Can Multi-Racial States Ever Function? Some Examples with Caveats.

Much has been written about the failure of multi-racial and multi-ethnic states.  Pierre L van den Berghe, Frank Salter, Steve Sailer, Robert D. Putnam, J. Phillipe Rushton, Jared Taylor, Satoshi Kanazawa, Kevin MacDonald, Miller McPherson, Neil Munro, Alex Rutherford, Rob Waugh and others have all written about the problems with multi-ethnic and multi-racial states.

From an evolutionary perspective, the instability of multi-racial states makes sense.  The more genetically diverse a state, the less likely people are willing to invest in the overall societal well-being.  For instance, small homogenous states (e.g. Sweden or Japan) of Europeans or North Asians seem to be at the pinnacle of state-wide altruism.  Everyone is closely related so by investing in the state (taxes, welfare, etc) one can still maximize his inclusive fitness.  But in multi-racial states, people aren’t so closely related, so there is probably no great desire to invest in the general well-being.  In fact, the more extreme — not only not investing in the general well-being but the general hostility between races — seems to be the norm in multi-racial states.   As Lawrence H Keeley points out in War Before Civilization, pre-modern history has really been a history of inter-tribal genocide.

OK, multi-racial states are failures.  Have they ever worked? Can they?

In an attenuated sense, there have been multi-racial and multi-ethnic success stories but there are many caveats to these stories.

Habsburg Empire: The differences here are largely ethnic, not racial, as the genetic distances between various European ethnic groups are small, but ethnic differences can still matter. The “other” is often defined by what is most proximate. The Hapsburg Empire was a multi-ethnic empire and largely successful.  What was its secret? Like most attenuated success stories, it pursued a policy of ethnopluralism — different groups were kept discrete; there were no governmental policies of forced assimilation, forced integration, etc.  The Habsburgs, in short, had no “busing programs” [carriage programs?].  Different ethnic groups were left alone and lived largely isolated from other groups.

The Roman Empire: Here we have a large multi-racial empire that was successful.  But, as in the case of the Hapsburg Empire, we have a policy of ethnopluralism — different racial groups largely live apart (except for mass immigration to Italy, which might have eventually undone the empire).  The Roman Empire largely cared only about collecting taxes and left various subjects alone.  In the classical sense, the Roman Empire was not a nation (a group of people related by blood — like Sweden or Japan) but but a collection of nations under the authority of the emperor.  There was also no forced assimilation.  While the Celts of Gaul eventually adopted Latin, most of the people of the East kept their indigenous languages and customs and Hellenized Greek remained the dominate language and culture of the East.

Switzerland: Like the Hapbsburg Empire, we here have a multi-ethnic state (not empire) and what is predominate in this multi-ethnic state is the demarcation of clear boundaries.  As this recent paper shows, ethnic boundaries in Switzerland are clearly demarcated and respected.

Pre-1964 United States:  In the 1960 census, the USA was 90% white, there were clear demarcations between white and non-white neighborhoods and the majority was self-confident and set an example for the rest.  Pre-1964 USA, although it had problems, probably could have continued indefinitely, but the Civil Rights Act and Immigration Act of 1964 have probably sealed its fate.

Success:  When surveying the above, factors that seem to lead to attenuated success stories are:  ethnopluralism (not multiculturalism), segregation, confident ruling class or majority, states demarcated into smaller nations, etc.

Failure: Notice that most Western nations today have the opposite of the above:  multiculturalism, the cult of diversity, forced integration, de-segregation, an unconfident ruling class or majority, policies of assimilation, etc.

Perhaps the most dangerous mix is when you don’t have a self-confident ruling class or majority, but rather a state divided into half between two racial groups, or into rough thirds of three racial groups with an assimilationist government trying forcing diversity upon everyone.  This has largely been the policy of the USA for the last 50 years and it’s falling apart.  A “race war” of sorts is already breaking out in California between blacks and mestizos.

Many pundits want to believe that the USA will mix into a “uniform coffee-colored nation” but this is highly unlikely.  Latin American countries have had centuries for this to occur but the patters across Latin America are largely the same:  a small European upper class and below it large segregated masses of Mestizos, Mulattoes and Amerindians, which are almost always mutually hostile.  In Latin American countries we most often see a color continuum; the lighter one is, the more likely he is to upper-class; the darker one is, the more likely he is to be lower class.  (Perhaps this has to do with a biological fact that fairer people are better adapted to function in modern states?)

In short, I tend to agree with the critics of multi-racial states.  They are rife with problems and often end in racial or ethnic strife.  And when multi-racial or multi-ethnic states are largely successful, the states or empires are clearly demarcated into smaller entho-states within the larger state.

Updates:

Primer on Immigration and Human BioDiversity

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26 thoughts on “Can Multi-Racial States Ever Function? Some Examples with Caveats.

  1. “For instance, small homogenous states (e.g. Sweden or Japan) of Europeans or North Asians seem to be at the pinnacle of state-wide altruism. Everyone is closely related so by investing in the state (taxes, welfare, etc) one can still maximize his inclusive fitness.”

    I suppose clannish, yet essentially mono-ethnic China is the counterexample to that. 😀

    “The differences here are largely ethnic, not racial, as the genetic distances between various European ethnic groups are small, but ethnic differences can still matter. The “other” is often defined by what is most proximate.”

    Well, ethnicities are just mini-races, which are really just macro-families, etc.

    In the case of the various multi-ethnic European empires, the degree of inbreeding in certain populations probably made a difference. You can get a stabler society with a patch work of outbred people than you can with even a homogenous society of inbred peoples, as your next example attests (“Switzerland: Like the Hapbsburg Empire, we here have a multi-ethnic state (not empire) and what is predominate in this multi-ethnic state is the demarcation of clear boundaries.”)

    “Pre-1964 United States: In the 1960 census, the USA was 90% white, there were clear demarcations between white and non-white neighborhoods and the majority was self-confident and set an example for the rest. Pre-1964 USA, although it had problems, probably could have continued indefinitely, but the Civil Rights Act and Immigration Act of 1964 have probably sealed its fate.”

    Even subtracting the non-White population of the pre-1964 United States, it was still a patch work of various nationalities:

    American Nations.

    And hence probably unstable for that reason. See more when I post in-dept about this.

  2. Even subtracting the non-White population of the pre-1964 United States, it was still a patch work of various nationalities:

    American Nations.

    And hence probably unstable for that reason. See more when I post in-dept about this. – JayMan

    It seems to me that for a great many (most) whites born pre-1964, they were not remaining in ethnic enclaves, and that there was emerging a hybrid sort of American-white, e.g. half-German, 1/4 English, 1/4 Italian, (or whatever Euro mixture) that was integrating into the greater-white existing Anglo culture. It didn’t seem like there were ongoing mini race wars among white American ethnicities by 1964. I realize there was some of that nearer the turn of the 20th century, but by ’64, I don’t believe it was still so. The melting pot, at least as regards, European descended peoples, was working.

    • It’s not just that. Whites in different parts of the country who descend from inhabitants of the British Isles are different from one another. Other Europeans who came hybridized with these Britons, absorbing the respective groups’ cultures and values.

      “It didn’t seem like there were ongoing mini race wars among white American ethnicities by 1964.”

      During the Civil Rights era?

  3. Another instructive example is the Qing Empire, the last monarchy to rule China, which was established by the semi-nomadic Manchu people. In that case, modern political orthodoxy makes it retroactively a multi-ethnic melting pot, but in fact during the height of the Qing dynasty, it maintained clear distinctions between at least four macro-nations: Manchuria, China, Mongolia, and Tibet (Turkic Xinjiang ambiguously formed a fifth macro nation). The overlordship of the Emperor was the one thing that united all the macro-nations, and the emperors were skilled at presenting different faces to each nation to maximise their legitimacy. At the micro-level, the Qing informally recognised many more small nations through the tusi system, in which local ethnic chieftains were granted ostensibly Chinese official titles and then were left alone to rule as they wished.

    It’s interesting that this “ethnic plural” system was beginning to break down in the last few decades of the Qing, i.e. it was already happening before the end of the dynasty. The late Qing converted itself into a Chinese nationalist state with assimilationist policies. I doubt that those policies caused the fall of the Qing, but it might be more than chance that they coincided with their decline and fall.

    It’s also interesting to compare the Qing with the earlier Great Khanate/Yuan Empire, established by Kublai Khan. The Yuan was in many ways the role model for the Qing, and yet the Qing proved much more successful and enduring. I don’t have any real conclusions about this yet, but it’s possible that the Mongols started out more ambitious about everybody living together and merging their culture, etc. According to Jack Weatherford’s book, the Mongols quickly developed a sense of fear and suspicion about racial hatred from the Chinese population, which they (the Mongols) didn’t start out with.

  4. Tito’s Yugoslavia would be another multiethnic state that worked. As soon as Tito died, the old fighting resumed along ethnic and religious lines. It might be that for multiethnic states to work, there has to be a separate non-aligned ruling power + structure of patronage that all different groups have to appease or bow down to like Tito’s communist state or the Hapsburg administration and military. The Hapsburgs also would set up military units that were homogenous, but then have them serving in an area that was not where their people lived. They sued one against the other. It worked for a while. Might fall into place like the emperors noted above as well as the Roman structure from Augustus to the Antonines… or if you want to say it worked, out to Diocletian or Constantine’s success.

    I too am interested about these mini-race wars that were going on pre-54 between whites in the US. Jayman must have soem study of it. The crime rate was low, but maybe it was the prohibition gang wars that he is talking about? If all he is talking about is the South not wanting desegregation that was imposed by northern whites, then wow, what a short span of time. Come on

      • I read the Derb. If you want to use a broad definition of war as political struggle for control of the patronage system and natural resources through elections, regulations etc., then sure. Both sides hold many thing in common on political issues, so the difference is minute. I think other posters here are viewing war as a different definition with actual violence, mosty likely organized or loosely organized. I’d say what the mestizos are doing in Compton to blacks with murders, shootings and muggings is unorganized war.

      • “Both sides hold many thing in common on political issues, so the difference is minute.”

        Yet intractable, to a large extent. The devil is in the details.

        That said, I don’t think the differences between Puritan-derived Northerners and Scotch-Irish and Cavalier-derived Southerners are all that minute…

  5. “It didn’t seem like there were ongoing mini race wars among white American ethnicities by 1964.”

    During the Civil Rights era?

    I meant between white ethnics. My point was that the various Euro-descended peoples seemed to indeed be “melting” into the greater Euro-descended existing pot within the U.S. People of African descent were not. The very ideal of a melting pot, emphasizing a commonality and fitting in with the dominant existing culture has changed to asserting that “diversity is our greatest strength”. It takes an enormous Cathedral to enforce an obvious untruth. Sooner or later it must unravel.

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  7. In short, I tend to agree with the critics of multi-racial states. They are rife with problems and often end in racial or ethnic strife. And when multi-racial or multi-ethnic states are largely successful, the states or empires are clearly demarcated into smaller entho-states within the larger state.

    This speaks in favor of American Nations: A History of the Eleven Rival Regional Cultures of North America

    Some New England neighbors of mine (I live in Appalachia) recently moved back to Massachusetts. As they left the wife said apologetically that they guessed they were part of the “Great Sort.” Are there trends in this direction?

    I was especially interested in New Netherlands and its relation to others. Vienna, let us remember, was the seedbed of modern racial anti-Semitism, which was really an Ashkenazi rather than a general Jewish hate phenomenon.

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  11. One thing about multicultural empires is simply their ability to maintain unity by sheer force. What kept Yugoslavia together and so peaceful for so long was the fear of Soviet intervention.
    Much as the peoples of Yugoslavia feared each other they feared the Russians even more. Once a Soviet intervention ceased to be a serious possibility the completely artificial Yugoslavian state quickly fell apart.
    Fear and terror can make a multicultural empire successful for quite a long time.

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  16. Singapore is multi ethnic, but is dominated by ethnic Chinese, the most competent, forward looking, and virtuous of all the minorities. Ancient wisdom and common sense smooths the political and social waters. Every minority is allowed to play, but the Chinese hold all the trump cards.

    Substitute Middle Class Whites for Chinese in the West, and you might have something that will last.

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  19. The Soviet Union would seem to be a good case. The collapse came from a reacton to the August Coup; the referendum before then showed most republics wanted to stay in USSR

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