Reality checks

Suppose reality checks were actual checks? I mean, suppose there were financial consequences for constructing and maintaining a self-delusional narrative of your own life.

Every time you mentally replaced the actual actions and beliefs of other people by your own fictitious version of those actions and beliefs, you’d be required to write a check. The greater the self-delusion, the bigger the check.

And everytime you got it right by managing to see people for who they really are, you’d receive a check. The greater your degree of honesty and self-awareness, the larger would be your cash reward.

Do you think that would work? Would an actual incentive system prompt people to be more honest with themselves, and sensitive to each other?

Or would people still prefer to cling to a cherished delusion, no matter how high the cost?

One Response to “Reality checks”

  1. Robin Hanson has spent much of his career trying to develop such schemes. Here’s one of his early overviews: http://mason.gmu.edu/~rhanson/ideafutures.html

Leave a Reply