[Paleopsych] Plausible Futures: Niche construction as a means to eugenic communities

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Sat Apr 2 16:06:03 UTC 2005

Niche construction as a means to eugenic communities


    Floating around in the back of my mind has been that nagging question:
    How will eugenics come about; what do we need to do to make it happen?
    This is not a question that I think must be answered, because in the
    end, eugenics will come about on its own. However, it is asked by many
    who want to see something happening sooner rather than later. As the
    technology advances and the importance of genes becomes apparent to
    more people, the desire will drive the application. Whether it will be
    primarily applied at the family level, the tribal level, or the
    national level is unpredictable. Nevertheless, most assuredly once it
    is implemented by enough people, the threat of those practicing
    eugenics will become problematic to others. They will try either to
    emulate or to stop eugenics.

    Like nuclear proliferation, where there is a desire to obtain new
    technology, human genetic engineering will be impossible to stop.
    Unlike nuclear proliferation, eugenics can be undertaken without the
    complexities of hiding radioactive material, building large facilities
    for enrichment, and then hiding a quite useless weapons system because
    to use it means almost sure retaliation. Eugenics can be undertaken in
    secrecy or belligerently by simply ignoring any future global
    sanctions or prohibitions.

    Most of us who embrace eugenics would like to have our own
    nation-state based on eugenics. Unfortunately, we can speculate how to
    bring that about but there is no action I can see other than a slow
    change in people's attitudes. Like libertarianism, it takes a great
    deal of intelligence to understand and appreciate the underlying
    principles of a nation based on inegalitarianism towards outsiders.
    Even ethnocentrism is a problem for eugenicists who argue that kin or
    race should be the boundaries for inclusion in the breeding
    population. An indicator for how ethnocentric a race is may lie in the
    degree to which they allow or discourage intermarriage. However, how
    much this is based on culture is hard to factor out of the equation. I
    am also unaware of any valid tests for ethnocentrism. Nevertheless, by
    all observable measures (MacDonald, 2002a), Whites suffer from low
    ethnocentrism and high moral universalism, which has become highly
    dysgenic for us in a multicultural world. Our wealth and our culture
    are being systematically undermined by more ethnocentric races that
    have particularly targeted the West (that is Whites) for scapegoating
    their own failures, and demanding compensation, both nationally and
    Even eugenics itself, while being attacked as pseudoscience by the
    Left, is simultaneously being included now in egalitarian proposals to
    make sure that eugenics is equally shared among all races and classes.
    That is, at the same time it is condemned, the left is taking no
    chances that when people finally do embrace it, it must be shared
    equally with all. It seems apparent to me that the very flurry of
    books and articles declaring that race is a social construct and that
    eugenics must never again be contemplated, is due to the fact that
    unraveling our genetic code and the new tools being developed for
    human genetic engineering has the Left in a state of panic. They are
    now so desperate that the only way to keep the lid on the genetic
    genie is to try to suppress freedom of speech, as has been done in
    most Western nations under hate speech laws. Mention racial
    differences and go to jail. The United States alone has the
    constitutional right to freedom of speech, but even here there are
    attempts to take away this basic right because with the Internet,
    discussions about eugenics and racial differences cannot be easily
    After reading Niche Construction: The Neglected Process in Evolution
    by F. John Odling-Smee, Kevin N. Laland, and Marcus W. Feldman, 2003,
    and rereading The Fratricidal Global Village: The Theory of
    Hypertrophic Group Formation, By Elliott White, 2001, I felt it was
    time to put together some thoughts on how a eugenic community could be
    formed, maintained, and prosper. But first, some basic assumptions: it
    is not a utopian project based on a goal of human perfection, but
    rather it is a process based on the member's desire to undertake it.
    That is, like any adventure, it does not promise anything but
    involvement and discovery. In addition, while the goal is not based on
    any moral or ethical precepts, its formulation is securely grounded in
    empirical data about human behavior. That is, my vision of a eugenic
    community is to make it rewarding to be a part of it. To do that, we
    must know how humans behave and try to anticipate the common problems
    that groups encounter repeatedly. Lastly, I do not intend to discuss
    the genetic boundaries of the group. That is, though I have my racial
    preferences on a sliding scale, it would be up to the group to decide
    who will be included or excluded. In the end, the winner will be based
    on just how well informed each group is with regards to eugenic
    principles and human behavior.
    The number of ways eugenics may be practiced is too indeterminate to
    argue for one way or another. The one thing I am sure of is that it
    will eventually lead to a eugenics' arms race. If you want to know how
    serious this is, just try discussing eugenics on Internet forums.
    People simultaneously will argue that it can't be done, shouldn't be
    done, etc. displaying moral panic. This could only happen if they
    really do believe that it is possible and that it is coming rapidly.
    Silly ideas are ignoreddangerous ones are condemned. In fact, with
    gender selection, in vitro fertilization, assortative mating, testing
    for genetic diseases; we are well on our way to personal eugenics
    driven by the desire for children who have the very best genes money
    can buy.
    I am not at all convinced that humans have an innate commitment to
    their own kind, but rather a need to form coalitions for advantage and
    defense. Before civilization of course, kin was the fundamental
    building block for tribal defense and social control, but we have been
    adapted primarily to be easily led and indoctrinated. White calls the
    penchant for forming large groups hypertrophy:
    "Successful macro self-selection yields hypertrophic group formation.
    This process involves the following factors: (a) at least minimal
    opportunity; (b) self-selection, selective migration, upward mobility
    ; (c) clusters of like-minded group or network members; (d) a critical
    mass, especially likely to occur if the selective process occurs in a
    large population; (e) hypertrophy."
    He explains that we see hypertrophy in the media, where self-selection
    is so prevalent that the public sees a very biased presentation of the
    news, leading more people to turn to other sources like the Internet.
    Self-selection has also been noted in government, where like-minded
    people surround a president to the point where no dissenting voices
    are heard, and truth becomes grounded in absolutes. Hypertrophy is
    seen in the formation of international terrorist organizations to the
    formation of fanaticism among sports fans. Wherever humans are allowed
    to self-select, they will form groups.
    Today, under government political programs in most Western nations
    advancing multiculturalism and diversity, any self-selection based on
    race is condemned if it includes Whites, but is encouraged if it
    involves minorities. Whites are expected to capitulate to minority
    demands, or be vilified as racists. Interestingly, this could only
    happen because many Whites have been indoctrinated through guilt or
    possibly self-promotion, to self-select for inclusion in the academic
    left's reformulation of Marxism from class struggle to minority group
    identity politics. Marxism's march through the institutions never lost
    a step after the collapse of Communism.
    White explains: "Thus it should be clear that locals and cosmopolitans
    may draw different in/out group distinctions. For the local, anyone
    outside his more immediate area and not belonging to his religion and
    ethnic or racial group is likely to be part of the out-group. That
    will include any cosmopolitan who seems to threaten the traditional
    values and identifications of his community. For the cosmopolitan, on
    the other hand, it is the local who often constitutes the out-group."
    I am not sure of the terms, but cosmopolitan versus rural (local)
    attitudes is a theme that keeps reoccurring, and the rural is losing.
    Religious fundamentalists, conservatives, liberals, and
    multiculturalists are all relatively non-empirical when it comes to
    understanding human nature. They all tend to either reject evolution
    or they reject that it has any significance for humans. But it does
    seem that the rural faction is in retreat while the Left is winning
    the war against Western culture.
    For this reason, any eugenics movement must accept the fact that our
    politicians, athletic and media stars, the elite in academics and
    business, will for the most part self-select away from their own kind
    for the comfort of their own hypertrophic group based on occupation or
    class interest, rather than race. I personally assume that any
    politician will betray not only their own race but also their own
    country to serve the interests of the elite, as we see with regards to
    immigration. Open immigration hurts not only the poor, but also even
    the Hispanic citizen community when more illegal Hispanics keep
    flooding into our country. So to keep the cheap labor coming, the
    elite has merely redefined what America stands for: "We are a nation
    of immigrants" and the discussion ends. The people have been properly
    As White explains it, cooperation in nature is abundant. Inclusive
    fitness or for humansgroup evolutionary strategiesfor promoting
    selfish genes is not the dominant factor in racial group formation. We
    had better not rely on anyone's innateness to stand by their own kind,
    it is too weak of a force. Cohesiveness needs to be established by
    creating a niche where members of the eugenic group can thrive, even
    while living amongst "the other."
    It is important to understand the enemy, and I am going to try to
    summarize the motivation behind the radical Left. Many religious
    fundamentalists and conservatives will also oppose any notion of
    eugenics, but I believe they are motivated more from fear and
    ignorance. For this reason, they are less of an immediate threat to
    genetic engineering than the well disciplined Left.
    Reading numerous books on the battle between the Left and the Right,
    it has occurred to me that both groups are driven more by a need for
    power than any real ideological agenda or concern for other groups. In
    Niche Construction they write: "For instance, much human (and animal)
    social learning is characterized by a positive frequency dependence or
    conformity, in which individuals bias their adoption of cultural
    information toward that expressed by the majority. In fact, a
    theoretical analysis by Boyd and Richerson (1985) found that most of
    the conditions under which natural selection favors social learning
    also favor the evolution of conformity. This 'when in Rome do as the
    Romans' principle can result in conventions that only loosely track
    environmental change and, at least in the short term, may generate
    maladaptive traditions. In addition, members of a group may be
    particularly prone to adopting cultural variants exhibited by
    particularly authoritative or charismatic individuals, a process Boyd
    and Richerson (1985) describe as 'indirect bias.' Theoretical models
    have demonstrated that cultural processes can lead to the transmission
    of information that results in a fitness cost relative to
    alternatives, and strong cultural evolutionary processes will
    frequently be independent of genetic control. While socially learned
    smart behavioral variants will subsequently be tested by the
    individuals that adopt them, even nonreinforcing or maladaptive
    behavior may be expressed again if it is socially sanctioned, or if
    individuals are locked into conventions that penalize nonconformists.
    As a result, some cultural information may be propagated even when it
    is detrimental to individual fitness."
    Docile humans follow their leaders, however that is defined, and
    conform to norms that may not be to the best interest of the
    individual or to a particular group. Few people show the independence
    and/or the character to challenge beliefs that have been set up by the
    prevailing ethos at any one time. I came across this short response by
    Jay Feierman to a Yahoo discussion group: "The high status persons of
    each society create the list of the human rights [and values systems]
    that in the long term serve their own best interest. Governments,
    which are controlled by high status individuals, codify and then
    enforce the exercise of approved human rights and suppress the
    expression of the unapproved human rights [and values systems]." (See
    the complete article in appendix.)
    So who are these reoccurring radicals that crop up continuously,
    trying to overthrow the established order? Well, they are you, me, and
    all the other activists out there who do not like the status quo. And
    for a very simple reason as White explains: "Cosmopolitans, moreover,
    need not be tolerant in their teachings. Marx and Engels divided the
    world up between the exploiting and the exploited, and Lenin and Mao
    took this in/out group dichotomy quite seriously. Only the elimination
    of one social class by the other would bring the desired classless
    society. It would appear that when able people feel the denial of
    opportunity, they become susceptible to ideological formulations that
    involve hostility directed against the social order implicated in such
    Quite simply, radicals take up causes because they feel left out, they
    need intellectual challenge and are motivated to act. Moreover, there
    is no race that is more motivated and intellectually capable than
    Jews, and I think that is the reason they are quite often, but not
    always, behind radical movements (MacDonald 2002b). It has little to
    do with the movement itself, but rather a means of gaining power and
    prestige in societies where they feel they have not achieved the
    status they deserve, as individuals. As a race, they are far wealthier
    and powerful than any other group, but some of the tribe's members
    want more than just the knowledge that the tribeas a groupis doing
    well. Power for many is an insatiable desire. Note that this is not a
    condemnation of Jewish behavior, but recognition as to why they seem
    to be such an integral part of radical movements.
    Whites on the other hand seem far more inclined to go along, get
    along, and are not usually as motivated to excel. We then become the
    victims of our own conformist weakness per Niche Construction:
    "Conformist transmission may potentially be exploited by powerful
    individuals, groups, or institutions, which dominate the dissemination
    of information through societies to promote their own interests. In
    preagricultural egalitarian societies this was probably not very
    important since in such societies inequalities of power and wealth are
    typically both temporary and minimal. However, in post-agricultural
    societies that display rankings, and in complex civilized states that
    display class stratifications, significant economic inequalities
    occur, and power networks develop. In these societies powerful and
    coercive cultural parents may stand to gain considerably from
    persuading other less powerful humans to conform, perhaps by
    recruiting extra assistance in modifying environments in ways that
    benefit them rather than the helpers. These processes can be amplified
    by tool use, for instance, by the technology of modern media, by
    weapons, by art, or by deceit. Religious, commercial, and political
    propaganda, for example, may all be used to persuade, trick, or coerce
    conformity from individuals against their personal interests in favor
    of the interests of a dominant class of cultural transmitters."
    The history over the last fifty years or more then has seen a
    reshaping of American value systems from a less socialistic, free
    market meritocracy, into one that is inherently anti-Western. When the
    intellectual elites universally promote without dissent, acceptance of
    multiculturalism, diversity, redistribution of wealth, racial quotas,
    and open immigration, then our culture has been high jacked by a core
    of ideological radicals that have used our own cooperative nature to
    accept their moral demands.
    "The niche-construction statement on conflict in section 7.3.1 should
    also extend to the human cultural level, with the qualification that
    at this level other processes may be operating as well. Group
    selectionists commonly focus on the positive repercussions of group
    selection (that is, within-group altruism) and neglect the negative
    repercussions (that is, between-group selfishness, hostility, and
    conflict). Group selection does not directly favor altruistic
    individuals so much as selfish groups. The group-level traits most
    effective in promoting group replication may also engender outgroup
    hostility, intergroup aggression and conflict, fear of strangers,
    slanderous propaganda concerning outsiders, and so on. The same
    processes that underlie the best of human motives may also favor the
    worst attributes of human societies."
    The above tactics have been evident in the science wars, where anyone
    who engages in research with regards to group differences in
    intelligence or raises concerns about dysgenic social policies, is
    labeled as a fascist, a racist, a Nazi, but probably all three and
    then some. With these tactics, the radicals have been able to
    transform our culture by recruiting others to follow them, in what
    appears to be a concern for human betterment everywhere. However, the
    singular hatred and vilification of only White Western society belies
    their true objectives. It is not the world they want to make right,
    but to replace the dominant, technological culture of the West with
    their own. It is warfare with the parasites from within.
    Christopher Boehm (Bloom & Dees, 2003) discusses another problem with
    regards to racial conflict in modern societies. The cultural elites,
    no matter what race or religion they belong to, take it upon
    themselves to settle disputes between rival groups. As the dominant
    power brokers, they have an interest in keeping disputes under
    control, and they are willing to do so even if it means giving
    preferences to other races or groups while disenfranchising their own.
    We see this with George Bush's pandering to Mexican illegals and Bill
    Clinton's pandering to Blacks. It is reproductively self-serving for
    the power elite to sacrifice their own kin in order to maintain order.
    In so doing, it means that when one race is more successful than
    another, peace between the groups must be won by giving preferences
    and transferring resources from one group to another. Again, it must
    always be assumed that except for a few rare exceptions, the power
    elite will go against their own race in favor of preserving their
    favored position of hierarchical dominance over all others. As Boehm
    points out, chimpanzees show this same pattern of alpha males settling
    disputes for the benefit of group. Beyond the level of the tribe
    however, this behavior is inimical to the interests of eugenicists.
    Political power brokering will mean an escalation of socialism and
    coercion against more successful groups.
    The reason for this short discussion of opposition from the Left (and
    from our own elite), is because if we are truly committed to
    implementing eugenics based on an unbiased understanding of human
    nature, then we cannot delude ourselves in thinking that we will
    convince others based on empirical arguments, and we must break off on
    our own, silently, and get on with our mission. Eventually, human
    genetic engineering will be ubiquitous, with the outcomes so
    beneficial, that opposition will cease on its own. As long as we can
    attract clusters of like-minded individuals, with "the capacity to
    transcend one's immediate space and time conceptually" for an improved
    human genome, our mission remains viable even in the face of extreme
    opposition from fundamentalists, self-serving revolutionaries, and the
    "I will arguethat hominid minds are not adapted to a Pleistocene
    average. Rather, they are adapted to the variability of hominid
    environments: to the spread of variation, rather than to its peak. Our
    evolutionary response to variation is phenotypic plasticity. Humans
    develop different phenotypes in different environments" (Sterelny,
    There is an increased recognition that humans create niches, and that
    niche construction can change human culture and/or human genetic
    frequencies. In Niche Construction they state, "In such cases, and to
    the extent that cultural processes cease to buffer culturally induced
    environmental changes, the latter are likely to give rise to
    culturally modified natural selection pressures. There may then be
    changes in allelic frequencies in human populations. For example,
    suppose there is no technology available to deal with a new challenge
    created in an environment by cultural niche construction, or suppose
    that the available technology is not exploited, possibly because it is
    too costly or because people are unaware of the impact that their own
    cultural activities are having on their environments. If such a
    situation persists for a long enough time, then genotypes that are
    better suited to the culturally modified environment could increase in
    While the above is true, it seems too simplistic in that as niche
    constructors, humans are constantly altering both their environments
    and their gene frequencies. The theory of evolution dictates that
    where the environment changes rapidly, there will be changes in gene
    frequencies. There is no condition that I am aware of where rapid and
    pronounced ecological changes have zero influence on the selection for
    genes. What is so fascinating then is not this simple truism, but the
    almost universal denial that humans are undergoing evolutionary
    change. It is recognized and discussed by evolutionary theorists,
    while denied or ignored by most of society: politicians, religionists,
    secular leftists, conservatives, liberals, Marxists, cultural
    constructivists, and even a lot of libertarians. Only within a small
    slice of educated humanity, is the reality of evolutionary change
    understood to be a present and ongoing process. On empirical evidence,
    it can't be any other way, and we are capable of detecting these
    changes from past evidence.
    Obvious to a few, it is only now getting more attention from
    neo-Darwinists. In Niche Construction they observe that "[there] is a
    third major consequence of niche construction. Where niche
    construction affects multiple generations, it introduces a second
    general inheritance system in evolution, one that works via
    environments. This second inheritance system has not yet been widely
    incorporated by evolutionary theory. We call this second general
    inheritance system ecological inheritance."  MacDonald (2002b)
    discusses the consequences of creating niche construction, primarily
    around racial and/or religious groups. The contrast for example
    between the niche construction of the Gypsies, where average
    intelligence declined, versus Ashkenazi Jews, where average
    intelligence increased, over hundreds of years, is a vivid example of
    how niche construction can mold the genes of those who stay within the
    The common theme today however is to ignore evolution, and preach a
    new ethos: the peoples of the world will meld together and all
    differences will disappear. That is, we will breed, slowly over time,
    to become one brown skinned race, where any differences, if they did
    exist, will exist no more. White however sees another humanity: "We
    live increasingly within a global village, but it is one that
    remainsand threatens to remainstubbornly fragmented. It is split, of
    course, along ethnic, racial, and linguistic lines as well as by
    socioeconomic inequalities. But even within the same ethnic group or
    socioeconomic stratum, fissures appear, at times deep, that are not
    readily papered over."
    As some people will intermarry and become perhaps nondescript
    racially, this will not lead to a single racial genome. Hypertrophy as
    described by White, and increasingly others, describes humans as
    incapable of cooperation on a global scale. Those who hope for world
    peace based on global cooperation fail to understand human nature.
    This group evolutionary perspective has shifted over the last few
    decades, and it is safe to say confusion is still the norm.
    The story goes like this: evolution can only occur at the level of the
    organism because at the group level, the free rider problem arises.
    Free riders are those that dodge the draft, don't pay their fair share
    of the restaurant bill, etc. They are not altruistic cooperators, so
    they will be selected for and will overtake others that are more
    altruistic. The discussion of altruism, group selection, kin
    selection, reciprocal altruism has filled volumes over the last few
    decades. But one thing was missed with regards to humans: we have
    language, can form coalitions, and can take action against free
    riders. Thousands of years ago, the free rider was killed, harassed,
    or banished. Tribes were often engaged in warfare with neighboring
    tribes, and they could not afford to tolerate dissent. We see this
    today in stiff penalties for army deserters; the most dangerous
    situation for a state is to not have the young men willing to die for
    its defense.
    White describes intratribal conflict: "A second environmental basis
    for conflict among intimates arises when renegades emerge within
    otherwise homogeneous settings. Simmel remarks that the hatred
    directed against the dissenter originates 'not from personal motives,
    but because the member represents a danger to the preservation of the
    group.... Since this hatred is mutual and each accuses the other of
    responsibility for the threat to the whole, the antagonism
    sharpensprecisely because both parties to it belong to the same social
    unit.' Lewis Coser comments that 'the group must fight the renegade
    with all its might since he threatens symbolically, if not in fact,
    its existence as an ongoing concern.' As an example, Coser sees
    apostasy as striking 'at the very life of a church.'"
    Over the last ten years then, group evolutionary strategies are better
    understood, and it is realized that humans are uniquely positioned to
    solve the free rider problem. In fact, if global peace ever were
    obtained through international agreements along with totalitarian
    controls on human freedom, the free rider problem would begin to
    return under universal socialism. To my knowledge, this aspect of
    world cooperation has never been addressed, or dare I say even
    pondered, by most evolutionists, who remain mostly egalitarian.

    As long as groups can form then for cooperative benefit against other
    groups, hypertrophy will take place, coalitions will develop, and
    breeding will continue along lines of blood or common interestor both.
    The rich and powerful will continue to encourage their children to
    marry other offspring of other rich and powerful people; the
    underclass will breed with little regard for anything but immediate
    needs and desires, and others will fragment into groups between the
    top and the bottom feeders. Humans, given the failure to maintain
    racial boundaries via geographical boundaries, will divide along other
    salient group selection criteriaand new niches will be created and
    reinforced as others melt and merge. But group selection, in my
    opinion, with the help of eugenics will be accelerated.
    White notes: "As sociobiological theory would have it, quantitative
    genetic similarity should underlie ethnic group membership. On the
    other hand, qualitative genetic similarity should underlie
    Dobzhansky's 'aptitude aggregation.' In other words, insofar as an
    open class society becomes attained, class positions should be
    occupied by people sharing similar genetically influenced
    aptitudeseven though their ethnic and racial backgrounds may diverge
    However, this depends on the aptitude one is looking at. Perhaps it is
    true that sports fans may coalesce say around a athletic team because
    of locality, where race and or religious affiliation is muted for the
    sake of the school or city where the team is situated. Music likewise
    is often quite open racially, because music ability is not as
    concentrated in certain races, though it does seem to be more
    prevalent among Whites, Blacks and Jews.  On the other hand, when it
    comes to say high intelligence, 'aptitude aggregation' may very well
    be concentrated among the intelligent racesi.e. East Asians, Whites
    and Jews. Likewise, Jews dominate fields that require verbal skills,
    and we may see more and more East Asians dominate fields that require
    visuospatial skills. From all available data then, aptitudes in fact
    do follow racial lines, making quantitative and qualitative
    aggregation not that different.
    In a cosmopolitan world, where different races come together and
    interact, and once the dogma of naïve environmentalism begins to fade
    and race realism returns, people will build new cooperative
    communities. Since genes underlie aptitude, race will remain the
    primary determinate of which races will dominate which economic niche.
    In addition, since people still prefer to be with their cognitive
    equals, social niches will most likely follow economic niches.
    Niche Construction explains: "Moreover, this dual role for phenotypes
    in evolution does imply that a complete understanding of the
    relationship between human genes and cultural processes must not only
    acknowledge genetic inheritance and cultural inheritance, but also
    take account of the legacy of modified selection pressures in
    environments, or ecological inheritance. Again, it is readily apparent
    that contemporary humans are born into a massively constructed world,
    with an ecological inheritance that includes a legacy of houses,
    cities, cars, farms, nations, e-commerce, and global warming. Niche
    construction and ecological inheritance are thus likely to have been
    particularly consequential in human evolution.
    "Less familiar, but equally deserving of attention, are empirical data
    and theoretical arguments suggesting that human cultural activities
    have influenced human genetic evolution by modifying sources of
    natural selection and altering genotype frequencies in some human
    populations. Cultural information, expressed in the use of tools,
    weapons, fire, cooking, symbols, language, agriculture, and trade, may
    also have played an important role in driving hominid evolution in
    general, and the evolution of the human brain in particular. There is
    evidence that some cultural practices in contemporary human societies
    continue to affect ongoing human genetic evolutionary processes."
    We can expect evolutionary change to accelerate as we increasingly
    change our environments through technology, environmental pollution,
    warfare, changes in religious attitudes, and especially human genetic
    engineering. White explains: "[G]enetic diversity is of central
    significance in understanding the human condition. As I have pointed
    out elsewhere, it underlies both human evolution and history, for
    neither could take place without it. It is also responsible, directly
    or indirectly, for much of the cooperation, as well as the conflict,
    found within and between human societies. A society comprised of only
    one kind of person, no matter how gifted, could not function. A
    population composed of a million clones of a Mozart or an Einstein
    could not establish an effective division of labor. But genetic
    diversity also ensures conflict. First, it fosters individual
    competition. Sociobiologists argue that, insofar as each person has a
    unique set of genes, he or she has a uniquely individual set of
    interests linked to the perpetuation of those genes. And the defense
    of those intereststhat is, the desire for a suitable mate, home, and
    jobis bound to compete if not conflict with the interests of others.
    Humans are not alone here."
    It may be true that a civilization of clones would not be a happy
    place where a division of labor is required, but I would add that this
    does not mean, as some people argue, that a society of highly
    intelligent people, with different interests, could not adapt to
    specialization. When people are intelligent, they will find ways of
    automating the most tedious of tasks. In addition, even intelligent
    people often times prefer physicality to desk-bound mental pondering.
    Many highly intelligent people would, if they could for the same
    status and pay, prefer more physical work because one feels better,
    healthier and more alivedepending on one's personality. The important
    thing is that people differ in what they like to do, even if they do
    not necessarily differ in ability or potential. Even the brightest are
    asked to go to war and die for their country, a fate far more
    devastating than driving a garbage truck.
    What will be critical is that a new race of humans be so cohesive and
    singularly directed, that even if humans alter their environments in
    such a way as to make our very existence unsustainable under current
    conditions, that the eugenic few can survive while the rest of
    humanity will succumb to a deteriorated environment. Most humans are
    brought up in and inculcated by dogmas that make it difficult for them
    to change and adapt. In Niche Construction they note that, "In
    particular, components of the social environment, for example, traits
    related to family, kinship, and social stratification, may have been
    increasingly transmitted from one generation to the next by cultural
    inheritance to the extent that contemporary human populations may have
    become largely divorced from local ecological pressures. Support for
    this argument comes from Guglielmino et al.'s (1995) study of
    variation in cultural traits among 277 contemporary African societies,
    in which most of the traits they examined correlated with cultural
    (linguistic) history, rather than with ecological variables. If this
    study is representative, then socially transmitted cultural traditions
    are a lot more important than most evolution-minded researchers
    studying human behavior would admit."
    If culture can be so ingrained as to make people inflexible to their
    changing environments, any eugenics' program must ensure that as a
    group, we are not caught in the same cultural trap. We have to both
    indoctrinate our children and/or members to act cohesively for the
    good of the group, while maintaining cultural and intellectual
    flexibility to react to changes in society as they come along that
    will increase the group's resources.
    Recently, the Libertarian Party, after careful deliberation, selected
    New Hampshire as a state worth migrating to to establish a libertarian
    niche. How many libertarians will actually move there, and how it will
    increase the state's already libertarian leanings, only time will
    tell. However, it does show the increasing willingness of groups to
    advocate separation over accommodation, and eugenicists need to
    consider similar plans.
    Constructing our own niches of like-minded people allows eugenicists
    to live within alien and degenerate cultures, by isolating ourselves
    from the most corrosive forces like crime, race mixing, and being
    forced to pretend to be tolerant, while taking collective advantage of
    the rich resources available. That is, as long as the group does
    better financially and emotionally by living in urban areas, while
    resisting the debilitating aspects of the local ecology, we are better
    off forming small communities for advancing eugenics than hoping for a
    grander scheme of separation that may never come about.
    The most important principle in forming a eugenic community is
    compatibility. That is, by selecting participants that can work
    together, play together, and be with one another rather than
    interacting outside of the group, the group can protect itself from
    outsiders, while still tolerating as necessary diversity in the
    workforce and during commutes. Even during travel, attempts can be
    made to travel together for safety and separation from the many
    unwholesome types that infest urban areas. In no way am I a prude or
    do I shun the enjoyment of observing the many human types one comes
    across in large cities. I enjoy the challenge; I am probably a natural
    cosmopolitan. Always however, my main concern is with the value and
    safety of my property, along with the wellbeing of my family. These
    areas of concern should be easy to address as a collective, targeting
    specific areas for development, control and protection and therefore
    increasing the value of owned property.
    Establishing eugenic communities that can establish new value systems,
    especially for children, and reinforcing each other's desired goals
    and objectives, it becomes a lot easier to fight the impulse to
    conform to the status quo. As stated in Niche Construction:
    "Gene-culture coevolution is relevant here because it captures two
    central features of our evolutionary perspective. First, through their
    expression of socially learned information, humans are explicitly
    recognized as niche constructors, capable of modifying their own
    selection pressures. Second, the information underlying this niche
    construction is inherited from one generation to the next by an
    extragenetic inheritance system. Although cultural inheritance clearly
    differs in several important respects from ecological inheritance, the
    most notable being the informational content of the former, it may
    nevertheless generate modified natural selection pressures."
    Once the community starts to grow, it can naturally fission along
    differing lines of self-selection. Just like in tribal clans, once a
    certain size is reached, social control becomes more difficult. It is
    better to split apart, maintain social control, but keep contacts
    between groups to compare the success of differing adopted policies.
    It should be a competitive relationship between the differing groups,
    but one based on mutual interests in learning what works and what
    doesn'tfirmly grounded in empirical data on human behavior.
    Of course, as this process continues, there will always be those
    leaving the group and those joining. This is a natural process of
    selection for certain types of people, and should proceed along lines
    of common interests and common genes. There is a myth that hybrid
    vigor comes about from interracial marriage. In actuality, there is
    enough variability in human genes that inbreeding can be very
    beneficial for consolidating those genes sought afterfor intelligence
    and ethnocentrism for examplebringing in new genes with occasional
    outbreeding. The important thing is that "Cultural processes may bias
    human mating patterns, they may bias other human interactions, such as
    trade or warfare, or they may bias the choice of which infants are
    selected for infanticide." Tough minded eugenic communities can
    sublimate dysgenic attitudes into purposefully directed ones that
    benefit the group. With a value system driven by a culture that is
    focused on breeding the best, human weakness can be overcome.
    Children in a eugenic community must of course be the focus of any
    egalitarianism. That is, some people may not want to have their own
    children, but would like to promote the propagation of genes like
    those that they carry. Others may prefer the nurturing of children to
    the fast paced corporate life style. The community then should provide
    for the children, but should also not be obsessed with the children
    There is no eugenic benefit to coddling children (Krebs in Crawford &
    Salmon, 2004). We are learning that the human brain develops slowly
    after birth because it progresses along a fixed plan of learning,
    change and eventually pruning back unused neuronal connections. Naïve
    environmentalists assume that children's learning can be accelerated,
    and junior will be more accomplished by force-feeding them every
    learning experience and every opportunity. But research has shown that
    an aggressive approach to teaching children too much does not make
    them smarter, but may just make them anxious.
    I propose that children be taught, not too aggressively, the value
    system of the eugenic community. That is, inegalitarianism for society
    in general, with a preference for their own kind. That is, prepare
    them defensively for immersion into a multicultural society, one that
    they will be able to negotiate within without drawing hostility from
    When it comes to pushing them into programs, sports, learning
    regimens, etc. however this should be resisted. Children should be
    socialized to interact with the group, and to be encouraged to find
    what they like best within the confines of the community. That is,
    with a highly intelligent community of children (and adults), there
    will be plenty of stimulation for their maturation and intellectual
    growth. As children get older, they will seek out their own areas of
    interest and pursue them efficiently, hopefully leading to a rewarding
    choice of interests that will carry them into successful careers.
    A good example of trying to make children too well rounded, as if they
    can master every area of culture and learning, is music. I love music,
    and as a kid I took up many instruments, joined the band, etc.
    However, I was not disciplined enough or dedicated enough to master
    any instrument well, and eventually left it all behind mewithout any
    regrets. I love music, but am more than happy to let others create it
    and perform it, while I just listen.
    My younger brother on the other hand taught himself how to be a
    rock-n-roll drummer when it suited him in his teens, and he mastered
    it magnificently. He started his own band, and was well on his way to
    a typical music career with lots of fun but eventual failure and a
    return to a more mundane existence decades later.
    My main point here is that music today is one vocation that can be
    very rewarding for a very small fraction of people, it can be enjoyed
    by many more for personal reasons, but for the vast majority it is
    usually just abandoned as the time constraints of pursuing different
    interests takes over. The point is, look for the few children who may
    really excel playing a musical instrument or singing, but don't assume
    they have to pursue one or the other or they will be somehow deprived
    of a needed talent or experience. There are simply too many areas of
    interest to explore for children to be exposed to all of them without
    taking away those areas of interest that they are genetically inclined
    to pursue. We live in an age of specialization, and we should allow
    everyone the chance to naturally make the best fit between their
    abilities, their interests, and what currently is of value.
    The other reason for not pampering children is simply that it can
    detract from enjoying life as an adult. For those who want to be
    around children, let them pursue that end. For those who prefer the
    company of adults, let the children be off by themselves as much as
    they like. That is, when children intrude on adults or vice versa,
    neither is benefited.
    In the end, some of the children will migrate out of the community,
    which is good because that is part of the selection process. The more
    committed will stay, and with each generation hypertrophy will
    accelerate the process of selection, niche construction, finer
    selection, the fissuring of large communities into smaller and more
    cohesive ones, etc.
    As White states, "Let us return to the aptitude aggregations. The
    successful formation of these in elite areas of talent and knowledge
    will, we recall, be characterized by hypertrophic tendencies that will
    enhance their level of performance. These tendencies will encompass
    the cooperative as well as the competitive. Like-minded individuals
    who share similar talent but not temperaments may be driven to outdo
    the others; those who share both the same talent and temperament may
    be more apt to cooperate in an effort to surpass others. Either way,
    higher levels of achievement are likely to be attained. And that is
    precisely the point, especially when the most successful in any
    endeavor are contrasted with the least successful. That is to say, the
    distance between the two groupings in Dobzhansky's world becomes
    greater than ever."
    Obviously, the eugenic community I am describing could become a highly
    competitive one, where internal friction could lead to conflict. The
    type of people attracted to such an adventure may be more independent,
    aggressive, and demanding of perfection than average. On the other
    hand, the community will be focused on understanding human behavior,
    and hopefully with a better understanding of what makes humans tick,
    the internal divisions can be kept in check and used to the advantage
    of the community.
    For example, research shows that the more complex a social system is,
    the more susceptible it is to exploitation by cheaters (Krebs in
    Crawford & Salmon, 2004). This is one reason that socialism is so
    terribly flawed. Efforts to help the needy are instead used by
    cheaters for personal gain, and the system slowly becomes more and
    more inefficient as more and more people take advantage of a free ride
    rather than producing their fair share. In addition, "Making people
    continually aware of their own and others' selfish motives by
    emphasizing these in an excessive system of rules intended to catch
    cheaters, may actually reduce levels of self-deception and thus
    cooperation. Cooperating in a sea of defectors is a maladaptive,
    costly strategy" (Surbey in Crawford & Salmon, 2004).  It is important
    then to teach out-group selfishness but to minimize in-group criticism
    of selfish behavior, in order to reduce tensions and over zealous
    accounting of member's behaviors. A eugenic society could become too
    cynical, if fault-finding was overemphasized, and should be kept in
    balance. That is, we must not try to be perfect cooperators but just
    make sure that everyone is better off by being in the group than on
    their own. Very few rules then should be createdjust enough to keep
    the system together to meet eugenic goals.
    Also in Surbey and CrawfordTimothy Ketelaar discusses in detail the
    relationship between cooperators (who want to maximize group
    outcomes), individualists (who want to maximize their own outcomes),
    and competitors (who will reduce their own maximum outcome in order to
    gain an advantage over others). From a vast amount of research, it
    seems that there is a natural ratio of cooperators to individualists
    to competitors of 4:2:1. Ketelaar is not clear what social groups
    follow this evolutionary stable strategy, but I assume it is a
    typically Western one. Nonetheless, It does show that when a nation
    operates on egalitarian principles that assume that everyone is the
    same, the system will break down in several ways. First, the
    competitors are extremely destructive. Second, after a point even the
    individualists will reduce their own level of cooperation. Third, as
    things get even worse, there will remain a large number of too-nice
    do-gooders within the 57% of cooperators who will lobby for even more
    resource reallocation from the haves to the have-nots. (With a ratio
    of 4:2:1, 4/7=57% cooperators.)
    Therefore, a eugenic community would want to maintain a very low level
    of competitors, but also it would not want nice cooperatorsthat is
    people who would be tolerant or forgiving towards competitorsand also
    free-riders and/or destructive psychopaths. (Note that some
    psychopathy is linked with creativity and technological advancement.
    See Eysenck, 1999 and Lynn, 2001.)
    So what types of people would we ideally want in a eugenic's
    community? The above is just a rough stab at some of the criteria, but
    fundamentally, I would state categorically that we cannot tell for
    sure, but as niche builders, it will be our intention to find out. The
    communities should do one thing that is lacking in Western countries
    when it comes to policy decisionskeep records. That is, any
    community's progress, problems, failures or successes should be
    statistically tracked and verifiable to so changes can be made in the
    future. It needs to be fully flexible, ever changing, evolving system
    in order to win the genetics arms race. There is no room for anecdotal
    stories, that predominate in modern culture's narrative style of
    social enquiry.
    Matt Nuenke
    April 2004
    See www.neoeugenics.com website for bibliography.
    The following was posted to the Yahoo site [evol-psyh] by Jay R.
    Feierman, March 4, 2004:
    Evolution and Human Rights Legislation
    Douglas Galbi says, "Human rights speak of rights flowing from the
    nature of every living being" and then asks,  (1) "In what way are
    humans different from other living beings? and (2) In what ways are
    all human beings equal?"
    In terms of (1) we are different from other living species in that we
    are a brain-specialized species with a highly evolved neocortex, which
    has the ontogenetic capacity to creatively find novel solutions to
    thwarted goals and to ontogenetically create more time- and
    material-efficient ways of solving novel problems, which we then
    culturally pass within and across generations to our kin (and others)
    by imitation learning. In terms of (2) we all have similarities
    (equalities) as well as differences (inequalities) depending on which
    we are looking to delineate.
    Far from being a part of our nature, "human rights" are culturally
    concocted and transmitted, arbitrary creations of our highly evolved
    neo-cortices. They are not species-typical traits. What are human
    rights in one society are not so in another. The high status persons
    of each society create the list of the human rights that in the long
    term serve their own best interest. Governments, which are controlled
    by high status individuals, codify and then enforce the exercise of
    approved human rights and suppress the expression of the unapproved
    human rights. In one society freedom of speech and religion and the
    right to bear arms (own guns) are considered basic human rights,
    whereas in other societies there are no freedoms of speech or religion
    or the right to bear arms but wealth is redistributed so that everyone
    is given food, healthcare and a place to live as their basic human
    rights. Obviously, there is no other specie that has a list of basic
    rights for each member of the species. In some human societies equal
    opportunity is considered a basic human right, which is the so-called
    "level playing field" concept. In other societies, equal outcome is
    considered a basic human right and resources are redistributed by the
    government and some humans are given preferential treatment to make
    the outcomes more equal.
    The concept of human rights always requires a government to establish
    and enforce them, since they are arbitrary. So I would take issue with
    Douglas's Galbi's basic premise that "human rights . . . flow from the
    nature of every living being." Instead, it appears that what are
    called human rights are culturally arbitrary access, denial and
    redistribution rules that in the long run have to serve interest of
    the rule makers. In the United States we are told that it is our "God
    given right" for life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. So even
    these so called rights are considered "God given" and not part of our
    basic human nature. Oh Natural Selection, where did my idealism of
    youth go?

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