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Thread: Are we better off than the prehistoric man?

  1. #21
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    Re: Are we better off than the prehistoric man?

    Quote Originally Posted by iguanaman View Post
    You are oversimplifying.
    I'm not the one who used the term 'equate', which began this exchange. I'm glad you now agree.

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    Re: Are we better off than the prehistoric man?

    Quote Originally Posted by ab9924 View Post
    This may be a no-brainer, but really. We work more hours than the prehistoric man hunted. We work in artificial environments that stretches our social/family ties, the prehistoric man did all his activities with the involvement of his social/family environment. The prehistoric man was "separated" from the animal kingdom by inventing that the weakest member of his horde was worth enough to support, we eagerly write off everybody who is not competitive enough.

    And what do we gain for these sacrifices? We can drive more expensive cars to take an even remoter job. We can buy more expensive houses that we hardly have any time to spend in. We can get hefty investment account balances that evaporate in one swoop at any stock market/credit dip/crash or at any structural unemployment experience. What is the difference between slavery and controlling the prices of all trades by cornering the markets? They teach in school that slavery was the step-ahead that advanced civilization out of the prehistoric age. But was it really a progression or a regression? Is our world today a progression?


    Lawd not this again.

    I know it has become fashionable to lament the change from hunter-gather to agrarian lifestyles, let alone the modern technological age, but holy crap people think it through.

    No modern dentistry. No antibiotics. No anti-virals. No vaccinations. You'd be an elder if you lived to be 40, and you probably wouldn't enjoy middle age much. Many would die in childhood or early adulthood of diseases, disorders and injuries that are trivial with modern medical science.

    You'd travel on foot, and there would be no roads. 30 miles and back would be a journey you'd pack multiple-days worth of supplies for. No Kelty backpacks or waterproof ultralight tents. Travel would be arduous and dangerous and a migration would involve many deaths, especially among the old and the very young.

    Few if any metal tools. Ladies, you'd cook over a campfire. You'd fry quail eggs on hot rocks, and you'd boil water by fishing hot rocks out of the fire with crude wooden tongs and dropping them in a leather waterskin. Men, you'd hunt with a spear or possibly a crude bow and arrows. If some bear decided to take your family's daily food from you, you could either run away or fight 400-800 pounds of fur and fangs with crude hand weapons.

    Might make for a fun adventure-vacation for a week or two, but you'd do it day in and day out, month after month and year after year, and it wouldn't be an adventure, it would be a daily grind.


    No maternity wards, no ultrasound, no pediatricians.... and no epidural to ease the pain. No condoms, no implants, no Pill. Have fun gals.


    No central heating or AC. In the winter you'd freeze your ass off, in the summer you'd broil, and there would be no relief.

    Primitive societies are not peaceful nature lovers... they're engaged in a bitter, hard tooth-and-nail battle-for-survival with nature. They're also inclined to make war on other tribes, and historically many practiced cannibalism or torture of prisoners or both.



    You'd be born, live your life, and die (probably in your 30's) as ignorant as dirt. You wouldn't know what stars were, or what lightning was. You'd probably think disease was caused by evil spirits and let the tribal Shaman beat your sick daughter with a Ju-Ju Stick to drive out the Fever Imps. You'd probably live in constant fear of imaginary monsters... anything you didn't understand would frighten you, and you would understand almost nothing.

    You could be in perfect health and youth and still die from an infected splinter, or dysentery, or childbirth, or an abcessed tooth.


    No thanks. I prefer the modern world, flawed as it is.

    Fiddling While Rome Burns
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    "I used to roll the dice; see the fear in my enemies' eyes... listen as the crowd would sing, 'now the old king is dead, Long Live the King.'.."

  3. #23
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    Re: Are we better off than the prehistoric man?

    I'd assume we are, because we live four times longer. True, we have stress, but it is about small things. 21st century man worries about a promotion. 210th century BCE man worried about being eaten by a lion. We have better medical care, safe food, safe water, war is less barbaric.

    I love it when people who live hundreds of thousands of years post hoc glorify a time when they wouldn't survive a week.
    Last edited by MadLib; 09-06-12 at 06:14 PM.
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    Re: Are we better off than the prehistoric man?

    We're far better off than prehistoric man was, in a great number of ways.
    If you build a man a fire, he'll be warm for a day.

    If you set a man on fire, he'll be warm for the rest of his life.

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    Re: Are we better off than the prehistoric man?

    It occurs to me that, if we were to live out of doors in tents and cook over fires made by wood we've gathered, we could get by on earnings from working 20 hours a week, too.

    and we wouldn't have to try to kill large animals with hand thrown spears, either.
    "Donald Trump is a phony, a fraud... [he's] playing the American public for suckers." Mitt Romney

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    Re: Are we better off than the prehistoric man?

    Quote Originally Posted by ab9924 View Post
    This may be a no-brainer, but really. We work more hours than the prehistoric man hunted. We work in artificial environments that stretches our social/family ties, the prehistoric man did all his activities with the involvement of his social/family environment. The prehistoric man was "separated" from the animal kingdom by inventing that the weakest member of his horde was worth enough to support, we eagerly write off everybody who is not competitive enough.

    And what do we gain for these sacrifices? We can drive more expensive cars to take an even remoter job. We can buy more expensive houses that we hardly have any time to spend in. We can get hefty investment account balances that evaporate in one swoop at any stock market/credit dip/crash or at any structural unemployment experience. What is the difference between slavery and controlling the prices of all trades by cornering the markets? They teach in school that slavery was the step-ahead that advanced civilization out of the prehistoric age. But was it really a progression or a regression? Is our world today a progression?
    You mean bag when the average life span was less than age 25 and an infected tooth was a death sentence?

  7. #27
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    Re: Are we better off than the prehistoric man?

    Quote Originally Posted by ab9924 View Post
    This may be a no-brainer, but really. We work more hours than the prehistoric man hunted. We work in artificial environments that stretches our social/family ties, the prehistoric man did all his activities with the involvement of his social/family environment. The prehistoric man was "separated" from the animal kingdom by inventing that the weakest member of his horde was worth enough to support, we eagerly write off everybody who is not competitive enough.

    And what do we gain for these sacrifices? We can drive more expensive cars to take an even remoter job. We can buy more expensive houses that we hardly have any time to spend in. We can get hefty investment account balances that evaporate in one swoop at any stock market/credit dip/crash or at any structural unemployment experience. What is the difference between slavery and controlling the prices of all trades by cornering the markets? They teach in school that slavery was the step-ahead that advanced civilization out of the prehistoric age. But was it really a progression or a regression? Is our world today a progression?
    We are a whole lot better off.People live long and live better. If you could take a cave man and have him live as a modern person for a week he would never want to go back to being a caveman.
    "A nation can survive its fools, and even the ambitious. But it cannot survive treason from within. An enemy at the gates is less formidable, for he is known and carries his banner openly. But the traitor moves amongst those within the gate freely, his sly whispers rustling through all the alleys, heard in the very halls of government itself. For the traitor appears not a traitor; he speaks in accents familiar to his victims, and he wears their face and their arguments, he appeals to the baseness that lies deep in the hearts of all men. He rots the soul of a nation, he works secretly and unknown in the night to undermine the pillars of the city, he infects the body politic so that it can no longer resist. A murder is less to fear"

    Cicero Marcus Tullius

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    Re: Are we better off than the prehistoric man?

    Quote Originally Posted by Dittohead not! View Post
    It occurs to me that, if we were to live out of doors in tents and cook over fires made by wood we've gathered, we could get by on earnings from working 20 hours a week, too.

    and we wouldn't have to try to kill large animals with hand thrown spears, either.





    Good point.

    Fiddling While Rome Burns
    ISIS: Carthago Delenda Est
    "I used to roll the dice; see the fear in my enemies' eyes... listen as the crowd would sing, 'now the old king is dead, Long Live the King.'.."

  9. #29
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    Re: Are we better off than the prehistoric man?

    Around 10,000 years ago, a new human species started to evolve and is still evolving within our species, which is misnamed homo sapiens after only a few of its members. But the obsolescent and unfit homo erectus still dominates, even though the whole species would be doomed if not saved by the new species, whom they are ungrateful and insulting to. This retrogrades' leader intimidates the smart ones or gets them to serve him through an intelligence-hating worship of Nature and the glorification of its primitive nightmarish chaos. These meek geek traitors to the new human species give away credit for our advancement out of the jungle to imaginary gods and their appointed substitute, the King Ape himself. This dumb hulk leads by grunting, howling at the moon, pounding his chest, and hitting the terrified and ignorant over the head with his club.
    On the outside, trickling down on the insiders.
    We won't live free until the 1% live in fear.
    Hey, richboys! Imagine the boot of democracy stomping on your faces, forever.

  10. #30
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    Re: Are we better off than the prehistoric man?

    Quote Originally Posted by lizzie View Post
    Imo, we aren't better off as a general rule. Technology is nice, but our problem-solving skills are probably suffering collectively, and our minds and bodies are idle too much of the time.
    Indeed, it seems that whatever gains we may achieve, we also undo them all the time. I thought that our minds are now less idle than in the prehistoric days, because now we have to compete against the whole world individually, unlike the prehistoric man who had to compete against the neighboring tribes only. But technology makes our bodies more idle, to the point of sickness.

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