- Capitalism and Alternatives -

This is a matter of common sense and has nothing to do with history.

Posted by: Darcy Carter ( UK ) on September 16, 1999 at 16:07:46:

In Reply to: This is not just semantics but an important distinction. posted by Darcy Carter on September 14, 1999 at 20:29:18:

: Dear McSpotlight - I am not sure whether I submitted my response to your comment correctly as I did not receive the same message that I did yesterday after my original follow up. If you have got it, please accept my apologies - if not...

: After a careful reading of my comments you will note that I said we have the same genes as our distant ancestors "by and large", not that we had not evolved "at all".

: This is not just semantics but an important distinction. Although we have branched off from the original African humans to cope with higher altitudes and colder climates, these changes are not "advancements" in the same way that progress from homo habilis to homo sapien was. They are helpful in a particular region but not improvements in the area of our evolution that has made us unique (our brains).

: Surely you are not suggesting that the other, later human races are superior to Africans, or that Africans' intelectual or social abilities are inherently different from their Caucasian counterpatrts?

: To look at this practically, imagine that a stone-age baby was taken in a time machine, at birth, to be raised by an affluent New York family in 1999 and given the best of everything. The child (of whatever race) would have as much chance of succeeding in that society as his less fantastic contemporaries.

: This means that our progress is due to something other than evolution, genetics or biology. It is due to the creation and development of the technology and institutions that constitute Western society, not bigger or inherently more enlightened brains.

: The future progress of mankind, about which I am extremely optimistic, lies in the continuation of this trend, not in some ill-founded concept of human evolution.

: The most cursory look at history shows that development has snowballed in recent times. It coincides, to a large dergee, with the temporal and geographic extent of capitalism. I know the difference between cause and affect and association, and that this is a long way from proving anything. However, it should make us think twice before consigning capitalism to the scrapheap (even intellectually).

: Finally, I'll bet many of your contributors haven't even read Marx, whose theories they probably claim to adhere to. He said that socialism was impossible until capitalism had created the wealth needed for its success.

: We are still a long way from this, but I am convinced that something akin to true socialism will be viable in the far future. For now, it would be, and has been, disastrous for all concerned.

: --
: McSpotlight: We got your other message just fine; see my comments there.

: Of course, I'm not suggesting that any race of humanity is superior or inferior to any other race; it is merely that they are genetically different. Now, humans are highly mobile,

Not really. Until very recently, most people died within a few miles of their place of birth.

meaning that the gene pool remains relatively homogenized, but this does not necessarily mean that evolution has ceased; merely that macroevolution does not appear to be occurring; but the whole of human history is so short that we can't really make any definite statements.

until someone can tell me a current human genetic trait that will lead to greater than average procreation, I will have to assume evolution has ceased in humans, as that is how the process works. This is a matter of common sense and has nothing to do with history. I am not a scientist, and am prepared to be corrected, but no-one I have spoken to has done so thus far...

: A lot of our regular posters are pretty well-informed on Marx, actually; we have a number of contributors who are political philosophers by career...hang around and they'll speak up.

Gosh..I'm just a lawyer and part-time pseudo intellectual. I'll probably run a mile when those boys turn up.

: However, I'm getting too involved in this debate, this is me getting my moderating ass out of this debate before I lay myself open to charges of partiality...I'm sure others can put this point better than I anyway.

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