Surrogation, or why we can’t have nice things

X: Representation and its consequences have been a disaster for the human race. Y: True, but but anything before that probably couldn’t be called the human race. Twitter 1. I am nearly finished with a book-length treatment of the “surrogation” concept—that is, the substitution of a representation—be it a metonym, symbol, proxy, metric, or signal—for…… Continue reading Surrogation, or why we can’t have nice things

Is strategic interaction Machiavellian?

One objection I’ve come across in arguing for a strategic view of human interaction is that “humans aren’t so Machiavellian.” My understanding of this objection is that it is founded in phenomenology—a feeling from those objecting that their conscious experience is only occasionally marked by a scheming, instrumental attitude toward their fellow interactants. (There is…… Continue reading Is strategic interaction Machiavellian?

Pfeilstorch Progress: Games, Dialectic, Spirit

From my 2020 “Year In Review”: I launched a [Discord server with a] small community of friends, which has this year, 2021, evolved into an online forum. Our mascot is the pfeilstorch. We’re interested in the inexact sciences, and moreover, in the rigorizing pipeline that got us from natural philosophy to biology, or alchemy to…… Continue reading Pfeilstorch Progress: Games, Dialectic, Spirit

Year In Review

Bla bla bla, 2020 was a big year for me. I started off doing philosophy of language and ended up at “strategic interaction.” For the uninitiated, think game theory meets microsociology, or check out a slide deck. Add a side plate of institutional theory, debt, and philosophy of science. Though our press, Not Nothing, was…… Continue reading Year In Review

Published
Categorized as Blog

Re-engineering “taste”

One way I’ve found helpful to think about “culture,” at a more manageable scale, is through the metaphor of an unending variety show, with many theaters and stages (think music festivals—GovBall, Coachella). This neverending show presents a class of problems to any audience member attempting to grok an act, or to any act attempting to…… Continue reading Re-engineering “taste”

The telephone effect, and the reciprocity of perspectives

In F. L. Allen’s Only Yesterday, a history of the 1920s published in the early 30s, Allen writes about the revolution in manners and morals that began to pick up in the early years of the decade: Like all revolutions, this one was stimulated by foreign propoganda. It came, however, not from Moscow, but from…… Continue reading The telephone effect, and the reciprocity of perspectives

Overhaulism

overhaulism (n): related to Chesterton’s fence, Hayek’s “fatal conceit,” Christopher Alexander and James Scott’s “high modernism,” Taleb’s “modernistic intellectualism,” and John Gall’s “systemism.” A belief in the power of individuals’ synchronous reasoning & intelligence to intervene in a complex system; correspondingly, an attitude of bearishness toward evolved solutions. Ethical overhaulism is an arguable facet of…… Continue reading Overhaulism

Published
Categorized as Blog

Sidebar: Mutual Hostilities

This is an entry in an ongoing series of posts, which will work through the ideas advocated by Eliezer Yudkowsky and other amateur philosophers from the LessWrong community, and attempt to understand the extent to which their ideas are novel as opposed to reinventions of the wheel. Link to introductory post for context and motivation.…… Continue reading Sidebar: Mutual Hostilities

Meta-Sequences: Introduction & Criteria

I have offered bounties to anyone who can identify a precedent, in mainstream philosophy, for an idea advanced by Eliezer Yudkowsky as his own. These bounties are in the service of a larger accounting: Background & Motivation LessWrong rationalists and mainstream philosophers are two tribes made up of generally intelligent & knowledgeable people, focused on…… Continue reading Meta-Sequences: Introduction & Criteria