Less Wrong is a community blog devoted to refining the art of human rationality. Please visit our About page for more information.

handoflixue comments on Timeless Identity - Less Wrong

23 Post author: Eliezer_Yudkowsky 03 June 2008 08:16AM

You are viewing a comment permalink. View the original post to see all comments and the full post content.

Comments (244)

Sort By: Old

You are viewing a single comment's thread. Show more comments above.

Comment author: handoflixue 25 May 2011 07:18:44PM 1 point [-]

I would expect to see a rational discussion of the benefits and trade-offs involved, in such a way as to let me evaluate, based on my utility function, whether this is a good investment for me.

Instead, I primarily see almost a "reversed stupidity" discussion, combined with what seems like in-group signalling: "See all these arguments against cryonics? They are all irrational, as I have now demonstrated. QED cryonics is rational, and you should signal your conformity to the Rationality Tribe by signing up today!"

I can totally understand why it's presented this way, but it reads off as "hype" because I almost never encounter anything else. It all seems to just naively assume that "preserving my individual life at any cost is a perfectly rational decision." Maybe that really is all the thought that goes in to it; if your utility function places a suitably high value on self-preservation, then there's not really a lot of further discussion required.

But I get the sense that there are deeper thoughts that just never get discussed, because everyone is busy fighting against the nay-sayers. There's a deep absence of arguments for cryonics, especially ones that actually take in to consideration social policy, and what else could be accomplished for $200K.

(Eliezer hinted at it, with his comments about economies of scale, but it was a mere footnote, and quite possibly the first time I've seen anyone discuss the issue from that perspective even briefly)