Archive for the 'SoCal Objectivists' Category

Reminder: SoCal Objectivists Meeting #5

by Jason Stotts

One final reminder that the next meeting of the SoCal Objectivists is Saturday!  The meeting is at 7:30pm at the China Palace Restaurant (13444 Newport Ave, Tustin, CA 92780).  We’re hosting Alex Epstein, former Ayn Rand Institute fellow and founder of the Center for Industrial Progress, for a Q&A on Objectivism and his work on Energy.

Please make sure you RSVP to the event so that we can make an accurate reservation at the restaurant.  You can RSVP by emailing Earl [Earl(at)socalobjectivists.com], or RSVPing via our Facebook event. We do ask that you RSVP by noon on Friday to make sure we have an accurate headcount for the reservation with the restaurant.  Please do also specify if you are bringing a guest or guests.

The event is free and open to anyone who wants to come and listen or ask questions.  Alex is a very smart guy and he’s very knowledgeable about Objectivism and energy, so I’m sure the Q&A will be great.

Also, make sure you come prepared to ask Alex questions!

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SoCal Objectivists Meeting #5

by Jason Stotts

Just a reminder that the next meeting of the SoCal Objectivists is coming up soon!  The meeting is January 14th at 7:30pm at the China Palace Restaurant (13444 Newport Ave, Tustin, CA 92780).  We’re hosting Alex Epstein, former Ayn Rand Institute fellow and founder of the Center for Industrial Progress, for a Q&A on Objectivism and his work on Environmentalism.

Please make sure you RSVP to the event so that we can make an accurate reservation at the restaurant.  You can RSVP by emailing Earl [Earl(at)socalobjectivists.com], sending him a tweet (Earl3D), or RSVPing via our Facebook event.

Also, make sure you come prepared to ask Alex questions!

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SoCal Objectivists Shooting Range Trip

by Jason Stotts

The SoCal Objectivists are heading to the shooting range on Sunday night.  We’re meeting at the LA Gun Club at 7:30 where we’ll be getting a couple of lanes and killing some paper zombies.  We’ll be there until around 9 or so, when we’ll retire to a nearby bar or restaurant for a drink and socializing.  Anyone is welcome to come to one or both of the events.  Please RSVP to Earl via email (earl-at-socalobjectivists.com) and specify if you’re coming to just the range or also to socializing.  It’s going to be a lot of fun and we’d love to see some new people, so if you’re in the LA area, come join us!

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SoCal Objectivists Second Meeting

by Jason Stotts

I’m happy to report that the second meeting of the SoCal Objectivists on Saturday night was a great success!  We had 13 people and a lively discussion.

I want to thank Don Watkins for coming and presenting a very good lecture primarily on Ethics, with some Politics thrown in.  I also want to thank all of our new members.  It was nice meeting each of you and I look forward to seeing you at future meetings.

I encourage everyone to email us your feedback about how you think things went in terms of the lecture itself, the venue, announcements, ease of RSVP’ing, and anything you think we should know.  We’re working hard to get SCO going and any feedback you can give is appreciated.  You can email either Earl [Earl.Parson(at)gmail.com] or me [Jason(at)JasonStotts.com].

The next meeting is tentatively scheduled for November 12th in the OC area.  We need to find an acceptable venue before we can host down there, so you OC people who want a meeting in your area, help us out finding a good venue.  For details about what we look for, please email us.

We’re working on putting together the calendar for 2012 now.  If you’re interested in presenting a lecture to the SoCal Objectivists, please drop us a line with the subject and a short description.

SoCal Objectivists is taking off!  If you’re in the area, please join us for great times and rousing discussions.

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SoCal Objectivists Meeting #2

by Jason Stotts

This is just a reminder that the next meeting of the SoCal Objectivists is fast approaching.  We’re having it at 7:30pm on Saturday October 15th.  The location is still TBD, but will be in the OC area (if you know a good location, please let us know right away).  Don Watkins, of the Ayn Rand Institute, will be presenting a lecture on Objectivism.  Here’s a quick overview of Don’s talk:

Why Non-Philosophers Should Study Ayn Rand’s Philosophy

A talk by Don Watkins

If you’re like me, you live a busy life. You work long hours, your Netflix queue is backed up, your car is overdue for an oil change, and your reading list is long enough to keep you busy for years. Nevertheless, taking the time to study Ayn Rand’s philosophy will be worth your while. In this talk, I’m going to discuss Ayn Rand’s philosophy and why I call it the ultimate self-help guide–one that will help you live a happier, more successful life.

Bio: I am an analyst at the Ayn Rand Center for Individual Rights, where I comment on today’s hottest economic issues. I am currently writing a book with Yaron Brook on stopping the growth of the state. You can follow my work by visiting https://www.facebook.com/DonWatkinsWriter.

Please RSVP for this event as soon as you can so that we can get a head count for the size room we will need. Please RSVP through our Facebook event page, which you can easily find by searching for SoCal Objectivists there.

In other news, we will be opening SoCalObjectivists.com soon (it’s still under construction).  If you want to help with the website, please let us know.  We could definitely use the help.

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SoCal Objectivists Introduction

by Jason Stotts

[I wrote this for our SoCal Objectivist group, but I thought the rest of you, my dear readers, might find it interesting as well.]

Greetings and welcome to the SoCal Objectivists. We are an organization dedicated to taking a serious look at Ayn Rand’s ideas and how they apply to the problems of today. (Philosophically speaking, Objectivism is in the Aristotelian Eudaimonist tradition.)

I’m Jason Stotts and I’m one of the two founders of SoCal Objectivism. I found out about Objectivism in 2003, after my first year of college. I had taken my first philosophy class in the second semester of my freshman year and absolutely detested it. Not just a little bit, but passionately. I vowed to never take another philosophy class. That summer, I set out to read a lot of classic books that I had never read and one of those books ended up being Atlas Shrugged by a woman I had never heard of, named Ayn Rand. I was captivated. I read Atlas Shrugged from cover to cover in two days. I felt, for the first time, that this was the vision of the world that I had always been looking for: the clear sight of reason, backed by intelligence, and pushed forward by passion for life. I read all the rest of Ayn Rand’s published works that summer.

When I went back to school in the fall, I declared as a Philosophy and Economics major. That fall, I started the Denison Objectivist Club and made some amazing friends. The next summer I interned at the ARI. I continued the Denison Objectivist Club for the rest of my time at Denison. I ended up getting my BA in both Philosophy and Economics with honors. Not only that, I graduated as a Philosophy Department Fellow as an open and very vocal Objectivist (I have never been subtle).

After I graduated, I didn’t know what to do. My life changed momentously when my future wife and I were talking about masculinity and femininity and I realized the great depths of my ignorance about sex and sexual issues. I set about to correct that by learning from the wisdom of others, but I found that real knowledge on the subject was scarce. Thus, I set about to try to understand the issues and began writing a book on the subject.  I’m still working on that book. A lot of my writing where I try out ideas is published on my blog Erosophia, which you can find at www.JasonStotts.com.

In 2009 I moved to Southern California with my wife, we had just recently married, so that she could start a PhD program in Philosophy. I realized that I missed the company of other people who shared my ideas and the value that one gains from interacting with rational people. I reached out to some fellow objectivists in the area, but no organization came of it.

After the success of the regional mini-cons and seeing the value they were gaining from their respective groups, I decided that it was time for me to have a group of my own to participate in. When Earl and I discussed it and he said that he, too, had been having the same ideas, we resolved to make it a reality.

I said in one of my early comments about the group, that there is a great value in being able to enjoy the company of those who share your ideas and we’re hoping to create a microcosm of this with SoCal Objectivists.

Won’t you join us?

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Reminder: SoCal Objectivists First Meeting

by Jason Stotts

Just a reminder for anyone who is interested, our very first meeting and social get-together is this Saturday night!  Details are available on our Google Group or you can find information on our Facebook page or via our twitter (@SoCalOists).  If you’re planning on coming to this meeting, please RSVP via our Google Group so that we know how many people to expect.

Our next meeting is going to be in October, around the 22nd.  This one will be held in either the IE or OC.  More details about this meeting will be available as we get closer to the date.

One of the things that I’m very interested in doing is setting up a series of lectures by prominent Objectivist speakers and writers.  Earl and I are both going to be giving a lecture in our respective fields (architecture for him and sex for me) and we’re looking for other speakers in the area.  If you’re already an Objectivist speaker or writer and you’d like to present for our group, please contact me at Jason(at)JasonStotts.com with what subjects you’d like to speak on and a short description.  If you’re simply the master of a particular subject and you’d like to present that to the group, that’d be great as well.

We’re going to start our lecture schedule soon and we’re trying to decide whether it’d be better to do bimonthly meetings with one being a lecture or reading group and the other being just a social outing or having just one meeting a month and having a lecture, followed by Q&A, then breaking into a less formal social event.  If we do the latter, people would be free to come to just one part and not another or to come to the whole thing.

More details about SoCal Objectivists will be forthcoming after our first meeting and Earl and I decide the direction of the group.

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