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Communism & associated tangents

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#51
Alright then,the computer is infallible and no-one knows where it is. Somehow it keeps itself clean, keeps out mice and enforces its will (what is the point of a supercomputer that only broadcasts suggestions?). Now I shall dictate government policy.

Its decisions are based on what makes the most people happy, within an established framework. So I skew the results with one of the following methods.

1: I copy the chips measuring happiness. Thousands, millions, billions of them. Whenever something happens which I like, I tell them all to be happy. Alternatively, I make one machine which sends out the signal of thousands of chips.

2: If the chips need to be registered to an actual person, I either hack into records and create a load of them (with suitable comedy names), or I use the chips of the dead (deleting their death certificates) or those who do not wish to be constantly tracked and assessed by the government.

3: If they need to be attached to an actual living, breathing person then I use the old staple of insane leaders everywhere: Drugs! Large doses of Dopamine and similar would likely do the trick. Alternatively (since we know the human brain well enough to see what it does when happy, or we couldn't make the chips), I simply stimulate chips in the appropriate areas. Perhaps I use animal brains, if that will work.

And this is just me thinking off the top of my head. Someone who actually was desperate to rule, with more resources than me, well...
 

Chaos_Born

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#52
Now that's what I'm talking about! Good thinking Spiney, you're certainly more imaginative than I and no doubt an argument against you certainly ends with tears:)
 

Mad 'At

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#53
spineyrequiem said:
So you protect it. How? Surround it with its own, personal robot guard programmed to kill any intruders? Now your ultra-racist domineering supercomputer has its own private army. Surround it with human guards? If any one of them is untrustworthy, the system falls to pieces.
But if we give it the private robot army from the start it will never become ultra-racist, it will just use it to ensure that no one will halt the continued spread of happiness ^^


Also this thread got me thinking, in The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy a robot, later named Colin, had it's happiness circuit (design to make the robot "happy" whenever it successfully completes a order) was short-circuit so he was constantly super super happy. Probably the most happy being ever to live.

Fortunately the computer would never do this to us as it would mean we weren’t "free", which of curse is desirable by humans if they want to be happy.
 

Count Darvaleth

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#54
@ Chaos Born: Of course, hobbies will still exist. An unfortunate misconception about communism is that it will always take place in bleak circumstances with no leisure and the only fun you get is when you die happily knowing you've at least got some free time whilst you rot in a grave. That is NOT a proper communist society. xD

Hobbies, such as warhammer, create happiness and can also provide a business opportunity for, essentially, a state-owned GW-equivalent. People use their tokens/credits to buy warhammer, enjoy the hobby, and so the computer recognises it as leisure. Similarly things like video games, shooting, horse-riding, racing, paintballing or airsofting etc; all this is still possible!

@ Spiney: You make a good point, sir; how would the computer be able to tell manufactured chips apart from real ones? Well, you talk about the creation of billions of chips; when the computer knows the population exactly, knows the exact number of pregnant females, can predict the change in population for years to come with a fair degree of certainty, a sudden influx of the world's entire population twice over will no doubt trigger investigation. Policing services would exist, they just wouldn't have any leadership positions; a detective/ a team of detectives would be told to investigate the case and off they go.

Then you say you could use existing people or dead people's names; right, this has already cut down the number of chips by several billion. We're doing well so far. :thumbsup:

Let's imagine, then, that you have chips registered to dead people, and set up elaborate units to simulate their entire bodies, as the chip monitors things like heart rate and organ functionality and illness etc. So this will be very expensive to even set up a single chip right off the bat. Let's imagine you have done this; you still have the problem of these people being recorded as dead. You say you could hack the computer, but the computer is infallible; if you could hack it, why go to the trouble of making chips inside surrogate-hosts? For this discussion we have established the computer is infallible and incorruptible, so this option isn't possible either.

Option 3; drugs. Quite how you would engineer a situation where the computer makes a decision you like and then to simultaneously administer obscene doses of banned materials into a large portion of the population, without any single sensor or camera in the country picking up either the drugs or the tension in the people being bound up beforehand to have the drugs forced upon them, I don't know. It'd certainly be very impressive if you did manage it, but still not enough. The computer can monitor the composition of the bloodstream and the brain activity through the chips; it can tell if somebody is high on drugs as opposed to being happy with a new decision. Even then, the majority of "happy" readings are taken from polls, not just brain-activity.

You fight well, sir, and I enjoyed this mental exercise, but I contend that the system, as yet, remains undefeated. :clown:
 

The Archivist

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#55
I still contend that the system is not possible without sentience, and thus slavery, and thus corruption of a core morality.

If it is not innovative, how would it decide to send investigative teams? If the situation is illogical, then it must trust whatever the detectives report unless it can think of solutions on its own and judge which are the most simple. It requires creativity to link two unknown concepts, to create a null and alternative hypothesis, to study synoptic relationships. Could a non-sentient being be a geographer? Able to causally link objects through hypothesis as well as fact? I would say not.
 

Chaos_Born

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#56
If I can make a huge, well painted warhammer army, surely there are people that would want to get in on the action. Could I not pursude them to change their votes by giving them awesomely painted miniatures? If I could get a bunch of like minded individuals together, could we not 'buy' lots of people's votes? After all, each individual person won't think that their one vote is worth much. If you get a bunch of awesome painters, or carpenters, or musicians, could you not buy out enough votes to influence situations?

Even if it's biochip based, I could just say 'Be happy at this moment and I'll give you my Vampire Lord of Zombie Dragon' and my goal will be achieved.

CheckxD
 
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#57
Chaos_Born said:
The reason you aren't enslaving the people is because (as Darvy has said) the choice is theirs if they leave the computer run state.
Right you are correct but what you dont realize is leaving the "system" means you are in the wastelands starving to death and dealing with many undesirables and most wouldnt last long. Therefore, most would choose the life that has been chosen for them in Communist society. No choices = slavery = communism.
 

Chaos_Born

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#58
There are other countries Shadow. The computer controls one nation, others may well be run by men
 
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#59
Mad said:
spineyrequiem said:
So you protect it. How? Surround it with its own, personal robot guard programmed to kill any intruders? Now your ultra-racist domineering supercomputer has its own private army. Surround it with human guards? If any one of them is untrustworthy, the system falls to pieces.
But if we give it the private robot army from the start it will never become ultra-racist, it will just use it to ensure that no one will halt the continued spread of happiness ^^
The point was it DID have the private robot army from the start. All I need to do is blast through or hack into a couple of dozen robot guards and I'm in. Probably, this is even cheaper and easier than bribing human guards to let me through...

Please note that it would also be impossible to have a totally self-contained, unfindable computer capable of receiving input and giving output. Something WOULD break down. If nothing else, dust would clog up the fans, leading to overheating, leading to an exciting fire and a bright new future where it is required by law to wear leather, have a punk hairstyle and kill people for fun.
 

Chaos_Born

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#60
Leave the computer alone Spiney, as I've said it's not the point of the exercise. Imagine that all of the problems to do with the computer are fixed because of something called 'leaveitalone'. A special kind of matter which is made of as of yet undiscovered fundamental particles which follow different laws to the matter we know of, for example totally untraceable information connections and hidden, infallible computers. Only one man new how to create 'leaveitalone' and he killed himself just after formulating the government and making the computer thing.

I know it's stupid, but don't pick at the computer itself. There are clearly many problems with it, all of which we must forget if we are to get anywhere. You can skew the data it receives perhaps, but the logic and infallibility of the computer must be given to Darvy as a rule of the debate.
 
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#61
Chaos_Born said:
If I can make a huge, well painted warhammer army, surely there are people that would want to get in on the action. Could I not pursude them to change their votes by giving them awesomely painted miniatures? If I could get a bunch of like minded individuals together, could we not 'buy' lots of people's votes? After all, each individual person won't think that their one vote is worth much. If you get a bunch of awesome painters, or carpenters, or musicians, could you not buy out enough votes to influence situations?

Even if it's biochip based, I could just say 'Be happy at this moment and I'll give you my Vampire Lord of Zombie Dragon' and my goal will be achieved.

CheckxD
You could quite feasibly do that in the UK at the moment due to the proxy voting system... in fact... you've given me an idea...

In response to your previous statement that my system is exactly the same as the current UK system, I would like to point out that there is one important difference: The lack of party politics. Party politics are in my humble opinion the one thing that prevents democracy from being a really good system. The fact that you are voting for a party rather than an individual and that all members of said party are told what to vote by the leaders of their party means the system can never have a fair representation of what the country as a whole want.

However, I do agree with you that current democracy is actually pretty good, it could just be a lot better that's all.

Spiney: In terms of hacking the computer to get what you want, that is also possible in modern society. As computers run many things (such as banks) it is all to easy to hack into them and assign yourself money from other peoples accounts etc. There is only one problem; you'll likely get caught and face huge repercussions. I see no reason why a computer controlled state would have less (or even the same level of) security than one in which it is ruled by a human.

After all, the more damage you can do by doing something, the more people are watchful to stop you doing said thing.
 

The Dread King

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#62
To create a supercomputer, you need to create defenses. And if there are defences, it is possible to break those defences. If one man killed himself after making 'leaveitalone' and nobody else knew about it, it might not be very long before another man discovered 'kickitintheface'. This has been proved throughout history, new things are always discovered when thought impossible by those before them. To make a system secure, you have to break it, enter it and secure it. That, by definition, means that it can be broken.

If a computer in the UK was taken over, repurcussions would follow as it does not rule the UK individually.
If the supercomputer was taken over, then the guards would have to obey it, and the other computers would have to obey it, and then they would opress the humans into obeying it, allowing a dictator, or even some random virus or default, to take over human civilization.

Other countries may well be run by humans. If this revered supercomputer was created supposedly flawlessy in one country, it wouldn't take long for other countries to find out how to make it, break it and use it. The U.S.created the A-bomb in 1945, the soviets learnt about it and made it in 1949. Britain's industrial revolution was followed by similar things in other countries. This could end up in the computer society being colonized, or worse, the whole world being run by one hacker controlling one supercomputer.

Say you had another computer designed to stop hackers once they'd got the supercomputer. The hacker could unlock security systems using supercomputer and then smash this other computer, using supercomputer guards as backup. If two computers had equal power, to rule without fighting each other, they'd have to have a network, and then the hacker could simply hack the network.

A little old guy in a house hacked the U.S. military security system without trying too hard, and he could have nuked the world! I dread to think what would happen if there was a supercomputer...
 
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#63
I'm picking at the computer because it's currently my least favourite aspect. If it was removed, I'd go off on my thing about why total democracy is not as good as it sounds (IMO). Probably, although I might pick something else

The reason hacking Friend Computer is a major problem is because it IS the authorities. Once I control it, I control everything else. Who cares if I get caught? I've got EVERYTHING. This isn't just hacking an ATM to give you more money than you can carry, this is hacking the ATM so that you are CEO of the bank, the former CEO can be shot on a whim, as can any disloyal employees who you decide to keep around after your corporate takeover, and the police won't do anything about it because you are also the police chief, and supreme commander of the armed forces, and every other title you can squeeze onto your business card. It is a coup in the most complete sense of the word, even marching into Parliament or all of the US governmental meeting chambers with a platoon of heavily armed men behind you would not put you more effectively in charge of the country than hacking into Friend Computer would.

Do you see now why I am complaining about it? Picking holes in aspects of the plan which I think cannot work as they stand is the whole point of debate, as far as I remember...
 

Chaos_Born

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#64
I always saw why you were picking on it Spiney, obviously you would become the government and so everything collapses. What I was saying was, don't because Darvy asked us not to.
 

The Dread King

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#65
John told me not to bring up a killer point in a debate; I still bring it up. This is a debate, not one-sided. Remember, we're talking about communism, not Soviet communism, so don't oppress the views on the computer in this thread!xD
 

The Archivist

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#66
I can't see much else to pick at other than the computer. Why? Because the entire idea IS the computer. What should we do, quibble about semantics and stuff? If the computer was all-seeing, all-powerful and incorruptible, sure it'd be the best: benevolent dictatorship is theoretically the best form of government, if it worked. If god manifested, theocracy would be too. We can't pick at anything other than the computer because that is all there is to dispute.
 
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#67
That is true, I do like the idea of bonuses based on being the best in your field, rather than what your field is. Essentially, my only bone of contention is the government itself.

Though since you want me picking at something other than Friend Computer... How do we decide who's the best worker on a production line? If we have ten or twenty workers each doing one thing to the product (so if we're making a rifle, one machines out the barrel, another slides the barrel into the appropriate place and welds it there, one attaches this to the bolt assembly and pushes in the locking pins etc. etc.), how do we decide who is best? None of them can work any faster than the others, or stuff starts going wrong. So is it that the best line get the bonuses, or do you switch people around constantly or what?
 

The Archivist

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#68
Just a side note on how I would utilise machines of a fraction of the caliber of this super-computer.

When it comes to actual mechanisation, I'd mechanise factory & routine agricultural jobs, with one specialised man and some repair drones (human controlled semi-automatics) to keep it running. Specialised production would be drone-done with occaisional hand-made parts. Primary and Secondary sectors out of the way, menial tasks no longer an issue.
The tertiary sectory, would be split. Menial services such as street-sweeping and phone exchanges would be drones and controller, while more specialised tasks such as doctors, teachers and management would be human with minor drone assistance (long distance calls, nurses e.t.c).
The quaternary sector would still be entirely human based. Only the support roles could be droned.

In other words, all humans go into research and development, construction and engineering, professional lines of work or drone control. Oh, and all entertainment.
 
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#69
Chaos_Born said:
There are other countries Shadow. The computer controls one nation, others may well be run by men
If this a true statement and what Darvy started this discussion about then its even more ridiculous because it would not solve world problems. You would simply be back to country A has something country B wants and invades and takes it.
 

Lynks

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#70
Below are inconsistent ramblings left open and written hastily during breaks over the period of a few hours so feel free to disregard them completely and ignore any repitition from previous conversation that i was unable to read and forgive any typos.



The trouble with this (if I'm to ignore the infallible supercomputer debate) is that no country is able to maintain a good existence within a vaccuum. North Korea is the perfect example of this currently. It will be only natural that the rest of the world will be prejudiced towards your fabled utopia and consequently it will be very difficult to maintain. You might have machines running almost everything but the nation will still be limited by the ammount of resources in it's landmass.

Also, what happens if another nation develops their own all powerful supercomputer? They won't be able to measure the happiness of those in the other society and then you have two equally driven forces competing for the happiness of their individual populations. Attempts to merge these networks would lead to errors and interference given their different programing so they wouldn't be able to integrate or coexist as that would effect their ability to maintain their own population's happiness. The trouble with the three laws is it's still open to interpretation. Again to the limited resources, by implementing the three laws you essentially prevent the computer from taking any action as any action will lead to some form of detriment to a person, meaning the computer would have to be unbound from those laws and would be entirely capable of killing when it deems neccesary to maintain or improve happiness for it's population in the future (as it can't only be working in the present as that would lead to serious shortfalls in the future) and would consider going into war against the opposing system.

The scenario doesnt really solve anything at all due to outside influences working against the system and the computer doesn't actually change anything, all you have done is replaced a person with fantasmo the theoretical deus ex machina, and therein lies the problem that everyone is arguing against. You are solving a problem with an impossible solution. Moreover, to assume any part of the system is completely infallible is to make the model essentially redundant, especially in a case where the computer is essentially the system in itself. The system will work because you have said it works. You might as well make the assumption that in your society greed will not exist.

This leads me to my next point which is that in a perfect situation, all of the systems will be perfect solutions if you take out their flaws. Capitalism is so widely used because in it's current form it is the easiest to operate and implement while maintaining a degree of fairness (certainly not what communism can offer) and is largely self maintaining. It is by no means perfect but over a very long period of time for humanity it has been shown to work and tends to avoid the problems of unequal demand and supply due to it's market basing.
 

The Dread King

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#71
If everything can be done by machines, then your supercomputer will neither be capitalist or communist or anything at all except the ruler. Your argument is therefore not for communism, but for a dream world in which the God computer gives everything to you that you'd ever want. By definition, this means that freedom is non-existent, as people are no longer thinking for themselves. There is nothing more to gain, so they do nothing more. Never progress. Never evolve. never expand. Human greatness has always been expanded by the desire for something more from life, and if this desire was destroyed, then humanity would become neutral, stable, unimaginative and, quite frankly, boring. Independence of thought would start to disappear completely, and then the computer wouldn't become us, we would become the computer-no emotions, no imagination, no thoughts of our own. Gradually, people would forget the need to reproduce, and the human race would slowly die out, content and insignificant.

The point about the perfect world is that when we reach it, humanity is doomed. There is nothing further it will do. And what would the computer do? It would sit there, alone, a forgotten relic of an age past. Who would ever know of humanity's glorious discoveries? Who would ever find its legacy? They would find a database, and nothing much more. All the human traces would have been cleaned from the streets by drones. This is not a utopia, this is a horrible ending.
 

The Archivist

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#72
@The Dread King: But what about academic pursuits? I doubt we will ever discover or invent everything.
 

Chaos_Born

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#73
When life on earth becomes great, the only place left to go is up. We'd probably end up going and colonizing other worlds and dealing with the problems they face. If life was to get boring, we'd go and find new challenges to beat into the floor.

Not really relevant to the topic of Darvyism, but just my reaction to The Dread King's post.
 
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