Entertainment News

Voluntaryist minecraft server

Log into from Minecraft and you’ll find a world kept free of authoritarian psychopaths. The kids and I have essentially been doing the same thing with our private server where the motto is “Be peaceful and fill in holes”. It’s been a great tool for us to practice non-violent communication and generally how to cooperate.

There have been opportunities for conflict that lead to intense discussions and then to peaceful resolutions. Likewise, we’ve worked together on several large projects.

I’m looking forward to introducing this public server to my kids.

The Voluntaryist

Q. What is the Voluntaryist website for?
A. This site is intended to promote the philosophy of voluntaryism as it might apply in both the game of Minecraft, and also in real life. This site is also intended to promote Intangir’s Voluntaryist Minecraft server where this philosophy is strongly encouraged and nurtured.

Q. What is Voluntaryism?

A. Voluntaryism is a philosophy which states that all interactions in society should be mutually voluntary, and those actions which are not (coercion) should be abolished. It is a clarification on the concept of anarchy which recognizes that abolishing rulership must necessarily also prohibit the means of rulership: initiation of aggressive force. This concept is used to avoid the assuption that most people jump to upon hearing the word anarchy, which is chaos. A true anarchy (voluntarism) is one which recognizes that all attempts to rule, initiate force, or coercion are violations of human rights and have no place in peaceful civilized society. A simple idea with far reaching implications!
Enhanced by Zemanta

A Free Society Includes Freedom to Shun

An inflammatory KKK cartoon from The Fiery Cro...
An inflammatory KKK cartoon from The Fiery Cross that was used as evidence in the civil trial that followed the murder of Michael Donald. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

CNN reports that the KKK in Georgia has been denied the request adopt a highway. The KKK are a vile organization that advocates initiating violence against people for inherent aspects such as skin color. I would never willingly have any association with a member of the KKK, and neither should anyone else. I don’t just mean I wouldn’t do business with a klansman. I don’t just mean I wouldn’t stop to help him change his tire. I mean I would offer no food if he were starving, nor any aid whatsoever if he were bleeding out on the side of the road.

In a free society, people are free to believe what they will. Likewise, in a free society, people are free to shun those they disapprove of. Unfortunately, we do not live in a free society.

The KKK is seeking help from the ACLU. There is a case to be made for protection under the first amendment. This is the tragedy of having a government: you are made to pay taxes so that the KKK can advertise their hate. People in the government claim ownership of the roads and offer equal treatment to the peaceful and the advocates of murder. If we were free to shun these people, I have no doubt they and their ideas would would be entombed in history.

It just makes me want to shout, in the immortal words of The Stains (AKA MDC): “No war! No KKK! No Facsist USA!”

If you’re interested in more ideas about how government itself enables evil, check out Jacob Spinney’s YouTube video The State Is Not Great: How Government Poisons Everything.

Enhanced by Zemanta


Last week, I built a little widget for that generates random quotes as if from Ayn Rand characters.

The generator uses pretty CSS3 styles in modern browsers.

My good friend, Rick Marazzani, put together the phrases and the template for combining them. I built the framework that allows anyone to embed the quotes in any Web site. Rick explained the philosophical ideas behind the RAND-o-matic. I want to discuss the technology.

To place the widget in an HTML document, you make a div element and you fetch a remote javascript file.

<div id="randomatic"></div>
<script type="text/javascript">//<![CDATA[
//Set width in pixels to 150-600
var randomaticWidth = 300;
(function() {
  var rom = document.createElement('script');
  rom.type = 'text/javascript';
  rom.async = true;
  rom.src = '';
  var s = document.getElementsByTagName('script')[0];
  s.parentNode.insertBefore(rom, s);

Rather than include the javascript straight away, I used javascript to generate a script tag. This ensures that rendering of the page does not block while the remote file is fetched. The remote script in turn creates new DOM elements and pulls in styles. This makes it easy for anyone wanting to use the widget, while also saving all of the control of functionality and design for me.

Look at the bottom of the right navbar to see the widget in action. It will generate a new quote every 20 seconds, or you can click the box to make a new one. In addition to the CSS3 styles I used for rounded corners and shadows, I also added little icons for posting the current quote to Facebook or Twitter. There really isn’t much magic to that–only making the right URL and sending the browser there.

One interesting hurdle was getting Facebook to take the recommended title text for wall posts. When you post a link to your news stream, Facebook pulls the remote URL and looks for Open Graph tags. The quotes are made in javascript, so I pass the whole quote back to the home page of the widget so that the PHP script there can set tags to match. I can even tell Facebook which icon to use along with the news item.

With the new Atlas Shrugged film opening in a couple of weeks, this can be a whimsical way to celebrate Rand’s greatest work. I also hope it generates attention for MindPosts and 18INT.

Enhanced by Zemanta
News Parenting

Study Philosophy, Be Powerful

Cory Doctorow linked to a list of famously successful people who studied philosophy.

Bust of Aristotle. Marble, Roman copy after a ...
Image via Wikipedia

Here’s a giant list of famous and accomplished people with philosophy degrees, just the thing to show the parental units when you choose your major. I want the comparable list of successful underwater basket-weaving majors. (via JoHo)

Check out the list and you’ll find one of your heroes and perhaps a villain or two. That suggests to me that studying philosophy helps you become powerful. You will learn fundamental truths, levers to move the world. While I too studied philosophy in college, intensely but outside of university classes, I passionately wish I’d focussed on it earlier. Philosophy should be a core subject of education from the beginning.

Are you interested in learning about philosophy right now? Try Stefan Molyneux’s An Introduction to Philosophy videos.

Enhanced by Zemanta