Re: virus: Rationality

Martz (
Tue, 25 Feb 1997 21:37:02 +0000

On Tue, 25 Feb 1997, David McFadzean <> wrote:

>So I'll take an example from human behaviour: assuming that one doesn't
>set out to become disliked, I would contend that it is an objectively
>irrational behaviour to insult, demean, taunt, and otherwise derogate
>one's (formerly friendly) peers in a public forum.

I can imagine scenarios where I might set out to do something I
considered important. So I sit myself down and figure out the most
rational route to my goal. Unfortunately this rational route has an
unpleasant side-effect; it pisses people off. I haven't set out to be
disliked (in a social species it's easy to argue that would be
irrational) but if I'm to achieve my aims it's sadly necessary. What
should I do? (this happens to me more often than I'd like in the real
world - I know I said it was an imagined scenario but that was to avoid
having to go into any depth).

I'm not trying to imply here that this is the case for any or all of the
antagonism we've witnessed over the past few weeks but without knowing
someones underlying motivation (which we rarely, if ever, can), it's
difficult to comment. We could ask what that motivation was but to
reveal it may be to undermine the results (I have specific examples from
my own life in mind).


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No more random quotes.