On saving the world and other delusions

a repost, but a worthy one


The nerd’s sense of measuring everything here is a big handicap when it comes to assessing life meaningfulness. Our instincts for impact evolved in a world where only a few dozen people had real agency in your world; you were part of what we’d perceive as a small ingroup by default, and it wouldn’t be too crazy to think you could be one of the most respected and influential people in the known world…

It’s difficult to believe in the sanctity of your own life without a soul.

Link: Compassion fatigue and the limits of caring


Empathy is as limited as attention.

Does “raising awareness” make more sense in context?

Altruism must be goal-directed (result-oriented) because resources are finite.

I’ll repeat for the dumb kids in the back: resources are finite.

I mocked an SJW here for saying we need to spend more money on gay charities. Not even HIV, but platitude propaganda to prop up their egos. I pointed out we already spend between 3-6% of charity money globally on this non-existent problem. Why? They can get therapy themselves (assuming the SJWs don’t block it). That money could have gone to worthy causes, there is a direct deprivation.

In short, first things first. You tackle the hardest problems first as a society, because they will require the most time, money and effort. It doesn’t mean that other people aren’t suffering, but it involves this little thing called perspective that requires you burst your little bubble of solipsism for five frickin’ minutes and see The Most Important Problems don’t come second to the Most Individual Problems.

Empathy has the same capacity limits as attention and worse, it’s emotionally draining, with chronic health effects. Charity workers/propaganda can become verbally abusive in the way it guilt trips, blackmails and antagonizes people into anger like a gaslighter, an abusive partner, which society would never stand for. Yet “for the starving children” and it’s suddenly OK? B.S. I don’t expect to see a study on this but I know what it would find. In this country at least, begging is illegal. Unless you have a tax-free number…
They don’t really want you to care anyway, they wanna pick your pocket. It’s emotional extortion. It isn’t even honest and annoying.

Video: Interview with Barbara Oakley, author of Pathological Altruism

Buy the bloody book if you keep using the term.

If you want a distasteful joke on the topic…

Altruists believe what feels good for them must also feel good for the person they’re doing it to

which you might recognize as….

– also the logic of a rapist.

Footnote: many psychologists say true altruism is impossible because its purity relies on the lack of endorphin boost. However, a good working definition for real altruism is costly altruism, where a personal sacrifice is taken on, as opposed to fake altruism, or self-serving altruism.

Fake altruism is social signalling for status, hence the proviso (to charity as good, charity as Christian duty called almsgiving) that philanthropy doesn’t count as a good deed if one brags about it. The Bible, NT all about almsgiving, says to keep it secret. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matthew_6:2

In this verse Jesus condemns the hypocrites who give to charity for their own glory rather than for pious reasons.


Genius as the ultimate altruist


Logically, selfish people project what they would do with such intellectual capital.

Hence the Tall Poppy problems.

Anyone who actually knows geniuses rather than people who pretend to be (overt and covert narcissists) will know they are very selfless people and in some ways a little helpless.

I blame Hollywood. The villain is always smarter than the Hero.

Video: r/K Selection Theory – Classified Material | Gene Wars

Part 1 here.

Part 2 here.

I want to draw your attention to this.

r and K immigration differences

And this, with my addition;

r and K altruism charity differences

Left: that’s everyone’s money. Free lunches for everyone! Aren’t I generous!
Right: that’s my money. It belongs to me and mine. Aren’t I fair?

Correction: I meant deserving of their position as poor, a label of the person, which makes linguistic sense. It is used to mean the opposite way around, so are they deserving of charity, despite being called the “deserving poor”.
It comes down to work ethic v. entitlement mindset, they had categories, hence in the Middle Ages it was illegal to be unemployed.

It goes back further than Victorian Times: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/English_Poor_Laws

The first complete code of poor relief was made in the Act for the Relief of the Poor 1597 and some provision for the “deserving poor” was eventually made in the Elizabethan Poor Law of 1601. The more immediate origins of the Elizabethan Poor Law system were deteriorating economic circumstances in sixteenth-century England. Historian George Boyer has stated that England suffered rapid inflation at this time caused by population growth, the debasement of coinage and the inflow of American silver.[2] Poor harvests in the period between 1595 and 1598 causing the numbers in poverty to increase while charitable giving decreased after the dissolution of the Monasteries and religious guilds.[32]

Gee, that sounds familiar.