Do we imagine ourselves exempt from natural selection and possible extinction?

OED uses sample sentences to illustrate the use of terms used by specialists in a field. Few besides biologists use the term "selects for" and its negative "selects against". Here is an OED sample sentence:

"Perhaps the possibility should be considered that evolution selects for beings that imagine their own species exempt from natural selection and possible extinction."

A desire for profit might explain an investor's objection to climate change. It might therefore select for irrationality and select against rationality.

Am I just nonsensically using words here?

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Religion certainly selects for irrationality, and selects against rationality.

I thought that was what OED was doing. What species besides homo sapiens would consider whether extinction was a possibility? And I'd think that, at least for a long time, any species capable of considering this question would just naturally exempt itself from the possibility of extinction.
I don't see that a desire for profit would necessarily cause refusal to accept climate change.
We own mutual funds. Within those some would gain, and some lose, if climate change is real. But a desire for increased value would not cause me to reject the premise that climate change has accelerated in large part through human activity. Rather, I'd want the companies we own (a microscopic part of) to assess the probability and adjust by finding a way to profit from it -- say, sell off oil stocks and buy wind generator stock. And by doing that we might decrease, microscopically, the chance of our own extinction.

I don't see that a desire for profit would necessarily cause refusal to accept climate change.

1) With sea level rise being a result of climate change, Jerry, and my owning sea shore land, I will refuse to accept the reality of change until after I've sold my land.

If I'm in Congress, especially on an environmental committee, I have access to insider info and know earlier than others when to advertise my land.

2) If I own stock in fossil fuel industries and can delay carbon tax legislation, I will do so.

. . . .

There are many opportunities for profit.




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