Technology and the New State of Nature

Civilization is the progress toward a society of privacy. The savage’s whole existence is public, ruled by the laws of his tribe. Civilization is the process of setting man free from man.” — Ayn Rand, The Fountainhead I. The Philosophies of Nature and the State Society, social contract theorists argue, breeds security. By establishing a government, one injects some rigidity into the civic landscape. In the untamed wilds of anarchic space, man is free to transgress…

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Government As Panopticon

Trump’s State of the Union suggests there are no societal ills outside the bounds of federal power. During Tuesday night’s State of the Union address, President Trump evoked the spirit of the Founding Fathers and their quest to create a government that, by placing strictures upon its actions, secured tangible, exerciseable freedom for its people. “America,” the president declared, “was founded on liberty and independence — not government coercion, domination, and control.” But these lofty…

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Conscience and the Law

Your conscience is your exclusive property. It’s the voice in your head, the feeling in your gut. It is an entity entirely internal to you. The warning bells it sounds when choices likely to lead to bad ends are near are a product of the workings of your mind. Morality is a product of your intellection; it is up to you to define right and wrong for yourself and up to you to determine in…

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Trump’s Latest Attacks on GM Reveal Feudalism of a Government That Promotes Public Welfare

There is no federal official whose mandate it is to protect American workers. Business is a private endeavor. Individuals hone and apply their own talents to build a business which rises or falls on their judgment and the merit of their work. The act of production is an act of consummation: a part of a person’s soul is poured into that which is born of their mind and their muscle. The creator alone has sovereign…

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This Election Day, Don’t Let Anyone Tell You How to Act

Come November 6th, this political theorist is going Galt. I’m the only effective advocate for my interests. No voice but mine can adequately represent them. To make a conciliatory choice and vote for a political representative whose ideology departs from mine is an act of self-alienation. Coercion is generally perceived as a negative, especially any time government is concerned. Except, apparently, when it comes to the choosing of political representatives. Then, not only is at…

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Immigrants and Utilization: Why Social and Economic Value Shouldn’t Drive Immigration Policy

President Trump’s America First rhetoric is motivated by a stated desire to protect native-born citizens and advance their interests. But by doing so, he takes away from individuals the ability to define their interests for themselves. Immigration is often made palatable in terms of the value brought by new citizens to communities with established social and cultural traditions, as if immigration were an act of utility, benefitting primarily the community receiving an individual who, for…

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Political Decisions and the “Human Element”

Blind justice is a concept inherent to most Americans’ thinking about the nation’s legal framework. Equality comes from dispassionate analysis: judges and juries are not to consider the person standing before them, but the facts and circumstances of an alleged aggression. Does analysis of these facts and circumstances rationally lead to the conclusion that the accused has committed the crime with which they are charged? The age, race, gender and personal creed of the person…

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