Friday, October 08, 2010
The Socialists' Favorite Mammal: Mole Rats
Often when arguing with socialists (here I am talking about self-professed socialists), I bring up the problem that socialism seems to demand of people that they act like social insects (i.e., ants and bees) rather than social mammals. This typically results in their denying that that is what they really mean. However, recently, I have run into an entirely new argument: "what about the mole rat?" Indeed, there are two species of mole rat which are considered to be "eusocial," in the same way that social insects are. (I find it interesting that once a mammalian example was found, the socialists I have argued with happily abandoned their denial about trying to make us like social insects, and have embraced practically the same model just because it's a mammalian one -- which suggests to me that I was right about their wanting to make us like social insects, with a central ruler and everyone else equally ruled by that ruler.) I am considering writing an article on the issue of the eusocial mole rat, and its (ir)relevance to evolutionary biological arguments for or against socialism. Or am I the only one getting the mole rat argument?