Re: virus: Re: The Battle Continues

Dave Pape (
Wed, 19 Feb 1997 13:16:32 GMT

At 01:07 18/02/97 EST, David R wrote:

>Dave Pape wrote:

> It sounds to me like you are saying that memes (or interaction of memes) are
>the cause of our minds. It's like memes are the cause, our minds are the

Ah: no, I'm not, I'm actually saying that there's no such thing as cause and
effect in the relationship between memes and minds. Or if there is, then
it's mutual or reciprocal. Minds "cause" memes just as much as memes "cause"
minds, in that without memes there wouldn't be what we all feel as human
minds, and without human minds (communicating) there'd be no memes.

I think where we're mismatching is that I'm losing faith in constructs like
cause&effect, or true&false. This is because I'm starting to see things in
terms of networks of interacting units where subsystems and emergent
metasystems reciprocally affect each other (ha! and thus themselves), and
(re: true&false) I'm starting to think that because memes are fuzzily
defined, and because what we're talking about here is often tendencies and
strategies which can be expressed to varying degrees, to say that the
statement "tendency x exists" is false because you have evidence supporting
the statement "tendency x doesn't exist"... doesn't work. That well...

>>Don't you yourself look to "higher authorities" on objectivism and neo-Tech
>>for YOUR guidance? Looking to experts for guidance is a pandemic human
>>strategy, and I reckon you do it as much as me, or any of the other Virus
>>list-mem(e)bers. Give me evidence that you don't look to people you perceive
>>as authorities or experts in your reply, please!
>While I might pay attention to what objectivists or Neo-Techers say, I do not
>look to them as higher authorities. I do my best to figure out reality
>Evidence? I was at an objectivist conference a year ago in which I got into a
>heated debate with a group of objectivists when I claimed, based on my own
>reasoning, that Ayn Rand was wrong about a few things (which I think she was).
>Also, last year, on a mailing list like this one but for Neo-Techers, I figured
>out on my own that a certain Neo-Tech idea was not technically correct and then
>I brought up this point on the mailing list, (starting a flame war) with the
>other NTer's.

You, involved in a flame war? Can't believe it! -JOKE! JOKE! PUT THE FUCKING

Your evidence knocks down, to an extent, the idea that you treat neotechers
as to-be-always-obeyed authorities. Cool. BUT I'd still claim that, TO AN
EXTENT, both you and I express a deeply ingrained human strategy of taking
accentuated notice of what certain people (experts etc) have to say. This
strategy, I'm saying, is very widespread (universal, almost) among people,
probably dating back to pre-sapiens evolutionary time, and independent of
whether the people involved believe in memes/freewill or not.

>>1 I think that most people in Europe, America, and Australasia DO
>"support a purported
>>higher authority such as big government to take care of them". Don't they?
>I agree with you. People everywhere have a tendency to look toward government
>for help (which doesn't work).

Doesn't it work? Don't they benefit, on the whole, and in terms of material
comfort, from things like stable (ish) social structures, shared (ish)
language, shared currencies, coordinated (ish) education programmes...? I
know I'd be worse off without having been sent to school (enforced by law)
as a child, being protected (and to an extent I'm sure I am, as long as I
don't do anything that they think is naughty) by the police, having central
organisations in place to monitor the safety of the public buildings and
transport systems which I use, etc...

And whatever, you do seem to be conceding my point here, that non-belief in
memetics or the deterministic nature of human thought doesn't proof people
against looking to governments for support.

>Because I have accepted the axiom of consciousness, various conclusions follow,
>such as the existence of free-will, an integrated system of ideas which connect
>seemingly unrelated subjects such as free-will to politics, and that there is
>only one other type of integrated system of ideas (although most people have a
>mixture of the 2). You have not accepted the axiom of consciousness (possibly
>since it hasn't been explained to you) so no such extrapolations would follow.

I think I just don't accept it. And, with my memetic ecology in its present
arrangement, I don't think there's much explanation of it that'd MAKE me
accept it. Because I get automatic alarm bells ringing when I hear abstract
logical arguments. Sorry!

Dave Pape
Limit the Fun. Prescribe the Fun. DESTROY THE FUN!
-(Southport & Formby Round Table Association slogan, 1994-1995)

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