December 10, 2013

Sailer: "Corruption of Blood"

From my column in Taki's Magazine:
One of the more striking evolutions of recent decades has been the stealth revival of the ancient concept of hereditary guilt. It’s seldom called that—terms such as “white privilege” and “structural racism” are more popular—but if you’ve been paying attention you’ll note an increasing reversion to this old assumption that the sins of the fathers demand that punishment be visited upon their distant descendants. ... 
Going back at least to the time of the poor Neanderthals, we all tend to be descended more from history’s winners than losers, so none of us should assume the purity of our ancestors’ and relatives’ morals. At minimum, fear of reciprocation should restrain our urge to denounce our contemporary rivals for corruption of blood.

Read the whole thing there.

63 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thank you, Steve. Peace on Earth o'er the Holidays.

Neil Templeton

Crawfurdmuir said...

Political correctness is a surrogate for religion, and white privilege is is surrogate for original sin.

Whiskey said...

Steve, the whole point of the crystal meth of religions, diversity-pc-multiculturalism, is that blood guilt and heredity is washed away by embracing a Black Jesus. Mandela, Obama, King.

Its Jesus 2.0, Black version.

Chait is a perfect example. Think Bibi or Bloomberg or Lubbavitchers get worked up about Blacks and non Jew Whites? No. But a post Christian would get worked up and emotionally moved.

I mean, do I care which Nahautl city state in pre Conquest Mexico killed and ate their neighbors the most? No.

As far as I am concerned Black people in the US owe **me**

Anonymous said...

Black folk sure don't suffer from it, do they? African tribes are still enslaving people, kidnapping children...you never hear "journalists" speak of such things.

Jason said...

It seems to me that the problem with guys like Chait is that they refuse to recognize that times have changed, that what might have been a reasonable generalization about Southerners forty years ago really isn't applicable today. Obviously this isn't only an American problem - nations like France are unable to let go as far as the sins of the Germans are concerned, even though there currently are not many of the latter who were even alive during the Nazi regime.

Anonymous said...

Strange piece. It started out promisingly enough, but then for its second half it morphed into a rant against the Jews.

Anonymous said...

"Santa Claus Should Not Be a White Man Anymore
It’s time to give St. Nick his long overdue makeover."

http://www.slate.com/articles/life/holidays/2013/12/santa_claus_an_old_white_man_not_anymore_meet_santa_the_penguin_a_new_christmas.html

Anonymous said...

Black folk sure don't suffer from it, do they? African tribes are still enslaving people, kidnapping children...you never hear "journalists" speak of such things.

Corruption for whites, purification for everyone else.

Strange piece. It started out promisingly enough, but then for its second half it morphed into a rant against the Jews.

Yes, it was odd.

Anonymous said...

Steve, the whole point of the crystal meth of religions, diversity-pc-multiculturalism, is that blood guilt and heredity is washed away by embracing a Black Jesus. Mandela, Obama, King.

Its Jesus 2.0, Black version.

Chait is a perfect example. Think Bibi or Bloomberg or Lubbavitchers get worked up about Blacks and non Jew Whites? No. But a post Christian would get worked up and emotionally moved.


This is a blog comment discussion area. You are supposed to post comments and then respond to others.

This is second time today that you have listed a person as an example of what you call "post-Christian" persuasion to prove your point. But like your mentioning of Gideon Rachman, Jonathan Chait is also not a gentile.

You think you are proving your point, but you are giving ammunition to your opponents. What gives?

Titus Didius Tacitus said...

If you're going to warn people not to start doing nasty thing X, ideally it would be better to warn them before they start it, and better still if the warning came from those inside the tribe.

If they've been doing it for half a century continually, always growing wealthier and more powerful while the ones they hate wither and perish, it's a bit late for you to say, "you would be smart not to start that".

You cannot bluff; they have already called your bluff.

It's even weaker if one of those who are withering under the attack says, "we stopped doing that in the seventeen-hundreds, you would be smart to do like us".

And die like you? No thanks.

It's even worse if the bluffing loser is from a group that's comparatively smart, and telling a group that's notoriously smart how to be clever and live a long time, collectively speaking.

If you're so smart, collectively, why is there a drive for mass non-white immigration and forced integration in every white country and only white countries? How would that be possible? And if you're so smart you should be giving advice to actually smart people, why is every white American being born today a minority in his or her own country? Maybe your expertise is only in being out-maneuvered.

In sum, I think the aggressive winners who have been working contagion of the blood since the age of Amalek are going to continue to make this attack on a race of losers they clearly hate.

Anonymous said...

For instance, English common law long featured “corruption of blood,” which justified depriving malefactors’ descendants of their civil rights. A bill of attainder would “attaint” the bloodline, preventing transmission of land to heirs.

I hope Steve doesn't get a bill of attainder levied upon him for this article.

Aaron Gross said...

If you take ethnic or racial group identity seriously - white, black, Jewish, whatever - and if you're not a libertarian individualist, then "hereditary guilt" necessarily goes along with the territory. Or at least hereditary responsibility. All of us have certain unchosen responsibilities just because we were born into various groups (plural). Some of those responsibilities involve past moral transgressions committed by the group. You also get hereditary credit, though, for instance for whites collectively shedding their own blood to end African-American slavery.

If black inequality is a legacy of slavery (I don't think it is), then whites would collectively have "hereditary responsibility" or maybe "hereditary guilt," and an obligation to try to repair the damage if possible. Of course, collective guilt means that no individual is individually guilty at all for something that happened before he was born.

The alternative to accepting collective "hereditary responsibility," if you're still serious about group identity, is just childishness: avowing all the good things your group has done as a group and disavowing the bad. That's exactly what I see, almost exclusively, from race-conscious whites.

The converse is that collective responsibility presupposes collective identity. For example, whites can't collectively be responsible for some past transgression like slavery unless whites exist. So if you're going to demand collective white responsibility for something, you have to agree that white identity, white consciousness, is a precondition.

Jon said...

Aaron Gross: "The alternative to accepting collective "hereditary responsibility," if you're still serious about group identity, is just childishness: avowing all the good things your group has done as a group and disavowing the bad. That's exactly what I see, almost exclusively, from race-conscious whites."

There are several other alternatives, among which (this works best if your group has a one StD IQ advantage over the "guilty" one's) is to hold that your own group is the sovereign final arbiter of group guilt assignment and to by using other groups, to covertly attempt to carry out the death penalty against any group which could possibly challenge such assumed status and further hold that no other group has standing to judge or even to criticise one's own. This has the further advantage of absolving the need of self-evaluation and criticism, which would naturally be truncated if at all present in a group using such a strategy.

Xavier said...

This is one corner of the blogosphere where Jews are condemned both for oppressing blacks and for liberating them.

Scheissherr said...

So Jews are evil for trying to destroy the South, except before the Civil War, when they were evil for helping to set up the South?

Anononymous said...

We have genealogical records going back that far, along with court records. We can apply civil rights laws to descendants of slave owners and business involved with slave trading and slave financing.

Lets see, the Nascar guy descended from Irish famine emigrants. No slaves, no laws apply.

Rich civil rights politician descended from important people. Most slaves are owned by a minority of rich people. Laws apply.

Really though, the Souths fate was sealed with The Act Prohibiting Importation of Slaves of 1807. The big northern companies were no longer making a profit from importing slaves, and could safely be abolitionist without harming their profits.

Anonymous said...

Nazis believed in blood guilt, wondered who they copied that from?

Hunsdon said...

Hitler never said it, but "Who now remembers the Amalekites?" Yes, yes, he actually said, "Who now remembers the Armenians?" but I think it would have been a bon more mot to have referenced the Amalekites.

Aaron Gross said: The alternative to accepting collective "hereditary responsibility," if you're still serious about group identity, is just childishness: avowing all the good things your group has done as a group and disavowing the bad. That's exactly what I see, almost exclusively, from race-conscious whites.

Hunsdon said: We learned it from the Jews. Trotsky? A Russian, because he was not religious. Einstein? A Jew, because he's awesome. Baruch Goldstein? Umm, he was an American, and you know how they are.

Aaron Gross said: All of us have certain unchosen responsibilities just because we were born into various groups (plural). Some of those responsibilities involve past moral transgressions committed by the group.

Hunsdon said: Aaron, do you feel guilt over the Jewish role in bringing slavery to the Americas through the sugar trade?

Anonymous said...

"Strange piece. It started out promisingly enough, but then for its second half it morphed into a rant against the Jews."

Counter-'rant', though fact-based than hostile and virulent.

Jews like Chait and Wise--and most of NY Times--rant about whites ALL THE TIME.

Time for some hitting back than merely covering up from the blows.
I mean enough is enough. If Jews are gonna badmouth whites at every turn, it's time to turn the tables.

http://youtu.be/axEQK_MGFu8?t=1h4m21s

Rohan Swee said...

Aaron Gross: The alternative to accepting collective "hereditary responsibility," if you're still serious about group identity, is just childishness: avowing all the good things your group has done as a group and disavowing the bad. That's exactly what I see, almost exclusively, from race-conscious whites.

Or, you see the universal human tendency toward this sort of childishness exclusively in "race-conscious whites". Or at least it's the only instance of this behavior that gets your goat.

The only alternative to laying off the insistence that whites have some unique obligation to flagellate themselves and make reparations for their bad deeds ('cause let's face it, we all know that nobody else is going to join this silly game), is to acknowledge that whites are indeed a superior group called to higher standards of behavior than lesser breeds. Anything else is just childish.

Bugg said...

Watching Bratton take his former job back brings to mind one word-OLD.

Titus Didius Tacitus said...

Jason: "It seems to me that the problem with guys like Chait is that they refuse to recognize that times have changed, that what might have been a reasonable generalization about Southerners forty years ago really isn't applicable today."

If Deliverance (1972) is a fair picture of Southerners, as it would be if influential generalizations about white Southerners were right forty years ago, well they were clearly vile, blood and bone, as the hostile portrait was quite physical, genetic and racial. (It's vile inbred evil Southern hicks, and sickeningly pale at that, unlike Hollywood's saintly Southern blacks.)

How much have they really changed since 1973? Are they proving they are non-racist by eagerly intermarrying with non-whites at such a rate that they have ceased to exist as an ethny? No. Well, racist then! And that's the same unforgivable sin as ever.

Enlightened minds will naturally conclude that that part of the gentile gene pool would be best swept away in the cleansing waters of an endless torrent of non-white immigration and forced assimilation.

That is, if culturally influential liberals were right forty years ago.

If liberals were right up until 1973, that means they were right about practically all history and all major issues. If that was true, they might as well just go on assuming they are always in the right. And they do.

Gilbert Ratchet said...

I think you could have done better here:

***

For instance, English common law long featured “corruption of blood,” which justified depriving malefactors’ descendants of their civil rights. A bill of attainder would “attaint” the bloodline, preventing transmission of land to heirs.

Yet the English tradition was characteristically individualist. When Parliament passed a bill of attainder against a rebel or an out-of-favor queen, it named an individual rather than a lineage. The children of the attainted one couldn’t inherit his property but could still pass on their own.

***

Your second paragraph is at odds with the first, and is in fact a better description of attainder than "corruption of blood" and "depriving descendants of their civil rights." As you note, it is against individuals, not "bloodlines." If you wanted to focus on that, you could have cited the Commie practice of hereditary political status.

Anonymous said...

Whiskey has implied that Jonathan Chait is post-Christian. Chait is currently-Jewish, as Whiskey must be himself. Some will see an attempt at cunning in this, but I think that Whiskey is simply a low-information person. Most people are. Do you think that the people interviewed by Jay Leno for his Jaywalking segments would recognize more than 90% of their own ethnic group's typical surnames for what they are?

Anonymous said...

Going back at least to the time of the poor Neanderthals, we all tend to be descended more from history’s winners than losers, so none of us should assume the purity of our ancestors’ and relatives’ morals. At minimum, fear of reciprocation should restrain our urge to denounce our contemporary rivals for corruption of blood.

That is probably one of the most poignant passages you've ever written, Steve. And it strikes right at the heart of contemporary progressivism.

Anonymous said...

No, Aaron Gross, hereditary guilt should only be associated with those families who owned slaves and profited directly from slavery. Your simple and stupid description flies in the face of the common law understanding of the concept. If some murderer was redheaded, only his redheaded children would share in his hereditary guilt, but not all redheads everywhere.

Sid said...

I agree. I would rather have Jews hitting hard in favor of HBD rather than against it. A piece like this won't bring any of them over.

Chubby Ape said...

An excellent piece Mr. Sailer. You mentioned the Amalekites which reminded me that I learned recently the story of killing every last Amalekites has troubled Christians since at least Origen of Alexandria all the way back in the 3rd century. He interpreted it to mean we should wipe out sin and temptation thoroughly, not rival tribes. Not surprisingly Judaism seems to have carried on with the unmodified Old Testament reading. I spotted this at Wikipedia in the entry for Agagite: "A well known Midrashic explanation of the term relates it to King Agag of the Amalekites whereby it is viewed as meaning either a literal descendant of Agag or an antisemite, the Amalekites having come to be symbolic of the antithesis of Judaism." It's a bit of a head-scratcher how the 19th century European movement of anti-Semitism ended up in ancient Persia though....



Jason said...

It seems to me that the problem with guys like Chait is that they refuse to recognize that times have changed, that what might have been a reasonable generalization about Southerners forty years ago really isn't applicable today. Obviously this isn't only an American problem - nations like France are unable to let go as far as the sins of the Germans are concerned, even though there currently are not many of the latter who were even alive during the Nazi regime.


I read various news sites and other websites from France pretty much every day, I lived there a while ago, and I have to say I see and hear very little of that.

Luke Lea said...

Speaking of past Jewish bigotry vis-a-vis African Americans, in The Jew Accused Albert Lindemann recounts Leo Frank's defense team's strategy of blaming the negro custodian, Jim Conley, who discovered the body. They described him as "a dirty, filthy, black, drunk, lying n*gger."

I think it was Mark Twain who once said that people blame the Jews for "not being any better than everybody else."

slumber_j said...

Bonus iSteve-themed fact regarding The Conspirator: producers Rob and Web Stone are brothers.

pat said...

Every now and then, Steve, you write a short piece that is really brilliant and thought provoking.

Albertosaurus

Svigor said...

The alternative to accepting collective "hereditary responsibility," if you're still serious about group identity, is just childishness: avowing all the good things your group has done as a group and disavowing the bad. That's exactly what I see, almost exclusively, from race-conscious whites.

The converse is that collective responsibility presupposes collective identity. For example, whites can't collectively be responsible for some past transgression like slavery unless whites exist. So if you're going to demand collective white responsibility for something, you have to agree that white identity, white consciousness, is a precondition.


Collective guilt is a pillar of Judaism, and collective guilt-mongering is a pillar of Jewish culture. Jews have been attacking white "gentiles" and exonerating Jews collectively for generations. It's their national pasttime. Jews as a group are as "race-conscious" as they come.

So, do tell us who's the world heavyweight champ of avowing all the good their group has done, and disavowing all the bad, again?

The beam in thine eye, sir. Jewry is a childish race?

Anonymous said...

slavenorth.com

NOTA said...

Aaron:

I think you're basically right that if you accept the idea of collective moral responsibility for anything, you need to accept it for all the actions of the group. But the whole idea of collective moral responsibility at the level of a race or religion or nation seems fundamentally wrongheaded.

Holding people responsible for their own actions, or for the actions of relatively small, manageable organizations in which they have a part, makes some sense. You can create incentives for good behavior that way, make it clear that robbing banks will get you prison time and inventing a cure for cancer will get you rich and famous. You can raise children to have a conscience, to personally feel bad when they do something wrong and good when they do something right.

None of that works for collective responsibility. Instead, it seems like collective responsibility relies on some combination of taking pride in yourself as a way of reflecting well on your group, and getting other members of your group to enforce some rules of behavior. You can be a credit to your race, or the other Jews in town can run you out of town because your drunken misbehavior is giving them all a bad name. It's a very different way of thinking about morality, and one that I honesly find very foreign.

To really take collective responsibilty seriously gets you to a clan-based system of justice, in which (for example) I can go beat up some random Chinese guy because some other random Chinese guy beat me up. And this is absolutely incompatible with individualist notions of justice. If *you* go beat up some random Chinese dude because some other Chinese dude beat you up, and *I* am on your jury, I'm going to be voting to send you to jail for assault. The collective guilt argument will absolutely not hold any water as far as I'm concerned.

NOTA said...

I also thought the article felt like two different articles bolted together. Both were interesting enough, but the connection was pretty slim.

a. Collective guilt is a notion that appeals to some people today, and maybe there's an increasing willingness to use it to further your team's interests. And furthering your team's interests always involves distorting history to make your team's guilt shrink and your opponents' guilt grow.

b. Applying the notion of collective guilt to Jews would lead to holding the Jews partly responsible for slavery and the confederacy. Here are some datapoints.

These two ideas aren't exactly unconnected, but the transition was kind-of weird.

NOTA said...

Anon 7:47 AM:

Well, if we caught someone now kidnapping people and working them to death in godawful sugar plantations, I'd want to hang the bastard. Certainly, he'd get at least life without parole. Would you propose that punishment for all the descendents of those responsible for sugar plantation slavery? Somewhere, there's a five year old boy sitting in front of a TV watching cartoons--should the police bust in and haul him off to prison or the gallows? Or maybe enslave him for his (short) life working in a sugar plantation, as payback?

See, that's what collective guilt looks like when you apply it. My thought is, people who try to apply it consistently are monsters--they're the kind of folks we have police and courts and armies to stop. Now, if you merely hand that five year old boy a permanent debt of a few hundred thousand dollars, or subject him to somewhat restrictive laws, in payback for his ancestors' crimes, that's not as horrible as hanging or imprisoning him. But it's no more defensible.

Decent societies we know how to build try, with varying levels of success, to make responsibility track with individuals--to hold people responsible for their own decisions and actions, more-or-less, though often with a side order of mercy (like bankruptcy laws that leave you on a short budget, but not in debtors' prison). Societies that run on collective guilt aren't generally anyplace you'd want to live.



Anonymous said...

"One of the more striking evolutions of recent decades has been the stealth revival of the ancient concept of hereditary guilt."


No one noticed these Bob Dylan remarks in Rolling Stone, which have led to criminal charges in France (for anti-Croat racism)?

"Blacks know that some whites didn't want to give up slavery – that if they had their way, they would still be under the yoke, and they can't pretend they don't know that.

If you got a slave master or Klan in your blood, blacks can sense that. That stuff lingers to this day. Just like Jews can sense Nazi blood and the Serbs can sense Croatian blood"


http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2515784/Like-Rolling-Stone-Croatian-community-France-suing-Bob-Dylan-famous-music-magazine-racism.html

Steve Sailer said...

"Hereditary guilt" or "hereditary responsibility" are concepts that can have some generally positive uses ... as long as everybody is allowed to play the game. But if one group is allowed to constantly impute the hereditary responsibility of another group, while crushing anybody who mentions their own ancestors' and relatives' roles, well, that lack of reciprocity undermines the potential of the concept for improving human behavior.

Anonymous said...

Give credit where credit is due. Here is a Jewish man in an Israeli paper owning up for past misdeeds of his people. I am amazed at what gets to be said in Israeli media versus American. If you were from another planet, you'd probably think America, not Israel, was the Jewish state. Things written in the Israeli media would get one fired in America.

Titus Didius Tacitus said...

Sid: "I would rather have Jews hitting hard in favor of HBD rather than against it. A piece like this won't bring any of them over."

Steve was trying to avoid or reduce a conflct that would derail a pro-HBD coalition and a lot of other potential coalitions.

He could not have done very much better than to say: don't start this; it might work out badly for you.

He expressed himself about as well as he could have.

He was right on many levels, one being that you can't forever have a functioning coalition where one side defines the other as Amalek, and is vigously imposing that definition on society at large.

What he tried is right, but it's not going to work, for many reasons, including and not limited to:
* That bluff got called fifty and more years ago.
* A "corruption of the blood" strategy has been applied with such success this past half-century and more that failing to adopt that method is obviously for losers.
* Winners don't take advice from losers whom they hate and are successfully pushing into the ash-heap of history.

But that's not Steve's fault. The problem is not that Steve's piece won't bring enough people like Jonathan Chait over to HBD.

Hunsdon said...

Anonydroid at 7:47 AM said: If some murderer was redheaded, only his redheaded children would share in his hereditary guilt, but not all redheads everywhere.

Hunsdon said: Hereditary guilt is, from a Western mindset, a heresy, a fallacy. The actor is responsible for his actions. What a novel concept! If you do not participate in the actions, you bear no responsibility, no culpability, for those actions. You didn't do that---as the POTUS might have said.

TGGP said...

Coincidentally, I was just reading David Friedman on justice/compensation for historical crimes. He pointed out that the descendants of slaves living in the U.S are by and large richer than the descendants of slavers who stayed in Africa. But under certain conceptions of justice found on the left or among "bleeding heart libertarians" it would seem the latter owe compensation to the former.

TGGP said...

Collective punishment is an anathema to individualism, but has a certain logic to it. Rebellious villages/towns would often face the threat of collective punishment to keep them in line, the Romans used "decimation" on their own troops. The imperial Chinese collectively punished families, which makes even more sense taking a gene's eye view of inclusive fitness. One of my favorite econ-bloggers (at least before he semi-retired blogging to sensibly devote more time to his kid) Karl Smith discusses that here.

The pre-Civil War Jews in America were typically Sephardic rather than Ashkenazi. I wouldn't be surprised if Chait was ignorant & uninterested in their history.

Anonymous said...

My understanding of Disraeli was that not only he was a convert to Christianity, but he was often openly hostile to Jewish interests.

Anonymous said...

"My understanding of Disraeli was that not only he was a convert to Christianity, but he was often openly hostile to Jewish interests."

He was very proud of his Jewish roots and saw Jews are more intelligent than gentiles.

Also, it depends on how one defines 'Jewish interests'. Today in the US, some Jews are for a deal with Iran, others oppose it. Of course, both think their plan is better for Jewish interests, but they disagree on how to serve it.

So, even as Disraeli seemed to have been going against 'Jewish interests', he may have been serving it in his own way.
It's like some of Obama's policies are seen by blacks as not serving 'black interests', but Obama knows he has to play the game in order to keep sufficient white support in order to push his larger agenda.

And in the 90s, Clinton seemed to go against the 'gay agenda', but he was only playing the 'moderate' to fool Middle America.
Politics is oftentimes two steps forward, one step backward.

Anonymous said...

Collective guilt is used along with SELECTIVE GUILT.

It's like the Chinese bitch on and on about Nanking but totally overlook what they did in Tibet or how it aided and abetted the massive genocide in Cambodia.

General rule for all people is, DO NOT ACCEPT ANY GUILT UNLESS THERE IS A MUTUAL WILLINGNESS ON THE OTHER SIDE TO ADMIT AND ACCEPT ITS OWN GUILT. Otherwise, you will be played for a fool.

Anonymous said...

Along with collective guilt, there is a kind of concentric guilt. Some forms of 'guilt' have more gravitational pull, and so, not only are the main perpetrators likely to revolve around that guilt core but others are likely to join in.

Take the Holocaust. Now, many non-German Europeans committed greater horrors against one another and to non-Jews than to Jews, but since Holocaust is the BIG KAHUNA GUILT in Europe, every European nation promotes its own guilt--however dubious--in relation to it. So, every nation makes movies about 'saving Jews' and erects monuments to the Holocaust--even though it had little to do with the tragedy. So, even if Germany is the main planet that revolves around the Holocaust guilt, other nations have also joined in the orbit.

Given what the Belgians did in the Congo, you'd think Belgians would be most obsessed about that horror. But they'd rather weep about how they didn't do enough to save Jews. And even though Sweden was a neutral nation, it wants to apologize forever for having done business with Nazi Germany.

Of course, concentric blame goes along with concentric guilt. Since the Holocaust has been used as the measure of all evils in the world, many nations--that had nothing to do with either Germany or Jews--will also dump on Germany over an issue that has nothing to do with their own histories(which could be just as bloody).

Anonymous said...

http://youtu.be/XYtK3q7RVBU

Nazi paranoia good(even after the defeat of Germany). Communist paranoia bad(even with Stalin having swallowed up all of Eastern Euro

Anonymous said...

"So Jews are evil for trying to destroy the South, except before the Civil War, when they were evil for helping to set up the South?"

More like constantly trying to whiny-blameshift, with an obvious, after awhile, lack of interest in the facts of the matter or any strong sense of objectivity.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of Jews and the Civil War, check out General Order No. 11

General Order No. 11 was the title of an order issued by Major-General Ulysses S. Grant on December 17, 1862, during the American Civil War. It ordered the expulsion of all Jews in his military district, comprising areas of Tennessee, Mississippi, and Kentucky. The order was issued as part of a Union campaign against a black market in Southern cotton, which Grant thought was being run "mostly by Jews and other unprincipled traders."[1]

Aaron Gross said...

NOTA, thanks very much for the criticism. First of all, I'm not endorsing "blood redemption," where if one Chinese guy hits you, then you go out and hit some other Chinese guy. I'm not talking about holding any person responsible for anyone else's actions.

Mainly, I see collective responsibility as important, in this context, in telling stories. I've often said this other places - it's kind of a hobby horse of mine - regarding Jews and the Nakbah, but I think it applies universally. At the personal level, we make ourselves better persons by telling the truth about bad things we've done, by telling truthful stories to ourselves and to the people we've hurt. I believe that the same holds for groups.

There's a lot of this in Germany with respect to the Shoah of course, among Jews (not enough) with respect to the Nakbah, which is really a placeholder for the whole Zionist movement, and in America with respect to the conquest of the Indians and slavery. The thing about America is that the people telling that story are never, as far as I've seen, people who strongly identify as whites. Maybe it's the same in Germany, I wouldn't know. That's what I mean when I say that white racialists aren't acting like grown-ups.

Steve Sailer said...

In 2000, the president of the West African country of Benin came to Virginia and apologized to African Americans for his ancestors selling them into slavery:

http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2000-05-01/news/0005010158_1_slave-trade-benin-president-mathieu-kerekou

Phalluster said...

I hope Steve doesn't get a bill of attainder levied upon him for this article.

Specifically, levies from Levys.

Pepe said...

I don't understand why we're making this so complicated.

The central question was addressed by Sir Henry Maine, writing from England at the outbreak of the U.S. Civil War, in his essay "From Status to Contract."







Belisarius said...

The widespread liberal Jewish condemnation of Mel Gibson's "The Passion of the Christ" had to do with the portrayal of the Jews' role in condemning Christ to death; the traditional passion play is often cited as one of the causes of Christian anti-semitism because it led peasants to blame all Jews for the actions of a few in the distant past. Some feared enraged Christians would attack the local synogogue with pitchforks and burning torches.

Most of those who condemned Gibson's movie, with no sense of irony, probably believe whole-heartedly that all white Christian Americans bear collective guilt for slavery; and they probably love- and I'm sure some helped produce- the recent crop of slavery porn.

Observer said...

Titus: "If Deliverance (1972) is a fair picture of Southerners, ..., well they were clearly vile" - bear in mind that ALL the characters in Deliverance are Southerners, both the city slickers on vacation and the inbred hicks who attack them. The author of the original novel was himself a white Southerner (James Dickey). The idea that Deliverance is an attack on white Southerners as a whole doesn't hold up - it's about the good v. bad ones among them.

Aaron Gross said...

Rohan, that sentence I wrote with "exclusively" was ambiguous, and sure enough, you parsed it the more plausible way, which was not the way I meant it.

I did not mean that only racially conscious whites do this kind of denial; probably every human group that's ever existed has done it. What I meant was that this is almost the only historical approach I see from racially conscious whites. I hardly ever see whites with a strong racial identity truly avowing the transgressions committed, collectively, by whites. The stories told by racially conscious whites are almost exclusively self-serving ones.

That's what I meant by "exclusively." I didn't express it clearly at first.

Svigor said...

The idea that Deliverance is an attack on white Southerners as a whole doesn't hold up - it's about the good v. bad ones among them.

Sure, sure. Hollywood will be making the black or Jewish version of Deliverance any day now.

Titus Didius Tacitus said...

Hollywood has routinely included one or more "good white" characters for white viewers to identify with, while making the over-all portrait damning. "Mississippi Burning" isn't a love song to the South because there's a white cop that fights those crackers for what's right. And as Svigor said, when Hollywood is protecting a group, it doesn't play this game.

NOTA said...

Aaron:

I can see the benefit of reflecting on history, but I guess that doesn't go in my moral responsibility folder, but somewhere else--in my "lessons of history" folder, guess.

The holocaust and slavery both give you some useful lessons like "apparently decent and sane people no dumber or more innately evil than I am have taken part in some truly godawful stuff; I'm probably susceptible to being swept along in similarly nasty stuff if I'm not careful." It's the same lesson I took from the Milgram experiments--people like me are susceptible to doing really awful things, so I need to really think through how not to be a part of such things.

The comforting story almost everyone tells himself is that he'd have joined the Maquis or smuggled slaves to Canada or some such thing. But really, modern Americans don't look any more moral or brave than Americans or Frenchmen or Germans of the past, so most likely, most modern Americans in similar situations would go along with that kind of horror. And indeed, there is no shortage of otherwise decent and sane people who are 100% on board with torturing prisoners or bombing Afghan kids--minor horrors compared with the Armenian genocide or the Great Leap Forward, but still morally awful things being done for really small benefits.

I am deeply skeptical that there is any particular race or religion that is immune to such things. Many of the smartest and most forward-thinking people in Western Civilization ended up as cheerleaders for Stalin; piles of deeply religious people applied the red hot irons and the rack during the Inquisition. The most advanced civilizations on the globe did godawful shit taking and holding down colonies.

But this doesn't seem like responsibility, exactly. It's like knowing you are a grown man who is strong enough to beat someone to death, and knowing that other people like you have gotten drunk and beaten their wives or girlfriends to death. It's not like *you* beat anyone to death, but it's still smart to recognize that drunken violent rages are a bad thing to get yourself into.

Aaron Gross said...

By collective "responsibility" I mean what people like Alasdair MacIntyre and Hannah Arendt mean. They both (unlike me) reject the concept of collective guilt. They mean that members of a group are personally responsible, going forward, to act a certain way towards certain other groups based only on things that their own group has done, often before they were born. For Arendt, at least, this is primarily a political responsibility.

So for instance, "responsibility" for white Americans includes the responsibility to tell the truth about the horrors of slavery, to whites and to African-Americans. That's a responsibility that a Chinese person doesn't have.

And, to emphasize my point, I don't know of any strongly race-conscious white (except for myself) who believes this. Lawrence Auster sort of agreed with me about this once, but only as a price he'd be willing to pay for the general acceptance of white identity, not because it's the right thing to do.

Anonymous said...

Mr. Gross,

I agree with you that honesty is a powerfully good strategy. I disagree that "telling the truth" about slavery as a conscious political directive will be profitable for our society.

Everyone knows that slavery is generally unpleasant, especially for the slaves. Everyone also knows that it has been almost ubiquitous across cultures until recent times. Probably every living soul carries the sins of slaves and slavers in their DNA. The issue has been vetted to the point of pornography.

I think it is counter-productive to establish mandatory or quasi-mandatory institutions that encourage lower individuals to construct elaborate victim's stories, and encourage higher individuals to offer the victim groups the rights and property of others. Where is the benefit in such a Potlatch?

To sacrifice one's own person or property to redeem another's loss may be noble, but to sacrifice another man's station in pursuit of equity or salvation is pernicious.

Neil Templeton



Anonymous said...

The idea that Deliverance is an attack on white Southerners as a whole doesn't hold up - it's about the good v. bad ones among them.

Well, really, it's about the urban ones vs the rural ones among them.

Part of that is simply the demands of the plot. It wouldn't make much sense to have these guys be chased down and tormented in a city, where there would be police officers and payphones every few blocks.

But Dickey also realized, at the time, that it was intended to be somehow surprising. Part of the irony is that these guys leave high-crime urban Atlanta, and end up being terrorized when they go out to the idyllic countryside.

It was surprising then because people then generally realized that the countryside was safer than the city. The portrayal of rural areas was still more like The Andy Griffith Show and Petticoat Junction, where rural people might be backwards and eccentric and even stupid, but not insane and dangerous.

It's interesting that the Deliverance view seems to have won out, which is why a lot of people don't seem to "get" the movie.

Well, of course a bunch of inbred rednecks are going to torture you if you go out into the woods! That's just how those people are!

Which is why, nowadays, you hear people from large cities making unironic references to Deliverance, and their apparently real fear of people out in the countryside going on rampages like this, if they leave the safe confines of their city.