All of Anton Fleck's Comments + Replies

Insights from 'The Strategy of Conflict'

Another major point was the effectivness of a fraction of the maximum harm possible inflicted over a long period of time. It would be more effective in a bargaining process to only kill one hostage/ kill 100 POWs/ nuke one city rather than threatening maximum harm immediatly after your action.

The True Essence of Honesty: How to Lie and Get Away With It

First of all, good analysis of the meaning of honesty! However, I see several problems with your application of this to the real world.

I think in most cases phrasing unintelligible for one group would not lead to them adopting any beliefs whatsoever. People also are not blank slates, just waiting for anyone to give their opinion on something, rather they have established worldviews and networks of beliefs, so your arguments might nudge somone already going in a particular direction, but will not make anyone believe something completly different. Also, I th... (read more)

You are correct that someone is unlikely form a new belief about how the world functions or something just because they hear someone say so. On the other hand, they're very likely to form new beliefs about you, and in politics, about your fellows and your constituents, on the basis of what they hear you say. Some things can be very clear, sure. First, I'd invite you to consider what you would do, as they say, in the least convenient possibel world. If you did have to work around impossible communication barriers that forced you to either shut up or deceive somebody, what would you do? As for the realistic nature of this supposed situation, it's very easy to show indeed. Just think how often politicians accuse each other of "cutting" funding to some vital thing because they've proposed not increasing spending as much as some previous plan. That's a very easily understood ambiguity for a nerd. The next one is harder. Suppose you say you support gun control. If you're not naive, you now know that people will make many assumptions about your other stances, on taxes, abortion, and so on. They'll use one answer to infer your ingroup, and use your ingroup to deduce your other answers. Your answer will, you know, make them believe false things about your other stances. Maybe the best thing to do is weigh how many true and false beliefs will be caused by any answer you give and try to rank them somehow... The next is worse. Realistically, no one person can be expected to be an expert on even half the issues that, say, the president of the USA will have strong influence upon. Honestly, candidates should probably say something like "I have no idea how to solve these problems. I have a few ideas about X and Y, but, honestly, superior experts can probably think of better ideas, and I should just listen to them. My only real qualifications are, my judgment in choosing which experts to guide me, the list of goals I will try to achieve with whatever power I achieve,