Evolution Will Punish You if You are Selfish and Mean

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posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 11:13 AM
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Here is a scientific finding that has philosophical and metaphysical implications:



"We found evolution will punish you if you're selfish and mean," said lead author Christoph Adami, MSU professor of microbiology and molecular genetics. "For a short time and against a specific set of opponents, some selfish organisms may come out ahead. But selfishness isn't evolutionarily sustainable."


Using high-powered computers to run hundreds of thousands of game simulations, they were able to prove that in the short term being mean and selfish can be an advantage. However, when only the mean and selfish are left they must learn to cooperate to continue to survive.

So listen up all you Wall Street types, you may think you know-it-all but according to this study you're nothing more than a caveman wearing an Armani suit!

Source
edit on 1-8-2013 by 1questioner because: (no reason given)




posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 11:15 AM
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reply to post by 1questioner
 


It makes sense when evolution relates to a whole group compared to individuals or a small family. Thanks for sharing OP.



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 11:18 AM
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My question is why doesn't evolution punish the selfish in the animal kingdom? Male lions thrive on selfishness. What ever happened to survival of the fittest?



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 11:27 AM
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reply to post by micmerci
 


Well, let's see... If the male lions ate all the other animal species soon they would have to start eating each other. Survival of the fittest..? I think what this study is saying is that it's time for us to wake-up.



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 11:34 AM
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Originally posted by 1questioner
reply to post by micmerci
 


Well, let's see... If the male lions ate all the other animal species soon they would have to start eating each other. Survival of the fittest..? I think what this study is saying is that it's time for us to wake-up.



My question is legitimate and not argumentative. It is clear that in the animal kingdom selfishness is key in the survival of the fittest. Why would humans be an exception to this rule? Know that I am not advocating the opposite in my questioning, just merely questioning.



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 11:34 AM
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Originally posted by 1questioner
Using high-powered computers to run hundreds of thousands of game simulations, they were able to prove that in the short term being mean and selfish can be an advantage. However, when only the mean and selfish are left they must learn to cooperate to continue to survive.



I recall reading much the same in Richard Dawkins 1976 book "The Selfish Gene".
There is quite a lengthy discussion about evolutionarily stable strategies.

First published as a specific term in the 1972 book by John Maynard Smith...


So its not clear to me why this is news today.

edit on 1-8-2013 by alfa1 because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 11:38 AM
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This may be an off the wall observation, but my friend and I were talking about different styles of playing poker, basically aggressive versus patient "gentleman rules".....we concluded that aggressive "bully" tactics, while effective in the short term, seem to always backfire ultimately.

I think the difference is we can see in a shorter amount of time how this works in poker, but evolution and history take longer to analyse. The fall of the Roman Empire is an example that comes to mind. Perhaps the Elites seem to have the advantage at this point, and maybe they won't even suffer in their lifetimes, but at some point the scheme will collapse, and the people will call their Bluff......



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 11:40 AM
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Originally posted by 1questioner
Using high-powered computers to run hundreds of thousands of game simulations


Oh.. you mean they used video games to simulate for data?

I knew they were doing crap like that, and people were saying otherwise..



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 12:04 PM
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reply to post by alfa1
 


From reading the article, the authors were responding to a study done last year:



In 2012, a scientific paper unveiled a newly discovered strategy -- called zero-determinant -- that gave selfish players a guaranteed way to beat cooperative players.



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 12:22 PM
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I wish they were publishing this for real instead it seems they are trying to say, don't be selfish give into tyranny for the greater good.



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 12:30 PM
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reply to post by Unity_99
 




don't be selfish give into tyranny for the greater good.


Unity, I must be missing something. I don't understand your tyranny reference. Here is the last paragraph of the article:



"The only way ZD strategists could survive would be if they could recognize their opponents," Hintze said. "And even if ZD strategists kept winning so that only ZD strategists were left, in the long run they would have to evolve away from being ZD and become more cooperative. So they wouldn't be ZD strategists anymore."



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 05:29 PM
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Originally posted by Unity_99
I wish they were publishing this for real instead it seems they are trying to say, don't be selfish give into tyranny for the greater good.


Nothing in nature survives for long if it can not find a stable symbiosis with nature. Every human on this planet would be dead if it was not symbiotically taken care of by another human in it's beginning.



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 06:19 PM
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reply to post by 1questioner
 


And the point is, only the selfish and mean survive. The game is survival of the fittest. These are the winners. And ultimately due to their nature they will also fail. Depressing isnt it?



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 06:26 PM
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Civilization sprang from the universal recognition of people needing each other. Humans are not naturally isolationists. it is only in the modern era of the digital age that we have become so dumbed down and "linked in" while ignoring the person beside us.

In regards to the "lion" guy above...humans and civilization would not have advanced without working together and sharing equally...just a fact. We overcame the lions and other predators by working together and not being selfish, mean and greedy.

So "lion" guy represents the downfall of civilization and the countdown to our extinction...the human race is doomed if it does not remember the dawn of civilization and what made it work.



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 06:28 PM
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That's not evolution....That's called "CONTROL."

SORRY, someone had to say that. Guess it was me....
Tetra50
Just like "natural selection" these days turns out to be NOT SO NATURAL.....



posted on Aug, 1 2013 @ 07:25 PM
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reply to post by Unity_99
 



Originally posted by Unity_99
I wish they were publishing this for real instead it seems they are trying to say, don't be selfish give into tyranny for the greater good.


Whoever is completely selfish will make it to the top, but then there will be in-fighting. They will be selfish against each other, and their tyranny will divide.

Think of how many empires fell because of "betrayal" and how one secret society can split up and become many even fighting against each other.

Complete selfishness divides, even among the tyrants...

The *SELFISHNESS* I believe in, is the one where I am caring for you in order to help myself. I believe in speaking up for other people's freedom because I care about my own. I'm not aggressive because I want to lead by example to not be so controlling with others, so that people won't be that way with me.

The type of selfishness where we can all join together to protect freedom in order to keep our own individual freedom is what true selfishness is, because anything other than that will eventually result in people taking over other people's freedom including your own.
edit on 1-8-2013 by arpgme because: (no reason given)



posted on Aug, 2 2013 @ 12:52 AM
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I'm sorry, hope this is just a good finding, for there is a science that shows cooperation is very necessary for survival. But I am starting to relate every published report or direction even they attempt to go in their scientific investigations or research, to be done in the spirit of trying to convey a political agenda, tyranny always. So I was kind of expressing sadness in that feeling of no longer being able to be happy with their findings but suspicious even if the outcome of a study is good.



posted on Aug, 2 2013 @ 01:18 AM
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Originally posted by Firefly_
reply to post by 1questioner
 


And the point is, only the selfish and mean survive. The game is survival of the fittest. These are the winners. And ultimately due to their nature they will also fail. Depressing isnt it?


Not really. If you mean a that the selfish are parasites then the parasite cannot survive if it does not have a host. Humans who are unselfish can live without the parasite and protect themselves from the parasite by not letting parasitism exists in their system. If you make a selfish act unacceptable to be in the group then you correct the behavior quickly. The solution is for the group not to accept parasitism and be manipulated by people who can speak with big words for their selfish benefit.



posted on Aug, 2 2013 @ 08:09 AM
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Originally posted by Unity_99
I'm sorry, hope this is just a good finding, for there is a science that shows cooperation is very necessary for survival. But I am starting to relate every published report or direction even they attempt to go in their scientific investigations or research, to be done in the spirit of trying to convey a political agenda, tyranny always. So I was kind of expressing sadness in that feeling of no longer being able to be happy with their findings but suspicious even if the outcome of a study is good.


Now I understand. Thanks, Unity.
Sometimes it's hard to see things in a positive light if change doesn't happen fast enough. But change is happening. The paradigm is shifting, slowly but surely. It's a challenge, but all of us must remain positive.



posted on Aug, 2 2013 @ 11:07 PM
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The issue of whether living beings on this planet are better off competing, cooperating or whatever else is not an either or issue. I think that is too simplistic a view.

Even the view that - life is all about surviving, and propagating is too simplistic.. Is that all life is about?

Bees survive by cooperating with each other, and there may be cases where they compete. Likewise with lions - they may compete against each other, though rare, and they certainly cooperate amongst their kin. Chimpanzees may compete and they may cooperate. I don't know if any beings are exclusively selfish or cooperative, and making a blanket statement that selfishness will work against you in life or for life as a whole is too simplistic and probably a wrong view.

By nature, all beings are selfish because they experience their own suffering (but not necessarily the suffering of others), and work to satisfy their own feelings. This seems necessarily so. This does not exclude them from experiencing empathy and being cooperative with other beings.





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