[Paleopsych] Re: An Evolutionary Mind...
Lynn D. Johnson, Ph.D.
ljohnson at solution-consulting.com
Mon Jan 17 16:11:37 UTC 2005
Hannes & Christian:
The view I am working from is somewhat like Alice Andrews: It
appears that around 50% of our behavior is from gene expression, which
can be modulated by environmental triggers. The other part is probably
The dilemma as I see it is unforeseen consequences of attempts to
modify behavior, a common phenomenon. I.e.: Children rewarded for
reading lose interest in the reading because they focus on the reinforcers.
Because of the unintended consequences it appears that socialism and
welfare state economics are very tricky and difficult to impliment. So
some prefer to have a lower level of social welfare programs because
they often backfire. Arguably Bush's policies contain many of these.
Bush put barriers up for steel imports, saving steel industry jobs but
costing many more jobs because of the ripple effect of raising steel
prices. Bush passed a Medicare drug benefit that now appears to vastly
accelerate the social security crisis. Bush passed "no child left
behind" and may have harmed education by costing school districts new
resources because of the burden of complying with this program.
So it appears government can help or harm, but often harms because
we aren't smart enough to view the consequences of our actions. Bentham
is wrong, because we cannot know what is the greatest good for the
In my humble opinion,
Christian Rauh (from webmail) wrote:
>Lynn and Steve,
>If man cannot be "perfected" by changes in the environment, it follows that it
>cannot be "imperfected" by changes.
>If you assume the above then you shouldn´t bother with how society is structured
>However, both of you have your takes on how things OUGHT to be so that men
>(individually or socially) are BETTER (more perfect).
>Quoting "Lynn D. Johnson, Ph.D." <ljohnson at solution-consulting.com>:
>>You asked me to reflect on your hate speech. Fair enough. I feel:
>> - sadness: You are a talented person who engages in reckless talk
>>that cheapens dialog.
>>I am obligated to oppose hate speech. Deontological obligation. Never
>>again Jewish gas chambers, never again Cambodian killing fields, never
>>again Saddam's mass executions. Every person is obligated to oppose hate
>>speech from whatever source.
>> Buddha said: Thoughts become speech; speech becomes actions, actions
>>become habit, habit becomes character. Take care therefore for your
>> So I speak against hate, and in favor of thoughtful and
>> About the perfection angle: Read "Radical Son" by Horowitz, where he
>>discusses that. That notion is also behind the infamous 'politically
>>correct dialog' that feminists and constructivists championed about 20
>>years ago. It is also behind the attempts to end poverty, as Johnson's
>>great failure, the "War on Poverty." It is also behind Stalin's embrace
>>of Lysenko. The idea is that by changing society we can fundamentally
>>change people. So there is a substantial body of evidence for that as an
>>implicit idea, perhaps not espoused but more a theory-in-action.
>>Steve Hovland wrote:
>>>As a card carrying liberal, I do not think that
>>>people can be perfected if we have the right
>>>kind of society. I have no idea where you
>>>get this formulation.
>>>From: Lynn D. Johnson, Ph.D. [SMTP:ljohnson at solution-consulting.com]
>>>Sent: Thursday, January 13, 2005 9:08 PM
>>>To: Alice Andrews; paleopsych at paleopsych.org
>>>Subject: [Paleopsych] Re: An Evolutionary Mind...
>>>Wonderful! I am glad for you. It is always worthwhile to share something
>>>you clearly worked hard on. I also read the Dembski review in the same
>>>issue, and had fun with that.
>>> You said, The feminist academic psychologist also asked me if it was
>>>not dangerous to our students to teach that "motherhood is innate and
>>>that the only way to be happy is to be a mother."
>>> You have identified the problem I have with feminists, namely that
>>>they ignore data that contradicts their theory, and they believe that
>>>only ideas that support their theory should be taught.
>>> At another level, you have identified a classic difference between
>>>modern conservatism and modern liberalism. The conservative believes
>>>that people cannot be perfected by society, the liberal believes that,
>>>given the right society, people can be perfected. Every contrary example
>>>is explained away.
>>> And I liked your description of your reaction to the dutch treat
>>>date where the man wanted to kiss you, even though you were raised not
>>>to have just that reaction. Sounds innate! So I think your article was a
>>>thought-provoking one and I hope it is widely read. I will forward it to
>>>the paleo list and encourage people to look it up.
>>>Alice Andrews wrote:
>>>>remember that piece you read some of....re me and the economist,
>>>>etc. "An Evolutionary Mind,"?...well it's a lot longer (i'm afraid)
>>>>Thanks again for your encouraging words...they definitely inspired me
>>>>to continue on writing!
>>><< File: ATT00000.html >> << File: ATT00001.txt >>
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>>>paleopsych at paleopsych.org
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