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lessdazed comments on Politics is the Mind-Killer - Less Wrong

72 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 18 February 2007 09:23PM

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Comment author: lessdazed 30 October 2011 11:21:39AM *  19 points [-]

"Zombie Bill", Halloween special educational rock song.

Boy: Woof! You sure gotta climb a lot of steps to get to this Capitol Building here in Washington. But I wonder who that sad little scrap of paper is?

I'm a dead bill
Yes, I'm a dead bill
If you’re on my side you’ll get your mind killed.
Well, it was a long, long journey
To the capital city.
It was a long, long wait
And then I died in committee,
But I know I'll eat your brain someday
At least I hope and pray that I will,
For today I am a zombie bill.

Boy: Gee, Bill, you certainly have a lust to devour people’s brains.
Bill: Well, I’m a zombie. When I started, I wasn't even political, I was just a reasonable consideration. Some folks back home forgot that policy debates should not appear one-sided, so they called their local Congressman -
Boy: - and he said, "You're right, there oughta be a law”?
No! Then he decided to rename the bill that he had already decided to submit once both parties had promised him it wouldn’t pass.
Boy: You were renamed even though your content didn’t change?
Bill: That’s right! He was going to call me the “American Job Security Free Choice Accountability Reform Reinvestment Relief Act”.
Boy: And then he decided to just call you “William”, and your nickname became “Bill”?
Bill: No, after hearing his constituents’ opinions, he decided to call me the “Aumann's Rational Bayesian Utility Anti-Bias Act!” And I became a bill, and I’ll kill your mind even though my content has some merit.

I'm a dead bill
Yes, I'm a dead bill
And I got as far as Capitol Hill.
Well, I died stuck in committee
And I'll sit here and wait
Though no one will honestly discuss or debate
Whether they should let me be a law.
Of human minds I’ll eat up my fill,
For today I am a zombie bill.

Boy: Listen to those people arguing! Is all that discussion and debate about you?
Bill: Yeah, I'm one of the lucky ones. Most bills are entirely ignored. I hope they decide to take me seriously as one argument against an army, otherwise I may starve.
Boy: Starve?
Bill: Yeah, from not eating brains. Oooh, but they’re not updating incrementally! It looks like I'm gonna eat! Now I go to the House of Representatives; they talk about me.
Boy: When they talk, then what happens?
Bill: Then I go on various media and gorge myself on the minds of the audience.
Boy: Oh no!
Bill: Oh yes!

I'm a dead bill
Yes, I'm a dead bill
They’ll never vote for me on Capitol Hill
Well, I'm off to the White House
Where I'll wait in a line
As a speech applause light
And then on some brains I’ll dine
With luck they’ll try to argue facts away.
How I hope and pray that they will,
For today I am a zombie bill.

Boy: You mean even if everyone has enough information to know you shouldn’t and won’t become a law, people still sacrifice their brains to you?
Bill: Yes! They’re debating politics as if their opinion was influential and admitting being wrong was catastrophic, using heuristics that used to work in the ancestral environment. If the content described by my label becomes political…
Boy: By that time it's very likely that you'll devour lots of minds, whenever either your content or your label is mentioned. It's easy to eat a human mind, isn't it?
Bill: Yes!

And how I hope and I pray that I will,
For today I am a zombie bill.

Congressman: Your name has become a synonym for “good” among some people, Zombie Bill! Now people won’t be able to dispassionately consider your content ever again!
Bill: BRAINS!!!

Comment author: Tyrrell_McAllister 30 October 2011 04:51:54PM 1 point [-]


Comment author: pedanterrific 30 October 2011 07:40:21PM 1 point [-]

Don't you mean "rational!"?