Sunday, April 13, 2008

The basis of human behavior.

What I teach is easy to learn, easy to practice.

However, nobody understands it and nobody practices it.”

Lao Tse

Understanding human behavior has always been a source of frustration and bitterness for humanity and of inspiration for poets and writers all over the world. Two basic postulates allow us to tie the whole range of motivations of human behavior into a coherent scheme. I intend to show that the motive force of human relationships is the same as in the material market-place.

Principal postulates.

First postulate: All human beings have two areas, that can be named the area “I want” and the area “I can”. The area “I want” cover all the desires of a person and the area “I can” includes everything one person is capable of doing.

The area “I want” extends from the wish for an ice cream on a hot day to the drive to survive in a hostile environment. The area “I can” extends from the capacity of the human species to reproduce itself to its ability to create music, paint squares or play chess. These two areas are not firm throughout the life of the individual. The areas grow, shrink and change their configuration; for over a life, the new desires appear, some old ones disappear, pleasures change with age, the person learns a profession etc.

Second postulate: The principal objective, the motive force of all actions in life, is the attempt to cover the area “I want” with some part of the area “I can”. In other words all humans simply attempt to satisfy their desires (they try to “be happy”). If the area “I want” is not covered, the individual “suffers”: he/she feels “unfortunate”. And thus in some moments when the area “I want” is almost completely covered, a person feels total happiness. I want to underline that the principal motivation of the individual is to cover his/her “I want” area, i.e. to satisfy his/her desires or, if that is impossible, to attempt to suppress them (that is, at bottom, to cover them with a part of their own “I can” area).

Self-sufficient strategy.

In order to fulfill this objective human beings use several strategies. One is to attempt to satisfy their desires by themselves (displace or deform their own areas so that the area “I can” covers their area “I want”). Of course there are some desires that human can satisfy themselves more or less successfully, but in the majority of cases the desires of individuals do not coincide totally with their abilities.

· The case of a hermit illustrates a situation in which a person deforms his/her area “I want” and displaces his/her area “I can” to a point of almost total self-satisfaction.

· Another case is the case of a drug addict who under the influence of some chemical substances can reduce his/her area “I want” to one particular desire. It is interesting that both these situations cause complete disconnection from the external world.

· The case of two lovers can show that the mutual areas of two people can overlap almost totally (at least for a certain time), causing both the mutual satisfaction (“happiness”) and also almost total disconnection from the world.

Mutual sufficient strategy.

Another path is for the person not to modify his/her “I want” area and search for another person’s help. But it is not very probable (in a normal situation) that he/she will meet a person who has the area “I can” exactly of the same appearance and form as his/her own “I want” (and that the other person reciprocates his/her desires). This pushes individuals to begin to search for the solution by being in touch with other humans. Curiously, at this moment appears the market, where individuals compete for attention of another, in order to “exchange” their zones of the area “I can” for the favors which could cover their necessity that are within the areas “I can” of others.

I am speaking of the exchange of favors beginning from a simple communication between two people (the ability to listen to a friend in a bar over a beer) to the situation where he/she lands money to a relative for the purchase of a house. This exchange of favors is very similar to a real well-known market-place. Observing human relationships from this point of view can help understand purely human concepts like “good” and “bad” people. The “good” person simply “concedes credit” longer, that is does a favor covering a part of the area “I want” without waiting for immediate reward (the person who “concedes credit” longer will be the more “good” in human terms). Similarly, it is a “bad” person who attempts to use another’s “I can” without the least intention of paying for what he/she has consumed or even paying a minimal amount.

· An example of a “good” person is a parent of children (usually). Parents have “an open credit” to their children all their life without knowing a priori if their “investment” will be “profitable” (and sometimes it is not). Of course, sometimes patience (valuation of the risk) runs out: there are when the parents eject the son from the house (cancellation of the “credit”).

· A selfish and egocentric person is usually referred to as a “bad” person. For example, a selfish friend uses you in order to unload their problems onto you (your capacity to listen is part of your area “I can”) or takes advantage of your personal qualities or relationships with other people (he/she is spending a credit granted to you by another) in order to resolve his/her problems; but he/she doesn’t spend a second listening to you, nor is disposed to be used as a middleman in your affairs. Really what is happening here is that he/she doesn’t return a “favor”.

· Another example of a “bad” person is the case of a rapist. What happens is that a person obliges you, by using violence, to pay something very valuable (for both). It is equivalent to a holdup with violence.

Ancient recipes.

The intensity of suffering caused by the “nakedness” of some zones of the area “I want” is remarkable. This topic worried a lot the old philosophers of India (philosophy and the practice of yoga) and China (Lao Tse, Confucius, etc.) and was one of their main concerns. The basic idea of these philosophers for resolving the problem of suffering consisted in self-control of the area “I want”, in its reduction or deformation so that it corresponded as much as possible to the area “I can” ( “He who is satisfied with what he has, is rich.”). This is perhaps the basic solution offered by Hindu philosophy. Another variation is to opt for a market of rigid and regulated relationships ( “complete the ritual”), which is a solution defended by the Confucius and other Chinese philosophers.

Friendship = mutual credit.

The attempt at free exchange of areas automatically provokes dynamic valuation and competition between the people. As in any “material” market, the buyers attempt to lower the price of the competitor’s “I can” in order to value to the maximum their own “I can”. So the pressure of the group over an individual operates until a dynamic equilibrium is reached.

It is interesting that in the world of human relationships, the majority of us live in a “world of credit.” In their daily environment people don’t usually exchange one favor for another, but rather “open mutual credit”. In other words they try to establish a certain friendship. And the “sum of the credit” depends on the level of friendship that they have; their behavior depends on the progress of mutual “payments.” And this is so important in life that the most unpleasant moments are when somebody begins to diffuse rumors in order to disparage you or sows doubt as to whether you are a “good” person (i.e., casts doubt on your “credibility”).

· Everybody knows that it is comfortable to be among the old friends. The mutual prices are known and stable, and the level of trust for “giving credit” is high, since this has been checked over the years. But it is very uncomfortable to be in a group of unknown people because the prices are not known (one must “haggle” ferociously) and the level of trust for “giving credit” approaches zero ( “there is no trust”).

· In schools or among the army recruits, the concept of a beginner and veteran has always existed. This is simply a way to force the price of the area “I can” of the new person down, so that he/she has to operate in a reduced, rigid and allotted market.

Consequences of the pressure.

Now then, over the years the biology of the body changes, people learn, their pleasures change, their training changes: i.e. the areas “I want” and “I can” constantly vary in location and size. In the modern world, and especially in the big cities, a person is obliged to be in permanent contact with different groups of people, in the office, in the subway, in the gym of the district, at home, etc. Any type of communication between people involves an exchange of the want-can areas. In the same way there is constant pressure on a person, which also stimulates and modifies the areas “I want” and “I can”. At work (office, factory etc.) a person is among colleagues in a market of more or less established relationships where the “mutual prices” are set for this local group. Returning home, however, the person could meet with a different system of values.

· The wide market of possibilities spreads out to influence a lot in the “I want” area of one or both spouses and can cause the mutual overlap of the areas “I want” and “I can” to decrease considerably (the banal expression “we no longer have anything in common” really hits the nail on the head). The obvious solution is not to lower your guard and mutually seek to cherish constantly the overlap areas (the best option is to keep love alive (mutual addiction)).

· An executive who is very efficient in the office and highly valued by his/her colleagues (negotiating ability, persistence, professionalism) could find that for his/her children and husband/wife these qualities have little value because the domestic market values highly human contact, compassion, participation, in other words, constant signs of trust (hope and security of having “credit” with members of the family). If a person is not capable of passing quickly from one system of values to another, this could lead to a break-down in the relationship.

· It is different case when at work a person is constantly under the pressures of different “markets” of values and on returning home can “verify” in a firm domestic market his/her system of values and self-price. This probably plays a very important role in human habits and will be one of the reasons why marriage won’t disappear for a long time yet.

Price of desire.

We have seen how the prices of several zones of the area “I can” usually settle down according to the laws of the market. This is not so for the zones of the area “I want” that are subjective. The mere need of “paying” with any part of the area “I can” for a certain desire could show us the price of the desire.

· For example, if we wanted an ice cream and we found this in the freezer of the house it means a certain effort, a certain cost. But if we didn’t find it and it had to go down to the car-park, take the car and search for it in the supermarket on a very hot day, this means another “cost” to pay for the desire, which could lead us to suppress the desire as being the more “profitable” way to behave.

There are some desires whose “cost” is not at all clear (maybe because the merchandise is extremely rare). In this case the person could suffer the failure to cover their desire without having slightest understanding of the price to be paid. This is an important factor in the decision whether to continue with the search for the reward or to attempt to suppress the desire (this is the same as using a part of their own area “I can” in the effort to suppress the desire). The problem of the correct valuation is very important in our life.

· A typical example is the yearning for a “Mr. Right”, which is the dream of almost all women. In the end, however, the majority accept that the “price” of this desire is overwhelming (or the “merchandise” simply doesn’t exist), especially, when they consider the value of their area “I can”. Not all single people fail to get married because they lack a “Mr. Right”, but probably because most of them fail to value themselves properly in the market of human relationships (they overvalue themselves).

From this point of view now it is possible to understand the common human tendency to gossip. This is a way to discuss and preinstall the price, the value, to some human behave that in other way (alone decision) is simple impossible or very subjective. In our common life frequently we also want to know the price of thing that we don't think to buy apriori.

All this leads us to the curious conclusion that the “market” is something more profound, something pre-programmed by nature, maybe a logical and natural consequence of any organism.

In this paper I have referred to human behavior, but maybe the same could be applied to the animal and even the vegetable world. I suspect also that the principal problem of the Artificial Intelligence is lack of understanding of this fundamental principle.

Barcelona, January 1996.

Test del autentico sociata.

El socialismo es una ideología de los representantes de Dios en la Tierra que quieren enseñar a la humanidad -por fuerza a cada humano si es preciso- como debe vivir para ser feliz.

Es un test de si eres un autentico sociata (socialista, nacionalsocialista, comunista, maoista, trotskista o verde) o no.

  1. Amas la humanidad con todo el corazón… pero odias a los humanos (son unos tontos borregos ¡¿hay que si?!)
  2. Amas lo público, escuelas y universidades públicas, sanidad pública, administración pública, pensiones públicas, etc. Todo lo público pertenece al Estado (lee al Partido) que sabe muy bien cómo hacer feliz a la humanidad... Y por el contrario odias todo lo privado, lo privado pertenece a estos estúpidos humanos que intentan de ser felices por si mismos, hacen lo que les da la gana, enseñan a sus hijos cosas del pasado y cada uno a su manera, a menudo no respetan a los representantes del Estado ni del Partido que son unos seres en cierto sentido superiores a los simples mortales
  3. Amas la Paz… pero tirar las piedras a los policías, quemar los bancos y autobuses es legitimo (claro ¡te impiden matar a todos estos fachas!)
  4. Amas el pacifismo. La desmilitarización, la abolición del servicio militar obligatorio, la desnuclearización, “No A La Guerra”, “Fuera los misiles” son unos eslóganes nobles para la eternidad… por su puesto que lo de “levantamiento de masas”, las revoluciones, las guerras de la Liberalización anticolonialistas son totalmente otra cosa. Tampoco vamos a confundir, las armas en las manos de los países socialistas son una cosa sagrada y legitima si no ¿como vamos a propagar la Revolución Mundial? y ¿donde van a comprar las pistolas y subfusiles nuestros héroes de la ETA, IRA, OLP o nuestros hermanos palestinos?
  5. Amas la naturaleza… pero no aguantas mas de un fin de semana en el campo (las moscas, agua fría y ¡sin el aire acondicionado!)
  6. Amas la ecología, la naturaleza debe ser protegida, cualquier intervención humana debe ser eliminada como perjudicial para su desarrollo "natural"... Pero claro los humanos son otra cosa. La sociedad no es una parte de la naturaleza (desde que Adán y Eva fueron expulsados del Edén). La humanidad no puede ser dejada al "azar". Debe ser modificada, educada, forjada a su pesar para que por fin llegue a su estado de armonía perfecta.
  7. Amas la cultura, ¡es la nuestra salvación!.... pero con dificultades acabaste el bachillerato (claro esta que ¡los profes no saben explicar cosas en plan simple!)
  8. Amas la diversidad de ideas… pero te gustaría quemar a todas estas iglesias y eliminar a los cristianos (lo de Islam es distinto, es su cultura autóctona!).
  9. Amas la diversidad cultural… pero lo de toros, flamenco, sevillanas es una cosa totalmente pasada de moda y deben ser borrados de la memoria.
  10. Estas a favor de la expropiación de la vivienda (vacia)… pero ojo! No estamos hablando de mi casita de la playa (es para echar un polvo con la novia los fines de semana!)
  11. Amas la enseñanza publica y gratuita... pero llevas a tus hijos a las escuelas privadas al alcance de unos pocos (para más detalles preguntar al ex-presidente Montilla y también al Primer Socialista español, el Presidente Rodriguez ZP).
  12. Amas la Democracia incluso piensas que morirás por ella... pero solo y cuando el pueblo vota a mi Partido. Si les engañan y empiezan a votar a otros es una democracia podrida y debe ser combatida.
  13. Amas la Libertad... pero quizás no esta para todos, algunos aun no están preparados (por ejemplo Paco vota a Dios sabe quien y Maria no vota nunca y critica a todos los políticos, incluso a los que ¡quieren ayudarle!)
  14. Amas la Libertad de expresion que es la piedra angular de todas las democracias... pero no vamos a confundirlo con lo que pretenden los fachas y todos estos "liberales" que quieren ofender el honor de nuestros lideres, nuestras ideas, nuestros símbolos y nuestras banderas, ¡por Dios un poco de respeto! A estos hay que tapar la boca sin miramientos.
  15. Amas la igualdad, toda tu vida luchas por la igualdad de los hombres... lo que pasa que estamos hablando del pueblo llano no de la riqueza de los miembros de mi partido (¡por favor no vamos a confundir peras con patatas! Primer paso a la igualdad será expropiar a los ricos y transferir su riqueza a los sabios manos de mi partido.)
  16. Amas la justicia para todos... lo que pasa que no se trata de una justicia ciega, no señor, ¡hablamos de la Justicia social! (es decir lo que dice el Partido en un momento dado, cualquier otra cosa es una justicia burguesa podrida). Los nobles representantes del Pueblo (lee la nomenclatura del Partido) deben ser tratados separadamente para no herir sus sentimientos y no desprestigiar la santidad de los altos cargos, si no, el Pueblo puede empezar a dudar de las decisiones de sus Timoneles.
  17. Amas el contrato fijo, especialmente el vitalicio como tienen los funcionarios, para que la empresa no piensa que puede dejarte en la calle en cualquier día de estos... pero esto no significa que tu pareja debe atarte con un contrato de matrimonio porque esto es un ataque a tus "libertades individuales".  Como máximo en términos "una pareja de hecho" (para que el Estado te pasa la pensión en caso del fallecimiento de tu pareja).
  18. Amas la Seguridad Social, todos deben tener derecho a una sanidad “gratuita” gestionada por nosotros, el gremio de los funcionarios… pero claro está, no vamos a jugar con nuestra propia salud y no podemos hacer cola al médico con Dios sabe con quién al lado,  por eso tenemos la nuestra Mutua privada MUFASE así de claro. 
  19. Amas el impuesto progresivo, es justo que los ricos paguen más que los pobres, ¿hay que si?… lo que pasa que es un buen eslogan para el pueblo llano pero en realidad hoy día los ricos son nosotros, la clase política en su mayoría, así que nuestros ahorros están en SICAV pagando 5% de impuestos y el pueblo llano paga los 120% de impuestos sobre la gasolina y tabaco, los 120% sobre el agua, los 100% sobre la electricidad y por su puesto los 21% del  IVA, todos por igual, si no ¿quién va a sostener a nosotros, la clase política? 
  20. Odias a las dictaduras, sin duda alguna son resultado del imperialismo militarista... y para acabar con ellas de una vez para siempre es imprescindible establecer un régimen de La Dictadura del Proletariado (que no es en realidad una dictadura porque no puede haber una dictadura sobre si mismo ). Las tentativas parecidas empezando por la de la URSS, Alemania, Corea del Norte, China, Campuchea, Vietnam, Cuba, etc. no eran verdaderas, ni correctas por su puesto.
  21. Odias a los monopolios, es que son las criaturas infernales del salvaje capitalismo... pero claro esta, no se trata de la Compañía Estatal de Ferrocarriles, ni de la Seguridad Social, ni del Sistema Educativo estatal, ni de Sistema estatal de Pensiones, etc., es que si vamos a privatizar todo de que va a vivir el Partido? y ademas el pueblo ya no dependerá de nosotros!
  22. Odias a los conservadores, son unos fachas y el freno al auténtico progreso de la humanidad… pero por supuesto debemos de proteger y conservar la vida campestre contra la invasión despiadada capitalista de grandes urbes, debemos de proteger y conservar la tierra contra los fertilizantes químicos, debemos de proteger y conservar los bosques contra la invasión de los humanos, debemos de proteger y conservar la vida de los indígenas que viven aún en los bosques de Amazonas, Borneo, Guinea-Papúa, África y Australia, debemos de luchar contra las presas hidráulicas que perjudican al flujo natural de las aguas de los ríos.
  23. Odias el tabaco y a los fumadores, el tabaco perjudica la salud no solo de los fumadores pero también a la gente que les rodea, los fumadores pasivos, y no hablo de los desorbitantes gastos de la SS para curar el cáncer que provoca el tabaco… pero por otro lado debemos de “liberalizar” el consumo de la marihuana y otras drogas blandas. Y no hablo porque estoy en contra de las multinacionales tabacaleras y la maría lo planto en mi tejado. 
  24. Odias a los "españoles" porque nos están expoliando: ¡pagamos más impuestos que recibimos del Estado año tras año!… pero por otro lado, cuidado, los ricos deben pagar más impuestos que los pobres y las grandes ciudades deben contribuir al desarrollo de la infraestructura del país así funciona la “distribución de la riqueza” en un mundo de la Justicia Social (una cosa es redistribuir dinero de otros que es justo y totalmente otra cosa es redistribuir dinero de uno que es un expolio!)
  25. Odias la “violencia de género”, hay tantas mujeres que sufren la salvaje violencia de los sucios hombres (más de 50 mueren cada año!)… pero claro esta lo de tirar las piedras contra los policías, pegar a los políticos en plena calle, hacer escraches a los fachas de todos los colores o incluso pegar un tiro a uno (o incluso meter una bomba a la discoteca de los burgueses) es una violencia revolucionaria y progresista!
  26. Odias a los transgénicos, es una aberración puramente comercial de las malditas multinacionales y es muy peligrosa para un humano… pero claro no tiene nada que ver con el cambio de sexo de los humanos, debemos de ignorar la dictadura de las cromosomas X o Y, si un hombre se siente más cómodo como una mujer o al revés es totalmente legítimo y natural.

Si has respondido afirmativo a todas estas preguntas significa que eres un autentico sociata e iras al paraíso socialista rodeado de 20 vírgenes esbeltas camaradas de tipo FernandezDeLaVega.

Y no escuches a algunos fachas que te recomiendan ir al psiquiatra...

Test de derechas o de izquierdas.
Sobre las derechas - derechas otra vez.