Now that our understanding of r/k is getting a bit more nuanced than “left libruls r bad” people are getting confused about whether they’re slow life history strategists, fast life history strategists, or even spiteful mutants. Every now and then some depressed person will go on Dutton’s show and say “I’m a mess, should I not breed?” and he’ll inform them that if they’re concerned enough with the well-being of others to ask that question, they should breed. So lately I’ve been thinking about how to get this down to one simple question.
SLH boils down to a sense of duty. K-strategists are very uncomfortable if they aren’t living up to externally imposed expectations, which is why they’re so concerned with things like religion, ideals, moral effort, society, and politics. These things all represent the sense of peace they feel when their behavior meets the external expectations they’ve internalized. They feel cognitive dissonance and a breakdown in their sense of self when their behavior doesn’t meet these expectations. This explains why many atomized k-strategists become interested in designing their own value systems. Insofar as you’re more comfortable doing your job than following your heart, you’re probably carrying k-selected genes.
FLH boils down to hedonism. R-strategists are very uncomfortable if external expectations are preventing them from acting on their primitive impulses, which is why they’re so enamored of parties, festivals, itinerant lifestyles, conquerors, comedy, outsider status, and giving trite excuses for being freed from all social expectations (e.g. YOLO). These things all represent the sense of whimsical freedom they feel when their behavior is effortless, i.e. following directly from their desires without concern for whether oppressive authorities expect otherwise. Insofar as you’re more comfortable following your heart than accepting responsibilities you didn’t ask for, you’re probably carrying r-selected genes.
If you’re k-selected it may be confusing to think of impulsiveness as producing the sense, for many people, that they’re doing the right thing. For SLH strategists, doing the right thing connotes self-control, whereas for FLH strategists it’s the opposite. It may help you to think of this primitivism as a competing religion, as in Rousseau’s idea of the noble savage, where adherents of this religion believe getting in touch with their deepest primitive instincts is the most moral thing they can do. This may help you to understand why Ashley Madison’s motto is “Life is short. Have an affair.” That’s appealing to a lot of people on a religious level. When they’re doing a good job in the workplace and not at a party, these people feel the same nagging concern that “the world doesn’t feel right” that you feel when you know you’re not doing what you should be doing.
(Spiteful mutation boils down to the desire to offend children. Insofar as you feel that desire, you’re probably carrying spiteful mutations.)
So there are two fundamental and opposing drives here: the desire to live up to expectations and the desire to live spontaneously. Similarly, two sources of anxiety: the fear of failure and the fear of oppression. You can think of it more metaphysically as dad’s boundaries and mom’s boundaries, where mom’s boundaries were made to be broken (or else she wouldn’t have become a mom) and dad’s were made to be enforced (or else he wouldn’t have become a dad). Since people live on a spectrum between these, leaders have to create pressure relief valves for both things: scheduled harvest festivals and the like where k-selected populations feel it’s their duty to be a bit spontaneous, and the availability of temp jobs, rehab centers, and confessionals for r-selected populations who spontaneously decide it’s time to straighten up and fly right.
Unrelated note on the metaphysical thing: Genius appears to have something to do with the masculine brain internalizing the Anima, which is why I think we feel a blood connection to society even when we don’t have children. This is also probably why superbureaucrats/Alchemists, obsessed with proving they’re geniuses shifting world events with the mere stroke of a pen, tend to get into black magic; invoking Cthulhu and Leviathan and all that incomprehensible tentacled horror shit. It’s the desire to externalize the Anima (that which cannot be looked at/examined), because releasing lighting from a bottle would prove they had caught it in a bottle before. They’re trying to forge the one rule/patriarchal boundary that breaks all the old rules. Many such cases. Sad!