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Can Win/Win Solutions Take Too Long?

Win/win solutions don't ever take too long.

Suppose you have conflicting ideas X and Y. Then you can decide: "this would take too long to sort out whether X or Y is better. so I will just do Z right away b/c it's not worth optimizing". Z can be a win/win.

note: Z could be X or Y, but is more often similar to X or Y but not exactly identical. Z can also be some kinda compromise thing that mixes X and Y. or Z can be something else, like a simple, unambitious alternative.

if doing Z is something that the pro-X and pro-Y factions in your mind can be happy with (since they value saving time and not over-optimizing), then you have a win/win.

so that's why win/wins never take too long. the cases where choosing between X and Y would take too long are addressed in this way.

if you cannot find a Z which is a win/win, you have a problem to address there. it's worth some attention. why does one or both factions in you reject every Z you think of? the reason is worth considering more than zero. it ought to be addressed somehow. you need to know what's going on there and come up with something OK (not terrible) to do about it; don't just ignore the problem.


Elliot Temple on May 4, 2017

Comments (10)

Win/Win

I wonder if the pragmatist criterion of results of choosing x or y can play a decisive role here.

I'm not a fan of win/win scenarios, I guess

Conrad at 1:10 PM on September 8, 2017 | #9001
> pragmatist criterion of results

what's that?

> decisive role

decisive in what way?

> I'm not a fan of win/win scenarios

you prefer win/lose !? or lose/lose !!!!!??????

Anonymous at 1:12 PM on September 8, 2017 | #9002

Win/Win

1. "what's that?"

"the 'true' is only the expedient in our way of thinking, just as the 'right' is only the expedient in our way of behaving"("The Meaning of Truth")

2. "decisive in what way?"

The appeal to the expedient (or carries things forward in the stream of experience) won't take us to metaphysical muddles like Kantian "deontological" criteria of right action

3. "you prefer win/lose !? or lose/lose !!!!!??????"

No, I prefer win/lose: search for the most expedient will usually (if we're sensible) give us a winnable solution.

Conrad at 1:21 PM on September 8, 2017 | #9003
> "the 'true' is only the expedient in our way of thinking

so, relativism. you know Karl Popper thought there was *objective truth* and *objective knowledge* right? do you have a criticism of Popper, David Deutsch or Ayn Rand's arguments about that?

> won't take us to metaphysical muddles like Kantian "deontological" criteria of right action

i wasn't going there anyway

> I prefer win/lose

why do you want some people to lose?

Anonymous at 1:26 PM on September 8, 2017 | #9004

Win/Win

1. "so, relativism. you know Karl Popper thought there was *objective truth* and *objective knowledge* right? do you have a criticism of Popper, David Deutsch or Ayn Rand's arguments about that?"

I don't know Deutsch but we can't mention Randinthe samediscussion of "objective truth" in science. Rand is so...well, so like her unabashedly Nietzschean self. They are so different. C'mon

Popper is a more serious player in the discussion of "objective truth" in science. The 'deductivist method' is intriguing and one with which I am much in agreement. But that's science; not ethics

2. "i wasn't going there anyway"

But you should go there; it's where your win/win discussion inevitably heads

3. "wy do you want some people to lose?"

There's a world of difference between the fact that people oftentimes fail to make expedient decisions, resulting in terrible sequences; and rather hoping that they do, to fulfil some quasi-religious scruple

C'mon

Conrad at 1:47 PM on September 8, 2017 | #9005
> I don't know Deutsch but we can't mention Randinthe samediscussion of "objective truth" in science. Rand is so...well, so like her unabashedly Nietzschean self. They are so different. C'mon

you aren't communicating your thoughts about Rand. i don't already have the same opinion as you, and you aren't arguing whatever your conclusion is. i don't agree.

> Popper is a more serious player in the discussion of "objective truth" in science. The 'deductivist method' is intriguing and one with which I am much in agreement. But that's science; not ethics

Popper's method of *conjectures and refutations* (evolutionary epistemology) applies to all fields, not just science.

> But you should go there; it's where your win/win discussion inevitably heads

you'd have to explain.

> There's a world of difference between the fact that people oftentimes fail to make expedient decisions, resulting in terrible sequences; and rather hoping that they do, to fulfil some quasi-religious scruple

you specifically said you prefer win/lose over win/win. that is, you want some people to lose. you aren't communicating very clearly though.


PS please use ">" for quotes so they're colored, like I do.

Anonymous at 1:57 PM on September 8, 2017 | #9006

Win/Win

>you aren't communicating your thoughts about Rand. i don't already have the same opinion as you, and you aren't arguing whatever your conclusion is. i don't agree.

Ayn Rand, the novelist, author of "Atlas Shrugged" and exponent of "rational selfishness" or unfettered "individualism" (capitalism), uses fiction to peddle a right-wing nationalist view of state and citizenry (think Bannon/Breitbart & the alt-right). Reason, in the service of unbridled exploitation of natural resources and labour, panders to a distinctively Nietzschean 'ubermensch' personality-type (as Dagny Taggart, Hank Reardon are)ruthless in its scorn of charity and alutruism and in its pursuit of power and control obtained primarily through property acquisition.

Her novels--badly written in my view--give the lie to any redeeming view of human reason as a tool of human integrity and virtue. I think William F. Buckley best characterized "Atlas Shrugged" as "ideological fabulism". See https://youtu.be/5KmPLkiqnO8 Rand's was a type of demagoguery that the intelligentsia of her day seemed attracted to! I think Trump best typifies the spirit of both author and viewpoint in politics in America today.

>Popper's method of *conjectures and refutations* (evolutionary epistemology) applies to all fields, not just science

Again, and notwithstanding the great man's claims to the contrary, the case for "deductivist method" is better made in science where Popper can flex his great logico-scientific muscles to make the celebrated "falsifiability" claim. His knowledge of political and ethical theory, on the other hand, wasn't as strongly grounded in key principals and methodologies (in the way that Herbert Marcuse was, e.g.) There is a world of difference between "Logic of Scientific Discovery" and "Open Society"

>you specifically said you prefer win/lose over win/win. that is, you want some people to lose. you aren't communicating very clearly though


No, I don't want some people to lose. You're quibbling. I prefer a pragmatist model of truth whereby 'truth' and 'falsity' (as applied to any human sphere) are determined by the consequences to which they give rise: for reasons which James very convincingly outlines in his "Meaning and Truth".

Conrad at 3:53 PM on September 8, 2017 | #9009
> No, I don't want some people to lose.

then why did you write:

> I'm not a fan of win/win scenarios

and then when asked to clarify, you wrote:

> I prefer win/lose

???

Anonymous at 4:51 PM on September 8, 2017 | #9011
> > Popper's method of *conjectures and refutations* (evolutionary epistemology) applies to all fields, not just science

do you have a criticism of C&R as a general method of learning? or an alternative?

Anonymous at 4:52 PM on September 8, 2017 | #9012
> Ayn Rand, the novelist, author of "Atlas Shrugged" and exponent of "rational selfishness" or unfettered "individualism" (capitalism), uses fiction to peddle a right-wing nationalist view of state and citizenry (think Bannon/Breitbart & the alt-right).

please slow down. i've read Atlas Shrugged 10 times. can you provide a *nationalist* quote from Atlas Shrugged? i never saw one.

Anonymous at 4:53 PM on September 8, 2017 | #9013

What do you think?

(This is a free speech zone!)