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8-02-2010 @ 9:24AM
"It doesn't matter *what* you assume your opponent will do, defecting on the deal is always the right solution."If you define "right" in a certain mathematical way. The thought experiment does make sense in its own way, although it's easy to miss the point of it."The only way out of the dilemma is to actually *genuinely* value the other person's comfort *more than your own*."Which may be considered "right" by some standards.I understand the purpose of the experiment, however I do not agree that everything can be boiled down to some sort of utilitarian/mathematical version of "rightness.""These sorts of situations actually do come up all the time in real life"Usually, for the sake of making the point, idealized scenarios assume an unnaturally ideal set of circumstances. A "sort" of situation may crop up in real life, but rarely is it so idealized that you have to resort to blindly following the mathematical description of the dilemma.It *does* serve to show that what is best for the individual may not be always be best for the entire group, which is true. Selfishness may not always result in behavior that is ideal for the entire group.
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