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I think I finally understand.

Everybody is lying, all the time. Except the nerds, who are *really bad at lying*.

This incapacity makes the nerds "socially awkward" and leads them to build small enclaves (like "science" or "tech") where people mostly don't lie, so machines work.
People are lying to each-other for advantage, and to themselves because life is unbearable if you are attached to it (family etc.), and aware of the presence of death.

People who lie should not meditate too much. The lying should more or less entirely stop before the meditation.
I find it very hard to understand when people lie. This makes me naive. It makes very little *sense* to me. Like, why not just *fix the situation* instead of leaving it broken, and lying about it.

This is, of course, a working definition of *power* - there's nobody I must lie to
When you expect everybody to lie, respect goes to the person with the best lies: it's all hokum, so you're just comparing quality of lies.

This is why people love Donald Trump.

It's also why I've been stunned into dysfunction by the world's handling of the covid crisis. My god.
I've been making my way through the world trying to precisely tell the truth against an absolute frame of reference: "here are the absolutes in the situation, starting with death and the limits of human knowledge" and producing accurate maps which nobody will use because of fear.
I've always been puzzled by this: "don't you want to know how the world really works?"


People want a model which gets them successfully through child rearing, Darwin style.

The truth is awful and horrifying. Those who know, don't often breed.

So the truth must die!
I've always operated by finding enclaves of honest people, and avoiding the Sea of Liars very carefully.

But, *of course*, humans evolved to lie _because it works short term_ and most lives in antiquity were short.

Nobody expects to live long enough for the cheques to bounce.
This is the "social people" - they're constantly flitting around telling pretty lies to each-other, and that's why the Titanic sinks and we have global warming: you put liars in charge of managing difficult realities, and you get TRUMP KILLS AMERICANS WITH COVID level dysfunction
Because in most situations, our primitive forebears were simply helpless. They could lie about the situation to give themselves agency, but fundamentally shaking the rattle did not cause rain, but pretending that it did produced more viable kids than being helpless and depressed.
And the poor problem-solving class are out here telling people about global warming and covid, and wondering why the habitual liars of the world can't look at the facts and start making difficult decisions.

Answer: their entire lives are built on avoiding fundamental truths.
And, of course, the people who figure out they are in a maze of lies either become novelists or conspiracy theorists. And most of the candid keep their mouths shut, and allow the world to spin on, mostly undisturbed.

I see Greta's challenge oh-so-much more clearly now. That kid!
The price of rational intelligence is having a personal relationship with death.

Either you have faced your own death, and have reason, or death is veiled and you pretend everything is fine, and all you have is instinct.

Because, if you’re going to be rational, the clock stops.
And, OF COURSE, this is all in Dune. The Bene Gesserit test because of course the Nerd Canon explains all things, badly.

The First Truth is that you are going to die. If you can’t get that one right the other Truths will not fit together and make a whole.
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