[lbo-talk] Left-neoliberalism: a bold strategy for the year 1999

Marv Gandall marvgand at gmail.com
Fri Aug 5 08:40:27 PDT 2011

On 2011-08-05, at 11:10 AM, Bill Bartlett wrote:

> At 10:14 AM -0400 5/8/11, Marv Gandall wrote:
>> No need, then, for special mechanisms to explain generosity. An open hand to the stranger makes evolutionary as well as moral sense. Except, of course, that those two senses are probably, biologically speaking, the same thing. But that would be the subject of a different article.
> Is there some reason to assume that, if humans have evolved to trust each other and co-operate, that such evolution would need to be biological? It seems to me that evolving these traits socially would and does allow humans to adapt to changing conditions in a more timely way.
> Humans are neither innately selfish nor innately co-operative. But have the capacity to be either, as might best befit the material circumstances they face. And we adapt to most such circumstances socially, not biologically. By evolving appropriate cultures.

Yes, I agree with you.

> […]
> Is there any reason why I should not declare any such research utterly stupid and the researchers who dreamt it up a bunch total and complete idiots?

Yes, because in an uncertain way their findings still point in the right direction, away from conservative notions deeply embedded in the culture that people are by nature cruel, venal, and selfish which have been used to counter impulses of collective solidarity.

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