technical innovations (was More Green Party)

From: altamira (
Date: Wed Jun 28 2000 - 14:08:35 MDT

domesticated maize (central Mexico)

domesticated chicken (I have Araucanas which, I believe, were domesticated
in Peru)

domesticated "Irish" potato (Peru)

domesticated sweet potato (not sure where)

fire (Africa?)

At the time these innovations occurred people seem to have been living in
small kinship groups. Since such groups have varied customs and practices,
it's hard to say anything about the social structure, other than that there
was no "centralized" authority telling all the groups of a region what they
must do or refrain from doing.

  Based on what I know of human nature, I believe that technical innovation
was most likely to have occurred in groups where custom allowed individuals
the freedom to experiment with different ways of doing daily work.
Domestication of food crops would have been most likely to occur in groups
where individuals and their kin were free to directly benefit from the any
work they might do to harvest more food than they needed at the moment and
store it for future use. In situations where this was not the case, such as
where neighboring groups frequently raided each other's camps, I would not
expect food domestication to have caught on.

The case where neighboring tribes frequently raid each other's camps is
analogous to the case where certain groups of people calling themselves "the
government" raid their neighbor's bank accounts. However, as long as the
raiding is kept within tolerable limits, it's not a barrier to innovation.
(the best parasite is that which allows its host to thrive)(better yet is
the parasite which actually benefits its host, like the bacteria in our


> -----Original Message-----
> From:
> []On Behalf Of
> Sent: Wednesday, June 28, 2000 1:43 PM
> To:
> Subject: Re: More Green Party
> "zeb haradon" <> wrote:
> > Make a list of the 5 technical innovations which you feel most vastly
> > improve your life. Now next to each one, write where they were
> invented.

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