Artificial Intelligence Shows Why Atheism Is Unpopular
In July, Sigal Samuel wrote about new artificial-intelligence modeling projects that may help predict policy outcomes—particularly around issues of religious pluralism.
In his book Sapiens, Yuval Noah Harari defines two classes of chaotic systems. In level-one chaotic systems, the rules can be complex, but they operate deterministically and produce a result based on the initial conditions. Level-two chaotic systems react to predictions about themselves and therefore can never be predicted accurately. A recent example might be the 2016 U.S. presidential election, where FBI Director James Comey assumed that the candidate Hillary Clinton was going to win; he claims that he used this prediction to justify the release of information to the public, in order to guard against the losing candidate claiming bias on the part of the FBI.
Politics is a second-order chaotic system, and does not always operate deterministically in the same way that a natural system does, because the actors’ beliefs in the future change the behavior of the system, altering the outcomes.
If a charismatic leader is able to persuade a significant portion of a population that they are able to create a certain outcome in the future, that shared belief can significantly alter the system outcome in unpredictable ways.