Friday, March 31, 2017

Democratic Decay

Democracy punishes the responsible and rewards the irresponsible, the responsible die and the irresponsible thrive, and the population degenerates until it is so irresponsible infrastructure starts suffering obvious, unmistakeable failures.

If properly husbanded, the decay can be slow enough to last centuries. However, the decay is monotonic and inevitable as long as Democracy, the Demon Prince, holds power.

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Folk Epistemology: Granularity

Example from here, via.
The last point is not a trivial one, since although our country is only about 13 percent black, according to a 2001 Gallup survey most people thought the figure was 33 percent, with the average non-white putting it at 40 percent.104 This was roughly confirmed by the GSS respondents in 2000, who also believed that nearly 18 percent of Americans were Jewish, a figure more than eight times too large.105 A very recent 2012 survey found that Americans believe Protestants outnumber Jews in this country by only 2.5 to 1, when the actual ratio is ten times greater.
From the perspective of the average mind, there's often nothing between 0 percent and 33 percent. The other options are 66 percent and 100 percent.
There are more than zero blacks in America, but it's not a majority, so that's 33%.

Essentially this is all confabulation. They have little to no idea what statistics mean, and trying to get quantities out of their fuzzy magnitude estimates is always going to be a pointless exercise in inaccuracy.

The average mind has broad categories. "None," "almost none," "a few," "some," "a bunch," "a whole bunch," and so on, based purely on the emotional experience of what they see in front of them. And why would they bother being more precise? They don't need to take a census, they just need to 'bond' with other average minds by having similar experiences. And maybe sometimes avoid places with "a whole bunch" of blacks.

There's "several times" more Protestants than Jews. (Assuming they even share the surveyor's idea of a "Protestant.") Three is several times, isn't it? If it was 25 times, there would be "almost no" Jews. There's clearly "a whole bunch" of Jews in some places, so that can't be right, can it?

More than half of America can barely grasp what numbers mean when it comes to balancing their chequebook. (Do folk still do that? Did they ever, really?) Why do you think they're going to take the effort to not be 'ignorant' of the correct demographic-statistical ratios?

It's not like they actually can't into numbers at all. Carpentry is not a high-IQ profession. It's just work, an experience the average surveyor could never imagine. However, asking for work from folk who have already been to work and would rather be having dinner is not going to end as the surveyor expects.

This is however a problem when politicians consult the public on things like airplane crashes and terrorism. Emotion drives out reason, even if they were into the work necessary, and you'll get two broad factions: those who say planes "never" crash and those who say 33% of frequent fliers will die in a plane crash. The solution being, predictably enough, don't do democracy.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Long Yet Still Very Short History of Sophism

Early hominids* evolved to kill other hominids in conflicts by having bigger groups. Especially after evolving throwing and activating Lanchester's Square Law, (PDF warning) having a bigger troupe was crucial. This required bigger brains, which incidentally makes you smarter.

*(Yes I'm starting that far back.)
For completeness I'll also mention that secondarily, good killer instincts evolved and solidified.

Having become smart and deadly, hominids become not only ecologically successful, but ecologically dominant. The only real selective threat was other hominids. This resulted in a troupe size arms race. However, this had an unexpected result: troupes became so big that most members would spend the bulk of their time interacting not with other troupes or the environment, but other ingroup members.

Thus hominids started to form three castes; the warriors, for dealing with outgroup conspecifics; the shamans or priests, for dealing with the nonverbal, nonstrategic environment; and the merchants, who dealt primarily with internal exchanges.

Surface area being what it is compared to volume, merchants are the most numerous caste. For them, the most important resource-acquisition skill did not involve contact with reality, but opposingly with fooling other ingroup members into thinking defection was cooperation, and of course of detecting and defeating the others' efforts to do same.

Result: the arms race stopped being group size, and become liar-liar competition. Humans now practice lying instinctively. Humans have exquisitely sophisticated lying assistance adaptations, such as the consciousness/subconsciousness compartmentalization. However, necessarily, this makes you smarter, and as a result of these two chained smartness arms races, human brain size has increased blisteringly fast over evolutionary history.

Perhaps the pelvic limits on brain size also helped shift the war from group size to liars. Brain spent on having a bigger troupe doesn't help as well for lying and detecting lies, and ditto neurons spent on killing instinct, so there's a tradeoff there.

Result: lying is natural. Agriculture thus inherently creates an environmental niche for a guild of liars. Expert craftsmen at exploiting lies for mind control. This guild will have its own subculture, techniques and tricks, and I call it Sophism, of which the earliest clear record is Protagoras. They are a perversion of the shaman caste: they use their grasp of reality, but are treating conspecifics like a natural problem to be manipulated, instead of as peers like the merchant caste do. Instead of shamans of the forest, they are shamans of the human.

For completeness I'll mention that super-Dunbar sized groups necessarily require anthropology; the science of being human; the shaman type very similar to Sophism.

Sophism has a problem. There's responsible folk, who will have stuff, and irresponsible folk, who are easy to fool, but little overlap. Irresponsible folk irresponsibly waste their windfalls and return to equilibrium. Responsible folk who hit hard times have a tendency to turtle up and survive them.

Humans have strong egalitarian instincts from back before money evolved. With no way to store wealth and troupe size being critical to survival in war, every individual counted and hoarding was pure waste. Similarly, because a strongman is a defector, and defection harms the whole group, anyone who made themselves out to be too dominant was quite rationally torn down by a coalition.

Sophism, the apotheosis of natural lying instincts, can appeal to natural egalitarianism to propose an equal-sounding form of government: democracy. In theory everyone is in charge, but we still get the benefits of division of labour, by making someone else do the actual ruling.

Of course the wealthy know that it's two wolves and a sheep deciding what to have for dinner. Though in reality the wealthy are the wolves, thus two sheep and a wolf, and in reality the sheep are monkeys, so it's a wolf versus a monkey troupe. Before agriculture, troupe size mattered. After, army sized still mattered a whole lot even though armour disabled Lanchester's Square Law, and so the wealthy wolves tended to surrender to Sophist sophistry. Not to mention it soothes their own egalitarian guilt.

(And thus democracy is an envy/spite engine.)

Thus Sophists establish democracy, to establish a siphon between rich and poor, and skim some off the top. It's not like the irresponsible poor are going to notice there's some missing. Plus hey, free stuff.

Sophism first appears clearly in the historical record in Greece. From there it spread around, reaching most of the world within a couple centuries. Folk contaminated by Sophism lost their kings or suffered similar problems.

When Rome fell, we entered a 'dark' age, where Sophism was lost. However, Islam kept (and subsquently suffered from, when Al Ghazali Sophisted them to death) enough texts for the Sophism virus to re-appear in Europe around 1100. Whereupon demogogues started reappearing, you got St. Francis, Luther etc. causing chaos, and ultimately...they lost their kings.

What is Progressivism? It is our particular strain of Sophism. Given a Hajnal folk who believe in Christianity, the easy lies are predictable. These lies get laid down as culture, and then new niches for lies appear on top of them, and thus Progressivism is largely predictable.


For now, I'll be brief about mentioning Sophism resistance, also known as Philosophy. Sophism is parasitism, so sooner or later the population adapts to resist the parasite. Lies are unstable form of predation, as they require the prey to trust the predator. No matter how well adapted, the predator cannot make the prey trust them.

Philosophy's root is the art of checking your facts. Generalized due diligence.


Democracy is socialist redistribution of power. Power is often used to acquire wealth. Democracy thus implies socialism of wealth.

Or more generally, democracy is in itself the defeat and surrender of wealth. The responsible are punished, and the irresponsible rewarded. The responsible etiolate, while the irresponsible multiply. As per Plato et al, the electorate degenerates, moving leftward, becoming ever more vulnerable to Sophist manipulation.

Full socialism is communism. Full communism is full equality. We are only equal in death. 


As part of Sophism resistance, the responsible right starts noticing the irresponsible left voters are a problem, especially as responsibility declines so much that infrastructure starts to break down. For now, they're not realizing that responsibility is a spectrum. There's always a left half of the bell curve, who will suffer envy and independently be more vulnerable to Sophism. Even Massachusetts votes right 40% of the time. Only DC is pure, and that's probably due to filtering.

The Left is not the enemy. Even if the electorate was subject to drastic action and radically shifted right, there will still be a left half. The mind control parasites are the enemy.

More accurately, egalitarian hubris is the enemy. Envy is the enemy. Pride is the enemy. Lies and the lying instincts are the enemy. These ideas may be familiar...

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Cthulu's Leftism Summary

As long as you accept that leftism == irresponsibility, it's simple. Democracy punishes the responsible. You get less of what you tax, more of what you subsidize. So, as per Plato et al, democracy degenerates the population, making them increasingly irresponsible. Hence, further left, in a positive feedback loop.

Cthulu always drifts left, says Moldbug. But here at casa AI, we insist on proof.

This is a highlight of a key section of a near-future post.

Progressivism is a parasite culture. It exists to use mind control via lies to siphon off resources for the minimum of effort. But it has a problem: the irresponsible folk, who are easy to fool, are poor. Responsible folk, who are hard to fool because they into due diligence, have all the stuff. Progressives must find some way to empower the irresponsible to take the responsible folk's stuff.

Hence, democracy. Let everyone, responsible or irresponsible alike, have one equal vote. The irresponsible naturally envy the wealth of the responsible, and it's easy to partition the electorate such that the bottom half siphons off the top half. Progressives simply skim some off the current - it's not like the irresponsible are going to run the numbers and find the accounts don't line up. (The responsible have already lost, so if they run the numbers it's easy to make them look like sore losers.)

Thus, being responsible is selected against. In the new election cycle, the whole electorate has shifted to be more irresponsible - further left. However, envy is zero sum. The poor are now poorer, the rich are now poorer (except the top 0.01% or so) so it's eternally possible to partition the electorate so that the bottom half can siphon off the top half.

Badly husbanded, it collapses immediately, such as when Russia liquidated the kulaks. Properly husbanded, this siphoning can run for centuries. However, inevitably responsibility drops so low that basic infrastructure starts failing. Ten generations is a rule of thumb for the limit. The end comes at the next economic shock.

Friday, March 10, 2017

Sleeping Beauty is Easy

Some very clever arguments for making it much harder than it actually is.

The Monty Hall problem is easy if you simply write out the possibility tree and count the final nodes. If I get fancier than counting, it gets tricky. I got this one wrong too before I checked using the dumb counting method.
Though there's a trick depending on what I care about.

The options above the line are 50% each. All I can do is change the weightings of the possibilities below the line, which must also sum to 50%.
The brain gets confused because there's more Ts in the lower half. However, since they must sum to 50%, they're worth less. More on this at the bottom.

If you run the experiment once, then it is kind of hard to think about. Instead, run it a thousand times.
If I think the probability of tails is 1/2, I will report it half the time, and my probability will match the number of times I'm right.
If I report tails all the time, I will be right half the time. If I report heads all the time, I'll be right half the time.
If I think the probability of tails 2/3rds, I will report it more often in the bottom, but less often than in the top, and be right half the time. (1/9 + 1/9 + 4/9 = 6/9 = 2/3. 2/6 + 1/6 = 1/2.)

I dunno. Doesn't seem like I need a whole big book of calculus to solve the problem. I just have to put aside my pride long enough to do the dumb counting thing.

Self-location information? Conditionalization? Principle of indifference? Imagine rule? Impressive, clever-sounding things I don't need to know or care about. I just make a stupid picture and look at it.

The trick being my choice of perspective. If I want to be right, I can pick whatever I want, as I'll be right half the time. If instead we're talking about the number of reports the experimenter sees, then it's different. If the observer is writing down each report separately, and I want to generate as many 'matching' entries as possible, it favours reporting tails. Tails causes double the records, effectively doing the experiment twice on that branch.

Wednesday, March 1, 2017

Carving Reality, Not Butchering It

I've found the Less Wrong description to be profoundly disappointing, so let's do better.

When you talk about a group for a purpose, the label used for that group should be causally relevant to the purpose.

I am hungry. I have a stick, a carrot, a steak, and a mug. I can carve up this group in various ways.
"Let's eat something natural."
"Let's eat something fleshy."
"Let's eat something long and thin."

Technically, if I have the correct background knowledge, any of those would work. In this example, were I sharing my dinner with you, any of those, while a bit stilted, are perfectly understandable and we could continue a discussion and ultimately sit down and dine.

However, when doing something difficult, we need every advantage we can get. Apparent understandability is not good enough. If I want to eat something, I should start by considering an edible property. We can say, "Whites are outbred," but 'white' is not a relevant property, and leads to interminable arguments about whether slavs or jews are 'white.'

When investigating, it's entirely possible that nobody knows the relevant background information. If I say, "Long thin things are edible," even formally restricting it to a simple set like above, we may end up trying to eat a stick.

Hajnal Europeans are the set living behind the Hajnal line, and thus have a history of manorialism and Catholic social engineering against the clan and in favour of itself. These things have a causal relationship with outbred nuclear families, which has a causal relationship to democracy resistance and lack of corruption and so on. Their colour, like the shape of the fleshy thing above, is coincidental.

Politicians/sophists love doing this wrong, precisely because it leads to confusions which they can exploit to get you to serve their interests instead of your own.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

Attitudes to Math vs. Logic

Modern Western culture is often considered pathological because of Progressivism. Progressivism == Modern == disease. While the previous identity is true, ultimately Progressivism thrives due to deeper, nonpartisan diseases.

If you google 'curl operator' you find a precise description and plenty of handles for googling more if you need to practice how it's done.

Learning critical thinking is exactly as mechanistic and objective. However, if you google a particular method such as 'look at something from multiple perspectives,' it is obvious that the pages were not written by a critical thinker, but instead consist of fluffy virtue-signalling. Or, in the best case, virtue-signalling with complicated obfuscations.

Progressivism took root because Hajnals were already the kind to leave the field of 'critical thinking' to the politicians.

Monday, February 13, 2017

Who Keeps the Laws?

Does they realize this is 100% authentic Steel Anarchism? (Via.)

However, respect for the law does not enforce itself.

At one time there was a place where the respect for rule of Law ran so deep it became true, and Law ruled. A nomoarchy. The King could be tried, and found guilty, and punished. And God's hands reached down and cradled those humble and glorious people. However, this respect did not last, and that land now affords Satan comfortable and well-appointed apartments.

Respect for the law does not propagate itself. The law does not enforce itself. As such, what is Law, from the perspective of the transgressor? Law is whatever the Lawkeeper says it is. If I want the Law on my side, I need a Lawkeeper on my side. I must Secure a Lawkeeper, who in turn must Secure my property.

To Secure my property, the Lawkeeper must have enough weaponry to force other Lawkeepers to respect it.

The problem then is to get a just Lawkeeper. In practice, dire apes are easily tricked, and occasionally directly prefer sick Lawkeepers. As example, American slaves were sold by their Lawkeepers to the Lawkeepers of America, and were primarily slaves as punishment for crimes. If indeed we can hang a werman until dead for transgression of the Law, a fortiori we can merely enslave* him. Indeed, give him the option and let him pick his preference.

(*Any lifelong slaves need to be sterilized.)

The typical dire ape knows nothing of the Law and will never know the Law. It is probably this that killed the respect I saw above. The Lawkeeper bent the Law, said it was not bent, and all agreed. But, inevitably, the bent Law was not worthy of respect, and still ignorant of the delta, true Law and bent Law were discredited both.

Yet, quis custodiet ipsos custodes. Neither can the Lawkeepers be trusted to pick just Lawkeepers.

Saturday, February 4, 2017

Peterson's Truth

Abstract: Peterson is saying we can't know what's really eternally true, so it's pragmatically a waste of time to worry about it. What we can do is arrange our beliefs in such a way as to serve our goals.
When I studied the idea of truth, I found enough constraints on what it could be that I concluded the definition isn't arbitrary. (E.g. the exact boundary of 'red' doesn't have to be in any particular place, but the boundaries of all ideas in the vicinity of 'true' form contradictions unless they're in a particular spot.)

Peterson closely approximates this definition, but fails to explain his reasoning. Like all but a few moderns, he finds discipline impossible, and as a result misuses language. Thus I will explain on his behalf. I will try (but fail) to leave the steelman for another time.

Timestamps will be late & wrong because I'm too lazy to rewind repeatedly.


Let's start with an example, because this topic is fraught with negative knowledge.
Peterson says atomic theory is wrong. What Peterson means is atomic theory is incomplete.

He would say it's irretrievably entangled with moral considerations. I would say you have to not get bogged down in the weeds. You're making a hydrogen bomb, in Peterson's tale, to prove atomic theory, but why are you proving atomic theory? Largely, for sex and survival. Don't get bogged down in the short-term parochial goal of proving a particular atomic theory.

This particular (exploding) proof, according to Peterson's unexamined priors, decreases the odds of survival. It is therefore quite literally fatally incomplete. Much as the belief [ammonia and bleach produce an interesting chemical reaction] is fatally incomplete if I decide to realize the interest of this reaction in closed quarters.

Peterson may or may not believe we should pursue atomic theory or atomic weapons. If he examined his priors and learned some game theory, he would realize it is inevitable.

At no point does Peterson claim or imply that mass is not energy, that electrons don't form a probability cloud around the nucleus, etc. What he's saying is if you try to fly a test plane without a rudder, you'll justify the insurance company's high premium for test pilots. Atomic theory is the lifting surfaces, but morality and consciousness is the rudder that stop you flying into the ground. Engineering can stop the bomb literally blowing up in your face, but it can't stop the existence of bomb technology metaphorically blowing up in your face.


To repeat, Peterson is saying we can't know what's really eternally true, so it's pragmatically a waste of time to worry about it. What we can do is arrange our beliefs in such a way as to serve our goals.

For example, if you're concerned about eternal truth, you start arguing about whether social justice is really 'justice' or some kind of perversion. If you're not, the discussion ends in about ten seconds when you ask, "What is it for?" and then, "Okay, what kinds of things in fact lead to that purpose?" Instead of an interminable Wittgensteinian sin, you end up with a concrete testable prediction. You try the thing and go look and see if it leads to, for example, lower crime and racial harmony, or higher crime and [politics reference redacted]ism.

Because of this, if we run across a theory which is less true in some objective detail, but better for survival, then Peterson says we should adopt this theory, even though it's 'provably' false. (I go into this with the smallpox below.) If the latter theory is better for survival, the previous theory is in fact the more false one. The new theory must have something new and true in it, even though we can't put our finger on it.

Is it really 'justice?' Who cares, it's doing what you want. Is your theory about why it's doing that correct? Who cares, it's doing what you want.
His goal is to justify religion, though I have to ironically note the heresy involved in this path.

If believing Jesus is God and died for your sins reduces crime over the competing theory, who cares if Jesus in fact existed or still exists? Let's say for the sake of argument it's pure fantasy. However, the mechanistic theory leads to higher crime. It must be false in a way we can't figure out, and Christianity must likewise be true in a way we can't figure out, and on balance mysterious desert sky gods is more true.

The only advantage to a truer theory, and thus the only purpose for pursuing truth in detail, is when it does what you want even harder. In other words, if you're only making a mangonel, use Newtonian physics. It's true enough. Doing a full Einsteinian treatment is a waste of time unless it's a GPS enabled silicon-age mangonel.

Peterson has the further specific claim that science is trying to use Newtonian morality to launch a moral GPS, and it's going to point your moral compass in the wrong direction. Quite possibly to civilization-ending results.

The Greek skeptics have never been widely accepted to have been refuted. Science is often said to be based on the idea that everything can be questioned; that all theories are merely our current best guess, and downright likely to be completely overturned in the future. By the lay definition, a thing that must be overturned isn't true.

Perhaps there is some way to rephrase the supposed scientific respect for contradictory evidence such that the scientist culture in fact respects it instead of resists it. Or there is at the least a way to prove there is no such rephrasing, and the cultural resistance is inevitable.

Even if we had access to eternal truth, it's not an end to itself. (Well, for me it is.) We access this truth for some purpose, and it therefore philosophically behooves us to keep this purpose in mind. Especially as our minds are limited - we must cull some knowledge, not access all of it - we're apt to make complicated versions of the [mustard gas reaction for fun] thing.

Anyway a few more details, then I'll try to sum it up again.



Peterson is of course correct that leaving out subjectivity is fatal. I've written about this extensively.


"I think about science as a tool instead of a description of reality."
Science defines itself as a tool and not a description of reality. This, however, is a motte-and-bailey thing. Scientists and Harris think of science as a description of reality, and as a matter of fact this makes them resist the overturning they say they support. This is the sort of pragmatic 'not true enough' thing which Peterson is trying to point out.



Harris thinks he doesn't discount subjectivity. I'm genuinely laughing out loud at how deluded he is.

"No Plato, these shadows are totes real! See, that one right there is green!"

>You look at the ruddy shadow. There's a little post-it note. It says 'green' on it.



Peterson is correct. Harris is ontologically committed to agreeing with Peterson. Harris' brain is too broken to realize it though.


After this my patience was utterly exhausted. Spot checks makes it looks like Harris continues to repeat the dogma as if Peterson hadn't heard it millions of times before, and Peterson continues to repeat his failure to communicate in various different ways.

I did find a thing about smallpox that might be a good example.


So there's a lab of good people who don't understand smallpox, and a lab of bad people who do.

Harris wants to say the bad people believe something true about smallpox.

Peterson is saying neither is true enough. Both of these sets of beliefs end up with smallpox epidemics that kill enough people to disrupt civilization. "But the bad folks have correct biology." Good for them. So what?

What you want is a theory of smallpox-and-morality, and these things aren't disentangleable the way Harris thinks they are, which leads to no smallpox epidemics. If it gets the smallpox biology wrong, then so be it. It beats the bad lab with good biology.

Note - Harris is ontologically committed to communism. "But the first lab had good intentions!" Right. Just like Lincoln and FDR had 'good' intentions. Do you want to ban medical malpractice lawsuits, or do we condemn FDR and Lincoln for their results?

If Harris wanted a discussion, he would have said something like, "But we can in fact combine good biology and no epidemics. Indeed in reality (not thought experiment) it should even make it easier." And indeed this is the case. But the priority is the no epidemics. Scientists do not have this prioritization, and neither do their funders.

Christianity might be patently false. There should be a theory that's not false but doesn't lead to ennui, alienation, atomization and crime. But we don't know what it is. (I might know what it is. Certainly, neither Harris nor Peterson know it.) The problem is having Christianity widespread is incompatible with having Progressivism widespread. They're self-entangled in complex ways. Trying to have it a la carte doesn't work: we can't simply combine non-genocidalism with good smallpox biology like we easily can with the lab. You can have Democracy or Christianity, but they cannot coexist.

The further problem is that Christianity is incompatible with widespread Philosophy as well. The Bible has logical contradictions. If we are to seek the truth, then both Christianity and Progressivism must fall. However, in the meantime, Christianity is clearly the more true of the pair, and should be kept around, even if you don't accept that Progressivism is philosophical sin.


Talk about being bogged down in the weeds. What is this conversation for? At which point do we accept that our theory about how conversation works has been falsified, because we have comprehensively failed to do whatever it is for? If you're talking to me, it takes substantially less than an hour and a half.

By the way, in short Harris' problem is he's not trying to understand what Peterson is saying, he's trying to convert Peterson to Harrisism. Peterson is likewise trying to evangelize and has zero interest in being converted, and thus unproductivity ensues.

As a judge I find in favour of Peterson, as the host has the power. When you invite a guest you're executing the guest in the sense of a program. If Harris did not invite Peterson for the purpose of activating him, he did a dumb, and Gnon punishes him accordingly. If Harris listeners don't already know what Harris thinks, they're beyond help, but they're curious about what Peterson thinks, and Harris' failure is not being curious on their behalf. If he could not bring himself to be curious, he should have recused himself.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Political Formulae are Perverse

Every political formula ends up promoting its opposite.
Not-exploitable because the point of political formulae is to sound aesthetically pleasing to dire apes.
Simply, because 'impact.'
"The conventional word is impact. Impact implies social status: it determines how often you get laid, and with whom. [...] To have impact, you must have an effect, and that effect must not have happened without you. [...] there is no impact unless you (a) produce some change, and (b) do so against some resistance."
Democracy is supposed to lead to policies that the governed consent to. But what kind of loser does what they're supposed to? You know you're really high status if you can provoke maximum dissent and get away with it. Thus we have a competition to implement the most pointless yet destructive policy.

Divine right leads to satanic kings. Sure you can do what God probably wants, but you know you're really high status if you can embody pure heresy and get away with it.

Aristocracy, the rule of the most virtuous, leads to rule by the most depraved reprobate.

Right of conquest is more stable, as it's pretty hard to argue that you weren't beat up when you were. Plus if you argue too hard you get beat up again. This leads to rule by wordy priests. You know you're really high status if you manage to rule without laying a finger on anyone, so as soon as the conquistadors become demoralized or tired, priests seize everything. (You are here.)

Pure ethno-nationalist democracy is worse. Not only will they compete to make pointless yet expensive policy, they'll compete to be as foreign as possible. The Cathedral's core is still mostly you really want to see what a mature ethnat Cathedral would look like?

Pure plutocracy would probably lead to rule by priests again. You know you're really high status if you can tell folk what to do after taking a vow of poverty. You wanna give it a shot? For Science? Maybe it would be warriors beating folk up again instead. Thug intimidates rich dude until he's appointed Evil Vizier. Fuck accountability, am I right? Of course I'm right.

Neocameralism is probably a special case of plutocracy. If you're rich enough you can buy the corporation/country. Hence, the game becomes how few stocks you can own and still get the CEO to do what you want. Alternatively, sabotage the CEO's reputation with the owner, thus getting them fired, until they go so far down the list your buddy gets to be CEO.

Finally we come to Exit.
Exit is still pretty good. Like conquest, it's hard to argue that North Koreans can leave if they want to. Similarly, even in NK, it's hard to restrict the movement of the more important members of society. Nonetheless, if Exit is the formula, the game becomes how much of a prison state you can construct and get away with it. And since everyone will be trying it, there will be a sort of voiceless collusion.

Basically you want your formula to be 'a legitimate state tortures and imprisons everybody.' However, this isn't a viable formula for legitimizing coercion: it doesn't seem legit to anybody. Hence the non-exploitability.

The solution is to convince dire apes that coercion is evil.
(Is the joke sufficiently clear?)

Sunday, January 29, 2017

Ascended Comments: Mathematics, not Wittgenstein
"The key insight of Wittgenstein is that speech is a kind of a game. You agree on a set of rules, e.g. that the word “apple” stands for a certain kind of fruit, and you agree to use that word to refer to that fruit."
But you don't need to read Witty, you only need to have done some math.

In math, we let x = 3. Or let x = tangent to the curve, or let x = all primes > 0 and < 1 000 000. Then, in the next problem, we change our minds and let x = cos(y). (You may notice they were doing this before the 1950s.)

We also find calling it 'x' is arbitrary. We can call it z, or potatoes, or phi, or draw little snowmen. Let [drawing of statue of liberty] = the unknown rate of change.

Then, I start doing philosophy. It turns out math is a language, English is a language, and expressions in languages play by the same rules.
Let 'justice' mean 'good things happens to good folk, bad things happen to bad folk, and not the reverse.'
Let 'justice' mean 'black folk have generally higher social status than white folk.' (Hence 'social' justice.)
Sure dude, whatevs.

But once so defined, what the label means is not arbitrary. If we let x = 1 and then try to divide by (x - 1), we can't say we're not dividing by zero. Expressions play by rules such as [no div0], and when we make other rules for ourselves, such as [x = 1], we have to play by those rules too.

We can make 'justice' be the label for anything we want, but the meaning of what it labels is not up to us. The double bump shape of '3' is also just a label, but the actual grouping of three objects we label with '3' is a true meaning. The purpose of justice is to make a robust and prosperous society. Only one possible choice of a 'just' society is robust and prosperous.

If I try to let x = dividing by zero is allowed, all I did is a dumb. If I try to let 'justice' mean that second definition leads to prosperity, all I did is a dumb.

"Epistemology is hard."
Epistemology is easy, but antisocial.