Race and Ethnicity

A Look at Chinese Eugenics

Article by Richard Hoste. Eugenics is something I look rather askance at, particularly when intertwined with the state, given its susceptibility to abuse. Even this author, who is obviously far more sympathetic to eugenics than I am, seems to recognize this problem. But this is an interesting article dealing with some obscure history and contemporary issues we won’t hear much about from conventional sources. I agree with the author’s point that China is indeed an interesting case study, given that it’s an advanced industrial civilization with an ancient history that has probably resisted the influence of Western liberalism to a much greater degree than any part of the world other than the Muslim states. Yet the Chinese lack the intellectual and scientific obscurantism of Islam, making it unique in being that only society of any real size or influence that has almost completely rejected Western values while embracing Western science, technology, and economics.
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Government officials and medical professionals supported making eugenic research a top priority. All policies dealing with reproductive health now exist within a eugenics framework. A couple isolated voices protest, but according to the author, suggesting that there’s much diversity of opinion on this issue would be misleading. Scientific journals, like those in the West, publish articles on the importance of heredity in determining intelligence. Studies are done showing that retardation also depends on genes. A detailed report in Fujian province showed that fertility trends were dysgenic. There’s no New Left lobby to block this research.

The government has waged a war on inbreeding, popular in rural areas and amongst some minorities. The author makes the compelling argument that even if much of this battle may be based on solid science, the crusade serves a symbolic purpose. Cosmopolitan elites across the world tend to see those practicing consanguineous relations as holdouts against modernity.

Legitimizing the reach of the government into families and lineages (the battle against cousin marriage) endows society with unprecedented powers of intervention and regulation into the personal lives of individuals in the name of public health.

In 1995, the famous Eugenics Law was passed, making prenatal screening mandatory and “encouraging” the unfit not to reproduce nationwide. Many provinces have their own, much stricter laws. Support for these programs reaches into the highest levels of government. Party officials who are eugenicists have centered around former Premier Li Peng (quoted as saying “Idiots breed idiots”), an outspoken advocate of good breeding. He has close ties to former Minister of Public Health Chen Minzhang, the man who introduced the Eugenics Law. In 1996 the government is alleged to have moved towards a policy of encouraging the more fit to breed. Officials are aware that this is unpopular with the “international community” (i.e., white elitist do-gooders) and not many details are available. Numbers on how many people have been sterilized are hard to come by.

14 replies »

  1. Hoste does not seem to recognize any problem at all, indeed his whole article seems to be in praise of China’s (supposed) eugenics program. Honestly, what Mr. Hoste believes (according to this article) about the desirability of state mandated breeding programs would be considered far more coercive and totalitarian than the totalitarian humanism that currently pervades society today. It would be more than a little ironic to me to decry political correctness on campuses while promoting this sort of thing, but then again I suppose it illustrates the fact that these people are only opposed to the coercion of the state insofar as it opposes their agenda.

    Btw, I have no opposition to people well genetically endowed breeding in order to increase the quality of the gene pool, though I am opposed on principle to the use of coercion in mandating such a thing. I do believe however, that Hoste is making some unwarranted assumptions about what the results of such a program would be, if they were applied in the west. Intelligent people of European stock do not tend to hold to traditional values more than the less intelligent, and also tend to be more individualistic as well. Indeed, most of those University professors, politicians, and intellectuals that gave us political correctness tend to have significantly higher IQ’s than the general population. Xenophobia , racism, and sexism maybe standard among all levels of intelligence in other ethnic groups, but generally among those of European ancestry, they are traits found in much higher proportions among the lower classes. Considering Hoste’s attribution of behavior to genetics, you would think he would be more cognizant of the fact that different groups will have differences far beyond intelligence, which is the one that the right seems to focus one when it comes to ethnic differences.

    As I pointed out before when it comes to racial separatism and white nationalism, might this program, when applied, produce the exact opposite affect.Near the end of the article, Hoste criticizes the author of the book for expressing concern about patriarchy by pointing out the irony of a man criticizing patriarchy because his race is going to cease to exist because of “women’s liberation”, but that makes sense because the author is a liberal and ““better extinct than politically incorrect” is the rallying cry of the modern liberal.” I wonder if it occurs to Hoste that a race of more intelligent women might very well be worse in the department of women’s lib than a race of stupid women.

    That part of the article is quite telling because it reveals Mr. Hoste for what he is, and that is a hardcore collectivist. Him, and others like him, are simply the flip side of the coin to these http://attackthesystem.com/2011/04/28/a-clash-of-victimologies/ totalitarian humanists. I don’t care about the white race going extinct in and of itself, what I do care about are the enlightenment values of tolerance, liberty, and yes, equality, vanishing from the world. These values mean almost nothing to the majority of the paleo right.

    If a world does come down to a battle between yellows and whites as part of two totalitarian super states, I don’t give a damn about which side prevails.

  2. “If a world does come down to a battle between yellows and whites as part of two totalitarian super states, I don’t give a damn about which side prevails.”

    Nor would I. That would amount to a repeat of the Hitler-Stalin showdown in Eastern Europe.

  3. “what I do care about are the enlightenment values of tolerance, liberty, and yes, equality, vanishing from the world. These values mean almost nothing to the majority of the paleo right”

    I often notice that when paleocon types attack “liberalism”, they’re not just referring to Leftist secular puritanism and the authoritarian enforcement of such, but, ironically, those qualities that make Western civilization so appealing and distinctive from others. I’m willing to bet those values (tolerance, liberty, equity) resonate more strongly within a considerable number of nonwhite folk (myself included) than they do with many of the white Alt Right.

  4. “I often notice that when paleocon types attack “liberalism”, they’re not just referring to Leftist secular puritanism and the authoritarian enforcement of such, but, ironically, those qualities that make Western civilization so appealing and distinctive from others.”

    I agree. And it’s a completely self-defeating position. The legacy of classical liberalism is as much a part of the Western heritage as Christianity and Greco-Roman philosophy. There’s about as much chance as repealing the Enlightenment as there is of establishing Zeus worship as the state religion. And attacking classical liberalism is removing one of the most powerful weapons from our intellectual arsenal, i.e. the incompatibility of globalism and totalitarian humanism with the Western liberal heritage. In fact, for those whom mass immigration is their primary issue, the incompatibility of Western liberalism with pre-Enlightenment civilizations like Islam has been one of the most effective arguments among the general public of Western nations as well.

  5. I think that if we ever have a movement in the West capable of challenging totalitarian humanism, globalism, et.al it would draw as much from the Left as the Right, and more closely resemble Pim Fortuyn, Ayaan Hirsi Ali and Theo Van Gogh rather than Nick Griffin, Gianni Alemanno, and Jean Marie Le Pen.

  6. I’m down with it.

    Alternative political movements in Western countries that defend national sovereignty against global corporate plutocracy and imperialism, and the Western liberal tradition against both modern leftist totalitarianism and reactionary Islamic conservatism are potentially viable as serious opposition forces. Ideas like recycled Nazism or turn-back-the-clock theocratic traditionalism are not.

  7. “Alternative political movements in Western countries that defend national sovereignty against global corporate plutocracy and imperialism, and the Western liberal tradition against both modern leftist totalitarianism and reactionary Islamic conservatism are potentially viable as serious opposition forces. Ideas like recycled Nazism or turn-back-the-clock theocratic traditionalism are not.”

    I see a false alternative provided by both modern liberals and paleo-conservatives so that it is either a choice between feudal authoritarianism or totalitarian managerial liberalism with neither side really in favour of individual liberty. The solution I think for libertarians (by that I mean those who value individual liberty and autonomy) is to break with both the right and the left as those terms mean nothing to us today despite whatever they may have meant in the past (This is where I disagree with some left-libs, who are trying to realign libertarianism with the left today, I see that as a futile endeavor). We should reassert the values of classical liberalism and anarchism and then have a movement separate from both the mainstream political positions, in other words right libertarians should stop being useful idiots for the Republicans, and left-libertarians should stop being the court jester fringe of the Democratic party.

    I do believe that while certain streams of thought from the 60’s would pave the way for totalitarian humanism, other cultural aspects of the time were consistent with the advancement of (classical) liberal values in society. The anti-war movement, the liberalization of sex laws including abortion rights, even certain aspects of women’s liberation and the civil right movement, and the more general distrust of perceived authority that resulted from those times. I think that the last point, from reading articles by conservatives, is the thing that irks them about the 60’s more than anything else and that is the reason they heap so much scorn upon the baby boomers and all subsequent generations.

    “If a world does come down to a battle between yellows and whites as part of two totalitarian super states, I don’t give a damn about which side prevails.”

    This was a misstatement of mine, in fact in such a scenario, I definitely would favour a certain side and it isn’t the one that Hoste would favour (and for reasons alternative rightists would abhor ;] )

  8. Your perspective and mine are basically the same. The only qualification I would add is that modern libertarians have a habit of painting themselves into an ideological ghetto where their movement becomes more like a sect than an actual movement. They spend far too much time on abstract philosophical and economic considerations and not enough time on how that can be translated into real world action. I think a solid strategic outlook has to be at the top of the agenda, and that’s the area where the standard libertarian movement is at it weakest.

    I’m all for a break with both the left and right on a theoretical level. That’s more or less what I’ve done. But on a strategic level we also need to identify those sectors of both the left and right we can pull in our direction which means that on some level we have to meet them where they are at while never losing site of the big picture. That’s more or less what I try to do as well. Plus, we have to take human nature into account. Most people are not instinctive anarchists. If anything, the opposite seems to be true. So we have to consider ways to make anarchism, libertarianism, neo-classical liberalism, whatever we are, palatable to a much larger and varied population than the anarchist vanguard.

  9. As a member of the HLMC myself, I actually agree with the concerns stated by the author of that post. The only exception is that I do think a cautious immigration skepticism is empirically justifiable as Totalitarian Humanism didn’t really exist in Mencken’s day (though it’s prototypes like Wilsonianism and Marxism certainly did.)

  10. From my viewing of the HLMC site, they seem to be using Mencken’s name as a kind of bait ‘n’ switch for the paleocon platform, which comes across as rather myopic; was this your experience of them when attending their meetings?

  11. Well, I had nothing to do with the founding of the club, and I didn’t get involved with them until their third annual meeting, so I don’t know much about their original ambitions. I think they selected Mencken because he’s considered one of the major intellectual figures of the American “Old Right” that existed in the pre-WW2 period and which is where the paleocons have their roots as well. Beyond that, there’s Mencken’s general iconoclasm and disdain for conventional pieties. You’re right that the club was very palecon oriented when it started, but it’s since moved away from that. I think Richard’s description of its evolution is accurate:

    “The term “alternative Right” started to have a lot of meaning for me in 2009, on the occasion of the second HL Mencken Club conference. The first meeting had been attended mostly by “paleo” types; I knew almost everyone who was there. At the second conference, however, a new breed was in force: they were younger and came from outside the conservative movement (this is not the case for the paleos.) Some were Rothbardian anarchists; some were White Nationalists; some were Traditionalists with a capital-T (Evolians and neo-Pagans); some were even more idiosyncratic, such as the followers of the blogger Roissy.”

    This is more or less what I’ve encountered there as well. There’s seems to be almost as many philosophies represented as there are individuals. So it seems to have started as a paleoconservative project and meta-morphed into a much broader “radical right” milieu that includes a lot of people with far more esoteric outlooks. Some of what the critic in the link you posted says is actually a little dated. For instance, they didn’t say “grace” before meals at the conference I attended, thank God (pun intended).

  12. I suspect that there may be a more prosaic reason for the name: “Our group will meet in Baltimore. Mencken was from Baltimore. Good enough, let’s have a conference.”

    It’s a good name, though, for what I think of as the Island of Misfit Rightwingers, that is, intellectuals that don’t fit into the corrupt, sell-out conservative mainstream but don’t necessarily agree with each other either.

    I thought the name might be a reference to the Old Right, but soon after I came to that conclusion AlternativeRight.com (run by Richard Spencer who seems to spearhead the club) ran some articles saying there never was an Old Right. Murray Rothbard wanted to believe there was one, but there really was more continuity between Nock, Mencken, et al, and the New Right thinkers like Buckley than he thought.

    BTW, I believe the need to say grace was a nod to the Fitzgerald Griffin Foundation, the Catholic organization that promotes the writings of Joe Sobran. I was at the second conference and saw that they played a role in organizing it. Perhaps that didn’t play a role the third time around, hence the absence of grace.

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