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The Wiki is Dead, Long Live the Wiki! [help wanted]

Thamks for that clarification! I think it would be OK to discuss the merits of importing any given page, perhaps in this very LW thread. Separately, there is quite a bit of Wiki content that's now been 'hidden' in the new system as a result of being merged with an existing tag, and the more "in-depth" portions of that content, if considered worthwhile, should probably be moved to newly-created 'wiki-only' pages, so as to reduce confusion among users who only care about the bare "tagging" aspect.

(I have in mind, e.g. the discussion of problematic 'persuasion' technology in the Dark Arts wiki page, or the 'community' conceptual metaphor for computer-mediated communication as discussed in the page on "Groupthink". That kind of content can make sense on a "wiki only" page, not so much in the bare description of a "tag"!)

The Wiki is Dead, Long Live the Wiki! [help wanted]

I can still identify a few pages on the old wiki that seem to have no matching entity in the new "tagging" system, e.g. Adversarial process (a general, widely-used notion wrt. which the rationalist Adversarial collaboration may be a special case -- so it seems like a fairly important thing to have!). Will these pages be imported in the future?

Are there technical/object-level fields that make sense to recruit to LessWrong?

We're at a point where gender studies shouldn't even be considered part of the humanities anymore, I'd say. As you remind us, they're severely in denial about what biology, medicine and psychology have established and their experimental data. They're the intellectual equivalent of anti-vax "activists" (except that the latter have yet to reach the same degree of entryism and grift).
There are other adjacent fields that are similarly problematic, being committed to discredited ideas like Marxist economics, or to what's sometimes naïvely called "post-modernism" (actually a huge misreading of what the original postmodernists were in fact trying to achieve!). All of that stuff is way too toxic and radioactive to even think about seeking it out explicitly.

Personal musings on Individualism and Empathy

For what it's worth, your struggles with modeling others via ToM probably had very little to do with your interest in Objectivism, individualism and the like. It seems that many, perhaps most children and teenagers share this trait in the first place; moral development is a slow process, even for those with entirely normal emotions and a normal substrate for affective empathy (i..e the non psychopathic/ODD/ASPD!).

I do have to caution though that the basic other-awareness that being non-psychopathic gives you also makes you a lot more effective at modeling others' preferences and being able to enter into efficient win-win deals and arrangements with them. Renouncing that other-awareness thus has very real costs, while OTOH the benefits of doing so are quite dubious. After all, even though you're obviously self-interested in some sense, you aren't trying to pursue the same preferences as a psychopath/ASPD would. And when you say "I’m able to constrain others rather heavily" by doing this, you're probably fooling yourself since expectations, implicit demands and social constraints are inherently a two-way street - they empower you to influence others even as they act as constraints on your own behavior!

Can movement from Conflict to Mistake theorist be facilitated effectively?

It’s surprising to me that people are even debating whether mistake- or conflict-theory is the “correct” way of viewing politics. Conflict theory is always true ex ante, because the very definition of politics is the stuff that people might physically fight over, in the real world! You can’t get much more "conflict-theory" than that. Now of course, this is not to say that debate and deliberation might not also become important, and such practices do promote a "mistake-oriented" view of political processes. But that’s a means of de-escalation and creative problem solving, not some sort of proof that conflict is irrelevant to politics. Indeed, this is the whole reason why norms of fairness are taken to be especially important in politics, and in related areas such as law: a "fair" deliberation is generally successful at de-escalating conflict, in a way that a transparently "unfair" one (perhaps due to rampant elitism or over-intellectualism)-- even one that’s less "mistaken" in a broader sense -- might not be.

Comment section from 05/19/2019

I'm very sorry that we seem to be going around in circles on this one. In many ways, the whole point of that call to doing "post-rationality" was indeed an attempt to better engage with the sort of people who, as you say, "have epistemology as a dumpstat". It was a call to understand that no, engaging in dark side epistemology does not necessarily make one a werewolf that's just trying to muddy the surface-level issues, that indeed there is a there there. Absent a very carefully laid-out argument about what exactly it is that's being expected of us I'm never going to accept the prospect that the rationalist community should be apologizing for our incredibly hard work in trying to salvage something workable out of the surface-level craziness that is the rhetoric and arguments that these people ordinarily make. Because, as a matter of fact, calling for that would be the quickest way by far of plunging the community back to the RationalWiki-level knee-jerk reflex of shouting "werewolf, werewolf! Out, out out, begone from this community!" whenever we see a "dark-side-epistemology" pattern being deployed.

(I also think that this whole concern with "safety" is something that I've addressed already. But of course, in principle, there's no reason why we couldn't simply encompass that into what we mean by a standard/norm being "ineffective" - and I think that I have been explicitly allowing for this with my previous comment.)

Comment section from 05/19/2019

The rationality community itself is far from static; it tends to steadily improve over time, even in the sorts of proposals that it tends to favor. If you go browse RationalWiki (a very early example indeed of something that's at least comparable to the modern "rationalist" memeplex) you'll in fact see plenty of content connoting a view of theists as "people who are zealously pushing for false beliefs (and this is bad, really really bad)". Ask around now on LW itself, or even more clearly on SSC, and you'll very likely see a far more nuanced view of theism, that de-emphasizes the "pushing for false beliefs" side while pointing out the socially-beneficial orientation towards harmony and community building that might perhaps be inherent in theists' way of life. But such change cannot and will not happen unless current standards are themselves up for debate! One simply cannot afford to reject debate simply on the view that this might make standards "hazy" or "fuzzy", and thus less effective at promoting some desirable goals (including, perhaps, the goal of protecting vulnerable people from very real harm and from a low quality of life more generally). An ineffective standard, as the case of views-of-theism shows, is far more dangerous than one that's temporarily "hazy" or "fuzzy". Preventing all rational debate on the most "sensitive" issues is the very opposite of an effective, truth-promoting policy; it systematically pushes us towards having the wrong sorts of views, and away from having the right ones.

One should also note that it's hard to predict how our current standards are going to change in the future. For instance, at least among rationalists, the more recent view "theism? meh, whatever floats your boat" tends to practically go hand-in-hand with a "post-rationalist" redefinition of "what exactly it is that theists mean by 'God' ". You can see this very explicitly in the popularity of egregores like "Gnon", "Moloch", "Elua" or "Ra", which are arguably indistinguishable, at least within a post-rationalist POV, from the "gods" of classical myths! But such a "twist" would be far beyond what the average RationalWiki contributor would have been able to predict as the consensus view about the issue back in that site's heyday - even if he was unusually favorable to theists! Clearly, if we retroactively tried to apply the argument "we (RationalWiki/the rationalist community) should be a lot more pro-theist than we are, and we cannot allow this to be debated under any circumstances because that would clearly lead to very bad consequences", we would've been selling the community short.

Comment section from 05/19/2019

Okay, so where exactly do you see Zack M. Davis as having expressed claims/viewpoints of the "ought" sort? (i.e. viewpoints that might actually be said to involve a preferred agenda of some kind?) Or are you merely saying that this seems to be what Vanessa's argument implies/relies on, without necessarily agreeing one way or the other?

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