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Writings based on Objectivism, the philosophy of Ayn Rand

Ayn Rand's most popular novels are Atlas Shrugged and The Fountainhead, which present her philosophy, Objectivism, in vivid characterizations.

  Metaphysics, epistemology, ethics, esthetics, and  politics are the five main branches of philosophy that she identifies. Utilizing her methodology, one can be rational about all aspects of life. These essays present my understanding of Objectivism.

Older Essays

This is Your Mind

Independence Day Special 2005

Copyright Issues Statement

Independence Day Special 2011:

 Jesus or Ayn Rand?

Don't Blame Wall Street

Governments and Individual Rights

Anarcho-Capitalism rebuttal

Doctors and Individual Rights

Internet Freedom VS On-line Piracy

Laws Must be Specific to Preserve Freedom

To Students of Objectivism

Kant as Founder of Modern Art

Thinking in Terms of Principles

The Purpose of Art

On Objectivity -- The Method of Thought

Applications of Philosophy

Happiness by a Proper Standard

Morality and War

Induction and Anarchism

Immigration and Applied Egoism

Independence Day 2012:

  Losing the Battle

On Civil Society

Batman and Justice

Paul Ryan and Objectivism

Philosophy in the Workplace

Articulating Freedom

The Argument for Freedom

Psycho-epistemology

Black Friday Special, The Morality of Profit

Intellectual Property Rights

How The Internet Works

Carnegie Museum of Art and Natural History

The Morality of Copyrights and Patents

Justice

Freedom of Speech -- a Sacred Right

Objective Value

Teleological Measurements

Induction

Causality

Cognition

Ayn Rand as a Moral Hero

Moral Integrity

On Dualism

Protest NSA Spying

The Objectivist Trilogy

The DIM Hypothesis

Tolerance and DIM

Individual Rights

How We Know

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Date: Fri, 31 May 2002 
Evolution?
Thomas M. Miovas, Jr.

> From Michael Pomerantz
>
> I am not extremely knowledgeable in Evolution. I
> can see the direct connection between say, primates
> and human ... and I can somewhat understand some
> aspects of natural selection (but not all of that). But
> I have never understood how evolution explains
> how we got from say, frogs to human. How did we
> get from one species to an entirely new species? I
> have never seen any fossil records even remotely
> proving how we jumped from one species to the
> countless species in existence.

There have been some excellent science shows on the Discovery Channel, the 
Science Channel, The Learning Channel and PBS regarding these sorts of 
issues. One of them is even called "Evolution" which goes into a great deal 
of detail (which I think is on PBS). You can check their web sites for more 
information.

However, I think there are some false premises in the question.

Just because a species is considered (or classified) as lower than some 
other species doesn't necessarily mean that the higher species came from 
the lower one.

<HB: I don't think there is a factual, biological basis for a distinction 
of "higher" and "lower." There is: earlier and later, and there is "simpler 
and more complex." But "higher" and "lower" are informal, anthropomorphic 
terms.>

In general, mammals came from an ancestor that was amphibious, but that 
doesn't mean that mammals (including man) came from frogs. Both frogs and 
man came from a previous species that was neither frog nor man, but some 
type of amphibian.

And evolution doesn't go in one direction only -- say from amphibians to 
mammals. Whales came from wolf-like animals that developed fins and 
eventually lost their hind legs altogether. I know...whales are not 
amphibians in the same sense that salamanders and frogs are, but they *are* 
mammals that live entirely in the water, but have to breath air.

<HB: Evolution doesn't have a direction at all, let alone not
being uni-directional.>

One interesting thing brought up by the series "Evolution" was how the 
bones of fish are connected and positioned (in relation to one another, not 
overall) in much the same way as the skeleton of man. For instance, the 
bones in the fins of fish correspond to the arm, wrist, and fingers of 
humans -- minus a few extraneous bones; though they have found an extinct 
amphibian that had, I think, seven or eight fingers.

In a similar manner, one of the episodes of one of the series showed quite 
well how a reptile-like animal that stood on it's hind legs could become a 
bird over time. Not only is the overall bone structure very similar, but 
the motions of grasping for something running in front of it are remarkably 
similar to the motion of the flapping wings of a bird. In essence, all that 
the bipedal reptile-like animal needed were feathers and a lighter bone 
structure to be able to take off in flight -- and they have found fossils 
that show these changes occurring.

Matt Sissel Fine Art

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Thomas M. Miovas, Jr.

tmiovas@appliedphilosophyonline.com

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Proud to be an Objectivist -- one who follows Ayn Rand's philosophy of Objectivism: I've earned it.