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Our Dual Moral Codes are the Real Base of Most Disputes

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As we became large-brained apes, we needed safe areas for extended child development. Mothers thus became benign dictators over small compounds to do their jobs, and this required a separate moral code where the adult had full authority and white lies could be better than truth. We all grow up trusting mother's authority, quite unaware of the two moral codes now buried in our pre-verbal wiring. In tribal society, it was clear that outside in the commons, one dealt with peers, not family, and behaved accordingly. Our gender roles stayed both distinct and synergetic.

In civilization, however, the two moral codes are often mis-applied, subconsciously pre-selected for tactical advantage. Psychopaths, who formerly led only in emergencies, have been able to create permanent crises to stay in power. These non-benign dictators own the food supply and declare control over a home-land with only their own truth permitted, evoking the same reactons we have to an upset mother.

The industrial revolution then destroyed the power of housewives, outsourcing most of their essential jobs, and gender roles went chaotic. Now, old-fashioned honour is just too much to expect. Political arguments usually can't be resolved, because each side dismisses any contrary evidence, but never sees the different moral codes at the base of the disagreement. Only true progressives are willing to trust democracy and the justice of their peers.

Nobody minds if a mother is lying about Santa Claus or the bogeyman, but about 10% of the time, for the good of our genetic health and evolution, she also has to lie about paternity. Therefore, it is better all around for her to have the last word in domestic disputes, and that is the usual case. Plutocrats now usurp that power by triggering similar emotional reactions.

To continue hiding the mother's special privileges, we have looked at the overlap in the abilities of individual women and men, and declared that the average should not be influenced even by our distinct brain structures and hormones. In nature, every creature has to determine both species and gender to know how to behave in any encounter, but we have been trying to eliminate our subconscious reactions. Ordinary men have always been very self-sacrificing for their families, but now, all male influence can be called patriarchy, splitting progressives instead of blaming the plutocrats who are the real problem.

Looking for the influence of the two moral codes easily makes sense of many common puzzles, and changes the perception of history radically. Our goal should be gender parity, not gender equality. That lets us be ourselves and have win-win relationships.

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My vocation was in Human Powered Vehicle design. I won the Practical Vehicle prize with a radical chassis that integrated the springs and suspension with the composite frame. I had many eager customers, but wound up learning hard lessons about (more...)

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