A pill that makes you sad and happy

Imagine a drug that makes you horribly nauseous and miserable for the first 59 minutes after you take it, but then makes you feel hedonistic bliss for a final 1 minute. The other effect of this drug is that during the those first 59 minutes, it blocks the transcription of long-term memories so that by the next day you only remember the final 1 minute.

  1. Assuming you did not know the full effect profile of this drug until after taking it the first time, would you expect yourself to take it a second time?
  2. Assuming you would decide not to take it a second time during the 12 hours while you still remember how horrible the first 59 minutes were, how would you prevent your future self who only remembers the bliss phase from taking the drug again?
  3. If you were King in the world where this drug existed, what policy measures (if any) would you enact to improve the welfare of your subjects’ interactions with this drug?
  4. If you were trapped on a deserted island with an inexhaustible supply of the drug and no way to prevent your future self from taking it each new day, would your subjective life be one of ecstasy or misery?

2 comments

    • bigjosh2

      Great Video, Thanks! Very much related, and I think important. His vacation example is very close to what I am trying to ask about, but even worse. Framed his way, your whole life *guaranteed* to be a vacation that you will forget when it is over, so what vacation life do you pick knowing this?

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