Why Hippy Communes Die Out: The Unequal Societies Just Kill Them Off
WHEN Hippy communities die out… Or rather why eaglitarian societies lose out to unequal ones. The basic problem is that equal societies, being equal, are reasonably happy. So they never go and do anything. Unequal societies have lots of pissed off people who then bugger off elsewhere, thus expanding that society and killing off the more equal ones.
That’s the explanation that these blokes are putting forward at least:
Agent-based simulation results show that in constant environments, unequal access to resources can be demographically destabilizing, resulting in the outward migration and spread of such societies even when population size is relatively small. In variable environments, stratified societies spread more and are also better able to survive resource shortages by sequestering mortality in the lower classes.
Oh and that second point as well: when there’s the hard times in an unequal society the poor die: in an equal one everyone gets weak and thus more likely to get wiped out by the next tribe over.
Of course, the question they’re really trying to answer is why don’t we still all live like those famously equal and egalitarian stone age tribesmen? Has human nature changed? No, just that the unequal societies won out over the equal ones.
Myself, I’m not so sure, I think humans are inherently selfish, love to lord it up over their neighbour and it’s only after we’ve stopped being hunter gatherers that we’ve actually got anything to lord it over them with.