I used to be young, but now I’m just immature
Well, I made the mistake of looking at one of the pictures from Bucha, and…
… I don’t think I’m going to be feeling rational about anything for a while. I have 2 small kids, and another on the way, and right now all I want to do is cry while tearing the throat out of the people responsible.
“every possible universe exists”
Under what kind of metaphysics or semantics could this sentence not be a tautology?
The universal trouble is that long-term, flexible and ‘ethical’ strategies always seem to get trumped by
short-term unethical power strategies (i.e., the mafioso type)
short-term amoral selfish/corrupt behaviour (i.e., iron law of bureaucracy, disaster capitalism)
It’s easier to build than to destroy or steal, sadly
Japan can be incredibly inflexible, rigid, and inconsistent with the rules and expectations they follow. There is also a great deal of respect/homage paid to Buddhism and Daoism.In short, I really don’t think rationality is by any means a linear metric, and you certainly couldn’t use it as a value-measure of how ‘good’ a society is.
I just wish the throat swabs didn’t trigger my gag reflex.
I didn’t even know I had a gag reflex until I took one, and it makes the swab pretty useless as I can’t get near my tonsils without having to stop before I throw up.
Without other people, any existence would be
full of grief and loss; where are my loved-ones? My children?!
That’s the only hope I have for escaping death,
Well… there is, of course, any variation of quantum immortality
I have a highly specific vision of a virtual reality heaven. Basically, I would be left alone for all eternity on my personal island
Funnily enough, you’ve just described, for me, a virtual reality hell
Even if the different regions have similar numbers of cases, is there an argument to be made for confinement in that it keeps variants more isolated?
Indeed, since there is no absolute distinction between the parts of reality that are ‘you’ and those that aren’t, then solipsism isn’t by itself a meaningful concept.
I presume that such treatments are a threat to the narrative that people bring Covid-19 upon them by being irresponsible (read: sinful) and thus must make various Sacrifices to the Gods in the hopes of making this stop. Treatments aren’t a sacrifice, and aren’t a morality play. In addition, any mention of them, or any encouragement, would lead people to be less eager to get vaccinated or take other preventative measures, and we can’t have that.
I honestly have no idea what you think people are actually thinking here, except that it seems utterly ridiculous
It might be useful to draw up the happy pathway to developing mRNA vaccines against spike proteins, and examining all the issues along the way.
My (very limited). understanding:
Coronaviruses use spike proteins to enter target cells
The immune system can
learn to recognise these proteins as foreign, then
generate a response when it encounters them
mRNA vaccines can
cause host tissue to display identified spike proteins
initiate the same immune response mechanism above
Mutations to spike proteins can
occasionally increase/not-decrease virus fitness (transmissibility etc.)
evade existing immune responses as they are no longer recognised
So, what are the issues that prevent
strain with distinct spike proteins identified
mRNA vaccine altered to display new spike proteins and initiate immune recognition
identifying the new spike proteins
replicating them via mRNA with enough fidelity
getting the host cells to display them
getting the host immune system to identify them as foreign
getting the host immune system to mount a sufficient response
preventing false positives from arising, with the immune system targeting incorrect entities
Or other things?
On the face of it, it seems almost like a trivial problem… but this is biology, so of course it isn’t.
No, not really, Richard, but at least you tried. If you tried harder, you might notice that my contempt did not actually bring with it any malice or schadenfreude, or even any mention of ‘horse dewormer’, which seems to be the entirety of your take. So… yeah, very well done there.
Let’s face it—anything promoted by reactionary-moron-targeting snake-oil grifters, especially those with ‘MAGA’ in their names, can basically be written off immediately with little loss of value.
I would expect the situation to be analogous to any situation that requires large socio-economic upheaval but ‘punishes’ individuals who try to start the ball rolling.
cough Climate Change Crisis cough
Myopic vested interests and inertia will scupper the needed changes, even if almost everyone acknowledges their necessity in principle.
We don’t live in a world of clear perceptions and communications about abstract, many-times-removed ethical trade-offs.
We’re humans, with a tiny little window focused on the trivia of our day-to-day lives, trying to talk to other humans doing the same thing.
Sometimes, we manage to rise a little above that, which is wonderful, and we need to work out how to co-ordinate civilisation better in that direction.
But mostly we are just stumbling about in the mud, and don’t pretend that ridiculous sophist exercises in philosophical equivalence have any relation to real people and real experiences.
People don’t often get the chance to participate in real, close, and meaningful ethical dilemmas. A quite-possibly-drowning-child that you can save by simply taking obvious physical action would be one of them. And anyone who refuses to take that action is scum.
Coming late to this, and having to skim because Real Life, but I would modify:
Keltham is being coherent, said the Watcher.Keltham’s decision is a valid one, given his own utility function (said the Watcher); you were wrong to try to talk him into thinking that he was making an objective error.However, the Watcher said, Keltham’s utility function is also awful and Keltham should be shunned for it by any being with decent ethics.
Keltham is being coherent, said the Watcher.
Keltham’s decision is a valid one, given his own utility function (said the Watcher); you were wrong to try to talk him into thinking that he was making an objective error.
However, the Watcher said, Keltham’s utility function is also awful and Keltham should be shunned for it by any being with decent ethics.
I really don’t care how valid your utility function is, or how rational you think you are, if it turns you into the sort of person who has to weigh the possibility of a child dying against materialistic concerns. In that case, you’ve sacrificed your soul for the sake of optimising something worthless.
There’s probably only one kind of fundamental abstraction: can A represent B if you squint real hard? Can ‘nothing’ represent ‘something’*? If so, perhaps that’s all you need to get ‘everything’.
* Like how you can build numbers up from the empty set: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Set-theoretic_definition_of_natural_numbers
And strings/digits themselves are just a bunch of bits in fancy clothes.
At some point, years ago, I decided that reality was basically just ‘nothing’, endlessly abstracted, and what can you do? :_D
I’m not sure we’re dealing with quantifiable abstractions here