J.D. Hall
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The first week of July was supposed to be a good week -- three-day weekend, Independence Day fireworks and BBQ, my lovely wife's birthday (she's 29 *cough* *cough* even though we've been together 32 years...)

That's what it was supposed to be. Damn if it instead went off the rails. Two men shot to death by the police (Baton Rouge, Minneapolis) and five police officers shot to death by a sniper or group of snipers (Dallas), one of the nominees for president barely escapes prosecution for using a private server to transmit and receive classified material, bombings in the Middle East that left hundreds dead.

Thank God for tequila.

I approach this weekend feeling saddened -- I always do after a "mass" shooting, and even though they come with depressing regularity these days, it still saddens me. I'm not one of those grumpy old geezers who thinks everything "back in our day" was hunky-dory, but still, this is really weird to me.

I promise you will get a lot of old geezers talking about how everyone got along (actually, them coloreds and women knew their place and shut up about it) and how the country was so united and peaceful. Tell that to the black men who got strung up on an old pecan tree just for daring to look at a white woman. Tell that to the woman who got the shit beat out of her by her husband, and was told by the cops that maybe she shouldn't be such a bitch to him. Tell that to the gay guy .... wait, you wouldn't have known if he was gay or not, because back "in the day" gay people hid their sexual orientation for fear of, well, everything. Tell that to the fish in the Ohio River watching the surface of the river burn due to chemicals dumped into the water, or the sanitation guys trying to scrub pounds of carbon that fell on statues and streets in America's big cities.

Yeah, the "Golden Old Days" were pretty messed up as well.

So I understand the shifts in culture, and mostly approve of them. Hell, I was a kid in the 1960s when America went through a wrenching social change. Outside of the LA riots after the Rodney King acquittal in the 1990s, we had honest-to-God riots back in the 1960s. Whole sections of cities burned down, dozens killed, more injured, hundreds arrested. We had the Vietnam War on TV every night -- not that sanitized, PR-based crap you see now. We saw guys shot in front of our eyes, bloody stumps where arms and legs used to be, terrified villagers huddled on the ground with troops standing over them. Takeovers of college campuses. Street clashes between anti-war protestors and "America First" construction workers. It was crazy, man, just crazy. But we needed to go through that, and we came out a more equal society that is more accepting of differences.

So what happened? Why the mass shootings, the deep political divide, the fear that has made kids disappear from streets and parks and shuffled off to "play dates" and video games. We seem to be withdrawing from each other in real life, in real time. People stay home, do their shopping online, many even work online, they're home-schooling their kids and are terrified of letting the kids play out in the backyard. It's like there are two Americas -- one where multi-racial marriages and kids are considered no big deal and women's life choices expanded dramatically, and the other America, where we all "shelter in place" every freaking day and teach our children to do the same.

I have a theory, and I am sure it is full of crap. But here it goes.

Revolution is often thought of as a governmental change -- you kick out the Brits and set up your own government, or you shoot the president and legislators, and install your own president and legislators. But in America, revolutions are fairly common, and have little to do with government. It's cultural.

For all the idiocy of the culture I grew up in, there were differences I find telling...and yes, most have to do with how we raise children. When I was a kid, we played lots of games (usually outside -- what a quaint, quaint notion). We played Army, or cowboys and Indians, with all its mock violence. But we also played baseball, football, basketball, even soccer!! We played with sticks and rode bikes and built things with Legos and Lincoln Logs. We didn't, however, have video games, and certainly when video games first started, we didn't have first person shooter games. When we went to the movies, we didn't see movies like Fast and Furious or any of the other similar themed movies that were about car crashes and guns and bitches/hos (not saying female roles were good back then, but still....). Sure, there was the famous car chase in "Bullitt," which, ended ironically enough, with the passenger of the car Steve McQueen was chasing accidentally blowing the head of the driver next to him just prior to the vehicle's crash into a gas station. We didn't have 24/7 television chock full of commercials and news programs who were ramping up the fear factor in order to sell us product or keep us glued to the set. And if you wanted to leave your 12-gauge in the rack in your pickup when you drove to school, nobody thought anything about it. It's not like we had school shootings back in the day.

In short, we have a far different culture now than four decades ago. Most of it is better, a lot of it isn't. That's how it goes, I guess. And I'm just barely smart enough to realize that much of what is controversial TODAY was HIDDEN back in the day. Domestic violence, racism (to an extent), homosexuality, women's rights -- those were problems back in the day, but they were hush-hush, not talked about. We're now actually confronting these issues, and that's where my theory comes to fruition:

We're in a civil war, not one fought with bombs and tanks and rifles, but fought in the culture itself. And the old guard - white people like me, especially males -- is resisting it tooth-and-nail. The new guard -- everybody else -- is pushing hard, probably too hard and too fast. But that's how things get done in the US. So that's why we had the Southern Democrats turn into the Southern Republicans, that's why we saw Congress basically turn the economy toward favoring the rich and connected to a greater extent than ever before, and that's why we have the "gun culture" that has literally exploded before my eyes. It's like the Doomsday Preppers stuff -- when I was a kid, we always talked about Doomsday, brought to you courtesy of thermonuclear war. We were always 30 minutes away from annihilation, so yeah, we talked about it == and then we went on with our lives. The Preppers, with a far more nebulous Doomsday, are taking concrete and excessive steps to prepare. Prepare for what is a good question, and their answers run a wide gamut of things -- none of them actually realistic.

So we have this incredible social tension, between the people who are fine with blacks and women and gays being treated like everyone else, and the people who resent losing their status as secure first-class citizens in a supposedly-classless society. If you thought the 1960s were full of extremists, you're not paying attention to the lunatics of the 21st Century.

Yeah, there really isn't a point to this, just a lot of meandering nonsense strung together. That's how I feel right now, so sue me. I hate that black men are automatically considered criminals by most of their fellow citizens, not just the cops. I hate it that five cops just doing their jobs were shot down in the streets for no reason at all. I hate it that Congress has basically given itself a pass to do nothing except draw a paycheck. I hate it that we have the two worst candidates for president in my lifetime. I hate it that we have the 24/7 news channel that relies too much on people paid to rachet up controversy and discord instead of have discussions on issues. I hate it that they still do drug tests where I work -- it sure would be nice to sit back and smoke a joint with my beautiful wife while we watch the sun set over the hedges in the backyard.

So my advice (like you care LOL) is to grab whatever enjoyment you have in life and hold tight to the people you love. And have another shot of tequila.

Peace be unto you.
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Thanks for this. This state of mind meshes well with what I've been feeling recently, so yes, I think there's a lot of us out there.

This state of mind also made it into a novelist's (rather long, but incredibly necessary) New Yorker piece.

The title's a bit bad -- it'll come off as "lib writer goes to Trump rallies, finds exactly what he expects" -- but the piece itself is way more of "lib writer goes to Trump rallies, finds the dissolution of civil society on left and right, mourns it, finds isolated crumbs of hope, and is scared for the future".

As for myself, I'm an Xer. I wear black Chuck Taylors to work, unironically. I worry like hell about my kids, and the quality of education they're getting in school, when (as any kids do), they absolutely obsess about where they're going to get their latest digital fix from.

I'm the bad cop in my house, i.e. Dr. No. I never thought my life would've turned out this way, but here we are. And yet, I'm tired and worried a lot, so I definitely get it, as Louie CK would say, when as parents we just need a few moments after the day/week/month of shit and just let the kids plug in with Minecraft video after Minecraft video.

Gin is my hard drink of choice.

My neighbor is a former contractor and current project manager. His daughter and my son are the same age and play together - they're going off to middle school together in the fall. We trade beer and "lazy husband" stories.

He's a gun owner, but doesn't keep it in the house, and is absolutely for more gun regulation - "we need a country where any asshole can't get his hands on one". I've sometimes expressed a desire to learn to shoot, or at least wanted to learn basic gun safety.

I just keep coming back to what the hated Obama said: we can do better than this.

Back to work.

Edit: actually, no. Not done.

There are little victories, here and there --

- I can play Beethoven piano, the really good stuff. I use it to keep myself sane without resorting to self-medicating. It's a true island of peace.
- I'm a great husband and father. Or at least my wife tells me so.
- Now that my kids are a bit older, I'm turning them into pretentious movie snobs. My son really likes The Great Escape, The Magnificent Seven, and Rear Window. (We might have a budding Hitchcock fan.) It was a night of magic -- I know of no other word for it -- when we watched City Lights as a family. This weekend we're scheduling Some Like It Hot.
- My son is handling his medical issues (will reveal if asked) with the amazing resiliency of kids that puts me in awe.
- My daughter is learning karate, because that's a thing that every woman should know. I admire her git'r'done spirit.

We're doing the right things, I think. I hope. I just worry constantly that it's going to be enough.
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He's looking real sharp in his 1940's fedora. He's got nerves of steel, an iron will, and several other metal-themed attributes. His fur is water tight and he's always up for a fight.
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bbenston wrote:
Thanks for this. This state of mind meshes well with what I've been feeling recently, so yes, I think there's a lot of us out there.

This state of mind also made it into a novelist's (rather long, but incredibly necessary) New Yorker piece.

The title's a bit bad -- it'll come off as "lib writer goes to Trump rallies, finds exactly what he expects" -- but the piece itself is way more of "lib writer goes to Trump rallies, finds the dissolution of civil society on left and right, mourns it, finds isolated crumbs of hope, and is scared for the future".

As for myself, I'm an Xer. I wear black Chuck Taylors to work, unironically. I worry like hell about my kids, and the quality of education they're getting in school, when (as any kids do), they absolutely obsess about where they're going to get their latest digital fix from.

I'm the bad cop in my house, i.e. Dr. No. I never thought my life would've turned out this way, but here we are. And yet, I'm tired and worried a lot, so I definitely get it, as Louie CK would say, when as parents we just need a few moments after the day/week/month of shit and just let the kids plug in with Minecraft video after Minecraft video.

Gin is my hard drink of choice.

My neighbor is a former contractor and current project manager. His daughter and my son are the same age and play together - they're going off to middle school together in the fall. We trade beer and "lazy husband" stories.

He's a gun owner, but doesn't keep it in the house, and is absolutely for more gun regulation - "we need a country where any asshole can't get his hands on one". I've sometimes expressed a desire to learn to shoot, or at least wanted to learn basic gun safety.

I just keep coming back to what the hated Obama said: we can do better than this.

Back to work.

Edit: actually, no. Not done.

There are little victories, here and there --

- I can play Beethoven piano, the really good stuff. I use it to keep myself sane without resorting to self-medicating. It's a true island of peace.
- I'm a great husband and father. Or at least my wife tells me so.
- Now that my kids are a bit older, I'm turning them into pretentious movie snobs. My son really likes The Great Escape, The Magnificent Seven, and Rear Window. (We might have a budding Hitchcock fan.) It was a night of magic -- I know of no other word for it -- when we watched City Lights as a family. This weekend we're scheduling Some Like It Hot.
- My son is handling his medical issues (will reveal if asked) with the amazing resiliency of kids that puts me in awe.
- My daughter is learning karate, because that's a thing that every woman should know. I admire her git'r'done spirit.

We're doing the right things, I think. I hope. I just worry constantly that it's going to be enough.


You also laugh maniacally while bombarding Nazis with artillery fire.
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J.D. Hall
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Jythier wrote:
You also laugh maniacally while bombarding Nazis with artillery fire.

Who doesn't?
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Jythier wrote:
bbenston wrote:
Thanks for this. This state of mind meshes well with what I've been feeling recently, so yes, I think there's a lot of us out there.

This state of mind also made it into a novelist's (rather long, but incredibly necessary) New Yorker piece.

The title's a bit bad -- it'll come off as "lib writer goes to Trump rallies, finds exactly what he expects" -- but the piece itself is way more of "lib writer goes to Trump rallies, finds the dissolution of civil society on left and right, mourns it, finds isolated crumbs of hope, and is scared for the future".

As for myself, I'm an Xer. I wear black Chuck Taylors to work, unironically. I worry like hell about my kids, and the quality of education they're getting in school, when (as any kids do), they absolutely obsess about where they're going to get their latest digital fix from.

I'm the bad cop in my house, i.e. Dr. No. I never thought my life would've turned out this way, but here we are. And yet, I'm tired and worried a lot, so I definitely get it, as Louie CK would say, when as parents we just need a few moments after the day/week/month of shit and just let the kids plug in with Minecraft video after Minecraft video.

Gin is my hard drink of choice.

My neighbor is a former contractor and current project manager. His daughter and my son are the same age and play together - they're going off to middle school together in the fall. We trade beer and "lazy husband" stories.

He's a gun owner, but doesn't keep it in the house, and is absolutely for more gun regulation - "we need a country where any asshole can't get his hands on one". I've sometimes expressed a desire to learn to shoot, or at least wanted to learn basic gun safety.

I just keep coming back to what the hated Obama said: we can do better than this.

Back to work.

Edit: actually, no. Not done.

There are little victories, here and there --

- I can play Beethoven piano, the really good stuff. I use it to keep myself sane without resorting to self-medicating. It's a true island of peace.
- I'm a great husband and father. Or at least my wife tells me so.
- Now that my kids are a bit older, I'm turning them into pretentious movie snobs. My son really likes The Great Escape, The Magnificent Seven, and Rear Window. (We might have a budding Hitchcock fan.) It was a night of magic -- I know of no other word for it -- when we watched City Lights as a family. This weekend we're scheduling Some Like It Hot.
- My son is handling his medical issues (will reveal if asked) with the amazing resiliency of kids that puts me in awe.
- My daughter is learning karate, because that's a thing that every woman should know. I admire her git'r'done spirit.

We're doing the right things, I think. I hope. I just worry constantly that it's going to be enough.


You also laugh maniacally while bombarding Nazis with artillery fire.


We all have our vices.

My grandfather actually served in WW1. He died when I was 7 or 8, so I never knew where he served or what unit he was in.
My wife's grandfather, who died long before I ever got the chance to meet him, was a Jew from Massachusetts who took part in liberating a concentration camp. From beyond the grave, he gave me a foolproof way of calming down a small child who's had some minor injury.
My father, trained as an artilleryman, narrowly missed being shipped off to Korea and went off to college, first at UW and later at Berkeley at the height of the free speech movement there. I still have my father's ammo vest.
I blow up pixels representing German soldiers on the Internet with my friends and cosplay at being some cross of Patton and the Joker.
 
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I use little cardboard counters and a hex-covered map, but I do the same thing.

No cosplay, though. Little old for that.
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remorseless1 wrote:
I use little cardboard counters and a hex-covered map, but I do the same thing.

No cosplay, though. Little old for that.


I say "cosplay" when what I really mean is I swear at and taunt imaginary Nazis and call them Jerry when I blow up their pixellated Tigers.

I do this because my larger diaspora of friends, owing to the fact that we're all middle-aged, mostly with kids and diverse work/play schedules and geography, can't really seem to get together to play much in person. (Despite gathering with work friends a week and a half ago to play Cosmic Encounter and Spaceteam, this highlighted more what we were missing than what we'd actually gained.)

So I take the bird in the hand of videogaming with a few friends after the kids are in bed.

Sunsets, plus bbq, beer, pot, and maybe leaving the political arena blissfully behind for just an instant, seems downright civilized.

Be well, JD and Jay.
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He's looking real sharp in his 1940's fedora. He's got nerves of steel, an iron will, and several other metal-themed attributes. His fur is water tight and he's always up for a fight.
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He's a semi-aquatic egg-laying mammal of action. He's a furry little flat-foot who'll never flinch from a fray. He's got more than just mad skills, he's got a beaver tail and a bill.
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bbenston wrote:
remorseless1 wrote:
I use little cardboard counters and a hex-covered map, but I do the same thing.

No cosplay, though. Little old for that.


I say "cosplay" when what I really mean is I swear at and taunt imaginary Nazis and call them Jerry when I blow up their pixellated Tigers.

I do this because my larger diaspora of friends, owing to the fact that we're all middle-aged, mostly with kids and diverse work/play schedules and geography, can't really seem to get together to play much in person. (Despite gathering with work friends a week and a half ago to play Cosmic Encounter and Spaceteam, this highlighted more what we were missing than what we'd actually gained.)

So I take the bird in the hand of videogaming with a few friends after the kids are in bed.

Sunsets, plus bbq, beer, pot, and maybe leaving the political arena blissfully behind for just an instant, seems downright civilized.

Be well, JD and Jay.


I didn't mean anything bad by it. I like that about you.
 
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Jythier wrote:
bbenston wrote:
remorseless1 wrote:
I use little cardboard counters and a hex-covered map, but I do the same thing.

No cosplay, though. Little old for that.


I say "cosplay" when what I really mean is I swear at and taunt imaginary Nazis and call them Jerry when I blow up their pixellated Tigers.

I do this because my larger diaspora of friends, owing to the fact that we're all middle-aged, mostly with kids and diverse work/play schedules and geography, can't really seem to get together to play much in person. (Despite gathering with work friends a week and a half ago to play Cosmic Encounter and Spaceteam, this highlighted more what we were missing than what we'd actually gained.)

So I take the bird in the hand of videogaming with a few friends after the kids are in bed.

Sunsets, plus bbq, beer, pot, and maybe leaving the political arena blissfully behind for just an instant, seems downright civilized.

Be well, JD and Jay.


I didn't mean anything bad by it. I like that about you.


Believe me. No offense taken --

Francis Ford Coppola wrote:
Now, we have the finest food and equipment, the best spirit, and the best men in the world. You know, by God, I actually pity those poor bastards we're going up against. By God, I do. We're not just going to shoot the bastards. We're going to cut out their living guts and use them to grease the treads of our tanks. We're going to murder those lousy Hun bastards by the bushel.

Now, some of you boys, I know, are wondering whether or not you'll chicken-out under fire. Don't worry about it. I can assure you that you will all do your duty. The Nazis are the enemy. Wade into them. Spill their blood. Shoot them in the belly. When you put your hand into a bunch of goo that a moment before was your best friend's face, you'll know what to do.


 
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Vincent Lalyman
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Should I give my "opinion" here ? I am not sure, but it's something I wanted to talk about for so long that reading a post talking about it seems a good occasion...

Humanity is changing.

It's not big news : look at history, all of history, and you can see humanity, as a whole or little parts of it (countries, religions, whatever) changing continually.
The way we think about the world, about "us", about religion, family, anything, changed through centuries - multiple times, and very fast.
In France, we had people, some time ago, when gay marriage was made legal, who were referring to "tradional" families (father mother children) wihtout even being aware that, two centuries in the past, french families were completely different from this model.

Humanity changes all the time, and it always happen the same way : the "old ways" slowly disappear from the mind of the new generations, while keeping a lot of power (because the leaders tend to be older) - and when it's about to go extinct, it tends to become more extreme. And then it dies off, slowly, and is replaced by new ways, new views, and people look at the past and wonder how the "old ways" ever was possible.

A century ago, in Europe, war was a desirable thing, something normal, something important for nations - today war seems "abnormal". Four centuries ago, slavery was still seen as not only acceptable, but "normal". Just a few centuries ago, in Europe, religion was the most important force in the life of everyone, a part of everyday life so important that modern people here, even those who consider themselves religious, can't even understand it. 30 years ago, the Cold War seemed the most important thing in our history, and it stopped in just one day, with no violence...

We change. All the time. I am nearly 50 years old, and when I remember the past, it's like I changed planets multiple times. People are different, technology is different, politics are different, love is different - everything, me included has changed.
The one thing that didn't change, I think, is this sentiment of the world being about to implode, of things being at a critical points - of things being changing, maybe for the worst.

It's like being in a train. You take a look out the window - and the landscape is completely different from what it was ten minutes ago. You've moved, even if you were not really aware you did. You may try to guess what the next landscape will but chances are you'll be wrong, and surprised by how different the things are from the past.

Retroactively, though, it seems so clear, so obvious. I look at the past and yes, it was obvious that society was going in the direction of more acceptance of gays, and of more power to women, and of more capitalism, and more religious violence, and more "populism", and so on. But for most people, at the time, it was bad science-fiction. It still is for some.

Maybe what really changed is that we tend to be more aware of this, "nowadays". A little more at least. Probably because we have access to varied and easily accessible information sources thanks to our technologies - and can see the changes happening far faster than in this not-so-far-away time when we had to rely on the filters of newspapers and radio to keep us informed.

Well. I should stop there - sorry, I know I sound like a philosophising grandpa mumbling non-sense in his rocking chair
I'll go back playing a game or look at Overwatch videos laugh
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I think part of the problem is simply a behavioral sink resulting from higher population density.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Behavioral_sink
Quote:

The ethologist John B. Calhoun coined the term "behavioral sink" to describe the collapse in behavior which resulted from overcrowding. Over a number of years, Calhoun conducted over-population experiments on Norway rats (in 1958–1962) and mice (in 1968–1972).[1] Calhoun coined the term "behavioral sink" in his February 1, 1962 report in an article titled Population Density and Social Pathology in the Scientific American weekly newspaper[2] on the rat experiment.[3] Calhoun's work became used as an animal model of societal collapse, and his study has become a touchstone of urban sociology and psychology in general.[4]


Quote:
Following his earlier experiments with rats, in 1972 Calhoun would later create his "Mortality-Inhibiting Environment for Mice": a 101-inch square cage for mice with food and water replenished to support any increase in population,[9] which took his experimental approach to its limits. In his most famous experiment in the series, "Universe 25", population peaked at 2,200 mice and thereafter exhibited a variety of abnormal, often destructive behaviors. By the 600th day, the population was on its way to extinction.[7]
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Jon M
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maxo-texas wrote:
I think part of the problem is simply a behavioral sink resulting from higher population density.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Behavioral_sink
Quote:

The ethologist John B. Calhoun coined the term "behavioral sink" to describe the collapse in behavior which resulted from overcrowding. Over a number of years, Calhoun conducted over-population experiments on Norway rats (in 1958–1962) and mice (in 1968–1972).[1] Calhoun coined the term "behavioral sink" in his February 1, 1962 report in an article titled Population Density and Social Pathology in the Scientific American weekly newspaper[2] on the rat experiment.[3] Calhoun's work became used as an animal model of societal collapse, and his study has become a touchstone of urban sociology and psychology in general.[4]


Quote:
Following his earlier experiments with rats, in 1972 Calhoun would later create his "Mortality-Inhibiting Environment for Mice": a 101-inch square cage for mice with food and water replenished to support any increase in population,[9] which took his experimental approach to its limits. In his most famous experiment in the series, "Universe 25", population peaked at 2,200 mice and thereafter exhibited a variety of abnormal, often destructive behaviors. By the 600th day, the population was on its way to extinction.[7]


You can always trust Mac to see the doomsday in the mundane.

Population density is not a very good measure is it? We are not mice crammed into a tiny cage. The population density in my street is far less than it was 100 years ago. There are more of us and more of us live in cities than ever before but the population density of those cities is less than Victorian times. If somehow living in very close proximity does lead to a behavioral sink it has already happened 100 years ago or we are able to over come it (perhaps with human inventions like sewers, skyscrapers, water treatment plants, refuse collection, supermarkets and Amazon.) I'd like to see the mouse society that came up with those!
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Jon_1066 wrote:
maxo-texas wrote:
I think part of the problem is simply a behavioral sink resulting from higher population density.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Behavioral_sink
Quote:

The ethologist John B. Calhoun coined the term "behavioral sink" to describe the collapse in behavior which resulted from overcrowding. Over a number of years, Calhoun conducted over-population experiments on Norway rats (in 1958–1962) and mice (in 1968–1972).[1] Calhoun coined the term "behavioral sink" in his February 1, 1962 report in an article titled Population Density and Social Pathology in the Scientific American weekly newspaper[2] on the rat experiment.[3] Calhoun's work became used as an animal model of societal collapse, and his study has become a touchstone of urban sociology and psychology in general.[4]


Quote:
Following his earlier experiments with rats, in 1972 Calhoun would later create his "Mortality-Inhibiting Environment for Mice": a 101-inch square cage for mice with food and water replenished to support any increase in population,[9] which took his experimental approach to its limits. In his most famous experiment in the series, "Universe 25", population peaked at 2,200 mice and thereafter exhibited a variety of abnormal, often destructive behaviors. By the 600th day, the population was on its way to extinction.[7]


You can always trust Mac to see the doomsday in the mundane.

Population density is not a very good measure is it? We are not mice crammed into a tiny cage. The population density in my street is far less than it was 100 years ago. There are more of us and more of us live in cities than ever before but the population density of those cities is less than Victorian times. If somehow living in very close proximity does lead to a behavioral sink it has already happened 100 years ago or we are able to over come it (perhaps with human inventions like sewers, skyscrapers, water treatment plants, refuse collection, supermarkets and Amazon.) I'd like to see the mouse society that came up with those!


The Calhoun experiments had the equivalent of sewers, skyscrapers, water treatment plants, refuse collection. They had unlimited clean food and water and environment. Only space was limited.

Some mice behavior observed in the experiments has been observed in humans (such as excessive grooming, voluntary withdrawal from society, and a loss of desire in sex or reproduction by young people) in japan.

Otherwise, you have some good points. And humans are not mice.

But I was addressing the parent poster's point saying bad things are happening with a possible cause. Is the parent poster just in a bad mood or are we the classic old people remember the golden days or are some things getting worse?

For example: Your odds of getting to attend BGGCON are way down due to a higher population seeking to attend. Are we remembering a golden time in the past or is it actually worse?
 
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