Son of Waru
How We Got Here And Potential Scenarios
In this essay I will discuss a few ideas or concepts that I have entertained, as well as scenarios relating to our future. This will be speculative and so based mostly on value judgements and opinion. It is likely that some of this, or all, is false.
One of the main issues with Anarcho-primitivism is that they cannot answer exactly why we left hunter gatherer society in the first place. If it was so good, why did we leave it? Granted, this is still debated by anthropologists today. A while back, I was thinking about why violence is so objectionable today, as well as Ted’s writings about how Japan transitioned from military dictatorship to democracy fairly easily, in that it's because they are disciplined, and so were able to adapt easily.
Then ideas came into my mind. From there it kept going. I typed up my thoughts in notes as quickly as possible. I’ve added or removed a few things, but what is below is the same as what I put down, just a bit more detailed.
How we might of got here
We all started in Africa, then went our own ways. We moved into cold environments. Colder environments made hunter gather society intolerable. Because food was scarce, any kind of in-group infighting caused the self destruction of said group. Anyone who knows natural selection knows the environment pressurizes animals, and humans, to adapt. So, violence has been naturally selected out of humans, at least since neolithic times as fighting when food is scarce leads to the dying off of such people.
Because of the cold, humans were pressured into making technology and tools. This wasn’t done out of evil, or a system, but out of necessity, or survival
Our success in the wild led us to grow and grow. Smaller groups became bigger and bigger. Soon people were delegated to search for food, or to look after the children. Specialization began. Eventually we evolved into agricultural society.
1st world nations may be more biologically agricultural than hunter gatherer. This may explain nostalgia for agricultural society.
Natural selection in cold environments caused us to select certain behaviours and genes (more intelligence on average, less rebellious traits, ect.)
Therefore, perhaps, the needs of the system/technique is mostly natural selection in our environment. Or maybe, because for continued advancement of our species, to sustain more food, resources, ect.
More genetic disorders are due to advances in medicine keeping those who would die off in such an environment alive. Medicine and lack of natural selection is due to the biological moral of altruism and helping out those who are less fortunate. You wouldn’t leave someone to die on the street and if you did, you’d likely suffer from guilt or maybe psychological issues. Not to mention it would be a human indignity.
Eugenics is being encouraged by our environment (the system?) to weed out the “weak”
Our biological morals will likely encourage us to find a common ground to use eugenics in a way that is ethical and is least damaging to human dignity.
Returning to pre industrial society will not be a solution, as any society in cold environments (natural or otherwise) will encourage technological growth and a removal of rebellious impulses through natural selection. This is why technological growth cannot be stopped completely.
Civilisation was a natural advancement of the social hierarchies which are biologically ingrained in us. In order to destroy civilisation, you must take out what it is built on. If we start at the bottom we have the family unit, children must obey parents and come back to them if allowed to play or explore. The family grows, or meets up with other families. This creates a small group, which meets other groups and so on so forth. Natural resources leads to conflict between groups. These groups are self propagating because they trust each other but not outsiders. These groups now grow to society. Then finally they turn into civilisations. In order to destroy civilisation, you’d have to literally destroy the human race.
Now I shall entertain various scenarios. As I have already discussed one such scenario before in another essay, I wont include it here.
Firstly, lets talk about the collapse envisioned by Darren Allen or other anprims or Tedites such as in /tkg/. To them, climate change and the environment will cause huge destruction to the system and eventually it will collapse. Darren thinks that after this, people will live in groups no more than 150 members, with powerless leaders and I guess, never again try civilization. I’ll let Ultimo Reducto answer this one.
It is not likely that techno-industrial society will at some point collapse (in a way that leaves a habitable environment for the human beings who would probably survive).
It is completely impossible that civilization and domination would disappear if human beings survived after that collapse. Wherever ecosystems permit, great and complex new societies would again arise over time (if they did disappear completely in the collapse), and human beings would continue to be human and behave as such in any kind of society, level of technological development, or ecological environment.
Given that Darren is proposing a small society, and I argue that civilization is merely an extension of everything it is built on, its likely that civilization will come back. How can one stop one group getting bigger and bigger? Sometimes, as I believe I have shown, getting bigger is out of necessity, out of survival. So I think the future envisioned by these people is not possible. A collapse they envision, will either be too great for humans to survive, or not great enough. Given people live close together, in cities, in towns, its possible that if such a collapse comes, people will work together to keep what remains useful, and they’ll get back on their feet somewhat quickly. Societies will rise and so civilization will come back.
Then, there is the revolution outcomes. These outcomes could go many different ways, so many it is not possible to discuss them all here. Lets imagine the next few decades. New technology arrives, leading to much discussion. We have anti-tech revolutionaries, and Transhumanists.
A) Revolutionaries become more authoritarian as they become more desperate to stop humanity from accepting more technology.
B) Revolutionaries do not become more authoritarian and simply keep doing what they’re doing.
C) The anti tech movement suffers infighting from more radical parts becoming more restless.
D) Both sides are rejected (I have already discussed one such scenario).
E) The transhumanists win but must accept that people choose to use the technology or not.
F) Transhumanists win.
The anti tech movement succeeds, but due to the fear of technology coming back they create some kind of dystopian world where they keep the weapons they used, where as everyone else is forced to live either in primitive society or agricultural society. People are forced to burn books, are brainwashed, read propaganda and revisionist history. If they give up their temporary power, then some groups may develop technology that will eventually start the cycle again. Regardless of whether industrial technology is possible or not. If they refuse to give up power, then the world becomes an anti-tech totalitarian nightmare.
This scenario is only possible if the revolution does not make the earth uninhabitable due to environmental damage
The anti tech movement succeeds, however they do not become authoritarian and give up power and their technology imminently. Its plausible that technology will advance and some form of large scale state, similar to Rome emerges. Industrial tech, may or may not come back.
This scenario is again, only possible if the revolution does not make the earth uninhabitable due to environmental damage.
The anti tech movement suffers infighting. The movement is currently loosely aligned and in this scenario splits over what tech we keep, the methods used and so forth. This infighting wreaks the movement leading to its collapse
Both anti-tech revolutionaries and transhumanists are rejected for something in-between. This is most plausible in my eyes, I have already explained it in TRAWIWF so no point in going over it again.
The transhumanists win but allow for choice of what they introduce. This allows for those who want this technology to use it and for those who don’t to live without it. However, the power of this technology will influence many, if Ellul is not exposed to the mainstream.
The transhumanists win. It will likely bring in a dystopia akin to Brave New World.
Of course, all of these scenarios I have entertained in this essay are speculative and it is impossible to make a perfect prediction on where the future will lead us. They are only to give a broad overview of potential ways humanity could go.