[extropy-chat] Deception theory, lies and natural selection

spike spike66 at comcast.net
Tue Dec 26 17:48:29 UTC 2006

From: extropy-chat-bounces at lists.extropy.org
[mailto:extropy-chat-bounces at lists.extropy.org] On Behalf Of Robert Bradbury

1. Devious Butterflies, Full-Throated Frogs and Other Liars, C. Zimmer, 26
Dec 2006

Robert!  Thanks man, this is the coolest thing I've seen since Amara's
Hubble article.

There are so many interesting concepts here.  I watch often for examples of
deception in nature.  Seagulls do this to each other all the time.  Ravens
lie to people.  It appears both bird species do this as a kind of game.
More on that in a later post.

Human babies are delightful in their transparency.  When happy, they laugh;
when sad they cry.  My own son's face lights up whenever I walk into the
room.  This is an example of how an effective parasite can create signals
that cause the host to tolerate and even nurture the parasite.  Hey, it
worked on me, bigtime.  {8-]  

Human babies can lie (depending on how it is interpreted.)  A few weeks ago,
my boy had a cold, coff-coffed, the adults immediately fussed over him to
make sure he wasn't choking.  Instantly he learned that coff-coffing causes
action to happen.  So he began faking a cough, but he isn't a good actor.
His lame ahuck-huck-huck will win no academy awards, but I thought it
remarkable for a four-month old child to make the association after a single
trial.  {8^D


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