virus: From the Shadows

Reed Konsler (
Thu, 20 Mar 1997 10:53:06 -0500 (EST)

>From: Lee Daniel Crocker <>
>Date: Wed, 19 Mar 1997 14:18:30 -0800 (PST)
>Subject: Re: virus: From the shadows
>> ...By the way if anybody here is in advertising or marketing
>> ...Kill yourself.
>It is morally wrong to allow suckers to keep their money. Advertising
>is the means by which the memetically unfit are weeded from the population.
>Evolution requires both variation and /selection/. Advertisers are just
>the predators of the meme pool.

It is (morally?) wrong to allow actions to be justified based upon poor
analogies to Darwinism. This is a kind of "Naturalistic Fallacy", which
gets an excellent treatment in "Darwin's Dangerous Idea" by Dennett.

The menemonic is:

Ought does not follow from is.

Just becuase you you can explain a system using a paradigm does not
mean that that paradigm is (morally?) right. If we can't imagine another
way of doing things which will be successful that is a statement about
the limitations of our imagination...not reality.

To be perfectly clear, though...I don't think people in advertizing and
marketing should kill themselves. In a sense, they are doing us all a
service by bringing various things to our attention. If we have a tendency,
as a culture, to covet pornography, violence, and conspicious consumption
then that is what they will provide.

When one points at the moon, a fool looks a the finger.

If one doesn't like the look of the moon, a fool cuts of that finger...
...and the greater fool puts out his own eyes.


Reed Konsler