Re: virus: reverberant doubt

Martin Traynor (
Tue, 3 Dec 1996 10:50:26 +0000


On 2 Dec 96 at 21:27, Eva-Lise Carlstrom wrote:

> The disappointing, but perhaps predictable, outcome was over 2000
> postcards, several of which contained such numbers as Avogadro's number, a
> googol, a googolplex....At any rate, of course, no one won, because there
> was nothing left to win.
> A possibly humorous, but at the same time depressing,
> demonstration of the determination of humans to buck the curve, rather
> than cooperating for greatest good.

As David McF pointed out, to cooperate we first need to communicate.
In each of the scenarios posited, there was no opportunity for the
individuals to open lines of communication so cooperation (excepting
accidental) couldn't happen. I don't think that my criteria for a
successful existence would be well served by assuming that people
will do what's best for me, time and again they have vindicated this,
so to opt for the self-serving choice seems a natural extension of
the survival instinct.

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It seems as though once a meme takes hold, the rest of the family starts pulling up in rusty trucks full of broken furniture and moving in. Erik Chelstad