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What Are The Goals Of Society ?

HikerGuy83

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Societie’s exist for a reason. It would seem we’ve forgotten what it is we are about.

As I listen to the extreme language of today, I have to wonder how people living the same communities can see the world so differently. A host of other questions comes to mind just about everytime I see two people on TV or the internet throwing verbal jabs and uppercuts at each other in an effort to somehow make a case for whatever their cause is. Often by degrading the opposing point of view.

I see this same adversarial approach amongst the various members of society in their day-to-day conversation.

In all this, I keep trying to draw out the answer to a question I don’t believe we ask or address near enough. What are our collective goals as a society.

Now, the converstion quickly turns to “What constitutes a society” ?

One definition is:

A society is a group of individuals involved in persistent social interaction, or a large social group sharing the same spatial or social territory, typically subject to the same political authority and dominant cultural expectations.

Which raises interesting questions about how we talk about our goals.

I believe that a discussion of those goals will engender a discussion around where they apply (i.e. a county law vs. a state law) and what other norms can be expected to be honored.

Far to often, issues are discussed in a vacuum.

What are your thoughts on what is a society what are it's (specific group's) goals and objectives.

I want to discuss this, but I'd also like to challenge some of the thought to ensure whatever is being discussed is it workable or even optimal.

Such an example might be healthcare at the national level.

Another vein might be the way we yell at each other and how that renders so many things unworkable.

And yet another might be the place of the extremist's (the loudest) voices and how they play into the conversation.

Looking forward to a "Lofty" discussion.
 

Nomad4Ever

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I mean, a "society" is just an inevitable byproduct of us being a social species. A society is pretty much any social relation, even between a very small number of individuals. Say, a small tribe would still constitute a society. As to what the goals of society should be; one would hope the prime axiomatic goal would be the betterment of that society. People will obviously disagree about what makes a society better, but fundamentally that should be the main focus.
 

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As far as I'm concerned the goal of a society is to protect it's women and children. Men are expendable. A large nation can lose hundreds of thousands of men in a war but the society goes on.

Women are pregnant for 9 months. For the final trimester they must be careful and guarded. Once the child is born it can't care for itself for over a decade. The investment of a society in its women and children is huge. Protect the women and children and the society continues. Put women and children are in harm's way and the society dissipates.
 

HikerGuy83

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Society exists to allow human cooperation, which is the reason we aren't living in caves and wondering if the bison will show up this season.

Any "goals" you can think of ?

Human cooperation can take many forms.

Just wondering if you had any thoughts on what goals you think we should have (i.e. universal health care) ?
 

HikerGuy83

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As far as I'm concerned the goal of a society is to protect it's women and children. Men are expendable. A large nation can lose hundreds of thousands of men in a war but the society goes on.

Women are pregnant for 9 months. For the final trimester they must be careful and guarded. Once the child is born it can't care for itself for over a decade. The investment of a society in its women and children is huge. Protect the women and children and the society continues. Put women and children are in harm's way and the society dissipates.

I would agree that is an important goal.

But..protect them from what ?

We seem want to keep strangers out of schools (they rarely showed up there before) and we certainly worry about school shootings.

But we have kids who are hooked on pornography which we allow to exist ad nauseum (from what I can tell).

We certainly don't protect women from being objectified by allowing porn to be so readily available. Not that I have a solution....but if your goal is to protect women.....seems like that would be in the conversation.
 

HikerGuy83

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I mean, a "society" is just an inevitable byproduct of us being a social species. A society is pretty much any social relation, even between a very small number of individuals. Say, a small tribe would still constitute a society. As to what the goals of society should be; one would hope the prime axiomatic goal would be the betterment of that society. People will obviously disagree about what makes a society better, but fundamentally that should be the main focus.

My contention is that if you can get agreement on objectives (i.e. what society should exist for....the hows are pretty easy).
 

Fabiusbile

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But..protect them from what ?
From starvation, at least... alimony and state support institutions, etc. exist in most countries of the world.
The state is interested in replenishing human resources... and yes, people are also a resource. The richer the society, the higher the qualifications of the members of society in the environment of industrialization, but there is also a downside that a high standard of living is followed by a high level of commercialism, as well as forms of social change, where mental and ethical deviations become norms, this is the effect of the "universe 25" or, if you want, "Sadom and Gomorrah".
 

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Recognizing the fact that the human species is not "A" society, but a great many societies,...

The primary goal of a society is its' survival.
 

Nomad4Ever

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My contention is that if you can get agreement on objectives (i.e. what society should exist for....the hows are pretty easy).
You’d think so, but that’s generally not the case.
 

HikerGuy83

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Recognizing the fact that the human species is not "A" society, but a great many societies,...

The primary goal of a society is its' survival.

This is a key point to the discussion in my estimation.

I think we need to look at things from different perspectives.

We live in a country, states, counties, cities, sub-divisions. We have different religions, races, genders etc. We like different things like sports, outdoor activities, academic activities. We have different interests in our families

A whole host of ways to dissect our "group" or nation.

So, what is the "society" I am referencing.

To start it is the nation as a whole. While we may be many things, we are all (mostly all) Americans. We have that in common.

That is where I start.
 

HikerGuy83

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The most basic society is the family.

First, immediate, then extended.

At one end you have the nation, 330,000,000 people who all live under a single federal government. Within that group ae close to 100,000,000 families. All with their own unique arrangements, goals and processes.
 

Evilroddy

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@HikerGuy83

Societies are not homogeneous aggregations of people. Societies are heterogenous and contain sub-groups which can be quite different from the bigger society of which the sub-groups are a part. These sub-groups can be ethnicly or racially different, they can be economically different, they can be demographically different, they can be urban or rural, the can be rich or poor or stuck in the middle, they can be well educated or less so, they can be religious or secular. Thus a country's aggregate society can be likened to an ingredient rich stew with each ingredient flavouring the other ingredients around them. The stew pot may or may not be an effective melting pot of cultures, religions, economic ideologies or political ideologies. Thus there may be no universally accepted goals of a heterogenous society but there may be dominant ones. However these dominant goals may alienate some sub-groups and cause societal fissures and ruptures.

What is a society? It is groups of people or more correctly groups of human communities living together due to circumstance or choice and attempting to do so to some sort of end. Societies can be cooperative in which case those ends are to foster harmony, peaceful coexistence and opportunity. Societies can be authoritarian or totalitarian in which case the ends are social control by an elite and the submission of the populace to the interests of the elite. Societies can be hierarchical in which case the ends are to serve the interests of the hierarchs or the society as a whole as interpreted by the hierarchs. The society can be individualistic in which case its ends focus on the fostering of individuals' rights, responsibilities and potential. The society may be collectivist in which case the ends focus on the betterment of the communities in the whole society at the expense of some or all of the individuals' wants.

In an individualist, capitalist society like the American Republic the goals are to foster individualism, to safeguard individual liberty, to promote "equality" (equal opportunity) and to allow for the freest pursuit of property (happiness) possible in a peaceful society. In Canada the emphasis is slightly less on individuals and more on communities and thus the goals are general prosperity as well as individual potential, peace, order and good governance.

What should be the goals of a society? That depends on the society of which you are a part and your willingness to make the effort to change that society in order to nudge it in certain directions which you feel it needs to go. In my case the goals of my preferred society are to strike balances between individualism and community so that opportunity for as many people as can be realised is possible while destitution and privation are minimised. Therefore I stand between a democratic and laissé faire capitalist society and a socialist but democratic collectivist society. Pragmatism, not ideology, should always guide my ideal balanced society and constant goodwill, negotiation and compromise should shape and reshape it constantly. In my mind societies are organic and changing systems in shifting dynamic equilibrium and not static, ossified monoliths slaved to the past or to an ideology. Societies change over time and must therefore be flexible and adaptable. Willow trees, not oaks.

Cheers and be well.
Evilroddy.
 

HikerGuy83

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@Evilroddy

As usual, your post has cleared the outfield wall with some distant landing site awaiting. Good job !!!!
It is groups of people or more correctly groups of human communities living together due to circumstance or choice and attempting to do so to some sort of end.

1. They often have some (but not all) common principles and practices (processes) for reaching common goals.
2. A person can be unique and, at the same time, belong to a society where they are not so unique in one sense.

What should be the goals of a society? That depends on the society of which you are a part and your willingness to make the effort to change that society in order to nudge it in certain directions which you feel it needs to go.

And you've hit very close to the center on this one. First, and most obviously, a large group of individuals can contain many "societies". And individual members may belong to several societies. The fervor and reach of each (society) being unique in and of itself.

While there may be an overarching group (we are all Americans), there can be subsets and subsets of those subset and on and on and on.

And so the more the most basic (fundamental) of societies is allowed to have maximum flexibility (liberty) in forming it's rules and pursuing it's goals the better things will be. And the less the entire collective attempts to make rules for the entire collective (thus homoginizing society), the better.
 

Paradoxical

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Societie’s exist for a reason. It would seem we’ve forgotten what it is we are about.

As I listen to the extreme language of today, I have to wonder how people living the same communities can see the world so differently. A host of other questions comes to mind just about everytime I see two people on TV or the internet throwing verbal jabs and uppercuts at each other in an effort to somehow make a case for whatever their cause is. Often by degrading the opposing point of view.

I see this same adversarial approach amongst the various members of society in their day-to-day conversation.

In all this, I keep trying to draw out the answer to a question I don’t believe we ask or address near enough. What are our collective goals as a society.

Now, the converstion quickly turns to “What constitutes a society” ?

One definition is:

A society is a group of individuals involved in persistent social interaction, or a large social group sharing the same spatial or social territory, typically subject to the same political authority and dominant cultural expectations.

Which raises interesting questions about how we talk about our goals.

I believe that a discussion of those goals will engender a discussion around where they apply (i.e. a county law vs. a state law) and what other norms can be expected to be honored.

Far to often, issues are discussed in a vacuum.

What are your thoughts on what is a society what are it's (specific group's) goals and objectives.

I want to discuss this, but I'd also like to challenge some of the thought to ensure whatever is being discussed is it workable or even optimal.

Such an example might be healthcare at the national level.

Another vein might be the way we yell at each other and how that renders so many things unworkable.

And yet another might be the place of the extremist's (the loudest) voices and how they play into the conversation.

Looking forward to a "Lofty" discussion.
This is a great philosophical discussion and a topic that will bring a thousand different opinions. Society is not an entity. It is a collection of humans living on a section of land and its rules and laws are based on protecting their "society" from being extinguished as the primary evolutionary mandate. Some societies have failed and succeeded over the centuries in surviving. Those that have survived have people in power that game the societal system so that they can gain power and money with the idea that themselves and their family and friends will live longer and more prosperous. This is happening in the United States right now with the politicians becoming extremely wealthy and powerful in office through insider trading and being able to wield their power to get bribes and favors called campaign donations. We really haven't graduated from centuries ago when warlords had the power to torture and kill their opponents. We just call those entities the DOJ, FBI, CIA, and Presidents.

You mentioned free healthcare as being important. We used to have "county" or state medical for those who didn't work. Now, many humans are clamoring for everyone and anyone to be treated for free for whatever it is they want. If more members of society are convinced this is a good thing it will be mandated and at a tremendous cost and the government will have to ration healthcare and get doctors who accept less pay and they will be from other countries. Soon, medical care will be a shell of its former self.

Society should be where people have to struggle and suffer pain in order to get what they want. Society should have people in office who are there for the public good only and no campaign contributions from any corporations, unions, or lobbyists. Society should encourage personal responsibility as the best means for the individual to prosper. Society should harshly punish those that harm others physically, mentally, or financially and give the swift death penalty to anyone that intentionally takes another's life. America has lost its way. It used to be as I described. Unfortunately, I see the demise of America in the next 30-50 years. We cannot take on the world population and make everything "OK" for them. We must let the countries the other societies live in correct their own misdeeds instead of taking them in because when we do, there is no penalty for those countries and they continue their ruthless oppressions of their own societies.
 

MamboDervish

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This is a great philosophical discussion and a topic that will bring a thousand different opinions. Society is not an entity. It is a collection of humans living on a section of land and its rules and laws are based on protecting their "society" from being extinguished as the primary evolutionary mandate. Some societies have failed and succeeded over the centuries in surviving. Those that have survived have people in power that game the societal system so that they can gain power and money with the idea that themselves and their family and friends will live longer and more prosperous. This is happening in the United States right now with the politicians becoming extremely wealthy and powerful in office through insider trading and being able to wield their power to get bribes and favors called campaign donations. We really haven't graduated from centuries ago when warlords had the power to torture and kill their opponents. We just call those entities the DOJ, FBI, CIA, and Presidents.

You mentioned free healthcare as being important. We used to have "county" or state medical for those who didn't work. Now, many humans are clamoring for everyone and anyone to be treated for free for whatever it is they want. If more members of society are convinced this is a good thing it will be mandated and at a tremendous cost and the government will have to ration healthcare and get doctors who accept less pay and they will be from other countries. Soon, medical care will be a shell of its former self.

Society should be where people have to struggle and suffer pain in order to get what they want. Society should have people in office who are there for the public good only and no campaign contributions from any corporations, unions, or lobbyists. Society should encourage personal responsibility as the best means for the individual to prosper. Society should harshly punish those that harm others physically, mentally, or financially and give the swift death penalty to anyone that intentionally takes another's life. America has lost its way. It used to be as I described. Unfortunately, I see the demise of America in the next 30-50 years. We cannot take on the world population and make everything "OK" for them. We must let the countries the other societies live in correct their own misdeeds instead of taking them in because when we do, there is no penalty for those countries and they continue their ruthless oppressions of their own societies.
There's a lot to unpack in your post, and much of it is simply wrong, but if there's something we can probably agree on, it is that we have to take the money out of our politics. In this point alone, the right, the left, and the center should find common ground.
 

Paradoxical

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There's a lot to unpack in your post, and much of it is simply wrong, but if there's something we can probably agree on, it is that we have to take the money out of our politics. In this point alone, the right, the left, and the center should find common ground.
It is a given that a staunch conservative and Progressive would disagree on many things and that is why your thread is more of a philosophical discussion than anything else. The primary question is what system of government is best for humans. I submit one that severely punishes criminals and rewards the achievers is the best for flourishing humanity. I submit that a progressive is just the opposite and given time a society that does not do this will perish. To debate those issues would be like debating religion and whether or not a "god' exists. IOW, questions that those on opposite ends of the spectrum will never agree on.
 

MamboDervish

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It is a given that a staunch conservative and Progressive would disagree on many things and that is why your thread is more of a philosophical discussion than anything else. The primary question is what system of government is best for humans. I submit one that severely punishes criminals and rewards the achievers is the best for flourishing humanity. I submit that a progressive is just the opposite and given time a society that does not do this will perish. To debate those issues would be like debating religion and whether or not a "god' exists. IOW, questions that those on opposite ends of the spectrum will never agree on.
I'll be happy to revisit this later - perhaps even today - when I have more time to rebut it. But for the time being, I'm happy acknowledge that you seem to also be in favor of taking money out of our politics, and if that's true, then we can certainly agree on that point.
 

Paradoxical

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I'll be happy to revisit this later - perhaps even today - when I have more time to rebut it. But for the time being, I'm happy acknowledge that you seem to also be in favor of taking money out of our politics, and if that's true, then we can certainly agree on that point.
Yes. A discussion of what type of government is best for the full flourishing of humanity would be a great debate with those who do not get upset over disagreements and do not allow their emotions to get in the way. regarding taking the money out of politics, one of the worst SC decisions ever was that corporations were citizens of the United States. You don't see either side rushing for a constitutional amendment because both sides loved that decision.
 

ttwtt78640

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Any "goals" you can think of ?

Human cooperation can take many forms.

Just wondering if you had any thoughts on what goals you think we should have (i.e. universal health care) ?

Folks have many basic needs (e.g. food, clothing, shelter, transportation and utility/communication services) and healthcare is certainly one among the many of them. From what you have said (so far in this thread) it would appear that you think (all basic?) individual needs should be met (supplied?) by ‘society’.

If the purpose (responsibility or mission) of society (a collection of individuals) is to meet the needs of all then what is purpose (responsibility or mission) of any given individual?

How does this following plan (goal?) for society fit your idea? From each according to their ability (to pay more taxes), to each according to their need (for more public assistance).
 
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SMTA

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Society exists to allow human cooperation, which is the reason we aren't living in caves and wondering if the bison will show up this season.
Bingo! Synergy.
 

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Societie’s exist for a reason. It would seem we’ve forgotten what it is we are about.

As I listen to the extreme language of today, I have to wonder how people living the same communities can see the world so differently. A host of other questions comes to mind just about everytime I see two people on TV or the internet throwing verbal jabs and uppercuts at each other in an effort to somehow make a case for whatever their cause is. Often by degrading the opposing point of view.

I see this same adversarial approach amongst the various members of society in their day-to-day conversation.

In all this, I keep trying to draw out the answer to a question I don’t believe we ask or address near enough. What are our collective goals as a society.

Now, the converstion quickly turns to “What constitutes a society” ?

One definition is:

A society is a group of individuals involved in persistent social interaction, or a large social group sharing the same spatial or social territory, typically subject to the same political authority and dominant cultural expectations.

Which raises interesting questions about how we talk about our goals.

I believe that a discussion of those goals will engender a discussion around where they apply (i.e. a county law vs. a state law) and what other norms can be expected to be honored.

Far to often, issues are discussed in a vacuum.

What are your thoughts on what is a society what are it's (specific group's) goals and objectives.

I want to discuss this, but I'd also like to challenge some of the thought to ensure whatever is being discussed is it workable or even optimal.

Such an example might be healthcare at the national level.

Another vein might be the way we yell at each other and how that renders so many things unworkable.

And yet another might be the place of the extremist's (the loudest) voices and how they play into the conversation.

Looking forward to a "Lofty" discussion.

The goal of society is the survival and prosperity of its members. Where disagreements lie is in how to define prosperity and how to attain both of these goals.
 

SMTA

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Bingo! Synergy.
@Hamish Howl
The antonym of synergy is discord - that’s where we are now
It‘s ridiculous, embarrassing, and extremely counter-productive
I know that you understand
 
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