Re: Is the fourth time is the charm?

From: J. Goard (
Date: Sat May 20 2000 - 12:39:27 MDT

At 11:41 AM 5/20/00 -0400, John Clark wrote:
>"This" instance of you will NOT step out of the transporter, "That"
>instance of you will. You concede that Mr.That is perfectly happy
>but you worry about Mr.This, and because he is no longer around you
>can't ask his opinion of the results. Well, this sort of thing happens
>every day. The John Clark of yesterday no longer exists, but I
>remember being him so in my opinion he has survived. However I
>must admit I have no way of asking the John Clark of yesterday if
>he is as happy with the results as I am. I just don't worry about it.

The problem with your analogy is that this hypothetical transporter
duplicates a person and then annihilates one of the duplicates. So, what
is your expectation when you step onto the transporter platform? Your
self-awareness must continue into either the guy on the platform who gets
annihilated, or the guy that comes out the other end, or neither, or both.
(You will care more about the one into which your self-awareness will
continue -- a lot more -- just like you care a lot more about yourself 50
years from now than you do about someone else tomorrow, even though you now
may be more similar to that other person tomorrow than to you in 50 years.)
 We can rule out both, (even if it could somehow be explained physically)
since it violates our hypothesis of duplication. If your single
self-awareness existed in both at the same time, then that wouldn't really
be duplication, just giving one person two brains and two bodies.

So, now what? Well, we're assuming that each duplicate experiences a
continuity of self-awareness with the original, but neither duplicate
experiences it with the other. With what should the original expect
continuity? If, rather than being annihilated, one of the duplicates were
to be tortured, and the other were to be given $100, would you undergo
duplication? I wouldn't. If one of the duplicates were to be slapped on
the wrist, and the other were to be given $1 mil, would you undergo
duplication? I would. Note that I'm not thinking altruistically at this
point; whichever one I become, I won't care about the other one, even if
he's "just like me". Rather, I'm thinking I have even odds of continuing
into each duplicate.

Does anyone here disagree with my economic calculations above? Would you
be non-destructively transported if the guy on the ship were going to be
tortured and the guy on the other end were going to get $100? If not, why
would you be willing to be destructively transported?

J. Goard
The Beyond outside us is indeed swept away, and the
great undertaking of the Enlightenment complete;
but the Beyond *inside* us has become a new heaven
and calls us to renewed heaven-storming.
                                      --Max Stirner

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