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View Diary: This week in science: The singularity approaches (66 comments)

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  •  Human nature trumps the singularity (1+ / 0-)
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    Nisi Prius

    For tea baggers human history goes back a few thousand years. That way they can make up their own bogus facts as they need to push their twisted view of reality.

    In reality human history goes back a quarter of a million years and if we count Neanderthals as human then our history goes back 3 quarters of a million to a million years. A seismic shift in human nature took place in the recent past when we began to practice agriculture as a means of feeding ourselves. It is generally agreed this took place about 10 thousand years ago.

    The shift in human nature followed since hunter-gatherer societies prior to agricultural societies don't have divisions of labor or if they do those divisions are cloudy at best. With the practice of agriculture came well defined divisions of labor and  slavery became a fact of life in many early and even modern agricultural societies. A shift in human nature took place as land, slaves, and herds of domestic animals became symbols of wealth. In hunter-gatherer societies wealth was measured collectively and symbolism was used to request divine intervention for a succesful hunt.

    So another seismic shift is taking place as technology replaces human labor. Will human nature undergo a shift as it did 10 thousand years ago? Time will tell. The ideal situation would be for human nature to shift back to what it was like in hunter-gatherer societies when the Earth and the Universe itself were seen as deities. My fear is that the gods of banking and commerce that we appease today will gain more power at the expense of nature. Those who are enamored with technology must see that technology must be used as a means of improving the human condition and not a means of gaining political and economic power. The siren song of the gods of banking and commerce is too strong for some. Many of those who claim to be using technology to improve peoples's lives are simply paying lip service to a social ideal. Unless we move the ideal to match reality we are staring down into the dystopian black hole we want to avoid.

    Knowledge is Power. Ignorance is not bliss, it is suffering. If you like hypocrite Obama, you'll love hypocrite Hillary.

    by harris stein on Sat Oct 26, 2013 at 09:24:14 AM PDT

    •  Um, not quite (2+ / 0-)
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      KenBee, RiveroftheWest
      The shift in human nature followed since hunter-gatherer societies prior to agricultural societies don't have divisions of labor or if they do those divisions are cloudy at best.
      The hunter-gatherer society I'm most familiar with, Inuit, certainly did have division of labour which arose out of the necessity of the hunter lifestyle (gathering tends to be minimal when ice and snow covers everything for most of the year).

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