Confusion Devolution

Tue, 15 Feb 1994 00:28:34 -0500

>My previous posting has caused seeker1 to respond to me in private (?);

Well, 'spublic now. Anybody who doesn't want this on the list, blame Mike,
not me...

>He seems to assume (wrongly) that I am in favor of censoring his ideas.

On the contrary, I thanked you for defending my 1st amendment rights!
Although, as another post will indicate, I myself never thought I was being
'censored' in the first place.

>I know that memetics was not intended to be viewed as a "cultural
>evolutionary model," but (as I understand it) it is being proposed as an
>analogue for genetics, which can best be described as an evolutionary
>*mechanism*. HOWEVER, what exactly does seeker1 **MEAN** in the paragraph

I think he means what he says.

>What exactly does memetics explicitly seek to explain, if
>anything at all?

The transmission and replication of memes.

>Or is it just so much unnecessary static which
>intentionally or unintentionally obfuscates the debate on cultural

BZZZT. Wrong answer.

A further point of confusion is seen in Mizrach's typology of
>culture change (evolutionary vs. retrogressive). If evolution is seen by
>Mizrach to be the opposite of retrogression, then I have some very
>serious problems with his definition of evolution. On the other hand,
>Spencer, Morgan, Tylor, and White might be quite comfortable discussing
>social philosophy with Mr. Mizrach. Seeker1 continues:

Hang on a minute here. I'm not interested in any of their social
philosophies. I was using evolution in the *naive* sense they did,
deliberately, teleologically. I know of course that most evolutionary
biologists today are talking about a very non-teleological 'blind' mode of
adaptation when they use the term 'evolution', not the 'progress' model of
the 19th century. The only point in that statement was that memes can
benefit or damage societies when they are incorporated - nothing else. The
society changes, either for the better or for the worse. More likely, with
most memes, for the worse.

>I never lowered this debate to such an level as to *suggest* that
>cyberanthropology and/or memetics were not serious scholarly pursuits. In
>fact, I specifically made mention of "the scholarly contributions of Mr.
>Mizrach" in my original posting. If seeker1 was able to discern that my
>tongue was firmly lodged in my cheek at the time I first typed out the
>above quote,

You might note the position of my tongue at this point is not next to my
cheek. Rather, it is fully extended.

>that may be due either to paranoia or to an incredible power
>of perception on his part. I won't reveal which one it is.

Not paranoia. Metanoia.

>Finally, I doubt that any response to this posting possibly exists that
>cannot be shared by all the other members of this list.
>Mike Forstadt
>Department of Anthropology
>H. University

I agree.

Seeker1 [@Nervm.Nerdc.Ufl.Edu] (real info available on request)
Anthropomorphist, Metanoid, Lerian, MatrixWanderer, HyperRealist, etc.
Rhipidon Society, VALISystem A, Sol Node 3
"Philip K. Dick is dead, alas/ Let's queue up and kick G-d's ass." --
Michael Bishop, the Secret Ascension