This Article IsCreated at 2023-09-04Last Modified at 2024-03-17Referenced as ia.www.f04

Representative Democracy Fails by Optimization

Opinion: Since politicians figured out that it’s faster to get support by appeal to emotion than solving social problems, democracy has failed.

It is kind of like the paperclip-making story. When the AI optimize for paperclips, it eventually made the whole universe into paperclips. On the political side, when our political system force runners to optimize for public support, they will turn to manipulating the population (rather than doing useful things).

That’s the reason we need a political system that doesn’t optimize for public support. A randomly selected group of people may do better (at least, they would not fearmonger).

A thing I observed in reality: mayors are as competent as presidents. The elected leader of 250,000 people is as competent as the “elected” leader of 300,000,000.

I also don’t like how the media also loves attention. In appeal to emotion, the media is aligned with the politician. This is very bad news. When the population act on urges, they are effectively dumber. What happens if people are dumber? Maybe the history of water lead pollution can tell you.

I assume that all regimes eventually fall. Can we break this vicious cycle? Hopefully, some people will realize that they need no government to do what they can do themselves, and decides to just stop caring about it. It does mean that more people will take on more responsibilities. In this sense, is the flip side of Power Complacent?

How “power vacuum” exists as a term is cursed. If people all desire less power, the world would be a better place.

I hope I have a solution to this problem, which I don’t.

Since you finished reading this article, you might be interested in reading The Worst Form of Government by Matthew White, which is of much higher quality than my writing.