Gates and Pinker – Things Are Getting Better

The phenomenon of denial seems almost ubiquitous in the human population, a masking procedure undertaken to alleviate anxiety about future events, especially unavoidable events without remedy. Death is one example of a big bugaboo that must be scrubbed from the mind with religious belief systems. Climate change and the potential for civilizational collapse and or extinction is another. Yet another is an individual’s denial of serious medical conditions like cancer. Some fears and anxieties are not readily scrubbed from the mind like obsessive-compulsive disorders where the perception of a problem must be “remedied” over and over again without end.

The limbic system is the seat of the emotions where incoming stimuli are given an emotional score. Most stimuli don’t excite the neurons of the limbic system, but important things that are associated with reward or danger will. Long-term memories may be engaged and behaviors appropriate to the danger/reward are undertaken.


Generally it seems that the limbic system controls or influences the types of thoughts that you have and the frequency you have them. A typical human is overwhelmed thinking about obtaining rewards, sex, matters of hierarchy and social status. Thoughts that a person believes are emanating from their own self-image are actually stimulated by the processes of the limbic system. This means that the limbic system is not leaving your mindspace completely open to your will, but rather influencing it to make sure you pay attention to the important things.

The memories of rewards and fears that have been established by the amygdala and hippocampus will undoubtedly be played like a loop, reappearing in the mind to remind the person to seek certain things and avoid others. Advertiser like to shape the system by making products seem especially rewarding, playing commercial again and again so that reinforced memories are established that will from then on pop into the head automatically under the influence of the limbic system.

Cortex says, “I’m going to be rich, all I have to do is pick the right numbers.” Limbic system is excited and has seen other winners and says “yes, yes, yes, do it.”  Neither the cortex or limbic system are very good at math.

If you mind seems to be dwelling on the negative, then a good dose of positive thinking is in order according to the Mayo Clinic.

Positive thinking: Stop negative self-talk to reduce stress

Positive thinking helps with stress management and can even improve your health. Practice overcoming negative self-talk with examples provided.

By Mayo Clinic Staff

Is your glass half-empty or half-full? How you answer this age-old question about positive thinking may reflect your outlook on life, your attitude toward yourself, and whether you’re optimistic or pessimistic — and it may even affect your health.

Indeed, some studies show that personality traits such as optimism and pessimism can affect many areas of your health and well-being. The positive thinking that usually comes with optimism is a key part of effective stress management. And effective stress management is associated with many health benefits. If you tend to be pessimistic, don’t despair — you can learn positive thinking skills.

Understanding positive thinking and self-talk

Positive thinking doesn’t mean that you keep your head in the sand and ignore life’s less pleasant situations. Positive thinking just means that you approach unpleasantness in a more positive and productive way. You think the best is going to happen, not the worst.

Positive thinking often starts with self-talk. Self-talk is the endless stream of unspoken thoughts that run through your head. These automatic thoughts can be positive or negative. Some of your self-talk comes from logic and reason. Other self-talk may arise from misconceptions that you create because of lack of information.

If the thoughts that run through your head are mostly negative, your outlook on life is more likely pessimistic. If your thoughts are mostly positive, you’re likely an optimist — someone who practices positive thinking.

The health benefits of positive thinking

Researchers continue to explore the effects of positive thinking and optimism on health. Health benefits that positive thinking may provide include:

  • Increased life span
  • Lower rates of depression
  • Lower levels of distress
  • Greater resistance to the common cold
  • Better psychological and physical well-being
  • Better cardiovascular health and reduced risk of death from cardiovascular disease
  • Better coping skills during hardships and times of stress

Accentuate the positive? Or perhaps delude yourself and completely eliminate the negative. “Yes, I’m going to die, but I’ll be in heaven.” “The climate is changing but I’ll like the palm trees.” Even without prompting by the Mayo clinic, the limbic system may have already started to affect cognitive processes to eliminate unproductive stress through denial.

People think they are in control of their minds and it’s true to some extent, but the limbic system is constantly prompting the “consciousness” with strongly reinforced memories of past rewards and dangers.

I found this article on Bill Gates and Steven Pinker a good example.

If you’re pessimistic about the state of world today, Bill Gates and Harvard psychology professor Steven Pinker have a message for you: “This bleak assessment of the state of the world is wrong. And not just a little wrong–wrong wrong, flat-earth wrong, couldn’t-be-more-wrong.”

The quote appears on the first page of Pinker’s new book, Enlightenment Now. In a recent blog post, Bill Gates calls it his new “favorite book of all time.” Pinker and Gates are optimists. They see the world differently than most people, and they have the data to prove it. In the first few pages of Pinker’s book, he makes the point that civilization has made “spectacular progress” in nearly every possible way. Here’s the kicker–almost nobody knows about it because most people focus on the negative. Change your thinking; change your life.

Each chapter of Pinker’s book covers striking accomplishments in 15 areas including: life, health, wealth/abundance, peace, safety, equal rights, and more. In this paragraph, Pinker gives us a small glimpse of “the gifts” we take for granted:

Newborns who will live more than eight decades, markets overflowing with food, clean water that appears with a flick of a finger, and waste that disappears with another, pills that erase a painful infection…critics of the powerful who are not jailed or shot, the world’s knowledge and culture available in a shirt pocket.Bill Gates says he loves the book because leaders who make a difference focus on positive progress instead of fixating exclusively on problems.

And Pinker is a Harvard Psychology professor that should know better, but apparently his limbic system is trying to whitewash reality, probably with the realization that good news sells books. It nice to know that our political, business and academic “leaders” are mostly deluded, limbic Larrys The title of his book should be “Denial Now”. But then again, maybe fusion is just around the corner. I’m going to go somewhere and have happy thoughts now.

So successful and so brilliant and yet so deluded. Do they know of their evolved role as RNA in technological cells? It could only be better if Elon Musk were at this feel good communion.

Blank Slate

The Big House at Belle Grove Plantation in Louisiana after slaves could no longer contribute to the concentration of power and wealth of its owner.


These are a few of the 150 slaves that helped produce the sugar for market.


The Big House (Federal Reserve) in Chicago.


Early high EROEI slaves that helped concentrate power and wealth.

What comes next?


An older interview of Nicole Foss while in Australia. Is the financial system financing the sucking of beer from the carpet, preferring relatively slow impoverishment to sudden collapse?

Total Eclipse of Industrial Civilization

Chandler, Arizona 1985 (top) population approximately 80,000 and Chandler, Arizona 2015 (bottom) population approximately 245,000.

The agricultural fields in this area of Chandler, Arizona have been overtaken by cellular expansion. In and of itself,  agriculture is an unsustainable nutrient and soil mining operation, but the houses, businesses and roads were deemed a higher and better use of the land. That is, agricultural land may sell for $5,000 and acre while land zoned for single-family residences may fetch $60,000 an acre. Most of the agricultural land that may have supported the nearby population is eliminated. Food for the human RNA working in the cells is still a small proportion of the energy and resource flow. Most of the flow is in technological commodities like coal, natural gas, steel, concrete, glass, asphalt, gasoline, water, waste removal an so on.

The natural growth in RNA populations requires they be educated and put to work in factories or other productive cells.  The factories pay them a wage to work with tools to produce the components of which cars, homes/cells and other things are constructed. Worker and bankers alike are rewarded by the economies of scale and automation within the factories. With a history of wage earning, RNA usually take possession of a domestic cell in the vicinity of their employment. Business hires RNA and they buy home cells and cars, more little RNA are born, more job creation, more cells are built……

Each day net human population growth is roughly 200,000 people or almost equivalent to the bottom picture of Chandler, AZ. These people are educated and welcomed into the system which promises to reward them as full fledged members of the cancer with a little house in the suburbs, a car, vacation time and stuff, in return for working in one of the production cells. Commodities flow in and waste flows out along a mostly linear path. Everything in the vicinity and beyond is consumed to build the technological infrastructure and feed and care for the human RNA that work in the cancer cells. As long as conditions permit and fecundity or migration is adequate, it grows and grows and spreads like a human cancer, pursuing maximum accumulation of wealth and reproduction, unaware that it is all the time weakening the host or ecosystem.

It seems like the feeding frenzy will go on forever and the little cells of the American Dream will just keep appearing on the horizon and beyond, and that’s all that matters to the emotional centers of the brain. But eventually the growth does stop. Student graduates stay home with their parents because the few jobs at the factories no longer pay enough to buy a little house and car. The banks provide easier lending terms to make up for inadequate wages because the factories must be kept running so that wages may be paid so that home and car loans can be serviced. But even as lending terms are eased, consumers are encouraged to go into increasing debt to buy the factory products. If the growth ever stops, the factories shut down as maintenance of the existing stock of structures is not enough to keep them running and profitable. Millions of RNA are then on the street, without jobs but still need to make payments for the next thirty years on their homes, or lose them. The flow of commodities through the factories comes to a standstill and more RNA are let go. And then not only is there not enough money for house payments, car payments, medical insurance but there is not enough money for food, utilities and transportation.

Human RNA construction workers assembling a technological cytoskeleton.

But the RNA in China and India are working hard for much less and the corporations and factories are drawn to this astounding surfeit of labor. RNA can even be housed in dormitories swathed in blankets of toxic technological effluents. Market share is taken from other cells whose RNA are paid more richly and they shrivel and go bankrupt. Societal health or quality of life no longer matters, only a ready supply of functioning RNA with which to staff the cells as cancer lines compete with each other for maximum growth.

As growth continues, the terminal build-out eventually occurs as all gradients are reduced or are abandoned as uneconomic to exploit. Waste sinks are full and are affecting the health of the RNA. Soon the RNA that once worked in cells are in full retreat, abandoning overtaxed 5,000 sq.ft. McMansions for smaller cells, cramped but easier to keep cool in the increasingly hot summers and cool in the winter. The cell/home and car manufacturing businesses are now completely defunct while the military/industrial complex still feeds on remaining resources to defend themselves as there’s not much left of society to protect.

Even towards the end, when humans should have been saving something for the future, like remnants of the ecosystem,  the cancer government wanted them to spend everything to keep the factories running, making more components for more houses and cars and to provide wages to service home and car loans.

And finally it happened, it stopped, metabolism was much simplified and global industrial civilization was eclipsed. The humans briefly gathered around the bedside of their dying mother-earth and lamented having killed her before disbanding into the rubble of their former glory to await their fate.



Running in Circles on a Linear Path

All of the negentropy or complexity exists because of a successful transformation of Gibbs free energy acquired from energy gradients. The energy feeds the emergence and evolution of the complex tools and structures which, in the end, release degraded energy as heat into the environment. If energy ever stops flowing through the conduits or dissipative structures, they will disintegrate and slowly or quickly return to equilibrium with the environment.

The “flowering” of civilization is the development of complexity or negentropy in the forms of external information (outside the brain), humans behaving as RNA and evolution of tools and infrastructure capable of attacking massive gradients of stored energy. Humans often celebrate the diversity of ways they have found to channel the energy to the environment as waste heat. They never really seem to understand the “meaning of life” although they perform it mindlessly. The human behavioral repertoire reveals their true nature as dissipative structures, especially their greed and egotistical self-interest.

Running in circles, the elite’s favorite pastime.

Driving in circles, the common man’s favorite pastime.

I am fairly convinced that the typical human brain, having arisen in the service of thermodynamics and energy dissipation, cannot for long resist natural tendencies to acquire energy and degrade it while perhaps reproducing along the way. Most humans are interested in getting rich by owning various features of the infrastructure, unaware that the seemingly perpetual flow of energy will come to an end in our linear exercises in gradient reduction.

There has always been an assumption, especially amongst economists, that the gradient reduction would provide the energy to support further engineering and development of tools to open new gradients as with fusion in a never ending progression of growth and complexity. This view naturally paralleled the natural greed of the bankers and “businessmen” whose main aim is to maximize profits by maximizing the number of technological cells, distribution of energy and resources and expedient removal and sequestration of wastes.

Here are some interesting links to papers written by Robert U. Ayres on industrial metabolism, self-organizing systems and related concepts.

“The concept of industrial metabolism is equally applicable to another kind of self-organizing entity, a manufacturing enterprise or firm. A firm is the economic analogue of a living organism in biology.” – Robert U. Ayres.

This is basically correct in that a technological firm may be single-celled or multi-celled (organism).

I’ve only read these two papers by Ayres. I’m not sure if he or anyone else studying “industrial metabolism” have defined the analogs in the technological and organic cells (humans acting as RNA).

This knowledge seems to have had little effect, satisfying intellectual curiosity but powerless in hindering the chain-reaction of destruction that is civilization.

Sometimes ego and too much energy can get you in trouble. I don’t think the windows open on those tall buildings, I mean, if the A/C were to go out or something.

Dubai has a tropical desert climate, köppen classification Bwh, because of its location within the Northern desert belt. Summers are extremely hot and humid,[1] with an average high around 41 °C (106 °F) and overnight lows around 30 °C (86 °F). The highest recorded temperature in Dubai is 55 °C (131 °F) in 2002.[2 – Wikipedia


“This is where it all began…..”  I like this ad because it’s so symbolic. They’ve always liked building big things for big egos in the desert, but the camel’s waiting for them when it’s over.  Meanwhile, dopamine man is sucking on a nicotine stick and admiring his imagined self while genetic damage gradually accumulates.

What’s Your FICO Score?

It’s becoming more obvious that the Western banking cartel and associated media are pulling all of the strings behind the facade of democracy and freedom. Politicians do not have freedom of action to pursue goals at odds with the banking cartel, whose main goal is cancer or growth promotion by lending “money” to those able to repay loans by bringing more goods into the general circulation. The importance of the “credit score” is simply a way to grade slaves as to their ability to feed the banks. Cash and “deposits” are mostly a mirage to make people think that the money is real and not just created out of nothing.

Economy equals metabolism of gradients, taking substances from the environment and pulling them into the general circulation of the civilization. Barter – slow and cumbersome, limited contact in space and time. Eventually, trading centers would be established and cities would form to bring more goods together for exchange or “reactions” could take place.

Money is a standard upon which everything can be priced and traditionally hard money (gold/silver) could be exchanged for goods at one point in time and not deteriorate before being exchanged for other good a later time. Sell 100 bushels of corn now, save the gold which will not deteriorate, and buy fertilizer and cows in the Spring.

Eventually the amount of gold cannot keep up with the potential growth, especially as fossil fuels become available. The government can print money but cannot mine gold fast enough to backstop it. The price of gold would reach many thousands of dollars per ounce. Instead, money can be printed and only a percentage of money can be backstopped with gold. The the gold standard can be abandoned entirely as growth explodes and the general circulation of the cancer grows much larger.

Eventually loans are made simply on the prospects of success in bringing marketable goods into the general circulation so that interest may be made by banks. The more “good” loans, the better. Capitalism and expansion of the cancer mean more loans and more profits. Militaries are used to access new areas for exploitation and to soften regimes that do not fully embrace exponential capitalism.

Eventually, at the limits to growth, more money can be created, but more commodity and finished goods cannot be produced. If RNA are given too many wages for their work when total commodities in circulation are falling, then inflation of prices occurs. Wherever money is lent freely or an extortionate situation exists, prices rise relentlessly like in higher education, housing and medical care.

The Western banking cartel is a for profit business. Their business plan involves expanding lending into the cancer to spur its growth and pillage of the natural environment. They are majority owners in the large media conglomerates and control the “message” fed to the population.

Getting rich is good.(Warren Buffett, Elon Musk and other bullshit.)

Growth can go on forever.

Freedom and democracy must be spread around the world (equals capitalism equals more loans banks can make for profit.)

Environmentalism stands in the way of capitalism (banking profit).

Governments (the swamp) is well greased with money to go along with the program.

I suppose these developments could be predicted by some now incomplete thermodynamic theory like the Maximum Power Principle, where a blow-out of growth occurs (and it has) and then dies down to nothing. Like a bonfire, it doesn’t burn at a measured pace, but at the maximum rate possible. They don’t tell you what happens when it’s over, but rather keep you pacified as you participate in the building of your own degraded “prison planet.”


Repeat this to yourself Lietaer: “Growth is good, substitution, substitution, substitution, freedom and democracy, there are no limits on a finite planet.”


Governments exist to cheerlead capitalism and provide military force when limits are met as banks grow their loan portfolios as fresh tissue is metabolized. Communists and environmentalists are on the black list, climate change is a hoax, as well as anything standing in the way of expansion of the banking system.


Russian interference in elections. Maybe just a ploy to get the “chips” installed so that real democracy can be verified with every vote. Will probably require a large catastrophe to get all the sheep lined-up for chipping. I actually think they’re a day late and a dollar short to implement any of their ill-conceived plans.

We need more babies for growth so we can make more loans.



Fast Thinking, Slow Thinking or No Thinking At All

A few days ago an incident on a local two-lane road made me think about consciousness, free will and the human brain. I was on a local highway, one with plenty of curves and hills, the speed limit being 55mph. I had to stop for a car turning right in my lane and in the opposite direction another car stopped and put on their turn light to make the same turn as the car in my lane. As I sat there waiting for the car in my lane to turn, another car careens around a curve traveling at perhaps 65 mph coming towards the car in the opposite land waiting to turn.  At 65mph and with approximately four seconds to impact the driver slammed on the brakes and began skidding, impact was imminent. Instead of impact though, with about two seconds to go and traveling perhaps 55mph, the car flew onto the grassy shoulder, which fortunately had a gradual slope, zoomed past the stationary car and then jumped back onto the highway as if it had been done on a Hollywood set. Obviously, the driver could only react quickly without “thinking”, or without conscious thinking. I will define conscious thinking as turning one’s attention inward to the analog world for various examination and planning. In this case the driver’s attention was split between two or more things which created a failure to see the car ahead.

I think that sometimes we perceive these fast reaction behaviors as being in a class of their own, but what if most of our behaviors are of this sort, automatic, learned and happening without conscious thought (looking inward). It seems that as we walk around doing our daily routines, we rarely engage in any conscious thought about them, we just do them, perhaps with a little prodding by the appetites. Daniel Kahneman (“Thinking Fast and Slow”) would consider this real world engagement as “thinking fast” whereas I would not label it “thinking”at all, although much subconscious processing must be occurring.  Kahneman’s “thinking slow” refers to deliberate explorations of the analog mind. This type of thinking tends to fall victim to distractions. I will just guess that the subconscious “thinking” is similar to that occurring in other animals that move through their environments reacting to stimuli, but without engaging “slow thinking” which simply doesn’t exist for them. The “fast thinking” occurs in the real world without being distracted by mental cogitation. Consciousness may survey its own analog world and the subconscious also likely models the world and thinks, especially when reality is turned off and dreaming begins. Often, nice nuggets of wisdom can seemingly appear out of nowhere in the “slow thinking” brain.

Here are some features of Kahneman’s system I fast (subconscious) and system II slow (conscious, logical, rational) from Wikipedia.,_Fast_and_Slow

In the book’s first section, Kahneman describes two different ways the brain forms thoughts:

  • System 1: Fast, automatic, frequent, emotional, stereotypic, subconscious. Examples (in order of complexity) of things system 1 can do:
    • see that an object is at a greater distance than another
    • localize the source of a specific sound
    • complete the phrase “war and …”
    • display disgust when seeing a gruesome image
    • solve 2+2=?
    • read a text on a billboard
    • drive a car on an empty road
    • come up with a good chess move (if you’re a chess master)
    • understand simple sentences
    • connect the description ‘quiet and structured person with an eye for details’ to a specific job
  • System 2: Slow, effortful, infrequent, logical, calculating, conscious. Examples of things system 2 can do:
    • brace yourself before the start of a sprint
    • point your attention towards the clowns at the circus
    • point your attention towards someone at a loud party
    • look out for the woman with the grey hair
    • dig into your memory to recognize a sound
    • sustain a higher than normal walking rate
    • determine the appropriateness of a behaviour in a social setting
    • count the number of A’s in a certain text
    • give someone your phone number
    • park into a tight parking space
    • determine the price/quality ratio of two washing machines
    • determine the validity of a complex logical reasoning


The “School of Athens” by Raphael. Plato is in the center with orange robe.

Plato had a similar model that is referred to as the tripart soul.

Plato’s tripartite theory of soul is a theory of psyche proposed by the ancient Greek philosopher Plato in his treatise the Republic. In Republic, Plato asserted that the ψυχή (psyche) is composed of three parts; the λογιστικόν (logistykon, logical), the θυμοειδές (thymoeides, spirited) and the ἐπιθυμητικόν (epithymetikon, appetitive). These three parts of the ψυχή also correspond to the three classes of a society.[1] Whether in a city or an individual, δικαιοσύνη (dikaiosyne, justice) is declared to be the state of the whole in which each part fulfills its function without attempting to interfere in the functions of others.[2] The function of the ἐπιθυμητικόν is to produce and seek pleasure. The function of the λογιστικός is to gently rule through the love of learning. The function of the θυμοειδές is to obey the directions of the λογιστικός while ferociously defending the whole from external invasion and internal disorder. Whether in a city or an individual, ἀδικία (adikia, injustice) is the contrary state of the whole, often taking the specific form in which the spirited listens instead to the appetitive, while they together either ignore the logical entirely or employ it in their pursuits of pleasure.

In Plato’s model the logical would be the slow thinking system of Kahneman, the spirited would be the fast thinking and the limbic and/or hypothalamic would be the appetitive.

I would divide them a little differently. The one that evolved last would be the logical, symbol using one that explores the analog world and plans, giving names to each feature, item and relationship. The next oldest system would be the subconscious which operates the body in real time and which also operates in an analog world, but with few symbols or logic. The subconscious system thinks, processes information from the environment constantly, but the logical system above isn’t aware of the activity. The third basic system would be the appetites originating in the hypothalamus and in the dopamine reward centers that tend to encourage the body to do the appropriate things.

I begin to wonder how much “thinking” in the most evolved, logical system is actually occurring in the general populace whose attention is fought over by so many. The logical thinking system is not necessary for day to day living as the subconscious seems to absorb what is necessary to get along in any culture or environment in which it grows. The medial prefrontal cortex seems to keep human behavior within socially acceptable norms, but this is mostly automatic too. The slow thinking system can spur the subconscious system to move the body in real time and once it is initiated this movement is without conscious thought. For instance, the slow mind may say to itself “It’s time to do homework.” The subconscious system will then begin a series of movements assembling papers, pens, books and need things. All of these motions are already stored in the subconscious. While doing homework a “I’m thirsty” message may come bubbling up from the hypothalamus all the way to the slow conscious system which then gets the body moving to obtain something to drink. The body already know what it needs to do to get a drink and no conscious thought is expended except a brief rehearsal in the mind of the body going to the refrigerator to get the pitcher of water.

Sometimes a person may direct the body, through conscious thought, to not eat the sugary cake and exercise. But the subconscious refuses the directive. It likes cake and hates exercise, which doesn’t have an immediate reward attached to it and it simply says “NO”, even thought the slow mind has arrived at the logical conclusion that weighing 400 lbs is not a healthy state of being. This is certainly not free will because the fast system is vetoing the slow systems logical directives. Additionally, the fast system, having been around the block in an evolutionary sense, may want to do some naughty things even though the logical system, mediated by the social brain, implores it not to. The medial prefrontal cortex may elicit a voice that says “Don’t do it, you’ll get in trouble.” and at the same time the subconscious is prompting a voice that says, “Do it, nobody’s watching, the rewards are great.” Even thought the subconscious does not have a voice, it can induce a dialog in the logical part of the brain.

The problem may be with what we call “attention”. The brain can split its attention into two parts, sometimes performing two tasks in the real world or performing one task in the real world while daydreaming in the analog world, as when driving and daydreaming. I don’t know of any instances where two inner selves can be exploring different parts of the brain’s internal analog world except perhaps individuals affected by schizophrenia.

The brain is behind all tasks needed for driving: visual, auditory, manual andcognitive. Recent developments in functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI)now allow researchers to see the brain’s reactions to specific challenges and tasks.

A Carnegie Mellon University study produced fMRI pictures of the brain while study participants drove on a simulator and listened to spoken sentences they were asked to judge as true or false.

The pictures below show that listening to sentences oncell phones decreased activity by 37 percent in the brain’s parietal lobe (Figure 2), an area associated with driving. In other words, listening and language comprehension drew cognitive resources away from driving. This area of the brain is important for navigation and the type of spatial processing associated with driving. Because this study involved listening and thinking of an answer and not actual cell phone conversation, the researchers concluded the results may underestimate the distractive impact of cell phone conversation.

The brain scan on the left is a brain fully concentrating on the road. The brain at right is having a conversation and driving and thereby the activity of the brain that was occupied in driving has been diminished.

The same study also found decreased activity in the area of the brain that processes visual information, the occipital lobe (Figure 2). While listening to sentences on cellphones, drivers had more problems, such as weaving out of their lane and hitting guardrails. This task did not require holding or dialing the phone, and yet driving performance deteriorated. The scientists concluded this study demonstrates there is only so much the brain can do at one time, no matter how different the two tasks are, even if the tasks draw on different areas and neural networks of the brain. The brain has a capacity limit. These fMRI images provide a biological basis of the risks faced by drivers.

What does this have to do with the collapse of industrial civilization? As others have said, ninety percent of the human brain’s activity is submerged like an iceberg (Kahneman System I). Only a small amount is above the waterline in consciousness. The submerged part is the voiceless mind that existed prior to logic and language that still runs the body through prompting from the emotional centers below and with some logical input and planning from above. This subconscious part is largely formed through immersion in an environment or culture and once formed is difficult to access and change by any logic or rationality.  Additionally, “attention” is kept from looking inward for answers and connections while being fully occupied in the real world where only spectacle and routines exist, and even if logic says we need a change, the subconscious, already formed, will likely resist changes. We will  react to global warming and ecosystem destruction like the driver of the speeding car described above. At the last second we’ll “come to our senses” throw on the brakes and swerve, but we won’t sail by the obstacle and keep going, instead we’ll hit a immovable concrete abutment.

The end of the line for a civilization that could not follow rationality and logic. Someone was distracted.


Birth, Growth, Death

It is sometimes difficult to visualize the complexity which can arise in complex adaptive systems, systems that preserve information generationally so that tool specifications may be preserved. I found this chart named “Biochemical Pathways” which gives a good idea of the complexity happening within cells. Other dissipative structures, like hurricanes, are quite different, having brief lifespans moving heat from warm ocean surfaces to the high troposphere. They’ll usually be cut-off from their source of warm water after passing over land. If there were no land, one could imagine a storm with a much greater longevity, even without information storage.

The details are too small to see, but it does give you some idea as to the complexity of reactions happening in the cell. A lot of ATP is required.

This is an enlargement of the metabolic cycle you can see at the center of the previous illustration. Even at this enlarged scale details are not discernible.

Now imagine that the Biochemical Pathways illustration above represents the technological complexity of the processes within a nation. In the biological case, a constant supply of inputs must be fed into the metabolic processes. For convenience let’s say the left margin is the cell membrane which must bind and let pass all of the substances necessary to keep the biochemical clockwork ticking. On the right margin is another cell membrane where waste is excreted back into the blood plasma. Everything is in motion. DNA is being transcribed and RNA is being translated into protein tools. Mitochondria are making the ATP with  their high-energy phosphate bonds from ADP, that upon breaking impart energy to processes within the cell. The ATP are made with the sugar glucose which is brought into the cell by active transport (requires ATP) or by facilitated diffusion (ATP not required, accomplished by membrane protein.)

In the both the biological and technological case, energy and resources must constantly be fed into the left margin of the complex dissipative structure to keep things in motion and moving towards the right margin where waste will end-up in a waste dump or be allowed to diffuse into the environment. All along complex metabolic paths waste heat is produced which also diffuses into the environment. (The biological cell is more properly compared to the technological cell which is also often highly complex, but for this example all of the cellular complexity of a nation of cells is exemplified in the illustration above.)

On the left margin we have coal, natural gas, oil, mined metals, biomass and other resources coming into the system. They are processed and fed into the many complex metabolic pathways, many of which are involved in repair of structures, building new structures, refining energy (ATP), shipping goods here and there and  simply for human entertainment. On the right margin, the trash trucks pick-up waste and haul it away to an area where it will not impair the continued functioning of the metabolism. Additionally, the waste water and sewage are piped outside the cellular confines and CO2 is released into the environment.

In order for all of this movement and metabolism to work, resources must constantly be fed into the left margin of the system, metabolic activity will occur and wastes will be eliminated at the other end with heat released as a by-product. This is much the same on the biological and technological levels. In the case of humans, if the glucose levels become too low, hunger will result and often the hunger is for different things the body needs, like sugars, protein or salt. We have built-in sensors that tell us when we need to eat so that the resources are available in the blood plasma for absorption into the cells. If glucose levels are inadequate and cannot enter the metabolism, then there is a chance that complex components within the cell will stop working and the cell will die. We avoid this fate by getting something to eat and drink.

Humans have built themselves a complex dissipative structure much like the cellular one. The glucose of oil, natural gas and coal must continuously be showing up in the blood plasma to be taken-in by the cells. The resources are then fed through the highly complex metabolism and waste is removed at the right margin. Undoubtedly there are control mechanisms for limiting the amount of energy that comes in at the left margin, the operational speed of the cellular metabolism, the growth or fissioning of cells through adjusting the number of receptors and enzymes  controlling the metabolic rate. One can also see within the technological dissipative structure, the nation, mechanisms for control of overall growth and metabolism. With adequate food coming in at the left margin, the central bank of a nation will adjust interest rates to manage the rate of growth. The growth must be coordinated with the provision of energy, higher interest rates putting a brake on metabolic activity and inflation and low interest rates encouraging more metabolic activity. The build-up of wastes is hardly addressed, if at all. The bankers are all about maximizing growth, but doing so in a balanced manner so that high unemployment of high inflation does not occur.

But what happens if, at the left margin, there isn’t enough glucose in the plasma to maintain metabolic activity, let alone create more growth? What is a central bank to do? First, it can lower interest rates. This can, in normal times, encourage consumption or put a negative pressure on the right margin of the cell to get the metabolites flowing through the system. If the economy overheats, it can raise the discount rate. But what happens if the extra stimulus of low rates and ample credit doesn’t seem to be having much of an effect? At this point you might want to look at the left margin of the metabolism where the resources are taken from the environment or plasma. A steady flow of material must pass through the metabolism the keep it in motion and maintain the complexity. The banks have been providing ample debt for a long time to maximize GDP  (the combined total activity of the metabolism) and now the debt receptors are saturated (debt cannot be retired fast enough to allow additional debt).  At the same time that debt cannot create more activity in the metabolism, the concentration of glucose in the blood and cells are falling. Each enzyme is now transporting less and less glucose across the cell membrane and into the system. The answer is to increase the number of enzymes or wells drilled, to keep the minimum operating level of energy flowing through the system. The system becomes more sluggish and profits disappear as net energy decreases.

In the meantime many human RNA are sitting in their home cells along with their children who have recently graduated from the nucleolus. Jobs are scarce or pay so little so as not to motivate the humans.  Fuel storage in the form of fatty acids are converted to glucose just as there are draw downs of the strategic petroleum reserve. This is certainly not enough to keep the economy alive. More debt is provided, but his has very little impact on metabolism as glucose levels are still too remain depressed. Messages are sent to the brain – eat, eat, eat, but what there is to eat provides inadequate energy to support the overly complex metabolism. The brain knows that if it doesn’t find another high-grade source of energy and resources, the outcome is certain, falling below the minimum concentration of glucose in the blood resulting in the metabolism screeching to a halt and death occurring soon thereafter.

There is only one thing to do, predatorily search the globe for new sources of highly concentrated hydrocarbons and eat them. Revisit old sites to lick the last of the hydrocarbons from the ground, eat bark and grass (shale and tar sands), fight others for the last few meals of high-grade hydrocarbons remaining. Then what? Plan an escape to Mars? 🙂

No, next the system begins to starve and unravel as various little tangents of metabolism shut-down. Things become more simple and basic. There is much cognitive dissonance as Muskovian propaganda doesn’t seem to match the surrounding reality where the metabolism has become increasingly idle. The central banks can do nothing but provide credit to the energy producers that increasingly provide less and less net energy to the system.


In the end, this overly complex system becomes idle as it has successfully exhausted the resource gradients. Roads and technological cells are empty of their formerly busy human RNA and the infrastructure begins to slowly decay. It really is too bad it grew so fast before it knew what it was doing, not that knowing would have impeded its progress that much. Solar was the only long-lasting source of energy, but the flow rate of net energy is much too low to meet the needs of an overly complex fossil fuel eating system. Harsh adaptation is necessary but the  energy required for change is being consumed to temporarily enrich those that have interests in the existing, soon to be dead,  metabolic machinery and pathways.

Punctuated Disequilibrium – Bigly

The emergence of self-organizing, complex adaptive systems has occurred twice on this planet. In the first instance, an independent, competitively reproducing molecule, RNA, because of its unique structural and bonding characteristics, became the first entity that could pair symbolic information (base pair sequence) with materials for making tools – amino acids, matching three base pair codons to specific amino acids for protein chain assembly. The information inherent to the RNA sequences would later be transcribed into more resilient DNA libraries. The amino acid tools, including enzymes, were much more capable of breaking into energy and resource gradients existing at that time and facilitated the development of information and cellular structures like nuclei, cytoskeletons and mitotic spindles. Once cells were prevalent and capable of deriving molecular and particulate nutrition from the environment. It was only a matter of time though before evolution would find a way to break into the next great energy opportunity – whole, living cells.  To consume individual cells it became necessary for previously single cells to form cell groups that could surround and engulf single cells and consume them. Early adaptations led to primitive guts or enclosures where digestive enzymes could be released to digest captive cells. These primitive predators would later become fully developed organisms with various specialized tissues for capturing food, digestion, excretion, immune systems etc. The result has been a continuous co-evolution of cellular forms for hundreds of millions of years, some being capable of using the sun as an energy source while others continued along the predatory path consuming other organisms whole or by ripping the body apart and consuming macerated tissues. The ecosystem emerged with many different competing cellular forms.

Neutrophil consuming Methicillin-Resistant Staphylococcus aureus (MRSA).

Phagocytosis is used by many predatory eukaryotes including the amoebas which can become rather large. A successful predatory strategy was to form organisms, vast colonies of cells with specialized functions capable of ingesting and processing the tissues of other organisms. Humans became tribal with coordinating communication in order to access gradients inaccessible to single individual.

The emergence of the second complex adaptive system, the technological one, occurred in much the same manner as the molecular one. The key functionality for human RNA is the ability to create information and then translate that into a sequence of bonding or manipulations of matter in the environment, much like proteins are synthesized from amino acids. For instance, an early hominid could have seen or imagined swinging a club at a predator. The imagery in the brain (information) is then translated into a hand grasping a stout club in the environment and swinging it wildly at threatening predators. Generational transfer of the information could occur by simply watching what others do and emulating them. The ability to “bond” and manipulate tools such as clubs and stones was made possible by the free hands of the early hominids that had been useful in holding branches, picking fruits from trees and nits from fur. Likewise, within the evolving neocortex there was an increasing ability to imagine and rehearse actions, a mutative property of the brain.

Combining information (brain) with an ability to deftly manipulate matter in furtherance of survival goals resulted in a rapid advantage over those organisms relying upon fortuitous genetic mutations. As occurred with the cells, humans tended to form social groups, specialize,  develop tribal behaviors and cooperate to kill and consume organisms too large for a single human to dispatch. It is this nexus between tool symbolism (brain/RNA template) and ability to bond or synthesize the symbolized tool that starts the movement of man and molecular RNA into the intermediate role between symbolic information and tool. Eventually both man and RNA would not be limited to one or a few tools for the individual, but would begin to function within a system capable of making hundreds of different tools systematically in factories and in cells. The success of the new tools at breaking open new gradients, much more capable than the unequipped human or RNA, would guarantee a continued progress in the direction of systematic existence. RNA would go on to become a specialized intermediate between DNA and the tool making process just as humans have become intermediaries between  their own alpha-numeric information and tool/infrastructure manufacture.

Papuan men working on tools and sago.

The hands modify and build tools after consulting with the imagery recorded in the brain. Nothing very complex could be accomplished during mankind’s early history because the emerging complexity requires a fidelity recording of information as found in written records and drawings or DNA. Humans are particularly good at accomplishing rapid evolution by purposefully rearranging and modifying information within the brain to be translated into new tool construction. Homo sapiens used few tools for hundreds of thousands of years until recorded information began to reflect the specifications of various components of tools mined and refined and the processes that led to finished tools.

Not only can hands manipulate matter to form tools, they may also have been used for language before the advent of spoken language and may have evolved their dexterity, useful in building and grasping tools, from the evolved usefulness in conveying ideas.

It is generally believed that the human transition to RNA-like functioning in the assembly of technological tools was a fortuitous event for Homo sapiens. Many tools have evolved, the distribution vessels have grown, the technological cells have been built, the information has been recorded and even speciation (tribalism/nationhood) has occurred. But all is not what it seems for the former vine swinging hominid turned key tapper, lever puller and knob twister. The same ferocity of competition that has existed in the ecosystem for the duration of its existence has been conserved by the various entities within the technological system. A competition to grow and profit in accordance with the Maximum Power Principle (MPP) is still prevalent. Instead of a technological nirvana, we experience a technologically based arms race, nation against nation, corporation against corporation, individual against individual, each trying to win the lion’s share of resources and profit. In the background of this all-consuming technological competition is an ecosystem seen only as a resource gradient and waste sink with infinite capacities to facilitate the on-going evolution and metabolism of the technological system. We’re too busy competing with each other for “wealth” to notice that we’re destroying the system that sustains us.

The human RNA toiling in the cells seem unwilling and unable to break away from the trajectory of the Maximum Power Principle which has shaped their behaviors over geologic time periods. It may simply be impossible to get them to “stand down” even in the face of disaster. Even though they have great intelligence in building and using tools, they lack a behavioral mechanism of restraint, but instead navigate from one reward to the next in joyous celebration of their conquests. Even with a modicum of knowledge about our ill-fated course, we seem as determined as bacteria in a petri dish or malignant cancer cells to continue growing until the supporting system collapses.

Many humans believe there is a great purpose to the technology, but it is simply the stuff of energy/resource gradient consumption and differs little in purpose than what one might find in a cell or organism. Better, faster, more, more growth, more profit – but there is no purpose except to survive the predatory behavior of one’s rivals at any moment in time while gathering enough energy/resources to maintain metabolism and reproduce. Incremental evolution -slow in the case of system one, the ecosystem, and comparatively rapid in the case of system two, the technological system, leads neither to an eventual nirvana nor promised land but simply to more of the same competition to consume gradients and dominate opponents.

House to house combat in retaking Seoul, South Korea. Korean War.

Some things will never be finished on this planet, like the competition between conduits for territory and resources.

Nuclear ballistic missile submarine USS Nebraska.

Like a neutrophil roaming the extra cellular matrix, this technological product  intends to defend the integrity of national borders and interests with technological tissue destroying weapons of mass destruction. Like the Megalodon sp. it will some day go extinct, but it’s unlikely it will have the 20 million year run of the shark. Perhaps a few more decades at most since the current state of disequilibrium is in the process of being punctuated – bigly.

Don’t Fall for Enemy Propaganda

Dissipative structures or conduits are not deterred from predatorily seeking additional resources even if this behavior is not in keeping with their intratribal morality. To accomplish this feat, the holder of coveted resources or territory, a nation that thereto may have been friendly or neutral, becomes the victim of the vilest chicanery through false flag operations. A false flag operation is a planned operation to make the target nation appear to have committed a heinous act, domestic or foreign, which then justifies retribution in furtherance of some preordained goal.

See more about false flags here:

The false flag operation is usually accompanied by a preplanned propaganda campaign that goes into effect immediately, calling attention to the wrongdoing, vilifying the supposed culprit and calling for retalliation or elimination of the guilty parties. The propaganda campaign is meant to manufacture consent (Manufacturing Consent: The Political Economy of the Mass Media (1988), by Edward S. Herman and Noam Chomsky) amongst the predatory nation’s population for those actions necessary to gain some resource or strategic advantage and uses the innate tribalism of the population to accomplish its goals. At this point, the truth or facts are not important, but rather impressions are all important. Pharmaceutical companies use the similar tactics in their advertising, providing an engaging and attractive visual impression to viewers while reading in monotone the side-effects and drawbacks of their medicines. Impression is all important in the general population, not facts or reasoning. The faster you can call someone the devil, or evil, or Hitler or a dictator, the better, and repeat it often until the impression is firmly fixed in vulnerable minds. While doing so, provide visual stimuli for additional negative impact. Next comes the moral response to rid the world of the evil influence, sometimes called regime change. Include a few more graphics of dead babies (or throwing babies out of incubators), arrange a Nayirah testimony and you’re almost good to go.

President George W. Bush strolling at the ranch with a special friend Saudi Crown Prince Abdullah

Was it a false flag, an unknown unknown, or simply a known known that got out of hand?

These deceptions are all part and parcel of operating as a predatory nation. After watching the recent episode in Syria with chemical weapons and Tomahawk missiles, and other similar instances, the “evil monster” story is becoming a bit lame. There was Osama Bin Laden, Saddam Hussein, Muammar Gaddafi, the Ayatollah, and now Assad, all evil monsters. Who’s next? Putin? As Forrest Gump might say, “evil is as evil does”. But one does not successively dispose of “evil monsters” unless one has a plan. What is the plan? My guess is that nations, being subject to death without adequate nutrition, are simply securing adequate supplies and routes for future fossil fuel delivery and must not inform the public of the peril of not obtaining adequate supplies. The United States campaigning in the Middle East reminds me of Sherman’s March to the Sea sowing destruction all the way, except this time it’s a march to the oil and natural gas. But not to worry, Europe will absorb the stunned stragglers into their loving embrace.

While emotionless strategic planners (“we came, we saw, he died” – Hillary Clinton in regard to the murder of Muammar Gaddafi), make chess moves, especially to meet personal, banking and corporate needs, the public is fed emotion-laden fabrications which elicit support for the predatory behaviors.

Propaganda can even work at home as with this Newsweek magazine that came out shortly after Donald Trump became President. Just a coincidence?  Hitler was a very effective psychopath and there are many of them in the general population, business and government. I don’t think Trump is a psychopath, but it’s not beyond the media to seek retribution against a President that berated the media executives for broadcasting “fake” news. Of course “it” (war/genocide) could happen again, and be much, much worse as the metabolic collapse gathers speed. Propaganda was being used in the United States long before Hitler came to power and both Hitler and Joseph Geobbels were fans of Edward Bernays that wrote “Crystallizing Public Opinion” in 1923 and “Propaganda” in 1928.


Edward Bernays, The Father Of American Propaganda


Deception is widespread in the ecosystem and there’s no doubt that the human mind has evolved to be adept at subterfuge. The medial prefrontal cortex (social brain) is monitoring the social environment for opportunities to gain wealth without upsetting the sensibilities of other humans, but someone always takes the last cookie (or the whole box of cookies). Recognizing deception is somewhat counteracted in many people by the optimism bias that encourages a sunny view of human nature.

Above is anti-propaganda propaganda poster  from WWII, only today it’s Fox news broadcasting in one ear and CNN broadcasting in the other. The bamboozled citizen remains the same.

Put “ISIS” on that sleeve and you have an effective propaganda for the United States current embroilment within the Middle East. Puppies and babies impaled by a dagger along with flag burning will also elicit strong emotions from the citizenry.

The take away message is that the national systems still strive for growth and assimilation of energy and resources and can clear a path with murder and deceit, all justified by the likely outcome of failing to act (an economy grinding to a halt, collapse of the financial system and starvation of the domestic population). The natural human tendency towards tribalism guarantees that there will be a “them” to take from until the human experiment is over. Governments will create a “them” if it’s necessary as an expedient to maintaining military readiness. Even a one world government with common language and identity, if that were possible, would not overcome the tendency for some individuals to cheat the system and accumulate an unfair share of resources resulting in societal bifurcation and tribal conflict. Eventually, the organism that was promoted to cancerhood and tasked with eliminating the energy tied-up in soil, biomass, fossil fuels and more, will accomplish its task bigley before starving within its own toxic excrement. The earth will be a place of eternal conflict and strife as long as conduits compete aggressively for thin margins of profit pursuing the Maximum Power Principle.


Last Roll of the Dice

To answer the age-old question “Which came first, the chicken or the egg?”, one must first travel back in time and examine the molecular ontogeny where the conservation of probabilistically unlikely molecular species was accomplished by ribonucleic acids (RNA) in the primordial soup or upon a substrate bathed by the primordial soup. The non-replicating environment of the RNA may have had catalytic and bonding properties (clay substrate?) which could concentrate the necessary nucleotides for strand assembly. RNA are also known to have enzymatic properties, although not as varied or capabable as the enzymatic proteins, but perhaps enough to facilitate self-replication. In any case, the most important condition for reproduction is the accumulation of resources necessary to build a replica. For such a molecule to reproduce successfully a “profit” must first be realized in that components must be concentrated against a tendency to otherwise disperse. These conditions, concentrating the building blocks of life and reproduction, are the foundations of life and have been conserved without exception. Those species, whether molecular, cellular, organismal or technological, behave in a manner to obtain the greatest profit to use in maximizing reproduction and growth. Some building blocks are diverted to defensive measures to thwart efforts at predation. The forms that are best at gathering the components for their own reproduction, which may occur multiple times before the mother form is defunct, will eventually displace less successful forms, unless the less successful occupy different environmental niches that bestow a reproductive advantage.

The freely reproducing molecules were eventually enclosed within cells, perhaps with primitive protein tools that allowed the capturing and sequestration of nutrients within the cellular envelope. At some point, a mechanical splitting process would occur separating randomly distributed populations of molecules. Perhaps not a complex fissioning that occurs with eukaryotic cells, but simply a budding-off due to mechanical necessity. Research continues on these subjects and the entirety of evolutionary steps may never be entirely elucidated before civilization fails to meet its own nutritional requirements. There were numerous steps and refinements leading to the complexity found within eukaryotic cells and undoubtedly it required significant amounts of energy as provided by the mitochondria. But just as a human mind is incapable of retaining large amounts of detailed information necessary for significant complexity, such as the diagrams and specifications for building and tools and related structures, RNA or RNA complexes didn’t do well at retaining all of the information in their populations, especially after the somewhat unpredictable process of fissioning. Much of the extra energy necessary to establish a permanent and replicable DNA library that could be separated with a spindle mechanism, must have been derived from the endosymbiotic relationship with the mitochondria. The increased energy also gave cells the extra energy necessary to form multicellular organsism. Human discovery and utilization of fossil fuels has allowed a similar increase in complexity, but on a temporary basis.

The addition of DNA, a written library of tools that could be transcribed into RNA and then protein tools and complex organelles like the Golgi apparatus, made reproduction more complicated and a spindle apparatus was required to make sure daughter cells obtained a full copy of information., DNA is copied and segregated to both sides of a dividing plate before fission occurs. Incorporated into a cell, the RNA were no longer able to maximize their individual reproduction, but rather had to specialize functionally within the cell to maximize efficiency within the reproducing system. Their controlled reproduction came to serve the needs of the cell whose primary activity was making tools to use in accumulating the profit necessary to enable cellular fission. Humans have been pulled inside a similar structure, the technological cell to function in a manner similar to molecular RNA. Many RNA no longer reproduce themselves, but rather function in the cells to maximize profit and essentially become a “job” within a technological metabolism. If these “domesticated” humans do reproduce, their children will be modified and schooled to also function within the technological metabolism. Some free-living humans continue to use primitive tools to obtain profit from the ecosystem, necessary for their individual reproduction.

Dissipative organisms feeding in order to nourish themselves and larvae back at the colony. Many of these worker ants, like their biological cousins, the human RNA, have lost the capacity or will to reproduce, but unlike human RNA, these ants are not involved in using information to produce tools.

There is a natural “greed” built into life that is difficult or impossible to temper in that the dissipative organism must obtain an excess or profit to reproduce successfully, and for the most part all of its behaviors and forms are built around that necessity. It isn’t enough simply to maintain the fires of basal metabolism, a profit must be obtained and invested in the offspring. Reproduction is the foundation of complex life, but what started as a molecular happenstance has become the sole preoccupation of dissipative structures – the meaning of life (although modern RNA humans may think jobs, businesses and their profit are the meaning of life.) All forms subsequent to the molecular beginnings have followed in the same mold and cannot escape the “greed” to which they owe their reproductive success. By failing to reproduce, you have simply foregone the opportunity to burden a being with the responsibility for at least balancing the books and making a profit for reproduction in what is usually a competitive and vicious world. However, the reproductive sequence usually happens spontaneously, the dopamine/opioid rewards are sufficient to result in reproduction, no reasons necessary. The most recent human additions, 7.5 billion persons, have been born into a world of temporary abundance. Conditions will be returning to normal as soon as the finite gradients have been exhausted.

When you observe the humans, with their lust for accumulating wealth, their reproductive excesses (at least until they’re subverted into a cellular society and become jobs), with their idolization of billionaires and preoccupation with portfolios of wealth, just realize that they’re not different than any other reproducing life, life that must obtain a profit to reproduce. Unfortunately they have drifted from the ecosystem into a technological system that can readily consume and destroy the ecosystem in its natural tendency to accumulate profit and maximally reproduce. Just as organisms gather profit maximally and reproduce maximally, not because they want to, but because they’re programmed to do so, so too does the human in technological society strive to be wealthier and take market share from their perceived competition without any limitations.

Is this why questioning population control and capitalism (growth) are taboo topics for discussion in technological society? Because these traits (reproduction and pursuit of profit) are the basis of life and mentioning their undesirability brings about a juxtaposition in the brain between the idea in the neocortex and the “two commandments” of the limbic system? The strong and fertile survive while the weak and infertile do not and this has been the basis of evolution for billions of years, but to carry the same motivations and impulses into the technological system, the desire to consume, grow, reproduce and produce a profit guarantees destruction and collapse. Under this natural occurring regime, sustainability will never be achieved in the technological system. But seeing that humans are basically automatons following deeply embedded behaviors established over billions of years of evolution, can we expect that they will ever gain control before growing themselves into oblivion.

Model of the human brain from Wellcome Trust.  The egg-shaped area at the center  of the brain is where the “Two Commandments” are written (thou shalt accumulate resources and reproduce.) This area is also known as “(head)quarters” and or the limbic system.

All of the behaviors observable in the ecosystem and technosystem are derived from the need to extract a profit from the environment to enable reproduction. The human is programmed to ring-fence wealth to use in a reproductive capacity and because humans are a social, hierarchical species and the impression is that the more wealth you possess the more successful your reproduction will be, there can be no end to the conversion of the ecosystem and fossil gradients into wealth markers for humans, even though the innate behavior will eventually destroy them.

Throughout history, if resources were not available in the environment, reproduction failed through starvation and/or disease. Under the current circumstances for humans, because the natural areas for accumulating wealth (foraging, hunting and fishing) have been claimed and fenced by the cancer, the modern human must strive to make their own business (cells) succeed just to obtain money to obtain nutrition from other cells, the farms and groceries. The specialized RNA inside technological cells probably have no idea how to obtain nutrition from a natural ecosystem or through simple farming or gardening and are therefore at considerable risk of starvation once the technological system fails. The egotistical class accumulates wealth far above what is necessary for successful reproduction, thereby denying others that possibility. The brain of the multi-billionaire seems to work in much the same way as the brain of a peasant that successfully raises twenty kids in the ecosystem. Both seem to be guided by a limbic autopilot. Human civilization is a cancer whose open-ended appetite for the accumulation of wealth will destroy the ecosystem.

There seem to be many rational reasons for restricting growth and consumption, since technological competition within the ecosystem commons will eventually result in total system(s) failure. It should be sufficient by examining the despoiled landscape and the melting ice to determine that limitations must be observed, but there are very strong biases chiseled into the neurology of every organism’s brain that encourage the gathering of resources, getting rich and provisioning of offspring. Unfortunately we continue to follow the same old algorithms even though things have profoundly changed. For every increment of technological growth, an equal or greater amount of biological growth is damaged or made extinct. Most humans believe that a healthy techno-system is in their interest, but they are mistaken. The inhabitants of the cancer fail to perceive the nature of the malignant system that has captured them.

The human is a collection of minute predatory protists that follow the Maximum Reproduction Principle (MRP) whose combined values and behaviors have been transcribed into a suitable neurology at the core of the human brain. The maximum reproduction and growth tendencies no longer reside within the cells, but these goals have been invested in the neurology of the various organisms. Nations, businesses, humans, cells, and molecules are all a continuation of the first reproducing entity. This goal of dissipative structures, common to all of life has been preserved, passed into the overarching structure of the organism as trillions of cells cooperate to consume large masses of nutrition (individuals of other species) found in the environment. We can refer to this open-ended desire to control and utilize resources, limited only by the time necessary to digest them and turn them into offspring conduits, as greed.

Complex protist cells whose forms have specialized for independent living. Human cells are also specialized, but work within a system that consumes massive organisms before nutrients are distributed throughout an internal circulatory system.

Greed, the desire to acquire and accumulate wealth cannot be questioned effectively by the human because greed, individual and tribal, is the imperative of reproducing entities. Maintaining homeostasis and basal metabolism are insufficient, a profit must be had until the offspring are formed and then actively obtaining energy from the environment for themselves. It’s no wonder that academics are reluctant to speak of the hazards of unbridled greed as they will be ejected from the company of fellow conduits and be deprived of income and profit. Even for the well-reasoned scientist there is little control of greed or the prime motive of garnering more pay, more benefits, more grants, more power. The greed had to be present in the first reproducing entities, the RNA, then cells, organisms, tribes and technological businesses and nations. It seems that many technological RNA (humans using tools) have successfully thwarted their own natural desires to reproduce, but they have simply been fully entrained by the technological system that prepared them for their role in society. Even the “religious” seek expansion and enrichment for their own dissipative needs. The only “reasonable” question for the human is how to get around the limits to growth through technological innovation so that more resources and energy may be delivered to the insatiable population. Humans are not equipped to throttle their subconscious desires and motivations, and any social barriers to obtaining more than one’s fair share of resources are often breached through lying, cheating and stealing, nefarious behaviors pulled from the Mr. Hyde’s toolbox as opportunities arise.

President Trump, sensitive to the “no-growth” dissatisfaction of his citizenry, almost all of which “know in their heart” that they want more, strives to satisfy their needs by eliminating any impediment to further growth, even though “reason” should lead one to believe that this is suicidal. The rational brain has evolved so as not to question the desires and motivations of the limbic brain and reward systems.

Human RNA walk to and from various cells to make metabolic connections including gaining organic nourishment at groceries and restaurants. If the system is not meeting their needs, they are likely to communicate back to the Trumpothalamus and demand action.

The future appears bleak as humans continue to build more cells and pack them full of “wealth”. Industry profits from this wealth accumulating tendency by periodically offering new and improved versions of products to replace those that have fallen out of fashion or been prematurely deposited in a waste dump. Unfortunately it is unlikely that humans will ever gain control of their behavioral tendencies instead continuing in an automatic mode, converting the natural world and fossil fuels into additional “wealth.” The end result is foretold in the prognostics of the “Limits to Growth”. Humans will march to their demise in a zombie-like state of stunned silence with occasional outbursts of violence, as opportunities to satisfy their greed disappear forever and previous gains are erased.

From the primordial soup of replicating RNA, to the complex cellular eukaryotic cell, to the human technological cancer, evolution shows an unbroken energy and resource flow through conduits which must reproduce before parent structures degrade. Humans have leveraged their ability to be successful predators through the use of technological tools and fossil fuel energy but fail to realize that they consume their own body just as a cellular cancer consumes its own body. In both cases, the biased mind will avoid truthful examination of the predicament as the disease slowly progresses towards catastrophic resolution.

Human civilization is a cancer which grows within the tissues of the ecosystem. It eats, it grows, it kills and its over. From where would it obtain the energy necessary for a second round of equivalent growth, even if the ecosystem were capable of surviving it and a third, fourth…a thousand generations. Will the energy and resources come from the vastly overstated collateral underlying an enormous debt that will supposedly be exchanged for a richness of resources in the future? The currency, bonds and stocks will be worthless in the future, as soon as the system breaks, capitalism, any -ism, will be finished and any reorganization will temporarily provide only meager salaries for a few and zero profit. As soon as a faltering economy induces the liquidation of paper assets, it’s only a matter of time before everyone rushes for the door to convert their paper into something real, only to find the algorithms have already passed through and locked the door a millisecond before them Most will be kept from liquidating in a timely fashion and will watch their illusory wealth realize its full potential – zero, leaving them with little hope of survival. A fully fledged zero sum game will emerge as impoverished masses spur governments to nationalize all assets, out-law hoarding, seize assets and distribute to those clamoring for salvation, a last ditch effort to keep the human RNA populations alive, even though the technological metabolism has ceased to function and cannot effectively restart. As soon as residual metabolites have been exhausted, the RNA will begin to starve and the technological order will descend into chaos and final disintegration.

But go about your business, enjoy your last days, you’re a winner in life, and that’s all that counts in the realm of competing dissipative structures. Make your last roll of the dice. When the game of accumulating wealth and reproduction restarts your grandchildren won’t be playing.