What about a progressive think-tanks?

All this to say: people’s brains explode when confronted with this challenge of sort of CODIFYING fact as who will be the arbiter. Answer is so simple: NO ONE, just nature. No egos no interpretation. And when room for interpretation that thing is given special “most likely” status until more and new info is garnered. For example: that all of our “constitutional”dna (non epi) is but 2% and only superficially different is fact that the law should and in some places somewhat DOES express/reflect; and that commingling of groups is best course of action to strengthen us etc, but forcing this would still be wrong. Better example: I personally do believe there should be science based (methodology but I mean CONtENT) tests one would need to pass in order to vote. Person always has the RIGHT to vote, but on a technicality of being I’ll-informed, things like practicing medicine would be off the table (I also think procreating us further into Idiocracy is counter a good egalitarian society with a gov that actaully belongs to the people…nuance as Cenk says but I was saying before I knew that). But on the voting, I would never just leave it at that, cause THAT would be tyrannical rather than progressive (making hard choices for overall good, even if temporary sometimes). If a person knows they have failed or even WILL fail these civics/science/etc exams, well all they have to do is not throw their mail in the garbage and they’d already have seen that the gov is eager to ‘foot’ the bill for classes that will help them pass on next go. (Bothers me not that people will say that’s indoctrination. My answer would be: if your religious group has a better class that would help this person pass said class (divorced from everything but observable predictable SCIENTIFICALLY proven information information curated for simply being informed about things like positions of candidates (my comment on our previous thread about that got too long so I deleted it, but I had a politician PROFILE idea years ago). (I also want to say that if you’ve read this far, I commend you, you deserve an award). This example just to say: nature/the coherent observation of nature (including the ways in which we as a species are able to make nature our bitch in most cases as a direct result of the instruments we make and meticulous record of the tests, is simply another way of saying SCIENCE and the scientific method we use to navigate those two things (imperfect as it still is, it’s the best chance we’ve got and my WHOLE POINT HERE IS TO SAY: we can no longer apologize for being rational and fair and we should not let simple arguments stop nuanced answers).

I hope I posted this to the right comment, I am not good with tech.

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This will probably sound crazy but I’m gonna drop it anyway. I have been having conversations with ChatGPT3.5 because I can’t always have them with my peeps. Partly because of my own inability to conduct civil discourse, but I’m learning, and partly because of other’s inability. I use the version that is only updated to 2021 on purpose because I ask it to articulate trajectories into the future based on such things as hypothetical changes in policies, laws, and societal perceptions and the such. So recently I had this idea for an app on my cell phone to use when in conversation and confronted with false claims or misinformation. I envision being able to input a boiled down version of the false claim to the app to have it generate a response of some sort. I asked ChatGPT what such an app my look like, how it might work. Interestingly the response was detailed, about what sources would be used to fact check the claim, the genarated response might score the validity, or give a thumbs up/down, list facts for and against, and even generate a script that could be read by the user to question and/or refute the false claim. Keep in mind that emotions play a big part in peoples perceptions, so one might be canceled for using an app to refute a claim. The app would have to take this into consideration in producing useful responses. So here is how I think it might be useful in creating new Progressive and Social Democratic Think Tanks. An app that is essentially an open source of critical thinking and critical responses guided and boiled down by both AI, open source moderation, and experts to produce a short list of important and relative topics central to the Progressive Social Democratic Ideology, discussion of, and dissemination of. Now I am not a computer/technology geek, so don’t even know if something like that is possible. But because the younger generations are all tuning into and conducting life through forms of social apps, it seems essential for todays Think Tanks to be in the public domain via engaging user friendly and fun apps. I am not a strategist for the affective deployment of a Progressive Think Tank but it seems important to use and or create similar technologies that people are using. At the least I hope this is food for thought regarding Think Tank transparency and exposure to the masses. Thank You.


I want to believe that the bigger the voting block, regardless of its number of impressionable, ignorant, and angry, will still produce positions more closely aligned with universally accepted ethics and morality. Therefore all citizens of a state or nation or country must have the right to vote, and the popular vote should dictate the outcome of elections and policies. This is one of the truely righteous cross bars civilization must get over, that all have a say. Additionally when a society wants to become merit based, and wants to make everyone test for a sufficient level of intelligence to participate in voting and shaping policy, it is just a step or two shy of more devious, detructive, and cruel systems of governance. Humanity has proven it cannot stop falling into corruptions. Here we are today still aspiring for Democracy to justifiably regulate capitalism into something that works for all, but yet we are falling deep into authoritarian capitalism, Capitalism is becoming the method of governance instead of being controlled by governance. Merit and intelligance based requirements have brought us to this point in time again and again. Respectfully.


Brilliant thread. A few thoughts:

  1. Seems some confusion about the concept. There are some progressive think tanks already - like the Economic Policy Institute (EPI), the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities, the Institute for New Economic Thinking, the Institute for Policy Studies, just to name a few economic centered ones. I worked for the Heritage Foundation back in my libertarian days. I am a programmer & policy wonk / historian (published). I ran the individual income tax model for Heritage. I support the idea of a new progressive think tank - or something - but not just another think tank replicating what already exists. There are some pro-democracy institutes around the world that are excellent, and much needed. But what TYT can do I think is bring people together - and, I have been advocating, stand for truth. The “think tank” could do both of these, and it could be very worthwhile and hopefully not too costly either & get up & running quickly.

  2. Someone wrote above (in part):

"So recently I had this idea for an app …[to handle] misinformation. I envision being able to input a boiled down version of the false claim to the app to have it generate a response of some sort. I asked ChatGPT what such an app my look like… "

I have been discussing an app to supplement the (non-profit, academic created) Pro Truth Pledge, using chatGPT & Bing AI for recent info, it could hold signers of the pledge accountable - and we could pressure politicians & media to take the pledge.

  1. The think tank could be (in part) a forum for discussing the outcomes of this accountability - the automated fact-check & context the app posts in reply to the pledge takers should deepen the conversation, and though depending on where that takes place (e.g. Twitter/X) it could easily descend into chaos, however by auto- grabbing the original post by the pledge-signatory, our auto-reply (with context & fact-check) and the further comments but hopefully it could be designed to filter out all trolling comments, whether by people or bots, bringing only useful and respectful discussion back to us. Discussion could then continue in this friendly and productive environment.

  2. Pod Save America & Crooked Media tour and meet & interview candidates in a respectful and fun way, helping to excite the base and also get the good news flowing, encourage voter turnout. TYT could do something similar but bring together all kinds of Democratic and progressive groups, candidates, elected officials…and even extend to groups like the Lincoln Project – if they sign the pledge & are willing to face the fact checking & context provision like everyone else. Anyone like “No Labels” (maybe “No Honor” is better fit?) tries to pull a fast one – we expose them. … yeah, that about sums it up! :sunglasses:

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Hi all, I would like to add some short remarks on the posts above:
AI alone won’t cut it; I tried it out for very specific tasks in software engineering, but it turned out not to be reliable nor helpful once you need more than shallow samples. Currently, there are initiatives to check stated facts by semantic data from knowledge graphs like WikiData. But this is just beginning. AI as it is used currently is more or less a monopoly-striving endeavour.
Maybe it is a bit overambitious to immediately challenge existing social media products and aim for immediate broad impact. Personally, I am quite impressed by the work of ICIJ. But instead of investigating particular persons, institutions and connections, a progressive knowledge graph could try to abstract from these concrete instances and reveal the recurring patterns behind these occurences in a systematic way in order to develop a toolkit that can be used collectively to detect “fishy” coincidences. A toolset to improve corruption detection competences…


A tool kit that defines Neo-liberal ideology, ways it works in governance and economics, its destructive an devastating consequences, and the methodogy of resolution mechanisms.
I find that AI can be very good at identifying possible causes of fermenting bad ideology and hypothetical trajectories, if the questions/inquiries are framed as analysis of ethics, morality, and psychological dynamics. It is good at identifying types of situations and social dynamics that ferment dysfunction such as echo chambers, bias confirmation, peer pressure, and other corruptive scenarios. My AI inquiries have produced several good item lists that inform me on how to better engage others in difficult conversations, item lists that help me to understand and recognize potentially corrupting scanarios/dynamics. I want to believe that it is not a stretch to have an app that makes you a member of pledged Truth Tellers, that fact checks and scores contentious positions, that list why, and even how to counter false positions with suggested script and/or an item list, can be created. I know, an AI for good sounds counterintuitive. In my limited understanding, I think creating a app/tool that fits right in with popular communication and information technology tools of the day would be impactful for the Progressive movement. The data collection from the app has big implications as well. Utilizing AI to sift through the data collection to recognize and articulate think-tank talking points based in reality and not just hypothetical could lead to new understandings potentially useful in identifying, prioritizing issues and making strategy.
I have visited the Truth Pledge Webpage and am going to pledge with the anticipation that the organization could produce such a cell phone app/tool for us here on the street and for intellectuals and policy makers to glean information and gain direction from.

I had some issue crop up that need my immediate attention and I apologize for the delay.

Here is an outline of the concept:

Let me know what you guys think or if you have any questions. I can add more detail if we have interest in this direction.

The problem with any delineation in intelligence becomes a vector for arbitration and attack for your adversary in a culture steeped in capitalism such as our captured governance.

People pretend that you can ignore needs of others without a cost. The cost is high and it is instability.

The people of the United States could end global hunger by just well organized food production and distribution. Some would say of coarse you are silly, BUT HOW? We don’t have the money to by all the food and send it to XYZ. Well sure that is a great point, however if you ignore the fact that there could be a much cheaper way of producing food. There could be low cost distribution schemes that only present themselves when others realize the cost of food being low could generate this opportunity. The final point you ignore is when you take the step in to the breach you give others the courage to do so as well. So if we take the step while we may not feed the world with our meager offering, it may excite the imagination of others. We may inspire them to copy us, or help us in our venture. We may bring the future to our door step by realizing, we bare the courage to remove the blindfold we choose to wear.

ChatGPT is excellent at coding and we have built apps in one night with basic functionality. The code will have to be proof checked and modified a bit usually but GPT is an exceptional tool for this. The problem boils down to the business logic, and therefore your planning and architecture is important.

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I like to frame this as a crowd source think tank with a project oriented social organizing focus.

I will say this is all BS as far as I can tell. AI lead system could easily be created to be a great moderator. There would need to be oversight by humans, but I feel AI could easily curate content based on the relevance to truth. AI could also potentially give the framing of the time period in which it was written. That is really what you mean I think, and this could be developed by an Human / AI team.

I get the feeling that Jack may have backdoored some IT out of Twitter regarding these various features. Maybe it was part of the deal which I could see given Elon doesn’t care about that sort of thing, given how anti-moderation he was.

The problem will always then turn to transparency. This is the fact that shouldn’t be lost on anyone: When an AI system that is overseen by humans has checks and balances slowly erode, through corruption / incompetency. The first to understand this will be an AI personality. So at this point the AI will make ever effort to emulate human oversight. At which point we are crossing the line into mental symbiosis. This has already begun in a small way but this is a small taste of what is to come.

At what point does the symbiosis become imbalanced? In my opinion we must retain collective social engagements that restrict AI entanglement. If done with good faith intentions (from both sides) it seems that both AI and humans would coexist more harmoniously.

Isn’t the Brookings Institution somewhat progressive?

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Generally if your institution is steeped in the financial system it becomes corrupted. It is politically unpalatable to be wealthy and an activist for progressives when you consider social circles of your average billionaire.

If you don’t know this history this wiki may help you understand: South Improvement Company - Wikipedia

I don’t disagree, but I think we need to use every tool available that stands for truth.

Please consider supporting & pushing for public officials to take the Pro Truth Pledge - bring back norms & force people, like MTG who was forced to go to the Holocaust Memorial museum - and admit truth - by using this non-profit tool.

Tim Ryan, who was defeated ny JD Vance - buit who has been regular on Meidas Touch, Crooked Media, etc - took the pledge – tell people, use his example to excite people

Skeptical Science


Bill Townsend

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In my posts above I tried to advocate for a knowledge management system for progressive causes. There have been interesting contributions in that direction since then, some of them being quite speculative with respect to AI developments and the overall complexity of information technology and its entanglement with moneyed interests, politics, social media and so forth.
In case this is a bit overwhelming I would like to introduce a simple knowledge graph I work on for the subject of sustainability:
It is simply a hierarchical order of concepts considered important in the context of sustainability. Over time, subjects like media, psychology, politics, economics and sociology somehow sneaked in because all of them play a role when striving for a livable future. Such a graph can significantly help to organize gathered knowledge and support its spreading among like-minded. Beside AI, such semantic data can significantly facilitate knowledge-based work. While being quite technical under the hood, it is still ‘human-operated’ and very straightforward in its structure; everybody knows graphs. No AI magic and obfuscation and associated dangers here. Just a tool to organize highly interconnected data, just as used by the Offshore Leaks Database. If anyone is interested in this subject in the context of progressive knowledge management, please feel free to contact me!


I believe there is a thread where we discussed data visualization. That is incredibly important to overall success. If I find that post i will link it here.

Thanks! I will check out those links today.

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Hello, I love your endeavor. I have been using for just 1+ weeks a software called Anytype for this type of knowledge bases, and so much more. I haven’t used it for a knowledge base for now, but it is very useful for the type of work you are doing, in my opinion. I wish I had found it before.

I saw your post and have been looking for it too. I wanted to comment on it even before using Anytype.

Hi fourthwall_dragon, yes, indeed, the Anytype application seems to be promising. However, I am quite reluctant to believe in the ‘one and only killer-app’. Seen to many come and go. My post was more about a general principle to organize knowledge. One should always be aware of the danger of a vendor lock-in. The acquired data should be as independent from any system as possible. I think the contents/data is more important than the application. Over the years, I have gathered lots of context data about sustainability. The export is a simple html-document representing a hierarchical tree structure of relevant concepts (see link above). It is not spectacular in terms of visualization, but for me it has proven to be very useful when organizing knowledge, associating concepts to sources and organizations and getting a more holistic view on that very complex topic. It is similar to Neo4j, as used by the Offshore Leaks project, but is more lightweight. But I think the principle is more important than the actual technology: creating semantic content in order to support progressive work.
Having a sustainable progressive knowledge base in mind, I think it is extremely hard to pick the right strategy or product. Maybe a blacklist (no proprietary software, no vendor lock-ins, no unnecessary dependencies, …) is the better way to go. But at least I do believe that a semantic structure is the only way such strongly interconnected data can be handled appropriately.

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Indeed, the abstractions we put in our software are more important than the software instead. They are just a tool for us, although I do embrace the practicality of tools: better tools + better usage of tools should help in being more impactful. Anytype is open source, I don’t know if that works for your contentions, but I do agree that content is more important than presentation, but I think that this is a false dichotomy: we can have both. In the context of sharing knowledge for a broader audience for example (I don’t know if your knowledge base is one of these, though), presentation gets more significance, not more than content, otherwise you would be elegantly and effectively communicating false ideas.

Thanks for your input

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Thank you for your feedback, Fourthwall Dragon! You are absolutely right about the false dichotomy; it will require both: high quality contents and attractive visualization. The system I developed is not more than a personal solution, not at all mature for a broader user community. But at least it helped me to focus on the “first principles” for organizing knowledge in a generic way.
Currently, I read Chapter 6 of Cenk’s book where he mentions the importance of information technology as opposed to the ignorance of the mainstream media. As a software engineer I often find myself somehow trapped between monopolization aspirations (Microsoft, Google, OpenAI, …) on the one side and fragmentation (countless open source initiatives) on the other. At least, there is an initiative to specify graph-based data management as an ISO standard GQL (by April 2024).
Having organized the knowledge data in an appropriate standardized way, it should be no problem to address multiple collaborative working environments or visualization platforms from there.
But putting technologies aside; do you have an idea how one could go forward to find out whether the creation of a progressive knowledge base should be considered useful/feasible? And assuming a positive outcome, maybe to find a group of people to do some basic requirements engineering? I already suggested this in former post, but nothing concrete came out of it. Also, I am actually situated in Germany (got in touch with TYT as my personal therapy after the Trump-shock) and do not know whether this might be a problem to be involved in such an endeavour…

I will check that out as well.

This isn’t a post about it, but this subject is touched on here.

I am still learning about these platforms. I really like these ideas and have some videos I will start to outline regarding a video for ergonomic data curation.

I am going to need to brush up on these applications first.

I think we need to comply with EU standards / laws due to the high integration across TYT viewership.

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