by phil on Sunday Aug 3, 2003 8:40 PM
information, nature of
There has to be some sort of upperbound on the amount of intelligence that individual nodes can carry for greater systems that depend on those nodes to function properly. For example, take rationalism. Greater intelligence tends to include greater rational thinking, but with too much rational thinking, democracy wouldn't be tenable.
Rationally speaking, one shouldn't waste their time voting because their single vote is not going to have an impact.
Then some nay-sayer says, "Yeah, well if we ALL did that, then we'd be screwed." Yes, exactly. That still doesn't give me reason to vote. Why should I vote? I don't control the all, I just control whether I vote. With millions of other people voting, how will my vote make a difference.
Then people stand proud and say, "It's people like YOU who are destroying democracy." Okay, fine then, I guess then it's people who obey certain "values" a priori that vote. Like, they should be able to look at themselves and be proud that they are fine members of democracy... great, it's a nice construct, but you can't argue with me that it's not irrational to think your vote counts or its worth your time.
Anyways, what I'm saying is that certain constraints on the amount of intelligence present in a self-aware node are necessary to prevent people from being Stoicists and just sitting around doing nothing or being philosophers who just sit around and think (but don't publish any work), or from becoming nihilists and just destroying things wantonly. And/or there has to be interfering memes that can prevent someone from acting out on their intelligent thinking.
Intelligently speaking, our love is false, but my hormones and your insecurities bind us together and make a wonderful unit.
It's like you have to dumb parties down in order to prevent the Prisoner's Dilemma from occuring in situations.
I think natural selection has already done a good job at weeding out people who are "too smart" for their own good, but with the accelerating pace of order and intelligence, it will be necessary for us to enforce natural selection's rule.
Some might say, well, nature will eventually take care of things. Not true, natural selection could continue to "march on" by potentially making Earth be an trial that failed while as other life systems elsewhere that managed to actively deal with prisoner's dilemma's afflicting their pass through the singularity being able to survive and reproduce, and so forth.
i.e. right now, natural selection is still taking care of the Planet because it's domain is just members of the planet. When our reach extends beyond the constraints of this planet, Natural selection will be operating on a interplanetary and galactic scale which would still mean we would have to "fight for our survival" in the universe just as everything else does.
UPDATE: According to neoshroom, Dennet says a similar thing about the Prisoner's Dillema being overcome by dumb people in Darwin's Dangerous Idea