Re: Re[2]: A very surreal day

From: Dagon Gmail (
Date: Thu Aug 02 2007 - 01:02:10 MDT

> --- Dagon Gmail <> wrote:
> > Humanity has shown itself so stubborn, so conceited,
> > and so elitist,
> > as a quality of almost genetic proportions, the
> > implications are
> > staggering. We scarcely discarded out pleistocene
> > hunter-gatherer
> > genes and are already adapting faster than credible
> > to modern
> > mass-murder realpolitik. The genes allowing such
> > creative leaps have
> > been migrating steadily upwards in the gene-pool,
> > hand in hand with
> > all the damn money.
> Evolution has not had any significant influence on the
> human species for the past thousand years due to time
> limits and the recent lack of selection pressure; see

/my point exactly. We are largely equipped at splitting bones and skinning
/deer and creating a small fire, but what do we do? Some humans are able
/to hold thousands of variables in their minds and do science for the
/pentagon or plan mass murders of millions. That's a rather poignant
/"second life" for human species. We are using our genes and minds in
/ways we weren't designed for.

> > My intuition screams at its loudest, for what it's
> > worth, the following points.
> >
> > 1 - a small but expanding number of extreme thinkers
> > in all 3
> > remaining superpowers are contemplating the
> > emergence of completely
> > unorthodox technologies. Russia has shown it thinks
> > most outside the
> > box, with it's references to He3 mining and nanotech
> > superpower
> > ambitions and notions of orbital energy stations,
> > but the US, with
> > it's nutty thinktanks and New American Century
> > rhetoric has done its
> > fair share of wild eyed speculation too.
> No government-sanctioned or political think tank
> speculation that I've seen mentions AGI. PNAC's agenda
> is a political system, not a new piece of technology.

I agree. However to US scientists the whole idea of squirrels
planted with microsurveillance devices is so rad. And those
same ideas may be 3 steps below what is discussed over here,
or on any >H board, but the CIA is a full 3 steps beyond that
guy who managed the local quickie market. PNAC does look
at emerging technologies real hard, especially robotics and
automated warfare systems.

> > 2- right now I sincerely believe that no sincere
> > powerplayer anywhere
> > inhabiting some consolidated power ivory tower,
> > anywhere in the US or
> > Russia or China will endanger his credibility and
> > career by actually
> > suggesting that pseudo-raelians like Kurzweil
> See on why
> transhumanism is not a cult.

I know that and you know that, by try convince my ex of
that. Many normal people who hear of what >H says or
contemplates will categoricaly refer us to be medicated.
It's just to big for them (I say with great smugness).

> > could
> > actually have a
> > point - publicly that is. However I am positive the
> > filthy cthonian
> > tentacles of the sith are even present here, on this
> > forum, in the
> > shape of junior think tank interns and other
> > assorted imps and minions
> > of darkness.
> If I were offered a position as a junior intern in a
> (sane, non-political) think tank, I would take it.
> Does this make me an imp or minion of darkness?
> > 3- I am certain superpowers are terrified and
> > extremely defensive
> > about emerging technologies
> Er... like what? Biowarfare and ICBMs are both
> well-established technologies, and so far as I know,
> we don't even have a well-organized plan in place to
> deal with those. If the US were terrified of AGI, they
> would not have granted SIAI 501(c)3 status.

Superpowers are fragmented, disorganized systems. The
pentagon still uses 90s greenscreens for fear of hackers.
So let me repeat my statement and let it sink in:
"certain superpowers are terrified and extremely defensive
about emerging technologies". Did I say anything about
them not supporting study after new technologies? Try
talking to an IBM researcher I know to hear about paranoid
fear of virtual reality changing the playing field. Even small
bits of technological application can change the existing
world on a fundamental level and they are afraid of the small
but fundamental sabots-in-the-wheels-of-status-quo.
And we can not afford to destablize status quo, with all
those ICBMs laying around.

> > and have been building
> > reserves of all
> > kinds to weather... unknowns... accidents. From
> > hidden swiss bank
> > accounts overflowing with pentagon money, to
> > consolidated oil fields
> > and salt mines with unprecedented barrel reserves, I
> > am sure and I
> > have seen clues the superpowers are cautious.
> Political cautiousness has little to do with AGI; if
> we did actually develop AGI, none of this stuff would
> help anyway.

So what you suppose they do? Think outside the box?
The pentagon is still fighting in the trenches mostly.

> > Take
> > for instance the
> > paranoid race to develop and keep secret the
> > spinoffs of the
> > Metalstorm technology. Metalstorm has already shaken
> > several strategic
> > ballances, and it's still as simple as staplers.
> >
> > What if some lunatic comes up with cold fusion? What
> > if some lunatic
> > comes up antigravity - the brass ponders with a
> > furrowed and sweaty
> > brow. And that's only linear predictable stuff.
> Cold fusion and antigravity are both physically
> impossible according to currently accepted theory;
> they are predictable in the sense that you can very
> confidently predict neither will ever happen.
> Antigravity requires negative energy density, which
> allows for solutions to the Einstein equations (see
> which
> permit FTL travel, causality violation, and a whole
> bunch of other weird stuff. Cold fusion is impossible
> because you cannot invoke the strong force (which is
> responsible for fusion) over ranges long enough to
> allow nuclei to be far apart (and thus in low energy
> states).

D'oh. It was a metaphor! How are researchers at the pentagon
to know what the hell may emerge in 10-20-50 years time. We
live in a world where *unthinkable* things may emerge. The
average semi-well educated corporal doing a presentation on
"the future" will still use Terminator2 video bits in his instructional
films, - or Minority Report these days. These people think in
metaphors of what they know. You know antigravity is soft SF,
I know that, after a few years Orion's Arm. But everybody keeps
whining about their flying car, because that is how they see this
strange land "Ze Future". The semi-specialists know that in
"Ze Future" strange things are going to happen. My example of
Metalstorm is just that; fairly straightforward, easy to make,
built by a small researcher, affordable - and eminently more lethal
than the whole generation of existing autocannons. Do you see
and reverse polarity plasma coils in a metalstorm device?

> > The
> > same brass,
> > generally elder men with straightforward linear
> > intellects, will have
> > trouble seeing the implications of smart, evolving,
> > modular robotics
> > with a portable fabber parts womb. The average
> > transhumanist gets
> > sparkles in his eyes when I say that, but 99% of
> > pentagon staff will
> > look puzzled and try wiki-ing what I just said.
> 99%? Why not 99.999%? Out of six billion people in the
> world, there are only a few thousand transhumanists,
> and I don't see any reason why transhumanists would be
> attracted to jobs as Pentagon staff officers.

Let me live X years on US welfare and I would be begging them
to do faked-out "bluff your way into" seminars at the pentagon -
using small stolen video clips of "minority report" and
"terminator2". As long as I can eat !

Hell, I bet the pentagon has hired quite a few very moral and
dirt poor pakistani nuclear scientists just to keep them off the

> > And
> > then most of them
> > will think I am one of those star trek losers.
> > Convince them however
> > that such a think could be a reality before 2025 and
> > they'll get
> > seriously nervous.
> We have a very hard time convincing technophiles of
> the benefits of the Singularity (see
> by
> Cory Doctorow). How are we going to convince
> government bureaucrats, even if we wanted two?

Not yet. But in a few years that will change.

> > 4- My intuition screams, again,
> Your intuition fails when placed into unusual
> situations. See
> for a long list of all the situations in which your
> intuition has been experimentally demonstrated to
> fail.

I am extremely aware of the limits of my 1350 gram
jelly. But I *did* call a few things happening before they
happened. I called 9/11 a full half year before it happened,
including hijacked planes and hitting the WTCs. Ask my
ex, we talked about at length. So intuition isn't wholly
crap. It works sometimes.

> > for what it is
> > worth, that elements in
> > all major superpowers have by now come to the
> > conclusion that "it
> > wouldn't be so bad if a major percentage of people
> > succumbed to a
> > variant of passive demise", somewhere in the next
> > 20-50 years. I am
> > sure there will be (a) reports detailing how such a
> > terrible thing
> > could happen have existed for decades, (b) studies
> > on how to
> > repopulate earth with people less inclined to be
> > homosexual or liberal
> > or or potheads or french have been completed, (c)
> > there may even be
> > studies to ehm coalesce such a horrible idea into
> > ehm a post-reality
> > state. Purely speculative of course, but only
> > because the heathen
> > communist slopes have a similar program.
> >
> > As such one thing is clear: I do not trust people in
> > power. Am I
> > wrong, after having witnessed several genocides as
> > casual topics in
> > the news, just after TV-reportings of Paris Hilton
> > and blipverts? I am
> > positive people are scum, as a rule, and once given
> > a good reason and
> > a few billion dollars, everyone, even that nice lady
> > across the
> > street, can sink to the moral equivalent of Dick
> > Cheney.
> See
> on why stressful situations can turn people evil.
> However, people who believe they have a great deal of
> moral responsibility (due to the tremendous impact of
> the Singularity on the world) are likely to be much
> more resistant to this then your random nice lady,
> especially if they've studied the subject before.

I know, again, I refer you to my ex to see the face of evil.
(, she isn't on it right now, but this is she: Totally irrelevant, but look
at her youth and understand how people are driven from
being "nice" to being "career sadists". Just a random nice

> > Which leads me to one conclusion worth mentioning
> > here: people like
> > Elizer, people who make the same bold techno-erotic
> > statements and
> > have the same eloquent charisma and credibility,
> > will, at some satured
> > point in the future, receive a visit from men in
> > dark suits, bearing
> > suitcases with money, blonde pleasure-slaves and
> > other assorted
> > temptations to lure them to all kinds of black ops
> > think tanks.
> Eliezer's ethical system sounds like it would be
> fairly easy to manipulate; just place him in a
> situation where the optimal path to a Friendly
> Singularity coincides with whatever you want him to
> do. Governments may be bad at technology development,
> but they're fairly good at psychological manipulation.

It's familiar ground, that particular science is a well-consolidated
well tested field.

> > They will try and buy the elizers of transhumanism
> > when they start
> > believing. Once the first stray transhumanist with
> > fiery eyes gets
> > his first visit by a present day mefistopheles, we
> > can make a sure
> > assumption skynet's evil twin-brother is less than 5
> > years away.
> >
> > Dare I say "muhuahua?"
> >
> We've had a hard time finding people who are skilled
> enough to work on an AGI project, and we've been
> trying for the past seven years; how the heck is the
> government going to do it?

Money. When they think it's worth it, soon enough. And the
pentagon made sure it has a lot of serendipity money in reserve
for a rainy day. Ask Cheney.

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