Fodor on evolution

Over the years, people keep proposing theories that go: “what everybody really wants is just …” (fill in the blank). Versions fashionable in their times have included: money, power, sex, death, freedom, happiness, Mother, The Good, pleasure, success, status, salvation, immortality, self-realization, reinforcement, penises (in the case of women), larger penises (in the case of men), and so on. The track record of such theories has not been good; in retrospect they often look foolish or vulgar or both. Maybe it will turn out differently for “what everybody really wants is to maximize his relative contribution to the gene pool”. But I don’t know any reason to think that it will, and I sure wouldn’t advise you to bet the farm.

—spotted over here in an old Mindhacks post.

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