Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Who you calling a "pinko forager"?...

A new look at how our political divisions may be more ancient and closer to home than we thought.
Types A and B map reasonably well onto today’s culture wars, with A the modern/liberal and B the traditional/conservative. It maps well to the rich-poor axis from the World Value Survey.  But in fact, type A vs. B are actually foragers vs. farmers. Which is my point: I think a lot of today’s political disputes come down to a conflict between farmer and forager ways, with forager ways slowly and steadily winning out since the industrial revolution. It seems we acted like farmers when farming required that, but when richer we feel we can afford to revert to more natural-feeling forager ways. The main exceptions, like school and workplace domination and ranking, are required to generate industry-level wealth. We live a farmer lifestyle when poor, but prefer to buy a forager lifestyle when rich. Why this should be will be the subject of my next few posts. [Please read the whole short post for context - I hated to excerpt more]
I'm always suspicious of methods to sort people out, but I keep finding references to agriculture creeping into our cultural debate. This will impact our ag policy debate to some degree IMHO.

[via mr]

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