Book 2 – Text Updates 048

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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 048

Postby Chit Rule Railroad » Mon May 16, 2011 5:08 pm

Atomic wrote:Slately's Duty is to the continuation of his side, and his loyalty (lowercase 'L') should fall in line with that... As far as Loyalty (uppercase 'L'), I don't believe he has any. I mean, if he's Loyal to anyone else, he sort of stops being the one who rules the kingdom. Natural Thinkamancy should, likewise, enforce his Duty for the preservation of his side...in a way much similar to the Summon Perfect Warlord-spell, I imagine that Slately was popped to rule. So that's exactly what his Duty compels him to do.


Given the decisions of Bea and Don, the Duty of a Royal Ruler (if such exists) may ultimately be to an abstraction. As many have argued on the forum, Slately's (now-foiled) plan of a suicide charge on the Atrium may not have been the best way to keep Jetstone in existence, and moreover Slately's decision-making seemed more emotional than strategic. But what if Slately's Duty is to a standard of Royalty, and he came to "recognize" that if Jetstone can't meet the standard, then it might as well cease to exist?

Don's flip-flopping raises the question of whether a Ruler truly has Duty or whether they have preferences that come out of personality and experience.

I wonder if Duncan Scone is shaping Jillian's conception of how a Queen should be, influencing her toward rationalism.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 048

Postby Oberon » Mon May 16, 2011 11:15 pm

Zeku wrote:To those making comments about royalty as an abstract concept, I'm wondering if you understand the need for noble men in positions of great power. I also wonder if you realize that royalty always exists, regardless of what it is actually called, and regardless of whether the royals in question are virtuous.
You are both right and wrong. You are right in that yes, even in non-royalty based governmental forms there is a huge amount of unwarranted deference given to political leaders. i.e. "Mr. President", not at all far from the royal "Your Grace" or the theocratic "Your Excellence", or similar titles.
You are wrong in your insistence that there is a "need" for such positions of great power. On the contrary, much of human misery can be attributed to men in such "positions of great power." Enough so that there can be no debate that the harm caused by such outweighs any good they may have accidentally brought about.

Moreover, the "Almond-Lippmann consensus" you cite seems to be rather short sighted, it appears to ignore the fact that "the publics role in U.S public affairs" is voting, which balanced across the House and Senate and the executive, that the Senate was deliberately designed to be in a position to ignore "knee jerk" reactions from the populace, while any executive in their second term can and often do ignore their party and the polls in order to promote their agendas, since they cannot serve another term. (Whether any given person feels that this goal has been accomplished is an entirely different subject) Only in a system where there is no unchecked accumulation of power can there be any hope that this power will not be abused. And I used 'hope' intentionally, as there are plenty of examples of abuse even within systems which attempt to distribute and check power. And no, I'm not an anarchist, not by a long shot.

Chit Rule Railroad wrote:Regarding Slately's chances vs. Ossomer: they don't need to dust or incapacitate Ossomer, just knock him off the carpet.
Dusting him would be best, to deny GK his WL bonus.
hidufel wrote:This just occured to me... the casters there atop the tower dont know that ossomer isnt the chief warlord, right? the pacing of these events sure makes it seem that parsons arrival providing his chief warlord bonus in the hex might be quite a surprise for them, especially if theyve already commited to an attack and then suddenly, WHUMP, chief warlord bonus shows up!
Parson's bonus is a very modest 2, it won't be that much of a surprise and will probably only impact marginal combats in any event.
MarbitChow wrote:The anarchist solution to the problem ignores basic human nature in much the same way as the vegan solution to world hunger does: it requires that 100% of the world will behave the way 1% wishes it would.
Just to be a contrarian, because it's fun, vegans (or at least vegetarians) offer up a far better solution to world hunger, since you can get far more calories out of far less surface area devoted to growing plants for food than you can growing plants for food to feed animals to eat. And no, not either a vegetarian or a vegan. But the vegetarian lifestyle I could see myself living, if only I hadn't already tasted bacon.
Zeku wrote:You are responsible for making on topic and respectful posts, even if others are not doing that.
I must have missed the part where you were jumped up to forum Napoleon. Nice to make your acquaintance, little prince!
Masennus wrote:How does CW gain precedence in chain of command over the ruler? Is it because the situation is tactical rather than strategic?
That's a real good question. This "chain of command" doesn't seem to exist within GK. The scene where Stanley decided that if Parson and his casters hadn't just betrayed him, they had at least failed him, ordered Parson to STFU when he was looking to develop a strategy for the next turn, and ordered them all out of his sight seems to illustrate a very different command model.
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ftl wrote:"royalty" tends to mean more than just "a leadership position" - it means a leadership position which is inherited by birth. I wouldn't argue that groups need leaders, but I am not at all convinced that said leadership needs to be hereditary.

Especially with all that in-breeding going on.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 048

Postby Atomic » Tue May 17, 2011 3:16 am

Chit Rule Railroad wrote:
Atomic wrote:Slately's Duty is to the continuation of his side, and his loyalty (lowercase 'L') should fall in line with that... As far as Loyalty (uppercase 'L'), I don't believe he has any. I mean, if he's Loyal to anyone else, he sort of stops being the one who rules the kingdom. Natural Thinkamancy should, likewise, enforce his Duty for the preservation of his side...in a way much similar to the Summon Perfect Warlord-spell, I imagine that Slately was popped to rule. So that's exactly what his Duty compels him to do.


Given the decisions of Bea and Don, the Duty of a Royal Ruler (if such exists) may ultimately be to an abstraction. As many have argued on the forum, Slately's (now-foiled) plan of a suicide charge on the Atrium may not have been the best way to keep Jetstone in existence, and moreover Slately's decision-making seemed more emotional than strategic. But what if Slately's Duty is to a standard of Royalty, and he came to "recognize" that if Jetstone can't meet the standard, then it might as well cease to exist?

Don's flip-flopping raises the question of whether a Ruler truly has Duty or whether they have preferences that come out of personality and experience.

Just picking a nit, but I believe the Duty of rulers can change between one side and another... While flip-flopping may or may not have to do with Duty/ Loyalty/ Thinkamancy/ whaaaaaaaaaaaatever we're calling it now, I don't see it as an 'easy' change. Nor should it be. Any change in Duty/ Loyalty should be part of character development and growth.

I'll explain why I think so... Until that final turn for Unaroyal, we have no indications that Bea was planning to commit suicide. Quite the opposite, in fact; the queen had pulled everything back to her capital. Bea wasn't even going to bring the fight to Gobwin Knob...no. She was hunkered in for the long haul, and in possession of a decently sized treasury, to boot. It's pretty clear Bea was going to (try to) hold out for as long as possible. Why? Two reasons.

1.) She wanted to buy as much time as possible for the other members of the coalition to build up. One/ three/ five turns? In a battle like this, that can be huge.
2.) She wanted to inflict as many casualties to Gobwin Knob before croaking. Again, every croaking (well, dusting, but she didn't rightly know that) matters. It's one less unit for the rest of the RCCII to face.

Of course, the whole exposition about Decryption changed that; if you can't kill, effectively, twice the amount you're losing? Not worth it. On the flip side, I'm not so sure any of the above is Duty. It all reeks of Loyalty to me. That makes me think you're using the words Duty/Loyalty like they're interchangeable, though... Loyalty can have an impact on Duty, but does Duty have an impact on Loyalty?

In my mind, Duty is showing up to work at Kinkos, 'cause that's your job and that's what you're supposed to do if you want to keep said-job. Loyalty is covering for your coworker (even when you don't have to) 'cause they're either missing/ dead/ sucked into a world which functions like a TBS. Natural Thinkamancy is what convinces you that you A.) want the job, or B.) want to cover for your coworker.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 048

Postby MarbitChow » Tue May 17, 2011 5:02 am

Oberon wrote:
MarbitChow wrote:The anarchist solution to the problem ignores basic human nature in much the same way as the vegan solution to world hunger does: it requires that 100% of the world will behave the way 1% wishes it would.
Just to be a contrarian, because it's fun, vegans (or at least vegetarians) offer up a far better solution to world hunger, since you can get far more calories out of far less surface area devoted to growing plants for food than you can growing plants for food to feed animals to eat. And no, not either a vegetarian or a vegan. But the vegetarian lifestyle I could see myself living, if only I hadn't already tasted bacon.

Thank you for supporting my point, Mr. Contrarian. :)

There are a lot of really excellent solutions out there that fail because they ignore human nature.
Communism is great on paper, but requires people to be selfless and motivated by concern for the good of the whole.
Veganism offers a much more efficient solution to feeding the world, but requires people to stop eating bacon.
Abstinence is the absolute best way to avoid STDs and unwanted pregnancy, but it requires teenagers to not want to have sex.
Hell, drugs and prostitution are illegal, and yet they are both easily available.

Any solution that requires humans to be enlightened and disciplined will fail.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 048

Postby Dr Pepper » Tue May 17, 2011 6:00 am

The way i see is this: Duty is to one's Side. For all but the top people, Duty focuses on the chain of command. Normally, they have no scope for reconsideration. In fact for the lowest level units, there is no disobedience at all. For mid level units there is the possibility of disobedience but with that comes autopoofing.

So for such units, only two things can change their duty: active efforts from another Side, or isolation. The first means the use of brainwashing and/or Turnamancy, the second refers to staying in the company of another Side long enough to "go native". That's what happens to most transylvitan ambassadors.

For the top people, Duty leaves room for reconsideration, argument, partial disobedience (like taking a road rather than the long way) and direct disobedience. However, unlike the real world, there's no Judge Advocate, no Admiralty Board to plead one's actions to. When the incident is over, it is entirely up to the ruler whether the insubordinate units get to live. Unless of course, there's been a coup.

For a ruler, duty is to the Side as a whole. They are required to act in its best interests. This of course, is somewhat subjective and includes both their own decisions and their delegations of authority. A ruler is free to choose among different actions, but they are not free to knowingly choose one that is nothing but detrimental.

Ok, with me so far?

Now Loyalty is to an affinity. For most units Loyal has the same object as Duty, it is their Side. Higher ranking units can have loyalties to other objects, such as groups with temporary common interests (employers, natural allies, formal alliances, coalitions), groups that transcend Sides (the Great Minds), or to abstract ideals, (Fate, Toolism).

Loyalty can influence how one responds to Duty, but cannot go directly against it.

So let's see hw that works out in specific cases.

Wriggley: A grunt. He's almost pure Duty, Loyalty hardly registers. He goes where he's told to, obeys all orders without thinking. Changing Sides doesn't cause him any stress, just a feeling that Fate has given him another chance and that somehow his actions will be meaningful. It doesn't change his actions, though. He follows his leader. When his leader is killed he auto attacks. He gets to stabbity and that's glorious, but if he had gotten to stabbity as a Jetstone unit it would have been just as glorious.

Webinar: My Life for Jetstone! His Duty is to Jetstone but he has enough rank to disagree with his commander about Jillian, and to revise his orders in light of new intelligence. He also has a strong Loyalty to Jetstone, but none to Jillian, even when Duty requires him to work with her. But if he had found an excuse and an opportunity, say by discovering that GK was using mind control to make her an unwitting double agent, he would have had no problem backstabbing her.

Jillian: Previously a freewilled commander with no Duty at all, but a standard amount of Loyalty to the RCC as an ally, and a lot of Loyalty to Ansome because she was in love with him. Also, somewhat conflicted because she was in love with Wanda. Now as a ruler, she has Duty to Faq.

Bea: Born to rule. As ruler she has Duty to Uniroyal. But she also has a strong loyalty to the concept of Royalty, and to King Don as a friend. In her war with GK, she does her best, but in the end she realizes her Side is doomed, no matter what she does. Except surrender and join them? No-- at this point Loyalty influences Duty by informing her that a Toolist Uniroyal is no Uniroyal at all, it's just another form of extinction. So Duty is neutralized and she makes her decision on Loyalty alone. She does what she can to improve the chances of her ideal, Royalty, and her friend, Don, surviving.

Ossamer: Knight of the Realm. Decryption has replaced Royalty with Toolism in his makeup. But his Loyalty to Honor remains strong and there's a lot going on that goes counter to that Loyalty. Combine that with his high ranking ability to question his orders and you have someone who continues to do his Duty, but weakly.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 048

Postby Raza » Tue May 17, 2011 6:21 pm

Zeku wrote:You are responsible for making on topic and respectful posts, even if others are not doing that.

I do not have a perspective in this case, I am reminding you of how you are expected to behave: the kind of behavior that a search through the forum will consistently reveal.

As far as hypocrisy goes: you stated you don't believe in hierarchies, to paraphrase. That's wonderful. Lets avoid both hypocrisy and hierarchies completely, by having a conversation about Erfworld, as equals.

Yeeaaaaah. I'm responsible for discontinuing a discussion you started because it is expected of me from a search engine full of precedents, and a hypocrite because I will discuss human social organization without believing in hierarchy.

As your equal, I'm going to just ignore you now.


MarbitChow wrote:As with any solution, the Anarchist solution is elegant, simple, and wrong. Humans by nature organize themselves into a hierarchy. Hierarchies are required to accomplish any organizational task that is more complex than that which can be accomplished by a few individuals.

That's not quite true. There exist models for non-hierarchical organization that've been used effectively by groups exceeding thousands.

There aren't many examples, because hierarchy is entrenched deeply into our culture - and admittedly also instinctive for many of us - but organization is definitely logically feasible if you could get enough people to want to work that way.

MarbitChow wrote:The anarchist solution to the problem ignores basic human nature in much the same way as the vegan solution to world hunger does: it requires that 100% of the world will behave the way 1% wishes it would.

Well, of course, no anarchist revolution is going to succeed while so few people support the ideal. Worldwide won't happen in our lifetime; nationwide, only for the tiniest of self-declared nationstates.

Still, I will argue that all solutions to humanity's biggest problems will require us to go against our natures to some extend, since all of our recurring problems are caused by common shortcomings of human psychology. That's the interesting thing about us, though: we have a very diverse nature with many potential motives for making any given decision, as well as this cool and scary potential to learn and bury certain instincts under cultural and intellectual upbringing, while empowering others through celebration and practise.

Anarchy will not be any different. Yes, it will require us to not give in to certain impulses (while liberating us to indulge many others!), and even people that try will fail sometimes - just as is currently the case with any popular moral or cultural standard. But if the ideal is well thought-out, the world will be better off for people trying, regardless. Current popularity is merely culture, and has every potential to change over the decades.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 048

Postby Zeku » Tue May 17, 2011 7:13 pm

Posting personal political beliefs is off topic, and it is disrespectful. It does not belong here.

Responding to someone about their personal political beliefs is off topic, and it is disrespectful. It does not belong here.

Asking questions of someone who is presenting their personal political beliefs is off topic, and it is disrespectful. It does not belong here.

Disagreeing with someone who is presenting their personal political beliefs is off topic, and it is disrespectful. It does not belong here.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 048

Postby Housellama » Tue May 17, 2011 7:19 pm

Raza wrote:
MarbitChow wrote:As with any solution, the Anarchist solution is elegant, simple, and wrong. Humans by nature organize themselves into a hierarchy. Hierarchies are required to accomplish any organizational task that is more complex than that which can be accomplished by a few individuals.

That's not quite true. There exist models for non-hierarchical organization that've been used effectively by groups exceeding thousands.

There aren't many examples, because hierarchy is entrenched deeply into our culture - and admittedly also instinctive for many of us - but organization is definitely logically feasible if you could get enough people to want to work that way.


There's several problems here. First of all, hierarchy isn't just cultural, it's also genetic. Most herd animals have a hierarchy of some form or another. Some species of primates have a fairly complex hierarchy. Humans are, by nature, herd animals. We run in groups, and like those herd animals before us, inside those groups we look towards an alpha. That's built in. Yes, it's possible for humans to work in a non-hierarchical structure, but it's not natural to us. Our instincts are to look toward a leader, or to BE a leader.

Second... have you ever tried to get a lot of people to want the same thing for a long time? If you can do that on a large scale, then you should be aiming higher than just spreading anarchy, imo.

Raza wrote:
MarbitChow wrote:The anarchist solution to the problem ignores basic human nature in much the same way as the vegan solution to world hunger does: it requires that 100% of the world will behave the way 1% wishes it would.

Well, of course, no anarchist revolution is going to succeed while so few people support the ideal. Worldwide won't happen in our lifetime; nationwide, only for the tiniest of self-declared nationstates.

Still, I will argue that all solutions to humanity's biggest problems will require us to go against our natures to some extend, since all of our recurring problems are caused by common shortcomings of human psychology. That's the interesting thing about us, though: we have a very diverse nature with many potential motives for making any given decision, as well as this cool and scary potential to learn and bury certain instincts under cultural and intellectual upbringing, while empowering others through celebration and practise.

Anarchy will not be any different. Yes, it will require us to not give in to certain impulses (while liberating us to indulge many others!), and even people that try will fail sometimes - just as is currently the case with any popular moral or cultural standard. But if the ideal is well thought-out, the world will be better off for people trying, regardless. Current popularity is merely culture, and has every potential to change over the decades.


Define 'well thought-out'. By whose standards? I'm pretty sure Pol Pot gave his cultural ideals a lot of thought before he started his way through the killing fields. Do you believe that the world is better off for his attempts? (Hey, at least it wasn't Hitler.) In all seriousness, you get the point. Just because an ideal appears to be ideal from where you are sitting, doesn't mean it is. And it DEFINITELY doesn't mean that the world will be a better place for its existence.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 048

Postby ftl » Tue May 17, 2011 7:40 pm

Zeku wrote:Posting personal political beliefs is off topic, and it is disrespectful. It does not belong here.

Responding to someone about their personal political beliefs is off topic, and it is disrespectful. It does not belong here.

Asking questions of someone who is presenting their personal political beliefs is off topic, and it is disrespectful. It does not belong here.

Disagreeing with someone who is presenting their personal political beliefs is off topic, and it is disrespectful. It does not belong here.


How are any of those things disrespectful? I've certainly run in to plenty of disrespectful anarchists on the internet; this discussion has mostly been quite civil. There has been discussion, in the past, of plenty of different things in these threads - morality, probability, human nature, etc. The comic makes you think about those sort of things. That's one of the reasons it's good.

Besides, you yourself posted
To those making comments about royalty as an abstract concept, I'm wondering if you understand the need for noble men in positions of great power. I also wonder if you realize that royalty always exists, regardless of what it is actually called, and regardless of whether the royals in question are virtuous.


This pretty obviously invites discussion of these different things - thus, discussing royalty as an abstract concept, the need for noble men in positions of power, and so on (political systems without royalty?), is on-topic enough, considering a major theme of Book 2 is Royalty versus Toolism.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 048

Postby Oberon » Wed May 18, 2011 12:38 am

Zeku wrote:Posting personal political beliefs is off topic, and it is disrespectful. It does not belong here.

Responding to someone about their personal political beliefs is off topic, and it is disrespectful. It does not belong here.

Asking questions of someone who is presenting their personal political beliefs is off topic, and it is disrespectful. It does not belong here.

Disagreeing with someone who is presenting their personal political beliefs is off topic, and it is disrespectful. It does not belong here.
Trolling the forum is disrespectful. It does not belong here.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 048

Postby Atomic » Wed May 18, 2011 12:52 am

Oberon wrote:
Zeku wrote:Posting personal political beliefs is off topic, and it is disrespectful. It does not belong here.

Responding to someone about their personal political beliefs is off topic, and it is disrespectful. It does not belong here.

Asking questions of someone who is presenting their personal political beliefs is off topic, and it is disrespectful. It does not belong here.

Disagreeing with someone who is presenting their personal political beliefs is off topic, and it is disrespectful. It does not belong here.
Trolling the forum is disrespectful. It does not belong here.

Calling people a troll is disrespectful. It does not belong here.

Quoting people is disrespectful. It does not belong here.

Being disrespectful is, obviously, disrespectful. it doesn't belong here.

Belonging here is disrespectful. It doesn't belong here.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 048

Postby Housellama » Wed May 18, 2011 12:59 am

Atomic wrote:
Oberon wrote:
Zeku wrote:Posting personal political beliefs is off topic, and it is disrespectful. It does not belong here.

Responding to someone about their personal political beliefs is off topic, and it is disrespectful. It does not belong here.

Asking questions of someone who is presenting their personal political beliefs is off topic, and it is disrespectful. It does not belong here.

Disagreeing with someone who is presenting their personal political beliefs is off topic, and it is disrespectful. It does not belong here.
Trolling the forum is disrespectful. It does not belong here.

Calling people a troll is disrespectful. It does not belong here.

Quoting people is disrespectful. It does not belong here.

Being disrespectful is, obviously, disrespectful. it doesn't belong here.

Belonging here is disrespectful. It doesn't belong here.


Ah, satire. Is there any situation that you can't make more awesome?
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 048

Postby Atomic » Wed May 18, 2011 1:04 am

Housellama wrote:Ah, satire. Is there any situation that you can't make more awesome?

If there is, I haven't yet found it! :lol:
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 048

Postby BLANDCorporatio » Wed May 18, 2011 6:29 am

Oberon wrote:the Senate was deliberately designed to be in a position to ignore "knee jerk" reactions from the populace


This is an excellent point, and a sad illustration of the gap between should and is. Case in point, Amber Alerts/Megan's Law.

Oberon wrote:
Hiai wrote:"which political party has driven us to ruin/is going to save us"
That'd be a rather short debate, the answer is self evident: They both have.


Sir! You forgot about The Rent Is Too Damn High Party, and He'll save us all for sure!



====



On anarchy and the rest, my take on it is that you need to be clear what you mean by it. Quite apart from any genetic predisposition/social animal instincts, any kind of organization (and you need those for many things) needs leadership. True, I'm casually mixing "leadership" and "power" here, but one goes with the other quite often.

Dr Pepper wrote:The way i see is this: Duty is to one's Side. {snip}

Now Loyalty is to {be} an affinity. For most units Loyal has the same object as Duty, it is their Side. Higher ranking units can have loyalties to other objects, such as groups with temporary common interests (employers, natural allies, formal alliances, coalitions), groups that transcend Sides (the Great Minds), or to abstract ideals, (Fate, Toolism).

Loyalty can influence how one responds to Duty, but cannot go directly against it.


I like the analysis, both for its own sake and for reminding me of the Shape vs. Stone philosophical debate in Arcanum (even though that was "Natural Ability" vs. "Social Role", whereas this is "Social Role" vs. "Personal Outlook").
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 048

Postby MarbitChow » Wed May 18, 2011 10:33 am

Raza wrote:That's not quite true. There exist models for non-hierarchical organization that've been used effectively by groups exceeding thousands.

Most non-hierarchical organizations operate on a voluntary basis. A hierarchy is required to get people to do things they don't want to do.

Most open source projects have gatekeepers who have more power than regular contributors, even if it's only the ability to reject some work. The hierarchy may be very flat (only 2 levels), but it's still there. Getting people to do things that they want to do anyway is easy.

Do you know of any examples of a modern completely non-hierarchical society comprised of more than a few 100 people? Say, over 100,000?

Raza wrote:There aren't many examples, because hierarchy is entrenched deeply into our culture - and admittedly also instinctive for many of us - but organization is definitely logically feasible if you could get enough people to want to work that way.

But that's the problem: most people don't want to work that way. The anarchist ideal is not new - it's several thousand years old. It's the way the Greek City-States were 'organized'. And they were crushed by an organization that used a hierarchy (Rome), because a hierarchy is more efficient. It's not a matter of desire, or idealism. The more people that are involved in a decision-making process, the longer the decision takes. A hierarchy is simply a means by which a collective will is focused on an individual or small group.

Raza wrote:Still, I will argue that all solutions to humanity's biggest problems will require us to go against our natures to some extend, since all of our recurring problems are caused by common shortcomings of human psychology. That's the interesting thing about us, though: we have a very diverse nature with many potential motives for making any given decision, as well as this cool and scary potential to learn and bury certain instincts under cultural and intellectual upbringing, while empowering others through celebration and practise.

Any solution that requires going against human nature is doomed to failure. You cannot factor it out of the equation, or wave your hand and say 'we will overcome this'. A hierarchically organized group will be able to react more quickly than a non-hierarchical one, and thus will compete for resources more effectively, ultimately 'winning'. The only way the anarchist solution can work is if there are unlimited resources, so that competition for resources is not an issue. At that point, I'd argue that all of humanity's problems have already been solved, so that people would be able to do whatever they please. Anarchy is not a solution, it's an ideal that can only exist when there are no problems.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 048

Postby Geordy » Wed May 18, 2011 11:09 am

Marbit, the reason why in history hierarchies seem superior over anarchist communities is simple: the process of decision-finding was way too complex for the latter.

This is changing (or has already changed). Now we have the Internet. Technically it is no problem to ask 100 million inhabitants about their opinion. Here in Germany during a local election for some cities major they tested a new decryption based on quantum-mechanics/-computer which gives you two: a) very hard code to crack b) if cracked youll know it. Just imagine a two week rhythm in which the population make its decision on always new situations concerning the society as a whole. The first week the Tv channels would be full of suggestions from certain parties - where they stand on the subject and why. (Yaay, no more "infotainment" brought to you by one of the ten richest families in the country.) The second week people have time to vote via Internet, choose between the options offered. Who needs politicians who always decide in favor of Big Money anyway?

Of course, there still will be hierarchies like in certain jobs. A firefighter shouldnt have to ask permission to fight a fire. Their decisions have to be made in seconds. But I cant think of any countrywide situation that requires adhoc decisions made by one man. Or lets say: these occasions are so rare you can make emergency plans for it in advance.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 048

Postby MarbitChow » Wed May 18, 2011 11:25 am

Geordy wrote:Marbit, the reason why in history hierarchies seem superior over anarchist communities is simple: the process of decision-finding was way too complex for the latter.

This is changing (or has already changed). Now we have the Internet. Technically it is no problem to ask 100 million inhabitants about their opinion. Here in Germany during a local election for some cities major they tested a new decryption based on quantum-mechanics/-computer which gives you two: a) very hard code to crack b) if cracked youll know it. Just imagine a two week rhythm in which the population make its decision on always new situations concerning the society as a whole. The first week the Tv channels would be full of suggestions from certain parties - where they stand on the subject and why. (Yaay, no more "infotainment" brought to you by one of the ten richest families in the country.) The second week people have time to vote via Internet, choose between the options offered. Who needs politicians who always decide in favor of Big Money anyway?

Of course, there still will be hierarchies like in certain jobs. A firefighter shouldnt have to ask permission to fight a fire. Their decisions have to be made in seconds. But I cant think of any countrywide situation that requires adhoc decisions made by one man. Or lets say: these occasions are so rare you can make emergency plans for it in advance.

Yeah, about that... seeing as how we still have 20% of the polled population in America that believes that our President is not a natural-born citizen even after seeing 2 copies of his birth certificate, I'm not convinced that polling the population is the best method of decision-making. :D

If you set up a situation where the majority decides every situation, you have a true democracy, which has been described as "three wolves and a sheep voting on what's for dinner". It also doesn't supply a mechanism for enforcement. In order to make people do things that they don't want to do, you need some method of imposing the "will of the people". That always resolves to a position of power.

Your example actually proves the point: accurate voting for a position of authority can be done on a much easier scale, but it's still a society that voluntarily grants the authority to make day-to-day decisions to a small body. Someone has to take the time to weigh the options and make a final call.

Hierarchy isn't more just more efficient at decision-making, it's more efficient at delegation of tasks. Any technology that improves the speed of decision-making for a group also improves it for an individual, and a single individual can make a decision more rapidly than a group can find consensus.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 048

Postby DoctorJest » Wed May 18, 2011 11:38 am

Oberon wrote:Just to be a contrarian, because it's fun, vegans (or at least vegetarians) offer up a far better solution to world hunger, since you can get far more calories out of far less surface area devoted to growing plants for food than you can growing plants for food to feed animals to eat. And no, not either a vegetarian or a vegan. But the vegetarian lifestyle I could see myself living, if only I hadn't already tasted bacon.


Ignoring that the "facts" vegans tout about how food is produced are often times faulty... the irony is, of course, that Genetically Modified Foods, which vegans are vehemently against, not only can in theory, but already HAVE in fact gone a long way towards ending world hunger.

Norman Borlaug, the father of GMOs, won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1970 for being personally responsible for saving over 1 billion human lives from starvation in the course of his life time. I'll stack him, alone, against every Vegan on earth who has ever existed and see who has the better track record for actually helping to end world hunger. If it were a score, it'll look something like this:

Vegans: 0, Norman Borlaug: 1,000,000,000

Heck, Vegans' attitudes towards things like pesticides, chemical fertilizers, and even farm machinery (as machinery kills more field animals when sowing and harvesting than all the slaughterhouses in the country) means we'd have LESS available food under a Vegan Regime than we do now because while no food would be "wasted" feeding food animals, we won't be able to use modern food production methods. We'd be trying to feed a 21st century world with 19th century techniques.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 048

Postby DoctorJest » Wed May 18, 2011 11:52 am

Geordy wrote:Marbit, the reason why in history hierarchies seem superior over anarchist communities is simple: the process of decision-finding was way too complex for the latter.

This is changing (or has already changed). Now we have the Internet. Technically it is no problem to ask 100 million inhabitants about their opinion. Here in Germany during a local election for some cities major they tested a new decryption based on quantum-mechanics/-computer which gives you two: a) very hard code to crack b) if cracked youll know it. Just imagine a two week rhythm in which the population make its decision on always new situations concerning the society as a whole. The first week the Tv channels would be full of suggestions from certain parties - where they stand on the subject and why. (Yaay, no more "infotainment" brought to you by one of the ten richest families in the country.) The second week people have time to vote via Internet, choose between the options offered. Who needs politicians who always decide in favor of Big Money anyway?

Of course, there still will be hierarchies like in certain jobs. A firefighter shouldnt have to ask permission to fight a fire. Their decisions have to be made in seconds. But I cant think of any countrywide situation that requires adhoc decisions made by one man. Or lets say: these occasions are so rare you can make emergency plans for it in advance.


Most people are simply not qualified to make decisions on many of the larger issues a nation faces. This is what the political process is designed to do: let the people choose someone who they feel is qualified to make those decisions to represent them in the governing process. Just like the average person is not qualified to practice medicine, but instead selects a qualified physician to treat them. Now you may argue the people don't pick a qualified person to represent them, so the process is broken. And you're right... but there's the hook.

The political process may be broken, but it's broken in a way your method will not fix. It's broken because people continue to vote for corrupt or inept politicians. So, these people continue to be lied to, continue to buy the same bill of goods, and continue to vote for the same parties they know are going to screw them over, and you want to just turn all decisions over to those same people? They've already proven they're unqualified to make important decisions simply by continuing to vote in the same people year after year. They keep being manipulated by TV media to focus on non-issues, they believe stupid mud-slinging and ridiculous conspiracy theories over and over again... we can't trust them to pick good leaders, and now you want to make them INTO the leaders themselves?

Heck, your way would be worse, since there would be nothing BUT infotainment about the various issues. Which ever side spends the most money on their productions and wins people over with their "news" programs will win because they'll sway the fickle finger of the public voting machine momentarily with feel-good campaigns and scare tactics. It'll be like the national elections, only writ large. It would be an unmitigated disaster.

I think you've got the wrong end of the stick. The political process isn't broken because of the politicians. The political process is broken because of the voters. Giving the voters more power only exacerbates the issue.
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Re: Book 2 – Text Updates 048

Postby cheeseaholic » Wed May 18, 2011 12:16 pm

DoctorJest wrote:Ignoring that the "facts" vegans tout about how food is produced are often times faulty... the irony is, of course, that Genetically Modified Foods, which vegans are vehemently against, not only can in theory, but already HAVE in fact gone a long way towards ending world hunger.

Norman Borlaug, the father of GMOs, won the Nobel Peace Prize in 1970 for being personally responsible for saving over 1 billion human lives from starvation in the course of his life time. I'll stack him, alone, against every Vegan on earth who has ever existed and see who has the better track record for actually helping to end world hunger. If it were a score, it'll look something like this:

Vegans: 0, Norman Borlaug: 1,000,000,000

Heck, Vegans' attitudes towards things like pesticides, chemical fertilizers, and even farm machinery (as machinery kills more field animals when sowing and harvesting than all the slaughterhouses in the country) means we'd have LESS available food under a Vegan Regime than we do now because while no food would be "wasted" feeding food animals, we won't be able to use modern food production methods. We'd be trying to feed a 21st century world with 19th century techniques.


Is "vegan" the name of a club or something? As far as I know vegans don't eat meat or dairy, and that's the only thing you can say about them. As far as I know pesticides, etc aren't part of that definition. Unless pesticides are made of meat, of course.
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