Thursday, March 17, 2011

Heroic Story from the Rubble of Japan

I am so in love with this story I found on Twitter today.  It's full of heroic gems such as:


Whereas many Japanese have adopted the nation's unofficial mantra: Shou ga nai, or, more politely, Shikata ga nai, loosely translated as, "What can you do?," "It's beyond our control" or "It's out of my hands," Akaiwa stands out as a virtual live-action hero.

And this:


Not willing to wait until the government or any international organization did, or did not, arrive to rescue his wife of two decades — whom he had met while they were surfing in a local bay — Akaiwa got hold of some scuba gear. He then hit the water, wended his way through the debris and underwater hazards and managed to reach his house, from which he dragged his wife to safety.

And this:


Finally, he adjusts the grip on his bicycle and heads off in search of other trapped survivors.

"Sorry, I have to get going," he says as he navigates around the dead fish, through a puddle and around the corner.

Click here to read the whole, awesome story.

Friday, March 4, 2011

This Week's Objectivist Roundup

It's over at Reepicheep's Coracle.  Go check it out!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Last Chance to Register for SnowCon!

Today is your last chance to register for SnowCon -- or just its keynote FROST Supper Talk on Saturday, March 12th.


At the FROST Supper Talk, you'll learn valuable skills for managing your relationships with friends, family, and co-workers better.  (I know that from personal experience... their techniques have even helped me train my dogs better too!)


The FROST talk is by Jenn Casey and Kelly Elmore on "Effective Communication: How Objectivists Can Use Positive Discipline Tools In Their Adult Relationships."  Here's the abstract:

In our talk, we will present a set of parenting principles called "Positive Discipline" that is compatible with teaching our children to use the Objectivist virtues while behaving virtuously ourselves. Positive Discipline techniques include respectful communication, problem-solving skills, and limit-setting that is both kind and firm. Positive Discipline techniques do not include reward systems, praise, punishments, behavior modification techniques, emotional manipulation, shaming, or logical consequences.

The focus of the talk will be on the communication and problem-solving tools used in Positive Discipline, tools that are essential not only to parenting but to all healthy relationships, at work, at home, with friends, with romantic partners, and on the phone with the customer service representative at your credit card company. The talk will be dynamic and interactive, and you will walk out with at least one new skill to try the next time you are in a difficult situation with your spouse, your coworker, or your child.

If you're unsure about attending, we recommend that you listen to their podcast about the lecture, available here.


We must give the final head count to the Rio Grande restaurant tomorrow morning, so you must register for either SnowCon or just the FROST talk today, preferably by noon.


Register for FROST here:

Register for SnowCon here:


If you attend the FROST lecture, and you'd like to attend another SnowCon event or two à la carte, just send Diana Hsieh an e-mail.


(Note to students: Thanks to contributions from generous FRO supporters, we can offer deeper student discounts than just the student rate.  Please e-mail Diana -- ASAP! -- if you'd like to attend but you can't afford the regular student rate.)


Also, everyone is welcome to join us for Friday night's SnowCon Happy Hour at Landry's.  It's free, but you'll be responsible for your own food and drinks.  Please RSVP via e-mail to Diana if you plan to attend.


SnowCon and FROST welcome all friendly people with a serious interest in or honest curiosity about Ayn Rand's philosophy, regardless of their level of knowledge.


Please e-mail Diana Hsieh if you have any questions!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Smart is Bad, Dumb is Good. Deceitful Preferred!

This story coming out of the NFL today makes me sick.


…McElroy's brainpower still has the potential to be taken as a negative around the league, as explained by Pro Football Talk's Mike Florio:

That said, scoring too high can be as much of a problem as scoring too low. Football coaches want to command the locker room. Being smarter than the individual players makes that easier. Having a guy in the locker room who may be smarter than every member of the coaching staff can be viewed as a problem — or at a minimum as a threat to the egos of the men who hope to be able when necessary to outsmart the players, especially when trying in some way to manipulate them.

So while McElroy, who was unable to work out due to injury, may be really smart, he perhaps would have been wise to tank a few of the answers.

What kind of sick and distorted society do we live in where people are so stupid and insecure as to be intimidated by someone smarter than they are?! Smart people still need to be managed and still have new things to learn, so why would a coach be intimidated by a player like this?!  Then to suggest that the player should've lied on the test to pretend he's dumber than he is takes the story from disgusting to pure evil, as if being dishonest and dumb are some sort of virtues!  Ugh!   


I embrace those who are smarter than I am, and I try to learn from them.  I look up to and respect them and desire to work with them.  And if my job is to manage or coach them, well, all the better for me!  Hopefully, they'll make my job delightful and easy!