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Your Strength as a Rationalist

Eliezer's model:

The Medical Establishment is always right.

Information given:

  • Person is feeling chest pain.
  • Paramedics say hospitalization is unnecessary.

Possible scenarios mentioned in the story:

  1. Person is feeling chest pain and is having a heart attack.
  2. Person is feeling chest pain but does not need to be hospitalized.
  3. Person is lying.

Between the model and the information given, only Scenario 1 can be ruled false; Scenarios 2 and 3 are both possible. If Eliezer is going to beat himself up for not knowing better, it should be because Scenario 3 did not occur to him -- not that Scenario 3 is the logical reality.

Think Like Reality

“That’s weird” is a colloquialism for “I notice that I am confused.” Saying so is an important intermediate step towards understanding... or so I’ve heard. Once you understand, then weirdness is a non-issue -- you are no longer confused.