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drethelin comments on Politics is hard mode - Less Wrong

28 Post author: RobbBB 21 July 2014 10:14PM

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Comment author: drethelin 22 July 2014 08:13:09AM 8 points [-]

Even if you ignore the tribalism problem, politics is still a giant black hole for cognition. 90% of people gain nothing more than entertainment from thinking or talking about it. It's a mind killer in terms of opportunity costs.

Comment author: blacktrance 22 July 2014 08:28:49PM 3 points [-]

90% of people gain nothing more than entertainment from thinking or talking about it. It's a mind killer in terms of opportunity costs.

Does something being purely entertainment make it a mind-killer? If so, I'm not sure that something being a mind-killer is necessarily bad.

Comment author: drethelin 24 July 2014 11:23:36PM -1 points [-]

it would be fine if people treated political discussions like hpmor threads but they act like the conversation is extremely important.

Comment author: MathiasZaman 25 July 2014 11:59:56AM 1 point [-]

HPMOR threads are often better sourced than discussion on politics. People also change their minds on /r/HPMOR more often than in anything political.

If anything, on the surface it looks like people take their Harry Potter fanfiction more seriously than politics.

Comment author: drethelin 25 July 2014 08:57:24PM 2 points [-]

yes the fact that there is a single text which everyone can refer to is part of what makes discussions about hpmor more interesting and less vindictive.

But since there isn't a single readable description of the state of the world, politics doesn't have that advantage.

Comment author: Nornagest 25 July 2014 12:26:50AM *  1 point [-]

People (though not, generally, here) also treat which Harry Potter characters should hook up with which as a question of apocalyptic significance. Something being "pure entertainment" does not preclude identifying strongly with it or acting like it's extremely important, whether or not it is.

Though the reverse is also true.

Comment author: RobbBB 22 July 2014 08:44:57AM 4 points [-]

I never said politics wasn't the mind-killer.

Comment author: ChristianKl 23 July 2014 09:39:52AM 0 points [-]

Even if you ignore the tribalism problem, politics is still a giant black hole for cognition. 90% of people gain nothing more than entertainment from thinking or talking about it. It's a mind killer in terms of opportunity costs.

I think you underrate the difference between politicians who feel like they are accountable to a public that watches their actions and politicians who don't.