Daniel Davies d_squared_2002 at
Wed May 23 07:53:14 PDT 2001

--- Carrol Cox <cbcox at> wrote: >
> Wojtek Sokolowski wrote:
> >
> > Contrary to popular belief, the guiding principle of
> > human behaviour is following the flock - rather than solipsistic rational
> > choices.
> >
> I think this could be reformulated to state something important, but as
> it stands it won't do, because it assumes what needs to be explained.
> "The guiding principle," if there is one, must explain why the _flock_
> moves in a given direction to begin with. One can't follow a flock not
> in existence; hence what requires explanation is the flock itself. A
> tendency to follow the flock then can be a subordinate or secondary
> principle of explanation.

It strikes me that if Barkley Rosser were subscribed at this precise moment, he would probably have some very smart mathematical things to say about herding behaviour, and I'm not sure that he'd agree that anything beyond a tendency to follow the flock is needed to explain the spontaneous emergence of flocks.


> Carrol

===== ... in countries which do not enjoy Mediterranean sunshine idleness is more difficult, and a great public propaganda will be required to inaugurate it. -- Bertrand Russell

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