Re: poly: The singleton hypothesis

From: Robin Hanson <>
Date: Mon Apr 27 1998 - 20:24:49 PDT

Nick writes:
>Hmm... I'm not sure what a temporary singleton would be. If the
>singleton chooses what should succeed it, then one might describe the
>change as one where the singleton has just changed its form. I'm
>still a bit vague about this, but I have in mind the idea that
>individuation in the future might depend more one goals and values
>than anything else (compare: Chislenko's "goal threads")

You're assuming that any single dominant power must be all knowing
and all powerful. But even slave owners haven't had such total
control; slaves have had private lives, however small. A single
power could still be at risk of revolt, intrigue, or breakup.
It might not want these events, but might not have enough knowledge,
power, or internal coherence to manage better. I expect a singleton
to be temporary simply because of limits on the stability of
political systems.
Received on Tue Apr 28 03:25:27 1998

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