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Author Topic: The Necro Wars  (Read 344999 times)

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silverspawn

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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6375 on: February 04, 2024, 11:57:37 am »

No disagreements :P But I have no reply to the deontological point

I would agree for both Democracy and Capitalism. How do you justify that democracy is inherently the best option, rather than just the least bad one?
Because I believe that inherently every person should have a say in the organization of their own lives.

That is probably not going to satisfy a utilitarian mindset. But I feel like it's pretty hard to make utilitarian arguments on the organization of a state because it seems very hard to predict outcomes of unprecedented changes. But at the very least I think it's established that people having the feeling of agency over their own lives is correlated to happiness.

One thing is that I'm planning to vote for Die Grόnen (Green Party) in 2025, but I don't feel like this gives me significant agency over my own life.

My vision of a healthy society is more that politics is boring and in the realm of nerdy intellectuals, whereas regular people get their agency in other ways.

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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6376 on: February 04, 2024, 12:20:12 pm »

LW people typically aren't following politics closely

Roko is, and although I am not aware of him being a Trump supporter, I am also not confident that he isn't one. He definitely spends a lot more time criticizing liberals than the far right.
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silverspawn

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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6377 on: February 04, 2024, 01:47:16 pm »

LW people typically aren't following politics closely

Roko is, and although I am not aware of him being a Trump supporter, I am also not confident that he isn't one. He definitely spends a lot more time criticizing liberals than the far right.

Hm, okay. I take back most of what I said. I mean it is generally true but he could be an exception. Maybe that was a dig at Biden after all.

faust

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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6378 on: February 04, 2024, 01:50:10 pm »

No disagreements :P But I have no reply to the deontological point

I would agree for both Democracy and Capitalism. How do you justify that democracy is inherently the best option, rather than just the least bad one?
Because I believe that inherently every person should have a say in the organization of their own lives.

That is probably not going to satisfy a utilitarian mindset. But I feel like it's pretty hard to make utilitarian arguments on the organization of a state because it seems very hard to predict outcomes of unprecedented changes. But at the very least I think it's established that people having the feeling of agency over their own lives is correlated to happiness.

One thing is that I'm planning to vote for Die Grόnen (Green Party) in 2025, but I don't feel like this gives me significant agency over my own life.

My vision of a healthy society is more that politics is boring and in the realm of nerdy intellectuals, whereas regular people get their agency in other ways.
Well, I guess, but someone has to decide who these nerdy individuals are. Democracy gives everyone a chance to be a nerdy intellectual. At the same time, nerdy intellectuals, if left to their own devices, will make policy decisions that appeal only to nerdy intellectuals.

Also stuff like workplace democracy has a much more immediate impact on your life.

I guess my main question would be, what's the alternative? You gesture vaguely at other options, but I'm not sure I can see what these are. What you said above sounds a lot like the system as it is in e.g. China.
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silverspawn

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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6379 on: February 05, 2024, 10:45:56 am »

The fun answer is Futarchy, though this is a sort of democracy

Other than that, like, probably a system where only a subset of the population gets to vote. Establish some kind of competence test. I know you could easily criticize this system, but I feel like if we were in it, the idea of letting everyone vote would sound crazy. Preferably the test should not follow class or wealth divides.

silverspawn

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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6380 on: February 05, 2024, 10:50:13 am »

To pre-empt this response: the term "low information voter" gets tossed around a lot, usually meaning "person who votes for the choice I don't like". I have low confidence that learning more facts will make people change their vote, and negative confidence that spending more time thinking about it will.

But I feel like applying that to the system as-is is kind of missing the point. If politics were more of a niche thing that you have to study for, I'd hope it wouldn't get this polarized in the first place. Once it is this polarized, I think reason is basically lost

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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6381 on: February 05, 2024, 11:25:44 am »

The fun answer is Futarchy, though this is a sort of democracy

Other than that, like, probably a system where only a subset of the population gets to vote. Establish some kind of competence test. I know you could easily criticize this system, but I feel like if we were in it, the idea of letting everyone vote would sound crazy. Preferably the test should not follow class or wealth divides.

Nice link.
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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6382 on: February 05, 2024, 11:29:38 am »

You could just pick a parliament out of citizens via RNG. If anyone doesn't want to do it or doesn't show up, they can get replaced by a different random person. This would probably be better than representative democracy.
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faust

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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6384 on: February 05, 2024, 02:21:33 pm »

But I feel like applying that to the system as-is is kind of missing the point. If politics were more of a niche thing that you have to study for, I'd hope it wouldn't get this polarized in the first place. Once it is this polarized, I think reason is basically lost
Again, this system pretty much exists in China. As a communist, I know that "look at China" is a really annoying argument, and I imagine that you don't want to use their model, but I do not understand how your proposal is meaningfully different.
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faust

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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6385 on: February 05, 2024, 02:22:25 pm »

You could just pick a parliament out of citizens via RNG. If anyone doesn't want to do it or doesn't show up, they can get replaced by a different random person. This would probably be better than representative democracy.
I have some affection for this model, but I would argue that it is still, in the broader sense of the word, democracy.
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silverspawn

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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6386 on: February 05, 2024, 02:23:21 pm »

Well I don't know anything about Chinese politics. But there are probably a lot more ways to do this wrong than right. RE slot machine metaphor; any one proposal is probably not going to work well.

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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6387 on: February 05, 2024, 03:27:36 pm »

You could just pick a parliament out of citizens via RNG. If anyone doesn't want to do it or doesn't show up, they can get replaced by a different random person. This would probably be better than representative democracy.
learned two things today:
1. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sortition  I find this interesting since less than half of the United States population has meaningful representation at any level or branch of government.
2. RNG = random number generation and not Renewable Natural Gas

:)

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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6388 on: February 05, 2024, 05:36:06 pm »

You could just pick a parliament out of citizens via RNG. If anyone doesn't want to do it or doesn't show up, they can get replaced by a different random person. This would probably be better than representative democracy.
I have some affection for this model, but I would argue that it is still, in the broader sense of the word, democracy.

Sure. I actually think it is plausible that "find the consensus among the whole population" (which is arguably the definition of democracy and also the whole point of RNG parliament) is simply the best approach that exists, and the best system is just the system that does that in the least biased way. RNG parliament should do a much better job than representative democracy there.
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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6389 on: February 05, 2024, 06:34:01 pm »

I mean the the truth is that only a handful of legitimate alternatives to Democracy  have been attempted. It's the equivalent of standing in front of a million different slot machines, trying out five of them, and finding that among those, #4 works best. To extend the analogy further, we can assume that every other slot machine requires a trillion dollars up front to see how well it works. In this situation, it's one thing to conclude that trying out others isn't worth it and we should just stick with machine #4 (seems reasonable), but it makes no sense to assume that #4 is actually the best one, and it makes equally little sense to declare #4 infallible and oppose gambling restrictions that have been shown to work pretty well.

Democracy has a lot more going for it than just "the best we've tried so far":
  • it's based on a principle we know works phenomenally well
  • it's simple, and optimal things are much more likely to be simple than complex
  • it is the most straightforward possible way to ensure that everyone's well-being is taken into consideration by the people who make decisions, possibly the only possible way to ensure that
  • as an ethical principle, "decisions should be made by people who are affected by them" is sensible and easy to justify from multiple different perspectives, and when it comes to decisions that affect the entire society, democracy follows from that principle
We also haven't really ever tried anything even close to a pure democracy. There have always been entire groups of people who haven't been allowed to vote, and all democracies have always had parties with more seats (and other measures of political power) than support and vice versa.
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silverspawn

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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6390 on: February 06, 2024, 05:25:37 am »



Wait what were we talking about? Oh yeah democracy

silverspawn

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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6391 on: February 06, 2024, 05:28:35 am »


This all sounds very reasonable in a vacuum, but I don't really see how it's not been falsified by now.

We also haven't really ever tried anything even close to a pure democracy. There have always been entire groups of people who haven't been allowed to vote, and all democracies have always had parties with more seats (and other measures of political power) than support and vice versa.

Sure but that's just on the margins. The problem in the USA right now isn't that Republicans have some systemic advantages due to the electoral college and senate map, it's that millions of people vote for Trump -- and if he had the same charm but was less politically stupid, that number would be a lot higher. The problem in Germany isn't {whatever systemic critique you could have}, it's that a ton of people are legitimately persuaded to vote for the AfD. The problem in Finland... I mean, I have no idea what the problem in Finland is.

silverspawn

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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6392 on: February 06, 2024, 05:46:06 am »

it's based on a principle we know works phenomenally well

Correct me if I'm wrong; I'm assuming this relies on a lot of people contributing a very small signal  amidst a lot of noise which, in aggregate, is a lot of signal, and since noise mostly cancels out, that yields a good aggregate decision or guess.

If so, this works as long as the decision of each person is, in fact, signal + noise. If it's signal + X with X not randomly distributed, it doesn't work. And that's the case with democracy; people's opinions aren't a little bit of rational assessment plus randomness; they're a little bit of rational assessment plus randomness plus partisan BS, and partisan BS doesn't cancel out. So when you aggregate all that, you get a total signal mostly made out partisan BS.

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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6393 on: February 06, 2024, 05:49:38 am »

It's all connected in my mind, the lack of democracy and the support for the far-right.

The far-right benefits because it can put itself in a perceived opposition to a system that does not serve the interests of the average citizen. The system does not serve their interests because people in critical positions are reliant on the support of corporations. Corporate power stems from the undemocratic control that wealthy people have over the economy. If corporations were worker-controlled, we could significantly remove their influence over politics, and when they do lobby, it would be on behalf of the workers rather than their rich shareholders.

At the same time, a corporatized media landscape pushes the interests of the media owners, which align more with the far-right than the left. Here again worker democracy in journalism would allow them to set an agenda that is more closely aligned with the interests of the people.

The problems in the US and in Germany are systemic.
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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6394 on: February 06, 2024, 05:59:53 am »

In fact I think that's the reason why political betting markets are so underwhelming. They should be wisdom of crowds supercharged because they have the profit motive baked in, yet Manifold is arguably better than them despite being only about play money, presumably because it has a different culture. Politics is just a virus of thought that ruins the otherwise functioning principle of crowd wisdom/markets.

edit: PPE

silverspawn

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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6395 on: February 06, 2024, 06:00:43 am »

It's all connected in my mind, the lack of democracy and the support for the far-right.

The far-right benefits because it can put itself in a perceived opposition to a system that does not serve the interests of the average citizen. The system does not serve their interests because people in critical positions are reliant on the support of corporations. Corporate power stems from the undemocratic control that wealthy people have over the economy. If corporations were worker-controlled, we could significantly remove their influence over politics, and when they do lobby, it would be on behalf of the workers rather than their rich shareholders.

At the same time, a corporatized media landscape pushes the interests of the media owners, which align more with the far-right than the left. Here again worker democracy in journalism would allow them to set an agenda that is more closely aligned with the interests of the people.

The problems in the US and in Germany are systemic.

I generally don't buy this but whelp that will be not be easy to hash out

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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6396 on: February 06, 2024, 06:25:25 am »


This all sounds very reasonable in a vacuum, but I don't really see how it's not been falsified by now.

We also haven't really ever tried anything even close to a pure democracy. There have always been entire groups of people who haven't been allowed to vote, and all democracies have always had parties with more seats (and other measures of political power) than support and vice versa.

Sure but that's just on the margins. The problem in the USA right now isn't that Republicans have some systemic advantages due to the electoral college and senate map, it's that millions of people vote for Trump -- and if he had the same charm but was less politically stupid, that number would be a lot higher. The problem in Germany isn't {whatever systemic critique you could have}, it's that a ton of people are legitimately persuaded to vote for the AfD. The problem in Finland... I mean, I have no idea what the problem in Finland is.

Not that many people in the US are actually happy to be voting for Trump, they do it because they don't feel like they have better options, which is not that hard to happen when they only have one other option and most of the other option's voters also agree that they aren't happy to be voting for him, they just do it because they don't feel like they have better options. The fact that most Americans are in agreement that there aren't really any good options to vote for shows 1) that the average American does actually have reasonable takes on politics 2) that the American democracy is fundamentally extremely imperfect.

Correct me if I'm wrong, but it doesn't seem like AfD really has all that much power in Germany?


In Finland, the far-right Finns Party is currently in the government, but it's not really a far-right government, it's just a regular liberal conservative right wing government. The government is basically doing all of the things the Finns Party promised voters they wouldn't do and extremely few of the things that they promised they would. So it's not really a disaster, it's just a disappointment — and the majority of Finnish people agree that it's a disappointment, only a minority actually support the government, so in a perfect democracy, we wouldn't have this government. The Finns Party presidential candidate didn't even make it to the 2nd round in the currently ongoing presidential election, where the 2nd round is between a centrist guy from the liberal conservative Coalition Party and a centrist guy from the Green Party (which is a green party but without the tankies and 50% less anti-nuclear sentiments than you would expect from a typical green party).
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Awaclus

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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6397 on: February 06, 2024, 06:41:35 am »

it's based on a principle we know works phenomenally well

Correct me if I'm wrong; I'm assuming this relies on a lot of people contributing a very small signal  amidst a lot of noise which, in aggregate, is a lot of signal, and since noise mostly cancels out, that yields a good aggregate decision or guess.

If so, this works as long as the decision of each person is, in fact, signal + noise. If it's signal + X with X not randomly distributed, it doesn't work. And that's the case with democracy; people's opinions aren't a little bit of rational assessment plus randomness; they're a little bit of rational assessment plus randomness plus partisan BS, and partisan BS doesn't cancel out. So when you aggregate all that, you get a total signal mostly made out partisan BS.

It works if the collective decision is signal + noise. Partisan bS cancels out with opposite partisan bS.
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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6398 on: February 06, 2024, 06:49:06 am »

In fact I think that's the reason why political betting markets are so underwhelming. They should be wisdom of crowds supercharged because they have the profit motive baked in, yet Manifold is arguably better than them despite being only about play money, presumably because it has a different culture. Politics is just a virus of thought that ruins the otherwise functioning principle of crowd wisdom/markets.

There's also the fact that real money betting markets have people who are there just to gamble. People with reasonable models of the world who actually do the math always make money on betting markets, not just politics but other topics as well. Meanwhile it's hard to make mana on Manifold, other than by collecting the daily bonuses, unless you stumble upon some obscure markets on topics you know something about and it looks like the market doesn't but those are hard to find.
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Re: The Necro Wars
« Reply #6399 on: February 06, 2024, 07:40:01 am »

Correct me if I'm wrong, but it doesn't seem like AfD really has all that much power in Germany?
It's true, but they have been doing well in polls lately, and state elections are coming up in several states that are strongholds for them, meaning they will probably win first place there.

Also as far as I can judge from the Finn's party Wiki page, the AfD is significantly more extreme than them. There has been a recent scandal about a secret meeting in which they discussed the deportation of naturalized citizens (and even German-born ones that aren't white).
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