Re: virus: Martyrdom
Sat, 26 Oct 1996 18:23:03 -0500 (CDT)

On Sat, 26 Oct 1996, Peter =?iso-8859-1?Q?=D6kner?= wrote:

> David Leeper asks:

> >> And there is always the 'normal' soldier risking death to defend the memes
> >> of his elders.
> >
> >I would call this "courage" and "patriotism", but not "martyrdom".
> Why not? Same-same, isn't it?, as long as you are prepared to kill and die
> by the judgement of others.

No. It is very useful to distinguish different memes that provoke
similar effects. Actually, competent armies actively discourage the
"martyrdom" meme--they want a strong self-preservation meme, and tie in
courage/patriotism to THAT.


If I may abuse D.Leeper's Cohesive Math: The intended logic [not that
boot camp always succeeds....] seems to be [I'm basing this on personal
acquaintance with those subject to this]:

"Self-preservation" attacks "Cowardice"
"Courage" uses "Self-preservation"
"Courage" attacks "Cowardice"

"Cowardice" attacks both "self-preservation" and "courage"

[Note that "cowardice" is the memetic analog of a biological mimic: it
tries to camouflage itself as useful for "self-preservation", but really
attacks it.]

[Also, note that "self-preservation" functions at least twice in the
proposed new-recruit target psychology, so it is VERY important!]

"Martyrdom" attacks "self-preservation"

THUS, program the new recruit to REJECT "Martyrdom"

It's interesting, how "self-preservation" can be integrated into an
autotoxic memetic system.


Note that when training suicide bombers, there is no need for a
"self-preservation" meme, so the reasoning doesn't apply.

When training your core forces, the "self-preservation" meme is rather
key. You are depending on typical shortsighted reasoning bias, of course.

> >I don't think the meme "Martyrdom" is as powerful as it seems at first.
> >In previous postings, I
> >presented uses of it from the point of view of Zen and of Cohesive
> >Mathematics. Outside of
> >these limited and rare situations, it seems Martyrdom is a dangerous
> >operation with little
> >chance of success.
> Well, it gave us christianity, and thats still around, if diminishing.


Religions with high perceived death rates have few spineless believers.
Possibly the church leaders had to change their talk to increase their
congregation size. [OOPS, another thread!]

/ Towards the conversion of data into information....
/ Kenneth Boyd