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Friday, December 13, 2013

Observations and societal implications

This long essay on African difficulties with abstract thought and how this effects everything from basic morality to building maintenance is not unrelated to my own concept of time-to-civilization and how that relates to a population group that has been in regular contact with advanced civilization for less than 400 years. If you are an American reading this, please keep in mind that the African-Americans of your acquaintance are not fully African, but are on average 17-18 percent European.
I am an American who taught philosophy in several African universities from 1976 to 1988, and have lived since that time in South Africa. When I first came to Africa, I knew virtually nothing about the continent or its people, but I began learning quickly. I noticed, for example, that Africans rarely kept promises and saw no need to apologize when they broke them. It was as if they were unaware they had done anything that called for an apology.

It took many years for me to understand why Africans behaved this way but I think I can now explain this and other behavior that characterizes Africa. I believe that morality requires abstract thinking—as does planning for the future—and that a relative deficiency in abstract thinking may explain many things that are typically African.

What follow are not scientific findings. There could be alternative explanations for what I have observed, but my conclusions are drawn from more than 30 years of living among Africans....

I quote from an article in the South African press about the problems blacks have with mathematics:
“[Xhosa] is a language where polygon and plane have the same definition … where concepts like triangle, quadrilateral, pentagon, hexagon are defined by only one word.” (“Finding New Languages for Maths and Science,” Star [Johannesburg], July 24, 2002, p. 8.)
More accurately, these concepts simply do not exist in Xhosa, which, along with Zulu, is one of the two most widely spoken languages in South Africa. In America, blacks are said to have a “tendency to approximate space, numbers and time instead of aiming for complete accuracy.” (Star, June 8, 1988, p.10.) In other words, they are also poor at math. Notice the identical triumvirate—space, numbers, and time. Is it just a coincidence that these three highly abstract concepts are the ones with which blacks — everywhere — seem to have such difficulties?

The entry in the Zulu dictionary for “number,” by the way — ningi — means “numerous,” which is not at all the same as the concept of number. It is clear, therefore, that there is no concept of number in Zulu.

White rule in South Africa ended in 1994. It was about ten years later that power outages began, which eventually reached crisis proportions. The principle reason for this is simply lack of maintenance on the generating equipment. Maintenance is future-oriented, and the Zulu entry in the dictionary for it is ondla, which means: “1. Nourish, rear; bring up; 2. Keep an eye on; watch (your crop).”

In short, there is no such thing as maintenance in Zulu thought, and it would be hard to argue that this is wholly unrelated to the fact that when people throughout Africa say “nothing works,” it is only an exaggeration.
Now, it would be surprising if the average American, who has never met an actual African and has absolutely no experience with them, did not blithely attempt to dismiss the detailed observations of someone who has spent more than 30 years living in Africa. After all, most Americans blithely ignore the lessons learned by inner city American schoolteachers. It is considerably harder for those of us who are in occasional contact with Africans and have witnessed them being completely stumped by the abstract concept of "you must first go right in order to go left" to do so.

For those equalitarians who are horrified by the terrible racissness intrinsic in the observation that most Africans lack the capacity for abstract thinking, I invite you to consider this thought experiment: how successful would you be in a society where you were required to perform complex calculus calculations just to turn on your car? How easy would it be for you to live your daily life if you had to solve a single higher mathematics problem every time you sat down at your desk to do your job?

That is very similar to the position your equalitarianism places hundreds of millions of people by expecting them to constructively participate in a technologically advanced society that is observably beyond their cognitive capacity. Even in the miraculous event you manage to teach the poor bastards how to puzzle out these metaphorical calculus problems, how successful are they going to be if it usually takes them an hour to work out what the other members of society do without even thinking about it?

What the equalitarian dogma inevitably leads to is this: a professional signer who doesn't know sign language.  Now that's pretty damn funny. But it's not so funny when you're talking about engineers at power stations, airplane mechanics, and transportation technicians responsible for keeping the food supply chain flowing smoothly.

Thowing an entire people into the civilizational deep end to either sink or swim is an intrinsically ugly and inhumane action. And it's even worse to go on and permit them to drag down the very institutions that are capable of raising them up over time. It also has some ominous implications for racially diverse places such as South Africa and various American cities, as there is considerable evidence very thing that the equalitarians are counting on to prevent widespread racial conflict, a sense of future self-interest on the part of the African community, does not exist at all.

Now, one can certainly argue that I'm incorrect. One can certainly argue that the gentleman's observations over the last 30 years are mistaken for one reason or another. But doing so will require the presentation of contrasting evidence and running away angrily crying raciss is a retreat from reality; it is not a response. It should also be kept in mind that divergent capacity for abstract thought in various human population groups has no more to do with my personal preferences than the score of the upcoming Vikings game depends upon which team I want to win.

While the idea that I am some sort of reality-defining god is flattering, I can assure you, it simply isn't the case.

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206 Comments:

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Anonymous MrGreenMan December 13, 2013 9:12 AM  

The problem with this is that, to accept it, one must also accept that the germ of Apartheid - that the Dutch tribe of Africa is so significantly foreign and disconnected from the Zulu or the Xhosa, that it is impossible for them to develop together and each achieve their own best potential, so they must develop separately.

You might as well have asked an EAP whether she was a virgin on her wedding night - the Western defense mechanism of rejecting the truth when it is unpalatable will kick in.

Anonymous Cryan Ryan December 13, 2013 9:16 AM  

A few years ago a young white guy was murdered by some black "youths" because he drove through the gas station with a rebel flag waving from his pickup.

At the trial it came out that the killer kid just felt "dissed". The rebel flag, he thought, was just some symbol from the Dukes of Hazzard.

Further, he was unaware of the Civil War.

Completely unaware.

He shot a kid because he felt he had been somehow insulted. That was all there was to it.

Anonymous joe doakes December 13, 2013 9:23 AM  

Well then, Vox, old man, if the Noble Savages aren't fully capable of living like civilized beings, then it's jolly well up to us to help them, what? Extend the helping hand, give them a leg up, it's the White Man's Burden, don't you know? I daresay it'll take a bit of time for them to get sorted out but they'll come right in the end, by George. So just ship 'em off to Minneapolis where we can give them Section 8 vouchers for free housing, EBT cards for free food, metro passes for free transportation and Obama-phones to keep in touch with their kinsmen . . . soon enough, they'll be right as rain. Jolly good, old boy.

Anonymous VD December 13, 2013 9:25 AM  

Well then, Vox, old man, if the Noble Savages aren't fully capable of living like civilized beings, then it's jolly well up to us to help them, what?

I think helping them is the right thing to do. The point is that long-term assistance is best provided by NOT permitting them to come in and destroy more advanced civilizations, but rather by giving them something to which they can aspire without giving them the ability to interfere with it internally or externally.

Anonymous TLM December 13, 2013 9:26 AM  

Someone here may have mentioned it before, but I also observed it in the military. Blacks gravitate to simple service positions such as cooks, quartermasters, etc. They were rare in the mid to higher tech MOS's, and especially aviation. Even on the lower end of technical positions such as motor pool mechanics you never saw them.

Business takes me to many hospitals across the country. You'll always find blacks staffing the cafeterias, laundry, janitorial, and orderly ranks. Rarely are they seen in ICUs, radiology, cath labs, etc. I know this makes me raciss, but I quit giving a s*it a long time ago.

Anonymous David of One December 13, 2013 9:35 AM  

I suppose having a "leader" long ago dedicating himself and everyone else to the Devil didn't help Hatai much. Emperically, it really doesn't seem to have help at all.

Anonymous Stilicho December 13, 2013 9:44 AM  

how successful would you be in a society where you were required to perform complex calculus calculations just to turn on your car? How easy would it be for you to live your daily life if you had to solve a single higher mathematics problem every time you sat down at your desk to do your job?

Nerdvana. It would actually be fun and would provide a union card of sorts to those so inclined. There would not be many tomatoes getting picked though, which presents an interesting dilemma: what can be done to usefully employ those who cannot function at higher levels, those who cannot be effectively trained to work at much more than unskilled labor?

Anonymous Bah December 13, 2013 9:50 AM  

I noticed, for example, that Africans rarely kept promises and saw no need to apologize when they broke them...

I believe that morality requires abstract thinking—as does planning for the future—and that a relative deficiency in abstract thinking may explain many things that are typically African.


But here's the question -- do Africans notice when you don't keep promises to them?

If they do notice, then they are indeed capable of the abstract thought required to have "morality".

As they used to say about the Apaches, "if you think he doesn't know right from wrong, wrong him and see what happens."

Blacks know when they're doing wrong. They just don't care.

Blogger Harold Carper December 13, 2013 9:51 AM  

Give the poor guy a break already. He's not a professional signer, he's a community gesticulator.

Anonymous VryeDenker December 13, 2013 9:52 AM  

James Manning knows what's what

Anonymous Stilicho December 13, 2013 9:53 AM  

he's a community gesticulator

Brilliant

Anonymous Tallen December 13, 2013 9:53 AM  

what can be done to usefully employ those who cannot function at higher levels, those who cannot be effectively trained to work at much more than unskilled labor?

I would add: and those who aren't even motivated to do that unskilled labor if they already have food for the moment.

Anonymous Salt December 13, 2013 9:53 AM  

what can be done to usefully employ those who cannot function at higher levels, those who cannot be effectively trained to work at much more than unskilled labor?

Plant more tomatoes.

Anonymous Star Trek December 13, 2013 9:59 AM  

So, if we boil all of this down, are you really just making a Prime Directive argument? Don't interfere with cultures that aren't ready yet.

Anonymous Stephen J. December 13, 2013 9:59 AM  

It's clear that what's being talked about here is a difference in statistical distribution over a curve, since there *are* many examples of black people who are clearly adept at abstract thought (my own company's I.T. hardware guy is black, very good at his job and very reliable in his obligations) and no shortage of Caucasian people who as a matter of reflex don't use the term "I promise" as anything other than a reassuring noise.

The question is whether that difference is significant enough to be a stronger or more consistent influence on individual and group success than the multitude of other factors at play, including the fallout from cultural conflict and failure to adapt on both sides. (To some extent I also think it is a moot point, as neither genetics nor environment are sufficiently correctible in practice to allow for much useful action -- you can blame South Africa's problems on innate predilections or on the effects of fifty years of various cultural pathologies, but neither suggests much in the way of useful responses now.) I am not myself so sure of this as our host, since, as noted, I have seen sufficient counterexamples to imply that at the very least the thesis is less generally true than here suggested.

Anonymous Susan December 13, 2013 10:01 AM  

I liked your point about most Americans having no experience with real Africans. It reminds me of the shock in the media when Theresa Heinz Kerry called herself African American during her convention speech. I mean, how dare she, a white woman who was born in Rhodesia, call herself an African American!

Given that perspective, I have to wonder if more Americans are unknowingly, actually dealing with real Africans, but those Africans are of white persuasion, as opposed to the black variety that we are all propagandized to.

Blogger Glen Filthie December 13, 2013 10:02 AM  

What the lefties, ghetto niggers and race whores don't understand is that training trumps genetics. We know that regardless of colour, here in the west if a man works hard, is willing to learn, and make short term sacrifices today to net long term benefits later...he will generally succeed.

We need to give blacks the same opportunities (not affirmative action). You have a right to make a living - but that's it. After that you are on your own to succeed or fail as is your wont. We need to hold blacks to the same standards as everyone else too - and hold their feet to the fire when they fail. Obama should be impeached, and Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton should be fired off a catapault. None of those shitbirds are fit to shine shoes in a whore house! Our attention should be focused on men like Bill Cosby and Thomas Sowell who have no time or respect for victim politics.

Anonymous The other skeptic December 13, 2013 10:11 AM  

It's happening here too. Another Affirmative Action Appointment

Blogger Matamoros December 13, 2013 10:14 AM  

The ability to have abstract thought and reasoning depends upon the frontal lobes. Of all the races, Africans have the smallest frontal lobes. This is why they cannot do things in the future, defer pleasure, and build civilizations.

They want to insist on being treated equally, given the fruits of a European civilization, without being able to contribute to it except at the lowest levels of manual labor. As such it is beyond reasonable to expect that Blacks (even American Blacks with their 17-18% European admixture) can maintain a civilization. This is not some astounding new discovery. The information has been available for decades to anyone not brainwashed.

Two books by well credentialed researchers, who have not tried to whitewash (blackwash?) the results are Dr. Audrey Shuey, The Testing of Negro Intelligence and Dr. Richard Lynn, Race Differences in Intelligence: An Evolutionary Analysis. A third, broader in scope is Dr. John R. Baker, Race.

As Vox notes succinctly: For those equalitarians who are horrified by the terrible racissness intrinsic in the observation that most Africans lack the capacity for abstract thinking, I invite you to consider this thought experiment: how successful would you be in a society where you were required to perform complex calculus calculations just to turn on your car? How easy would it be for you to live your daily life if you had to solve a single higher mathematics problem every time you sat down at your desk to do your job?

White liberals are forcing Blacks to try and perform above their levels of competency and ability. The levels of frustration at seeing others succeed while their own people repeatedly fail leads to the victim and you owe me mentality of Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton. The problem is not racisss, it is the lack of frontal lobes to provide the intelligence needed for a first world civilization.


Of course the real question is, as John Derbyshire remarks, What needs explaining—what always needs explaining—is white ethnomasochism.”



Anonymous zen0 December 13, 2013 10:17 AM  

@ Stephen J

.since there *are* many examples of black people who are clearly adept at abstract thought (my own company's I.T. hardware guy is black, very good at his job and very reliable in his obligations

Does the following apply here?

@ VD If you are an American reading this, please keep in mind that the African-Americans of your acquaintance are not fully African, but are on average 17-18 percent European.

Anonymous Brother Thomas December 13, 2013 10:18 AM  

@Glen Filthie December 13, 2013 10:02 AM "...training trumps genetics. We know that regardless of colour, here in the west if a man works hard, is willing to learn, and make short term sacrifices today to net long term benefits later...he will generally succeed."


Are you aware of 0% interest rates and a manipulated and inflating fiat currency that devalues “savings”? You're point may have been valid a few decades ago, but not within current economic circumstances. The banksta has destroyed the heart of capitalism. He has destroyed capital.

Want to know the future? Then look to Detroit and Africa. The time horizon is 24 houres.

Anonymous 11B December 13, 2013 10:23 AM  

But doing so will require the presentation of contrasting evidence and running away angrily crying raciss is a retreat from reality; it is not a response.

In America contrasting evidence consists of presenting ONE example that goes against the norm. Thus if you were to post this on HuffPo or some similar site, it wouldn't take long for someone to identify an African with a 150 IQ to prove your point is incorrect.

Blogger swiftfoxmark2 December 13, 2013 10:25 AM  

I suppose this man's observations are accurate, having the benefit of years of experience with them.

I have only a couple of months of experience, but I can say that the church leaders in central Africa are, by and large, much more wise than the Western church leaders. Of course, that doesn't say much.

Anonymous dh December 13, 2013 10:25 AM  

. One can certainly argue that the gentleman's observations over the last 30 years are mistaken for one reason or another. But doing so will require the presentation of contrasting evidence and running away angrily crying raciss is a retreat from reality; it is not a response.

You can certainly say that this man is "racist" in that he believes that a black Africans are inferior to white Anglo's or white Africans in terms of civilization and future thinking, abstraction, and other qualities related to civilizing behavior. In this sense, the man is clearly racist. He has formed the opinion that one race is inferior to the other in some significant, broad sense.

But in general you are right, we should not dismiss him for what he has said because it is racist, we should examine it for actual content.

I read the long article and it left an impression. But several of the language anecdotes that are his primary insight into the mental function of Africans don't reconcile. I remember having read "Zulu Thought-patterns and Symbolism" in prep for some business in Africa. A travel agent recommended it from his reading it in college. I distinctly remember discussions of abstracts topics and a deep use of symbolism. The concept of a "debt" is clearly established, which is contradicted by the author of the linked piece, as well as the concept of a "promise" in relation to a debt. Just because it's not conveyed as an "obligation", (i.e. a credit), the corresponding concept that has a similar meaning is a "debt". So just because a Zulu has no word for it as an obligation, it doesn't mean they don't understand the concept abstractly.

Anonymous dh December 13, 2013 10:27 AM  

VD

I think helping them is the right thing to do.

Is this not the heart of liberalism? At this point, we are only now arguing about how best to help them. Welcome to the club.

Anonymous Bah December 13, 2013 10:27 AM  

In America contrasting evidence consists of presenting ONE example that goes against the norm.

That is only true when the Left is trying to disprove something the Right believes.

When the Right is trying to disprove something the Left believes, then even an overwhelming number of data points that contradict Leftist dogma are insufficient to overthrow the dogma.

Anonymous dh December 13, 2013 10:35 AM  

bah--

I don't think it's quite that easy. If you have ever argued about marginal taxes with someone who "believes" the Laffer curve, but doesn't understand that there is a point of optimal (as in, highest) revenue, you'll see it from the left's point of view. There are a great many number of people - probably leaning 2-to-1 on the left - who are only interested in using data to justify motivated reasoning.

Anonymous CunningDove December 13, 2013 10:37 AM  

One explanation for this lack of abstract thinking, including the diminished understanding of time, is that Africans evolved in a climate where they could live day to day without having to think ahead. They never developed this ability because they had no need for it. Whites, on the other hand, evolved under circumstances in which they had to consider what would happen if they didn’t build stout houses and store enough fuel and food for the winter. For them it was sink or swim.

I have also seen this idea as an explanation for some of the early development of the Greek peoples. Since there was so much fertile soil to be found in the area we today call Greece, there was little reason to fight for territory. Simply relocate & start again was the norm.. at first. However, over time, this changed & settlements developed into cities that grew, etc. The size of the continent of Africa may have indeed influenced the development of time preferences. Either way I find it interesting.

Anonymous Jill December 13, 2013 10:41 AM  

I'm not going to be at my computer today, so although I may not be able to come back to this discussion, I would be curious to know how societal evolution is accomplished. Because you infer that black Americans who have European ancestry, as well, are more evolved than their black counterparts in Africa, you must mean that there is a genetic component to this evolution--that it is not so much social Darwinism as it is a form of microevolution--unless, of course, you are implying that the difference is in being raised by at least one white parent.

Unlike many, I have daily interactions with black South Africans, who are currently attending my local university for advanced degrees in math and engineering. I don't know how successful they are academically aside from being very conscientious in studying. I am, however, often disconcerted by their outward politeness, which involves eye contact, addressing people by first names, and always asking after family, even asking after people whom they don't know at all.

Anonymous Josh December 13, 2013 10:41 AM  

Is this not the heart of liberalism?

No

Anonymous Josh December 13, 2013 10:47 AM  

what can be done to usefully employ those who cannot function at higher levels, those who cannot be effectively trained to work at much more than unskilled labor?

Fred Reed talks about that problem in his "commentator's disease" essay.

The reality is that half the population just isn't suited for higher level thinking and tasks. Probably even more than half.

However, because of rampant inflation and what KD has coined "financialization", those jobs don't pay the bills and can't pay the bills.

What is to be done? Ending the Fed would be a good start.

Anonymous YIH December 13, 2013 10:48 AM  

Also from the first link:
My first inklings about what may be a deficiency in abstract thinking came from what I began to learn about African languages. In a conversation with students in Nigeria I asked how you would say that a coconut is about halfway up the tree in their local language. “You can’t say that,” they explained. “All you can say is that it is ‘up’.” “How about right at the top?” “Nope; just ‘up’.” In other words, there appeared to be no way to express gradations.
This was also mentioned about the vuvuzela noise during the World Cup. No matter what happened the noise was constant, unlike with (American) football where crowd noise changed in reaction to what was occurring on the field.
I also found this from VFR:
LA replies:
The complete lack of modulation in the loud noise fits what Eugene Valberg said in his talk at the first American Renaissance conference about his experience in an African hospital. The television on his ward was extremely loud. When he asked that the volume be turned down, it would be turned all the way off, in response to which someone else would turn it back on to full blasting volume. He asked over and over for people to turn it down a little, rather than all the way off, so that it wouldn’t keep going back and forth between off and full volume, but it didn’t happen. His point was that Africans had no concept of gradation. . It was either on all the way or off all the way.

Two examples of why I'm not terribly impressed when I hear that some African can speak (as in not read or write) several African languages. With a vocabulary of only a few hundred words and a lot of terms poorly defined (and the written word a very recent import to sub-saharan Africa) is not like comparing someone who can do several European languages with huge vocabularies and a long tradition of the written word.
I have no confidence that Africans (wherever on Earth they may happen to be) will ever be able to 'catch up' to the level of civilization of biblical times let alone modern European-based or Asian-based societies.

Blogger Nate December 13, 2013 10:49 AM  

"Is this not the heart of liberalism? "

No... that's the slogan of the left.

The difference is one side wants use helping as an excuse to accumulate power. and the other side knows that a really really dumb idea that only leads to one place.

Blogger tz December 13, 2013 10:54 AM  

White abstract thinking gave us the abortion holocaust.

Do black true africans murder one out of four of their children?

Are their families less stable?

Then there's the land of the setting sun.

Peter Kreeft has noted, and I strongly agree, that Morality - knowing what is good and evil is easy to know, but hard to do.

Only with great rationalization (hamsters?) can humans override "don't kill your offspring", and "don't act like a slut in the rut".

Perhaps there is more disproportion of the partial white blacks here not because they are less smart, but because people who are insisting they are smarter are provoking them into evil.

The devil is far smarter than any human. He managed to do it to Eve and Adam. And the smarter the person, the more they can rationalize their sin and damnation.

But I would like an explanation on how abortion, contraception / barrenness, and divorce - supported by the smartest whites - is pro-civilization.

My view is that what it takes to be good hasn't changed since before Moses' codification. What is necessary is to take the red pill, then the two tablets. And perhaps the roman 12 tablets for good measure. It isn't calculus, it is simpler than arithmetic. Yeteveryone fails (the just man falls 7 times a day).

We don't thave to do calculus before committing a sin, but it would be a far better world if we did.

Anonymous Anonymous December 13, 2013 10:58 AM  

ut, he assured me, it was otherwise for “promise.” I was skeptical. How about “obligation?” We both had the same dictionary (English-Zulu, Zulu-English Dictionary, published by Witwatersrand University Press in 1958), and looked it up. The Zulu entry means “as if to bind one’s feet.”

Umm the etymology of "obligation" in latin is "a binding". abstract terms come from metaphors...

Anonymous patrick kelly December 13, 2013 10:58 AM  

Whether the author is racist I really don't care, but his observations and presentation are not necessarily racist.

What I took away from it is that the evolving, amorphous measurements of intelligence are not only influenced by DNA, but by the limits of the vocabulary of language, which develop according to environment. (my nutshell take, maybe a bit oversimplified as usual).

Any research about at what point in human development we start thinking in words and internally use language to describe and interact with our external environment?

Anonymous Stephen J. December 13, 2013 10:58 AM  

@zen0:
"Does the following apply here? (...African-Americans of your acquaintance are not fully African, but are on average 17-18 percent European.)"

Unknown, but my best assessment is "possible but implausible". By accent, the gentleman is a first-generation Caribbean immigrant, and by appearance he is very classically West African/Nigerian.

I would also advance some skepticism that "17-18% European" is sufficiently meaningful, in terms of any known genetic correlations with intellectual potential specifically, to be a useful case-by-case predictive factor for that potential. Too much would depend on which Europeans, when, and where.

Anonymous Dingo December 13, 2013 10:58 AM  

Maintenance is future-oriented, and the Zulu entry in the dictionary for it is ondla, which means: “1. Nourish, rear; bring up; 2. Keep an eye on; watch (your crop).”

In short, there is no such thing as maintenance in Zulu thought…


I have no idea how he comes to the conclusion that there is no such thing as maintenance when the above Zulu definition encompasses much of what is meant by “maintenance” in English. And what is “to rear” or “to bring up” if not future oriented?

Also the whole “African” thing is bothersome. Having spent some time on the continent, I can tell you that just saying “African” is analogous to saying “Asian”. Do you mean an Iranian? A Russian? An Indian? Koreans? What?

Anonymous ODG December 13, 2013 11:01 AM  

VD: It also has some ominous implications for racially diverse places such as South Africa and various American cities, as there is considerable evidence very thing that the equalitarians are counting on to prevent widespread racial conflict, a sense of future self-interest on the part of the African community, does not exist at all.

Living near Detroit, and having read the whole article, my concern about the future just shot up astronomically. I assumed "necklacing" was similar to "just" slitting someone's throat, and though reprehensible, is definitely not torture. Reading that eye-witness account of what necklacing is nearly made me physically ill. In 21st century America, where what is "moral" basically boils down to "what I can get away with", it's a short distance from "White girl bleed alot" to necklacing.

Anonymous dh December 13, 2013 11:04 AM  

and the other side knows that a really really dumb idea that only leads to one place.

So VD wants to help even though he knows it really dumb and only leads to one place?

The problem here is that you can't have it both ways. If everything written is true, the black Africans of today are simply not capable of living in a civilized way. And so the only real option is to exclude them effectively and if they get out of place, to kill them in sufficient numbers to keep them inline.

And where does that lead?

Blogger Bogey December 13, 2013 11:06 AM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Anonymous Josh December 13, 2013 11:07 AM  

What do y'all think about the power of christianity to alter time preferences?

After all, the Bible does talk about our minds being transformed and renewed.

I would wonder if Christian Africans have the some issues with abstract thinking, time preferences, etc as non Christian Africans.

Anonymous TWS December 13, 2013 11:13 AM  

Vox- I don't disagree with your basic premiss but what about the Gypsies? They have been in contact with civilization at least 900 years. And India wasn't all that primitive to begin with.

Shouldn't the Gypsies be more civilized than they are?

Anonymous Josh December 13, 2013 11:14 AM  

The problem here is that you can't have it both ways. If everything written is true, the black Africans of today are simply not capable of living in a civilized way. And so the only real option is to exclude them effectively and if they get out of place, to kill them in sufficient numbers to keep them inline.

And where does that lead?


I don't think it's simply binary: civilized or uncivilized. It's a spectrum.

A solution would be to stop acting like all cultures are equally capable of supporting civilization. Acting white isn't a bad thing, it's how we got to airplanes, electricity, computers, etc.

Booker T Washington had the right ideas. His system worked very well for African Americans. Would it work for Africans? I don't know.

Anonymous damntull December 13, 2013 11:23 AM  

@dh
"One certainly say that this man is "racist" in that he believes that a black Africans are inferior to white Anglo's or white Africans in terms of civilization and future thinking, abstraction, and other qualities related to civilizing behavior. In this sense, the man is clearly racist."

I object to the use of the term "racist" when what the man is doing is merely noticing something real. It's not "racist" to notice differences. We cannot allow pejorative language to be used to characterize these observations.

Anonymous GG December 13, 2013 11:25 AM  

"Thowing an entire people into the civilizational deep end to either sink or swim is an intrinsically ugly and inhumane action."

This is very true, but bound to get you labeled a racist. People assume that not equal or not identical means we are allowed to exploit people, enslave them. In truth if you genuinely wish to be kind, you promote their strengths, their skills, not your pre-conceived notions of what their skills should be.

Consider President Obama. I get myself into trouble by suggesting that it was cruel, indeed, extremely racist to support him and set him up for failure. He had no experience, he was unqualified for the job. Throwing him into the deep end and demanding he lower sea levels was simply cruel. Not saying that no black man ever could become president, just that electing this particular one was a pretty cruel and selfish act of racism. He may have been able to be successful in several other ventures, but now he'll just go down in history as a miserable failure.

Anonymous Luke December 13, 2013 11:28 AM  

Related from Derbyshire's famous "The Talk":

"(2) American blacks are descended from West African populations, with some white and aboriginal-American admixture. The overall average of non-African admixture is 20-25 percent. The admixture distribution is nonlinear, though: “It seems that around 10 percent of the African American population is more than half European in ancestry.""


"11) The mean intelligence of blacks is much lower than for whites. The least intelligent ten percent of whites have IQs below 81; forty percent of blacks have IQs that low. Only one black in six is more intelligent than the average white; five whites out of six are more intelligent than the average black. These differences show in every test of general cognitive ability that anyone, of any race or nationality, has yet been able to devise. They are reflected in countless everyday situations. “Life is an IQ test.”


http://takimag.com/article/the_talk_nonblack_version_john_derbyshire/print#ixzz2nNANBzEY

And, from Kipling:

(Was written about sending white citizens to Brit 3rd World colonies, but could as well apply to EMTs/nurses/teachers/cops/etc. working in the black part of your hometown.)

"Go, bind your sons to exile
To serve your captives' need;
To wait, in heavy harness,
On fluttered folk and wild--
Your new-caught sullen peoples,
Half devil and half child."


http://www.online-literature.com/kipling/922/

Anonymous Luke December 13, 2013 11:34 AM  

The importance of the first part in my post above is that the 10% or so of blacks that are half or more white in ancestry would go a long ways towards explaining the occasional competent black engineer/physician/scientist, especially for native-born U.S. blacks. (Most Caribbean blacks observably have lots of white blood, too.)

And, the smart blacks fresh off the boat from Africa? They're in many cases undoubtedly the top 0.0001% in IQ of the hundreds of millions of blacks back home. Practically no one denies there are SOME smart blacks with essentially all-black ancestry. It's just that there are relatively very few of them, far fewer than among N. Europeans/N. Asians, and the culture of African countries does not generally allow them to be in charge.

Anonymous Harsh December 13, 2013 11:35 AM  

I invite you to consider this thought experiment: how successful would you be in a society where you were required to perform complex calculus calculations just to turn on your car?

The upside to this is I'd walk a lot more. I could really use the exercise.

Anonymous the bandit December 13, 2013 11:37 AM  

So just because a Zulu has no word for it as an obligation, it doesn't mean they don't understand the concept abstractly.

That leaped out to me in the excerpt because of my background in linguistics. The Whorfian hypothesis sounds legitimate but does not really pan out to the extreme: we may not have the Inuit vocabulary for snow (which has also be exaggerated), but we can tell the difference between dirty snow, wet snow, powdery snow, etc. I knew there were different meanings to "I love you" before learning the trendy Greek terms. That's not to say language is not a valid window into some conceptual and cultural differences, but it's not great evidence for absolute mental limitation. For example, speakers of languages with less terms for colors do have a harder time differentiating subtle color differences, but there's nothing different about their brains or photoreceptors.

So it's hard to trace cause-and-effect in this vein; there's probably a lot of interaction between the two. I was just about to check out the full piece, I'm going to be disappointed if the vocabulary thing is the primary form of evidence, as you say.

Anonymous Fisk Ellington Rutledge III December 13, 2013 11:38 AM  

About that signer. He boldly got up in front of everybody with no apparent embarrassment. This is typical of Blacks mistaking the style for the substance. In the U.S. this is most obvious when Blacks achieve high office or a lofty title in private business. As far as they are concerned, achieving the office or title means that their work is done. I've seen this in Mexicans too. We had a Mexican become the chief operations executive where I work. It was an obvious affirmative-action promotion that was played for all the PR it was worth. This Mexican then figured that his "job" was to simply enjoy it. He spent most of his time speaking to minority groups telling them how great he and they were. At work, when he was there, he basically wandering around chatting and laughing with his Mexican friends. Occasionally he would chair a meeting where he would spout unconnected management seminar platitudes in a bland, bored voice. Then when that performance was done he would look around the table and say something like, "And if anybody has a f**king problem with that, they can just kiss my rosy, red a**."

He was finally "eased out" because he refused to see the value of our company having a major presence on the internet. He didn't understand it or like it much, so that was all the evidence this very dim bulb needed. Now his "career" consists of being an honored member of a university faculty where he teaches the very thing he failed at. Of course most of his "teaching" is simply whining about his victim status and essentially telling everyone that Mexicans can kick the a** of Whites.

Anonymous Roundtine December 13, 2013 11:39 AM  

Chinese characters can convey far more information in much shorter time, but you need to invest far more time learning it. Some speculate that professional restictions on Jews boosted their IQs over time. I would think any system that requires a high intelligence to thrive in would be helpful.

Anonymous YIH December 13, 2013 11:44 AM  

But it's not so funny when you're talking about engineers at power stations, airplane mechanics, and transportation technicians responsible for keeping the food supply chain flowing smoothly.
Say what you will about the EU but at least one thing they do makes sense: List of air carriers banned in the European Union
Note the countries listed under 'banned' what do most of them have in common? Hmmm?

Anonymous Duh December 13, 2013 11:44 AM  

The problem here is that you can't have it both ways. If everything written is true, the black Africans of today are simply not capable of living in a civilized way. And so the only real option is to exclude them effectively and if they get out of place, to kill them in sufficient numbers to keep them inline.

And where does that lead?


It leads to civilization being maintained.

Were does it lead if you do NOT kill or exclude the barbarians?

It leads to civilization falling.

Anonymous Stickwick December 13, 2013 11:46 AM  

I believe that morality requires abstract thinking—as does planning for the future—and that a relative deficiency in abstract thinking may explain many things that are typically African.

Or typical of any primitive culture. My father worked with urban Native American kids back in grad school, and this same inability to think in the abstract made it very difficult for him to make inroads with these kids. In particular, he noticed that they had no concept of the future whatsoever -- everything was immediate and in the moment -- so there was no way he could impart to them the importance of doing tedious activities, like work and studying, and giving up on instant gratification in order to have things better tomorrow. Now, my father always held that it was largely cultural and not so much genetic -- in large part because he noticed a similar characteristic in the poverty-stricken white kids he worked with -- and he could be wrong about that, but either way you look at it, the reason some people are desperately unsuccessful is not because they're being downtrodden by oppressors, but because they lack a crucial characteristic for success.

Many years ago, when I was a beginning grad student in a science department, I overheard a discussion at the afternoon tea between some of the British faculty. One of them mentioned his observation that Africans have no concept of cause and effect (which requires some abstract notion of the future), and they all came to the conclusion that because of this, it was impossible for Africans to learn science. The American faculty were visibly uncomfortable with this discussion, but said nothing; you can't argue with the logic.

Blogger Quadko December 13, 2013 11:52 AM  

The question of thinking ability being constrained by language and culture makes me wonder how much better we could be with improved language concepts. For example, take calculus. It's simple enough to teach to high school students, but it's complex enough we only teach entry level calculus 1 to some high school students. How much of that difficulty is the "language" of math? Could we reformulate that "language" in a way that we could teach it to middle school students? Or to all high school students? Could we all be good at calculus? (What about economics!?!)

I think it also relates to our short term memory - the idea we can hold around 7 things in memory at once, give or take. If we express a concept as a combination of 5 things, it's hard to think about and we have little extra bandwidth. If it takes combining 10 things, we can't hold it in our head. But if we can express the same concept in two (more complex) concepts we "understand" it easier and can hold it in our head. It's the same way that it is harder to remember: 1 0 0 3 2 than 100 32.

And I've noticed people tend to work to bring the complexity of a task down until it fits in memory - 5 to 7 steps - and then they stop working on complexity and just repetitively perform the task. But often the complexity can be reduced further, the task can be made easier and take less time, but everyone stopped, content that it takes an hour and fits into memory and not trying to make it take 10 minutes while doing something else.

Anyway, comparing African nations to America or Europe, etc. makes me wonder:"
1. Africa is to America/Europe as America/Europe is to ???"
2. Can we apply these lessons of Africa growing to America/Europe to ourselves? Does that help us achieve the ???

And after that, I usually cap it by thinking about the balance that if I talked in the tongues of men and angles, and understood all things, but don't have love, I am nothing. Of course, that balance just inspires me to try to have both knowledge and love.

(Nuts, failed the 'keep it terse' skill again. Trying to work on that!)

Blogger JCclimber December 13, 2013 11:53 AM  

Most Bay Area liberals I interact with do NOT consider Obama to be a failure. In fact, by most of their definitions, he has been quite a success.

All those "embarrassments" that we see, where the ridiculousness of liberalism is on full display, their hypocracy and lying and getting caught out in so many instances of corruption? Invisible. Didn't happen. That was so yesterday. Old news.

And you're raciss and sexiss for even bringing it up again. Many, many times every week I hear about what a godsend Obamacare will be for Amerikans. All the problems? Just eggs that were needed for making the omelet.

Blogger IM2L844 December 13, 2013 11:54 AM  

And so the only real option is to exclude them effectively and if they get out of place, to kill them in sufficient numbers to keep them inline.

dh, why does someone simply recognizing that cognitive differences between races actually exist always send you into a tizzy of disjointed hyperbole.

Anonymous Athor Pel December 13, 2013 11:57 AM  

Some here don't seem to grasp how language constrains thought and thereby our very view of reality. To state it another way, if you can't easily imagine it then it is not real to you. If you have no word for it and language is intrinsic to your everyday life then you will have a hard time seeing any new idea as real or possible or true.

Unless you are truly multi-lingual and have the ability to think in more than one unrelated languages then you will likely have a hard time imagining how some ideas cannot simply enter and reside in a single language mind unless that mind has a label(s) or symbol(s) to apply to it in order to make contemplation and manipulation possible.

The process of making an idea available in a mind when that mind previously had no word for it is not easy. For some it may not even be possible. If successful it likely means a word from another language was adopted to enable the mind to cope with the new idea. Even then it will always be foreign for a first adopter in a society. It will only be future generations, assuming the idea and the word survive the generational transfer, that will own the idea and word as theirs and thereby expand the world of thought they inhabit.

Anonymous fnn December 13, 2013 11:58 AM  

As they used to say about the Apaches, "if you think he doesn't know right from wrong, wrong him and see what happens."

Even dogs seem to understand when they've been wronged.

Anonymous Stickwick December 13, 2013 11:59 AM  

Josh: What do y'all think about the power of christianity to alter time preferences?

A fascinating question, Josh. It was Christianity that ultimately spread the concept of abstract, linear time in the first place. But look how long it took to bear fruit. For instance, Augustine first discussed the concept in the 4th century, and we didn't get genuine science until the 17th century. Other advancements took less time to develop, but nonetheless were far from instantaneous.

Once people accept the idea of time to civilization, then maybe there can be some discussion of how to artificially accelerate that process. But it sounds like it will be difficult. I have some very good friends who are/were missionaries in all the major regions of Africa, and they all say that in the 30 years they've been planting churches and training ministers over there, Christianity hasn't managed to really "stick" yet. What you get instead is syncretism, and it's not clear whether the Christian component is dominant enough to impart a sense of the abstract, especially with respect to time.

Blogger RobertT December 13, 2013 11:59 AM  

This is a good article. Add this to John Wright's article and you're beginning to get the makings of a book - that in my humble opinion it would be a big, big bestseller. And it doesn't have to be long. I have paid $4 for a book on tight hips about 20 pages long. I just bought a 120 page book for $9 something. That was a bad decision, but most book purchases are. It's part of the game of reading voluminously.

Anonymous Wald December 13, 2013 12:00 PM  

You're welcome for the link, Vox.

Anonymous Anonymous December 13, 2013 12:03 PM  

And so the only real option is to exclude them effectively and if they get out of place, to kill them in sufficient numbers to keep them inline.

It's water under the bridge now, but I've wondered this: if the first European explorers had gotten to sub-Saharan Africa and said, "Wow, this place sucks; let's never come here again," would black Africans have ever gotten out of Africa to trouble anyone else? Northern Africa had some civilization in Roman times, so if there had been no European colonization, would the northern Arabs simply have swept down the continent at some point, wiping out or enslaving them all?

Anonymous GG December 13, 2013 12:05 PM  

"...he noticed that they had no concept of the future whatsoever -- everything was immediate and in the moment.."

Kind of ironic, us civilized people now pay big money to have therapists and self help experts teach us how to live in the moment, live everyday as if tomorrow may not come.

For those who are poor or who have lived in primitive cultures, this reality is reinforced constantly. So, trying to force people to live as if their future was assured, as if cause and effect were reasonable expectations, is somewhat cruel. They're not going to be good at it, the outcome you are promising is unlikely, and you'll do more harm then good.

Blogger IM2L844 December 13, 2013 12:06 PM  

That was a bad decision, but most book purchases are.

That's funny because it's true. I have boxes full of half-read books.

Anonymous The other skeptic December 13, 2013 12:09 PM  

racist thought-crime feel-bad Nazi KKK Republican Nazi Nazi Nazi!

I am sure that McRapey feels better now.

Anonymous dh December 13, 2013 12:09 PM  

I object to the use of the term "racist" when what the man is doing is merely noticing something real. It's not "racist" to notice differences. We cannot allow pejorative language to be used to characterize these observations.

I invite you define the term "racist". What the word means to you or someone else, it must have a real meaning. The one I would work from is the "belief that one race is inherently superior to another".

The truth is not mean, it's just the truth. If the truth is accurately described as racist, then so be. If you point out the truth, which is racist, and you accept the truth, then you are also racist.

Nothing is going to change unless people accept that the term "racist" properly describes this line of thinking. If you are trying to change the perception of the world, the first thing to do is own it. Upon being describe as racist is the answer should be "so?", assuming that's your personal belief.

Is 95% of polite society in the US going to recoil in horror if they thin someone will notice them associating with racist thought? Sure. So?

It's like Bernie Sanders. I've seen him debate Republicans who label him a socialist and a leftist and a collectivist. And his response is to defend socialism. You don't have to love socialism to recognize that this is inherently more honest than the dozens or hundreds of Congresspeople who essentially agree with him, but refuse to accept the label of a socialist.

If you have a racist beliefs, just own them. It's important that polite society know that it's not simply mean people who wish to call blacks "niggers".

Anonymous Josh December 13, 2013 12:10 PM  

OT, but this quote explains so much about Harry Potter:

“There comes a point where Susan, who was the older girl, is lost to Narnia because she becomes interested in lipstick. She’s become irreligious basically because she found sex. I have a big problem with that.” - JK Rowling

Anonymous dh December 13, 2013 12:15 PM  

dh, why does someone simply recognizing that cognitive differences between races actually exist always send you into a tizzy of disjointed hyperbole.

It's not hyperbole at all. It's simply saying what the next step is. As VD said yesterday, you must judge the consequences, not the intentions. The consequences of subordinating a race of group of people below another is that the subordinated race is likely to be a target for reprisals and genocide. That is not the intention, but it is the consequence. We've seen it not ironically, in Africa most recently. Once you remove the barrier that the others are not your equals, it becomes trivial to unleash the dogs upon them.

If that's not the case please feel free to make the case.

I am not particularly offended by recognizing and structuring society based on the realities of racial differences. But I think that Europeans, whites, and Anglos presume this will be in their favor - it won't be necessarily. Wait until the regulations on Irishmen drinking and southerners making hard liquor are adopted - I mean, we can't let these people near spirits without proper supervision, it's their nature to overindulge, right?

And it's not hard to realize that once government gets into the act, the naturally murderous condition of all governments will be utilized effectively against the minorities that we started off trying to help. Benign oversight is replaced with rancor too easily in my view.

Anonymous jack December 13, 2013 12:17 PM  

@TLM
Not to place words that Tom Kratman might wish to voice; but, he mentioned once that the character of CSM McNamara, in his Desert called Peace series was modeled on the best Command Sergeant Major he ever knew, and he knew a few. This CSM was a very black man from Jamaica, I think he said.
I saw this in SE Asia, in country, decades ago when working with the Marines. I was in radio communications and there was one black guy in the whole of the radio platoon [supplies battalion operators to the companies, and battalion level operators with the upper command group, etc.] He was good. But only one.
You want excellent ground fighters and motivators of men at the mud soldier level your black fighters are the ones. I, too, never saw any black folks in the very skilled MOS levels. That would be technical communications repair, the more technical equipment maintenance in general, etc. At the time, then and there, there were no officers that were black. Now, this was the late sixties and the PC stuff was still a few dacades away, but it was telling.
Qualifier: There are always exceptions, of course. You cannot paint with too wide a brush. Sounds like, if I had to do another fire fight [and Lord knows there were enough back then for a lifetime] I would want Kratman's favorite CSM right there calling the shots.

Anonymous VD December 13, 2013 12:25 PM  

If that's not the case please feel free to make the case.

It's obviously not the case. The British Empire never saw Africans or Asians as their equals and never made any attempt to wipe anyone out... except perhaps for the Boers.

Anonymous Stilicho December 13, 2013 12:36 PM  

And it's not hard to realize that once government gets into the act, the naturally murderous condition of all governments will be utilized effectively

Sayeth the proponent of government coercion as a force to help people.

Anonymous the bandit December 13, 2013 12:37 PM  

OK, having read the entirety of the linked post, it actually does some fascinating linguistics-oriented exploration of VD's time to civilization hypothesis. It seems in step with the historical record that a requisite step toward civilization is a written language that allows for better development of the abstract within the culture.

In my experience, it's consistent that the languages that lack abstract concepts of time also lacked a written form until the linguistics professors recently came along and documented them. Theoretically, development could be accelerated by mother-tongue adoption of the foreign language that already has these concepts within it, but man oh man won't the liberals howl at a notion like that.

Blogger Quadko December 13, 2013 12:37 PM  

If successful it likely means a word from another language was adopted to enable the mind to cope with the new idea.

I expect this explains English and German as languages of civilization, because they combine, invent, and steal words at will. Meanwhile the French "purity of language" rules: they explain so much!

Anonymous Separation uber alles December 13, 2013 12:42 PM  

The consequences of subordinating a race of group of people below another is that the subordinated race is likely to be a target for reprisals and genocide.

Untrue, but in any event, if Africans stayed in Africa, the problem would not arise.

Anonymous dh December 13, 2013 12:44 PM  

Untrue, but in any event, if Africans stayed in Africa, the problem would not arise.

This assumes Africans are all once race, which they assuredly are not. Within a race, you also have competing sub-groups.

Anonymous dh December 13, 2013 12:45 PM  

It's obviously not the case. The British Empire never saw Africans or Asians as their equals and never made any attempt to wipe anyone out... except perhaps for the Boers.

What was colonization?

Anonymous Josh December 13, 2013 12:47 PM  

Colonization wasn't genocide. Except in Belgian Congo. And the rest of Europe was horrified at Belgium.

Anonymous Josh December 13, 2013 12:48 PM  

Sayeth the proponent of government coercion as a force to help people.

He will shove us into the ovens for our own good.

Blogger James Dixon December 13, 2013 12:48 PM  

> The one I would work from is the "belief that one race is inherently superior to another".

Where does one race being better or worse at certain tasks than other races equate to superiority, dh?

Anonymous Josh December 13, 2013 12:50 PM  

What was colonization?

Certainly not genocide. Except in Belgian Congo, and the rest of Europe certainly disapproved.

Anonymous VD December 13, 2013 12:51 PM  

What was colonization?

A) The extraction of resources to send to the mother country, and, B) getting rid of the troublesome and unwanted at home. Do you know so little British history that you don't realize that the numbers of the native people under their rule tended to INCREASE?

Anonymous Separation uber alles December 13, 2013 12:54 PM  

This assumes Africans are all once race, which they assuredly are not. Within a race, you also have competing sub-groups.

So what?

Blogger IM2L844 December 13, 2013 12:57 PM  

If that's not the case please feel free to make the case.

First, I would take issue with your obvious misuse of the concept of subordinate. Cognitive inequalities are not axiomatically indicative of overall superiority or inferiority. That's a completely different matter with many subjective complex and dynamic components.

Secondly, I would take issue with your apparent desire to see society artificially structured at all. Left to their own devices, societies will naturally structure themselves more appropriately than governments impositions ever can or ever will.

Anonymous Josh December 13, 2013 1:01 PM  

I'm surprised Nate hadn't already mentioned it on the thread, but one of the primary concerns of Southrons about emancipation was whether or not blacks would actually have been able to function in a modern society.

Given what has transpired over the last 150 years, their concerns might have had some merit.

Anonymous automatthew December 13, 2013 1:09 PM  

"It seems in step with the historical record that a requisite step toward civilization is a written language that allows for better development of the abstract within the culture."

The civilizations described by Homer would tend to falsify that, provided you accept the theory that Homer's works were orally composed.

Anonymous cheddarman December 13, 2013 1:11 PM  

" Cognitive inequalities are not axiomatically indicative of overall superiority or inferiority." - IM2L844


cognitive inequalities ARE axiomatically indicative of cognitive superiority or inferiority...there is no other way to compare them than to measure ability

Anonymous cheddarman December 13, 2013 1:14 PM  

"Secondly, I would take issue with your apparent desire to see society artificially structured at all. Left to their own devices, societies will naturally structure themselves more appropriately than governments impositions ever can or ever will." IM2L844

yes, and histroy has shown that when people are free to associate and have property rights, the more cognitively advanced peoples have better living conditions, including functioning sewage, water and power systems

Anonymous ? December 13, 2013 1:22 PM  

Left to their own devices, societies will naturally structure themselves more appropriately than governments impositions ever can or ever will.

For example?

Anonymous Concerned Rabbit Hunter December 13, 2013 1:26 PM  

"Qualifier: There are always exceptions, of course."

Of course, but when the means of two normal distributions are different, the exceptional under one distribution is often not exceptional under the other.

Anonymous Zulu Spectator December 13, 2013 1:27 PM  

Two examples of why I'm not terribly impressed when I hear that some African can speak (as in not read or write) several African languages. With a vocabulary of only a few hundred words and a lot of terms poorly defined (and the written word a very recent import to sub-saharan Africa) is not like comparing someone who can do several European languages with huge vocabularies and a long tradition of the written word.

Kodwa izilimi Afrika umsindo omkhulu.

Anonymous dh December 13, 2013 1:28 PM  

Where does one race being better or worse at certain tasks than other races equate to superiority, dh?


Better = superior. It's literally a synonym.

Anonymous Jack Amok December 13, 2013 1:30 PM  

Stephen J.

The Bell Curves definitely overlap. If we honestly had Martin Luther King's society where everyone was judged by the content of their character, then it wouldn't matter - we could merge the curves into one and every man could be judged on his own individual merits. I'd love to live in that society.

But such a society may not be possible. There are the obvious race hustlers like Al Sharpton, and the more subtle politicians (like Obama) who forge electoral coalitions based on race-baiting, not to mention the deluded do-gooders who help create things like the EEOC. All these politicians and fools keep race at the forefront, making it impossible to merge the curves because they insist on keeping them separate so they can exploit the differences.

So we'd have to get rid of their like to have that society, but can we ever? It's not like these hustlers discovered a new con and once everyone knows about the Nigerian Bank Scam we can avoid it. Racial politics are as old as mankind. The Old Testament, Greek history, Roman history, Chinese history, Indian (both East- and Amer-) all have examples... It's always been with us.

Americans are probably as near to the most colorblind humans in all of history, and it still tortures our society.

Anonymous Eric Ashley December 13, 2013 1:31 PM  

"Between genocide and justice, there is ultimately no middle ground." --Lois McMasters Bujold. I think she was largely agreeing with DH. Interestingly, she had her cultures separated on different planets with each planet having a very different style (Barrayar with it Russian aristocrats, and Beta Colony with its progressives, and Cetaganda with its, um, weirdness and genetic engineering, and Jackson's Hole with its utterly amoral gangster capitalism). She also dealt with 'The Mountains of Mourning' with cultural change.

========
Perhaps some sort of industrial feudalism might work to solve the problem. The top rank are full-tilt capitalists, but certain lesser ranks have defined priviledges and responsibilities. So Joe the Squire is an 89 IQ, and he has this set of duties and a fairly well defined rewards, with some give and take. Smarter guys get higher ranks and more flex, and less certainty. And those on top have responsibilities to those below them.

This works because those on the bottom need guidance, but also those on top need Indians to their Chiefs both emotionally and physically (not a point the bright like to bring up as they like to imagine themselves as self sufficient.)

Anonymous Jack Amok December 13, 2013 1:31 PM  

Stickwick:

Or typical of any primitive culture. My father worked with urban Native American kids back in grad school, and this same inability to think in the abstract made it very difficult for him to make inroads with these kids..

I may have mentioned this before, but be careful equating Reservation Indians with Amerindians in general. The Reservation system is one where the highest achievers are motivated to get out. Your father was dealing with the left half of the Amerindian Bell Curve.

Anonymous civilServant December 13, 2013 1:39 PM  

If everything written is true, the black Africans of today are simply not capable of living in a civilized way.

All of them?

Anonymous eShamus December 13, 2013 1:41 PM  

I realize this is anecdotal, but as that's how this thread began, in I leap.

Based on discussions with groups and individuals of native-born Africans:
1) Nigerians see themselves as superior intelligently, academically, and ambitiously to other Africans. Ghanians are corrupt, fat and lazy. Rwandans are also-rans.
2) Ghanians believe Nigerians have no heart or music in their soul and thrive on arrogance. They love "all the other Africans."
3) Rwandans believe themselves elegant, graceful, and quietly intelligent. Ghanians are too loud and sloppy. Nigerians want to be seen as smart because they're really not.

All three view themselves as different races from the others. Different body types, inclinations and instincts.

Thoughts?

Anonymous civilServant December 13, 2013 1:42 PM  

The top rank are full-tilt capitalists, but certain lesser ranks have defined priviledges and responsibilities. So Joe the Squire is an 89 IQ, and he has this set of duties and a fairly well defined rewards, with some give and take. Smarter guys get higher ranks and more flex, and less certainty. And those on top have responsibilities to those below them.

Brave new world.

Anonymous eShamus December 13, 2013 1:45 PM  

Stickwick:

Or typical of any primitive culture. My father worked with urban Native American kids back in grad school, and this same inability to think in the abstract made it very difficult for him to make inroads with these kids..

Jack Amok:

I may have mentioned this before, but be careful equating Reservation Indians with Amerindians in general. The Reservation system is one where the highest achievers are motivated to get out. Your father was dealing with the left half of the Amerindian Bell Curve.



Reservation Indian or no, how many children have extended time preferences?
Was it your father's grad school experience that indian children time preferences significantly diverged from non-indian children's?

Anonymous Shutterbug December 13, 2013 1:47 PM  

While reading the comments I also was thinking about the emancipated blacks in this country and how they fared after the civil war. I may be believing a myth, but overall they had strong families and some thriving communities in certain urban and rural areas. In Des Moines in the first half of the 20th century there was the Porter Street Neighborhood that was all black and had a number of small businesses, churches, intact families and, of course, colorful (as in interesting) local characters. The neighborhood thrived until Des Moines grew and the neighborhood was absorbed into the growing downtown business district. That's just one example I know of.

I think the problems we're seeing with American blacks today are a direct result of the state "helping" them by rewarding self-destructive behavior. The state replaced the father in families and makes it more profitable to sit around, use drugs and pump out illegitimate kids. Self-destructive behavior is glorified in the music and tv and movies that target black audiences and Democrats create an entitlement mentality to garner their votes. It's sad. Humanities default mode is sin and self-destruction.

Anonymous Josh December 13, 2013 1:50 PM  

All three view themselves as different races from the others. Different body types, inclinations and instincts.

Thoughts?


It depends on how you define a race. Certainly white people are vertically closer to other white people than they are to blacks, but there is still a vast difference between various white groups.

Even looking at Albion's Seed or American Nations, there are separate nations within both England (four) and America (eleven).

That's why the WN cry for all whites to stick together is a silly one.

Anonymous VD December 13, 2013 1:51 PM  

Better = superior. It's literally a synonym.

Right. So, your definition of racism is worthless. The moment you admit there are DIFFERENT races, you must admit that one is better than another one. So, if you admit that race exists, you are racist.

Congratulations, you just reinvented race-realism. Anti-racism is intrinsically anti-reality AND anti-science.

Blogger IM2L844 December 13, 2013 1:53 PM  

For example?

Well, how about the ~50,000 separate pre-contact Algonquian, Siouan, and Iroquoian society's residents of the Americas Chesapeake region. They seem to have worked out a reasonable system of cohabitation and interaction without a centralized government.

Anonymous Josh December 13, 2013 1:53 PM  

In Des Moines in the first half of the 20th century there was the Porter Street Neighborhood that was all black and had a number of small businesses, churches, intact families and, of course, colorful (as in interesting) local characters. The neighborhood thrived until Des Moines grew and the neighborhood was absorbed into the growing downtown business district. That's just one example I know of.

One of the positives of segregation was that it forced black Americans to develop their own institutions: cultural, business, education, religious, etc.

Many of those might have been inferior to white ones, which is why so many disappeared after segregation.

A good way to think of it would be integrating boys and girls teams. How many girls would actually be able to compete?

Anonymous VD December 13, 2013 1:53 PM  

I may be believing a myth

You are believing a myth. The government has certainly made things much worse, but it wasn't like the white norm either.

Blogger Joshua Dyal December 13, 2013 1:54 PM  

cognitive inequalities ARE axiomatically indicative of cognitive superiority or inferiority...there is no other way to compare them than to measure ability

Sure, but that's why you're replacing of the word [overall] with [cognitive] fundamentally alters the nature of the statement.

Blogger James Dixon December 13, 2013 2:01 PM  

> Better = superior. It's literally a synonym.

So if I'm better at repairing computers than Adrian Peterson, but he's better at being a running back than I am, who's superior?

Anonymous Stickwick December 13, 2013 2:05 PM  

Jack: I may have mentioned this before, but be careful equating Reservation Indians with Amerindians in general. The Reservation system is one where the highest achievers are motivated to get out. Your father was dealing with the left half of the Amerindian Bell Curve.

Yes, you did mention this before, and I pointed out then as I'll again remind you that the Native Americans my dad worked with were urban kids, not reservation kids -- this was in the inner city of a large-ish urban center. I appreciate that there are differences within the Native American population, but even still, the families of these urban kids tended to have the same problems you find on reservations (violence, unemployment, disease, alcoholism, etc). This is hardly surprising, given that the inner cities represent a distinct primitive culture in America. And that's my point. The primitive mindset, whether it's possessed by urban Amerindians, white Chavs, or African blacks, are all inhibited by a lack of an abstract sense of the future.

Anonymous dh December 13, 2013 2:09 PM  

The moment you admit there are DIFFERENT races, you must admit that one is better than another one. So, if you admit that race exists, you are racist.

True with one exemption. Race, if it was only color, would impose no actual meaningful differences. Like if a person was nothing more than a less tan black person, race would be meaningless.

As soon as you acknowledge racial differences, yes, that would make you racist by its real definition

Posit an alternate definition. Happy to hear.

Anonymous TWS December 13, 2013 2:11 PM  

Shamus- You are aware of the phrase "Indian time"? It's not referring to overly punctual or precise keeping of time.

The right half of the Indian bellcurve keeps the same time. In fact, youngsters have never been forced to meet western time standards. In my experience managers are terrified of being accused of racisim.

Anonymous China Expat December 13, 2013 2:12 PM  

VryeDenker, thanks for the link ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t0stJkUWUyM )

Lately I've been so caught up with anger directed at the whites who almost seem to enjoy watching and encouraging the destruction of the West that I neglected to empathize with the intelligent blacks who view race with a fresh pair of eyes, are curious enough to look into related facts and histories, and honest enough to admit to themselves what they find, however unpleasant.

If the situation were inverted, how many of us would admit that whites have done virtually nothing of significance when compared with blacks, and are almost completely dependent on blacks to maintain even a semblance of civilization, or the capacity to maintain one, to ourselves even let alone as a public figure?

I know nothing of the man but what I just saw there was heroic.

Blogger James Dixon December 13, 2013 2:12 PM  

> As soon as you acknowledge racial differences, yes, that would make you racist by its real definition

Not per your definition, which I will quote: "belief that one race is inherently superior to another".

Differences do not equate to inherent superiority. Are cats superior to dogs?

Anonymous Porky December 13, 2013 2:13 PM  

Josh: "I'm surprised Nate hadn't already mentioned it on the thread, but one of the primary concerns of Southrons about emancipation was whether or not blacks would actually have been able to function in a modern society."

Aww. Concerned southron is concerned.

Southrons, and all other wannabe authoritarians, should best express their concern by leaving indigenous societies alone in the first place.

Anonymous Porky December 13, 2013 2:14 PM  

Are cats superior to dogs?

Absolutely not. Unless you've got mice.

Anonymous VD December 13, 2013 2:14 PM  

Posit an alternate definition.

"an individual who believes in the doctrine that their own race is intrinsically superior to any and all others across a broad range of metrics".

Anonymous Stoner Cat December 13, 2013 2:15 PM  

Are cats superior to dogs?

No. Dogs are superior to cats.

Anonymous ? December 13, 2013 2:15 PM  

Well, how about the ~50,000 separate pre-contact Algonquian, Siouan, and Iroquoian society's residents of the Americas Chesapeake region. They seem to have worked out a reasonable system of cohabitation and interaction without a centralized government.

Um, well, a tribe is a form of social organization, to be sure, but whether this is "better" or "more appropriate" than a European government is highly debatable.

And that's even disregarding the usual outcome when primitive tribes came in contact with European governments...

Anonymous dh December 13, 2013 2:16 PM  

"an individual who believes in the doctrine that their own race is intrinsically superior to any and all others across a broad range of metrics".

This can't be. As a white person, if I believe that blacks are intrinsically superior to any and all others in that manner, does that make me not a racist?

Anonymous Josh December 13, 2013 2:18 PM  

"an individual who believes in the doctrine that their own race is intrinsically superior to any and all others across a broad range of metrics".

That's a good definition. It separates the race realists like Steve Sailer and Derb from the actual racists (like the ones who think that white football players are discriminated against).

Anonymous China Expat December 13, 2013 2:24 PM  

oops - please delete last comment

VryeDenker, thanks for the link ( http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t0stJkUWUyM )

Lately I've been so caught up with anger directed at the whites who almost seem to enjoy watching and encouraging the destruction of the West that I neglected to empathize with the intelligent blacks who view race with a fresh pair of eyes, are curious enough to look into related facts and histories, and honest enough to admit to themselves what they find, however unpleasant.

If the situation were inverted, how many of us would admit that whites have done virtually nothing of significance when compared with blacks, and are almost completely dependent on blacks to maintain even a semblance of civilization, even to ourselves, let alone publicly? After all, I imagine rationalization hamsters run even faster at higher intelligence levels.

I know nothing of the man but what I just saw there was heroic.

Anonymous dh December 13, 2013 2:28 PM  

Josh that statement makes my head hurt. I think VD's definition is helpful and probably perfect if you insert "preferred", making it "that their preferred race". There is no self required to be racist.

I think the definition change though does not change anything. The linked author - by either a dictionary/contemporary definition of racist OR by VD's definition - holds black Africans in an very low state across all manner of metrics that are important. The only wiggle room is that by saying blacks are inferior he is not claiming his or any race as superior. It is simply inferred.

A doctrine that holds a particular race as widely inferior also should be racist, it seems to me. It is the inverse case of VD's definition. Namely that if your race is superior all others must be inferior.

Anonymous Stickwick December 13, 2013 2:28 PM  

eShamus: Reservation Indian or no, how many children have extended time preferences? Was it your father's grad school experience that indian children time preferences significantly diverged from non-indian children's?

Your first question is insightful. Children are inherently primitive and time preferences are learned. The raising of children in more advanced cultures focuses heavily on instilling the concept of the future / cause-and-effect and how it relates to behavior. You see this in various ways, from the consequences of failing to do chores or hitting a sibling to instilling in children the idea that they have to work towards future goals. I remember a Chinese friend of mine relating a typical dinner conversation for a Chinese family: the grandparents always ask the young children what kind of doctors they're going to be when they grow up. These kids are constantly hammered with the notion that the future is important and that what they do now will have a huge impact in their later life.

What's missing with the urban Native American kids my dad worked with is the value system that emphasizes teaching kids the importance of the future / cause-and-effect. These kids never grow out of the impulsive phase, because no one teaches them -- or at least it's partially due to this. It's possible there is a genetic bias towards this kind of mindset. Studies like the Stanford marshmallow experiment revealed that individual people are biologically wired for either longer or shorter time preferences, and so it's possible there is a genetic component in race that tends to favor one time preference over the other.

To directly answer your second question, yes. My father has been in K-12 education for 30+ years, and he has noticed distinct differences in time preferences between certain groups of kids. Kids from poorer, less structured families (including whites) tend to have short time preferences compared with kids from more middle class, structured families. But it was most noticeable to him with the Native American kids, in which there was literally zero concept of the future.

Anonymous Josh December 13, 2013 2:30 PM  

Josh that statement makes my head hurt

Which statement?

Anonymous Mike M. December 13, 2013 2:39 PM  

Stilicho, you bring up the Great Question that Dr. Pournelle has raised for 15 years - and which finally turned me against unlimited free trade.

What IS to be done with the people on the left side of the Bell Curve? Traditionally, they could be usefully employed in low-skill manufacturing, which provided them with a reasonable living and an respectable place in society. When you allow unlimited trade with non-peer states, you wind up exporting those low-end manufacturing jobs...and shove the people who did them into low-end service positions that pay less to begin with. And are now flooded.

I won't even mention the effects of further flooding the market with immigrants.

I support free trade - as long as it is among peer states. With non-peers, not so much. It might raise the cost of low-end consumer goods, but I'd love to see an analysis - as I suspect the cost of goods would be offset by reduced welfare costs and lower taxes.

Anonymous dh December 13, 2013 2:49 PM  

John- about racists and those other racists. I can't tell the difference in your example of who the "real" racists are.

Anonymous ODG December 13, 2013 2:50 PM  

dh: "holds black Africans in an very low state across all manner of metrics that are important."

You are making an assumption that cognitive ability is the primary measure of someone's worth. It's not.

Anonymous dh December 13, 2013 2:51 PM  

VD, agreed from up a bit I dont know much colonial history. Any good starters for reading? It's not something that is really emphasized much these days. Sort of scrubbed from the books as far as I have seen so far.

In term of race, in Europe, do people from England, Ireland, France, Italy and Germany consider themselves all the same race? From the Tudor and Elizabethan ages I have read some works they were not considered even all human. What is is modern opinion like on this topic?

Anonymous Randy M December 13, 2013 2:52 PM  

Frankly the reason racism is such an effective slut is that the left can slide from one, warranted meaning of the term to other unwarranted ones, such that it is now that case that even the admits-the-possibility-of-differences 'racism' is now viewed with the same horror as the actively-works-to-harm-others 'racism'.

Anonymous Josh December 13, 2013 2:53 PM  

John- about racists and those other racists. I can't tell the difference in your example of who the "real" racists are.

The real racists are the idiots who think that whites are just as athletic as blacks and only discrimination is keeping them from NFL success (specifically at WR, DB, RB).

Anonymous dh December 13, 2013 2:54 PM  

You are making an assumption that cognitive ability is the primary measure of someone's worth. It's not.


I don't think I am. I think it's not honest, as some people will try to do, is to make up metrics that are artificial to sort of balance out racial disparity. So they can say "well blacks are more X, but on the other hand whites are more Y", where X or Y are worthless measures. That holds no water for me.

I don't know what a standard set of metrics would be, but most metrics do at some point boil down to average intelligence or average physical strength.

Anonymous Randy M December 13, 2013 2:59 PM  

"You are making an assumption that cognitive ability is the primary measure of someone's worth. It's not."

This is what comes from losing the concept that man is created in the image of God. Once that is gone, we must hold to an utterly improbably doctrine of equality-guided evolution or else constrain great swaths of humanity to less than human status.

The Christian is free to face reality without gaining the germ of justification for eugenics or genocide.

Anonymous Josh December 13, 2013 3:11 PM  

This is what comes from losing the concept that man is created in the image of God. Once that is gone, we must hold to an utterly improbably doctrine of equality-guided evolution or else constrain great swaths of humanity to less than human status.

The Christian is free to face reality without gaining the germ of justification for eugenics or genocide.


Amen.

This is particularly problematic for leftists because they like to think that they are much smarter than the right. They place a very high value on their own intelligence.

So the bad think that all races are not equally intelligent makes leftists very uncomfortable. If they are special and valuable because they themselves are so smart, what does it mean when others are not as smart?

They are forced to look into the mirror and see the little Hitler that looks back at them through the glass.

Anonymous VD December 13, 2013 3:14 PM  

This can't be. As a white person, if I believe that blacks are intrinsically superior to any and all others in that manner, does that make me not a racist?

In theory, sure. In practice, I've yet to meet anyone like this outside of the occasional guy in my Asian Studies program. But in reality, they just had yellow fever.

I dont know much colonial history. Any good starters for reading?

James Morris has a very good three-volume history of the British Empire I think you would find useful. It would be a good place to start.

Anonymous Josh December 13, 2013 3:20 PM  

In practice, I've yet to meet anyone like this outside of the occasional guy in my Asian Studies program.

If Jews are a distinct race, there's a decent amount of American Christians who think that Jews are superior to all other people because they're chosen.

Anonymous Porky December 13, 2013 3:21 PM  

dh: "Is this not the heart of liberalism? At this point, we are only now arguing about how best to help them. Welcome to the club."

The only way to really help is through missionary work.

The Sean Penns of the world simply jet from location to location long enough to hammer a few nails in front of the cameras, and drop a few dollars in the coffer of the local warlord. Indeed liberals tend to damage much more than they fix.

Otherwise explain to me how driving up the cost of fossil fuels around the world through green energy initiatives helps the poor savage who just wants to keep his family warm in the winter.



Anonymous Feh December 13, 2013 3:22 PM  

The problem is that most histories of the British Empire are written by breast-beating, white-guilt-ridden Leftists who detest it.

Anonymous Randy M December 13, 2013 3:26 PM  

>"If they are special and valuable because they themselves are so smart, what does it mean when others are not as smart?"

Hence the effects that could come from lower intelligence must be really due to racism or colonialism,no matter how long it has been.

Blogger Nate December 13, 2013 3:28 PM  

"The problem is that most histories of the British Empire are written by breast-beating, white-guilt-ridden Leftists who detest it."

I wonder if you could find primary sourced histories written during the period... or shortly there after.

Blogger IM2L844 December 13, 2013 3:29 PM  

I think it's not honest, as some people will try to do, is to make up metrics that are artificial to sort of balance out racial disparity.

Oh, you mean like affirmative action?

Anonymous eShamus December 13, 2013 3:35 PM  

TWS
Shamus- You are aware of the phrase "Indian time"? It's not referring to overly punctual or precise keeping of time.


I am, yes. To be overt, I wasn't passive aggressively attempting to gut or snark at Stickwick's comment. There were at least two clear variables: a) Indian and b) children. In my experience, children have zero time preference. (Now, somebody somewhere is thinking, 'and trading land for beads is...?' and someone else can respond, 'building casinos to fleece honkey is playing on honkey's short time preference!' and someone else can say, 'see, you want raciss cause you're stupid', and... wait, where was I?)

I live in Cincinnati, OH. I devote time to working with poor. I've worked in detox. What strikes me is this, urban poor black male conversation -- when passionate -- includes "do you feel me?" for emphasis.

I believe (guess?) that a reliance upon feelings as guide and ultimate arbiter is the bane of progress, advancement, success, civilization, and maturation.

My postulate applies to myself - I'll read Vox's mind (pardon the intrusion) and aver he doesn't guide his vigorous schedule by his feeling in a given moment.

In my opinion, a culture that is a) maternal and b) emotional will quickly devolves the individual, group, and itself.

If or as much as you agree with this, do you think it is root cause or symptom?

Anonymous eShamus December 13, 2013 3:40 PM  

"These kids are constantly hammered with the notion that the future is important and that what they do now will have a huge impact in their later life."

Stickwick, thanks for the good, thorough answer. You answered both my question and their implications.

Your (excerpted) statement may tie to my question just posted.

Anonymous Josh December 13, 2013 3:54 PM  

GA Henty, who lived during the height of the British Empire, included this in one of his books:

They [negroes] are just like children ... They are always either laughing or quarrelling. They are good-natured and passionate, indolent, but will work hard for a time; clever up to a certain point, densely stupid beyond. The intelligence of an average negro is about equal to that of a European child of ten years old. ... They are fluent talkers, but their ideas are borrowed. They are absolutely without originality, absolutely without inventive power. Living among white men, their imitative faculties enable them to attain a considerable amount of civilization. Left alone to their own devices they retrograde into a state little above their native savagery

Anonymous Redjack December 13, 2013 3:59 PM  

Dh
The are different races from Europe. Look into the Scotch Irish crime rates compared to Anglo/Saxon.

Anonymous VD December 13, 2013 4:08 PM  

My postulate applies to myself - I'll read Vox's mind (pardon the intrusion) and aver he doesn't guide his vigorous schedule by his feeling in a given moment.

Mood is a thing for cattle, or making love.

They are fluent talkers, but their ideas are borrowed. They are absolutely without originality, absolutely without inventive power.

Holy crows, John Scalzi is black!

Anonymous Josh December 13, 2013 4:10 PM  

Holy crows, John Scalzi is black!

And yet, like yourself, he is also transracial, as he self identifies as white.

Anonymous eShamus December 13, 2013 4:21 PM  

VD

Mood is a thing for cattle, or making love.


BAM. And I'll infer it's no way to run a civilization. In fact, an excellent wife will get in the mood (an act of will) in order to fulfill her duty. And no, I don't think there's a more awkward way of phrasing that. :)

This analogy has been floated so often I cannot correctly cite its originator, but "how would react if only earned money when he was in the mood?"

Good analogy and a precise fit - what would happen if you allowed your mood to withhold the chief thing you're here to provide? But you can witness the answer to the question by looking at most American black families. It happens amongst white families, too, but so inversely disproportional it's striking.

Blogger James Dixon December 13, 2013 4:25 PM  

> ...holds black Africans in an very low state across all manner of metrics that are important.

That would be a very non-Christian viewpoint.

Anonymous dh December 13, 2013 4:40 PM  

Otherwise explain to me how driving up the cost of fossil fuels around the world through green energy initiatives helps the poor savage who just wants to keep his family warm in the winter.

Green energy is all about price discrimination. Relatively rich people are expected to use more expensive fuels, leaving plentiful cheap/dirty fuels for the poor.

But none of the justifies the hypocrites out for self-gratification. Who are just idiots.

Anonymous fnn December 13, 2013 4:41 PM  

Even looking at Albion's Seed or American Nations, there are separate nations within both England (four) and America (eleven).

Does any non-leftist really believe that are eleven different nations within (white) America? "Nation" implies a high degree of group identity-something not much in evidence outside the South. You have at least have to have a name,which none of these alleged groups have-Texans and Southerners excluded.

Anonymous dh December 13, 2013 4:42 PM  

Oh, you mean like affirmative action?

Not racial disparity in that sense, I mean, "I am not racist, I am just saying that white people can't jump. But white people sure can take a calculus test, can't they?"

Jumping = not a real metric
Calculus test = not a real matric

BOth just made up to justify making a generalization.

Anonymous Josh December 13, 2013 4:57 PM  

Does any non-leftist really believe that are eleven different nations within (white) America? "Nation" implies a high degree of group identity-something not much in evidence outside the South. You have at least have to have a name,which none of these alleged groups have-Texans and Southerners excluded.

Here's how those eleven are broken up.

The reality for WN is that there isn't any broad cohesion amongst American whites. Southerners hate Yankees as much as y'all hate blacks and Jews. If not more.

The upper South, deep South, New England, Midwest, Left Coast, El Norte, and the far West are pretty distinct places.

Anonymous automatthew December 13, 2013 5:07 PM  

Eleven is suspiciously close to twelve. Awright, everybody out of the pool! Time for a headcount.

Anonymous Anonymous December 13, 2013 5:16 PM  

R7 Rocket:

The Souf African signer was just "speaking in tongues".

Anonymous civilServant December 13, 2013 5:28 PM  

In term of race, in Europe, do people from England, Ireland, France, Italy and Germany consider themselves all the same race? From the Tudor and Elizabethan ages I have read some works they were not considered even all human. What is is modern opinion like on this topic?

Begin with the self. Everyone considers themselves human. Then work your way outward - "How much in agreement with me are these? Are those?" Where serious disagreement is reached there you will find the dividing line between "human" and "inhuman".

Anonymous Huckleberry - est. 1977 December 13, 2013 5:42 PM  

The real racists are the idiots who think that whites are just as athletic as blacks and only discrimination is keeping them from NFL success

Toby Gerhart is totally the equal of Adrian Peterson.
You'll see on Sunday!

Blogger IM2L844 December 13, 2013 5:43 PM  

Not racial disparity in that sense...

Ah, jump out of Africa
With a step that looks so bold
Ah, when you're kickin' high
It make my blood run cold

I said, dance, little sister, dance...

Anonymous Aeoli Pera December 13, 2013 6:06 PM  

I invite you to consider this thought experiment: how successful would you be in a society where you were required to perform complex calculus calculations just to turn on your car? How easy would it be for you to live your daily life if you had to solve a single higher mathematics problem every time you sat down at your desk to do your job?

I could get a decent job in that society.

Anonymous Noah B. December 13, 2013 6:37 PM  

I haven't known many black Africans, but of the ones I have known, two were doctors, two were engineering majors, and one was a physics major. The physics major was probably about average for a physics student, but he was also, I'm judging by his appearance, half white. The two engineering students were pitiful. I remember a time when one of them gave a presentation that probably would have gotten me kicked out of the engineering program if I had given it, but instead, the presenter got an A. And I have no idea about the competence of the two doctors.

Anonymous TWS December 13, 2013 6:55 PM  

eshamus - In my experience modern (the last 50 years) Indian communities are not maternal. If by maternal you mean dominated by women they are no more or less than the rest of America. They are emotional. I am pretty sure the emotion, lack of modern conception of time (or maybe rejection of it), low impulse control are all features of those communities and the people.

Their languages are dead or on life support, they even more than blacks are encouraged to hate whites and the dominant culture, they are given free money (sometimes called 'Indian money') or make-work jobs, and when they do get off the rez they often adopt the gangsta subculture and its trappings. In short, it's as if nature and nurture conspire to keep them from adopting all of western norms.

Tom Kratman believes socialism and western welfare societies are enough to make any group implode. He might be right. They certainly don't help.

Anonymous DonReynolds December 13, 2013 6:59 PM  

Noah B.... "I remember a time when one of them gave a presentation that probably would have gotten me kicked out of the engineering program if I had given it, but instead, the presenter got an A."

For good reasons, I decided to switch from public administration to economics for the masters degree, but I had to get permission from the political science department in order to make the switch, in particular from a Greek professor named Vernadakis. He wanted me to stay, so he told me...."There are lot of Asian students in Economics. How are you going to like it when you do better work than they do, but you get a lower grade?" So I told him the truth....."Then it will remind me of being in the political science department....when I did better work than blacks and got lower grades." Without another word, he signed his permission for me to leave and both of us were happier.

Anonymous Jack Amok December 13, 2013 7:02 PM  

Yes, you did mention this before, and I pointed out then as I'll again remind you that the Native Americans my dad worked with were urban kids, not reservation kids -- this was in the inner city of a large-ish urban center.

Ah, I'd forgotten that. Thank you.

the inner cities represent a distinct primitive culture in America. And that's my point. The primitive mindset, whether it's possessed by urban Amerindians, white Chavs, or African blacks, are all inhibited by a lack of an abstract sense of the future.

I completely agree. I'd also add that metropolises are probably serious honey traps for short-time-preference/low-IQ folks. The city exudes an air of easy abundance, but in reality it is more expensive to live there and provides fewer jobs suitable for below-average IQs. Primitives are drawn there thinking the hunting and gathering are easy, then have a hard time paying their way and end up flailing.

Anonymous Jack Amok December 13, 2013 7:08 PM  

The problem is that most histories of the British Empire are written by breast-beating, white-guilt-ridden Leftists who detest it.

There's one written by a guy named Churchill that might be worth investigating. Not a lot of self-hatred to the guy. But I've only read an abridged version, and don't know if the full one covers enough of the colonial angle for your purposes.

Blogger Scott December 13, 2013 7:57 PM  

I'm in my 3rd decade of software engineering, which requires heavy abstract thinking. Is it a coincidence that of the ~1000 engineers I've worked with I've NEVER worked with a black guy? Plenty of back dudes "graduate" from "colleges", but for some reason they don't show up for work. Well, unless you include gov't work.

Also, as Vox points out, blacks in America are nearly 1/5 white on average. Therefore, it's not quite fair to point out counterexamples in the USA. For instance, Booker T. Washington was half white.

Anonymous eShamus December 13, 2013 7:57 PM  

I propose TWS is on the right path. Nature and nurture conspiring to implode the group.

Now, welfare was designed (ostensibly) to help and it's become so identified that DH, earlier in this thread, suggested "helping people" was a liberal trait.

Welfare does not help, starvation motivates.

So if TWS's assessment of Kratman's opinion is correct, you can only effect one of those aspects.

But how efficacious is that effect thus far in its current form?

Blogger Scott December 13, 2013 8:08 PM  

I think helping them is the right thing to do. The point is that long-term assistance is best provided by NOT permitting them to come in and destroy more advanced civilizations, but rather by giving them something to which they can aspire without giving them the ability to interfere with it internally or externally.

How exactly can brain function be "helped"? The only ways are through breeding and/or direct genetic alteration.

Blogger Outlaw X December 13, 2013 8:14 PM  

This comment has been removed by the author.

Blogger Outlaw X December 13, 2013 8:23 PM  

I find that most of the people I know have great trouble with abstract thought. I wonder sometimes why they couldn't see it coming. You coined MPAI. You tell someone what is coming and when it comes they hate you for telling them and almost never admit it because they laughed at you. but when you are wrong they are sure to point it out and don't take the whole of your message and only see the negative..

People don't like being the fool and I am sure the same human condition exists in the African people. It is called cognitive dissonance.

Anonymous fnn December 13, 2013 8:27 PM  

The upper South, deep South, New England, Midwest, Left Coast, El Norte, and the far West are pretty distinct places.

Manhattan is very different from Staten Island. Does that mean they're two different nations?

Anonymous Porky December 13, 2013 8:49 PM  

Relatively rich people are expected to use more expensive fuels, leaving plentiful cheap/dirty fuels for the poor.

No, there is no "poor people's price" or "rich people's price" on the commodities exchange. The way liberals get rich people to use solar and wind is to A) give out subsidies, and B) drive up the price of dino fuel.

Really I am continually fascinated by the contortions of the liberal mind attempting to justify the evil it conceives.

Anonymous emdfl December 13, 2013 9:24 PM  

I'm still trying to figure out why after >200 years most aa's in this country still can't speak anything approaching understandable English

Anonymous dh December 13, 2013 9:57 PM  

No, there is no "poor people's price" or "rich people's price" on the commodities exchange. The way liberals get rich people to use solar and wind is to A) give out subsidies, and B) drive up the price of dino fuel.

Of course there is. You quite literally don't know what you are talking about.

Adjust the mix of power required to be purchased from each source. Energy portfolio ratios are price discrimination. They require energy suppliers to buy a certain mix of power from different sources. They are common throughout the United States. In poor areas, and outside of the US, there is no such thing. They buy whatever is least expensive. For richer areas, these ratios require a certain amount of wind, solar, nuclear, gas, biofuel, etc fuel sources.

Really I am continually fascinated by the contortions of the liberal mind attempting to justify the evil it conceives.

I am continually interested to find that you know literally nothing at all. I will happily admit to the many things I don't know. While you happily stick your foot in your mouth every chance you get.

Anonymous Scintan December 13, 2013 10:14 PM  

I'm still trying to figure out why after >200 years most aa's in this country still can't speak anything approaching understandable English

Try getting out of your house more. Also, stop watching lousy television and start watching some of higher quality.

Anonymous Scintan December 13, 2013 10:16 PM  

You quite literally don't know what you are talking about.

Says the person who originally argued the merely noting racial differences was racist.

Anonymous dh December 13, 2013 10:38 PM  

Says the person who originally argued the merely noting racial differences was racist.

It is by the common definition of racism. I agree that I like VD's definition but it doesn't make the accepted version. The situation in reality land is that pointing out racial differences is literally racist. The orthodoxy on race is that race doesn't matter, it's only a color and a few non-threatening features like hair or facial bones. Even by the VD definition which is superior, the linked article implies racism.

Anonymous Scintan December 13, 2013 10:45 PM  

It is by the common definition of racism.

No, it's not.

Blogger The Aardvark December 13, 2013 10:47 PM  

The post reflects other regional things: the Muslim concept of "insha'Allah", "If Allah wills", is very similar. North African Muslims are tough to pin down as to keeping appointments (thus saith an old boss of mine who did engineering consulting in the region). "We need to meet at 10AM to go over the specs for the generators." "Insha'Allah" would be the reply. If Allah wills, then I'll make it. Often Allah apparently did not will it.

Anonymous emdfl December 13, 2013 11:07 PM  

Sorry, Scintan, I was out of the house for the better part of 30 years as an electro-mechanical field engineer. Did 20 years in the civilian world and then 10 years in the .gov world. Filled up 5 passports working in 22 different countries including a lot of time in the ME and the Far East during those times. Didn't have much time to waste watching TV - still don't.
In that time I worked with a mixed lot of AA engineers. Two introduced me the early rap group N.W.A. and really knew their stuff one; one couldn't get along with anybody; one was finally fired after not showing up for work for about five months; another was pretty good; one of them still drops down for a visit now and then

Anonymous Scintan December 13, 2013 11:12 PM  

Sorry, Scintan, I was out of the house for the better part of 30 years as an electro-mechanical field engineer.

Odd, since I have absolutely no problem, whatsoever, understanding most AAs who speak English. I grant that I've not spent time on the left coast, but I've spent plenty of time throughout the east and the midwest.

Anonymous Porky December 13, 2013 11:13 PM  

@dh

I'm talking about commodities exchanges. You are talking about downstream regulatory manipulation. Two different things.

In poor areas, and outside of the US, there is no such thing. They buy whatever is least expensive.

Dh, do you deny that liberals lobby heavily against things like... pipelines, exploration contracts, refinery construction, drilling in the gulf, drilling on federal lands, drilling on private lands, drilling near caribou, etc. etc. etc??

All these things apply upward pressure to the price of crude, which although assymetric, applies pressure to the prices of fuel - for rich and poor alike. Saying "Well, we also regulate the hell out of the energy companies so it ends up costing the rich folks way more" does little to ease the burden for the poor father of 6 in Africa who can't afford fuel refined from Brent crude that now costs 3 times what it did just 10 years ago.

It's this weird little liberal belief that sticking it to rich people somehow intrinsically helps the poor. The truth is that the rich simply pass the hurt back down to the poor every time. But by the time the poor African farmer can't afford to heat his home or run his little tractor the well intentioned liberal is already patting himself on the back and jetting off to yet another lavish conference on wealth redistribution.

















Anonymous The other skeptic December 13, 2013 11:30 PM  

Heh, Other problems in SA that suggest a lack of abstract reasoning in Africans.

Anonymous Jack Amok December 13, 2013 11:35 PM  

By random chance, I find myself watching District 9 tonight.

Anonymous A. Nonymous December 13, 2013 11:40 PM  

Rwandans believe themselves elegant, graceful, and quietly intelligent. Ghanians are too loud and sloppy. Nigerians want to be seen as smart because they're really not.

I would assume that the Rwandans in question here are Tutsi, rather than Hutu.

Anonymous dh December 13, 2013 11:44 PM  

Scintan--

No, it's not, yes it is. Whats the point. A very much more common definition of racism than what VD thinks it is - "the belief that some races of people are better than others".

The question is, is the author making specific claims that are not a broad statement of superiority, or is the author making a comparison of a specific trait or characteristic.

For sure, the author is not arguing that whites or another race is superior. So I agree this isn't a straight forward racist screed that is effectively "my side is better than yours". But, the same argument can be inferred. If the choice is A or B, and you argue against B, then A is your inferred preference. That is in my opinion clearly what is happening in this article. 8,000 words give or take are expended talking about the specific flaws of black Africans. And then those lessons are carried forward to Hispanics and American Blacks. I suppose the author could be making a very subtle case for Asian Pacific Islanders to be the superior. The author makes strong cases on reasoning, logic, civilization, time preference, intelligence/IQ, and moral behavior. To me, the totality is that the person is arguing that African blacks are inferior to Western standards. The framing of the article is about how Africans differ from Westerners.

Anonymous Scintan December 13, 2013 11:52 PM  

yes it is. Whats the point. A very much more common definition of racism than what VD thinks it is - "the belief that some races of people are better than others".

You claim to having the "common" definition. Dictionary.com, Webster's dictionary, Oxford English dictionary, The Free Dictionary online, Cambridge Dictionaries Online, Collins English dictionary.... they all disagree with you.

Anonymous Scintan December 13, 2013 11:53 PM  

Sorry for the "to having" on that one. I made an edit and forgot to adjust that part accordingly.

Blogger tz December 14, 2013 12:08 AM  

QED

Blogger tz December 14, 2013 12:11 AM  

@Josh - As I've observed earlier, eternity is the ultimate time preference. So, yes, Christianity affects time preference. But in general, it simply bolsters the foundation of civilization - morality, trust, family, and the rest.

Blogger Doom December 14, 2013 1:41 AM  

I am, over time, and just through thought, starting to believe that there is no amount of time that would allow Africans to advance. You suggest it takes time, while noting the obvious... they don't natively have the capacity to think along the lines that are necessary. Perhaps, in time, they could also learn to fly?

With Africa, there have been situations where the natives have been around technology, civilization, and some other things for hundreds of years, and more I would suggest. It can be seen that muslims disrespect natives out of hand, if they aren't much better... a side point if true as well.

I simply don't believe some "people" will ever have the capacity, without having it breed into them, and I wouldn't count on that either actually. While African Americans might have 17-18% Euro, they also only have about 30% African genes. Even breed to minority aspect and they still lack the capacity to function even in the weaker elements of a modern society.

Anonymous Jack Amok December 14, 2013 2:17 AM  

Doom, compare Haiti to Barbados. They have essentially the same official racial demographics (Barbados 93% black, Haiti 95% black). Haiti is nearly the definition of basket case. Barbados has a per-captia GDP relatively close to Spain and Italy, 99+% literacy rate, and a homicide rate comparable to Louisiana (not great by US standards, but pretty good by Caribbean ones). Barbados had a couple extra centuries of colonial rule. It makes a difference

Anonymous GeckoMan December 14, 2013 3:11 AM  

While thinking about the guy signing gibberish, I couldn't help thinking about the cargo cults of the 2nd world war, natives who thought they could generate air traffic and material goods by mimicking American and Japanese technology and building fake runways and airports out of wood and straw. The fake signer thinks he can just waive his hands around and create meaningful communication, not understanding that sign language is dependent upon a whole underlying grammatical and social structure.

Blogger Doom December 14, 2013 4:45 AM  

Jack Amok,

Nah, I think, if a genetic survey was done, you would find that "black" isn't always "black". Islanders and others, or outside influences, would be the thing, not a few centuries. One other issue may be the relationship between those who ruled, or owned. I don't know about Barbados but Haiti was a French held slave island. They ended up butchering their owners. And, I am not sure it would be the relationship itself, necessarily, but how it ended. If there are still connections, in Barbados, that might help.

Reminds me of, say, Dr. Z and the Wolverine. If he can get in his head, he can help. The Wolverine doesn't want him in his head, but if Z can calm him and include him, and do it passively, he can start taming the beast. Now, the beastly nature will always exist, but it might be further controlled with contacts other than Z, even antagonistic ones so long as the nature of the antagonism can be controlled.

So... who is, truly, controlling Barbados. Assuming they are truly African black and not just darker skinned. More studies... Other than that, we are just speculating.

Anonymous dh December 14, 2013 6:32 AM  

Porky--

I'm talking about commodities exchanges. You are talking about downstream regulatory manipulation. Two different things.

You started talking about green energy. Green energy regulations do not affect the proverbial poor person in some other place anymore than the US minimum wage does.

Dh, do you deny that liberals lobby heavily against things like... pipelines, exploration contracts, refinery construction, drilling in the gulf, drilling on federal lands, drilling on private lands, drilling near caribou, etc. etc. etc??

No, not all. But you have shifted the goal posts. Those things are not "Green energy", those are environmental concerns. Liberals and the left very selectively support those items, usually only when it has a direct positive impact to them. Otherwise they are against it.

If you are trying to equate green energy silliness with general disregard for energy extraction, that's the problem. They are not the same. The people pushing green energy are essentially the same as the traditional energy people - except they are wanting to get the same government monopoly, the same sweetheart deals, the same
influence - as the oil and coal people. Industrial wind, industrial solar, offshore power producers, etc. They are essentially the same cronies as involved in traditional power generation with slightly cleaner (in some cases) technology.

You have correctly pointed out the people raising energy prices, but apparently lumped them into the green energy bucket. The environmentalists are essentially asking us to transition to more costly energy sources before the traditional ones run out. They are accelerating the price increases.

A very simple explanation will make it clear to you. I have a small hunting cabin in the woods. I put a solar panel on the roof and mounted on a pole, and have no power from grid. That is green energy. It's still a lie because that panel is disgusting and costs lots of power to make, which probably came from coal. But regardless, ongoing, it's "green energy". Renewable, no fossil fuels. Me doing that has no effect on the price of petrol, except to lower it ever so slightly because I am not using any. It either leaves demand alone or reduces it.

My hunting cabin is on a river. I support removing the hydro damn to allow fish to migrate naturally upstream. Removing the damn will increase the demand for oil by removing otherwise perfectly good power. Removing the damn is a perfectly left-wing policy that does make oil more expensive by increasing demand. However, it has nothing to do with green energy. It has to do with environmentalism.

That is why green energy is about price discrimination. These people are saying "use a more expensive form of energy because you afford to". It is fundamentally as honest as traditional power generation, which is not necessarily very honest, but at least it's not destructive.

Anonymous Stilicho December 14, 2013 6:35 AM  

I support free trade - as long as it is among peer states. With non-peers, not so much. It might raise the cost of low-end consumer goods, but I'd love to see an analysis - as I suspect the cost of goods would be offset by reduced welfare costs and lower taxes.

"Fair trade" would be a good term for this concept if it had not already been co-opted for a leftist feel-good cause. If you have not already read them, Vox has a series of posts dealing with free trade as proposed by most libertarians in general and Gary North in particular that is quite instructive. They (Vox's posts) support your point quite well.

Anonymous dh December 14, 2013 6:36 AM  

Scintan--

M-W has the 2nd definition of racism as "the belief that some races of people are better than others". OED has it first as "the belief that all members of each race possess characteristics or abilities specific to that race, especially so as to distinguish it as inferior or superior to another race or races.".

I think you are very much splitting hairs. Both are in line with what I said is the common in use definition of the word, and both are opposed to VD's definition of the word.

VD's definition has a few key components.

Anonymous Stilicho December 14, 2013 6:39 AM  

I will happily admit to the many things I don't know.

Unlikely, as I am still waiting for you to admit that gifts are not taxable to the donee under U.S. tax law. Huffpo or Talkingpointsmemo are not acceptable authority on tax law.

Anonymous Stilicho December 14, 2013 7:08 AM  

Josh, that 11 nations idea is interesting, but I'd quibble with a few designations. 1) Yankeedom includes "New Amsterdam" eastern PA, NJ, DE, eastern MD (excluding the eastern shore). The Tidewater has merged for the most part with Appalachia and the Deep South. The old divisions there just do not apply any more. Likewise with Appalachia and the Deep South, there is so much overlap and migration between the two that any lines have been blurred away. The economic forms that provided the original distinction are gone and the primary population of both is the amalgamation of the Scots Irish and the English while the culture is strongly Scots Irish. New France is probably distinct enough to merit a separate nation status but small enough to be mostly insignificant. I would expect El Norte to be somewhat larger than shown on the map.

Nonetheless, interesting breakdown.

Anonymous jasmer December 14, 2013 7:18 AM  

I've seen Vox' theory about race referred to, but is there anywhere it is expounded upon in essay form?

I ask because I find fault with what I **perceive** it to include, which is a genetic and physical race component involved in the process of civilization over time.

Again, without knowing the premise, I will hold fire - but from my experiences, it's culture, culture, culture. Iraqis are as backward as any African tosser, I've met far more intelligent Africans than I have African-Americans (due to selection bias), and one only needs to look at what's happening to the British lower class to realize that the process is easily reversed by stupidities like many welfare policies.

Blogger James Dixon December 14, 2013 8:14 AM  

> It is by the common definition of racism.

Neither by the common definition nor by your definition quoted above, dh.

> But, the same argument can be inferred.

Inference is not definition.

> OED has it first as "the belief that all members of each race possess characteristics or abilities specific to that race, especially so as to distinguish it as inferior or superior to another race or races.

And you keep equating different to "inferior or superior". Which no one else is doing.

Given the nature of the article, and the discussion so far, I can only conclude that you believe that a race capable of maintaining an advanced technological civilization is superior to one which can't.

Blogger IM2L844 December 14, 2013 10:05 AM  

The author makes strong cases on reasoning, logic, civilization, time preference, intelligence/IQ, and moral behavior. To me, the totality is that the person is arguing that African blacks are inferior to Western standards.

So it's not that you think the author hasn't made a compelling factual case? You just think it's decidedly racist and consequently wrong for anyone to point such things out?

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