anders at aleph.se
Mon Mar 21 16:59:53 UTC 2016
On 2016-03-15 22:45, Kelly Anderson wrote:
> To addiction? Why did addiction evolve?
Why did fractures evolve? There are limits to what evolution can do, and
it optimizes for average performance in an environment. So if bones
occasionally break with evnetually fatal outcomes it is OK if the
fitness cost of that is smaller than the cost due to making them
heavier. And rare events will have extra weak and noisy selection pressure.
Same thing for addiction. The kinds of brains and motivation we have are
vulnerable to some chemical and behavioral signals, but the fitness
losses due to addiction in the natural environment are small and the
costs of making addiction-resistant motivation systems are likely high
(you need to rewire very fitness-relevant systems with highly preserved
It is worth noting that drug use is not uncommon among animals, but
addiction is more rare.
Future of Humanity Institute
Oxford Martin School
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