> From: Robin Hanson <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
> Since some people on this list might be considered extremists,
> what do you think of this explanation?  Are you extreme
> because you are inflexible?

No, I am inflexible because I am extreme.
"Extreme" is relative, and means extremely far from the average.

I believe that my beliefs are based on reason.  That being the case, I am
inflexible in changing them because that would require basing my beliefs on

My views are extreme because most folks base their views on the prevailing
culture, not on pure reason, i.e. logic and evidence.  

But mainstream views can also be inflexible.  For example, most folks
believe that ordinary murder is evil, and I would hypothesize that this
view would be inflexible.

It seems to me the apparent flexibility of mainstream views derives from
the appearance of large change when viewed from the center, while an
extremist who changes seems not to change so much when viewed from the
center rather than from the extreme perspective.  

Close objects seem to move a large distance, while far away ones seem to
move only a small distance, even thought the movement in distance is the

Fred Foldvary 

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