Its been mentioned, that the success in battle of the Navi against the Technological invaders, was implausible at best. But why is that? First of all there some specific things like arrows penetrating what I would assume to be bulletproof glass. I mean maybe it wasn't inteneded to be bulletproof, but you would think that these aircraft should be able to sustain attacks from stone aged weapons.
But I think what people were getting at was the historical accounts of how stone age indigenous societies fared against invading technological societies.
The indiginous people seem to pretty much always lose. Here is what I think it is:
The biggest critique of Modern life has got to be the pervading sense of alienation. But its also a strength. It would seem to me that an indigenous society would be so connected to nature as to render it invisible, like a fish in water. I also sense that indigenous people would lack a certian degree of self awareness because of this. They would not have the ability to see outside themselves and their environment. Themselves and their environment would be too interconnected and would appear to be one and the same. There are very fuzzy borders in these cultures, like for example the borders between life and death, dreaming and wakefulness and even the sea and the sky. They think Magically.
It reminds me of the book "Flatland" where a 2 dimensional civilization encounters a Three dimensional one and are unable to concieve of it. That's the experience of Primitive hunter gatherer societies encountering technologically advanced societies.
Technological Society has a perspective of being outside nature, opposed to nature, seeking to conquer nature. There is this dichotomy. That is the reason why people are often so dissatisfied with modern life. But this does offer a type of Archimidean point with which to lift the World that Stone age people would lack, having no place to stand.
Having a place to stand outside of nature, however, is experienced as a loss. That's what causes this type of longing modern people have for cultures such as the fictional one portrayed in "Avatar"
Criminal Gangs become States when they become powerful and Sophisticated enough. They engage in domestication/exploitation programs of the citizens/subjects while competing with other Criminal Gangs/States for power and resources. This process leads to fiercer and fiercer competition Externally among powers which selects for greater and greater sophistication. Internally, since states create a monopoly of violence, the citizenry becomes more and more compliant dependant and domesticated. If this pattern were to follow its logical conclusion, eventually one great state power will hold universal sway over a global society of compliant subjects. Criminal behavior will be euthenized out of the gene pool.
At one time, probably around 40,000 years ago, all humans were illiterate hunter gatherers. I say illiterate, but its not because they were stupid, its just that writing hadn't been invented. It was an oral culture. There were few artifacts, but socially they were quite sophisticated. Material culture by way of technology, was at a standstill, but socially they were arguably more advanced in many ways than modern humans. They enjoyed excellent health from their varied diet, had lots of time for liesure and were egalitarian.
These humans had advanced pre-frontal cortexes that allowed for empathy and social cohesion. There was no capital punishment. The most serious punishment for social deviants, such as people lacking empathy and respect for social mores, was banishment.
Psychopathic behavior has a strong genetic component related to the blunting of dopamine reception involving two specific allels: DRD4 and DRD2.
These genes are also related to "novelty seeking" ADHD and Psychopathic behavior. The DRD4 7R variant is associated with ADHD anf the DRD2 variant is related to Psychopathy/Anti-social Personality Disorder. But the interesting thing about both of these genes is that they effect the modulation of dopamine in the pre-frontal cortex.
The prefontal cortex that is one of the things differentiates humans from animals and took millions of years to evolve. Our Chimp like ancestor's brains lack this feature. Their social structure is thus less complex and more violent.
These genetic variants are known as "balanced polymorphisms" which means they exist in the human gene pool at a certain threshold level and have been subject to positive selection. What that basicaly means is that a certian number of psychopaths, and novelty seekers improves inclusive fitness in societies competing with each other.
In a way these two genetic polymorphisms take the basic design of the prefrontal cortex and modify it, almost in a way that makes it less advanced and more archaic. Its almost de-evolutionary. A Psychopath's brain is in a way more primitive.
In the scientific literature it has been documented that Psychopathy occurs in all societies and that in primitive societies such as the Inuit and the San Bushmen its controlled by banishment.
So picture Psychopaths being banished from egalitarian Societies of hunter gatherers, living in a virtually Edenic state of natural abundance. Where would they be banished to? To areas considered waste lands, possibly the Steppes of Central Asia/Eurasia.
Also its worth considering that these Hunter gathers were not so much free spirited hippies, as strict conformists obeying codes of conduct handed down generation after generation for thousands of years, so probably people considered too free wheeling and non-conformist were banished along with the psychopaths. Technological innovation was at a standstill lasting hundreds of thousands of years. Societal evolution was at a plateu.
So these genetic freaks, basically, banished to the Steppes, shook things up and created positive feedback loops, unsettling the equilibrium.
So what do you get when you create an outcaste society of Psychopaths and Creative people, living in Wastelands? You get a bunch of War like Nomads that are very creative in how they conduct war. You get the Indo Aryans, Mongolians, Huns, all these people that have invaded the "civilized world" in wave after wave throughout history and became violent Over lords. You Get Ghengis Khan basically.
Many Ghengis Khans living on the Steppes among other barbarians cancel each other out. But when they invade civilized societies and enslave peace loving people to work for them you get Empire.
The ruling Castes of all Empires have their origins in the Barbarians of the Steppes. Wave after wave after wave. Even when Ghengis Khan conquered China, all he did was wrest control of it from the Ruling Caste descendants of a previous wave of Mongolian barbarians.
The Nomadic Padstoralist lifestyle is centered around brigandry. Its an austere life, but not labor intensive, freeing up all males in society to focus on fighting. The nomadic lifestyle is a strategy against being conquered.
Midieval Kingdoms were basically coalitions of Barbarians that had become a warrior caste after conquering a civilized agricultural society. They enslaved serfs to farm the land and create wealth, while dedicating themselves to the Art of war. Competing Kingdoms created peer polity groups that fought against each other. This system selected for the Kingdoms that could most effectively organize themselves to win wars.
It was a battle to be at the "top of the Heap."
A note about hierarchy:
A heierarchically organized logical category runs top down from the most basic to the most specialized. That is also the case with Hierachical societies. The elite are the most basic cateory of person. There is a trick of words, caused by people seeing "elite" as being rare or special and "commoners" being...well commonplace. But actually Elites have the most generalized knowledge. Historically only slaves had specialized training. Elites had to know a little bit about very many things and know how to delegate. One trick of power is to divide and conquer. People with specialized training weren't allowd to compare notes. Only elites were allowed to connect the dots and see the big picture. A legacy of this can be seen today in th University system. Buckminster Fuller called attention to this fact in his "great Pirate Theory of History"
Elites are very Basic/Base people. There is a bit of a mirror image effect between elites and the criminal underclass of society. Elites and criminals have similar motivations and similar behavior, they differentiated only by scale and level of sophistication. See Alexander the Great and the Pirate
The difference in scale is achieved by the administrative skill involved in turning societies into machines designed to win wars. War machines. The most sophisticated War machine of all is the US military Industrial Complex.
This is a testable hypothesis. If my Theory of history is true than the United States should have the highest concentration of Psychopaths as well as creative non-conformist types. There should been a period in US history of self reliant autonamous "barbarians" living on a frontier, followed by a peroid of concentration of power by fewer and fewer "Gangs."
This appears to be the case. Frontier independance and Individualism has given way to Corporate Capitalism and War Profiteering and the Federal Reserve system. Americans have become more sedentary, settled and compliant for the most part, with deviancy, criminal behavior and psychopathy occuring most at the topmost and lowest eschelons of society.
Criminals, con artists, creative idealists, religious extremists flocked here to a wilderness far from the confines and comforts of civilization, creating a rich soup, in relative isolation, and then eventually came to conquer the known world.
Its a pattern that has been repeated throghout History.
If you want a picture of the future, imagine a boot stamping on a human face— forever.
-George Orwell 1984
It would be nice if I could flap my arms and fly like a bird, but since I obviously can't I don't spend a lot of time worrying about it. I must admit I have a similar attitude toward Peace Activists, although I admire their idealism because I think it springs from positive motivations.
I can get behind them a lot more than I can get behind the flag waving born again Christian conservative crowd, because they seem so obviously brain washed and ignorant. Better to be overly idealistic than simply stupid and brainwashed.
But, still it seems like an impossible dream to have nothing but peace in the World. It would seem to me like you would have to rewire basic human nature. To me war is just an extrapolation of basic human conflict on a massive scale.
However, I see a trend that Peace Activists maybe missing that is leading to less war and perhaps eventually it will be done away with forever.
I refer to the trend toward accumulation of power into a World Government. "The State" becoming more and more powerful, until there is no more war, only crime. Eventually, there will be no more soldiers, only policemen.
Concurrent with this trend is a program of human domestication that has been going on for 10,000 years. It won't so much be a boot stepping on a human face forever as a human face licking the boot, like a labrador retriever...forever. Eventually everyone will be citizens of the same powerful State. It will be a welfare state. Domestication is dependence and also specialization. So everyone will be a cog in the machine, and the misfits will be euthenized. Then there will be no war.
Beyond the fact that these were all innocent civilians, it just strikes me how sophisticated the weaponry is. Or I guess, you could say its not sophisticated enough, or else they would have seen more clearly that the "AK-47's" and "RPG" the soldiers saw were actually cameras. But still its way more advanced than anything the insurgents have. So advanced and overwhelming as to create over-confidence to the point of cockiness. Massive overwhelming fire power at the push of a button, from a detached removed position in the sky.
Maybe we should be thankful that there aren't any wars going on where the great super powers are evenly matched. All modern wars seem to be turkey shoots in third world countries.
My opinion on this is pretty jaded. War is simply reality. I am not anti-war because I am not anti-reality. It is sickening though and there is little that I could call heroic going on over there. Its not a fair fight, but that's probably a blessing. Our mission is pretty unclear at best, sinister at worst.