Episode 31

#31 - The Fall of the Weinstein Republic


September 14th, 2021

54 mins 51 secs

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About this Episode

Today we take your twitter questions before doing a deep dive into the Weinstein fiasco (Bret and Eric, not Harvey.) If you haven't heard of the Weinstein's before, then we suggest you run away before we drag you down into a rabbit hole filled with acronyms, anti-vaxxers, and theories of ... everything? anything? literally anything at all?

Topics we touch:

  • We take your twitter questions!
    • Filos with a weird one: I have a weird one that could be fun. It seems to me that the idea that we could upload our minds to a computer is nonsense. I agree with Kastrup that what we would upload is a description of our minds and a description of something is not that something. And it seems this desire to immortality is the nerd's reinvention of God via AGI, and heaven via uploading a mind to a silicon substrate. Where do you fall in this mind uploading fantasy? possible? Religious impulse? Reasonable?
    • Dan would like us to talk about: The pervasive skepticism that seems to run through much the Popperian and Crit Rat communities regarding nonhuman animals’ capacity to suffer, particularly factory farmed animals.
    • Karl is interested in: I'm interested in the meta-question of why that issue seems to split the community in two. Why hasn't one view become the dogmatic truth yet as it seems to have in most other communities?
  • WTF is up with Bret and Eric Weinstein
  • The allure of reflexive contrarianism
  • The (horrible! awful! stop it!) tendency of academics to use convoluted language to impress their non-peers
  • The notion of "secular gurus" and what distinguishes a secular guru from a person with a large platform
  • And the special responsibility of researchers to communicate clearly.


Animal Suffering

  • Bruce Nielson's blog post on whether animals experience qualia, and his second on animal emotions. We mostly discuss the first.



Every intellectual has a very special responsibility. He has the privilege and the opportunity of studying. In return, he owes it to his fellow men (or 'to society') to represent the results of his study as simply, clearly and modestly as he can. The worst thing that intellectuals can do - the cardinal sin - is to try to set themselves up as great prophets vis-à-vis their fellow men and to impress them with puzzling philosophies. Anyone who cannot speak simply and clearly should say nothing and continue to work until he can do so.
Karl Popper, Against Big Words

What would you say to your half million twitter followers who want to know your opinion on everything? Tell us at incrementspodcast@gmail.com.

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