Three stunning current examples of human character reflect our evolutionary history
Yesterday’s New York Times had three remarkable specimens of humanity on the front page, and together they say much about the human species and our long evolution. They say a lot too about human nature, and perhaps even more about human culture.
Champagne bubbles, dot-com bubbles, credit bubbles, and bursting dreams.
After a lecture in Poughkeepsie in mid-November I had take a car down to the White Plains airport at 3 AM in order to meet my class in Atlanta. The driver—let’s call him Don—was a big, burly, solid man around fifty with a New York accent that made me feel right at home.
He turned out to be a retired police officer, pro-Obama, a classic New York Democrat like his father and grandfather before him. Don could care less about Obama’s name or race, but as a struggling entrepreneur with two daughters in college he was very, very worried about the economy.
Why did Main Street hate the bailout plan so much? Evolutionary psychobiology has an answer.
Last Monday, in the worst financial crisis in a century, the House voted "no." The representatives of the people, after prolonged deliberation and sometimes rancorous debate, said no, we will not appropriate $750 billion to bail out Wall Street and pick up the tab for years of reckless greed.
They manipulate fear, reward greed, and give new meaning to the term “Orwellian.”
They’re not bailing out the single mom who works checkout at Wal-Mart, has a diabetic son, and no health insurance.
They’re not bailing out the guy in Michigan whose job on the factory line got shipped to Mexico with the blessing and subsidies of their administration, and who now kicks cans in the afternoons and wonders how to face his wife.