Pop-psychology “smart” aphorisms that are actually BS (or IMO annoying)

My blog is adjacent to some "mental models" blogs. Some of the mental models they discuss are elementary concepts (what confirmation bias is, what first principles are, what tribalism is, what a reductio ad absurdum is). My blog assumes you already know those. Some of the mental models they discuss are, in my opinion, wrong. … Continue reading Pop-psychology “smart” aphorisms that are actually BS (or IMO annoying)

Morality (Sam Harris is Wrong, part 7 and conclusion)

Morality is perhaps the most philosophically difficult part of Sam Harris’s worldview. He argues against moral relativism, in favor of objective morality. This objective morality is based on maximizing "wellbeing for all conscious creatures." I doubt this article will change people's minds. It is much easier to do that in conversation where you can instantly react … Continue reading Morality (Sam Harris is Wrong, part 7 and conclusion)

Choosing Who to Love: How the West Beat a Game Theory Trap While China Embraced It

This article was written by a different author than usual. It is a contribution from the editor.  Something that has been mentioned previously on this blog is how culture is influenced by natural selection. A society’s culture acts much in the same way as a species’ genome, as they are both products of and determining … Continue reading Choosing Who to Love: How the West Beat a Game Theory Trap While China Embraced It

Profiling (Sam Harris is Wrong, part 6)

Sam Harris has argued in favor of profiling (in airports, for example). He explains his position: we can exclude from inspection some people who we so obviously don't need to worry about. He even euphemistically calls it "anti-profiling." It's insane, he says, to search the old Chinese granny's shoes just as vigorously as the 22 … Continue reading Profiling (Sam Harris is Wrong, part 6)

The pendulum swings left

“Politics is downstream from culture,” a common saying, has some truth to it. But it’s incomplete. Here is a more comprehensive version. Politics is downstream from culture, which is downstream from metapolitics, which is downstream from metaculture. Politics refers to who gets elected and such things. Culture refers to pop media. Metapolitics means the language … Continue reading The pendulum swings left