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N.M. Scientist Offers Look at Origins of War
Albuquerque Journal ^ | Friday, October 26, 2007 | John Fleck

Posted on 10/26/2007 7:02:47 PM PDT by woofie

War— humanity's great curse— seems to have developed hand-in-hand with the better angels of our nature, new research suggests.

The strange combination of sharing with our neighbors while we engage in organized group killing of outsiders— two relatively unusual and puzzling human traits— could in fact go together, according to new research by a New Mexico scientist.

Groups of brutish warriors— fierce toward neighbors while nobly sharing among themselves— could have swept aside groups that otherwise would have prospered in peace, Santa Fe Institute researcher Samuel Bowles has found.

Bowles said in an interview this week that he finds the results of his research "unsettling."

But whether this aspect of human nature is genetic or cultural, Bowles said the fact that war is part of our nature does not mean we can't overcome it.

"Our legacy need not be our destiny," Bowles said.

Bowles, an economist whose career defies academic labels, has spent time in the field studying hunter-gatherer cultures in Africa and Latin America, trying to understand the basis of human cultural behaviors.

For his most recent work, he teamed with Jung-Kyoo Choi of Kyungpook National University in South Korea to try to explain two of the great puzzles of human evolution: altruism and war.

The results of their research are being published today in the journal Science.

In evolutionary terms, war has always been a bit of a mystery.

Evolution favors those who live long enough to have lots of offspring and who acquire the resources so those offspring can prosper and have offspring of their own.

Going on the attack against your neighbors costs resources and risks death, two behaviors that are generally bad evolutionary bargains.

(Excerpt) Read more at abqjournal.com ...


TOPICS: Culture/Society; News/Current Events; Philosophy; US: New Mexico
KEYWORDS: culturalsuicide; evolution; nationalsuicide; pacifists; science; war

1 posted on 10/26/2007 7:02:48 PM PDT by woofie
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To: woofie

war might have developed pre Bush ...hard to believe


2 posted on 10/26/2007 7:03:55 PM PDT by woofie
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To: woofie

War exists because there are people who only pay attention after receiving an ass-kicking.


3 posted on 10/26/2007 7:05:41 PM PDT by Terpfen (It's your fault, not Pelosi's.)
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To: woofie
War occurs because of the existence of evil men...and I mean men.As long as we have men we will have evil men.And as long as we have evil men we will have war and/or oppression.

It's just that simple.And there's not a damn thing we can do about it...unfortunately.

4 posted on 10/26/2007 7:07:08 PM PDT by Gay State Conservative (Wanna see how bad it can get? Elect Hillary and find out.)
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To: woofie
War might have developed pre Bush ...hard to believe

War originated with Richard Nixon when he ordered John Kerry to Cambodia in December 1968.

5 posted on 10/26/2007 7:09:11 PM PDT by Gay State Conservative (Wanna see how bad it can get? Elect Hillary and find out.)
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To: Gay State Conservative

War will exist as long as there are pacifists.


6 posted on 10/26/2007 7:11:40 PM PDT by vbmoneyspender
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To: Gay State Conservative

War, huh, yeah
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Uh-huh
War, huh, yeah
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Say it again, y’all

War, huh, good God
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Listen to me

Ohhh, war, I despise
Because it means destruction
Of innocent lives

War means tears
To thousands of mothers eyes
When their sons go to fight
And lose their lives

I said, war, huh
Good God, y’all
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Say it again

War, whoa, Lord
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Listen to me

War, it ain’t nothing
But a heartbreaker
War, friend only to the undertaker
Ooooh, war
It’s an enemy to all mankind
The point of war blows my mind
War has caused unrest
Within the younger generation
Induction then destruction
Who wants to die
Aaaaah, war-huh
Good God y’all
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Say it, say it, say it
War, huh
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Listen to me

War, huh, yeah
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Uh-huh
War, huh, yeah
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Say it again y’all
War, huh, good God
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Listen to me

War, it ain’t nothing but a heartbreaker
War, it’s got one friend
That’s the undertaker
Ooooh, war, has shattered
Many a young mans dreams
Made him disabled, bitter and mean
Life is much to short and precious
To spend fighting wars these days
War can’t give life
It can only take it away

Ooooh, war, huh
Good God y’all
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Say it again

War, whoa, Lord
What is it good for
Absolutely nothing
Listen to me

War, it ain’t nothing but a heartbreaker
War, friend only to the undertaker
Peace, love and understanding
Tell me, is there no place for them today
They say we must fight to keep our freedom
But Lord knows there’s got to be a better way

Ooooooh, war, huh
Good God y’all
What is it good for
You tell me
Say it, say it, say it, say it

War, huh
Good God y’all
What is it good for
Stand up and shout it
Nothing

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>
well thats one view
On the other hand....


7 posted on 10/26/2007 7:12:27 PM PDT by woofie
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To: Gay State Conservative

“War originated with Richard Nixon when he ordered John Kerry to Cambodia in December 1968.”

Really? I thought war originated with FDR when he duped the poor, naive Japanese into bombing Perl Harbor so that he’d have an excuse to invade north africa and steal all the oil.


8 posted on 10/26/2007 7:13:14 PM PDT by Grimmy (equivocation is but the first step along the road to capitulation)
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Comment #9 Removed by Moderator

To: woofie

Perhaps there will be no more war when every nation is a democracy?


10 posted on 10/26/2007 7:15:21 PM PDT by Momaw Nadon ("...with the ultimate goal of ending tyranny in our world.")
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To: yeehah
In the complex intergroup interactions that followed, groups that were peaceful and willing to trade with their neighbors often prospered. Absent war, they tended to do the best.

But in the long run, the peaceniks got shoved out by people who were altruistic within their own group but willing to wage war against outsiders. The warriors would provoke wars and then win them, giving them dominance despite the evolutionary costs of battle, Bowles and Choi found

11 posted on 10/26/2007 7:19:16 PM PDT by woofie
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To: vbmoneyspender

John Liberal thought it wrong to fight.
Abdul, who killed him, thought it right.


12 posted on 10/26/2007 7:24:31 PM PDT by expatpat
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To: woofie
OH NO!!! NOW I HAVE JACKIE CHAN SINGING THAT IN MY HEAD!!!!

THANKS A LOT!!!!

13 posted on 10/26/2007 7:26:39 PM PDT by Pistolshot
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To: expatpat

That belongs on a tee shirt and/or bumper sticker!!


14 posted on 10/26/2007 7:50:20 PM PDT by pilipo
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To: woofie
The strange combination of sharing with our neighbors while we engage in organized group killing of outsiders— two relatively unusual and puzzling human...

and Chimpanzee traits.

15 posted on 10/26/2007 7:52:31 PM PDT by Rudder
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To: woofie
Going on the attack against your neighbors costs resources and risks death, two behaviors that are generally bad evolutionary bargains.

Unless you win.

"Let the dice fly high!" --Julius Caesar

16 posted on 10/26/2007 7:59:08 PM PDT by Max in Utah (If your neighbors habitually trespassed, wouldn't you want a nice tall fence with razor wire on top?)
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To: Rudder
The strange combination of sharing with our neighbors while we engage in organized group killing of outsiders— two relatively unusual and puzzling human...and Chimpanzee traits.

All the author had to do was watch the first five minutes of "2001: A Space Odyssey" and he would have seen the his weighty observation played out to great music long before he crystallized this amazing finding in his pea brain.

17 posted on 10/26/2007 8:11:22 PM PDT by USMA '71
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To: woofie

From the bowles of Samuel Bowles.


18 posted on 10/26/2007 8:11:28 PM PDT by shove_it (nonillegitimous carborundum)
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To: Max in Utah

It costs less in resources to steal what others have accumulated through hard work. That is the basis behind conquest and that is why those who build you must be ready to defend what they have built.


19 posted on 10/26/2007 8:20:23 PM PDT by Vietnam Vet From New Mexico (Rock The Casbah (said the little AC130 gunship))
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To: Rudder

Chimps live in patriarichal bands which engage in organized warfare and they have been far more successful than their bonobo relatives who are matriarichal and don’t engage in warfare. Social evolutionists say that humans share traits from both groups though making us far more complex.


20 posted on 10/26/2007 8:38:55 PM PDT by Eternal_Bear
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To: Eternal_Bear
Social evolutionists say that humans share traits from both groups...

Yes, I know. I spent a two-year fellowship in Tanzania watching them.

21 posted on 10/26/2007 8:54:39 PM PDT by Rudder
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To: woofie
"Who are you?"

What do you want?"

Babylon 5; It was the Vorlons and the Shadows

22 posted on 10/26/2007 9:00:41 PM PDT by TruthConquers (Delendae sunt publici scholae)
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To: woofie

Origins of war - Cain and Abel


23 posted on 10/26/2007 9:06:19 PM PDT by maine-iac7 ("...but you can't fool all of the people all of the time" LINCOLN)
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To: maine-iac7

Cain and Abel, brotherly love


24 posted on 10/26/2007 9:08:16 PM PDT by woofie
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To: Gay State Conservative
"evil men"

Exactly right. And because there will always be a percentage of the population of evil people who can convince other not-quite-so-evil people that they can gain something by following them, we will have war. But liberals do not believe in human nature, which is why they're always puzzled over origins of strife and war. Like the clown who did the study.

25 posted on 10/27/2007 5:37:37 AM PDT by driftless2
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To: Momaw Nadon
Perhaps there will be no more war when every nation is a democracy?

That's the neocon delusion. War is in our genes. It will be with us no matter what form of government we establish.

26 posted on 10/27/2007 10:39:51 AM PDT by curiosity
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To: woofie
The strange combination of sharing with our neighbors while we engage in organized group killing of outsiders— two relatively unusual and puzzling human traits—

Not puzzling and certainly not new information. It's the pack mentality. People band together for strength while protecting their turf, goods and family from any real or perceived threat.

27 posted on 10/27/2007 10:44:09 AM PDT by Lijahsbubbe
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To: woofie
Going on the attack against your neighbors costs resources and risks
death, two behaviors that are generally bad evolutionary bargains.


This scientist probably does know a lot of theory.

But doesn't know sh-t about history.
28 posted on 10/27/2007 10:44:59 AM PDT by VOA
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To: woofie
"Our legacy need not be our destiny," Bowles said.

The slogan of many disappeared pacifistic groups.

That won't be found in history books because they were "erased"
by their more pragmatic neighbors.
29 posted on 10/27/2007 10:46:54 AM PDT by VOA
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To: vbmoneyspender
War will exist as long as there are pacifists.

One rock-solid lesson of history.

And one that naive pencil-necked geeks have the freedom and leisure
to try to debunk the lesson.

Because people that understand that lesson of war provide them that
freedom and leisure.
30 posted on 10/27/2007 10:58:25 AM PDT by VOA
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To: curiosity
War is in our genes.

The whole reason humans walk upright is to free our hands to carry weapons. Almost every human trait can be traced to its advantage at war, especially our having intelligence far in excess of that needed to find food and shelter. For some reason leftists have real trouble accepting this idea that human means war-maker. Darwin wrote about about this subject a long time ago in his book The Descent of Man but this is seldom understood or acknowledged.

31 posted on 10/27/2007 11:08:09 AM PDT by Reeses (Leftism is powered by the evil force of envy.)
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To: woofie

“Bowles, an economist whose career defies academic labels...”

Another way of saying he’s not accredited.


32 posted on 10/28/2007 8:23:51 AM PDT by tet68 ( " We would not die in that man's company, that fears his fellowship to die with us...." Henry V.)
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