FROM THE WILDERNESS
By James Strauss
Neither American political party, not the republicans nor the democrats, can release themselves from the secure steely grasp of old people running almost everything. Biden is likely to be the candidate for president from the democratic party and Trump for the republican. Biden would be 81, if he wins the nomination and the election and Trump 77. Where are all the young people? There are over 20 members of the senate under age sixty and over 110 members of the House. There are also 24 governors under sixty years of age. The mass media does not cover the publication or give exposure to any of these younger politicians unless they practice their politicizing by being outrageous. Marjorie Taylor Green and Mr. Santos are perfect examples of who gets televised or written about, yet these two outrageous individuals get most of the notice, while the media noticing them know deep down that they have no chance of ever running for higher office.
Anthropologists can answer the question about why this is the way it is.
It’s exactly the same thing that happens in baboon troops that anthropologists’ study. The anthropoid studies have shown over time that the older males, called alpha males, hold onto power over the baboon tribes for as long as possible in life. They depend upon a small cabal of those male baboons not attempting to overthrow them and that is the authority structure in every baboon troop. Younger males, those trying to gain a hold within the tribe, suffer such frustration and anxiety that they beat bushes and trees with big sticks to release their emotions without getting themselves killed. This kind of activity is called ‘displacement activity,’ and is common to all baboon tribes. You will note that females of the human species have not been mentioned as potential alphas simply because that is not the way that genetics have shaped the human condition through the many thousands of years since the beginning of our modern development. Females have joined into the pursuit of leadership positions, however. Not in vast numbers but they have been marginally successful at offering competitive meritorious performance to the extent that some alpha males have been replaced by them. What will happen over time, however, is anyone’s guess.
What is the likelihood that the genetic behavior that alpha males exhibit and their ability to form and control small cabals to stay in power will be overthrown as a form of leadership selection for large populations of humans? That’s a difficult question to answer, especially in light of the obvious fact that alpha male behavior and control of others isn’t really presented as that by the mass media. The hoary old stories of “I was raised a poor black child” stuff, as well portrayed in the movie The Jerk, the actor speaking the lines, Steve Martin. Nepotistic behavior pervades the human social system. Sixty-two percent of all students who get into private colleges across the nation do not get into those schools by taking tests or by being 4.0 students through high school. They get into those schools by a method called legacy. If their parents went, then they get in. The public doesn’t much know this or pay attention to it. The literary fields of writing and screenwriting are exactly the same. Be related or be on your way. I am not revealing deep dark secrets in this article, I’m just relating stuff that people know about but don’t pay attention to unless ‘grazed’ by a part of the system that might affect them personally. Is this system of selection, spread out over the entire society and deeply and silently embedded into the culture likely to change?
Will the nation be able to get a decent leader that is not an aging alpha male who’s been able to hold onto a high leadership position until dying in place? Occasionally, because the existing social systems sometimes break down, from violence within or without, because of disasters or physical changes to the economics or even geography of a social order and more. Today, right now however, the nation teeters between selecting one old alpha male over another. All competitors have been beaten down using tools that today don’t require fighting or violence. Displacement activity is everywhere but it’s called alcoholism or drug addiction. As botch Socrates and Plato stated thousands or years ago: “finding a beneficent leader is almost impossible.”
We, today, are living through a very revealing and evident part of the real selective process, which is not survival of the fittest, but survival of the best connected.