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Monday, February 25, 2008

A Personal Note on Blogging and Objectivism

Recently there has been some discussion on HBL about the need for Objectivists to spend less time bemoaning the sad state of political affairs and more time introducing Objectivist ideas to young people because they are the future of this country.

I agree with one caveat: posting on bad ideas can be a good thing if it is shown why the ideas are bad. For example, it is a good thing for a doctor to advise a patient on all the bad physical consequences of being an alcoholic or doing drugs. People need to be aware of the threat to their physical well being. So people also need to be made aware of bad ideas that may imperil the well being of their mind thus threatening their survival ability.

I have tried to point out a number of bad ideas on my blog and frame them so the reader could know why they're bad. But I have decided the HBLers are right. More advocacy of good ideas is sorely needed. And I agree further that the main target of those rational ideas should be the young. Now I already do a little bit of this even though I've barely posted on it before. I recently left a few paragraphs in the comment section of an op-ed in the student newspaper Iowa State Daily of that University. I occasionally write op-eds to the local Detroit newspapers. Sometimes letter writers say they are students or otherwise give away their age so I know some young folk read the editorial pages. I have even dropped off a few papers introducing the Objective Standard to a few local libraries, one of them a junior college.

In any event I have decided to visit a few more student papers and see about posting there. In this vein, The Undercurrent, a student newsletter which is delivered to a number of universities nationally, has a new blog which I have added to my blogroll. I highly recommend it. But the best way to get to young minds is to buy books, lectures and interviews on CD and tape from the Ayn Rand Book Store. It's a win/win situation. You get more in-depth knowledge about her philosophy of Objectivism and ARI uses the profits to place more books into classrooms.

This blog of mine is a part time effort. I'm retired from plastic injection molding but not from life. I have a few other irons in the fire. Advocating Objectivist principles is not the only reason I blog. I also want to get better at writing which requires getting better at thinking. Blogging plus ARI has really helped that. I plan to stay the course. I enjoy it.


Amit Ghate said...

Hi Mike,

I'm not on HBL, so not sure what the discussion there is, but I must say that I enjoy your blog and hope that you continue. IMO the key, if one's goal is to effect cultural change, is to write for reasonable people, not just for Objectivists, and I think you do an admirable job of this. And I'm not sure how important it is to target just the young, or primarily the young, I think any active thinkers in the culture can be swayed -- and this then can have a wider impact when they discuss topics with others, or when they make professional decisions, etc.



Mike N said...

Amit: Thanks and,

You are right of course. I am not going to abandon the over 30 crowd. I was one myself when I accepted Objectivism. I'll just be somewhat more active with the under 30 people.