Race: social construct or biological reality? Why can’t it be both? When the Left (let’s use Liberal Creationists, LC for short) says that “race is a social construct”, what do they mean? They mean, obviously, that race is not a biological reality and that most ‘racists’ assume that race is only what we can physically see—the phenotype. However, genotypic differences give rise to phenotypic differences between humans. We can then say, with 100 percent certainty, that even ‘small genotypic differences’ can make ‘big differences in phenotype’ between two almost genetically similar organisms.
The thing that LCs don’t understand is that race is a ‘social construct’, but not in the way that they believe. They believe that since what we call ‘white’ and ‘black’ are genetically different depending on which geographic location you look at, that race must be something constructed by the mind based on the ‘small genotypic differences’ which lead to the ‘large differences in phenotype’. This couldn’t be further from the truth.
See, what we call the ‘races’ are arbitrary. Instead of ‘white’ we can say ‘hulina’, instead of ‘black’ we can say ‘lorux’ (two random ‘words’ I made up on the fly). What we call these biological realities is arbitrary, replacing the common usages of ‘white’ and ‘black’ WILL NOT change biology. This is what they don’t understand. They are correct that ‘race is a social construct’, but the ‘social constructions’ that we have chosen describe genotypic differences between geographically isolated populations. What we call races, ethnies, or anything for that matter, is arbitrary as the genetic underpinnings we are describing will not change if we call them another (arbitrary) name.
Race is not biological. It is a social construct. There is no gene or cluster of genes common to all blacks or all whites. Were race “real” in the genetic sense, racialclassifications for individuals would remain constant across boundaries. Yet, a person who could be categorized as black in the United States might be considered white in Brazil or colored in South Africa.
This goes back to my point about using different ‘constructs’ for these biological realities (though mixed is a better ‘construct’ to use than ‘white’ or ‘black’. ‘Colored’ is a good term as that denotes a white/black mix). Call someone ‘black’ in America and he’ll be ‘white’ in Brazil or ‘colored’ in South Africa. OK? And? Does this change any type of underlying biology that is being described? I do admit that using the term ‘mixed’ is better than the ‘straight terms’ of ‘white’ and ‘black’, however, these ‘constructed terms’ are shockingly correct in describing the biological underpinnings of ‘race’.
I define ‘race’ as a genetically isolated breeding population. Sure, we can still conceive children between racial groups, that, however, doesn’t change any underlying biologic underpinnings. That should be obvious, though.
You have people like Richard Lewontin, of ‘Lewontin’s Fallacy’ fame who say that “because there is more variation within racial groups that the smaller variation between racial groups is insignificant, stating:
“Since such racial classification is now seen to be of virtually no genetic or taxonomic significance either, no justification can be offered for its continuance.”
There IS a genetic significance, and there IS taxonomic significance, to quote Dawkins:
It is genuinely true that, if you measure the total variation in the human species and then partition it into a between-race component and a within-race component, the between-race component is a very small fraction of the total. Most of the variation among humans can be found within races as well as between them. Only a small admixture of extra variation distinguishes races from each other. That is all correct. What is not correct is the inferene that race is therefore a meaningless concept. This point has been clearly made by the distinguished Cambridge geneticist A.W.F. Edwards in a recent paper “Human genetic diversity: Lewontin’s fallacy.” R.C. Lewontin is an equally distinguished Cambridge (Mass.) geneticist, known for the strength of his political convictions and his weakness for dragging them into science at every possibile opportunity. Lewontin’s view of race has become near-universal orthodoxy in scientific circles.
We can all happily agree that human racial classification is of no social value and is positively destructive of social and human relations. That is one reason why I object to ticking boxes on forms and why I object to positive discrimination in job selection. But that doesn’t mean that race is of “virtually no genetic or taxonomic significance.” This is Edwards’s point, and he reasons as follows. However small the racial partition of total variation may be, if such racial characteristics as there are highly correlated with other racial characteristics, they are by definition informative, and therefore of taxonomic significance.
Strike out. Lewontin, like his colleague Gould and other ideological brother in Marxism Diamond all deny race, first and foremost, for ideological reasons, not scientific ones. Though, this doesn’t mean their arguments should be discarded. On the contrary. They should be deconstructed and shown how and why they are wrong.
In 2002, Risch, et al published a paper that confirms the existence of five racial categories (not three [as is commonly though] as ‘Natives’ cluster on their own due to genetic isolation and Melanesians and Australoids are NOT NEGROID; saying so makes race a true ‘social construct’. Sorry PP), writing:
The African branch included three sub-Saharan populations, CAR pygmies, Zaire pygmies, and the Lisongo; the Caucasian branch included Northern Europeans and Northern Italians; the Pacific Islander branch included Melanesians, New Guineans and Australians; the East Asian branch included Chinese, Japanese and Cambodians; and the Native American branch included Mayans from Mexico and the Surui and Karitiana from the Amazon basin. The identical diagram has since been derived by others, using a similar or greater number of microsatellite markers and individuals [8,9]. More recently, a survey of 3,899 SNPs in 313 genes based on US populations (Caucasians, African-Americans, Asians and Hispanics) once again provided distinct and non-overlapping clustering of the Caucasian, African-American and Asian samples : “The results confirmed the integrity of the self-described ancestry of these individuals”. Hispanics, who represent a recently admixed group between Native American, Caucasian and African, did not form a distinct subgroup, but clustered variously with the other groups. A previous cluster analysis based on a much smaller number of SNPs led to a similar conclusion: “A tree relating 144 individuals from 12 human groups of Africa, Asia, Europe and Oceania, inferred from an average of 75 DNA polymorphisms/individual, is remarkable in that most individuals cluster with other members of their regional group” . Effectively, these population genetic studies have recapitulated the classical definition of races based on continental ancestry – namely African, Caucasian (Europe and Middle East), Asian, Pacific Islander (for example, Australian, New Guinean and Melanesian), and Native American.
Pretty damn good for a ‘social construct’, right? Unless the computer somehow consciously knows the result we want and then allocates the clusters according to our desires, but I doubt it. These studies show, definitively, that race as we know it is a biological reality.
They then state in the conclusion:
As we enter this new millennium with an advancing arsenal of molecular genetic tools and strategies, the view of genes as immutable is too simplistic. Every race and even ethnic group within the races has its own collection of clinical priorities based on differing prevalence of diseases. It is a reflection of the diversity of our species – genetic, cultural and sociological. Taking advantage of this diversity in the scientific study of disease to gain understanding helps all of those afflicted. We need to value our diversity rather than fear it. Ignoring our differences, even if with the best of intentions, will ultimately lead to the disservice of those who are in the minority.
One of the best conclusions one can write after an article as ‘controversial’ as that one. We need to embrace our diversity, not destroy it. We need to study it and see how and why we are so diverse, not ruin the diversity making it impossible to study. This also has implications for disease acquisition as well as whether or not one responds to certain drugs (blacks and the drug Bidil, for instance). These inherent differences between races/ethnies need to be studied so we can get everyone the best care they need based on their genetic makeup, without pretending that it doesn’t exist. Pretending that these differences don’t exist does not make them go away.
If race were ‘fake’ and ‘socially constructed’, would there be a success rate of 99.86 percent between self-identified race/ethnicity and genetic structure? Tang et al (2005) write:
We have analyzed genetic data for 326 microsatellite markers that were typed uniformly in a large multiethnic population-based sample of individuals as part of a study of the genetics of hypertension (Family Blood Pressure Program). Subjects identified themselves as belonging to one of four major racial/ethnic groups (white, African American, East Asian, and Hispanic) and were recruited from 15 different geographic locales within the United States and Taiwan. Genetic cluster analysis of the microsatellite markers produced four major clusters, which showed near-perfect correspondence with the four self-reported race/ethnicity categories. Of 3,636 subjects of varying race/ethnicity, only 5 (0.14%) showed genetic cluster membership different from their self-identified race/ethnicity. On the other hand, we detected only modest genetic differentiation between different current geographic locales within each race/ethnicity group. Thus, ancient geographic ancestry, which is highly correlated with self-identified race/ethnicity—as opposed to current residence—is the major determinant of genetic structure in the U.S. population. Implications of this genetic structure for case-control association studies are discussed.
These ‘social constructs’ have some pretty damn good predictive power to guess geographic ancestry (race) 99.86 percent of the time. But isn’t it weird that this so-called ‘social construct’ fits neatly into 4 categories (‘Hispanic’ is not a race, but I assume it would cluster between ‘Natives’ and Europeans, showing that fourth cluster. There hasn’t been enough time for ‘Hispanics’ to cluster into a distinct race, so they cluster in between ‘Natives’ and Europeans)?
If race is a ‘social construct’ as LCs would want you to believe, how do we have these clusters showing this variation? Because they’re genetically similar others. We can then start to wonder about things such as genetic similarity theory and ethnic genetic interests, as they then become a direct result of these genetically similar individuals. Yes we humans are 99.9 percent identical, but what matters is not how genetically distant humans are when being compared with one another, what matters is gene expression. We share over 90 percent of the same genes with dogs, cats, mice, and other great apes. Must mean we are almost all the same and any genetic differences ‘are meaningless’, then!
Think of it this way. People in the same family differ both genotypically and phenotypically. Hereditary traits get passed down through the generations and they stay in that family. If you broaden that to ethnic and the bigger racial groups, you can then see how genetically isolated human populations (key phrase here) do differ, on average, in hereditary traits.
We see racial in sports from swimming, baseball, football, bodybuilding, sprinting, and Strongman. We (somewhat) openly discuss racial differences being the cause for this, yet discussing racial differences in intelligence is taboo.
Liberal Creationists and their denial of race in the modern genomics age is absurd. It’s like people who deny evolution because they don’t understand basic evolutionary theory. Liberal Creationists, too, don’t understand basic evolutionary theory. Race-denialism, when the facts are right in front of you showing how these so-called ‘social constructs’ exist and outright denying them, is very telling. Ideology is the name of the game, not science.
It doesn’t matter how many people believe race doesn’t exist, the underlying realities are still there. LCs can say talk all about changing definitions of race in other countries and the past few hundred years, but this doesn’t address the fact that what we call ‘race’ and ‘ethnicity’ have real biological underpinnings. What we call ‘race’ and ‘ethnicity’ is meaningless. ‘Race’ is a social construct, but a ‘social construct’ of a biological reality. Even if we changed, or even eliminated the words from use, actual genetic differences between races will not go away.
In 2005, Linda Gottfredson published What If the Hereditarian Hypothesis Is True? in the journal Psychology, Public Policy, and Law defending Rushton and Jensen’s (2005) conclusions on the black-white IQ gap. This gap in intelligence between the races has been noticed since the IQ test’s inception 100 years ago. What if the hereditarian hypothesis is true—what if there are genetic differences in intelligence between races? How should society handle such a ‘discovery’ if one were to occur?
In Rushton and Jensen’s opus paper, they didn’t set out to prove that the hereditarian hypothesis is true, rather they set out to prove that the hereditarian hypothesis—which states that 50 percent of racial differences in intelligence come down to genetic factors with environment dictating the other 50 percent—is more tenable the culture-only hypothesis—0 percent genetics 100 percent environment. Gottfredson states that the hereditarian hypothesis becomes scientifically plausible “only after five evidentiary requisites have been met”: “IQ differences among same-race individuals represent (a) real, (b) functionally important, and (c) substantially genetic differences in general intelligence (the g factor), and mean IQ differences between the races likewise reflect (d) real and (e) functionally important differences on the same g factor.” (Gottfredson, 2005: 311) The past one hundred years of intelligence testing has proven all of this. The black-white differences in intelligence are on subtests that are more heritable, proving a genetic component.
The hereditarian hypothesis has been proven by adoption studies such as the Minnesota Transracial Adoption Study, to differences overall in IQ tests, to differences in life success etc. Environmentalists believe it’s ‘racism’ or ‘classism’ that’s the cause for racial/ethnic/class differences in achievement, when a genetic explanation makes a lot more sense.
The Denial of the Hereditarian Hypothesis
The denial of the hereditarian hypothesis has greatly harmed American society. Before the push for multiculturalism in the 60s, a genetic reason for racial/class differences was widely accepted. Minorities couldn’t perform well in school in comparison to whites because they had lower innate g. The difference in g causes differences in wealth attainment, salary, mortality, fitness, educational attainment, and other pertinent achievements. This then leads to programs with an abysmal ‘success rate’, such as Head Start. Head Start does not work, its gains fade away in a few years after the program. It’s time to stop Head Start, because it makes people believe that parental intervention can have any kind of effect on a young child, when it’s shown that these so-called gains fade away in a few years as the heritability of intelligence increases. Individuals differ on g, races differ on g, there are differences in achievement and more people in one SES bracket and other people in another SES bracket and it’s down to g. Denying the hereditarian hypothesis wastes taxpayer money as more and more money goes towards programs like Head Start that don’t do anything to close any of the gaps they promise to close.
Academic achievement in math, science, art, humanities, and second language were all shared by the same genes. They found that 60 percent of the results in GCSE scores were attributed to genetic factors. Genes and not upbringing had more of an effect on the scores one receives on the GCSE.
Moreover, other behavioral traits such as psychopathology and personality also account for genetic influence on GCSE scores beyond that predicted by intelligence. This shows that ‘nature’ wins out in the nature-nurture debate. If individual differences in test scores are largely determined by genetics, why not the black-white difference?
Individuals nor groups are ever ‘equal’ in terms of any capacity. One will be better at something than someone else, and that will largely be determined by genetic factors. Training and repetition brings out the best in one that’s genetically inclined to excel. We accept genetic differences for differences in sports, such as sprinting and distance running. They are genetically inclined to excel at those competitions due to fast and slow twitch muscle fibers. Take Usain Bolt. Do you think anyone can train to get to that level? Do you think random Joe can just wake up one day and decide to try to be the fastest man in the world? If you say no, you’re a hereditarian. Of course Bolt’s training makes him better, but without his genetics, he wouldn’t be the fastest man in the world.
Now take the genetic differences from sports (that any sane person would recognize), and think about that in regards to brain power. We are talking about 2 groups that have been genetically isolated for tens of thousands of years. They had to do different things to survive and both faced different selective pressures that would have an effect on intelligence.
The worldwide differences in IQ between East Asians, Europeans and Africans; an inverse correlation between the race differences and brain attributes and black-white-East Asian differences in body maturation; . 2 and .4 correlations with skull size and in vivo brain volume, moderately high correlation of .6 to .7 of different IQ test’s g loadings on the magnitude of the black-white-East Asian differences as well as the measures of the subtests being rooted in biological and genetic processes; rising heritability of IQ; differences in crime, gestation, and sex ratio at birth, law-abidingness, marital stability; and a genetic divergence of world population groups during evolution. The most telling one is the last one, genetic divergence of world population groups during evolution. These differences in the brain are rooted in genetic factors. The hereditarian hypothesis fully explains within and between group differences in achievement and intelligence. No “culture-only” hypothesis could ever convince me otherwise.
Richard Nisbett has attempted to say that the hereditarian hypothesis is wrong and that culture-only theory is the only game in town. He couldn’t be more wrong. Citing studies like Moore and Eyferth to make your case against the hereditarian hypothesis won’t get you anywhere. They had a smaller sample size, and some of the subjects were extremely young. Environmentalists use these studies to say that the difference in IQ comes down to a type of ‘ghetto’ environment that saps American blacks’ intellect and that raised away from that type of environment, they’d be able to score on par with whites. Except that’s not what was found in the Minnesota Transracial Adoption Study. This is the only study to test the children again at age 17, when genetics would be taking its full effect. The racial gap in intelligence still stayed the same (Rushton and Jensen, 2005: 258). I’ve written about the strong evidence for the hereditarian hypothesis in regards to adoption studies and how they support the hypothesis that genetics, and not culture, are the cause for differences in intelligence.
If the Hereditarian Hypothesis is Accepted What Policies Should Change?
If the general public were to ever accept a genetic hypothesis for individual and group differences as a whole, then affirmative action and other such programs that shoehorn kids with lower ability into schools should be abolished and these spots should be filled on merit. Sure there would be fewer blacks and more whites, Jews, Asians, than blacks, ‘Hispanics’ and others but that’s how a merit-based society looks, not one based on feelings and imaginary causes of racism as the culprit for any types of intellectual downfalls. When we come to our senses with genetics and educational achievement and intelligence—which should be coming soon due to the advent of CRISPR—then America can start to become less polarized, in my opinion, on the so-called ‘racist system’ ‘holding down’ minorities. Maybe if people/groups accepted they were less intelligent and it was due majorly to genetic factors, then some of this racial animosity between groups in America will die down. That’s an extremely far reach, though, and I can see them then arguing that accepting by accepting the hereditarian hypothesis then we should continue these programs.
That’s an extremely far reach, though, and I can see them then arguing that accepting by accepting the hereditarian hypothesis then we should continue these programs due to genetic differences. They would say “Well, as a group, we are less inclined to make it into higher areas of learning so we, therefore, should continue to receive these benefits.” To that I would say you’ve been taking advantage of these benefits for 50 years and what’s changed? Billions of dollars have been spent on affirmative action and related cases since the 60s and what has changed? These groups still complain and talk about being oppressed by ‘the man’ not getting what they want. Yet there is an ongoing racial preference for blacks and ‘Hispanics’ over whites and Asians in US medical schools. This is all an effect of affirmative action and the policies it brings to American institutions. Admission into places of higher learning should be completely merit-based, not based on what racial/ethnic group you belong to. That in and of itself is continuing the so-called ‘racism’ and ‘prejudiced attitudes’ that people complain about since they insist on having special privileges based on their ancestral background.
If we were to accept the hereditarian hypothesis as a country, I’d hope to see an abolishment of affirmative action, Head Start, and related programs that do not work. The acceptance of the hereditarian hypothesis would only be a net gain over time, as people would learn to not blame ‘the man’ on their problems, but would look to better themselves in ways that accentuate their strengths. Since any attempt at raising scholastic achievement has failed due to the heritability of intelligence and how it increases as one ages (which is why Head Start doesn’t work and should be abolished) once this is accepted then other avenues can be taken to address these issues that don’t focus on attempting to raise scores. Gottfredson states at the end of her paper that we should have targeted intellectual support for those with an IQ below 80. She also says we should make some jobs less complex, ie “inadequate or overly complex labeling, instructions, and forms”, target training and education towards people with that level of intelligence, and provide more assistance in daily living matters, This can increase their QoL and ability to attain meaningful employment.
She sees a more positive outlook in the future than I do. I see things become more stratified as automation rolls out. This will have the lower IQ people out of work, while the higher IQ people still are sitting well at the top due to the increasingly complex society that we make for ourselves. Accepting the hereditarian hypothesis can ease this slightly by targeting programs at the less intellectually inclined as well as attempt to soften the claims of ‘racism’ when this starts to really become noticeable. The only way to explain such a disparity is with a genetic hypothesis, at least 50/50 genetics culture. The culture-only theory has no leg to stand on. Once we accept that individual and group differences are due to genetics, then we can begin to accept some of the differences in our society in terms of class and race.
People who deny evolution don’t understand evolution, whether due to complete ignorance or because they don’t want to believe that we ‘evolved from monkeys’ (wrong, and goes completely in line with the old and outdated “march of progress“), or that we evolved in Africa from paleo-Africans. Well, the funny thing about science is that things are true whether or not people believe in them or not. In the past ten days I’ve come across two people who’ve denied evolution (surprise surprise, both religious). Even in the year #2016 people still deny something that has tons of explanatory power behind it, it shows they do not want to believe it because ‘we came from monkeys’. Evolution deniers deny evolution due to ignorance and a need to believe the Bible, that we were created for a purpose and placed here by a Creator, however. there is no evidence for this viewpoint so I cannot personally believe it.
I was in Starbucks the other day when I was drinking my coffee working on something on the laptop when I heard someone say that evolution was wrong and that he didn’t believe in evolution. So I went over and started talking to the kid. He was no older than 18. I asked him why he denies evolution and he says because of his religion. Then I started to go through the natural selection process—how new variants are selected for in populations. I told him there is 4 ways that evolution can occur: migration, mutation, genetic drift and natural selection.
I then gave him this example: take a population of 100 wolves. They live in a temperate climate. 50 of those wolves migrates northward and stay genetically isolated for 100kya. Over time, they incur phenotypic changes and adapt to the environment. They then wouldn’t be able to interbreed when they became a new species. (Or if they did conceive, it would be sterile.) Evolution occurs through mutation, migration, genetic drift and natural selection.
Now take a species of bird with long beaks. They need long beaks to get nectar out of the flowers. Over time, the environment changes and the birds’ food source dwindles away. Now they need to find something new to eat. The way the birds’ beaks currently are, they won’t be able to crack open nuts. However, the ones with shorter and stubbier beaks will be able to crack open nuts and eat nuts. So, over time, the birds with the shorter beaks will breed and be more successful since they can eat more food. The birds with the long beaks then die out while the birds with the shorter, stubbier beaks prosper since they were more fit and able to survive better in the new ecosystem.
Natural selection can only select on what heritable variants are already in that population. So since the birds with the stubbier beaks could survive better than the birds with longer beaks, the stubby beak trait, let’s call it Gene B, gets selected for while the long beak trait, let’s call it Gene A, becomes less prevalent in the bird population because it’s not as useful.
Let’s just say that my examples didn’t sway him and he still disbelieves evolution “due to his religion”.
A woman started talking to me last week about some random things. Then we started talking about our interests. I told her of my interest in biology and evolution and she says “You don’t think we evolved from monkeys, do you?” I laughed and said no, that’s a huge misconception. I told her that we didn’t evolve from monkeys, we just share a common ancestor with chimps. This answers the oft-said “If we ‘evolved from monkeys’, why are they still around?” She then invited me to a Bible Fellowship this past Sunday, and I said yea sure, I’ll go. So I went to the Fellowship; there were a lot of nice people there. Two men gave some talks, speaking of some of their personal experiences all while citing different quotes in the Bible. The man speaking said “And I looked down at my hand and thought ‘Wow, this is amazing. How did my hand get like this? The only way possible is for it to have been designed.'” I facepalmed so hard hearing that. People who ask such simple questions like that, that can be explained by evolution, clearly have no understanding of biology, so they then make the leap that goddidit because they can’t wrap their heads around the fact that evolution is the cause for how we came into being today.
I left the event shaking my head, how can people be so willfully ignorant in #2016? We have the answers to almost all of our questions in a few seconds, how can people be so ignorant about natural processes that occurred to have us humans arise from completely different organisms?
Finally, this brings me to those who deny evolution because evolutionary theory says we “descend from chimps” and that evolutionary theory says we all share a common ancestor in Africa going back a few hundred thousand years. People deny evolution due to this because they don’t want to admit that they “descend from a monkey”. Complete ignorance, and an emotional statement at that with no factual backing.
Intelligent Designers (IDers) may say there is a lack of transitional fossils to prove human evolution. This shows more ignorance. there are plenty of these fossils. This claim was made in the 1800s, when there were hardly any available. Since then, many have been discovered. Ardipithecus ramidus, Australopithecus afarensis, Australopithecus africanus, Homo habilis, Homo erectus, and Homo heidelbergensis are all ‘transitional fossils’:
Sometimes called “the only transition which matters”, this mustn’t be thought of as a transition from chimps to humans, but rather, as a transition from the-common-ancestor-of-chimps-and-humans to humans. Chimps themselves have had time to evolve and change since we parted ways, and so “the ancestor we last shared probably differed substantially from any extant African ape” (White et al, 2009).
Another way we can see that humans and chimps/apes descend from a common ancestor is looking at our chromosomes. Chromosome 2 is currently one of the most studied chromosomes, and for good reason. Apes have 24 chromosomes while humans have 23. Why do apes have one more chromosome? This signifies a fusion event sometime in the distant past in the LCA between humans and apes/chimps. Chromosomal evidence also proves common descent between ape/chimps and humans. Fossil evidence proves it, chromosomal/genetic evidence proves it; why they denial?
“We conclude that the locus cloned in cosmids c8.1 and c29B is the relic of an ancient telomere-telomere fusion and marks the point at which two ancestral ape chromosomes fused to give rise to human chromosome 2.”
Moreover, there is evidence for universal common descent as well:
Here I provide the first, to my knowledge, formal, fundamental test of UCA, without assuming that sequence similarity implies genetic kinship. I test UCA by applying model selection theory to molecular phylogenies, focusing on a set of ubiquitously conserved proteins that are proposed to be orthologous. Among a wide range of biological models involving the independent ancestry of major taxonomic groups, the model selection tests are found to overwhelmingly support UCA irrespective of the presence of horizontal gene transfer and symbiotic fusion events. These results provide powerful statistical evidence corroborating the monophyly of all known life.
A process called allopatric speciation shows how genetically isolated organisms can become distinctly different. This occurs when biological populations of the same species are genetically isolated, no longer sharing a similar environment. If these geographic barriers are removed, the two may not be able to breed, denoting a new species. Speciation is not based on degree of morphological difference:
I analyze a number of widespread misconceptions concerning species. The species category, defined by a concept, denotes the rank of a species taxon in the Linnaean hierarchy. Biological species are reproducing isolated from each other, which protects the integrity of their genotypes. Degree of morphological difference is not an appropriate species definition. Unequal rates of evolution of different characters and lack of information on the mating potential of isolated populations are the major difficulties in the demarcation of species taxa.
When biological populations of the same species become genetically isolated with a geographic barrier, over time they will both diverge, incurring different pheno and genotypic traits and eventually, they won’t be able to breed anymore, denoting speciation. This is how macroevolution occurs.
To deny evolution because of religion or because you don’t want to believe that Man evolved from the same ancestor as apes/chimps makes no sense at all. It’s denying all of the facts we have on evolution, and human evolution. How could you willingly deny the fact of evolution and what facts you do accept you twist it into evidence for Intelligent Design? It makes no sense. People don’t understand evolution because they don’t understand biology:
Nothing in biology makes sense except in the light of evolution—Dobzhansky
Unless you’ve been living under a rock these past two years, you should have come across the Alt-Right movement somewhere on the Internet. What is driving the rise of the Alt-Right and Nationalism in the West? Simple answer: Selfish Genes. We are, at the end of the day, bags of meat trying to replicate our genes and have more children as to increase our genes’ copies of themselves. This rise in the Alt-Right is due to continued demonization of whites. For instance, a Rutgers professor was quoted as saying “All white people are evil, some are only ‘less bad’ than others“. Statements of this nature, said over and over again towards a population that’s about to become a minority (I won’t use any of the estimates as the TFR for populations constantly changes, but it will happen eventually) will eventually have the open-minded ones become sick of what is occurring to people who look like themselves. I hypothesize that more ethnocentric people have higher levels of the brain peptide oxytocin, which in turn leads to higher rates of ethnocentrism. From the article:
Human ethnocentrism—the tendency to view one’s group as centrally important and superior to other groups—creates intergroup bias that fuels prejudice, xenophobia, and intergroup violence. Grounded in the idea that ethnocentrism also facilitates within-group trust, cooperation, and coordination, we conjecture that ethnocentrism may be modulated by brain oxytocin, a peptide shown to promote cooperation among in-group members.
Results show that oxytocin creates intergroup bias because oxytocin motivates in-group favoritism and, to a lesser extent, out-group derogation. These findings call into question the view of oxytocin as an indiscriminate “love drug” or “cuddle chemical” and suggest that oxytocin has a role in the emergence of intergroup conflict and violence.
Oxytocin is known as ‘the love drug’. We can then stretch this to ‘love of one’s race/ethny’. Since political beliefs are heritable (though environment is “still key”, we know that we make our environments based on our genes), I hypothesize that those who are genetically more prone to leaning conservative and ALSO have higher levels of brain oxytocin would be more likely to be ethnocentric and follow a movement such as the Alt-Right. Conversely, people who are genetically more prone towards liberalism (neo-liberalism, not old-fashioned real American liberalism) also have higher levels of oxytocin, except instead of directing their altruistic behaviors towards genetically similar co-ethnics, they direct their altruism towards the out-group. Oxytocin as well as which political ideology one is genetically disposed to, can more than likely be the culprit for these current phenomena that we see in America with both right-wingers and left-wingers.
Some excerpts from my article from earlier in the year Altruism and Ethnocentrism:
We can see ethnocentrism in action in our very own society today. Black Lives Matter is one (extreme) definition of ethnocentrism. La Raza is yet another extreme example. The KKK is another. We can see that in these groups, the motivation to be altruistic to one’s own kind far outweighs being altruistic to those of a different race/ethnicity. Altruism/ethnocentrism is a huge part of the woes of America today.
Which finally brings me to this: why exactly do whites in America not have this same altruistic/ethnocentric behavior towards their own?
Rushton answers this question in one of his AmRen talks: Genetic Similarity Theory and Ethnic Nationalism.
He says that he has really thought about it before and has no definitive answer. But, we are a species who ‘follows the leader’ so to speak. He says to look at individual psychology and not anything to do with being more spineless. That we want to be liked and not disliked. We learn many of our social attitudes (social learning). So we look to people who are similar to ourselves (names some Presidents and others), and that those people tell us things, and since they are high status, we believe it. It’s difficult to go against what those at the top of our society say.
He says what is right and wrong is basically what our neighbors are doing. One outstanding example he gives is how when those at the top say “open your borders and allow more immigrants in” since we are social animals we take to it and want to do it because we ‘follow the leader’. With the majority though right now in America (liberalism/leftism/Marxism), that is the ‘societal norm’ for the country. Therefore, everyone follows that one societal norm, for the most part.
The mass media plays a huge role in this, as I have noted in my previous article on what is going on in Europe and why. Telling whites to hate themselves, that whites are the cause of all evils in the world, makes one begin to hate themselves, their families and, of course, their race/ethnic group. Rushton says many people have said that the media is the cause for many whites with the self-hate that they have. He says back in earlier times, the Jews were self-hating in their identity, because they have assimilated some of the disdain for the wider community. He says the black groups have historically hated themselves because they identified with the conception they have of themselves of the white slave masters/white majority have of them.
Though there is a genetic desire to construct (hi social constructs. =^) ) an identity, the positive cues of that identity has to be picked from the culture (notice anything?).
Finally, David Duke asks Rushton “How would one increase ethnic solidarity and ethnic nationalism”. He says it’s common sense when Goebbels had complete control of the media in Germany, ethnic nationalism shot up, ethnic solidarity increased, out-group hatred increased and the German birth rate shot up. He said the images being displayed on television is the cause for the rise in the aforementioned points. He says, for instance, if you show a lot of blonde haired, blue eyed white babies and women being happy with those white babies in the media, showing women that are happy being stay at home mothers and not working in turn, more women will want to go out and have more babies and be stay at home mothers. He says what you see portrayed on TV, what is portrayed by people who look like you in the media, will make you take to it more.
How is our media today? I noted, very briefly in my previous article, that the media is anti-white. Showing things to bring down the morale of American whites is a huge cause of the lack of altruism and ethnocentrism in American whites.All of these anti-white articles you see in the media daily, all of the anti-white things you see on TV every day, all compound to have what we have in our society today: Marxist whites who go along with groups such as BLM, going completely against their genetic interests, because of media socialization.
Rushton’s AmRen talk on ethnic nationalism should be on your list to view. Media socialization plays a huge part in the self-denigration of whites in America. Being told you’re ‘racist’ just because of your ancestry, to being told that you should be “so sorry” for things that transgressed hundreds of years ago (never mind the fact that the chance that a white person who currently lives in America today most likely has no familial ties of any type of slavery that occurred in the beginnings of this (once great) country. Things like this, when told to someone over and over again, will eventually have them embrace ”’radical”’ ideologies (radical in this sense being far outside of the American norms).
This rise in ‘identity politics’ (hate that phrase, both sides do it) has led to the rise of both the far-left and far-right. But, when you really think about it, ‘identity politics’ is a way to show altruistic behaviors towards genetically similar others. Rushton’s genetic similarity theory (based off of Dawkins’s (1976) theory of selfish genes) explains why these differences how our altruistic acts manifest themselves physically. According to Rushton’s theory, we are more likely to help others who share a similar set of genes. That’s not to say that liberals showing altruistic behavior towards non-co-ethnics refutes the GST theory; on the other hand, it strengthens it.
Americans of mixed ancestry made up for ethnic dissimilarity by matching up on the more heritable traits, whereas the correlation is lower for those traits that are more influenced by the environment. Since the correlation is higher for heritable traits, i.e., BMI, personality, alcoholism, aggressiveness, criminality, psychiatric disorders and so on. Since the correlations are higher than in the environmentally mediated traits and since mixed-race couples match on more heritable traits than on the traits more influenced by the environment, this shows us that even though they are marrying outside of their race/ethnicity, they still match up on the more heritable traits and not the traits more influenced by the environment. So even a liberal’s altruistic actions towards non-co-ethnics shows that GST is still in effect.
The main point is this: our genes are selfish AND they want to produce similar genes. Who is more likely to be genetically similar to yourself? A co-ethnic. This is why nationalism is rising—it works!! Nationalism is rising because the people themselves—the vast majority of ‘vehicles’—are in danger of not being able to ‘replicate’ (their genes). So since the ‘vehicle’ is in danger, the ‘replicators’ have one be more altruistic/ethnocentric to a co-ethnic; oxytocin is the mediator of ethnocentrism as a whole. I’d love to see a study conducted on ethnocentrists and non-ethnocentrists to see what the average level of oxytocin in each group is. I’d bet a large sum of money that the ethnocentrists have higher levels of brain oxytocin while the non-ethnocentrists have a statistically lower amount.
Some of the most distinct genes of individuals will, of course, be found in close family—mothers, brothers, sisters, fathers, first cousins, etc. However, against the worldwide variance, the average similarity between people within a single population is on the magnitude of second cousins, so I posit that those with higher levels of brain oxytocin will be more likely to be ethnocentric over others with less of this hormone. See, there is a reason for so-called ‘racist’ (ethnocentric) behavior: since the average similarity between people within a single population is on the magnitude of second cousins against the worldwide variance, this shows why ethnocentric behavior arises.
The rise of nationalism in Europe follows these same patterns. When looking at diversity in the social context, we can see the negative effects of said diversity in neighborhoods (net negative effect, even with the positives that Putnam cites). Knowing the effects of diversity within a homogenous population, we can see the exact cause for the rise of the Alt-Right.
For some people, diversity decreases social trust (this is my opinion) because they see how the out-group acts: increased crime, not assimilating fully to native culture, how many benefits the out-group receives, etc. Then, since it’s drilled into them that ‘we are all the same in the brain no matter where our ancestors evolved for tens of thousands of years’, that all genetically isolated groups must act the same on average. This then causes what Putnam calls ‘hunkering down’—avoiding engagement with the community. This ‘hunkering down’ leads to less social interaction with neighbors and the community as a whole, causing the social trust that Putnam found in his research. Since one of the ways we match on genetic similarity is by culture, when out-groups move in and begin changing the native culture, the ‘hunkering down’ begins to lessen the one way that population propagates its genes—by masking the native culture—which arose for the sole reason of ensuring that the gene made copies of itself with genetically similar others. The increased diversity changes the average person’s perception of their own people since it’s drilled into them that we all have the same mental capacities and behaviors on average (with deviations from said average due to average individual variation; not any inherent genetic racial/ethnic differences).
On the other hand, for one who is more predisposed to lean right who has a higher amount of brain oxytocin on average, sees the negative effects of diversity along with their countrymen getting hurt, negative (natural) feelings then arise. Moreover, seeing how sections of formerly once nice neighborhoods deteriorate when the out-group moves in further drives these feelings. This is one small example from Putnam’s data that shows how diversity negatively affects societies. I’d be interested in a study on racial/ethnic diversity in third-world countries/the East.
This rise we have seen in the Alt-Right is due to the increase of mass immigration to third-world countries. We want to be around genetically similar others—to propagate copies of our genes. With the gene being ‘selfish’, it wants to make copies of genes like itself. Who’s more likely to share similar genes? Parents, brothers, uncles, sisters, brothers, grandparents, first cousins, second- cousins, and third cousins. Since we are related to co-ethnics on the magnitude of second cousins, this shows how and why ethnocentrism evolved. It was beneficial to be more altruistic towards your ‘clan’, and to derogate the out-group since they are genetically dissimilar. This then extends to today in regards to out-groups being derogated—no matter if they’re genetically similar others or if they share the same personalities or hobbies. We want to be around people like ourselves, to better help out members of the ‘team’. The ‘team’ can be anything from race, ethnicity, baseball team, basketball team, football team, hockey team, etc. To understand ethnocentrism, we must understand human evolutionary history. That’s how you understand the rise of far-right or left politics. Genetic similarity theory is that road map to discovering how and why we act the way we do in regards to out-groups.
Any organism strives for the betterment of its group. Any organism will defend that group. Genes cause people to construct ideologies to improve genetic fitness. That one sentence pretty much sums up the rise of the Alt-Right, and along with the negative effects of diversity, you have the recipe for a new right-wing movement.
This growth of “white survivalism” and militant “Christian Identity” groups such as the Aryan Nations, and the Covenant, the Sword, and the Arm of the Lord, represent a more extreme response to these perceived threats to the AngloSaxon gene pool. If this overall analysis is correct, one might expect similar correlations in deviations from both genetic and ideological norms in other groups. Preserving the “purity” of the ideology might be an attempt at preserving the “purity” of the gene pool. Are ideological “conservatives” typically more genetically homogeneous than the same ideology’s “liberals”?”
The rise of the Alt-Right shows, in my opinion, one of the main facets of human nature—ethnocentrism. It’s seen with the Ashkenazi Jews and Arabs, to Europeans, Africans, and the pretty much isolationist East Asians. The world is beginning to become more ethnocentric—and selfish genes are in the driver’s seat.
Before Darwin thought up his theory of evolution, there was another game in town: Lamarckism. Lamarckism is the idea that an organism can pass on characteristics that it has acquired in its lifetime to its offspring. His theory was wrong, obviously, because organisms pass on traits through genes, while what an organism acquires throughout its lifetime is not inherited by any future offspring. However, just because Lamarck was wrong on how traits were passed down doesn’t mean that Lamarckism has no utility in our understanding of ourselves. (Lamarckism is also a precursor to the new and budding field of epigenetics—“the study of heritable gene expression that does not involve changes to the underlying gene sequence”, see here for another view on epigenetics.) Human culture is Lamarckian in a sense—along with memes are why cultural change put such strong selective pressures on humans.
Lamarckism is the inheritance of acquired characteristics, the transformational pattern of evolution and the concept of directed changes. Thinking of about this in a way that pertains to human culture, we can say that cultural tendencies starting at 1 generation can be passed down to successive generations; culture can transform itself in the blink of any eye, really, and completely change how people’s live as well as how they evolve; and finally directed cultural change (ie if a new cultural trait passed down will continue in successive generations). Stephen Jay Gould wrote in his 1996 book Full House:
In this sense, I deeply regret that common usage refers to the history of our artifacts and social organizations as “cultural evolution.” Using the same term – evolution – for both natural and cultural history obfuscates far more than it enlightens. … Why not speak of something more neutral and descriptive — ‘cultural change,’ for example?
But cultural change, on a radical other hand, is potentially Lamarckian in basic mechanism. Any cultural knowledge acquired in one generation can be directly passed to the next by what we call, in a most noble word, education.
This uniquely and distinctively Lamarckian style of human cultural inheritance gives our technological history a directional and cumulative character that no natural Darwinian evolution can possess.
This uniquely and distinctively Lamarckian style of human cultural inheritance gives our technological history a directional and cumulative character that no natural Darwinian evolution can possess.
Human cultural change is an entirely distinct process operating under radically different principles that do allow for the strong possibility of a driven trend to what we may legitimately call “progress”.
The common designation of “evolution” then leads to one of the most frequent and portentous errors in our analysis of human life and history – the overly reductionist assumption that the Darwinian natural paradigm will fully encompass our social and technological history as well.
Gould also wrote in his essay “Bully for Brontosaurus“:
I am convinced that comparisons between biological evolution and human cultural or technological change have done vastly more harm than good — and examples abound of this most common of all intellectual traps. Biological evolution is a bad analogue for cultural change because the two are different for three major reasons that could hardly be more fundamental.
First, cultural evolution can be faster by orders of magnitude than biological change at its maximal Darwinian rate — and questions of timing are of the essence in evolutionary arguments.
Second, cultural evolution is direct and Lamarckian in form: [t]he achievements of one generation are passed directly to descendants, thus producing the great potential speed of cultural change. Biological evolution is indirect and Darwinian, as favorable traits do not descend to the next generation unless, by good fortune, they arise as products of genetic change.
Third, the basic topologies of biological and cultural change are completely different. Biological evolution is a system of constant divergence without subsequent joining of branches. In human history, transmission across lineages is, perhaps, the major source of cultural change.
Great explanations on how human culture is Lamarckian; education is one of the most important aspects of how we transfer ideas from one generation to the next. Put in that context, since education is how we (partly) teach our culture to the next generation, culture and education are both inherently Lamarckian.
Gould, being the Darwinist that he is, obviously accepts that H. Sapiens arose through Darwinian/Mendelian changes as a result of the long-term evolutionary process. But, he asserts, culture is more Lamarckian—that is, it can be literally passed down from one generation to the next. When you really think about culture, this is how it works. Human culture is a Lamarckian, not Darwinian process.
We do have gene-culture co-evolution, which explains that human behavior is a product of two interacting variables—genetics and culture. When you really think about it, this is correct. Culture is the environment that we make for ourselves. The environments we make for ourselves are dependent on our genetics, therefore any cultural change SHOULD coincide with a change in genotype (since culture is phenotype). But when a new cultural tendency is introduced from an outside source, it can be especially powerful (like all cultural traits), enough to change the environment and, with it, make a new selective pressure that spreads new and beneficial mutations in that environment.
I, however, don’t think that ‘evolution’ is a good term for cultural changes. “Evolution” in this sense implies “progress”. Progressive evolution makes no evolutionary sense, so, in this case, cultural change makes much more sense than cultural ‘evolution’ (Gould, 1996); implying a teleological meaning to anything and everything is ridiculous, when what we’re really doing is anything to survive and pass our selfish genes on to the next generation. Culture, on the other hand, can be transferred to one person from another from generation to generation (in a Lamarckian way or in terms of memes).
As I stated in my article about Stephen Jay Gould’s tirade against hereditarianism, I fully understand exactly why Gould espoused anti-hereditarian views—his and Eldredge’s punctuated equilibria theory, which is when an organism spends a long time in stasis before a quick genetic change (like what happened with human brains, a long period of stasis before a quick change) which he obviously applied to Man after we became ‘Man’ around 50kya and his (correct) views on human culture being Lamarckian. In my opinion, Gould assumed that since culture was Lamarckian and we all have ‘the same brains’ (we don’t), that the only differences between Man comes down to his culture. We know this is not true as differing selection pressures led to differences in brain size and, in turn, differences in culture. The diverse array of culture that Man has is a testament to the different evolutionary selection pressures that we had to weather in the differing environments that we settled in coming out of Africa.
There is also one more way in which culture can be spread: memes. (I wonder how many of the people who use the term ‘meme’ know where it originated [The Selfish Gene, 1976] or even who coined the term [Richard Dawkins].) Take, for example, birth control. The Catholic meme of birth control can have adherents of said meme not take birth control, facilitating the “reproductive success” of the meme, so to speak, which does the same for the memer. Thusly, in this context, memes are subject to the same evolutionary selection pressures— so if a meme is ‘unfit’ it gets ‘thrown out’, just like if a meme is ‘fit’ it stays in the culture (eventually becoming a new selective pressure for that population), which makes new pheno and genotypic changes in that population completely independent of all other genetic changes throughout the world in genetically isolated human populations. Memes are one huge way that culture gets transmitted between generations, and even differing human cultures. Memes are a form of Lamarckian inheritance
Finally, this brings me to human races. We all have different cultures, we all have different genetics and we all have different memes that we pass to the next generation. Differing human cultures arise from differing selective pressures in that ancestral environment. These differing selective pressures in the environment led to differing institutions between the modern-day races—which is why some populations are less ‘advanced’ (whatever that means) than others; because they didn’t have the right selective pressures to select for those strong institutions like what occurred in northerly climes. Each race and ethny have their own memes, their own ways of getting new cultural information to the next generation. This, in turn, leads to even more differing selection pressures betwixt the isolated human populations leading to even more distinct pheno and genotypic change amongst them.
Human culture is Lamarckian. Lamarck’s theory is perfect for the multi-generational transmission of cultural information. Along with memes (a form of Lamarckism), these two phenomena both shape human culture as well as behavior (along with genetics). Moreover, Lamarckism is pretty much an archaic form of the new and budding field epigenetics (which the jury is still out on that for me, I’m leaning towards no [see Steven Pinker for more information on this]). Lamarckism is the inheritance of acquired characteristics, the transformational pattern of evolution, and the concept of directed changes. These three variables perfectly describe human culture, describing it as change, and not evolution, which is the perfect way to put it. Differing human races also have different memes which permeate their culture and, given enough time, put new and different selective pressures on the population that is pushing a certain meme. This forces new differences between human populations on top of the already genetic differences from isolated evolution.
Lamarck was wrong to say that acquired traits during an organism’s lifetime carried over to the next generation, but his theory perfectly explains the transmission of human culture from generation to generation. If there is an inheritance of acquired traits, along with the transformational pattern of evolution and the concept of directed changes, therefor, human culture is Lamarckian.
All of these are true, so human culture is Lamarckian.
Diversity is, supposedly, “something that is our strength“. How ever, a lot of people who live in ethnically and racially diverse communities don’t seem to think that way. “White flight“—that is, fleeing an area once it becomes diverse—is prevalent in America. If “diversity is our strength”, then why do whites “flight” out of neighborhoods that become ethnically diverse? Diversity is only good insofar as minorities get better social programs and societal structure. When whites move in, blacks move in then whites move out. Blacks then follow whites to their new areas and the process begins anew.
From the article cited above:
“People know what is a white suburb and what is a black suburb,” Lichter says. “Whites are still attracted to those suburbs that are white.”
Why are whites still attracted to suburbs that are white? Because we want to congregate around others that are like ourselves, genetically similar others. When diversity increases, crime increases; when diversity increases, social trust decreases. This phenomenon is the focus of this article.
Diversity in the Social Context
The purpose of this tonight is to talk about diversity in the social context. Diversity can be anything from diversity in politics, to diversity at school, diversity in the workplace, and diversity in the neighborhood, to diversity at Church etc. Robert Putnam analyzes neighborhoods (keep that in mind before extrapolating this to other settings, research is only applicable to what is studied) to discover the side effects of diversity—including race and ethnicity.
From the abstract of his paper:
Ethnic diversity is increasing in most advanced countries, driven mostly by sharp increases in immigration. In the long run immigration and diversity are likely to have important cultural, economic, fiscal, and developmental benefits. In the short run, however, immigration and ethnic diversity tend to reduce social solidarity and social capital. New evidence from the US suggests that in ethnically diverse neighbourhoods residents of all races tend to ‘hunker down’. Trust (even of one’s own race) is lower, altruism and community cooperation rarer, friends fewer. In the long run, however, successful immigrant societies have overcome such fragmentation by creating new, cross-cutting forms of social solidarity and more encompassing identities. Illustrations of becoming comfortable with diversity are drawn from the US military, religious institutions, and earlier waves of American immigration.
Diversity is shown to not be conducive to a strong, trusting, altruistic and cooperative society both scientifically and the real world. However, Putnam does say that creativity, economic growth, “young immigrant workers (both documented and undocumented) (pg. 140-1) and:
New research from the World Bank has highlighted yet another benefit from immigration, one of special relevance to the Nordic countries that have long played a disproportionate role on issues of global development. This new research suggests that immigration from the global South to the richer North greatly enhances development in the South, partly because of remittances from immigrants to their families back home and partly because of the transfer of technology and new ideas through immigrant networks. So powerful is this effect that despite ‘brain drain’ costs, increasing annual northward immigration by only three percentage points might produce net benefits greater than meeting all our national targets for development assistance plus cancelling all Third World debt plus abolishing all barriers to Third World trade (World Bank 2005; Pritchett 2006).
So economically and creatively speaking, he says, diversity “immigration and multicultural diversity have powerful effects for both sending and receiving countries” (pg. 141). What about the effects of diversity on social capital?
Across workgroups in the United States, as well as in Europe, internal heterogeneity (in terms of age, professional background, ethnicity, tenure and other factors) is generally associated with lower group cohesion, lower satisfaction and higher turnover (Jackson et al. 1991; Cohen & Bailey 1997; Keller 2001; Webber & Donahue 2001).
• Across countries, greater ethnic heterogeneity seems to be associated with lower social trust (Newton & Delhey 2005; Anderson & Paskeviciute 2006; but see also Hooghe et al. 2006).
• Across local areas in the United States, Australia, Sweden, Canada and Britain, greater ethnic diversity is associated with lower social trust and, at least in some cases, lower investment in public goods (Poterba 1997; Alesina et al. 1999; Alesina & La Ferrara 2000, 2002; Costa & Kahn 2003b; Vigdor 2004; Glaeser & Alesina 2004; Leigh 2006; Jordahl & Gustavsson 2006; Soroka et al. 2007; Pennant 2005; but see also Letki forthcoming).
He also shows that within experimental game settings such as the prisoner’s dilemma, people who are dissimilar from one another defect more with this being seen from Uganda to America. Across companies in the Union army, the greater the internal homogeneity of the group, the higher the desertion rate.
Why does this occur? Because we tend to favor people who are genetically similar to ourselves; even, of course for things like marriage and divorce, to speed-dating. This is Rushton’s genetic similarity theory in action, developed from Dawkins’s (1976) book The Selfish Gene.
In the book, he talks about “replicators and vehicles“; a replicator is “anything in the known universe of which copies are made”, while a vehicle is the organism itself. Basically, we’re just meat, bones, genes trying to replicate. We’re only 10 percent human (great book) and 90 percent bacteria!!! We’re driven by our genes to reproduce copies of said genes since against the worldwide variance, the average similarity between people within a single population is on the magnitude of second cousins.
This is how ethnic genetic interests arises and why some people are more ‘racist’—that is, ethnocentric than others. Ethnic genetic interests causes people to congregate in neighborhoods with genetically similar others. Putnam’s work corroborates Rushton’s genetic similarity and shows the cause for white flight and less social trust within and between groups/ethnies/races.
Replicators, vehicles, genes, and EGIs/GST, is why Putnam found negative social consequences with diversity in the social context in regards to social trust in neighborhoods.
However, Putnam then says:
Diversity itself can only be conceived in terms of socially constructed identities. We saw that earlier when we were forced to define ‘diversity’ in our research in terms of the currently canonical four ethno-racial categories in the United States Census. However, how people are assigned by others to racial and ethnic categories has varied greatly over time and space. Thus, adapting over time, dynamically, to immigration and diversity requires the reconstruction of social identities, not merely of the immigrants themselves (though assimilation is important), but also of the newly more diverse society as a whole (including the native born). (159-60)
He then gives several personal anecdotes in which “races are socially constructed“. Just because people have misconceptions on race and what constitutes a race doesn’t mean that what matters—the underlying genetics which drives social distrust and other variables—aren’t the cause for lower social trust in genetically heterogeneous neighborhoods.
Putnam then said that his research was “twisted” to give a negative context for diversity, thus giving ‘racists’ ammo for their views. Showing the benefits to his research, he says that people have misconstrued what he said in his paper. However, Steve Sailer then says:
The story of how Putnam shelved his findings for five years while he tried to think up a pro-diversity spin to put on them is documented here:
Why would you wait 5 years to publish something that was positive? Even then, why would he attempt to derive a pro-diversity conclusion off of his work if it was so positive? Because ethnic/racial diversity, despite the positive variables he cites, has a negative impact on the neighborhood as a whole.
Dr. James Thompson posted today about the accuracy of stereotypes, citing a paper from physicist and HBDer Emil Kirkegaard and Julius Bjerrekær titled Country of origin and use of social benefits: A large, preregistered study of stereotype accuracy in Denmark in which they asked a nationally representative sample of the Danish population to estimate the amount of benefits people who were from 70 other countries were receiving. They state:
After extensive quality control procedures, a sample of 484 persons were available for analysis. Stereotypes were scored by accuracy by comparing the estimates values to values obtained from an official source. Individual stereotypes were found to be fairly accurate (median/mean correlation with criterion values = .48/.43), while the aggregate stereotype was found to be very accurate (r = .70). Both individual and aggregate-level stereotypes tended to underestimate the percentages of persons receiving social benefits and underestimate real group differences. In bivariate analysis, stereotype correlational accuracy was found to be predicted by a variety of predictors at above chance levels, including conservatism (r = .13), nationalism (r = .11), some immigration critical beliefs/preferences, agreement with a few political parties, educational attainment (r = .20), being male (d = .19) and cognitive ability (r = .22). Agreement with most political parties, experience with ghettos, age, and policy positions on immigrant questions had little or no predictive validity. In multivariate predictive analysis using LASSO regression, correlational accuracy was found to be predicted only by cognitive ability and educational attainment with even moderate level of reliability. In general, stereotype accuracy was not easy to predict, even using 24 predictors (k-fold cross-validated R2 = 4%). We examined whether stereotype accuracy was related to the proportion of Muslims in the groups. Stereotypes were found to be less accurate for the groups with higher proportions of Muslims in that participants underestimated the percentages of persons receiving social benefits (mean estimation error for Muslim groups relative to overall elevation error = -8.09 %points). The study was preregistered with most analyses being specified before data collection began.
Seems like this is what the propaganda of “diversity being our strength does”, have us lower our expectations for things that are obvious. This shows that ‘stereotypes’ are, more often than not, based on fact. Stereotypes arise because people of a certain group may be overrepresented in crimes and people’s negative average experience around others. They are clearly based on fact.This notion of stereotypes being wrong because they’re just prejudiced assumptions is wrong. Stereotypic thinking arises as a natural defense mechanism—a defense mechanism to keep the vehicle safe so the replicator can replicate. Everything we strive to accomplish, everything we do to have a good life is to attract a mate, have children and then take care of those who you are genetically similar to.
Western politicians should take note of this research and attempt to work immigration policy around the structure of the research (and ‘stereotypes’). The denial of human nature that has permeated the West has caused this nonsensical immigration policy. The denial of human nature, believing we are “blank slates” is another cause for this as well. Better known as “pathological morality and altruism“, this is the cause for the current cucking of Europe.
Everything we strive to accomplish, everything we do to have a good life is to attract a mate, have children and then take care of those who you are genetically similar to. Racial/ethnic diversity impedes this from occurring.
Robert Putnam waited years to publish his study, thinking of a way to spin it to show diversity being good, to show it as “our strength”. However, he published it (as any good scientist should do, regardless if they agree with their findings or not) and proved that, at least in the neighborhood context, diversity decreased social trust even showing desertion rates to be higher in heterogeneous groups. Kierkegaard’s paper shows that stereotypes are accurate (though the amount of benefits Muslims received was underestimated), confirming what is already known from general experience. Replicators are what drives ethnocentrism, “selfish genes” are the cause for people wanting to be around genetically similar others since genetically similar others share the numerous amounts of copies of the same gene. This gene-centered view of evolution is one of the many reasons why diversity is negative in the social context. Diversity is clearly not our strength, in fact, it negatively enhances our strength. Diversity in the social context is a net-negative for all races/ethnies in the long run.
Numerous factors prevented Colonial America from becoming a united empire. The main reason was that it was not a homogeneous nation. Looking back at history united empires were racially homogeneous. IQ differences both within and between races also play a factor. When a country is homogenous, all (or most) of the people living within the boundaries of the country all have the same interests, which is not seen when a land is non-homogeneous.
The first and most important factor preventing America from becoming a united empire was that America was not a racially homogenous land. All of the races currently in the country at the time had their own motivations and how they wanted to get them done. When countries are not racially homogenous, they don’t have the same goals and thusly cannot work together for common goals. The African slaves wouldn’t work together with Europeans as the Europeans held them as slaves. The Natives in the country had their own goals as well (such as protecting their land), and would not work together either.
The Colonial settlers did conduct trade with the ‘Natives’, however, we had quite a few wars with them and the great Andrew Jackson isn’t looked at too highly amongst ‘Native Americans’. However, this is just what occurs when a land is so racially/ethnically divided. When a country is homogeneous, there is less of a chance for wars and strife to break out (that is, if they’re not as inbred as Arab Muslims are).
Contrary to popular belief, a paltry amount of slaves came to America, around 2 to 3 percent (with the rest going to the Carribean and Latin America) of slaves from West Africa were transported to what is now America. However, with the ‘Natives’ also being in what is now America, when Europeans settled America there were now three ethnies in one land who all had their own separate ethnic genetic interests. This small amount of slaves had large negative effects on the QoL of the American citizens at the time. The African slaves rebelled a lot; these rebellions killed a lot of people, both black and white. This also
Another reason for this was that between the North and South, there was a difference between the ethnic demographics of the area. The South had more slaves while the North had less. Another factor was, for instance with regards to Chesapeake and New England, they both had differing amounts of men and women, and the biggest factor was that both regions had differing amounts of slaves. With two such distinct areas of the country both with peoples from differing parts of the world, this is yet another reason why Colonial America would not become a united empire.
Lastly, the ethnic demographic differences between the North and the South prevented America from realizing its true potential. The North had a much more complex economy with farming, trading ship building, and related matters. The differences from both regions of the country greatly contributed to why the new country never became a superpower.
The Southern part of the Colonies was more Scots-Irish, while the Northern ones, like the New England territories, were more English. Along with these ethnic differences (they will have differing ideas of ethnic interests), there were also differences in death rates (in the South, the average age of death was 43, due in part to the amount of slaves). Moreover, in the North the male/female ratio was 3 males for 2 females where in the South it was 6 males to every one female.
I could also see IQ differences playing a factor here. Scots-Irish are less intelligent today; and if you look at their current descendants in Appalachia today, they’re what is called ‘white trash’. The English had a much better environment, encouraged family life, and they also developed their own hierarchy. Looking at America in the American South and New England, we can see these intelligence differences still exist today. I wouldn’t doubt that these IQ differences DO go back to Colonial America, and if so, it is a great explanation for economic as well as life differences between the two different parts of the Colony with peoples from different countries.
The reasons Colonial America never became a superpower are numerous, however, the main reason is that it was not racially/ethnically homogenous. When a land is homogeneous, the people can work towards a common goal and feel safer. The differences in lifestyle and economy between the North and the South were also two other contributing factors. Intelligence differences played a huge factor in life outcomes and how each part of the country conducted day-to-day life. Other things such as inequalities between classes can be (somewhat) ameliorated, however, if a country is not racially/ethnically homogeneous, they will never become a world power as too much in-country strife will ensue. The story of why Colonial America never became a United Empire is imperative to show that races and ethnies have differing ways of life and when they live together in the same area, ethnic strife occurs. The main difference, I believe, that there was no united empire was due to the huge intelligence differences both between races and within them. As we can see today, intelligence differences both within and between countries and peoples are a huge reason for the readily apparent differences between them.
As I showed back in September, FLynn (“FLynn” to give Richard Lynn the credit of noticing it as well) losses were not due to immigration, but due to dysgenic effects (and partly to do with nutrition). One must wonder: When will the FLynn Effect stop—and reverse? It looks like it will happen sooner, rather than later. A new paper just released today, Survey of expert opinion on intelligence: The FLynn effect and the future of intelligence by Rindermann, Becker and Coyle (2016) talks about the future of this FLynn Effect. What did they find?
The FLynn Effect is a slight increase in IQ scores—about .3 points per decade—and is due to better nutrition (the biggest cause in my opinion), health, living standards and education. Contrary to popular belief, education DOES have an effect on intelligence. If one is educated, they are able to reach their genetic max. The authors state:
The decline of the FLynn effect in developed countries, and its increase in developing regions with currently lower than average ability levels (e.g., Africa), may lead to a narrowing of international gaps (Meisenberg and Woodley, 2013 and Rindermann, 2013).
Now, I didn’t need a scientific paper to tell me this, it’s just common knowledge. I do believe that the gap will obviously close between countries, as a lot of the countries with lower average IQs are near the equator and have to deal with inadequate nutrition, diseases and parasitic load, and as these geographic areas come go from third-world to first-world countries, their IQ scores will increase as well. The genetic IQs of peoples in the equatorial localities around the world will increase as their standard of living increases, and as dysgenic fertility continues in first-world countries, these populations will close the gap a bit, but barring some extraordinary circumstances, I don’t see this occurring.
Going to quote this whole paragraph as it has huge implications (and I’m sure the full paper will get taken down eventually so I’m saving this in my files on my computer):
Future IQ changes are linked to past cognitive development and expected demographic changes, which permit predictions of future development at the country level (e.g., + 0.45 to + 0.76 IQ points per decade in the US; Rindermann & Pichelmann, 2015). Demographic changes may be linked to genetic effects, which are influenced by asymmetric birth rates in modern populations (e.g., Lynn, 2011 and Nyborg, 2012). Negative genetic effects on intergenerational changes in ability are plausibly linked to: (a) parent-children correlations in intelligence (for individuals about r = 0.40 to 0.50; Plomin, DeFries, Knopik, & Neiderhiser, 2013, p. 76), (b) the well established theory that intelligence is not only transmitted via family environment but also via genes (backed by twin research; Plomin et al., 2013) and (c) better educated and more intelligent adults having fewer children (e.g., Loehlin, 1997). If these three statements are correct, negative genetic effects on intergenerational intelligence development are a logically compelling consequence. Such negative effects may be aggravated, if migration produces brain drain in developing countries, which occurs when high ability people in developing countries immigrate to developed countries (e.g., Kapur & McHale, 2005), or if low ability people (relative to the level in destination countries) immigrate to developed countries, a pattern observed in the West over the last decades (e.g., Rindermann & Thompson, 2016).
There is no doubt in my mind that immigration from MENA countries WILL have a negative effect, but as I showed back in September, the alarm bells shouldn’t be ringing yet because they didn’t even put a dent in the scores yet.
So we have better educated and more intelligent adults having fewer children (CLASH AKA r/K selection theory in action), intelligence being transmitted through genes (well known by now) and parent children correlations that show that the negative generational effects on intelligence for the native population is due to the differential birth rate between lower and higher IQ (educated) people. Of course these effects can be heightened by mass immigration (as is currently happening in the West at the moment), but I’ve shown, at least with the case of France, that mass immigration is not a cause, YET, of decreasing IQ scores and that dysgenics is a better explanation.
The authors state why they did a survey of expert opinion:
An expert survey has three advantages. First, according to the Spearman-Brown prediction formula, increases in the items being analyzed (here expert ratings) will increase the reliability of the final averaged result. Second, the average result of an expert survey may be closer to the truth than the average result of a non-expert survey (e.g., Rindermann et al., 2016). Third, in the current study, data collection procedures were designed to ensure anonymity, which reduced pressure for socially desirable responses and increased the likelihood of obtaining honest opinions about controversial issues.
Expert surveys are great ways to get information—especially on such a controversial topic such as intelligence. With an anonymized survey, people won’t have to worry about losing their careers or have hecklers attempt to ruin their careers and make life a living hell for them as happened to Rushton and Jensen during their heyday.
Question 1 is:
“In your opinion, what are the most plausible scientific theories about the Flynn-effect (FLynn-effect) in 20th century?” Predetermined answers were presented in the following order: (1) rising standard of living (wealth), (2) decline of group-inequality, (3) genetic changes, (4) better education and school-systems, (5) longer education for more people, (6) better education in families, (7) better nutrition, (8) better health, (9) smaller families, (10) TV and media, (11) computer (and similar as smartphones), (12) immigration, (13) more test experience, (14) more educated parents, and (15) more intelligent social environment. Respondents rated each factor on a scale of 1 (“not important/not true”) to 9 (“important/true”).
A dearth of answers, I’ll answer what I think.
I believe that the most plausible theories on the rise in IQ across the globe have to do with better nutrition (in my opinion, the most important variable), better health (goes back to my disease and parasitic load post), and better education and school systems. I rank these as 9,9, and 6 respectively.
The second question:
The second question concerned a possible end of the FLynn effect: “In your opinion, if there is an end or retrograde of the FLynn-effect in industrial nations, what are the most plausible scientific theories to explain this development?” The following options were presented: (1) decline in educational values, (2) worse education and school-systems, (3) worse education in families, (4) worse nutrition, (5) worse health, (6) low intelligent adults have more children than others (genetic effect), (7) low intelligent adults have more children than others (socialization effect), (8) TV and media, and (9) migration.” The rating scale varied between 1 (“not important/not true”) to 9 (“important/true”).
In my opinion, if there is an end (there is) or retrograde to the FLynn effect, the causes are low intelligent adults haveing more children than others (genetic effect), worse health (partly), worse nutrition, and migration (a small effect as I’ve documented—so far). I rate these 9, 5, 7, and 2 respectively.
The third and final question:
Finally, we asked participants about the future development of intelligence in different world regions. The question was: “What is your opinion on the future development of intelligence up to 2100 in listed regions? Please mark the IQ points how much average cognitive ability will increase (right side) or decrease (left side) or remain stable (0) (in today’s norms).” The predetermined scale of IQ changes consisted of 19 levels, from “− 29 or less” to “+ 29 or more”. The world regions comprised: (1) Western countries in general, (2) Scandinavia, (3) West-Middle Europe, (4) Southern Europe, (5) Eastern Europe, (6) USA, (7) Canada, (8) Latin America, (9) Australia (10) East Asia (China, Japan, Korea), (11) Africa, (12) Arabian and Muslim countries, (13) India, and (14) Israel.
Western countries in general will get less intelligent with more illegal (and legal) immigration); Scandinavia I’d say will not get less intelligent as the US as quickly, but with more immigrants going to these countries the IQ scores will decrease further (along with dysgenic fertility); West-Middle Europe I’d say they both will continue to get less intelligent as the birth rates are seriously below replacement in these countries (1.3 TFR in Germany, for example); Southern Europe I can see getting less intelligent due to more immigration along with dysgenic fertility but they will fight back against immigration more than other Western countries; Eastern Europe is the same as Southern Europe; As more and more immigration from the South of the border occurs and as our ‘Presidents’ allow more MENA immigration into our country, our IQ as a whole will fall sooner rather than later; Canada has the same situation as the US; I can see it staying stable in Latin America, Australia I see as being just like the US and Canada; East Asia I see staying the same and allowing no immigration as the West does and will conserve their IQ; Africa is on the rise mostly due to the Chinese and along with better infrastructure and nutrition, some of their woes will be ameliorated, not enough to ‘bridge the IQ gap’, however; Arabian and Muslim countries I see decreasing sightly; the more they inbreed, they will become slightly less intelligent (as well as the factor of nutrition) I see India on the rise as they are showing a lot of development in the South of the country as well as getting better nutrition; and finally Israel I see getting slightly more intelligent due to them disallowing immigration (or being strongly selective) and as the Ashkenazi population increases, the country as a whole will get more intelligent.
Table 1 shows the experts’ ratings in what the causes for the FLynn effect are. Better health, longer education, improved schooling and better nutrition were the main causes the experts thought were enough to explain the FLynn gains. These variables, in concert, definitely would cause this secular increase in intelligence scores over the past 100 years. Do note that the gains we see in IQ scores have started around the industrial revolution, which better nutrition and institutions (schools) happened in these industrialized countries. Now, think to the third-world countries that are ‘coming up’, basically their own ‘industrial revolution’, they will have their own IQ increases as seen in Africa currently BUT, this will not close any GENETIC gaps in intelligence.
Then this comment:
In the comments, one expert mentioned that the FLynn effect is mostly on non-g factors, suggesting that the increases are not general and therefore less relevant for everyday life achievement.
Echoes what JP Rushton (who was not mentioned in this paper, dissapointed at that, however Jensen was) said back in 2000: “Flynn Effects Not Genetic and Unrelated to Race Differences“. Rushton and Jensen had a long back-and-forth with Dickens and Flynn on the nature of the black-white IQ gap, which I will cover eventually. I love how someone echoed Rushton’s sentiments on the FE, since Rushton was not cited in the paper.
Table 2 shows less intelligent adults having more children along with migration. This explanation is two-fold here. Migrants, more often than not, are super-selected. That is, they are a highly selected immigrant sample and are not representative of their native population. But as more and more migration occurs, the super-selected sample will no longer be migrating and the low IQ peoples then flood the countries and lower the average IQ (this will decrease QoL as well, among numerous other variables). The next explanation was low intelligence, more children. This is a huge cause for FLynn loses, as I’ve covered already. Health and nutrition showed less support, all though I slightly disagree with health not being a factor. If there were no health/parasite/disease problem, they’d reach their genetic IQ. I’d love to see a huge study one day on a representative sample of people from all geographic locations across the world and see what they would look like in first-world conditions.
The authors state:
The correlation between the ratings of all experts and FLynn experts was very high (r = 0.97, N = 9 categories, p < 0.001), as was the correlation between FLynn experts (N = 16) and the other cognitive ability researchers (N = 43) (r = 0.91, N = 9 categories, p = 0.001). The high correlations indicate that the pattern of ratings was consistent across different groups of experts.
And some comments:
In the comments, two raters noted that education, nutrition and health have not become worse but that their benefits are diminishing and have reached a ceiling, comparable to other trends in post World War II development. One person mentioned that dysgenic changes are accumulating across generations.
The dysgenic changes across generations are the culprit in my opinion.
Finally, in table 3 the FLynn experts and the rest of the experts thought that East Asia, India, Africa, Latin America and Muslim/Arab countries will show the largest gains in IQ by 2100. You may be wondering “Why East Asia?” Because a lot of the East Asian population does live in poverty (especially in rural China), and better nutrition among other factors that occur in urban environments. The FLynn experts also expect huge decreases in Israel, Canada, Australia, all parts of Europe and all Western countries in general. I agree with this trend (except for Israel, I see nothing that’s occurring there to drop their IQ in the next 84 years).
Quoting the last paragraph of the discussion:
However, such an outlook may be moderated by country-level policies. Such policies may include incentives that increase birth rates among well educated people, incentives that attract high ability immigrants, and improved environmental conditions for cognitive development at all levels of the ability spectrum, including for the gifted and less advantaged. Improved environmental conditions may have especially large effects on less educated and lower ability people, who are more likely to benefit from improvements in health, sanitation, and education (e.g., Glewwe & Kremer, 2006).
I fully agree with this. We do need incentives for the more intelligent, more educated people to need to have children so we can offset the current trend towards idiocracy that America and the West as a whole is currently observing.
The truth about genetics and IQ is slowly coming out, and with this paper coming out today (November 14, 2016) I hope to see more talk about intelligence as a whole and what mass immigration will do to the overall intelligence of a country as well as stopping (or doing extremely limited) immigration as I have proposed here).
Taking back our countries’ spirit—i.e., halting mass immigration—is not only important for the preservation of people and culture, but is important for the average IQ of the nation, as mass immigration from less intelligent countries is a net negative for the richer and more intelligent countries that get emigrated to (I mean, would you go anywhere else?). Eventually, not too far off in the near future, I see our countries in the West getting more sensible, HBD-aware politicians and activists that understand the truth of this research. Once that occurs, immigration can be halted and we can take care of that one problem for declining national IQs. After that, we need policies that encourage the intelligent and educated to have more children, maybe giving them a tax break on the number of children they conceive. There are numerous ways to go about these problems and differing solutions to help tide them. I just hope that we get people in power who actually realize this and are actually for preservation of people and country. Remember, that the environments we live in are products of our genetics. “Race is not a socal construct, society is a racial construct. Society and culture derive from race/biology.”—Douglas Whitman
To top it off, not surprisingly, when the researchers had anonymity, many (unsurprisingly) said that the cause for the retrograde of the FLynn effect was genetic (people with lower intelligence conceiving more children). It’s sad that people have to say these things anonymously, but one day we’ll be able to talk about these real things in society, I just hope it’s soon before it can’t be reversed.
Stephen Jay Gould was one of the biggest opponents of hereditarianism, one of Rushton and Jensens’s biggest opponents. He is the author of The Mismeasure of Man, which is still given to college students to read as a “definitive refutation of The Bell Curve” and an all out attack on factor analysis, IQ testing and the whole hereditarian position at large. A passage from the very end of his book Full House perfectly explains his thought process on this matter:
“The most impressive contrast between natural evolution and cultural evolution lies embedded in the major fact of our history. We have no evidence that the modal form of human bodies or brains has changed at all in the past 100,000 years—a standard phenomenon of stasis for successful and widespread species, and not (as popularly misconceived) an odd exception to an expectation of continuous and progressive change. The Cro-Magnon people who painted the caves of the Lascaux and Altamira some fifteen thousand years ago are us—and one look at the incredible richness and beauty of this work convinces us, in the most immediate and visceral way, that Picasso held no edge in mental sophistication over these ancestors with identical brains. And yet, fifteen thousand years ago no human social grouping had produced anything that would conform with our standard definition of civilization. No society had yet invented agriculture; none had built permanent cities. Everything that we have accomplished in the unmeasurable geological moment of the last ten thousand years—from the origin of agriculture to the Sears building in Chicago, the entire panoply of human civilization for better or for worse—has been built upon the capacities of an unaltered brain. Clearly, cultural change can vastly outstrip the maximal rate of natural Darwinian evolution.” (Gould, 1996: 220)
He wrote Full House as a sequel of sorts to his book Wonderful Life: The Burgess Shale and the Nature of History (currently on the way to my home which I will read in a few days of getting it), where he argues that progress is not the driver to evolution and that complexity does not rule as bacteria rule the planet. He argues that we are not in the “Age of Mammals”, but the “Age of Bacteria”. But how could you argue that there was no change in humanity from our most recent ancestors to today?
Eldredge and Gould pioneered the theory of punctuated equilibria in 1972. The theory states that species lie in a state of stasis (that is, a period of inactivity or equilibrium) and there is little morphological change before there is a rapid burst of change, which perfectly explains why there are few transitional fossils to be found. Punctuated equilibria is the missing piece to Darwin’s theory of evolution. But what does it have to do wth the evolution of Man?
As you can see, Eldredge and Gould’s theory states that all species spend an extremely long time in stasis, and for any phenotypic change to be noticed in the fossil record, the rapid burst in change had to occur.
Quoting Gould on culture and evolution (1996, page 219-20):
But human cultural change is an entirely distinct process operating under radically different principals that do allow for the strong possibility of a driven trend for what we may legitamately call “progress” (at least in a technological sense, whether or not the changes ultimately do us any good in a practical or moral way). In this sense, I deeply regret that common usage refers to the history of our artifacts and social orginizations as “cultural evolution.” Using the same term—evolution—for both natural and cultural history obfuscates far more than it enlightens. Of course, some aspects of the two phenomena must be similar, for all processes of genealogicallt constrained historical change must share some features in common. But the differences far outweigh the similarities in this case. Unfortunately, when we speak of “cultural evolution,” we unwittingly imply that this process shares essential similarity with the phenomenon most widely described by the same name—natural, or Darwinian, change. The common designation of “evolution” then leads to one of the most frequent and portentious errors in our analysis of human life and history—the overly reductionist assumption that the Darwinian natural paradigm will fully encompass our social and technological history as well. I do wish that the term “cultural evolution” would drop from use. Why not speak of something more neutral and descriptive—“cultural change,” for example?
From the two passages I cited above, to his work on punctuated equilibria, I can definitely see how and why he would believe that there has been no relevant human evolution in the past 50,000 years. These two quotes, one from Stephen Jay Gould and the other from evolutionist Ernst Mayr show the “conventional wisdom” about human evolution:
There’a been no biological changes in humans in 40,000 or 50,000 years. Everything we call culture we’ve built with the same body and brain
—Stephen Jay Gould
Something must have happened to weaken the selective pressure drastically. We cannot escape the conclusion that man’s evolution towards manness suddenly came to a halt.
These quotes are from page 1 of The Ten Thousand Year explosion. Many great thinkers have suggested that human evolution has halted ever since the emergence of behavioral modernity, however, this couldn’t be further from the truth. I fully understand why such great evolutionists like Gould and Mayr believe that human evolution has halted and their arguments make complete sense based on the data (punctuated equilibria for one). But to any knowledgeable race-realist, they know that these claims are bunk and that human evolution has most definitely accelerated within the last 10,000 years (due to agriculture, the advent of farming) that made it possible for a bigger population and, along with it, a higher chance for high IQ alleles and other positive traits to spread throughout the population as it increased fitness in the environment.
HOWEVER, agriculture was good and bad for us. The good increased our population size that made it possible for high IQ alleles to spread throughout the population. The bad was along with an increase in population size, living in one spot with large groups of people upped the chances for disease acquisition, that of which are not found in hunter-gatherer populations (because they’re constantly moving, not staying in one place). According to John Hawks, our brain size has decreased, going from 1500 cc on average to 1350 cc on average, and the cause is, and this is hard to believe with the advent of agriculture (and thus, supposedly better nutrition) worse nutrition due to the advent of agriculture. Another reason I can posit is that due to more group behavior and social cohesion, we could work together with others and that, over time, would shrink our brains since we wouldn’t have to “do all the thinking”, a type of “self-domestication”, if you will.
The denial of any human change over the past 50,000 years is clearly ridiculous, however it is grounded in solid science. But with the advent of The Ten Thousand Year Explosion by Cochran and Harpending, they blasted all of the misconceptions away about no genetic change in humanity over the past 50,000 years. But, to the dismay of those who believe in “progressive evolution”, the same agriculture that was responsible for this boom—this explosion—over the past ten thousand years is also the cause of our decreasing brain size and stature. I’ve documented the change of erectus or habilis into floresiensis, this is proof enough that evolution can “work backward” (whatever that means) and have an organism become “less complex” (going back to left and right walls of complexity, which I just wrote on last night). Floresiensis is the perfect example that an organism can become less complex than a predecessor and the cause, in this context, is due to less energy on the island which led to a decrease in caloric consumption and along with it a decrease in brain size since that was what was best for that environment (due to less caloric energy being available).
While Gould makes a compelling argument in arguing against the explosion of Man in the past 50,000 years, modern data tells us otherwise. This explosion was due, in part, to agriculture which led to more social cohesion (both of those variables are also leading to a decrease in brain size). With the understanding of Eldredge and Gould’s punctuated equilibria theory, you can then see how and why Gould denied the genetic change in anatomically modern humans over the last 50,000 years. He, however, is wrong here.
I fully agree with Gould that cultural change can outstrip Darwinian evolution—he is right there. But, to make the leap and then say that there is no basis for genetic change in AMH (anatomically modern humans) is clearly wrong. I know that Gould was driven by his politics, partly, to deny any change in human nature and genetics in the past 50,000 years. Though, I don’t care about that. I care about looking at one’s perspective through a scientific lens. While Gould is wrong on his views of hereditarianism, he is 100 percent correct on “progressive” evolution and that there is no so-called “drive to complexity”. It’s his views on human evolution as a whole that are wrong. We know that faster evolution gives rise to more racial differences, and, obviously, more “differences” can either be “good” or “bad” depending on the environmental context. In my tirades over the past 6 weeks on the non-progressiveness and non-linearity of evolution, I’ve shown that these differences can either go to the “left wall” or “right wall” of complexity.
To deny the speed of evolution ever since modern behavior, and even the agricultural revolution is wrong. Too much evidence has piled up for that position. I do, after reading a lot of Gould’s work recently, understand how and where he came from with that argument, all though he was clearly wrong. Culture is learned—not biologically inherited. The cultural norms we know well are learned behaviors.
Finally, and what it seems Gould didn’t realize, is that there is gene-culture coevolution. Learned social information is central to our adaptations as humans. New cultural tendencies may force a novel and new evolutionary selection pressure that may incur new phenotypic changes. In this sense, genes and culture simultaneously evolve side-by-side with each other. Again, stressing that there is no “unilateral direction” in which these changes go, they just occur based on new environmental pressures. Thusly, to say that there is any “progress” or any inherent “drive” in evolution makes no sense. Due to which cultures we “inherit” that will drive which changes occur in that population but not another, they’d be different (as we know all genetically isolated humans are), but none would be “better” than another since they have incurred new traits to better survive in that environment; each different culture will further gain a different phenotype due to the differing culture which puts a differing selective pressure on that population.
The notion of no change in humans over the last 50,000 years is wrong. It has been driven by the rise in agriculture (giving us both positive and negative traits) along with each culture that each population adopted due to the differing selection pressures and environments over the course of their evolution genetically isolated from every other human culture. These differing cultural tendencies also gave rise to slightly faster evolution and different and novel environments in comparison to other populations. With these variables working in harmony with each other, these then accelerated human evolution (for better or worse). That same advent of behavioral modernity 50,000 years ago gave rise to the Out of Africa event. Humans then spread across the planet. In time, after being differing “founding populations” for the current races/ethnies today, differing cultures were adopted due to the differing evolutionary pressures. This is the main reason why genetically isolated human populations show such stark differences between them: Because evolution has sped up since the advent of behavioral modernity, agriculture and the adoption of culture by humans that have all contributed to making Man so different compared to the rest of the Animal Kingdom.
What do complexity, baseball and evolutionary “progress” have to do with each other? A lot. Stephen Jay Gould, in his book Full House he eloquently weaves these seemingly unrelated things into a coherent attack on so-called “progressive” evolution. Most people assume that the disappearance of 0.400 hitting is due to a decline in ability, however Gould argues that we didn’t get worse at baseball, we got better. The average stayed the same (around 0.260 a year) but the variation in the curve decreased substantially. He shows that complexity is a forgone conclusion since the simplest organisms, bacteria, are at the left side of the wall of complexity, that is the simplest organism there can be. Thusly, complex organisms aren’t driven by “progress” to become complex; the left wall of minimal complexity is “followed by successful expansion thereafter with retention of an unvarying bacterial mode.” (Gould, 1996: 196-7). Complexity is an incidental occurrence due to life’s beginnings at this left wall; no organism can become less complex than this. Complexity is not driven by “progress”.
Most people assume that 0.400 hitting has disappeared from baseball because we have gotten worse at the game. However, an alternate way of looking at it is there have been no 0.400 hitters since 1941 because we have gotten better at the game and the variation on the bell curve shrunk due to the average players getting better. A batting average between .260 and .275 has been the average for each year since the conception of the game. This shows that since the average didn’t change, the variation got smaller due to the average player becoming better.
With the right tail shrinking, this meant that the average player then became closer to the right wall, that is the wall of how good one can become (i.e., 0.400 hitting) and since the variation shrunk, both bad and good (the 0.400) batting averages disappeared due to the average player getting better and getting closer to the right wall. Since the SD of batting averages for regular players decreases steadily over time, this shows that a disappearance of 0.400 hitting is “a consequence of shrinkage at the right tail of the distribution.”(Gould, 1996: 107)
Gould sums up as follows:
In quick summary of a long and detailed argument, symmetrically shrinking deviations in batting averages must record general improvement of play (including hitting, of course) for two reasons—the first (expressed in terms of the history of the institutions) because systems manned by best performers in competition, and working under the same rules through time, slowly discover optimal procedures and reduce their variation as all personnel learn and master the best ways; the second (expressed in terms of performers and human limits) because the mean moves toward the right wall, thus leaving less space for the spread of variation. Hitting 0.400 is not a thing, but the right tail of the full house for variation in batting averages. As variation shrinks because general play improves, 0.400 hitting disappears as a consequence of increasing excellance in play. (Gould, 1996: 127-8)
The explanation of the disappearance of 0.400 hitting sets the stage for the purpose of this article: “progressive” evolution. It’s important to know that I’m not saying that organisms don’t become more “complex”, the point is, evolution is not “going” anywhere; and that there is a passive and not driven trend in the complexity of organisms. Since bacteria, the modal bacter rules the earth, can we really say that there is any “drive” towards progress? Or is complexity driven by the consequence of the simplest organisms being at the left wall, with the only way to go being “right”?
Complexity, Walls, and “Progressive” Evolution
The assumption that there is a “march of progress”, a “scala naturae”, an “evolutionary ladder of progress” for all organisms on earth is a pervasive idea. But does the fossil record show any march to “progress”? No. People assume that evolution is “progressing” and the end result is a “better” organism. However, that’s a gross misunderstanding of natural selection and what it does. Natural selection is not “progress”, but local change. Let’s take a population of 100 brown bears. Half of them split off and head north and spend 100,000 years evolving near the North Pole. Would the new species that arises be “more progressed” or “more evolved” than the brown bear? No. It has incurred local adaptations to better survive in that new environment.
Bacteria is the most abundant life form on the planet. Bacteria, which is at the very left wall of complexity, is the most simple organism that can be. Due to this, there is nowhere to go but right, to the right wall. So any organism that’s caught up in the middle of the left and right walls of complexity can go in either direction. They can become less complex or more complex depending on what the environment calls for.
Darwin himself had contradictory views on “progressive” evolution. On the one hand, Darwin stated at the end of On the Origin of Species:
There is grandeur in this view of life, with its several powers, having been originally breathed into a few forms or into one; and that, whilst this planet has gone cycling on according to the fixed law of gravity, from so simple a beginning endless forms most beautiful and most wonderful have been, and are being, evolved.
Darwin did write in one of his notebooks to “Never call a species higher or lower”. This shows that even the man who originated the concept of natural selection didn’t believe in “higher” and “lower” organisms. Quoting page 135 of Full House by Gould on a conversation between Huxley and Darwin (their descendants) held in 1959:
Huxley: I once tried to define evolution in an overall way, somewhat along these lines: a one way process, irreversible in time, producing apparent novelties and greater variety leading and leading to higher degrees of organization.
Darwin: What is “higher”?
Huxley: More differentiated, more complex but at the same time more integrated.
Darwin: But parasites are also produced.
Huxley: I mean a higher degree of orginization in general, as shown by the upper level attained.
Darwin asked a good question about what constitutes “higher”. Huxley gave a non-answer, an answer that confirms what he said (which isn’t true).
Any so-called “progress” would have been stymied by the five mass extinction events that have occurred throughout earth’s history. The history of life has been punctuated with mass extinction events. It was, after all, the mass extinction event at the Cretaceous period that killed off the dinosaurs that gave mammals the chance to evolve into what we did today. It was fish that mutated the beginnings of arms and wings; the precursors to what more complex organisms would use in the future. Our fish ancestor evolved that way most likely due to the fact that it could have pushed itself onto land to avoid predators. Examinations of the fossil record show that certain fishes have the precursors to arms and wings. This shows that we evolved from fish that eventually came on to land. The ONLY REASON why we are around today is because of the mass extinction event 65 mya. Without that, disnosaurs would still rule the earth. Basically, if our ancestors swam up instead of down, left instead of right, they’d have been eaten and we wouldn’t be here today. That’s not to say that there would be no right wall of complexity; there always will be, but they wouldn’t turn into us as there is no evolutionary trend in organismal design.
Numerous studies have been done on ammonites, plankton, and other small, less complex organisms. No line of “progress” was found in none of the organisms tested. There was no bias in increasing complexity from ancestor-descendant pairs in ammonites (that is, the range of variation for complexity increased, not just a drive to become more complex) (Boyajian and Lutz, 1992), nor was there any correlation for sutural complexity and geological longevity. No bias for increasing complexity was found in these organisms, that is no bias to go towards this right wall of complexity.
McShea (1994) uses this “left wall of minimal complexity”, in which there is only one way to go: right. McShea proposes three tests for seeing whether or not there is a driven or passive drive for evolution:
- Test the Minimum: In passive systems, minimal values of complexity should be preserved by some species throughout the expanding history of their evolutionary timespan because no preference for evolutionary complexity exists and most species would do better by simply staying as they are. In systems that are driven, both minimal and maximal complexity should increase because higher complexity confers general advantages that the evolution of all species should be biased in this direction (they aren’t). The preservation and continuing enhancement of the modal bacter strongly points to the passive mode for life as a whole.
- Testing Ancestor-Descendant Pairings: This test identifies ancestral lineages for an expanding lineage and then tabulates whether each concurrent species stayed the same, got simpler or got more complex. However we cannot use this test because the fossil record is so incomplete.
- Test of the Skewing: Life as a whole can produce right-skewed trends no matter if evolution is passive or driven. So the same overall result of right distribution with a maximum complexity can still occur whether or not evolution is passive or driven. In driven systems, the new lineages should show a right skew towards complexity since all species favor the right skew of “progress” as a favored direction, and should have more species towards the right wall of complexity, stretching the entire distribution to the right. But in the passive systems, there should be no skew in increases and decreases should be just as common as increases. Many species move leftward in complexity as they do rightward. If one organism is in between the right and left wall of complexity, it can go either get more or less complex, with least complex being a bacteria, that being the “left wall” of complexity.
McShea did these tests on veterbral columns. You would say “Of course there was an increase in complexity!!” But is this increase driven or passive? According to McShea (1994), vertebrates began at a minimal level of complexity, so the only way to go was UP!
Quoting Gould (1996: 207):
All the tests provide evidence for a passive trend and no drive to complexity. McShea found twenty-four cases of significant increases or decreases in comparing the range of modern descendants with an ancestor (out of a potential sample of ninety comparisons, or five groups of mammals, each with six variables measured in each of three ways; for the other comparison, average descendants did not differ significantly from ancestors). Interestingly, thirteen of these significant changes led to decreases in complexity, while only nine showed an increase. (The difference between thirteen and nine is not statistically significant, but I am wryly amused, given all traditional expectation in the other direction, that more comparisons show increasing rather than decreasing complexity.
McShea summarizes his entire study as follows (1994: 1762):
The minimal complexity of vertebral columns probably did not change (indeed, the actual minimum seems to have remained close to the theoretical minimum), ancestor-descendant comparisons in subclades of mammals reveals no branching bias, and the mean subclade skew was negative, all pointing to a passive system.
This can be summed up as follows: Looking at the “full house” of variation, there is no general trend in “progress” for organisms or evolution as a whole. The example of the disappearance of 0.400 hitting is the perfect metaphor that shows there is a left and right wall of both minimum and maximum skill (complexity) and that the variation shrunk which is the cause for the disappearance of 0.400 hitting, not us getting “worse” at the game. This same metaphor of skill walls can be used for evolution as well, replacing skill walls with complexity walls. Bacteria inhabit the very left wall of complexity, that is, the least simple organism possible; no other organism can become more simple than bacteria. On the other side, you have the more complex organisms, those that arise at the very right tail end of the distribution, but arose there due to no inherent drive for “progress”, but due to the fact of moving towards the right tail of complexity was the only thing possible to do. Any organism that is in between the left and right walls of complexity can go in either direction, and the fossil record shows more organisms going left than right.
Looking at certain variables, we may be able to say “Look!! Evolutionary progress!!” But that’s only a small snapshot in time. People may point to the brain size increase as a driven increase towards complexity, however, the assumption that there is a “relative enlargement and differentiation of brains reflect a progressive evolutionary trend toward greater intelligence is a major impediment to the study of brain evolution.” I will cover this in the future and goes against what believers of evolutionary “progress” believe. When looking at one snapshot in the huge picture of evolutionary time, we may be able to “pin point” a “progression” towards “something”, but when looking at the fossil record as a whole (which is not possible due to there being huge gaps due to punctuated equilibria, we cannot study the whole record) there is no “drive” towards complexity, it is “passive”, that is organisms become less and more complex due to variation in environments. THAT is what natural selection is and does for organisms. Natural selection is local adaptation, not evolutionary progress.
The notion of “progressive” evolution needs to be put to rest. It doesn’t allow us to fully appreciate the beauty of evolution through natural selection, mutation, genetic drift and migration. No species is “better” or “more progressed” or “more evolved” than another; on the contrary. Each oragnism is unique to its environment and will incur both genotypic and phenotypic changes that respond to what’s occurring in the environment as to better reproduce to the next generation. I will end with a quote from Gould that perfectly sums up this argument:
I hate to think that an intellectual position, hopefully well worked out in the pages of this book, might end up as a shill for one of the great fuzzinesses of our age—so-called “political correctness” as a doctrine that celebrates all indigenous practice, and therefore permits no distinctions, judgements or analyses.
Looking at the whole “full house” of variation shows there to be no trends of “progress”. Organisms are just as likely to become less complex (towards the left wall) than they are to become more complex (towards the right wall). Once we get this “scala naturae” paradigm out of our heads and understanding of evolution, only then can we appreciate the beauty and randomness of evolution and all of the differences it brings about. There IS a drive towards the right wall of complexity, however, it is not driven, it is passive and is only a result of there being a minimum wall of complexity that no other organism can get less complex than. Looking at evolution in this way shows that there is no inherent “progress” to evolution as a whole, only local adaptations, the true definition of “natural selection”.