Posts Tagged ‘feedback loops’

Understanding Feedback And Feedback Loops

Wednesday, June 28th, 2017

Some insight into feedback loops

The advantage of capitalism v. central planning, is that information is sent through prices, supply and demand. This information feedback, however, is still gameable by power blocs. The exact strategies are different than in a command economy, but the end result is the same. The West and America are currently undergoing this exact problem. The entire financial crisis was about inaccurate feedback, and broken feedback loops: it was about the financial and housing industries deliberately damaging the feedback system.

…In a hundred years, when historians and whoever deals with economic issues look back (hopefully not economists as we understand them), they aren’t going to be that impressed that Western Capitalism outlasted Soviet Communism by forty or fifty years. Instead they are going to look back and say that both were doomed, in large part, by inability to manage the exact same problem. In both cases the feedback systems which controlled economic production were so perverted by various internal power blocs that the societies were unable to reproduce the material circumstances necessary for their continuance.

This is why many of us oppose formal organization, because it creates rules which are de facto centralized power, as opposed to what conservatism favors, which is informal, particularized, localized and case-by-case basis decisions.

Leftism is the religion of the rule, and the rule involves the word “all,” which leads to control as it naturally creates a centralized power structure. All people must drive 35 MPH; all applications must be filed in triplicate; all people must go through the door on the right. This forces obedience by making people equal in the rule of the law.

The natural opposite to the religion of the rule is cooperation, which requires inequality, because not everyone can do the same thing. Instead of a rule saying that all people must do the same thing, which means they have equal obligation to the centralized control, cooperation says that each has different importance, we do not all do the same thing, and thus we have unequal obligations and rewards.

This thwarts the internal power structures which arise in human organizations to attempt to take control, such as dark organizations or crowdist cult-gangs.

Feedback is a vital part of the cooperative system. In it, power resembles a cascading hierarchy, which means that each level delegates to the level below and does not intervene on the basis of method. Instead, they assign tasks and say, “Use best judgment always” or “by any means necessary,” both of which are ends-over-means analyses.

Control on the other hand is means-over-ends. It requires that each person use the same method so that it can filter out methods that it believes weaken its power. The classic example is demanding that each person repeat back dogma on a regular basis, effectively programming their thoughts. Think of someone saying, “Diversity is our strength.” You either accept it and pass the test, or are identified as an enemy.

Feedback loops happen when something is wrong at the level above the one to which it has been delegated; you see this in the form of jury nullification, for example. The person to whom the task is delegated needs to report back that the task is wrongly framed, unintended consequences have arisen, or that a new type of problem has occurred.

The classic feedback loop is what William Gibson observed when he saw a young boy playing a video game. The boy moved the cursor, the computer responded, and the boy responded to that and then the cycle repeated. His inspiration William S. Burroughs saw feedback loops using naturalistic metaphors: monkeys attack the weakest participant in any altercation, so some monkeys play fey, which is a covert form of attack.

You can see feedback in your hand. You intend to grasp something, so you pick it up, and the hand radiates back that it is hot, so you do something else with it. A feedback loop might be a man adjusting a sluice: he fiddles with it, the water goes in a different direction, so he responds to that and the cycle repeats.

The importance of feedback loops is that they recognize what most humans deny: time, and the cyclic nature of history. Our moments are not unique, because they exhibit patterns that others can experience. And, the changes we want to make to the world must be interpreted not in the instant they are performed, but how the world will react, like thinking ten moves ahead in chess.

Classic human informal order recognizes the need for feedback with lattices of power, and for feedback loops with informal power. Lattices of power are hierarchies that are both vertical and horizontal, like the classic aristocratic model, and informal power avoids the rule as much as possible, relying on a case-by-case basis that avoids precedent and therefore can be negotiated not only unequally but specifically.

You can see conservative-style informal power anywhere leadership employs localized, particularized and case-by-case decisions made by culture, wise elders, a caste system where higher castes have social power, religious leaders, local respected voices, and the like. All of these systems are more flexible and resilient that rules, resolutions, laws, regulations, treaties, and command economies.

Modernity Encourages Obsessive Behavior

Thursday, December 1st, 2016


From the Financial Times comes the recognition, unwelcome to Leftists, that government legalization of formerly illicit substances causes a massive increase in their use.

As we say around these parts, “What you tolerate, you get more of.” Legalization is a form of tolerance, but a more potent form is creating a carrot/stick reward system.

These “Control” systems have a similar pattern: people are manipulated individually through reward and punishment by treating them as identical units, depersonalizing them and driving them toward a lowest common denominator. This breaks their spirit and makes them obedient, which to the type of incompetents chosen in modern societies, seems like success.

These systems create obsessive behavior by promising a reward that is never fulfilled, and making any other option seem intolerable. Control systems create a “game” that replaces reality by social mediation. People are addicted to games, and this creates a compulsive mentality where a small group takes over society as a result of its obsession.

Like rats in a lab, gamblers in Vegas do the same thing over and over again, and are constantly watched, measured, and studied. Millions of dollars depends on it.

Casinos are not the only businesses to take notice and profit from the study and manipulation of human behaviour. Smartphone companies also rely on the same discoveries about human nature. They also seek to promote a style of consumer behaviour that, at its most engaged and profitable, looks a lot like an obsessive compulsive disorder.

…The result is a matrix of similarities between problem gambling and problem smartphone use, which is even evident in the economics, as casinos and many smartphone applications make their greatest profit off a small portion of “big fish” users, who are hooked and pulled from the vastly larger set of casual users.

These obsessive-compulsive nature of these pathologies create negative feedback loops where people expect something good, and receive something less good, but because no other option is tolerated, they keep pursuing the one option open to them. This is the end result of setting up games with binary carrot/stick reward/punishment control systems.

This is the nature of modern society. By making individual intent the mediator of reality as The Enlightenment™ prescribed, our society has replaced the question of results-in-reality (consequentialism) with the question of appearance to others (collectivized individualism). This creates the game-playing that in turn fosters the obsession, turning society upside down as herd panic takes over.

The Great Filter that dooms non-leftist movements

Monday, April 20th, 2015


Recapping history in brief: The EnlightenmentTM legitimized egalitarianism — lack of social standards to hold back the individual — as a viewpoint, then the French Revolution in 1789 made it a political force. The French went on from there to rage across Europe in the first of the ideological wars, and the Americans tried to invent a form of liberalism that would not consume itself.

We all know the problem of liberalism: it destroys civilizations and leaves third world remnants. It does this by dividing the people against one another and substituting the quest for civilizational and personal health with an ideological jihad for ever-greater equality. Its policies are unrealistic, its advocates insane, and it constitutes a power grab that then fails to rule because it is mob rule.

Why, you may ask, with every intellectual who was not awash in personal problems knowing this since 1500 AD approximately, has nothing been done?

The first is democracy itself. Crowds reward emotionally-pleasing ideas that are easy to understand, which cuts out any long-term plans (longer than the next year at most) and any complex ideas that cannot be explained in one sentence at a bar. Crowds also like to receive things from society, and to not be accountable, so radical changes are bad but entitlements are good.

The further problem is the compromise problem which is that in a group of people, each person will differentiate himself by having a unique opinion or need; the process of differentiation is important for that person to succeed socially. This will force a norming onto the many divergent ideas which involves taking their lowest common denominator. (See LCD, r/k, Dunning-Kruger.)

Between these effects, you have a political system that is hostile toward leadership. Leadership sees what others do not, acts toward it, and worries later about getting all the special interests into line. Politics works the exact opposite way: it is “pragmatic,” and involves currying favor among special interests and flattering voters and accepting lobbyists and the interests of foreign powers, a process that politicians hide behind altruism because if you can justify your plan with helping pity objects — the poor, women, LGTBBQ, minorities, orphans and cripples — then the credulous wide-eyed voters will go for it and completely fail to observe its actual goal.

This is analogous to advertising. If you want to make good beer, you create a painstakingly crafted product that is more expensive than the average and has low margins. If you want to make money making beer, find a way to do it at low cost so that you can both sell it cheaply and have a high margin. This requires making bad beer, but you can offset that with a relatively minor cost — compared to that of making actually good beer — of advertising. When you advertise, do not sell them cheap beer. Sell them an image of how this is sexually successful person beer, and being essentially monkeys with the facility of language, they will buzz warmly to that image and buy the product. Politics is no different.

In addition to the problem of politics, there is the problem of internal politics on the right:

On the other hand, it has happened several times already in the history of the Right that intellectual movements have gotten to this level. Then they dissipated. For whatever ultimate cause, they became corrupted and oversimplified; they lost the enthusiasm of their followers and the attention of everyone else. These schools of thought all failed to impede the advance of liberalism. Between its initial awakening and world historical influence there seems to be a Filter (perhaps several, but let’s keep things simple), and no antiliberal movement has yet survived it. And this challenge is before the neoreactionaries, not behind them. – Bonald via Outside In

What, indeed, is this Great Filter?

I submit it is two things: First, people interested in normal life do not have a concentrated demand that is deconstructive like the ideological people do. Second, people on the right are easily seduced by the ego, which demands social success over accuracy, and so they modify their philosophies to include what people want to hear and special interests demand, and get rich and popular and so everyone follows them.

Truth is a lonely path that can only be appreciated by at best the top fifth of the population in terms of intelligence. Then the question of their honesty arises. Have they disciplined their emotions? Are they mature enough to view a world in which they and their personal success are not the most important things? Can they think on a long term basis? And the biggest: can they think of situations with more than one actor, such as market forces, culture and leadership working together, instead of the standard modern solution of making a law to create an institution to address a problem with a strict rule?

Most right-wingers know they are not-liberal by their gut feelings and their intimation that liberalism is sheerly insane.

There are some who are not right-wing per se, but also recognize that the liberal/leftist plans will end in disaster.

These two find it very hard to unify in any way because to do so requires unpopular thoughts, violation of trends and fashion, and even more, personal sacrifice by not profiting from selling people what they already want to hear, and personal negation by recognizing the world outside of the narcissistic ego.

Any right-wing movement is easy to split up. Wait for it to get going, then re-state liberalism with a conservative surface. The crowd will flock to you! You have given them a path of least resistance, and the ability to be popular for upholding it. This is why conservatives always try to be like liberals, even though it hands them defeats over the long term.

It is easier for conservatives to be the “party of NO” because it enables them to hide their own ideas and focus solely on why liberal ideas are insane, dysfunctional and destructive. While this is less popular than the “and it’s all free!” style of politics, it gains support from those who want lower taxes and to avoid following the ideological train into the graveyard of empires along with the Soviets.

But can Neoreaction survive entryism by populism through self-promotion?

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