This site is intended to help our rational neocortex overcome our instinctual reptilian brain stems. To overcome the Caveman Principle and make utopia a reality... with NUMBERS!
Reality-Based Statistical Data vs. Intuition-Based Conventional Wisdom
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Debate Podcast recorded via USB microphone and Skype.
A world without disease, starvation, violence, and suffering is the ultimate destination of humanity. Getting there will require voters to base their decisions on statistical cost-benefit analyses instead of irrational emotions. The power of numbers can make utopia a reality. Without factual data for our neocortices to use in doing a cost-benefit comparison of the candidates, our stupid brain stems and emotional limbic systems get to choose our candidate. The US government is the most powerful man-made entity in the history of the world. Allowing an uninformed public control of this colossus is like giving a baby a nuclear bomb. The goal of this website is to upgrade our democracy to the equivalent of a toddler with a nuclear bomb.
Your mind has been infiltrated. Your logical, conscious prefrontal cortex is ever thwarted by a powerful saboteurs hiding within the dark realm of your subconscious. The usurpers of your decision-making process are none other than the ignorant reptilian brain stem and emotional limbic system. They torture you with sadness for the slightest defiance. They drug you with narcotic neurochemicals like dopamine to reward your obedience. This diabolical duo is responsible for all forms of irrational human behavior, such as racism, war, and marriage. Your only defense against these illogical bastards is to base our decisions on cold, hard numbers. For, unlike the flawed and mischievous parts of our brain, numbers cannot lie.
You have a total of three brains: the reptilian brain, the paleo-mammalian brain, and the rational brain. In a sense, a human being is what you might get nine months after a romantic evening between a lizard, a dog, and a Star Trek’s Mr. Spock. These three are currently deciding the fate of our planet. You’ve got the vicious, impulsive lizard, the slobbering dog digging a hole in your couch for no reason, and Mr. Spock. Wouldn’t it be best to leave this job solely to Spock
Brain 1: The Lizard, feeding, fornication, fight, flight, Crocodile Brains
Brain 2: The Dog
Brain 3: Mr. Spock
So, we’ve got this top of the line neocortex which is perfectly capable of rational thought. Why then, do we behave so irrationally as a species? The problem is that the rational neocortex is enslaved by the lower brains. It is not free to examine all available information in the attainment of objective truth. Instead, it frequently becomes a kind of a slimy neuro-lawyer serving the emotional limbic system. Break it down The limbic system, this primitive brain that can neither read nor write, provides us with the feeling of what is real, true, and important using its own often irrational and illogical criteria. It therefore poses significant danger to us
You are exposed to a piece of information.
The information is transmitted to the limbic system
The limbic system decides if this information is agreeable (true) or disagreeable (false).
The limbic system attaches positive emotions to agreeable information or negative emotions to disagreeable information.
That feeling gives that thought a sense of conviction or truth.
This information/emotion combination is what we call a belief.
At that point, the neocortex is employed to protect and defend this belief.
The neocortex puts forth all available evidence which supports this belief.
The neocortex figures out ways to discount any contradictory information.
Many of the hostile commenters on my site have expressed their own theories as to why this is. However, I feel that the reason for this can be explained by something called “The Caveman Principle”. This principle states that our brains have generally evolved very little since the time of the caveman. The human brain has been around for about 200,000 years. The Stone Age only ended about 6,000 years ago. So, ninety-nine percent of our ancestors lived in environments characterized by starvation and a general scarcity of resources. Evolution crawls at a snail’s pace, so we still have these caveman brains optimized for an environment millennia away from our own. The evidence is lacking that our brains have changed much since then. So our wants, dreams, personalities, and desires have probably not changed much in 200,000 years. It is likely that we still think as our caveman ancestors did.
So, like, what were cavemen into? Surviving long enough to successfully replicate one’s genes in an unstable environment requires brains with very specific interests. Hence, the type of brain that survived typically paid a great deal of attention to these questions:, Can I eat it?, Will it eat me?, Can I mate with it?, Will it mate with me?, Note these items, which are suspiciously absent from this list:, Statistics, Economics, Formal Cost-Benefit-Analysis Calculations
“It is a capital mistake to theorize before one has data, fool.” - Mr. TA general disinterest in economics and statistics wouldn’t be a big deal if we lived in a dictatorship. But in our political system, government action is a product of public opinion. Thomas Jefferson once said, “An informed citizenry is the bulwark of a democracy.” Based on this quote, I think it’s safe to say that our democracy is currently bulwark-free. The fact that I don’t know what a bulwark is further proves that we do not have an informed citizenry.The only way to understand the important details of complex and large-scale societal issues is through the use of statistics and economics. Additionally, formal cost-benefit analysis is the only way to make optimal decisions on complicated issues. However, most Americans don’t even know what a cost-benefit analysis is, let alone have a grasp of the statistical data needed to perform such an analysis.
Here’s a list of what the average voter doesn’t know:, How much their government spends on, Foreign aid, Wars, Education, Medicare, Interest on the debt, How many troops have been killed in our various and sundry wars, How many civilians have been killed in our various and sundry wars, How much they pay in taxes, What the rate of inflation is, What the unemployment rate is, How much profit corporations make, What the Dow Jones Average is, Who was involved in perpetrating the 9/11 attacks, How wealth is distributed among classes, How many branches there are in the federal government, That the president cannot legally suspend the Constitution
“If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be.” — Pee Wee Herman
Values and Emotions of the Electorate, If the neocortex were in charge, politicians would be selected solely based on:, INTELLIGENCE, KNOWLEDGE, RECORD
Informational Vacuum, Some of the factors influencing their electoral decisions include:, LOOKS, To determine election outcomes, study says snap judgments are sufficient, Bailenson Facial Similarity, LOVELIFE, ELECTABILITY, TRIBAL LOYALTY, VOTER’S MOOD, FLAGS
Utopia, a world without disease, starvation, violence, and suffering, is the ultimate goal and destination of society. The thinking, rational mind has the power to make utopia a reality through innovation. We’ve had a few hundred thousand years to get there, yet it remains a distant dream. Irrational or uniformed decisions are the primary reason why humanity fails to reach its true potential.In a democracy and a free enterprise economy, voters and consumers are the deciders. Our prehistoric brains decide to waste society’s resources on wars and short-term gratification through erroneous decision-making. They are a drain on the economy, public welfare, the environment, and national security. Resources are misallocated, good ideas are rejected, and bad ideas are accepted. Money is wasted. Life and health are put in jeopardy. Irrational beliefs are sand in the gears of the entire economy. It’s virtually certain that your life will be shorter and less happy as a result of emotion-based decisions.The only way to break the shackles put on our neocortices by its evil stepsisters is through the use of numbers. When our rational mind has cold, hard statistics to support its arguments, it’s much more likely to overcome the emotion-based arguments of the primitive brains. Providing your neocortex with this ammunition is the purpose of this site. Using numbers we can overthrow this idiocracy and ignite a revolution of reason. Suffering can be eliminated and utopia can be realized. 50% of our happiness is set by our genes, 10% by life circumstances beyond our control, and 40% by our own actions. http://sonjalyubomirsky.com/wp-content/themes/sonjalyubomirsky/papers/LSS2005.pdf Our WHY is to eradicate clinical depression from the earth. We want to conquer depression the way we conquered polio. We needed this done yesterday. Almost a million people are going to commit suicide to free themselves from the living hell that is depression this year. Every second we waste means more dead people and continued unimaginable suffering.Currently, governments around the world erect massive barriers to experimentation in search of mental health. In the United States, we are guaranteed the right to the "pursuit of happiness." However, you can be imprisoned for possessing the pharmaceuticals necessary to achieve happiness. If we can find a way around the totalitarian legal restrictions, we could facilitate a platform for the crowd-sourced clinical trials and self-experimentation necessary to eliminate clinical depression.