On Sunday, 11 November 2012, I broadcast a new episode of Philosophy in Action Radio, answering questions on the 2012 election results, explaining a break-up, keeping contact with questionable family, and more. Greg Perkins of Objectivist Answers was the episode’s co-host.

If you missed the live broadcast, you can listen to audio podcasts of selected questions or the whole episode. You’ll find those posted below, as well as on this episode’s archive page: Q&A Radio: 11 November 2012.

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Q&A Radio: Episode: 11 November 2012

The Whole Episode

My News of the Week: I gave a talk on liberty and virtue at the Liberty on the Rocks Workshop yesterday, and it went well.

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You can also download or listen to particular questions from this episode.

Question 1: The 2012 Election Results (2:01)

In this segment, I answered a question on the 2012 election results.

What should we think of the results of the 2012 election? Many free-market advocates are despairing over the election results, particularly the re-election of President Obama. They claim that America has sunk to a new low in re-electing an openly socialistic and egalitarian hater of America. Do you think that such despair is warranted? Also, how can intellectuals, activists, and others effectively promote individual rights over the next four years?

My Answer, In Brief: Advocates of free markets need to stop despairing and start thinking about how to make progress over the next four years.

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Tags: Alcohol/Drugs, America, Apocalypticism, Democratic Party, Elections, Gay Marriage, Immigration, Politics, Republican Party, Rights

Relevant Links:

To comment on this question or my answer, visit its comment thread.

Question 2: Explaining a Break-Up (45:23)

In this segment, I answered a question on explaining a break-up.

Do I owe my boyfriend an explanation for my breaking up with him? I dated my recently-ex-boyfriend for a few months. Over the past few weeks, I realized that some personality and value differences preclude any long-term prospects. When I broke up with him, I didn’t give him any reasons why, and that really upset him. Do I owe him an explanation? Would that help or hurt our chances of a cordial relationship in the future? If I should talk to him about my reasons, what should I say?

My Answer, In Brief: If your former boyfriend is a decent person, then it’s wrong not to honor his request for an explanation for the break-up: given your past intimacy, it’s cruel to leave him in the dark.

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Tags: Benevolence, Communication, Ethics, Honesty, Relationships, Romance

To comment on this question or my answer, visit its comment thread.

Question 3: Keeping Contact with Questionable Family (55:16)

In this segment, I answered a question on keeping contact with questionable family.

Should I keep in contact with my morally questionable and mystical father? Recently, I initiated contact with my father. I’ve not seen or spoken to him for most of my life. He left behind a lot of damage, and I was very hurt by that. I made amends with him, thinking that he was in recovery. However, I recently discovered his eastern mystic philosophy. Also, although he is fully recovered, he still has moral problems. Now I’m second guessing my decision. Would it be immoral for me to break off the contact with him after I’ve made peace with him? Should I preserve the relationship to keep my character intact? Or should I cut ties with him, on the principle that I should only maintain relationships of value to me?

My Answer, In Brief: The critical question to ask is whether you can establish a relationship with your father that enriches your life and happiness. That requires having realistic standards, as well as some honest conversation with him.

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Tags: Adult Children, Alcohol/Drugs, Communication, Ethics, Family, Honesty, Moral Wrongs, Relationships

To comment on this question or my answer, visit its comment thread.

Rapid Fire Questions (1:02:03)

In this segment, Dr. Diana Hsieh answered questions impromptu. The questions were:

  • Why do you think men tend to gravitate more towards rationalism than women?
  • Regarding the third question, should the questioner tell the father “I decided I need to practice non-attachment, so good bye”?
  • Is there a rational concept of honor or is honor an empty sack worth the sack?
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To comment on these questions or my answers, visit its comment thread.

Conclusion (1:07:03)

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  • Allen

    Thank you for your remarkably sane commentary on the election results. I was beginning to think that a majority of Objectivists are permanent residences of Bill Maher’s conservative bubble.

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