Re: humor as memetic inoculation

Keith Henson (
Wed, 29 Jan 1997 10:19:20 -0800 (PST)

On Wed, 29 Jan 1997, Steve Witham wrote:

> Tom--
> (from "On the Importance of Silliness" off
> )
> >I suggest that <EM>humor, like inoculation, generates anti-memes</EM>.
> >...I theorize that making a meme the butt of jokes transmits it in
> >enfeebled form....
> Are you (consciously) developing Minsky's "Jokes and the Cognitive
> Unconscious" (which is a development of Freud's ideas on jokes and
> "censors")?

One of the things which I see as almost defining an abusive cult is that
they amputate your sense of humor. Scientology (now locked in a death
struggle with the net) is particularly bad this way, while the memetically
related Church of the SubGenious (SLACK!) instills immunity to cults in
general by its strong sense of humor.

Any of you interested in memetics in action might take a look into the
frey going on in alt.religion.scientology. Bring your kill file. :-)

Keith Henson