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Old 2011-02-16, 20:23   Link #61
Sugetsu
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GuidoHunter_Toki View Post


And it also breeds progress and success. Competition itself doesn't have to be bad, once again it comes down to what people themselves do.

I know I argued this point to death in the other thread, but; These "things" that this movement seems determined to fix all come down to humans themselves.



"The world is not beautiful, therefore it is."
Competing against yourself breeds progress and success, this is the way it has always been. Competing against others is completely unnecessary in a sane world. This competition breeds aberrant behavior.


Quote:
To achieve such goals you must change what makes us human, essentially.
Competing against others is not an intrinsic part of being a human being. Lack of resources or their poor management generates this aberrant behavior. If you change the environment you change human behavior. I hope you watched the movie.

Quote:
The idea of a perfect world may appeal to others, but not to me. The general picture of such a world, how it would operate, and what we'd need to do to get there sickens me. For this I give an appropriate quote...
The world of the venus project is not a perfect world. Perfection represents stillness, but the universe is always in motion. Human beings in their current condition would not be able to live in such a world because they are conditioned to compete against each other, among many other things. So in this sense, the world of the venus project might seem unattainable if you simply take the current aberrantly conditioned human being and place him in such a world. It is the same as tanking a indigenous person that lives in the amazon and placing in New York. Therefore, a change in the system is required in order to change his behavioral patterns.

Human beings are a reflection of their environment.
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Old 2011-02-16, 20:45   Link #62
Ithekro
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There are many kinds of competition. Aside from those needed to survive per the "Survival of the Fittest" model, there is also other forms. Just as the desire to be first or best at something. Take the sport of Swimming for example. There are multiple types of competition in that. First there is personal competition, where one is trying to beat a specific time to completion. Then there is personal bests which is related to the first one. Then there is the need to get to the end first and thus beat the person in the next lane. This form of competition translates to goals. Having a goal and reaching for it.

Other things can be competitions. Engineers trying to make the better product compete with others, making improvements on each other's designs until someone perfects the idea. Ocean Liners use to compete for who was the fastest or most efficient vessel to cross a body of water.

Again, competition tends to revolve around goals. What happens to a species that no long has goals?
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Old 2011-02-16, 21:14   Link #63
WordShaker
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Anyone mind if I put my two cents down somewhere? I'll preface this by saying I'm not a part of the ZG movement, I think there's plenty of truth to be found in it (my being a reader of Kropotkin, Marx, and others).

Quote:
Originally Posted by GundamFan0083 View Post
So now you're denying Darwinian evolution?
I realize that this might come as a shock to you, but I have news for you dear.
Competition is also known as natural selection or as Darwin and Wallace termed it Survival of the Fittest.
While competition does exist in nature (and is the dominant modus operandi for our fellow organisms), your statement precludes the biological altruism and mutualism we see in all life, from the lowest bacterial colonies to human altruism and cooperation. It's a bit of a stretch to say that evolution relies upon competition (and your extended point that competition = progress).

Further, I think it's inaccurate to equate natural selection with competition. Natural selection only says that the organisms that survive move on to reproduce, whereas competition is the vying for resources between organisms. While competition is necessarily a part of natural selection, being that the better fit to a certain task would certainly improve your chances of getting your freaky on and passing on your genetic material, natural selection due to competition does not exist to the exclusion of other types of natural selection. For example, the individual wolves of a pack will pass on their genetic material to their litters in large part due to the cooperation of the pack (and, yes, competition with other packs and organisms).

That's just the lead-up to your main point, though, so I'm not going to dwell on that.

Quote:
Competition is what created the industries that your precious Zeitgeist needs to implement their Technocracy.
Without competition mankind would have died out long ago because it would not have strived to survive and thus evolve technologically.
I disagree. Innovation does not go hand-in-hand with competition, and particularly not with warfare. Early civilizations were born out of cooperation, perhaps due to choice or perhaps due to circumstance; regardless, humans--and many of our close biological relatives--were and still are social creatures whose existence depended/depends on interaction and group-decision making. Take early human tribes and groups, and extend their history to the egalitarian-communitarian cultures of aboriginal peoples in nearly every continent; the communal structures of early farming and fishing, settling; the European communes of the Diggers and other early socialists; to contemporary history with Free Ukraine, Anarchist Spain, even the ongoing Zapatistas in Mexico and groups elsewhere. Again, innovation is not exclusive to competition.

Quote:
The greatest innovator in the human experience is now, and always has been, war.
War is competition in the extreme sense of the human experience, and as of yet has no equivalent.
However distasteful it is, war is unfortunately necessary as William James pointed out nearly a century ago.

The very internet we use today was built by the US military as a means to maintain communication in the event of a nuclear war.
The space program that created the satellites used for your cellphone, GPS, highspeed internet, television, and all international communications was all created to beat the Socialists technologically during the Cold War.

The jet aircraft we fly in, the steel ships we cruise on, the trains we travel on, the automobiles we drive, ALL were either developed for, or improved as a result of, war.

Iron was mined and developed into steel to make stronger and more powerful swords, armor and other weapons of war. Without that metal you and I wouldn't be talking, we'd be to busy scavaging for food in animal hides.
True, all those things you listed were born during or benefited during a time of war, but it's speculation to say that it could only have happened because of war when so much more, and arguably more integral, has been born out of it. To name just a few--the farming revolution grew organically (pun fully intended!) out of hunter-gatherer society, the wheel began as a toy and a tool, electricity was harnessed as an academic pursuit, and (to be recent and all) the internet has grown out of its roots to be a sprawling network far removed from any initial ideas it had (though networking existed far before the military ever thought of it, methinks). And, though warfare may have spurred the conditions of innovation, innovation itself is separate from warfare; fantastic leaps of understanding do not unfold on the battlefield, but in crowded hotel rooms and Swiss patent offices!

It seems to me that innovation is bred out of combined knowledge. Today, the free exchange of ideas is one of the hallmarks of modern science, cooperating to better understand the world. Warfare has merely led one government or another to provide the funding and gather the minds. I can scarcely believe that innovation would stop if people stopped shooting at each other; I know I find it easier to think without bullets whizzing over my head.

----------------

I really dislike the props given to competition. I'm not talking about the small scale competition of individuals in one thing or another, but the competition of society. Competition in education, economic competition, imperialist competition--it all leaves a pretty bad taste in my mouth. As if we couldn't get along if we actually...got along.

EDIT: Hmm, neg-repped, I'm wondering exactly what the problem was.

Last edited by WordShaker; 2011-02-16 at 23:13.
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Old 2011-02-16, 21:28   Link #64
Asuras
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War spurs on a much faster intent to improve, as I'd like to say. When in a time of life and death, victory and defeat, the human mind in all of its subtle adrenaline floods will drive for the creation of some innovative thing to win; and to survive. Of course, many things are bred without war, but most things that would've taken many years without war were created in months or small amounts of years. If there was no need for a better weapon to fight each other during our caveman years, then why would it have a need to be invented? If that happened, newer weapons that are more adept at hunting may have never been invented either. If there was no need for a rocket to fight others, we may have never came up with the idea to make a rocket for anything. It's a basic fact that humanity creates things for a better life. And in a world filled with unavoidable hate and difference, we will always need a bigger gun.
War isn't necessarily the only time of disparity. Consider that an apocalyptic meteor is headed for us, and we have no viable way of preventing it from annihilating us. The situation is very real, yet we don't seem to be taking precaution! I don't see an anti-meteor system anywhere, do you? But when it's evident that the time is coming, we'll all run our motherfu**ing asses off to build the next new thing. Then when it's all over we'll use the new technology for something else.
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Old 2011-02-16, 21:52   Link #65
GuidoHunter_Toki
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Originally Posted by Sugetsu View Post
Competing against others is not an intrinsic part of being a human being. Lack of resources or their poor management generates this aberrant behavior. If you change the environment you change human behavior. I hope you watched the movie.
*sigh* this is going to keep going around in circles.

Competition is a basic function of nature. Humans compete with each other, they compete against themselves, and they compete as groups against other groups. The negative aspects of competition inspire us to attempt to intellectually deny this aspect of our nature, but think about it; this leads to us competing at being non-competitive.

Competition between humans, even if sometimes it breeds "bad things" ultimately it is good in hindsight (A simple look at history should tell one this). I don't feel like getting too much into it for now (maybe I'll explain later), but I'll just say that I truly believe that the world needs pricks, dictators, and greedy f**ks. I know that may seem strange, but just take some time and ponder it. Thats all I'll say on that subject for now.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sugetsu View Post
Human beings are a reflection of their environment.
But not a complete reflection. It goes far beyond just the enviornment when explaining why and how any particular human acts.
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Old 2011-02-16, 22:15   Link #66
GundamFan0083
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wassupimviet View Post
Anyone mind if I put my two cents down somewhere? I'll preface this by saying I'm not a part of the ZM movement, I think there's plenty of truth to be found in it (my being a reader of Kropotkin, Marx, and others).
Not sure about anyone else here, but I for one don't mind at all.
I enjoy the conversation.
Although, I must say that your admission about being a reader of Prince Pyotr Alexeyevich Kropotkin explains why you might find Zeitgeist appealing.

He was a firm believer in an inherent biological cooperation that he believed existed within all species.
His book Mutual Aid: A Factor of Evolution was interesting to read, but clearly doesn't reflect the reality of what we plainly see in nature.
His political beliefs clearly clouded his judgement.

Quote:
While competition does exist in nature (and is the dominant modus operandi for our fellow organisms), your statement precludes the biological altruism and mutualism we see in all life, from the lowest bacterial colonies to human altruism and cooperation. It's a bit of a stretch to say that evolution relies upon competition (and your extended point that competition = progress).

Further, I think it's inaccurate to equate natural selection with competition. Natural selection only says that the organisms that survive move on to reproduce, whereas competition is the vying for resources between organisms. While competition is necessarily a part of natural selection, being that the better fit to a certain task would certainly improve your chances of getting your freaky on and passing on your genetic material, natural selection due to competition does not exist to the exclusion of other types of natural selection. For example, the individual wolves of a pack will pass on their genetic material to their litters in large part due to the cooperation of the pack (and, yes, competition with other packs and organisms).
That post looks very much like the Mutual Aid theory of Peter Kropotkin.
That theory cannot account for the blood lust of nearly all animal species.
Whether for the acquisition of food, territory, procreation, or simply dominance over another animal, the Mutual Aid theory of Kropotkin falls apart.
It's not surprising considering that Peter Kropotkin was an anarcho-communist of the 19th century who studied wildlife in Siberia.

Personally I take Thomas H. Huxley's position which he wrote of in The Struggle or Existance

Quote:
I disagree. Innovation does not go hand-in-hand with competition, and particularly not with warfare. Early civilizations were born out of cooperation, perhaps due to choice or perhaps due to circumstance; regardless, humans--and many of our close biological relatives--were and still are social creatures whose existence depended/depends on interaction and group-decision making. Take early human tribes and groups, and extend their history to the egalitarian-communitarian cultures of aboriginal peoples in nearly every continent; the communal structures of early farming and fishing, settling; the European communes of the Diggers and other early socialists; to contemporary history with Free Ukraine, Anarchist Spain, even the ongoing Zapatistas in Mexico and groups elsewhere. Again, innovation is not exclusive to competition.
No, actually they were not.
The pre-Sumerian Mesopotamian cultures were all warlike city-states.
That is an incontrovertable fact.
The city-states fought with on another for domination of land, resources, and wealth among other things (political struggles).


Quote:
True, all those things you listed were born during or benefited during a time of war, but it's speculation to say that it could only have happened because of war when so much more, and arguably more integral, has been born out of it. To name just a few--the farming revolution grew organically (pun fully intended!) out of hunter-gatherer society, the wheel began as a toy and a tool, electricity was harnessed as an academic pursuit, and (to be recent and all) the internet has grown out of its roots to be a sprawling network far removed from any initial ideas it had (though networking existed far before the military ever thought of it, methinks). And, though warfare may have spurred the conditions of innovation, innovation itself is separate from warfare; fantastic leaps of understanding do not unfold on the battlefield, but in crowded hotel rooms and Swiss patent offices!

It seems to me that innovation is bred out of combined knowledge. Today, the free exchange of ideas is one of the hallmarks of modern science, cooperating to better understand the world. Warfare has merely led one government or another to provide the funding and gather the minds. I can scarcely believe that innovation would stop if people stopped shooting at each other; I know I find it easier to think without bullets whizzing over my head.
Innovation has always come from competition, and mostly from warfare or the need to prepare for warfare.
Again, this is a historical fact, there's really nothing to argue over.

Quote:
I really dislike the props given to competition. I'm not talking about the small scale competition of individuals in one thing or another, but the competition of society. Competition in education, economic competition, imperialist competition--it all leaves a pretty bad taste in my mouth. As if we couldn't get along if we actually...got along.
Competition is the best thing that ever happened to humanity.
Without it we simply would not have the civilization we live in today.
I understand that it is a double-edged sword which cuts both ways and it hurts people as much as it helps, but it is in our nature to be this way and it will not change.
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Old 2011-02-16, 22:24   Link #67
GuidoHunter_Toki
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sugetsu View Post
If you change the environment you change human behavior. I hope you watched the movie.
I just wanted to reply to this for the simple fact that it seems as though you assume if I'm not ":getting" it I didn't watch the film. I did watch the film (a half year ago), but I didn't need to since this theory has been tossed around many times before. Just because I watched a film doesn't mean I take everything I heard in it as the truth or a well supported answer.

I simply don't agree with the films evidence plain and simple. I think you need to look beyond just what this film and it's so called "support" is telling you, because it is just not so simple as being the enviornment that causes all these problems with humans.
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Old 2011-02-16, 23:09   Link #68
WordShaker
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Asuras View Post
War spurs on a much faster intent to improve, as I'd like to say. When in a time of life and death, victory and defeat, the human mind in all of its subtle adrenaline floods will drive for the creation of some innovative thing to win; and to survive. Of course, many things are bred without war, but most things that would've taken many years without war were created in months or small amounts of years. If there was no need for a better weapon to fight each other during our caveman years, then why would it have a need to be invented? If that happened, newer weapons that are more adept at hunting may have never been invented either. If there was no need for a rocket to fight others, we may have never came up with the idea to make a rocket for anything. It's a basic fact that humanity creates things for a better life. And in a world filled with unavoidable hate and difference, we will always need a bigger gun.
War isn't necessarily the only time of disparity. Consider that an apocalyptic meteor is headed for us, and we have no viable way of preventing it from annihilating us. The situation is very real, yet we don't seem to be taking precaution! I don't see an anti-meteor system anywhere, do you? But when it's evident that the time is coming, we'll all run our motherfu**ing asses off to build the next new thing. Then when it's all over we'll use the new technology for something else.
To be fair, weapons generally evolve from tools or were weaponized secondary to its original purpose. Some of the first rockets began in China as fireworks, after all. In any case, warfare remains only the context in which these discoveries were made by providing the conditions for innovation.

From what I gather, this is strictly over human competition on the wide scale; I, like I think Sugetsu does, find modern human competition to be an artificial construct of capitalism. Capitalism and industrialization has produced the epidemic of overproduction for the few and imposed scarcity for the many; this mismanagement leads to forced competition between the many.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GuidoHunter_Toki View Post
Competition is a basic function of nature. Humans compete with each other, they compete against themselves, and they compete as groups against other groups. The negative aspects of competition inspire us to attempt to intellectually deny this aspect of our nature, but think about it; this leads to us competing at being non-competitive.

Competition between humans, even if sometimes it breeds "bad things" ultimately it is good in hindsight (A simple look at history should tell one this). I don't feel like getting too much into it for now (maybe I'll explain later), but I'll just say that I truly believe that the world needs pricks, dictators, and greedy f**ks. I know that may seem strange, but just take some time and ponder it. Thats all I'll say on that subject for now.
I don't think that the naturalistic argument is very convincing, honestly. And I definitely take some issue with the idea that competition is ultimately good; as I've seen it, competition throughout history has caused undue suffering for the sake of a lucky few and this idea of "progress." Furthermore, simply because competition was the context in which "progress" was made doesn't make it the only context where it could have occurred; I'd argue that competition has hindered human progress, in terms of a society that can take care of the needs of its people, far more than it has helped.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GundamFan0083 View Post
Not sure about anyone else here, but I for one don't mind at all.
I enjoy the conversation.
Although, I must say that your admission about being a reader of Prince Pyotr Alexeyevich Kropotkin explains why you might find Zeitgeist appealing.

He was a firm believer in an inherent biological cooperation that he believed existed within all species.
His book Mutual Aid: A Factor of Evolution was interesting to read, but clearly doesn't reflect the reality of what we plainly see in nature.
His political beliefs clearly clouded his judgement.
Great!

I actually find a lot of the ZG movement to be pretty bad, actually. It follows a trend of thinking that I find dangerous to individual expression and liberty, which is why I quite prefer Kropotkin's idea of anarcho-communism.

Quote:
That post looks very much like the Mutual Aid theory of Peter Kropotkin.
That theory cannot account for the blood lust of nearly all animal species.
Whether for the acquisition of food, territory, procreation, or simply dominance over another animal, the Mutual Aid theory of Kropotkin falls apart.
It's not surprising considering that Peter Kropotkin was an anarcho-communist of the 19th century who studied wildlife in Siberia.

Personally I take Thomas H. Huxley's position which he wrote of in The Struggle or Existance
Competition exists, sure, but it's not the only means by which evolution and natural selection occur. Science has widely documented altruism in animals, with that making up a major part of the discussion over the evolution of the conscience. It's kind of a side-point to everything else, though.

Quote:
No, actually they were not.
The pre-Sumerian Mesopotamian cultures were all warlike city-states.
That is an incontrovertable fact.
The city-states fought with on another for domination of land, resources, and wealth among other things (political struggles).
Then try the hunter-gatherer cultures of the American continents, many tribal societies in Africa, indigenous Australians, so on and so on. It was the centralization of farming and the accumulation of resources that led to stratified social structures and created competition. Don't get me wrong, conflict existed between hunter-gatherer groups as well, but this was low-key conflict much more akin to honor warfare than the massive imperialist warfare for resources and capital that has existed since the earliest kingdoms.

Quote:
Innovation has always come from competition, and mostly from warfare or the need to prepare for warfare.
Again, this is a historical fact, there's really nothing to argue over.
I dispute this and ask that you review the examples I've put up as well as provide evidence for your own argument. Simply saying that it is so does nothing.

Quote:
Competition is the best thing that ever happened to humanity.
Without it we simply would not have the civilization we live in today.
I understand that it is a double-edged sword which cuts both ways and it hurts people as much as it helps, but it is in our nature to be this way and it will not change.
Isn't that at the heart of the ZG movement, though; to change the way we think in relation to the system around us? Saying that it can't be helped avoids the issue, I think.
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Old 2011-02-16, 23:13   Link #69
GuidoHunter_Toki
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wassupimviet View Post
I don't think that the naturalistic argument is very convincing, honestly. And I definitely take some issue with the idea that competition is ultimately good; as I've seen it, competition throughout history has caused undue suffering for the sake of a lucky few and this idea of "progress." Furthermore, simply because competition was the context in which "progress" was made doesn't make it the only context where it could have occurred; I'd argue that competition has hindered human progress, in terms of a society that can take care of the needs of its people, far more than it has helped.
Likewise I don't think the enviornmental argument is very convincing (at least to the scale of it's effects).

As for competition brewing suffering around the world and throughout history all I have to say is that it was worth it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GuidoHunter_Toki View Post
the world needs pricks, dictators, and greedy f**ks. I know that may seem strange, but just take some time and ponder it.
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Old 2011-02-16, 23:25   Link #70
Asuras
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wassupimviet View Post
From what I gather, this is strictly over human competition on the wide scale; I, like I think Sugetsu does, find modern human competition to be an artificial construct of capitalism. Capitalism and industrialization has produced the epidemic of overproduction for the few and imposed scarcity for the many; this mismanagement leads to forced competition between the many.
Capitalism? CAPITALISM has caused our fierce competition?! It's painfully evident my friend that we've competed all our lives. Since day one, every living thing on this planet has competed for the top. Merely changing an economic stance doesn't make you competitive. Even without capitalism, every other form of government and economy has shown that the majority of the population competes for something.

Capitalism caused overproduction for the few and scarcity for the many? It was the same way before capitalism or industrialization were even a conceived word.
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Old 2011-02-17, 00:41   Link #71
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Old 2011-02-17, 00:45   Link #72
GundamFan0083
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Quote:
Originally Posted by wassupimviet View Post
Great!

I actually find a lot of the ZG movement to be pretty bad, actually. It follows a trend of thinking that I find dangerous to individual expression and liberty, which is why I quite prefer Kropotkin's idea of anarcho-communism.
We agree.
Kropotkin's idea did have merit as an untried theory of the 1800s.
Steven J. Gould tried to act as an apologist for Kropotkin awhile back in one of his papers/lectures on Mutual Aid theory.
The problem with the theory is it fails to realize that while the man promoting probably has pure intentions (which I believe Kropotkin did), the people who implement it and put the theory into real practice historically do not.

The Soviet Union was the ultimate experiment in Socialist theory, and it was an abysmal failure.
Lenin's virtuous dream of a Workers' Paradice was plagued with the ambitions, desires, and schemes of the politically powerful around him.
From the KGB to the labor unions, there were numerous individuals and groups seething with the desire to gain power.

Stalin is the epitome of the failure of Socialist Theory when he proved that corrupt despotism was the political-evolutionary pinnacle of all socialistic systems put into practice.

Leon Trotskyshould have become the Premier of the USSR, but due to the natural instinct of man to dominate, conquer, and crush his fellow man for his own ambition, Trotsky was exiled and then Stalin had the KGB put an ice-pick into the back of Trosky's head.

That event is one of many which proved (to me at least) that collectivist theory is not worth the sacrifice of personal property nor the ability to keep government in check via the capitalist system.

Quote:
Competition exists, sure, but it's not the only means by which evolution and natural selection occur. Science has widely documented altruism in animals, with that making up a major part of the discussion over the evolution of the conscience. It's kind of a side-point to everything else, though.
Natural selection is by its very nature competitive especially when two species (or elements within a specie group) must fight over finite resources.

Take for example males who compete (either by fighting, or plumage, or dancing [as with some birds], etc.) for the right to mate with a female.
They are competing for the right to pass down their genetic code.
Only the most competitive and strongest will do so with the best females, while the lesser types will mate with lesser females.
The least successful will not mate at all and their inferior line will cease.
That's basic evolutionary theory.
The species which are best suited to survival succeed, the ones who aren't become extinct.

Quote:
Then try the hunter-gatherer cultures of the American continents, many tribal societies in Africa, indigenous Australians, so on and so on. It was the centralization of farming and the accumulation of resources that led to stratified social structures and created competition. Don't get me wrong, conflict existed between hunter-gatherer groups as well, but this was low-key conflict much more akin to honor warfare than the massive imperialist warfare for resources and capital that has existed since the earliest kingdoms.
Uh...no.

The Aztecs were cutting out the hearts of their captives and eating them in the Americas.
Native Americans had a time honored tradition of scalping their captives.
Africa has been war torn since before the first Kingdom in Egypt, that's like what 5000+ years?

I don't know where you're learning about all this kum-ba-ya nonsense regarding ancient and savage man, but it's just flat out wrong.
The ancient astronaut (or astronut if you prefer ) theory has more credibility than the concept of flower-power primitives.

There was no mutual cooperation between tribes unless it was for mutual survival.
Man is a vicious, flesh-eating, war-making, animal with an apetite for killing that few other species can rival.
Oh we have our good side also...now, but when man lived as a savage in the early hunter-gatherer cultures, he was a very dangerous beast.
He had to be in order to survive.

BTW, all warfare is Imperialist by its very nature.
You've heard of the Babylonian/Persian Empire right?
Existed around 3000 BC.
They weren't waging war for honor, they were doing it for plunder.
The Persians were kicking butt and conquering their neighbors until the Arabs handed them their ass in the 600s AD.

Since the dawn of civilization ALL GOVERNMENTS have been Imperialist.
The USSR was one of the most Imperialist socialist countries on Earth during its time.
Imperialism is simply, the extension of rule or influence by one government, nation, or society over another.
Socialism claims to be anti-Imperialist in theory, but again reality shows a very different story.
Stalin, more than any other Socialist leader, proved that socialism was Imperialist when he took the Balkin states, Ukraine, tried to take Finland, and took most of Eastern Europe.

No -ism or -ology has a monopoly on being Imperialist.
They're all guilty of it without exception.

Quote:
I dispute this and ask that you review the examples I've put up as well as provide evidence for your own argument. Simply saying that it is so does nothing.
I'll do you one better...because I'm such a nice guy.

Here's a fine explanation of my point.
http://www.fpri.org/footnotes/1402.2...echnology.html

Quote:
Isn't that at the heart of the ZG movement, though; to change the way we think in relation to the system around us? Saying that it can't be helped avoids the issue, I think.
Saying it can't be helped is not dodging the issue, it's acknowledging who and what we are as a species.
This is where Zeitgeist fails utterly.
It proposes to change humanity via computer/machine control without addressing who will control/maintain the machines.
It claims a non-economy will be used to exchange the value of labor rather than money, and yet fails to address the fact that this system would be ripe for corruption, abuse, and eventual despotism on a global level.
Zeitgeist fails to explain what will be done with (or to) the people who do not wish to be apart of this global system.
I've said it before, and I'll kindly repeat for your benefit wassupimviet.
Zeitgeist is anti-human, it is a threat to mankind simply because it does not accept man for who he is and what his nature is.

Put another way, Zeitgeist is a 19th century solution (Utopian socialist-technocracy) to a 17th century problem (mercantilism).
We need a 21st (or at least 20th Century) solution to the 20th Century problem we're currently stuck in (Corporatism).
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Old 2011-02-17, 00:55   Link #73
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The only way we'll ever unite as a whole is via an external threat.

So all you folks hoping for an Earth Nation, wait until the aliens attack.
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Old 2011-02-17, 01:22   Link #74
Asuras
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I'm waiting for Independence Day. Please come and attack us aliens. Please.

The sad thing is, even if we did unite, it would inevitably fall apart later on.
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Old 2011-02-17, 03:03   Link #75
Sugetsu
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Originally Posted by Ithekro View Post
There are many kinds of competition. Aside from those needed to survive per the "Survival of the Fittest" model, there is also other forms. Just as the desire to be first or best at something. Take the sport of Swimming for example. There are multiple types of competition in that. First there is personal competition, where one is trying to beat a specific time to completion. Then there is personal bests which is related to the first one. Then there is the need to get to the end first and thus beat the person in the next lane. This form of competition translates to goals. Having a goal and reaching for it.

Other things can be competitions. Engineers trying to make the better product compete with others, making improvements on each other's designs until someone perfects the idea. Ocean Liners use to compete for who was the fastest or most efficient vessel to cross a body of water.

Again, competition tends to revolve around goals. What happens to a species that no long has goals?
Yes competition revolves around goals, but these goals have positive or negative effects on society depending on weather they are related to external or internal competition.

Internal competition comes from your desire to change things in yourself after practicing self observation or receiving advise. This type of competition keeps your ego in balance and improves your being. An example of internal competition would be trying to change your habit of always being late or acquiring knowledge. Internal goals have a positive effect on society because they do not come into conflict with the environment.

External competition is the result of scarcity. This type of competition imbalances your ego, which makes you ruthless. In this society money is one of the main breeders of competition, it automatically implies that having more of it will improve your quality of living. Our educational system is also a big contributor; it teaches us to compete since early childhood. External competition creates goals that come into conflict with the environment, which lead to division and force.

Competition should not exists when it comes to covering the basic necessities of life, these ones being food and shelter. Animals fight against each other for food and territory when this ones are limited but will tend to avoid conflict as much as possible if they can obtain them easily. Herbivores generally do not fight for vegetation because this one is abundant. Therefore, scarcity triggers the survival mechanism, which leads to competition. Humans react in the same way.

However, with the advent of technological development the need to compete for basic human necessities should no longer exists. (I should not need to explain why it is so, it should be very clear already) The problem stems from the current profit based system which exacerbates the need to compete for wealth. Food, shelter and recreation should be an universal human right, unfortunately they are not free and we are forced to fight for money on a daily basis.

The profit system has effected our psyche to such an extend that not only we compete for food, shelter and recreation but also for frivolous things, such as sports, arts, recognition, reputation, material objects and much more. In a sane world, we should not be caring for our ego so much that we are willing to hurt each other in order to preserve it. We should not care for what others think about us or weather you have the highest grades in class. We should be caring only to better ourselves internally and as a whole. Unfortunately, this aberrant behavior is exacerbated by the mass media and its culture of consumerism.

The need for external competition should not exist. What matters most is to make sure is that our basic human needs are taken care of automatically without the need to enslave ourselves. This is something that can be avoided but our system won't let go. If money and mass media weren't there to brainwash us into thinking that we must compete against each other we would have true goals in life that would only benefit mankind as a whole instead of keeping us divided.


Quote:
Originally Posted by synaesthetic View Post
The only way we'll ever unite as a whole is via an external threat.

So all you folks hoping for an Earth Nation, wait until the aliens attack.
I am going off topic here but I believe that the existence of evil aliens is impossible. The development of a sentient species consists of two elements: Spiritual and scientific. These two must be in balance at all times in order to promote the development of society. Technology can be used positively or negatively and its impact on the environment increases with higher scientific knowledge, if the species has a high degree of scientific knowledge but poor ethical behavior it is bound to use this scientific knowledge for self destruction. For example, would you let a child alone with a box of matches?

The technology required for star travel is so incredible that it could easily lead to an specie's extinction if used as a weapon. Therefore, if a sentient species were able to travel beyond its planet's boundaries it would have to have a very high degree of spiritual knowledge in order to be responsible enough to avoid auto destroying itself with such great power.

Needless to say, I believe it is impossible for us to achieve star travel while being constrained by the profit system. It is also pretty obvious that we are destroying ourselves because our spirituality is lesser than our science.

Last edited by Sugetsu; 2011-02-17 at 03:34.
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Old 2011-02-17, 03:19   Link #76
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Originally Posted by synaesthetic View Post
The only way we'll ever unite as a whole is via an external threat.

So all you folks hoping for an Earth Nation, wait until the aliens attack.
Does a killer asteroid count as an external thread? I doubt a sufficiently higher developed species is going to attack us (to waste their resources on us to fight a war - besides such an alien race has technology that must be able to generate enough energy, so that it could easily destroy planets (surface) - otherwise intergalactic travel wouldn't work quite well - this requires that the whole alien species is inherently peaceful/altruistic, otherwise it would have wiped out itself before it could attack mankind)
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Old 2011-02-17, 06:30   Link #77
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I know you mean well Sugetsu but your theory is flawed.

Competition can be good and bad. Healthy competition promotes respect, civility, creative thinking, fun, happiness, well being, and other positive reinforcements. A cheap example would be little things like our forum contests. We don't offer much, if any, incentive beyond a little bit of recognition. The driving motivator for most contestants is friendly competition.

It is true that competition can breed negative behaviors, like collusion, manipulation, anger, arguing, jealousy, etc., but you're forgetting that negative behaviors are reinforced by the environment. For example, take your average internet forum such as AnimeSuki. The ability to have civil discussion is largely in part to strong moderation attracting users who want to express their opinions within a relatively relaxed environment. Compare this to the average unmoderated forum which quickly fills with people who couldn't discuss their way out of a paper bag without resorting to immature behavior.

It is true that even a site like ours attracts posters who lack the ability to form a coherent argument. Most don't last long however, and those that do, adapt once they realize it's pointless to act like an idiot.

It may be in our *nature* to have undesirable traits (if you want to argue human nature), but it is how we *nurture* the people and environment they are in that ultimately results in the creation of desired traits and conditions.
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Old 2011-02-17, 08:47   Link #78
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Solace View Post
I know you mean well Sugetsu but your theory is flawed.

Competition can be good and bad. Healthy competition promotes respect, civility, creative thinking, fun, happiness, well being, and other positive reinforcements. A cheap example would be little things like our forum contests. We don't offer much, if any, incentive beyond a little bit of recognition. The driving motivator for most contestants is friendly competition.

It is true that competition can breed negative behaviors, like collusion, manipulation, anger, arguing, jealousy, etc., but you're forgetting that negative behaviors are reinforced by the environment. For example, take your average internet forum such as AnimeSuki. The ability to have civil discussion is largely in part to strong moderation attracting users who want to express their opinions within a relatively relaxed environment. Compare this to the average unmoderated forum which quickly fills with people who couldn't discuss their way out of a paper bag without resorting to immature behavior.

It is true that even a site like ours attracts posters who lack the ability to form a coherent argument. Most don't last long however, and those that do, adapt once they realize it's pointless to act like an idiot.

It may be in our *nature* to have undesirable traits (if you want to argue human nature), but it is how we *nurture* the people and environment they are in that ultimately results in the creation of desired traits and conditions.
You're right. Competition can be beneficial if the idea is used correctly, but using your own example here, as you said, the forums are highly moderated and people who disrespect the rules and act like idiots generally don't last long and it allows us to have civilized conversations and competitions, which are of a friendly nature. The rewards, as you say, do not amount to much.

This type of competition is regulated. The real world is different. Where success on forum competition doesn't give you all that much power over others, it does in the real world, and people fight in many ways out there. The government is not as involved in business competition is thoroughly as moderators are here. The real world is one where workers, employees and entrepeneurs were conditioned to believe money is everything, and the system is set up so that this is true, whereas rep here doesn't mean all that much (or shouldn't for those of you who think so ).

The current economic system is set up so that competition is success. Companies aren't involved in friendly competition when the continuation of the business is entirely dependant on how well you do against competitors, how much you sell, how well you use capital and where you place your investments. We are conditioned to compete when we, as humans, should support each other as fellows who walk the same Earth. Businesses don't compete to become friends like we do on forums. They compete to do better than the other and kick competitors out by capturing the greater part of the market.
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Old 2011-02-17, 13:40   Link #79
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jinto View Post
Does a killer asteroid count as an external thread? I doubt a sufficiently higher developed species is going to attack us (to waste their resources on us to fight a war - besides such an alien race has technology that must be able to generate enough energy, so that it could easily destroy planets (surface) - otherwise intergalactic travel wouldn't work quite well - this requires that the whole alien species is inherently peaceful/altruistic, otherwise it would have wiped out itself before it could attack mankind)
Yeah, but that's our view of things. Another highly-developed species may have different thought patterns. They may think on such a fundamentally different level as to not have our concepts of what's good and what's evil.

Unlike most sci-fi series, I suspect that any intelligent and advanced aliens out there will be so unlike us that our own preconceptions and beliefs and morals will mean jack all to them.
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Old 2011-02-17, 14:59   Link #80
Jinto
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Originally Posted by synaesthetic View Post
Yeah, but that's our view of things. Another highly-developed species may have different thought patterns. They may think on such a fundamentally different level as to not have our concepts of what's good and what's evil.

Unlike most sci-fi series, I suspect that any intelligent and advanced aliens out there will be so unlike us that our own preconceptions and beliefs and morals will mean jack all to them.
I don't think you really understand the inherent correlation of a technological level that allows for meaningful intergalactic travel and the necessary social/philosophical level of a society that is using such a technology. Say, you have a spaceship that can travel at 99.99% the speed of light. Lets assume the spaceship is very lightweight... just 1 metric tonne. Ekin = (m*c² / (sqrt(1-(v/c)²))) - m*c² :

(1,000*300,000,000² / (sqrt(1-(0.9999)²))) - 1,000*300,000,000² = 6,274,120,135,671,156,762,166 Joule (6,274,120,135,671 GJ)

Now for a comparison... the explosive equivalent of 1 tonne of TNT is 4.184 GJ... so that energy amounts to 1,499,550,701,642 t of TNT or 1,499,550 Mt of TNT or 1.5 Tt of TNT.
Imagine such an object crashes into another object... lets say a planet. Then you'ld have an impact energy equivalent of say 1.5 Tera tonnes of TNT or 15,000 full spec Tsar Bomba (100Mt). I know its a silly thought experiment, but imagine a society where everyone can drive a car that releases an impact energy of an apocalypse when causing a (deliberate) accident. How long do you think, will such a society survive, when it is not altruistic to the core?
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