[extropy-chat] Gandhi and EP was Bushido

Robert Bradbury robert.bradbury at gmail.com
Wed Apr 25 17:14:46 UTC 2007

On 4/25/07, Keith Henson <hkhenson at rogers.com> wrote:
> The trick to keeping humans out large scale violence is to keep their
> "bleak future" detectors off.  The modern equivalent of game and berries
> is
> income per capita.  Steady or rising income per capita keeps a population
> out of "war mode" unless they are attacked.
Keith, you keep harping on this topic of population growth as driving war.
I feel it is an incomplete theory. Perhaps a much better approach to "going
to war" is simply to "migrate".  Find a place where the resources are more
abundant than they are in the current location and simply move there.  Lord
knows that we mastered taking down a mammoth long before we mastered taking
down a walled city.  And one could argue that if one is clever about it
fewer people lost their lives in the process.

And though I realize this will raise the censor awareness level -- *why*
precisely did we go to war in (a) Korea; (b) Vietnam; (c) Iraq?  You have to
stretch very very far to argue that we were up against population
constraints and or decreasing income per capita.

I would also cite an interesting example involving the Mongols attacking
Iran where it had little to do with population pressure and a lot to do with
the Iranian's slaughtering Mongol ambassadors.  Or consider for example the
"Trojan wars" -- they were fought over a girl as stories go.  Or the wars of
Roman conquest?

IMO, there is a lot of ego and lust for power involved in the theory of war.
You need to document on a case by case basis the wars since the beginning of
recorded history and how population pressure or declining economic fortunes
drove them before I'll grant the argument.

(I'd suggest this be a non-list based effort, so people can easily review
and consider it.)

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