HedonicTreader

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No peace in our time?

Pasquale Cirillo and Nassim Nicholas Taleb†

I am curious why you put the sign of the cross there. None of these people appear to be dead. (?)

Rationality Quotes Thread April 2015

The dominating distinction between our perspectives is that I don't think having kids in a warzone is an acceptable tradeoff, where you think it is.

This is probably just an intuitive disagreement about the relative harm and benefit of being born into a warzone.

I think it is clearly a very bad deal for the child, and to do it recklessly or out of selfishness in fact constitutes a form of child abuse. Of course, if you would actually rather be born into poverty or war, than not be born, you will disagree where the acceptable range lies.

We do not disagree about the rest of the argument.

Rationality Quotes Thread April 2015

His ethical guideline has nothing to do with how close humanity is to extinction.

Except I already wrote:

You can easily augment the underlying harm avoidance principle with a condition that it should not result in the extinction of intelligent life (assuming that intelligent life doesn't cause even more harm in the long run).

You don't even have to apply the principle of charity, you could just look at what I had literally written.

However, if practiced diligently, it can bring humanity to extinction in a few generations from any population size.

Nonsense. Most humans don't live in a warzone at any time now. And followed in extreme poverty, this principle would reduce local malthusian traps and probably reduce poverty; at least the suffering of children from poverty.

Open Thread, Apr. 20 - Apr. 26, 2015

I know you are sincere, but you are understimating that getting rid of the unpleasantness is half the game for us depressives. Being dead objectively removes the unpleasantness, by destroying the parts of the brain that instantiate unpleasantness.

You deny this so strongly because you are offended by it, which is simply a mix of cultural programming and psychological death aversion on your part.

What you have to realize is that you are harming people by it, because this is the political foundation for the reduction in our suicide options. I would be objectively far better off if I could buy a deadly dose of barbiturates, drink it, fall asleep and then die. Society as a whole would also be objectively better off (an improved version would be one that allows me to donate my organs).

Facts don't go away because you don't like them; LessWrong is the one place where I would have expected people to understand that.

Rationality Quotes Thread April 2015

2 responses:

  1. It is possible that this would have been better overall.
  2. Even if we reject 1, humanity was no where near extinction for thousands of years now.

You can easily augment the underlying harm avoidance principle with a condition that it should not result in the extinction of intelligent life (assuming that intelligent life doesn't cause even more harm in the long run).

Rationality Quotes Thread April 2015

I personally wouldn't decide to have kids in a warzone...

...but it's okay if others do it? How is that different from saying, "I personally woudn't decide to abuse children..."

Is there any context outside of sudden, subjectively unlikely disaster where the quote is meaningful?

It was written by Michael Jackson. I don't think he was referring to sudden, subjectively unlikely disasters, but the personal material means of people deciding to become parents.

Rationality Quotes Thread April 2015

I think "unintended consequences" is a better analysis framework than "parasite response from the ecosystem".

It certainly sounds less cynical, unless we use strong charity and see it in the most technical way possible.

I think the most plausible use case for government-funded incentives to have extra kids is a wide consensus that a society doesn't have enough of them at the time, according to some economical or social optimum.

But even this requires a level of cynicism in seeing kids as a means to an end.

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