Re: Memetic Parasitism & Flintstones

From: Scott Chase (
Date: Fri 29 Jul 2005 - 12:07:55 GMT

  • Next message: Keith Henson: "Re: Memetic Parasitism & Flintstones"

    --- Alan Patrick <> wrote:

    > > We could try taking the thread back to where Alan
    > > introduced the topic of how Harry Potter has
    > raised
    > > the ire of X-ian fundies and how Kate pointed to
    > the
    > > US as a locus of this fundamental (pun intended)
    > focus
    > > (that rhymes). That was actually getting kinda
    > > interesting.
    > A thought......the US was initially settled by
    > (European) people much more
    > "infected" by religiosity memes....(whether they
    > were more susceptible to
    > infection, or just plain infected is another
    > debate).
    > > Seriously, to understand the controversy over
    > Potter I
    > > think an exploration of recent history holds the
    > key.
    > > EP might provide *a* basis in primordial
    > psychological
    > > motivations, but not *the* overarching answer.
    > EP'ers
    > > need to get over themselves already. They tend to
    > > revert to the kneejerk adaptationist stance no
    > matter
    > > how many times nonaptive byproducts are
    > acknowledged
    > > then quickly forgotten.
    > I wonder if EP (or just plain E) has "selected" US
    > people to be more
    > "fundie" - or susceptible to "Fundie" memes - than
    > Europeans?
    Actually EP'ers tend to think that most of our evolved traits were set in stone (another pun) back in the EEA so much of our innate psychology is shared across groups. Our diversification would emerge in this context. The problem is whether particular EP'ers think of this cultural diversification as an uninteresting thin veneer (strong EP) or as a thick, rich and interesting complex of phenomena (weak EP). I tend toward the latter. I'm working on Keith to convert him to Gouldism ;-)

    It's doubtful that Usians have been selected to be any different from Euros in any biologically meaningful sense. The timeframe is too short and immigration means we are a melting pot without any truly coherent genetic background that makes us distinctly "American" thank goodness for that.
    > Btw...If Fred was a pagan stone ager he would
    > probably be familiar with
    > quite a few of the Potter concepts that Xians find
    > so offensive ;-0
    I wonder if the belief system Fred might have had emerged from a religiosity module and/or superstitious ideation* connected to reinforcement regimes gone haywire (adventitious or random reinforcement in behaviorese). Is Skinner *persona non grata* now that Pinker et al have raised the Jolly Roger?

    *-Yes I realize Skinner had a bee in his bonnet about
    "ideas" or anything internal to a "mind", but I'm more in tune with cognitivism than he was, so I'm open to how superstition within an operant conditioning framework could influence the emergence of religious belief systems.

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