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Comment author: JoshuaZ 30 March 2015 05:01:13PM *  1 point [-]

Can you, in interests of transparency, let the community know who the new banned individual is?

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 30 March 2015 09:57:30PM 1 point [-]

I can, but I'm not sure whether it would be a good idea.

Would people with experience of moderating care to weigh in on this?

Comment author: HedonicTreader 30 March 2015 03:08:09PM 4 points [-]

Interesting discussion. Since I too am from Germany, I know the environmentalist culture here well. I grew up in it - including what I now think was bordering on propaganda - and in the recent years I somewhat grew apart from it.

Some random thoughts:

It was also mentioned humorously that one approach to minimize personal ressource consumption is suicide and transitively to convice others of same. The ultimate solution having no humans on the planet (a solution my 8-year old son - a friend of nature - arrived at too). This apparently being the problem when utilons/hedons are expluded.

I don't think that's it. There are two other problems:

  1. If you care about utilons/hedons, you can't ignore wild-animal suffering. Assuming humans and arguably domesticated animals experience better lives than wild animals, and/or at different resource-per-experience-second ratios, a world without humans can contain more suffering and/or less pleasure (however, the possibility of space colonization probably dominates this question) Beware the idyllic view of nature that underlies a lot of environmentalism.

  2. No more humans would mean the ultimate unsustainability of human culture and civilization. The question then is, what exactly it is you want to be sustainable, and to what end.

For mere resource consumption (where the prices are internalized by the consumers), most people here will probably assume The Market will take care of it. If resource X becomes rare, prices will increase and substitutes will be more attractive. This is often not reflected in German environmentalism, which tends to see capitalism as somewhat evil. Of course, this is not true of factors that are not internalized in the prices, such as climate change, but even then most people here would probably see it as a lower priority as other existential risks.

It's useful to remember that German environmentalism comes with a baggage of traditional biases.

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 30 March 2015 03:17:36PM 2 points [-]

What might happen to the calculation if you include wild animal pleasure?

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 29 March 2015 11:28:04PM 5 points [-]

Thanks for the write-up, and yes, engaging with the real world is a lot harder than signalling.

Comment author: RyanCarey 28 March 2015 01:19:20AM *  0 points [-]

Hey Tom, thanks for volunteering to do this.

Personally, I expect this would worsen my experience because it would fragment comments. I'm not going to go to LW to read comments for SSC. I prefer to read comments, if any, on SSC itself.

In general, for most of the people, all they are going to notice (if anything) is a slight decrease in quality of on-site comments, so just a handful of people desiring this does not mean that it's net positive for Scott's readership at large.

Split comment-threads would also reduce cross-pollination of ideas. It's good that LessWrong readers currently bring their ideas in contact with some people who only have vague background awareness of LW at SSC. It's a challenge in practising explaining things well, provides feedback, and spreads useful ways of thinking.

So this would be personally undesirable for me and also has some clear negative externalities on others.

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 28 March 2015 04:08:31AM 1 point [-]

One possibility to avoid fragmenting the conversation would be to wait to link to link to a post at SSC until the comments have died down over there.

Comment author: Xerographica 27 March 2015 09:30:17PM 2 points [-]

I really like the idea of blogs "outsourcing" their comments to forums. A second best option would be for Scott to use Disqus for his comments. With Disqus you're always logged in. Plus you can rate comments up or down.

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 27 March 2015 09:32:03PM 18 points [-]

I hate disqus. It's hard to keep track of what you're read or haven't read, and since it doesn't load all comments automatically, it's inconvenient to search.

Comment author: JohnBuridan 27 March 2015 05:04:53AM *  5 points [-]

You think that the Will of Melkor could be potentially un-corrupted? Though all evil in Arda is his doing, bitterness, greed, excessive heat, piercing cold, avaricious orcs, other creatures that lust for blood or power, and even darker things than this, that is not enough to despair of him? Aye, you don't yet realize what Morgoth is. He is pride and cruelty and rage. Morgoth's spirit cannot change, because it presumes the only worthwhile fact is its own continued self-expression. His cruelty wishes to wrench all that's beautiful and true in the world into darker purposes, to turn good intentions to bad ends. And his rage, oh, his rage is a starless cry of cosmic dismay that all the evils of the world are undone one by one.

Tell me not of the turning of Melkor, even now he is chained up on the other side of night, yet still whispering his will throughout Middle-Earth, and plotting to break the Gates and return again to destroy the Sun and the Moon and all living things. You are telling me that same guy who wants to tear down all the universe in supreme envy can be turned to work for Good?

This is Morgoth we are talking about, not Anakin Skywalker.

P.S. I take your point; but the Maiar and Valar do act indirectly in Middle-Earth, though creation is over as are the wars against Sauron and Ar-Pharazon. They do not just accept the the gradual decline of the world.

I will never relinquish my Sword of Fandom +10. :)

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 27 March 2015 10:29:01AM 3 points [-]

Is Melkor explicitly described as unredeemable?

As I recall, Eru's creation is incomplete, and we cannot know all the outcomes.

Comment author: seer 26 March 2015 09:42:24PM 4 points [-]

I like the idea that it will take inspiration-- the development of a new religion or variant of Islam or alternatively some brilliant satire-- to create something to move people away from IS. It's pretty clear that mere decency isn't motivating enough.

No, the problem is that the West has been slowly rejecting the very concept of decency over the past century.

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 26 March 2015 10:07:28PM 1 point [-]

We are hardly limited to having only one problem.

I'm willing to grant that I've been seeing a slow-moving war on empathy in the West, but I don't think that's the reason Daesh has been influencing people.

Comment author: Lumifer 26 March 2015 06:16:18PM 0 points [-]

Also, I'm not sure what an Islamic Reformation would mean.

I would mean the separation of religion and profane life into separate magisteria.

The problem with Islam is that it claims to be a total religion which guides all aspects of human life including politics, art, etc. Islam never had a "render unto Caesar the things that are Caesar's" moment and routinely calls the Christian separation of sacred and profane life "schizophrenic".

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 26 March 2015 10:04:08PM 0 points [-]

The idea that religion shouldn't be all of life is a good idea, but I don't think that's what most people mean by a Reformation.

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 26 March 2015 08:23:25PM 1 point [-]

Note the lack of recent names.

Also, Spinoza's God is identical with everything that exists-- it isn't much like the God in most (any?) religions.

Comment author: Viliam_Bur 25 March 2015 04:07:55PM *  0 points [-]

development of a new religion or variant of Islam

Perhaps someone who knows more about Bahaism (without being one of them) could tell whether promoting Bahaism might be a way to stop violent Islam.

Bahaism tries to be the next version of Islam, so for people who need religion in their lives it should be easier to convert from Islam to Bahaism, as opposed to Christianity. At this moment, Bahaism seems like a peaceful religion; which of course can be due to the fact that they are an oppressed minority at most places. But still, some peaceful memes could survive even if they would grow.

So, the strategy is that non-Islamic countries should support on their territory the Bahai preachers trying to convert all Islamic immigrants to their faith. First, more peaceful religion is preferable. Second, let's give our enemies one more problem to care about, so they have less time to spend on fighting us.

Comment author: NancyLebovitz 26 March 2015 06:05:34PM 0 points [-]

Bahaism isn't the solution-- if it were, it would have worked already. The same goes for Sufism, though it might be fair to think that the Sufis are working on the problem, but haven't been able to exert enough influence yet.

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