📓 truth


why founders are pressured to lie "lie" =~ embellish IMO: everyone is overselling so 'being real' seems unglamorous

the first "lie" a founder tells is to themselves
  founders need to spend so much headspace in the future
     ~ fantasizing about the future
     (partially, to keep themselves motivated / excited)
  most venture pursuit is irrational
    founder's create a delusion
    prerequsite of 'succeeding at a risky thing'
       is to to over-believe in it enought to be willing to put in the effort
 second lie --- to your team
 third lie --- to outsiders (customers, investors) 

"fake it until you make it" / "pre-truth"

mental bias that exists: decision was the correct one, if the result was positive; even if 'the facts' made it incorrect ex. toss coin, cost $1 to play, if heads, win 10cents
shouldn't play, but a person who does play and wins, thinks it was the right decision

What value does truthful speech have in our society towards the goal of human flourishing?

>> making decisions with 'truth' / 'reality' leads to more accurate predictions and outcomes

Our society has historically believed in the sacredness of truthful speech (ie. “I swear to tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth, so help me God”), do you believe that truthful speech is sacred in some way?

definitely considered "sacred"

In 2016, post-truth was the Oxford Dictionary word of the year. How has this modern movement affected your perspective on the importance of objective truth and truthful speech?

most knowledge is not first-hand
  ...so much NOISE, conflicting information
  often must 'trust' others
'history' is written by victors
   objective truth is impossible is many situations (usually, "complex")
(IMO, I agree that a lot of "truths" are just "narratives", "simplifications" of complex systems that don't tell a complete story)
can be abused (by politicians and media, b/c of the reach they have)

politics and policy operate in realm of: normative decisions (no 'truth' needed) & 'fuzzy' zone of complex systems (like economies) where effect of various interventions is unknown ex. major disagreement between chicago vs austrian school — it's all made up ex. COVID practices

 policiticians are in business of making decisions and judged by the impact of those decisions
   less important if they weren't made "correctly" / "based on facts"
   "ends justify the irrational decisions"
  when truth is unknown/unclear/impossible-to-determine, making it up as fact
  impossible promises
  fake news
  challenging evidence
  offering alternatives, challenging as "jury is still out" (ex. climate change)
  weak/disingenous argumentation (ex. straw man)
  misleading statistics
  "what good has truth/science brought us?"

post-truth as rebellion against "expert economic opinion becoming a surrogate for values-based political judgements" ?

  current system, "experts" === "truth"; respect in "science" and "science based medecine" etc. 
    => but experts are flawed, modern science process is flawed, etc.

post-truth has always been a thing, perhaps only a "new thing" now, b/c of our ability to better uncover it? (fact check)

If a 3rd party (a V.C.) tells you you are allowed to lie - does that make it more or less right?

In software companies it is quite typical that sales people “stretch the truth” to get new clients. As a founder how would you view this?

 personally, try to be truthful
 bad experiences w/ overselling --- better longterm experiences with underselling     

This article describes a social contract where founders are allowed to or perhaps should, depending how you label it, lie/pre-tell the truth/not tell the literal truth. If this enables the creation, against all odds, of purposeful businesses (a business that solves a market problem without creating externalities), do you find the argument convincing that this social contract could be a positive thing for society? Do the ends justify the means?

yes, ends justify the means
   lying bad, but can consider "fraud" an expense/externality, made up for by the benefit
     ...BUT, that's in the isolated case... 
       perhaps as a systemic thing, it might be a 'tragedy of the commons', where we're all worse for it if everyone does it

Do you believe founders should lie? If yes, under what conditions?

If there are conditions where founders should lie, what restrictions should they give themselves?

When considering these questions, who is a hero or model of yours that may implicitly be informing your decision-making?

[[FutureSight Lunch and Learn]]

#ethics #entrepreneurship