Share and share alike. Benevolence, altruism, good stuff and happy
This is a nice
option. It's such a nice option that many of us wonder frequently
why human beings don't use it all the time to solve all their problems.
No strife, no bloodshed, no prejudice, no conflict, just happy nice
sharing among all the members of the human family. After all - the
100 members of the 2 clumps are all human type thingys aren't they?
No one life is worth more than another, is it? Why can't they just
drop the guarded looks, give each other nice warm embraces, accept
each other as friends and happily cooperate and share the resources
of the territory? Isn't it the only fair thing to do? Why even consider
them 2 separate clumps? Where did a silly idea like that come from
anyway? All human type thingys have needs, let's settle the situation
equitably by divvying things up equally. Right?
You don't believe that for a moment do you? You know that isn't how
it works. Sure, you think, sure you start sharing with the first miserably
hungry other clump that comes along and first thing you know all the
other clumps are banging at your door wanting a piece of your woolly
mastodon pie or whatever else it is you're serving for dinner.
Even though we
have presented for you an option that involves you not being the least
bit scared or wary or unhappy - just accepting the Other Clump exactly
as you accept your own - you don't believe it, you don't believe that's
how your clump or any other clump would handle the situation. You
don't believe it because in this case sharing doesn't work.
In a limited resource
situation such as the one you have found yourself in, sharing and
sharing alike means that 100 people get half rations and they
all fucking starve to death together - but very kindly! Nobody
is unhappy with each other - but everybody dies. Doesn't work. They
may be in a good mood toward each other and politely passing the gnawed
on bones (no, you first!) but they all fucking die. Your Social
Brain has developed an exquisite ability for you to be extremely fucking
unhappy with and scared of Other People and Other Clumps because
if you don't have that to motivate you, you're going to fucking share
yourself into the graveyard.
It's not that
this share and share alike impulse doesn't exist in people - it does.
That's why people long for it, why the Rodney King module inside all
our brains occasionally cries out 'Can't we all just get along?!'
To which the sobering answer is - no, sometimes we can't. There's
enough for 50, not enough for 100. Somebody's going to die. If it's
everybody - lights out human race. If a mechanism is found to weed
out some of the excess - survival for human type thingys.
in history, clumps will veer toward the share and share alike response
when confronted by invading clumps of Other People. This often
doesn't work out for them. Note American Indians, frequently adulated
for displaying the occasional share and share alike response to those
terrible white folks. Admirable perhaps, but also pretty close to
annihilated. Share and share alike clumps when confronted by voracious
invaders have an alarming tendency to go belly up and get overrun
by those same invaders. Peace may be a nice idea, and it is, but sometimes
it just doesn't fucking work for the peaceful.
This is why the
un-peaceful often get incredibly fucking uptight when there is some
sort of crisis looming and Other People around them are peaceably
babbling about peace and so on. Their active Social Brains start screaming
at them - 'You're gonna die! These fucking peace-mongers are going
to screw around babbling about peace until we're all fucking dead!
We're doomed! We're in danger! Starvation is immiment! Fuck those
peaceniks, I want war! War now!' And so on. It seems nonsensical,
who the fuck can be against peace? Who could be against avoiding bloody
mounds of mutilated dead people? Who wants to get bombs dropped on
them, or watch other helpless humans get bombs dropped on them and
go up in truly horrifying spectacular bursts of agony? No one, not
really. But part of the Social Brain's job is to get uptight and terrified
of peace when it appears there's a threat on the horizon.
And toward its
general aim of inciting fear of peace, it is prone to make its victims,
otherwise normal people like yourself, babble incredibly stupid
things in favor of war. The Social Brain's warring impulse is
not there so you can make logical sense when you speak on its behalf,
it's there to make you scared out of your fucking mind of peace and
to communicate that fear as rapidly as possible so that you can
scare the shit out of everyone in your clump so they won't sit
around on their asses like idiots trusting in peace while your entire
fucking future as a clump is perilously endangered. That's its
job. It's good at it. If it wasn't, there'd be no human race for
you to complain about and be scared of.
You can hate
this if you like - the Social Fucking Brain's fear of peace in
times of threat. You can argue with it if you like. You can say that
things are different now and we are not in evolutionary fairy-tale
land anymore and we should have evolved as a species if you like.
You can say that things should be different. You can declare this
a terrible fault and flaw in human wiring. You can do anything you
want. But all those suspicious-looking Other People clustered in
your neighborhood - they all have brains shaped by an evolutionary
history in which happy peaceful share and share alike was not
the best option in clump to clump resource shortage encounters.
brain, your big fat fucking Social Brain was shaped by it too. Deep
in its heart, way down inside your skull, your Social Brain pumps
out messages to you that say things like 'Share! Share with those
miserable [Insert Other Clump Name Here], no fucking way! That's
a fucking death sentence! No, MINE! No sharing, no! No, no, no! I
won't be nice, goddammit, I won't, I won't. And nobody can make me!
No!' Even when there is a not exactly a war looming on the horizon.
Maybe you think
that your Social Brain is terrible to say things like this to you
- and that it's terrible that Other People are busy thinking them
too, but that's part of its job too - to not want to be nice to others
who don't belong to your clump - for fear of what that will mean for
you. Your Social Brain firmly believes that sometimes there is
just not enough to go around and that as a result, sometimes you
are going to get fucking screwed if you don't screw someone else first.
Advanced spiritual thinkers will tell you that your Social Brain is
wrong - that in fact we live in a world shaped by God's abundance
and that scarcity and the unhappy fearful reactions it creates are
just an illusion. This may be true. But your Social Brain doesn't
fucking believe it.
Your Social Brain
was shaped by the reality of scarcity and that's one thing it believes
in. Being a human-survival-depends-on-it mechanism - the Forget
That Fucking Altruism Mechanism is very strong-minded and quick to
assert its opinion. It will encourage you - and everybody else
on the planet - to be scared of Immigrant Other Clumps, and Different
Racial Clumps, and Suspicious Foreign-Acting Other Clumps and to clutch
its precious resources to its breast and start whining things like
'They're taking our jobs!' and so on.
You will see this
mechanism everywhere you go - you have noticed it already - in the
subway, in the cities, in the car rental line. You have noticed it
for many years - you just didn't know why the human universe is overrun
with jerks. It's overrun with jerks because Social Brains worldwide
are constantly worried that there just isn't enough. Not enough rental
cars, not enough seats on the subway, not enough oil, not enough you-fucking-name-it.
If being afraid
of immigrants and other races and saying things like 'They're taking
our jobs!' suits you just fine, then you and this part of your
Social Brain will get along quite well. If constantly fucking getting
your guts in a knot about not-enoughness and scarcity is your cup
of tea then you and this part of your Social Brain will spend many
bonding moments together freaking out and panicking about shortages
of all kinds of things. You may even find the occasional war somewhat
of a relief. Since action is an antidote to fear, it may feel
like at least someone is finally doing something aggressive about
all those potential dangers.
not all your Social Brain can whip up when it comes to war. There's
plenty more war-like Social Brain antics ahead!
fun with your personal Social Brain and the existence of war.....