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Why Beautiful People have More Daughters
Alan Miller and Satoshi Kanazawa
There are very few things which are 100% due to heredity - Huntington's Disease (if you have the wrong gene, you always get disease), eye color and blood type. But many people still think opposite - that human behavior mostly shaped by environment.
Many ideas offend someone's moral preconceptions, but this doesn't change the truth of the idea. Some stereotypes are true and some true stereotypes offensive. Most people recognize that, on average, men are taller than women, and few get upset about it. But it is equally true to say women are, on average, fatter than men.
Our taste for sweets and fats is based on evolution - through most of our history, getting enough calories was a serious problem. Those who's genes gave them a preference for storing high calorie foods lived longer and produced more offspring than those who didn't.
Human evolution applies to the brain as well as rest of our bodies - function is to solve problems so that the body survives to reproduce.
Savannah Principle: we lived on the African savannah for millions of years, and our brains evolved to cope with that environment. We really only left there 10,000 years ago, and our brains haven't changed much in that time. So they have problems when asked to cope with novel situations that weren't in ancient environment.
Male sexual jealousy made sense on the savannah because man didn't want to waste resources raising someone else's genes.But now, if your wife is on the pill, it shouldn't make any difference if she is unfaithful. But man's brain not able to internalize birth control so still operating on Savannah Principle where extreme forms of mate guarding (kill the rival) made sense.
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A Russian woman had 69 kids - 27 pregnancies with never a single birth - 4 sets of quads, 7 sets of triplets - and all but 2 survived to adulthood. One of the emperors of Morocco had over a 1000 children.
This difference is one of the main reasons for male aggression - men gain more by fighting for mates, whereas women don't. If they don't compete, they lose (leave no kids). So they might as well compete, because even if they lose they are no worse off.
Common to blame media for arbitrary standards of beauty. In fact men prefer to mate with blonde bombshells because of what indicates - long hair shows healthy, and have been for several years; big breasts because easy to judge age, and blonde hair because usually darkens with age. And again the Savannah Principle - men fancy blondes with tits even though she's actually 45 and engineered, because that doesn't penetrate his Stone Age brain
Same with pornography. Man's savannah brain cannot comprehend that the 2D picture he is looking at is not an actual naked and sexually available hot babe. Because no such images existed on the savannah, every naked woman smiling at him was a sexual partner. If men really understood that they weren't going to have sex with the pictured woman, they wouldn't get an erection.
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Feminists get upset at movies which portray older men taking younger women partners - their theory that this is standard male dominance. But in fact all societies have done this - men prefer younger (more fertile) women, women prefer older (more resources) men. Only males who prefer to mate with older women are teenage boys.
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Communication misunderstandings. A man and a woman have a pleasant conversation - man thinks she's attracted to him; she just thinks she was being nice. tested in ext - man and woman have a 5 minute conversation in mirror room, watched by another man and woman. Afterward, both the male participant and male observer rated the woman as being far more interested than either she or the female observer did.
US supermarket chain instituted 'superior customer service' policy which required employees to look customer in the eye and smile. Worked fine in 3 out of 4 situations - male-to-male, male-to-female, female-to-female. But with some female-to-male interactions, when female looked guy in the eye and smiled, he 'naturally' assumed she was interested in him, ans so he started following her round. Eventually store had to drop policy.
Explanation: our decision making process often subject to jumping to the wrong conclusion, but some errors are more costly than others. So if a man trying to guess whether a woman is attracted to him, he can either assume she was interested when she wasn't, or that she wasn't interested when she was. The latter mistake far more costly. The first might get him a slap in the face, the second misses a chance to pass on his genes.
Marriage: all human societies polygamous to some degree. Promiscuity exists - we know from DNA testing that significant percentage of children from 'non-paternal events'. And the more polygamous the females, the bigger the difference in size between male and female. If you have to compete for reproduction chances, better to be bigger and stronger. So effectively, only the bigger, stronger males get to pass on their genes (certainly in the past) whereas virtually all women get to mate, and so can pass on the full range of gene sizes.
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Polygamy emerges with income inequality - women are better off with a small share of a rich man than full share of a very poor one. And serial polygamy, where a rich man has series of younger partners who benefit from his resources, whereas women just get less attractive.
Women benefit from polygamy because they get a chance to marry further up the ladder. Men benefit from monogamy because gives better chance that will find a mate. Only the top 5% of men have resources to provide for multiple families, so they cream off the most desirable women, leaving poorer men with fewer choices.
Women need to distinguish between 'cads' and 'dads' - best 'dads' are ones who (a) have resources and (b)are willing to invest them in her and her children. Handsome men get disproportionate number of mating offers so can use 'cad' strategy ('love em and leave em') but less attractive men have to stick to the 'dad' strategy because women will not choose them as short-term mates.
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Handsome men are less desirable as husbands because more likely to be offered chances to stray, so some women will reject them as long-term mates. But beautiful women are desirable to all men so get a virtual free choice. So physical attractiveness contributes more to a woman's reproductive success than a man's. American survey found that women rated as 'very attractive' have 56% chance of a daughter as first child, whereas everyone else it's 48%.
Ultimate reason men do anything is to impress women so that they will have sex with them. All women who want to, can have sex. But for men, the greater the income inequality, the more men will miss out.
Most homicides between men start from trivial fights over status that escalate because neither will back down.
More books on Crime
Women steal enough to survive, men steal more, to impress.
Tendency to commit crime tails off after turn 30, but this applies to all male display behavior - Bill Gates, Paul McCartney, Nobel Prize winning scientists. Before your first child born, the risks of competition are the same as costs of not competing. But as soon as you have a family, you're better off putting resources towards raising them. If you die or get hurt in a fight, they might starve.
We've always known that criminal behavior drops off after marriage, but always assumed it was due to the calming influence of more passive wife. But evolutionary explanation better because marriage has same effect on legal behavior as well - unmarried scientists keep making discoveries into their 50's, whereas married ones tail off.
So it's the evo theory that once they're married and reproducing they don't have the same incentive to compete.
In all societies where female makes greater parental investment, mating is a female choice. So because females sometimes say no, men have to go to war, compose symphonies, write books, paint portraits and start businesses to impress women.
Middle aged men go through mid-life crisis not because they are middle-aged, but because their wife is. When she hits menopause he needs to look for a younger replacement. So a 50 yo married to a 25 yo woman won't have a mid-life crisis, but a 25 yo man married to a 50 yo woman will.
Why do (male) politicians risk everything by having affairs? men strive to attain political office for same reason as other status trophies - ie to gain reproductive access to women. So for Bill Clinton it's not 'Why?' but Why not?'
Why women paid less than men? Evo has equipped men and women with different preferences. Throughout history, the successful males were ones with material resources and higher status, because that was what women chose. In contrast, the women who passed on their genes were the ones who looked after their kids and didn't take unnecessary risks. Men take higher-paying jobs as first priority, even if it means long ours, relocations or dangers. Women are more likely to value the well-being of their kids above all else.
Men make more money because they want to, women make less because they have better things to do.
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Religion based on same judgement system that causes men to over-estimate women's sexual interest in them. We are descended from the cautious decision makers - the ones who interpreted strange noises as potential enemy action and took evasive action. And explains why women tend to be more religious than men - women are more risk averse, because the costs of taking risks are higher. And the more cautious a man is, the more likely he is to be religious.
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Why are almost all suicide bombers Muslim? Suggest that it's because of (lack of) sex. They come from polygamous societies, which creates a shortage of wives. So men at the bottom of the ladder are likely to miss out on marriage, and so the prospect of 72 virgins in paradise becomes very attractive.
'Lekking'- a term borrowed from zoology where it refers to males' display behaviour to attract mates. The males strut an display their genetic qualities in contests. At the end the females choose the one they'll mate with and all the others miss out.
Human males do the same - but their displays are culturally based - can't take BMW or the art with you when you travel. But for females, their sex is attractive everywhere, so women can have just as much fun anywhere in world. But for men, not so much - they have no status in a new society. So young women travel far more than young men.
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