RE: virus: Altruism, Empathy, the Superorganism, and t

Wright, James 7929 (
Fri, 18 Apr 97 07:59:00 EDT

Corey and Drakir cogitated as follows:
Drakir wrote:
>The other problem is that the game has already begun. The dice
>have been rolled, and the players are in action. To sit out is to lose
>out. It's too late to suggest another game. We have to wait 'till the
>current players have all lost before it's over, and before we can
>suggest some alternatives. Only the alternative has to be preferable to
>the original, otherwise they might just start again.

But what if the game is like Nomic? What if you _can_ change the rules,
without waiting for everyone to lose? I think that's what Reed
is trying to say.
You ARE changing the rules, everytime you create a new meme - something
(someidea) that wasn't there before is now, and must be allowed for /
dealt with in proportion to the number of people who hold it, spread it,
and defend it for the benefit of those who need explanations.
You need not wait (IMO) for everyone else to lose - simply spread enough
memes and supporting evidence that greed is not rewarded. The fate of M.
Milken the junk-bond trader, most underworld figures whose names are
known through their trials and various politicians who get caught with
their fingers in the till is one form of this - and the reverence
accorded to Mother Teresa, M. Gandhi and various others is another.
Part of the difficulty lies in showing how altruism / empathy is
sufficiently rewarded to make it worthwhile; this is even harder when
most of the population is conditioned to regard material items and money
as rewards superior to peace of mind, good health and increased
The alternatives are better - but demonstrating them as better is tough.
Suggestions for a meme to convey - "Not only is greed self-defeating in
the long run, altruism makes better neighbors and ultimately greater
personal fulfillment."? Anyone got a better / different view?