Wisdom from Robert Heinlein

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Kadelic
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Re: Wisdom from Robert Heinlein

#16

Post by Kadelic » Wed Aug 21, 2019 6:41 pm

From Stranger In A Strange Land.

“Thou art god, I am god. All that groks is god.”
Honor Necessity


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Re: Wisdom from Robert Heinlein

#17

Post by srothstein » Wed Aug 21, 2019 10:16 pm

This thread certainly warms my heart. Heinlein is my favorite author and I have done my best to read everything he has ever written. I got hooked on him with his juvenile books while I was in elementary school.

Starship Troopers was always one of my favorite books, along with Stranger in a Strange Land. Glory Road probably comes in number 3.
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Re: Wisdom from Robert Heinlein

#18

Post by srothstein » Wed Aug 21, 2019 10:25 pm

The Annoyed Man wrote:
Tue Aug 20, 2019 11:23 am
I have no problem with that idea in principle, so long as allowances are made for legitimate reasons. Otherwise, it’s unjust. I never served in the military, but I’m now in my late 60s. So if we converted over to a literal interpretation of this system, I’d lose my rights. I’m not down with that. I’m happy to stand guard with a rifle at the state's border or something like that, but there’s no way I could attempt, let alone finish a boot camp. Nor would I want to at this stage of my life, even if I could. I’m well past the age of putting up with some kid in a Smokey the Bear hat chewing me out for walking to the mess hall. Homey don’t do 4:00 a.m. reveilles unless it’s to go fishing.

Also, you have to make room for legitimate objectors of conscience by providing an alternative means of service for those who have legitimate religious or other philosophical objections to military service.....sort of an "internal peace corps" or something like it, if you will. They’d still be serving, but in a different capacity.
TAM, the book very carefully explained both that the term "federal service" was not equivalent to military service. It also explained why the system developed and why it continued. The system started after a rebellion against a tyrant and was only vets because the vets knew they could trust each other. Since it was a rebellion that started with secret members, trust was important. It continued because it worked. Later Heinlein explained that the psychologists found that the system worked because it only allowed people to vote who had proven that at least one time, they could put the good of society over their own personal good.

If you look at our society today, people voting for their own good instead of society's is one of the biggest problems I see in our country today. I am not advocating for Heinlein's society but I have trouble arguing against it too.
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The Annoyed Man
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Re: Wisdom from Robert Heinlein

#19

Post by The Annoyed Man » Wed Aug 21, 2019 11:00 pm

srothstein wrote:
Wed Aug 21, 2019 10:25 pm
The Annoyed Man wrote:
Tue Aug 20, 2019 11:23 am
I have no problem with that idea in principle, so long as allowances are made for legitimate reasons. Otherwise, it’s unjust. I never served in the military, but I’m now in my late 60s. So if we converted over to a literal interpretation of this system, I’d lose my rights. I’m not down with that. I’m happy to stand guard with a rifle at the state's border or something like that, but there’s no way I could attempt, let alone finish a boot camp. Nor would I want to at this stage of my life, even if I could. I’m well past the age of putting up with some kid in a Smokey the Bear hat chewing me out for walking to the mess hall. Homey don’t do 4:00 a.m. reveilles unless it’s to go fishing.

Also, you have to make room for legitimate objectors of conscience by providing an alternative means of service for those who have legitimate religious or other philosophical objections to military service.....sort of an "internal peace corps" or something like it, if you will. They’d still be serving, but in a different capacity.
TAM, the book very carefully explained both that the term "federal service" was not equivalent to military service. It also explained why the system developed and why it continued. The system started after a rebellion against a tyrant and was only vets because the vets knew they could trust each other. Since it was a rebellion that started with secret members, trust was important. It continued because it worked. Later Heinlein explained that the psychologists found that the system worked because it only allowed people to vote who had proven that at least one time, they could put the good of society over their own personal good.

If you look at our society today, people voting for their own good instead of society's is one of the biggest problems I see in our country today. I am not advocating for Heinlein's society but I have trouble arguing against it too.
He's not the only author to suggest this either, although he may be the first. Kurt Schlichter's three dystopian future books posit a future in which the US has divided into The Peoples's Republic—made up of the liberal states—and the USA, made up rest of the country. There’s a low-grade war going on between the two factions. Texas is the political center of the USA, and residents must do compulsory military service to have the right to vote.

Like I said above, I don’t have a problem with compulsory service as a guiding principle. What I do have a philosophical problem with it is limiting that to service in the military. I am NOT anti-military. I’m just recognizing that it may not be suitable for everyone, for various reasons; and that a just society would provide other ways of serving for those for whom military service is not a realistic proposition. I’ll have to go back and reread the book. I last read it when I was a boy.
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Re: Wisdom from Robert Heinlein

#20

Post by ghostrider » Wed Aug 21, 2019 11:03 pm

Heinlein fan here too.

Interestingly, I believe he started out in the radical left anti-gun uh...'persuasion' and learned the error of his views, becoming the more ilbertarian pro-2A individual that we know.


p.s. I highly recommend "the Moon is a Harsh Mistress" even if you are not into sci-fi
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Re: Wisdom from Robert Heinlein

#21

Post by oljames3 » Thu Aug 22, 2019 5:04 am

TANSTAAFL!
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Re: Wisdom from Robert Heinlein

#22

Post by Middle Age Russ » Thu Aug 22, 2019 9:54 am

I have enjoyed all of his books that I have read. The generally Libertarian elements in them resonate with me, along with the Renaissance Man (Jack of all trades) angle. The only aspect of his fictional tales that I find somewhat objectionable is his apparent favorable view of eugenics. Of course, writing SF tends to allow a person to look for ways of making human society "better" than it tends to be and exploring different strategies to this end somewhat justifies how he approached it with the Lazarus Long family.

“A human being should be able to change a diaper, plan an invasion, butcher a hog, conn a ship, design a building, write a sonnet, balance accounts, build a wall, set a bone, comfort the dying, take orders, give orders, cooperate, act alone, solve equations, analyze a new problem, pitch manure, program a computer, cook a tasty meal, fight efficiently, die gallantly. Specialization is for insects.” Robert Heinlein - "Time Enough for Love"
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Re: Wisdom from Robert Heinlein

#23

Post by oohrah » Thu Aug 22, 2019 10:03 am

My first Heinlein book I discovered in junior high "Have Space Suit - Will Travel" and I was hooked for life.
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Re: Wisdom from Robert Heinlein

#24

Post by Don T » Thu Aug 22, 2019 7:38 pm

Ditto. Have Space Suit, Will Travel got me hooked on Heinlein and SciFi.

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