May 052014

I’ve not been blogging much lately, I know. That’s because I’ve been working damn hard on various projects — particularly Explore Atlas Shrugged. (I’ve revised and expanded the questions, and now those questions plus the podcasts are available for $20. Now I’m working on a print-on-demand and e-book version of the questions.)

Nonetheless, I would be remiss if I didn’t mention that I’ll be speaking at ATLOSCon in Atlanta over Memorial Day weekend. I’ll give a talk on honesty, lead a discussion on Objectivism, and broadcast the radio show. Also, I’ll have tons of fun, because ATLOSCon is always a blast.

Here are the descriptions of my talks… and if you’d like to attend, be sure to register pronto, as classes are filling up quickly.

Confess Your Sins: The Moral Dangers of False Excuses

“False excuses” are lies told to conceal our wrongdoings from others. For example, a man might blame an accident on the freeway when late for a meeting, rather than honestly acknowledging that he was disorganized about leaving home. Or a woman might blame a co-worker for causing her angry outburst, rather than honestly admitting that she failed to control her temper. Of course, such false excuses risk all the usual harms of dishonesty — including damage to trust in relationships, a slippery slope of cover-up lies, and the erosion of character. Moreover — and less obviously — such lies inhibit moral growth by concealing character flaws and diminishing motivations to change. This talk will explore the dangers of false excuses, focusing on that interesting intersection between the virtues of honesty and pride.

What I Wish I’d Known as a New Objectivist

Many attendees of ATLOSCon have been studying and practicing the philosophy of Objectivism — as well as interacting with other Objectivists — for over a decade, if not two or three or more decades. In this interactive discussion, we’ll ask ourselves a seemingly simple question: If you could sit down with yourself when you were new to Objectivism, what advice would you give? What ideas, attitudes, assumptions, and practices would you want your younger self to question and re-think? In the process, we’ll consider the implications of that advice for our present-day choices about activism, relationships, and living well. This discussion should be of interest to new and not-so-new Objectivists.

Be sure to check out the other classes and social events too!

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