Wednesday, February 18, 2015

And The Comments Prove Democracy Sucks

George Goerlich dropped a link about how the FDA appears to be hiding fraud, fabrication, and scientific misconduct from the public- you know the folks they are supposed to be serving.
If you feel like digging into the comments, you'll find people who think there still should be an FDA. This means they not only don't get the principles of freedom and decentralization, but that when faced with evidence of systematic wrongdoing, they double down and insist that the failure of the FDA to protect us means we need an FDA to protect us.

No, what we need is a way to ban these sorts of people from any sort of vote, office, bureaucracy, etc- that would lead to them having even nominal power over humans. They probably need to be declared unfit for pet ownership as well.

Occasionally I like to comment as well. I commented on this: Did Falling Testosterone Affect Falling Crime. I don't think this is true, and I brought some info to the table. First, I pointed out crime rates have fallen largely because the payoff is not as good as it used to be. As an example, the resale value of a TV stolen in the 1970s was pretty good, whereas now the TV stolen is likely obsolete, and the smart TVs are likely trackable now. It is just less fuss and muss for your potential purchaser of stolen goods to go get a TV from the store. Additionally, muggers are likely to get a few credit cards rather than cash. The incentives for crime generally and then violent crime are just down across the board.

But that's not all. Pinker and others who trumpet this drop in violence with evangelic zeal are committing some very basic errors of probability, and think it is somehow evidence of progress. But I get nonsequitors back:

It seems an odd definition of social progress that excludes “changing incentives so people act better to each other.”
This was from someone calling himself Social Justice Warlock. I didn't define progress. My entire comment was about how modern society had inadvertently changed incentives via things like credit cards.

Then I got this:
The demand for “meditation” on my part has not in fact resulted in any meditation or reconsideration of my position. It has caused me to think of you as offensive, obnoxious, and not worthy of further engagement.

From a guy named John Schilling. I did not demand. I did, however, realize that it sometimes takes time and imagination to move from one paradigm to another, so I suggested.

This is one of the things I noticed on 23&me- among those who identified Neanderthal there seemed to be an ability to hold and/or understand a variety of views at once. It is like a hobby, collecting theories, often very wacky ones, but also having an understanding of the mainstream one, which is important, because then, when some foreigner shows up at Disneyland and infects a bunch of vaccinated people with measles, who then go on to spread the disease elsewhere, you can notice what the current outbreaks look like- specifically, it looks like herd immunity is not conferred upon the populace via vaccine.

And you would leave those poor moms of autistic kids alone. Surely ya'll must know this is marketing by now? Some corporate hack see the measles outbreak and says, "Quick, ramp up the dog and pony show, so that no one will notice vaccines aren't a sustainable strategy!" No, clearly demonizing people is more appropriate.

Well, whatever. I'm online to learn stuff.

But I am also increasingly aware there are an awful lot of people who shouldn't be allowed near any sort of authority, which presents a sort of conundrum to those of us who are freedom minded. Perhaps we have been a bit too principled, and underestimated the need to seek out and take power, if for no other reason than to keep it away from the sort of idiots who play king of the hill.

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