В чем сила брат? (the post is in English)
Echo chambers ruin everything. Warping innocuous minds into blind assurance and utter disgust at others who don’t look at the universe their way. The latter category is perceived as brain-washed, brain-dead, evil and all other terrible adjectives I can’t be bothered to look up in a dictionary of synonyms.
Has the Internet made it worse?
Yes, because… Because memes exploiting the primitive, atavistic part of our brains gain phenomenal popularity and achieve over-night success.
Because with our connectedness it’s so easy to form intercontinental echo-chambers and recruit people around the globe.
People are slowly learning: “fool me once, shame on - shame on you. Fool me…
- you can’t get fooled again”, George W. Bush. Entire societies to battle with misinformation formed. They sever the interconnectedness of Echo chambers with their deadly blades sharpened by The Truth.
Here comes my thesis: probability_spread(truth) > probability_spread(lie).
The Galton-Watson tree of the Light Force has more offspring than the Galton-Watson tree of the Dark Force. So, the loyal recruits of The Truth, I have good news for you: we’re destined to win.
For it’s The Truth that has the advantage of being confirmed and it’s the Lies that has a disadvantage of getting falsified. So the long-term dynamics is on our side.
But the long-term dynamics is predetermined only if the warriors of The Truth continue to dismantle lies, confusions and inaccuracies via the mighty force of sanity. So we can’t relax.
Just because I tell you your brain runs on deterministic physics, it doesn’t free you from the painful process of decision making. Just because a super intelligent agent Omega could’ve predicted your decisions - it doesn’t make it any easier for you to carry on the necessarily computations and decide what’s best for you. Just like a chess algorithm performing mundane alpha-beta-pruning to find a winning strategy is pre-determined to find it from the initial conditions, it still has to run the algorithm to find it.
Similarly we can’t relax just because we are destined to win. We still have to engage our enemies in battles, take losses, recuperate and carry on.
The road map is not without challenges. History showed us that generations of the bleary-eyed trainee soldiers of The Light Force were not accepted into the ranks of The Truth. For they advocated using weapons of the Dark Side: noble lies and misinformation for achieving their shared goals with the Light Side. The Truth doesn’t accept such efforts because of the Black Swan consequences. You might say a targeted nuclear strike is a good way to achieve your goals, until one day, suddenly, you are the target!
Meanwhile there are short-term challenges. Such as terrorism claiming lives due to subverted epistemologies of the not-even-wrong category (or, rather, so wrong that there’s no entry point for a debate any longer). The Truth responds however and the Internet is its close ally. Progressive ideas spread much further than ever before. There’s now a Nudge unit of the government tunneling our efforts into the most efficient ways to tackle such challenges. Only few years ago The Truth responded with its Effective Altruism movement where efforts of only very tiny minority of our population saved more lives than terrorists ever managed to claim. Again, such a fast growth in popularity was tremendously supported by the Internet. Of course just the number of lives is too simplistic for a metric, but it’s just the beginning. Remember that EA fraction of The Truth is just one small combat unit.
Thus, I am optimistic. #winning
P.S. for Russian-speakers the following tag line would be appropriate: -В чем сила, брат? -Я думаю, что сила в правде. И у кого правда - тот сильней!