RANGER AGAINST WAR: Circle Jerk 2: Queensberry Rules <

Wednesday, September 06, 2017

Circle Jerk 2: Queensberry Rules

A freedom which is interested only in denying freedom
must be denied. And it is not true 
that the recognition of the freedom of others
limits my own freedom
--Simone de Beauvoir

So let's leave it alone 'cause we can't see eye to eye
There ain't no good guy, there ain't no bad guy
There's only you and me and we just disagree
--We Just Disagree
Dave Mason

It's funny how the colors of the real world
only seem really real when you viddy them
on the screen
--A Clockwork Orange (1971)

And if you want to be me, be me
And if you want to be you, be you
'Cause there's a million things to do
You know that there are
--If You Wanna Be Free, Be Free,
Cat Stevens

self-flagellation does not equal integration
--Lisa (doing her best Johnny Cochran)

{We refer readers to the comment thread our previous post, Circle Jerk I. It is a candid and considered dialectic of the evolution and position of thoughtful RAW (link) readers. 

Think of it as "My Dinner with Andre", with gravitas.}

You didn't know?

FirstOne may think as one wishes, and believe what one wishes. Those are the primary and foundational human freedoms, upon which all others are contingent. There is no second, for we are not going to the next step of potential action, as actions are circumscribed by the laws of civil society.

This obviates the need to discuss the Charlottesville marchers. It is a full-stop, Q.E.D. right there.

However, seeing as our media and society has fixated upon, ostensibly, the topic of civil rights lately  -- with relish -- we will look at them to figure out the answer to the question, "Why?" and, "Is their concern genuine and relevant apropos their topic?"

If we agree that one's thoughts and beliefs are one's own, why the move to persecute anyone for his beliefs? We have not yet Orwell's Thought Police to torment and imprison us (though DARPA is probably working on that app.)

Don't Give Me No Hand Me Down News

Following the recent Charlottesville march supporting the retention U.S. Confederate War General Lee's statue, the media has been giving overwhelming coverage to supposedly mandatory contervailing thoughts and behaviors to the those of the marchers (whether stated or inferred). These are presented as necessary correctives to be imposed upon the dissenters.

To watch the talking heads is to imagine that we are like Captain Renault in "Casablanca", shocked that people believe different things. But Renault knew the game.

Maybe we are actually more like Gomer Pyle, USMC, with his authentic gesture of  profound discombobulation. "Gol-ly!"

The topic might make a nice solid 3000-level Philosophy course on ethics and morals ("Why do people believe what they believe?"), but focusing on conflicting ideologies -- and preferencing one -- is not the stuff of national news. In fact, no university (aside from Berkeley, perhaps) would have the temerity to go to the next step and instruct upon how to eradicate or silence difference.

Surely any true liberal arts activist would cry to the high heavens if freedom of expression were curtailed. At least, that is how the United States used to be run.

Morality may be neither judiciously nor judicially mandated. It may at times be a curiosity and a perversion, but it is NOT actionable news. It deserves no front page ink.

So why is this even a thing?

In parts of the South, blacks celebrate their 1865 emancipation from slavery, the religious likening Mr. Lincoln's War to Moses's dictate to Pharoah ("Let my people go".) Of course, it is not exactly the same thing, but this part of the analogy to Christianity holds: Jesus doesn't make much sense without the cross.

Erase the Roman soldiers and the Crucifix and you just have a gentle guy spreading platitudes about love. So you can't have Jesus without the cross.

While General Lee was hardly anyone's crucifier, he is a representation of the Confederacy. Being as the CSA was an actual separate entity within our nation, then if for no other reason than historical accuracy, scrubbing statues and other testimony from our midst makes little sense. The statues have stood for the last 100 or so years, so why the move to rent them now?

Kipling's Jungle Book and Twain's Huckleberry Finn have both been bowdlerized to meet the politically correct policemen's standards. But in doing so, they have lost the very fire against racism which they had contained. They are happy little stories now, with nothing to rub you raw.

Throughout the South, including in many predominately black counties, statues of Confederate soldiers stand, facing North. it is a reminder of the horror of the Civil War which the young nation endured to become a Union.

So what are we really talking about when we talk about racism? Why were the people duking it out in the street in Charlottesville predominately white people? Can we reify the viewed phenomenon in order to see it as more than a salacious bloody news bite?

The Night They Drove Old Dixie Down

The marchers had a clear agenda and a permit to march, and they did so with the blessing of the ACLU. If we accept the media's presentation, they were mostly middle-aged white men who have been left behind in a technological society, and find value in identifying with the past.

They have either been adversely affected by the mandates of the Civil Rights era, or know someone who has been. The Equal Opportunity era was not about them, and racial quotas signified the end of white male dominance.

If they wish to march to preserve a commemorative statue, it is their right and they are permitted to do so. We moved through the Civil Rights and EOE era 50 years ago; the project was a judicial one, not one of neuro-engineering human thought and belief. In case you had not noticed, the human is not a perfectable organism; this is as good as it gets.

In any event, who is our Solomon, and who dictates what constitutes "right thought"? Who may choose and install our beliefs?

The Confederacy lost, and its sympathizers know that. Many have direct familial ties to that tragedy. For them, the history is living, and the desecration or removal of a monument is a felt offense.

They are like comedian Richard Pryor's black men who hold their crotches: Y'all took everything else ... we're just checking to make sure they're still there. The white marchers are checking.

Like a mute garden of stone, the continued existence of the thing will not affect history moving forward. In fact, the infinitely stronger argument is for the retention of the monuments as a reminder of the horrible sacrifices made all 'round.

The protesters are more difficult to understand. White and predominately young, they use the few and the worst placards of the marchers as their animating cause, signs expressing bigotry towards Jews and blacks. But Jews and blacks were not protesting, so what gives?

Who are these malcontents who gather to wale with such fury upon those with whom they ostensibly disagree? How are they mobilized to perform their violence? What fuels them, and what is their raison d'etre?

The protesters (not marchers) were crusin' for a brusin', fired up and ready to go. More agile and confrontational than the marchers, they looked like nothing so much as hipsters fancying themselves nuevo Che Gueveras. 

But they were not fighting the power. The protesters were goading the marchers into a reaction, and taunting is schoolyard bully behavior.

They were attacking a dissipated cohort. Those from barren former factory towns know the bounty once theirs will not return for them.

The protesters are reminiscent of the character Malcolm and his misfit cohort in Anthony Burgess's A Clockwork Orange. They probably hit the Milk Bar (Starbucks) after a performance, for how to fuel the next round of "ultra-violence"? (Maybe they just return to their group homes and take their medicine.)

The larger point is, they have achieved nothing by expulsing their anger upon a crowd of non-violent legal actors. In a charitable reading of what is their driving their hatred, perhaps the protesters are resentful that they may not retroactively join the Union forces.

But more likely, they are a bunch of prigs who are angry that they missed the counter-culture movement of the 1960's. Today, gays may marry, so we are really at the end of the line as far as finding civil rights causes to fight for.

Knockin' down statues and telling people they may not believe what they believe? Kind of embarrassing. Once they have performed their diffuse violence, the beliefs of the people they are protesting remain. Their action is rendered entirely impotent. Worse, they are guilty of intimidation and illegal assault.

Beliefs are inviolable. If anything, when the marchers confront such white hot fury they will be strengthened in their beliefs, for they have been transgressed upon, furthering their feelings of alienation and resentment.

Hypocritically, many of those same protesters exploiting the few anti-Jewish placards also support the BDS movement and would be glad if the Jewish homeland disappeared. These are the same people who would disallow Stanford Jewish student Rachel Beyda from sitting on a committee because she is Jewish.

But back to Religion 301

People believe different things, and in seeking meaning they often affiliate. Their associates and they often believe they are special in some way, perhaps chosen as favored by God. This is all good in Democratic Republics like the U.S. which have both freedom from coercion to believe and the concomitant freedom to believe anything. One's mind is terra incognita.

The Judeo-Christian doctrine brings many fine things to the table of civilization. But true Christians do believe that non-believers will go to hell upon death, while they will go to the Elysian Fields. Mormons and Urantians believe they will go to another planet upon expiration. If you are not a believer, you might find these things disagreeable.

The Dalai Lama makes it his business to love all, but dollars to doughnuts, there is someone out there who thinks he is the anti-Christ. Nonetheless, all may believe as they wish. One world is enough for all of us, as the song goes.

Freedom of speech, assembly, religion -- all very fine things, inviolable in even the smallest way, for the smallest abridgment would nullify the whole. Liberalism is not the State religion; we do not have one.

On the spectrum of black power and liberation, one might choose to affiliate with Marcus Garvey, Haille Selassie, Farrakhan's anti-Semitic Nation of Islam or the Black Lives Matter movement, Frantz Fanon, Malcom X or the peaceful Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., among others. No one's gonna cold-cock you for it.

Yet the media gleefully reported the first white marchers to lose their jobs due to doxxing (revelation of anonymous marcher's personal data): a Chick-fil-A worker and a roofer. What has been accomplished? Proof that you are more powerful than they?

Do you feel better that these people are now unemployed? I do not.

I do not feel good knowing that there are vengeful bands of brigands in my midst, people hailed by many for inciting violence. Who is next on their list?

It was bully behavior and nothing to apotheosize in a functional democracy. Yet in a non-sequitur, the media rushed to feature black commentators on the spectacle, despite the fact that they were not a part of it.

The PBS NewsHour featured the usually reasonable Leonard Pitts and Carol Anderson , a black female academic from Emory, who said, either disingenuously or without understanding, that America needs to have a place for all Americans.

All, apparently, except the marchers.

Ironically, Public television had just concluded a six-part series on the American Civil War. Historian Shelby Foote gave informed testimony to the tragic regional devotion of Confederate General Lee, a man who had written passionately about the plight of slavery and the damage which the peculiar institution wrought on both Whites and blacks. He, like Jefferson before him, saw the permanent mark which would be left upon the nation.

None of the featured historians suggested Lee was a monster whose image should be struck from our collective memory. In fact, Lee's example is of nothing so much as the tragedy borne by capable military men who must perform their terrible duties, leaving unspeakable wretchedness in their wake.

The news cycle hasn't the time for such nuance, does it, when it is ultra-violence that keeps 'em tuning in.

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Blogger Ael said...

Who'd have thought that chanting "blood and soil" and "jews will not replace us" would be bad for your employment prospects.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017 at 8:35:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great piece, Lisa. Right on target.

I have already seen the twisted answer to your reasoning. It goes like this. The marchers (the people against statue removal) came ready to fight. They pronounced fighting words. Then a counter protester got killed by a weaponized car. therefore, this is not a matter of free speech. However, that answer is so biased as to be retarded. If the marchers showed up to fight, then don't fight them.

Of course that response also overlooks that the marchers had a permit and the counter protesters did not.

It further overlooks your more nuanced points about free speech, but you already knew - and wrote about - that.

Here's my addition to you excellent writing; let's look at the worst, most stereotypical, of the marchers and single them out. They're as bad as that bad gets. A motely bunch of loser dorks with dumb haircuts waiving banners purchased online and performing some superficial salutes and uttering some slogans from a movement of a by-gone era, in another country, that lost hugely. These broke dick losers have no more ability to bring about a new Nazi era than you or I do to bring about heaven on earth. WHO IS AFRAID OF THESE IDIOTS? WHO TAKES THEM SERIOUSLY? The driver of the weaponized car washed out of Army boot camp. Guys who work at chic-fil-A? These guys can't get a meaningful job or a date on a Saturday night let alone herald the return of the Waffen SS. My god! Perspective please.


Wednesday, September 6, 2017 at 8:40:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah sure. I guess that's why all the black lives matter bros are on welfare.

After all, who would have imagined that chanting "what do we want? dead cops! when do want it? Now!" and "pigs in a blanket. Fry 'em like bacon" would keep you from employment?

So much for the "economic violence of systemic racism"


Wednesday, September 6, 2017 at 8:46:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

The counterprotest had a permit too, Avedis, a fact not just conveniently omitted by certain right-wing critics of the counterprotest but now actively denied.

Truth is such a slippery thing.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017 at 9:16:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...


Interesting thoughts.

It would be interesting to know what percentage of Antifa are people with liberal arts degrees headed for a gloomy future of working-class cafe jobs and unpaid internships. One branch of the working class (self-created and in denial about it) beating up the other branch.

Amusingly, had the right not got latched onto this idea that Antifa didn't have permits, they might have noticed that the counterprotest permit was taken out by none other than a social science professor. I wonder if that qualifies as what I believe the modern left calls "punching down."

In the middle of all this was or should have been the police, who have yet to receive their fair share of the blame for letting this situation in the first place by attempting to shut down the Confederate and neo-Nazi protest and basically driving them straight into the "counter" protest. Gee, what did they think was going to happen?

Wednesday, September 6, 2017 at 9:25:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am not so sure that is true. I have read from non-right wing sources that the counter protesters did not have a permit.

If it is true, then then the govt officials that issued the permits are the ones that were looking for a fight to ensue. My point still stands. If someone shows up looking for a fight, don't fight them (if you are going to condemn physical fighting). It takes two to tango.


Wednesday, September 6, 2017 at 9:27:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

Then you need to broaden your reading.



Wednesday, September 6, 2017 at 9:37:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

The government first tried to force the neo-Nazis to protest somewhere else, and then, as I understand it, declared them (but not Antifa's) an illegal assembly shortly before it was scheduled to get underway, which resulted in the police effectively driving one protest from the park straight into the street and into the other.

Now one does not know another's mind, obviously, but this seems to me like reckless disregard for civil rights and catastrophic disregard for situation management, in the most charitable interpretation.

Or, you know, "looking for a fight to ensue."

Wednesday, September 6, 2017 at 9:40:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes. I agree. The govt officials architected the fight are responsible for the fatality to some extent.

Arguing the minutia of permit/no permit does injustice to Lisa's writing.

Here's a question for the righteous amongst us; if the counter protesters/antifas are so concerned with the well being of minorities, why are they not taking their sticks and fire bombs over to the south side of Chicago to protest the gang violence that kills more blacks and causes more suffering than wannabe Nazis could ever accomplish?

Oh yeah. That's a real danger and they might really get killed.

These people, on both sides, are a bunch of slacker weenies producing political kabuki theater for the benefit of the main stream media. That the antifas challenge the neo-nazis proofs that the neo-nazis are not a threat.


Wednesday, September 6, 2017 at 9:55:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Ael said...

Confederate monuments are intended to divide the population . The population is much stronger when whole. A divided society is much easier to manipulate.

Perhaps some of the hysteria about antifa is that young people could politically unite with various other groups to form new political alliances. This could slow down the ongoing inter-generational wealth transfer by the existing power structure.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017 at 10:54:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...


On your question, because a large part of that violence isn't white on black, I would guess, and so it doesn't fit in the narrow prism of what's interesting to them. I see the same problem with modern liberalism in many contexts. For instance, a large portion of the consulting business I've fashioned up here deals with native issues. Native women are the biggest victims of violence up here. The most common perpetrators are native men, but somehow that part gets sidestepped. Indeed, the natives have started to parrot back the new liberal ideology and say, if they're being violent to women, it must be because European colonialism made them that way. I imagine there must be a "professor of critical race studies" somewhere who has hit on the same argument about black violence in the U.S.


It's probably overly simplistic to say there's one intention behind those statues. Some of the people who funded them were interested in white supremacy. Others were getting old and just wanted something to make sure the next generation would remember the friends they lost on the battlefield.

But you're right about the point about division. This is a microcosm of what I've been saying for months about identity politics. A small mob waving tiki torches and chanting Nazi slogans is pathetic, not frightening, and will probably manage to discredit itself without Antifa's "help." If the handful identified are any indication, these are disproportionately working-class people who sense they have been left out of the new globalized economy but have also been abandoned by the modern left.

I would guess the Antifa side also had its fair share of people waiting tables and doing other entry-level jobs, albeit after getting their humanities degrees. Such people drank a different flavor of Kool-Aid but their economic interests ironically have more in common with the neo-Nazis who lost their jobs than with the professor who got them their demo permit.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017 at 11:29:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...


Thank you for your kind words to keep the discussion to an aerial level, lest we get bogged down in unknown points of minutiae.

The respondents here speak of the marchers as "Confederates and neo-Nazis". This implies that everyone who wants the statues to remain is part of this small and unsavory cohort.

But when 62% of respondents in a recent NPR poll say the statues should remain, you have a majority. I think we can all agree that the U.S. is not composed of crypto-Nazis, so this should give pause to the easy brush off.

Spot-on re. your observation that if we/they truly cared about minority angst, they would be operating on the south side of Chicago, "protest[ing] the gang violence that kills more blacks and causes more suffering than wannabe Nazis could ever accomplish."

The 2011 film, "The Interrupters", shows how it's done. It's not glamorous, and it doesn't get you on nightly telly. (Like David said, it doesn't feed their b/w anger fantasies.)

It is curious that the seething hatred depicted here is done over black (and Jewish) bodies, sans their participation. The irony is that they are still being exploited for someone's ends.


Agreed that charitably, this event would seem a system failure, and the police end of the equation has been given a pass. But as you suggest, the other way to view it is that the last minute permit revocation was tinder on the fire, insult upon perceived insult, with a predictable outcome.

It sounds to me like a fixture of the system, rather than a bug. The system now is, "How do we spin everything as a damnation of the President", even when the event is not at all linked. I mean, he is a successful white man ... does that mean he is rightly the pinata for every grievance fashioned into one of white oppression?

Which, BTW, this particular media event does not qualify.

All agencies function rather like Sherman outside of Savannah ("I beg to present you as a Christmas gift ..."). The interesting thing would be to know to whom they present their petit cadeau.

You are also correct that the supposedly opposing forces do not see their economic points of intersection and abandonment. I'm sure the antifa baristas simply feel good to blow off some steam, and to imagine that there is some purpose to their existence.

Maybe the white boys in black are playing out a Jungean fantasy, symbolically murdering the ground from whence they sprang (the older white man shadow archetype.)

Wednesday, September 6, 2017 at 1:38:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

The polling link:

Confederate Statues Should Remain

Wednesday, September 6, 2017 at 1:41:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Brilliant! "Maybe the white boys in black are playing out a Jungean fantasy, symbolically murdering the ground from whence they sprang (the older white man shadow archetype.)"

I have pondering this racial self-hatred that so many young white people indulge in these days. I have been certain all along that it is not at all about what they say it is on the surface. And so many angry minorities are so quick to urge them on with it. A very sick dynamic. Rational, but sick on the minorities' part. Irrational and sick on the white boys' part. ...

...but I think you just nailed it.

They seek to kill their fathers and paternal ancestors for their own personal psychological reasons (one being that they feel they can't measure up?). Much easier to kill if you demonize the target first.

Like I said, they're a bunch of weenies.


Wednesday, September 6, 2017 at 2:40:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...


It's not irrational if your 1000 words on how becoming aware of the invisible knapsack of white privilege has caused to reflect critically on your personal life choices earns you an A plus.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017 at 7:36:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes. That must be part of it. Certainly the radicals of the '60s withdrew from the streets and re-grouped within the education system. My wife was a middle school teacher and she watched helplessly as the curriculum was slowly but surely altered to reflect all of this "new" thinking. By the late 90s the movement was in full swing.

IMO, a lot of minorities cannot handle being minorities. It has nothing to do with how whites treat them. There's no amount of acceptance that will help. It's just human nature. When you're, say, a Native American and you have to accept that your people pretty much lived like cave men and your culture couldn't even produce simple tech like, say, the wheel and that, therefore, you were easily overrun by a relatively highly advanced society, it has to burn a bit. It's got to create a cultural inferiority complex.

The answer to this situation seems to be to re-write history and create a set of baseless myths to help minorities feel better about their backgrounds. The white man plays the role of the devil in all these myths. Gotta have a devil, you know.

This is a big part of the cultural revolution. Thanks a lot social science people.


Thursday, September 7, 2017 at 7:36:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...


I don't like to tell people exactly how much resentment they should or shouldn't feel, and I'm sure if Nikolay comes back he'll complain that I'm grossly oversimplifying everything here in order to defend the evil elite empire, but I think you're putting the cart before the horse there. I don't actually think resentment is naturally going to result. I think it gets constructed later as part of identity politics.

Some pretty shitty things happened in history, but if you look at what's happening now, there isn't a direct line from what white slave-owners did 200 years ago, say, to the people who are upset about statues today. Those statues sat there for a long time. Most of the people who are very emotional about them now, I will bet you, were not just grumpily suppressing those emotions 10 years ago. They just weren't thinking about it until their little media bubbles told them to think about it in a certain way.

This is especially obvious in the native issues I deal with professionally, where there are movements afoot at least in this country, and I'm guessing south of the border too because most of this just floats back and forth, to say that science doesn't count because it's "Western" and "European" and not "native." I can guarantee you that 250 years ago native people did not think in these terms. I have never come across a text in the archives where a native person complains that Western science doesn't belong in America. I have come across many, many texts where a native person asks to buy a gun, say, or a metal pot, because he recognized that it's a tool and it's good for something, and that's all it is, and you don't have to take a graduate seminar in the cultural baggage that comes along with the pot in order to just use it because it's useful.

Thursday, September 7, 2017 at 6:16:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

And just to clarify because on reading back that's a little vague, what I mean is there are native leaders in both countries who are upset, say, that archeology and genetics prove that their ancestors migrated here from Asia, because, of course, their creation stories say they were created here, etc., etc.

There are also other tribal leaders who think this cultural identity politics stuff is bullshit and would much rather get on with needed economic development.

Guess which ones' kids and communities will be better off two generations down the road.

Thursday, September 7, 2017 at 6:19:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Ael said...

All the axes traded to the natives in the museums have lost their metal insert. This insert was steel and gave the axe a sharper edge. It also eventually failed, forcing the natives to trade more furs for a new axe.

And people think that planned obsolescence is a new idea.
I am not surprised that there is some suspicion of people offering to "help".

Thursday, September 7, 2017 at 8:20:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

Well that is certainly a possibility, although oddly, I haven't come across any such scheme in either the Hudson's Bay Company records (the largest fur trading enterprise until the 19th century), who should have mentioned it, or in the records of the missionaries, who certainly would have.

Or, you know, it's because steel is more expensive than iron and because by the 1800s cheap axes in North America had steel inserted into iron to save money.

I'm also going to take a very long step out on a very short limb and say it isn't true that all surviving axes acquired by natives (a) came such inserts and (b) are now missing them. There's a lot of fur trading enterprises. Which empire was doing this? Or all of them?

I don't mean to be dismissive in an offhand way. If it really is true that fur traders invented these axes to rip off natives, it would be interesting to me. But, I suspect it falls into the same category of myth as many, if not all, supposed campaigns to use smallpox blankets as bioweapons.

Thursday, September 7, 2017 at 9:13:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Interesting observations and thoughts re; NAs. I have had two NA friends go totally psycho in the last few years with the same kind of programming you speak to. Both are people that I have known well in real life. One I had lost contact with, but found on FB and the other, someone that I would get together with a few times a year since being close friends 30 years ago. The latter won't talk to me any more because I voted Trump (which proves I'm a racist) and the former has a FB page on which he posts constant vitriol against white people as well as allegiances to various groups like black lives matter, antifa, etc. Both of these guys have been welcome guests in my home, have been introduced - proudly - to my white friends, etc. The FB radical was even a welcome roommate for like 6 months when he was going through hard times. Now I'm a racist. That really hurts my feelings.

All of the new history and mythology you mention issues forth prolifically from both of these guys; like a fountain. They think that because I voted Trump and I don't agree with their radical victimization/anti-white/anti-capitalist/anti-western society dogma that I have secretly been a racist all along. I think that because of their radical views they have secretly been white man haters all along. At least I KNOW I haven't changed much, if any.

I suspect that blacks and Hispanics are being brainwashed in some similar manner. Asians seem to be immune from all of this, thankfully, to their credit and benefit.

Anyhow, since he's determined to be a jerk, I like to give it right back to Types With Venom. I always tell him he is guilty of cultural appropriation. If he lived in a Tipi and drank from streams and hunted for food, I have more respect for his propaganda. I wouldn't agree with it, but I'd have more respect. I mean, if NAs are so great and white man so evil, why is he living in a city enjoying all the things that white culture produced?


Friday, September 8, 2017 at 8:32:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Lisa and Jim,
I hope this hurricane doesn't cause you any hardships. Stay safe.


Friday, September 8, 2017 at 8:35:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

laminated knives are not a rip off.
there are famous makers that still put soft iron over steel.
in the gun world the sharps borchardt of 1878 had a iron reciever with hardened steel sleeves for the action bars. when there was wear it was easier to replace the worn parts.
we stay ready to run from storms. all cars are fully fuelled and ready to roll.
if it looks to be coming this way we'll head north east.
we sat out the last large power outage in a motel in PC FL.
only a fool would stay if it crosses our path.
jim hruska

Friday, September 8, 2017 at 11:41:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger mike said...

Jim & Lisa - I second Avedis' comment, stay safe and beat the storm.


Saturday, September 9, 2017 at 12:50:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

Thanks for everyone's good wishes. Despite the fact that Guv-nah Scott lives in town (and if one believes in the divine intervention explanation for hurricanes), the Capitol should see only tropical force winds. The Live Oaks get the worst of it, as they are big and have shallow root systems, toppling over easily.

Our larders are stocked, anyways.

Just a few more thoughts:

1) A reminder that I'm only using the Charlottesville situation as an example of how the media use "events" to distract, distort and control us, especially in our Neo-tribalistic social platform-mediated lives. In fact, media can't do it without us.

People may not see how they've been seamlessly integrated into the propaganda machine, for they are both the middlemen (the "re-Tweeter") and the end-user. Quite diabolical, when one considers the matter.

IMHO, because a life lived "virtually" is so little -- so pale and colorless -- we must ramp up our replies "there" to feel even a little. When I see people laughing or crying over their little screens on their "down time", often interfacing between two or more at once, I feel more than a little sad.

2) I wanted to reinforce David's observations on the kinship of those in extremis. They are largely "disproportionately working-class people who sense they have been left out of the new globalized economy but have also been abandoned by the modern left". If they could reach out, they could form a powerful bloc calling for re-training and jobs.

I would call for a "beer-and-latte" summit to introduce them to the idea. They've both been betrayed and left behind; both are being exploited by someone. I mean, the hunters and the environmentalists could do it, so why not these poor slobs?

Yeah, I know, queue up Lennon's "Imagine". And for avedis: you may have noted that I have used Lennon's lyrics in the past. I hope you (and all readers) know that my quotations choices are often use in a highly ironic manner. It's a little game to figure it out (but not too tough, methinks.)

And correct again, David:

"They just weren't thinking about it until their little media bubbles told them to think about it in a certain way." This goes for most of the little media flare ups which keep us so riven and busy.

And again, avedis:

"There are also other tribal leaders who think this cultural identity politics stuff is bullshit and would much rather get on with needed economic development." --

Bottom line, no -- how will the people advance and prosper? Not by getting tied up in these teapot tempests. No siree.

Saturday, September 9, 2017 at 2:47:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree completely that a color blind beer and latte summit should be held.

I am not optimistic about its outcome or its occurring in the first place.

To do so would require strong leadership out in front. Lead by example. Unfortunately, those who have become leaders are stuck sucking their power up from the divisiveness. So we would need new leaders first. True visionaries. Still, these leaders would have to speak the truth and the truth is not popular.

Second, there is a major ideological fault line between the camps. One camp believes in traditional capitalism and the other on something very close to traditional socialism.

I know RAW tends towards anti-capitalism/anti-big business. I do not. I used to, but now that I have become ensconced in big business I have come to understand that it mostly isn't the mysterious monolithic monster that I once thought it is and that my associates who went in other directions still see it as. I do not trust big government or government provision of goods and services. I have seen its screw ups up close and personal. The kind of screw up that big business would not tolerate. As David said, there are more often unintended consequences than intended ones and there is little accountability with govt. I can see some gentle adjustment to capitalism's excesses at times (e.g. child labor laws). IMO, govt has already gone way too far in its involvement in our lives. This, to my mind, is the major hurdle *n the surface*. Now that we're talking - beer and latte - what is the solution? Private or govt?

But that's still the surface...........


Saturday, September 9, 2017 at 5:49:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...


Private sector solutions and government solutions imply there is a problem you are trying to find the best solution for. At least in those terms there's some hope for a rational discussion of how important the problem is, what the potential solutions are, and what the costs of those solutions could be.

The traditional fault line between economic right and economic left is real, but it's one that governments have been trying to muddle a middle path between for a long time. I am not sure what the rise of new identity politics movements adds to this already significant challenge except to keep people endlessly distracted by mostly peripheral and superficial issues. For instance, I have a hard time figuring out what problem tearing down a statue is intended to solve, or how.

Saturday, September 9, 2017 at 6:48:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Many minorities come from inferior cultures. Take Native Americans. They couldn't even invent the wheel. Now they have come to depend on - and enjoy - all of the good stuff Western culture has produced that theirs never would have. Yet they are behind when it comes to adopting the values and attitudes necessary to be successful in western culture. IMO, in large part, this is their own psychological problem and not the result of racism (a good counter example is Asians, who look different, but are doing very well as a group in Western societies). Jews, as a group, have also done very well despite discrimination.

It's not "white" racism that is holding minorities back, it's their own defective attitudes. Yet they and their non-minority enablers refuse to recognize that. These people want govt provision of everything because they don't know how (or refuse) to play the game right. They don't get how it works. Because they can't follow the bouncing ball, they think the game is rigged against them. Therefore, the govt must save them. And they end up hating those that can integrate into the system (who they believe have some secret handshakes and are screwing them). There are a fair number of such people and they are getting louder.

Then there's this whole class of non-minorities who, for their own personal psychological reasons, feel the need to "save" these poor oppressed people. They're kind of the white version of the dysfunctional minorities. They don't understand - don't want to really understand - how things work and, being emotional people, they live by colorful myths that demonize successful people. That or they are perfectionists with thin skin that get upset when things are 98% good. It's that 2% that gets them torqued into a screaming radical on the street. These are also people that see govt as the savior (of course they imagine their own genius selves as becoming the govt). You can't have a rational discussion with these people because they aren't rational. Aren't even capable of it.

These are the people that want to tear down statues.

Remember, being a "progressive" means you have to be perpetually unsatisfied. Once you are satisfied there is nothing to progress to because things are fine. Thus progressives are like sharks. They must keep swimming and gobbling up new victims' causes.

On the domestic front, this is by far and away the biggest problem the country faces. It's way down at the grass roots level. The politicians that promote identity politics are just playing off this existing phenomenon in the masses. The pols didn't invent the problem anymore than the vulture that eats the road-kill drove the car that killed it.


Sunday, September 10, 2017 at 3:48:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

To clarify my insomnia induced ramblings....I had a buddy that was an Apache from the White Mountain res in AZ. This is a huge res. up in the mountainous region of mid/northern AZ. Excellent land. I spent time up there as his guest. I was invited to attend sacred ceremonies that few whites have seen. After his father passed away my buddy was on track to become the leader of the bear clan. He was a leader.

I saw the alcoholism, the abuse of women, the inter-clan fighting (w/ knives, etc), the stupid fatal accidents....everyone up there had a govt check and a govt provided home; modest,but decent. They all had nice trucks. At some point they got a casino going that added to tribal revenues. They also had a nice and popular ski resort. Many worked for the BLM or National Forest Service in some capacity. Some were loggers and some were cattle ranchers. The educational opportunities for these people are practically unlimited.

These people have every opportunity to turn their res into a model society AND THEIR NATIVE CULTURE COULD BE LARGELY PRESERVED WITHIN IT. They could really create something beautiful there. Could be at least as functional and coherent as what the Amish do. But they don't. Racism has nothing to do with it. This is a homogenous and potentially self-sufficient (+ govt checks) community that can't get it together.

Yet many sit around doing nothing but bitching about the white man and drinking and creating a wide variety of social ills - which they blame on the white man. They were doing this bitching and slacking back in the '80s before identity politics became the norm.

I think the idea of the USA as a melting pot is false. IMO, it can't work. This is a sad realization for me. European and Asian cultures seem able to melt in the pot just fine, but Native and African cultures, not so much. The politicians have realized this too and are working it; probably making it a lot worse, but surfing on existing currents all the same.


Sunday, September 10, 2017 at 11:24:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

btw...my experience on the WM Apache res is one of the reasons I am totally in agreement w/ Jim's perspective on nation building and foreign interventions generally. If the WM Apache can't get it together despite living in a perfect incubator INCONUS, then how the hell are we going to have a bunch of Afghans or Vietnamese, thousands of miles away to become something functional as we define it?

It's a fools errand


Sunday, September 10, 2017 at 11:58:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...


In my work I have met both native communities that were doing very well and native communities that were not. You'll be not at all surprised, I suspect, to learn that the ones that are working out did it because people there put hard work into it themselves and not because the Indian Affairs bureaucrats worked miracles in some places and not others.

So yes, interestingly, our experiences parallel there and that's been part of my thinking, too. What I have observed is that bureaucracies usually "build" societies that are dependent on those bureaucracies. Then either the bureaucracies never leave, or when they do, those nations collapse. The only times this isn't true, like Germany and Japan, are when we weren't really doing nation-building in the first place so much as some surface-level regime change.

Sunday, September 10, 2017 at 12:18:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"Then either the bureaucracies never leave, or when they do, those nations collapse."

Right. Which is why I am opposed to excessive govt intervention in the larger US society. I'm a moderate libertarian. I always get razzed by democrats about my not wanting public roads, etc. I never said any of that. The "moderate" is a qualifier that means I recognize the need for public goods. Being trained as an economist means I recognize market failures. Insurance for the elderly (i.e. social security and medicare being other good examples). However, I do think we need to draw hard lines as to where govt should step in.

Those lines are where a lot of the division lies in this country. The identity politics, as I outlined above, are really proxy wars for the drawing of the lines, IMO. Victims claim to need govt intervention in all aspects of life. I say the govt intervention makes them weak and dependent (as does seeing themselves as helpless victims in the first place).

The beer/latte summit must somehow overcome that underscoring.


Sunday, September 10, 2017 at 1:46:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...


I'm not opposed to government interventions when people can actually convince me that they would work, but I think too often they are started based on what someone wishes would happen, not what they can actually achieve. This is certainly true of foreign wars but I think of domestic policy too.

You don't seem confident about Lisa's beer-latte summit. Perhaps you are right, but at least a rational discussion about goals and means can be had by people who disagree. If your starting point is to kick over the table because it's a symbol of [insert here] oppression, then that kind of cuts short the discussion.

Monday, September 11, 2017 at 12:11:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

mike and avedis.
we made it thru the storm.
electric is out but that's common living in the woods.
Lisa is fine.
i lost 1 100 yo pecan tree down with no collateral damage.
my old barn didn't lose a piece of tin roofing.
thanks for your concern.
i plan to write a series on oers and life in the army of old.

Monday, September 11, 2017 at 12:39:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

i am not anti big business.
i am pro union and labor.
i am anti big business run and owned by foreign concerns.

Monday, September 11, 2017 at 12:47:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Glad to hear you weathered the storm with minimal hardship.

I am also pro-union as long as they don't get out of control. I notice a lot of modern progressives are against big business, but that seems to me to be against the working en and women of the country. With you on being anti-foreign run big biz....are you sure you're not really in the Trump camp ;-)

Look forward to your mil posts


Monday, September 11, 2017 at 1:15:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

I'm glad to hear you are both all right.

Monday, September 11, 2017 at 2:48:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...


Jim and I were just discussing this:

"European and Asian cultures seem able to melt in the pot just fine, but Native and African cultures, not so much."

Not to white-wash all, but these tend to be more tribal groups; there are so many examples of how they struggle in industrial society. A 30-year NYT science writer wrote a rigorous book a few years back that was sunk by the the liberal media where he posited just this idea.

Per your comment on who should handle the beer-latte summit, you are right: whomever, it will still only be surface.


Tuesday, September 12, 2017 at 5:18:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am a racist in that I believe there really are difference between races. Not every last member, of course. The bell curve means that there will be overlap between races on the tails. The extent to which culture versus genetics contribute to the differences is hard to say. If one believes in evolution then it follows that environmental factors led to the development of cultures that are well adapted to the environment and then individuals within the cultures best suited for the culture and, ergo, the environment.

I am not a racist (pejorative) in that I don't believe that the differences mean that one race gets to treat another badly.


Wednesday, September 13, 2017 at 7:10:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

The book is, "A Troublesome Inheritance" by Nicholas Wade. I think that it is simply a fact, and cannot be doubted, unless one wishes to be willfully blind and Pollyannaish.


Thursday, September 14, 2017 at 3:26:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

I'm not sure why it would be surprising that Eurasian cultures do better in a Eurasian-derived melting pot.

That there is a book called A Troublesome Inheritance by Wade, we can agree on. I found some of his arguments laughable, particularly what I took as implications that there might be some genetic basis to highly significant behavioral traits that could proliferate across a population of millions in a mere thousand years in England, China, etc. Laughable. That geneticists seemed to be mostly united in criticizing this book confirmed my suspicions. Ultimately I suppose this is what you get when you trust an outsider to interpret a complex field in which he does not have expertise.

However, I will say that this is the sort of reaction that the dominant left wing of social science has essentially brought on itself by insisting -- Stalinist style -- that race absolutely cannot ever be correlated to intelligence or social evolution, never ever ever, because such statistics would be politically inconvenient to them, and that just cannot be.

An eminently irrefutable logic, there.

Thursday, September 14, 2017 at 10:22:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I don't see why genetics would not be selected for successful abilities and behaviors. I actually don't believe in evolution (speciation). The current theory has way too many holes in it. I do however, believe in natural selection for adaptive traits. We can see that happening. Darwin observed it. We can reproduce it in the lab.

There is every reason to believe that the races don't just differ in physical looks, but in behavioral and mental tendencies. Why wouldn't they? And we can see this too. No one doubts that a quarter horse has a totally different "personality" than a thoroughbred or draft horse. No one doubts the pit bulls are different personalities from poodles. In fact, liberals like to target pit bulls as evil dogs that should be banned. So they even recognize disparity in breeds.

Certain environments require an emphasis on different mental attributes for survival.

Funny that a lot of liberals these days have no problem bashing "white people" for supposed bad personality traits, while denying there is such a thing as race. But then I have given up on looking for coherence in liberal beliefs long ago.

Charles Murray's "The Bell Curve" is definitive, IMO. Yes, there may be other types of IQ, but what is measured by the tests correlates highly with the mental skills necessary to thrive in modern industrial society. The racial differences even hold true when culture and educational and income level are controlled for.

Just because you don't like something doesn't make it not true. Murray's science seems quite sound to me.


Sunday, September 17, 2017 at 10:59:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

If you don't accept the theory of evolution, then why are you trying to apply it in this particular case? Speciation is an effect of evolution, not evolution itself. For that matter, speciation has been observed and reproduced in a laboratory setting too, so by your own standards there, you ought to accept it. Perhaps you don't understand the theory as well as you imagine you do. That problematic beginning kind of makes the rest of your reasoning irrelevant here.

As far as my observation about how quickly traits can proliferate across a population, that isn't really a matter of opinion. It's basic math. The bigger your population an the slower you reproduce, the longer it takes for traits to disperse. It follows that even if there were people selectively breeding the human population, which there weren't, it would have taken hundreds of thousands of years to achieve the degree of genetic diversity in humans that we have produced in dogs. So I don't know what that comparison is supposed to illustrate.

Sunday, September 17, 2017 at 4:11:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I understand the theory - emphasis on "theory" - of evolution quite well. Adaptation, which Darwin observed, is the emphasis of genes already in the genetic pool of a species. Again, the bell curve is a handy concept. You have finches with and average beak length. On the right side of the curve you have longer beaks and, on the left side, shorter beaks. If getting at the local food source is easier with a longer beak, eventually the finches with the genetic mix that expresses longer beaks will become dominant because they are more likely to survive to reproduce and flourish.

But here's the thing. It's not a new species. It's the same old finch with an emphasis on longer beaks. If you took the finches and placed them in an environment that was neutral to long beak success, over time they'd revert to something closer the original mean because the genetic potential for shorter beaks still exists within their gene pool.

All of that is very different from saying that a lizard can become a finch or even that a finch can become an eagle. The idea that a lizard can become a finch hinges on excepting that genetic mutations can occur that magically increase survival success as an entirely new critter. Sorry, but ain't gonna happen. A finch is not a lizard who's scales have mutated to become feathers. That alone would be a remarkable mutation, but more importantly, it that change would have to coincide with dozens of others in systems so complex as to be almost incomprehensible when considered thoroughly.

A finch and a lizard, out of necessity for their roles in life, have totally differ skeletal systems. They have different ocular systems. Ocular systems are connected to the central nervous system, etc etc etc etc. .....so we're looking at a multitude of successful mutations happening at once.

Why at once? because it doesn't work to be a feathered lizard with bones so heavy that it can't fly. Or a bird with lizard eyes that can't detect the seeds it eats from the air. Or a cold blooded bird. Do you have any idea how complex the mutations would have to be to move from cold blooded to warm blooded?

I tried to build a model once that would assess the amount of time needed to allow mutations to occur that would permit such changes to happen accidentally over time. There isn't enough time in the universe for monkeys banging on key boards to write even that relative simple book. It's actually far worse for the theory that it doesn't start with lizards. It starts with primordial ooze. There are a number of highly qualified biologists that agree with me.

Then there is the fact that genetic mutations that we can observe in real time almost always are negative. They harm the individual experiencing them, not help it. The offspring of the mutations that do manage to live to reproduce and that aren't sterile (a very small subset)are usually failures.

Then - and this is important - you'd have to have many other individuals experiencing identical mutations at the same time and those individual surviving to breed with similar mutants if you want the mutation to take hold and replicate in the population. Otherwise, the mutation would be lost in the greater genetic sea of the species and reversion to the mean would occur.

It's all so silly that a single mutant could influence an entire population. If you are going to talk about multiple mutant individuals all happening at once then you are very very close suggesting intelligent design.

The fossil record, contrary to what some hard core believers say, does not show lots of in between species. Rather, you get sudden bursts of change. If the mutation theory were to be true - and I don't see how it can be - then you'd have layers of mixed critters; like finches with scales, but bird skeletal systems, etc, etc etc etc. We don't see that when we carefully examine the evidence.

The theory of mutation driven evolution s right there with global warming.Poor science that has become politicized.


Monday, September 18, 2017 at 8:04:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

evolution con't...

Now as for humans, ponder this for a moment. Those of northern European and Middle eastern ancestry typically have some % of what is called "Neanderthal" DNA. Sub-Saharan Africans do not. Clearly the out-of Africa theory cannot be correct. African humans would have been breeding with some other type of human they encountered only upon existing Africa. Ergo, humans existed outside of Africa and had different genetics. How can that be if all humans started in Africa? It can't! That 1% or 2% Neanderthal DNA could be doing a lot! Keep in mind the genetic similarities between humans and monkeys; or even humans and a frog.

Then there is Java Man, who is not the same as Neanderthal or Africans, but does seem to be the progenitor of the Asian race.

Plus, we keep discovering that humans are much older than previously believed. There is plenty of time for separate races to emerge; especially if geographically dispersed human populations started out somewhat different (i.e. Java Man, Neanderthal, Sub-Saharan).

But the bottom line here is that if there is sufficient time for skin color to evolve to meet environmental pressures, then there is sufficient time for nervous systems to evolve somewhat too; resulting in a different set of intellectual abilities and behavioral characteristics.....

....All assuming you believe in classical evolution (which I do not).

I think it is *mostly* Darwinian selection at play here (excepting the fact of Neanderthal and Java influence). If interracial breeding took place over a long period of time, humans would eventually revert to the mean. In the meanwhile, we have interracial differences that must be accepted if we are to actually understand and address social issues arising from the fact.


Monday, September 18, 2017 at 8:28:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

A few more thoughts on genetics (apologies to Jim and Lisa for being a blog hog).

Genes are not magical little gods. All they do is turn on and off proteins. There is no gene for feathers. There is no gene that builds a hand or a tooth. There is no brain creating gene.

Where most people are concerned (many of them scientists) genes and the mutation theory of evolution are indistinguishable from magical thinking and Just So Stories. They get to feel superior to religious people while indulging in exactly the same kind of thinking. Lightening hit some primordial ooze and a bunch of acids and proteins fused to create "life". The genes in the life blob started mutating by random chance and we ended up with what we see today. Don't question it! What??!!?? Do you believe in God or something, you backwards idiot!

Even though none of that can be replicated in any lab and much of it is inconsistent with the available evidence (which means it isn't really science).

I do not like the false dichotomy of 'either you accept our "science" or you must be a believer in the God of Moses and Abraham'. Whenever I see such straw man arguments, I know I'm dealing with propagandists with political motivations and not deep thinkers interested in truth.

An offshoot is that if you think there are racial differences that count, then you are a Nazi hater.

I also do not like it when people suggest that certain truths are simply too dangerous. We can't accept racial differences because it will lead to Nazism and gas chambers and slavery. What else they are hiding from us for our own good? I am not a child and I do not have respect for those Harvard people that think I am and who have anointed themselves as my keeper.

Some of deplorables spend time thinking about things other than guns and Bibles. Amazing, huh?


Monday, September 18, 2017 at 8:49:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Finally, I have borrowed the language of the genetics oriented theorists to demonstrate the silliness of evolution via mutations and the potential for true human racial variation. On the first point to show the lack of internal consistency and on the latter to use the accepted theory against itself.

Naturally the question will arise, "Well, what do you think is happening then?".

IMO, consciousness is primary. This life is more akin to a dream than we realize (just as we do not realize that we are dreaming when caught up in the drama and action of a dream). Matter is merely energy at a low vibrational level. Thoughts seem to be energy and consciousness can have intent. If we become aware we are dreaming we can intend the reality we experience within the dream. People that have accessed other realms of consciousness describe layered dimensions of intelligence; with influences going down and up the layers. Somewhere in all that - and probably much more - is the answer. I've studied this stuff for my entire adult life and have achieved some of these experiences myself as well as personally received verifiable evidence that proves to my satisfaction that there is most definitely something going on beyond the material.

None of that requires faith in what is in the Bible (or any other organized religion). It does go past the current "scientific" meme that we are all meat robots in a meaningless world that has developed by random chance.


Monday, September 18, 2017 at 9:11:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

This article says it better than I and even directly addresses a couple points you made re; the reality of human races.



Monday, September 18, 2017 at 11:59:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous David said...

With respect, it's conceivable that your graduate training in economics has not adequately prepared you to grapple with current research in an unrelated scientific field. I don't mind bashing the social sciences all day, but when you start claiming vast swathes of the well-established natural sciences are in on the gimmickry, you're heading into frankly kookish territory.

Evolution is the change in the distribution of traits in a population over time, not the creation of new species. From the perspective of modern biology, Darwin was at best only half-right: these changes can occur because of natural selection, artificial selection, or a number of other drivers, like just random genetic drift. Most of the ones studied by biologists are genetically based, and we do in fact know a number of genetic sequences that drive creation of traits like feathers, contrary to your claim there.

Occasionally, where populations are isolated long enough, they can undergo change to the point where they can no longer interbreed, but "speciation" isn't really the point of the theory of evolution. Since it seems important to you, though, I'll point out that it's already occurring with dogs in a pretty short span of time -- not on the genetic level, because in a lab you could do whatever you wanted with this, but just on a physical level, there are obviously some breeds that couldn't interbreed on their own. Genetically you need the isolation so that some more radical mutations can make the change irreversible, but if you put both new "species" back into exactly the same set of selective pressures, yes, you'd expect there to be some convergence again if you waited long enough.

Java Man isn't human and isn't "the progenitor of the Asian race." That's not possible, genetically. Java Man was Homo erectus, which spread out of Africa for a very long period of time and had its own races. I'll use that term because I think it matches with humans -- I suppose the biologists would say great regional diversity or some such because we don't usually use the term "races" to talk about non-human groups. There were quite a number of human-ish subtypes, like Neanderthals, that emerged in the same milieu in the last million years. These were close enough that they interbred, like our humans and Neanderthals and Denisovans. People who say we started in Africa either mean it only in a general sense -- the first hominids were obviously African -- or are just playing the odds that because Africa has the highest genetic diversity, it's older on the whole and therefore more likely to be first.

All of that said, the genetic diversity between modern human races is trivial compared to that between different archaic human races, which in turn is trivial compared to that between all archaic humans and Homo erectus like Java man. You don't actually need natural selection to explain all subsequent change -- for instance, maybe red hair is just dramatic drift and sexual selection -- but if you're going to posit that natural selection drove meaningful changes in brain structure on different continents, you'd need to identify the environmental pressure that gave rise to that, which you haven't.

Monday, September 18, 2017 at 3:15:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Nonsense. Where do separate species come from then? Why does one always hear about genetic mutations driving speciation? The primordial ooze/protein and amino acid soup + lightening strikes, etc? I believe I am accurately representing what evolutionary science claims to be the case.

Most biologists that I've talked to recognize the difference between Darwinian adaptation versus speciation exactly as I describe.

If Darwin is even half correct, as you say, why are their still monkeys? Why would they all have not turned into humans? Why are there not other talking species. Wouldn't the same evolutionary pressures that drove humans to evolve have driven monkeys to evolve, zebras to develop speech?

Any forensic expert can identify the gender and race of a person simply by looking at their bones. There are clear differences in skull shape and even brain shape and size between the races. That is pure science. anthropologists like to deny the differences between races (or that race even exists), but biologists tend to accept the concept and the science supporting it.


These questions are usually answered with the genetic mutation argument.

Monday, September 18, 2017 at 5:03:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

David and avedis,

I appreciate your passion preceded by my mention of Wade's book. There is much to say re. "fitness" to a society. To me, it seems reasonable to take Mead's approach to observing different cultures in situ to arrive at some ideas of differences (and similarities.)

David disdains Wade's suggestion "that there might be some genetic basis to highly significant behavioral traits that could proliferate across a population of millions in a mere thousand years in England, China, etc. Laughable."

Not exactly, David -- societal pressure could result in this eventuality. There is emerging work showing that secondary trauma inheres in a population following genocides, like the Holocaust. That would be one generation to a new genome.

We have been hardcore Darwinians for 150+ years, trouncing Lamarck along the way, but lo, Lamarck is having his day, now. Maybe those giraffes really DID possess an intention to reach the higher branches, thus the elegant necks ...

If you do not wish to follow avedis's idea on the primacy of intention, we cannot dismiss the emerging field of epigenetics: not only may a trait be manifested (whether "turned on" from the existing genome or otherwise "created" by a shuffling of the base pairs) in one lifetime, but that new trait may then be heritable! Big changes in how mutable the genome may in fact be.

As avedis says, mutations are not usually favorable to the organism and hence not passed on, but from whence arises epigenetic changes? Probably a welter of pressures. Whether they perdure is yet another unknown matter ...

I'm with avedis in that the Lucy "Out of Africa" scenario for all mankind seems far-fetched, and I also agree with the punctuated evo theories popularized by Stephen Jay Gould.

There is nothing condescending in recognizing racial differences, ISTM. We will not all have the same opportunity to become President one day, despite the doggerel.

And the things that define us are so manifold as to be beyond our ability to quantify, or to even understand. Begin with even the simplest thing which we think we understand, hormones.

Each race (or geographical group, or whatever the p.c. term is) demonstrates different levels (i.e., black females have the highest levels of testosterone; white females, next, and Asian women, the lowest.) But that is only one of an intricate soup of hormones (and we may not even have identified all, yet.)

So how does this small biological difference affect behavior? It is unknown! To branch out from there to construct a cohesive "racial" template is an impossible task.

But what we can do is to observe who creates and adapts to more industrialized societies, and who seems to fall behind once placed in them, and why that might be. Our mindset is always to be able to initiate a corrective, but perhaps a detente and acceptance of different proclivities might be more functional. And honorable.

Again, that would be to give the lie to the bromides that everyone can be this or that.

Monday, September 18, 2017 at 5:56:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well said!

Again, I think there are some important differences between the races and there is plenty of evidence for that; albeit a lot of suppressed.

However, I will not abide those differences being used as an excuse to mal-treat any group. In fact, if we desire to do good and benefit all to the greatest extent possible, then we must understand what is happening first. A lot of current political woes are centered on the belief that everyone can be anything they want to be and that everyone wants to be some common ideal, and, if they aren't achieving, it must be due to some sinister villains stunting their opportunities by design (consciously and/or subconsciously). This is a cruel mistake in thinking that helps no one; not alleged victim nor alleged oppressor and makes us all worse off in the long run.

I admit it is a conundrum of a challenge as to how to deal with it. OTOH, I know a lot of blue collar types that are perfectly happy accepting that they will be high paid tech workers, doctors or lawyers or rocket scientists. They just want decent paying jobs that they are capable of doing. Thus another current political issue is revealed. Good jobs for all at the level of employment they are capable of performing.

Equality - other than equality in the eyes of the law - is a supremely dangerous concept that is running wild with the liberals these days. Worse they've framed it in a way that if you disagree then you are a Hitler beast that must be driven from society.


Monday, September 18, 2017 at 7:35:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

typo; "...*not* be high paid....."

Lots of people I know accept who they are and that it falls short of the high achiever/high paid model.

But when race gets involved, there is too often the assumption that not achieving is due to race on the part of the low achiever. Another reason I don't think the melting pot works. People of color can't seem to see themselves as anything other than their color. Way too self-conscious. Add to that the inferior - by modern US standards - culture they are born into and we have big problems with a negative self-identity.

Then come the mal-adaptive genetic (?) issues. A bottomless pit of despair emerges for those in the middle and to the left on the bell curve.


Tuesday, September 19, 2017 at 7:11:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Nikolay Levin said...

Oh Dear God. Where do I begin in this frazzle?

The fossil record is incomplete Avedis and you forgot to add all the mass extinctions that so rigidly defined the geological record since life first evolved on earth; like oh, the extinction of the dinosaurs. Who survived that giant asteroid impact? Water-based predators like crocodiles, crafty anthropods like the horseshoe crab (so old that the literal blue-blood survived multiple extinction events and cannot even be called a crab at all) and flying beasts roughly summarized as raptors.

You know them today as birds.

Those less coarse feathers became more apt when birds could dominate the skies unopposed with a significantly smaller level of oxygen in the atmosphere versus dealing with scorpions that were as big as elephants and pray mantises whose giant scythes likely required more protective skin. Insects get that big when more oxygen is in the atmosphere. Modest predators that could only get at flying things when they were on the ground or when they left their nests vulnerable hewed toward the trait of feathers rather than the trait of scales. Quickness of flight rather than the necessity or armor. Even the mammals joined in, like the infamous bat. Organisms evolved according to the fickle environment, not the other way around. I think the wisdom of avoiding messing with a fickle parent like Mother Nature is only recognized by indigenous people today, most famously Native Americans. I bet my bottom dollar that a critical mass of mankind finding out this wisdom is correlated with Man's survival. Science confirmed this of course. Conservatively 95%, of all the species on earth have become extinct. The number that has the most consensus is 99%. I know you have a deathwish Avedis. But some of us dreamed of exploring the stars.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017 at 10:35:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Nikolay Levin said...

For all the secret knowledge Avedis and Lisa seem to believe they share. There is a lot that isn't talked about race. Perhaps there are clusters of differences among "races". That hasn't stopped say, blacks from well exceeding the average hundred IQ, or IQ differences being explained by deficiencies in nutrition or safety in the slum port cities that dot the entire third world and are the legacy of forced marches and migration by European Imperialism. Do I have to tell you who disproportionately lives in homes built with lead even in the great old United States? Still, even if we take the presumption of inferior mental capacity of blacks (which you seem to be getting at) life in more humble societies can charm even the most successful "more intelligent and more civilized" whites.

There is the perhaps intentionally scandalous story of Swiss woman Corinne Hofmann who dumped her white boyfriend and married and had children with a Masai warrior which she turned into a multi-million dollar selling book and movie. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_White_Masai

But a more down-to-earth British PhD student also married into a Masai warrior tribe. Her quotes are poignant and relevant here I think.

On returning to Britain to complete her PhD.

'For three weeks, I barely left my room. I felt like a stranger in my own culture - the sheer noise of city life gave me a splitting headache. I realised I now thought of Africa as my home, and I was determined to go back.'

On life with her husband today.

'It's a simple life, and one that would be anathema to most people in the West, but it makes me happy,' she says. 'I have no problem with giving up my western ways. When I'm there I feel so alive and free. Living with the tribe has taught me to live in the present. It taught me what matters.'


It worked out for white women. But certainly a successful millionaire antiques dealer with a wife twenty years his junior wouldn't give up his 12-room mansion to live among African herders too...


Oh....... oh.

I'm straddling two posts here with the topics of the thread bleeding into each other but I have other thoughts on black rappers writing entire graphic songs spitting disses against who has more white groupies willing to splay their legs naked on their kitchen table at the convenience of a booty call in the next post and why the contrast couldn't be more different. For all the hared spewed against Jews who are supposedly trying to mix the races by seducing white girls with black marketed music; the music you probably hear, even in an urban radio station, does a better job at reinforcing tyrannical corporate culture among everyone involved than any other medium. Hop on over there in a bit to see why.

Tuesday, September 19, 2017 at 10:35:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Nikolay Levin said...

I almost forgot. This archetypal yearning perhaps these European women feel towards their tribal husbands may be rooted in a way of life long past; where Europeans resembled the humble Empire of Nir or perhaps the Indus Valley civilization who forswore the use of violence to cow their rivals and only relied on the promise of their bounty and goodwill to rule and expand.

"Now comes ‘Old Europe’. The Oxford exhibition is small, but utterly spectacular. Its objects – the figurines, the painted ceramics – are irresistible. Its message adds a new page to the conventional history of ‘civilisation’. Some 7000 years ago, in south-eastern Europe around the lower Danube, groups of farmers with loosely similar ways of life settled in an area reaching from modern Bulgaria and Romania across into Ukraine. In the transitional period between the Neolithic and the Bronze Age, they flourished and multiplied. They evolved an elaborately beautiful material culture of painted pottery, goldwork and beads. They modelled and treasured clay figurines of women – and a few men. They mined copper and gold, and imported fashionable seashells from the distant Aegean. They seem to have lived in peace and equality. Before the first big cities arose in Mesopotamia, the peoples settled between the Carpathians and the Dnieper (heftily named the ‘Cucuteni-Tripolye culture’) lived in enormous ‘villages’ with up to 8000 inhabitants. These were the largest communities anywhere in the world. But such ‘megatowns’ show no trace of palaces or temples or other structures of central authority. If this ‘Old Europe’ had survived and spread westwards and northwards, the human story of the whole continent might have developed along a different track – perhaps a happier one...

The figurines are the stars of the show. Almost all of them are the stylised bodies of women, their legs squeezed tightly together, their heads often represented by a blank knob, their thighs and sometimes torsos incised with swirly patterns which seem to represent clothing. In some of the sets of Cucuteni figurines, the women are sitting in a circle on tiny chairs. At another site, they were found arranged inside a curious bowl which may represent a building. They seem to be holding a meeting.

What are they up to, and what is going on? The late Marija Gimbutas, who introduced the ‘Old Europe’ term, was sure she knew. They were mother goddesses, worshipped in a peace-loving society run by women. Reaching into her own background in Lithuania, the last pagan country in Europe, she identified a White Goddess of Death and all the deities of a maternal fertility cult. According to Gimbutas, this ancient matriarchy was finally overthrown by an invasion of primitives from the Black Sea steppes, horse-riding tribes dominated by male warriors. Agriculture, the earth-loving mode of life practised by women who controlled fertility in a society without hierarchy, was replaced by the male activities of stock-breeding, raiding and battle under dominant warlords."


Wednesday, September 20, 2017 at 12:26:00 AM GMT-5  
Anonymous Nikolay Levin said...

These pastoral warlords resemble the war-like cultures that were shared and diffused through violence between what would become the "races" of Mongoloids and Caucasians that defined Scandinavia, the Steppe and what would become Western Europe, to the point that the Hungarians speak Magyar or Mag-Yar as its spoken in its actual Asian accent, all the way in Europe and the Ainu migrating all the way to Japan and escaping barbarian violence are thought to be Caucasian. The tyrannical feudal principalities that would become Imperialist Capitalism had many fathers under several ethnicities. For all these races' capacities for "civilization" Japanese women have surgery on their teeth to be jagged like a toddlers. And Americans, of course, juxtapose teddy bears with seemingly sexually-available teenage girl singers in bikinis planting their asses onto the crotches of older male vocalists (of course I'm taking about that notorious televised concert).

What is this supposed to tell us? These "developed" cultures encourage pedophilia. This is endemic to peoples that pass down property and power patrilinearly and who have to make certain of the fatherhood of their heirs, so the girls have to marry and they have to marry young, even before their first blood. They also must be considered property and not full human beings. Typical in Western Europe and Japan until very, very recently and then only changed in ideal culture. Child-sex rings are now a pastime for the Clintons and Trumps of the West on "Air Lolitas". Just because these cultures would rather trash nobler examples of coexisting doesn't mean they're superior. That should be theme of the last millennia (at the very least).

Just some of the cultural features of "civilized" people that its denizens find too taboo to admit. Ideal culture versus real culture in other words. I can see why even European Neo-Pagans find Western Civilization overrated and mourn what they lost, when they forgot the lessons of the majesty of nature their gods and goddesses taught them and decided in their folly to follow the charlatans who thought they could not only control it, but peoples who lived among it as well.


This sentiment has been put into poetry and sound, and its selling pretty well. This is just one iteration.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017 at 12:28:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger rangeragainstwar said...

Howdy, Nikolay! Boy, I don't know how we got off on this one ...

Just two more ideas from my bank of "secret info" which you impute to avedis and me:

1) A couple of years ago, Science Daily reported new finding re. fingerprints supporting a distinct racial difference evident in fingerprints.

We used to think every fingerprint was unique, but recent studies show that while all Western fingerprints are unique, not so with African Americans, 15% of whose members share bioidentical markers in their whorls.

2) Chronic pain causes not only conformational changes in both brain matter and structure, but also neural connections. But the big story is, these "learned" changes are then heritable. So their are lines of generationally "overly-sensitive" pain responders, hence supporting the idea, once again, of changes happening within one generation.

Consider a geographical trauma like, say The Blitz, and one can imagine observational and quantifiable changes spread out over a large population.

Again, this is not to claims supremacy for anyone or any way, just to recognize undeniable difference.

New post tomorrow.


Thursday, September 21, 2017 at 5:25:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Nikolay Levin said...

Lisa, I didn't see your post today so perhaps Jim decided to postpone the sequel too. If so (or perhaps even so), I'll ponder a few things here (and for my blog) and then return to my studies (which I really need to get back to.)

The implication I got from you is that you have knowledge the scientific community hasn't already figured out :-).

#1 can be explained easily. No Western European was ever bred for slavery and the only breeding in the history of slavery were that of Slavic concubines Germanic and Viking tribes captured as booty and sold as sex slaves (which was bad enough).

When the pressure from the industrialists and abolitionists encouraged the United States to ban the docking of slave ships, however, the South turned to something cruel and inhumane that was never attempted before or since. Slave husbandry. They found a choice African slave "stud" or "mandingo" (actually, the latter may instead imply the secret predilections of horny slave master's daughter/wife) and had them breed select females, for strength, dexterity or any other need the slavemaster desired. While any white member of the master's family could bed a "Jezebel" at will, whether she wanted to or not, they only let certain slave men procreate. Many, many, many African Americans thus have a recent common ancestor. Thank you progressive feudalistic Southern cotton farmers.

So I'm sure African-Americans have clusters of unusually similar genetic markers (which explains their almost uniform size and muscle mass and testosterone apparently). What do you make of the !Kung people who are considered the most genetically diverse ethnicity in the world or of the rest of the fairly large and populated continent of Africa for that matter?

#2 Native American shamans have known this for centuries. They claimed, before to ridicule, that Native Americans' historical addiction to firewater (alcohol) was epigenetic. If the Jews or the British had it bad, you can't imagine what the survivors of the most brutal genocide in recorded history inherited.

I say if anyone deserved reparations its them. Even as an Ashkenazi Jew I recognize that the victims that least deserved it got the most recompense (middle class Jews, who lived relatively well even before the Holocaust and weren't as thoroughly exterminated). I and many other Jews of my generation find this unjust. But I can't deny that this phenomena is a post-Fedualist pattern of Capitalist Western "justice".

In what would be an original post to my blog. There was once a white couple featured in the Guinness Book of World Records that gave birth to a black boy with no known parents in the family tree that weren't white (I hope they have a DVD collection of the TV series, because I'm not buying all those print editions). Where does whiteness end and blackness begin? If you ever do plan to answer it in one of your infamous posts, I hope you do so when I have time for the subsequent flame war in the summer and winter academic breaks ;-).

Saturday, September 23, 2017 at 12:16:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...


I stand in awe, and could never hope to match your prodigious commentary output ;).

You refer to my infamous posts. While I thank you for the compliment of suggesting I produce such high agitation, I'm not sure I can assume that honor! Defining the races isn't my thing; I was dialoging with something avedis said, I think.

I'm thinking of that (possible) headcase, Rachel Dolezal who did the afro hair so well. I wrote a piece defending her right to claim for negritude, and against those who did not think she could be allowed that leeway (mostly, black.)

In my cursory understanding of her background I thought, "Well, why not?" Most of us are mongrels, and who knows? As with gender identity, you are what you think you are, right?

Later, I discovered she sued for racism both on the basis of being white and black, as it fit her needs. So that's not too cool, is it?

Saturday, September 23, 2017 at 1:40:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...


new post 9.24.17.

Saturday, September 23, 2017 at 1:41:00 PM GMT-5  
Anonymous Nikolay Levin said...

Well, it helped that I was about to fail an exam in English the last week (I ended up barely passing) but now its back to school to jump back from it.

Although FDChief and BadTux were hotheads and left because of your content, (especially the latter although Moe and others left too) a productive respectful discussion is rare even among my radical left compatriots. Despite Bourgeoisie Liberalism increasingly being confounded by its own contradictions, the young'ins have something to learn from you old breed. Its what draws me back every time.

I think Dolezal is endemic of a mad society, haunted by certain societal forces. But the dissertation I'm being graded on is my English one. Its also the one I'm paying the big bucks for. So perhaps I'll expound on that in my infamous way another time.

Good deal and we'll see you on the other side.

Saturday, September 23, 2017 at 1:58:00 PM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...

"Old breed"?!?

Not so fast, Sonny! I call it "reality", mine, at least.

Y'think people jumped ship cos they couldn't bear the truth? If that's so, it's all to the good, no? All shall be very well, as Julian of Norwich assured.

I don't know this "Moe", but I smile to think of the Three Stooges. And I really did like Chief ... it's just, it seems he took a turn somewhere.

I've remained true to my ethics. (It's an unknown to me when my former associates think it is I who have changed.)

Agreed: "Dolezal is endemic of a mad society".

... Now focus on that English, y'hear, Sonny :)

Monday, September 25, 2017 at 5:06:00 AM GMT-5  
Blogger Lisa said...


Sorry, but it just hit me: are you calling us "bourgies"?!

I think not.

I am always amused how the "young" (maybe 10 years younger) drop in the "oldie" line, the painfully obvious dismissive backhanded compliment.

Truth has no expiration date, Nikolay. Your grandfather (I suspect, a real old person) may have ingathered more truth than the both of us.

So there's that.

Monday, September 25, 2017 at 1:03:00 PM GMT-5  

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