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Harry Binswanger

Presented at: OCON 2011

Date: Jul 02, 2011

Ayn Rand had an unparalleled ability to identify and apply principles.

“Thinking in principles” is a process she began at age 12 and held to throughout her life. What exactly are principles? Why does thinking in principles provide such immense cognitive power?

This course explains the nature of principles, how they arise, how they apply, and what are the unavoidable consequences of violating them. Dr. Binswanger covers both theory and application, using thought-provoking examples from morality and politics to thoroughly “chew” the issue of how principles work in real-world situations.

Topics include: epistemic and causal hierarchies; the nature of fundamentality; principles as fundamental generalizations; the need for principles as psycho-epistemological; principles as “cognitive bridges”; the Rationalistic misuse of principles; how principles can be both simple, almost “tautologous,” yet enormously informative; the contextuality of principles; the absolutism of principles; the Pragmatist cult of compromise and its consequences.


Parts: 3

Handout: none