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2 Monkeys Were Paid Unequally

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maybe the

monkey is just ticked that 9 times out of 10 he gets the grape but for some reason this lady didn't get the memo. Yup, to me it looks like they cooked the books on the research. That monkey had no care for what the other monkey was getting. It was pissed that the lady was violating the entrenched rules. I hate people that work with primates to push social purgatives. In fact, I'm starting to think Ted talks are made for leading simpletons by their delusions that they are not simpletons.


while this video may be discussing equality, what we actually need is to restore the equilibrium not equality. No one is questioning why does "the hand" that feeds the monkeys?

What if the monkeys broke out one day, shanked the pretentious nurse with a razor blade and decided to loot the fridge and escape to the wild finding their own food? Oh the horror!

The Libertarian Party, irrelevant since 1971.

Where did this monkey get his morals from???

This monkey did not resort to violence! Where does he get his morals from? Who told the monkey not to throw the rock in order to harm the scientist?

God must be whispering into baboon ears as well.

Prepare for a more diverse heaven; now your afterlife may be littered with baboons. Watch out. Heaven is getting crowded.

... but they still like each other


this thread is pretty wild. There is everything from morality based biblical stories, through speculation about the nature of man, to animal rights considerations.

What I think is that most of that is unnecessary complexity. Maybe it's just a monkey who would like some grapes ? I think that the bible story is useful in some contexts, but not as a broad all encompassing rule set for behavioural correctness. IMO there is no framework which can define righteousness.

If you try to use that story in this way you can extract all sorts of dysfunctional rational, such as never giving a worker a pay rise seeing as they have already agreed to work at the current rate, or feeling morally justified at taking the product of a mans labour and selling it on for 10 times the amount, "because they agreed to it".

If balance and compassion are not considered in the context of the equation at hand, there is bound to be inadequacy and unfairness as a result. As far as animal rights go, I've been a vegan for 20+ years because I care about animals, but I don't see what great harm these chimps are in.

How do we know they don't like working with the humans ? Maybe they have a nice life away from the test cages. Do you ever put your dog on a leash... is this not a restriction on freedoms for the dog ? How about when you confine it to one property it's whole life ?

If you consider half of what we do to produce our meat for consumption, the example of these chimps doesn't even register on the chart.

Freedom is a byproduct of acceptance - judge not.

Marxism and income disparity

There was a series I listened to about Marxism and it's deficiencies. One of the main points was how Marx made a mistake about income inequality. He believed that the masses would revolt over the inequality in society and income differences. However, what sociologists found is that people will get upset when they see income differences among people who perform similar tasks. People don't get as upset if there's income disparity among people who perform different tasks. For example, two cooks would get upset if they were paid differently. However, a cook generally rationalizes that a doctor deserves more income than a cook and won't get as upset.

That was my first thought...

they were both asked to do the same task, but got different rewards. If the one getting the grape had to do something different, then the response might be different. Unless, I am thinking, the task that got the grapes was not available to the other. Would the cucumber monkey demand the same task so they could get the grape? If the task was available to both, say two rocks not one, then I would think that the cucumber monkey would hand over two rocks and expect to get the grapes. And, if they didn't get the grapes, then I could see a protest. That's what women have been upset about for years. They do the same task as the man but get a different pay rate.

TwelveOhOne's picture

Gender equality in pay rates seems impossible

The simple fact is, women are more likely than men to drop out of the work force to focus on raising a family.

Thus, a company is less likely to invest the same amount in a "temporary" worker than they will in an employee who will be available longer.

Note that I'm not saying I agree with this situation; it is rather distressing that equal work does not garner equal pay.

But pay isn't only about what you've done; there is a component of what you will do, as well.

And there is something wonderful and magical about being able to spend time raising loved ones, holding them, hugging them, giving them energy; "a mother's job is never done" is something I started saying decades ago as a friend had a child, watching the effort it took. It may never be done, but it is far more rewarding than pushing buttons, even if I use a lot of thought before pushing the buttons.

There may not be equal pay, but there also is not equal opportunity; regardless of the movie Junior, I am highly unlikely to carry a child to term and experience the wonder that a mother does. I might be rambling here but I hope my meaning is clear: there is a disparity, and it is worth noticing, but there might not be a lot that can be done to fix it.

I love you. I'm sorry. Please forgive me. Thank you.
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Not to be a sorry ass, but I

Not to be a sorry ass, but I hate seeing animal testing in cages like this.

This experiment is missing

This experiment is missing several things but shows that even monkeys seek equity. I'm not sure that the monkeys are looking at this as 'work' or as trade. I give you a rock, you give me a cucumber, he/she gives you a rock, you give them a grape. Why is my rock only worth a cucumber when their rock is worth a grape?

If the first monkey only had sticks to hand over and had no rocks, would it accept the cucumber for trade when it sees the other get grapes for rocks?

Contract is also missing. If I agree to trade rocks for cucumbers, then I can stop producing rocks and you can stop giving me cucumbers. I can find someone else who will give me grapes. Or not.

While I can see several flaws with relating the test work and compensation for work, it shows that equity is a fundamental meme in nature.

Slaves in a cage

I'd like to put the guy on stage in a cold hard steel cage, and feed him to make him dance...and then get up on stage and laugh about it... what a cold heartless immoral moron. Is someone paying these idiots to do this, just what are they trying to prove? They are just pretending to do science so they can keep their government grant which is money they stole from me... in a voluntaryist society, this type of thing would cease to exist, because nobody would pay for it, and because it violates the non-agression principle on animals.

It is amazing that very few of the comments below talk about how wrong it is to cage another creature... it is the indoctrinated slave mentality, not even noticing! People arguing over the significance of grapes and cucumbers and wages, when they ignore the elephant in the room.... caged innocent animals.

Not sure

about the originality of this one. I kinda knew what would happen...I have two dogs...if I feed them side by side and give one of them dog food and the other one chicken - it is not a pretty sight.
They know "equality" or they simply know which food is better?
It would have been interesting if the left monkey got 1 grape and the right monkey got 2 grapes - would the monkeys have been aware of the inequality?

Proposed new definition of "human"

"Animal that can comprehend that there aren't a fixed number of grapes".

(right or wrong, I guess that kind of rules out most liberals)

Honestly though, it does kind of open an interesting debate about what satisfies our human nature:
1. having more grapes... or
2. having fewer grapes but more than my neighbor.

Monkey knows

where grape lady lives. Revenge is a dish best served cold. 2 a.m. comes a knock on the door....

[F]orce can only settle questions of power, not of right. - Clyde N. Wilson


So the one on the left must be named Cain?

His concern was not with what he was getting from the human God, but his status in comparison with his brother. Monkey-cain had no way of knowing if monkey-abel was more pleasing to woman-God. His interest was not in fairness, but status.

This has its instinctive corollary in non social animals who want to be top dog. If these two monkeys were free, they might settle for a fair distribution, or fight between themselves. But if a bigger monkey came along, they would submit and deal with his alpha status as a simple fact.

Humans take it a step further and use intricate social and cultural systems to produce either alpha status for some, or 'fairness,' depending on their status and station in life.

But this instinctive rooted behavior is often at odds with what we call morality.

The video calls to mind another parable, this one from the New Testament, where a bunch of laborers are hired by a property owner. At the end of the day those who worked 11 hours received the same pay as the ones who worked one hour. The moral of that story was not to condemn the owner for unfairness, but rather the property owner rebuked the longer-working laborers for their anger, saying "Is it not the sum we agreed on, and am I not free to do what I want with my own property?"

So in the Bible the sin of status-envy is considered a pillar of immorality and brackets the Bible like bookends.

Michael Nystrom's picture

Thought exercise: What if these were little kids?

And you did the same thing?

Instead of being in cages, they were in "classrooms," but like these poor monkeys, they couldn't escape.

And they were subject to it for 12 solid years, without understanding why.

Then what would happen to those little kids?

He's the man.

Government schools.

A few would believe they are oh so special. Many would be made to believe they are born losers. Some wouldn't fall for that and believe naturally that if they worked hard and were creative and smart they would succeed and prosper. Then small group would realize that it takes a free market to decide the winners and losers justly . Not this bullshit system we got. Sorry I turned it into my life story.

Oh, five schools teacher in my immediate family. Aunt's ,uncle's, cousin's I guess twenty or more. Pre FDR we're mostly farmers. I could go on but I won't .

TwelveOhOne's picture

Still working on reversing

the training. Think that I am succeeding.

Randomly: 6th grade science teacher took a pair of scissors and cut the film we were watching, saying he thought it was boring. This was jarring: it taught me that authority is unpredictable; it taught the other kids that destruction of state property is okay.

I love you. I'm sorry. Please forgive me. Thank you.
http://fija.org - Fully Informed Jury Association
http://jsjinc.net - Jin Shin Jyutsu (energy healing)


I think it depends on all the other variables really. You can't really separate out a single cause for an individuals behaviour like that.

If the kids had liberty minded parents who taught them about the imbalances that they were experiencing, maybe they would rise above them, or maybe they would seek to change them for others ?

If they had rebellious parents, maybe they would seek to oppose or fight those who they felt were responsible ? If they had no paternal influences, maybe they would just come to accept it as normal, like the low wage third world workers.

I don't actually think that the condition holds it's own meaning.

Freedom is a byproduct of acceptance - judge not.

Grapes fer nuthin...

chicks fer free..
we got to move these color teeeveeeeeeeeeeeesssssss!!!!

I was expecting him to start throwing the rocks

Clearly, this ape is not yet fully radicalized.

dont worry, its phones are

dont worry, its phones are tapped


If these monkeys were free from their cages they could choose for themselves.

Michael Nystrom's picture

I showed this to Samantha

She has a PhD in neuroscience. She doesn't experiment on animals, only humans. She thought this was hilarious. She couldn't stop laughing.

Thanks for posting, BT.

He's the man.

The video is an accurate reflection of a Socialist state.

The government has everyone locked in a cage and is paying according to which of the subjects pleases it more.
Nobody is free to leave their assigned cage and find another occupation / employer.
The monkey on the left had better learn to lick the you-know-what of the feed master.

Better idea

Put those scientists in the cage. Have no respect for people who do this. They must of got picked on in school imo.

Then again science knows no love. Ie. Big bang theory show


Would you refuse modern medicine

if you were seriously sick?

I think it's safe to assume any effective medicine nowadays used animal testing at some point in its creation.

Just curious.

I thought by now

We have come out of the dark ages.

Do no harm....how naive of me

I do eat organic meats btw but no veal of course >:

Knew a farmer who raised veal...saw what it did to his mindset eventually.

Like the Lord says be good stewards of thee earth


experiment with free monkeys

I was going to post about a different experiment here, but decided it contained enough information that it deserved a separate thread.


I feel like the system tends

I feel like the system tends to be very self-correcting...just not over short periods of time.

Look, if there are enough people not doing well enough, unfairly or fairly (however each individual philosopher wants to deny it), they'll just revolt until they get more handouts.

Fundamentally, you may say that your ability to "earn" more, through legal means, has more validity than someone else's ability to earn more by stealing it or using government force to get it, but at a certain level its all the same. It is doing whatever you can to get ahead.

Plan for eliminating the national debt in 10-20 years:

Overview: http://rolexian.wordpress.com/2010/09/12/my-plan-for-reducin...

Specific cuts; defense spending: http://rolexian.wordpress.com/2011/01/03/more-detailed-look-a