[ExI] Evolutionary psychology was Donald Trump

Keith Henson hkeithhenson at gmail.com
Sat May 7 00:22:59 UTC 2016


On Fri, May 6, 2016 at 1:50 PM,  "spike" <spike66 at att.net>

snip

> After pondering my own question, I fear we did this us.
>
> Why doesn?t this sort of catastrophe ever happen to the saner nations, such as, like, Britain or Germany?
>
> Oh wait, back up one.  It did happen once in Germany.

If you are into evolutionary psychology then you look into the ways
our ancestors lived as hunter-gatherers for an explanation as to what
happened in Germany in the 1920s and lots of other examples.

Humans have had the ability to reproduce to fill the environment to
capacity for a few million years.  But "capacity" is a variable as
weather can seriously reduce the capacity of a given environment to
feed people.  The solution, which worked just fine for millions of
years, was to go kill neighbors when facing starvation.

Now killing neighbors is a dangerous thing do to from your personal
viewpoint, they fight back and may kill you.  But from the gene's
viewpoint, it is substantially better than half the tribe starving.
(I have discussed the math behind this here several times.)  So what
evolution has done is bias us to follow crazy leaders when the future
is looking bleak.  The crazy leaders take us into wars, and from the
gene's viewpoint, honed over a million years, wars are better than
starving.

> OK then, Britain.  Why don?t the Brits ever find themselves in a spot where their two major parties nominate odious characters, then somehow convince themselves only those two parties can ever matter forever and ever amen?  And why did this happen to us?  And can we do anything?

That's the bleakest part of evolutionary psychology.  Probably not.

If there is anything we can do it is to change the population wide
perception and reality of the future to a more hopeful view.  That's
why I work on power satellites as a mechanism to solve energy and
improve population wide economics.

Keith



More information about the extropy-chat mailing list