[ExI] extropy-chat Digest, Vol 45, Issue 20

Thomas thomas at thomasoliver.net
Mon Jun 18 18:36:18 UTC 2007

On Jun 17, 2007, at 1:02 AM, extropy-chat-request at lists.extropy.org  

>> It is of course very important that no-one be forced to do  
>> anything they don't want to do.
> Cheap slogan.  What about five-year-olds?  Where do you draw the line?
> Someone says they want to hotwire their brain's pleasure center;  
> they say they think it'll be fun.  A nearby AI reads off their  
> brain state and announces unambiguously that they have no idea  
> what'll actually happen to them - they're definitely working based  
> on mistaken expectations.  They're too stubborn to listen to  
> warnings, and they're picking up the handy neural soldering iron  
> (they're on sale at Wal-Mart, a very popular item).  What's the  
> moral course of action? For you?  For society?  For a  
> superintelligent AI?
> -- 
> Eliezer S. Yudkowsky                          http://singinst.org/


Where coercion begins morality ends.  The principle of respect for  
self ownership cannot not fully extend to those who cannot sustain  
their own existence or to those who choose to disown themselves.  I'm  
speaking in the social context where "self" means an individual that  
can be distinguished from other individuals rather than the  
psychological context wherein many here believe "self" is an illusion  
created by a summation of competing mind agents.   Adults have the  
moral option of protecting the children they value.  Adults have the  
moral right to self destroy.  An AI, depending on its programming,  
might or might not have the option of salvaging a disowned self.  If  
one cannot or will not own oneself, I think salvage rights apply and  
victim status becomes questionable.  Don't you?  -- Thomas

Thomas at ThomasOliver.net

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