I was fortunate to attend In the Year 2525: Big Science, Big History, and the Far Future of Humanity conference last month. Of the many thoughtful presentations, one in particular still keeps me up at night.
Altruism is the unselfish concern for the welfare of others. It goes against the logic of survival of the fittest because it increases the fitness of another individual at the expense of the executor. At the conference, Richard Dawkins spoke about altruism as “a wonderful Darwinian mistake”.
Dawkins mentioned that living organisms abide by certain rules of thumb under normal environmental conditions. For example, a bird will feed any squawking things in a nest, but by following this rule of thumb, a bird may feed another species. From a Darwinian standpoint this is a mistake, but a wonderful mistake because it is altruistic.
How could we get our elected leaders to understand altruism beyond mandated ethics training? Maybe the Government Accountability Office (GAO) plays a greater role in the on-boarding and education process. Better yet, we should have GAO Day, a national holiday that ensures everyone knows about the great work that they do.
Thanks for reading my twenty-eighth blog post.
The Republican Millennial