Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Puerto Rico is Detroit

Like Detroit

Lorenzo says: "If there is some good news, it’s this: Puerto Ricans are wise to shock doctrine tactics. They know all too well that their island’s debt crisis, fueled by Wall Street’s hunger for tax-exempt bonds, was systematically exploited to extract brutal “reforms” from workers and students who played no part in driving up the debt. They know that the debt crisis was used to strip Puerto Ricans of their most basic democratic rights, putting the island’s finances in the hands of an unelected Financial Oversight and Management Board — referred to locally as “La Junta.”


https://interc.pt/2zCQLwN

Friday, October 13, 2017

Don't blame Black People; blame the system

In virtually every socio-economic statistical measure of the quantity and quality of life in USAmerica , white people are better off than Black people: life expectancy, income, wealth, crime in your neighborhood, raggedy housing in your neighborhood, quality of schools in your neighborhood, educational attainment, unemployment , morbidity , alcoholism, etc. Is this because somehow Black people are inherently inferior ? Due to genes ? Souls ? Culture ? Or is the cause external to Black people in a white supremacist , capitalist system ?

Thursday, October 12, 2017

Cultural Darwinian adaptations not _random_ , but caused by, the adaptive problem they solve

Dear Maria,

Preparing for class to  discuss the conflict between the theory of inheritance of acquired characteristics and the theory of random genetic mutation I thought :

1) Darwin had a) no theory of the cause of variety in a species b) no theory of _how_ characteristics are inherited, 

2) Darwin had no conflict with LaMarck on inheritance because Darwin didn't have one . Actually, I don't know that LaMarck had much of one either. 
3) Darwin had no variety theory either so no conflict with LaMarck's explanation of variety.

4) Furthermore, LaMarck's was a natural selection theory !  In his famous giraffe example, the giraffes that stretch their necks are selected for by their environment ; stretching the neck is an adaptation . 

Inheritance of acquired characteristics conflicts with random genetic mutation , discovered post Darwin. 

Culture as inheritance ( in brain cells, language and memory, instead of gamete cells) of acquired characteristics (not body cells , but extra-somatically , in objective reality) is more efficient adaptive process than genetic mutations that occur randomly relative to the adaptive problem they solve. Because, cultural inventions (acquired by one generation and passed on to the next) are caused by the adaptive problem they solve and do not arise randomly relative to the adaptive problem they solve. 

Thus, there is the population expansion of homo erectus and then Homo sapiens out of Africa with the origin of culture in the Stone Age. 

Maybe ? 

Charles

Thursday, October 5, 2017

Premeditated Mass Murder: Fascist Economic Planning

https://www.facebook.com/GammoRay/posts/10155761774474836



"Tyler Cowen, the economist who co-presides with Charles Koch over the cause's academic base camp (yes, that Tyler Cowen, host of the most visited academic economics blog), has spelled that out. You might want to sit down to hear what he envisions for the rest of us. He has written that with the "rewriting of the social contract" underway, people will be "expected to fend for themselves much more than they do now." While some will flourish, he admits, "others will fall by the wayside." Since "worthy individuals" will manage to climb their way out of poverty, "that will make it easier to ignore those who are left behind." And Cowen didn't stop there. "We will cut Medicaid for the poor," he predicted. Further, "the fiscal shortfall will come out of real wages as various cost burdens are shifted to workers" from employers and a government that does less. To "compensate," this chaired professor in the nation's second-wealthiest county advises, "people who have had their government benefits cut or pared back" should pack up and move to lower-cost, poor public service states like Texas.

Indeed, Cowen forecasts, "the United States as a whole will end up looking more like Texas." His tone is matter-of-fact, as though he is reporting the inevitable. Yet when one reads his remarks with the knowledge that he has been the academic leader of a team working in earnest with Koch for two decades now to bring about the society he is describing, the words sound more like premeditation. For example, Cowen prophesies lower-income parts of America "recreating a Mexico-like or Brazil-like environment" complete with "favelas" like those in Rio de Janeiro. The "quality of water" might not be what US citizens are used to, he admits, but "partial shantytowns" would satisfy the need for cheaper housing as "wage polarization" grows and government shrinks. Cowen says that "some version of Texas -- and then some -- is the future for a lot of us" and advises, "Get ready.""

http://www.truth-out.org/opinion/item/41206-misinforming-the-majority-a-deliberate-strategy-of-right-wing-libertarians



.

American gun fetish

Suzette says : "I grew up with guns.

Hell, even my grandmother had a hunting rifle.

My grandfather slept with a pearl handled revolver under his pillow.

My uncles and grandfather had cabinets full of hunting rifles ...

My father had a shotgun mounted on the wall over his bed, plus handguns.  He'd been a part time cop for some years.

All the neighbors had guns and nobody even thought about it.

But nobody thought guns made them in any way special, either.

I never once growing up heard of anybody having an accident with a gun much less ever shooting anybody.

No murders in my town or family.

Guns were simply guns.

Not dicks.

To be blunt.

I'm so old that I remember when "open carry " meant putting your shotgun or hunting rifle on a rack in the cab of your pick up to go hunting or target shooting.

NOT fancy prancing around stores at the mall or restaurant wearing a gun like a fashion accessory.

I am so old that I remember when the NRA focused on teaching gun safety, not ramping up gun sales.

Don't blame the guns. Guns don't make decisions.

Too many Americans have changed.

Into a bunch of rabid nut jobs.

What seriously pisses me off now is that we are the ONLY developed nation that puts up with this crap of mass shootings and big annual death tolls from shootings and constant cases of children "getting their hands on their parents guns" and shooting other kids, etc.

Nightmares!

What nobody talks about is what it's costing us in medical treatment for gun shot wounds, either!  Very expensive emergency treatment and surgeries!

WTF.

How stupid can a country BE?

What is wrong with Americans, psychologically, that we live this way, while civilized people around the world look on in horror and wonder why we're so damn stupid?

I keep asking myself, what's different about us?

Why are Americans so casual about gun violence, as though it's a natural disaster, like floods and windstorms?

It's not natural.

It's just us.

Just us, among ALL developed countries.

ONLY America.

Monday, October 2, 2017

Coleman , the Younger: When can I protest ?

https://www.facebook.com/ColemanAYoungII/videos/1746956492004857/

Philosophy of biology

https://plato.stanford.edu/entries/biology-philosophy/


Philosophy of biology can also be subdivided by the particular areas of biological theory with which it is concerned. Biology is a diverse set of disciplines, ranging from historical sciences such as paleontology to engineering sciences such as biotechnology. Different philosophical issues occur in each field. The latter part of the entry discusses how philosophers have approached some of the main disciplines within biology.

1. Pre-history of Philosophy of Biology
2. Three Types of Philosophy of Biology
3. Philosophy of Evolutionary Biology
4. Philosophy of Systematic Biology
5. Philosophy of Molecular Biology
6. Philosophy of Developmental Biology
7. Philosophy of Ecology and Conservation Biology
8. Methodology in Philosophy of Biology
Bibliography
Academic Tools
Other Internet Resources
Related Entries

Definition of biological species

Jim : "Jaguars can mate with panthers. Therefore, jaguars are panthers? No."

CB:
Horses mating with donkeys produce mules; mules are infertile, sterile  , though viable. Therefore , horses and donkeys are not the same species .

Jim : "Yes, but not all hybrid animals are infertile. Hyenas, Wolves, Coyotes and Dogs can all inter-breed, and produce fertile hybrid offspring. Are hyenas and wolves therefore the same species?

Granted, if you define "species" as the ability to produce fertile offspring then your statement is correct, but that is not really the definition of species - which, as noted above, is fairly nebulous.  Some modern humans have Denovesan DNA, too. Not all homo erectus are homo sapien. "


CB: If they are not infertile, then they are not "hybrids" in the sense of different species.

Jim : "https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coywolf"

What if they are selectively fertile, like how Ligers can mate with lion but not tiger?  According to your logic, a LIger is therefore a lion - not a hybrid? I'm not sure what your purpose in stating "neanderthals ARE homo sapiens" is ..?

Taken at face value, it's simple a false statement - i understand you may have some larger point, but I don't see it.

CB: "Taken at face value, it's simple a false statement - i understand you may have some larger point, but I don't see it.

https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Species

John : "You see that section, 'attempts at definition'? It's definitely a hairy question."

CB: Not hairy at all; very clear cut.

John : "Did you see the thing on 'ring species'? The whole first paragraph is basically giving a bunch of important exceptions which throw the whole rule into doubt."

CB : Just read what I said above. It's very logically tight .  Doesn't matter how they've been classified before the mating..
No they don't throw the definition in doubt . Just means the prior classification was wrong .


Jim : Homo sapiens and neatherthals belong to the same GENUS  - not species: "genus is higher than species"

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Genus

CB : No Homo sapiens and Neanderthal belong to the same species, because they mated and produced fertile offspring ; because there are Homo sapiens living today with Neanderthal genes .
Homo sapiens Neandertalis

Mike : "Charles Brown , consider ligers. two species, mated, of the same genus, and produced a NEW species.
Neanderthal and homo-sapien are NOT the same species, they are both hominids, some of which may produce intermated offspring, of a NEW species, which may in some cases intermate within either original species.

When we consider Ligers, we note that a liger may be capable of mating with either parent species under the correct conditions, sex of the liger being a large determinant.

It's all well documented, how the mating within a genus might produce offspring, and the p
ossible and practical limits of interbreeding between offspring or parent species.



It seems likely that the offspring of neanderthal and sapien, produced offspring that was unlikely to successfully mate with neanderthal, and yet was highly capable of mating with sapien.

That along with local adaptations to conditions, eventually produced a single species, humans, with differences we see today.

CB: Ligers are not fertile; sterile, like mules .
If any are , just means the two that mated are the same species.


Mike : "Other Hybrid Big Cats

Because female ligers and tigons have proven to be fertile in some cases, handlers have bred them with lions and tigers. These pairings have also happened accidentally when a ligeress or tigoness was housed with a lion or tiger. For instance, a tigoness that mates with a tiger produces titiger cubs. These cubs, with 75 percent tiger parentage, mostly resemble tigers with few lion-like attributes. Lions and tigers have also been bred with other big cat species, such as jaguars and leopards. Leopards and lions have been bred together to create leopons and lipards. A tiger-leopard pairing is called a tigard."

You are seriously misinformed on the subject.

CB : Could have been anagenesis all the way back from homo Habilis or homo erectus , Mike Anderson. There's no such thing as hybridization in the sense of different species producing fertile offspring , because of the definition of species.

Ligers and mules are viable but not fertile. I use them as an example of a close case to explain the definition of species in my anthro classes.



Could have been anagenesis all the way back from homo Habilis or homo erectus , Mike Anderson. There's no such thing as hybridization in the sense of different species producing fertile offspring , because of the definition of species.

Ligers and mules are viable but not fertile. I use them as an example of a close case to explain the definition of species in my anthro classes.

No I'm seriously an expert on the subject. I'm an anthropology professor . What I say above is logically correct. If you don't get it , you are not thinking logically about it.



Mike: "You may teach, but are seriously misinformed, and may be teaching incorrect information.
You may wish that it is factually true that two distinct species within a genus CANNOT produce fertile offspring. And the reason you wish that to be true, is to support your flawed definition of species.

Too bad, your wish is of no concern to reality.

CB. : no I'm correctly informed. I understand it , and you don't. You are confused.


Mike: "Sir, to put a rather blunt point on it. Your position is absurd."

Harry : "If you are a professor you are aware of peer reviewed studies, not sure where Wikipedia fits in"


CB : I have many text books which corroborate Wikipedia . Textbooks are super-peer reviewed. Harry Green. On technical issues like this, Wikipedia is very good . There's no motive for anyone to

post bogusly.

No my position is strictly logical the opposite of absurd .

Harry : "Quote the textbook then" I have access to the library at college who, in turn, have access to many reputable libraries and textbooks

CB :
I don't care if _you_ believe me.  I'm casting pearls before swine with you. Your loss . You are stuck in ignorance and confusion.

Harry : "
perhaps i am confused here.
Are you saying then, that the tiger species, and the lion species are the same species?

Friday, September 29, 2017

Jemele Hill is correct; Trump is a white supremacist

Jemele Hill
Jemele Hill @jemelehill
Replying to @DonnyParlock and 2 others
Donald Trump is a white supremacist who has largely surrounded himself w/ other white supremacists.

White man kills some white supremacy like only a white man can

https://www.facebook.com/Iamnotyourbuddypal/videos/687056211495185/

Saturday, September 23, 2017

Symbolic Inheritance

For anthropology, culture-language-Symbolic Inheritance is the unique species characteristic of
_homo sapiens_.  In a sense, "culture-language-Symbolic Inheritance is another word for "wisdom",
from the notion that humans are the species _homo  wise_.  It is
humans socially learned practices, customs, language, traditions,
beliefs, religion, spirituality that make us "wise" in so many ways,
certainly clever and winners _as a species_ ( not just as a few "fit"
Individuals) in the struggles and snuggles to survive as a species.
Since the advent of civilization, sometimes it's not so clear how wise
our culture makes us. Greed, slavery, war, male supremacy, Egoism originate with Civilization ! It is better termed Savagery and Barbarism. Therein lies the central drama of the history of
the human species.  Nonetheless, clearly in the Stone Age, our having
culture-language-Symbolic Inheritance was a highly adaptive advantage over species that did not have
culture , stone tools , scientific knowledge (!) standing on the shoulders of dead generations , raising our species
fitness.  This is  evidenced by _homo sapiens_ expanding in population
and therefore migrating to an expanded area of living space across the
earth , out of what is now Africa to the other continents. Stone Age
foraging and  kinship organized , peaceful and sharing societies were  the mode of life for
the vast majority of time of human                    species '
existence,  90% or more.



Big capital wipes out small Black entrepreneurial spirits

To make a long story short, Black people who build small businesses, like all small businesses , are in a historical stage of the "Market" in which "one capitalist always kills many other capitalists, cutthroat monopoly competition . Any weakness is used against small capital to take it. Racism is a powerful weapon for cutting the throat of all Blacks with the entrepreneurial spirit and a little capital. In Detroit , Black Bottom Black wealth was wiped out by "urban renewal" in the late 1950's, for example. The City government was the agent of big capital. Urban renewal,  was a special weapon against Negro businesses; wasn't used against white businesses.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Pure Detroit and Black Detroit

Snake Snyder has a Pure Michigan.


There are two Detroit's . Pure Detroit part of Pure Michigan , and Black Detroit.

Footballer Colin Kapernick takes a knee down into Black History

If you won't take a knee against something, you'll stand for anything. Colin K went down on a knee like Rosa Parks sat down in the front of the bus.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Financial dictator would rob Detroiters of their vote March 22, 2011

This is from 2011: 

2011: 

Financial dictator would rob Detroiters of their vote
March 22, 2011 4:21 PM CDT  BY CHARLES BROWN 
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Financial dictator would rob Detroiters of their vote
DETROIT – A receivership or appointment of an “emergency” financial manager by Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder is hanging over this city’s head, based on the phony claim that its deficit poses an “emergency” for the public health, welfare and safety. The financial manager could usurp the powers of the mayor, City Council, pension board, and the City Charter. The essence of this would be profoundly un-American and undemocratic. It would be a violation of Detroit residents’ right to self-determination.

In the larger historical view, the financial power structure that controls Detroit’s economic investment and development is responsible for the long-term economic depression that has afflicted Detroit as it has become a majority Black, and proud, and disproportionately poor urban location. There has been a financial and investment blockade on Detroit by the private sector.

Now the same financial power structure that for the last 35 years made Detroit what it is economically stands in the shadows as certain mouthpieces of money in Michigan state government threaten that the city may have to submit to receivership.

Detroit did not become overwhelmingly Black because Black people planned to take it over. No, it was by default, from the long-term process, confirmed by social science experts, of out-migration of many whites to Detroit’s surrounding communities. (See Thomas Sugrue’s “The Origin of the Urban Crisis” and Coleman A. Young’s “Hardstuff.”) To this day, at least one official in Oakland County, north of the city, holds office based on opposition to integrating greater Detroit 40 years ago.

My point is, it has not been Black people who made the Detroit metropolitan area the most segregated in the country (according to the last Census).

The out-migration of economic wealth and investment by the financial power structure has created this out-migration, or “flight,” of the population of this area. People must have jobs in our society. There is no other way to survive. People follow the jobs. People in Detroit need jobs and income. Detroit’s fiscal stresses are rooted in the job deficit and the business deficit.

The people of Detroit also have the right to the democratic election of their own leaders. This principle was proven in the election vote on ending the state takeover of the Detroit Public Schools board several years ago. America owes the majority Black population of Detroit equality of citizenship, which means the right of self-determination and self-governance, especially with regard to the financial matters of its city government. This is irrefutable, given the history of the struggles of Black people in the civil rights movement in America.

Drawing on this historical context, Detroiters demand that any accounting of their own government, any assessment of the city of Detroit’s fiscal health, be made based on the following issues:

* Down through the years, returns to city residents in public services and funding do not equal the federal and state taxes Detroiters have paid. We say federal and state governments owe Detroit because we have not gotten full value for taxes paid to them.

* We think the tax breaks given to municipal bondholders on Wall Street should be shared with Detroit, which sold them the bonds, providing the tax breaks based on Detroit’s municipal status. This must now be given back to Detroit in a substantial forgiveness of current bond debts.

* Finally, the state of Michigan, under former Governor John Engler, made a deal with Detroit under former Mayor Dennis Archer: Detroit would reduce its income taxes in exchange for revenue sharing from the state to the city. The state has not lived up to its end of this bargain. It has cut revenue sharing to Detroit. This reversal has hurt Detroit’s fiscal situation.

Declaring a public emergency because of a fiscal deficit is a fraud. A fiscal deficit does not endanger the public health, safety and welfare. The powers-that-be are using this lie as a cover for robbing the people of Detroit of their vote and their assets, and robbing city workers of wages, benefits and pensions.

In a protest rally at the state Capitol in Lansing this month, state Sen. Coleman Young quoted founding father Patrick Henry, saying, “Give me liberty or give me death.” United Auto Workers President Bob King said the struggle against the tea-Republican Party attacks on the people of Michigan will be responded to by a struggle all the way to November 2012. We in Michigan will follow the lead of our brothers and sisters in Wisconsin.

Photo: The famous sculpture of Joe Louis’ fist, in downtown Detroit. The photographer calls it “a symbol of the strength of Detroit and its people.” ktpupp CC 2.0

Friday, March 10, 2017

For Women's Liberation Marxism


For women's liberation: a comradely critique of the Manifesto

By The Manifesto of the Communist Party, every Marxist knows the A,B,C's of historical materialism or the materialist conception of history. The history of all human society, since the breaking up of the ancient communes, is a history of class struggles between oppressor and oppressed. Classes are groups that associate in a division of labor to produce their material means of existence. In The German Ideology, Marx and Engels asserted an elementary anthropological, or "human nature", rationale for this conception. In a section titled "History: Fundamental Conditions" they say:
"... life involves before everything else eating and drinking, a habitation, clothing and many other things. The first historical act is thus the production of material life itself. And indeed this is a ... fundamental condition of all history, which today, as thousands of years ago, must daily and hourly be fulfilled merely in order to sustain human life."
Production and economic classes are the starting point of Marxist analysis of human society, including in the Manifesto, because human life, like all plant and animal life must fulfill biological needs to exist as life at all. Whatever humans do that is "higher" than plants and animals, we cannot do if we do not first fulfill our plant/animal like needs. Therefore, the "higher" human activities are limited by the productive activities. This means that historical materialism starts with human nature, our natural species qualities.
Yet, it is fundamental in biology that the basic life sustaining processes of a species are twofold. There is, in the first place, obtaining the material means of life and subsistence, or survival, of the living generation ("production"). But just as fundamentally there is reproduction or success in creating a next generation of the species that is fertile, and survives until it too reproduces viable offspring. Whoever heard of a one generation species? In fact, one test of two individual animals being of the same species is their ability to mate and produce viable offspring. We can imagine a group of living beings with the ultimate success in eating and drinking, a habitation, clothing and many other things. But if they do not reproduce, either they are not a species or they are an extinct species (unless they are immortal). Thus, having premised their theory in part on human biology, our "species-being", Marx and Engels were obligated to develop historical materialism, the theory of the Manifesto, based not only on the logic of subsistence production, but also on the logic of next generation reproduction.
In The German Ideology, they do recognize reproduction as a "fundamental condition of history" along with production. However, they give reproduction, or at least, "the family" a subordinate "fundamental" status when they say:
"The third circumstance, which from the very outset, enters into historical development, is that men, who daily remake their own life begin to make other men, to propagate their kind: the relation between man and woman, parents and children, the family. The family, which to begin with is the only social relationship, becomes later, when increased needs create new social relations and the increased population new needs, a subordinate one..."
My thesis in this comradely critique is that the mode of reproduction (in the broad sense, including, but not limited to social institutions called "the family") of human beings remains, throughout human history, equally fundamental with the mode of production in shaping society. This is true even after classes arise, even with the "new social relations" that come with "increased population." For there to be history in the sense of many generations of men and women all of the way up to Marx, Engels and us today, men had to do more than "begin to make other men." Women and men had to complete making next generations by sexually uniting and rearing them for thousands of years. Otherwise history would have ended long ago. We would be an extinct species. An essential characteristic of history is its existence in the "medium" of multiple generations. Thus, with respect to historical materialism, reproduction is as necessary as production. The upshot is women's liberation must be put on the same footing with workers' liberation in the Marxist project.

Not only did Marx and Engels in The German Ideology give reproduction a "subordinate" fundamental status compared with production. They did it by the following sleight of hand: in part population increase or the success of reproduction somehow makes reproduction less important in "entering into historical development" as a "fundamental condition" (or "primary historical relation" in another translation, or "basic aspect of social activity" in another).
This is quite a misogynist dialectic, given that "men" are in the first premise and the third premise, but women only are mentioned explicitly in the latter. It is also an idealist philosophical error, because the theory now tends to abstract from the real social life of individuals in reproduction. Another passage in The German Ideology demonstrates the same sort of magical rather than scientific use of "dialectic" with respect to reproduction, and in this case the impact on the materialist philosophical consistency of their argument is more direct and explicit. They say:

"Only now, after having considered four moments, four aspects of primary historical relations, do we find that man also possesses "consciousness". But even from the outset this is not "pure" consciousness. The "mind" is from the outset afflicted with the curse of being "burdened" with matter, which here makes its appearance in the form of agitated layers of air, sounds, in short, of language. Language is as old as consciousness...language like consciousness, only arises from the need, the necessity, of intercourse with other men...Consciousness is, therefore, from the very beginning a social product, and remains so as long as men exist at all. Consciousness is at first of course, merely consciousness concerning the immediate sensuous environment and consciousness of the limited connection with other persons and things outside the individual who is growing self-conscious... This sheep-like or tribal consciousness receives further development or extension through increased productivity, the increase in needs, and, what is fundamental to both of these, the increase in population. With these there develops the division of labor, which was originally nothing but the division of labor in the sexual act, then the division of labor which develops spontaneously or "naturally" by virtue of natural predisposition (e.g. physical strength, needs, accidents, etc.) Division of labor becomes truly such from the moment when a division of material and mental labor appears. From this moment onwards consciousness can really flatter itself that it is something other than consciousness of existing practice, that it really represents something without representing something real (as the semioticians' signifier is arbitrarily related to what it signifies-C.B); from now on consciousness is in a position to emancipate itself from the world and to proceed to formation of "pure" theory, theology, philosophy, morality, etc."

In this paragraph, we see that Marx and Engels's early formulation and explanation of the origin of what Engels later famously dubbed the fundamental question of philosophy (materialism or idealism?) is rooted in the "second" original division of labor. For some reason, the "first" original division of labor, which gives women equivalent complementary status with men, just disappears and is replaced by a productive division of labor, between "men's" minds and hands. And to make it worse, once again, the "reason" the reproductive division of labor disappears as an ongoing fundamental determinant throughout history is its own success in creating a population explosion. This seems to be an error of substituting a negative and destructive dialectic in thought for what is the most fundamentally positive and fruitful dialectic in human history--reproduction. Here is a key connecting point: then Marx and Engels (whom I love dearly) substitute for the reproductive division of labor a productive division of labor as the fundamentally determining contradiction of historical development. This division of labor, between predominantly mental and predominantly physical labor, becomes the root of development of classes, the importance of which is declared in the first sentence of the Manifesto.
Yet, Marx and Engels commit the same error of abstraction at one level that they criticize at the next level: the error of mental laborers in abstracting from the concrete reality of physical labor. In addition, they keep depending on "population increase", which is another name for reproduction and "the sexual act", to explain the origin of increased "productivity" and "needs". These, in turn, seem to be the "premises" for the division between material and mental labor (and are because of the role of material surpluses in making possible the creation of the class of predominantly mental laborers). Thus, we might say that the original idealist philosophical inconsistency of Marxist materialism is abstraction from reproduction. For a fuller historical materialism, the theories of workers' liberation and women's liberation must be integrated. This may be done on the basis of Marx and Engels's fundamental logic carried out more consistently. Feminism, therefore, is derived from, not added on to, the original premises.

By 1884, with the impact of anthropological studies (and perhaps greater interaction with women in his maturity) in the Preface to the First Edition of The Origin of the Family, Private Property and the State, Engels says:
"According to the materialistic conception, the decisive element of history is pre-eminently the production and reproduction of life and its material requirements. This implies, on the one hand, the production of the means of existence (food, clothing, shelter and the necessary tools); on the other hand, the generation of children, the propagation of the species. The social institutions, under which the people of a certain historical period and of a certain country are living, are dependent on these two forms of production; partly on the development of labor, partly on that of the family."
The change in this formulation from that in The German Ideology supports our fundamental thesis in this essay: that reproduction is an equally fundamental, not a subordinate, process with production in shaping society from its origins to modern (and post-modern) times. But Engels's formulation in The Origin is after Marx's death and late in their heroic joint project in developing Marxism. Thus, the main classic writings of Marxism, and Marx and Engels's political activity, focused on production and political economy, not the family and the other institutions of reproduction. The Origin's is the best scientific formulation of the materialistic conception of history, even when we consider that "the family" is, in later stages of history, surrounded by larger social institutions, as asserted in the passage from The German Ideology, quoted above.
Even under capitalism, many of the social relations and institutions that are quantitatively greater then those in the "nuclear" family (See anthropologist G.P. Murdock on the "nuclear" family) are part of reproduction, such as school and training, as well as medical services and recreation. More importantly, reproduction and production have qualitatively different functions, both fundamental in constituting the existence of our species, our species-being. In other words, not only are reproductive relations not quantitatively less important in determining history, but from the beginning, from the true original division of labor as in the sexual act, reproduction has had a qualitatively, necessarily complementary relation with production in creating history. From the standpoint of our uniquely human character (our culture), it might be said that production makes objects and reproduction creates subjects.
Thus, problems in dealing with subjectivity in the history of Marxism (see my "Activist Materialism and the ' End ' of Philosophy") may in part be remedied by rethinking Marxism based on equating and even privileging reproduction over production in interpreting and acting to change the world.
This becomes especially important when we consider that there is now for Marxism a scientific, materialist, truth-seeking and urgent need for intellectual affirmative action in using empirical study of reproduction to re-explain history to compensate for the sole focus on production. Reproduction has always been scientifically coequal, as demonstrated by Marx and Engels's clipped comments and "admissions" quoted previously. They never refute their own words about the importance of reproduction in historical materialist theory. They simply (and uncharacteristically) fail to develop one of their own stated fundamental materialist premises. Living Marxists must creatively redevelop historical materialism based on this compensation.
Dialectical materialism holds that the relationship between subject and object is dialectical, of course. It is "vulgar" materialism that portrays the subject as one-sidedly determined by the object. Reproduction and production are complementary opposites, and their unity in struggle is the fundamental motive force of history today as in ancient times.
However, when I say "reproduction creates subjects", I mean reproduction in a broader sense than only sexual conception and birth. Reproduction includes all child-rearing, from the home through all school and any other type of training. It is all "caring labor" as defined by Hilary Graham in "Caring: A Labour of Love" (1983). Reproduction is all of those labors that have, as a direct and main purpose, making and caring for a human subject or personality as contrasted with those labors of production which have as a direct purpose making objects useful to humans. Reproduction includes affirmative self-creation.
A wikipedia item gives a fuller definition of what I call "caring labor".
"Care work is a sub-category of work that includes all tasks that
directly involve care processes done in service of others. Often, it
is differentiated from other forms of work because it is intrinsically
motivated, meaning that people are motivated to pursue care work for
internal reasons, not related to money.[1] Another factor that is
often used to differentiate caring labor from other types of work is
the motivating factor. This perspective defines care labor as labor
undertaken out of affection or a sense of responsibility for other
people, with no expectation of immediate pecuniary reward.[2] Despite
the importance of this intrinsic motivation factor, care work includes
care activities done for pay as well as those done without
remuneration.
Specifically, care work refers to those occupations that provide
services that help people develop their capabilities, or their ability
to pursue the aspects of their life that they value. Examples of these
occupations include child care, all levels of teaching (from preschool
through university professors), and health care of all types (nurses,
doctors, physical therapists and psychologists).[3] Care work also
includes the array of domestic unpaid work that is often
disproportionately done by women.[4]
Often, care work focuses on the responsibilities to provide for
dependents--children, the sick, and the elderly.[5] However, care work
also refers to any work done in the immediate service of others,
regardless of the recipient's dependent or nondependent status.
Care work is becoming a popular topic for academic study and
discussion. This study is closely linked with the field of feminist
economics and is associated with scholars including Nancy Folbre,
Paula England, Maria Floro, Diane Elson, Caren Grown and Virginia
Held" http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Care_work
Under capitalism with alienation, production's impact in making subjects is primarily "negative" or indirect. Conversely, reproduction indirectly makes objects, in the sense that the subject, the human laborer, who is the direct and "positive" purpose of reproduction, is the possessor of labor power, the active factor making objects in production (directly).
Production makes objects; reproduction creates subjects. This conception of reproduction is consistent with Marx's basic reasoning in Capital. In his famous development of the concept of the labor theory of value (beyond Adam Smith and Ricardo) and surplus value, he asserts that human labor is the only source of new value in the production process. The human laborer and the means of production (tools and raw materials) all add exchange value to a commodity. But the means of production add no more value to the commodity than the values added to them by a previous human laborer in the production of the means of production. The human labor power is the only element in the process that can add more value to the commodity than the values that went into producing the labor power itself. The labor of a worker in one-half day (or now one-quarter of a day) produces enough value to pay for the necessities creating the worker's labor power for a full day's work. The value produced by the worker in the second half of the day is the surplus value exploited by the capitalist. The creation of the worker's labor power is done in reproduction, in the broad sense we have been using that concept here. Thus, reproduction is the "only source" of the only source of new value. Subjectivity is the "source" of the unique ability (over the means of production) of the human component in the production process to produce more value than went into producing it.
Subjectivity is the source of a sort of Marxist "mind over matter." Reproduction is the source of subjectivity. In relation to the discussion of the primacy of reproduction as the original division of labor (as Marx and Engels said) over the division of predominantly material and predominantly mental labor, we might deduce that it was (and is) within reproduction that the mind and matter are non-antagonistically related as opposites (when "men" were simultaneously theoreticians in their practice as mentioned in "The Economic and Philosophic Manuscripts of 1844").
Sociology and common experience teach that historically, women have been the primary reproductive laborers - from childrearing to housework, from elementary and high school teaching to nursing. Beyond pregnancy, women's "assignment" to reproductive roles is historically and ideologically caused, not biologically or genetically caused or necessary (see, for example, Not in Our Genes, by Richard Lewontin, et al.). But as a result, women are, historically, an exploited and oppressed reproductive class, whose defining labor is as fundamental to our material life as that of the productive laborers on whom Marx and Engels focused. Thus, the materialist conception of history and the new Red Feather Manifesto, must be modified, and women's liberation put on equal footing with workers'(women's and men's) liberation in the Marxist project. It is especially incumbent on male Marxists to be and to be known as champions of feminism.
----
Charles Brown is a political activist in Detroit, Michigan. He has degrees in anthropology, and is a member of the bar. His favorite slogan is "All Power to the People!"
Image:   from Parent Map Magazine  May 2007 on the WILPF webpage.

Why anthropological psychology ?

Anthropological psychology because psychology is study of the Individual   , the Self, that idol of American culture and symbolic inheritance . So, learning about individuals is automatically more relevant to individual student's interests , which is of course , especially in themSELVES. 

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

More Leisure is Homo sapiens species essence ; May Day demand


More Leisure is our species essence ( See "The Original Affluent Society" by Marshall Sahlins). Foraging is a mode of direct appropriation from nature , not a mode of production; making a living by gigging  smart not working hard. It was not that bi-pedalism and the origin of hands originated a new labor that caused the invention of tradition , names and words . The invention of culture and language in childcare by mothers expanded to making a living  transitioned labor by making it smarter, wiser, because of accumulation of knowledge over many generations . More leisure gives more time to think and thereby work even smarter. Engels is wrong on this in "The Role of Labor in the Transition from Ape to Man" when he says "First labour, after it and then with it speech ..." First long childcare then names and speech , then a transition to LESS labour, smarter labour and more leisure as compared with primate ancestor species .

That's Societas , 2.5 million years ago to 6,000 years ago with the beginning of Civitas, private property, greed , slavery and heavy labor.  Hard work , work ethic, then comes to dominate cultural ideals. So, hard labour is not species-being , but civilization-being, a small fraction of the full time of our species history.

Nonetheless , Marx and Engels do propose transition from the Kingdom of Necessity to the Kingdom of Freedom . Freedom  is Leisure and smart work through technology . Jobs lost to technological invention should be translated into more leisure time for the masses, a May Day demand. 

[Marxism-Thaxis] The Part played by Labour in the Transition from Ape to Man
c b Thu, 27 May 2010 05:54:49 -0700

What about the transition in labor in the transition from ape to man ?
 This essay uses "labor" in the sense that it is something that apes
do.  So, it is not the "labor" ( or is it work ?) that produces
capitalist surplus value in _Capital_I, but the more general labor
that Marx describes in Chapter so and so , where he says the
difference between the labor of spiders and bees and that of man is
imagining the project as a plan first ( this implies that spiders and
bees labor).

So, the implication is that in the transition from ape to man, labor
transitioned in part by taking on more mental labor, imagination and
planning , as a component.

CB


The Part played by Labour in the Transition from Ape to Man



Engels: But the decisive step had been taken, the hand had become free and could henceforth attain ever greater dexterity; the greater flexibility thus acquired was inherited and increased from generation to generation.
^^^^^ CB: Ahhh but how ? How did the experience of repetition of use of _a_ hand by one individual get transferred to the brains of the next generation and the next , become the experience of _The_ hand ? If Patriarch uses his hands thousands of times his increasing dexterity is based on accumulated experience in that one individual's brain. The next generation's brains goes back to "square one" at birth and childhood . The only way to accumulate the knowledge across generations is by mediating the learning experience with language, imagination. The only way to "stand on the shoulders of giants" is to receive messages from them through a system of symbols. ( as in those days there wasn't the technology to take enough pictures) "The" hand is not the hand of an individual, but The Hand, as a concept, an organi of the species. 

Wednesday, January 25, 2017

US has a Cult of Individuals

US has a Cult of Individuals.

Selfishness guides American masses' politics as it guides everything else.

Individualism, selfishness; mimicking the selfishness of the bourgeoisie , so the working class has petit bourgeois ideology and worldview. I, me , my.

US has a Cult of Individuals. Many people make a cult of themselves . They have to look after themselves majorly ; nobody else will.


(((((((

Why anthropological psychology ?

Anthropological psychology because psychology is study of the Individual   , the Self, that idol of American culture and symbolic inheritance . So, learning about individuals is automatically more relevant to individual student's interests , which is of course , especially in themSELVES. 

Tuesday, January 24, 2017

in group fighting VERY rare as unfit in Darwinian sense


Someone says : "An animal group, including humans, will attack its own members for resources. In order to remain as members of the group the attacked must let themselves be attacked.

In modern society the members who are attacked often express adoration for their attackers. The reason is that their attackers protect them from attack by outside groups and societies."

Devon says : "
.Me against my brother
.Me and my brother against my cousin
.Me my brother, and my cousin against the village
.Me my brother, my cousin, and my village against another village"


CB SAYS: Rarely or else our species would have gone extinct long ago. These group  suicidal assaults are extraordinarily rare, especially before 6,000 years ago for the vast majority of human species existence .

I was just speaking on the general in-group and out-group relationship


CB: Since 6,000 years ago there is a lot of what you are talking about, Devin Boyd, I must agree with you completely on that.

I'm trying to use science to get to how human society was 200,000 years ago when our 23 chromosome pairs were set : original human nature in our genes. I'm thinking it was super peaceful among everybody in the 25 to 50 person bands, and peaceful between bands . They were organized based on kinship , family relations connecting everybody. The kinship was organized based on ancestor worship , tradition to dead ancestors of family .

Monday, January 23, 2017

The questions anthropology dare not ask: why and how were language and culture invented ?!?


The questions anthropology dare not ask: why and how were language and culture invented ?!?



I'd say culture and language originate in childcare with mothers naming children to care for them and teach them: trans-generational communication.



Yes difference , unity of differences , identity of differences ; using something to represent something that it is not; like a Name; in the beginning was the Idea , the Word , the Name.




Robert says : "I believe they evolved from grunts and gestures made to indicate desires of primitive primates."


Yes evolved and revolutionized primitive primate communication. There is a qualitative leap from primitive primate communication to human language and culture.  Humans use symbol systems; primitive primate species do not.

Symboling is using something to represent something that it is not as with words . Primitive Primates do not have true words .


Todd says : "Actually, anthropologists asks both of these questions all of the time. Here are some relevant citations. The first citation (Alexander 1974) is particularly influential.

Alexander, Richard D. "The evolution of social behavior." Annual review of ecology and systematics 5.1 (1974): 325-383.

Tomasello, Michael. Origins of human communication. MIT press, 2010.

Tomasello, Michael. The cultural origins of human cognition. Harvard University Press, 2009.

Shennan, Stephen. "Demography and cultural innovation: a model and its implications for the emergence of modern human culture." Cambridge archaeological journal 11.1 (2001): 5.

Mithen, Steven J. "The Prehistory of the Mind a Search for the Origins of Art, Religion and Science." (1996).

Richerson, Peter J., and Robert Boyd. "The Pleistocene and the origins of human culture: built for speed." Perspectives in ethology 13 (2000): 1-45.

Stout, Dietrich. "Stone toolmaking and the evolution of human culture and cognition." Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London B: Biological Sciences 366.1567 (2011): 1050-1059.


Animal individual organisms have two types of thoughts: Sensation-Perceptions and Memories. All are cell processes in the brain.

Sensations-Perception are immediate sights, sounds, smells, and feels.

Memories are records of past sensation-perceptions.

Humans have uniquely and majorly records of past sensations-perceptions in the form of symbols, words, language and culture.

Humans also have memories they have rearranged or modified : imaginings .

Since 6,000 years ago there is a lot of what you are talking about, Devin Boyd, I must agree with you completely on that.

I'm trying to use science to get to how human society was 200,000 years ago when our 23 chromosome pairs were set : original human nature in our genes. I'm thinking it was super peaceful among everybody in the 25 to 50 person bands, and peaceful between bands . They were organized based on kinship , family relations connecting everybody. The kinship was organized based on ancestor worship , tradition to dead ancestors of family .




Sunday, January 22, 2017

Symboling is identifying something with something that it is not

CB: Symboling is ,as I like to explain it , using something to represent something it is not. Imaginary beings are using something ( words or drawing or sculpture ) to represent something that doesn't exist or nothing. Math is all that. Numbers don't exist except in the imagination . Lines in geometry are infinitely long, but there are no infinitely long lines in reality , only in imagination.

Ancestor worship , original culture and language, are using things and words to represent people who no longer exist.

In other words , the gods are symbols of many generations from the past, mortal beings who attain some immortality by the living generation having so many recorded memories in living individual brains of the  experiences of the dead  while they were still alive . The living individual brains get this by learning language and culture, custom and tradition , religion .

Like the Sphinx rising from the Dead
Culture as material, not mystical,  "soul" transcending generationally  the mortality of all individual Selves; cultural immortality, eternity , symbolized as gods.




Kelly Smith: "Hmmmmmm I dig this concept. It reminds me of the a priori/a posteriori knowledge distinction, which I am a big fan of thinking about. In this vein, Stanford has a great philosophy site but this seems to be a pretty nice article too: http://www.iep.utm.edu/apriori/".
Just for those who want more info cuz it's super fucking fascinating shit"

CB: Yes , I have an interest in a priori / a posteriori knowledge since my philosophy 101 teacher had us thinking about it ; Kantian issues .

Knowledge from ancestors is from experiences that are a priori to the living generation's experiences ; it  is  not spun out of thin air by the living individual.

As far as scientific knowledge, Newton said he stood on the shoulders of giants. The Giants were his dead scientist ancestors .


CB: For me , original human society (at least , 200,000 ya) is given qualitatively greater wisdom about the struggle for existence than any other species, even close species like chimps, because to a significant extent the living generation is able to share the experiences of many, many past dead generations. Instead of 50 living heads only , there are 1000 heads from the past inside the living 50 heads as language and culture.



YESS!!!!!! I think about this constantly!!! And the internet is such a fantastic bridge to the past and the future even, like whaaaattt

CB: Yes the Internet is a leap; as writing was a leap from the Stone Age.


Todd L. VanPool:
Relevant article talking about the universality of ancestor worship...

Steadman, Lyle B., Craig T. Palmer, and Christopher F. Tilley. "The universality of ancestor worship." Ethnology 35.1 (1996): 63-76.


Emotions don't exist except in the imagination, correct?

Well, they often correspond to physiological changes. Changes in breathing, hormonal changes, and so forth. If someone hits your system with a lot of adrenaline or suppresses your thyroid hormone production, it will have consistent impacts on emotions for example. "Love" likewise corresponds to certain physiological responses. So, emotions are not completely imaginary, even if something like "love" exists in the mind.


We can track "love" through chemical changes to different areas of the brain.  As well as fear, anger, lust and a host of basic human emotions.


Part of the emotion is memory, memory of a past sensation and accompanying memory then, no ?

Emotions are not imaginary. They are sensations and memories , both of which exist in the brain; are material . Memories correspond to past sensations. They are "images", drawings , recordings of past sensations.  They are semi-symbols of those past sensations, the way a drawing is semi-symbolling  to represent what it depicts. A drawing is not what it represents , but it imitates, is not arbitrarily related to what it represents; not the way full symbols, like most words , do not imitate in anyway what they represent.

A major proportion of human memories are of symbols , especially words. Many memories of emotions are of words or concepts of emotions.
Founding Anthropological Psychology: I'm criticizing Evolutionary Psychology as a social "darwinism ." Anthropological Psychology is a critique of Evolutionary Psychology based on Anthropology's long history of accumulating knowledge of human evolution , biological , anatomical, psychological and cultural , beginning with Darwin's Descent of Man and SELECTION BY SEX and Antoinette Blackwell's valid feminist critique of Darwin, right through all the fossil, genetic and ethnographic and physiological studies of the 20 and 21st Centuries.

Main point of the sub field would be human individual psyches are especially though not utterly shaped by language and culture.

All Animal individual's thoughts , including humans, are perception-sensations and memories ( imagination is recombined memories). Human individuals have especially memories of symbols and words language , as well as memories of direct sensations. Symbols are memories of especially dead generations , tradition . Other animal individuals have almost no memories of symbols or dead generations' experiences .

Other individual animals are rational . They pursue goals rationally as predators chasing prey or prey escaping predators; that's ultimately rational ! The difference between our thinking and theirs is we have such big symbol systems in our brains ; the difference is not rational cognition.

We share the experiences of many , many dead ancestors in our individual brains. We stand on the shoulders of giants like Isaac Newton said he did.  Culture is elementary and original science in accumulating experience across generations.


Every individual being of all animal species has an instinct for Self-preservation. A main way it is expressed is hunger for enough food to eat .

For the human species, many different species of plants and animals can fulfill this fundamental physiological , life and death need.  All human cultures select only part of the universe of possible food species to eat and taboo other species.


Marshall Sahlins , one of my mentors in anthropology, recently mentioned Tomasello favorably ( on a YouTube video ). So, I look at him favorable . However, I must say that I think chimps , monkeys , mammal individuals imitate each other's intentions .  All animal individuals are rational , capable goal seekers , most especially as predators going after prey and prey escaping predators.

The difference ( viva la difference)  is  other species don't have a lot of projects dictated by tradition , history, custom , language and culture . Other species don't have utterly symbolic goals like becoming a football player or an actress. For humans symbolic projects dominate our individual lives and values.

That's anthropological psychology .

Why anthropological psychology ?

Anthropological psychology because psychology is study of the Individual   , the Self, that idol of American culture and symbolic inheritance . So, learning about individuals is automatically more relevant to individual student's interests , which is of course , especially in themSELVES. 


Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Ancestor worship , original culture and language, is using things and words to represent people who no longer exist.

CB: Symboling is ,as I like to explain it , using something to represent something it is not. Imaginary beings are using something ( words or drawing or sculpture ) to represent something that doesn't exist or nothing. Math is all that. Numbers don't exist except in the imagination . Lines in geometry are infinitely long, but there are no infinitely long lines in reality , only in imagination.

Ancestor worship , original culture and language, are using things and words to represent people who no longer exist.

Kelly Smith: "Hmmmmmm I dig this concept. It reminds me of the a priori/a posteriori knowledge distinction, which I am a big fan of thinking about. In this vein, Stanford has a great philosophy site but this seems to be a pretty nice article too: http://www.iep.utm.edu/apriori/".
Just for those who want more info cuz it's super fucking fascinating shit"

CB: Yes , I have an interest in a priori / a posteriori knowledge since my philosophy 101 teacher had us thinking about it ; Kantian issues .

Knowledge from ancestors is from experiences that are a priori to the living generation's experiences ; it  is  not spun out of thin air by the living individual.

As far as scientific knowledge, Newton said he stood on the shoulders of giants. The Giants were his dead scientist ancestors .


CB: For me , original human society (at least , 200,000 ya) is given qualitatively greater wisdom about the struggle for existence than any other species, even close species like chimps, because to a significant extent the living generation is able to share the experiences of many, many past dead generations. Instead of 50 living heads only , there are 1000 heads from the past inside the living 50 heads as language and culture.



YESS!!!!!! I think about this constantly!!! And the internet is such a fantastic bridge to the past and the future even, like whaaaattt

CB: Yes the Internet is a leap; as writing was a leap from the Stone Age.


Todd L. VanPool:
Relevant article talking about the universality of ancestor worship...

Steadman, Lyle B., Craig T. Palmer, and Christopher F. Tilley. "The universality of ancestor worship." Ethnology 35.1 (1996): 63-76.


Emotions don't exist except in the imagination, correct?

Well, they often correspond to physiological changes. Changes in breathing, hormonal changes, and so forth. If someone hits your system with a lot of adrenaline or suppresses your thyroid hormone production, it will have consistent impacts on emotions for example. "Love" likewise corresponds to certain physiological responses. So, emotions are not completely imaginary, even if something like "love" exists in the mind.


We can track "love" through chemical changes to different areas of the brain.  As well as fear, anger, lust and a host of basic human emotions.


Part of the emotion is memory, memory of a past sensation and accompanying memory then, no ?

Emotions are not imaginary. They are sensations and memories , both of which exist in the brain; are material . Memories correspond to past sensations. They are "images", drawings , recordings of past sensations.  They are semi-symbols of those past sensations, the way a drawing is semi-symbolling
to represent what it depicts. A drawing is not what it represents , but it imitates, is not arbitrarily related to what it represents; not the way full symbols, like most words , do not imitate in anyway what they represent.

A major proportion of human memories are of symbols , especially words. Many memories of Culture as material, not mystical,  "soul" transcending generationally  the mortality of all individual Selves; cultural immortality, eternity , symbolized as gods.emotions are of words or concepts of emotions.


Since 6,000 years ago there is a lot of what you are talking about, Devin Boyd, I must agree with you completely on that.

I'm trying to use science to get to how human society was 200,000 years ago when our 23 chromosome pairs were set : original human nature in our genes. I'm thinking it was super peaceful among everybody in the 25 to 50 person bands, and peaceful between bands . They were organized based on kinship , family relations connecting everybody. The kinship was organized based on ancestor worship , tradition to dead ancestors of family .

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Founding Anthropological Psychology

Founding Anthropological Psychology: I'm criticizing Evolutionary Psychology as a social "darwinism ." Anthropological Psychology is a critique of Evolutionary Psychology based on Anthropology's long history of accumulating knowledge of human evolution , biological , anatomical, psychological and cultural , beginning with Darwin's Descent of Man and SELECTION BY SEX and Antoinette Blackwell's valid feminist critique of Darwin, right through all the fossil, genetic and ethnographic and physiological studies of the 20 and 21st Centuries.



Every individual being of all animal species has an instinct for Self-preservation. A main way it is expressed is hunger for enough food to eat .

For the human species, many different species of plants and animals can fulfill this fundamental physiological , life and death need.  All human cultures select only part of the universe of possible food species to eat and taboo other species.

Sunday, January 8, 2017

Locus and levels of material necessity in human society and written history




From: Charles Brown <cb31450@gmail.com>
Date: September 7, 2016 at 8:46:49 PM EDT

Subject: Locus of material necessity in human society and history
[Marxism-Thaxis] Locus of material necessity in human society and history
Charles Brown cdb1003 at prodigy.net
Sat Feb 14 13:01:27 MST 2009

Next message: [Marxism-Thaxis] kingdoms of necessity and freedom

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
This is a reworking and expansion of a thesis I have been
developing on Thaxis

Charles
Materialism, Necessity and Freedom: Rehearsal of the Fundamentals of Marxism


By the
_Manifesto of the Communist Party_ every
Marxist knows the A,B,C's of historical materialism or the materialist
conception of
history. The history of  hitherto existing society, since the breaking
up of the
ancient communes, is a history of class struggles between oppressor and
oppressed.
Classes are groups that associate in a division of labor to produce
their material
means of existence. Why are class struggles fundamental in determining
the whole of society's laws and rules, it's
history and culture, the
"super-structure" ?

Because exploited classes are coerced into producing
surpluses for
exploiting classes by making supply of the physiological necessities of
life to the exploited classes conditional upon
their producing those
surpluses. Not only do exploited classes produce the physiological and
derivative material necessities of life for
society , but they are
denied the fruits of their labor unless they supply the bosses, the
ruling classes with super fruits.

Ruling class coerce this exploitation by
control of the state power or special
repressive apparatus

               In The German Ideology, Marx and Engels implied this
elementary
anthropological or "human natural" rationale for this conception of
class relations determining substantially
 the shape of society as a
whole. In a section titled
"History: Fundamental Conditions, they say:
               "*life involves before everything else eating and
drinking,
               a habitation, clothing and many other things.  The first
historical
               act is thus the production of material life itself.  And
indeed this
               is an historical act, a fundamental condition of all
history, which
               today, as thousands of years ago, must daily and hourly
be
               fulfilled merely in order to sustain human life."

          Production and economic classes are the starting point of
Marxist analysis
of  human society because human life, like all plant and animal life
must fulfill
biological needs to exist as life at all. It is an appeal to biologic
(which I
support, all of the anti-vulgar materialist critiques to the contrary
notwithstanding,
but that's my other paper).  Whatever humans do that is "higher" than
plants and
animals, we cannot do if we do not first fulfill or plant/animal like
needs, physiological necessities.

Marx and Engels define scientific analysis as
tracing the materially or objectively _necessary_ connections in a
phenomenon. Thus, the scientific understanding
of human society must be based in the materially
necessary connections of human society. Fulfillment
of physiological or biological requirments are
the materially necessary "connections" for
humans.

These biological necessary connections exist
in all human societies. But it is only in'
class divided society that , as said above,
surpluses are extorted from exploited classes
by ruling classes by employment and threat of
deployment of the
forces of destruction and violenced, standing bodies of armed
men , against the exploited
and ruled classes less
they disgorge the surplus fruits of their labor to
the ruling classes.

For not only is supply of food, shelter, air
etc. biologically and materially necessary
for living. The _absence_ of being killed or
bodily harmed by armed men is materially necessary
to live. Thus, the mode of destruction is as central
to the necessary connections of human society as
the mode of production. The mode of destruction as
critical in ruling class coercion and extortion
of the ruled classes is a mode of necessity in
human society and history.

Thus the mode of necessity in human society
consists in both the mode of production and
the mode of destruction.

On Materialism ( speaking of Mao),
 there are two levels of
 the relationship between
thought and being:
"economics" and "physics".
While society remains in
the Realm (or kingdom) of Necessity ,
society during its class divided history,
 ruling classes control
masses by conditioning
fulfillment of the _material_
needs of the exploited
classes on the exploited
classes ' producing surpluses
 for the ruling , exploiting
classes. The materialism
 (determinism by the material)
 at this level derives from
 the coercive use of conditional
 provision of material needs.
In all societies, including
those in the Realm (kingdom of Freedom
 ( socialist, communist future
 and ancient) , all people
must , of course, "obey"
the laws of physics,
chemistry, biology,
physiology, objective
reality etc. "physics", in
the general sense.



 The "higher" (cultural, semiotic. super-structrual, social
conditioning traditions, "super-natural,
 aesthetic, artistic etc.) human
activities are limited or negatively determined ( See Marshall Sahlins'
_Culture and Practical Reason_ on
biological limits of culture) by the
productive  and destructive activities, the activities that produce biological
necessities or deprive human biological necessities (Althougn, in human
IDEAS, SYMBOLS, LANGUAGE AND CULTURE,
because of the
arbitrary central definition of the symbol ("sign" in French)
there is non-necessary connection.
_Arbitrary_ connection
is the opposite of _necessary_ connection. This is the sense
in which superstructure is not
subject to scientific analysis the
way that infrastructure is. Idea systems do simulate
necessity as rules, such as
rules of grammar or
cultural rules, including state enforced laws

 Also in formal logic, "necessary"
arises in
>  _modus ponens_, modus tolens
 or "if-then", if p, then q, q is a
 necessary
> condition of p, i.e.
not q,not p.  This is arbitrary
and abstract necessity. In the Realm
of Necessity, ( Marx and Engels
 used the
> term "necessity" here precisely
to make the point I am making here)
> there is a science of human
conduct based on the things
that human must
> do, i.e. necessity. As Marx and Engels had
to explain to "the Germans" in
 _The German
> Ideology_, humans have
physiological necessities. In
meeting these,
> there arise scientifically
discernable necessary patterns in their
 behavior


To continue, This means that historical materialism starts with human
nature, our human natural species qualities, Feuerbach's "species-being
" This is Marx's point in the famous
passage in the Intro to the
Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy concerning social being
determining social consciousness

"At a certain stage of their
development, the material productive
forces of society come in conflict
with the existing relations of
production, or - what is but a
legal expression for the same thing
- with the property relations
within which they have been at
work hitherto. From forms of
development of the productive
 forces these relations turn into
their fetters.

Then begins an epoch of social
revolution. With the change of
 the economic foundation the
 entire immense superstructure
 is more or less rapidly transformed.
 In considering such transformations
 a distinction should always be
made between the material
transformation of the economic
conditions of production, which
can be determined with the precision
 of natural science, and the legal,
political, religious, aesthetic or
philosophic - in short, ideological
 forms in which men become
conscious of this conflict and fight
 it out. Just as our opinion of an
individual is not based on what he
thinks of himself, so can we not
 judge such a period of transformation
 by its own consciousness; on the
 contrary, this consciousness must
 be explained rather from the
contradictions of material life,
from the existing conflict between
 the social productive forces and
the relations of production. "

Preface of A Contribution to the Critique of Political Economy

http://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1859/critique-pol-economy/preface-abs

The economic conditions may be
articulated "with the precision
of a natural science"
because in that sector of society biological
necessities or needs are met, and
as discussed above, thereby necessary
connections reside. Necessary connections
are the business of science.


Being determines consciousness, but intermitently
However, being determines
 consciousness discontinuously.
("primarily and ultimately").
 Meanwhile, in between time,
 being and consciousness are
 reciprocally determiining.

Being , in the form of class struggle,
determines consciousness in history.
However, the revolutions
 which are the points of
determination or change
 by class struggle are
 intermittent and rare.
Most of the time consciousness
or ideology is not changing,
 is not in a revolutionary
 state of transformation.
Most of the time society is
in a status quo, a relative
 equilibrium , is not changing
 fundamentally.

This is somewhat analogous
to the punctuated equilibrium
 of Stephen Jay Gould in natural
 history, with the punctuations
being the revolutions when being
 determines, asserts itself, like the
 roof falling in periodically asserts
 the law of gravity, when
 contradictions reach a crisis.

It is the long equilibria that
cause the confusion and make
 people think that consciousness
 has determined being in history's
revolutionary changes,
 or the idealist error.

Also, there is a sense in which
consciousness as a system of
 ideas does determine people's
 conduct. When an idea grips
the masses , it becomes a material
 force; and lots of ideas grip the
 masses. In fact , the masses
 only act based on ideas that
grip them. What revolutions do
 is change the system of ideas
 that determines peoples' conduct.
And only class struggles change
systems of ideas or ideologies.
This is the fundamental sense
 of being determines consciousness
or part of the theory of historical materialism.

As Marx says
"...so can we not
 judge such a period of transformation
 by its own consciousness; on the
 contrary, this consciousness must
 be explained rather from the
contradictions of material life,
from the existing conflict between
 the social productive forces and
the relations of production. " "



In big historical changes,
Necessity is the mother of invention.
, the mother of revolution. The
necessary connections in economy and
class structure periodically, though
rarely , break through to "invent" a new superstructure
revolutionary ideas. Necessity is the mother of
invention, new ideas.
Ideology is the stabilizer of convention.

Ideologies are formal logics, based
on the principle of identity as their
first principle. Formal
logics are not "self-changing", they
abdure contradictions ( non-identity)
tend to sustain convention, avoid
invention of new principles. This
is why we don't think our way to
revolution. This is why dialectical
logic , with contradiction as its
first principle, is rooted in class
struggle , reflecting real or
material contradictions.

The Second Thesis on Feuerbach -
the test of theory is practice

Thus, the most practically
reasonable and rational course
 is for the working class of our
era to overthrow capitalism and
establish socialism. This would
 be the optimum for the class
self-interest of the working class ,
 collectively and individually
in its billions of people. Yet, we
are in a lag time, the long lag
 time of the "equilibrium" before
 the punctuation of revolution.
Irrational ideas, from the
standpoint of the working class,ideas of many types
compete with the rational idea
of revolutionary class struggle
for gripping the working masses.
 False consciousness, capitalist ideology is
determining being, keeping it
stuck in capitalist relations of production.

Do any of the fancy Marxist theories
which interrogate the principle
of being determines consciousness
 have solutions to the riddles of the
 irrational, anti-class self-interest
ideologies, systems of ideas and
images which are gripping the
masses and blinding them to
their historic revolutionary mission ?
That is a question on c
onsciousness for today's challengers to materialism who also claim to
 be Marxist in some sense.

An even more fundamental
understanding of consciousness
must come through an augmented
 Marxist feminism. As the historically
constituted class of oppressed
and exploited reproductive or c
aring laborers, the creators of
subjects en masse, women have
been the uncredited makers of
consiousness in history. This is
not just in childrearing , although that is obviously important, but in all
caring labor which is critical in
 shaping  and repairing the self.
This includes housework, for the
 house or the home is that shelter
 where the adult self is itself away
 from work in the capitalist daily
 geography of the person.Thus,
women's liberation and recovery
 of women's history is fundamental
 to the science of consciousness.

http://archives.econ.utah.edu/archives/m-fem/1998m07/msg00006.htm
(Here is a reiteration of the above thesis)
Materialism, Necessity and Freedom: Rehearsal of the Fundamentals of Marxism
A three act play with beginning,
 middle and end, and non-dogmatic
improvisation. Several vulgar parts

 Double materialist
determination; there are two
 levels of
determination, in materialism
attitude toward
the relationship between
thought and being:

1)"economics" and 2) "physics".
1)"economics"
While society remains in
the Realm of Necessity ,
 ruling classes control
masses by conditioning
fulfillment of the _material_
needs of the exploited
classes on the exploited
classes ' producing surpluses
 for the ruling , exploiting
classes. The materialism
 (determinism by the material)
 at this level derives from
 the coercive use of conditional
 provision of material needs.

2) "physics"
In all societies, including
those in the Realm of Freedom
 ( socialist, communist future
 and ancient) , all people
must , of course, "obey"
the laws of physics,
chemistry, biology,
physiology, objective
reality etc. "physics", in
the general sense.

The first level above is based
 in the specific biological necessities
of the second level.

There is a third level of
materialist determination in
the Marxist thesis. It is also
economic. Marx and Engels
(Engels and Marx) claim that
history is a history of
 class struggles. The
 answer to the question
"Why is history  a history of
class struggles ?" is the
philosophy of historical
materialism.  Why is it that
economic material relationship
of exploiting and exploited
classes causes the changes
which are called "history" ? The
alternatives at the time Marx wrote
the
thesis were especially Great Men in
state and economic power
and Big Ideas as in Philosophies
 of Great Men.

Marx in wanting to take a scientific
approach to the question, looked to
necessity upon the theory that science
details necessary connections between
things. There is no necessity as strict in
 the realms of ideas or Great Men as
 the necessity of biology, and by extension
 the area of economics of material
production of minimal life sustaining
 necessities or Being or Existence

There still must be made an
 argument as to why and what
 changes by class struggle
 determination in the sense that
 history is a history of class
struggles. What changes through
 the course of history ?

If it were the structure of
the relationship between
classes, then what about
tautology ?
So, Big Ideas (or Consciousness)
 and Great
Men _types_
change as the change
that is history.

However, Being determines
 consciousness
 intermittently, rarely in terms
 of the total time of the many
generations of people. Most
generations don't experience
a fundamental or revolutionary
change.

And so on the rare, intermittent
determinism of the structure of
ideas by the Realm proper of
Necessity:



http://lists.econ.utah.edu/pipermail/marxism-thaxis/1998-March/007351.html
 Although biology only limits
us human beings because
we have
culture (super-natures and natures )
 this contradiction between biology
and culture is still where it
 is at in generating universals
or big
generals.
    Being determines consciousness
 is still a focal rule of thumb (guide
to action) for building a universal,
 real common interests among huge
numbers of people, the masses.
     My first post-Marx development
of species-being is to derive women's
liberation organically from
historical materialism's premises,
as Marx and
Engels derive workers' liberation
from those species-being historical
premises.  It is a correction of
classical Marxism, but based on Marxsim's
own premises. In ways its
too vulgar for pomos and fancy marxists.
    However, the pomos and
their old cousins, Frankfurt
school, Gramsci,
exitentialists, et al. all the fancy
 marxists have taught us something:
being determines consciousness
discontinuously, intermittmently, rarely.
Through most of the actual
time of history ( day-to-day life; quotidien), consciousness
and being are
reciprocally determining.
Only rarely, in revolutions,
 primarily and
ultimately does being
utterly determine consciousness.
  Today, that means that the
direct naked appeal to the working class'
class self-interest is inadequate
 in itself-necessary but not sufficient
in the formal logical sense -to
inspire revolution.  That appeal
 cannot be
dropped - the vast majority
are working class, wage
laborers - but must be
complemented with appeals to other consciousness, other consciousness =
determined by being
(gender, for example) and
consciousness that is
determined more by consciousness.
  Overall one wants to change
the world based on interpreting it,
changing
it through practical-critical activity,
 a unity of theory and practice
still.

(to be continued)

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