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Natural Selection: Is it really still around?

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posted on Jan, 6 2006 @ 12:32 PM
I know back in the day, it was a lot easier for the "inferior" to harm only themselves and get removed from the gene pool. But the moment we began conquering nature is the moment that we started slowly halting this process. I'm sure natural selection still occurs on some level, the Darwin Awards has established that. But the real effectiveness and prupose of the process has been lost. The stupid are in larger numbers than ever, and they're effect on others is greater than ever.

And for those of you who argue that you can't escape this law of nature, ok. Well is the damage we do to the gene pool with our activities, tools and chemicals we've created overwhelming natural selection? The many devices we have at our disposal insures each of us a greater impact on the gene pool. One can dump motor oil if they choose, or invent a new hazardous substance and have friends usher it through the FDA for profit. Technology's proliferation has produced a need for greater personal responsibility and discretion, and the two haven't quite gone hand in hand. Thoughts?

[edit on 6-1-2006 by bigpappadiaz]

posted on Jan, 6 2006 @ 01:12 PM

Originally posted by bigpappadiaz
I know back in the day, it was a lot easier for the "inferior" to harm only themselves and get removed from the gene pool.

Please define your idea of "inferior" in context to your post.


posted on Jan, 6 2006 @ 01:49 PM
Well "inferior" genetically, the guy who was meant to fall off according to Darwin. The cow at the end of the herd. The dude natural selection is supposed to select. The people who win the Darwin Awards, or dumps a load of chemicals down the sink and when their son standing next to them says "isn't that bad dad?", he says "nonsense, they just want us to pay them to throw it away, it's a scam." The guy who has little understanding of the world around him or his impact on it, and doesn't wish to waste his time thinking about these things because his friends and family don't. That guy; we all know who he is or should, anyways.

[edit on 6-1-2006 by bigpappadiaz]

posted on Jan, 6 2006 @ 01:55 PM
It's a universal principle and as such remains 'around' forever.

The question is who's subject to selection... it's not just the individual, mind you, it affects, umm, populations, too. entire societies in fact, but more on that later.


there's a problem with societal conclusions based on what we percieve as natural selection: whenever we're talking about extinct species, we presume they failed because they sucked...

and our proof for suckage is that they're extinct, right?

circular logic is fun though, whenever it can be used to shut someone up. loser? it's your fault. trying to disprove it? heck no-one believes a loser, so the label sticks...

but who's selecting who in this case? society adversely selects the individual, so the logical moniker for selection within societies would be

Social Selection

surprising, eh? one example of social selection: soldiers with above average abilities are sent to elite units... who do you think has a better chance of survival, elite troops or logistics folks? how many GIs survived riding the first wave to omaha beach? did they suck? if you think they did not you'll have to reconsider social darwinism, i presume.

-----end interlude---

now, if society believes somebody's inferior, they'd better make sure they're right, otherwise they risk deterioration of their collective fitness (not necessarily by genetic influence, if you reward destructive behaviour, people will adapt accordingly), eventually destroying society, Naturally Selecting it for the collective darwin award (which doesn't necessarily mean the end of every single individual, of course..)

PS: please keep in mind that NS is a destructive principle (obviously, it's about death and infertility) and as such cannot act constructively without additional means (a dead tree may give nutrition to other plants, but only if there's seeds present...)

posted on Jan, 6 2006 @ 02:14 PM
Maybe you didn't quite get my point, which is that sure, social darwinism and natural selection works to an extent. But we've given single persons the ability to screw with all of our lives since we've risen technologically. One person's mistake can cost thousands of lives, and who knows how much untold genetic damage, simply because they thought something was safe or just didn't care. Selfishness, bad science, and new tools have overwhelmed the standard processes. My topic should hav been titled Natural Selection: It's Outdated, Since We Have Bigger Problems We've Created With the Gene Pool.

I'm not just talking about the soldiers who never get promoted and stay on the frontlines where they most likely die, I'm also talking about that guy over there opening up his Copper Mill and spreading his acid rain all over my genes. Or that group of people over there defending their artificial sweeteners, because they lost a bunch of weight drinking milligrams of one thing instead of 40 grams of sugar at every pop. As a result, we all have to live with these unneccesary factories dumping pollutants into our rivers, messing us all up just the same.

[edit on 6-1-2006 by bigpappadiaz]

posted on Jan, 6 2006 @ 03:01 PM
As I look around me, natural selection and social darwinism. seem to have been replaced by the "Peter Principle" where the inferior rise into promanance due to the fact they are not a threat.

Quantum events work in evolutionary aspects imo as in the observed bend and scrape due to who's doing the observing.

posted on Jan, 7 2006 @ 05:51 AM

Originally posted by bigpappadiaz
Maybe you didn't quite get my point..

NS is still around, but as i said, it affects our entire civilisation, not primarily each and every individual (then i tried to explain why that's the case). perhaps that's not what you wanted to hear, but it is an answer to the thread's question, isn't it?

posted on Jan, 8 2006 @ 09:46 AM

Originally posted by bigpappadiaz
But the real effectiveness and prupose of the process has been lost.

There is no purpose to natural selection, and its certainly going on today like its allways been. Natural Selection is practically a logical certainty, given variation and differential survival. Man hasn't stopped natural selection by permitting what you call 'inferiors' to survive. Man has simply altered the selection pressure.

Don't look to nature for morality.

posted on Feb, 7 2006 @ 03:35 AM
This has been a topic i have always been fascinated with....The whole purpose of natural selection is to ensure that the strongest, fastest, smartest and genetically superior are the animals that pro-create thus giving that species the best possible chance of survival whilst keepingthe population of that particulair species in check... least thats the way it works with every other animal except for us....

......there's no question that natural selection still apllies with humans to some extent....however humans being blessed with compassion and an ability to change the course of nature have very much taken it out of the picture.

In our society we help the weak live, cure disease, and believe wholly and solely in the preservation of us and ours. The result is we've cheated nature and very heavily upset the balance of the world.

I often wonder at just how many of us there are on this planet...over 6 billion it is now estimated....answer me this, how many other mammals are there on this planet with a population of over 6 billion? how many of any substantial species are there with a population of over 6 billion?

Through our intelligence and compassion IMO we are killing the planet.

Our only apparent form of population controll seems to be our deep seeded desire to kill each other. War seems to be natures way to "cull" the human population.

I know some of the idea's there are contraversial, but there's my 2 cents.......

posted on Feb, 7 2006 @ 08:50 AM
Natural selection has a hard time taking place within humanity mainly because we cater to everyone...

If someone is disabled, we give them a wheelchair.

If someone is born mentally handicapped, we take care of them.

Mind you I'm not saying any of that is wrong, its just thats why natural selection has little effect on humans.

Out in the wild, if an animal is born mentally handicapped then it would probobly not make it. Same with an animal that becomes disabled.

posted on Feb, 7 2006 @ 10:24 AM
So this person becomes a burden and eats up all the food and becomes a waste. If someone really wanted to be evil, they'd convince us that it's a goodness we help them. OOps, too late...

posted on Mar, 13 2006 @ 09:11 PM
it is around, but it's overly affected by human intervention...

so yes, natural selection is there, but only with different situation.

posted on May, 30 2006 @ 08:10 AM
I think natural selection is a flawed theory. 99.99% of all the species that have ever existed are now extinct. If there is a way to avoid extinction - it hasn't been naturally selected yet.

In the case of plague - what determines who lives? A gene providing resistance, in some cases this gene could be related to other less desirable traits, like people with inherent blindness are immune.

Or people with agoraphobia survive.

In a social context - the false construct of values that determine success - where the resources are hoarded; luck of being in the right place at the right time, have very little to do with who is wisest or best suited.

Natural selection is an enviromental determination of what types of beasts survive - not a determination that the 'best' survive. Just remember in nature, the healthy turds sink to the bottom of the bowl and the foamies float.

Given our current enviromental inertia, the numbers of people alone is our best hope - not our great character and wisdom. Natural selection would appear to favour polygamy.

As creatures with the capacity for abstract thought, we have failed at our task, using the excuse of natural selection for all manner of cruelty and greed. It is a flawed theory because it excludes our ability to effect and manipulate environment as oppossed to being the page upon which the environment is written.

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