I am a woman born 1949 and my quest is to find a mindmate
to grow old together as a mutually devoted couple
in a relationship based upon the
egalitarian rational commitment paradigm
bonded by intrinsic commitment
as each other's safe haven and secure basis.

The purpose of this blog is to enable the right man
to recognize us as reciprocal mindmates and
to encourage him to contact me:

The entries directly concerning,
who could be my mindmate,
are mainly at the beginning.
If this is your predominant interest,
I suggest to read this blog in the same order
as it was written, following the numbers.

I am German, therefore my English is sometimes faulty.

Maybe you have stumbled upon this blog not as a potential match.
Please wait a short moment before zapping.

Do you know anybody, who could be my mindmate?
Your neighbour, brother, uncle, cousin, colleague, friend?
If so, please tell him to look at this blog.
While you have no reason to do this for me,
a stranger, maybe you can make someone happy, for whom you care.

Do you have your own webpage or blog,
which someone like my mindmate to be found probably reads?
If so, please mention my quest and add a link to this blog.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

106. Migration, Evolution, Cultural Differences

Migration, Evolution, Cultural Differences

I am wondering, if migration is an event of natural selection of the fittest, precisely self selection.   People, who successfully migrate to another country, appear to be physically fit enough to survive the hardship of migrating and to be daring enough to go.  

There is an entire nation to look at as an example.   Except around 1% (source Wikipedia) of the population of Native Americans, every citizen of the USA is either an immigrant himself or a descendant of immigrants.  

Due to my lack of more knowledge, I am restricting the following speculations on Americans with European and African decent.  

1.   European descendants:
They survived famines in Ireland and other countries in the mid 19th century, they survived being shipped and checked in Ellis Island and they were millions.    Many survived the trek out to the west under harsh conditions.   The weakest, the helpless, the destitute stayed back and perished in their misery.   And the rich and powerful stayed back too, but they were probably not fit enough to survive hardship either.  

2.  African descendants also are the fittest.   Their ancestors came as slaves, they survived atrocities and extreme hardship.    Their ancestors were also the tragic victims of betrayal by their own kind, because they were sold by other Africans as slaves.    Maybe the morally better were sold, and their worst kin stayed back, providing the world now with the worst crooks and scammers.   

Beyond differences between ethnic subgroups, from my distant view, there is a general American culture, that is in some ways noticeably different from all European cultures.   Since by now, one can walk through a German city center and see so many American fast-food, soda and shop chains, that one could nearly think to be in the USA, the differences are deeper than that.   I perceive the American culture as a culture of daring and risk-taking.  

Example 1.   In Germany, the last bears and wolves have been killed centuries ago.   A few wolves are allowed back now into national parks, but many people resent this as dangerous.    One stray bear having come from Slovenija killing sheep caused a big upheaval, until he was finally killed.  
If Germany were like the USA, there would be some huge national parks, where the bears would be, with huge fences around, and nobody would even have to keep people out, because most people would not even dare to enter.    They are just content to have a bearfree safe country outside that fence.
In the USA, the bears are everywhere, they come to people's gardens and enjoy their swimming pools.   Once in a while, a bear kills a camper or rips off the face of a hiker.   People read it in the newspaper, shrug their shoulders and go on hiking.   I was amazed about this unconcerned attitude towards the danger of ferocious animals.

Example 2.  There are infrequent slight earthquakes around here.   The worst under the geological conditions did slightly shake the house, and it was a big deal for everybody.   When in California the house shakes as much as that, some people seem not even to notice, for others it is such a minor thing.  
Scientist expect an earthquake of a magnitude of up to 8.1 with a high probability in the near future along the San-Andreas-Fault.

If there were such a prediction in Germany, this would cause mass panic, any person able to do so would move away as far as possible.   Houses would loose their value down to a fraction, and most probably the administration would evacuate the area nearest to the fault.  
In California, people are not impressed by the danger of such an earthquake.   People continue to invest millions in expensive buildings, public and private houses, infrastructure is build as if there is eternal safety guarantied.   They build water supply lines, roads, power lines all crossing the fault, as if nobody had ever predicted that one side of the fault could easily shift 26 feet to the north all of a sudden.  
People fill their homes with expensive consumer goods, in complete oblivion that one big shake up will destroy hundreds or even thousands of dollars worth of such stuff in any household at any moment. 
I have seen museums, where very precious ancient porcelain, glass and ceramic had been brought from far away by a collector.   It was standing there in showcases, in no way secured, and after the earthquake, all the millions worth of rarities will just be a heap of shards.   Even if an insurance pays money, the loss of cultural heritage from several cultures can never be replaced.   Why did that collector not leave the stuff in a safer part of the world?

But risk taking is also noticeable in financial matters.   People get risky mortgages and then loose their houses, people loose money in risky investments.   Even the entire invention of the credit card seems to be the product of a risk taking culture.   

If I would think enough, I might come up with more examples.   But I have made my point, why I am wondering, if this difference is just historical development, a consequence of living in a specific environment, socially and geographically, or if indeed the migration was such a strong selection of who migrated and who stayed behind?

Any comments welcome.