TRIBAL VARIATIONS - John Wawrzonek

There has always existed, since we lived in tribes as hunter gatherers, the potential to put on blinders and not see, understand or recognize the validity of other tribes, even (in the case of racism) not viewing them as human beings.

”...TRIBALISM IN THE AGE OF TRUMP.” is the subject of an article by George Packer in the October 12, 2018 issue of The New Yorker. I quote the whole first paragraph:

We live in a time of tribes. Not of ideologies, parties, groups, or beliefs—these don’t convey the same impregnability of political fortifications, or the yawning chasms between them. American politics today requires a word as primal as “tribe” to get at the blind allegiances and huge passions of partisan affiliation. Tribes demand loyalty, and in return they confer the security of belonging. They’re badges of identity, not of thought. In a way, they make thinking unnecessary, because they do it for you, and may punish you if you try to do it for yourself. To get along without a tribe makes you a fool. To give an inch to the other tribe makes you a sucker.”

This leads to qualities of human nature I have only recently realized were the driving force for warming. I also realized that these qualities, because they are so common were likely genetic, a variation on how we behaved as hunter-gatherers and perhaps even further back in our evolution. The are several reasons we are in trouble, all as a result of our hunter-gatherer heritage.

1. Hunter gatherers could not comprehend the time scales and distances we deal with.

2. Hunter likely stayed isolated from nearby tribes, just as hedgefund managers have little contact with lower class people.

3. The free-market capitalistic system is inherently unjust. Although millions of people work to support the large companies that earn the billions. These “worker-bees” have been stripped of the power by union busting, but I think most of all by the hideous ideology of low taxes and small government. On th surface this can appeal to almost anyone, but the low taxes combined with numberable tax avoindence techniques have brough the CEO scale to a ridiculous multiple of the minimu wage which has not been increased since it was instituted and is about 1/3 of what it should be.

TRIBES

or why it is so hard to get people around the world to work together.

I believe the following to be true:

1. Populations are divided into “tribes.”

2. A tribe is any group of people that have chosen to live in a group or community or share particular ideas ranging from fans of sports teams to beliefs in racial and political philosophies and have formed bonds for any number of reasons.

3. On the average research has shown that inate intelligence does not vary significantly from tribe to tribe. However, tribal teaching, religion, experience, historically determined practices or values can either greatly expand the mental range and reach of a tribe or contract it, sometimes drasticaly. This includes the imporant practices concerned with threatment of the opposite sex and well as attitutdes toward other tribes.

4. Attitudes and beliefs of any kind can be modified significantly by individuals or groups within a tribe that chose to take behavorial posession of the tribe. The degree of education may or may not prevent this.

5. Variation across the planet is very large encocmpassing hunter-gatherer tribes, religious groups such as quakers, evangelicals, and believers in various interpretations of scriptures. Leaders can also create great confusion in the mental outlooks of tribal members or of large groups of tribes (e.g. V. Putin).

6. Racial predjudices often have major influence on the formation of tribes. Many of these are based on mistaken notions such as skin color which has been shown to be primarily determined by ancestoral migragion which began in Africa for all homo sapiens, but stopped in fairly warm (sunny) climates or continued far north. The need for sunlight to produced vitamin D in turn affects the amount of melinin in the skin and therefor the lightness or darkness of the skin. A result has been the formation of tribes with various beliefs about skin color including those we refer to as white supremists. A lack of education may have a large effect although changing beliefs can be difficult and can take generations.

7. Teaching about experiences such as slavery is very inconsistent, and often false and misleading aiding misconceptions about people of color. 8. Religious beliefs are mainly apocrophal and may contain wisdom or falsehoods. Only by use of intelligence can we distinguish one from another.

9. Religion in combination with recent history and long held beliefs and will and these may vary widely among different groups within a religion such as the denominations in Christianity.

10. Evolving a global intelligent civilization is impossible or nearly so.

11. The development of advanced civilizations is directed primarily by intelligent thinking (e.g. the US Constitution).

12. Considering the harm already done and the enormous diversity of beliefs it is doubtful if a unified civilization can be achieved, but it is necessary to try.

Powered by SmugMug Log In