White Lives Matter

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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby doogles on September 12th, 2020, 6:51 am 

I made a mistake in assuming that you had a similar interpretation of pecking orders as I did Serpent. Obviously we have different understandings.

When you say, "That pecking-order idea is also a big assumption about "our" drives, given the variety of social arrangements in "our" evolutionary history. While we do observe hierarchies in many other intelligent species, they certainly do not all fit the same model. The model itself comes from the observation of domestic fowl - and i have to wonder how closely that society approximates the natural order. I'm not aware of any animal societies that routinely discriminate against a group for irrational reasons.
Closer to home, the variety of arrangements in the certified human communities about which we have reliable information, suggests that stratification is not an inescapable necessity of human groups."
, I just have to disagree.

There are just too many references to support 'dominance hierarchy' across species. If you check in Google Scholar with the keywords DOMINANCE HIERARCHY ACROSS ANIMAL SPECIES, you will see that it ranges through insects and fish to most social and herd animals. I witnessed it in various animal species on a daily basis as a veterinarian for 40 years and the similarities within our own species were obvious. I can fill pages with everyday examples in our species, ranging from family and workplace structures to the operations of bureaucracies and club organisations. Because of its high prevalence across species, I regard it as an innate drive.

I will just make one more comment in this post and that is to the one link you provided -- "If that were so, you'd expect it to be uniformly distributed in all societies. And yet that is not what we find. https://www.thelancet.com/journals/eclinm/article/PIIS2589-5370(20)30020-1/fulltext.

I looked at that reference and I came to a conclusion different from yours. Their findings were "Of the 317,869 adolescents studied, 151,036 (48%) were males, and 166,833 (52%) females. The pooled prevalence of bullying victimisation on one or more days in the past 30 days amongst adolescents aged 12–17 years was 30·5% (95% CI: 30·2–31·0%). The highest prevalence was observed in the Eastern Mediterranean Region (45·1%, 44·3–46·0%) and African region (43·5%, 43·0–44·3%), and the lowest in Europe (8·4%, 8·0–9·0%). Bullying victimisation was associated with male gender (OR: 1·21; 1·11–1·32), below average socio-economic status (OR: 1·47, 1·35–1·61), and younger age (OR: 1·11, 1·0–1·24). Higher levels of peer support (0·51, 0·46–0·57), higher levels of parental support (e.g., understanding children's problems (OR: 0·85, 0·77–0·95), and knowing the importance of free time spent with children (OR: 0·77, 0·70–0·85)), were significantly associated with a reduced risk of bullying victimisation.

Their Interpretations were that "Bullying victimisation is prevalent amongst adolescents globally, particularly in the Eastern Mediterranean and African regions. Parental and peer supports are protective factors against bullying victimisation. A reduction in bullying victimisation may be facilitated by family and peer based interventions aimed at increasing social connectedness of adolescents." The main point here is that it is prevalent amongst adolescents globally.

This supports rather than contradicts what I said in my previous post.

We appear to be on wavelengths that are too far apart to continue a chat on dominance hierarchy and sexism, nationalism, etc.
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby Serpent on September 12th, 2020, 9:08 am 

There is a difference between hierarchy based on relative strength, ability, etc. and social stratification based on a hereditary caste system. A herd of elephants has a small group of dominant individuals - who just so happen to be the oldest, most experienced females -- not the emotionally deprived male offspring of some conceited bull on whose head a bull in a bishop's miter happened to place a crown. See the difference?
In order to maintain his dominance, the leader of a wolf pack has to keep proving his competence as a hunter and protector; as soon as he falters, he's challenged and replaced by a younger, faster, sharper-eyed alpha. That's quite different from a lazy fat man conferring the castle and its farms and tenants onto his lazy fat eldest son, while banishing his younger sons to the colonies, where they must make their own fortune with nothing more than military command of 100 peasants' sons, or the royal grant of a thousand acres of Native's land and a few dozen slaves.
Leadership that emerges through childhood competition earns the respect and loyalty of its followers without bullying, blackmail or coercion. Artificially imposed hierarchies are under constant threat of rebellion; they're fearful and must constantly keep their subjects in a state of insecurity. Which makes both rulers and subjects crazy, which turns the society into bullies and victims.
It seems universal and inevitable, because we made that one fatal mistake which is now driving us inexorably and irreversibly to the crumbling edge of the very cliff we've previously undermined.
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby doogles on September 13th, 2020, 6:52 am 

Here's an excerpt from a book titled ANIMALS, BRAINS AND CULTURES on the similarities of motivation and behaviour in humans and other animals. This brief comment on pecking orders is one of about 13 drives I regarded as innate because of its prevalence across many species. It's not posted as a response to Serpent, so much as just one person's view of pecking orders and their possible role in racism, sexism and nationalism. The book itself is not popular because it tends to show that we humans are still just as 'primitive' in our behaviour as other animals lower in the phylogenetic order.

WE ALL LEARN TO KNOW OUR PLACES WITHIN OUR GROUPS

Isolated groups of bulls will brawl to the detriment of the farmer’s barbed wire fences until they establish an order of physical superiority. The lacerations from the fences are nothing compared with the desire for dominance. Once the order is established, no more brawling ensues unless a new bull is introduced, or unless the equilibrium is disturbed by removing one of the bulls from the paddock for a while, and then returning it.

Herds of cows have definite pecking orders. Any dairy farmer can point out the boss order in his herd. He may have some difficulty with the exact order in the middle group, but he will have no trouble pointing out the top boss and the lowest in the order.

If ever a flock of sheep is confined for a prolonged period in a pen or a yard, an hierarchy will be established, sometimes to the detriment of some of the sheep that may be prevented from feeding. Jostling ceases once all animals accept certain positions in the pecking order.

Rabbits also have bullies. At a laboratory-animal holding house I once supervised, we decided to take all of the rabbits out of individual cages and place them in groups in pens on wood chips - for animal welfare reasons. One of the problems was that bully rabbits emerged. In one particular pen, a large brown rabbit was so bossy that it started inflicting multiple bite wounds on the other rabbits. In this case, we collectively decided to try putting a collar around the neck of the offending rabbit, and tying a weight to it. This had the effect of handicapping it from pouncing on the others. It turned out to be too effective. The other rabbits found that they could bite the bully without reprisal and mount it in a simulated sex act, even though we had neutered all of the males. They did this to the point where the bully seemed to completely lose its spirit. The assaults continued even after we removed the weights. We had to isolate that rabbit in a cage for its own survival. Such is the nature of the pecking order - even in penned rabbits.

If dogs are kept in pairs in pens, one will occasionally kill or badly injure the other. It was my assumption that they were cases of dominance assertion. I saw a number of cases while in practice, and I had to patch up many badly mauled dogs. It may be similar with people. Every year in Brisbane, we see media reports of cases of stabbing incidents between two human males living together. Whether it’s for dominance, or a result of an insult to self-image, is never discussed.

It may seem surprising that one never hears of the cases that occur in animals of the kind I’ve cited. But then again, I’ve never notified a newspaper of such things, and I have a feeling that people would not really want to hear about them; it would shatter their delusion that animals are kind to one another. There is one report though. In 1987, JA Serpell, an American veterinarian wrote about litter mates of dogs killing one another in an article on The Influence of Inheritance on Canine Behaviour: Myth and Fact.

Although none of us had heard of such a thing at the time, a strong physical pecking order did exist among my peers when I was at primary school. It reflected the imagined physical strength of other young males. There weren’t any contests of strength, although there were physical contact games that tended to give you some idea of your relative strength. There were a couple of boys who were a little bigger or a little older, whom we acknowledged as top of the pecking order. At the next level, there were one or two who had demonstrated either some form of physical superiority at games, or who, as in one case, showed a slight tendency towards insanely berserk reactions in a fight. Others left this one alone.

I fancied myself in my self-image as being just somewhere below this group. As studies have shown with other species, it was among a lower group, at my own perceived level, where physical challenges occurred. Although I was small, I felt physically superior to some of the other boys. It wasn’t as if anybody spoke about these things. The entire pecking order just seemed to exist.

There came a day when one of the boys at my own perceived level, challenged me to a fight. Like gentlemen, we agreed to meet in one of the playgrounds at lunchtime. I was wishing the other kid would show up sick or something because I wasn’t looking forward to the idea of a punch-up. No such luck! Anyhow, the result was that I retained my status, because just about when I started to feel it was hurting a bit much, the other kid broke down crying and ran off.

Within six months, another kid wanted to have me on. Life’s tough if you’re not at the top of the tree, and if you don’t readily accept a position at the bottom.

These types of fistfights were quite common in the area in which I was reared, and the status of the victor was always enhanced.

Apart from attempts by individuals to gain dominance within their own groups, there are now many reported cases of conflict between entire groups of animals of the same species. In The Rise and Fall of the Third Chimpanzee (p 261), Jared Diamond cited examples of inter-troop conflicts between Langur monkeys, lions, wolves and hyenas that resulted variably in the killing of neighbouring infants, the repulsion or killing of neighbouring males and the killing or kidnap of neighbouring females.

In the same book on pages 262 to 264, Jarod cited the report by Jane Goodall of the guerrilla type attacks by one group of mainly bachelor male chimpanzees from one troop on a neighbouring troop. They eliminated the neighbouring troop one by one over a period of several years, till they were able to take over the territory. The only difference between this case and human genocide seemed to be, as Jared pointed out, that chimpanzees lacked the educated skills to kill efficiently.

Not all confrontations between neighbouring groups of animals result in combat. In most cases of confrontation, one troop will back off without a fight if it is obvious that the numbers are greater on the other side. Apparent might determines the rights at the time. So what’s new about the ‘Arms Race’, or even border confrontations in our own species?

Perhaps one of the reasons we wage wars is because we have not established the natural physical superiority of the warring groups. No! Let’s put it another way. If it was clear beforehand that one of the two groups could destroy the other, then the less adequate group would stick to negotiations rather than force a military issue. Wars only stop when one of the two groups establishes the ability to destroy the other, or when both groups realise that neither is achieving dominance and they mutually agree to cease hostilities. Of course, the initial reason for the war is usually an insult or threat to the established psychosocial ways of one of the groups, or disagreement over territory, or a threat of economic loss, the equivalent of accumulated harvest. But the lesson is that the more established the pecking order, the less the number of conflicts.

Within our society, we have established pecking orders in many ways. From an early age, we accept that our parents are stronger and higher in the order than we are. Of course, there inevitably comes a stage in our lives when we have conflicts with them in a vague attempt to establish our own position within the family. Mostly we do this too soon and when we are far too little. It’s natural for two- and three-year-olds to attempt to defy their parents’ requests. Up till the last decade or so, a token smack on the backside used to quickly establish the correct pecking order.

We usually make a more serious attempt during our teen years, sometimes resulting in prolonged conflicts within families. Some husbands and wives indulge in lifetime battles to achieve psychological superiority over one another. I find it uncomfortable to be in the presence of couples who indulge in points scoring.

We tend to avoid such attempts in public life by establishing status. It’s primitive in one way but it works. Many big businesses have hierarchy systems. Chief Executive Officers, Directors, Managers, Assistant Managers, Foremen and Workers all have to acknowledge the rankings, otherwise conflict occurs in the firm. Workers usually do not talk to managers as they would to another worker of equal rank. We usually regard any departure from this situation as unusual. Generally, there is relatively free communication between foremen and workers, but even then, there are limits. One does not tell a foreman that he doesn’t know his job without the foreman reacting in the usual way to an insult to self-image. In such a case, the foreman has the power of the hierarchy, the power to dismiss you from your job.

If you’ve ever worked in a large organisation you will also have noticed that there is a corollary to this pecking order. We have terms such as toadies, sycophants, and brown-nosers in our language for people who ingratiate themselves with the bosses, and who, because of this established liaison, lord it over others who do not ‘brown nose’ the boss. In a recent e-mail dictionary, a new word has been introduced – ‘arsemosis’, which is defined as the absorption of success and advancement in the workplace by sucking up to the boss. As I said, if you’ve ever worked in a large institution, you will know what I mean.

Would you believe that a similar social situation has been described in a troop of baboons? Lorus and Margery Milne in The Animal in Man, cite the work of Irven de Vore who studied olive baboons in Kenya. Apparently, a number of sycophantic baboons kowtow to the dominant male baboon and become part of the central hierarchy. These baboons can and do threaten males outside the central group and even attack them with impunity. The attacked males cannot retaliate without appearing to challenge the dominant male.

We have pecking orders within many of our groups. Democratically we elect presidents, vice-presidents, and committee members in most organisations within my culture. In doing so, we establish mutually agreeable pecking orders for specified periods. Groups seem to function better with pecking orders.

Status means power of one sort or another. As a bonus, there is usually more money associated with top jobs, and in all societies, money equates with power. People in the top positions have a sense of being in control, and this gives them a sense of security.

Perhaps the next best thing to being the top person in an institutional pecking order is having the feeling of being better than someone else is. Racism, sexism, and all forms of bullying fall into this category. There will always be a tendency for bullying to occur in schoolyards simply because of our innate natures. The best we can do is to devise ways of keeping it under control.

It seemed to me while dealing with cattle that if ever one cow found another one in a disadvantageous position she wouldn’t miss the opportunity to give it a good hard thump. I concluded it was an attempt to assert authority over another. Aren’t Australian politicians exactly like that too? If you ever watch Question Time in Parliament, you will see something similar every day. Whenever a politician of one persuasion finds any evidence of a mistake or mis-demeanour associated with a politician of another persuasion, he will never miss the opportunity to denigrate his opponent. If cats find themselves face to face, it usually results in a slapping contest till one backs off.

An American schoolteacher named Jane Elliott demonstrated how easy it is to establish relative dominance and submission of not only children, but of adults, over others on the basis of such an arbitrary characteristic as the colour of one’s eyes. In an initial experiment, she divided a class of all white students into two groups depending on their eye colour - light colours such as blue or green, and dark coloured. She broadly classified them as blue or brown. On the first day, she proclaimed that the ones with blue eyes had superior intelligence and that brown eyes equated with inferiority. She reported that the ‘superior’ students quickly began to dominate the brown-eyed ones, the latter exhibited self-loathing and fear. When she reversed the roles the next day, the behavioural attitudes of the respective groups also became reversed.

Later in 1996, she produced a videotape called Blue-eyed in which she demonstrated this same experiment with mixed age adults. Even though it was only role-playing, those deemed to be inferior, really felt inferior. Some adults in the so-called inferior group were reduced to tears after only hours of torment because of a morbid feeling of inferiority. As Jane Elliott pointed out, eye colour was a characteristic over which they had no control, because they were born with it.

If authority is to be asserted, it needs to be obvious to the lower orders exactly which individuals are in charge. Now humans can’t go around asserting their authority in the same way as top dogs, stallions, bulls or silverback gorillas, but consider the equivalents. They may wear a uniform, which announces their rank or position. Or they may have special privileges and accessories that will make their status plain -- reserved parking places, the keys to the executive washroom, a certain quality of carpet on the floor, a chair with a higher back than those used by subordinates, are all well-known markers of a person’s status among his or her colleagues.

Peter (1973) wrote about hierarchies. He claimed he had founded a new science, Hierarchiology. On this subject he wrote (p 4) - “Man orders his affairs in hierarchies. His schools are ordered in grades from kindergarten through graduate school. His businesses are operated with employees in order of rank. His government is organised with taxpayers forming the base and the national leader as the apex. Similarly, the military, fraternal orders, social welfare, sports and the Mafia are all structured on hierarchies … Each hierarchy consists of an arrangement of ranks, or classes to which each individual may be assigned."
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby Serpent on September 13th, 2020, 10:23 am 

Okay. Hierarchies exist in nature. You've proved, beyond a shadow of a doubt (well, maybe just the shadow of using domesticated and captive animals to study the nature of animals; much as you would learn about the social behaviour of men by studying prison populations), something that was never contested. I never, for instance, suggested that animals are generally "kind" to one another: only that they tend not to be irrational in their dislikes or in their choice of leaders.
It's not the "order" I question; it's the causes of "pecking".

What I disagree with was not the fact of hierarchical arrangement in societies, but the criteria and methods of establishing status in a society. Not all animal societies are organized in the same way, and not all human societies are organized in the same way.
Nor can the status of individuals within a group compare to the competition of human ideologies for the hearts and minds of individual humans. Those are different mechanisms for different functions, on different orders of magnitude. Nor is the effect of personal status on an individual's psychological health compare with the effect of adherence to an ideology on the individual's relationship to the rest of his society.

None of that has any bearing on the notion of racial intolerance. If that were a "hard-wired" or universal human trait, no European explorers who set foot on another continent would have returned to tell about it; no Jews would have been rescued from the nazis; no Jim Crow laws would ever have had to be enacted in the US. The very existence of episodic persecution proves that the norm is peaceful co-existence: you can't scapegoat a group until after it's been established.

Since we're doomed by 7000 years of the wrong methods of sorting, it no longer matters very much.
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby BadgerJelly on September 14th, 2020, 12:43 am 

Doogles -

I think we could almost as easily argue that ‘pecking orders’ worsen society. Generally speaking issues arise between humans due to how we’re entangled with each other. We necessarily have to reference and orientate ourselves (as individuals within a group, and/or as a group among groups), and so mediate between ‘better’ or ‘worse’ upon a bias of personal experience (first or second-hand; meaning, by way of interpretation of how, what and why other act/say what the do/say).

Taking things all the way back to Aristotle’s view of the ‘master’ and ‘slave’ dynamic, I’ve always found it telling how he frames there as being such a thing as a ‘good’ master and a ‘good’ slave. These terms in the modern sense have a lot of baggage so it can be hard to see underneath what is being said here. Essentially that ‘dominance’ is probably a term of bias to be used to convey a certain view of how humans interact.

To briefly summise what Aristotle says, he says that a ‘master’ who mistreats his ‘slaves’ will get less love and affection from them, they will not be of much use to such ‘masters’. Whereas a ‘good’ master will not mistreat their ‘slaves’ and earn their respect and thus have ‘better’ use from these ‘slaves’. Other ‘slaves’ able to see how others are treated will then act up against their master’s even more if they are mistreated ... passively or actively. This will eventually result in the ‘bad’ masters falling shorter of the ‘good’ masters in terms of social standing.

To bring the topic back around to the point the OP is addressing ... the Citizens are the ‘slaves’ (we are the slaves) and the Governing Body (law and order) is our ‘master’. Obviously this is more complex when dealing with what Aristotle was saying on such a scale, but it still rings true. It is, generally speaking, in every ‘slaves’ interest to protest against the mistreatment of other slaves as it is their interest too - it could easily be them targeted next time.

I am NOT going to ignore that there are ‘bad’ slaves too. This is precisely what the modern day issue is because the lines between groups of people is fuzzy at best, so making sweeping judgements about one section of society can be dangerous, just as NOT paying attention to certain injustices can be even more dangerous for the stability of any society. The issue of how ‘power structures’ are viewed is often reduced to something intangible or slippery. We set up the rules of society and those in ‘positions of power,’ sometimes unwillingly, are ‘slaves’ to the ‘master’ of the current social norms. Even the victims of misdeeds are more and more likely to accept their positions in society regardless of how unfair the reality of the situation is (and the reality of almost every human situation is ‘unfair’ to some degree or another). The target is to not to make injustice disappear (that is an idealistic and unobtainable item), but to face the many-faced monster of injustice and fight it to the bitter end.

I don’t think the ‘cycle’ can be broken ever. We are creatures that seek out conflict both internally and externally. Sadly, we’re also prone to getting things terribly wrong due to our limited understanding, and the few experiences we’ve had as individuals within humanity.

Anyway, the idea of ‘dominance hierarchies’ as comparable to animals ‘penned in’ there is certainly some crossover there - we are essentially ‘self-domesticated’ beings now! That said though, there is something to be said about the entire situation of being ‘penned-in’ in the first place. We’ve ‘naturally’ fallen into the habit of limiting our place in the natural world and benefited from a greater degree of control over our environment (or rather, we’ve carved out a niche for ourselves as a species) at the cost of certain freedoms. There is always cost and sometimes we don’t see the cost paid until it is almost too late (maybe we blind ourselves completely rather than suffer the discomfort/distress involved when dealing with items almost completely out of immediate resolution?).

The whole BLM movement will inevitably carry good and bad with it. I don’t think it makes sense to park in either the ‘for’ or ‘against’ group, but rather to address that there is an issue being highlighted and that any issue being highlighted demands some degree of attention. I don’t blame people for pointing fingers as it is what we generally tend to do. I do believe the problem runs deeper than this though, but that societies are just not quite ready to cope with facing it yet.

Just like it is extremely difficult to make Covid disappear, so it is with racism. It is NOT an impossible task, but it is highly unlikely to happen over night, nor do I expect the extermination of racism to be a resolution of human conflict in general. I think it is worth noting that the uproar about ‘Islamophobia’ as a term runs parallel to this issue. Meaning I believe there are different problems at play in society in regards to how we frame our problems and exactly how to deal with the issues in a positive and progressive manner (we do seem to have slowly made some stumbling progress thankfully!). To clarify, I’m talking about how we use the term ‘phobia,’ ‘racism’ and/or items like ‘prejudice’. Prejudices are irrational, yet certainly a natural disposition we use in order to fumble around and find a ‘place’ to suit our views/experiences. With Islamophobia and Racism, these are just extensions of ‘prejudices’ we’ve been born into, and/or create in order to navigate through life and possess a sense of ‘place’.

edy -

I do find humans to be quite extraordinary. I love humanity. I love all the mistakes we make, all the suffering we’ve caused each other, and the resolve we find within to step forward no matter what - even though it often feels like we’re going backwards or have already ‘lost’ the game.

Children give me hope. I hope we can all become children again in our lives rather than dismiss such naive optimism with an overly cynical and resentful view of the world. Sometimes the beauty if the world makes me want to cry, as it does today ... likely for sentimental and selfish reasons, but I FEEL something profound at the moment that warrants optimism and calm, because there is suffering and heartache within me and within everyone else, just as much as the beauty of being a part of humanity is trying to burn its way out of me and everyone else.

I do truly believe that anyone looking at something with disgust does so because they realise, deep down, that the act that deem disgusting is an act they too are equally capable of ... better be revulsed than to face the darker shades within us all for some perhaps (who can blame them?). Without wishing to sound all wishy-washy I’d just rather push myself toward forgiveness and love rather than revulsion and disgust (and I’ll fail often enough as will everyone ... that’s okay).
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby BadgerJelly on September 14th, 2020, 12:48 am 

Note: It is more than likely that the phrase Black Lives Matters was meant to display just the right amount of controversy in order to make me say ‘All Lives Matter’ to further hammer home the point that, yeah! Ffs! That is the entire point! Of course some will use and abuse the slogan to suit their own selfish demands on the world, but life is tough so maybe we should offer a measured degree of charity in interpreting who they are, what their upbringing could’ve been like, and try (failingly often enough) to pick and choose our words with a degree of care and understanding as and when we best see fit.

None of will ever agree on anything in all its complexities and manifestations. That is MUCH harder fro some to handle than others.
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby doogles on September 14th, 2020, 6:20 am 

Bear in mind that I'm not an authority on any of this stuff. It's just the way I see things after 40 years of close association with animals of all kinds, and humans for much longer, coupled with the ability to read as much as I could about what others have had to say about such matters.

Serpent said -- "It's not the "order" I question; it's the causes of "pecking"." The cause of pecking is an innate 'drive for status' evident across species, at individual or group level.

Serpent also said -- "None of that has any bearing on the notion of racial intolerance. If that were a "hard-wired" or universal human trait, no European explorers who set foot on another continent ... " I may not have expressed myself as well as I intended. It's not raciism, sexism or nationalism that's hard-wired, it's the innate 'drive for status' at individual or group level.

This 'drive' corresponds to a part of Freud's ID. How we manifest it depends on the environment we are reared in. In the case of Afro-Americans, I can see where, as slaves, they were regarded as the lowest caste. Many whiteys must have felt a certain sense of superiority in their presence. And I can understand (but not condone) the feeling of resentment in some whiteys, when this sense of superiority was taken away from them. It robs them of a degree of status.

A drive for status is probably a good thing where healthy competition is concerned, but when it manifests as the 'bullying' of physically weaker individuals, globally as adolescents (as per Serpent's last link), maybe sexism, and psychologically as name-calling, fault-finding, we have problems.

Rightly or wrongly, that's the way I see racism, sexism, domestic violence and nationalism. They are expressions of our primitive innate drives for status.
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby doogles on September 14th, 2020, 6:46 am 

Badger, I'm not quite sure of the point you are trying to make, but I have a different view of your very first sentence -- "I think we could almost as easily argue that ‘pecking orders’ worsen society."

I hope that I've made a convincing case that dominance hierarchy (pecking orders) exist within groups of animals, including human beings. I also attempted to make a case that it is this innate primitive drive of seeking status that results in racism, sexism and nationalism at individual or group level of existence.

But rather than regarding them as 'worsening society', I see them as strengthening the stability of group living, if we accept them AND LEARN TO KNOW OUR PLACE IN THE ORDER OF THINGS.

Before you start hitting the computer keys, let me first make it clear that I see the individual achievement of status by bullying, racism, sexism and nationalism as the last hope for people who are, in reality, 'losers' in life. As I'm typing this, an image of Hitler comes to mind, as does the question of the charisma that some people possess in recruiting like-minded people -- like 'White Supremacy groups.

Anyhow, back to the necessity of pecking orders in civilised cultures. How can families function if the parents are not obeyed (Yes, I know many parents are far from perfect)? Sometime in my schooling, I used to get constant messages to respect and obey my parents and my elders, even though I was acutely aware that many of them were struggling with their own lives. How can schools function if children do not show respect to the teachers and ultimately the head master? How can an army function without rankings and the compulsion to obey orders from superiors in rank? How can the public service operate without ranks and without someone as the head of the organisation? How can any club or association work without a President, Vice-President, Secretary, Treasurer and rank and file members? You can expand on these examples as well as I can.

I'm happy that I live within the governance of the Westminster System of the Commonwealth of Nations. We have a hereditary referee system (The Monarchy and their representative Governors at State an Federal level) who have no say in the actual running of Parliament but who have the power to accept the peoples' choice after elections, and to dissolve Parliaments and call for re-elections when stand-offs occur in Parliamentary matters. Governors have back-up resources spanning centuries of experience in handling Constitutional Laws. Presidents of Republics are stand-alone persons with no long-term traditional back-up. I like our dominance hierarchy system of governance. It's based on a primitive pecking order system, but it works.

Problems only occur with workable pecking-order systems in civilised cultures when people do not accept their place in them anymore. This is the substance of protests and revolutions.

I accept that many structured dominance hierarchies are essential for the satisfactory function of civilised cultures, but that racism, sexism, nationalism and bullying in relationships are manifestations of attempts at dominance by people who have no other legitimate claim to status themselves (or something of that sort). I'm not sure I have expressed that very well. Someone may gather my gist and express it better.
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby Serpent on September 14th, 2020, 10:58 am 

doogles -- I accept that many structured dominance hierarchies are essential for the satisfactory function of civilised cultures, but that racism, sexism, nationalism and bullying in relationships are manifestations of attempts at dominance by people who have no other legitimate claim to status themselves

My bold.
That's exactly what I've been on about. When the system of "dominance" is established through a mechanism and according to criteria that do not feel legitimate to a substantial membership in the group, that dominance has to be maintained by force, rather than trust. That is the source of bullying.
I have issues with two other words there. There is a difference between 'leadership' and 'dominance'. A well qualified leader doesn't need to beat his team into submission: he commands their attention and respect. He can safely turn his back on them and trust them to carry on with the assigned tasks, without needing spies. He can face a challenge on his own merit, rather than have to call in armed intermediaries to enforce his will.
The word 'bully' is also misleading. In the wild, bulls only fight at mating season, for the privilege of transmitting their DNA to the next generation, for the ultimate betterment of the herd. If they're not fenced in, the weaker bulls can run away: there is no need to keep 'putting them in their place', belittling and humiliating them. The rest of the year, those same bulls lead the entire herd to seasonal pastures and stand on the outside of the circle to defend the cows and calves when predators attack.

In captivity - which is what civilization is for the majority of a society's members - things are quite different. The legitimate paths to social status are blocked by artificial barriers. (that's one function of systemic racism) The loser of a fight has nowhere to go. And the winner doesn't gain real status in class-stratified society: beating a weaker child, or man, or ethnic group is nothing more than a shore-term panacea for damaged self-esteem. And because it's temporary, it needs ritual repetition - which doesn't actually salve the underlying pain, resentment and frustration of being dominated by one's inferiors.
The laird can have his pick of milk-maids and no cowherd dare raise a hand to him - even though the cowherd is stronger, faster, smarter and would make a far better leader as well as a far better grade of offspring.
Fear is a very, very poor substitute for respect.
Once you have arbitrary rulership, the whole society is heading in the wrong direction. The bigger it gets, the more power is concentrated in fewer and less competent hands, the proportion of disillusioned, disaffected, disenfranchised citizenry grows. The road to decline and fall is paved with broken psyches.
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby BadgerJelly on September 14th, 2020, 11:46 pm 

Doogles -

Badger, I'm not quite sure of the point you are trying to make, but I have a different view of your very first sentence -- "I think we could almost as easily argue that ‘pecking orders’ worsen society."

I hope that I've made a convincing case that dominance hierarchy (pecking orders) exist within groups of animals, including human beings. I also attempted to make a case that it is this innate primitive drive of seeking status that results in racism, sexism and nationalism at individual or group level of existence.

But rather than regarding them as 'worsening society', I see them as strengthening the stability of group living, if we accept them AND LEARN TO KNOW OUR PLACE IN THE ORDER OF THINGS.


My point was exactly what I said. It can be viewed either way. You may prefer to lean more one way than the other but it’s pretty irrelevant without empirical data. Of course they exist, but viewed just as ‘pecking orders’ makes it sound a little like force rules, which is simply not the case in any social structure - poor leaders will be cast aside eventually. In human societies our strictures are HUGE so it’s not quite as simple as that most of the time because of the number of layers between those at the bottom and those at the top.
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby doogles on September 15th, 2020, 6:05 am 

Badger, I'm pleased that you agree with me on the prevalence of dominance hierarchies in our culture when you say "Of course they exist ... " I understand that.

And Good day to you Serpent. It sounds as if you agree with me in principle, except for some fine tuning.

You said "I have issues with two other words there. There is a difference between 'leadership' and 'dominance'." You could be right about a distinction between 'dominance' and 'leadership' but that's a side issue. I've never used the word 'leadership' in this chat. I don't know where that came up.

I don't know why you find the word 'bully' misleading. I think its connotation is well understood in the English language. And cattle don't have a breeding season as such; they cycle all the year round. And as for bulls defending a herd, I've never seen such a thing in domestic cattle, and in footages of lion attacks on herds of similar herd animals such as Wilderbeeste, they run like every other animal; it's usually one of the cows that finishes up confronting the predator. And studies show that it's usually a nursing cow that commences the migration movement each year, not the bulls. But that's by the by; I understood the thrust of what you meant.

I agree with your fine tuning when you say "The legitimate paths to social status are blocked by artificial barriers. (that's one function of systemic racism) The loser of a fight has nowhere to go. And the winner doesn't gain real status in class-stratified society: beating a weaker child, or man, or ethnic group is nothing more than a shore-term panacea for damaged self-esteem. And because it's temporary, it needs ritual repetition - which doesn't actually salve the underlying pain, resentment and frustration of being dominated by one's inferiors." I could add to that by commenting that because they can't just move on, they have to wear the shame and stay the victim. This is the exact reason why half-way houses have been instituted for victims of domestic violence. Victims of racism probably have similar problems; socio-economic reasons don't make it easy just to pack up and go elsewhere.

Seeing that you seem to be roughly on the same wavelength as me, do you think that the significantly high rate of homicides of black people by other blacks, could also be a manifestation of attempts to achieve dominance within their own groups?
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby BadgerJelly on September 15th, 2020, 6:45 am 

Doogles -

It’s not a case of agreement. Of course they exist. No one would deny that they exist would they?

Whether or not they are ‘innate’ depends upon what exactly is packaged up within the term ‘dominance’. Generally speaking ‘competition’ is innate and the existence of ‘dominance’ of people/peoples over others may be to the greater detriment of both in the long and/or short term.

Society is complex and causal relations are not particularly easy to spot across the span of human history. We can infer many things and make some reasonably safe guesses, but beyond that treading lightly is probably a sound course of action.
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby charon on September 15th, 2020, 7:44 am 

It’s not a case of agreement. Of course they exist. No one would deny that they exist would they?


Good lord, you're beginning to sound like me :-)

(I have no idea what all this is about, by the way!)
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby Serpent on September 15th, 2020, 10:29 am 

doogles » September 15th, 2020, 5:05 am wrote:And Good day to you Serpent. It sounds as if you agree with me in principle, except for some fine tuning.

Ya. At the first fork, we should have turned left instead of right.

You said "I have issues with two other words there. There is a difference between 'leadership' and 'dominance'." You could be right about a distinction between 'dominance' and 'leadership' but that's a side issue. I've never used the word 'leadership' in this chat. I don't know where that came up.

I introduced it. It's the central issue. You use 'dominance' to illustrate how social hierarchy works; I say the purpose of social hierarchy is to select good leaders. Through the natural selection process, we get good leaders who help the group survive. Through the artificially imposed selection process, we get rulers who have agendas other than the welfare of the group.
If the troop perceives the leader as legitimate, they'll follow enthusiastically - you don't need any pecking or bullying or chivvying or firing squads to maintain discipline.

I don't know why you find the word 'bully' misleading.

I explained that.
And cattle don't have a breeding season as such;

And cattle are not natural. I've already pointed out that captive, domesticated, subjugated, genetically and psychologically manipulated animals do not present an accurate model of nature. They show us what we have influenced other animals, not how evolution influenced us.
Herd animals in the wild are different, one species from another, in their social organization, breeding habits and responses. The term "bully" does not come from wildebeest or musk oxen, but from domestic cattle.
And as I've said, behaving like domestic cattle is not humanity's bast hope.

[the loser has nowhere to go] I could add to that by commenting that because they can't just move on, they have to wear the shame and stay the victim. This is the exact reason why half-way houses have been instituted for victims of domestic violence. Victims of racism probably have similar problems; socio-economic reasons don't make it easy just to pack up and go elsewhere.

It's far more fundamental than that. A class-stratified society erects barriers to the very possibility of winning, or even entering, a fair fight. A serf isn't allowed to raise his hand to the overseer - not even if the overseer rapes his daughter right in front of him: he'd be flogged to death.
So, what does that ignorant, frightened, ashamed man do with all the bile he's had to swallow in his short, brutish life? He beats his wife and his master's horse.
A coercive hierarchy requires every level of power to keep its precious little power by pressing down on the one below. If you're forced to kiss up, you're bound to kick down. The lowest socio-economic level is desperate for someone to kick down at. When they're offered a scapegoat in the form of an ethnic group, a religious minority or an alien incursion, they seize upon it with gusto.

... do you think that the significantly high rate of homicides of black people by other blacks, could also be a manifestation of attempts to achieve dominance within their own groups?

More likely territorial/resource disputes between herds of young bulls surrounded by barbed wire.
But I'm skeptical of the statistics - their source and provenance.
And it doesn't matter anyway. It's only one symptom in a vast array of manifestations of a systemic infection. All of our civilized societies are dysfunctional in too many ways to treat.
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby TheVat on September 15th, 2020, 7:03 pm 

I can agree with much of the evidence that Isms are derived from the drive towards status. And those more insecure in their status are most easily recruited into Isms and the groups that coalesce around them. One proposed answer is a more egalitarian social structure, where leadership derives from competencies and skills rather than two-fisted dominance. Do you all thinks it's possible to achieve that without more limits on things like predatory capitalism and more focus on moving away from materialism/consumerism? Can humans accentuate cooperation over competition?
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby Serpent on September 15th, 2020, 8:29 pm 

TheVat » September 15th, 2020, 6:03 pm wrote:... One proposed answer is a more egalitarian social structure, where leadership derives from competencies and skills rather than two-fisted dominance. Do you all thinks it's possible to achieve that without more limits on things like predatory capitalism and more focus on moving away from materialism/consumerism? Can humans accentuate cooperation over competition?

Capitalism is predatory by nature and incompatible with egalitarian social structure. Limits and regulations keep it from destroying the capitalists' own society very quickly - so long as those limits and regulations don't protect any other society, or the environment, from their predation. Indeed, since even an imperfect democracy tends inevitably toward socialism, capitalists need to undermine, subvert, corrupt and co-opt its agencies in order to maintain their own ascendancy.
So, that would be a No.
Of course humans can accentuate cooperation over competition: significant numbers of humans do it in emergencies and times of hardship; most humans do it routinely in mundane life, when they're not threatened or baited from outside.
The whole reason elites keep needing to make miscegenation, dietary, dress and segregation laws is that people, given reasonably stable conditions, tend to trade, exchange information, socialize and intermarry.
Machiavelli knew what he was talking about.
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby BadgerJelly on September 15th, 2020, 9:34 pm 

TheVat » September 16th, 2020, 7:03 am wrote:I can agree with much of the evidence that Isms are derived from the drive towards status. And those more insecure in their status are most easily recruited into Isms and the groups that coalesce around them. One proposed answer is a more egalitarian social structure, where leadership derives from competencies and skills rather than two-fisted dominance. Do you all thinks it's possible to achieve that without more limits on things like predatory capitalism and more focus on moving away from materialism/consumerism? Can humans accentuate cooperation over competition?


Do want to - is it ‘better’ - accentuate cooperation over competition? Competition is great, but not all competition is what is sometimes termed ‘healthy competition’. It seems to me that the very pattern of competition leads to a disregard for causation to some degree. This is due to actively focusing on perfection in one specific area - all care and caution is applied to the task immediately at hand in order to reach a better result within that specific area.

I believe the issue is more about how to mitigate against competition working against the broader human interest ... that is extremely difficult to say the least. Even if we had a competition to come up with the best idea to combat the negative aspects of competition, then we’d still have to accept the fallout of those working on the task.

I think it is a reasonable thing to say that some areas are more prone to causing greater harm than others in terms of focused competition. All competition can obviously go too far, and cooperation can just as easily work against an optimal outcome - to use a hyperbolic example if Usain Bolt had ‘cooperated’ in the 100m sprint with everyone else fully then they’d have been no new world record and most of them would’ve shared the gold medal! Yes, I know that is silly :) the point is to show that cooperation as well as competition can be just as detrimental toward a preferred outcome.

Something I mention many years ago in here was how we split seemingly opposing concepts into ‘positive’ and ‘negative’ creating a cultural bias. That is actually a very strong reason why the -ism exists in how we categorise human behaviour and marginalise each other in an almost programmed manner. With this in mind I’d say it is almost certain that most human beings in todays world view ‘competition’ as being more negative than ‘cooperation’. Yet, there is pretty much nothing to base this on. It is just something we unconsciously accept as how the world is, just as we accept that the sun rises, when in fact it doesn’t ‘rise’. The Earth is merely spinning, but from our perspective it appears to be ‘rising’ (which is also a term we frame with positivity!).

As for something that leans more towards a social system, based purely on competence and skill, the issue is still that some will have more competence and skill than others. I think Rawls’ “Veil of Ignorance” is a pretty nice point to consider even though it isn’t a solution it does help us as individuals to take a step back and address certain issues that have been hidden right under our noses.

I believe it is too often ‘the obvious’ that causes human suffering because we’re not attentive enough to what is ... well, paid no heed because of its prevalence. We don’t think about how we walk and talk, how we view this or that person, or whether or not what we really believe, and/or understand, what it is we think we’re saying from one moment to the next.

Anyway, Rawls and his thought experiment for those unfamiliar: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Veil_of_ignorance
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby doogles on September 17th, 2020, 6:20 am 

Thank you TheVat for summarising things so well -- "I can agree with much of the evidence that Isms are derived from the drive towards status. And those more insecure in their status are most easily recruited into Isms and the groups that coalesce around them. One proposed answer is a more egalitarian social structure, where leadership derives from competencies and skills rather than two-fisted dominance. Do you all thinks it's possible to achieve that without more limits on things like predatory capitalism and more focus on moving away from materialism/consumerism? Can humans accentuate cooperation over competition?"

Obviously, I agree with your first two sentences. Neither Serpent nor Badger appear to have questioned your statement, so it seems that at least we can take that as a 'given' in explaining a possible basis for racism, sexism, domestic violence etc. and move on instead of sideways.

As far as an answer to the 'isms' is concerned, it seems to me that some sort of subtle advertising (education?) indicating that the mentality associated with them is in line with that of the lowest of other species of animal and that the behaviour has no place in civilised human cultures, may be worth a try. I'm pessimistic though, because here in Australia we have many programs in progress against domestic violence, with some minor reduction, but no great change in its prevalence.

I can't personally see any need for changing any of the many other systems of dominance hierarchy within western cultures. Family, Workplace, Institutional, Governmental and Legal hierarchies and the Westminster System all seem to work all right to me. Admittedly, none of them are perfect, but they exist, and they keep a degree of stability in our cultures. As I've said before, the systems seem to me to remain stable so long as each person accepts their place in them.

As Serpent and Badger have pointed out, there is much room for fine tuning. We should endeavour to create systems that give everyone a chance to move up the scale, and you will note that this has happened in many organisations by creating new ranges of rankings. As Badger suggested, pure competitions may need some modification in order to retain some personal esteem in losers. And it would be more ideal if we had some criteria for ensuring that chosen leaders possessed leadership and fairness qualities.

But they are probably subjects for another thread. My aim in this one, in spite of its title, was to chat about BLM and racism a little more.
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby Serpent on September 17th, 2020, 10:26 am 

Doogles -- Neither Serpent nor Badger appear to have questioned your statement, so it seems that at least we can take that as a 'given' in explaining a possible basis for racism, sexism, domestic violence etc. and move on instead of sideways.

I didn't think I needed to restate my position.
Yes, there is a drive in all social animals to establish their status in a group. No, that drive is not the cause of racism, sexism and domestic violence. The perversion of that drive, resulting in rule by a wrongly-selected [illegitimate] elite, the insecurity and machinations of that elite, manipulation of the subject people, always pitting one faction against another, lest all the subjects unite and depose the elite - that is the source of destructive isms.
As far as an answer to the 'isms' is concerned, it seems to me that some sort of subtle advertising (education?) indicating that the mentality associated with them is in line with that of the lowest of other species of animal and that the behaviour has no place in civilised human cultures, may be worth a try.

We tried that in the 20th century. It didn't work, simply because it wasn't true. Other animals have no similar class or political or economic arrangements. They do not behave irrationally - except when they've been civilized. Cilivilization is irrational.

I'm pessimistic though, because here in Australia we have many programs in progress against domestic violence, with some minor reduction, but no great change in its prevalence.

Because you haven't addressed the cause. Caged rabbits fight, not because they're rabbits. but because they are caged.

You don't need to educate people in tolerance; free and happy people are tolerant. You need to stop educating them to prejudice.
You need to curb the hate-mongers. You need to break down the present power structure of an elite that depends upon keeping the the productive classes in a constant sate of anxiety and frustration.
What you need is a global socio-economic collapse and a whole new world order.
I'm pretty sure we're about to get the former, but I no longer anticipate the latter.
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby BadgerJelly on September 17th, 2020, 11:44 pm 

Doogles -

The thing is I am talking about ‘racism,’ but I certainly don’t see it as a stand alone issue being merely an extention of heneral human prejudice - a function that possesses both positive and negative aspects.

BLM is clearly an important movement. I am unsure about its application on a global scale though in terms of what is being said. It is worth stating that the US has enormous international clout in terms of its media presence so it is of large significance to the rest of the world what happens there. I generally believe in the fumbling positivity of humanity so I lean towards a greater benefit (be this long or short term).

Lines are divided in terms of sex, religion, beliefs, and numerous outward appearances and tropes ... it is the way we operate. Some areas have more political/social/historical weight than others, and all are used and abused (consciously or otherwise) to fuel personal agendas and world views.

In simple terms I’m saying putting ‘racism’ under one umbrella, that applies to every section of society across multiple cultures and nations that all have reasonably differing and diverse historical attitudes, is useful to some degree. The underlying problem we have within the social sciences is a lack of objective data and the lack of means to measure ethical postions against each other.

Most problems probably boil down to one simple flaw. A lack of imagination. There are many people out there who lack imagination, so when someone says ‘if everyone just tried to look at the world from the position others are in we’d all be better off,’ is quickly followed up by the imaginatively void persona spouting out ‘that’s just a dream, not a reality’ because they lack the ability to make the first step towards a possible betterment of society and would rather xepress this by pulling down those to their level of ineptitude. Another problem is the opposite pull! Too much believe in an imagined scenario. The rigid belief that their own view is indoubtedly the best view and that if it was adhered to the world would suddenly become better overnight ... that is an unwillingness to put the graft in to push things slightly towards an idea of ‘better’ (and knowlingly taking on the task with the possibility such an act may be the detriment to the cause you so adamently fight for).

The term ‘humility’ exists because people are lacking. All concepts exist due to a lack of human understanding.

On a more pessimistic line I’d argue that a ‘perfect world’ would fall quickly to the human destructive tendencies that have gotten us so far already. Meaning, as I believe Schiller loosely put it, if everything worked flawlessly we’d smash it uo just to give ourselves something to do - boredom may be our biggest enemy? More positively I’d probably lean towards Chomsky’s view of humans as ‘creative beings’ and needing to express themselves in some creative capacity (within that there still lies plenty of darkness that comes packaged up on both the manner we ‘create’ and the inequality between every person’s creatuve capacity and thirst).

I’ve no idea what you wish to discuss precisely - and never will. The can be said of the BLM movement. No one person is involved in it for exactly the same reasons. What it is is pretty much an expression of humanity, and none of us are ‘humanity’ as it is concept that expresses our collective affect which we can only observe and consider with humility and act according to what we dee as our best balance between the immediate ‘good’ and the longterm ‘good’ (we’re partially sighted, but we strive onward).

I’m framing the issue in such a light so as to shut it down. My intent here is to step further out in order to look upon the matter compared to other issues and compare what success there has been here or there in order to apply a rational outlook on the situation/s and better arm ourselves against repeating too mistakes of the past or creating new and more vicious ones.
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby doogles on September 18th, 2020, 5:27 am 

Badger, I went through your post three times and gather that you do not believe there is any point in discussing such matters or in attempting to change things to any degree.

Unfortunately, it seems to be a part of my nature to attempt to make sense out of problems and to ponder ways to remedy them. I did this for a living for 40 years as a country veterinarian and then a university veterinarian. My living during my 25 years as a country veterinarian depended on making accurate diagnoses and on instituting remedial measures that produced results at an economic advantage to the farmer. We did not get paid for patting an animal on the head and hoping it would recover. I'm optimistic that if you understand what is causing a problem, you have a better chance of correcting it. It just so happens that in my 40 years of close contact with animals of all kinds, I could see behavioural similarities with those of our own kind. Not only that, but from reptiles upwards in the phylogenetic order, we have anatomies (including the entire neurohormonal systems), biochemistries and physiologies that are comparable. This suggests to me that our emotional and behavioural reactions and motivations are comparable as well. I spent decades in the days before Google Scholar and PubMed in researching everything I could about world research on such matters. As a result of these studies, I may perceive human behaviour differently from other people.

I don't see any difference in the dominance behaviour shown by animals towards each other and of humans towards each other at every level of life.

I threw the idea into the ring on September 8 to be kicked around. Obviously you and Serpent do not see it the way I do, and I can live with that. But TheVat appeared to see a connection when he said "I can agree with much of the evidence that Isms are derived from the drive towards status. And those more insecure in their status are most easily recruited into Isms and the groups that coalesce around them."
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby doogles on September 18th, 2020, 5:32 am 

Good day to you Serpent. You've left me no room to respond to your post because you have provided all the answers. You tend to make dogmatic and authoritative conclusive assertions.

Some examples:

" ... No, that drive is not the cause of racism, sexism and domestic violence. The perversion of that drive, resulting in rule by a wrongly-selected [illegitimate] elite, the insecurity and machinations of that elite, manipulation of the subject people, always pitting one faction against another, lest all the subjects unite and depose the elite - that is the source of destructive isms." End of all other opinions. Serpent is right and everyone else is wrong.

"We tried that in the 20th century. It didn't work, simply because it wasn't true." A reference to that 'Trial' would have been useful.

"You don't need to educate people in tolerance; free and happy people are tolerant."
Oh!

"What you need is a global socio-economic collapse and a whole new world order." Sounds like you want a revolution.

I'll just have to learn to live as a delta or something in this area where you have alpha experience, knowledge and authority. I can foresee a high position for you in your new world order.

Anyhow, I've said enough in this thread. We just have to agree to disagree. All lives matter, but dominance hierarchies exist.
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby BadgerJelly on September 18th, 2020, 6:16 am 

Doogles -

Badger, I went through your post three times and gather that you do not believe there is any point in discussing such matters or in attempting to change things to any degree.


Err ... what? If that is what you interpreted my words as you should probably reread and assume the exact opposite. I wouldn’t post here if I didn’t think it was worthy of discussion.

Ah! There is an issue ... it should read ‘NOT to shut it down’ ... these touch screens are unreliable (will go back and edit).

Still looking for a point to what you’re saying that is relevant the topic? What is it you want to talk about? We’ve already established that dominance hierarchies are a thing ... that isn’t up for debate.

What about ‘racism’ is it you wish to look at? Maybe I missed it.
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby BadgerJelly on September 18th, 2020, 6:19 am 

Cannot edit ...

Should have read :

“I’m framing the issue in such a light NOT to shut it down.” I was obviously going to write ‘so as to open up’ then had one of my usual brain farts :D
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Re: White Lives Matter

Postby Serpent on September 18th, 2020, 9:58 am 

doogles » September 18th, 2020, 4:32 am wrote:Good day to you Serpent. You've left me no room to respond to your post because you have provided all the answers. You tend to make dogmatic and authoritative conclusive assertions.

I see no point in waffling. I state what I know and what I think as clearly as I can.
No, I do not want a revolution: too many revolutions have failed or worse - achieved the opposite of their original aim. Even at their best, they all perpetuate some of the bad ideas of civilization.
I did want, enough to advocate and work for it, gradual improvement. That effort was thwarted. Though I still support worthwhile causes and candidates, there is nothing left for me to want on a global scale. I'm just an observer now; I only report what I see.

Anyhow, I've said enough in this thread. We just have to agree to disagree. All lives matter, but dominance hierarchies exist.

What exists was never at issue. I addressed how a natural phenomenon that promotes survival has been perverted and corrupted to promote destruction.
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