Re: Brain Structure Drives The Consequent Effects Of Economic Inequality

Posted: Sun Jan 27, 2019 5:30 pm, #25
by MaureenCarter
I wish to point out a profound aspect regarding one's thoughts on the formation of economic inequality. The speed at which the subconscious processes information compared to the conscious mind is dramatic. Whereas mental process at the conscious level operate in the realm of seconds, the subconscious operates in milliseconds and is significantly faster than conscious thought. Most of the foundational basis and underpinnings for inequality operate in this millisecond range and is outside our conscious thought; this produces a powerful yet rapid reaction to economic inequality mostly beyond our conscious control.

For example:

BBC Future
The enormous power of the unconscious brain
By Chris Baraniuk, 16 March 2016
http://www.bbc.com/future/story/2016031 ... ious-brain
You’re already aware of the fact that breathing and organ functions are things we do “automatically”, but there are lots of other examples.

Take the experience of hitting a ball with a bat. It takes a ball travelling close to 100mph (160km/h) just a few hundred milliseconds to reach the hitter. It’s so fast that it’s not possible to consciously register the trajectory of the ball and one’s response to it. It’s only after hitting the ball, indeed, that we truly register what happened consciously.

“The reason you practise sports over and over again is so you get really good at automising your actions,” says Eagleman. “Thinking about them, naturally, slows you down.”
SPEED
Dec. 19, 2016
What Is the Speed of Thought?
By Jeff Wise http://nymag.com/speed/2016/12/what-is- ... ought.html

BigThink
Your identity is almost entirely based on unconscious brain processes
It’s not personal awareness but a different mechanism which lends an evolutionary advantage, allowing our species to thrive.
Philip Perry, 27 November, 2017 https://bigthink.com/philip-perry/your- ... -processes
We often think that our deeply held beliefs, opinions, and emotions are the result of a long time spent thinking. We see ourselves as an executive of sorts somewhere inside our own head, pondering, making plans, and coming to decisions. This is what is known as a top-down model of executive control. It isn't only laypeople who think this way, but scientists and scholars, many anyway. This has been the prevailing theory for decades.

Most experts see human consciousness as a combination of two different phenomena. The first is the consciousness we experience from one moment to the next. That's knowing who and where in the world we are. It's also the ability to evaluate things, and calculate opportunities and threats. The second is our thoughts, feelings, impressions, intentions, and memories. So here's the innovation, a new paper published in Frontiers of Psychology says that actually, our thoughts and feelings are developed by unconscious mechanisms behind our logical thoughts.

We don't so much come to conclusions on things as become aware of how we feel. In fact, researchers write that the “contents of consciousness" are completely unrelated to the “experience of consciousness." The contents of consciousness are derived from “non-conscious brain systems."
The conscious mind is prone to this kind of manipulation because it has a complex computational mission. It must interpret the world, make predictions about the future, and figure out a course of action. All of this is difficult and slow. And while conscious thought is invaluable for forming long-term strategy, it’s absolutely useless in the face of fast-moving danger. Imagine that a tiger leaps out of the bushes at you: If you have to perceive the situation consciously and reason through a response, you’ll be dead.
Fortunately, the brain has several layers of emergency-response circuitry, each faster and more simplistic than the last.

The fastest is the startle reflex. If you’re walking along and you suddenly hear a loud noise, your ear will trigger an extremely simple chain of just three neurons that connect to the spinal cord and brain stem. Within five milliseconds, hundreds of muscles are recruited into a self-defense reaction: eyelids shut, shoulders and chest tighten up, hands clench. There’s absolutely nothing you can do about it — by the time you’re consciously aware that you’ve been startled, you’re already two feet in the air.

Given a few more milliseconds, the body is able to respond in a more nuanced way. When something threatening occurs, it takes about 12 milliseconds for the information to reach the amygdala, the almond-shaped neural hub that’s one of the most important centers for emotional processing. The amygdala isn’t super-sophisticated, but it knows what danger looks like. Imagine that you’re about to get into bed, and you pull back the sheets — and there, right in front of your face, is a three-foot-long snake. The amygdala triggers an immediate fight-or-flight response: your heart rate goes through the roof, your pupils dilate, and you hear yourself scream. A half-second later, your consciousness kicks in and you realize it’s a rubber snake, and you go to throttle your 10-year-old.

We tend to think of startle and panic as bad things, because more often than not, they turn out to be overreactions. But once in a while, they can save your bacon. I’ll never forget the time I put my infant son in his bouncy chair on the kitchen table and turned around to the kitchen counter to make pancakes. I was holding a measuring cup full of flour when I suddenly found myself spinning around, flour flying everywhere, and grabbing my son, who had bounced too far forward and was at that moment falling head first toward the floor. For an instant I crouched there, my son’s head suspended a foot above the floor, wondering what the hell had just happened. (I later learned that there is an entire YouTube genre of “dad save” videos documenting just such behavior.)

This is a dramatic example, but the principle applies to all sorts of daily activity: anything that we do in the span of less than half a second — hitting a fastball, improvising a lyric, catching a stranger’s glance — we do entirely through automatic circuitry rather than conscious decision. The upshot is either depressing or inspiring, depending on how you look at it: For all the wonders that human consciousness has brought into the world, some of the best things we do we accomplish without it.
Forbes
How to Master Yourself, Your Unconscious, and the People Around You -- 3
Nick Morgan, Mar 7, 2013 https://www.forbes.com/sites/nickmorgan ... 2dc8476762
Most of our communication is unconscious. Our conscious brains can only handle something like 40 bits of information a second, while our unconscious minds can handle 11 million bits of information per second. We’ve evolved to push much of our behavior – including much of our communication – down to our unconscious minds because they can handle the chores so much more powerfully and rapidly.