite number of models are acceptable. Objectivism realizes that the "map
>is not the territory" and that we as humans do not know everything. Some models
>may be useful in some cases, other models useful in other cases. For example,
>Hertz discovered radio waves with the model of light as a wave travelling
>through an aether, while Einstein used the model of light as a particle moving
>through a vacuum to make many discoveries. Depending on the context, various
>models can be used. Even philosophies that are believed to be non-objective can
>sometimes be used as models, within a limited context. For instance, General
>Eisenhower saw astrology as non-Objective, but he objectively used astrology to
>predict what Hitler would do, since Hitler used astrology. But, no knowledge is
>outside the boundaries of the basic axiomatic principles mentioned. This
>includes memetics. BTW, a terrific objective article on memetics, about how it
>is not the transmission of memes that is important, but the effects of the
>transmission of those memes, was in the recent post entitled "Replication and
>Fitness in memes" by Lee Daniel Crocker.

You are arguing that Objectivism is only way to build "right-thinking" and
that memetics is a useful tool. Richard is (kind of) arguing that 3-Level
is "right-thinking" and than objectivism and memetics are both useful
tools. Is this an argument over primacy? "In the beginning there was

In the beginning there was nothingness. All conciousness in constructed
from that basis. This is what I believe. But from your perspective I am
already "wrong-thinking" for disagreeing with you.

Can't you see me out here?


Reed Konsler