Politics and Human Nature

Reason has an article today on "Politics and Evolution."

The Association for Politics and the Life Sciences (APLS), is dedicated to the proposition that analyzing politics and philosophy without reference to human biology and evolutionary history would be like deliberately ignoring general relativity and quantum mechanics when discussing physics. Nevertheless, injecting human biology into political discussions still makes most political scientists come down with the vapors.

I think this is very true. Politics will change in the future as neuroscience allows us to come to terms with who/what we really are (even though many people may not accept it). I'm currently reading The Blank Slate: The Modern Denial of Human Nature, and it addresses some of these same issues. I'll post more thoughts on it when I finish the book in a week or so.

My belief, is that humanity will cause its own demise. We just aren't well adapted to the world we live in today. For example, we evolved to like high calorie foods because food used to be scarce. Now that food is abundant, our desire to eat these things leads to obesity, heart disease, etc. But we don't care because Krispy Kreme and Ben and Jerry's taste great. Similar conundrums are playing out in the political realm. We all just really want to be happy, but happiness for many people is measured not on an absolute scale, but relative to everyone else.

I'll get off my soap box now until I finish the book.