Overcoming Trump in the Age of the Game

in life •  last year

Overview

I have no hesitation in saying that games have, and always should, play a role in our societies, but all games, and particularly those with the potential to create real impact, need to be accompanied by unambiguous language and highly- targeted epistemological frameworks. Distinct delineations between games and reality have never been blurrier, and in consequence, the political rhetoric has never been more misleading and dangerous. Just as Pokemon Go and World of Warcraft are games, so too are fake news, satire, and propaganda. As a society, we’re no longer collectively aware of whether we’re playing these games or being played (and I’m convinced it’s the ladder more often than we realize). We all like to wear an outward portrayal of clarity and comprehension, but I’m far from convinced of our honest and authentic understanding of objective truth (unfortunately, our votes speak volumes).

Games and Political Correctness

There’s little that can be done to slow down the advancement of impactful games, and I really wouldn’t want to, but I do see potential for impact around how we talk about them and how we support their societal integration. First and foremost, we need honest language (or perhaps more precisely, what Kim Scott calls Radical Candor). I used to have such a clear understanding of political correctness, but the term has been twisted and tormented, by all political factions, to the point where its very utterance leads almost inevitably to misinterpretation. The variety of subjective preconceptions and accompanying rhetorical undertones creates an almost infinite number of “truths” every time someone claims to be correct, politically or otherwise. Our language and rhetoric has been gamified just as our fantasies and sports have. It’s time to cut through the bullshit of what it means to be politically correct by encouraging objective honesty and bravery in pursuit of translating truth when it matters. Comedians and satirists (political gamers) such as Steven Colbert are clearly obfuscating objective truth, but part of their unfortunate intrigue is that you never hear them make the outright declaration of it being the case. I’m in no way denouncing these sorts of games (I actually think satire is critical to a healthy democracy), but I do think that those who hold the most power (game developers) have an obligation to speak honestly about what their game is really meant to be and do. To dive deeper into the complexity of satire, I recommend Malcom Gladwell’s insightful deconstruction, The Satire Paradox, from his Revisionist History podcast. Being correct politically should involve nothing more than the use of objectively accurate statements to benefit society. How we’ve gone from that to where we are today is beyond me.

The Fine Line of Theorycrafting

As long as there have been games, there have been sub-cultures looking to better understand, and at times exploit, the underlying structure of those games. Theorycrafters (though they weren’t always called that) are critical societal players. They investigate (often mathematically) the most foundational elements of their favorite games. How was the game created? How does it really work? What can be understood about the underlying algorithms to help me succeed? While there’s concern that theorycrafters undermine the “spirit of the game” and create niche, ultimately harmful, echo chambers, I think it’s also worth investigating how a deeper understanding of a complex game might lead us towards more responsible ways of developing and playing them. It’s no surprise why hacker George Hotz was hired by Facebook after exploiting a vulnerability in their system. The most challenging games we play today involve unrivaled complexity, global implications and dynamic change at every moment. I see no reason to alienate those looking to understand the deepest structures of these complex systems; their acceptance just needs to come with more open forms of collaboration and the creation of strategic policies which aim to maximize the ultimate good that can come from empowering them. It's a slippery slope, but an inevitable one that we might as well look to leverage, much like the advancement of technology itself.

Our Collective Move

It’s never been more important to communicate honestly and listen critically for subversive and hyperbolic rhetoric. Beyond information itself, games are perhaps the most ubiquitous actuality we’ve ever encountered as a society and species, and their underlying theories represent a fascinating phenomenology that is as dichotomous as it is human; crossing lines of race, sex, status, and culture. Unfortunately, these games we’ve all grown into, which show so much promise for fun and prosperity, have also fragmented and grown around us as the lines between them have become perilously clouded. If we are to look towards positive refinement and an indefinite progression of the games we enjoy playing, then we simply can’t afford to stay the course. Our current trajectory will only lead to further player polarization, leading to distinct winners and losers, and with games of this scale, we sink or swim together. It’s time to make our move.

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The Satire Paradox

Much ❤
@Tayken


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Well written buddy a clear and well justified post. I could not agree more in a time where it getting hard and hard to distinguish between reality and propaganda the game is in full swing. But as more people question the rules the reality become clear to them and they spread this reality into creating a game against the game in order to stop the game. Man its bedtime ...

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Are you saying that you view crypto as the game that will save us from the inevitable win/lose reality of other societal games? Things got meta for you real quick. Hope some sleep was the answer :)

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Yer was later here. I think crypto is the future either way. The banking system are looking into it so it will happen in what form we can not guarantee currently. If they wanted to stop crypto they probably could have or made enough people fear it to make whittle out.

Currently there is a game of crypto vs fiat both (i’m on the crypto side, clearly). What is mean is;

Those in the know are aware that fiat is on its last legs so something is need to replace it i.e. crypto. Those that are waking up are moving towards the crypto way of thinking (in general) and are using a decentralised version in turn creating a more decentralised life over all. Now the game part is that the shadow government (what ever you choose to call them) are aware of this movement and in my opinion are powerless to stop it; are throwing in red herrings to try and hinder its progress so they can get their war in turn regaining power and hijacking the decentralised form of crypto.

So in a sense its the same game that has been played for centuries with the powerful playing to hold on to their power by giving the appearance that the freedom movement is there. However I feel the decentralised crypto is a game changer not the game if that make sense :)

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Mostly makes sense. You're just looking at the power dynamic (which is a big component of game theory) as the broader game. Crypto just happens to be the lever we're collectively using to affect the game. It's just a matter of whether the fulcrum is strong enough to create the leverage needed to build a better society.

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Yep were on the same train I think. I really to think crypto is the leverage needed and of course when the 100th monkey awakes they’ll be not stopping the momentum :)

The reason for the "game" of politics degenerating into mud-wrestling travesty is because of too many participants, most of them unqualified, on the stage of highly centralized social structure. It is akin to the audience deciding plays and player line-up at a football game, referees are chosen by popularity, and the clowns influence game strategy decisions: the lunacy of a system called democracy.

The sole value of democracy is mercantile sensibility, in which nothing is sacred, all things can be bartered, and the prostitute is the most successful. During the era when merchants were kept in their place by their political betters, the peer-group conventions of aristocracy enforced acceptable behaviors. In the modern world of democracy, where anyone can be purchased for a few dollars, political crippling is a logical extension.

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I grin, but I'm then struck by a simultaneous fearfulness of how accurate it is to say that we're amidst a "mud-wrestling travesty." So what game gets us out?

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Hi, I was meaning to reply to you sooner, but was working on a blog related to this topic. The "game" is politics and with the limits of concord so blatantly disrupted in recent years, it will be impossible to arrive at a political fix. Social changes occur beyond the realm of petty politics, as men gradually disengage and jettison conceptual framework that has not been effective in describing or prescribing functions of a polity.

For too long mankind worshiped under the feet of men who would be gods, expecting quick and easy resolution to their self-inflicted miseries. What are so-called "democracies" but the crude attempts of zeroes appointing kings to rule over them? Either the drones decide they prefer authoritarian rule of a single god, or recognize that leaders are fallible men like themselves and take responsibility for their own lives.

The truly meaningful political processes occur at the local level, but how many zeroes participate in local politics? As long as men refuse to take responsibility for their own community, expect a god-king to solve their problems, and waste their limited resources in selecting a figure-head every 4-years, the "game" continues.

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Just appreciate the thought put in...even if it took some time to marinate. Our thinking is very well-aligned (which introduces a separate, but related, issue of echo-chambers) and I don't see any way out of the game (at least not in our lifetimes). Leaves me retreating back to philosophy, "spirituality," and intellectualism as a means of suppressing the nihilistic tendencies that accompany the 4-year, figure-head reality of our time.

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If you want political solutions, participating in local affairs will result in more significant influence than national affairs. What many do not recognize is that enforcement is a decentralized affair. By influencing the figures in local enforcement offices, citizens can effectively neutralize odious central government policies.

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Get out and make changes where it matters most! 🙏🏻👍🏼🙏🏻

it makes sense

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And what would "it" refer to?

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Woah... That was some pretty deep stuff there. The lines and the words had me jumping back and forth between reality and a make-belief world. I think I would need to read that several times before I could presume to understand it fully. But I guess that was your whole point... that reality is just a different type of game.

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In that case, I hope you'll take the time to understand it. I had to do a bit of added research, and I think that's what it takes to understand anything. We all move to quick and make judgments without being honest about comprehension. This is a good report that would help to build some important context.

Much ❤️

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Thanks for the link. So it seems I was mistaken and you were actually speaking only about actual games and the effects they have. I was thinking that you were also talking about 'the games people play' in real life, like attempting to fool someone into believing something that may not be true.

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It's all of it...the games people play, the political ones in particular, are still governed by many of the same rules as traditional games. That's why game theory is so fascinating; the more you dig, the more the fundamental ubiquitousness becomes clear.

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Since you are such a deep thinker, you may enjoy this video I just found today:

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Yes, someone else (I think on Steemit) shared this with me (hell, may even have been you). Really well-produced and digestible given the topics. Glad this made you think of me...few know what truly makes me smile :)

I'm glad I came across this! More people deserve to see this and hopefully they will.

Well done and keep being you.

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Story of my life on Steemit :)

Thanks for the kind words and I look forward to staying connected. One of my greatest joys is to see a comment, take a quick read of their latest post, and know that you've got a meangful connection with someone. Thanks @fisteganos

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I love that you actually write slightly over my head and challenge me to really think about what I am reading. yes, we have a huge need for honest and objective thought, but the problem is a huge portion of the population are schooled to think like zombie workers instead of engaged citizens. our standards and practices for education and socialization will keep perpetuating a voting populace who fail to understand the need for critical analysis and action until parts of our infrastructure are revamped. hopefully the paradigm shift will happen before its ecologically too late.

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I like to write just above my own head, so it's pretty awesome to hear that. No reason to do anything (speaking of zombies) if we have no intention of critical examination and challenging our own thinking. We're watching the paradigm unfold together.