(Reminder to self: It doesn’t need to be perfect or even represent me perfectly. It just needs to be readable and honest.)
My audience is suddenly a lot bigger. I posted on the Less Wrong facebook group asking for a mentor. I wanted to know if any other people out there belong to the (aspiring) rationalist group and the (reluctant) politicians group, or if my little Venn Diagram section is populated by only me. (So far, there is one other person in this intersection, who ran for office in the Finnish Parliament several years ago…but he didn’t win, so I’m still the only known resident.)
Then Eliezer Yudkowsky shared my blog on facebook…and tagged Robin Hanson and Carl Shulman. Then somebody created a post on Less Wrong announcing my existence.
I have a lot of emotions about this. Here are a few:
1) Guilt, or something like it. “I don’t deserve this attention. There are lots of people in the rationalist community who are smarter than I am and whose thoughts are more deserving of attention, whose careers have and will accomplish more than my career, who are smarter and more-educated and more thoughtful than I.”
2) Nerves. “Now I have one more community to represent (edit: I mean represent in the general sense, not in the sense of voting in the legislature), and it’s a community I respect a lot. If I make a bad choice or say something ridiculous…”
3) Excitement. “All these extremely intelligent people who’ve put a lot of work into educating themselves and overcoming the flaws in their hardware are now aware of my existence and my goals and able to give me advice. This can only be a good thing.”
The guilt is dumb, because people aren’t paying attention because they think I’m the smartest or the best-educated or the most thoughtful around. They’re probably paying attention because I’m doing something unusual in the rationalist community, and they’re curious about how it will go. Let’s shelve the guilt. The excitement makes the most sense.
…Posts I’m planning on making soon:
Advice Received So Far
Is the New Hampshire State House Optimized for Good Decisions?
Reasons Why You Shouldn’t Have Voted for Me (or Anybody Else)