A significant body of work has been accomplished the last few years regarding some fundamental animal and insect behavior and the relationship of some simple algorithms to individual and mass human behaviors. The work is strikingly exciting, especially, for how easily it debunks scads of in-vogue, century-old social and political theories. Those theories are based on 19th Century abstract thinking in political-economy from a bunch of complete cheeseheads (no offense intended toward Wisconsin).
I’ve written on GDT a number of times of how human behavior is naturally individual and not “collectivist” in any objectively discernible way. It is the study of the natural world that proceeds to explain more and more of who we are, as humans, too. The research and published work also continues to confirm that all intelligent behavior and organization is based on definably individual behavior and action. The “intelligence of crowds” operates on the same principles as the “intelligence of colonies” in the insect and animal kingdoms. The idea of the “social mind,” as social theorists want to explain it as a top-down, centralized control paradigm, is not only a myth but demonstrably dangerous to people.
The artificial construction of so-called “socialized behavior” and collectivism is a false one. It is a completely impaired social and political theory of those who refuse to acknowledge or understand why that statement is true. It is also why every “progressive,” utopian dream always decay into dystopian nightmares. The worst form of decision-making for a large population is to have a small number of “big brains” making all the decisions. No matter how big those brains are, they make many more mistakes than all the individuals in the population do-acting cooperatively.
Two areas of study, swarm intelligence and chaos theory, have yielded another watershed of information on how human behavior is always a direct reflection of the operation of the natural world (check out segment 4, “Hive Mind” on that link). Many types of apparently “smart” or highly intelligent behaviors by animals appear to emulate higher, or even human, intelligence. However, it is nothing more than the outgrowth of natural adaptations and basic intelligence, generated starting at the “stimulus-response” level, and shared by all forms of life.
In fact, we’re so closely aligned with the natural world, in the ways we naturally and fundamentally behave, that it should give any self-serving, human- (or, perhaps, self-) hating, progressive and/or liberal environmentalist, the willies. Surprise! Our higher-function capabilities have evolved in a way that,for some, seems to enable conflict with natural-ordered intelligence. In turn, that produces most of our modern problems, especially with regard to pushing various centralized organizational methodologies. Those methodologies, in fact, proceed toward destruction precisely because they attempt to constrain the operation and innate logic of that natural intelligence distributed through the population by individual cooperative exchange.
Humans and all of our activities, even the most technologic and industrial ones, are just another part of universal principles and the natural world in operation. All life, even human, operates by the same rules that can also be seen as fundamentally mathematically-defined relationships. That conflicts with every one of the 19th and 20th Century social-theory constructs used to generate industrial, political and governmental organization drivers of the last century.
For example, the concepts of modern “industrialism” followed by “environmentalism,” as generally understood and practiced political-economic movements, were both nothing short of preposterous on their face and inherently and outwardly dangerous to people and the natural world. Both developed as government co-opted and supported methods of organization.
First, mass industrialism was allowed to run rampant over individual, and attendant, property rights, while government failed in its role to impartially administer justice in law. Power and money of the few purchased the influence of government to either look the other way or intercede in markets in ways that only benefited the well-connected few at the expense of the free market and all other players. That ultimately harmed the rights of workers, the economy and the environment.
Next, when the imbalance tipped so far, and the government-enabled, corporatist abuses became so numerous, the system self-destructed and the balance swung the other way. As the political winds shifted government then co-opted the environmental “movement” (and vice-versa) and initiated the introduction of the hyper-regulatory state. Power and money then moved to buy a different type of government influence which destroyed common-sense resource extraction and industrial activity. As a single obvious example, few people recognize or acknowledge that it was first government practice and control which created and encouraged further clear-cutting and allowed over-logging and under-compensation for timber on federal lands. The market for timber was completely distorted. That same forest agency now creates huge fire conflagrations through fire and ‘management’ policy in the under-logged and unhealthy, disease-plagued forests they created.
In both cases, those in government and surrounding it simply acted as narrow opportunists of political influence outside of impartial considerations of justice and law, ignoring the proper role and dictates of law as originally imposed under our Constitution.
How the Real World Works
Every other species of life that develops the natural intelligence to fully exploit available resources within their habitat will do so to perpetuate their species without regard to any other species and to exhaustion. Only man has the capacity to potentially override the propensity to fully exploit by employing intelligent conservation.Without the intelligence to both fully exploit necessary resources and conserve, all other species will simply exploit resources to their own maximum capability. The other species simply know no better. That’s the way the natural world and the way life, so created, works. The problem comes in human populations when those natural behaviors to both exploit and intelligently conserve (through market mechanisms and pro-actively) are distorted through government interference and force.
All species, by definition, consume until they can consume no more because they have no other natural (or, from their level, logical) choice. To not consume available resources to support their species is the death of a species. In the natural world feast and famine balance and regulate the species and the resources that support them. The key difference is whether that species also develops the intelligence of “conservation.” Man, of course, is the only species that can effectively employ conservation through measured means (of production/consumption and resources) and seek artificial (engineered) adaptations when necessary resources start falling short of previous demand. That ability allows mankind to stabilize, to a large enough degree to create an advantage, the effects of feast and famine.
By definition, whether one accepts the theologic or cosmic/geophysical origin for life, all life forms and is an inherent part of the environment, so created. In either case, we are here because the other life is here, and vice-versa, based on the resources to support it. Even though this would seem to be patently obvious certain theorists have spent centuries convincing themselves, and others, that man stands apart from nature either via theological doctrine or social doctrine.
To say we’re some kind of un-natural plague on the planet or other life or independent of it is, again, preposterous on its face. We are part of the continuum of the whole. Or, to say that we have dominion over all life on the planet is just as preposterous. We have “dominion” over nothing and are simply another factor in life’s existence of biologic and geophysical operation. We are subject to the same rules of the overall framework as all other species, regardless of our intelligence. We can “manage” better within the rules but we are still completely subject to them.
Because we can alter the geophysical world around us, in ways more sophisticated and broad-scale than other forms of life we know, is irrelevant. Natural geophysical processes are almost all much larger in effect, in altering the environment, than any effects humans can create alone. It wasn’t man or man’s effects that placed 98% of all species, to ever exist on the earth, into extinction. Very low forms of life such as viruses can also destroy far more life, including humans, at a stroke, than nearly all of our most technological methods. Even the most technological of all, war.
The single most preposterous concept of environmentalism is that humans, “will destroy the earth!” Humans may succeed in destroying themselves and some of the other life forms on the planet along the way. However, it will never be us that “destroys the earth.” That’s just silly hyperbole and propaganda. The earth and other life will go on as long as cosmic or geophysical processes allow it, not us. The same way our mammalian ancestors and the rest of life went on after the K-T event 65 million years ago. We may be capable at some point of reducing all life on earth to a very low level. However we, as yet, are not capable of “destroying the earth.” We’re likely not yet capable of destroying mankind even given the impact of total nuclear war. Life is very adaptive and we still know so little.
The biggest problem in all such hyperbolic gobbledygook and nonsense spewed out by environmentalists and its government outriggers is one of time-span, proportion and measurement. Their time horizons are always human-scale instead of cosmic or geophysical. The data and perspectives are “stove-piped,” automatically skewing their conclusions to very limited perspectives.
All plants and animals, given the opportunity and plentiful conditions, may overuse and abuse their environments. When conditions are right and times are plenty any type of life will over-exploit their environment– from algae blooms, to fish and rodent population explosions, to over-grazing by herbivores, to blood lust by predators, etc.
Nature’s biologic and geophysical mechanisms create “environmental pollution” just as man does, only in much larger quantities and more massive scales. The world’s total biogeologic “respiratory” cycle alone releases more than 200 times the “harmful” emissions, which “environmentalists” so hate, than all the cars of the world do (840 gigatonnes vs 4 gigatonnes). The human contribution to total biologic and geophysical operation is truly the “tip of the iceberg.” Yet, we are told everyday and every way that the tip is what drives the whole iceberg! However, those “big brains” do that, not to help but instead to control. It’s the 1-2% of our supposed betters that “always know best” when it comes to directing your life and my life.
When adding all the other sources of biogeophysical carbon and “greenhouse gases,” the fact that we may add or subtract some negligible amount (IN FACT, 0.28%) to the “harmful” gases our planet emits, is not a truly significant factor in the long-term “health” of the planet. Assertions to the contrary have simply not been substantiated through comprehensive analysis of the earth’s carbon cycle. We are now only beginning to learn the true extent of the natural and geophysical methyl hydrate emissions, for just ONE example. To see just how mad (and I mean crazy) the big brains in government and environmentalism are I suggest a new book, “The Mad, Mad Mad World of Climatism” by Steve Goreham.
We also only think our effects are unique because we have yet to study another advanced enough species of life elsewhere in the galaxy or universe that alters their environment as we do. So, for the time being, the only thing that separates us from other species are methods of intelligent conservation.
“Environmentalism” then, as al scientific and political construct, isn’t even a useful concept any more than “industrialism.” Most dangerous, would be that this artificial, centralized-organizational construct is imposed on natural and voluntary organizational systems of people by government co-opted by powerful interests. That’s why it’s important to far reduce those effects by reducing the scope and size of government first, except in the truly impartial judiciary role. However, we don’t have an impartial judiciary as of yet.
Left alone to their own devices, living in a state of freedom and liberty, normal people generally make excellent, peaceful decisions and engage in distributed, individual voluntary exchange to their best mutual benefit. And when mistakes are made they are distributed and much smaller scale than when organized in centralized, single-points-of-failure by the big brains. What disrupts the natural cycle of civilization’s development is misanthropic schemes of centralization created by a small fraction of the human population. Governments, Corporatists, Environmentalists and other megalomaniacs fall into that small fraction.
It is a fact that all governments have been and will continue to be the most wasteful, destructive and polluting single entity-type on the planet, of any human organizational system. The place we need intelligent conservatism to work is in government. The larger those centralized systems become, the more wasteful and dangerous they become. It is governments that wage war and lay waste to various portions of the planet. It is governments that have created nuclear waste dumps and toxic forbidden zones from testing Nuclear, Biological and Chemical (NBC) weapons all over the planet. It is government that wrecks the conservative and effective operation of economic activity. It is government that creates hugely wasteful and inefficient hyper-regulatory schemes that effectively regulate little but destroy most productive effort in the process.
Many of the people attracted to those entities can typically be described as the obsessive-compulsive, narcissistic personality-disordered individuals with a desire to control. Their internal dichotomy of self-love/self-loathing usually transfers into only a loathing of those around them. Hence, their desire for centralized schemes of control. We have just come through a century of the dominance of that type of person and organization across the planet. In the 20th Century those attempting to impose such order reached the apex of control which various members of that group had been seeking for a few centuries.
Certain tools of distributed technologies are about to knock them completely off that pinnacle. High speed forms of travel, computing and the internet are accelerating the end of all centralized control mechanisms that are maintained through coercion. That and their own corruption and bankruptcy are assisting the run to the end of centralized, coercive governments.
If we truly wish to solve the problems we have on the planet and with our civilization, the first thing we must eliminate, to the maximum extent, is every form of centralized, controlling government. The government that tells us what to eat, what to consume or how to manage our families, communities and economy. That is the best form of intelligent conservation for all species of earth.