Very productive conversation with Owl this week.
how to direct good impulses to productive urges?
read a comment this week that people who contribute to things liked wookiepedia would have been amateur scientists/scholars/librarians in previous centuries
so how to direct that urge to pursuits in the real world?
external reward unlikely to be a good avenue of approach due to likely internal motivating facotrs (interest in niche subject material)
Primarily by being emotionally invested in outcomes for other people in the community.
Some spergs would still think it’s important to write diatribes on how many angels can dance on the head of a pin, but if the default justification for all research is “for Christ and the church” it’s harder to rationalize.
Don’t get me wrong, I’ve seen some truly labyrinthine rationalizations for how X serves Y that would make Cthulhu blush.
But it applies pressure.
Pragmatism is the solution to postmodern epistemology.
The trouble may be that lightswitch brains can’t conceive of pragmatism which is teleological rather than a mere license to psychopathy.
well it’s an interesting question
how do you incentivize pragmatism in a post-modern world
The best solution I can think of is pragmatism for lightswitch brain spergs and idealism for lightswitch brain neurotypicals.
hell, the question has a strong thing-in-itself assumption there
why would pragmatism need to be inventivized if pragmatism made sense?
Because spergs are biologically idealists.
The thing that they really have to guard against though is individualism. [Ed: spiraling into alienation via low personality factor.]
I guess what I’m kinda getting at here is a 4-quadrants model where everyone has a biological position and then you indoctrinate them with whatever keeps them closer to the center and away from purity spiraling into their favorite corners.
Individualism (R) – Collectivism (k) on the X-axis and Pragmatism (dark triad) – Ideological (autism quotient) on the Y-axis.
This reminds me, I may not have shared these links with you before…
The problem with autists is they’re in the top left by disposition.
We’ve learned you can teach them to be group-oriented by ideology, but teaching them to accomplish meaningful shit has been a tricky proposition so far.
don’t you almost have to kind of trick them into it?
“man, i just can’t seem to get my space laser to work. I’ve tried everything. any of you guys have an idea?”
That’s not a bad idea.
the whole schtick is just digging in and going whole ham
the trick seems to be getting them to dive into just the sort of porblems you need solved
say, you need your IT systems fixed and someone has an autistic nephew
Hot damn, I can use this as the punchline for the next couple of Blockheads comics.
like, you let the nephew play with something removed from the mainframe
if nothing comes of it, no harm no foul
but maybe he figures out some trick to make yoursystem twice as efficient
same principle could apply with things like: traffic flow in major cities, optimal loading/scheduling for freight train shipments, nuclear weapons design…etc
this is actually how they roped in a number of people to work on the manhattan project, and presumably how they continue to get people to work on things like secret military projects
i would imagine the risk/reward ratio probably looks better for the genius autistic grad student really into rocketry versus the neurotypical but equally-smart grad student that for some reason really wants to work on death lasers, bioweapons, nuclear missiles…etc
Sure, you have to handle their cluelessness, but anyone smart enough to design next-gen weapons and personally inclined to due so is perhaps a bit too dark triad to ever be fully trsuted
and sure, you wouldn’t bring the autist into the inner circle but the potneital upside is higher for less hassle and general miantenance
*insert “clueless/losers/sociopaths” traingle here*
hey, that’s a useful metric to analyze this dynamic
eternal autist=hyperproductive clueless
normie genius=potential sociopathic competitor
everyone else (including most middle amnagement of your secret military project)= clueless or lsoers, depending
you’ve already talked about how you believe genius is a niche for group-level selection
[Ed: Credit for that idea should go to WD Hamilton via Dutton and Charlton.]
genius being a clueless but one too valuable to lose
the wisest sociopaths need be aware of this on some level to retain their position
any environment that fosters geniuses is more likely to succeed (agan, manhattan project)
but it requires 1) keeping them motivated on the core problem (how to build bomb?), 2) making sure they don’t go off the reservation, and 3) keeping potential sociopathic competitors at sufficient level that they DON’T crowd out the geniuses but you still have one or two potential succesors to play off each other (to ensure competent future leadership and thus the preservation of he institution ong-term)
an interesting example of #3 is Exxon Mobil in recent years, where instead of having a direct successor to the CEO, they had two high-level executives essential compete in made-up posiitons
Don’t remember the guy who lost out, becaause WINNERZ, but the eventual successor was a guy named Rex tillerson
he went on to something after that…if only I could remember what?
anyway, main gist of this is that autisit geniuses are clueless, but indispensable clueless, and you have to cater to them for optimal fitness
things written before the trump admin speak of flynn as an eccentric genius
he did seem to revolutionize how the us hunted terrorists
he also took operational responsibilty away from the usual suspects (and all power flows from responsibility so you can see how that made enemies)
think that might be all i’ve got on this
i’m clearly running into that owl melon symbolic think block of seeing the dynamic but not being quite sure if i’ve described it effectively
Weaponizing autism is actually an incredibly important topic.
all historical progress has been amde as a result of it
Okay, so the obstacle your melonhead is running into is the tension between Sociopaths needing to convert Loser autists into Clueless geniuses, but then not allow them to amass too much power by actually being too damn useful to remove or kill.
If the autists then take power, you get the period from 1600 to 1850 where they ruin everything with their boneheaded idealist utopianism.
(And creating calculus in the process, which is not a good trade.)
It’s the fox and hedgehog problem.
Only a hedgehog can pursue a problem through to the solution, but he suffers from the paperclip maximizer problem.
E.g. Marx was a hedgehog. They’re very good at describing problems but very poor at balancing concerns, so they can only be trusted to solve highly specific technical problems.
Ayn Rand was also a hedgehog.
When they start playing bigger games like political philosophy, they reduce institutional foundations to a single pillar (the principle to maximize paperclips) and cause catastrophic collapses.
But you can’t remove them from an institution if they get too useful to fail.
So the Fox’s job re: Hedgehogs is to lure them into useful corners of the walled garden.
Last note: a hedgehog may be a paperclip maximizer by nature, but maybe your garden doesn’t need paperclips. If he’s a low-powered hedgehog it’s not a problem, you can let him write his MLP fanfics and be useless and harmless. But if he’s extremely high ability you need to kill him or get him doing something close to paperclips (maybe you do need pins or nails?) and economically relevant (hence constrained by pragmatic economic concerns). The way to do this is to trick him into fun working relationships with hipster pin enthusiasts or whatever who will appreciate having someone to answer their harder technical questions.