The History of Selfishness

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Selfishness is a primordial survival instinct on par with the instinct to reproduce. I suspect that millions of years ago our ancestors bred like wild animals and that the male did not take any responsibility for the young that were produced; that was left up to the mother who had to find food and shelter and avoid predators on her own, and the weak did not survive. Nature programmed us to be selfish and it may have saved our species from extinction; a strong male predator that is selfish survives and grows stronger and as he grows stronger and is no longer hungry he starts feeling the second primordial instinct and that is the urge to mate.

I suspect that the first families were headed by early men who enjoyed the satisfaction and pleasure of mating with particularly amiable and attentive females: I also think this altered the male’s basic selfish instinct to survive to include a mate that gives him attention and pleasure that he had not experienced before.

A strong male that could provide food and shelter for himself and his new mate would, I think, take another mate as soon as the first female was pregnant; so his survival instinct of selfishness would once again expanded to cover himself and his two females. The female’s instinct provides her with what she needs to know and do and the male may also have faint memories of once having a mother. Early man was, without being aware of it, expanding his circle of selfish survival instincts to include his females and their children; early man started to protect what he had and enjoyed from predators. The females were also in a new position and had expanded their selfish survival instincts; they had a strong male that was staying with them, protecting them, feeding them, and protecting their children from predators so he received special treatment.

Somewhere on the African Savannah millions of years ago a strong and somewhat intelligent ancient male overcame his primordial selfish instinct to create the world’s first family.

In today’s world this useless primordial survival instinct of selfishness is still in our genes but has been mostly under control. Our mental control of selfishness was a result of training from our mothers, when we were young, and from religious training and exposure to philosophy as we got older. Philosophers for the past five thousand years have touted that the best path to happiness was through generosity with others; however, generosity cannot exist on its own, generosity must be accompanied by self-control, compassion, empathy, and understanding for the condition of others. This is where American parents, schools, and colleges have, and are, failing our young people (i.e., people under 30).

Most of the people I meet today who are under 30 are very selfish; you do not have to talk to them very long to discover just how selfish they are. Their conversation wanders from “I deserve” to “the government should” to “I’m entitled to” when it comes to education cost, housing, transportation, and even food.

Our selfish young people are going to vote themselves into Communism in the belief that the Social Democrats promise of a fee and equal world will solve their selfish desires. What they are going to get is what has already been demonstrated in Communistic countries around the world, and that is abject poverty for the majority of people and unlimited wealth for a few elite leaders. Unless you are a member of the central Communist government or a ranking military man then you are just dirt under the feet of the elite.

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John Simpson

During my twelve-year navy career I served as an electronics instructor and flight crew member tracking NASA manned apace shots. I took the first pictures of the Russian nuclear-powered icebreaker Lenin as it traveled south along the coast of Norway; one of the photographs I took was on the front page of the New York Times. I was a member of the navy’s Operation Deep Freeze in New Zealand and the Antarctic. During President Johnson’s South East Asia tour, I was assigned to President Johnson’s White House staff in Wellington, New Zealand and served as a security team leader. In 1967 I switched to the army and trained young army officers to be avionics maintenance officers. I was recruited by the Green Berets and assigned to jump school. After my airborne training, I was assigned to the 46th Special Forces Company in Thailand where I traveled from Malaysia to Burma installing and upgrading communication sites. On one occasion, I provided support for Special Forces operations in Laos. I was also an instructor for small weapons, jungle survival, physical security and combat-in-cities. In 1970 I graduated from primary flight school and Cobra attack-helicopter training; then went directly to Vietnam and the 25th Infantry Division just outside of Saigon. After six months, I was reassigned to the 101st Airborne Division just south of the dividing line between North and South Vietnam. I received nine air medals, two bronze stars and one army commendation medal in Vietnam. My next assignment was in Munich, Germany where I flew the border between East and West Germany. While stationed in Germany I was recruited by the Criminal Investigation Division and later Military Intelligence to track military drug dealers; my investigation led me to a French Communist woman who was supporting an underground newspaper that was providing instructions on how to sabotage military aircraft, vehicles and generators. While serving with the 2nd Armored Cavalry Regiment in Germany I also trained the unit's Aero Rifle Platoon in combat-in-cities and combat-in-forest techniques. During my long military career I was trained in and pursued independent studies in special warfare, psychological warfare, and physical security. My presentations on the military prove that I understand the difference between the problems inherent to war and problems caused by poor military planning, leadership, and management. I have lived and worked in a number of Muslim countries and have studied Islamic culture and religion for more than twenty years. My presentations on the Middle East and Islam provide insight into current world events and our relationships with the Middle Eastern countries of Iran and Iraq. After retirement, I worked for Bell Helicopter and was assigned to Isfahan, Iran as a Cobra test pilot. I enjoyed Iran until the terrorism started. They blew up my favorite Korean restaurant just moments after I had walked out. I escaped from Iran just prior to the overthrow of the government. Upon returning home to Ohio, I learned from the evening news that some of the Iranian military officers I had worked with had been executed (murdered) under orders from Ayatollah Khomeini. Since leaving Bell Helicopter, I have had three novels published and have worked as a technical writer, publications consultant, and engineer for Siemens, IBM, Motorola, and Dresser Industries. I have written more than 300 technical manuals on computers, computer controlled equipment, central-office telephone equipment, pagers, robots, hydraulics, pneumatics, diesel engines, jet engines, helicopters, and mining equipment. Today, I am employed as a research and development engineer for a South Florida Aerospace company; I also continue to do public speaking and radio appearances. I live in Florida with my wife JoAnn and my four-pound Chihuahua named Chiquita.

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