The quantity and ingenuity of the resolutions proposed for Newcomb's Problem over the years have been staggering. (It has been linked to Schrödinger's Cat in quantum mechanics and Maxwell's Demon in thermodynamics; more obviously, it is analogous to the Prisoner's Dilemma, where the other prisoner is your identical twin who will almost certainly make the same choice you do to cooperate or defect.) Yet none of them has been completely convincing, so the debate goes on. Could Newcomb's Problem turn out to have the longevity of Zeno's paradoxes? Will philosophers still be vexing over it 2,500 years from now, long after Anarchy, State, and Utopia is forgotten? If so, it is sad that the late Robert Nozick, the man who put Newcomb's Problem on the intellectual map, should not be the one to enjoy eponymous immortality. "It is a beautiful problem," he wrote, in a melancholy vein. "I wish it were mine."
TODAY IN SLATE
I was hit by a teacher in an East Texas public school. It taught me nothing.
There Are New Abuse Allegations Against Adrian Peterson
After This Merger, One Company Could Control One-Third of the Planet's Beer Sales
John Oliver Pleads for Scotland to Stay With the U.K.
If You’re Outraged by the NFL, Follow This Satirical Blowhard on Twitter
Don’t Expect Adrian Peterson to Go to Prison
In much of America, beating your kids is perfectly legal.
Ford’s Big Gamble
It’s completely transforming America’s best-selling vehicle.