The Reason For Wars

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The Reason For Wars

Post Number:#1  Postby Gordon975 » January 14th, 2017, 4:27 am

The conventional reason for war and military conflict are those, based on an intellectual analysis of perceived political wrongs imparted on one culture or country by another, there are some very classic and accepted reasons, Economic Gain, Territorial Gain, Religion, Nationalism, Revenge, Civil War, Revolutionary War and Defensive/Pre-emptive War. I would like to suggest for discussion a single and far more primitive reason for war and conflict between males of the human species, and that is reproductive natural selection.

In the evolution of the human species, without the application of intellect, the modification and therefore the adaption of our species as with all others to a changing environment, would be purely via the process of reproductive natural selection, the human species has evolved via this method to enable evolution via intellect, and this evolution driven by the application of communication between species members to exchange ideas has accelerated the evolutionary process that our species can achieve. The basic biological make up of the human species is no different now to that which it was many tens of millennia ago, meaning that the male of our species is still in conflict as part of its primitive biology with all other males for the possession of the females of reproductive age.

There is no logically justifiable reason as the result of intellectual analysis, for violence between members of our species, and warfare is, as perhaps the ultimate example of violence that our species inflicts on itself, can never be justified. The violence between individuals of our species occurs almost exclusively between members of its male population, and the intellectually driven reasons given for war given as Economic Gain, Territorial Gain, Religion, Nationalism, Revenge, Civil War, Revolutionary War and Defensive/Pre-emptive War are derived by males of our species, who are driven and influenced in this by both intellect and their primitive pre-intellect state as the result of their need to acquire and defend the females of their species.

The primitive part of our species mental thought process that exists alongside our intellect is perhaps best revealed by studying what are considered to be swear words, and these words link together all the basic instincts needed for survival. We use swear words in the context of sex, fear, basic human biological functions, repulsion and violence etc; and the existence of this link points to an indication that these functions exist outside of intellectually reasoned thought.

The primitive pre-intellect state of the human species which relied for its survival on reproductive natural selection, had the aim of the maximization of the genetic supremacy of the males of one culture or group over that of another, by replacing them by those of their own. In cultures of the past this would have amounted to the killing or enslavement of the entire male population of the losing group of males, and the acquisition by the winning one of the females of that group.

In our intellectually driven and evolving societies it is not just the ownership and control of the territory of another culture that has become important, but also control and influence of that culture, and this is what partly drives our modern excuses for war, when combined with the more primitive one.
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The Reason For Wars



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Re: The Reason For Wars

Post Number:#2  Postby Ormond » January 14th, 2017, 9:00 am

Gordon975 wrote: The violence between individuals of our species occurs almost exclusively between members of its male population....


Which suggests a simple obvious solution to wars and other male based violence. Get rid of men.

Three facts are for this necessity. 1) No society in history has succeeded in controlling violent men and 2) the knowledge explosion will result in violent men having access to ever more powerful weapons and 3) sooner or later all available weapons get used in all out fight to the death scale conflicts. These facts prove that violent men will eventually crash human civilization.

Consider how expensive violent men are to society. Armies, police, courts, jails around the world are costs overwhelmingly (but not entirely) associated with violent men. The U.S. defense budget in 2015 was about 600 billion dollars. Another 80 billion or so goes to prisons. Another 100 billion for police forces. Let's round those three numbers off at 750 billion dollars a year. What positive improvements could be made to the United States with 750 billion dollars a year, each and every year?

A world without men will seem like a ridiculous fantasy until some revolutionary event unfolds to dramatize the danger. Perhaps a nuclear war between Pakistan and India, where 100 million people die on a single day. It's only a matter of time until some event teaches us it's time to start thinking about the unthinkable.

Go ahead. Tell us all the reasons why this could never work and will never happen etc etc. Enjoy such outdated thinking while you can, because it doesn't matter whether we think this is possible or not. It's going to happen anyway. All that remains unclear are the details of how, when, where etc.

Peace on Earth is within our reach. We just have to want it enough to do what's necessary to make it happen.
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Re: The Reason For Wars

Post Number:#3  Postby Eluhorem » January 15th, 2017, 10:32 pm

Ormond wrote:
Gordon975 wrote: The violence between individuals of our species occurs almost exclusively between members of its male population....


Which suggests a simple obvious solution to wars and other male based violence. Get rid of men.

...

Peace on Earth is within our reach. We just have to want it enough to do what's necessary to make it happen.


Haha I can't tell if you're joking or not. Wouldn't getting rid of men for the sake of reducing violence itself require violence? If the goal is to reduce violence, how could one justify using violent means to achieve that goal?
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Re: The Reason For Wars

Post Number:#4  Postby Gordon975 » January 16th, 2017, 4:43 am

Ormond Wrote:
Which suggests a simple obvious solution to wars and other male based violence. Get rid of men.



It is not getting rid of men that is necessary but understanding why they need to exist in
the first place.

The male, female relationship is in a primitive world the means by which a species of life
evolves to fit into its environment. Humans as a species are in the short term evolving
very quickly via the application of their intellect, instead of by reproductive natural
selection.

My suggestion is, that it is the male of our species that because of reproductive natural
selection, competes with all other males for females, and this is a perfectly natural and
normal thing to do within a species where the long-term adaptation to environmental
changes is reliant on the process of natural selection. Violence between males of our
species is abhorrent, but I am suggesting that it is a natural part of the makeup of the male
half of most species of creature when competing with each other for females.
If we just try and define war in intellectually based political terms and ignore what is
perhaps the very natural reason for its existence, then we will always be at war or
disagreeing in a potentially violent way with other cultural groups that we consider
not our own, without really understanding why.

It is perhaps therefore via the application of intellect, and with a more realistic
understanding of the reason for the violence that happens between males of our species,
that we may be able to evolve towards understanding and removing aggression between
males from our human societies.
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Re: The Reason For Wars

Post Number:#5  Postby Steve3007 » January 16th, 2017, 5:41 am

Gordon

I think you're almost certainly right that the underlying reason for war is competition for reproductive rights. Whether that information has practical benefit is a different matter. Ultimately, the underlying reasons for all human behaviour must be traceable, one way or another, back to selective evolutionary pressures. But that's almost as unhelpful as saying that the underlying reasons for human behaviour are the laws of physics which describe the molecules in our brains. Physicists know, perhaps more than anyone else, how practically useless their subject can be, despite (or perhaps because of) being the most fundamental of the sciences.

There is a hierarchy of disciplines from fundamental subjects that study simple systems and broadly applicable/universal sharply defined laws (bottom of the pile: Physics) to high level subjects that study hugely complex systems and more narrowly applicable, fuzzy, heuristic laws (top of the pile: Sociology). Evolutionary Biology is way above Physics, but way below Sociology.
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Re: The Reason For Wars

Post Number:#6  Postby Ormond » January 16th, 2017, 9:34 am

Eluhorem wrote:Haha I can't tell if you're joking or not.


That's a normal reaction, no problem. If you'll review the logic outlined in my post above, you'll see it's really not that funny. Like I said, everybody will think this idea is a big joke hardly worth replying to, until the day violent men kills millions in an afternoon. Such a revolutionary event will generate a revolutionary new global mindset.

Eluhorem wrote:Wouldn't getting rid of men for the sake of reducing violence itself require violence? If the goal is to reduce violence, how could one justify using violent means to achieve that goal?


It doesn't require violence. It requires the insight that there is no other option. If violent men are allowed to continue they will eventually succeed in crashing civilization. Evidence, the Cuban Missile Crisis.

If we should discover a way to get rid of violent men while keeping peaceful men, that would be great. But so far anyway, we have thousands of years of failure at such attempts.

Imagine that 98% of the violence in the world was being committed by armadillos. What would we do? We'd get rid of armadillos.
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Re: The Reason For Wars

Post Number:#7  Postby Ormond » January 16th, 2017, 9:43 am

Hey Steve, welcome back!

Steve3007 wrote:I think you're almost certainly right that the underlying reason for war is competition for reproductive rights. Whether that information has practical benefit is a different matter.


I wouldn't quarrel with the reproductive rights reason, for surely the job of male mammals is to compete and weed out the weak genes.

A deeper source of human conflict would be the inherently divisive nature of thought. I wouldn't propose that this problem can be solved entirely, but it can surely be managed far better than we do currently. The divisive nature of thought means that we experience conflict within our own minds pretty routinely. That's where wars begin, between our own ears.
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Re: The Reason For Wars

Post Number:#8  Postby Gertie » January 16th, 2017, 10:26 am

I have no particular knowledge in these fields, but I'd say fields like sociology and psychology talk about the way these more fundamental tendencies play out in particular circumstances, and these things are to an extent manipulable at that level. We're the product of the interactive relationship between our genetic impulses with the environment.

I'd also point out that while understanding ourselves from an evolutionary psychology point of view must be helpful, maybe essential, we have to bear in mind evolution is a messy complex process which has resulted in a messy complex kludge of a species in human beings. With often competing impulses (welfare of self vs others perhaps being the most basic), which we rationalise to ourselves in various ways.

So you can focus on any one aspect of of evolutionary psychology to create a good account of the way we are, why there are wars for example, but the reality is going to be much more complex, and in feedback with broadly 'environmental' influences.

For example, I could give an account of war based in how our social biological mechanisms evolved at a time when we lived in small tribal groups competing for precious survival resources, so we tend to bond as groups in competition with other groups. Does that completely explain war? Maybe not, but it's a major factor surely. And points to finding ways of extending our circle of care to include 'the other', as a possible way forward.

So I'd say an informed holistic approach is the best one, and be wary of simplistic 'just so stories'.
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Re: The Reason For Wars

Post Number:#9  Postby Gordon975 » January 16th, 2017, 11:13 am

Steve3007 Wrote :
I think you're almost certainly right that the underlying reason for war is competition for
reproductive rights. Whether that information has practical benefit is a different matter.


Without a fundamental understanding of a problem then it is much harder to find a
solution to it. In my suggestion for the reason for war, I propose that without debating and
exploring the competition for reproductive rights as a reason, along with others, we may
assume only politically motivated reasons, as a cause over what might be a fundamental
biological one. If we can recognize that there are potentially within the male half of our species,
a natural predisposition for warfare, then removing the need for war may become more of a
possibility.

The literature about the reasons for war, give no mention that I can find, of a link between the
instincts of the male for competition, with other males for the reproductive rights over the
females of another society. Perhaps it is "politically incorrect", to debate such a concept, but if
included in the debate, along with the other reasons, the female half of our society would
perhaps have the ability to persuade the cultural group of which they are part, that there can
never be a sensible reason for the stupidity of war.
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Re: The Reason For Wars

Post Number:#10  Postby Ormond » January 16th, 2017, 12:57 pm

Gordon, quick tip. If your text editor can remove line breaks, do that before postings, and your posts will be more tidy in appearance. Or, you can of course always type directly in to the post editor here on the forum.
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Re: The Reason For Wars

Post Number:#11  Postby Ormond » January 16th, 2017, 1:21 pm

Gordon975 wrote:It is perhaps therefore via the application of intellect, and with a more realistic understanding of the reason for the violence that happens between males of our species, that we may be able to evolve towards understanding and removing aggression between males from our human societies


Removing aggression from males how? Again, no society in history has figured out how to control violent men. I generally agree with your analysis, but the vagueness of your proposed solution reveals a very widely shared group consensus that such problems will somehow sort themselves out over time, and/or that we can continue to endure such problems indefinitely.

I'm proposing that both of these assumptions are dangerously outdated, and that in fact 1) we don't have unlimited time, and 2) that the problem has already escalated to a scale that can't be endured. Again, this is not a speculative futuristic projection of imagination, as the Cuban missile crisis clearly demonstrated.

This page provides a chart which helps illustrate the scale of the danger.

As example, the bomb dropped on Hiroshima was 15 kilotons. Modern nukes are more like 15,000 kilotons, that is, one thousand times more powerful. The U.S. and Russia together have over 3,000 of such weapons. One bad day is all that's required.

These basic facts of modern life have been well understood since the 1950s, and yet we still go on thinking in a manner left over from the 19th century. Yes, you too. Yes, this entire forum. Yes, pretty much our entire culture. As example, where was a discussion of violent men and nukes in the recent presidential election? Barely mentioned.

It's in this context that I make my proposal. Human civilization can no longer afford men.
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Re: The Reason For Wars

Post Number:#12  Postby Gordon975 » January 17th, 2017, 4:39 am

Gertie wrote:
I have no particular knowledge in these fields, but I'd say fields like sociology and psychology talk about the way these more fundamental tendencies play out in particular circumstances,and these things are to an extent manipulable at that level. We're the product of the interactive relationship between our genetic impulses with the environment.

So I'd say an informed holistic approach is the best one, and be wary of simplistic 'just so stories'.




Sociology and Psychology are based on the careful study of the traits of the human species that have resulted from evolution, both by the process of natural selection, and via intellect, the problem with this is often that the analysis is by an already educated intellect, conditioned by that education.

I agree there is no such thing as a simplistic 'just so story', and there is usually always the exception to every fixed rule, so every statement must fall into the category of a generalisation.

A war can only take place if one person is prepared to kill another one.

War as far as I can ascertain is an horrific experience, that if the simplest least educated person were to choose whether not to be part of, they would never choose, and yet there have been wars throughout history, and there appears to be no end in sight of humans inflicting or at least threatening violence one on another in this fashion.

The question to be answered is why, and one answer could be that it is a natural part of the human evolutionary journey to engage in war.

If we ignore the intellectually derived reasons for war, invented by our educated elite, such as Economic Gain, Territorial Gain, Religion, Nationalism, Revenge, Civil War, Revolutionary War and Defensive/Pre-emptive War, which throughout history have cost far more in blood and treasure than has ever been gained, we are left with the problem of finding a non intellectually based one.

Wars and military activity is mostly the domain of the male sex, and certainly the killing is almost exclusively the role of the males. This topic is trying to explore the possible reason for war apart from the ones that our "intellectual, educated" political elite has fed ordinary people over the millennia, to persuade them to fight and die in their service.

My suggestion here and it is perhaps a strange one, is that each male in war is effectively living out their inbuilt conscious based instinct for reproductive natural selection, that perhaps requires hem to kill the males of a rival group to acquire reproductive rights over the females of that group.
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Re: The Reason For Wars

Post Number:#13  Postby Londoner » January 17th, 2017, 5:49 am

Ormond wrote:
Imagine that 98% of the violence in the world was being committed by armadillos. What would we do? We'd get rid of armadillos.


That would only make sense if the armadillos were always violent. If the armadillos were only sometimes violent (and so were other creatures) then we would know that the cause for violence must be something other than 'being an armadillo'.

Similarly, every example of a man not attacking other men is evidence against the theory.
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Re: The Reason For Wars

Post Number:#14  Postby Ormond » January 17th, 2017, 9:19 am

Ormond wrote:Imagine that 98% of the violence in the world was being committed by armadillos. What would we do? We'd get rid of armadillos.


Londoner wrote:That would only make sense if the armadillos were always violent.


It would make sense because, um, it would get rid of 98% of the violence in the world, a highly rational operation.

Ormond wrote:Similarly, every example of a man not attacking other men is evidence against the theory.


Well, you clearly don't yet understand what my assertion actually is.
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Re: The Reason For Wars

Post Number:#15  Postby Gordon975 » January 17th, 2017, 10:40 am

Ormand Wrote:
Removing aggression from males how?
Human civilization can no longer afford men.


Aggression between males is sadly a fact of life resulting from our evolutionary past, hence boxing, judo, fencing, etc, removing it is impossible and perhaps the wrong thing to do as it is part of our evolved strategy for our species survival.

The Male of any species is the means used by life to intelligently evolve it to fit with an environment, and so the male of a species is essential.

Removing aggression is perhaps not the problem, understanding it is, it is perhaps dangerous for the long term evolution of life, to control to carefully the result or the course of reproductive natural selection, we should always be mindful that the human species is just a small blip in the existence of life and its evolution.

In terms of war it is not the physical aggression of the human male on male that is perhaps important to control, although each individual does "their duty", based on their inherited evolved instincts for violence.

The aggression that is hard to control is that which the leaders of our cultures have between themselves, and therefore exists between societies and countries. Our leadership class expose us all to the prospect of destruction in their goal of achieving self-aggrandisement; often such people have no conscience with which to ameliorate their more extreme political beliefs.

The way towards a peaceful world as with the solving of all problems, is via an informed uncensored education system, enabling an individual person to question their motives for potentially joining an organisation that rewards its servants for killing others just like themselves, by giving them cash, public glory and medals, this is perhaps an impossible dream, but perhaps a possible direction of travel.

If our leaders had no servants to do the dirty work in our societies the work would remain undone.

The life as we currently experience it is perhaps limited, we are currently living in a period of geological history between earth changing natural disasters, Volcanic Eruptions, Meteor Strikes, Global Temperature change and perhaps others, our nuclear arsenals are in this context not such a problem.

In the end it is not human life that must be preserved, but life itself, and this could never be totally destroyed by the human species, although we may destroy ourselves, other life could replace us and we would just count as an evolutionary experiment in reproductive natural selection, that went wrong.
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