When looking back at the world’s great civilizations, one notes they all reached an expiration point. What drives their decline and ultimate collapse, however, is one of the most debated topics in history. According to noted scholars Joseph Tainter and John Michael Greer, collapse occurs when a civilization reaches a point of unsustainable complexity that requires ever growing amounts of resources that are increasingly hard to obtain, making them vulnerable to internal and external shocks. Tonight we’re joined by Twitter collapsologist Borzoi to discuss these tendencies as they pertain to the United States, Western, and modern civilization as a whole.
https://www.gwern.net/docs/iq/1938-cattell.pdf Some changes in social life in a community with a falling intelligence quotient, 1938 Raymond B CattellCombining insights from Freud and Weber, this article explores whether Protestants (vs. Catholics and Jews) are more likely to sublimate their taboo feelings and desires toward productive ends. In the Terman sample (Study 1), Protestant men and women who had sexual problems related to anxieties about taboos and depravity had greater creative accomplishments, as compared to those with sexual problems unrelated to such concerns and to those reporting no sexual problems. Two laboratory experiments (Studies 2 and 3) found that Protestants produced more creative artwork (sculptures, poems, collages, cartoon captions) when they were (a) primed with damnation-related words, (b) induced to feel unacceptable sexual desires, or (c) forced to suppress their anger. Activating anger or sexual attraction was not enough; it was the forbidden or suppressed nature of the emotion that gave the emotion its creative power. The studies provide possibly the first experimental evidence for sublimation and suggest a cultural psychological approach to defense mechanisms.
To maintain the same percentage of delinquency with a falling intelligence average, therefore, it seems that the commnnity must either invent substitute satisfactions at a low level or revert to Spartan or Puritanical standards of suppression.
Psychological analysis suggests that the above is not the whole story. To see all sides of a question, to make a discriminating and qualified, rather than an all-or-nothing response, requires higher intelligence. A fall of average mental capacity means an increase in the number of people capable of being led into extremist positions.
It is a commonplace in education that freedom can generally be safely given to a child in proportion to his intelligence. Newer systems of education, allowing the child considerable rights of self-determination, work admirably with gifted children; but at the other end of the scale, among border-line feeble-minded children in special classes, it is noticeable that children neither desire nor tolerate much individual freedom.
The above considerations combined suggest the probability of political changes of a complex kind. They include lack of cohesion between social groups, together with changes of mental attitude such as might lead to the dissolution of the ideal of democracy; a decrease of the tempo of liberal progressiveness, an increase in those who pin their faith to simplified extremist formulae; and a hardening of rigid disciplines which preclude individual freedom.
Reduction of mental overlap arising from that diminution in the radius of individual minds produced by the substitution of lower for higher I.Q.’S thus has two major consequences :
(1) The impairment of social cohesion.
(2) Reduction in the intensity of cultural life, which is the sum of these overlaps, or, otherwise expressed, of the total psychic energy investment of a given set of ideas-the ideas which give form to that culture.
A similar process must take place within the limited fields of the special sciences and arts. The inability of what we regard as the intelligent person to cope with the increased complexity of modern culture has been met by accepting the device of specialization. Versatile minds, capable of taking all knowledge for their province, are far rarer to-day than in Elizabethan times; indeed it has begun to be considered presumption to attempt proficiency in more than one field of learning. Yet co-ordinating minds are always urgently needed, and the progress of one science often depends upon its being brought into relation with another.
The imponderables, especially in this final calculation, are too many to justify the statement that a back-to-religion movement in the conventional sense of religion is probable, but the rough draft of a formula for the social response to an I.Q. decline can a t least be given, and one possible solution of it is clearly an increase in religious forms of self-expression.
This thesis, elaborated partly on experimental and partly on analytical grounds, indicates that the probable consequences of a downward shift in the intelligence distribution curve are as follows:
1. A fall in academic standards in the schools.
2. A change in the curriculum of schools towards less abstract and generalized studies.
3. An increased cost of education.
4. Increased unemployment in the less-skilled occupations.
5. Decrease in the average real earning capacity of the community as a whole.
6. A rise in the frequency of delinquency (unless there is a deliberate lowering of moral standards) orland proneness to aggression between nations.
7. Alternatively, if inhibitory forces prevail, either (a) an increase in the social equipment provided for phantasy compensations, or (b) an increase in religious expression.
8. An increase in the percentage of people adopting extreme or uncompromising political view-points, together with the growth of a generally conservative position.
9. An increased retardation in the percolation of ‘cultural news’, together with a lowering of the intensity of cultural life and a diminution in the rate of scientific discoveries and other specialized advances.
10. A shift of cultural and recreational interests to cruder tastes and forms of expression, together with an increased divergence of interest between different groups and a greater domination by the average.
11. A check to the growth of social and political freedom and a reversion to a more detailed prescription of individual behaviour.
In Sex and Culture (1934), the ethnologist and social anthropologist J. D. Unwin studied 80 primitive tribes and 6 known civilizations through 5,000 years of history and found a positive correlation between the cultural achievement of a people and the sexual restraint they observe. "Sex and Culture is a work of the highest importance," Aldous Huxley wrote; "Unwin's conclusions, which are based upon an enormous wealth of carefully sifted evidence, may be summed up as follows. All human societies are in one or another of four cultural conditions: zoistic, manistic, deistic, rationalistic. Of these societies the zoistic displays the least amount of mental and social energy, the rationalistic the most. Investigation shows that the societies exhibiting the least amount of energy are those where pre-nuptial continence is not imposed and where the opportunities for sexual indulgence after marriage are greatest. The cultural condition of a society rises in exact proportion as it imposes pre-nuptial and post-nuptial restraints upon sexual opportunity."
According to Unwin, after a nation becomes prosperous it becomes increasingly liberal with regard to sexual morality and as a result loses it cohesion, its impetus and its purpose. The process, says the author, is irreversible: "The whole of human history does not contain a single instance of a group becoming civilized unless it has been absolutely monogamous, nor is there any example of a group retaining its culture after it has adopted less rigorous customs."
It seems he thought that a combination of equality while still being able to limit sexual behaviours would break the cycle, but thats doesnt look to be the case this cycle at least.page 382
It is historically true to say that in the past social energy has been purchased at the price of individual freedom, for it has never been displayed unless the female of the species has sacrificed her rights as an individual and unless children have been treated as mere appendages to the estate of the male parent; but it would be rash to conclude that sexual opportunity cannot be reduced to a minimum under any other conditions. The evidence is that the subjection of women and children is intolerable and therefore temporary; but we should go beyond the evidence if we were to conclude from this fact that compulsory continence also is intolerable and therefore temporary. Such a statement, indeed, is contradicted by the tenor of the whole story.
Now I will describe the historical careers of the selected societies. In doing so I shall rely to a great extent on the reader's knowledge of the
historical facts, and shall merely summarize the changes which were introduced into the methods of regulating the relations between the sexes. I
shall neglect, or merely imply, the cultural events which followed those changes.
In my survey of the facts the points I wish to make are:
1. that when they began to display great social energy the societies had reduced their sexual opportunity by the adoption of absolute
2. that in each case the society was dominated by the group which displayed the greatest relative energy;
3. that as soon as the sexual opportunity of the society, or of a group within the society, was extended, the energy of the society, or of the
group within it, decreased and finally disappeared;
4. that whatever the racial extraction of the people, and whatever the geographical environment in which they lived, the manner in which
they modified their absolute monogamy was the same in every case.
All we know is that, in the past it has been displayed in uneven quantities, and that the amount displayed by any society has varied from time to time. In the past, too, the greatest energy has been displayed only by those societies which have reduced their sexual opportunity to a minimum by the adoption of absolute monogamy (para. 168).
In every case the women and children were reduced to the level of legal nonentities, sometimes also to the level of chattels, always to the level of mere appendages of the male estate. Eventually they were freed from their disadvantages, but at the same time the sexual opportunity of the society was extended.
Sexual desires could then be satisfied in a direct or perverted manner; no dissatisfaction demanded an outlet; no emotional stress arose.
So the energy of the society decreased, and then disappeared.
It is difficult to express any opinion with complete confidence, but as, at the end of my task, I look back along the stream of time, it seems to me that it was the unequal fate of the women, not the compulsory continence, that caused the downfall of absolute monogamy. No society has yet succeeded in regulating the relations between the sexes in such a way as to enable sexual opportunity to remain at a minimum for an extended period. The inference I draw from the historical evidence is that, if ever such a result should be desired, the sexes must first be placed on a footing of complete legal equality.
In the future, it seems, a human society may continue its fortuitous career, and reflect, both in its cultural behaviour and in its structure, the
amount of energy it chances to possess ; but, if any society should desire to control its cultural destiny, it may do so by decreasing or increasing
the amount of its energy. Such decrease or increase will appear in the third generation after the sexual opportunity has been extended or reduced.
A lesser energy is easily secured, for the force of life seems to flow backwards, and the members of the society will not be slow to take advantage
of any relaxation in the regulations. If, on the other hand, a vigorous society wishes to display its productive energy for a long time, and even for ever, it must re-create itself, I think, first, by placing the sexes on a level of complete legal equality, and then by altering its economic and social
organization in such a way as to render it both possible and tolerable for sexual opportunity to remain at a minimum for an extended period, and
even for ever. In such a case the face of the society would be set in the Direction of the Cultural Process ; its inherited tradition would be continually enriched ;it would achieve a higher culture than has yet been attained ; by the action of human entropy its tradition would be augmented and refined in a manner which surpasses our present understanding.
Of course this could be just a part of the natural end of all civilisations that hit a peak and its all downhill from there, everything else is just weights on how quickly or badly if falls as the men that can start tapping out and the rest run around like headless chickens without any real direction or try rob the place blind. Either way if you do not control the behaviours of both men and women to some standard, the stricter the better, your civilisation will take a header off a cliff, based on past examples and the direction we are heading in, we look to be no different, let alone issues regards immigration.Now, aside from these questions we have another horrifying problem to deal with. If indeed, as Unwin states, there is no reversal of sexual liberation, only internal anarchic revolution or conquest at the hands of a more energetic culture, which of the two awaits Europe? In the first case there will necessarily be complete societal collapse followed by a new regime that reshapes an existing culture or we will be swallowed up by another culture during that period of anarchy. Perhaps Japan, due to its isolation and anti-immigration policy, has the potential for saving itself with revolution. However, in Europe, the story looks different. Muslim countries are sexually repressive, therefore, according to Unwin, have high expansive cultural energies which we can clearly see Muslims applying. What is the likelihood that if a European country falls into civil unrest, and has a meaningful Muslim population, that restoration of order will in fact happen by this Muslim population putting into effect their own rule? It seems that if I was hell bent on destroying a culture, I would first put into place sexual liberation, then when the internal anarchic revolution looked to be on the horizon, I would start importing vast amounts of people from a stronger culture so that when the sexually liberated culture finally falls into anarchy, there was a demographic laying in wait to seize the opportunity and restore order under its own terms. Somehow I get the feeling that a typical male hipster will be no match for the more boisterous Muslims making their way into Europe.
Amazing that you will find article here of there in the irish media that at least try and point out how we are being used and abused, but such articles are obviously ignored, but delighted i found this.Over the last twenty-five years, a dramatic transformation in the American public’s view of homosexuality has occurred, symbolized best by the movement of same-sex marriage from the position of a fringe few to the pinnacle of morality and a cornerstone of establishment thought. From Tolerance to Equality explores how this seismic shift of social perspective occurred and why it was led by the country’s educational and financial elite. Rejecting claims of a commitment to toleration or a heightened capacity for moral sympathy, author Darel E. Paul argues that American elites use opinion on homosexuality as a mark of social distinction and thus as a tool for accumulating cultural authority and political power.
Paul traces this process through its cultural pathways as first professionals and, later, corporate managers took up the cause. He marshals original data analysis and chapters on social class and the family, the ideology of diversity, and the waning status of religious belief and authority to explore the factors behind the cultural changes he charts. Paul demonstrates the high stakes for same-sex marriage’s mostly secular proponents and mostly religious opponents—and explains how so many came to fight so vigorously on an issue that directly affects so few. In the end, From Tolerance to Equality is far more than an explanation of gay equality and same-sex marriage. It is a road map to the emerging American political and cultural landscape.
On the contrary, if we are “catching up” with the rest of the West, Catholic paternalism will not be replaced with the post-war secular European social democracy, which has been under attack for a generation. Instead the ruling economic, cultural and political order will be one of unlimited freedom of choice for the individual mixed with greater economic inequality, indebtedness and declining living standards.
Today the most rapacious global corporate giants love nothing more than to celebrate female empowerment, gay pride, individual self-expression and freedom from the shackles of the past. This past International Women’s Day, once a Soviet Union holiday, every global corporation was desperate to be publicly associated with the cause of feminism. McDonald’s turned their golden M upside down to be a W. Porsche blacked out letters to read SHE. Matel released special feminist barbies including a Frida Kahlo Barbie. Twitter released an astroturfed hashtag campaign with a spoken word feminist poetry video. And the list goes on.
There could hardly have been a better symbol of the contradictions of contemporary liberal egalitarianism than at this year’s gay pride celebrations in Ireland during which ATMs were transformed into “GayTMs” with rainbow colours and kitsch designs framing the dreary machines, so often the bringers of bad news. A country whose economy was entirely restructured to facilitate the upward transfer of vast public wealth to bail out elite gambling debts has seamlessly transitioned to a country in which banks preach egalitarianism to the public. In recent years at gay pride, there have been so many floats dedicated to tech multinationals one could easily forget that it had ever been anything other than a North Korean-style ideological parade for the glorification of big tech. The Yes Equality campaign itself was backed by major corporations like Google, Ebay and Twitter.
Good for business
“Failure to support civil marriage equality may do untold damage to Ireland’s international reputation,” warned the Irish Business and Employers Confederation (Ibec) in the lead-up to the marriage referendum. Enda Kenny added “Civil marriage equality will further promote Ireland as a leading place to work and do business.” Twitter Ireland vice-president Stephen McIntyre advised a “Yes vote in referendum would be good for Twitter and for Ireland”. Richard Bruton said at the time that a Yes vote would be a wise choice because it would be “helpful for businesses to grow”. He went on, “It would be good for Ireland. We are now a very vibrant, multicultural society, we are generous, we support equality.” Well, let’s examine for a moment our national commitment to “equality”.
The aptly named study The Missing Profits of Nations found Ireland to be effectively the world’s largest tax haven, enabling global corporations to avoid any public distribution of wealth. The research estimates that multinationals moved €90 billion in corporate profits through Ireland in 2015 and estimates that this practise of profit shifting costs tax authorities globally about €170 billion. To get a sense of the historical trajectory of the bigger project we are racing to catch up with, between 1985 and 2018 the global average statutory corporate tax rate fell by more than half.
A report from this year’s World Economic Forum described Ireland as having “high income inequality and soaring wealth inequality”. Our prolonged housing crisis which sees Dubliners spending over half of their takehome pay on rent, has created a predicted 40-year timeframe for the provision of public housing based on the current waiting list and a young generation locked out of buying a home. Not to worry, the liberal vision of Silicon Valley already has an answer – “digital nomadism” – a work lifestyle for citizens of the world that enables an individual to work anywhere, always moving and transient.
The corporations eager to associate themselves with liberal egalitarian causes in Ireland and elsewhere include for example Apple, who were found to be paying 0.02 per cent tax thanks to Ireland’s liberal regime and whose core technologies come from public investment in research. Amazon, whose name was spelled out in the colours of the rainbow at this year’s gay pride in Dublin, is owned by the richest person in the world, Jeff Bezos, with a personal net worth of $108 billion. Amazon has suppressed efforts to unionise its workers internationally but its low-wage, high-profit model and infamously poor working conditions caused its European workers to go on strike recently.
In our limited and shrinking national public discourse, closely monitored for deviant thought by a culture of militant conformism on the very social media platforms that champion this new vision of progress, we slavishly mimic US liberalism. But just as Ireland is busy collectively retweeting itself for enthusiastically coming into line with long-standing progressive norms elsewhere in Europe, many others across the developed world are beginning to question liberal premises. In his unsparing criticism of the plutocratic liberalism represented by Hillary Clinton, Marxist philosopher Slavoj Zizek declared, “this vision is coming to an end”. In the US the public conversation is grappling with the idea of the total decline of liberalism itself with books like conservative critic Patrick Deneen’s Why Liberalism Failed. As left-leaning commentators like Thomas Frank and economist Mark Blythe have argued, the election of Donald Trump in the US that stoked anti-immigrant sentiment was also a reaction against the ravages of economic globalisation. Just as the rest of the West is beginning to try to think its way through liberalism’s inability to deliver real material equality and imagine a way forward, Ireland is hoping to become its most credulous enthusiast.
Perhaps today we should adopt some of Lennon and Ó Faoláin’s healthy scepticism of the ruling ideology of their time by first recognising what ours is. Whatever remains of the old Catholic nationalist regime will soon be gone completely but our intellectual conformism and deference to the one that has replaced it remains. Ireland now enters a phase in which the restrictions and social taboos of our parents and grandparents generation have been lifted but access to the basic material necessities of life such as housing and stable employment will likely decline.
The “shared space” that represents our having transcended the bad old days of nationalism is also perfectly conducive to our new role as obedient colonial subjects to be ruled from Silicon Valley rather than Westminster. The guiding force behind our economic inequality is no longer parish-pump parochialism, the church or nationalism but a system based on a globalised, financialised and speculative economic order.
For those who want neither a return to the past offered by the right or the liberal individualism offered by the permitted American model of the left, a feat of the imagination will be required to offer an alternative vision. Ireland could instead, for example, draw from our own unique radical traditions to fight for the rights of those who do not own property. Instead of lazily adopting the liberal cosmopolitanism of Silicon Valley, we could look out to the great cultures of the world for inspiration, to those elements that have withstood the marketisation and Americanisation of everything. We could use the best of what technological advancement could offer – greater leisure time and less work would be a good start. But the first step to understanding, before we can have any hope of changing, our current predicament will be acknowledging that the long 19th century is indeed over but that what is replacing it is not an egalitarian vision but the failing, globalised American vision of progressive individualism in culture and economics – the illusion of choice and freedom in a time of greater alienation, atomisation and diminishing expectations for the many and unlimited enrichment for the few.
Angela Nagle is the author of Kill All Normies: Online Culture Wars from 4chan and Tumblr to Trump and the Alt-Right
c'mon the krakenLooks like someone finally released the kraken. Maybe it'll crawl to New York to crush CNN headquarters.
Few scientists get to just go on a mission for the sake of exploring. Even fewer get to encounter rarely seen images of animals in their natural habitat. But a group of scientists on a research mission in the Gulf of Mexico got to do both.www-m.cnn.com
Neo feudalism, thought it was interesting, we seem well on our way.Like the barbarian princes who seized control of western Europe after the fall of Rome, the oligarchs have captured the digital landscape from the old industrial corporations and have proceeded to concentrate it in ever-fewer hands. Like the Medieval aristocracy, the ruling tech oligarchy—epitomized by firms such as Amazon, Google, Facebook, Apple, and Microsoft—have never produced a single coherent political manifesto laying out the technocratic vision of the future. Nevertheless, it is possible to get a sense of what the internet elite believe and, more tellingly, to see the outlines of the world they want to create.
For an industry once known for competition, the level of concentration is remarkable. Google controls nearly 90 percent of search advertising, Facebook almost 80 percent of mobile social traffic, and Amazon about 75 percent of US e-book sales, and, perhaps most importantly, nearly 40 percent of the world’s “cloud business.” Together, Google and Apple control more than 95 percent of operating software for mobile devices, while Microsoft still accounts for more than 80 percent of the software that runs personal computers around the world.
The wealth generated by these near-monopolies funds the tech oligarchy’s drive to monopolize existing industries such as entertainment, education, and retail, as well as those of the future, such as autonomous cars, drones, space exploration, and most critically, artificial intelligence. Unless checked, they will have accumulated the power to bring about what could best be seen as a “post-human” future, in which society is dominated by artificial intelligence and those who control it.
The oligarchs are creating a “a scientific caste system,” not dissimilar to that outlined in Aldous Huxley’s dystopian 1932 novel, Brave New World. Unlike the former masters of the industrial age, they have little use for the labor of middle- and working-class people—they need only their data. Virtually all their human resource emphasis relies on cultivating and retaining a relative handful of tech-savvy operators. “Software,” Bill Gates told Forbes in 2005, “is an IQ business. Microsoft must win the IQ war, or we won’t have a future.”
Of course, the oligarchs have no more intention of surrendering their power and wealth to the proletariat than the Commissars did after the 1917 revolution in Russia. Instead, they favor providing what Marx once described as a “proletarian alms bag” to subsidize worker housing, and provide welfare benefits to their ever expanding cadre of “gig” economy serfs. The former head of Uber, Travis Kalanick, was a strong supporter of Obamacare, and many top tech executives—including Mark Zuckerberg, Y combinator founder Sam Altman, and Elon Musk—favor a guaranteed annual wage to help, in part, allay fears about the “disruption” on a potentially exposed workforce.
Their social vision amounts to what could be called oligarchal socialism, or what the Corbynite Left calls “fully automated luxury communism.” Like the original bolshevist model, technology and science, as suggested by billionaire tech investor Naval Ravikant, would occasion “the breakdown of family structure and religion” while creating the hegemony of a left-wing identity-centered individualism.
Life in a world dominated by these oligarchs would depart from the model of democratic and competitive capitalism that emerged over the last half-century. Rather than hope to achieve upward mobility and the chance to own property, the new generation will be relegated largely to the status of rental serfs. For the next generation, this promises a future not of upward mobility and owned houses, but of rented apartments and social stagnation. Here in California, Facebook is leading the drive to vastly expand this kind of housing, where the serfs and technocoolies can lose themselves in what Google calls “immersive computing.” The poor, most of whom simply want opportunity, will be relegated to permanent dependent status.
California, and particularly the Bay Area, already reflects this neo-feudal reality. Adjusted for costs, my adopted home state suffers the overall highest poverty rate in the country, according to the US Census Bureau. Fully one in three welfare recipients in the nation live in California, which is home to barely 12 percent of the country’s population, while a 2017 United Way study showed that close to one in three of the state’s families are barely able to pay their bills. Today, eight million Californians live in poverty, including two million children. Roughly one in five California children lives in deep poverty and nearly half subsist barely above that.
For all its protestations of progressive faith, the Golden State now suffers one of the highest GINI rates—the ratio between the wealthiest and the poorest—among the states. Inequality is growing faster than in almost any state—it now surpasses that of Mexico, and is closer to that of Central American banana republics like Guatemala and Honduras than it is to developed countries like Canada and Norway. There’s even the return of medieval diseases such as Typhus tied to the growing homeless encampments. We could soon even see the return of Bubonic plague, although the mainstream media seems to be ready to blame this, like most ills, on climate change as opposed to failed social policy.[
Urban website CityLab has described the tech-rich Bay Area as “a region of segregated innovation,” where the rich wax, the middle class wanes, and the poor live in increasingly unshakeable poverty. Some 76,000 millionaires and billionaires call Santa Clara and San Mateo counties home. At the other end are the thousands of people who struggle to feed their families and pay their bills each month. Nearly 30 percent of Silicon Valley’s residents rely on public or private assistance.
As recently as the 1980s, the San Jose area boasted one of the country’s most egalitarian economies. But in the current boom, cost-adjusted wages for middle class workers, Latinos, and African Americans in Silicon Valley actually dropped. Many minorities labor in the service sector in jobs such as security guard, for around $25,000 annually, working for contractors. There’s ever-greater segregation of minority and low income families, workers forced into mobile home parks or sleeping in their cars, as well as some of the nation’s largest homeless encampments. According to the Brookings Institution, in the last decade, increasingly tech-dominated San Francisco has suffered the most rapid growth in inequality while the middle class family heads towards extinction.
But these well-placed defenders may not be enough to fend off regulatory assaults, particularly as more people recognize how the world being created by the tech elites offers little promise for the middle class, democracy, or free thought. Rather than the saviors many once saw, the oligarchs now represent a clear and present danger to the most basic foundations of our democracy. Resisting them represents the great imperative of our era.
I remember this being a good headline when Suarez bit his latest victim.Panic stations! Time to start a mass hyster...public awareness campaign about the dangers of sharks.
Never mind the fact that you're statistically far more likely to drown in some easily preventable accident worthy of a Darwin award, shark awareness must take priority. What do you mean resources would be better deployed elsewhere? Look how mean he looks!