virus: Enough Fights!

Reed Konsler (
Tue, 18 Mar 1997 10:19:57 -0500 (EST)

>I'd hope I'd take time to try and understand people's positions before I got
>involved in fights with them, and the fights would be memetic in nature,
>"my" aim would be memetic infection of their minds with the ideas which make
>All discussions are memetic fights, in a sense. Someone who didn't ever want
>to win such fights would do fairly poorly in the meme-propagation stakes. I
>want to discuss things, and in a disagreement situation I'll try and
>persuade opponents to accept my points. That's trying to /win a memetic fight/.
>Dave Pape

Enough fights already! Why do we always have to come back to this
conflict-orientation? Memetics, learning, etc. is a non-zero sum game
with respect to the hosts. The more ideas you are exposed to (and allowed
to analyze, deconstruct, and reintegrate) the broader and more adaptable
you are. Memes are a model invented to explain phenomena...a

It seems a little Freudian that such a creation is automatically labeled
a "war, fight, conflict, etc."

Get beyond your "DANGER!" and "CRISIS!" memes. Nobody is going to
brainwash you against your will over e-mail. Nobody worth converting
will integrate your memes just becuase you package them well...give the
audience a little credit!

If I read one more passage about how someone intends to infect other people
with their ideas... "I just don't know what I'll do!" (as my mother might say)

Would we also say "I'm going to try to see my genes propogated as effectively
as possible, too" For the love of Chuck! you'd think we might all reflect a
moment on the suitcase of wierdness we're each carrying around and ask if it
is worth presenting for consideration (it is, of course) much less "infecting"
other people with.

Look, I'm not saying I don't get the metaphor. It's just soooo cliche. And it
ends up as such a pat defence for incivility and pig-headed stubbornness.

"I'm trying to infect you with my ideas and you are trying to infect me
with your
ideas, of course we will end in argument."

Dammit, ought does not follow from is! I recognize the pattern as well as
but just becuase it exists is no excuse to propogate it. People don't use
their turn
signals anymore either, but you still ought to.


Reed Konsler