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It means, in this context, "the first word of the technical term 'ideal money' which Flinter has been using, and which I am hoping at some point he will give us his actual definition of".

Ideal, the standard definition, means implies that it is conceptual.

You began by saying this:

I would like to suggest, as a blanket observation and proposal, that most of these difficult problems described, especially on a site like this, are easily solvable with the introduction of an objective and ultra-stable metric for valuation.

which, as I said at the time, looks at least as much like "There is such a metric" as like "Let's explore the consequences of having such a metric". Then later you said "It converges on money" (not, e.g., "it and money converge on a single coherent metric of value"). Then when asked whether you were saying that Nash has actually found an incorruptible measure of value, you said yes.

Yes he did and he explains it perfectly. And its a device, I introduced into the dialogue and showed how it is to be properly used.

I appreciate that when asked explicitly whether such a thing exists you say no. But you don't seem to be taking any steps to avoid giving the impression that it's already around.

It's conceptual in nature.

Nope. But you introduced this whole business in the context of AI value alignment, and the possible relevance of your (interpretation of Nash's) proposal to the Less Wrong community rests partly on its applicability to that sort of problem.

Yup we'll get to that.

I'm here discussing this stuff with you. I am not (so far as I am aware) ignoring anything you say. What exactly is your objection? That I didn't, as soon as you mentioned John Nash, go off and spend a week studying his thoughts on this matter before responding to you? I have read the Nash lecture you linked, and also his earlier paper on Ideal Money published in the Southern Economic Journal. What do you think I am ignoring, and why do you think I am ignoring it?

Nope, those are past sentiments, my new ones are I appreciate the dialogue.

But your question is an odd one. It seems to be asking, more or less, "How dare you have interests and priorities that differ from mine?". I hope it's clear that that question isn't actually the sort that deserves an answer.

Yes but its a product of never actual entering sincere dialogue with intelligent players on the topic of Ideal Money so I have to be sharp when we are not addressing it and instead addressing complex subject, AI, in relation to Ideal Money but before understanding Ideal Money (which is FAR more difficult to understand than AI).

I think I understand the nature of money OK, but I'm not sure I understand what you are saying about it. "A money"? Do you mean a currency, or do you mean a monetary valuation of a good, or something else? What is "the general market", in a world where there are lots and lots of different markets, many of which use different currencies? In the language I speak, "propriety" mostly means "the quality of being proper" which seems obviously not to be your meaning. It also (much less commonly) means "ownership", which seems a more likely meaning, but I'm not sure what it actually means to say "money is ownership". Would you care to clarify?

Why aren't you using generally accepted definitions?

the state or quality of conforming to conventionally accepted standards of behavior or morals. the details or rules of behavior conventionally considered to be correct. the condition of being right, appropriate, or fitting.

Yes money can mean many things, but if we thing of the purpose of it and how and why it exists it is effectively that thing which we all generally agree on. If one or two people play a different game that doesn't invalidate the money. Money serves a purpose that involves all of us supporting it through unwritten social contract. There is nothing else that serves that purpose better. It is the nature of money.

It seems to me entirely different from your earlier statements to which I was replying. Perhaps everything will become clearer when you explain more carefully what you mean by "A money is chosen by the general market, it is propriety".

Money is the general accepted form of exchange. There is nothing here to investigate, its a simple statement.

Clearly our difficulties of communication run both ways. I have told you neither of those things. I like money a great deal, and while indeed not everyone uses it (there are, I think, some societies around that don't use money) it's close enough to universally used for most purposes. (Though not everyone uses the same money, of course.)


I genuinely don't see how to get from anything I have said to "you don't like money therefore not everyone uses it".

Money has the quality that it is levated by our collective need for an objective value metric. But if I say "our" and someone says "well you are wrong because not EVERYONE uses money" then I won't engage with them because they are being dumb.

I think, again, some clarification is called for. When you spoke of "converging on money", you surely didn't just mean that (almost) everyone uses money. The claim I thought you were making, in context, was something like this: "If we imagine people getting smarter and more rational without limit, their value systems will necessarily converge to a particular limit, and that limit is money." (Which, in turn, I take to mean something like this: to decide which of X and Y is better, compute their prices and compare numerically.) It wasn't clear at the time what sort of "money" you meant, but you said explicitly that the results are knowable and had been found by John Nash. All of this goes much, much further than saying that we all use money, and further than saying that we have (or might in the future hope to have) a consistent set of prices for tradeable goods.

We all converge to money and to use a single money, it is the nature of the universe. It is obvious money will bridge us with AI and help us interact. And yes this convergence will be such that we will solve all complex problems with it, but we need it to be stable to begin to do that.

So in the future, you will do what money tells you. You won't say, I'm going to do something that doesn't procure much money, because it will be the irrational thing to do.

It would be very helpful if you would say clearly and explicitly what you mean by saying that values "converge on money".

Does everyone believe in Christianity? Does everyone converge on it? Does everyone converge on their beliefs in the after life?

No but the nature of money is such that its the one thing we all agree on. Again telling me no we don't just shows you are stupid. This is an obvious point, it is the purpose of money, and I'm not continuing on this path of dialogue because its asinine.

I mentioned my own attitudes not in order to say "I am a counterexample, therefore your universal generalization is false" but to say "I am a counterexample, and I see no reason to think I am vastly atypical, therefore your universal generalization is probably badly false". I apologize if that wasn't clear enough.

Yes you live in a reality in which you don't acknowledge money, and I am supposed to believe that. You don't use money, you don't get paid in money, you don't buy things with money, you don't save money. And I am supposed to think you are intelligent for pretending this?

We all agree on money, it is the thing we all converge on. Here is the accepted definition of converge:

tend to meet at a point. approximate in the sum of its terms toward a definite limit.

Because it leaves the market participants with no basis for valuation. Every time they find one there is pressure for self interested actors to corrupt it. And also it doesn't matter, if I don't give an argument then the suggestion is still that competition will tend the currencies towards ideal.

Gold money means that the VALUE is relatively stable (relative to other options) in comparison to Ideal Money (which is money comparable to an optimally chosen basket of stable global commodity prices). We have never had that option, other than gold that Nash explains failed for reasons, and is not a good idea to re-instate for reasons.

Also the governments heavily restrict our ability seek better alternatives.

As general feed back: On Less Wrong we actually tend to have pretty thick skins, so it doesn't bother me too much when you call me stupid. It only makes you look bad.

Calling you stupid is a short cut. I know it doesn't hurt you, and I don't care if I look bad. I bring content that is truth.

Despite Isaac Newton's obviously superior intellect, I see no reason to drop what I'm doing and become an occultist.

I know but the thing is that Newton was an alchemist too, and their famous endeavor is to effectively turn math into gold, which I am claiming has been achieved now. Also in Ideal Money Nash notes Newton pegged the pound to gold as/when he was master of the mint.

Likewise, I will defer to Nash on the particulars of abstract Game Theory, but see no strong reason to accept claims beyond his domain of expertise. I suggest you stop insulting people and stop ostentatiously worshiping John Nash, and I make this suggestion because it's inhibiting your ability to communicate in general, not because it particularly effects me one way or the other.

People are insulting us, and I am not worshiping him just because I am pointing out his logic here is obviously infallible. And it is not intelligent to say you defer to him on game theory and not Ideal Money. His discovery was Ideal Money all along. The others proofs and insights are artifacts of him trying to express Ideal Money. Ideal Money is what he spent his whole life on. Its the big problem he solved and all his works is related and an expression of that.

If the currency defines what is economically correct, and but does not perfectly capture human value, then human value will not be preserved when the AI tries to optimize for the parameter defined by the currency.

I don't know what you mean to say. In the future humans will get paid the most for contributing the most value to society (and at the same time pursing their own selfish interests). AI will do the same. The prices will tell us what to do. AI won't corrupt that because its obviously optimal and it is smarter than us.

If there is any way of manipulating an objective function, an AI will try to do that in order to conserve resources while still maximizing its objectives. If there is any way of manipulating the currency -- for example, hacking into whatever global database defines the value of the currency and literally changing the numbers -- the AI will do that. This will almost always be easier for the AI, and the AI will have no inclination to follow the "spirit rather than the letter" of its programming.

No you cannot manipulate ideal money because its conceptual. You are being silly. Also when Nash was a kid he sent a letter to the NSA explaining a conjecture for unbreakeable encryption. AI can't hack bitcoin. The encryptor always wins.

Its not my proposal.

The answer to your questions is too big. There is an intrinsic problem with our gobal financial system. Essentially the triffin dilemma. Governments, because self interested, cannot act for the good of the citizens. It is the nature of the problem.

Nash proposes the introduction of a "good" money, but it is good not in the conventional sense, but rather the "gold" sense (which again he defines because not many understand).

With the introduction of this international "gold money", there is now a new stage set or game created. Governments now have to respond to the fact that citizens can CHOOSE, and so the markets start to (let's say) "hyper-reflect the quality of our money.

The ultimate result is a limit towards what Nash calls Ideal Money, which is money comparable to an optimally chosen and adjusted basket of industrial commodity prices.

…although that scheme for arranging for a system of money with ideal qualities would work well…it would be politically difficult to arrive at the implementation of such a system.

…for the government of a state, acting on its own independently of other states, to rationally contemplate the evolution of the inflation rate for its currency towards zero there are clearly some very relevant considerations relating to tax revenue expectations.

I think of the possibility that a good sort of international currency might EVOLVE before the time when an official establishment might occur.

To be quite respectable, in a Gresham-advised sense, money needs only to be AS GOOD as other material commod-ities that might be hoarded. Starting with the idea of value stabilization in relation to a domestic price index associated with the territory of one state, beyond that there is the natural and logical concept of internationally based comparisons.

The currencies being compared, like now the euro, the dollar, the yen, the pound, the swiss franc, the swedish kronor, etc. can be viewed with critical eyes by their users and by those who maybe have the option of whether or not or how to use one of them. This can lead to pressure for good quality and consequently for a lessened rate of inflationary deprecation in value.

And so the various currencies managed with “inflation targeting” would be comparable by users or observers who would be able to form opinions about the quality of the currencies. And what I want to suggest is that “the public” or the users, those for whom a medium of exchange functions as a basic utility, may develop opinions that are critical of currencies of lower “value quality”. That is, the public may learn to demand better quality of that which CAN be managed to be of better quality or which can be manged to be lof the lower quality observed in so many of the various national currencies in the 20th century.

“Keynesian” players in this game have natural opponents (or co-players, beyond zero-sum perspectives) who are interested in not being themselves “outsmarted” by those who control the options that determine, say, the quantity supplied of the national currency.

"Depending on how things were fundamentally arranged" is doing an implausible amount of work in that quote. Depending on how the atoms in my desk are fundamentally arranged, my desk may be a fully general nanoassembler, but the scientific and engineering work needed to turn my desk into a nanoassembler hasn't been done.

Firstly you are calling Nash dumb, which is stupid and ignorant. Do you think maybe you don't understand what he is saying and especially WHY he is saying?

2ndly you are not using the standard accepted definition of the word Ideal:

Also, why do you think it is so unlikely that the value of the standard kilogram could be corrupted by the actions of politicians? It is improbable but not impossible. In fact, the definition of the "standard units" has evolved over time.

Are you seriously addressing me as if I wrote Nash's Ideal Money? Listen, Nash isn't dumb, he explains how the standard units evolved over time and he is making fun of your for not considering a unit of value could do the same. He also explains how the standard unit of value needs to be adjusted over time.

economists figure out a way of defining a standard portfolio of commodities that is inherently resilient against technological change, global disasters, market fluctuations, Soros-esque currency manipulation, and

Nash perfectly defined it, don't be silly.

some entity implements this scheme in such a way that the standard is perfectly immune to institutional corruption, and

Yes Ideal Money is immune (so is bitcoin I might add)

assuming the prior two (extremely difficult and maybe impossible) objectives have been accomplished, we further assume that, at the moment we turn on an AI, all knowledge potentially relevant to human value has already been in some sense encoded in this magical currency,

Your assumption AI won't also evolve into existence is asinine.

... then this might have a shot of working.

Would you dare say that to Nash, that his idea MIGHT work? I don't believe you, because no one had the guts to say when he was alive. You don't look tough here, you look like a coward for this.

However, if there is any chance at all of the system that defines the currency being manipulated in any way, shape, or form, it's pretty likely that a superintelligent AI will just manipulate the currency such that the most "economically correct" actions happen to coincide with the actions that are simplest and most certain, and in about three steps you have a paperclip maximizer.

No this is silly and irrational. If Nash showed that the levation of ideal money is the intelligent thing to do, then why would and AI corrupt the process considering its smarter than us? You are afraid of technological advance. Any intelligent life form, knows AI is the first goal of a level 1 civilization.

AI will just manipulate the currency such that the most "economically correct"

The currency itself defines what is economically correct. You are misunderstanding the nature of money and the problem it solves. The AI cannot do what you are saying because its not logical.

The problem happens when we approach the economy from the question of "how do we design the best money" Money arose NATURALLY to solve a problem mankind couldn't solve with design and intuition. The (most significant) problem it solves is provided and objective basis for value, but it doesn't perfectly solve it, there are still intrinsic problems, paradoxes, and dilemmas.

The problem is how to optimize our economy, not how to create an ideal money.

What we are looking for is a stable metric, not an optimized money, it is simply that some people feel money and provide this metric. However, over our history money of any form has never remained stable.

Only ideal money, or money comparable to it, can be stable and properly solve this problem

Keynesian money doesn't even attempt to address the problem, it doesn't understand the problem.

Yes it is isn't it. It is also widely criticized. What Nash explains is that Keynesianism is simply an advance opaque form of bolshevik communism. It's an excuse to sell the public bad money under the label "good" money". Nash explains that we can view it as it has a missing axiom:

I think there is a good analogy to mathematical theories like, for example, “class field theory”. In mathematics a set of axioms can be taken as a foundation and then an area for theoretical study is brought into being. For example, if one set of axioms is specified and accepted we have the theory of rings while if another set of axioms is the foundation we have the theory of Moufang loops.

So, from a critical point of view, the theory of macro-economics of the Keynesians is like the theory of plane geometry without the axiom of Euclid that was classically called the “parallel postulate”. (It is an interesting fact in the history of science that there was a time, before the nineteenth century, when mathematicians were speculating that this axiom or postulate was not necessary, that it should be derivable from the others.

So I feel that the macroeconomics of the Keynesians is comparable to a scientific study of a mathematical area which is carried out with an insufficient set of axioms. And the result is analogous to the situation in plane geometry, the plane does not need to be really flat and the area within a circle can expand hyperbolically as a function of the radius rather than merely with the square of the radius. (This picture suggests the pattern of inflation that can result in a country, over extended time periods, when there is continually a certain amount of gradual inflation.)

The axiom is effectively that our currency system should be arranged for a different result:

The missing axiom is simply an accepted axiom that the money being put into circulation by the central authorities should be so handled as to maintain, over long terms of time, a stable value.

People (these days) are trying to postulate and theorize about how we can idealize our money, or in other words, how can we design the perfect money. Nash (and Hayek) points out that perfect money is FREE from such design, and so its actually an logical absurd pursuit.

This is what Keynesians are doing with the argument "There is no better way but clear and admitted sanity".

Nash proposes a money: " …intrinsically free of “inflationary decadence”..a true “gold standard”, but the proposed basis for that was not the proposal of a linkage to gold"

But it is not by design per se.

He says everyone is Keynesians even post-Keynesians, can we understand that?

Also James Miller. I got in trouble from the community for saying that its silly that a game theory professor could never have heard of 20 years of Nash's works, especially his lifes passion, that is wholly and perfectly related to game theory. Do you think thats wrong of me to suggest?

OK. Would you care to help me understand correctly, or are you more interested in telling me how stupid I am?

There is no possible modification I could make to my definition of "ideal" that would make any difference to my understanding of your use of the phrase "ideal money". I have already explained this twice.

Existing merely as an image in the mind:

An ideal is a concept or standard of perfection, existing merely as an image in the mind, or based upon a person or upon conduct: We admire the high ideals of a religious person

I think you erred saying there is no possible modification.

Er, what? No, I haven't (more accurately, hadn't) heard of it because no one mentioned it to me before. Is that difficult to understand?

Yes and you are going to suggest we are not ignoring Nash, but we are.

Nash is not being ignored here. "Ideal money" has not been a topic of conversation here before, so far as I can recall. If your evidence that Nash is "ignored" here is that we have not been talking about "ideal money", you should consider two other hypotheses: (1) that the LW community is interested in Nash but not in "ideal money" and (2) that the LW community is interested in Nash but happens not to have come across "ideal money" before. I think #2 is probably the actual explanation, however preposterous you may find it that anyone would read anything about Nash and not know about your pet topic.

Yes and in the future everyone is going to laugh at you all for claiming and pretending to be smart, and pretending to honor Nash, when the reality is, Nash spanked you all.

(I think I already mentioned that Nasar's book about Nash doesn't see fit to mention "ideal money" in its index. It's a popular biography rather than an academic study, and the index may not perfectly reflect the text, but I think this is sufficient to show that it's possible for a reasonable person to look quite deeply at Nash's life and not come to the conclusion that "ideal money" is "the main body of work that Nash was working on nearly his whole life".)

Yup she ignored his life's work, his greatest passion, and if you watch his interviews he thinks its hilarious.

The person who removed your earlier post has already explained that what he was actually saying about Hayek was not "Hayek is better than Nash" but "please don't think I'm removing this because I dislike the ideas; I am a fan of Hayek and these ideas of Nash's resemble Hayek's". This is more or less the exact opposite of your characterization of what happened.

No, it will be shown they thought it was an inconsequential move because they felt Nash's Ideal Money was insignificant. It was a subjective play.

Its too difficult to cut to, because the nature of this problem is such that we all have incredibly cognitive bias towards not understanding it or seeing it.

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