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buybuydandavis comments on Making Beliefs Pay Rent (in Anticipated Experiences) - Less Wrong

110 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 28 July 2007 10:59PM

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Comment author: buybuydandavis 21 September 2011 09:43:35AM *  3 points [-]

But why do beliefs need to pay rent in anticipated experiences? Why can’t they pay rent in utility?

I think you've hit on one of the conceptual weaknesses of many Rationalists. Beliefs can pay rent in many ways, but Rationalists tend to only value the predictive utility of beliefs, and pooh pooh other other utilities of belief. Comfort utility - it makes me feel good to believe it. Social utility - people will like me for believing it. Efficacy utility - I can be more effective if I believe it.

Predictive Truth is a means to value, and even if a value in itself, it's surely not the only value. Instead of pooh poohing other types of utility, to convince people you need to use that predictive utility to analyze how the other utilities can best be fulfilled.