Agreed: lack of perspective is the real M. O. here, at least with people who have theoretically aligned goals.

I think capitalism creates a big persistent bias, though, because it’s one way in which the value of transmitting information can be made wholly independent of the truth or utility value of that information for the recipient: the entire practice of advertising consists of aggressively telling half-truths for the sake of causing people to behave in ways that are against their interests, and that’s probably the simplest case. When you add futures markets, you begin to have situations where you can make a great deal of money by moving information around that has no relationship at all to reality.

People can learn to consider others whose experiences are unlike their own, but they are far more motivated to put in the effort if their livelihood does not depend upon preventing those people from succeeding.

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Resident hypertext crank. Author of Big and Small Computing: Trajectories for the Future of Software. http://www.lord-enki.net

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