virus: Discoveries and Inventions

Reed Konsler (
Thu, 6 Feb 1997 22:03:52 -0500

>From: Dave Pape <>
>Date: Wed, 5 Feb 1997 23:49:55 GMT
>Subject: Re: virus: Discoveries and Inventions
>At 11:15 05/02/97 -1000, Peter wrote:
>>I don't ascribe to memes as totally free agents.
>Not at all. Indeed and truly no. Free memes are... unstable and senseless
>memes. "Vacuum-packed Klondyke homeopaths". That's a meme freed of selection
>pressures. In fact, probably without heavy selection pressures to drive
>them, we'd never even be able to develop memes to distinguish between our
>parents' faces.

Recognizing parent's faces? You're getting close to the line where I ask
how you differentiate between a meme and a reflex or a heritable encoded

I also think you are using the meme like the word "smurf". No offense
intended, I just have difficultly seeing how a useful concept can be so
broad as to include parental recognition and existentialism (aren't they
one and the same? [this is a joke]). Sounds a little like "god" to me...


Allright, now look. I'm a huge fan of Daniel Dennetts and love his
theories as much as the next guy. Nevertheless, the concept that
conciousness is an illusion is a philosophical extrapolation based on
Dennett's interpretation of a deverse set of experiments. The
experimentors, themeselves, seldom make the claims that Dennett does as to
the implications of their own isn't their purpose. In no way has
this theory been "proven", nor could it really (though a number of
experiments may make it's acceptance much more likely). I just want to
point out that this is still a debated issue, not that I disagree.
Conciousness may be an illusion, but it may yet be of some use to us.

>Where do you stand on the free-will-real-or-illusory debate? Eh? Pal? Go
>on... mate?

Yeah, punk, take a shot! (kidding)


Reed Konsler