Feb 19, 03:59 by IROSF
Have something to say about Peter Watts or this interview?
The article can be found here
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I am intrigued by the idea of sociopaths becoming evolutionarily successful. I just watched the movie "Jumper" in which there was a mass amount of said sociopathic behavior. Jumpers are people who have a mutation allowing them to "jump" anywhere in the world (as long as they have been there before). Of course, when young people find they have this ability (well, let's not limit this to young people--many people in general) they use if for their own advantage, robbing banks or any other items that are desired--leading to a very comfortable life. They are able to live outside the rules--and quite successfully, too. However, the sociopathic behavior moves on from there: women are more easily loved and left, trucks and buses are jumped with the jumpers, then smashed or rolled, no thought for the people caught inside. The idea of accountability (or lack of with such an ability) was repeatedly mentioned, though one would think at some point the characters (or at least the one that says he is "different" and will not use his ability for "evil") there would be some learning from all the sociopathic behavior. There isn't, at least in this installment.
That being said, I can see that jumpers would come out on top, especially with the world being so big that they can easily get lost in it. The paladins chasing them (a group that through history has followed and eliminated jumpers) might have something else to say about that, and in this context are attempting to control evolution so perhaps us "normal" humans don't end up with the short end of the stick (at least that would be the evolutionary reason--the paladins claim that it is an abomination to have such a god-like ability and it must be eliminated). I can't help but wonder if the using of jumping for evil that the paladins refer to is that consequence-less, sociopathic behavior which even the main character is guilty of, and he is not really different from the other jumpers after all.
[ Edited: Nov 30, 00:00 ] [ Reply ]
Emlymom, I think you're on the right track. "Jumpers" does have a lot of sociopathic characters -- but they're not all Jumpers. The Paladin called Roland (Samuel L. Jackson) exhibits sociopathic tendencies. He believes he has a mandate from a divine power to stop Jumpers permanently. Once his team captures a Jumper, in one nastily memorable scene, Roland uses a large knife to kill the Jumper, and he looks rather happy doing it.
David Rice (Hayden Christianson) is not, imo, sociopathic; he feels remorse for what he feels he's forced to do (rob banks to support himself, as he sees it, because his ability to teleport makes him a permanent outcast from society). He leaves behind apology notes. There is a hint that he attempts to repay those from whom he stole, though it's never explicitly shown, afaik. Sociopaths, by definition, have no sense of moral responsibility and no social conscience. If Rice was a sociopath, he wouldn't leave the notes, and he'd be doing a lot more damage.
As to the question of whether sociopaths would come out on top in the evolutionary sense, I disagree. I think humans developed cooperative behaviors because they increased the survival rate for a larger number of humans, thus serving the need for a diverse gene pool. Sociopaths, not having the moral responsibility/social conscience switch turned on, are opting themselves out of these benefits. If only sociopaths were left in the world, they wouldn't last long; they'd be killing each other.
[ Edited: Nov 30, 00:00 ] [ Reply ]
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