[ExI] addiction

Stathis Papaioannou stathisp at gmail.com
Sun Apr 5 15:24:38 UTC 2015

On Sunday, April 5, 2015, William Flynn Wallace <foozler83 at gmail.com> wrote:

> On Sat, Apr 4, 2015 at 6:21 PM, Keith Henson <hkeithhenson at gmail.com
> <javascript:_e(%7B%7D,'cvml','hkeithhenson at gmail.com');>> wrote:
>> I don't think people are going to get very far with understanding
>> addiction until they understand why human (some at least) can be
>> addicted at all.
>> You folks are sick of hearing about it from me, anyone have an
>> evolutionary pathway to this curious trait.
>> Keith
> ​Long ago psychologists established that if you inserted a stimulator in a
> lab animal's pleasure centers, (in fact the studies that established the
> existence of them), the animal would make a response to get the stimulation
> until it fell over from exhaustion and then later get up and do it again.​
> ​It could not be distracted by food or the smell of a receptive female.
> Surely this is the mother of all addictions.
> It is difficult to see how this behavior could in any way help an animal
> to survive and breed.
> Perhaps someone who is more up-to-date on cerebral stimulation can
> enlighten us.
> One thing I do know:  not every single thing about us is positive in terms
> of evolutionary fitness.  We have just enough to keep going.
> Look at the susceptibilities to various cancers.  Very negative but
> generally occurring well after sexual maturity.

Evolution has not had long enough to act on addiction, which is a
maladaptive hijacking of a physiological system.

Stathis Papaioannou
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