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Agriculture is the root of all evil?

Skepticalone
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1/31/2016 8:43:29 PM
Posted: 10 months ago
Hunter gatherers:

1. were better nourished
2. suffered from less disease
3. worked less hours.
4. were unfamiliar with social inequality
5. treated women as equals

Did we make a mistake by planting roots?

http://discovermagazine.com...
This thread is like eavesdropping on a conversation in a mental asylum. - Bulproof

You can call your invisible friends whatever you like. - Desmac

What the hell kind of coked up sideshow has this thread turned into. - Casten
Hayd
Posts: 4,022
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1/31/2016 8:49:55 PM
Posted: 10 months ago
At 1/31/2016 8:43:29 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
Hunter gatherers:

1. were better nourished
2. suffered from less disease
3. worked less hours.
4. were unfamiliar with social inequality
5. treated women as equals

Did we make a mistake by planting roots?

http://discovermagazine.com...

No, agriculture allowed us to expand the population and have *more* food, which is the point of their lives. Any step that could have been taken to get *more* food should have been taken. Meaning of life, have babies. Food lets you do that, thus you must have more food.
Skepticalone
Posts: 6,090
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1/31/2016 9:02:26 PM
Posted: 10 months ago
At 1/31/2016 8:49:55 PM, Hayd wrote:
At 1/31/2016 8:43:29 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
Hunter gatherers:

1. were better nourished
2. suffered from less disease
3. worked less hours.
4. were unfamiliar with social inequality
5. treated women as equals

Did we make a mistake by planting roots?

http://discovermagazine.com...

No, agriculture allowed us to expand the population and have *more* food, which is the point of their lives. Any step that could have been taken to get *more* food should have been taken. Meaning of life, have babies. Food lets you do that, thus you must have more food.

Increase in the quantity of life is not the same as increasing the quality of life. Is there an argument for agriculture increasing the quality of life?
This thread is like eavesdropping on a conversation in a mental asylum. - Bulproof

You can call your invisible friends whatever you like. - Desmac

What the hell kind of coked up sideshow has this thread turned into. - Casten
Hayd
Posts: 4,022
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1/31/2016 9:04:43 PM
Posted: 10 months ago
At 1/31/2016 9:02:26 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
At 1/31/2016 8:49:55 PM, Hayd wrote:
At 1/31/2016 8:43:29 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
Hunter gatherers:

1. were better nourished
2. suffered from less disease
3. worked less hours.
4. were unfamiliar with social inequality
5. treated women as equals

Did we make a mistake by planting roots?

http://discovermagazine.com...

No, agriculture allowed us to expand the population and have *more* food, which is the point of their lives. Any step that could have been taken to get *more* food should have been taken. Meaning of life, have babies. Food lets you do that, thus you must have more food.

Increase in the quantity of life is not the same as increasing the quality of life. Is there an argument for agriculture increasing the quality of life?

Increasing the quality of life is only beneficial if it increases the quantity of life.

The entire purpose of you existing, and what makes you...you. Is to give you the maximum possibility of having children. You eat food so that you can survive long enough to have children, you are healthy so you can have children, etc. Quality of life is only relevent if it increases a persons chances of having more children.
bballcrook21
Posts: 4,468
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1/31/2016 9:47:49 PM
Posted: 10 months ago
At 1/31/2016 9:02:26 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
At 1/31/2016 8:49:55 PM, Hayd wrote:
At 1/31/2016 8:43:29 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
Hunter gatherers:

1. were better nourished
2. suffered from less disease
3. worked less hours.
4. were unfamiliar with social inequality
5. treated women as equals

Did we make a mistake by planting roots?

http://discovermagazine.com...

No, agriculture allowed us to expand the population and have *more* food, which is the point of their lives. Any step that could have been taken to get *more* food should have been taken. Meaning of life, have babies. Food lets you do that, thus you must have more food.

Increase in the quantity of life is not the same as increasing the quality of life. Is there an argument for agriculture increasing the quality of life?

Industrialized agricultural systems lead to an exponential increase in the quantity of life. Once matured, this new generation was able to offer quite a lot of job demand, meaning that investments increased. One after the other, advances in agriculture lead to stronger economies and higher quality of life, as food was easily accessible.
If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in 5 years there'd be a shortage of sand. - Friedman

Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself. -Friedman

Nothing is so permanent as a temporary government program. - Friedman

Society will never be free until the last Democrat is strangled with the entrails of the last Communist.
Idealist
Posts: 2,520
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1/31/2016 10:05:34 PM
Posted: 10 months ago
At 1/31/2016 8:43:29 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
Hunter gatherers:

1. were better nourished
2. suffered from less disease
3. worked less hours.
4. were unfamiliar with social inequality
5. treated women as equals

Did we make a mistake by planting roots?

http://discovermagazine.com...

I've read similar articles to this one, and they often skip the fact that it takes far more land to support a group of hunter-gatherers than a group of farmers. If the human-race were made-up of hunter-gathers today then the entire planet wouldn't support more than eight or so percent of the current population. Also things like art and science would not have developed as quickly or extensively. The reason why Europe became such a wealthy and capable area was because of the invention of ever more functional plows and methods of farming. Yes, I do believe that as an individual I might be happier as a hunter-gatherer, at least during years of plenty. The problem is that a decade of plenty can lead to a sharp rise in population, which would then tend to sharply die-out during years of hunger. The opposite is that when people gather together in towns and cities then they are more likely to spread disease and not get enough exercise and air. In the long-run it was agriculture, however, which allowed the rise of humankind.
Idealist
Posts: 2,520
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1/31/2016 10:08:45 PM
Posted: 10 months ago
At 1/31/2016 9:02:26 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
At 1/31/2016 8:49:55 PM, Hayd wrote:
At 1/31/2016 8:43:29 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
Hunter gatherers:

1. were better nourished
2. suffered from less disease
3. worked less hours.
4. were unfamiliar with social inequality
5. treated women as equals

Did we make a mistake by planting roots?

http://discovermagazine.com...

No, agriculture allowed us to expand the population and have *more* food, which is the point of their lives. Any step that could have been taken to get *more* food should have been taken. Meaning of life, have babies. Food lets you do that, thus you must have more food.

Increase in the quantity of life is not the same as increasing the quality of life. Is there an argument for agriculture increasing the quality of life?

Agriculture increased the "quality" of life by allowing us to have things. Would a person be happier today if they were healthier, and yet bored all the time? I suppose some of them would, but I doubt that would include the majority. Countries around the world are struggling to modernize, not to regress to hunting/gathering.
Skepticalone
Posts: 6,090
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2/1/2016 1:04:34 AM
Posted: 10 months ago
At 1/31/2016 10:05:34 PM, Idealist wrote:
At 1/31/2016 8:43:29 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
Hunter gatherers:

1. were better nourished
2. suffered from less disease
3. worked less hours.
4. were unfamiliar with social inequality
5. treated women as equals

Did we make a mistake by planting roots?

http://discovermagazine.com...

I've read similar articles to this one, and they often skip the fact that it takes far more land to support a group of hunter-gatherers than a group of farmers. If the human-race were made-up of hunter-gathers today then the entire planet wouldn't support more than eight or so percent of the current population.

I don't see that as a problem. It seems that is pretty much the point. Overpopulation is one of the problems perpetuated by agriculture, and not an issue that would be encountered by hunter gatherers - at least not on the same scale.

Also things like art and science would not have developed as quickly or extensively.

That could be, but is art or science really necessary for our survival?

The reason why Europe became such a wealthy and capable area was because of the invention of ever more functional plows and methods of farming.

A farmer is successful, hires underlings, and social inequality is born.

Yes, I do believe that as an individual I might be happier as a hunter-gatherer, at least during years of plenty. The problem is that a decade of plenty can lead to a sharp rise in population, which would then tend to sharply die-out during years of hunger. The opposite is that when people gather together in towns and cities then they are more likely to spread disease and not get enough exercise and air. In the long-run it was agriculture, however, which allowed the rise of humankind.

Thanks for your input!
This thread is like eavesdropping on a conversation in a mental asylum. - Bulproof

You can call your invisible friends whatever you like. - Desmac

What the hell kind of coked up sideshow has this thread turned into. - Casten
Skepticalone
Posts: 6,090
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2/1/2016 1:06:56 AM
Posted: 10 months ago
At 1/31/2016 10:08:45 PM, Idealist wrote:
At 1/31/2016 9:02:26 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
At 1/31/2016 8:49:55 PM, Hayd wrote:
At 1/31/2016 8:43:29 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
Hunter gatherers:

1. were better nourished
2. suffered from less disease
3. worked less hours.
4. were unfamiliar with social inequality
5. treated women as equals

Did we make a mistake by planting roots?

http://discovermagazine.com...

No, agriculture allowed us to expand the population and have *more* food, which is the point of their lives. Any step that could have been taken to get *more* food should have been taken. Meaning of life, have babies. Food lets you do that, thus you must have more food.

Increase in the quantity of life is not the same as increasing the quality of life. Is there an argument for agriculture increasing the quality of life?

Agriculture increased the "quality" of life by allowing us to have things. Would a person be happier today if they were healthier, and yet bored all the time? I suppose some of them would, but I doubt that would include the majority. Countries around the world are struggling to modernize, not to regress to hunting/gathering.

Is quality of life determined by boredom? Were hunter gatherers bored?
This thread is like eavesdropping on a conversation in a mental asylum. - Bulproof

You can call your invisible friends whatever you like. - Desmac

What the hell kind of coked up sideshow has this thread turned into. - Casten
Skepticalone
Posts: 6,090
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2/1/2016 1:29:41 AM
Posted: 10 months ago
At 1/31/2016 9:04:43 PM, Hayd wrote:
At 1/31/2016 9:02:26 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
At 1/31/2016 8:49:55 PM, Hayd wrote:
At 1/31/2016 8:43:29 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
Hunter gatherers:

1. were better nourished
2. suffered from less disease
3. worked less hours.
4. were unfamiliar with social inequality
5. treated women as equals

Did we make a mistake by planting roots?

http://discovermagazine.com...

No, agriculture allowed us to expand the population and have *more* food, which is the point of their lives. Any step that could have been taken to get *more* food should have been taken. Meaning of life, have babies. Food lets you do that, thus you must have more food.

Increase in the quantity of life is not the same as increasing the quality of life. Is there an argument for agriculture increasing the quality of life?

Increasing the quality of life is only beneficial if it increases the quantity of life.

I can see a point when this cannot be true - overpopulation. Overpopulation causes death, death cause misery, misery diminishes quality of life. Quanitity =/= quality

The entire purpose of you existing, and what makes you...you. Is to give you the maximum possibility of having children. You eat food so that you can survive long enough to have children, you are healthy so you can have children, etc. Quality of life is only relevent if it increases a persons chances of having more children.

Did hunter gatherers have chances for producing children insufficient for survival?
This thread is like eavesdropping on a conversation in a mental asylum. - Bulproof

You can call your invisible friends whatever you like. - Desmac

What the hell kind of coked up sideshow has this thread turned into. - Casten
Skepticalone
Posts: 6,090
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2/1/2016 2:25:33 AM
Posted: 10 months ago
At 1/31/2016 9:47:49 PM, bballcrook21 wrote:
At 1/31/2016 9:02:26 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
At 1/31/2016 8:49:55 PM, Hayd wrote:
At 1/31/2016 8:43:29 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
Hunter gatherers:

1. were better nourished
2. suffered from less disease
3. worked less hours.
4. were unfamiliar with social inequality
5. treated women as equals

Did we make a mistake by planting roots?

http://discovermagazine.com...

No, agriculture allowed us to expand the population and have *more* food, which is the point of their lives. Any step that could have been taken to get *more* food should have been taken. Meaning of life, have babies. Food lets you do that, thus you must have more food.

Increase in the quantity of life is not the same as increasing the quality of life. Is there an argument for agriculture increasing the quality of life?

Industrialized agricultural systems lead to an exponential increase in the quantity of life. Once matured, this new generation was able to offer quite a lot of job demand, meaning that investments increased. One after the other, advances in agriculture lead to stronger economies and higher quality of life, as food was easily accessible.

Food is necessary for a high quality of life - on that we agree. However, I'm not sure if you're suggesting hunter gatherers had/have insufficient food for such a standard. Plus, an overabundance of food is either wasteful or unhealthy (if habitually consumed). More food is not necessarily a good thing.
This thread is like eavesdropping on a conversation in a mental asylum. - Bulproof

You can call your invisible friends whatever you like. - Desmac

What the hell kind of coked up sideshow has this thread turned into. - Casten
bballcrook21
Posts: 4,468
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2/1/2016 2:31:35 AM
Posted: 10 months ago
At 2/1/2016 2:25:33 AM, Skepticalone wrote:
At 1/31/2016 9:47:49 PM, bballcrook21 wrote:
At 1/31/2016 9:02:26 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
At 1/31/2016 8:49:55 PM, Hayd wrote:
At 1/31/2016 8:43:29 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
Hunter gatherers:

1. were better nourished
2. suffered from less disease
3. worked less hours.
4. were unfamiliar with social inequality
5. treated women as equals

Did we make a mistake by planting roots?

http://discovermagazine.com...

No, agriculture allowed us to expand the population and have *more* food, which is the point of their lives. Any step that could have been taken to get *more* food should have been taken. Meaning of life, have babies. Food lets you do that, thus you must have more food.

Increase in the quantity of life is not the same as increasing the quality of life. Is there an argument for agriculture increasing the quality of life?

Industrialized agricultural systems lead to an exponential increase in the quantity of life. Once matured, this new generation was able to offer quite a lot of job demand, meaning that investments increased. One after the other, advances in agriculture lead to stronger economies and higher quality of life, as food was easily accessible.

Food is necessary for a high quality of life - on that we agree. However, I'm not sure if you're suggesting hunter gatherers had/have insufficient food for such a standard. Plus, an overabundance of food is either wasteful or unhealthy (if habitually consumed). More food is not necessarily a good thing.

More food has always been a good thing, unless people pursued unsafe farming practices. More food means food becomes less scarce, thereby driving down the prices and making it much more accessible for people. Plus, a surplus means that in the case of a downfall in production, food will not become inaccessible to such a high degree.

Hunter/gatherers were primarily before advanced farming techniques came by. Now they are more attuned to grazing their livestock, instead of hunting them down. This is better as they can reproduce these animals, which will do the same for scarcity.

If you look at historical trends, as quality of life and quantity of life both have increased, so has the shift from hunting into advanced farming methods.
If you put the federal government in charge of the Sahara Desert, in 5 years there'd be a shortage of sand. - Friedman

Underlying most arguments against the free market is a lack of belief in freedom itself. -Friedman

Nothing is so permanent as a temporary government program. - Friedman

Society will never be free until the last Democrat is strangled with the entrails of the last Communist.
Skepsikyma
Posts: 8,280
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2/1/2016 2:51:10 AM
Posted: 10 months ago
At 1/31/2016 8:43:29 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
Hunter gatherers:

1. were better nourished
2. suffered from less disease
3. worked less hours.
4. were unfamiliar with social inequality
5. treated women as equals

Did we make a mistake by planting roots?

http://discovermagazine.com...

No. It's why we were the conquerors, and not the conquered. Vae victis.
"The Collectivist experiment is thoroughly suited (in appearance at least) to the Capitalist society which it proposes to replace. It works with the existing machinery of Capitalism, talks and thinks in the existing terms of Capitalism, appeals to just those appetites which Capitalism has aroused, and ridicules as fantastic and unheard-of just those things in society the memory of which Capitalism has killed among men wherever the blight of it has spread."
- Hilaire Belloc -
Skepticalone
Posts: 6,090
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2/1/2016 11:12:03 PM
Posted: 10 months ago
At 2/1/2016 2:31:35 AM, bballcrook21 wrote:
At 2/1/2016 2:25:33 AM, Skepticalone wrote:
At 1/31/2016 9:47:49 PM, bballcrook21 wrote:
At 1/31/2016 9:02:26 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
At 1/31/2016 8:49:55 PM, Hayd wrote:
At 1/31/2016 8:43:29 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
Hunter gatherers:

1. were better nourished
2. suffered from less disease
3. worked less hours.
4. were unfamiliar with social inequality
5. treated women as equals

Did we make a mistake by planting roots?

http://discovermagazine.com...

No, agriculture allowed us to expand the population and have *more* food, which is the point of their lives. Any step that could have been taken to get *more* food should have been taken. Meaning of life, have babies. Food lets you do that, thus you must have more food.

Increase in the quantity of life is not the same as increasing the quality of life. Is there an argument for agriculture increasing the quality of life?

Industrialized agricultural systems lead to an exponential increase in the quantity of life. Once matured, this new generation was able to offer quite a lot of job demand, meaning that investments increased. One after the other, advances in agriculture lead to stronger economies and higher quality of life, as food was easily accessible.

Food is necessary for a high quality of life - on that we agree. However, I'm not sure if you're suggesting hunter gatherers had/have insufficient food for such a standard. Plus, an overabundance of food is either wasteful or unhealthy (if habitually consumed). More food is not necessarily a good thing.

More food has always been a good thing, unless people pursued unsafe farming practices. More food means food becomes less scarce, thereby driving down the prices and making it much more accessible for people. Plus, a surplus means that in the case of a downfall in production, food will not become inaccessible to such a high degree.

Hunter/gatherers were primarily before advanced farming techniques came by. Now they are more attuned to grazing their livestock, instead of hunting them down. This is better as they can reproduce these animals, which will do the same for scarcity.

If you look at historical trends, as quality of life and quantity of life both have increased, so has the shift from hunting into advanced farming methods.

You are claiming an increase in the quality of life, but how does the introduction of social and sexual inequality, increased disease, more work hours, and being less healthy fit into that narrative?
This thread is like eavesdropping on a conversation in a mental asylum. - Bulproof

You can call your invisible friends whatever you like. - Desmac

What the hell kind of coked up sideshow has this thread turned into. - Casten
Skepticalone
Posts: 6,090
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2/1/2016 11:13:14 PM
Posted: 10 months ago
At 2/1/2016 2:51:10 AM, Skepsikyma wrote:
At 1/31/2016 8:43:29 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
Hunter gatherers:

1. were better nourished
2. suffered from less disease
3. worked less hours.
4. were unfamiliar with social inequality
5. treated women as equals

Did we make a mistake by planting roots?

http://discovermagazine.com...

No. It's why we were the conquerors, and not the conquered. Vae victis.

It seems likely we've been both the conquered and the conquerers at some point or another.
This thread is like eavesdropping on a conversation in a mental asylum. - Bulproof

You can call your invisible friends whatever you like. - Desmac

What the hell kind of coked up sideshow has this thread turned into. - Casten
Skepsikyma
Posts: 8,280
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2/2/2016 3:51:45 AM
Posted: 10 months ago
At 2/1/2016 11:13:14 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
At 2/1/2016 2:51:10 AM, Skepsikyma wrote:
At 1/31/2016 8:43:29 PM, Skepticalone wrote:
Hunter gatherers:

1. were better nourished
2. suffered from less disease
3. worked less hours.
4. were unfamiliar with social inequality
5. treated women as equals

Did we make a mistake by planting roots?

http://discovermagazine.com...

No. It's why we were the conquerors, and not the conquered. Vae victis.

It seems likely we've been both the conquered and the conquerers at some point or another.

I meant 'we' as in 'societies which abandoned the hunter-gatherer model'. Societies are destined to be out-competed and consumed by more efficient and better organized ones, so saying that agricultural society was a 'mistake' is like saying that falling at 9.8 m/s/s is a 'mistake'. There's no volition involved; it's just nature taking its course.
"The Collectivist experiment is thoroughly suited (in appearance at least) to the Capitalist society which it proposes to replace. It works with the existing machinery of Capitalism, talks and thinks in the existing terms of Capitalism, appeals to just those appetites which Capitalism has aroused, and ridicules as fantastic and unheard-of just those things in society the memory of which Capitalism has killed among men wherever the blight of it has spread."
- Hilaire Belloc -
triangle.128k
Posts: 3,633
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2/3/2016 11:43:56 PM
Posted: 10 months ago
That would be like saying modern medicine is bad due to immune systems lowering and becoming more dependent. Social inequality requires power, a few hunter-gatherers don't have enough power to introduce social inequality women had faced. There's no saying there would have been some racists/sexists here and there. Also keep in mind racism couldn't exist either, nobody had cared to travel that far in a lifetime to where they would meet different races.

When you think about it, we'd be no different than animals if we were still hunter-gatherers. Humans managed to get to the top of the food chain and control the world due to simple advances such as cooking and farming, which have also extended upon our lifespan. If we remained true to our roots, wildcats and wolves would have been higher up in the food chain than us. The human body genetically is no match for wildcats or any other predators, our intelligence is what allowed us to become "better."