Essay on Greed; Utopianism, Libertarianism and Natural Law

Discussion in 'Miscellaneous' started by pettyfog, Jun 17, 2005.

  1. pettyfog

    pettyfog Well-Known Member

    Jan 4, 2005
    Human Behaviorists have long noted that an individual is the product of two influences, Genetic Predisposition and Environment.

    That is, the organism has natural inbred tendencies but can be trained to display those tendencies uniquely, based on a long empirical process of punishment and reward seen as Action equal Result. (Pavlovian Dogs; Psych 101.)

    And submersed in voluminous papers on the subject is the third factor, unique to humankind: REASON.

    If you do much surfing on serious topics on the net, you are bound to run into a site G-R-E-E-D in which a guy named Julian Edney expounds on the influences and anomalies of "natural law" on the social fabric.
    At first glance reading him seems a long torturous trip to nowhere ..(he ought to call himself 'pettyfog', eh? ;)) but the guy makes some very valid points on how we got where we are and the long trip to social justice.

    I havent bothered to suss out his conclusions yet but I will wager that, if he comes to a definitive point, it is wrong; whatever it is.

    But he needs to be read, fully and often, before we expound on our favorite current events topics.

    As an example, it has always amused me that the 'Progressive' -call him an atheist, for this point- adores Darwinism except when it affects his rhetorical agenda.... He is loathe to employ 'survival of the fittest' when speaking of the community... insisting that all people are equally entitled to some basic human needs regardless of ability -or WILLINGNESS- to provide them for himself. And that is up to the rest of us COLLECTIVELY to provide and distribute them... and that is just the inescapable result of applying REASON!

    On the OTHER hand, look at a successful Farmer, who might be labeled a fundamental Christian because he ascribes to the Bible LITERALLY.

    He will employ the fruits of the Darwinist theory daily when dealing with livestock and his crops yet deny the influence in his own and others' lives.

    REASON tells him that God separated man from beast by 'REASON' and that man being unique, he is the master -and conservator- of all the earth creatures.
    So it is up to him, by religious teaching and values, to provide for the 'less fortunate' by giving a tenth of all he earns for them.

    So the ironic conclusion:
    BOTH deny Darwinism applies to Humankind, yet believe in and employ it!

    But the issue is more complicated than that!
    When examined closely, the 'Progressive' who attains a position where he is listened to, beats the drum for 'Protection' of the innocent and ascribes 'Evil' as the actions of a corporate bogeyman out to exploit them for attainment of money and power.

    The opposite actor, who may or may not be religious, believes in free and unrestricted activity in commerce and all manner of activity. Whatever the person's goal, he who attains the most totems wins.

    Which brings us back to 'Darwinism'. While paying lip service to 'all being equal', the Progressive, in his heart, doesnt believe that for a minute.

    He believes he (or She) is one of a select group of alpha leaders and entitled to some degree of the three human needs:
    Fame (recognition)
    Influence (power))
    Creature Comforts (riches)

    I am not deeply read enough to know if those three have been specifically listed before.. and frankly I dont care... that IS a list of the three human needs. That the individual varies in his desire and value placed on each, doesnt matter.. it must be considered by anyone who thinks about it.

    The nut of this is illustrated by the simple question, posed on any employment, celebrity, or college entrance interview:
    "What is (are) your ambitions?"
    The answer to which will surely describe desire for one or more of those three.

    That the question IS universal shows that they are values which describe 'Leadership' qualities in our societies... no matter the political strain.

    The (arguable) exception of Eastern religious ascetics aside, every human being .. even Psycho and Sociopaths ..strive for these three in some degree or other.

    And achieving the top tier in any of them, inevitably, brings on the other two.

    Which brings me back to GREED! The extent to which an individual desires, and the lengths he is willing to go to to attain one of the three, describes his level of GREED.

    That the person may have altruistic motives which lead him to achieve the pinnacle in one of them, incidently, doesnt change that. That person IS an Alpha leader, accidently or not.

    And are those people NOT attempting to influence, no matter the motive?

    So, we ALL, to some extent or the other have in our innate being some element of GREED! If only to achieve some degree of Creature Comfort.

    ergo.. SOME Greed is good, TOO MUCH is BAD. Just like salt, huh!

    Now...I would like to point out that the CURRENT fashion of society is to elevate the "Influential"... Prosperity has made excess riches and surrounding 'Creature Comforts' only noteworthy by way of how famous the achiever is willing to be. Fame is only noteworthy, in itself, as a distraction to problems of the day.

    Thus the Hollywood Actor, whose motive starts as acquisition of fame, thus being accorded more than sufficient Creature Comforts, seeks the third totem...INFLUENCE. Whether or not, he has even the brain power of an ant, he will study what it takes to achieve that immortal end.
    - Fame or Brains? "Gimme the Oscar, please!"

    The opposite is the "altruistic motive", the utopian embarks on an academic career, either to influence others by teaching his values or to "protect the unfortunate" by way of influencing the application of the law or to make that law, himself. To the extent he is successful, he inescapably attains both fame and creature Comforts by way of those who seek his influence.
    - It's my contention that this doesnt require a lot of Brains, either.... To the extent that he learns to court fame, thus voters or clients or patrons; he only needs sufficient mental acuity to learn the rules, how to apply them and how to leverage the results.
    ergo..Law School Grad and Doctorate in Polical Science is the cousin of the pretty girl in the beauty pageant: "I wish to win this so that I can work for World Peace!"

    So, wtf does all this mean?

    Ask a Law School Grad, the first thing he learns in studying for his JD is that "Common Sense" has NO place in the Law, save your ability to use it to influence a favorable outcome of your case.
    "Looks like a, walks like a , acts like a..." means nothing; "my client merely likes ducks!" (eg Michael Jackson)

    OTOH, the PoliSci guy LEARNS how to influence via spin... he will learn how to MAKE the unworkable or illogical or factually FALSE premise seem like "Common Sense"
    Thus the truly greedy for INFLUENCE will ignore all that has gone before to gain his ends. He truly believes that he can exert enough influence that the forces of natural law (genetics and environment) as recorded in history are overcome.

    He will appeal to REASON, while defining beforehand what REASON actually is. When historical fact is suppled as rebuttal to his point, he will bluster, change the point, simply either deny that the fact exists or claim it doesnt apply "because of recent enlightenment". All this in order to exert or gain influence

    And there is NO ONE more desperate in the need to exert influence than one who has had it and lost some of it.

    - to be continued-
  2. JohnnyCash

    JohnnyCash New Member

    Jan 5, 2005
    Are you calling us inbred?

    I think everything humans do revolves around sex...fame, power, riches all go back to moving furhter up in the sex ladder

    and even normal things, going to work, brushing your teeth, driving a car, playing soccer...all goes back to that
  3. ChicagoFan

    ChicagoFan New Member

    Jan 4, 2005
    Spoken like a true Republican. :lol:

    The Republican mantra: "Neither facts, nor proof, nor hard evidence shall deter us from our appointed beliefs."
  4. pettyfog

    pettyfog Well-Known Member

    Jan 4, 2005
    Say "Bred-In then...

    Um... yeah, CF. Comes back to facts and ignorance. Want to get on a pissing contest as to who has lied and about what? Wait for the end!
  5. Smokin'

    Smokin' Administrator

    Jan 3, 2005
    Machu Picchu
    I find this all very interesting, I also think that Johnny Cash has a valid point. But doesnt this all fall into the environment portion of what shapes us?

    if i was born into republican and my environment was republican would I ONLY strive for a republican type of fame...

    I do agree that serial killers follow the same agenda in search of one or all of those things.... TAKE FROM ME.... muhahahaaa
  6. pettyfog

    pettyfog Well-Known Member

    Jan 4, 2005
    Freudian.. hence Darwinism, and the reference to salt above. Sex is what drives the underlying basic instincts.

    {Survive and}Reproduce

    Not necessarily in that order... hence the admonition of the wise men in all societies to exercise restraint and discipline. Eat too much salt and die. Too much sex and something else dies.
  7. JohnnyCash

    JohnnyCash New Member

    Jan 5, 2005
    Yeah but if you eat and have shelter so you can live...

    so you can have sex at a later date
  8. Smokin'

    Smokin' Administrator

    Jan 3, 2005
    Machu Picchu
    I think women instill that logic in us... well sometimes I think this...

    I'm all about sex now now now....

    sex now or let me die.... while finally getting laid of course.
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