Saturday, July 2, 2011


Good is defined as acts benefiting others at your own expense.
Evil is defined as acts harming others for your own benefit.
Intelligence is defined as acts that benefit yourself and others.
Stupidity is defined as acts that harm others with no benefit to yourself.
Therefore it is better to be intelligent than good, and better to be evil than stupid.

I've been using that as a personal motto for a long time now. I got the original idea after reading about the Basic Laws of Human Stupidity by Carlo M. Cippola I essentially replaced "hapless" with "Good", and "bandit" with "Evil". My conclusion is my own. I posted it on one of my favorite websites and someone pointed out the first letter of each sentence made an acronym. Here was my response before I noticed:

"Geist? hrm... Googling Geist tells me either it's crime fighting guy in Minnesota, a German word for ghost or spirit, a trance band, a company that sells server rack equipment, a video game, or "To shake one's head in disappointment or shame"....

I love it. So now I call this the "GEIST" box.

So I use this Geist box whenever I'm about to do something that may have consequences.
 Basically, I'm trying to puzzle out what the results of the action I'm contemplating will likely be. Note that my intentions don't matter, just my results. I compare what my plan is to where it would fit in these definitions, and try to puzzle out whether I can move that plan closer to intelligent. I'm trying to be intelligent and good... and trying to avoid any actions that could end up as evil. Or worse... stupid.

Also, by this definition people who commit evil acts, can often be shown that by going for "Intelligence" instead of  "Evil", they will prosper far more. After all, why be evil, and deal with repercussions of the ones who were harmed, when you can just as easily be intelligent, and prosper with the same people giving their blessings..

Evil can generally be reasoned with... Stupid is irrational to the core. It is the results that I label... not, in general, the motivations.

A popular saying is "Evil will triumph over Good, because Good is dumb". I'm adding... "Intelligence trumps both".