Wednesday, January 05, 2011

The Only Way to Peace?

A while back I suggested that the most profitable way to peace was mutually beneficial trade. Nations that rely on each other don't fight each other. A newly created mathematical model predicts that it only takes small changes within small groups to get complete peace or complete war. From the Scientific American:
Consider a relationship triangle. Arthur and Carl don’t like each other. But Bill is friendly with them both. Bill will probably try to convince Arthur and Carl to get along. But Arthur and Carl are telling Bill that the other guy’s no good. You don’t need to be a math whiz to see that, as time goes on, either everyone will be friends or Bill is going to have to pick a side.

Now picture a big network made of these triangles. Which is what scientists did in their computer model. And they found that this theoretical social network produced either global harmony or all-out war, depending on the initial triangles. The model even predicted almost exactly the identities of all the Allied and Axis forces during World War 2. So one way to prevent global war may be to forge friendships between enough Arthurs and Carls.
Puts a new spin on "love your neighbor".


  1. So it is either all peace of all out :)

  2. Yeah. It claims either world peace or world war are our only options. Not sure what they would say we are in now (I'm guessing peace).

  3. I hope your guess is right.


You are the reason why I do not write privately. I would love to hear your thoughts, whether you agree or not.