[ExI] Silence in the sky-but why?

spike spike66 at att.net
Tue Aug 27 19:17:30 UTC 2013

>... On Behalf Of BillK
Subject: Re: [ExI] Silence in the sky-but why?

On Tue, Aug 27, 2013 at 2:32 PM, spike wrote:
>>... This view of the evolution of intelligence as a temporary random 
> excursion from the boring mean, a spike rather than an S curve to a 
> new and higher plateau, goes against everything I have always believed 
> and hoped for, but it is the only way I have been able to explain 
> Fermi's paradox.  This realization is in some ways worse than when my own
fundamentalist religious
> notions crumbled to dust beneath my feet.   I do hope someone can talk me
> out of this grim conclusion.

>...Your scenario is certainly plausible, though the reasons for such a
universal surge then decline of intelligence remain obscure. I would need to
see some possible causes for a *universal* appearance then decline of

I thought of a couple BillK.

One of them I will save for later, since I need to run soon, but here's one
of the ideas.

We can think of predatory memes such as religions that allow what I call
voluntary tyranny.  These are religions where people willingly and blindly
follow some leader, completely surrendering their own will to the group.  We
can imagine that predatory memes always existed, but every intelligent
species everywhere will eventually develop some planet-wide communications
system, which could be used to facilitate the spread of a predatory meme to
otherwise healthy places.  The existence of such a communication system
would give an enormous advantage to the meme over the memetic immune system
under certain circumstances, such as if the meme includes the duty to
reproduce genetically to the physical limit.

I am compelled to argue this is exactly what is happening today.  We have a
particular well-known predatory meme, which encourages or demands complete
obedience to the leaders of that meme-plex, encourages its followers to
breed like pathogens wherever they are on the globe.  It is easy for me to
see that predatory meme destroying progress and eventually causing humanity
to enter another dark age, from which extrication may or may not happen.

>...Once started, intelligence should be difficult to stop, as each
generation builds on the past... BillK

It has in the past, but it is possible to imagine a predatory meme which
specifically and determinedly destroys at every opportunity the progress of
past generations, in hopes of supplanting its own memeset.  It would have a
certain structure and mythology, and come with the attitude that any
previous mythology is either in agreement with the predatory memeset or not,
in which case it would be classified as either redundant or heresy, to be
destroyed in either case.

This is not to say this has happened in the past, you understand.

You do understand, ja?


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