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Domarius
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I think on the cultural level you can indeed see it as evolution as well, where Lamarcians hypthoses would be correct. This is kind of what Dawkins calls Memes instead of Genes, as the unit of evolution.

As an example: If both parents smoke, the chances that the kids also start smoking is much higher. If parents are religious, the chances that their kids are also religious are higher and so on.

 

Sure, memetic evolution could well be said to be Lamarckian, as you suggest. However, normally when one refers to "evolution" by itself, one is referring to genetic evolution which is strictly Darwinian.

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Exactly, I hate philosophy. It tries to come up with solutions to problems that never existed in the first place.

 

 

Sure, memetic evolution could well be said to be Lamarckian, as you suggest. However, normally when one refers to "evolution" by itself, one is referring to genetic evolution which is strictly Darwinian.

Regardless though, there's no doubt that humans, above all other animals, pass on complex ideas from and to each successive generation.

How this affects our Darwinian evolution is not known, bt it surely has an effect on it, so when calculating how human evolution has progressed over the last 50,000 years, you cannot really draw comparisons with simpler species.

Civillisation will not attain perfection until the last stone, from the last church, falls on the last priest.

- Emil Zola

 

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Regardless though, there's no doubt that humans, above all other animals, pass on complex ideas from and to each successive generation.

 

Ah! you mean like, for example some apes do. Or doles (I think), and other animals.

 

How this affects our Darwinian evolution is not known, bt it surely has an effect on it, so when calculating how human evolution has progressed over the last 50,000 years, you cannot really draw comparisons with simpler species.

 

Simpler in what regard?

Gerhard

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Ah! you mean like, for example some apes do. Or doles (I think), and other animals.

The complexity and magnitude of of information we pass on, only counting one single generation to the next, dwarfs the information passed on by every generation of every other species that's ever existed (apart from some of the other, now extinct, advanced hominids perhaps).

 

Simpler in what regard?

 

cognisance, logical reasoning, invention, abilty to manipulate environments and raw materials, ability to communicate abstract information...we're not only in a separate ballpark from the other species, but we're playing a different game, and therefore, darwinian evolution alone is not enough to explain us.

 

 

Then it should be a simple matter for you to define "better." Please do!

Look it up in the dictionary.

As for the meaning of the concept itself, it's relative, and we can all agree that we are relatively better off than most black Africans.

Civillisation will not attain perfection until the last stone, from the last church, falls on the last priest.

- Emil Zola

 

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THe nature of any natural system, whether it be the universe or evolution of life, is to start off as very simple and gradually grow more and more complex over time.

That's exactly what's been happening on Earth, and to deny we're the most recent and most complex creatures produced by that system is a nonsense, it's just pointless semantics.

I've pointed out several specific complexities above, which go so far beyond any other species, it almost makes us alien compared to them.

 

Now you're going to say.'ok so we're more complex, that's undeniable, even for a twat like me who likes to argue that black is white just for the sake of it, but does that make us better than animals?'

Again, better is a relative comparison between two or more things, and it's depends on who's doing the comparison.

AS it happens, we're doing the comparison, and we're the only creatures capable of doing it, and therefore only out point of view counts,m since it's the only one.

So from our point of view, we're better than being a lion, if we project ourselves to wonder what it's ike being a lion, then we feel that we're better off that a lion, but from the actual lion's point of view, no we're not better, or worse, becasue the lion can't have a point of view, it's incapable of making a comparison, and that's part of the problem of being a lion, or any other animal for that matter. They're no better off than rocks. They're just moving rocks really.

If there's a 1mm distance between a rock and a lion on a scale of complexity, then there's a million miles between human and a lion.

Civillisation will not attain perfection until the last stone, from the last church, falls on the last priest.

- Emil Zola

 

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If there's a 1mm distance between a rock and a lion on a scale of complexity, then there's a million miles between human and a lion.

You've never studied biology, have you.

My games | Public Service Announcement: TDM is not set in the Thief universe. The city in which it takes place is not the City from Thief. The player character is not called Garrett. Any person who contradicts these facts will be subjected to disapproving stares.
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Maybe there is a valid reason for sanitary bins in this case (although one wonders why they can't be made biodegradable and flushed away like ordinary toilet paper),
Well that is because they're not paper, they're a huge chunk of cotton that expands like 3 times it's size when wet. If they were flushed down on a frequent basis they'd just clog up the pipes.
but there were plenty of other examples of self-importance and "specialness" by the women's societies at uni. One of them even tried to demand that the university-wide student magazine should be written exclusively by women, because obviously having men involved in any way is evil discrimination which degrades the unique "women's perspective" on current affairs.
I assumed you had other reasons for being annoyed with them, which is why I didn't take you up on the sanitary bin comment directly.
I have not suffered sexual discrimination in any meaningful way, no. However, as I said before there are other forms of discrimination and harassment, and just because somebody is a white male does not mean that they have been surrounded by cheering fans for their whole life. I don't deny the existence of sexual (and racial) prejudice, I just get tired of women acting as if they are in some unique position.

Well from what I've seen, they're in a position somewhat like ethnic minorities. So from my point of view, they are in a unique position compared to me. I simply don't get treated as badly and unfairly as the girls in workplaces I've seen.

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You've never studied biology, have you.

 

I'm not talking about simple DNA comparisons, it's meaningless and tells you nothing, since cognisance cannot be explained or mapped out in a neat chart, I mean in real terms.

Civillisation will not attain perfection until the last stone, from the last church, falls on the last priest.

- Emil Zola

 

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lol. In "Real Terms" guys obviously lions = rocks in the real world. I think looking at DNA or not a creature like a dolphin or ape that we can communicate with even on a basic level is closer to us. Neither us nor them can communicate with rocks. Also Your arguement still has no connection to the superiority of any specific race. I really don't see what you're trying to prove.

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Sure we can have a pointless philosophical discussion about what 'better' really means, but I think we all know what it means.

I can agree we all know what "better" means, but your argument based on adapting to a different place vs. continuing to adapt in the same place doesn't prove "better", only "different."

 

In the group who stay in the same place, it's not like evolution ever comes to an equilibrium. Random mutations keep happening in both groups (the ones who move and the ones who stay), and if a mutation comes along in the group who stayed that gives an advantage over others in surviving & breeding, it will still be selected for.

 

Even if the group who stayed somehow developed traits that conquered all of the threats present in that environment, lets not forget that we humans have a penchant for killing eachother every now and then, and who knows what the hell factors will influence whether humans find a mate. Both killing and competitive mating mean there's still a lot of competition from within the human population that drives selection, regardless of environment changes.

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Well, once you've accepted that it's possible that europeans and chinese for example, did develop 'different' mental traits from africans, it's only a small task to see what we achieved with our brains compared to them, and then work out which brains you think are 'better'.

lol. In "Real Terms" guys obviously lions = rocks in the real world. I think looking at DNA or not a creature like a dolphin or ape that we can communicate with even on a basic level is closer to us. Neither us nor them can communicate with rocks. Also Your arguement still has no connection to the superiority of any specific race. I really don't see what you're trying to prove.

 

I'm not trying to 'prove' anything, since the evidence doesn't exist to do so, but what I'm saying is that I consider the leap from animal to human, and specifically cognisance, to be a more significant development than the leap from inorganic compounds to self replicating organisms in the first place, and if that's the case, then the difference between a rock and a lion, is less than the difference between a lion and a human.

Civillisation will not attain perfection until the last stone, from the last church, falls on the last priest.

- Emil Zola

 

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It's not like there's a clear split between humans and other animals in terms of consciousness. I think there's a continuum. Many pet owners will tell you that their pets can think for themselves, at least on some level. There are birds and animals that adapt and use tools from their surrounding environment.

My games | Public Service Announcement: TDM is not set in the Thief universe. The city in which it takes place is not the City from Thief. The player character is not called Garrett. Any person who contradicts these facts will be subjected to disapproving stares.
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That was my point crispy. I think that to believe that cognisance is that big of a leap goes against both genetic data and observations of the world. And even ignoring that, I still don't get how you could draw the conclusion that africans haven't evolved the same mental traits (if any different "races" can even be classified as different" It seems to make as much sense to me as saying that tall people or people with brown as opposed to blond hair have somehow different intelligence. You have no reason to justify mental connections to physical traits.

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It's not like there's a clear split between humans and other animals in terms of consciousness. I think there's a continuum. Many pet owners will tell you that their pets can think for themselves, at least on some level. There are birds and animals that adapt and use tools from their surrounding environment.
For a slightly more objective example of that, parrots are capable of abstract concepts such as color, size, shape, counting, and differences/similarities between groups of objects. They can answer questions regarding these concepts and can create new combinations of words to express new desires. (for example, they may give a physical description of a desired object)

 

I would argue that the difference between a lion and a rock is enormous. The leap from inorganic compounds to self-replicating molecules with the complexity of DNA is large enough, but even in terms of mental capacity, lions are far closer to humans than to rocks. Lions are capable of performing visual and auditory processing. They have a concept of their environment, and are able to figure out how to maneuver through it effectively. They have some forms of social interaction. They do all this thousands of times better than even our most advanced computers can. Humans rely on much the same mental infrastructure as lions, and have merely extended and improved certain aspects of it.

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WHat does that prove about the parrots? They're just basic abilites any animal needs to survive. Different animals need different abilities.

Again with the lions - better hearing and sight? So what, it's pathetic compared to what you can see and hear when you evolve our abilites. We can build tools to let us hear and see things happening on the other side of the planet, or on another planet for that matter.

As I say, the difference is immense. You're not thinking about it in real terms. It basically makes our hearing and sight better than all other species that have ever existed put together, and the same is true across the board. We're so exponentially more able than all other species combined, because of the traits I mentioned such as cognisance, logical reasoning, invention, the abilty to intricately and rapidly manipulate environments and raw materials, the ability to communicate abstract information, and the abilty to very quickly adapt to completely new environments.

Many of these are interdependant of course, but they combine to produce a staggering leap in evolution as compared to anything else that has ever evolved, they've given us almost limitless potential to do virtually anything, and in such a small space of time as well, our species is almost brand new on an evolutionary timescale.

 

With that in mind, the lion being locked into a cycle of instinctive behaviour, doomed to forever roam the savanna in search of gazelles, compared to our potential to do literally anything, I'll stick to my opinion that makes them closer to rocks than to us.

Civillisation will not attain perfection until the last stone, from the last church, falls on the last priest.

- Emil Zola

 

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With that in mind, the lion being locked into a cycle of instinctive behaviour, doomed to forever roam the savanna in search of gazelles, compared to our potential to do literally anything, I'll stick to my opinion that makes them closer to rocks than to us.

 

Here you are wrong. They are not doomed forever, because if that were the case, we also wouldn't have evolved. The only real advantage that we had was that we were the first one. Considering some animals and their state, I have no doubt, that sooner or later this would have happened, and we won the race (so far).

Gerhard

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WHat does that prove about the parrots? They're just basic abilites any animal needs to survive. Different animals need different abilities.
The point is that parrots have the intellectual capacity of a human 5-year-old child. Human intellect isn't necessarily the result of a fundamentally different paradigm; rather it's the natural and continuous extension of facilities that most animals have.

 

Again with the lions - better hearing and sight?
I'm not talking about the quality of their eyes and ears. I'm saying that, like humans, they're able to comprehend sight and sound, which is no small task compared to deductive logic. Consider that we have plenty of programs that can do a wide range of mathematical theorem proving (though arguably that's not true deductive thought), but no machines that are capable of navigating environments nearly as well as a lion can. Visual and audio comprehension, navigation, concepts of objects, pleasure/pain, and all the other basics that you take for granted, are NOT easy - they are very significant mental functions. I would argue that the same features that allow us to plan and logically deduce also exist in lions, but are merely not as developed.

 

Saying that a lion is closer to a rock than a human shows a profound ignorance for the multitude of difficult tasks that a brain - human or lion or parrot - must accomplish.

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You're deliberately refusing to accept the point that I'm making.

We are on an entirely different level from anything else, because of the abilities we have that let us break free and create for ourselves, rather than accept what is given. It's makes the very notion of abilities a meaningless concept, since any boundaries are only there to be broken by us.

I'm not saying that rocks and lions are similar, they're obviously very far apart, it's just that we are even further apart from all of them. We're an entirely different concept.

 

Here you are wrong. They are not doomed forever, because if that were the case, we also wouldn't have evolved.

Well, they are doomed, becasue if lions do ever evolve into something esle, then they're no longer lions, but something else, so lions are doomed to the same fate until they're extinct.

The only real advantage that we had was that we were the first one. Considering some animals and their state, I have no doubt, that sooner or later this would have happened, and we won the race (so far).

Evolution had no goals or finish line, so there is no race.

Other animals may or may not in the future develop hman-like qualities, but that has nothing to do with this argument. We're talking about the present.

Also, I think we're disrupting the flow of evolution and natural habitats so much ,and will continue to do so, so we can no longer say that anything that happens in nature was not in some way influenced by us.

Civillisation will not attain perfection until the last stone, from the last church, falls on the last priest.

- Emil Zola

 

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I'm curious about what might happen if scientists decide to clone another homonid species. Apparently, they will have enough of Neandrethal DNA preserved in bones, etc, to do it someday soon (if not now). Now we are talking about another walking, thinking, talking hominid that quite clearly has a different brain structure ("inferior" maybe only in the sense that they were selected against while competing against humans in a very specific environment that no longer remains).

 

I was trying to think about the problem as a lawyer thinking about anti-discrimination law... because one of the foundations of that law (and constitutional law generally) is that many distinctions behind discriminatory behavior are not relevant to the actual cognitive capacity of the discriminated person to perform (leaving slightly harder cases where it might be an issue, like pregnancy, but then only to the extent it affects capacity). But if suddenly we had another hominid species walking around, we'd have to really think about how "human rights" might apply to them.

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What do you see when you turn out the light? I can't tell you but I know that it's mine.

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That's not going to happen, so you needn't worry about it. Why would they bring them back?

I don't disagree with the fact that humans have evolved further then lions, I'm just curious how that proves your point that white people are more intelligent, which was the original point of this threas (note title of racism not evolution)

 

I'm not trying to prove anything, I don't have the evidence to do so, all I'm doing is deducing a possible cause for why europeans achieved so much more than africans.

Unless you deny completely that human brains have evolved over the last 50,000 years, then you have to accept the possibility that pockets of humans around the world developed slightly different brain capabilities, just as those isolated pockets developed different physical traits.

It's not impossible, if the brain has been evolving, even only a little, then there no reason why all populations of humans spread over the globe would have developed in exactly the same way, in fact, is almost impossible that they would have developed in exactly the same way.

Therefore, there must be differences, and it's only a small step from that, to wondering what those differences might be, and looking at what the different populations have achieved.

Civillisation will not attain perfection until the last stone, from the last church, falls on the last priest.

- Emil Zola

 

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