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Response to 4th law of robotics (Reply #29)

Tue Jul 17, 2012, 10:31 AM

33. If threats were perceived rationally . . .

. . . nobody would bluff, would they?

Try being in a crowded room where somebody begins to scream insults and threats to you. Other people are there. They perceive it. There's zero chance that he's going to be able to rip your eyes out and skull fuck you. Yet, when you hear it, you're body is going to begin to react as though it can happen. The stress hormones are hard on the body and brain.

I'm certain as Tosh made the remark, this woman did not perceive the chance that five guys would get up and rape her. However, I'm also certain her perception of reality was altered when the crowd laughed. How could she have expected that? In the immediate moment, he's shown that he has authority, he's in control. Now why wouldn't possibility of rape, if not right there, then when she left, seem real? And, having watched Tosh, I suspect that's exactly the kind of effect he wanted to have on her.

Not to mention the fact that Tosh showed her that the world is more threatening than she thought. They laugh at the possibility of her being sexually assaulted.

Granted, Tosh was bluffing. For anyone sitting outside that crowd, there's no way he could have meant to carry it out. I guess to be technically correct, I'd have to say it was a bluff not a joke. Nevertheless for a bluff to work, it has to perceived on some psychological level as a threat.

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LineLineLineReply If threats were perceived rationally . . .
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