lack of evolutionary pressures (was Re: An end to "court appointed attorneys")

Kent Crispin kent at
Fri Aug 22 23:01:51 PDT 1997

On Sat, Aug 23, 1997 at 12:53:08AM +0100, Adam Back wrote:
> Kent Crispin <kent at> writes:
> > On Fri, Aug 22, 1997 at 12:40:29AM +0000, Vipul Ved Prakash wrote:
> > > 
> > > the idea is that the "competent" (not "chosen") are irrevocably different 
> > > from those other "incompetent and parasitical" (and not "unfortunate") 
> > > creatures that accidentally share the same physical form.
> > 
> > And how is it that one knows that one is "competent"?
> One doesn't.  But if one is not competent, one is likely to find out the
> hard way.
> There's precious little evolutionary pressures around at the moment,
> the race could use some more.

The evolutionary definition of "competent" is "propagate your genetic 
material".  A rough corollary is that those who raise the most children 
to child-bearing age are the most competent.  In practice it seems to 
be the case, however, that intelligence and "evolutionary competence" 
are negatively correlated.  As I am sure you are aware, there are all 
kinds of evolutionary strategies...

I think this goes a little deeper, in fact.  The kind of intelligence
that leads to high technical achievement is not even necessarily a
kind of intelligence that favors survival under difficult situations. 
If society dissolves it is my belief that computer geeks, like us, are
not the ones that will be most likely to survive.... 

Kent Crispin				"No reason to get excited",
kent at			the thief he kindly spoke...
PGP fingerprint:   B1 8B 72 ED 55 21 5E 44  61 F4 58 0F 72 10 65 55

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