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Isolated Tribes Die Shortly After We Meet Them

Soulskill posted about 5 months ago | from the keep-your-culture-to-yourself dept.

Science 351

Daniel_Stuckey writes: "It's a story we all know — Christopher Columbus discovers America, his European buddies follow him, they meet the indigenous people living there, they indigenous people die from smallpox and guns and other unknown diseases, and the Europeans get gold, land, and so on. It's still happening today in Brazil, where 238 indigenous tribes have been contacted in the last several decades, and where between 23 and 70 uncontacted tribes are still living. A just-published report that takes a look at what happens after the modern world comes into contact with indigenous peoples isn't pretty: Of those contacted, three quarters went extinct. Those that survived saw mortality rates up over 80 percent. This is grim stuff."

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351 comments

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Open SSL (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46701801)

Netcraft confirms it: OpenSSL is dying.

The combined efforts of a million masturbating internet nerds was unable to secure a secure website protocol used by Apache, Linucks, and others.

This lack of security caused such utter failure, that attackers were actually able to read private server memory.

LOL.

I guess you Open Sores should have used Microsoft Windows Server, and should be reading Ars Technica instead of Slashdot which still hasn't reported on this.

Re:Open SSL (-1, Offtopic)

Zaldarr (2469168) | about 5 months ago | (#46701857)

What the living fuck are you on about?

Re:Open SSL (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46701889)

Read about it here [arstechnica.com]

Ars Technica - News for Nerds, Slashdot is dying.

Re:Open SSL (0, Offtopic)

megabeck42 (45659) | about 5 months ago | (#46701903)

Are you new here? I'm surprised he isn't citing a petrified Natalie Portman covered in grits and vetted by the GNAA. "Netcraft confirms X" is an old, old, late 90s slashdot comment "joke." Granted, it's as funny as those forwarded email I get from my aunt; but it's the thought that counts, right?

Re:Open SSL (-1, Offtopic)

Zaldarr (2469168) | about 5 months ago | (#46701995)

I've been here for 5 years, and as far as I'm concerned this has nothing to with TFA, even as a joke.

Re:Open SSL (-1, Offtopic)

megabeck42 (45659) | about 5 months ago | (#46702153)

That's correct. Netcraft confirms X has never, to the best of my knowledge, related to TFA.

Re:Open SSL (1, Offtopic)

Immerman (2627577) | about 5 months ago | (#46702179)

Out of curiosity, and as long as we're all horribly off-topic anyway, why are your comments all in a hideous fixed-width font?

Re:Open SSL (-1, Offtopic)

megabeck42 (45659) | about 5 months ago | (#46702185)

It appears I set it as a preference once. I hadn't bothered to change it. This better? Sorry for the horrification.

Re:Open SSL (-1, Offtopic)

Immerman (2627577) | about 5 months ago | (#46702319)

Much better.

What a strange thing to even have an option for. Then again I suppose /. doesn't actually offer any per-post formatting options.

Re:Open SSL (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702435)

yes it goes the right direction now with sugar on top please

Re:Open SSL (-1, Offtopic)

Trax3001BBS (2368736) | about 5 months ago | (#46702397)

Are you new here? "Netcraft confirms X" is an old, old, late 90s slashdot comment "joke." Granted, it's as funny as those forwarded email I get from my aunt; but it's the thought that counts, right?

LOL I got caught with NetCraft then just a few weeks ago, had a post, looking for a place to reply it to, It was a If NetCraft says it's dead....
Posted it there.

The troll mentioned OpenSSL so for safe hex it's been advised to download immediately the newest version of the OpenSSL protocol, which includes a fix, and quickly swap out your encryption keys.
http://bits.blogs.nytimes.com/... [nytimes.com]

This was mentioned yesterday on /.

Re:Open SSL (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46701893)

When I said I wanted my SSL open, I didn't mean this open, am I right folks!?

Correlation != Causation (5, Funny)

Z34107 (925136) | about 5 months ago | (#46701907)

Correlation is not causation. It's entirely possible that dying natives cause visiting Europeans. I'll admit I'm unsure as to the mechanism, but maybe Hernan Cortes was a misunderstood doctors-without-borders kind of guy.

It's also possible that a third confounding factor causes both dying natives and Europeans. Perhaps they both generate spontaneously from gold and oil, or perhaps from tectonic action within countries with hats.

Re:Correlation != Causation (0, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46701993)

Awesome, but you forgot to include the post hoc fallacy possibility as well. I didn't see any estimates of the death rates of actually-uncontacted "uncontacted" tribes. If an uncontacted-uncontacted tribe dies off in the forest, and no anthropologist is there to record the data...?

Re:Correlation != Causation (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702485)

Does it make a sound?

Re:Correlation != Causation (2)

Immerman (2627577) | about 5 months ago | (#46702203)

I'm sorry, but we had to kill the patient in order to save him. The good news though is that soon we will have cured you and all your neighbors as well.

Re:Correlation != Causation (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702281)

I'll admit I'm unsure as to the mechanism, but maybe Hernan Cortes was a misunderstood doctors-without-borders kind of guy.

Playing doctor gets a whole new meaning here.

Re:Open SSL (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46701917)

and should be reading Ars Technica instead of Slashdot which still hasn't reported on this.

But you just don't get old fashioned internet babble like yours on those other sites. You're like the authentic frontier gibberish hillbilly from Blazing Saddles, and I am happy to have witnessed this display of a disappearing part of net culture.

If only (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46701813)

these tribes had a space program and 3D printers, they could have left this mud ball and colonized Mars to survive their extinction.

Oh so sorry! "We" only get to talk about species when it means rich white guys in their 50s wearing Nike track suits in low Earth orbit!

Re:If only (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702073)

You're going to die of old age, QA.

Just as sure as the luddite tribes that didn't care to find out what was over the next hill.

HA (3, Funny)

zamboni1138 (308944) | about 5 months ago | (#46701823)

"people die from smallpox and guns and other unknown diseases"

I'm pretty sure at least one of those was unintentional.

"smallpox OR guns OR other unknown diseases" (1, Insightful)

MikeTheGreat (34142) | about 5 months ago | (#46701845)

C'mon people - aren't we nerds? Clearly we need an OR here, not an AND!

Re:"smallpox OR guns OR other unknown diseases" (1, Funny)

Tim99 (984437) | about 5 months ago | (#46702257)

C'mon people - aren't we nerds? Clearly we need an OR here, not an AND!

I think that you want a NOR gate. The tribe only survives (1) if the inputs from disease or guns are both 0 : Wikipedia NOR gate [wikipedia.org]

Re:"smallpox OR guns OR other unknown diseases" (1, Offtopic)

JaredOfEuropa (526365) | about 5 months ago | (#46702291)

Interestingly, the English word "nor" is more like a NAND.

Re:"smallpox OR guns OR other unknown diseases" (1)

Noughmad (1044096) | about 5 months ago | (#46702559)

Either you don't understand Slashdot's native language, or you don't understand English. In any case, the Enlish "nor" is short for "neither", which is true as long as both inputs are false, exactly like a NOR gate.

Re:"smallpox OR guns OR other unknown diseases" (1)

N1AK (864906) | about 5 months ago | (#46702617)

Either you don't understand Slashdot's native language, or you don't understand English. In any case, the Enlish "nor" is short for "neither", which is true as long as both inputs are false, exactly like a NOR gate.

Odd how you'd accuse him of not understanding English when you yourself then misdefine the same word. As someone who is still trying to break the habit of using it in conversation and baffling southerners I can assure you that it isn't limited to use as a short form of neither, and nor should it be.

Re:"smallpox OR guns OR other unknown diseases" (1)

danlip (737336) | about 5 months ago | (#46702273)

The problem with the sentence is not "and" versus "or", it is really the placement of the word "other" e.g. "smallpox and other unknown diseases and guns".

Re:"smallpox OR guns OR other unknown diseases" (2)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | about 5 months ago | (#46702293)

C'mon people - aren't we nerds? Clearly we need an OR here, not an AND!

Nope - these natives have been just ridiculously unlucky.

So? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46701847)

Why do people think it's best to leave others living in the stone age?

Re:So? (5, Insightful)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about 5 months ago | (#46702003)

Why do people think it's best to leave others living in the stone age?

Alive in the stone age or dead but part of the neoplastic mess that is Homo Industrialis?

You decide.

Re:So? (2)

the_Bionic_lemming (446569) | about 5 months ago | (#46702207)

what is the average age of those that lived in the stone age?

Re:So? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702357)

...and what is the amount of living done now vs then? Honestly? I'd say it's a coin toss. Every time we find a solution, those "in charge" are ready with a whole mess of problems they can create to keep us off balance and out of control. I'd blame sadism, but I doubt they put that much thought into it.

Re:So? (2)

Mr0bvious (968303) | about 5 months ago | (#46702063)

Dunno, but from my observations modern humans seem stressed not not overly happy (though, they have toys and are well fed).

I think you need to have lived like these people before you can make any assessment here.

Re:So? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702097)

Come on, homo modernis would be incapable of being happy in any conditions, especially conditions where there's no TV, no internet and he has to do physical work.

Re:So? (2)

tlambert (566799) | about 5 months ago | (#46702143)

Dunno, but from my observations modern humans seem stressed not not overly happy (though, they have toys and are well fed).

I think you need to have lived like these people before you can make any assessment here.

I agree. Send him in to contact them... wait...

Re:So? (3, Insightful)

Johann Lau (1040920) | about 5 months ago | (#46702407)

It's all pretty much relative, and ultimately stone age and transcendent energy beings with civilizations spanning the whole universe are exactly the same before the heat death of the universe. Can you tell me the fundamental difference between a bacterium, a dog, a human, or the entirety of human civilization? It's all just a bunch of life, and any hierarchy of value you could propose you made up yourself, self-righteously so.

And actually, it's not like we are much more than toy people from a toy culture -- we can't even make lighters that can be refilled more than a few times because we're too greedy, and right now we have new devices and software on us pushed constantly just to keep us buying, with hardly any meaningful progress and plenty of regression. We're ones to talk, really. It's Dunning-Kruger all the way down -- if we were oh so advanced, maybe cultures we came in contact with would thrive, instead of shrivel up and die?

This bit from "Network" comes to mind:

It's too late, Diana. There's nothing left in you that I can live with. You're one of Howard's humanoids. If I stay with you, I'll be destroyed. Like Howard Beale was destroyed. Like Laureen Hobbs was destroyed. Like everything you and the institution of television touch is destroyed. You're television incarnate, Diana: Indifferent to suffering; insensitive to joy. All of life is reduced to the common rubble of banality. War, murder, death are all the same to you as bottles of beer. And the daily business of life is a corrupt comedy. You even shatter the sensations of time and space into split seconds and instant replays. You're madness, Diana. Virulent madness. And everything you touch dies with you.

between 23 and 70 uncontacted tribes (1, Troll)

Nutria (679911) | about 5 months ago | (#46701871)

Jesus H Christ, but that's a huge spread. Do anthropologists actually know anything?

Re:between 23 and 70 uncontacted tribes (2, Insightful)

AK Marc (707885) | about 5 months ago | (#46701923)

People complain when you put the wildlife ear tags on the natives.

Re:between 23 and 70 uncontacted tribes (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702087)

Is that why you had to flee the country?

Re:between 23 and 70 uncontacted tribes (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46701951)

There are between 11 and 74 letters in the alphabet, depending on which one you use. Likewise, there are between 23 and 70 tribes, depending on what definition of tribe you use.

Jesus H Christ, but that's a huge spread. Do anthropologists actually know anything?

One more thing than you apparently.

Re:between 23 and 70 uncontacted tribes (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702123)

They know that you humans are assholes.

Uncontacted Tribes Die Instantly After We Meet The (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46701883)

instantly. poof, it's like magic!

Other animals (2)

Dan East (318230) | about 5 months ago | (#46701885)

Wouldn't the same thing happen to pretty much any other species of animals, if one small group had been isolated for several hundred years and a much larger group came into contact with it? The only options are to absorb into the larger group, or die out from disease, starvation or direct fighting.

Re:Other animals (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702177)

Explain how tribes can survive after thousands of years without disease?

Native Americans used herbs and other plants to heal themselves, and yet today /.ers deny any chance that alternative medicine works. And what does this say about Europe who used religion as a heal/execute all.

Natives Americans were fairly populated, just divided into several tribes. Without any major population wiping disease. I'm not saying that having a large population wouldn't cause such disease, add that fact they lived with there livestock, any disease could jump from human into animal and mutate, or vice verse, and the vaccine for small pox came about because of [essentially] milk maids who didn't get the disease, due to their interaction with the heifers. Their lack of proper hygiene, not deposing of their feces in a proper manner. Contaminating their drinking water with their own feces, animal feces, ect....

Re:Other animals (5, Insightful)

RoknrolZombie (2504888) | about 5 months ago | (#46702331)

Explain how tribes can survive after thousands of years without disease?

I'm pretty sure the OP intended to say "new diseases". Obviously they have their own diseases - and their own immunities...they just aren't the same as the rest of the worlds'.

Native Americans used herbs and other plants to heal themselves, and yet today /.ers deny any chance that alternative medicine works.

Yes, because when it's proven to work it's called "medicine".

And what does this say about Europe who used religion as a heal/execute all.

Eh...no comment? People were largely uneducated back then? I'm not sure what the excuse is in this day and age though...

Natives Americans were fairly populated, just divided into several tribes. Without any major population wiping disease.

This is a random link - I'm sure you can find more with a quick search:
http://www.examiner.com/articl... [examiner.com]

The only reason that the Europeans had a chance was because the Native American population was already decimated. Not saying that it's "ok" or anything like that, but thems the facts.

I'm not saying that having a large population wouldn't cause such disease, add that fact they lived with there livestock, any disease could jump from human into animal and mutate, or vice verse, and the vaccine for small pox came about because of [essentially] milk maids who didn't get the disease, due to their interaction with the heifers. Their lack of proper hygiene, not deposing of their feces in a proper manner. Contaminating their drinking water with their own feces, animal feces, ect....

Hail dumb luck? Really? What are you getting at? That science is "bad"? By all means - segregate yourself from the scientific community...I don't think you'll be missed.

Re:Other animals (1)

Johann Lau (1040920) | about 5 months ago | (#46702439)

There is a huge span between "coming into contact" and "having to compete for space/food". The animals and plants I see day in and out seem to be generally rather more relaxed than what you are describing -- the option you pretend doesn't even exist, co-existence, is the most common one.

Consider the GDP (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46701899)

How are they dying of smallpox? I thought that was extinct in the wild.

But seriously, uncontacted tribesmen don't even measure on the GDP, so frankly, what good are they for society? Are we going to train them to write PHP or MUMPS or something, and if so, who foots that bill? Hopefully not me the Taxpayer.

Let them go, we have enough unemployed alcoholic indigenous peoples as it is.

Re:Consider the GDP (2)

istartedi (132515) | about 5 months ago | (#46701947)

Are we going to train them to write PHP

Improv. GO!

... yes, because there aren't enough qualified people here, get them H1B ASAP.

... Backward tribes already use PHP.

... Many of them can only count to 3, so... oh, no problem. Carry on.

... for FacePaintBook?

OK, that's all I've got. Thanks for the setup.

Sad, and not black and white either (4, Insightful)

RightwingNutjob (1302813) | about 5 months ago | (#46701905)

The metaphorical White Man has a heavy burden here. Reach out to the savages, and there are adverse consequences, suffering, death, and loss of traditions going back millennia. Stay away, and people who should be your fellow human beings are cut off from the fruits of civilization, and are treated like livestock whose habitat must be delineated and (un)managed to keep their numbers healthy so that more children can be born into a life where their greatest aspiration can be to live just like their grandfathers going back tens of thousands of years.

Re:Sad, and not black and white either (1)

phantomfive (622387) | about 5 months ago | (#46701977)

The metaphorical White Man has a heavy burden here.

What is the burden? I mean, what do you suggest doing? We can barely take care of ourselves out here.......

Re:Sad, and not black and white either (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702021)

It is our duty to keep those tribes alive, for they could be a chance for the human race to reboot after the technological collapse.

Re:Sad, and not black and white either (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702091)

Not really. They won't be *that* helpful to us. They've got local knowledge of flora and fauna, but that's not helpful to me many thousands of miles away in another ecosystem. Just because they are still living as their ancestors lived hundreds of years ago, doesn't mean they possess some ancient wisdom that trumps modern science. I'm not sure it's our duty to keep them alive. Do we have a duty to keep others alive? I'd like to think yes, but this is Slashdot, and I can bet a lot of people would disagree that we owe anything to our fellow Man. We're not responsible for those tribes being in their predicament to the extent that we didn't prevent them from evolving on their own. They were isolated, and when their ancestors encountered Europeans, they retreated further away into the jungle in order to stay isolated. Those are consequences they must deal with. If we went in to contact them, we would be trespassing on their world and threatening their lives. If we left them alone, we wouldn't be isolating them anymore than they already have themselves. The fact is, we can't interact with them without requiring them to change. At the very least, they must be vaccinated.

Re:Sad, and not black and white either (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702157)

Reboot really? The rest of civilization has done things like land on the moon and send rovers to mars. We have satellites that are leaving our solar system. Some of the indigenous tribes in Australia haven't developed pottery yet.

My point is they have yet to evolve to a point where we were thousands of years ago, I have no hope that suddenly they will change. Somewhere they lost their drive to better themselves. Even if that means moving to a location that allows them to do so.

Re:Sad, and not black and white either (4, Insightful)

Immerman (2627577) | about 5 months ago | (#46702235)

One man spends a few hours a day supplying for all his worldly needs, and the rest in the pursuit of art, spiitual development, and other pleasures.
The other spends half his waking day slaving away for somebody else's goals, in order to earn money he doesn't need in order to buy things he doesn't want so he can impress people he doesn't care about.

Which is the wiser man?

Re:Sad, and not black and white either (2)

RoknrolZombie (2504888) | about 5 months ago | (#46702345)

The one that got a banking degree in the 80's?

Re:Sad, and not black and white either (1)

Johann Lau (1040920) | about 5 months ago | (#46702475)

Yeah, those types are just oozing spiritual development.

Re:Sad, and not black and white either (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702573)

Pursuit of the spiritual and pursuit of the material are not an either/or proposition, you tourist. You would visit quaint villages in foreign countries and remark about how pure the people were, slaving away at the fields, foraging for food, risking death to bring back meat, using rudimentary tools, free from the pressures of credit and the horrific slavery of refrigeration, combustion engines, and metal alloys. So pure, so free.

It's so easy to look at people that still struggle for the most basic of wordily needs and find some form of peace when you enjoy everything they don't have and bear little or none of their risks. When you get sick, and you will, you will have medicine, medicine that you bought slaving away for somebody else's goals. When you are hungry again, you will have to make that awful choice of take-out or instant. You won't have to hunt. You may want to, but you won't have to.

Be a hipster if you want, talk about how iPhones are killing good ol' fashioned chats in the street with strangers, or how satellite radio and fuel efficient cars have destroyed the bond you used to be able to have with a beast of burden, whether it be your spouse or your horse; but don't think for a moment that those impressive things that people buy for themselves are incapable of bringing them actual lasting happiness simply because their lavish. You're just fooling yourself. I will happily take an understanding of the atom and bacteria over a belief that the sun is angry at me, or the constant fear that comes from superstition.

Re:Sad, and not black and white either (5, Insightful)

Tom (822) | about 5 months ago | (#46702575)

One has a life expectancy of 30-odd years, the other of 70+. He has access to literature, art and music from all over the world. If he breaks his leg, he is transported to a hospital, gets a cast and will be well again in a short time instead of getting an infection and having a 50-50 chance of surviving.

We have romantic thoughts about prior times mostly because we forget all the shit about them. Your average medieval market fair doesn't include the open-latrines, your village getting burnt down in one of the constant wars, the fact that women had a reasonably high chance to die when giving birth or the simple fact that most likely everyone reeked to high heavens. Or just the fact that 90% of us would be pig farmers or something.

I know what I'd pick if given a choice. If you think different, pick a tribe, learn their language and go and live with them for a few years.

You can totally work a few hours a day to satisfy basic needs and spend the rest doing whatever you want. Of course it will probably mean not being able to buy the latest smartphone every year or going on expensive holiday trips, or very much medical care or a car - but then, the tribesmen do without those as well, right?

Re:Sad, and not black and white either (3, Insightful)

Waccoon (1186667) | about 5 months ago | (#46702605)

The one that can still feed himself for a few months if he breaks a leg.

I'm not a very materialistic person and I don't make much money, but I do very much understand the concepts of emergency buffers and retirement savings.

Re:Sad, and not black and white either (1)

rossdee (243626) | about 5 months ago | (#46702531)

Climate change will wipe them out too, probably by drought.

Re:Sad, and not black and white either (1)

93 Escort Wagon (326346) | about 5 months ago | (#46702301)

They really need access to Facebook.

Re:Sad, and not black and white either (1)

loufoque (1400831) | about 5 months ago | (#46702089)

Are you implying that white men have better aspirations than living?

Evolution in action (0, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46701937)

I always find it interesting when people who believe in evolution get upset when instances of it take place in real life. If you can't adapt to the current world, then you die. That's evolution in action. This is the world we live in and being shut of from it doesn't help anyone's society or the human race in general progress further. Millions of species have died out over millions of years, so why not specific groups of humans too ? But no, evolutionist want to have a kind, caring world, even though their very theory demands the opposite. For the human race to survive and grow, it must move forward and evolve in new ways. This means that the failures die off just like they have throughout the entire history of this planet and this benefits the race as a whole. And please, don't call me a troll. I'm not trolling. I'm saying exactly what evolutionists have been saying for decades, but tried to hide. This is evolution in action. So deal with it.

Re:Evolution in action (3, Insightful)

MightyMartian (840721) | about 5 months ago | (#46701981)

So if someone walks up and shoots you in the head, that's fine because it's evolution?

Evolutionary biology is science, not morality.

Re:Evolution in action (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702069)

You are talking about an action that takes place to an individual by another individual. I'm talking about something taking place to a group of humans because they can't handle the modern world. Their isolation makes it impossible to survive in today's world. Therefore, they as a group die off.

Re:Evolution in action (4, Interesting)

Immerman (2627577) | about 5 months ago | (#46702251)

If you contact an isolated group, knowing you are a carrier for pathogens likely to kill 80% of them, then you are absolutely taking an action as an individual against a group of individuals.

Not that I'm opposed to allowing natural selection back into human development, but I abhor a double standard. Tell you what, I've got a friend here who's a carrier to a particularly virulent strain of Ebola. His tribe are all immune, but what say I send him to your family reunion to make contact with a foreign culture?

Re:Evolution in action (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702191)

Yes, you are right, evolution is a science. It's supposedly the way humans came into being. So what does morality have to do with that ? There is NO morality in evolution. It's all about survival of the strongest, smartest, fastest. The weak, stupid, slow die off so that eventually they no longer add to the race. The only "morality" is the survival of the human race. That's it.

Re:Evolution in action (1)

Flozzin (626330) | about 5 months ago | (#46702253)

Not the original AC. But I agree with him. I would take it a step further. Warring tribes used to completely wipe each other out. I would call this evolution as well. You see the same pattern of behavior in ant colonies. When they find another colony, they go and attack. At the end one colony wins the other is defeated. The capture the living as slaves. On the scale of ants, its evolution. On the scale of humans, it's evolution. Just because we are self aware does not mean evolution stops for us.

Re:Evolution in action (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702359)

In the grand scheme of things, if a faction of humans kills themselves off because they can't live with each other, then yes - that's evolution. The ones that have learned to live and help each have clearly evolved socially to persist longer than those who did not.

Re:Evolution in action (0)

mooingyak (720677) | about 5 months ago | (#46702019)

I always find it interesting when people who believe in evolution get upset when instances of it take place in real life.

Why?

I believe that if I were stabbed, it could be fatal. At a minimum it would probably hurt. I would get upset if an instance of this were to take place in real life.

Would this also be interesting?

Re:Evolution in action (5, Insightful)

Johann Lau (1040920) | about 5 months ago | (#46702555)

If you can't adapt to the current world, then you die.

Heh. There is no singular "current world" outside our tightening sphere of slavery. Also: if you adapt successfully, for a while, you die as well.

But no, evolutionist want to have a kind, caring world, even though their very theory demands the opposite.

What is it with kids these days awkwardly rephrasing Mein Kampf and not even being aware of it? I swear I keep seeing that.

Evolution doesn't "demand" shit, it just is. It doesn't strive towards a certain purpose or zenith, it just wobbles around here and there because it can, because there is energy available to do so, and when it ends, it ends. Yeah, there is competition and fighting, but it's not required for evolution to happen -- all we need is diversity and random stuff happening. And it's actually kinda hard, if not impossible, to get rid of that, and furthermore evolution also laughs at the tiny timeframes you can conceive of, the differences you see.

Where you see a straight line to some kind of goal, it sees you bouncing around local optima, and none of the what any lifeform is doing is distuingishable from anything else if you zoom far out enough. Yet if you zoom in far enough, if you are that lifeform, it always matters. If you zoom in too far, you end up believing what you think matters, matters in general, and that's where unintentional comedy begins.

Last but surely not least: a stone age baby raised by modern parents would behave like any modern child. Most of our supposed progress is not in us, it's in the networks of objects and human relations we amassed; by ourselves, we haven't changed. And 5000 years of progress would disappear in one single generation if it simply ceased to be passed on, you know? Not so for, say, the ability of a bird to fly. Instead of thinking we're hot shit because it feels good to hear us saying that, we should know our place and think for a change, really.

Inherent bias (5, Insightful)

JazzHarper (745403) | about 5 months ago | (#46701941)

We have considerably less data on the isolated tribes that die out before we meet them.

Re:Inherent bias (1)

alexhs (877055) | about 5 months ago | (#46702571)

We have considerably less data on the isolated tribes that die out before we meet them.

Well, that's what you think.

We know how many there are (*).
Should I remind you that the NSA never met you; however it knows more about you than your close family ?

(*) Obviously, the civilians only get a rough approximation, the exact number is classified.

No wonder we don't see Aliens (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46701943)

Perhaps intelligent life forms don't want to visit Earth because they know it all ends in tears. The pattern is they come, say hello in their fancy technology and then we die of some alien plague; or we're scared and try to nuke them.. Maybe it's happened time and time again and so the really clever kind ones just don't bother to make contact because alien life is so hard to come by in the first place.

Re:No wonder we don't see Aliens (2, Insightful)

Immerman (2627577) | about 5 months ago | (#46702265)

That makes sense, except why haven't we been visited by the drunken alien frat boys out for a joy ride?

Wait a minute... Random graffiti in corn fields. Mutilated cows. Probe-rich abductions. Suddenly it all makes sense!

Re:No wonder we don't see Aliens (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702371)

And they never made it home, because once they exposed themselves to our putrid cesspool of a planet, they died off as well.

Weren't they already dying? (3, Interesting)

hawguy (1600213) | about 5 months ago | (#46701955)

Weren't they already in serious decline before being visited?

That first graph shows a lot larger average population before year 0 (the year of contact), which slowly grows in the 20 years after contact.

http://www.nature.com/srep/201... [nature.com]

The original article seems to confirm this:

http://www.nature.com/srep/201... [nature.com]

Estimates of population sizes before sustained peaceful contact (n = 22, recorded an average of 45 years before contact, range 1–106) were on average 5.5 times larger than populations at contact ...

So if populations were 5 times higher before any contact at all, why do they blame the contact for population declines?

Re:Weren't they already dying? (1)

rasmusbr (2186518) | about 5 months ago | (#46702487)

The year zero on the graph is the approximate year of peaceful contact.

What do they think? (3, Interesting)

erlegreer (1994842) | about 5 months ago | (#46701967)

What do uncontacted tribes think when they see our passenger jets and cargo ships? Gods?

Re:What do they think? (5, Funny)

j-beda (85386) | about 5 months ago | (#46701979)

What do uncontacted tribes think when they see our passenger jets and cargo ships? Gods?

"There goes the neighbourhood"?

Re:What do they think? (3, Funny)

Lendrick (314723) | about 5 months ago | (#46702007)

Spaceballs.

There goes the planet.

Re:What do they think? (3, Insightful)

dbIII (701233) | about 5 months ago | (#46702131)

A first contact situation with a pilot landing in the New Guinea highlands showed that "Gods" or not, it was not an important enough situation to miss out on lunch :)
In that situation a lot of people turned up to look and then went home after a while. Unlike fiction they recognised the pilot as a person that just happened to have a lot of really cool stuff.
People are people wherever they are even if fiction likes to paint some as more superstitious than a Californian crystal healing fanatic or with less reasoning ability as a meth head.

Re:What do they think? (1)

geniice (1336589) | about 5 months ago | (#46702139)

Not much. They usually know a fair bit about us. Which in turn is usually the reason they are trying to avoid us.

Re:What do they think? (1, Interesting)

azrael29a (1349629) | about 5 months ago | (#46702541)

What do uncontacted tribes think when they see our passenger jets and cargo ships? Gods?

Yup. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/C... [wikipedia.org]

Reality Check (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702119)

Sorry to break it to you, people. But this is exactly what we can expect to happen to us if the "friendly aliens" ever do show up here.

Re:Reality Check (3, Insightful)

Immerman (2627577) | about 5 months ago | (#46702295)

That would presume compatible biology. It's just as likely their pathogens take one bite of our incompatible amino acids and go belly up. And that's assuming they're even amino acid based at all.

Re:Reality Check (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702361)

These tribes die out because they are suitable hosts for whatever pathogens the visitors carry, since tribesman and visitor are actually of the same species. It is quite a stretch to assume the same thing will hold true for visiting aliens, at the very least you'd have to buy into the crackpottery about aliens seeding Earth with their own DNA or some similar mechanism that makes us == them.

Just look at your friendly neighborhood pets, there are thousands of diseases that they can contract that will not affect a human, even though we've shared the same habitat for, well forever.

Colonial Guilt (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702149)

Take your colonial guilt and go blow yourself up.
Then the rest of us can enjoy life for what it is and the progress we've made.

Not just the isloated (3, Interesting)

cold fjord (826450) | about 5 months ago | (#46702151)

Various Native American tribes are engaging in self-destructive behavior. Some say it is over gambling profits.

Disenrollment leaves Natives "culturally homeless" [cbsnews.com]

One tribe in California will shortly have cut itself in half, down to 900 or less: I Know I Am, But What Are You? [thisamericanlife.org]

Prophylactic immunization (3, Interesting)

EmperorOfCanada (1332175) | about 5 months ago | (#46702175)

I am going to go out on a limb; but maybe the solution is to figure out which diseases are typically killing all these people, then put together a tasty treat that is filled with weakened strains of this and that, and air drop them into areas where these people might be living.

Then stage two might be to hunt them sci-fi style with drones and fire vaccine darts into their asses.

Now I am going to go even further out on a limb; To do anything less would be a condemnation on our lack of civilization. If the people of the world have to spend a few billion saving these people then I think that then we might be able to call ourselves at least marginally civilized.

Look at the effort being spent on finding a missing plane. We are not doing it to find the plane so much as to find out what happened so that we don't have it happen to us. Maybe we can even find a selfish reason to save these people; so let's assume that one of their medicine men knows something pretty cool.

Re:Prophylactic immunization (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702323)

Bet you that large portion of deaths are due to sudden availability of cheap alcohol, tobacco and drugs. Vaccinate that. Adapting to el hombre blanco is more than just getting your vaccines.

Re:Prophylactic immunization (4, Informative)

BlackPignouf (1017012) | about 5 months ago | (#46702467)

+1
In French Guiana, isolated tribes saw white men coming at them, and basically telling them :
"Congrats, you're now officialy unemployed French citizens. You don't know what money is, but you'll receive XXX Francs per month from the government. You can go visit the next town, and discover what rum and hookers are. Not much else to do though. kthxbye!"

Inevitable Star Trek Reference ... (2)

garry_g (106621) | about 5 months ago | (#46702271)

... look like it's time to put a Prime Directive into effect ... only observe them, protected by a cloaking shield ... do not make contact until they have developed warp drive ...

Re:Inevitable Star Trek Reference ... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702449)

You mean do not contact until they have developed vaccinations against common diseases?

What happened to the Romans? (1)

Neo-Rio-101 (700494) | about 5 months ago | (#46702351)

This is the argument that usually gets the slam-dunk in discussions with racial supremacists of any ilk.
The fact that all civilizations form, collapse, and remorph is an element of evolution.

As for indigenous populations dying off... many of them interbreed with the local populations, while the rest of them engage in self-destructive behaviour (gambling, alcohol, and other vices) which in turn destroy what's left of their old communities.

Another tribe set for the kill? (3, Informative)

Trax3001BBS (2368736) | about 5 months ago | (#46702405)

Mar 31, 2014 When I read this article 9 days ago, my first though was -well they're history.

What This Uncontacted Tribe Did When Seeing A Plane For The First Time Is Awesome Yet Heartbreaking.

Upon seeing an airplane, this was their reaction.
http://www.berbix.com/stories/... [berbix.com]

----

11 August 2011 Find one lose another.

Brazil confirms existence of 'lost Amazon tribe' discovered via satellite as another goes missing after drug gang attack
The news comes as another uncontacted tribe went 'missing' after drug traffickers overran Brazilian guards posted to protect its lands.
No trace of the Indian tribe has been found after heavily-armed men destroyed a guard post in western Brazil around 32 miles from the Peruvian border.
Workers from FUNAI, the government bureau of Indian affairs, found a broken arrow in one of the men's backpacks, raising fears for the tribe's safety.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/new... [dailymail.co.uk]

"We" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702525)

We , you know , the civilized ones

Guns are the worst disease (2)

azrael29a (1349629) | about 5 months ago | (#46702527)

"indigenous people die from smallpox and guns and other unknown diseases" Yeah, guns are the worst disease - there is still no vaccine for it.

Discovered? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#46702563)

Why the hell people still say that Columbus "discovered" America?

Don't despair. (4, Interesting)

OpenSourced (323149) | about 5 months ago | (#46702613)

There is always the possibility that one of these tribes will have a sickness that will wipe out the rest of the world. Or at least 80% of it.

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