Re: This is the third time this has happened [WAS Re: Manhattan, Apollo and AI to the Singularity]

From: Richard Loosemore (
Date: Sat Aug 26 2006 - 20:06:07 MDT


The amazing and terrible thing is that your knowledge of cognitive
psychology appears to be so shallow that you STILL have no idea that
your original outburst (in had
nothing whatever to do with the argument that I presented.

You cannot misinterpret someone else's argument (by garbling their
words, or by only reading the first few sentences of their argument),
and then call that person a fool who knows nothing nothing of the entire
field. Especially when that person starts to demonstrate greater depth
of knowledge than you, by quoting more sources and laying out detailed,
coherent arguments that you ignore. At least, you cannot do this and
expect to be taken seriously.

Until you get that point, everything you say is justmore ranting - and
the longer you go on avoiding the actual argument that I presented (you
haven't talked about it or shown any sign that you understand it, not
once in all these messages), the more you will dig yourself deeper and
deeper into a hole, and destroy your own credibility.

Here *I* am, the one who has gone to so much trouble on this list to
advance arguments and explain myself in great detail, and to address
counterarguments (whenever they have actual content) with as much care
as I can.

And there *you* are: your collected responses to my arguments are
filled with ad hominem abuse, content-free sarcasm and attacks based on
distortions of what I said. You make sweeping, unsupported allegations
about the general character and quality of what I have to say, but you
never get down to it and discuss any issues that are relevant to the
actual arguments I present.

Richard Loosemore

Eliezer S. Yudkowsky wrote:
> Richard Loosemore wrote:
>> In the recent past you have *twice* thrown out insulting challenges in
>> response to something I have written, and each time you then
>> disappeared when I got back to you:
>> On the first occasion:
>> Your message:
>> My reply:
>> you implied that I was completely ignorant of the literature, that I
>> was just making things up, and that I should go and read some
>> baby-level references. I gave a thorough response, including detailed
>> references that showed my knowledge of the literature to be at least
>> as good as your own, countered everything you said and backed up the
>> claim that I originally made. Hey, what more could I have done?
> And your reply showed that you were, still, completely ignorant of the
> literature. I will followup to this effect. Please note, all, that my
> post cited above is *not* a "challenge" - it does not request any
> response from Loosemore.
> All it tells Loosemore to do is read the literature on heuristics and
> biases, which I still have trouble believing he's ever done. Maybe he
> read it and forgot it - I don't do much of that myself, but I understand
> that it happens to other people. He certainly did not absorb the basic
> concepts in the field.
>> But what did you do? You ignored my reply completely. Nada; nothing;
>> total silence.
> I don't see where your reply contains a specific request that I respond,
> let alone a challenge to do a simple thing that I have claimed to be
> able to do.
>> On the second occasion:
>> Your message:
>> My reply:
>> I again made an immediate reply, in which I pointed out that a proper
>> response to your request could go one of two ways, and I invited you
>> to choose which direction you preferred it to go (I wanted to give you
>> the option of not wasting time on what I thought we would both agree
>> was the less interesting line of attack).
> You said: "Falsifiable predictions are not the issue."
> You offered to:
> 1) Try to argue me into believing this absurd proposition, or
> 2) Have me accept that the argument must take place "at the paradigm
> level".
> As far as I was concerned, my point was made. I felt this was evident
> to any member of the audience who had followed the thread thus far. I
> saw no reason to reply further.
>> > I fully expect that Richard Loosemore's response will complain
>> > about how dreadfully unfair and unprofessional it is of me to
>> > dare say that he has a systematic problem about anything, and
>> > what an awful place the SL4 mailing list is...
>> References please?
> Justin Corwin's post "Offended respondent" is a fairly good case example.
> Or, more recently:
>> Please bear in mind that many aspects of how to do it are not
>> discussed on this list. Whatever the purpose of SL4 might be, any
>> attempt to talk about real technical issues gets immediately swamped
>> by low-quality noise and vitriol...... as a result of this you might
>> think that there is no serious technical work in existence (about the
>> specific problem of building a coordinated, complete AGI, including
>> all the motivational/moral/ethical aspects, and including
>> considerations of safety and friendliness).
>> This impression would be a mistake. To take just the issue of
>> friendliness, for example: there are approaches to this problem that
>> are powerful and viable, but because the list core does not agree with
>> them, you might think that they are not feasible, or outright
>> dangerous and irresponsible. This impression is a result of skewed
>> opinions here, not necessarily a reflection of the actual status of
>> those approaches.
> "You might think there is no serious technical work in existence?"
> Fine, name just *one*.
> "The list core doesn't agree with them"?
> That rather implies they were presented to the SL4 list at some point.
> It's "a result of skewed opinions here"?
> Point us to opinions somewhere else in the online world, somewhere else
> we can see them, that evaluate the same proposal a different way.

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