Junior Ganymede
We endeavor to give satisfaction

Democracy

September 09th, 2015 by Marie Antoinette

Democracy that really listened to all the people would be an authoritarian nightmare.

Thus Brian Caplan

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September 09th, 2015 09:13:08

Christ and the General Will

April 03rd, 2015 by G.

What do people collectively want? It’s hard to say. Voting gives you one kind of answer, but voting isn’t nuanced. Voters can only say yes or no to ballot questions as phrased and as they understand them. It’s possible that with more explanation they might feel differently, or with even slightly different phrasing they choose the other option.   Or else they can only select between candidates. Different voting systems give different answers. Arrow’s Impossibility Theorem says that no voting system can ever perfectly capture voter intent. Polls are even more fallible.

That’s where the concept of the General Will comes in. What if someone knew the people well enough to have an intuitive, almost literary, sense of what they wanted? That’s why dictatorships claim to be democracies. They say they’re giving the nation what it really, collectively, wants.

The reason it’s hard to know what voters want is because it’s hard to know what a voter wants. Individuals are something like a collection of people over time. No man can step in the same river twice, the Greek said, because it’s never the same man. The mind is always engaged in editing memory to fit the needs of the present, which it wouldn’t need to do if we were really fully the same throughout, if we always had the same end in view. (more…)

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April 03rd, 2015 07:16:01

My Presidential Prospects

November 29th, 2014 by Vader

The American public wants me to be President. I understand their point of view. The first all-black President would be historic, and I have unparalleled experience in the field of managing vast, lethal boondoggles that I feel would translate well to the Executive. On the other hand, His Majesty would be unbearable. He seems to think politicians were created for his amusement.

I mentioned the poll to him. He said, “excellent,” and then said something about selling the capitalists the rope to hang them with. I think he may be getting senile.

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November 29th, 2014 18:07:24

Every Man is a Strawman

October 28th, 2014 by G.

Straw  menThe Bonald has a choice little esssay on intrinsic failure modes.  Here is what he says about Christianity.

How about a Christian neighbor?  Better stay on your toes.  She might hear one too many times about tax collectors and prostitutes getting into heaven before priests, and it may trigger Moral Inversion Syndrome, and she’ll go around haranguing her fellow Christians about the many moral lessons they can learn from prostitutes.  This sort of thing is not the proper interpretation, but I’m afraid all Christians are prone to it.  We know that we’re all sinners, so we tend to imagine that spectacular sinners have some deeper spiritual awareness, or at least they’re not “hypocrites” like respectable Christians.

You’ll notice that the Bonald’s intrinsic religious failure modes look very much like a dumb critic’s strawman of the religion’s belief.  That is because the strawman  version of a belief is usually entropic.  A critic isn’t going to take the time and effort to put energy into making a belief he hates more nuanced and ordered.  Entropy is universal, so believers are prone to it to.  Intrinsic religious failure modes are when believers strawman themselves. (more…)

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October 28th, 2014 15:23:49

“Democracy’s Death-by-Welfare”

May 10th, 2013 by Vader

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May 10th, 2013 10:39:56