A Theory of Pervasive Error

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(Con­tent warn­ing: poli­tics. Read with cau­tion, as always.)

Cur­tis Yarvin, a com­puter pro­gram­mer per­haps most fa­mous as the prin­ci­pal au­thor of the Ur­bit de­cen­tral­ized server plat­form, ex­pounds on a the­ory of how false be­liefs can per­sist in So­ciety, in a work of what the English philoso­pher N. Land char­ac­ter­izes as “poli­ti­cal episte­mol­ogy”. Yarvin ar­gues that the Dar­wi­nian “mar­ket­place of ideas” in liberal democ­ra­cies se­lects for æs­thetic ap­peal as well as truth: in par­tic­u­lar, the æs­thet­ics of am­bi­tion and loy­alty grant a se­lec­tive ad­van­tage in memetic com­pe­ti­tion to ideas that al­ign with state power, re­sult­ing in a po­ten­tially se­vere dis­tor­tionary effect on So­ciety’s col­lec­tive episte­mol­ogy de­spite the lack of a cen­tral­ized cen­sor. Watch for the shout-out to Effec­tive Altru­ism! (Novem­ber 2019, ~8000 words)