Days of Change

Behavioral Sink | August 25, 2016

There is a truly amazing correlation between population density and party affiliation. many have noted this before. There’s a graph in this article that basically says between 800 to 1000 people per square mile, a United States Congressional district goes from being likely Republican (low density) to likely Democrat (high density). This is pretty apparent when you look at places like Alaska and Wyoming, big, sparsely populated and deeply Republican. Then you have places like New York, increasingly controlled politically by densely populated New York City and Washington DC, basically a city that has never voted Republican.

You can read into the reasoning in different ways. My take is that self-reliance is required when you don’t live near a lot of people or not in an apartment building. Here’s something I used to wonder about. What does it do to people who live in big cities?

At the start of the American experiment, we were part of an agrarian society. The majority of people were farmers. For people in cities, farm to table wasn’t a concept, it was the way to keep from having rotten food. Infrastructure and mass production eliminated the need for multiple small farms and people started to move to cities to be near work. This often involved factories. Apartments sprung up to support a growing population. Other people were able to open small businesses selling food and other goods to the people working in the city.

Over the last 50-60 years, big cities have been synonymous with danger, poverty and social breakdown. Much of that has either been attributed to the race of the people living there or to institutional racism. However, there is a theory that the population density itself is a problem. That and what Democrats did to encourage population density.

An animal behaviorist named John Calhoun created a number of utopia environments for rats and mice during the middle of the last century. The most famous is probably Universe 25, or what Calhoun called “mouse heaven.” He created a contained ecosystem that had various rooms and a common area. Food and water was always available, and the box was cleaned regularly. He started on day 1 with 8 mice, four breeding pairs.

The mouse population increased in that environment every few weeks until it reached about 600 in less than a year. The environment could support 1000 mice effectively, but the population growth started to slow. Still, in another 5 months, the population peaked at a dense 2200 inhabitants.

During this period, mice became less like mice. Female mice abandoned their young and eventually stopped breeding altogether. Males found that being territorial was useless because there was no territory left. The majority of mice collected in the common area where they waited for food. They occasionally turned to homosexuality, random fighting and eventually asexuality. A small number of mice with an aversion to other mice segregated themselves into smaller rooms where they spent their time eating, sleeping and grooming themselves away from everyone else.

Calhoun deemed this activity “behavioral sink” and it spelled the beginning of the end. Mice no longer bred and as the population died off, the ability to replenish was not even attempted by the mice left. The results of this and other experiments were published and became fodder for the media in the 1970’s. Other psychologists became famous supposedly disproving Calhoun’s conclusion about this applying to man, mostly with short, meaningless experiments with college students.

It’s pretty easy to draw parallels between rat heaven and the massive rates of abortion, joblessness and sloth in the inner city. While population density is not a good thing, Calhoun did something that may have been even worse for rat society. He gave them all their material needs without any responsibility. Every socialist in history has predicted the freeing of the human spirit when the need to put food on the table is eliminated. Instead, the human spirit is destroyed. In Universe 25, rat society was destroyed around the same time as the average lifespan of a mouse. After long enough, young  mice had no elders who had been outside the universe.


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  1. Interesting! I never noticed that.

    Comment by insanitybytes22 — August 25, 2016 @ 8:49 pm

    • I can’t believe I never heard of behavioral sink. Sloth is a real danger.

      Comment by 1539days — August 25, 2016 @ 9:22 pm

  2. It’s really a creepy idea because there is some truth there. Even here in the Western world were we are somewhat comfortable we have this huge addiction to pain pills and antidepressants. In the West, nearly everyone suffers from some sort of affliction. You don’t see that in war torn Somalia or parts of the ME. People have much lower rates of depression living in poverty in war torn countries. We call it affluenza, the human spirit actually gets sick from too much peace, comfort, and affluence. Socialism does a similar thing I suspect, it makes the human spirit sick. We’re creators, innovators,dragon slayers, to be unable to pursue what is natural to us is unhealthy.

    Comment by insanitybytes22 — August 25, 2016 @ 9:47 pm

  3. […] What we consider political is actually cultural. We need to elevate the human spirit, not by allowing every personal whim to become a right, but by allowing the human race in this global community freedom to think and say what they want, but not impose those beliefs on everyone else. And that goes for keeping the government at arm’s length as well. If human beings are packed in like rats, they will start to act like rats. […]

    Pingback by All Terrorism is Local | Days of Change — September 11, 2016 @ 9:09 am

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