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JamesAndrix comments on Raising the Sanity Waterline - Less Wrong

114 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 12 March 2009 04:28AM

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Comment author: JamesAndrix 12 March 2009 05:36:33PM *  6 points [-]

"Could you - realistically speaking, regardless of fairness - win a Nobel while advocating the existence of Santa Claus?"

Absolutely! Your examples already show that that level of insanity is tolerated. The difference is only social acceptance of one belief vs. another.

The only way to change that is to have a culture in which people are held to a high standard in every part of their lives. Today if you examine the reason people believe anything, you come off as the jerk. Even outside of religious beliefs.

Person makes unfounded statement, people don't challenge unfounded statement. That's polite conversation. Some people like a few iterations of challenge-response, but only wierdos follow the turtles all the way down.

We look a t a scientists work, what they do outside of their work is ignored in general. Do we want to start discounting the credibility of a physicist because he cheats on his wife?