Re: virus: Re: Rationality
Fri, 28 Feb 97 11:00:24 GMT

David McF wrote:

> #1. You say if rationality is a meme, then the self is operated on by a
> superior meme-complex. Not necessarily, what about people who aren't
> infected by rationality?

Rationality is subjective, surely. Everyone's style of rationality will
be different, but I suspect that it is inherant at some basic level.
I'm sure that you could not find any individual who is totally and
utterly irrational, and even if they were, could not justify to themselves
that they were acting irrationally.

> #2. If #1 is true, then (paraphrasing) "all mechanisms of thought and reason
> are memes". No, what about hormones, genetic neural structures, and innate
> behaviours like the sex drive?

What was that thread about memes and genes?

I think it depends how far you are willing to take the concept of
memetics. Does memetics describe why a baby will try random patterns
of muscle movements, to establish how to operate it's body? Is the
final solution the meme, or is the initial reaction a meme?

> But let's ignore that for now. Say that Eudora is the only process running, does
> it control the computer? Not really, its behaviour is being largely controlled
> by signals coming from a serial peripheral commonly known as a keyboard, which is
> at this very moment being controlled by a type of animal I like to refer to as the
> "story-telling ape". And *its* behaviour is incredibly complex due to vast number
> of influences including many thousands of apes of the same type, many of them dead
> for centuries!
> So even my simple example is too complex to analyze because throwing just one of
> these animals into the loop brings a good portion of their entire culture. Who is
> controlling my computer? Certainly no one factor. But what is influencing its
> behaviour? Literally we all are. Weird.

Wow - Mindfuck! I'm not even going to attempt to think of a response. I might