This distinction of chores versus tasks has a corrupting influence on work. It is form of the corrupting influence of money because we tie compensation or continued employment to the progress made during tasks. This is different because money is not a factor. Greed is not the cause of the corruption. Instead, it is the corruption of having to justify one’s position. It is the corruption of being gainfully employed. To justify employment, we need to show the gain. Our work has to be important in some larger sense.
I like my useless body-composition weight scale. It gives me numbers and plots with labels describing things I want to know. The numbers come from computations based on scientific studies. The numbers have a certainty to them even though I have no idea where this health story will end up. I am entertained watching the show of my own making.
We were reliving the 1950s fall-out shelters, but where the shelter was the comfort of the usual home. Like the fall-out shelter, there was an acceptance that people will need to stay inside for a long while. I think the current neuroticism will last for a decade, similar to the peak of people’s attention toward building and stocking fall-out shelters. Eventually, people will decide that living and enjoying the present does not need to be sacrificed for this threat that remains as real as ever before. Courage is better than neuroticism.
The important thing is to keep the government in the business of solving problems it discovers. Government funded science is serving this need by providing the new problems to solve and the new solutions that would solve them. Meanwhile, there exists other science by concerned scientists who are not funded directly by government. If this outside science contradicts the government, then we dismiss that science as misinformation because it did not come from government.
The hide and seek experiment started with a blank slate for the agents. They had no prior conditioning and can learn entirely from the situation they are in. Something very different would happen if the agents were born from successful parents but find themselves in an environment different from what they parents excelled in.
A dedomenocracy fears nothing while a democracy fears everything. In this context, everything refers to the collective library of scientific knowledge. Nothing refers to the empty space that may harbor plans that we will can only learn by paying close attention to the present, allowing observations to contradict theories we accepted in the past.
In a democracy, the declaration of an emergency is a declaration to freeze science, particularly in those areas that tend to predict the most pessimistic results if nothing is done. I suspect this is inevitable because a democracy selects specific individuals to be leaders, and human leadership demands steadfast determination to see a policy to completion and the install confidence of the population. Given the recent experience, this particular property of democracy raises doubts about a democracy’s ability to handle a new emergency that is inconsistent with established theories and the operational plans based on those theories.
All government funded scientists, whether through salary, contract, or grant, have a conflict of interest when it comes to providing science to support government policies. The strong bias is toward supporting those policies and avoiding any challenge to those policies.
The continued obsession on COVID19 is shining a bright light on this very fundamental fact: we are asking the young to sacrifice their future calendars for the sole sake of preserving the future calendars of the retirement-age group. Eventually, that light will shine on the massive qualitative difference of those calendars.
It is conceivable that our faith in science over observations could return the human condition to where it was at after the fall of the bronze age, only the mysterious monuments would need to be explained by even bigger giants. The risk of this happening is significant even if it is unlikely.