You may be right about my lack of tools, and I can't honestly say I used the try harder in the proper manner seeing as I hadn't been introduced to it at the time. I played the role of the supportive boyfriend and tried (unsuccessfully) to convince her to go to a therapist who was actually qualified at that sort of thing. I am suspicious, however that you took pains to separate yourself into a new reference class before actually knowing that one way or the other. Unless of course you have a track record of taking massive psychological issues and successfull...
Yes well I wasn't a rationalist at the time, nor did I know enough about psychology to say what the right thing to do to help a person whose father... Well I cannot say the exact thing but suffice to say that If I ever meet the man at least one of us is going to the hospital. I'm rather non-violent at all other times. There wasn't exactly a how-to guide I could read on the subject.
I am also the kind of person that would be drawn out and try to help a person who breaks down crying. You use your energy to help their problems, and have less left for yourself....
I've had a 3 year relationship with a woman I thought I could fix. She said she'd try hard to change, I said I'd help her, I tried to help her and was extremely supportive for a long time. It was emotionally draining because behind each new climbed mountain there was another problem, and another, and another. Every week a new thing that was bad or terrible about the world. I eventually grew tired of the constant stream of disasters, most stemming from normal situations interpreted weirdly then obsessed over until she broke down in tears. It became clear th...
On 6 of the past 7 days I've succeeded in doing 50 minutes of exercise and 2 hours of job searching a day. I'm now talking with 3 different recruitment agencies and it seems likely that I'll be having interviews shortly! I've been wanting to get into running for years so i'm spending half the exercise periods doing a couch to 5k program and the other half on bodyweight workouts. This may not seem like much but as a person who have been struggling to get anything done at all for the past 5 months it really is a big deal. Thanks to /u/peter_hurford for his guides on productivity which were brief enough that I couldn't procrastinate by reading them.
Thanks for the write up. I used these tips, and they've been effective for 5 days in a row so far which is great because I'm finally getting callbacks about job interviews now after putting off applying for so long and all my muscles hurt from working out. It was short enough that I couldn't do what I normally do and put off taking action till I'd finished reading the book/presentation/whatever. Ended up skipping step 2 due to having plenty of free time in the schedule, which probably doesn't apply to most employed people but hey, feedback.
I found it usefu...
I had the happiness of stupidity once. While younger I edged into the valley and recoiled. I believe I even made a conscious choice and enforced it through various means. It was a good time over about two years, and it was unsustainable. I made the mistake of continuing to gain knowledge about human nature, I kept my curiosity and my fascination with how things worked and thus was my ignorance doomed. I dipped deep into the valley and eventually found this place, where I (hopefully) hit critical mass of bootstrap.
If I had stayed in that bubble of wilful ig...
And neither of us have the evidence required to find this point (if indeed it is just one point instead of several optimal peaks). I'm tapping out. If you have any closing points I'll try to take them into account in my thinking. Regardless, it seems like we agree on more than we disagree on.
You misunderstand me. I am not saying that a large government is definitely better. I'm simply playing devils advocate. I find it worrying that you can't find any examples of good things in larger government though. Do socialised single payer healthcare, lower crime rates due to more police, better roads, better infrastructure, environmental protections and higher quality schools not count as benefit? These are all things that require taxes and can be improved with greater spending on them.
Edit: In retrospect maybe this is how a changed humanity looks already. That seems to fit the reality better.
Achieved almost entirely by fighting through normal means, guns and such so I hardly see the relevant. Suicide bombing kills a vanishing small number of people. IED's are an actual threat.
Their original goal as rebels was to remove a central government and now they're fighting a war of genocide against other rebel factions. I wonder how they would have responded if you'd told them at the start that a short while later they'd be slaughtering fellow muslims in direct opposition to their holy book.
Really? I was not aware of that trend in the field, maybe I should look into it.
Well, at least I understand you now.
It finally makes sense, you're looking at it from a personal point of view. Consider it from the view of the average wellbeing of the entire populace. Zoom out to consider the entire country, the full system of which the government is just a small part. A larger government has more probable failure modes, but a small one simply outsources its failure modes to companies and extremely rich individuals. Power abhors a vacuum.
You and I are not large enough or typical enough for considerations about our optimality to enter into the running of a country. People ...
That large government is worse than small government.
A theory of government is not an terminal value, it is an instrumental one. You believe that that particular way of government will make people happy/autonomous/free/healthy/whatever your value system is. What is lacking is evidence that this particular government actually achieves those aims. It's a reasonable a priori argument, but so are dozens of other arguments for other governments. We need to distinguish which reality we are actually living in. By what metric can your goals be measured and where would you expect them to be highest? Are there countri...
Right, well would you please continue? I believe the question that started all this off was how do you know said theory corresponds to reality.
Not yours specifically, but the general average across humanity. lukeprog wrote up a good summary of the factors correlated with happiness which you've probably read as well as an attempt to discern the causes. Not that happiness is the be-all and end-all of terminal values, but it certainly shows how little the average person knows about what they would actually happy with vs what they think they'd be happy with. I believe that small sub-sequence on the science of winning at life is far more than the average person knows on the subject, or else people wouldn't give such terrible advice.
Right, it's time we got back on track. Now that we using the same definition of power and we've come to the conclusion that a reduction in tax revenues can reduce physical projection of power but is unlikely to remove the laws that determine what maximum level of power is legally allowed to be projected.
I believe you were talking about optimal levels of power when compared to growth?
It's a statement of fact, not a political agenda. Neuroscientists know more about people's brains than normal people do, as a result of spending years and decades studying the subject.
Ah, I think you may have gotten the wrong idea when I said truth was incidental, that a thing is incidental does not stop it from being useful and a good idea, it is just not a goal in and of itself. Fortunately, no-one here is actually suggesting active self-deception as a viable strategy. I would suggest reading Terminal values and Instrumental Values. Truth seeking is an instrumental value, in that it is useful to reach the terminal values of whatever your actual goals are. So far as I can tell, we actually agree on the subject for all relevant purposes...
Statements can still be used for calibration even if you don't know the answer, but it's always more fun if you have at least an inkling of the answer. It's always good to add more fun to things like this, so any chance I could convince you to bring along some of the type of questions you think would be good?
Agreed, a general rule of truthiness is definitely a very effective approach and probably the most effective approach, especially once you've started down the path. So far as I can tell stopping halfway through is... risky in a way that never having started is not. I only recently finished the sequences myself (apart from the last half of QM). At the time of starting I thought it was essentially the age old trade off between knowledge and happy ignorance, but it appears at some point of reading the stuff I hit critical mass and now I'm starting to see how ...
Persistence is a good word for it, plus a sense of making it work even if the world is unfair, the odds are stacked against you. No sense of having fought the good fight and lost, if you failed and there were things you possibly could done beforehand, general strategies that would have been effective even if you did not know what was coming, then that is your own responsibility. It is not, I think, a particularly healthy way of looking at most things. It can only really be useful as a mindset for things that really matter.
can you be more explicit?
Then what was all that stuff on the news about cutting government jobs, trying desperately to ensure frontline services weren't effected and so on about?
Edit: I knew it! No wonder I felt so confused. It would seem the reduction in spending just took a while to come into effect. Take a look at the years after 2011 that your chart is missing. Unfortunately it's not adjusted for inflation but you still get the idea. If you change category to protection and the subcategory to 'police', 'prisons' or 'law courts', you can see the reduction in police funding over the course of the recession.
There does come a point when the bill must be paid though, even if it is over a long time. Even if it's over 40 years as you pay back the interest on the debt.
Before we go further, I think we need to be sure we're talking about the same thing when we say power. See, when you said a reduction in government power, what I heard was essentially less money, smaller government. I'm getting the feeling that that is not entirely what you meant, could you clarify?
Well, yes, it was all over the news. This feels like a trick question. Are you about to tell me that spending went up during the recession or something?
They don't necessarily have to, but generally do. For instance during austerity measures spending is generally reduced in most areas. Police forces have less funding and thus lose the ability to have as great an effect on an area, that is they have less power. Unless you're talking about power as a state of laws instead of a state of what is physically done to people?
Yes, I was going to comment on how a clever politician could spend during their own term to intentionally screw over the next party to take power, but I wanted to avoid the possible political argument that could ensue.
All of it looks reasonable to me apart from the last paragraph. I can see times when governments do willingly contract. There are often candidates who campaign on a platform of tax cuts, the UK had one in power from 1979-1990 and the US had one in power from 2001-2009.
Tax cuts necessarily require eventual reductions in government spending and thus the power of government, agreed?
I'll put this in a separate post because it is not to do with heroic responsibility and it has been bugging me. What evidence do you have that your favoured idea of reducing political power does what you want it to do? Are there states which have switched to this method and benefited? Are there countries that have done this and what happened to them? Why do you believe what you believe?
Okay, my definition of sane is essentially: rational enough to take actions that generally work towards your goals and to create goals that are effective ways to satisfy your terminal values. It's a rather high bar. Suicide bombers do not achieve their goals, cultists have had their cognitive machinery hijacked to serve someone else's goals instead of their own. The reason I think this would be okay in aggregate is the psychological unity of mankind: we're mostly pretty similar and there are remarkably low numbers of evil mutants. Being pretty similar, mos...
See, you're ignoring the qualifier 'sane' again. I do not consider suicide bombers sane. Suicide bombers are extreme outliers, and they kill negligible numbers of people. Last time I checked they kill less people per year on average than diseases I had never heard of. Quite frankly, they are a non-issue when you actually look at the numbers.
It is not obvious to me that heroic responsibility implies that a thing should be done without cost/benefit analysis or at any cost.
Of course it depends on the values systems involved, I just happen to be fine with mos...
I think we're using a different meaning of the word sane. See, I hold sanity to a rather high standard which excludes a huge breadth of people, probably myself as well until I've progressed somewhat.
I am imagining enough sane people taking heroic responsibility, the world looks rather different than this and it seems to be better run. We already have people in charge with value systems unacceptable to me, making them at least competent and getting them to use evidence-based strategies seems like a step forwards. People will have a normal range of value sys...
See you on sunday! I've had a look at some cool exercises to do and Fermi Calculations, 5 minute debiasing and Zendo all look fun and useful. We'll talk it over it at the rock climbing place in a few hours
You say he's not-mad, but isn't he the spitting image of the revolutionary that power corrupts? Wasn't Communism the archetype of the affective death spiral?It would appear he was likely suffering from syphilis, a disease that can cause confusion, dementia and memory problems. Anyway, isn't that an ad hominem argument?
I think heroic responsibility is essentially a response to being in a situation where not enough people are both competent at and willing to make changes to improve things. The authority figures are mad or untrustworthy, so a person has to figure out their own way to make the right things happen and put effective methods in place. It is particularly true of HPMOR where Harry plays the role of Only Sane Man. So far as I can tell, we're in a similar situation in real life at the minute: we have insufficient highly sane people taking heroic responsibility. If...
I'm not sure they're wrong to be honest (assuming an average cross section of people). Rationality is an extremely long term approach and payoff, I am not sure it would even work for the majority of people and if it does I'm not sure if it reaches diminishing returns compared to other strategies. The introductory text (sequences) is 9,000 pages long and the supplementary texts (kahneman, ariely ect) take it up to 11,000. I'm considered a very fast reader and it took me 3 unemployed months of constant reading to get through. For a good period of that time I...
I rather think there may be demand for a cheaper, less time dependent method of attending. It may be several seasons before they end up back in my country for example. Streaming/recording the whole thing and selling the video package seems like it could still get a lot of the benefits across. Their current strategy only really makes sense to me if they're still in the testing and refining stage.
Well that's a bit dispiriting, though I suppose looking back my view of CFAR was a bit unrealistic. Downregulating chance that CFAR is some kind of panacea.
Fantastic guide, a small note: the various status cues on page 28 is a dead link
Edit: Note to future readers: dead links can generally be traversed using the internet archive to find the cached site from when it was up.
Do you think it was unhelpful because you already had a high level of knowledge on the topics they were teaching and thus didn't have much to learn or because the actual techniques were not effective? Do you think your experience was typical? How useful do you think it would be to an average person? An average rationalist?
Do you think it was unhelpful because you already had a high level of knowledge on the topics they were teaching and thus didn't have much to learn or because the actual techniques were not effective?
I don't believe I had a high level of knowledge on the specific topics they were teaching (behavior change, and the like). I did study some cognitive science in my undergraduate years, and I take issue with the 'science'.
Do you think your experience was typical?
I believe that the majority of people don't get much, if anything, from CFAR's rationality...
Fair point, done. On a related note, I wonder how I can practice convincing my brain that failure does not mean death like it did in the old ancestral environment.
Exposure therapy: Fail on small things, then larger ones, where it is obvious that failiure doesn't mean death. First remember past experiences where you failed and did not die, then go into new situations.
Any chance you could relate the details for how the scholarship works and how much it is for? I am considering applying for something similar and thought I'd ask
Somehow I doubt the financial aid will stretch to the full amount, and my student debt is already somewhat fearsome.
I'm on the LW meetups already as it happens. I'm currently attempting to have my local one include more instrumental rationality but I lack a decent guide of what methods work, what techniques to try or what games are fun and useful. For that matter I don't know what games there are at all beyond a post or two I stumbled upon.
I'd like to ask LessWrong's advice. I want to benefit from CFAR's knowledge on improving ones instrumental rationality, but being a poor graduate I do not have several thousand in disposable income nor a quick way to acquire it. I've read >90% of the sequences but despite having read lukeprog's and Alicorn's sequences I am aware that I do not know what I do not know about motivation and akrasia. How can I best improve my instrumental rationality on the cheap?
Edit: I should clarify, I am asking for information sources: blogs, book recommendations, partic...
I've been to several of CFAR's classes throughout the last 2 years (some test classes and some more 'official' ones) and I feel like it wasn't a good use of my time. Spend your money elsewhere.
Let's see how basic I can go with an argument for rationality without using anything that needs rationality to explain. First the basic form:
Rationality is an effective way of figuring out what is and isn't true. Therefore rational people end up knowing the truth more often. Knowing the truth more often helps you make plans that work. Plans that work allow you to acquire money/status/power/men/women/happiness.
Now to dress it up in some rhetoric:
My friend, have you ever wished you could be the best you? The one who knows the best way to do everything, cuts ...
optimize diet for low cost with an at-least-superior-to-the-average-American level of nutrition
Well there's the Soylent idea, thought I don't think it was from LW. Soylent being 100% of all required daily nutrients stored in powder format then used to make shakes. In theory after a number of iterations it should be the healthiest food possible for humans to consume as well as being fairly cheap.
Depends on what specific information are you waiting for before you can decide. If it's something that won't happen soon or indeed ever it's more likely to be delusion. If it's something you can figure out in a week or just ask then it's more likely to be legitimate. Best of luck
How did it go? Were your family okay with it? Was the technique effective?
Completed. I'll be fascinated to see how digit length correlates to gender default. It would imply some very interesting things about sexuality.
I, like many people, have a father. After a long time of not really caring about the whole thing he's expressed an interest in philosophy this Christmas season. Now, as we know a lot of philosophy is rather confused and I don't see any big reasons for him to start thinking truth is irrelevant or other silly things. I don't think the man is considering reading anything particularly long or in-depth.
So, I'm asking for book recommendations for short-ish introductions to philosophy that don't get it all wrong. Solid, fundamental knowledge about how we know wh... (read more)
Not a book but: http://sqapo.com/