Re: Forbidden Planet

From: Keith Henson (
Date: Thu May 13 2004 - 21:38:48 MDT

At 11:00 AM 14/05/04 +1000, you wrote:
>Hi Keith,
>I think conditionally triggered responses are likely to be plentiful in
>humans as you suspect.

Probably. Only a subclass is dangerous (I hope).

>Just on the issue of cruelty to captives - I think the response is most
>likely uniquely triggered by the mindset in which the captive is
>considered. We can care lovingly for our captive pigeons or rabbits in
>their cages OR treat the captives like things. It depends whether we
>are promed to see them as 'animate and ALSO in the family' or as
>'mere things'.
>The quote below gives a hint that the perceptual pre-positioning is
> > Even Kimmitt admitted, "I'd like to sit here and say these are the
> > only prisoner abuse cases we're aware of, but we know there have been
> > other ones since we have been here in Iraq." I just don't believe soldiers
> > do any of this on their own. But let me go beyond this and discuss what I
> > have heard and read about part of the training our government provides our
> > young people. The word is: DEHUMANIZATION. It happened in Vietnam. It's
> > still happening. For a soldier to call an Iraqi a human--unacceptable. Can
> > you even train a person to kill other humans rather haphazardly? I don't
> > think so. But if you turn those people into gooks or ragheads, or whatever
> > non-human assignment you can think of, the soldier is no longer murdering
> > human beings. No, they are killing things, bugs, irrelevant living
> > creatures. Isn't this the attitude reflected in these photos?

That's certainly one aspect I considered. "keith henson" dehumanizing in
Google will find thoughts about dehumanizing memes over a year ago.

> > I saw similar pictures as these in the Winter Soldier hearings.
> > Soldiers had not just killed the enemy and murdered people. They had gone
> > on the hunt, and successfully bagged their prey. Imagine hunters throwing
> > their ducks on the back of their pickup truck. Imagine a fisherman having
> > his picture taken while standing next to his big fish hanging on a hook.
> > Imagine soldiers throwing their enemy in piles and having their pictures
> > taken giving a big "thumbs up" to the people at home. Oops--you don't have
> > to imagine that, we saw it on 60 Minutes. This is war. War is not pretty
> > or noble. This is what we are training our young people to do in order to
> > win.

We train them, and it's not hard to do. Why? Because working the warriors
of a tribe up to go kill a neighboring tribe was the way your genes
survived hard times for a million years. What we do today though is
*frustrate* the tribal trait to just kill all the men in aa attacked tribe
and take the women for booty.

>I found the book "Religion explained" useful in helping to identify some
>underlying mental architecture that conditions how we see/respond to
>things outside ourselves. (Religion Explained: The Evolutionary Origins
>of Religious Thought by Pascal Boyer (April 2002)

Excellent book. I have cited it 27 times according to Google.

Thanks for the comment, I think you are spot on. If you can figure out any
way to spread out this knowledge, please do and let me know how successful
you are. Ghod knows we and our leaders need better insight into what is
going on.

Best wishes,

Keith Henson

>Cheers, Philip

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.5 : Wed Jul 17 2013 - 04:00:46 MDT