• universeness
    6.3k
    Stop trashing 'jungle rules' - they worked for 300,000,000 years before we bulldozed the jungles. We didn't discover co-operation; social animals predate us by a wide marginVera Mont
    Under jungle rules, young females are considered property and part of 'to the victor, the spoils, rule.'
    Is that an example of one of the jungle rules you don't think I should trash?
    I don't think our species is in competition, for the credit of which species discovered co-operation!
    You normally offer better responses than that Vera!
  • Vera Mont
    3.7k
    Under jungle rules, young females are considered property and part of 'to the victor, the spoils, rule.'universeness

    In what species? Not elephants, crows, dolphins or or cheetahs. The norm in many human situations today, of course - not so much spoils as commodities.

    I don't think our species is in competition, for the credit of which species discovered co-operation!universeness

    Haven't you noticed the armed conflicts that took out a few million people? Or the ones that are currently taking out hundreds of thousands and might end the whole sheBANG if it gets out of hand?

    for the credit of which species discovered co-operation!universeness
    You take credit for something ants perfected 150,000,000 million years ago, and we still haven't managed to get our heads around how it's supposed to work?
    There have been more than 200 mass shootings across the US so far this year, according to the Gun Violence Archive, which defines a mass shooting as an incident in which four or more people are injured or killed. https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-41488081
    That's back on May 9, I don't know how many since.
  • universeness
    6.3k
    Under jungle rules, young females are considered property and part of 'to the victor, the spoils, rule.'
    — universeness

    In what species? Not elephants, crows, dolphins or or cheetahs. The norm in many human situations today, of course - not so much spoils as commodities.
    Vera Mont

    We seem to be talking past each other Vera.
    My main point is that under 'jungle rules,' that are recorded as in common practice amongst ancient homo sapiens, such as perpetually warring with every 'group' of humans your group comes across, obtaining as much resources as you can, regardless of how much you actually need or how badly your actions affect the well being of others, IS imo, a very bad way to behave, and it always has been.
    Co-operating with each other in common cause is a BETTER way.
    What the hell have groupings of elephants, crows, dolphins or cheetahs got to do with that point?
    And, what the hell does it matter if ant's used co-operation before humans did?

    I don't think our species is in competition, for the credit of which species discovered co-operation!
    — universeness

    Haven't you noticed the armed conflicts that took out a few million people? Or the ones that are currently taking out hundreds of thousands and might end the whole sheBANG if it gets out of hand?
    Vera Mont
    What are you typing about? What does that point have to do with my point that some human beings have to stop living their lives and affecting the lives of others so negatively, because, THEY choose to behave like we STILL, ALL, have to live under 'jungle rules.'
    The only folks I see who HAVE TO convert to 'jungle rules,' to survive, are those who have nothing because they are under the control of a nefarious, rich, elite, who used 'jungle tactics' to gain their power, wealth and authority they have over the masses.
    Many of those poor people who employ jungle tactics to survive often become the future nefarious rich. Any gangland culture, demonstrates that.

    for the credit of which species discovered co-operation!
    — universeness
    You take credit for something ants perfected 150,000,000 million years ago, and we still haven't managed to get our heads around how it's supposed to work?
    There have been more than 200 mass shootings across the US so far this year, according to the Gun Violence Archive, which defines a mass shooting as an incident in which four or more people are injured or killed. https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-41488081
    That's back on May 9, I don't know how many since.
    Vera Mont
    Are you suggesting that humans would be able to create a better society, if we lived like insect species such as ants? I value human co-operation over human war but I don't think we are going to create a better future for the human race by emulating ant society or any other insect or animal society I am familiar with.

    What point have I made in this thread so far, that you think warrants adjustment, based on your comment to me about mass shootings in the USA???
    It cannot be that you think I need a wake up call regarding a current lack of cooperation amongst humans, as that is already part of my own complaint regarding how we need to improve things! So I am fully aware of the current state of affairs, positives and negative. There IS a whole lot of cooperation going on!
  • Vera Mont
    3.7k
    My main point is that under 'jungle rules,' that are recorded as in common practice amongst ancient homo sapiens, such as perpetually warring with every 'group' of humans your group comes across, obtaining as much resources as you can, regardless of how much you actually need or how badly your actions affect the well being of others, IS imo, a very bad way to behave, and it always has been.universeness
    Except not jungle-dwelling human societies did live that way. What's recorded in history is conflict between civilizations, which all had a strongly united internal structure - though the co-operation was usually coerced to some extent by an elite.

    What the hell have groupings of elephants, crows, dolphins or cheetahs got to do with that point?universeness

    The FACT that humans didn't DISCOVER co-operation. And are not particularly good at it in large numbers.

    Are you suggesting that humans would be able to create a better society, if we lived like insect species such as ants?universeness

    No, the ants are simply an illustration of how old the concept is. Human would be able create a better society is 99% of of us were not here.
  • universeness
    6.3k
    Except not jungle-dwelling human societies did live that way. What's recorded in history is conflict between civilizations, which all had a strongly united internal structure - though the co-operation was usually coerced to some extent by an elite.Vera Mont

    I refer you to a previous response to Athena:
    https://thephilosophyforum.com/discussion/comment/808871

    What the hell have groupings of elephants, crows, dolphins or cheetahs got to do with that point?
    — universeness

    The FACT that humans didn't DISCOVER co-operation. And are not particularly good at it in large numbers.
    Vera Mont

    I think you would need to go back to the single celled organism, co-operating with various bacteria and creating a symbiosis which still exists today. Those cells exist in humans, so from that angle, cooperation plays a big role in why we exist at all. Where do you think co-operation began Vera? Do you have a particular species in mind since abiogenesis? You still haven't explained why, when it started, and who or what started it, matters, when it comes to humans needing to employ it a lot more, to create a better future for our species?

    Human would be able create a better society is 99% of of us were not here.Vera Mont
    So out of a planet of 8 billion self-aware, sentient, conscious humans, you have concluded that the utter vastness of the universe with more planets, than there are grains of sand on Earth, can only handle 1% of that (around, 80 million, which is around the current pop of Germany).
    Perhaps it's just the Earth you are restricting all our possible futures to, and that any extraterrestrial resources available, will permanently be inaccessible to us.
    On a universal scale, humans may be the rarest lifeform, with the ability to affect it's environment and demonstrate reason and purpose in the ways we can, in the entire universe. We have not yet found any other equivalent, have we?

    Would you consider the time implied in the sentence below, to be a time when all homo sapiens alive then, were having a far superior experience of life as a human, than the average human, living on planet Earth is experiencing today, purely because there were a lot fewer of us then?

    For the time of speciation of Homo sapiens, some 200,000 years ago, an effective global population size of the order of 10,000 to 30,000 individuals has been estimated, with an actual "census population" of early Homo sapiens of roughly 100,000 to 300,000 individuals.
  • Vera Mont
    3.7k
    Perhaps it's just the Earth you are restricting all our possible futures to, and that any extraterrestrial resources available, will permanently be inaccessible to us.universeness

    Currently, I'm not aware that Elon Musk is capable of lifting a colony to Arcturus, and even if he could, it wouldn't relieve much of the population pressure on available resources. So, yes, for the foreseeable future, we are restricted to Earth, which we are rapidly turning uninhabitable.
    Besides, of course, what that was an answer to it has nothing to do with all possible futures but rather this:

    Are you suggesting that humans would be able to create a better society, if we lived like insect species such as ants? — universeness

    No, the ants are simply an illustration of how old the concept [of social species] is. Human would be able create a better society if 99% of of us were not here.
    Vera Mont

    Would you consider the time implied in the sentence below, to be a time when all homo sapiens alive then, were having a far superior experience of life as a human, than the average human, living on planet Earth is experiencing today, purely because there were a lot fewer of us then?universeness

    No. Distant past and distant future are neither equivalent nor applicable in the present context.
  • Athena
    3k
    That last site asks for a donation before a person can know anything about it.

    The following link explains recycling water and probably is the best way to go.

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Water_reuse_in_California#:~:text=Water%20reuse%20in%20California%20is,economy%20and%20population%20to%20grow.

    The future will probably be a combination of distillation and recycling water.

    The efforts to save the Colorado River are huge.washingtonpost.com/climate-environment/2023/05/23/colorado-river-deal-water-cuts-explained/

    Around the world major rivers are threatened and may die. https://www.reuters.com/article/us-wwf-rivers/many-major-rivers-are-in-danger-of-dying-wwf-idUSL1957773520070320

    We have to rethink our reality and our role in the health of our planet. Indigenous people around the world have struggled to protect our planet and their little space of it. This is surely a cultural matter.
  • Athena
    3k
    This seems to be a very obvious truth but the truths that apply most widely are often the most obvious, even though they remain a 'struggle' for most humans alive today. Sure, it's not JUST about water, but its ALSO about water. The biggest truth about culturalism is that it does not affect your need for water, food, shelter, warmth, etc. All people from all cultures have identical basic needs.universeness

    But our understanding of reality is not identical. Some believe we have a spiritual duty to protect the earth, and some do not. For me, this an extremely important disagreement about reality.


    In fact, those basics are needed by all fauna on the planet.
    People mostly war over basic resources. But the nefarious want to be 'EXCESSIVELY RICH,' in resources. They don't want a little gold, they want to be surrounded by gold and be recognised as 'god like' and have every whim serviced and own an excessive glut of all resources and have every urge satisfied and be loved and feared by everyone, etc etc. It's either YOUR WAY or there will be HELL TO PAY!

    That is a cultural reality but there is also cultural opposition to it. Native Americans and other indigenous people.

    Somewhat, but what is more important, is the basic understanding that Planet Earth has plenty of water. The rest is just bad behaviour.

    I will trust the Native Americans with the answer. I join them in spiritual reasoning and oppose Christianity in part because it denies spiritual truth as I understand it.

    Another obvious but absolutely great, vital question. MY HONEST answer is to do EXACTLY what we are doing now, 'keep fighting the good fight to make things better.'

    Thank goodness for this forum that makes that possible.

    War is the survival of the fittest strategy that was an imperative under jungle rules, but we discovered that it's not the only way to survive. We discovered that co-operation and negotiation, CAN produce better results for all stakeholders. But the nefarious want INSTANT gratification and permanent recognition of their superiority under the traditional jungle rules. We continue to struggle against them and I think we have been gaining ground against them for the past 10,000 years.
    The progress has been very slow and it will probably continue to be so, but imo, success is inevitable.

    We have praised the Spartans for their warrior society and somehow fought to add, the Spartans' worst enemy was themselves and they failed because they could not produce enough children to keep Sparta alive. That choice to praise Sparta is a culture choice. The choice to imitate Rome and Germany is a cultural choice. Why are we making these cultural choices instead of adopting Native American spirituality and putting the earth first?


    What are the fundamental beliefs that make our lives good?
    — Athena
    What do we want that future race to know so they have the best chance of manifesting a good life for our planet?
    — Athena
    We need a better belief system. Any idea of how to construct that?
    — Athena

    I think these questions are for each of us to answer individually. I can give you the core of my answers.
    Socialism and secular humanism and the details involved in them would make up the core of my answer to all 3 questions above. I have not came across any better labels for what I think would be a 'better way' for humans to live and treat each other.

    Those must be a united choice because individuals can not make the differences that need to be made.

    How about education for the humanities and insisting on worshiping our Mother Earth and taking care of her and planning for the future of our nation and making the well-being of our planet and children our primary concern? We need to continue this communication and explore what agreements we have.
  • Athena
    3k
    Humans are not equal to ants or dinosaurs. And while modern-day horses pass on a culture to the young, humans and horses are not equals. Horses and other mammals are known to teach their young proper behavior, but their heads don't get full of arguments about good and bad and where do my rights end and yours begin. That is, humans have the potential for being intellectual and other mammals do not. That makes getting along much, much more difficult for humans.

    I would like us to have a good understanding of visceral, relating to deep inward feelings rather than to the intellect. I will venture to say, all mammals can learn through sensations of reward and punishment. The Behaviorist Method for training children can be used for training dogs, but we do not give our dogs citizenship responsibilities. The US replaced the Conceptional Method with the Behaviorist Method and now we have some very serious social problems! This makes me go a little crazy when someone says something that could mean there is not a huge difference because humans and other animals.

    So when a pony is misbehaving the mother may prod the pony, stirring a bit of an uncomfortable feeling. The mother does not give her young long explanations about good and bad behavior, but we give our children lots of lectures and we do a lot of explaining, or at least I hope most of do. Verbal communication is about reasoning and it is what makes us political animals. Because we can communicate with words, we have rule by reason as opposed to rule by authority over the people. People who don't understand this may think a gun is a good communication tool, or bombs and economic warfare are good political tools. Like there are some people who do not understand democracy at all but think life is just one big power game. Unfortunately, we even make those power game players our presidents, because have lost an understanding of democracy as rule by reason, and boy are we in a mess.

    Unless we have education for intellectual development, we do not have education for the culture that is essential to democracy. Dinosaurs and ants do not require that education.
  • Athena
    3k
    Under jungle rules, young females are considered property and part of 'to the victor, the spoils, rule.'— universeness

    In what species? Not elephants, crows, dolphins or or cheetahs. The norm in many human situations today, of course - not so much spoils as commodities.
    ---Vera Mont
    Vera Mont

    :gasp: Maybe a better understanding of jungle rules would help.

    Antagonistic relationships are found not only between animals of different species, but within species too. Intraspecific conflict occurs when the interests of individual animals within a given species conflict. This happens when there is a limited supply of a valuable resource. For example, some areas are better than others for finding food, shelter from the elements, places to hide from predatory animals, or opportunities for attracting a mate. Conflicts occur frequently because animals of the same species have very similar requirements for their wellbeing, survival and reproduction, yet their demand for those resources exceed what is available.1 Animals also compete with each other for access to mates, social status, food, and parental care. The conflict may be direct, with animals fighting each other (called “interference”) or indirect, with animals competing without fighting each other directly (called “exploitation”).2 Both forms of competition can be harmful. Fighting can result in injury or death. Even if animals aren’t directly harmed by others, they can be harmed by deprivation.

    By jungle rules, Whites can enslave dark-skinned people, and kill those who do not stay in their place. The US did not begin with the understanding of being born equal and equality under the law as we have today. Not all of the US agrees on who has rights and who does not. That is an intellectual decision and jungle rules are for lesser animals.
  • Vera Mont
    3.7k
    Humans are not equal to ants or dinosaurs.Athena

    I was aware of that. Also, that if you transpose a remark from one context to another, it becomes nonsense.


    Fighting can result in injury or death. Even if animals aren’t directly harmed by others, they can be harmed by deprivation.

    But not, AFAIK, to the level of killing 58 random members of one's own herd or pack, or letting entire classes of it starve.

    By jungle rules, Whites can enslave dark-skinned people, and kill those who do not stay in their place.Athena
    No, they really can't. That was civilized Europeans. Some African nations did take their captured enemies as slaves, which had nothing to do with commerce or skin-colour, though they were often ransomed back by their own nation. They didn't live in the jungle, for the most part.
    In fact, there is no one jungle, and no 'law of the jungle': that's also an invention of civilized Europeans.
  • Vera Mont
    3.7k
    The US did not begin with the understanding of being born equal and equality under the law as we have today.Athena

    Yes, the US started with exactly that understanding.
    We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.
    They just found it expedient never to implement it.
  • Athena
    3k


    The age-old question is who is one of us? All social animals recognize who is one of us and who is one of them. We defend "us" against "them". Human is to include far more people as one of us, than any other group of social animals. We do this through culture.

    A huge problem with leaving moral training to the Church is our human nature leads us to divide "us" from "them" and so we take a religion that us supposed to unite us and create a lot of division. Like I know God's truth and He favors me, and I am going to heaven but not you because you do not know God's truth. You are not one of us.

    Although some areas of the US have not gotten the message Americans are equal no matter what color their skin or what their sexual preferences are. Coming from the Bible there is no equality and ministers must protect their sheep from the pagans and barbarians or those cursed with dark skin. :grimace: That is not the culture for democracy. But can we achieve the way of life that was taught to school children when the US mobilized for the second world war?

    "Democracy is a way of life and social order organization which above all others is sensitive to the dignity and worth of the individual human personality, affirming the fundamental moral and political equality of all men and recognizing no barriers of race, religion, or circumstance." "Democracy Series".

    If we had the consciousness of the past, all children would be educated for the culture that manifests democracy, and so educated they would be citizens of the US, and none without that education would be citizens with the rights of citizens. A set number of immigrants could enter each year and they could become educated in this way of life and if they passed the citizenship test they could become citizens, but this needs to be kept separate from being a Christian, you know that divisive religion that commands us to play God and take care of the needs of everyone while at the same time we stand at our borders with guns and fight to keep the immigrants out. :chin: Does that makes sense?

    Bottom line, how do we determine who is one of us and who is not? Should we care for everyone regardless of their contribution to society and cost of doing so?
  • Athena
    3k
    Yes, the US started with exactly that understanding.
    We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.
    They just found it expedient never to implement it.
    Vera Mont

    Oh my goodness what a delicious argument. The South used the Bible to defend slavery. Both the North and the South thought they were defending the will of God, making the civil war a very deadly war. Even Quakers had a history of having slaves, but they came to see this as wrong and took a stand against it. The Quakers refer to the New Testament and ignore the Old Testament. The Old Testament justifies slavery. The Old Testament is a tribal religion where only Jews could not be slaves because of their relationship with God, but they could own slaves. Later Romans made Christianity a national religion that Judaism could never become.

    In the beginning of US democracy, there was a high illiteracy rate, especially in the rural South. Also, the education that really matters for democracy is literacy in Greek and Roman classics. That would be higher education and extremely few would have that.

    Without education for democracy, we can not manifest the culture for democracy. To this very day, there is a lot of disagreement about men being created equal. What does that mean? The KKK was a Christian organization and it was behind lynching people of color and keeping them in their place.

    White women in the South played a very strong role in promoting racism and white supremacy.

    the long-standing work of white women who sustained racial segregation and nurtured both massive support for the Jim Crow order in the interwar period and who transformed support into massive resistance after World War II. Support for the segregated state existed among everyday people. Maintaining racial segregation was not solely or even primarily the work of elected officials. Its adherents sustained the system with quotidian work, and on the ground, it was often white women who shaped and sustained white supremacist politics.Elizabeth Gillespie McRae

    Before the Civil War, the North attempted to make the US a strong and united nation with textbooks published in the North and sold to schools throughout the nation. These books promoted democracy the one you see in the historical documents. The South realized what the North was doing and began printing its own textbook manifesting the culture of the South, not the culture for democracy in the North. The North and South have had distinctly different cultures and today that is very much a problem. Trump divided us as much as the Civil War and we remain glaring aware of the divide. Never in my 70-plus years did I drop friends because of political differences till Trump. I am afraid if that comes up again, we will see more violence.

    A big problem is the size and wealth of Texas and its flavor of Christianity that attempts to control in favor of Christian mythology in public education. Textbook companies want Texas business so they design textbooks for the Texas market including science books that presented creationism as science equal to evolution. Teachers took the school board to the supreme court, to get religion out of the science books.
    Our nation is not the united culture that Jefferson and his associates hope the US would have through education.

    Here is the original Pledge of Allegiance.

    "I pledge allegiance to my Flag and the Republic for which it stands, one nation, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all."

    When the US was mobilizing against the USSR Bill Graham helped Eisenhower see how adding "God" to that could unite us against those "godless people". This is not the peaceful democracy we defended in two world wars, but is now the Military Industrial Complex it defended our democracy against. War is good for religion and religion is good for war. That was not our culture based on the Greek and Roman classics.
  • Athena
    3k
    think you would need to go back to the single celled organism, co-operating with various bacteria and creating a symbiosis which still exists today. Those cells exist in humans, so from that angle, cooperation plays a big role in why we exist at all.universeness

    I love that explanation! I see how it goes with an understanding of logos. We can discover the laws of the universe with science. And then with our knowledge of logos, we can have rule by reason and live together symbiosisly with peace and the good for all.

    But to achieve that we need to work with an understanding of logos and what it has to do with democracy. That is not explained in the Bible and leaving moral training to the church is problematic. Unlike the single-celled organisms going with the flow without opposing opinions, humans center their choices on self-knowledge and competition for finite resources and they can go against the flow. We have to intellectually understand the benefits and reality of symbiosis before we can put that in our lives.
  • Vera Mont
    3.7k
    Oh my goodness what a delicious argument. The South used the Bible to defend slavery. Both the North and the South thought they were defending the will of God, making the civil war a very deadly war.Athena

    Whereas, it wasn't even remotely about religion or any kind of moral principle. (Lincoln: "If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that.")
    The real issues were political and economic. And this fundamental, foundational schism was built into the original federation by those very same men who signed that document which began as idealistic and wound up as fraudulent. That expedient compromise has cost a whole lot of powerless people a whole lot of blood and pain and grief.

    In the beginning of US democracy, there was a high illiteracy rate,Athena
    Not merely encouraged but often mandated by the elite, who sent many of their own children to Europe for their education. The FF's had had that classical education themselves. https://www.memoriapress.com/articles/classical-education-founding-fathers/
    and did nothing to enable their fellow Americans.

    This is not the peaceful democracy we defended in two world wars,Athena

    Of course not!
    Aside from the fact that America didn't actually need to defend itself in either of those wars (Hawaii wasn't a state then; it was occupied territory)
    that peaceful democracy never existed in the physical universe.
    1775–1783 American Revolution English Colonists vs. Great Britain
    1798–1800 Franco-American Naval War United States vs. France
    1801–1805; 1815 Barbary Wars United States vs. Morocco, Algiers, Tunis, and Tripoli
    1812–1815 War of 1812 United States vs. Great Britain
    1813–1814 Creek War United States vs. Creek Nation
    1836 War of Texas Independence Texas vs. Mexico
    1846–1848 Mexican-American War United States vs. Mexico
    1861–1865 U.S. Civil War Union vs. Confederacy
    1898 Spanish-American War United States vs. Spain
    That's not including most of the campaigns against First Nations and all the little secret and overt interventions in other nations' colonial conflicts and not even mentioning conflicts between farmers and ranchers, disputes over water rights, labour wars,
    In the 1800s and early 1900s, picketers often faced the risk of being beaten up by police or thugs recruited by management. “The U.S. has one of the most violent labor histories in the world,” says Judith Stepan-Norris,
    police violence against protesters of every kind... and then there's all the gangs and outlaws.

    Trump divided us as much as the Civil War and we remain glaring aware of the divide.Athena
    Nixon had laid some good ground-work for that, undoing whatever Johnson had been able accomplish to mitigate the enormous gulf that had always existed and is never going away. The United States has never been anything but a figment of wishful thinking. When Bobby Kennedy was killed, the excellent film director, Norman Jewison, felt he had to leave the country, saying, "How can America be so violent that it destroys its own best people?"

    I'm convinced that you care deeply and passionately about education. But if you're not prepared to teach young people about their own history - the unspun, unrevised, unvarnished, unedited truth - no substantial problem will ever be addressed. You may as well leave the lobbyists, jingoists and propagandists take over.
  • universeness
    6.3k
    We have to intellectually understand the benefits and reality of symbiosis before we can put that in our lives.Athena

    From all of the days of your life Athena, what events/realisations/empathy/anger/shame/joy do your remember most?
    Do you perceive 'logos' as an ideal aspiration? Is logos what you want, in the way that Plato/Aristotle conceived it? Is YOUR logos/idealism/the goddess Athena who/what you personally want/aspire/need to be? or who/what you think others need to personally aspire/need to be?
    Did you manifest YOUR own life or are you a total product/consequence of your culture/nurture/nature/environment/indoctrination/contextual fears/age?
    What credence level do you assign to total determinism?
  • Athena
    3k
    Whereas, it wasn't even remotely about religion or any kind of moral principle. (Lincoln: "If I could save the Union without freeing any slave I would do it, and if I could save it by freeing all the slaves I would do it; and if I could save it by freeing some and leaving others alone I would also do that.")
    The real issues were political and economic. And this fundamental, foundational schism was built into the original federation by those very same men who signed that document which began as idealistic and wound up as fraudulent. That expedient compromise has cost a whole lot of powerless people a whole lot of blood and pain and grief.
    Vera Mont

    Wow, I so appreciate your explanation of history and I wish we had the history of inclusive equality to go with that. I am afraid we are working with a false understanding of indigenous people and our animal nature which is evolved from it. We are by nature tribal. We are doing good to remember the names of 500 people and something about them such as who they are related to. For us to live in larger groups is pretty amazing. It is not our nature that makes that possible but our intellect overrides our nature. What is the story we tell ourselves about who to include as one of us and who is not one of us? That story is the foundation of culture.

    Not merely encouraged but often mandated by the elite, who sent many of their own children to Europe for their education. The FF's had had that classical education themselves. https://www.memoriapress.com/articles/classical-education-founding-fathers/
    and did nothing to enable their fellow Americans.[/

    That goes back to the story of who is one of us and who is not. The Iroquois were willing to be one of us because the culture recognized the benefit of getting along and not all tribes have done so. In some areas of the world, cannibalism was practiced. That is a pretty serious notion of who is one of us and who is not. Closer to home, how did the Europeans think? In ancient times, the Greeks took control of a region with Jews and they had a terrible fight because the Greeks based hiring on merit and the Jews were totally locked into inherited positions. Our democracy is a new social order, Not the social order of the Bible. The philosophy behind democracy does not go with the notion that God determines who will be masters and who will be slaves/servants and Europe was Christian with a hierarchy of power and authority, NOT a democracy.

    Today many Christians believe in a super-loving God, not the jealous, revengeful, fearsome, and punishing God of our European history. I am saying these things because you mentioned the FF and the rich sending their children to Europe to be educated. I think we need to understand the mentality of the past, to understand our present clashes of values and how to manifest a better nation. I also want to point out, Thomas Jefferson devoted his life to mass education, believing that was the only way to have a successful democracy.

    We might keep in mind, Martin Luther thought God decided who would be a master or a slave. Look we had a famous Black man named Martin Luther King. KING?! That is not a democratic concept and the Bible is a book of kings and slaves. It is a different understanding of reality than the secular Greeks who gave people jobs based on merit. We are just beginning to attack this ugly problem with talk about how the privileged and how that privilege is undemocratic and does not manifest the ideal of equality.
    We are trying to have a democracy without a good grasp of people not being born to rule over others, but bred to have the position of power and authority.

    This is not the peaceful democracy we defended in two world wars,
    — Athena

    Of course not!
    Aside from the fact that America didn't actually need to defend itself in either of those wars (Hawaii wasn't a state then; it was occupied territory)
    that peaceful democracy never existed in the physical universe.
    1775–1783 American Revolution English Colonists vs. Great Britain
    1798–1800 Franco-American Naval War United States vs. France
    1801–1805; 1815 Barbary Wars United States vs. Morocco, Algiers, Tunis, and Tripoli
    1812–1815 War of 1812 United States vs. Great Britain
    1813–1814 Creek War United States vs. Creek Nation
    1836 War of Texas Independence Texas vs. Mexico
    1846–1848 Mexican-American War United States vs. Mexico
    1861–1865 U.S. Civil War Union vs. Confederacy
    1898 Spanish-American War United States vs. Spain
    That's not including most of the campaigns against First Nations and all the little secret and overt interventions in other nations' colonial conflicts and not even mentioning conflicts between farmers and ranchers, disputes over water rights, labour wars,
    In the 1800s and early 1900s, picketers often faced the risk of being beaten up by police or thugs recruited by management. “The U.S. has one of the most violent labor histories in the world,” says Judith Stepan-Norris, police violence against protesters of every kind... and then there's all the gangs and outlaws.
    A reminder the guardians of truth are confusion and paradox. While the list of violence can be used to argue we have never had peace, it can also be argued the US was nothing like the Military Industrial Complex it is today. We held a sense of destiny but like Israel, we had limits. For the most part, we depended on the oceans to prevent us from being attacked and we were totally unprepared for the world wars. The military technology of WWII and the need for oil, changed all that. I think to deny the Military Industrial Complex of the US today is extremely different from our past, is a huge mistake.

    [qiote] Nixon had laid some good ground-work for that, undoing whatever Johnson had been able to accomplish to mitigate the enormous gulf that had always existed and is never going away. The United States has never been anything but a figment of wishful thinking. When Bobby Kennedy was killed, the excellent film director, Norman Jewison, felt he had to leave the country, saying, "How can America be so violent that it destroys its own best people?" [/quote]

    That is a delicious question. I think we are more religious than Europeans, who seem to have a better understanding of democracy serving the good of everyone, not just the privileged. Going with religion Jesus did tell his followers to sell their robes and buy swords. Also, we are not that far from the wild west where there was no established government to keep peace and order. Certainly in states that are mostly rural, people are not as sophisticated as they are in large cities. They are accustomed to being their sole authority and enforcer of authority. They are not adjusted to living with many people with many differences between them. That is, they are not "civilized". We used education to unite everyone and to a very large degree, this was achieved but the 1958 National Defense Education Act changed the purpose of education, and this is why I write of culture. We Stopped transmitting a culture that is essential to being a united and strong nation.

    I'm convinced that you care deeply and passionately about education. But if you're not prepared to teach young people about their own history - the unspun, unrevised, unvarnished, unedited truth - no substantial problem will ever be addressed. You may as well leave the lobbyists, jingoists and propagandists take over.

    Thank you for challenging me and causing me to think things through. I might know a little more about history than you think. Learning history by studying the history of education is totally fascinating to me. I think my whole mental organization is different from most. I am less prone to seeing history as HIS STORY and strongly favor a more sociological perspective of consciousness, how did someone become aware of that idea? How was the concept communicated to others? How was it changed as the concept move from one culture to another? How did it clash, assimilate and evolve with other concepts?

    The US defended its democracy against what it is today. It is a huge error to deny that change. We come from a totally different understanding of God than we have today. It is a huge error to be unaware of that. Democracy is a new social order and it is pretty amazing Christians claim we have democracy because of it being God's will, and they defend God's will. But Christianity supported kings and slavery.

    History is a perspective, and if I completed a school book for democracy, I would begin with Athens. I lack the motivation to do that because I don't think Christians would choose such a book for the education of their children. But that is where the history of our democracy needs to begin and that history needs to include the Native American Federation which was a model for our federal government, instead of a kingdom being our model for our government.
  • Athena
    3k
    From all of the days of your life Athena, what events/realisations/empathy/anger/shame/joy do your remember most?universeness

    :heart: Oh, my love, I love that question and will say it is probably my teacher grandmother and world wars and the depression, through the 1960's and the technological transition today. :down: I would so love to say more but I am out of time:cry: PS Germany is our soul mate and historic partner who manifests our present more than our historical past.
  • universeness
    6.3k

    Your grandmother must have been a 'tour de force.'
    PS Germany is our soul mate and historic partner who manifests our present more than our historical past.Athena
    I can't see that at all. Perhaps I would have fought with them/for them against the Romans, but that's about it.
    As a Scot, I see little to admire regarding the Saxons or/and the Angles, that hailed from that place and along with the Norman French, eventually formed England. Prussia was quite an ugly civilisation as was WWI and WW2 Germany. Almost as ugly a grouping as the Spartans imo.
  • Vera Mont
    3.7k
    Thank you for challenging me and causing me to think things through. I might know a little more about history than you think.Athena

    I didn't say anything about how much you, personally, know about what aspect of history. I'm merely warning that, regardless what else is taught in their schools, as long as Americans lull themselves with mythical versions of their story as a nation, their national identity and character; as long as they keep telling those stories to their children, and do not correct the inaccuracies, fallacies, misconceptions and outright fictions in their own understanding of their own history; as long as they refuse to come to terms over what's dysfunctional in their social system and why, nothing in their perilous present situation will improve and there are strong indications that it will deteriorate, and at an accelerating pace.
    (and this applies equally to other nations that are not under consideration here)
  • Athena
    3k
    I didn't say anything about how much you, personally, know about what aspect of history. I'm merely warning that, regardless what else is taught in their schools, as long as Americans lull themselves with mythical versions of their story as a nation, their national identity and character; as long as they keep telling those stories to their children, and do not correct the inaccuracies, fallacies, misconceptions and outright fictions in their own understanding of their own history; as long as they refuse to come to terms over what's dysfunctional in their social system and why, nothing in their perilous present situation will improve and there are strong indications that it will deteriorate, and at an accelerating pace.
    (and this applies equally to other nations that are not under consideration here)
    Vera Mont

    Let's see I think I made a derogatory comment about HIS STORY and referred to a few problems in our past that continue to plague the US and absolutely what you said is correct. I just think it is important to begin the history of democracy with Athens and Sparta.

    I have a lot of old textbooks because I want to see the past of our education, and some history books are soo boring it is cruel and inhuman punishment to make children read them. Only one of these old history books presents history with a more humanities approach. But boy, is that one inaccurate by today's standards however, it at least it begins with a mention of ancient times, and that is where a history book for democracy must begin.

    That is, we can national history books but that is not exactly what I think we need. We need to learn of the history of democracy and how the understanding of it changed. Every, every important to me, is a more scientific understanding of creation, and this is compatible with logos and the idea that land animals evolved from fish. I want a book that punishes for understanding the importance of morals and the Greeks understood morals. Moral is to know the Law (universal law/ logos) and good manners. This needs to be developed into what good reasoning has to do with being a democracy.

    The history book you recommend has merit. But my way could result in better understanding without all the pushback that is happening now with history that increases awareness of our wrongs. Our public broadcasting station is doing a good job of increasing awareness of our wrongs. That is a history book for democracy.
  • Vera Mont
    3.7k
    The history book you recommend has merit.Athena

    I'm not recommending a book. Your proposed book is fine - so long as it has lots of company from different perspectives. I'm recommending - warning - an adjustment of mind-set. All the times you've taken for granted that Americans were/are "the good guys" in a conflict; all the times you've advocated, directly or indirectly, for American-style capitalism; all the the usual accepted fictions... it's not deliberate; it's habitual. People need to develop a new habit: questioning the old verities.

    Our public broadcasting station is doing a good job of increasing awareness of our wrongs. That is a history book for democracy.Athena
    Robust funding and support for that would be an excellent start! (and then find some way to seep-six DeSantis.)
  • Athena
    3k
    I can't see that at all. Perhaps I would have fought with them/for them against the Romans, but that's about it.
    As a Scot, I see little to admire regarding the Saxons or/and the Angles, that hailed from that place and along with the Norman French, eventually formed England. Prussia was quite an ugly civilisation as was WWI and WW2 Germany. Almost as ugly a grouping as the Spartans imo.
    universeness

    Oh my God, I love what you said. Now if I win the lottery I will have to travel to your part of the world and stay there long enough to absorb history from your point of view. But at the moment I only know my point of view gleaned from books, and we have an agreement about Prussia. Charles Sarolea's book written just before the first world war "The Anglo-German Problem" says the Prussians are very unpleasant people. However, The Prussians who were like the Spartans for the same reason the Spantans were unpleasant, are not the whole of Germany. Spartans and Prussians were as they were for geological reasons. Neither had enough good farmland.

    But the rest of Germany had the geology that makes life in the US good. Mild climates and plenty of good farmland. These people are artistic, congenial, and good neighbors and it really worried Sarolea that they left government up to the Prussians who were not nice people. And love, it is what I know of these people's differences that presses me to write about the importance of culture. Sarolea said the Prussians did not have a culture but were as an army always ready for war. It is the Prussian military order that has made the US what it defended its democracy against. The US adopted the Prussian model for bureaucracy and the German model of education. With our institutions model after Germany's institutions is it any wonder Trump has enjoyed the popularity of Hitler? But now I am pissing into the wind because if there are any US citizens who see what I see, I have not come across them. We are all like the Germans who let Prussia have control.

    This thread being about culture is good for speaking of the Scotts who made a huge intellectual contribution to the US and the formation of its rebellion against the English. They especially influenced Jefferson during his school years and made Jefferson intensely focused on the importance of universal education if we were to have a strong and united Republic. Our liberty was dependent on that education and following WWII, we totally replaced that education with the German model of education for technology for military and industrial purposes. Now we struggle to control citizens with law and law enforcement and some states have gone as far as rewarding citizens who report on their neighbors! And we are clueless about what has gone so wrong.
  • Athena
    3k
    I'm not recommending a book. Your proposed book is fine - so long as it has lots of company from different perspectives. I'm recommending - warning - an adjustment of mind-set. All the times you've taken for granted that Americans were/are "the good guys" in a conflict; :gasp: all the times you've advocated, directly or indirectly, for American-style capitalism; :gasp: all the the usual accepted fictions... it's not deliberate; it's habitual. People need to develop a new habit: questioning the old verities.Vera Mont

    Would you please copy and paste what I said that lead you to think what you think?

    Democracy is a way of life that is based on Greek and Roman classics. Basic to that way of life is secular thinking. The God of Abraham religions are not compactable with democracy because in a democracy there is no God with favorite people. Instead of fear of learning that is tied to fear of Satan and displeasing a God, in a democracy life long learning is an essential part of participating in politics and being a good citizen. There are fundamental differences separating church and state!

    "Democracy is a way of life and social organization which above all others is sensitive to the dignity and worth of the individual human personality, affirming the fundamental moral and political equality of all men and recognizing no barriers of race, religion, or circumstance." (General Report of the Seminar on "What is Democracy?" Congress on Education for Democracy, August 1939)" From the 1941 "Democracy Series" of books for the grade schools.
  • Vera Mont
    3.7k
    Would you please copy and paste what I said that lead you to think what you think?Athena

    No. It would take a week to track down all the pieces of such a quilt.
    Democracy is a way of life that is based on Greek and Roman classics.Athena

    Yes, you've said, on several occasions.

    Basic to that way of life is secular thinkingAthena

    Except for all the gods Socrates is supposed to have offended.

    The God of Abraham religions are not compactable with democracy because in a democracy there is no God with favorite people.Athena

    Because Abraham is a clan patriarch and much later, Israel is a monarchy. The Greeks and Romans are not chosen by a god; they assemble their national gods out of their own self-image - as does every other culture.

    There are fundamental differences separating church and state!Athena

    And a code of laws based on the biblical commandments meshed together with English common law, on the foundation of a fatally flawed constitution and electoral procedure.
  • Athena
    3k
    Except for all the gods Socrates is supposed to have offended.Vera Mont

    It used to take at least a hundred years for something like the discovery of bacteria to become common knowledge. The miracle of the Athenians is their transition from superstition to science and a focus on proofs. That is why they got our attention and became a model for US education. They were thought to be a race of geniuses. The transition did not happen overnight, but it happen.

    In the play, The Clouds by Aristophanes, the character named Socrates argues in favor of science.

    It would take a week to track down all the pieces of such a quilt.[/quore] It would take more than time because I have not said what you think I said. When I speak of democracy I do not mean the US, except when speaking of something about democracy that the US did get right. And for sure I am horrified by US capitalism and we need to replace the autocratic model of Industry with the Democratic model. It would help if you asked questions instead of assuming what I mean.
    Vera Mont
    Democracy is a way of life that is based on Greek and Roman classics.
    — Athena

    Yes, you've said, on several occasions.

    I keep waiting for discussions to be about democracy as a way of life, and they never do. It is like no one gets the concept. The discussion I would like to have can not move forward when what I say is just words without meaning.

    And a code of laws based on the biblical commandments meshed together with English common law, on the foundation of a fatally flawed constitution and electoral procedure.Vera Mont

    Now that could become a discussion about our way of life. I really wish we would get Christianity out of our culture. And I much prefer the Greeks to Rome. The US aspires to be like Rome more than it aspires to be like Athens. This is about culture, not politics. Where does our conscientiousness come from? As powerful as Rome with Christianity was, it still fell.

    What are the fatal flaws of the US Constitution?

    Tocqueville saw some problems and warned the US would become a despot in his 1830 book "Democracy in America". I am open to examining the flaws.
  • Vera Mont
    3.7k
    I keep waiting for discussions to be about democracy as a way of life, and they never do. It is like no one gets the concept. The discussion I would like to have can not move forward when what I say is just words without meaning.Athena

    It's not that we don't get the concept so much as that we disagree on the examples.

    I prefer
    In general, Ojibwe society was loosely organized, and there were few personal differences in equality except those based on age. Important people could gain respect and prestige as outstanding warriors, civil leaders, religious leaders, or shamans, but this seldom made them more powerful in society as compared to everyone else.
    as a democratic way of life to
    Only free adult men who were citizens – about 10% of the population – could vote in Athens' limited democracy. Women, children, slaves, and foreigners were excluded from participating in making political decisions. Women had no political rights or political power. Aristotle, in “On a Good Wife,” written in 330 BCE, declared that a good wife aims to "obey her husband; giving no heed to public affairs, nor having any part in arranging the marriages of her children.
    What's left to discuss that hasn't been trashed-over multiple times?
    What are the fatal flaws of the US Constitution?Athena
    We hold it to be self-evident that all men are created equal, except for those, and those, and the females. And those men that are less equal than these men will be worth 3/5 of a person - with the extra votes going to their owners. But that's only south of this river. West of that river, we'll see, once we've killed enough of those unequal men.
    Plus, they might have articulated that right to bear arms clause a little more clearly.
    As a way of life, it hasn't worked perfectly.
    I'm not talking about a moral stance on the institution of slavery; I'm talking about the political instability of the structure. If it was a slave-owning country, that issue could be addressed later on, as it was in England. If it was to be a free country, that should apply to all of it. Making half and half built a civil war right into the foundation.
  • Athena
    3k
    It's not that we don't get the concept so much as that we disagree on the examples.Vera Mont

    Wonderful and why did we attempt to have a democracy? What makes it different from the kingdoms of the Bible? What are the characteristics of democracy? What is the best way to prepare our young for citizenship? The title of this thread is Culture is Critical. What does that have to do with democracy, liberty, and justice?
  • Vera Mont
    3.7k
    Wonderful and why did we attempt to have a democracy?Athena

    There wasn't any "we" involved. A couple of dozen well educated, privileged men decided the government they set up needed a framework that would work for their own vision of a new country. Obviously, it had to be different from the imperial monarchy against which they'd just finished leading a lot of good, loyal foot-soldiers into death. They had to promise the people something different and hopeful. Most of them probably believed some aspects of the form they put forward. It probably wouldn't even have occurred to them to wonder what the miners and farm workers wanted; it certainly wouldn't have crossed their minds that women might be political actors. The classical form of democracy probably looked as good to them as it does to you. And then, in order to get everyone on board, they started compromising....
    What makes it different from the kingdoms of the Bible?Athena
    Nineteen hundred years of European history and philosophy.
    What are the characteristics of democracy?Athena

    That's the trick question, innit? The joker in the political deck. It means something entirely different to me from what it meant to Pericles or Robert Walpole. Each iteration of the form of governance called 'democracy' is different from every other.

    What is the best way to prepare our young for citizenship?Athena
    In my opinion, to teach them how both governance and economy actually work, and the true jingo-free history of both.

    The title of this thread is Culture is Critical. What does that have to do with democracy, liberty, and justice?Athena

    Not enough. Culture includes a lot of material, both valuable and potentially corrosive, but it doesn't necessarily include critical analysis.
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