Received: by alpheratz.cpm.aca.mmu.ac.uk id XAA01103 (8.6.9/5.3[ref email@example.com] for cpm.aca.mmu.ac.uk from firstname.lastname@example.org); Sun, 10 Mar 2002 23:21:47 GMT X-Originating-IP: [22.214.171.124] User-Agent: Microsoft-Outlook-Express-Macintosh-Edition/5.0.3 Date: Sun, 10 Mar 2002 23:13:24 +0000 Subject: RE: Rumsfeld Says He May Drop New Office of Influence From: Steve Drew <email@example.com> To: <firstname.lastname@example.org> Message-ID: <B8B19862.2ECemail@example.com> In-Reply-To: <200203102227.WAA00836@alpheratz.cpm.aca.mmu.ac.uk> Content-type: text/plain; charset="US-ASCII" Content-transfer-encoding: 7bit X-OriginalArrivalTime: 10 Mar 2002 23:15:34.0199 (UTC) FILETIME=[7AF44C70:01C1C889] Sender: firstname.lastname@example.org Precedence: bulk Reply-To: email@example.com
> Date: Sun, 10 Mar 2002 16:51:06 -0500
> From: "Scott Chase" <firstname.lastname@example.org>
> Subject: RE: Rumsfeld Says He May Drop New Office of Influence
>> From: Ned Wolpert <email@example.com>
>> Reply-To: firstname.lastname@example.org
>> To: email@example.com
>> Subject: RE: Rumsfeld Says He May Drop New Office of Influence
>> Date: 10 Mar 2002 08:21:47 -0700
>> On Sat, 2002-03-09 at 16:46, Scott Chase wrote:
>>> I don't think Lerner was equating sociobiologists and Nazis but was
>>> some biologically deterministic parallelism nonetheless. He really lays
>>> the topic of Nobel prize winning ethologist Konrad Lorenz's checkered
>>> past and his analogy comparing certain humans to a cancerous growth.
>>> I'm probably a tad more sympathetic to sociobiology/ep than those on the
>>> intellectual Left and may come down a *little* less critically than
>>> and his buddies, but I still look at sociobiological (and memetic)
>>> quite cautiously.
>> I too have the same problem. On one hand, I accept that evolution
>> exists, and accept the base principles of genetics. I can also agree
>> that the 'meme' does exist and that thoughts/ideas are viral and merely
>> desire replication. I have a problem when us humans (the vehicle of
>> both genes and memes) decide we can manipulate either. As we look at
>> eugenics (active or passive) the ease for a 'culture' to develop
>> destructive traits, like the Nazis, seems too easy. And what about
>> eugenics of the mind? (meugenics?) Does one try to kill religious
>> thought like the Marxists of USSR?
>> I think the problem is that people believe that evolution is geared to
>> go toward a 'perfection', or if it doesn't then they try to push it
>> toward a 'perfection'. This seems to be the core problem whenever the
>> study of genetics and culture are mixed. (Without trying to rile people
>> up via flame-bait, a comment made to me from someone was basically
>> "social darwinism is reductionist and/or tautological at its best,
>> racist at its worst." Where does sociobiology fit in that?.)
> I think Lerner made the point that sociobiology tends to have biologically
> (or genetically) deterministic underpinnings. As such, though, sociobiology
> is not necessarily racist, though it is open to co-option by those who would
> harbor a racist agenda. Something I've pondered, but haven't followed
> through on, would be a possible odd marriage between extreme right-wing
> ideology and hard-boiled sociobiology. Though those on the right might have
> a tendency to religious fundamentalism which precludes an acceptance of
> evolution as fact, the social implications of sociobiology (at least some of
> the more extreme strains having contentious stuff to say about race and
> gender) might appeal somewhat to the far right.
Yes, i would agree here. It is easy for racists to co-opt sociobiology to
persue there aims. They unfortunately ignore the fact that the difference's
in race are outweighed by the 99.999% etc similarity's between people.
Charles Murray has used sociobiology to prove that people are poor because
> With sociobiology there is the is/ought distinction (and related
> naturalistic fallacy) to contend with where one might see something that is
> a naturally based fact (say *if* there is a tendency toward rape,
> infanticide, or aggression etc... in certain ecologically circumscribed
> circumstances), but this "is" does not translate to an ethical ought (or
> because it is the natural state it is not automatically "good" in the sense
> of the summum bonum), so sociobiologists, if they're careful about their
> theories, need not be seen as advocating the implications of their theories
> or justifying them in the social, legal, or political sphere as letting the
> status quo stand or whatever. They could very well rally for a totally
> different set of oughts than the is's they postulate arising from the
> evolution of behavior.
> Nonetheless, sociobiology and is cousin EP are still open to charges by
> critics of Panglossian adaptationism and "just so stories". Thus, the "is"
> itself is open to question, regardless of whether the theorist translates
> this is into an ought.
>> The only thing I end up with is that educating people on the concept of
>> these two replicators is very important. That way we can avoid the
>> pitfalls of having two replicators driving our actions though 'instinct'
>> and our concept of 'intelligence'. Course, then I'm back to square one;
>> what education is this? I don't think it currently exists in any form.
>> Ned Wolpert <firstname.lastname@example.org> 4e75
>> 1024D/5DEA314E: 7FFB 99C3 BF90 6135 12F4 07B8 0B23 2E5C 5DEA 314E
>> << signature.asc >>
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