The Rational Argumentator's Sixth Anniversary Manifesto

G. Stolyarov II
Issue CLXXII - August 31, 2008
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Throughout the first five years of The Rational Argumentator’s existence, a strong empirical tendency has held with regard to TRA visitation. Every subsequent year’s visitation has been slightly greater than the cumulative visitation prior to that year. This year, however, has seen a departure from that tendency. Instead of rougly equaling prior cumulative visitation, TRA visitation since the publication of the Fifth Anniversary Manifesto has exceeded it by over 87%! Indeed, during the sixth year of its existence, The Rational Argumentator has been visited over a half-million times – 531,475 times to be more precise. This is approximately 1.8744 times the prior cumulative visitation of 283,544.

Numerous massive improvements to the magazine can account for such a phenomenal increase. The infrastructure of TRA has undergone a massive makeover, incorporating the latest in Web 2.0 templates and shifting to an open-source program – Kompozer – for creating and uploading pages via File Transfer Protocol (FTP). Publishing an article or an index page has largely been reduced to the editing work required. The technical details of formatting and uploading each page have largely been reduced to an insubstantial portion of my effort.

The new website format is considerably more attractive, professional, and easy to navigate than any of its predecessors, and – as always – it will continue to evolve and improve.

Moreover, numerous features have been added to enhance The Rational Argumentator and more firmly integrate it with numerous popular hubs of Internet traffic. My YouTube videos, Free Tools for Rational Education, and free e-book, The Best Self-Help is Free are all externally hosted by websites that attract major traffic . All of these link back to The Rational Argumentator, drawing visitors to its pages and, from them, back to sites like YouTube and Associated Content, where significant amounts of my work can be found. Just like a store in an oft-frequented location tends to attract a lot of business from passers-by, so does a website that is closesly integrated with major online content hubs tend to draw a lot of its visitation from them.

TRA has also broadened its provision of free educational services, especially to actuarial students (via my  free study guides for exams 3F/MFE and 3L) and students of Austrian Economics (via the TRA Audio section).  Moreover, all of my musical compositions are at long last publicly available, and we are seeing just the beginnings of a massive experiment in open-source rational estethics and implicit activism against the ultimate enemy, death itself. As a creative, productive, satisfying leisure activity, you, too, can explore and contribute to Antideath.  Speaking of leisure, TRA’s Rational Leisure section provides an extensive offering of engaging, mind-developing, intellectual flash games. My ambition of bringing rational principles to bear on all facets of human endeavor is steadily being realized.

An extremely significant development – and quite a recent one, dating from early June 2008 onward – has been the establishment of The Progress of Liberty, a companion blog to TRA, containing regular posts integrating political, philosophical, and economic theory with creative ideas for free-market activism. Already, this blog has won a $150 award from You might have already noticed a steady integration of TRA with The Progress of Liberty. It is my intention to turn these two venues into a single integrated entity, with essential features embedded into both sites and seamlessly easy navigation between them. The Progress of Liberty enables me to earn small amounts of advertising revenue, which I hope will eventually grow to cover the costs of hosting The Rational Argumentator’s domain. TRA still does not turn a monetary profit from visitation, but my hope is to eventually make it a self-supporting enterprise.

In addition to all the upgrades and added features, TRA has published 51 excellent issues, combining more than 510 essays, videos, works of art, musical compositions, and other intellectually enriching content. In the publication of regular issues, no year has seen more productivity than TRA’s sixth.

I am delighted that the principles of Reason, Rights, and Progress continue to attract an extensive audience of people with varied interests, worldviews, and ideas for the future. The Rational Argumentator will continue to serve as the hub for an increasing, broadening, and intensifying number of endeavors. My aim is nothing less than the gradual but wholesale transformation of contemporary political, economic, cultural, and even biological norms. I have no illusions about how much continued and determined effort this will take, but I do know – to paraphrase Ray Kurzweil – that, while most people greatly overestimate what can be accomplished in the short term, they also greatly underestimate what can be gained in the long term. Over the prior six years, The Rational Argumentator has grown beyond my most optimistic projections. I am even more enthusiastic about what the future will bring.

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Learn about Mr. Stolyarov's novel, Eden against the Colossus, here.

Read Mr. Stolyarov's comprehensive treatise, A Rational Cosmology, explicating such terms as the universe, matter, space, time, sound, light, life, consciousness, and volition, here.

Read Mr. Stolyarov's four-act play, Implied Consent, a futuristic intellectual drama on the sanctity of human life, here.