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View Poll Results: Which society would you choose? (read the post)

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  • Society A

    15 88.24%
  • Society B

    2 11.76%
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  1. #1
    Arcesso pulli gingerios! Eldanen's Avatar
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    Default A Paradigm Shift or "Genius is Dead"

    In "the days of old" we find a society where individuals are set up across a divide, a broad ravine. On one side we have the class A individuals. Priests, ruling bodies of people, tribal consulars, shamans, etc. On the other side of the divide we see the average populace, living in a somewhat dwindling manner compared to their counterparts which have achieved much more within their lifetimes.

    Over the many years (thousands), though specifically in the last couple of centuries, I see that society, especially in the developed countries, is shifting more toward an attitude that promotes an equality of ability and intelligence. Instead of having the Class A individuals and the Class F individuals, we see much more of "Class C" constituents, somewhere in between. Most of us have probably noticed this.

    What brought this to the fore of my mind, specifically, was a book I saw at the store tonight about the Net Generation. To sum up relevant portions, it showed the differences between generations X and Y. The former being considered along the lines of the baby boomer generation and Y as those growing up in the 90s, or thereabouts. In the first generation we have an emphasis on solidarity, self-reliance, a "static-based" mind (learn everything you need and remember it for the long term). In the second generation, mine, we have an opposing interest in fluidity, collaboration, and a dynamic mind where information is switched in and out modularly as it is needed.

    A few implications of this scenario have come to my mind. As time passes and the attitude of this latter generation Y becomes more prevalent, what kind of changes will we see? Economic status, intelligence, independence, personal ability (e.g. apart from a group of like-minded others). In ancient times we saw a large number of individuals who could be identified as polymaths or geniuses in the classic sense of the word. Nowadays, there's much more a tendency to specialize into a nook of one field. What impact will this have on society? Will we have a lack of "pioneers" in the future, who could be said to invent a large portion of important information on their own?

    Here's a poll based on the above dump of thoughts: Which would you prefer, a society (Society A) where individuals are not limited by a lockstep integration with the society around them, where they have a greater chance to fail, but also a chance to greater success. Or would you prefer a society (Society B) where there is a modicum, a medium, many "Class C" individuals collaborating as a group.

    I find myself in the former category, with Society A, seeking a pioneering, individualistic mindset apart from those around me. It seems that I feel somewhat out of my time period, considering this. I like the thrill of having great things to gain or to lose, sort of like a pirate I guess! Arrrr!

    The benefits of Society B is that it offers a larger safety net for the lower classes. The caveat and the detriment is that as the lower classes rise, the upper classes fall. And as the upper classes fall, they take their ability to help those around them flourish.

    (Please, let's not make this into a singular discussion on economics. That's not what I'm looking for here. Although, you can make allusions to economics if you wish to prove your point.)

  2. #2
    DoubleplusUngoodNonperson
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    Society A is the only logical choice given that the division of labor will increase greatly in the near future... might as well make efficient use of it. Ironically, this DOES require a social support structure that I presume to be in place... .. dot..

  3. #3
    Arcesso pulli gingerios! Eldanen's Avatar
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    [YOUTUBE=Swl8frWSNEQ]Dismantle Public Education[/YOUTUBE]

    Here's a youtube vid that outlines a bit of what I'm talking about. Lowering of standards in favor of equality. It's from a libertarian standpoint.

  4. #4
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    The problem with Society A is you eventually get an aristocracy: a group more concerned with preserving their place in the social order rather than one based on merit. This is natural with all social groups.

    And while there are plenty of "geniuses" in ancient times, one must take in mind the length of times compared. Einstein holds up now and then. Being a polymath is far more difficult now. Can one really master a great many subjects? Most of what the ancient Greeks knew is covered as introductory material on the college level. They never did calculus for example, much less computer programming. Vehicle repair consisted of replacing the wheel, not a computer diagnostic of the fuel injector.

  5. #5

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    Quote Originally Posted by Eldanen View Post
    [YOUTUBE=Swl8frWSNEQ]Dismantle Public Education[/YOUTUBE]

    Here's a youtube vid that outlines a bit of what I'm talking about. Lowering of standards in favor of equality. It's from a libertarian standpoint.
    Interesting video.
    "The purpose of life is to be defeated by greater and greater things." - Rainer Maria Rilke

  6. #6
    Senior Member Darjur's Avatar
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    I do not believe in human equality, that should explain my point of view.

  7. #7
    Senior Member ptgatsby's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Eldanen View Post
    Here's a youtube vid that outlines a bit of what I'm talking about. Lowering of standards in favor of equality. It's from a libertarian standpoint.
    I was into this subject after the OP, but then watched that video. If that is the context you are thinking about... I have no idea what to say.

    The short of it is that education is under-produced by the free market. Human capital is one of the most important determinants of prosperity, at least for nations that are industrialized. I prefer a society rational enough to make sure they take this into account and ignore ideological arguments on what 'things should be'. Especially when they involve misleading facts. "Less intelligent?" IQ has been rising. Less capable? High school and post-secondary have steadily risen. Nevermind the Godwin effect, which happens every single time, it seems.

    So... yah. I prefer the 'equal' one, because it works for society and for the individuals involved. Do I think there are better and worse systems? Yes. But it'd have to be really really bad in order to compete with what a completely free market would provide.

    Although, on the plus side, it may allow 'equity stakes' in people. I still think that's a major missing component in education.

  8. #8
    Protocol Droid Athenian200's Avatar
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    I don't really like the sound of either of them, to be honest.

    One sounds like it's only good for the privilaged classes, and the other sounds like it doesn't permit much individuality.

    If it's possible, I'd like to choose something that gives us a better balance.

  9. #9
    no clinkz 'til brooklyn Nocapszy's Avatar
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    We forget the typical and every day events because there's no time to go over it all, so we only keep track of the memorable and more extreme events/classes/etc.
    It happens in our own minds, and it happens in conversation, and it happens in academia.
    It may be true, but history is exaggerated.
    Not having been there, I can't say for sure.
    we fukin won boys

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darjur View Post
    I do not believe in human equality, that should explain my point of view.
    Humans should have basic fundamental rights, but they are certainly not equal. Anyone that really believes that is deluded. Some people are more intelligent, attractive, talented, and skilled. Some are healthier and possess superior genes. Equality is a facade.

    Survival of the fittest.

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