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Thread: Are we tending our gene pool well?

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    Politics.ie Member cyberianpan's Avatar
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    Default Are we tending our gene pool well?

    I was reading this:

    Times

    Such courage has always been recognised as a supreme asset by military strategists — Carl von Clausewitz, the 19th-century Prussian theorist, described it as “above all things . . . the first quality of a warrior”. For biologists, however, it poses a problem: humans simply should not have evolved to be heroic: the dangers to life and limb are too great.

    Now, it appears, the solution to this evolutionary puzzle may lie in sex. New research suggests that braver soldiers may ultimately win more sexual partners as well as more battles, and that the extra chances to spread their genes can outweigh the risk of dying in combat.

    its overall advantages can easily outweigh its risks, a mathematical model has shown.

    Some men who carry genetic variants that promote bravery might perish because of them, but the ones who survive may win more battles through their greater daring. The resulting opportunities for rape and pillage can create a net evolutionary benefit.
    And was thinking that "warrior rapist" is a quite undesirable genetic trait for civilised society as whole. I'd wager that even as recently as 150 years ago being a "warrior rapist" was a great advantage (to the man's genes) and allowed lots more children.

    Ok by now laws & civilisation have probably reduced the advantage of the "warrior rapist" gene ... possibly to zero but I doubt to negative zone. Also maybe the "warrior rapist" gene isn't recessive and may be increasing...

    Often natural selection was "good", it encouraged greater intelligence as the smart survived longer ... now (in the "civilised world") the state ensures no one dies of hunger and that we try to treat all diseases ... all these people go on to have children and thus bad genes get passed on.

    I'm aware that anyone who discusses eugenics gets labelled a Nazi very quickly ... I'm not - I'm worried that in say 500 years we might be weakened as a society and the "warrior rapists" or some other ugly creature might take over.

    Given that, by choice, we've pretty much abandoned natural selection at a genetic level(*) ought we start consider social enforcement ?

    E.g. banning repeat rapists from having children etc ?

    Some say it's a slippery slope and we shouldn't tinker ... but doing nothing is in and of itself taking a choice - but anyway we're already tinkering with natural selection...

    cYp
    (*) though not at memetic level
    "Yawn , am I alive yet ?"

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    Default Re: Are we tending our gene pool well?

    I wouldn't worry, Cyp. These days, warrior rapist types just work for Wall Street and the City of London.

    Bankers bonuses are a far more predictable indicator of maximum reproductive capacity than brandishing a sword ever was.

    More seriously; there are ways in which the gene pool might be being corrupted however. The 24/7 work culture is ensuring that intelligent career women are having far fewer children than their stay-at home or McJob employed peers. Their diminution of reproductive success is undoubtedly affecting everyone's gene pool.... it means that half of the people programmed for career success, often the best and the brightest, are not having the children they should.

    Better working hours and child care provision please!!
    The floggings will continue until morale improves

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    Default Re: Are we tending our gene pool well?

    Of course the Irish gene poll will not exist as a separate entity within a couple of decades.

    I think that's a pity, but then again I love diversity. I regret the loss of anything that can never be replaced.

    Ni fheicfear ar leitheid aris.

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    Politics.ie Member Oppenheimer's Avatar
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    Default Re: Are we tending our gene pool well?

    Quote Originally Posted by cyberianpan

    Given that, by choice, we've pretty much abandoned natural selection at a genetic level(*) ought we start consider social enforcement ?
    This is a bit of a brash statement - how do you arrive at the conclusion we have the choice to abandon this? We have increased our resilience as a species but we are still not beyond external influences, nor indeed, internal programming by our genetic code, to becoming extinct. This is a somewhat flippant reference, The Darwin Awards but does, on a lower level, illustrate my point.

    @ Expat Girl: Will women ever evolve to be less superficial - looking at a man's bonus, indeed!!
    We are "they"

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    Default Re: Are we tending our gene pool well?

    Quote Originally Posted by twtone
    Of course the Irish gene poll will not exist as a separate entity within a couple of decades.

    I think that's a pity, but then again I love diversity. I regret the loss of anything that can never be replaced.

    Ni fheicfear ar leitheid aris.
    It never did exist.... Celts, Vikings, Normans, British (who are also a mixed bag; Celts, Romans, Saxons, Vikings, Normans, now Asians and Eastern Europeans).... and to muddy the British gene pool, there was an Irish invasion of Scotland in the 5th century.

    The racially pure Irish person doesn't exist! You need to go to isolated and remote places like Iceland if you want genetically isolated populations!

    Besides, outbreeding is good; the further apart two people are in terms of genetic origin, the less likely their offspring are to inherit nasty recessive diseases. This is the reason that people have known by gut instinct for ages that the breeding of close relatives is a Bad Idea. Just look at the recent press on pedigree dogs if you don't believe me. Inbred doggies = huge vets bills, gimme a good outbred mongrel any day.
    The floggings will continue until morale improves

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    Politics.ie Member cyberianpan's Avatar
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    Default Re: Are we tending our gene pool well?

    Quote Originally Posted by Oppenheimer
    Quote Originally Posted by cyberianpan

    Given that, by choice, we've pretty much abandoned natural selection at a genetic level(*) ought we start consider social enforcement ?
    This is a bit of a brash statement - how do you arrive at the conclusion we have the choice to abandon this? We have increased our resilience as a species but we are still not beyond external influences, nor indeed, internal programming by our genetic code, to becoming extinct. This is a somewhat flippant reference, The Darwin Awards but does, on a lower level, illustrate my point.
    Very few people win the Darwin Awards/Feic all Westerners die without having opportunity to rear children:

    UN Mortality Stats
    Malawi(1998)
    0 - 1................................................. .................................................. ...... | 44,928
    1 - 4................................................. .................................................. ...... | 59,930
    5 - 9................................................. .................................................. ...... | 16,717
    10 - 14................................................ .................................................. ....... | 9,638
    15 - 19................................................ .................................................. ....... | 7,130
    20 - 24................................................ .................................................. ....... | 11,710
    25 - 29................................................ .................................................. ....... | 9,290
    30 - 34................................................ .................................................. ....... | 8,797
    35 - 39................................................ .................................................. ....... | 7,036
    40 - 44................................................ .................................................. ....... | 6,338
    45 - 49................................................ .................................................. ....... | 5,639
    50 - 54................................................ .................................................. ....... | 3,677
    55 - 59................................................ .................................................. ....... | 3,872
    60 - 64................................................ .................................................. ....... | 2,921
    65 - 69................................................ .................................................. ....... | 2,695
    70 - 74................................................ .................................................. ....... | 2,228
    75 - 79................................................ .................................................. ....... | 1,599
    80 - 84................................................ .................................................. ....... | 1,516
    85+ .................................................. .................................................. ..... | 2,379

    Canada(2001)
    0 - 1................................................. .................................................. ...... C 1,739
    1 - 4................................................. .................................................. ...... C 340
    5 - 9................................................. .................................................. ...... C 245
    10 - 14................................................ .................................................. ....... C 286
    15 - 19................................................ .................................................. ....... C 1,033
    20 - 24................................................ .................................................. ....... C 1,267
    25 - 29................................................ .................................................. ....... C 1,238
    30 - 34................................................ .................................................. ....... C 1,616
    35 - 39................................................ .................................................. ....... C 2,649
    40 - 44................................................ .................................................. ....... C 3,829
    45 - 49................................................ .................................................. ....... C 5,488
    50 - 54................................................ .................................................. ....... C 7,620
    55 - 59................................................ .................................................. ....... C 9,396
    60 - 64................................................ .................................................. ....... C 12,100
    65 - 69................................................ .................................................. ....... C 17,452
    70 - 74................................................ .................................................. ....... C 24,938
    75 - 79................................................ .................................................. ....... C 32,381
    80 - 84................................................ .................................................. ....... C 34,630
    85 - 89................................................ .................................................. ....... C 32,192
    90+ .................................................. .................................................. ..... C 29,096
    I'm taking age 45 to be cut off for people (men or women) having children, a bit crude I know but it's roughly right.

    So from above 9% of Canadians die before they reach 45 whereas 90% of Malawians die before this age. In Malawi it takes something special to survive and pass on your genes (infant mortality 50%!) ... that something special is effectively natural selection. E.g. I would posit that if in Malawi you live long enough to pass on genes that you must have a pretty amazing immune system ... so Malawi is clearly still "selecting" yet still better immune systems.

    So most Malawians experience mortality which interferes with their passing on their genes whereas the opposite is true for Canada.

    I'm claiming that social progress (not individual effort(*)) is prime reason for Canadians living longer (food,health less conflict etc). So Canadians are (to an extent) are cheating individual natural selection. The only Canadians to whom natural selection possibly still applies to are the childless who wish for children (homosexuals, singeltons, infertile etc) - however these are a small proportion.

    In The West , mostly, we cheat natural selection ... this I approve of , in general however I'm wondering if we should look for downside ?

    cYp
    (*) if you want to claim individual effort is why Canadians don't die young you're in a strange boat, for starters you're clearly claiming Canadians to be massively genetically superior to the Malawians
    "Yawn , am I alive yet ?"

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    Default Re: Are we tending our gene pool well?

    Quote Originally Posted by expat girl
    I wouldn't worry, Cyp. These days, warrior rapist types just work for Wall Street and the City of London.

    Bankers bonuses are a far more predictable indicator of maximum reproductive capacity than brandishing a sword ever was.

    More seriously; there are ways in which the gene pool might be being corrupted however. The 24/7 work culture is ensuring that intelligent career women are having far fewer children than their stay-at home or McJob employed peers. Their diminution of reproductive success is undoubtedly affecting everyone's gene pool.... it means that half of the people programmed for career success, often the best and the brightest, are not having the children they should.

    Better working hours and child care provision please!!

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Bell_Curve

    The more able mothers are probably producing fewer children than the less able
    Fianna Fail will allow the Irish People, to me milked like Milch Cows, by the CIF through high house prices, rents, and land prices, at the expense of competitiveness,and quality of life. FF+CIF=1

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    Politics.ie Member KingKane's Avatar
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    Default Re: Are we tending our gene pool well?

    I've seen the future and it doesn't work.

    Dan Sullivan. I was back but we still couldn't all have a vote. http://www.danielsullivan.ie/blog/

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    Default Re: Are we tending our gene pool well?

    I agree that we humans (in non-third world countries) are more or less outside the realms of natural selection.

    This has partly to do with the fact that we have no natural predators and many illnesses can be taken care of through medicine.

    This removes a relatively large individual aspect to evolution. We, as a whole, are benefiting from developments made by a few. We are surviving, but not because of changes in OUR genes, but rather because others have developed methods to tame dangers to our survival. I'm not saying this is wrong and I certainly would never be able to deny a sick child treatment but it is not exactly what is normally meant by "natural selection". We control our environment and not the other way around.

    One could argue that humans go out of their way to help others with no genetic relation whatsoever and call this an evolutionary trait in humans. I don't think so. We, in the western world, have abundant food supplies and no natural predators (Insurance salespeople excluded) so the "competition" part of natural selection is basically undone. But should we have a food shortage, we would (i believe) fall immediately back to a typical behaviour in which only members of our own gene pool will be supported.

    Shane.

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    Default Re: Are we tending our gene pool well?

    your talking about riding so at the end of the day you can forget about social enforcement as sex is primaraly a selfish act of gene aquirement so people will always do what they want regardless to social imperatives.

    they wont admit it in public but they'll still go ahead and do it.

    from my point of view in terms of the irish genepool the best thing to happen in a hundred years was the NICE treaty. i voted against the thing on political grounds but on biological grounds its been a godsend as thanks to isolation this country was so indemically imbred that weve got a 50% higher risk of cystic fibrosis than anyone else on the planet.

    so as far as im conscerned the greater the mix the better

    to be honest though the biggest threats to this countrys gene pool come from capitalism, which forces women into the workplace thanks to social and financial preasures and such puts off reproduction. and the pill. lets be honest if middle and upper class people were riding as much as they are without that there'd be ALOT more kids in this country. plus abortion. contentious i know but its undeniable that if all the women that had abortions in the last 10yrs didnt than we'd have an extra 50 to 60 thousand citizens now.

    the really scary thing is take out immigration and our populations dropping as more of us are dying than are being born. thats why the gov are so shite sacared about a pensions crisis down the road. as it stands theres six workers to every pensioner. by the time i retire (and thats only 30yrs cheeky!) that figure'll be down to 2 workers to every pensioner. this is why people in australia and france are paying people to have kids.

    in regards to the whole "Designed to succed " thing though it is worth mentioning that if you stuck the best paid people in this country on an island with no supplies odds are they'd be dead in a week. as mentioned weve built up an entire system for survival. take your average media consultant or banker out of that and they'll wake up to reality quick sharp. for all the slagging scumbags get they'd probably thrive as they recieve the least amount of support in our society.

    fact is as far as your genes are conscerned were still out there fighting tigers and living in a cave. your bodys no idea civilisations even happend yet.(hence why when your being chewed out by your boss you want to either smash his skull in or do a legger )
    “The measure of a civilization is how it treats its weakest members.” Vote NO on May 25th. 2016 : Anybody but FF/FG/LAB !

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