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History What are some of your most contraversial takes on history?

WolfBear

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Yeah, I was going to say, the border between things was very reminiscent of the old Iron Curtain line in Europe. As such, I feel like the recent destructive influence of Communism that is barely a generation removed might have a greater impact immediate impact as opposed to genetic drift.

Also, does China and Japan have similar prohibitions on cousin marriages? As both countries historically have been highly innovative, Japan especially in the 20th century.
Here's why I'm skeptical of the Communism explanation: The former East Germany produces much more patents per capita than Portugal, southern Spain, and southern Italy even though the former East Germany was previously under decades of Communist rule whereas these other regions were not.

As for China and Japan, Yes, they both have relatively low rates of cousin marriage:




Southern Indians have much higher rates of cousin marriage.
 

Abhorsen

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I thought about Communism as an explanation but then I saw that East Germany still produces a lot of patents, so I suspected that the Hajnal Line explanation makes more sense.
Note that East Germany was purposely lifted out of poverty by West Germany, is still worse off than West Germany, and there are far more flaws with the other possibility. No, the simplest explanation is communism.
 

WolfBear

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Note that East Germany was purposely lifted out of poverty by West Germany, is still worse off than West Germany, and there are far more flaws with the other possibility. No, the simplest explanation is communism.
And the Eastern EU countries are being purposely lifted out of poverty by the Western EU countries, no?

As for the former East Germany being poorer than Germany, 30 years isn't enough time for the effects of Communism to fully disappear. However, it's worth noting that East Germans don't appear to be deficient in human capital:


This bodes rather well for long-term trends. :) This is similar to why exactly China was able to economically grow so rapidly over the last several decades.
 

Abhorsen

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And the Eastern EU countries are being purposely lifted out of poverty by the Western EU countries, no?
Not really, and not nearly enough to compensate. East Germany is an exception because Germany actually gave a shit about itself then, and we can still see the cost of communism in it. Everywhere else, we can see the problems brought by totalitarianism. It also clearly has jack shit to do with Catholicism, given that it doesn't seperate between Catholic/Protestant countries vs Eastern Orthodox, given the Iberian Peninsula and South Italy, especially.
 

Agent23

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Yeah, this really has to do with the USSR/totalitarianism. Note Spain also being screwed cause Franco's legacy, despite being highly Catholic. The explanation offered doesn't explain Poland or Hungary, for example.
I thought about Communism as an explanation but then I saw that East Germany still produces a lot of patents, so I suspected that the Hajnal Line explanation makes more sense.
You are both missing the point that a lot of your backwards areas are in very temperate zones - Greece, Spain, Southern Italy.
A nice, warm climate and abundant access to food makes people lazy and does not force them to think ahead all that much.
The protestant work ethic and the alleged benefits of this line probably have more to do with the crappy northern climate forcing people to build steadier and better isolated structures, better storage for food, better clothing and food preservation, transportation so as to have trade as a fallback if the harvest is bad and you need to import foodstuffs or go raid your neighbors, or simply move.
Where would you need to be more inventive?
A nice tropical island with abundant coconut trees and other edible plants and animals, ala Robinson Crusoe, or a barren rock in the middle of the Baltic sea?

Also, we have the tendency of heat to make people lazy and less productive, that effect was observed by Lee Kuan Yew, who basically said something along the lines of the Airconditioner being the greatest invention of the century, because it enabled Asians/people in his general area to boost productivity to European levels.

Looking more broadly at the situation on a global level, the Philippines is the only country in South-East Asia that was catholic, and other Asian countries do not have the strong cousin marriage taboo the Catholics allegedly have.

The Philippines is quite backwards compared to most of its neighbors IMO.
 

WolfBear

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You are both missing the point that a lot of your backwards areas are in very temperate zones - Greece, Spain, Southern Italy.
A nice, warm climate and abundant access to food makes people lazy and does not force them to think ahead all that much.
The protestant work ethic and the alleged benefits of this line probably have more to do with the crappy northern climate forcing people to build steadier and better isolated structures, better storage for food, better clothing and food preservation, transportation so as to have trade as a fallback if the harvest is bad and you need to import foodstuffs or go raid your neighbors, or simply move.
Where would you need to be more inventive?
A nice tropical island with abundant coconut trees and other edible plants and animals, ala Robinson Crusoe, or a barren rock in the middle of the Baltic sea?

Also, we have the tendency of heat to make people lazy and less productive, that effect was observed by Lee Kuan Yew, who basically said something along the lines of the Airconditioner being the greatest invention of the century, because it enabled Asians/people in his general area to boost productivity to European levels.

Looking more broadly at the situation on a global level, the Philippines is the only country in South-East Asia that was catholic, and other Asian countries do not have the strong cousin marriage taboo the Catholics allegedly have.

The Philippines is quite backwards compared to most of its neighbors IMO.
The Philippines was only Catholic for 500 years, though. In contrast, Western Europe was Catholic for sometimes like 1,000 years in some cases. It might have also helped if Western Europe's starting average IQ was much higher than that of the Philippines, of course.
 

WolfBear

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Not really, and not nearly enough to compensate. East Germany is an exception because Germany actually gave a shit about itself then, and we can still see the cost of communism in it. Everywhere else, we can see the problems brought by totalitarianism. It also clearly has jack shit to do with Catholicism, given that it doesn't seperate between Catholic/Protestant countries vs Eastern Orthodox, given the Iberian Peninsula and South Italy, especially.
Protestant countries also have a long Catholic history since the Protestant Church was only created 500 years ago, no?
 

Scottty

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Not really, and not nearly enough to compensate. East Germany is an exception because Germany actually gave a shit about itself then, and we can still see the cost of communism in it. Everywhere else, we can see the problems brought by totalitarianism. It also clearly has jack shit to do with Catholicism, given that it doesn't seperate between Catholic/Protestant countries vs Eastern Orthodox, given the Iberian Peninsula and South Italy, especially.
Weeeelll... do you have any examples of countries that are Protestant and not in the super-cool group?
 

Abhorsen

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Weeeelll... do you have any examples of countries that are Protestant and not in the super-cool group?
Eh, the question was about if Catholicism's ban on cousin marriages had an effect. Protestantism carried that over mostly, and the territory of Protestantism is a subset of pre-Reformantion Catholic territory. Though Protestantism being more northern and industrial no doubt enhances this.

Protestant countries also have a long Catholic history since the Protestant Church was only created 500 years ago, no?
Exactly. Which is why I lumped them together.

You are both missing the point that a lot of your backwards areas are in very temperate zones - Greece, Spain, Southern Italy.
A nice, warm climate and abundant access to food makes people lazy and does not force them to think ahead all that much.
This is a fair point: the tragedy of prosperity is real. Why do agriculture when there's plentiful food to hunt/gather? Hardship is what makes civilization necessary. On top of that, if we look at the policies of the places, they are designed for handouts, plus Southern Italy has the OG Mafia.

So.

A combination of factors, where genetics is a part.

Makes sense to me.
I don't see this as even being a part here. At the very least, very little evidence that it is genetics has been put forward. Communism plus hot weather seems to explain the data, plus maybe Protestantism v Catholicism (which is very correlated with hot weather, so have fun pulling these apart, but I'm leaning towards weather cause Greece). I'm not seeing any evidence here for genetics mattering in Europe.
 

Simonbob

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I'm not seeing any evidence here for genetics mattering in Europe.
Do you believe there are genetic issues that come from incest?

If you don't, I'm both going to point out the end result of the various Euro Royal lines, and tell you to stop being an idiot.
 

Abhorsen

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Do you believe there are genetic issues that come from incest?

If you don't, I'm both going to point out the end result of the various Euro Royal lines, and tell you to stop being an idiot.
I mean, they do over time compound, but there's no evidence shown that correlates that to any of the maps, nor is there much evidence here of long term inbreeding in eastern orthodox places.

I'm looking for the explanation that best fits. And the explanations that fit best are first communism, then the parts of Europe most affected by the Enlightenment/Renaissance (northern Italy, France, England, the low countries, and Germany). Alternatively, Communism, followed by the Catholic/formerly Catholic parts, followed by "Do you have high temperatures?"

You'd have to compare evidence of inbreeding in places in Europe to one of these maps, then I'd consider the data. Or show that there is a lot of inbreeding in Orthodox cultures, not just an absence in Catholicism.

But the big difference is certainly communism. It just absolutely dominates the maps.
 

ShadowArxxy

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If you don't, I'm both going to point out the end result of the various Euro Royal lines, and tell you to stop being an idiot.
I have to point out that "the end result of the various Euro Royal lines" is basically the worst possible case for incest, representing the result of hundreds of years of repeatedly inbreeding a small, homogenous population which was also shielded from most natural selection. And even then, only certain specific specimens out of those lines were notably unfit.

The degree to which less direct, less generationally consistent, and less sheltered incest amplifies genetic malformations is vastly less than imagined, which is exactly *why* anti-incest laws vary so widely from jurisdiction to jurisdiction.

TL;DR: While there is a scientific basis for saying that extreme incest is bad, there isn't actually a lot of data for *how* much incest is too much.
 

Agent23

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Do you believe there are genetic issues that come from incest?
I am pretty sure that Orthodoxy has prohibitions against cousin incest as well.

Islam though, and especially some Islamic states are far more willing to tolerate it for various reasons and it has its downsides.
On the other hand, Ashkenazi Jews who are supposed to have the highest group IQ are fine with it to a much greater degree.
In harsher selection conditions people that suffer the downsides, as in sickle cell anemia with the Ashkenazis die out, and the positive reinforcement of recessive genes that boost intelligence get reinforced, at least according to Joly Heretic.

However, genetics is not the only reason why some societies have better work ethics and innovate more.

This is a fair point: the tragedy of prosperity is real. Why do agriculture when there's plentiful food to hunt/gather? Hardship is what makes civilization necessary. On top of that, if we look at the policies of the places, they are designed for handouts, plus Southern Italy has the OG Mafia.
It is not just that, a warmer climate also makes it harder to work and makes you pretty lazy.

Try building stuff in 35+ degrees Celsius heat and see how it affects you, for instance.

Another thing that no one in this discussion has noticed is that most of Eastern Europe was under frequent attack from outside forces.
If you go back about 800 - 900 years for example, the East had far more stability and economic prosperity, to the point where the West saw the Byzantine empire as a bunch of rich degenerates.
The various Rus principalities were also fairly free and prosperous before the mongol invasions, and the Polish-Lithuanian commonwealth was also quite rich.

The Southern part of Italy was also raided far more often than the north.

So, I'd say climate, geographic connectivity which permits trade and communication, and not getting invaded and subjugated too often all play a major role, certainly a bigger one than something the Pope once did.

I have to point out that "the end result of the various Euro Royal lines" is basically the worst possible case for incest, representing the result of hundreds of years of repeatedly inbreeding a small, homogenous population which was also shielded from most natural selection. And even then, only certain specific specimens out of those lines were notably unfit.

The degree to which less direct, less generationally consistent, and less sheltered incest amplifies genetic malformations is vastly less than imagined, which is exactly *why* anti-incest laws vary so widely from jurisdiction to jurisdiction.

TL;DR: While there is a scientific basis for saying that extreme incest is bad, there isn't actually a lot of data for *how* much incest is too much.
Exactly, the suitability of people with bad recessive genes goes up with social affluence.
IIRC there was someone theorizing that the prohibition of distant cousin marriage in Christianity came about because they wanted to break up the very powerful extended families, like the clans in places like Scotland and England and the large, powerful Familias that existed in Rome.

And here we go into my next hot take about history, namely that Christianity was pushed by roman elites in an attempt to make the empire more homogeneous, break up extended familial and ethnic loyalties, and centralize power in one person.

So, yeah, Christianity was the GloboHomo/WEF project of its day.
 
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Abhorsen

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It's certainly a big factor. How big?

Hard to say. I just don't rule out genetics existing, like so many do.
Sure, I haven't ruled it out either, but there's also no evidence presented here for it in Europe. I'm also not going to believe it just because I want or don't want it to be true.
 

Agent23

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Sure, I haven't ruled it out either, but there's also no evidence presented here for it in Europe. I'm also not going to believe it just because I want or don't want it to be true.
Yeah, it we could perhaps roll this intelligence, nature vs. nurture debate into a sperate thread and stop derailing this one, that will be great.

Personally, I have encountered materials supporting both theses, but the one that mainly comes to mind, namely The Better Angels of Our Nature by Pinker rang pretty hallow in places.
On the New Right side, we have people like Jolly Heretic, who has done a decent amount of research into the field, saying that it is over .5 heritable, maybe it was .7, although that probably relates to genetics and the child's social cycle and parents.
Stefan Molyneux also had one episode of Free Domain where he had some scientist discussing the situation, and he was of the opinion that the intelligence drop brought about by bad parenting was caused by external factors, like the structure of welfare systems.

As to Jolly Heretic, well he bases much of his initial thesis on reaction speed changes.

There was also a fairly decent response video to one of Dutton's that stressed differences in the needs of modern humans vs. those in the 1970s for example, like the simple need to memorize a phone number interfering with recall and the like.

TL;DR the Brain can be treated as a muscle, but some people are better at running than others are for generic as well as training reasons, and this is a huge fucking can of worms, and somebody is bound to start reeing about racism/eugenics, so, yeah, best have a thread if you want to dig into it.
 
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