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My deepest hope is that when the dust has settled from this pandemic, the planet of humans will have moved closer to working together on all things that threaten our momentary existence in the cosmos. When you get down to it, the only real threat humanity faces is our own behaviors, even in terms of how this coronavirus theoretically came about, to then devastate the entire planet with Covid-19 in a few short months.

According to the work of China's "Bat Woman”, virologist Shi Zhengli, the zoonosis, cross-species transmission, of this virus is theoretically attributed to the abuse of animals for their faux science medicinal properties, in this case, bats. Science has a way to go to demystify it. Another traditional Chinese medicne animal is suspect: the pangolin, which resembles a scaly anteater.  UPDATE:  And according to the latest research, DNA evidence suggests that the virus jumped one time to a human from a pangolin in the Wuhan market, and has since been spread human to human.  But that's just the tip of an iceberg in how countless pathogens evolve out of our agricultural animal intensifications, and our political refusals to make health care a human right if only by virtue of how that protects the whole of society. And even if we look at other threats to our exisence, like war, climate change, and even a meteorite (we should be investing far more in looking), it is our choices that make these threats so serious. There are threats we can't do much about, like a supervolcano or near-Earth supernova explosion, but only an idiot would suggest that that implies we are infinitely at the mercy of powers above our control.

The big problem, as i see it, is greed, the subcounscious foundational cornerstone of our modern economic system. We can anthropomorphically analyze the near 4 billion year evolution into humanity of that greed by looking at the competition for resources among more primitive, dog eat dog life, here chimp wars. It can also be seen microbiologically without any consciousness among countless, one-celled organisms in any number of ecosystems, large and small. Greed is wired into us as an instinctive impulse of survival like sex. Neuroscience's ever sharper brain imaging tools has better defined that one. Due to how dangerous it can be to immediately have sex with anyone the moment you feel the impulse, like some animals who will have sex until they die, or kill one another to have sex and thus be vulnerable to other predators, we tend to cognitively manage that impulse. And that's also in the interest of nurturing forth children within stable family groups who can then socially flourish to go where none have gone before. That’s called civilization. So our brains are capable of managing very powerful instincts, if it's in the interest of our survival.

Capitalism, founded upon an instinct and now culturally evolved into an often violently self-destructive civilization, has to be managed away ASAP. Some sort of economy that critically looks at the big picture and manages our instincts, no matter how cloaked in a human history written by the winners of battles, needs to evolve by our choices. If forced, it will never work. The whole planet needs some sort of cognitive behavioral therapy, and exercise neuroplasticity – and best done through good childhoods -- to biologically bolster those areas of the brain that can inhibit our impulse-driven behaviors and empower us with brilliant moral systems. I would be living in a fantasy universe if I were to believe that all nations -- particularly USA, China, and Russia -- and their 7.7 billion people would overnight submit to mental health counseling. But it can begin by exercizing our right to vote.

My favorite economic system would reflect the ideas of Buckminster Fuller, who, as well as being the architect and engineer known for his geodesic domes in the 1960's, was also a math-based systems philosopher. Without getting all complex, one essential component to such a more socialistic system includes "pricing nature's services," what most MBA students learn are externalities that need not be considered when billionaires trade at Wall Street.

David Suzuki, a Canadian zoologist and geneticist (and environmental activist) who contributed to the science of the Human Genome Project at the turn of the millennium, brilliantly expresses it in this short video.

Bent Lorentzen

Bent Lorentzen

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