Thursday, May 23, 2013

Selecting for Chaos

An observation on the various happenings in Europe and the US, regarding violence and the rising of the violent subgroups.

One of the things that I think is critical at this junction is the fact that we are selecting (in an unintended fashion) for strength of violence. With each successive iteration, with each round of gun control, we remove the ability to resist from a few more, leaving the truly heinous behind. We disarm the people who are willing to obey the law, while those willing to flout it continue to go about their business. The people who would do the most good are being denied arms, while the people who do the most harm are left intact. In its turn, we are intentionally selecting for ease of governance while unintentionally selecting for heinous violence.

Look at this another way- start with an armed populace. Some will be good at heart but weak, some good but strong, others vile but weak or vile but strong. (I'm drastically simplifying the shadings). Ask for the guns, telling them its for the greater good. The good/weak, not trusting themselves for their own defense, will hand them in. The good but strong will resist. The vile but weak don't care for the greater good, and will ignore. The vile but strong will see easier targets in the unarmed. Now threaten them all a little bit, if they don't give the guns back. The vile but weak will give up- they can't hack it. But the vile/strong (who were commiting the most heinous acts anyway) aren't going to give it up that easy. Ok, so now try to take them by force. The good/strong will have moral objections to killing you when you try to take them- the vile/strong will have none. You will successfully disarm the good/strong, but fail to disarm the vile/strong.

It is important to look at some examples- the Aryan Brotherhood, the Cartels of South America, and violent street gangs of US cities.

The AB is a group that is defined by race- only one color allowed. In our cultural quest for equality (no time here to comment on THAT), we have suppressed any group that values the white (grrr, I hate this terminology) race. We have removed or destroyed all but the most insidious group- a group that represents all of the latent violence, distilled through social engineering to remove any voices that would caution or restrain them. Basically, the only ones left are the hardest or most adherent, as social pressure has removed any and all moderates from their ranks.

 Next example, the drug Cartels. When various recreational drugs were illegalized in the US, a black market naturally sprung up. At first, there were many groups that were involved in it, but an increasingly intense Law Enforcement effort has removed most of those it can handle. Unfortunately, we have not reduced the demand for these drugs, thereby guaranteeing that the groups who are left have several things in common. First, they are much richer than they were before- enforcement having removed all their rivals, each remaining Cartel occupies a much larger portion of the market share. Second, they are the most ruthless and the most difficult to catch, otherwise they would have been caught already. Third, they are the most successful- those successes are what built both their reputation and their ability to remain elusive. Relying on the Law Enforcement's methods has, indeed, reduced the number of drug supply groups in the United States, but the unintended consequence is that the remaining groups are stronger, more influential, much much richer, and immeasurably more vicious than the ones that came before them. They were selected for those very traits.

Finally, the street gangs. Granted, there is some overlap between youth street gangs and both racist subgroups and drug running, but I think it is important to focus on the community aspect of these groups in particular- mostly because THEY HAVE ONE.  One aspect of the street gang phenomenon is that of belonging. Your gang is your home, your family, and your protection. In many ways, it echoes the tribalism of the US prior to settlement by Europeans. Each tribe generally looks out for its own, guards its members against attacks by other groups, and the majority of the violence occurs over either a scarcity of resources or on the borders between two expanding groups. Many kids join these gangs not for the prestige, or the money, but for a sense of belonging. And, not incidentally, for the protection afforded a member. One difference of note is that the resources are not food or shelter but money and influence. The margins on the drug supply are the highest profit margins of any product in the world today, so it is unsurprising that these are the markets that these gangs operate in. Systematic suppression by social and law enforcement methods, as described in relation to the other two groups, have selected for the highest level of violence, and the lowest level of moderation.

Life is getting more and more interesting these days. Stay safe out there!