Re: necessity of mental memes

From: Joe Dees (
Date: Wed Jan 23 2002 - 04:01:14 GMT

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    Subject: Re: necessity of mental memes
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    >Date: Tue, 22 Jan 2002 22:04:40 -0500
    > Keith Henson <> Re: necessity of mental memesReply-To:
    >At 08:47 PM 22/01/02 +0000, "Steve Drew" <>
    > wrote:
    >>I was under the impression that the level of choice in accepting or
    >>rejecting memes is one of the things that is still very much undeceided.
    >>Although i agree that contagion and virus are emotionally charged, i am
    >>hard pressed to think of something that could replace them. For me memes
    >>and acceptance/ rejection run through a range from choice to no choice,
    >>and the ability of various people to accept/reject varies th same. For the
    >>no choice my idea is that the meme in question may fit with your own
    >>collection of memes very closely that you accept them without the
    >>necessary scrutiny that something that conflicted with them would command.
    >Right. If I hear about some idea in science which fits right in with the
    >rest of science it will rapidly become part of my set of memes. As an
    >example, I had no problem with the presentation a few years ago that
    >stomach ulcers were caused by a bacteria and years before that about plate
    >tectonics. I have a vivid memory though of a quite senior scientist who
    >flew into a rage about an article on the topic in Scientific American.
    >>if i understand Susan Blackmore's book correctly, then she believes we
    >>have no choice whatsoever.
    >Susan is *technically* right on this point. It is the direct consequence
    >of the fact that everything is either directly caused by something else or
    >the result of a random event.
    >So you can look back and state with confidence that everything that
    >happened including any memes you picked up were either caused or
    >random. You can even say that the future is the same way. But it makes no
    >difference in the operation sense because you will always feel you have choice.
    this view reduced humans to conduits, totally bereft of any causal efficacy of their own whatsoever. And also, in contradiction to what you have previously asserted, choice and responsibility for the consequences of those choices are logically correlative. If we have no choices, then we own no responsibility for the consequences of our actions, for we could not have chosen another course.
    I consider it patently absurd to assert that every flickering thought and every crystal pattern on every snowflake, every wind current and the topography of every grain of sand was written in the fabric of the universe one Planck instant after the Big Bang. Even the three-body problem is theoretically unsolveable in physics, due to the complex interrelations of feedback and feedforward between multiple components of a complex system.
    But all this does not matter to the acolyte at the superdeterminist altar; they believe that they have no choice to believe as they do, and that should they change their belief, that they had no choice but to do that, also; thus they have locked themselves in a cognitive trap. But there is a counter-trap that even trumps that one, and that indeed is logically necessary for it to be proferred. And this is the irrefuteable point that no one can noncontradictorally argue for such a position as superdeterminism, for to do so presupposes an exercise of the verty free will which the contention denies. In other words, their arguments (or anything else they say) are not their own; they are marionettes on strings, mouthing syllables that likewise were inscribed in the very fabric of the Big Bang. This reduces their arguments to meanoinglessness, and irretrieveably removes even the status of argument from them, for if their contentions are indeed correct, they can not logically ev!
    en be truly meant by their proponents..
    >Keith Henson
    >This was distributed via the memetics list associated with the
    >Journal of Memetics - Evolutionary Models of Information Transmission
    >For information about the journal and the list (e.g. unsubscribing)

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    This was distributed via the memetics list associated with the
    Journal of Memetics - Evolutionary Models of Information Transmission
    For information about the journal and the list (e.g. unsubscribing)

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