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September 11, 2017 / JayMan

Interview With JayMan

(This is also published at The Unz Review)

I was recently interviewed by Robert Stark (of The Stark Truth). That interview is up as a podcast here:

Robert Stark interviews Jayman – The Stark Truth With Robert Stark

Just to get this out of the way, in this interview I didn’t cover much new ground. Long-time readers will be familiar with what we talk about here. Nonetheless, (quoted from The Stark Truth), here are  the topics:

Robert Stark, Joshua Zeidner, and Sam Kevorkian talk to Jayman. Check out Jayman’s Blog and writings at The Unz Review.


Steven Pinker’s The Blank Slate: The Modern Denial of Human Nature
Arthur Jensen on Human Intelligence
Jayman’s Jamaican heritage
Jayman’s political views; liberal both socially and economically(see: Political Alignment)
Liberalism, HBD, and Solutions
Idiocracy Can Wait?
Jayman’s American Nations Series
Colin Woodard’s book American Nations: A History of the Eleven Rival Regional Cultures of North America
A Tentative Ranking of the Clannishness of the “Founding Fathers
Maps of the American Nations
Demography is Destiny, American Nations Edition
Assortative migration patterns
A Dialect Map of American English
The Donald Trump Phenomenon: The American Nations
The Five Laws of Behavioral Genetics
The ethics of health insurance companies setting rates based on genetic records

The talk is about 1 hour and 10 minutes long. Enjoy!

August 4, 2017 / JayMan

The Five Laws of Behavioral Genetics

(This is also published at The Unz Review.)

The time has come for a review post on the laws of behavioral genetics. I will talk about why these laws are laws and why they are important. Eventually, this will be merged into my Behavioral Genetics Page, but for now, I will start with this primer.

The five laws of behavioral genetics are:

  1. All human behavioral traits are heritable
  2. The effect of being raised in the same family is smaller than the effect of the genes.
  3. A substantial portion of the variation in complex human behavioral traits is not accounted for by the effects of genes or families.
  4. A typical human behavioral trait is associated with very many genetic variants, each of which accounts for a very small percentage of the behavioral variability.
  5. All phenotypic relationships are to some degree genetically mediated or confounded.

All are simple. All can be said in one sentence. Yet all are incredibly profound and terribly underappreciated in today’s society.

For most of the history of the laws, there were only three. The first three were coined by Eric Turkheimer (who has since spent his time trying to undermine his own discovery). Recent genomic studies have added the fourth (Chabris et al, 2015). And Emil Kirkegaard has proposed the fifth based on multivariate behavioral genetic studies. Allow me to review the five laws and their everyday significance.

First Law: All human behavioral traits are heritable.


  • Identical twins raised apart will be similar – and usually highly similar in every conceivable measurement
  • More generally, behavioral and other phenotypic similarity is predicted by genetic similarity for all behaviors and phenotypes, across all human relations, regardless of environmental circumstances. That is, identical twins are more similar than fraternal twins or full siblings, who are more similar than half-siblings, who are more similar than first cousins, and so on ad infintum.

This is underappreciated because this means that all human characteristics, including the things we feel are products of “free choice” or “free will” are in fact heavily dependent on genetic forces. This includes life circumstances, such as where and how you live – even how you grew up. Free will doesn’t exist. Political, religious, and moral views are themselves partly enshrined in the genes. This (or, more specifically, additive heritability) is responsible for continuity within families and within social and ethnic groups. And this is why human societies and behavioral quirks persist, resistant to change.

Second Law: The effect of being raised in the same family is smaller than the effect of the genes.


  • Identical twins raised apart are no less similar than identical twins raised together
  • Non-related individuals reared together are no more similar than random strangers
  • More generally, people growing up together are no more similar than you’d expect from their genetic relationship alone

Also under appreciated, the Second Law talks about the “shared environment” – parents, peers, schools, neighborhoods – all the things children growing up in the same household share. The effect of all those things on any behavioral trait or other phenotype is nil. Zip. Zilch. Nada. Zero. All the things people (especially in the modern West) think matter to children’s development have no effect at all. This includes expensive schools, nice homes, strict discipline, religious indoctrination – none of it matters. No adult outcome shows any effect of shared environment, this includes criminality, marital stability, income, adult happiness, and substance abuse (though note, educational attainment seems to be affected by shared environment, but even here, the effect of education goes away when you look at income). It just doesn’t matter. This strikes squarely against popular belief, making the second law the most vehemently denied of them all.

Third Law: A substantial portion of the variation in complex human behavioural traits is not accounted for by the effects of genes or families.


  • Identical twins (even raised together) are in fact far from identical and differ in significant ways
  • In general, there will be variance left over once genes and shared environmental effects are accounted for

Identical twins may have different handedness, have different fingerprints, and indeed, can differ in criminal history (such as perpetrating a mass shooting).


More poignantly, identical twins can (and in fact, in cases where at least one is gay, usually do) differ in sexual orientation.

Twins differ substantially for cancer incidence – despite having very similar lifestyle habits, indicating that these factors don’t do as much as many think.

Now, while a good bit of this of left over variance turns out to actually be measurement error (i.e., twins are even more similar than they first appear when you watch them long enough/better), the Third Law means that there is more to the story that straight-up genetic forces. Many commenters here try to fill in the blanks with the usual environmental suspects (e.g., schools, peers, differential parental treatment) – ignoring the lessons of the Second Law which shows the nonexistence of any effect of these things. As fingerprints indicate, there are deep developmental forces at work that render many of these ideas unnecessary – indeed, nonsensical in many cases. Or, in the case of sexual oriental, the distinguishing force may be something largely outside our control, such as pathogens (see Greg Cochran’s “Gay Germ” Hypothesis – An Exercise in the Power of Germs). The Third Law indicates that chance effects can dash our best laid plans.

Fourth Law: A typical human behavioral trait is associated with very many genetic variants, each of which accounts for a very small percentage of the behavioral variability.


  • Genomic studies have found few genetic variants that have a large effect on behavioral traits

This is mostly of concern for breeding or for genetic engineering. This puts the kibosh on simplistic notions of a “gene for X”, because in reality there are a plethora of genetic variants at play in a given behavioral trait. This is why, despite the progress being made in genetic modification, it will be still a while yet before “made to order” designer babies are a reality.

Fifth Law: All phenotypic relationships are to some degree genetically mediated or confounded.


  • Whenever there is an association between two phenotypes (such as poverty and crime), there will be a genetic association driving both

And finally, I come to Emil Kirkegaard’s newly coined law, one that is vastly underappreciated. This was drawn from studies like those of Amir Sariaslan’s and others showing the confounded nature of phenotypical associations (even extended phenotypes like social circumstances). This essentially strikes at the heart of modern social science (and for that matter, medical science), which assumes, wrongly, that association between social and/or behavioral factors is an indication that one causes the other. In reality, genetic forces cause both. Indeed, we see this with health and lifestyle: people who exercise more have fewer/later health problems and live longer, so naturally conventional wisdom interprets this to mean that exercise leads to health and longer life, when in reality healthy people are driven to exercise and have better health due to their genes.

* * *

I could go on and also talk about another thing that bugs me, namely twin control studies, which basically apply a version of the confounded wisdom seen in the Fifth Law. Namely such studies assume that correlations in unshared environment (i.e., the matter of the Third Law) as causal, ignoring the substance of the Third Law in the process (i.e., unshared biological forces could cause both factors of interest). But, this will be a topic for another day.

These are dangerous times for biosocial science – societal and political forces make this matter difficult to discuss or research. A reckoning is approaching, and it is unclear how it will turn out. In the mean time, technology and our understanding of the forces at play marches on, waiting for our society to catch up.





February 8, 2017 / JayMan

The Genetics of the American Nations

(This is also published at The Unz Review)

Throughout my American Nations series (based on the books American Nations: A History of the Eleven Rival Regional Cultures of North America by Colin Woodard and Albion’s Seed: Four British Folkways in America by David Hackett Fischer) I’ve talked about how North America is divided into distinct ethnocultural regions based on historic settlement patterns.

North American Nations 4 3

These various regions are visible in many ways, from dialect, politics, enlistment in the military, support for marijuana, average IQ (Maps of the American Nations), attitudes towards the death penalty, abortion, guns, same-sex marriage, and school corporal punishment, as well as overall health, lifespan, and behaviors such as smoking and drug use (More Maps of the American Nations & HBD Is Life and Death):


Support for same-sex marriage

Support for same-sex marriage

White Age-Adjusted traffic death rates county 2004-2010

Previously I’ve established that these boundaries reflect genetic differences among different Americans in different places. This is because all human behavioral traits are heritable, with “nurture” (as it’s commonly thought of) playing a minimal to nonexistent role in each. This means that genetic differences between different peoples lead to differences in their behavioral traits, which, collectively, manifests as cultural differences. As John Derbyshire put it, “if dimensions of the individual human personality are heritable, then society is just a vector sum of a lot of individual personalities.” See my Behavioral Genetics Page for more.

It’s also important to note that (as I’ve discussed previously in this series) assimilation is largely an illusion. Cultural and behavioral characteristics can persist for many generations as long as the people who exhibit them remain.

And now, a new paper in Nature bears out the genetic roots of the American nations. In “Clustering of 770,000 genomes reveals post-colonial population structure of North America” (Han et al, 2017), we see that Americans can easily be partitioned into distinct regional clusters:

These clusters map very closely to the boundaries of the American nations, as we can see when they’re superimposed:


Using the vast genomic database of, the authors were able to partition Americans into distinct clusters. As the authors report:

Here we identify very recent fine-scale population structure in North America from a network of over 500 million genetic (identity-by-descent, IBD) connections among 770,000 genotyped individuals of US origin. We detect densely connected clusters within the network and annotate these clusters using a database of over 20 million genealogical records. Recent population patterns captured by IBD clustering include immigrants such as Scandinavians and French Canadians; groups with continental admixture such as Puerto Ricans; settlers such as the Amish and Appalachians who experienced geographic or cultural isolation; and broad historical trends, including reduced north-south gene flow. Our results yield a detailed historical portrait of North America after European settlement and support substantial genetic heterogeneity in the United States beyond that uncovered by previous studies.

They describe their methods:

To investigate recent, fine-scale population structure in the United States, we leveraged one of the largest human genetic data sets assembled to date: genome-wide genotypes of 774, 516 individuals born (96%) or currently residing (4%) in the United States (Supplementary Table 1; Supplementary Fig. 1). All individuals were genotyped at 709, 358 autosomal single-nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) using the Illumina Human OmniExpress platform as part of the AncestryDNA direct-to-consumer genetic test, and have consented to participate in research (Methods). In this sample, we analysed patterns of identity-by-descent (IBD)16, which have been shown to reveal signatures of recent demographic history3,17,18,19,20,21. If two individuals share an ancestor from the recent past, they will likely carry one or more long chromosomal segments inherited IBD from that ancestor.

In short, their giant sample and rich genealogical data allowed them to detect large patterns of shared ancestry in living Americans. And, as expected the American nations clearly emerge from the genetic data. 

How did this pattern emerge? In short, this is ultimately the result of the four British folkways of Albion’s Seed. Here the genetic data show that they remain alive and well. Previously, in my post Genes, Climate, and Even More Maps of the American Nations, we saw that the founding British colonists came from distinct parts of the British Isles and settled in different parts of North America. The founding British stock are themselves visible in the genetic data, as we saw from fine-scale analysis of Britain (Leslie et al 2015, ungated link here):


As I put it in Genes, Climate, and Even More Maps of the American Nations:

Genetic differences between groups of people, once established, persist as long as the different groups do until diluted or erased by admixture (this is known as the Founder effect). As well, new differences can emerge within a single population as selective migration leads this initial population to fission into two or more daughter populations (see here and here – more on that to follow).

In short, tiny genetic differences between two groups of people can lead to large differences in behavioral traits. This extents to all facets of human behavior – a point driven home by a recent paper correlating linguistic diversity across Europe with genetic diversity there (Longobardi et al, 2015).

But why do the American nations follow the pattern that they do? It turns out that this pattern was hardly a coincidence.

The founding colonial groups landed at various spots across the North American east coast:

From there, the nations spread westward across the continent. However, they did so in a certain way, as the next map will show:

Climate North America Nations


Geography dictated the settlement of the country:

wood_expansionAn example of this process can be seen in the settlement of the “upper Midwest” (Hudson, 1986):

yankeeland.middle.westSettlers moved to places where they could easily transplant their way of life. Areas of similar climate obviously aided in that aim. In the upper Midwest, Yankee and Midland settlers were joined by German and Scandinavian immigrants (as detailed in the preceding posts), who were also coming to areas climatically similar to their old homes.

These settlements have left their genetic as well as cultural mark across the continent.

Now, it’s important to understand what these data actually mean. These clusters do not mean that the descendants of the colonial settlers are numerically dominant in their respective regions, because they are not. Over the course of the continent’s history, the descendants of the original settlers were joined by subsequent immigrants, mostly other Europeans, who themselves settled in different parts of the country. As we saw previously in Demography Is Destiny, American Nations Edition:

ancestries mapped fulford

ancestry timeline

(Tables are from Fulford, Petkov, and Schiantarelli, 2015). These other ethnic groups have a huge impact on the character of the modern United States (and Canada), as we saw on display during the recent presidential election (see The Donald Trump Phenomenon: Part 1: The American Nations).

So what then do the clusters of Han et al mean? While the original colonial ancestry of the country has been overrun by subsequent migrants, the founding stock remain as a genetic undercurrent – a common genetic thread – within each American nation. This is especially true in the nations of the American South, where the colonial settlers received less subsequent migration and the original stock remains strong. As Han et al put it:

Taken together with the IBD network clustering results (Table 1), the visualizations of the genealogical data in North America (Fig. 3) highlight broad-scale demographic trends, as well as patterns specific to individual populations

The five largest clusters (third set of rows in Table 1), which we describe as assimilated immigrant clusters, account for a large portion (60%) of the IBD network and exhibit a markedly different profile. Lacking distinctive affiliations to non-US populations, they show almost no differentiation in allele frequencies (FST at most 0.001; Supplementary Table 5) and high levels of IBD to non-cluster members (Supplementary Data 2), suggestive of high gene flow between these clusters. Moreover, few members of these clusters could be assigned to a stable subset, indicating that this clustering is largely driven by continuous variation in IBD. Genealogical data reveal a north-to-south trend (Fig. 5), most consistently east of the Mississippi River (Fig. 3). These findings imply greater east-west than north-south gene flow, which is broadly consistent with recent westward expansion of European settlers in the United States, and possibly somewhat limited north-south migration due to cultural differences.

The descendants of the Puritans, for example, while hardly the dominant genetic group across Yankeedom, nonetheless cluster together because people across Greater New England share that ancestry. This is true for the other nations as well.

Curiously, Han et al seem to have found two distinct currents of Appalachian settlement. I’m unclear about what this represents.

Some more interesting bits of information appear when you dig into Han et al’s supplementary info:


For Yankeedom, we see that the inferred genetic origin area is encompasses East Anglia and Kent, the home of the Puritan settlers. We also see the Scandinavian signal that is the home of many Mormon converts.

This group is also evident along the Left Coast, reflecting the Yankees’ historical settlement there.


For the Midlands, we see that the inferred source area is around Yorkshire in England. Also, the strong German signal corresponds to the Palatine.



For some reason, two Appalachian populations seem to appear. The main difference in Europe appears to be a stronger signal from Germany in the northern population.


For the Tidewater and Deep South, the home of the English Cavaliers (see The Cavaliers) in Southwest England is evidence. The Scottish link (presumably Scots-Irish that settled in the Deep South) is also visible.

These are the “Midwestern immigrants”. As expected, this group is heavily Scandinavian and Eastern European (mostly Polish and Czech/Slovak). However, what’s interesting to me here is that the German settlement here is different from the Germans that settled in the east. These Germans aren’t so heavily from the Palatine, but are from farther north and east. This is interesting in light of my earlier post Germania’s Seed?; different German-Americans in different parts of the country hail from different parts of Germany. Behavioral differences among these different German-Americans are expected.

The genetic data now serve as the final confirmation of the existence of the American nations (if the mass of other data wasn’t already sufficient). These regional differences have and continue to have huge implications for American society, including the ongoing cultural and political struggle that is now playing out.

Indeed, even in the 2016 presidential election (despite being a bit less regionally skewed than previous years) the American nations still were clearly divided in same ways they were previously:


This is from Woodard’s How Colin Woodard’s ‘American Nations’ explains the 2016 presidential election. There he gives a fine analysis of the regional split in the vote. Rest assured, the divide would be more stark if the White vote alone were examined, especially for the Tidewater, the Deep South, and the Far West.

Trump did manage to pick up considerable support in Yankeedom and the Midlands relative to 2012 and 2008, but the regional split remains.


As it has remained throughout the country’s history. Understanding these divides will be key to understanding our country and its future.

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January 26, 2017 / JayMan

Broken Links/Images

Things go offline on the internet (a massive pain in the butt). If you find any broken links or missing images on my many posts, columns, and pages, please do report them here. Once I get a list compiled, I’ll try to fix them.


January 16, 2017 / JayMan

Clannishness – The Series: A Finer-Grained Look at How It Happened

(This is also published at The Unz Review)

In my earlier entry (Clannishness – The Series: How It Happened), we saw that the thing that made the difference between WEIRD Northwestern Europeans and their more clannish neighbors was the selective pressures that each underwent during their histories – particularly since the fall of Rome until the present. This era in time established the conditions in which different sort of individuals survived and reproduced, eventually leading to the modern world as we know it.

As before, it is to be understood that these differences have a genetic basis. That is, they are heritable. This means that genetic differences between different peoples lead to differences in their behavioral traits, which, collectively, manifests as cultural differences. We should be clear that all human behavioral traits are heritable, with “nurture” (as it’s commonly thought of) playing a minimal to nonexistent role in each. As John Derbyshire put it, “if dimensions of the individual human personality are heritable, then society is just a vector sum of a lot of individual personalities.”. See my Behavioral Genetics Page for more. The rest of this entry proceeds assuming an understanding of this reality.

To recap, in Northwestern Europe it was bipartite manorialism that selected for a certain type of people not seen elsewhere in the world.





In Eastern and Southern Europe, and much everywhere else in the world, it the selective factor was the various forms of “vicious” societies, where heavy dependence on relatives for social life selected for individuals who were “particularist” (as opposed to universalist NW Euros) and distrustful of outsiders. As HBD Chick put it:

part of william hamilton‘s theory of inclusive fitness/kin selection, which explains how altruism ever could’ve arisen at all (altruism here having a very specific definition), is that it should be possible for genes for altruism to be selected for if close kin interact regularly. kin don’t need to recognize one another for altruism to be selected for. as long as closely related individuals don’t move far from one another — that is, if a population is viscous — selection for altruism might happen.

i can’t see why this couldn’t also apply to lesser forms of altruism, not just the kind where you sacrifice your life for two brothers or eight cousins. you know what i mean. like: reciprocal altruism or nepotistic altruism. or just pro-social behaviors. whatever you want to call them. seems to me that nepotistic behaviors ought to be selected for more easily in viscous populations (if they increase fitness, of course).

and some populations are more viscous than others

But beyond this, there are great differences between different NW European countries, along with great differences between different clannish societies. Why is this? No doubt, part of the answer is the precise selective pressures each experienced. Let us try to take a look at what those may have been.

This entry will also be a sequel to my earlier post, More on Farming and Inheritance Systems – Part I: IQ – consider this Part II to that post. There I discussed the IQ differences across Europe, and how they could have arose. I will return to that topic and expand on it a bit here.

The differences among peoples of Europe proceeds on a sort of gradient, which is visible when you look at the World Values Survey data:

Indeed, as HBD Chick’s modifications (from the one where i draw squiggly lines all over the welzel-inglehart cultural map | hbd chick) make it clear:

The left image are the countries within the Hajnal line, while the right are countries that have practiced father’s brother’s daughter marriage.

Across these regions, many social indices proceed along this broad gradient. WEIRDness peaks in the areas bordering the North Sea (England, the Netherlands, northern France, southern Scandinavia) and diminishes in all directions from there. This area is also the area of peak human accomplishment (see Clannishness – The Series: Zigzag Lightning in the Brain and “core europe” and human accomplish-ment | hbd chick), which likewise roughly diminishes in all directions from there.

WVS axes

Why is this? I’d argue that two main selective factors are involved, at least with respect to HBD Chick’s theory. (I will also discuss two other important selective pressures not directly related to HBD Chick’s theory below).

One was simply the length of time under the manorial system. The longer a selective pressure is (consistently) applied, the stronger the evolutionary change that occurs. The manor first appeared in Austrasia (roughly northern France) and spread outward from there.

The second factor is the farming and inheritance systems that arose – in part due to geography and climate, in part due to the characteristics of the people who adopted them:


We see that the farming and inheritance systems form roughly concentric rings outward from the North Sea. One could imagine that the social systems of each became steadily more “viscous” as you moved away from the North Sea.

Indeed, by the time you reach Eastern Europe, you find that there was a period of actual communal living. In Russia, farming peasants (the bulk of the population) lived in communes, the Obshchina, an arrangement that persisted into the 20th century. Wikipedia has this to say about these (emphasis added):

The organization of the peasant mode of production is the primary cause for the type of social structure found in the Obshchina. The relationship between the individual peasant, the family, and the community leads to a specific social structure categorized by the creation of familial alliances to apportion risks between members of the community. In the Obshchina alliances were formed primarily through marriage and common descent of kin. Usually the eldest members of the household made up the Mir to govern the redistribution of land. The families came together to form a community that depended on making taxes more equitable and the concept of mutual help. Jovan E. Howe writes, “The economic relations so established are essentially distributive: through various categories of exchanges of both products and labor, temporary imbalances such as those occasioned by insufficient labor power of a newly-established family unit or a catastrophic loss, which places one unit at an unfair reproductive disadvantage in relation to its allies, are evened out.[2] In addition the alliance system had residual communal rights, sharing exchanges during shortages as well as certain distributive exchanges. Furthermore the structure defined by these alliances and risk-sharing measures were regulated by scheduling and the ritualization of time. Howe writes, “the traditional calendar of the Russian peasants was a guide for day-to-day living. The names attached to calendar dates, the calendrical periods into which they were grouped, the day on the week on which each fell, and the sayings connected with them encoded information about when to undertake tasks, but also about when not to work, when it was necessary to perform symbolic actions, take part in rituals and compulsory celebrations”.[3]

Peasants (i.e. three-quarters of the population of Russia) formed a class apart,[4] largely excepted from the incidence of the ordinary law, and governed in accordance with their local customs. The mir itself, with its customs, is of immemorial antiquity; it was not, however, until the emancipation of the serfs in 1861 that the village community was withdrawn from the patrimonial jurisdiction of the landowning nobility and endowed with self-government. The assembly of the mir consists of all the peasant householders of the village.[5] These elect a Village Elder (starosta) and a collector of taxes, who was responsible, at least until the ukaz of October 1906, which abolished communal responsibility for the payment of taxes, for the repartition among individuals of the taxes imposed on the commune. A number of mirs are united into a volost, which has an assembly consisting of elected delegates from the mirs.

This is a quintessential viscous society, and vastly different from the corporate, more atomized ways of Northwestern Europeans at the time. (See also M.G.’s post on the matter: Those Who Can See: The Tsar is Far).

Whereas the circum-North Sea peoples depended on free movement of people and impressing themselves among non-relatives, the inhabitants in the more peripheral European areas had to rely on family or distinct structured alliances with particular people. Democracy flourishes in Northwestern Europe (for better or worse) and is distinctly weaker to the south, east, and in the Celtic fringe – where particularism and strategic social alliances reign.

It should be said here for those that don’t notice that the gradient along the WEIRDO-clannish dimension exists within various European countries.

Great Britain:




From Differences Between the North and South of France – As Told By Dana

 French people all over are wonderfully nice (I was even published about it!). However, I find people in the north to be friendlier and less superficial than people in the south. Although people in the north may tend to be a bit more initially reserved, they quickly become so friendly when you get to know them! On the other hand, southerners are upfront quite nice, but it is often only surface level.

I am cat-called and harassed on the street a billion times more in the south than I ever was in the north.

Life’s pace in the south, especially when it comes to work, is much slower and more leisurely.

This may be contrary to the “leisurely lifestyle” but many French people here in the south (as well as Paris) drive like absolute maniacs!

The styles of houses are very different. Houses in the south, specifically in the Côte d’Azur, are very colorful … In the north of France, houses are built with wood or stone, but in a very different Nomadic or Germanic style.

(Indeed, many of these differences within France sound like the broad difference between Northern and Southern Europe.)

This map of the results of the 2012 French presidential election (from Wikipedia):



Spain (from Comparing PISA With GDP Per Capita In Spain And Italy | A Reluctant Apostate):


GDP per capita left, 2009 PISA scores right.


Also from Comparing PISA With GDP Per Capita In Spain And Italy | A Reluctant Apostate, GDP per capita left, 2009 PISA scores right:


See also Those Who Can See: Chalk and cheese


See also my earlier entry Germania’s Seed?


All of these differences exist in the direction of the gradient of clannishness radiating from the North Sea.

Of course, by the time you reach the Middle East and the Maghreb, you have life in actual clans, with high levels of inbreeding even up to the present day: (image sources here and here):

Inclusive fitness and highly viscous societies select for the highly nepotistic and incredibly corrupt societies we see there. See Those Who Can See: Why Re-Colonization? Commonweal Orientation and The Clannish World of Organized Crime | Staffan’s Personality Blog for more.

The key fact is that the fine details of the selective pressures explain the traits of the people, which in turn explains the society they create. (Which of course goes on to shape selective pressures, and hence the traits and hence societies of future people – gene-culture co-evolution).

Geography and climate is a big factor in social organization, as discussed before at More on Farming and Inheritance Systems – Part I: IQ:

The left is a map of the average minimum winter temperatures across Europe; the right is a map of average annual precipitation. While Europe has experienced several climatic swings throughout the Middle Ages, a general pattern can be seen here. While Eastern Europe is in general colder and drier than Western Europe, the Northeast is much colder than the Southeast, leading to the infamously brutal Russian winters.

Farming systems were in large part influenced by climate, which in turn affected social and inheritance systems. Indeed, as noted about France here: Differences Between the North and South of France – As Told By Dana:

because the weather in the south is so much better, people naturally spend more time outside, and therefore consequently meet and interact with more people on a daily basis. However, it’s sometimes hard to spend quality time with so many people, so the relationships are not always as deep. In the north on the other hand, people spend much more time inside because the weather is not so good during the winter, and as a consequence they spend time with fewer people. However, the people they do spend time with they are very close to. So, although it takes a much longer time to meet people in the north, once you’re friends, you’re friends for life, and you’ll tend to have long, meaningful relationships.

Introversion is more common in colder areas generally, as discussed in my earlier post Predictions on the Worldwide Distribution of Personality.

But, as we’ve seen before, one thing that varies across Europe, particularly in a roughly north-south gradient is average IQ. HBD Chick’s theory alone doesn’t completely explain the IQ differences that exist, which brings me to another key force, Clark-Unz selection.

As Gregory Clark discussed in his book A Farewell to Alms: A Brief Economic History of the World – and as Ron Unz posited in How Social Darwinism Made Modern China | The American Conservative, in medieval times, the wealthiest, most intelligent (see also Tollnek & Baten 2012) individuals had more surviving offspring in Europe and in Northeast Asia (see also Peter Frost Does the Clark-Unz model apply to Japan and Korea?). Over time, this led to the evolution of of increased average IQ in these areas, leading to their modern levels.

However, average IQ is significantly lower in south. Why? One factor is that without harsh winter conditions, Clark-Unz selection is less efficient. Poorer and less intelligent individuals also survived and reproduced in sufficient numbers.

Finally, an important selective factor in shaping the modern world, in addition to HBD Chick’s selection and Clark-Unz selection, is state pacification, Frost-Harpending selection:

BydoE2BIgAA43cP.jpg large

As Peter Frost writes:

While war has always been with us, personal violence has been declining in Western societies over the last millennium.

Courts imposed the death penalty more and more often and, by the late Middle Ages, were condemning to death between 0.5 and 1.0% of all men of each generation, with perhaps just as many offenders dying at the scene of the crime or in prison while awaiting trial. Meanwhile, the homicide rate plummeted from the 14th century to the 20th, decreasing forty-fold. The pool of violent men dried up until most murders occurred under conditions of jealousy, intoxication, or extreme stress.

The immediate causes were legal and cultural: harsher punishment and a shift in popular attitudes toward the violent male—who went from hero to zero. This new social environment, however, also tended to favor the survival and reproduction of individuals who would less easily resort to violence on their own initiative. Given that aggressive behavior is moderately to highly heritable, as shown by twin studies, is it possible that the high rate of capital punishment gradually removed propensities for violence from the gene pool? This hypothesis is modeled by Frost and Harpending, who conclude that such natural selection could explain a little over half of the reduction in the homicide rate. The rest of the decline may have partly resulted from violent men being increasingly marginalized in society and on the marriage market.

We see a steep decline in rates of violence across Europe:


HBD Chick had noted that the timing of this pattern follows the Hajnal line (see historic european homicide rates … and the hajnal line | hbd chick):


Frost and Hapending 2015 analyze the effects of historic executions and rates of violence across Europe. (This process likely also occurred across much of Northeast Asia.) They themselves note that the selective coefficient they devised explains much of what we see, but it insufficient to explain all of the decline.

I posit that it is the combination of all three of these forces, “HBD Chick selection (bipartite manorialism and subsequent atomized/corporate societies), Clark-Unz selection (tendency for the wealthiest and brightest to have more surviving offspring), and Frost-Harpending selection (execution of violent individuals) acted in concert in a synergistic arrangement to produce the NW Europeans we know today. The precise combination of all these forces (along with basic geographic, climatic, and food production factors) produced the varying degree of traits we see across Eurasia and North Africa today.

Indeed, beyond evolution by natural selection itself, it is amazing that there are other general trends. But geographic realities (as well as simple proximity) served to create a geographic pattern to selective pressures, and hence the societies we see today. For better or worse, these explain the features of these societies, and the consequences of such.

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January 11, 2017 / JayMan

JayMan Jr. Turns Three!

The little man has turned three years old! Doesn’t it feel like yesterday that you were reading an irreverent HBD’er and heard the great news?

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JayMan Jr 2 (Copy) JayMan Jr with Grandma 2 (Copy)

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December 25, 2016 / JayMan

Merry Christmas!