Author Topic: Survival of the Dumbest  (Read 886 times)

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Offline jaimehlers

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Survival of the Dumbest
« on: July 09, 2012, 02:39:04 PM »
http://www.science20.com/hammock_physicist/survival_stupidest-77846

The gist of the article is that stupidity survives in the human race because stupid choices tend to negate the bad consequences of those choices if multiple people make them.  If you have two other people in a group with you, and each has the option to make a choice that harms them and you and benefits the other person, and they both choose that option, they effectively negate the harm they do to themselves while doing greater harm to you.  In short, it makes it look like the stupid choice is actually the smart one (from a selfish perspective).

The simplest way to put it is that if the majority of the group is stupid (and thus are likely to make stupid choices that harm other members of the group and possibly themselves), the minority who is smart (who are likely to make smart choices that benefit themselves and possibly others) are the ones who end up being harmed the most, while the stupid majority get off lightly.  In short, it creates a feedback loop that reinforces stupidity and, in true Pavlovian fashion, causes the smart people to also make stupid choices in order to also get off lightly.

There's a great example involving tennis courts in the article.  Basically, the gist of it is that in a group of three people, with two tennis courts available for different amounts of time (45 minutes and 60 minutes), and each person getting to play for 2/3 of the available time if all three select the same tennis court, selecting the court that's available for longer is the smart choice as long as at least one other person also picks it.  However, if both others pick the stupid choice, the one who picked the smart choice doesn't get to play at all; the two others benefit from making the stupid choice because they get to play for more time (45 minutes) than if they'd picked the smart choice (40 minutes).

So how does this apply to religion?

It's actually fairly simple if you consider that stupidity is self-reinforcing, harms people who make smart decisions, and is easily underestimated by those same smart people.  Leaving aside the question of whether religious belief itself is stupid, because it's beside the point here, there's a choice between participating in worship services and giving offerings to a community's god, or not.  This is a classic example of a choice between stupid and smart alternatives (in terms of personal gain/loss), because there is no proven benefit to worshiping and offering, whereas there is definite harm in doing so (if only the time and money/food lost).  All other things being equal, there's no reason to worship and to offer.

However, if the majority of the community are religious, they are likely to make the choice to worship and to offer.  A person who refuses to will end up suffering the most harm, because they will be disliked and distrusted by the community, if not simply driven out entirely or killed.  In short, even smart people will learn to ape belief in that situation.

It certainly explains why religion has been so prevalent in our society, if nothing else.  It takes a country which is secular and where religious belief is neither required or necessary to overcome it.

Offline Zankuu

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #1 on: July 09, 2012, 10:40:05 PM »
Interesting article. This snippet helped me understand:

"Suppose you are playing a three-player game against Alice and Bob. Assuming this game to be enriched by Morton effects, Alice will have the choice of a stupid move that will make herself and you suffer while Bob will profit. But so can Bob: a stupid move is available to him that will cause himself and you to suffer while Alice will profit.

What will happen if both players will make such a stupid move? The net effect will be that you suffer while Alice and Bob will gain.
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Leave nothing to chance. Overlook nothing. Combine contradictory observations. Allow yourself enough time. -Hippocrates of Cos

Offline kindred

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #2 on: July 10, 2012, 07:14:31 AM »
See, this is why we should all be elitists. People should create groups of upper echelons of skill and intelligence so that they are not affected by the idiocy of other people whilst at the same time making other elites the benefit of smart choices.

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Offline Graybeard

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #3 on: July 10, 2012, 08:08:50 AM »
See, this is why we should all be elitists.
What... even the idiots? : )
Quote
People should create groups of upper echelons of skill and intelligence so that they are not affected by the idiocy of other people whilst at the same time making other elites the benefit of smart choices.
I wish I could find it now but, somewhere on the internet is a well-argued claim that evolution tends towards an average. To do this, the stupid have to pull down the intelligent.

Imagine that, unfortunately, you are born a genius in Biblical times. It suddenly comes to you that there cannot be a God. You go into the marketplace, stand on a slave to raise yourself above the crowd, and shout, "Listen up! I reckon that if we leave God out of the equation we will understand the world so much better!"

There is a sudden silence... all eyes turn to you... you are just about to continue when a hail of rocks hit you and your chances of breeding more geniuses are reduced to zero. The slaves drag your body to some pit and life continues as normal.
Nobody says “There are many things that we thought were natural processes, but now know that a god did them.”

Offline stuffin

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #4 on: July 10, 2012, 08:27:15 AM »
I wish I could find it now but, somewhere on the internet is a well-argued claim that evolution tends towards an average. To do this, the stupid have to pull down the intelligent.

Imagine that, unfortunately, you are born a genius in Biblical times. It suddenly comes to you that there cannot be a God. You go into the marketplace, stand on a slave to raise yourself above the crowd, and shout, "Listen up! I reckon that if we leave God out of the equation we will understand the world so much better!"

There is a sudden silence... all eyes turn to you... you are just about to continue when a hail of rocks hit you and your chances of breeding more geniuses are reduced to zero. The slaves drag your body to some pit and life continues as normal.

Sometimes when I read here I get educated and depressed at the same time.
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Offline jaimehlers

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #5 on: July 10, 2012, 10:03:45 AM »
I wish I could find it now but, somewhere on the internet is a well-argued claim that evolution tends towards an average. To do this, the stupid have to pull down the intelligent.

Imagine that, unfortunately, you are born a genius in Biblical times. It suddenly comes to you that there cannot be a God. You go into the marketplace, stand on a slave to raise yourself above the crowd, and shout, "Listen up! I reckon that if we leave God out of the equation we will understand the world so much better!"

There is a sudden silence... all eyes turn to you... you are just about to continue when a hail of rocks hit you and your chances of breeding more geniuses are reduced to zero. The slaves drag your body to some pit and life continues as normal.
That is a good example of how sufficient stupid can be invincibly strong.  A much more common example is that a handful of iron pebbles can't stiffen up a bucket of spit.  It just ends up rusting the iron.

Hm, there's an example from a book (The Rats, the Bats, and the Ugly, Eric Flint and David Freer)which does a phenomenal job of illustrating how this works.  Consider "stupid people" to be a powerful acid and "smart people" to be water.  If you dump the water into the acid, it just dilutes the acid a bit and splashes it around, making the problem worse.  So you need to carefully add the acid to the water, a little bit at a time, and make sure you have a way to get more water.

Offline screwtape

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #6 on: July 10, 2012, 01:36:33 PM »
The Stupid must be destroyed at all cost and by any means.
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Offline kindred

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #7 on: July 10, 2012, 11:47:01 PM »
See, this is why we should all be elitists.
What... even the idiots? : )
Quote
People should create groups of upper echelons of skill and intelligence so that they are not affected by the idiocy of other people whilst at the same time making other elites the benefit of smart choices.
I wish I could find it now but, somewhere on the internet is a well-argued claim that evolution tends towards an average. To do this, the stupid have to pull down the intelligent.

Imagine that, unfortunately, you are born a genius in Biblical times. It suddenly comes to you that there cannot be a God. You go into the marketplace, stand on a slave to raise yourself above the crowd, and shout, "Listen up! I reckon that if we leave God out of the equation we will understand the world so much better!"

There is a sudden silence... all eyes turn to you... you are just about to continue when a hail of rocks hit you and your chances of breeding more geniuses are reduced to zero. The slaves drag your body to some pit and life continues as normal.

A group of average people being exclusive would do very little for themselves whilst a group of intelligent people would benefit themselves far more.

This way, the elites can make sure that the benefits of intelligence go out to the worthy rather than everyone that needs it.
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Offline joebbowers

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #8 on: July 11, 2012, 04:54:33 AM »
Evolution does not favor the smart, it favors those that procreate. In today's world, many intelligent, educated couples are choosing to have only 1 child, to ensure they have the resources to properly provide for it. On the other hand, stupid hillbilly fucks[1] shit out babies[2] and depend on the state welfare system to take care of them, ie. tax dollars paid by those smart people. The end result is more and more inbred dipshits who can't innovate or contribute in any useful way, and fewer educated children to grow up, start businesses, and pay taxes.

Religion certainly plays a part in this problem, as it praises ignorance and punishes those who desire to improve themselves through education, creating a culture that worships stupidity.

Can you say "Snooki 2024"?

One solution would be to enact a system where those who do not possess at least a high school diploma would not be allowed to have children. Those without a college degree would be limited to one child. Couples in which both spouses are college graduates could have two or more children.

China has a one-child policy but unfortunately they grant exceptions for uneducated rural farmers instead of the children of innovators and job creators.
 1. That's the technical term.
 2. Another technical term.
« Last Edit: July 11, 2012, 04:57:40 AM by joebbowers »
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Offline kindred

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #9 on: July 11, 2012, 06:59:24 AM »
@joebbowers

See, that is why the elites should make an exclusive group so benefits are doled out only to the deserving.

Its particularly aggravating, when you do something smart and other AVERAGE people benefit more from it than you. If you try and claim more rewards for yourself because you deserve it, the group will try and shame you. If you leave, they'll call you selfish for not sharing the fruit of your skill with the group. A group of elites that take up members solely through qualifications ought to be able to control their resources and make it so they no longer need to mingle with the average rabble and that the rabble no longer benefit from the elites.

Heck, I've pretty much done the same thing to my life. I've cut ties to people who aren't scholarly or skilled. I hate having to be the one that always takes the high road in a misunderstanding. I hate having to be patient with somebody as they struggle to understand a concept you took 2 minutes to understand. I hate having to be one that a clique depends on the most yet gets the least credit.

Pretty ironic, though. I'm a college student that gets half of my tuition for free because its paid for by the common people's taxes in the hopes that the colleges they pay for will produce professionals that the country needs. Suck it, bitch*s.
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Offline jaimehlers

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #10 on: July 11, 2012, 09:13:59 AM »
Seems to me that the crux of the problem here is not so much that there are stupid people, but that stupid actions reinforce each other.  So one solution would be to break up the stupid actions and consider them separately, rather than as a group (which I suspect most people do).

Offline Graybeard

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #11 on: July 11, 2012, 12:52:09 PM »
A group of average people being exclusive would do very little for themselves whilst a group of intelligent people would benefit themselves far more.

This way, the elites can make sure that the benefits of intelligence go out to the worthy rather than everyone that needs it.
To do that, you would have to put a ban on voting. In order to achieve this, a perfect measure of intelligence would have to be found. People who are unrepresented within a country are treated like s**t - see apartheid South Africa.

In South Africa, the Blacks have not had the advantages that the Whites have had and, appear, at least to the Whites, to be stupid. You believe we should go back to this?

Do you think there are groups within your country who most people would class as stupid?

The next problem is that if the fruits of a persons labour are shared only within a small group, the price of those things is disproportionately high, as there are few produced - you create a limited market for everything.
Evolution does not favor the smart, it favors those that procreate. In today's world, many intelligent, educated couples are choosing to have only 1 child, to ensure they have the resources to properly provide for it.
What happens if you are slightly below average but are extremely wealthy? There is no direct link between intelligence and wealth.

"It is who you know, not what you know." (This is how the currently rich people know other rich people and make sure that the wealth remains within a group.)

Quote
One solution would be to enact a system where those who do not possess at least a high school diploma would not be allowed to have children. Those without a college degree would be limited to one child. Couples in which both spouses are college graduates could have two or more children.

China has a one-child policy but unfortunately they grant exceptions for uneducated rural farmers instead of the children of innovators and job creators.
So most of Africa and Asia would be castrated? Good Luck with that.
@joebbowers

See, that is why the elites should make an exclusive group so benefits are doled out only to the deserving.
The idea of "The deserving poor" is Victorian. It was then basically the churches who decided who got the money. If you had a criminal record, drank or smoked or were a bit scruffy or held views people did not like, you got no money. Basically, your humanity, dignity, and freedom was removed and you were forced to conform.

Quote
Pretty ironic, though. I'm a college student that gets half of my tuition for free because its paid for by the common people's taxes in the hopes that the colleges they pay for will produce professionals that the country needs. Suck it, bitch*s.
How do I know you are deserving?

How do I know that you are studying something that will benefit the state? It could be something like, "Art" or "English" or "Latin" or "Media Studies" or any one of a hundred pointless degrees. Why should the tax-payer pay for someone to paint, or read books, learn a dead language or read newspapers every day?

Conclusion:

Both you and kindred describe a fascist state. A state in which all freedoms and liberty are crushed except where it benefits the ideals of the state. A state where everything is banned unless it is officially permitted.
« Last Edit: July 11, 2012, 12:58:10 PM by Graybeard »
Nobody says “There are many things that we thought were natural processes, but now know that a god did them.”

Offline kindred

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #12 on: July 12, 2012, 02:50:53 AM »
@graybeard
 
Why is that bad exactly? Normal people do worse things. The only difference is that there is no bad intent. Why is it bad if I was to go out and consciously screw people over whereas a person who sticks to the status qou and does the same amount of bad as me, just without the malice, isn't called out on it even though they produce the same amount of shite as me.

Chances are when you buy something you don't research all the available choices and options and just opt for the nearest store. By doing that, you fund inefficient means of production and you end up screwing the economy by doing small things like that. I plan on doing the same except much more efficiently and beneficial to me.
« Last Edit: July 12, 2012, 02:52:56 AM by kindred »
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Offline joebbowers

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #13 on: July 12, 2012, 04:10:58 AM »
Evolution does not favor the smart, it favors those that procreate. In today's world, many intelligent, educated couples are choosing to have only 1 child, to ensure they have the resources to properly provide for it.
What happens if you are slightly below average but are extremely wealthy? There is no direct link between intelligence and wealth.

I doubt many of the world's 1-percenters are of below average intelligence.

Quote
"It is who you know, not what you know." (This is how the currently rich people know other rich people and make sure that the wealth remains within a group.)

This doesn't have anything to do with my point that innovators and job creators are having few children while unskilled and uneducated leeches are spewing out brood and relying on the former group to provide for them.
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Offline Graybeard

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #14 on: July 12, 2012, 05:32:40 AM »
I doubt many of the world's 1-percenters are of below average intelligence.
Unfortunately, you do not define intelligence, not show anything to say that is the sole, or even the most important, reason for their success.

I can't comment of your intelligence, but how close are you to becoming a 1%er?

Quote
This doesn't have anything to do with my point that innovators and job creators are having few children while unskilled and uneducated leeches are spewing out brood and relying on the former group to provide for them.
Well, perhaps you should amend your thinking... Who will work for the innovator and job creator? What point creating jobs if everyone is creating jobs?

Do we a nation of discontented geniuses working collecting garbage or repetitively working on some production line or ploughing some field in the middle of nowhere or simply selling on the products made by others?

I don't think you have thought much of this through.
Nobody says “There are many things that we thought were natural processes, but now know that a god did them.”

Offline Graybeard

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #15 on: July 12, 2012, 05:34:18 AM »
@graybeard
 
Why is that bad exactly? Normal people do worse things. The only difference is that there is no bad intent. Why is it bad if I was to go out and consciously screw people over whereas a person who sticks to the status qou and does the same amount of bad as me, just without the malice, isn't called out on it even though they produce the same amount of shite as me.

Chances are when you buy something you don't research all the available choices and options and just opt for the nearest store. By doing that, you fund inefficient means of production and you end up screwing the economy by doing small things like that. I plan on doing the same except much more efficiently and beneficial to me.
You've been reading too much Ayn Rand and listening too much to Ron Paul.
Nobody says “There are many things that we thought were natural processes, but now know that a god did them.”

Offline screwtape

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #16 on: July 12, 2012, 08:10:51 AM »
I doubt many of the world's 1-percenters are of below average intelligence.

Cipolla's First Law of Human Stupidity:
Always and inevitably everyone underestimates the number of stupid individuals in circulation.


I suspect many of them are.  Most of them inherited their wealth.  And if Cipolla's paper is correct, stupid people are evenly distributed across sex, race and class. 

Of the dozen or so wealthy people I have personally known, only one of them could be classified as actually smart.  He was a sugeon.  He was also not the wealthiest person I know.  The rest were of average intelligence or less.  Two of them hadn't gone to college and not because they were so brilliant they didn't need to.  It was because they weren't smart enough.  Overall, they were generally people who happened to be in the right place at the right time or were born into money. 

Cipolla's Second Law of Human Stupidity:
The probability that a certain person be stupid is independent of any other characteristic of that person.


It is a common mistake to assume weath and success indicates intellect.  It does not, though the wealthy would sure like you to think so.

However, strictly going by Cipolla's defintion of stupidity (Third Law), you may not be completely wrong:
A stupid person is a person who causes losses to another person or to a group of persons while himself deriving no gain and even possibly incurring losses.

Rich people tend to cause losses to everyone else for their gain, which by Cipolla's definition makes them Bandits.  Depending how much loss they cause others to incur determines whether they tend toward intelligent bandits (unlikely) or stupid bandits (more likely).

So within the context of Cipolla, while 1%ers may not be stupid per se, the overwhelming majority of them are bandits and tend toward stupidity.

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Offline jaimehlers

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #17 on: July 12, 2012, 08:58:10 AM »
kindred:  Are you saying that the best that intelligent people can do is to essentially kill off all the stupid people?  That with the intellect and reasoning power available to them, they can't come up with a better solution than that?  Yyyy...no.

Good intentions and a dollar won't buy you coffee at Starbucks, you know.

Offline boobatuba

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #18 on: July 12, 2012, 10:18:31 AM »
Most of them inherited their wealth.

This is a common misconception. "Most" wealthy people didn't inherit their wealth. Not even close to most.

Offline jaimehlers

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #19 on: July 12, 2012, 11:00:34 AM »
This is a common misconception. "Most" wealthy people didn't inherit their wealth. Not even close to most.
Source?

Note that we're talking worldwide, not just in the USA or even first-world countries.

Also note that even if this is accurate, it still doesn't mean that a wealthy person is particularly intelligent.

Offline screwtape

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #20 on: July 12, 2012, 11:25:10 AM »
huh.  looks like I'm wrong about the inheritence thing:

Quote
Two-thirds of the members of The Forbes 400 have fortunes that are entirely self-made, while only 19% of the group inherited their entire fortunes.
http://www.forbes.com/2008/09/16/richest-american-billionaires-lists-400list08-cx_mm_dg_0917richintro.html

At least, as applies to the forbes 400^

However, this discussion makes some good points:
http://boards.straightdope.com/sdmb/archive/index.php/t-600669.html
Quote
First, for point 2, no matter how many advantages they got from their family, how many people would willingly cite 'inheritance' as their source of wealth? I'm pretty sure there exists at least one rich person who honestly admits they were lucky and maybe didn't deserve it, but I'm not sure there's more than one.

Second, there's a difference between the amount of cash directly inherited upon a relative's death, and the total amount of advantage gained from one's family. I mean, George W Bush probably hasn't inherited much cash in the strictest sense, but there's little doubt that he would be much much much less wealthy if he'd had a different last name.

If you want to avoid having to decide exactly what counts as 'inherited wealth', you could look at what's called 'intergenerational mobility', which just looks at to what extent rich people tend to be children of other rich people.
Bold mine

Though not exactly the segment I had in mind - "millionaire" does not have the punch it once had - this is also interesting:
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-srv/style/longterm/books/chap1/millionairenextdoor.htm/
Quote
Most of us have never felt at a disadvantage because we did not receive any inheritance. About 80 percent of us are first-generation affluent.

And to go with the thread on taxes, this link suggests the rich do not pay nearly enough:
http://www.quora.com/Statistically-how-did-the-rich-get-their-money


But I still stand by the rich being stupid or bandits (or both). 

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Offline kindred

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #21 on: July 13, 2012, 08:14:12 AM »
@graybeard
 
Why is that bad exactly? Normal people do worse things. The only difference is that there is no bad intent. Why is it bad if I was to go out and consciously screw people over whereas a person who sticks to the status qou and does the same amount of bad as me, just without the malice, isn't called out on it even though they produce the same amount of shite as me.

Chances are when you buy something you don't research all the available choices and options and just opt for the nearest store. By doing that, you fund inefficient means of production and you end up screwing the economy by doing small things like that. I plan on doing the same except much more efficiently and beneficial to me.
You've been reading too much Ayn Rand and listening too much to Ron Paul.

No idea who those are and also not american.

Heck, I am part of a group LITERALLY named the "elites." I was part of the centennial batch of freshmen in the University of the Philippines Los Banos. To put that into terms that outsiders will understand, how about this translated saying where I come from "there is only one university worthy of note in the Philippines, UP(University of the Philippines)."

I know firsthand the shittyness of people expecting alot from you. I also know firsthand how annoying it is when people mock you for being an elitist when you are not. People feel like I'm bragging whenever I say study in UP and respond by trying to take me down a few notches. Not only that, people also consider it bad form for me to stoop to their level. I should always be the mature one and try to patch things up and should never resort to the same name calling. Screw this. I've had enough of people's bullshit.

It is MY time to screw people over. I should also be allowed to be resort to the same level of dickery as normal people and I will do so if I need to do it systematically, clinically and even industrialize the dickishness.
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Offline Graybeard

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #22 on: July 13, 2012, 09:01:26 AM »

@graybeard
 
Why is that bad exactly? Normal people do worse things. The only difference is that there is no bad intent. Why is it bad if I was to go out and consciously screw people over whereas a person who sticks to the status qou and does the same amount of bad as me, just without the malice, isn't called out on it even though they produce the same amount of shite as me.
Why, when you play a game of chess is it fine to win by keeping to the rules and why is it wrong to win by cheating?

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Chances are when you buy something you don't research all the available choices and options and just opt for the nearest store. By doing that, you fund inefficient means of production and you end up screwing the economy by doing small things like that. I plan on doing the same except much more efficiently and beneficial to me.
Buying from a convenient store and a cheaper more distant store, has no effect on production.
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You've been reading too much Ayn Rand and listening too much to Ron Paul.

No idea who those are and also not american.
Neither am I but both are famous for their "Every man for himself." attitude to life.

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Heck, I am part of a group LITERALLY named the "elites." I was part of the centennial batch of freshmen in the University of the Philippines Los Banos. To put that into terms that outsiders will understand, how about this translated saying where I come from "there is only one university worthy of note in the Philippines, UP(University of the Philippines)."

I know firsthand the shittyness of people expecting alot from you. I also know firsthand how annoying it is when people mock you for being an elitist when you are not. People feel like I'm bragging whenever I say study in UP and respond by trying to take me down a few notches. Not only that, people also consider it bad form for me to stoop to their level. I should always be the mature one and try to patch things up and should never resort to the same name calling. Screw this. I've had enough of people's bullshit.
My son is at the world's best university - he takes life as it comes and he understands that some people are small minded and that this does not mean he should be small-minded too.

He would agree that some deals are a tax on stupidity, but no tax should be too high. A little legislation can go a long way to easing burdens placed upon the unfortunate by unscrupulous people.

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It is MY time to screw people over.
No it's not.
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I should also be allowed to be resort to the same level of dickery as normal people and I will do so if I need to do it systematically, clinically and even industrialize the dickishness.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Corruption_Perceptions_Index

You are there to help the world with your talents, not perpetuate a system that you, apparently, hate.

Humans are social animals. The most stupid and poorest experience the same grief as the rich and intelligent. In the UK, there is no law against sleeping under a bridge; the point is, some people have to, others can choose to but don't.

Edit to fix quotes
« Last Edit: July 14, 2012, 11:11:40 AM by Graybeard »
Nobody says “There are many things that we thought were natural processes, but now know that a god did them.”

Offline jaimehlers

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #23 on: July 13, 2012, 09:42:34 AM »
I have to agree with Graybeard here.  There's a saying, "when life throws lemons at you, make lemonade".

I knew a kid in high school who was constantly harassed by people throwing coins at him (he would always pick it up if it landed anywhere near him), because he would always pick change up off the ground and check the vending machines for change people left in them.  Once, I asked him why he kept on doing it, when he knew that people would continue to give him grief over it.  His answer was both enlightening and humbling, he told me that he didn't care how other people saw him, and that if they were going to throw money at him, he might as well profit from their actions.

It's true that stupid people will often try to screw over people who make them look bad (whether it's intentional or not).  Those people basically have two choices; they can return the favor and become part of the problem, or they can ignore it and continue to focus on succeeding in life, which is the only benchmark that really matters.

Offline kindred

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #24 on: July 14, 2012, 09:47:40 AM »
I have to agree with Graybeard here.  There's a saying, "when life throws lemons at you, make lemonade".

I knew a kid in high school who was constantly harassed by people throwing coins at him (he would always pick it up if it landed anywhere near him), because he would always pick change up off the ground and check the vending machines for change people left in them.  Once, I asked him why he kept on doing it, when he knew that people would continue to give him grief over it.  His answer was both enlightening and humbling, he told me that he didn't care how other people saw him, and that if they were going to throw money at him, he might as well profit from their actions.

It's true that stupid people will often try to screw over people who make them look bad (whether it's intentional or not).  Those people basically have two choices; they can return the favor and become part of the problem, or they can ignore it and continue to focus on succeeding in life, which is the only benchmark that really matters.

Grudges can also make you a better person. I hate my uncle for thinking that I'll never amount to anything in life so I go to a highly exclusive college even though its hard. I hate lots of people and want to beat them up if the occasion ever arises so I took up boxing. See where I'm getting at?

You might say that "succeeding in life, which is the only benchmark that really matters" but that's just personal opinion and ,personally, I believe that is not enough. Its never enough to win. Your enemy should suffer a traumatizing defeat. Your opponent needs to be beaten so badly they doubt why they competed in the first place. Think Ronnie O'Sullivan levels of shaming your opponent.

Although to be fair, that kid was smart. I like his style. He is using the small-minded people's own ammo against them. You got to admire that. In a few years he'll be able to screw the doubters without any fear of retaliation.

"Keep calm and carry on"

"I trust you are not in too much distress"

Offline Graybeard

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Re: Survival of the Dumbest
« Reply #25 on: July 14, 2012, 11:14:00 AM »
Grudges can also make you a better person.
You are mistaken.
Nobody says “There are many things that we thought were natural processes, but now know that a god did them.”