B. F. Skinner

The evolution of cultures appears to follow the pattern of the evolution of species. The many different forms of culture which arise correspond to the “mutations” of genetic theory. Some forms prove to be effective under prevailing circumstances and others not, and the perpetuation of the culture is determined accordingly.

Society already possesses the psychological techniques needed to obtain universal observance of a code – a code which would guarantee the success of a community or state. The difficulty is that these techniques are in the hands of the wrong people-or, rather, there aren’t any right people.

Each of us has interests which conflict the interests of everybody else… ‘everybody else’ we call ‘society’. It’s a powerful opponent and it always wins. Oh, here and there an individual prevails for a while and gets what he wants. Sometimes he storms the culture of a society and changes it to his own advantage. But society wins in the long run, for it has the advantage of numbers and of age.