This is mainly what I want to know. From the comments on this post, it looks like W_N claims to have (read: geniunely has, geniunely thinks he has, or trolls as though he has) come across something he can't tell people about - a basilisk, some conspiracy-theory-type information, something. Being a relative newcomer unwilling to go through large numbers of his previous posts, I'd like to know if anyone who's seen him longer has any more information.

Also, this whole thing is absolutely hilarious to read.

This is mainly what I want to know. From the comments on this post, it looks like W_N claims to have (read: geniunely has, geniunely thinks he has, or trolls as though he has) come across something he can't tell people about - a basilisk, some conspiracy-theory-type information, something.

Would you have written the same comment if the header of this site wouldn't read "a community blog devoted to refining the art of human rationality" but instead "computational theology"?

[This comment is no longer endorsed by its author]Reply
12Mitchell_Porter8yI have a few ideas: 1) It's a "basilisk", i.e. an imaginary lovecraftian threat that doesn't even make sense outside of some highly particular and probably wrong belief system. (That's not my definition of basilisk, but it is what I think of such claims.) 2) Some mundane fact about the difficulty or danger of actually trying to save the world (in the specific sense of shaping a singularity) has made his blood run cold. It could be the existence in the real world of powerful evil cliques; it could be the psychological potential of joining them, or just of becoming selfish in an ordinary sense. 3) I remember when I was 22 and realized (according to the plans I had at the time) that it might take me eight years to save the world. That was very daunting, because at the time it looked like it would be a joyless, stressful, solitary existence, for an unimaginably long period of time. And as it turned out, I didn't even get it done... Will could be fleeing the responsibilities of his "position" - I mean his existential position, which surely includes the perception that he has the potential to make a difference in a huge way. ETA 4) He wants to create a barrier (a "credibility barrier") between himself and his former associates in SI, so as to develop his own thinking, because there's a systematic deficiency in their outlook and he must avoid the temptation of working within that paradigm.

This post is for sacrificing my credibility!

by Will_Newsome 1 min read2nd Jun 2012347 comments

-30


Thank you for your cooperation and understanding. Don't worry, there won't be future posts like this, so you don't have to delete my LessWrong account, and anyway I could make another, and another.

But since you've dared to read this far:

Credibility. Should you maximize it, or minimize it? Have I made an error?

Discuss.

Don't be shallow, don't just consider the obvious points. Consider that I've thought about this for many, many hours, and that you don't have any privileged information. Whence our disagreement, if one exists?