All of ErnstMuller's Comments + Replies

4thomblake9ySee the simple truth [http://yudkowsky.net/rational/the-simple-truth].
4[anonymous]9yI'm confused. If there's no such thing as the actually true, how are we to understand the claims you make in this comment? Are they not actually true? I take it you don't think they're false. Perhaps they're what you call viable models? But of what? And if you do want to say that they're viable models, you would be saying that its true that they're viable models. But then is the claim that they're viable models itself a viable model? Doesn't this lead to a vicious regress? Sincerely, A romantic twerp
The Unfinished Mystery of the Shangri-La Diet

Maybe I've been a bit unclear. That may be because I'm no native writer of English.

The point I wanted to make was just "Be very, very careful if you start messing with your feelings of hunger." Self inflicted eating disorders are no fun.

(Also, there are a lot of people with eating disorders out there. Knowledge about starving more effective can be harmful to some people.)

And just to make it clear no one in their right state of mind would start taking ECA while being at BMI 18, the bit about my BMI was just anecdotal to make my point clearer. The ... (read more)

0NancyLebovitz9yI think you were very clear. As might be obvious from this thread, a lot of people have trouble believing in the range of human metabolisms.
The Unfinished Mystery of the Shangri-La Diet

Messing with your feelings of hunger is seriously dangerous. Starvation leads to a massive biochemical response, among other things a excretion of endorphines, so you can get kicks from hunger. (That seems to be one of the ways anorexia works - http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22036318)

So, if you want to test the ECA- theory for yourself, be very, very careful. (I speak as a person with weak feelings of hunger which tends to forget to eat. I constantly battle against my tendency to lose weight, especially if stressed. That's no classical eating disorder ... (read more)

4taw9yPeople with normal weight and higher (exact numbers depend on gender etc.) have a lot of adipose tissue, which absorbs and releases fuel all the time - after every meal there's excess energy, between meals and at nights there's deficit of energy, it actively manages that. When you eat insufficient amount of food, your body tries to keep your energy in homeostasis by things like: * increased hunger (strongly countered by ECA) * decreased energy levels (strongly countered by ECA) * decreased metabolic rate (somewhat countered by ECA which has minor thermogenic effect) * increased release of fuel from adipose tissue (what we want, maybe somewhat enhanced by ECA) * increased breakdown of lean tissue (maybe somewhat countered by ECA, eating relatively higher protein diet may have protective effect here) Your homeostasis will get what it wants somehow, and ECA tries to prevent it from doing it the way you don't want it to, so it's more or less limited to primarily relying on releasing fuel from adipose tissue. Trying to starve yourself, and willpower the hunger away works much worse than that. If your adipose tissue cannot do that since it lacks sufficient stored fuel, your body will try the other things harder, and you may have some nasty side effects. Anyway, who the hell would want to take ECA while being at BMI 18?
Why is my sister related to me only 50%?

Because it works something like this, in a grossly oversimplified explanation:

Human genes are organized on 23 chromosomes, 2 complete sets of them, so 46 in all, with 50% being redundant. Your DNA is fragmented in 46 stripes of neatly ordered DNA.

Information on these two sets of chromosomes aren't identical, just redundant: On one set could for example be the information to make fair hair, on the other the information for brown hair, with the carrier of those genes getting brownish hair.

If a human produces gametes (cells used for reproduction, sperm and e... (read more)

Bayesians vs. Barbarians

Then you are suffering strongly from the Bystander-effect. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bystander_effect

One could translate this effect as "the warm fuzzy feeling that there are enough people around which will do the job and oneself doesn't need to bother".

The effect is very strong. So, adjust your thoughts: The barbarians will kill you either way. There aren't enough people which care, so you yourself have to rise to do something. (That also applies to everyday life: If you want something done, especially in a busy and people-rich environment, do it yourself.)

Policy Debates Should Not Appear One-Sided

The point of banned goods is not that they are banned because of the hazards for the people alone who buy them but for everyone else also. Sulphuric acid for example is easily usable as a weapon especially in concentrated form. (It grows very hot if it touches water. And it is very acidic. So, by using a simple acid proof squirt gun one can do serious damage.)

And, that's not really all: Suppose I could go into such a shop, proof that I'm sufficiently intelligent to handle dangerous stuff without being a danger for myself and buy a) a PCR machine b) a flu ... (read more)

Most of the goods you mention aren't restricted at all. I don't need any special permits to buy a PCR machine or anything necessary to run it for example.

2guineapig10yMadagascar, obviously.
Politics is the Mind-Killer

You write "The evolutionary reasons for this are so obvious as to be worth belaboring: In the ancestral environment, politics was a matter of life and death."

Is there any evidence for that? That sounds much like the typical sort of sociobiologistic hypothesis which sounds so convincing that no one really thinks about it and just nods in agreement. So, are there any papers, experiments, mathematical models to back it up?

I would rather more suggest a hypothesis that it was (and is) very favorable for humans in terms of fitness to belong to a certa... (read more)

2omeganaut10yCitystates in Greece had to deal with politics that certainly could mean life or death. When the Peloponnesian war broke out, states had to take sides, or risk being hated by both sides, and at risk for invasion and conquering. Rome around the time of Julius Caesar was turbulent, and where supporting the wrong Tribune could mean being put on a wanted list and killed by a bounty hunter when they came to power. In Germany, choosing the wrong side at the wrong time could certainly result in execution for heresay or treason. There are many examples throughout history where competing political views transferred into violence and killing, if not outright war.