Re: virus: What makes memes compete?

Tim Rhodes (
Thu, 10 Apr 1997 23:36:57 -0700 (PDT)

On Thu, 10 Apr 1997, Dave Pape wrote:

> Because the general effect seems to be, the closer the genotype, the more
> competition between (nod to Lee) the organisms that are specified by it.
> Now, I'm sure that individual animals with IDENTICAL genomes wouldn't
> contain a magic switch that STOPPED them from competing... so what, do
> identical memes compete with each other?

Well, if the gene anology holds water (and I'm still not convinced it
does, where's the proof, if any?), then similar memes would benifit from
NOT competing directly. Just like how it is in the interest of your genes
to protect your brother until the risk is greater than 50-50 that you,
yourself, will die (for half of your genes can survive through him).

> So here's another question: How many copies of a kind of meme do you host?
> EG, I have memes like:
> "Don't like dogs"
> "Look at that crappy dog"
> "Dogs piss me off"
> "Dogs shit all over the fcken pavement"
> Presumably these all weigh in to some internal arguments en masse? Do they?
> But are in competition for direct expression when it comes to me actually
> SAYING something negative about dogs?

Hmmm,... Maybe they "compete" the same way members of the same species
"compete". The wing (pardon the pun) of the species of dinosuars that
would become birds "out-competed" the others, but I don't think that means
there was a direct competition between the wings. Maybe that's already
been said...

How `bout this: It's in the interest of "Don't like dogs" and "Look at
that crappy dog" for "Dogs piss me off" and "Dog shit all over the fcken
pavement" to survive as long as it doesn't threaten their own survival.

Or maybe they're all just expressions of the same meme, the


A sound like the sound a Prof. Tim would make if he was thinking clearer.