tammy's blog about
AI alignment, utopia, anthropics, and more;
(edit: this post is sort of superceded by ∀V)
the more i think about it, the less i think the solution to Moloch is a single benevolent Elua; or, in other terms, we shouldn't implement Elua, but we should enact reasonable principles which Elua might want to implement herself.
here are what i currently believe to be the two principles that form the basis of a largely freedom-conserving utopia:
the first principle, Voluntaryism, consists of NAP, UBI, and population control.
are to be the basis of a reasonable voluntary world.
secondary notions like taxation on externalities and usage of the commons help make that UBI tangible ("why does the UBI currency have value ?" → because it's what eventually one must pay those taxes with) and reasonably redistribute ressources so as to help all persons benefit from growth.
the second principle is the dismantlement of non-person forces (DNPF).
what i mean by a non-person force is any phenomenon that interacts with mankind in a way that isn't answerable to persons; this goes, in order of scale, from gravity and kinetics, to cancer, to publicly-owned corporations and states. these all keep abusing persons (by which i here mean moral patient) in many ways, and just generally keep us from being in control of our lives.
the example of corporations is particularly insidious: though they would be (under UBI) aligned to benefit the values of persons, they still outcoordinate those persons and thus in many ways outsmart them through the abuse of discoordination and cognitive biases; and not only that, but they are, in the petri dish of capitalism, bred so as to maximize their ability to do this. that said, at least fully top-down autocratic corporations have a person agent at the top, who is able to enforce the values of persons; publicly-owned corporations are even worse in that even their top-level direction is uncoordinated enough that valuing nice things is guaranteedly out of the equation (this could perhaps be addressed with better and maybe more society-distributed shareholder voting, but those shareholders probably get outcoordinated).
(the argument above, by the way, is my largest criticism of non-distributist capitalism)
in effect, this principle turns the world we inhabit from a world of cold natural and emergent laws inside which reside some minds located in brains (materialism), into a world of ad-hoc minds determining everything else (panpsychism ?).
the easiest way to implement this principle is probably to move everyone to a virtual world (which saves resources too, which helps the population control cap be way higher)
in my current opinion, those two principles must be enforced for the basis of a utopia to be form. the rest can be done through the voluntary action of persons (hopefully), but these two principles are what Elua/the singularity is to enforce for the continued free and valueful life of persons to be guaranteed.
Voluntaryism alone is not enough, and this is largely missed by what i'm tempted to call right-wing utopians; not just abusive structures, but systematically self-reinforcing abusive structures, can and will still happen even under a complete voluntary society. Meditations on Moloch addresses this largely with coordination, but coordination only hopefully wins battles; the addition of DNPF permanently wins the war.
DNPF alone is not enough either, and this is what is largely missed by what i'm tempted to call left-wing utopians; in a virtual world of minds where resources are fairly allocated between persons, there can still be abuse, plagues, malthusian traps, and so on; and ultimately abusive structures, just of a different kind. the common left-wing answer of organizing people (and the scarier "changing culture to make people systematically organize against those" which, if voluntary, is largely wishful thinking, and if not, insanely violates self-determination and the values of persons) only wins battles; the addition of Voluntaryism permanently wins the war.
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