Interesting Question

The State is a condition, a certain relationship between human beings, a mode of behavior; we destroy it by contracting other relationships, by behaving differently toward one another....We are the state, and we shall continue to be the state until we have created the institutions that form a real community and society of men.

- Gustav Landauer, Schwache Stattsmanner, Schwacheres Volk!, June, 1910

Selected Correspondence:

18 July 2006

Ethical value metrics

This metric reflects the expected increase in universal entropy caused by the existence of an organism over the future course of the universe compared to the organism not existing (or being killed, if that is the question). Since this is usually uncomputable due to our inability to predict the deep future in this way, we might (a) do some sort of future discounting or modify the metric to (b) only include the entropy increase of the universe for the expected duration of the organisms life.

This metric ("m") is natural in several ways:

let A and B be individuals. Let everything else be equal between the individuals unless otherwise stated and let us use the (b) metric unless otherwise stated. Then the metric is natural is the sense that:
1) if A lives longer than B, then m(A)>m(B)
2) if A does more work / consumes more energy than B, without stealing it from a more efficient consumer then m(A)>m(B)
3) (if we're counting descendents too) if A has more offsping than B then m(A)>m(B)
4) if A is bigger than B then generally 2) is implied
5) if A does not kill capriciously, then m(A)>m(B)
6) if A recycles waste and uses the extra energy then m(A)>m(B)
7) if A does not "burn down the forests" without what most people consider good cause, then m(A)>m(B)
8) descendents set up solar panels on mars or otherwise tap new
energy sources: then m(A)>m(B)
9) descendents spread out geographically, otherwise act the same: then m(A)>m(B)