Are we living in the least violent times in history?

Discussion in 'Human Science' started by litewave, Mar 7, 2008.

  1. litewave Registered Senior Member

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  3. iceaura Valued Senior Member

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    We're working too hard, we don't have time. That's worldwide.
     
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  5. alexb123 The Amish web page is fast! Valued Senior Member

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    Good link. Its always interesting to have the rubbish that the media feed us disproved. Also, many religions feed us the world is getting worse its a sign of the end, crap.
     
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  7. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    Great link! I've been quoting it extensively. Thanks!
     
  8. Lord Hillyer Banned Banned

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    Pinker is a lightweight, and that video is tedious propaganda. He gives thanks to Clinton for fewer deaths in America (presumably because of his failed 100k 'more police' initiative), yet 'forgets' to mention, apparently, the half-million Iraqi children Clinton murdered through sanctions. Or his inaction during the Rwandan genocide, among other slaughters. And his radio-controlled bombing of hospitals is legendary. Pinker also 'forgets', while showing Western European figures, to mention the horrors going on elsewhere in the world due to the colonial ambitions of those 'Enlightenment' countries - horrors in places that did not have European-style censuses and mortality figures.

    Pinker discusses 'violence' as though violence equates to violent death only. He entirely ignores the threat of global nuclear apocalypse which loomed for half a century. It didn't come to pass (despite many 'close calls'), but the 'just nuke 'em' perspective was strong in the hearts of millions in both hemispheres. He also 'forgets' the impending catastrophe of peak oil wrought by greed and complacency, the man-made environmental disaster of global warming, industrial wage slavery, children in the coal mines, the psychological violence of media, the emotional violence of an increasingly sociopathic society, the physiological violence of hard drugs (both legal and other) and highly unnatural diets and lifestyles, et cetera. Humans haven't become less violent, they've just found more ways to diversify their violence - and they have scaled it up a notch or two. Genghis Kahn, for all his blood-lust, was a mere amateur compared to warmongers within living memory - including any number of video-game players.
     
    Last edited: Mar 8, 2008
  9. John99 Banned Banned

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    Where did you get that from? And exactly how did that happen?
     
  10. alexb123 The Amish web page is fast! Valued Senior Member

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    "highly unnatural diets and lifestyles" have nothing to do with violence. But you are right humans have created new problems that have replaced many of the old. However, things are still better today.
     
  11. John99 Banned Banned

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    I think it is really better today mainly due to better law enforcement. At least in U.S, look at the 'wild west' i guess you could pretty much kill someone and ride into another town and who would even know?
     
  12. Bells Staff Member

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    I need to ask, were you living in a bubble since the early 1990's?

    Educate yourself:

    http://www.cnn.com/WORLD/meast/9908/06/iraq.sanctions/

    http://www.globalpolicy.org/security/sanction/iraq1/hallida3.htm

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

    http://www.washingtonpost.com/ac2/wp-dyn/A809-2004Nov20?language=printer

    http://www.johnpilger.com/page.asp?partid=115

    In short, the sanctions were a human rights catastrophe.

    -----------------------------------------------------------------------

    And well said Lord Hillyer. I agree with you.

    We are not less violent. We have just found better ways to wage warfare and cause death and destruction upon others. Be it by sitting idly by and doing nothing, imposing sanctions or using more sophisticated forms of warfare. Instead of the long, drawn out battles in history, we now have more frequent, but more violent battles and wars, which result in a higher death toll, be it during the actual fighting and what happens afterwards.
     
  13. John99 Banned Banned

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    First of all BELLS, i am educated. I am educated enough to know that reading about someith is nothing like actually living there. You mean to say that if the U.S stops trading with a country all those people die? Couldnt they get supplies elsewhere? Saddam\Iraq was worth billions but why couldnt they get the stuff they needed from other neighboring countries? Money talks and with cash you can buy almost anything.

    Dont get all high and mighty BELLS i dont like to see anyone suffer either but it just does not make sense. Saddam built how many palaces during those sanctions and sold plenty of oil, i just dont understand what happened thats all.

    You can even get tons of cocaine through some of the toughest security, they could not get medical supplies? Can you explain that?

    AND dont forget BELLS Saddam invaded Kuwait and after that made Saddam called for U.S to go down in some pretty graphic speeches and for what helping Kuwait against a country that also wenrt to war with Iran...For 10 years.
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2008
  14. Lord Hillyer Banned Banned

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    Indeed they do. Type two diabetes, cancer, ischemic stroke, heart attack, obesity, rheumatoid arthritis, chronic pain, depression, migraines, physical degeneration - all can be attributable to diet and lifestyle factors. Some incidents of these are genetic or of unknown provenance, to be sure, but the mountain of scientific evidence linking what we put into our bodies to what happens to our bodies dwarfs Mt Everest. Manufacturers freely put hydrogenated fats, scandalous levels of salt, white flour, refined sugars, lethal low-density lipoprotein cholesterol from dairy and eggs, high fructose corn syrup, dioxins, and other deadly trash into every part of our food supply without blushing, despite the widely known dangers. This, too is violence - as you know if you have ever experienced one of those maladies.
     
  15. John99 Banned Banned

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    Thats right LH, guess that is why hospitals and old age homes are so violent. Corn flakes are a cure for violence for sure.
     
  16. Lord Hillyer Banned Banned

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    Movies don't count as history, dear.
     
  17. Lord Hillyer Banned Banned

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    There is a tremendous level of violence in hospitals and 'nursing homes', and not only from the pain induced from the maladies which in turn were inflicted by the insatiable rapacity of the food, drink, and tobacco syndicates. There is routine abuse of patients in these places - some that would make even Chuck Norris blanch. Even the most cursory peek into the subject will yield much more than you ever wished to know.

    Corn flakes are hardly the answer, either. They are filled with carcinogenic acrylamides.
     
  18. John99 Banned Banned

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    Come i think that now your just reaching. But seriously as far as my comment about the west is concerned it is historical record and the reason was simply law enforcement was nothing like what we have today.

    But more than that i would like an answer for post #10, either you or Bells can take a crack at it and i would also like to point out that Cuba is in a similar situation and they are not really doing all that bad. U.S does not trade with Cuba and hasnt for decades.
     
  19. Syzygys As a mother, I am telling you Valued Senior Member

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    Are we talking about relative or absolute numbers?

    That is not good logic. Even with sanctions you would expect a country in the 20th century has less deaths than a country in the let's say 15th century...Also the OP meant violent actions. You could blame Henrik the VII that he didn't go to Africa to feed the starving...
     
  20. Lord Hillyer Banned Banned

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    The embargo of Cuba is similarly stupid. However, the US knew about the deaths of Iraqi children its vigorously-enforced embargo was causing, and yet continued full-speed ahead.
     
  21. Lord Hillyer Banned Banned

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    The question is 'Are we living in the least violent times in history?' and the answer is that it is irrelevant: we're still very violent, so violent that no great moral distinction can be drawn between events of today and those of of 50, 500, or 5000 years ago. The reptilian brain still prevails in the human historical narrative.
     
  22. John99 Banned Banned

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    No offense but cant you answer the question directly instead of tap dancing. Isn't Iran in similar circumstances too? And i am sure that Iran is doing just fine as far as heathy citizens...

    Bellllllssssss where are you?
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2008
  23. Fraggle Rocker Staff Member

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    And how does this surpass Genghis Khan's actual killing of four or five percent of every population that the transportation technology of his era allowed him to reach? You seem to be saying that two birds in the bush are indeed worth more than one in the hand. Not to mention the anthropological evidence, discovered by actual "heavyweight" scientists, that 60% of Mesolithic adults died at the hands of others?
    And other "great" nations throughout history did not harbor the same attitude toward their enemies? And generally did not leave that hostility in the status of a "cold war"?
    Like man has never fouled his nest before? The Maya cut down all the trees in something like a 200-mile radius in order to build temples, and then wondered why the climate changed and they couldn't grow food any more.
    Come back when that's a fact instead of a hypothesis. I'll hedge my bets and vote for green policies, but I'm not finding the evidence conclusive yet.
    You've got to be joking if you're saying that's worse than the life of 90% of the people in the Roman or Greek Empire
    Which is worse than the cat-burnings of medieval Europe or the public stonings of an earlier era? At least this is fiction and the fiction of those earlier eras was even more brutal than their brutal reality.
    Please cite your evidence that our society is increasingly sociopathic. Even with 9/11 and the high-profile teenage wacko killers, the odds of being killed by your fellow man are falling.
    Oh come on dude, buy time on an infomercial and tell it to the illiterati who don't know any better. You're talking to an unreconstructed hippie who's "been there done that."
    You have failed to make that point.
    That is false and the statistics have been posted on SciForums often enough that I don't need a citation. Genghis killed a larger percentage of the people within his reach than anyone for whom we have reliable figures. By saying something like that you're starting to cast doubt on the reliability of everything else you present.
    So now because you personally don't like MMPRPGs you're asserting that people who play them are worse than Genghis Khan? Uh, dude...
    Yet the life expectancy is rising almost everywhere. Rare exceptions are the AIDS epidemic in southern Africa and pockets of exceptionally irrational despotism like Darfur.
    Yet our life expectancy continues to rise. The only item on your list that can be correlated (although still not causatively) with mortality is sedentary lifestyle. And lifestyle always becomes an issue during a Paradigm Shift because people can't change to adapt to the world as quickly as they can change the world. The Industrial Revolution took its toll until we sorted out the social issues. The Agricultural Revolution was a disaster. The life expectancy of an adult who survived the illnesses of childhood in the Mesolithic Era was in the 50s, but that plummeted to the low 20s in the Roman Empire because it would be many centuries before we were able to identify the nutritional deficiencies in a grain-intensive diet. Yet we did identify them and fixed our diet without a lot of trouble.

    The same will happen once the Information Age settles in and our descendants understand it. They'll fix these problems faster than we or the Romans did.

    There were hand-wringers picketing against the Industrial Revolution and I'm sure a lot of hunter-gatherers thought the world was coming to an end when they saw people building permanent settlements and growing their own food.
     

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