The War on Human Nature

Original research published by the National Policy Institute. Download the PDF here.

Darwinian Evolution revolutionized the natural sciences. The social sciences have been immune for too long.

Enormous strides have been made in recent years in unraveling the evolutionary basis of human nature. Among other thing, this work totally undermines the Behaviorist view that everything human is environmentally determined. Behaviorism, for decades, hindered serious progress in the social sciences; it is well that it be put to rest.

Unfortunately the pervasive influence of Cultural Marxism and the tactics of its adherents have prevented evolutionary approaches from spreading widely in the human sciences. This is apparent in the persistent rejection of any discussion of the biological basis of human racial differences, nowhere more so than in issues relating to IQ. This rejection in unfazed by the fact that there are few, if any, constructs in the social sciences more powerful than IQ. It correlates with and predicts an extremely wide range of social phenomena including, but not limited to, school and economic performance, criminal behavior, differences in wealth between nations, and demographic groups within nations. Among research psychologists this is well known and not particularly controversial. Equally well-known is that, based on decades of research, IQ is, in large measure, genetically determined.

Among elite opinion makers, however, the importance and predictive power of IQ is denied, as is the idea that it is genetically based. This denial is completely at variance with 100 years of research on IQ and the consensus opinion among research scientists. For example, the American Psychological Association (APA), in response to the controversy surrounding The Bell Curve, created a task force to examine the questions raised, and in 1996 acknowledged the validity and reliability of IQ tests. In addition, the task force also endorsed the idea that IQ is, to a significant extent, heritable, though it remained agnostic on the issue of genetically determined racial differences.[1]

The practical value of IQ is indicated by the reliance in recruitment by two of the nation’s most important institutions upon measures that are, for all intents and purposes, IQ tests. Colleges make extensive use of SAT and ACT scores in the admission process. Both of these tests correlate very highly with IQ tests. Likewise, the United States armed forces use the AFQT (Armed Forces Qualifying Test) in selecting recruits. The test is based on performance on four subtests—Word Knowledge (WK), Paragraph Comprehension (PC), Arithmetic Reasoning (AR), and Mathematics Knowledge (MK). Given the similarity of the abilities measured by the AFQT and standard IQ tests, it is hardly surprising that the two are highly correlated. Both college admissions tests and the AFQT are regularly used by researchers as reliable proxies for IQ tests.

Nevertheless, most intellectuals eschew the idea that important human characteristics and abilities are genetically determined. The reasons are plain, since for at least from the late 1960s, the social sciences and humanities have been dominated by self-conscious egalitarians. The journalist John Derbyshire has called one of the central beliefs of such academics the Dogma of Zero Group Differences, or DZGD; it holds that there there are no inherent human characteristics; human nature is a social construct. In this view, human behavior is culturally determined and the product of social and class conditioning. It follows that, barring certain inconvenient social distinctions, all people must be equal in their abilities and temperament; at the very least, they possess equal human potential. Therefore, any differences in economic or social status are the result of the social conditioning, and more often than not, attributed to the exploitation of the powerless by ruling elites. The powerless are, in this view, induced to accept their oppression because they have been indoctrinated by the ruling class into thinking that their inferior status is the necessary result of their inferior abilities. Put another way the working class is induced to accept the false understanding (false consciousness) that modern societies are meritocratic rather than organized and manipulated to benefit those in power.[2]

Evolutionary explanations undercut this view since, from the evolutionary perspective, a substantial number of human characteristics must be determined by genes shaped by thousands of years of natural selection. Given the demonstrable reality of natural selection and the resultant evolution that it creates, the notion that the human mind is a “blank slate” is simply untenable.[3] Nevertheless this conclusion is rejected by most all of the left-right spectrum, including many of those who claim to believe in evolution.

The dogmatic rejection of any genetic explanations for human difference was glaringly revealed in the left’s response to the publication in 1975 of Sociobiology by the eminent Harvard entomologist Edward O. Wilson.[4] Wilson argued that the nature of animal social behavior, including human social behavior, was governed by the same rules of evolution that shaped all the other features of living things; that human behavior is not immune to natural law and that, in effect, there is a human nature that cannot be easily modified by social conditioning. From this view, boys like guns and girls like dolls, because that is the way they are and no amount of conditioning can erase that difference.

Wilson came under attack by the aptly named Sociobiology Study Group of Science for the People, an attack vigorously supported by the well-known left-wing scientists Stephen Jay Gould and Richard Lewontin. The Study Group did not simply claim that Wilson was mistaken in his science, but that his position was morally tainted and a barely hidden assertion of the inferiority of various non-White racial groups. The fact that Wilson never discussed racial differences in his book (race does not appear anywhere in the index) did not exonerate him from the charge of malicious intent. Wilson’s critics argued that evolutionary explanations survive because “they consistently provide a genetic justification of the status quo and of existing privileges for certain groups according to class, race or sex.” His book betrayed “the personal and social class prejudice of the author.” And he joins a “long parade “ of those “whose work has served to buttress the institutions of their society by exonerating them from responsibility for social problems.” [5] Wilson was hounded for many years by student demonstrators and was often prevented from speaking before university audiences. In one well-known incident at a 1978 meeting of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, ”antagonists commandeered the podium as Wilson was scheduled to speak, delivered a five-minute diatribe against him and his works, and concluded by pouring a pitcher of water over him. . . .” [6]

It should be stressed that that this was an extreme reaction against any claim for the biological basis for human differences. Many social scientists accepted the reality of human biological differences at the level of the individual. However, no such explanations were acceptable for differences between groups. If groups differ, on average, in income or school performance or rates of crime or illegitimacy, these must be due to differential treatment by society and, in particular, to the ethnocentrism, racism and sexism of the majority White population. This view on racial differences emerged in the 1960s and had, by the 1970s, become an unchallengeable orthodoxy, even in supposedly conservative circles and remains so to this day, now under the guise of political correctness.

The fate of Richard Herrnstein and Charles Murray’s book, The Bell Curve, which came out about 20 years after Wilson’s book, is instructive.[7] The main thesis of the book was that group differences in social and economic success could be based, in large measure, on genetic causes. That book, which spent 15 weeks on the New York Times best-seller list in 1994-95, has dropped down the memory hole in elite academic circles, even though at the time it was a major focus of controversy. In 1994, the Wall Street Journal published a statement by noted educational researcher Linda Gottfredson, and endorsed by a large number of individuals readily recognized as the most illustrious researchers in psychology and related fields. Quoting Gottfredson:

Since the publication of The Bell Curve, many commentators have offered opinions about human intelligence that misstate current scientific evidence. Some conclusions dismissed in the media as discredited are actually firmly supported. The following conclusions are fully described in the major textbooks, professional journals and encyclopedias in intelligence. Intelligence is a very general mental capability that, among other things, involves the ability to reason, plan, solve problems, think abstractly, comprehend complex ideas, learn quickly and learn from experience. It is not merely book learning, a narrow academic skill, or test-taking smarts. Rather, it reflects a broader and deeper capability for comprehending our surroundings—“catching on,” “making sense” of things, or “figuring out” what to do. . . . Intelligence, so defined, can be measured, and intelligence tests measure it well.[8]

In the 20 years since The Bell Curve was published, the suppression of the fundamental truths in that book grows even more outrageous. Charles Murray is hardly exaggerating when he argues that in academia, “assistant professors know that their chances of getting tenure will be close to zero if they publish politically incorrect findings on climate change, homosexuality, race differences, gender differences, or renewable energy.”[9] Simply adopting incorrect views is, in academia, to be ostracized and shunned by colleagues.

Unfortunately, this kind of suppression of dissent has infiltrated all walks of life and has had a poisonous effect on the onetime valued ideal of a free exchange of ideas. For instance, in addressing Black-White gaps in education one must claim to believe that such differences are always attributable to social causes and never to any inherent characteristics of individuals. For instance, if Black children are disciplined more frequently in school, it can only be attributed to teachers’ biases. It can never be due to the fact that Black children are many times more likely to engage in criminal acts on the streets when not in school, and do not drop their propensities simply by walking through the schoolhouse door.

To argue that group differences have their basis in genetics is to jeopardize one’s career. The case of the otherwise impeccably leftist Lawrence Summers teaches us a great deal. This economist was forced to resign as president of Harvard University in 2006 for suggesting a possible genetic explanation for differences in scientific achievement between the sexes. His suggestion is hardly exceptional, and, in fact, is based on well-established research that has been well-known for years, namely that most characteristics are more widely distributed among men than among women; i.e., there are more males than females at the extreme tails, top and bottom, of the bell curve. Therefore it is perfectly reasonable to argue that among those scientists who have made extraordinary contributions, there are likely to be more men than women.[10] Before assuming the presidency at Harvard, Summers had been a major economic advisor in the Clinton administration, and after leaving Harvard served in the Obama administration and was the key economic decision-maker in President Obama’s response to the recession of 2007-2008. The fact that he was a respected economist, and one who had served in a liberal Democratic administration, provided him no immunity from the wrath of those who deny the reality of human biological differences.

Nobel laureate geneticist James Watson, one of the most celebrated scientists of our time, came under virulent attack for expressing a forbidden opinion on race. In a long interview published in the London Sunday Times, Watson commented on Western policies with respect to Africa that “are based on the fact that their intelligence is the same as ours—whereas all the testing says not really.” Further,

[T]here is no firm reason to anticipate that the intellectual capacities of people geographically separated in their evolution should prove to have evolved identically. Our wanting to preserve equal powers of reason as some universal human heritage of humanity will not be enough to make it so.

He suggested that new approaches were probably needed to help Africans escape their unfortunate circumstances. For these perfectly defensible statements, he was widely vilified and relieved of his duties at the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory. He had been its director for 35 years and under his leadership it became a world-leading center for basic research in cancer and molecular biology.[11] In late 2014, Watson revealed that he was selling his Nobel Prize because he was short of cash and “no-one really wants to admit I exist.”[12]

The fate of lesser-known individuals who deviate from egalitarian orthodoxy is not so widely publicized. Christopher Brand, a highly respected British scholar published a book on group IQ differences that produced such uproar among his critics that his publishers cancelled his contract and went so far as to recall all the books it had already distributed to bookstores. He was subsequently dismissed from his position at Edinburg University, although the university eventually settled with him for unlawful dismissal.[13]

In the United States, deviating from accepted opinion about universal natural equality and biological sameness results in ostracism or loss of employment. In countries that lack free-speech protections, dissenting from the accepted views is criminalized. J. Philippe Rushton was investigated by the Ontario police for possible prosecution for a paper he presented on racial differences at an academic conference in 1989. According to Jonathan Rauch, writing in Reason magazine, the police “launched a six-month investigation of Rushton under Canada's hate-speech prohibition. They questioned his colleagues, demanded tapes of his debates and media appearances, and so on." If prosecuted and convicted, Rushton might have been imprisoned for two year for “using questionable source data.” Rauch explains, ”In the end, the attorney general decided not to prosecute and settled for denouncing Rushton’s ideas as ‘loony.’”[14]

All of these sanctions serve to intimidate those who question the prevalent egalitarian dogma and they appear to be working as planned. To quote Murray “We will never know what scientific work was avoided by scientists who wish to avoid the scorn, harassment and ostracism that will result if they discover something that contradicts the prevailing view.”(Murray, “In Defense of Jason Richwine.) For those academics without tenure, the penalty for dissenting views or research that reveals uncomfortable findings will result in the denial of tenure and very likely in the denial of positions elsewhere. They are, in fact, driven from positions they have devoted years to obtain and deprived of their very livelihood. For young instructors supporting or helping to support families such risks are unacceptably high.

Until now, physical scientists have not had to contend with political correctness, but that is changing. The completion of the mapping of the human genome and very recent advances in the ability to decode individual genes has led many scientists to explore genetic components of disease, including racial differences in disease patterns. This research has not always been welcomed, even though it promises to lead to better diagnosis of diseases, which are more common in some races, and in better treatments, some of which are more effective in some races than in others.

University of Chicago geneticist Bruce Lahn came under fire for publishing an important finding that two genes implicated in brain size (and perhaps intelligence) were more common among people from Asia and Europe but uncommon among people from Africa. One of the genes seems to have arisen about 40,000 years ago, roughly at the time when the first modern humans are thought to have appeared in Europe. The other gene was found mainly in people from Europe and the Middle East and was thought to have arisen about 6,000 years ago. Lahn speculated that the first may have been selected for conditions in northern latitudes and the second may have been the product of, or the explanation for, large-scale agriculture and the rise of early civilizations. The clear implication of Lahn’s research is that these may be among those many genes thought to influence the various differences between the three large racial groups found in Africa, Asia, and Europe.[15] Offering biological evidence for racial differences is, under the current regime, “racist” by definition. This point was not lost on Lahn’s colleagues, whose personal attacks led Lahn to abandon the study of brain differences.

This sort of ostracism is by no means practiced only on the left. Kevin Lamb was summarily fired from his job as managing editor of the conservative newsweekly Human Events when it was discovered that, in his free time, he was writing for and editing The Occidental Quarterly, a journal “that specializes in research and analysis on issues involving race, ethnicity, politics and culture.” The journal in question has been denounced as “white supremacist” since it promotes the idea that Western Civilization is a product of the unique nature of European peoples.[16]

Jason Richwine was fired from his job as senior policy analyst at the Heritage Foundation in 2013. This occurred two days after the Washington Post reported that his Ph.D. dissertation argued that Hispanics have lower average intelligence than White Americans and questioned current immigration policy. The unseemly haste with which the Heritage Foundation acted, without even allowing Richwine to explain the context of his argument, underscores what is now obvious. A leading conservative think-tank ran to fire someone who questioned the orthodox leftist position on racial differences.[17]

Well-known commentator and Contributing Editor at National Review, John Derbyshire was also fired in 2012 because of a satirical piece he published in the wake of the brouhaha over the acquittal of George Zimmerman in the death of Trayvon Martin. The piece was a direct response to a highly publicized “talk” that required black mothers to warn their teenage sons about the dangers posed by White police. In his piece Derbyshire pointed to the hypocrisy of Blacks in their prejudicial view of White police, when contrasted with the real threat of Black crime. In his hypothetical talk with his children, he recited the dangers to Whites posed by black thugs. Instead of taking this for what it was, i.e., a serious rebuke to Black parents who instill fear of endemic White racism in their children, Derbyshire was summarily fired for unacceptable thoughts. Of course, the only people who should find this unacceptable are those who would deny the staggering reality of Black crime.[18]

In explaining the hostility to evolutionary thinking in liberal academic circles, Harvard evolutionary psychologist Steven Pinker notes that findings of a genetic basis for racial differences would put into question “the assumption that all group-wide social differences (e.g., in crime, poverty, and health) are caused by discrimination or a rigged economic system. It would be an enormous challenge to the unspoken consensus of mainstream left-of-center politics during the past fifty years. . . .”[19] In a similar vein, Charles Murray, in a review of Nicolas Wade’s A Troublesome Inheritance, maintains that the book will not likely be welcome since it challenges the orthodox position that genes play no role in racial differences. Quoting Murray, “true believers in the orthodoxy still dominate the social science departments of the nation’s universities. I expect their resistance to “A Troublesome Inheritance” will be fanatical, because accepting its account will be seen, correctly, as a cataclysmic surrender on some of the core premises of political correctness.”[20] It is obvious why the left would object to evolutionary theories of human behavior that explain national, racial, and class differences, since the rejection of the particularities of human beings have been a motivating force of the Left since the French Revolution. The Right has generally been comfortable with the idea that there is a natural hierarchy of talents among men, and a spectrum of diverse abilities and temperaments. From this perspective, nations reflect the particular nature of distinct historic peoples. For the Left, any national or local attachments are but a retrograde tribalism that undermines the ideal of a universal human solidarity. Certainly one of the most powerful conservative argument against communist regimes, and leftism in general, is that, in their attempt to abolish natural hierarchies and national loyalties, they crush the diversity and uniquenesses within the human species. After all, if one views difference as inherently unjust, how can one deny the need to abolish these inequities and eliminate physically or marginalize those who promote them. Leftism can be viewed, in this way, as a centuries-long revolt against human nature.

On a more mundane level, the reality of human differences is, as James Watson suggested, the most powerful argument against the varied wasteful and generally unpopular policies pursued in the name of “fighting inequality.” For instance, the government has continued to spend enormous sums in the attempt to eliminate racial disparities in educational attainment on the false premise that any such differences are the result of bias, rather than the result of obvious differences in ability. Fifty years of this effort have produced no reduction in racial differences in academic performance. Currently, major efforts are underway to expand the efforts of the Head Start program into universal pre-schooling, which all research has shown to be of no value in improving performance.[21]

A recognition of natural group differences would allow for a serious challenge to programs of racial preferences in the form of Affirmative Action, minority set-asides, and disparate impact rulings, all of which are premised on the assumption that racial differences in ability and temperament do not exist. An acknowledgment of fundamental differences between the sexes would allow for a principled stand against the disturbing policy of placing women in combat roles in the military and rules that require ignoring sexual differences in hiring decisions. Similarly, rules that require equal expenditures on high-school athletic programs for males and females only make sense if there are no sexual differences in athletic interests and abilities. The reader can add his own examples to the list of foolish rulings based on the absurd assumption that the only differences between boys and girls are secondary sexual characteristics. Disparate impact rulings that fail to acknowledge racial and sexual differences often undermine public safety. How could it be otherwise when the recognition of group differences are made illegal in the recruitment of policemen, firemen, soldiers and sailors?

Affirmative-action is profoundly contrary to the traditional American principles of individual autonomy and responsibility, and totally inconsistent with the bedrock American value of self-reliance. Such a policy is built on the hateful idea of group guilt, of visiting the sins of the father on the son. Even if one accepts the dubious assertion that Black difficulties are the result of slavery and Jim Crow, that hardly requires the remedy of handicapping individuals born generations later, whose ancestors, in almost all cases, had nothing to do with slavery or Jim Crow. On what basis, furthermore, can a claim be made that recent Asian and Hispanic immigrants are entitled to special consideration? Such a claim rests on the patently false assertion that most Whites cannot be trusted to treat people of different races fairly.

Differences in ability between groups have obvious social implications, but so too do differences in temperament. The refusal to accept the reality of such differences obfuscates the reasons for the great racial and sexual disparities in criminal conduct. For instance, recent research indicates that certain variants of the MAO gene are very much implicated in criminal behavior, and are much more common in some racial groups than in others.[22] Likewise, the huge disparities in violent criminal behavior between men and women are inexplicable, absent an understanding of important temperamental differences between the sexes. Denial of such differences hinders effective measures of crime control. For example, the proactive crime prevention “stop and frisk” policies of the New York City Police department necessarily leads to a racially disparate impact in the people questioned by police. That practice, which obviously must be partially based on racial and sexual profiling, is falsely claimed to be evidence of racial discrimination. Of course, nobody questions why more men than women are stopped and frisked by police. Why not? The answer, in the case of sexual differences is obvious, but so is the answer in the case of racial differences. Proactive policing in New York City dramatically reduced violent crime, but that seemed to be of no consequence in a judge’s decision, rightly set aside, that forbade the New York City police from continuing the use of this highly effective tactic. In other words, public safety had to be compromised on the dubious grounds that effective policing is racially motivated, no matter that most perpetrators of violent crime, and most of its victims, are members of racial minorities.[23]

An admission of important group differences would allow for a serious examination of an immigration policy, opposed by most Americans, based on the flawed multicultural notion that human beings are everywhere the same and can be moved about the world without serious, and often negative, consequences. For instance, the denial of differences between the human capital of North and Central Americans results in the unquestioned support for family unification in immigration policy and for continued support for birthright citizenship. The entirely foreseeable consequence of this denial has been the flooding of America with disproportionate numbers of Hispanic immigrants, who have educational and economic difficulties.

One would think that the left, which makes so much of rising income inequality, would be champions for curtailing mass immigration, which drives down wages and employment, especially for those with limited academic skills. Surely massive immigration is a major contributor to the wage stagnation afflicting American workers. The Left’s attachment to open borders is plain and clearly reflects the Left’s universalist multicultural ideology, but also reflects their venal desire for boosting the electoral prospects of the Democratic Party. Poorly educated Hispanic immigrants are ready-made recruits for the Democratic Party and represent a vast source of clientele for those employed at all levels in an ever-growing welfare state bureaucracy. Here, as in so many cases, the interests of labor and industry converge.[24] Those immigrants, many of whom serve as clients in the welfare state, are also an abundant source of labor, which, in depressing wages, bolsters the bottom line of industrial and farm enterprises. It is important to emphasize that it is not merely cheap manual labor that explains the eagerness of the United States Chamber of Commerce to expand immigration. The leaders of technology firms are among the most vociferous in claiming the need for increased immigration quotas (and H1B visas) for STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) employees, on the false argument that such technically trained people cannot be found among Americans. But this is a chicken-and-egg problem of the industry’s making. The easy availability of less expensive foreign technology workers drives down wages and serves to discourage American students from pursuing difficult and expensive educations. How can they be expected to compete with foreigners for whom even low wages by American standards are much better than anything they could have gotten at home.[25]

One of the most tragic consequences of the denial of human diversity has been the decline of cities and the access to urban amenities for people of modest means. Everyone is familiar with the depressing fact that large stretches of major American cities are dysfunctional, ugly, and dangerous places, barely tolerable by those who, for any number of reasons, are unable to leave. Not so well publicized, but obvious to the observant traveler, has been the havoc visited upon the urban enclaves of the American heartland. Just about every mid-size American city has seen its downtown hollowed out and its middle-class population relocated to the suburbs. The term relocated is not used arbitrarily, but is chosen to highlight the fact that this migration out of cities was not the result of some spontaneous impulse, but rather the direct result of government policies that made those cities uninviting and in many cases unlivable for middle-class individuals. What good is it to live in a place where your child can walk to school, if the school is all but useless academically, and if the walk to school is through neighborhoods that are both aesthetically disfigured and unsafe. From Richmond, Virginia, to Florence, South Carolina, in the south, to Buffalo, New York, and Camden, New Jersey in the north, the pattern is sad and undeniable. The heroic efforts of civic minded, usually older, individuals to revitalize their downtowns are often to no avail. Their children and grandchildren, who were carried to the suburbs, do not even know what has been lost.

Civil-rights advocates and bureaucrats who are unaware or ideologically blind to the reality of human differences are, under Section 8 guidelines and anti-discrimination edicts, requiring the relocation of dysfunctional minority families into the suburban enclaves to which many less-than-wealthy middle-class people retreated in an attempt to escape the depredations that beset many urban neighborhoods. This effort is being pursued under the false assumption that it is chaotic neighborhoods that create dysfunctional families. But research clearly shows that it is the other way around: Dysfunctional people are simply incapable of creating healthy communities.(ft: Hanna Rosen, American Murder Mystery, The Atlantic, July/August 2008.) Common decency requires a concern for, and need to assist, people who have difficulty in creating well-functioning communities. It is sheer folly, however, to imagine that seriously maladjusted people can be magically transformed by a ride down the road in a moving van. This is, of course, the same mentality that imagines that a native of Somalia can be metamorphosed into a blue-eyed Scandinavian by moving him to Minnesota.

It is not only the unfairness of Affirmative Action and other leveling policies that should be of concern to thoughtful people. More important is that these policies tend to obscure the far more serious problem of how to deal with the problems technological progress present for people with limited intellectual resources. In the past, such people could support themselves with menial jobs on farms and in factories, and in a host of semi-skilled trades. But these sorts of jobs are becoming increasingly rare. Lower and middle-class Americans with IQs below the White average are caught in the pincers of labor-saving technologies, off-shoring, outsourcing and the massive importation of labor. One result is a growing underclass described so clearly by Charles Murray in his book Coming Apart.[26] It has also led to a stagnation of wages for the middle-class and growing income inequality. A serious conservative movement would wish to confront this problem directly and attempt to find ways to deal with it. This is so because a concern for the problems of one’s less talented countrymen is rightly seen as a patriotic duty. The myth of equality serves to free elites from any real obligation to those who have been less lucky in life’s genetic lottery. In this view, people lacking marketable skills need only avail themselves of the unlimited educational opportunities that America provides. It is facilely asserted that people who used to assemble automobiles and television sets should be able to advance, through education, to more technical remunerative occupations. But this supposes that there will be many high-skilled jobs that can’t be outsourced or off-shored, and that almost all Americans have the capacity to be trained for such jobs. The first supposition is highly unlikely; the second is patently absurd.

A problem of enormous human difficulty for modern societies is thus confounded with what is a transient problem of race relations. The absurdities of Affirmative Action can only be defended by a denial of the unfairness of life’s lottery. Imagine anyone claiming that placing a short player on a professional basketball team would enable him to overcome his disadvantage in height. That is hardly different from claiming that a Black person’s academic weakness can be overcome by admission to an elite college. In both cases, the remedy is absurd because the premise is absurd. Playing basketball with superior players will not make the short man tall, nor will going to school with superior intellects make the dumb student smart. Placing people in positions on artificial grounds merely postpones the need to find practical means to address the base cause of differential performance, and find ways to help people with lesser ability lead self-sufficient and gratifying lives. This is a problem for all advanced societies and not one unique to mixed race societies.

A serious attempt to assist less-capable Americans would require addressing the sources of their difficulties, a primary source of which is American industry’s attachment to the doctrine of free trade, facilitated by the breakdown of national borders. This allows for the location of production to low-wage countries and increases corporate profits, the benefits of which accrue to investors and industrial managers. Free trade, therefore, requires American workers to compete with workers in countries with much lower standards of living, resulting in lower wages and reduced employment opportunities. This well-known phenomenon is treated as a natural and inevitable outcome of the laws of economics. Recently, however, respected economists, such as Ian Fletcher, have provided strong arguments that the theory of free trade is deeply flawed and some form of protection is necessary to keep industries in America, where they can provide decent salaries for American workers.[27] Ricardo’s principle of comparative advantage, upon which the doctrine of free trade is based, claims that every country’s prosperity can be maximized by doing what each does best. Fletcher argues that Ricardo’s theory was based on a set of highly restricted assumptions that are rarely satisfied today. Moreover, whatever the basis for a country’s prosperity, there is no assurance that all individuals within a prosperous country will prosper. In a global economy, just the opposite may be true; the world’s most talented will prosper, while others will fall by the wayside. It little matters to those unable to compete in a world market if they live in a prosperous country but are impoverished nonetheless. It is hard to deny that an American worker has a difficult time competing with workers who can live comfortably on one-half to one-tenth the wage a reasonable living would require in America.

It bears repeating that our open-borders policy exacerbates the problem by flooding the United States with low-skilled workers from Mexico and Central America, who compete directly with similarly skilled Americans. The same is true, as mentioned earlier, for middle-class Americans, who are squeezed by competition from talented immigrants from almost every continent in the world. The result, as Edwin Rubenstein has amply documented, is the erosion of wages and employment opportunities for native-born Americans.[28] The argument that a more populated America is a more prosperous America for all workers was true so long as American enterprise dominated the world and the American market was, in large measure, insulated from world competition; a rising GNP could almost guarantee a rising per capita GNP. A bigger pie provides bigger slices for everyone involved, but only so long as the population grows more slowly than the size of the pie. However, if the number of people wishing to sup grows, while the pie does not, many people must leave the table hungry, and economic activity comes to resemble a zero-sum competition. In recent years, the American share of world industry has been shrinking, but the number of people seeking employment in American industry is rising.

A primary responsibility of a nation’s leaders is to forward the interests of all citizens. A concern with the nation’s industrial competitiveness is certainly legitimate, but must be tempered by a moral imperative to provide opportunities for less talented individuals. No constitutional republic can remain healthy without a citizenship made up of of self-sufficient and self-respecting individuals. A citizenship that depends on government largess must inevitably descend into a debased democracy and finally into tyranny. Too often such concerns are dismissed by both the Left and the Right as relics of discredited theories of protectionism, and of xenophobia, racism, sexism and all the other bogymen of political correctness.

Most of the policies that frustrate significant majorities of Americans could be resolved by the simple admission that racial groups differ in important ways and that such differences are as fixed as are differences in physiognomy; they are simply not amenable to elimination by government edict. No amount of government intervention can possibly eliminate group disparities in educational, economic and social attainment. Any and all attempts to do so are not only fraught with dangers to a free society but are bound to fail. Denying this reality is to invite a heavy-handed totalitarianism that imposes a superficial and false equality at the cost of human freedom and well-being. The history of the 20th century bears undeniable evidence for this assertion: The leveling impulse, taken to its ultimate conclusion. has not produced human equality; instead it has destroyed society’s decency and the dignity of its people.

Given the unpopularity of so many multicultural and other left-wing policies it is difficult to understand why the conservative establishment is reluctant to challenge the bases of these policies. Why, for instance, have mainstream conservatives not endorsed the growing consensus that real and important differences exist between the races? Acknowledgement of these differences would allow for a principled stand against the left-wing drift in American social policy. Why not forcefully reject the doctrine of multiculturalism? That doctrine is not only ahistorical and utterly incompatible with conservative philosophy but corrosive of national unity. How are we to understand the refusal of conservatives to forthrightly argue for a natural diversity of abilities and temperaments and for the preservation of the historic American nation, rooted in European custom and ancestry?

Why does the Republican Party refuse to take such a principled position? One obvious reason is that those who object to the leftward drift in American society are overwhelmingly White and of European descent. Most Whites have little to gain, and much to lose, by the continuation of current trends. Most non-Whites, on the other hand, have no difficulty with leftist policies, since a considerable proportion benefit from them. There is no doubt that, should the Republican Party champion the interests of the majority White Americans, the dominant media would demonize the Republican Party and paint them as endorsing a divisive and ugly racist strategy. But it is foolish to worry over this since the Republican Party is already so characterized in the media. Indeed, the Democratic Party claims to represent the interests of all minorities and the other casualties of oppressive “White privilege” and have clearly defined themselves a vehicle for the aggrieved, whatever their class, race, or sex. How would it do Republicans any harm to accept the left’s characterization as the defenders of the historic (European) nation? It takes a curiously benighted vision to imagine that standing by the historic America is somehow “un-American”! Without belaboring an argument made so cogently by Steve Sailer, it only takes a modest majority of White Americans to win most elections.[29] The reason is simple; the overwhelming majority of the electorate is White and will be so for some decades to come. Minorities are, after all, in the minority, especially among those who are active participants in electoral politics. Pursuing a chimerical attempt to garner more minority votes by supporting policies opposed by most Republican core voters is, quite simply, self-defeating.

It is difficult not to conclude that those who carry the mantle of conservatism are, in fact, not conservative at all, but are closer to apolitical apparatchiks of what has become an oligarchic social order. They include members of a professional governing class that thrives so long as they forward the interests of those who pay the exorbitant bills for their reelection. They are the educators and media elites whose generous salaries and outsized prestige are preserved so long as they support the existing order that rests on the doctrines of multiculturalism and unfettered free trade. It is an order that richly rewards those who throw in their lot with multinational corporations or the ever widening reach of the bureaucratic state. Such people are an internationalist vanguard, as it were, heralding a new world order of supranational organizations such as the European Union. Theirs is a vision conditioned by the economic benefits of ever widening and interwoven markets, while ignoring the social and political disruptions such developments must necessarily entail. In such a vision, a North American Union composed of Canada, the United States and Mexico, in time joined by the nations of Central America and the Caribbean, has much to recommend it. That such a program would undermine the historic European heritage of the United States is of small consequence. How could it be otherwise for those who have worked so assiduously to render the United States a borderless nation, in fact, if not yet in law.

According to Francis Fukayama “postmodern elites . . . feel that they have evolved beyond identities defined by religion and nation and have arrived at a superior place.”[30] British philosopher Roger Scruton observed that such thinking explains “the acceptance of subsidized immigration, and for attacks on customs and institutions associated with traditional and native forms of life.” A typical member of this elite, according to Scruton, “repudiates national loyalties and defines his goals and ideals against the nation. . . .” He sees himself “as a defender of enlightened universalism against local chauvinism.” It follows then that such a person defines “his political vision in terms of cosmopolitan values that have been purified of all reference to the particular attachments of a real historical community.” [31]

Getting on today in the elite circles of academia, the media, politics, and corporate America requires allegiance to this deracinated vision and a disdain for the concerns of the benighted and recalcitrant Americans, who cleave to their bibles and their nation and their other assorted superstitions. This explains the vicious attacks on those who believe human differences are real and express reservations about the benefits of multiculturalism, unfettered immigration, and the internationalist agenda. Those that do so challenge the essential underpinnings for the privileges, both honorary and pecuniary, of statist bureaucrats and managerial elites and their enablers in academia and the media.

The dissolution of the historic American nation is well underway, and there is little on the horizon to give hope that it would be otherwise. One must remain in the dark as to what comes after, but perhaps it will be less bleak than reason, at present, dictates.

  1. Ulric Neisser, et. al., “Intelligence: Knowns and Unknowns,” American Psychologist, 31:2, (1996), 77-101.
  2. A different version of this belief system, which is broadly popular among self-described conservatives and libertarians, holds that human potential varies greatly between individuals; however, there are no significant differences between races.
  3. See Steven Pinker, The Blank Slate: The Modern Denial of Human Nature (New York: Viking, 2002)
  4. Edward O. Wilson, Sociobiology: The New Synthesis (Cambridge MA:. Belknap Press, 1975).
  5. Sociobiology Study Group of Science for the People, “Sociobiology–Another Biological Determinism,” BioScience, 26:3 (March 1976), reprinted in Arthur L. Caplan, ed., The Sociobiology Debate (New York: Harper and Row, 1978), 280-281.
  6. Arthur Fisher, “Sociobiology: Science or Ideology?” Society, 29:5, 74.
  7. Richard J. Herrnstein and Charles Murray, The Bell Curve: Intelligence and Class Structure in American Life (New York: Free Press, 1994).
  8. Linda Gottfredson, “Mainstream Science on Intelligence,” Wall Street Journal, December 13, 1994. Reprinted in Intelligence: A Multidisciplinary Journal, 24:11 (1997), 13-23.
  9. Charles Murray, “In Defense of Jason Richwine,” National Review Online, May 15, 2013.
  10. Jacob Sullum, “Brain Storm: Can we Talk About Sex Differences in Math and Science Aptitude Without Yelling?” Reason Online, January 21, 2005
  11. Charlotte Hunt-Grubbe, The Elementary DNA of Dr. Watson, The Sunday Times, October 14, 2007.
  12. Keith Perry, “James Watson selling Nobel prize ‘because no-one wants to admit I exist,’” The Telegraph, November 28, 2014; accessed January 15, 2015,
  13. Ruth Bell and Ehsan Masood, “Race and IQ Psychologist in Inquiry over Teaching Conduct.” Nature, 381, 6578, (1996), 105.
  14. Jonathan Rauch, “The Truth Hurts: The Humanitarian Threat to Free Speech,” Reason, April 1993.
  15. Rosenberg, et. al., “Genetic Structure of Human Populations”; Voight, et. al., “A Map of Recent Positive Selection in the Human Genome”; Wade, Before the Dawn, 2006, 185-88; Williamson, et. al., “Localizing Recent Adaptive Evolution in the Human Genome.”
  16. Kevin Lamb, Forced Out: The Price of Speaking Freely in Multicultural America, Middle American News, June 2005.
  17. Michael Barone, “In defense of Jason Richwine and Charles Murray,” Washington Examiner, May 16, 2013; Murray, “In Defense of Jason Richwine,” op cit.; Jason Richwine, “Why Can’t We Talk About IQ?” Politico, August 9, 2013, accessed January 15, 2015,
  18. John Derbyshire, The Talk: Nonblack Version, Taki’s Magazine, April 5, 2012; The Daily Caller, John Derbyshire: ‘National Review Race-Whipped” Controversial Anti-Black Column ‘Just Common Sense’, April 11, 2012; Joseph Kay, “The Rationality of Firing John Derbyshire: Excess Truth-Telling must be Stamped Out,” American Renaissance, April 9, 2012.
  19. Darth Quixote, 10 Questions for Steven Pinker, 8.
  20. Charles Murray, “The Diversity of Life,” review of Nicholas Wade,A Troublesome Inheritance, Wall Street Journal, May 3-4, 2014. Emphasis added.
  21. Teachers’ unions would obviously benefit by such an expansion, but so would American industry in that it would free more women for entry into the labor force and put added pressure on the wages of working men. As is true of so many current policies, there is a growing convergence of interests between labor (natural constituents of the Left) and big businesses (natural constituents of the Right).
  22. Lewis, P., The World Today, ABC Radio (Transcript) August 9, 2006; New Zealand Herald, Maori Crime Rate Concerns Government. October 28, 2005; TVNZ, Police Tackling Maori Crime Rates. November 10, 2005.
  23. Joseph Goldstein, Judge Rejects New York’s Stop-and-Frisk Policy, New York Times, August 12, 2013; Joseph Goldstein, Court Blacks Stop-and Frisk Changes for New York, New York Times, October 31, 2013.
  24. See Peter Brimelow, “Immigration is the Viagra of the State,”, June 4, 2008,
  25. Norman Matloff, “On the Need For Reform Of the H-1B Non-Immigrant Work Visa in Computer-Related Occupations (Invited Paper),” University of Michigan Journal of Law Reform, Fall 2003, Vol. 36, Issue 4, 815-914, 19-31; Patrick Thibodeau, “Norman Matloff Tells What’s Wrong with the H-1B Visa program,” Computer World, September 8, 2008; Ron Hira, “Do we Need Foreign Technology Workers?” The New York Times, April 8, 2009; William Branigan, “Visa Program, High-Tech Workers Exploited Critics Say, Visa Program Brings Charges of Exploitation,” Washington Post, July 26, 1998; National Academy, “Brain Mobility,” Issues In Science and Technology, Winter 2006; Ralph E. Gomory and Harold T. Shapiro, “Globalization: Causes and Effects,” Issues In Science and Technology, Summer 2003.
  26. Murray, Coming Apart: The State of White America, 1960-2010 (New York: Crown Forum, 2012).
  27. Ian Fletcher, Free Trade Doesn’t Work: What Should Replace It and Why (Washington: U.S. Business and Industry Council, 2010).
  28. Edward S. Rubenstein, “National Data: September Data Shows Immigrants Displacing American Workers—Especially Blacks,”, October 5, 2008.
  29. See Steve Sailer, “Election 2010 and the Unmentionable Sailer Strategy: White Vote Still Key,”, November 4, 2010, accessed March 15, 2015,; Sailer, “The Sailer Strategy Updated: Three Steps to Save America,”, October 9, 2011, accessed March 15, 2015,; Richard Spencer, “The Majority Strategy,” The National Policy Institute, accessed January 15, 2015,
  30. Francis Fukuyama, “Identity and Migration,” Prospect Magazine, Vol. 131, February 2007, 7.
  31. Speech by Roger Scruton, Antwerp, 23 June, 2006; Scruton, “Roger Scruton on immigration, multiculturalism and the need to defend the nation state,” Brussels Journal, July 8, 2007,