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Bicep size & belief systems

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  • Bicep size & belief systems

    PROBLEM: The pre-societal, animal model of conflict resolution is simple, brutal, and effective. Leaving aside political gambles, moral considerations, and the like, the strong are more willing to fight for their self-interest, while the weak find it more advantageous not to assert themselves. Extrapolated to a fairly simple conflict of interest -- wealth redistribution -- do modern humans operate under the same logic?



    METHODOLOGY: Researchers at Aarhus University in Denmark and UC Santa Barbara collected from several hundred men and women in Argentina, the U.S., and Denmark. They categorized the subjects by socioeconomic class, their upper-body strength, or "fighting ability" (as measured by the "circumference of the flexed bicep of the dominant arm"), and their responses to a questionnaire gauging their support for economic redistribution.


    RESULTS: Rich men, who would benefit least from redistribution, were more likely to be opposed to it -- but only when they also had large biceps. There was a negative correlation between the two, so that rich men with less muscle strength were more open to redistribution. In men of lower socioeconomic status, the correlation was reversed: stronger men were more in favor of redistribution, while men with smaller muscles were less likely to support it.


    These associations remained significant even once the researchers controlled for political party. No relationship between strength and ideology, however, was seen in women.




    IMPLICATIONS: Evolutionarily speaking, write the authors, "it is a fitness error for weaker contestants to attempt to seize resources when they cannot prevail and for stronger ones to cede what they can cost-effectively defend," at least in men. For women (again, in terms of evolution), physical conflict is rarely worth it. Regardless of the high-minded ideas we may have about how our ideologies are formed, their findings suggest, whether we argue in favor of the common good or our own self-interest is to some degree influenced by who would win should it come down to an arm wrestle.
    Study: Men's Biceps Predict Their Political Ideology - Lindsay Abrams - The Atlantic

    so would your beliefs change when you get big biceps from going primal?
    Starting Date: Dec 18, 2010
    Starting Weight: 294 pounds
    Current Weight: 235 pounds
    Goal Weight: 195 pounds

  • #2
    I have gotten big biceps, not from going primal, but from working out on my pullup bar. It hasn't changed my politico-economic orientation.

    Comment


    • #3
      It may be more to do with testosterone. I doubt that the stronger of these men were all working out and the weaker were all sat on couches. It's more likely that muscle distribution was partly down to activity, but also partly down to latent testosterone.
      Someone with higher testosterone is more likely to develop physical strength and muscle mass (even without really trying), more likely to be an alpha, gamma or beta type, far less likely to be passive and accept social change that would harm them.
      Someone with lower testosterone is less likely to easily develop muscle, more likely to be a delta or omega type and less likely to destabilize their environment, even if it gives them a chance at a better life.

      Of course, some people with low testosterone could boost it with exercise, diet or steroids. This typically results in a more assertive, dominant individual (though sometimes in someone aggressive, when a true "omega" boosts their T) who would be less likely to compromise their own success. So it COULD change, but I doubt it does so all that often.
      --
      Perfection is entirely individual. Any philosophy or pursuit that encourages individuality has merit in that it frees people. Any that encourages shackles only has merit in that it shows you how wrong and desperate the human mind can get in its pursuit of truth.

      --
      I get blunter and more narcissistic by the day.
      I'd apologize, but...

      Comment


      • #4
        Growing my biceps changed my world-view completely, especially the last two inches...
        "All truth passes through three stages. First, it is ridiculed. Second, it is violently opposed. Third, it is accepted as being self-evident."

        - Schopenhauer

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by Kochin View Post
          It may be more to do with testosterone. I doubt that the stronger of these men were all working out and the weaker were all sat on couches. It's more likely that muscle distribution was partly down to activity, but also partly down to latent testosterone.
          Someone with higher testosterone is more likely to develop physical strength and muscle mass (even without really trying), more likely to be an alpha, gamma or beta type, far less likely to be passive and accept social change that would harm them.
          Someone with lower testosterone is less likely to easily develop muscle, more likely to be a delta or omega type and less likely to destabilize their environment, even if it gives them a chance at a better life.

          Of course, some people with low testosterone could boost it with exercise, diet or steroids. This typically results in a more assertive, dominant individual (though sometimes in someone aggressive, when a true "omega" boosts their T) who would be less likely to compromise their own success. So it COULD change, but I doubt it does so all that often.
          I think it's also true that people who try it and find they get quick results are more likely to keep with it than those who see imperceptibly slow results.

          Comment


          • #6
            Originally posted by eKatherine View Post
            I have gotten big biceps, not from going primal, but from working out on my pullup bar. It hasn't changed my politico-economic orientation.
            One issue with the study: note no correlation between bicep size and behavior in women, which immediately invalidates their main thesis measuring tool
            Starting Date: Dec 18, 2010
            Starting Weight: 294 pounds
            Current Weight: 235 pounds
            Goal Weight: 195 pounds

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by kenn View Post
              One issue with the study: note no correlation between bicep size and behavior in women, which immediately invalidates their main thesis measuring tool
              Not necessarily. There are many instances where the behaviors of men and women in a given situation are simply different.

              For instance, taller men are treated as leaders, simply because they are tall, and shorter men as followers. A shorter man will behave in small ways as though he is threatened by the presence of a taller man. He responds differently than he would with a man or men his own height.

              But women do not behave differently in the presence of taller women or men. They do not feel threatened or challenged.

              Comment


              • #8
                I'm scrawny and poor. I do not believe in redistribution of wealth. I guess I am an anomaly.
                The above should be viewed as complete and utter nonsense.

                Comment


                • #9
                  Originally posted by aliphian View Post
                  I'm scrawny and poor. I do not believe in redistribution of wealth. I guess I am an anomaly.
                  And then there's the question, redistribution of wealth of what sort? Because redistribution of wealth is a double-ended arrow. Wealth can and does move in either direction depending on political and economic considerations.

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Originally posted by eKatherine View Post
                    And then there's the question, redistribution of wealth of what sort? Because redistribution of wealth is a double-ended arrow. Wealth can and does move in either direction depending on political and economic considerations.
                    Socialism/Communism

                    Using the state to force people to give up their wealth so it can be given to those that the state decides to.
                    Starting Date: Dec 18, 2010
                    Starting Weight: 294 pounds
                    Current Weight: 235 pounds
                    Goal Weight: 195 pounds

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Originally posted by kenn View Post
                      Socialism/Communism

                      Using the state to force people to give up their wealth so it can be given to those that the state decides to.
                      Which means that when poor people pay a much higher tax rate than the wealthy, so that the wealthy not only pay little or none but get direct subsidies, we have socialism/communism?

                      The flow of money is a two way street.

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        Originally posted by eKatherine View Post
                        Which means that when poor people pay a much higher tax rate than the wealthy, so that the wealthy not only pay little or none but get direct subsidies, we have socialism/communism?

                        The flow of money is a two way street.
                        What?
                        Starting Date: Dec 18, 2010
                        Starting Weight: 294 pounds
                        Current Weight: 235 pounds
                        Goal Weight: 195 pounds

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          Originally posted by kenn View Post
                          What?
                          Yep. Wealth can redistribute in either direction. And does.

                          Comment


                          • #14
                            Originally posted by eKatherine View Post
                            Yep. Wealth can redistribute in either direction. And does.
                            Except your subtopic has no bearing on the topic of the thread. But I'll bite, where does your above situation exist in a developed country?

                            How does wealth redistribution mean anything other than the generally accepted meaning that I posted?
                            Starting Date: Dec 18, 2010
                            Starting Weight: 294 pounds
                            Current Weight: 235 pounds
                            Goal Weight: 195 pounds

                            Comment


                            • #15
                              Originally posted by kenn View Post
                              Except your subtopic has no bearing on the topic of the thread. But I'll bite, where does your above situation exist in a developed country?

                              How does wealth redistribution mean anything other than the generally accepted meaning that I posted?
                              Your meaning is not the "generally accepted meaning". The word "redistribution" is neutral in direction. All taxes are redistributive in nature. They never go back 100% to the person who paid them.

                              But why should I have to give you examples of wealthy people paying no taxes PLUS getting subsidies from the government right here in the US, when it's been in the news regularly for years?

                              You were the one who brought up redistribution of wealth.

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