Eusocialism

All societies idolize altruists, so it should be obvious that an altruistic system would be the most agreeable solution.  Eusociality is such a system. It is considered the preeminent form of a social hierarchy within the animal kingdom; it is, as some may say, the final step. It’s defined as cooperative brood care, generational overlap, and a division of labor, including reproductivity. Generally, ants, bees, wasps, termites, two species of mole-rats, and one species of shrimp are the only known animals considered to be eusocial. Some have asserted that humans fit the definition, though the main rebuttal to such arguments is that humans do not have a reproductive division of labor.

Humans, however, do meet most of the requirements: Schools can be considered brood care. We do have many generations living together in society. Division of labor is nearly universal, even in tribal societies and group projects certain people are charged with different responsibilities. The only exception is, tentatively, reproduction. Nevertheless, poorer individuals tend to have the highest birthrates, for a plethora of reasons, while well educated humans tend to have fewer kids, again due to numerous circumstances. In this light, humans are eusocial. But, we aren’t very good at it. Our brood care has lapses, division of labor is incomplete, and we sometimes segment societies by age.

From my perspective, it is easy to view most social structures as meager attempts at eusociality. Caste systems, feudalism, and slavery all seek to have a steady source of lower class individuals to do the jobs no one wants to do. Capitalism subtly forces people into this mold, and communist systems dictate it directly. Poorer individuals tend to have the least access to education, and thus fewer job opportunities. Poor individuals have the highest child mortality, so consciously or unconsciously they plan for loss. Children can be a boon to helping their parents economically, by being used for labor, sold into slavery, and caring for them later in life.

Now the real question is why does this all matter? Well I believe it is the best social framework available to humans. It works effectively for other animals, and we need major changes in order to survive as a species. The only way to make the changes on the scale necessary is by working together, and the only construction we have in the animal kingdom of a way to do this effectively is eusociality. The largest communal animals all are eusocial and we have too many people to survive without striving to become fully eusocial.

One important note is that if we are eusocial animals, we would be the only species with a demonstrable amount of freewill to be such. This fact inevitably works against all defined examples of eusociality. People are notoriously difficult to force to do something they do not believe they want to do. Consequently, to become fully eusocial, we must either remove people’s ability to see it as a choice to participate in such a system or we must convince everyone to actively choose to join in. I don’t see how we could reach the former without first having effected the latter.

We must embrace free will in order to not be compromised by it. I firmly oppose eugenics on those grounds. Our species has become more and more intelligent over the past several decades, as indicated by rising IQ scores, known as the Flynn effect. This has happened without any perceptible evolutionary advances, so we must conclude that it would be a more effective use of resources to improve humanity through better brood care than through selective breeding. We have not begun to challenge the limits of human intelligence; our brains are incredibly malleable, and though they by and large stopped evolving tens of thousands of years ago, we have been able to apply their wiring toward novel practices, such as scientific disciplines.

Inevitably, once everyone is well educated, the division of reproductivity will hinge upon personal choice and freewill. Nevertheless, there will be a division of reproductive labor. We eventually allow those who wish to have kids have kids. That will be our breeding class. Those who wish not to have kids will be otherwise. Division of labor is about the same as it has been, just give people more options and the ability to make good choices. Also give people the option of no option, let them have the option of being forced into a job.

Schools can be considered brood care, and if we view eusociality as a model for our society, then we need to improve schools in order to make up for bad parenting. We must idolize teachers and tie their pay to the highest class of earners, this will encourage the best and brightest to go into education. We can’t outlaw bad parenting, or feasibly prevent stupid people from having kids, the only thing we can do is try to minimize a bad parent’s negative impact on their child(ren).

Now some people will say communalism could work, but humans have a tendency to hold on to things even if they have no immediate value. People hoard. There will be people who posture themselves into prospective positions of power. People will seek to hold dominion over others, be they human or animal. We must design a society with that in mind, and design it so that people can have the illusion of power, but can never have too much. Give people not just the illusion, but the objective appearance of inequality, albeit at an agreeable level, and go from there.

In such a society we need to strive for equality. We need to attempt to pay people equally for their effort. Nevertheless, we will also need some people to lead others. I would like it if the only difference in the job between a worker and supervisor was the prestige. Salary should not be much of a factor. That is in part because money will be less important in a eusocial society.

Money will be less important because we will provide many of the things which we now pay for to our brethren at no charge. Basic sustenance, food, water, shelter, electricity, medicine, all must be free. We need to ensure we waste no life by preventing them from having the opportunity to thrive. This is a moral duty. I will work on trying to refine my argument, bolster my case, and do a better job convincing people that it is right. But I know it is, and I hope you do as well, and I also hope you help me when I am lacking. I can’t convince everyone all at once, but if I’ve reach you, the reader, please try to help me in relaying the message to others.

If you are religious, if you care about humanity, if you believe all human life is valuable, then you should support this endeavor. This is the best way to convince people, religious or agnostic, to support a beneficent social system. This is the simplest system, the most rational system, to create a society that accepts the limits of itself, accepts the limits of human interaction, and accepts that not all humans can be equal in a society. What I’m saying is that one often can make more progress moving forward while allowing others to ride on their coattails, than by turning around every few steps in order to knock them off.

 

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