A conversation with Jon Entine, for European Scientist

220px-Entine_photo  Jon Entine is an American science writer. He is the founder and executive director of the Genetic Literacy Project, a nonprofit that educates the public about the revolution in biomedicine and agricultural biotechnology. He was formerly a fellow at the Institute for Food and Agricultural Literacy at the University of California, Davis, the Center for Health & Risk Communication at George Mason University, and at the American Enterprise Institute. After working as a network news writer, producer and head of documentaries for NBC News and ABC News from 1974-1994, Entine moved into scholarly research and print journalism.

  Entine has written seven books, four on genetics and chemical risk, and has addressed a range of controversial issues, including the genetics of sports; the shared ancestry of Jews, Christians and Muslims; socially responsible investing; and why organic farming will not scale to produce sustainable food. He is a contributing columnist and writer for dozens of newspapers and magazines. He has was won 19 major journalism awards including two Emmys, three CINE, Ohio State Award, Chris Award, Best Feature Film Interntional Sport Film Festival,  and a National Press Club Award for Consumer Journalism.

  Grégoire Canlorbe: You carefully investigated the genetic underpinnings of the over-representation of blacks in many high profile sports. Could you remind us of the fruits of your inquiry? Why do whites dominate strength related positions and events in so many sports—and why are blacks so poorly represented in some major sports, such as swimming?

  Jon Entine: I think it’s phenomenal, really startling that if you look at the major sports around the world: track and field, football in Europe, American football, baseball, and basketball, which is an international sport, you see a very odd distribution of which athletes do the best in various sports. In many of the sports, the ones that require speed, quick reaction time, things like global and American football or basketball or sprinting, it’s utter dominance by athletes of West African ancestry.

  In long distance running, which requires endurance, you see the dominance of East Africans and a few North Africans, whose ancestors evolved in higher altitudes, shaping their physique and physiology. You look at strength events, and you see dominance of East Europeans and Euro-Asians with very minimal representation of those of African ancestry. These aren’t just recent aberrations.

  These patterns have persisted for decades and have actually become more pronounced as the playing field got more level, so ‘natural talent’ could emerge and environmental factors were at a minimum. Once the influence of performance enhancement drugs during the 1960s, 70s, and ‘89s driven by Russia and the Eastern bloc dissipated, which distorted who were the best athletes, we saw these patterns become even more pronounced around the world. And I think the more you research this, the more you understand that at the elite level of athletic competition, we are very much a product of our genetics and the patterns reflect evolution in different geographical areas.

  This is not a black/white issue or an issue of ‘race’ as we have traditionally used the term. It’s about regions of evolutionary origin. Phenotypes and genotypes are shaped by thousands of years of evolution. Although some characteristics seem to loosely correlated with traditional, folkloric notions of race, many do not. Just look at the difference in body types and athletic skill sets of distance running East Africans and elite athletes who trace their primary descent to West Africa. The differences in physiology and physique may be small in the case of some characteristics, and there is a great deal of overlap, but those differences are magnified at the elite level of sports competition where a fraction of a second can make the difference between winning a gold medal or being an also ran.

  Social factors alone or even significantly cannot explain why the top two thousand all time 100 meter times are held by a person of West African ancestry yet West Africans are almost nonexistent at the elite level of medium and long distance running. I addressed many of these issues, along with the toxic history of ‘race science,’ in my book Taboo: Why Black Athletes Dominate Sports and Why We’re Afraid to Talk About It. Although the book is now 20 years old, and some data are dated, the arguments in the book are now mainstream science and genetics. It was actually based on a documentary that I wrote and produced back in 1989 with Tom Brokaw, Black Athletes: Fact and Fiction.

  The idea that anybody can grow up and become an elite athlete with the proper training and opportunities is just not supported by what we know of genetics. Genetics is not destiny, but I would say that genetics is like designing a house. You can tidy up the rooms a little bit, you can move things around, but generally speaking, who you are is like the house itself. Once it’s built, it’s set, and these predeterminations are the result tens of thousands of years of evolution.

  That said, there are always cultural and genetic factors in play. There is a biocultural feedback loop in sports in which culture helps magnify small but meaningful biologically-based differences. People say, “Oh, there are few blacks in ice hockey,” for instance. Well, ice hockey is played in northern climates, and there have been relatively few blacks in Canada or in Europe, historically. So, the number of blacks is almost representative of the number of blacks in those regions. And some sports, like gymnastics, for instance, or swimming, require a lot of training. They require facilities, pools that are very expensive. Social opportunity has largely excluded minorities. The more factors that cost a lot of money, like the availability of expensive facilities, then, cultural and social factors come into play.

  The sports that I cited: running, football, soccer, and basketball which are usually state sponsored or sponsored by schools—sports like those represent a level playing field. It doesn’t require special financial advantages to be a great long-distance runner or sprinter. It’s really natural talent that comes to the fore. So, it’s best to think of sports as a biocultural phenomenon—sports success. And the lower the cultural barriers to entry, the more genetic factors come into play. And those genetic based differences are not distributed equally among populations. In running, blacks of West African ancestry dominate the sprints, totally. In long distance running, blacks of East African ancestry dominate. And that’s purely a result of our genetic history.

  Grégoire Canlorbe: It has been hypothesized that race differences in intelligence and in psychopathy should be connected to the severity of encountered winters over tens of thousands of years of evolutionary time—with Caucasians and a fortiori Northeast Asians having faced the coldest winters and consequently evolved the higher IQs and the lower psychopathy levels necessary to navigate difficult environmental circumstances. Do you endorse this alleged connection?

  Jon Entine: Well, there has been some speculation on that controversial issue by evolutionary psychologists and others, as well as some geneticists, that some people embrace and some people do not. One of the suppositions is that evolution does shape who we are physically, and there are group differences–overlapping but real. We know that. And so, some people have asked, if genetics shape us physically, and we see the examples in sports, it must shape us psychologically and intellectually, as well. And there’s belief among many scientists that there are patterns of differences based at IQ tests—although many people like to dismiss them as unimportant or pseudo-science or racist. I think there’s profound evidence and belief within the psychometric community that IQ tests are very real measurements of a kind of intelligence. But how much of the differences are the result of evolutionary factors versus environmental and cultural factors, including those that impact biology, such as natal and childhood development. Obviously environmental factors predominant in explaining patterns of differences.

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A short conversation with Daniel Pipes, for Gatestone Institute

220px-Daniel_pipes_bw  Daniel Pipes is an American historian and president of the Middle East Forum. His writing focuses on Islamism, the Middle East, and U.S. foreign policy. His archive is at www.DanielPipes.org 

  Grégoire Canlorbe: Do you expect the George Floyd protests to leave, in the American collective memory, a mark comparable to the September 11 attacks and the Vietnam War?

  Daniel Pipes: The great question is: Will the current lurch to the left be temporary or permanent? I worry it is permanent because liberals are capitulating to progressives as never before. Will that trend continue or end? It is hard to forecast when very much in the moment.

  Grégoire Canlorbe: Donald Trump’s foreign policy is often praised as dismissing nation-building in favor of short-term intervention, economic asphyxiation, and striking a deal with US enemies. How do you assess Trump’s approach? Do you subscribe to John Bolton’s criticism?

  Daniel Pipes: Trump came to office with minimal knowledge of the outside world, just impressions and emotions. He also lacked a philosophy or a network. The result has been haphazard. Bolton saw this from close-up and was understandably appalled. Fortunately, some of Trump’s instincts are solid, for example, as concerns China, Iran, Israel, and Venezuela, and he does not get intimidated by the Establishment consensus. So far, anyway, no catastrophe.

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A conversation with Philippe Fabry, for The Postil Magazine

 

Philippe Fabry  Philippe Fabry is a lawyer and a theorist of history. His approach, which he calls “historionomy,” endeavors to identify the cyclical patterns of history. He authored Rome, from Libertarianism to Socialism, A History of the Coming Century, and The Structure of History. His website is: https://www.historionomie.net/.

  Grégoire Canlorbe: You do not hesitate to challenge the usual discourse (which liberals [libertarians, classical-liberals, anarcho-capitalists, free-marketists] do not avoid, even for the most conservative of them) claiming France to be an artificial construction from the building and unifying State: a political work whose plinth is no more geography than ethnicity or blood. Far from having formed differently from other European nations, France has, according to you, been built around an ethnic and territorial reality; and globally follows the same trajectory in its history. Could you come back to that subject?

  Philippe Fabry: Yes, it is indeed a common place in the commentary on the history of France to say that it is the State which made the Nation, while among our neighbors it would be the Nation which made the State. I can’t say if historians believe it, because it’s just not the kind of question they ask themselves these days, but it’s the kind of ready-made thinking that is prized by journalists and politicians who pride themselves on diagnosing “French trouble.” But in truth that dichotomy opposing France to the rest of Europe, if not the world, is fallacious, in two respects: first, all Nation-States are constituted according to a standard model (in reality two, but France is in the most frequent, I will come back to it), then the State does not have a more determining role there than the territorial and ethnic factors.

  There are two models of the appearance of Nation-States: the most common model, the most immediate, primary one, is that of the long-term gathering—around six centuries—of territories and people under one single state authority. The other model is the one that I would say “secondary” of the Nation-States born by secession, during an independence revolution: that is the case of Rome vis-à-vis the Etruscans, the separated United Provinces formerly Spanish possessions, the United States of America; those are formed when a population geographically and culturally too much distant from the state base of a “primary” Nation-State is under its control for various reasons.

  France belongs, like all major European States, to the first category. The model is as follows: in a populated territorial area, ethnically and linguistically relatively homogeneous, but where there is no State, either because none has ever emerged—for example Germania of the early Middle Ages—, or because it is a former imperial state which has withdrawn—that is the case of Gaul at the same period or of Great Britain after the ebb of the Danes in the X century—, the primitive regime is feudalism and therefore extreme political fragmentation. In the absence of a large-scale exogenous event, generally the invasion by an imperial power, a feudal lord more powerful than the others appears over time, who is logically the one who reigns over the economic lung of the territorial area. That economic lung, a fertile agricultural region, is very easily identified by looking at a relief map: it is a large plain, the largest in the territorial area: the Paris basin in France, the North German plain for Germany, the Guadalquivir plain for Spain, the London basin for Great Britain. The seigniorial power which can rely on this economic lung has a decisive advantage in resources and can extend over all the space which is naturally peripheral to it, that is to say both culturally close, and belonging to a geographically well-defined territorial area: the whole of Gaul for the Paris basin, including the Breton peninsula, the Massif Central and the smaller plains of Aquitaine and Languedoc; the entire island of Great Britain for the London basin, winning over Cornwall, the mountainous Wales and Scotland; all of southern Germany for the northern plain, including mountainous Bavaria. Of course, those centers of power do not stop at sharp boundaries, which for centuries engenders conflicts over the exact boundaries of the areas of influence. Those conflict zones are generally characterized by a hybrid character allowing them to be linked to several groups: an ethnic aspect could make Britain be disputed to France by England, language linked Alsace to Germany while the largest geographic proximity to the Paris basin made it lean towards France, and so on. It is rare that a border so clear separates two territorial areas that it is never challenged, but we can say that this was the case of the Pyrenees between France and Spain—although Roussillon, close to culture Catalan, did not become French until the XVII century.

  That dominant seigniorial power then builds the state, first by going beyond the feudal system by creating an assembly representative of the orders: urban bourgeoisie, nobility, clergy, to which the peasantry is added in the Nordic countries. That assembly allows the dominant seigniorial power to give itself a higher stature than that of the rest of the nobility and to embody the first national representation. That new paradigm leads to the construction of an administration exercising, more and more uniformly throughout the controlled territory, the regalian functions. The population gathered under the same authority gradually becomes a political community, becomes culturally uniform, and develops a national feeling. And it is when that national feeling is sufficiently present, and when happens an event—a lost war which discredits that regime which is called “administrative monarchy”—, that what I call a movement of national revolution occurs, which is the final stage in the constitution of a Nation-State by making the Nation the true holder of sovereignty, and therefore of the power of the State, through a parliamentary regime. That revolutionary movement lasts about forty years and goes through various systematic stages: collapse of the regime, radicalization of the revolutionary phenomenon, military dictatorship, partial restoration of the old regime, and final parliamentary change.

  So it’s always a bit the State that makes the Nation, but at the same time the Nation that arouses the State. The geographic expansion of the State is constrained by cultural, demographic, linguistic and obviously purely geographic factors, but its emergence and consolidation are themselves the product of an ethno-geographic reality. It is a kind of feedback loop, and it is rare that a State absolutely corresponds to its natural ethnico-geographical zone: the competition of large States creates disputed zones which are often resolved either through an arbitrary delimitation, or through fragmentation and the appearance of multi-ethnic, multicultural, plurilingual buffer States like Belgium or Switzerland—which may end up developing their own identity, certainly, but one more accidental.

  The determinism is not absolute and leaves the possibility of several combinations, but it is clear that it is the most “obvious” one which generally triumphs. Thus in France, two nations could have been born, because there are two basins: the Parisian and the Aquitaine. For a long time Bordeaux was the capital of that Aquitaine basin and Aquitaine dominated the country of Oc, while the country of Oïl depended more naturally on Paris. The distinction between the two countries could have endured, since each had a certain linguistic and cultural unity: the language of Oc against the language of Oïl, a country of written law against a country of customary law. But on the one hand the Parisian basin is much larger than the Bordeaux basin, and on the other hand the “natural” territorial area was rather on the scale of the whole of the former territory of Gaul, whose settlement base had besides remained the same as during Antiquity, the Great Migrations having not constituted a real demographic break. The Paris basin therefore succeeded in its vocation to dominate the whole which has given France.

  Another example: Germany saw the development of two centers capable of unifying the German nation: Austria and Prussia. Prussia controlled the plain of North Germany, and Austria dominated the plain of Pannonia (Hungary). That resulted into a division of the Germanic space between the two centers until the Great War, and ultimately the impossibility of keeping them lastingly unified after the failure of the Third Reich—even while the Germany of the seven electors appointed by the Golden Bull in 1356 covered all of those German-speaking territories.

  I think that the political debate would often gain if those invariants of the state and national construction are better known, because they say a lot about what can or cannot be a Nation-State, about the deleterious effects that can have on a Nation-State a constituted mass immigration, for example.

  And as for liberals [libertarians, from classical-liberals to anarcho-capitalists] there is a remark that I like to make to them, and that they generally take badly, it is that if the Nation-State is built in such a systematic way, it is because it is the most efficient product on the public security market, so that if we were to recreate an anarchic society, in the long term it would be towards the re-emergence of Nation-States that the political and social order would tend.

  Grégoire Canlorbe: While Greco-Roman paganism—on that point, in phase with Judaism—breaks with the veneration of motherly Nature, the pre-Indo-European gynecocratic spirit, the biblical conception of time as linear (and of cosmic and human history as endowed with a beginning, an end, and a progression) contrasts with the pagan motif of the eternal return of the same. You assert both your Catholic heritage and your cyclical conception of history. How is that duality conciliated within your intellectual life?

  Philippe Fabry: It always seemed natural to me, faced with that kind of conceptual opposition, to think that the truth was more likely to be a mixture of the two. Cyclicity and linearity are not necessarily contradictory if we consider that there are several scales to consider, several temporalities. And it seems obvious to me that history is both cyclical and linear. And that is not proper to human history, but also to natural history. Take the evolution of species: it is linear, there is no turning back, but it is based on a cyclical phenomenon which is the life of living individuals: their conception, their birth, their maturation, their reproduction, their death. It is through that recurrence that nature, through mutations which are then selected naturally, makes species evolve. The same goes for humanity: it is subject to certain recurrences, but those recurrences end up drawing a linear pattern and a general progression: in the demographic mass of the species, the size of its political communities, its scientific and technical power, its artistic sophistication. Its destiny is linear, but its embodiment is recursive. Which led me to suggest, and my work always leads me further in that direction, that human history can be modeled in the mathematical form of a cellular automaton, which is also a tool for modeling the appearance and development of life.

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A conversation with Kamel Krifa, for The Postil Magazine

Kamel Krifa  Kamel Krifa is an actor, film producer, and Hollywood’s stars trainer—including Jean-Claude Van Damme, Michelle Rodriguez, Eddie Griffin, Steven Seagal, and many other ones. Krifa ranks among Van Damme’s longstanding collaborators and personal friends, acting alongside him in various movies. This conversation with cultural journalist Grégoire Canlorbe first happened in Paris, in July 2017; it was resumed and validated in April 2020.

  Grégoire Canlorbe: In Kickboxer IV, you have given flesh and soul to iconic villain Tong Po. Do you intend to return to the saga?

  Kamel Krifa: At the time I had been offered a contract of five films to interpret the character of Tong Po. It was an interesting challenge, for my acting was essentially limited to the expression of my eyes and to working the articulation of the mouth. Indeed, I was asked to wear a mask, destined to give me oriental features. Alas, concerning fighting scenes, I did not have the opportunity to really prepare them thoroughly, because I had to avoid spoiling, through my respiration, the three hours of make-up that were devolved to me each day. (Knowing that an extra hour was still required to remove my make-up after filming.)

  Finally, I will have only once lent my traits—or rather, lent my stature and my agility—to the deceitful and cruel Tong Po. But I effectively returned to the franchise Kickboxer, since I appear in Kickboxer: Retaliation, alongside Mike Tyson, Hafþór Júlíus Björnsson, Christophe Lambert, and none other than Jean-Claude Van Damme. The movie was released in January 2018. It is the sequel to Kickboxer: Vengeance, a remake of Kickboxer released twenty-seven years after the original film.

Kickboxer IV final fight
Final fight in Kickboxer IV, exhibiting the martial prowess of Kamel Krifa (in the role of Tong Po)

  Grégoire Canlorbe: Jean-Claude Van Damme has directed a single film, The Quest, in which he plays in the company of the late Roger Moore. According to you, why did JCVD not want to repeat the experience since then?

  Kamel Krifa: Jean-Claude has an undeniable talent as a director and he does not hesitate to advise the directors who work with him. They benefit from his experience, acquired both before and behind the camera. In turn, he offers them the best of himself in his acting. Since The Quest, he indeed prefers to delegate the task to the director and to focus on his interpretation. It allows him to let his mind float — instead of cornering his attention with a host of technical considerations that never leaves his mind in peace. In that way, he can prove fully invested, relaxed, and reactive under the eye of the camera; he can put himself in the skin of his character with an optimal ability to concentrate.

  Also, entrusting the filmmaking to someone else, whom he knows qualified, and to whom he transmits his directives, allows him to take time for himself: time to commune with himself, and to read and meditate on subjects that are dear to his heart. Jean-Claude is not only a man of great culture; he is an authentic gifted, a superior intelligence, who carries a unique and insightful look at people, the things of life, and the universe.

  Grégoire Canlorbe: Whether as his coach, his producer, or his on-screen partner, you have been working steadily and consistently with JCVD. Would you care to say a few words about it?

  Kamel Krifa: I have known Jean-Claude since he was thirteen. When I met him, I was twenty years old; and from simple sports room colleagues, we quickly became best friends, spiritual brothers. In 1989, Jean-Claude, who had just acted in his launch pad Bloodsport (and who was about to become an international star with the tremendous successes of the early 1990s), proposed to me that I become his exclusive trainer; very honored, I accepted his offer. I then had the opportunity to act alongside him in Death Warrant and Lionheart—and that is how I became a Hollywood actor.

Kamel Krifa in Death Warrant
Kamel Krifa in Death Warrant

  During the 1990s I continued to appear alongside Jean-Claude in various action movies; on the same token, I launched into production. That is how I was an associate producer for Double Impact, featuring Bolo Yeung. I also co-produced Legionnaire, for which I made location scouting in Morocco for two years. I must confess that I have a special affection for that period film, which deals with the Rif War and which features Abdelkrim Khattab, whom I had the good fortune to play. Most recently, I collaborated with Jean-Claude on the pilot of the TV series Jean-Claude Van Johnson, sponsored by Amazon—and, of course, on the last installment of the saga Kickboxer.

  Grégoire Canlorbe: Let us talk about the origin of your cinematographic vocation. What could be, in particular, the “double impact” of your Tunisian childhood and of your early discovery of martial arts?

  Kamel Krifa: At the age of seven I had stars in my eyes in front of peplums and other spy films from the 1960s; and it is to a large extent in the popular movie theaters of Tunis, where action movie left me mesmerized, that my vocation of actor was born. But it is also at home, from a very early age, by having fun shooting amateur films through a play of shadow and light, by imagining myself in the shoes of role models like Tarzan or Maciste, that my attraction for cinema took shape. The martial arts, which I have been practicing since my childhood, seemed to me early on to be the royal way to make my entry into the Hollywood milieu. As an adult my experiences in the army, the police, or as a bodyguard allowed me to perfect my combat skills.

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A conversation with Volkmar Weiss, for American Renaissance

1863396  Volkmar Weiss is a German geneticist and historian. He graduated from Humboldt University of Berlin with a doctor of science degree in 1972, after presenting his dissertation on the heredity of intellectual giftedness for mathematics and technology. In 1990 he earned his postdoctoral qualification as a geneticist with the book Psychogenetik: Humangenetik in Psychologie und Psychiatrie [Psychogenetics: Human Genetics in Psychology and Psychiatry] and in 1993 as a social historian with the book Bevölkerung und soziale Mobilität: Sachsen 1550–1880 [Population and Social Mobility: Saxony 1550–1880]. He co-founded the German Social Union in 1990 and was a member of the German Christian Democratic Union from 1990 to 1993. From 1990 to 2007, he was head of the German Central Office for Genealogy.

  In 2000 he published Die IQ-Falle: Intelligenz, Sozialstruktur und Politik [The IQ Case: Intelligence, Social Structure, and Politics], which is commonly considered the German counterpoint to The Bell Curve. He has spent his retirement writing nonfiction books and alternative history novels, among them, in 2012, Die Intelligenz und ihre Feinde: Aufstieg und Niedergang der Industriegesellschaft [Intelligence and Its Enemies: The Rise and Decline of Industrial Society] and, in 2007, Das Reich Artam: Die alternative Geschichte 1941–2099 [The Reich Artam: The Alternative History 1941–2099]. In his 2010’s book Deutschland schafft sich ab [Germany Abolishes Itself], Thilo Sarrazin refers to and uses Weiss’ arguments to support his own conclusions on demographic substitution. A short actualized version of his 2012’s monograph is the book IQ Means Inequality: The Population Cycle that Drives Human History (KDP 2020).

  Grégoire Canlorbe: Against the consensual position in social sciences that interindividual differences in intelligence are exclusively molded by the membership in a given social class, you do not hesitate to present intellectual inequalities as mostly rooted in genes—and nonetheless correlated with properly social inequalities. How do you develop your subversive claim?

  Volkmar Weiss: The Communists, who came to power in 1945 in the Soviet occupation zone of Germany, started from the assumption that all social differences were based on social causes and only on them. By abolishing these causes and, first and foremost, the differences in education, one also abolishes the social differences, so orthodox communists believe. Therefore a “counter-privileged educational policy” began in East Germany. Children whose parents belonged to the intelligentsia were discriminated against, while children of workers and peasants received special support, for example in “workers and peasants faculties”. At the end of the 1950s, East Germany had managed to make considerable progress towards the goal of equal opportunities. But what happened then?

  In the 1960s, the proportion of high school graduates whose parents had once received special support after the war as children of workers and peasants and who had meanwhile become managers or members of the intelligentsia grew from year to year. In the statistics, their children no longer counted as children of workers and peasants. This was annoying and embarrassing to the representatives of the “leading working class,” and the special promotion of workers’ children was abolished in the mid-sixties. In the meantime, there was already social research in East Germany, which, since it could do nothing with such deliberately blurred categories as “working class”, had to work with clear classifications and therefore began to speak of educational strata. Empirical social research defined all university and technical college graduates (i.e. all those with an IQ above 115), regardless of their job, power or function, as members of the intelligentsia.

  Uniform school conditions not only have a homogenizing effect, but also a differentiating one and social differences are intensified. In the 1960s, in view of this development the East German power elite became more and more interested in the promotion of talents and did not longer categorically rule out the possibility of a genetic background of high IQ. In 1969 professor Hans Grimm, director of the Institute of Anthropology in Berlin (East), proposed to me to do research on the inheritance of mathematical high-giftedness. I saw myself in the footsteps of Francis Galton, agreed and received permission for this research from Margot Honecker herself, Minister of National Education.

I used the annual “Olympiads of Young Mathematicians” held in East Germany as the starting point of my investigation. In the period 1963-1971 about 2.8 million students participated in these competitions, all mentally healthy students of the grades 5-12. The registration cards of the 1329 best placed pupils and questionnaires provided data on around 20 000 relatives.

  The following empirical findings were particularly important:

  1.   In families in which the father belonged to the same top IQ occupational group as the highly gifted, all siblings of the test persons were far above average (i.e. all attended a school leading to a high school gratification certificate [German Abitur]).
  2.   In the families in which the father had a different occupation than one from the IQ top group, the siblings spread over the entire possible occupational spectrum. Approximately 14% of siblings were in jobs that generally did not require more than average mental power.
  3.   A particularly striking finding was found among the collaterals (the siblings of the parents of the highly gifted and their spouses), where both parents either belong to the top IQ occupational group or both are unskilled workers, almost always have only children who again exercise occupations of the respective qualification and thus IQ level. Parental couples in the IQ range around 110, on the other hand, have children who are spread over the entire possible occupational spectrum.

  For someone who has Mendel’s law and their statistical distributions in mind, these findings suggest the segregation of genes as the background of high IQ and high giftedness. The same effect as a major gene locus could have a series of additive alleles.

  Grégoire Canlorbe: Thirty years after the fall of the Berlin Wall, and the publication of your article on the European proletariat (in which you challenged the Marxist notion of a hereditary and disproportionately increasing proletariat), how do you assess the economic integration of Eastern Germany—and the global fate of free enterprise and laissez-faire capitalism in the reunified Federal Republic of Germany?

  Volkmar Weiss: East Germany became and remains the poor annex of the West. Up to 1989, the inhabitants of East Germany did see decades of decline. After reunification they are afraid to live again in a state whose historic fate as a whole is decline. Therefore we have in former East Germany a strong opposition against unlimited immigration.

  Grégoire Canlorbe: Relying on the logic of genetics and available knowledge on allele frequencies, you used to judge it highly probable that C2orf16 rs1919128 was the major gene locus of general cognitive ability. How did you come to endorse, then dismiss, the hypothesis?

  Volkmar Weiss: Genes underlying IQ should have a certain distribution within social strata, ethnic populations and samples of high and low IQ subjects, in 2012 this was the starting point to look into all available databases of human genes. Despite the extreme probabilities, which spoke for C2orf16 rs1919128, it was a false positive finding. Many of genes claimed to underlie schizophrenia, Alzheimer and so on are false positives.

  Another approach would have been to look for the greatest genetic differences between man and apes. On this route of research the group, led by Prof. Sikela, Denver, Colorado, found out that the number of copies of the gene DUF1220 (Olduvai) in the human genome is highly correlated with IQ and the risk to have autism or schizophrenia. High IQ subjects have about 20 copies more than low IQ persons. The number of copies has the same effect as the number of alleles of one genetic locus.

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Preliminary Notes to a Renovation of Platonism — Part Two, A Reassessment of the Ideal Field

Le_Chêne_et_le_Roseau_Achille_Michallon_1816  The properties (at the level of the composition of matter or that of its arrangement) which, at the instant t-1, find themselves to be actualizable are not only subject to decryption and to triage on the part of matter at the instant t; they rank among the possible implications of the properly atemporal (since virtual) bundle of the cosmos’s elementary archetypes and its starting rules. Therefore we are allowed to call them the “implicit properties” of matter (or “implied”).

  By the Spirit I mean a purely virtual being (therefore devoid of the slightest material support), which is the substantial reality (the one self-sufficient to exist), and which is infinite as well as creator and subject to a creative impulse deploying itself like a selective impulse which actualizes the own content of the Spirit. The latter has this paradoxical feature that it is both outside of time (by reason of its supra-worldly character) and engaged in a process of revelation of itself over the course of the history of the cosmos (whose existence it generated from nothing). The paradox is elucidated through taking into account the fact that the Spirit, which entirely lies in the axioms (the starting rules repeating in a fractal mode) and in the elementary archetypes of the cosmos, therefore lies in the infinite swarm of their implications.

  At each level of emergence in the composition or the arrangement of matter (starting with the emergence which saw matter spring from nothingness), matter subjected to time—and engaged in a momentum which we will see is, so to speak, the shadow or the reflection of the selective and actualizing impulse on the part of the Spirit—decrypts, sorts, and concretizes those implications. It does so on the occasion of the communication process that physicist Pavel V. Kurakin describes between matter at the instant t and the actualizable properties of matter at the instant t-1.

The material impulse towards selective actualization

  More precisely the Spirit (all the components of which are traits of the Spirit that are essential rather than accidental) is entirely contained in an ideational (therefore atemporal and supra-worldly) swarm of axioms, archetypes, and implications whose actualizing drive transmits itself to matter. The latter—not content with embodying the ideational field which yet remains distinct from matter and ideational—therefore takes care of the actualization of the aforesaid implications.

  Yet the material accomplishment of the Spirit gradually leads to the consciousness of the Spirit (in the sense that the cosmos sees the knowledge of the existence of the Spirit germinate), as well as to the transparency of the Spirit (in the sense that the content of the Spirit lets himself to be known also). In other words, matter selects over the course of time passing in cosmic history—and as a result of an actualizing impulse that the Spirit breathes into the two partners that are time and matter—those of the implications arising from archetypes and axioms which will be actualized. Including the implication which consists of the emergence of consciousness among living beings—and, in fine, the emergence of the awareness of the Spirit’s existence, and of the knowledge of the Spirit’s content, within the thought of men (especially Faustian Westerners).

  This process of a selective and material self-revelation of the Spirit has a temporal and worldly beginning. The advent of this beginning is the object of a global and undivided impulse (which nevertheless communicates itself to axioms, archetypes, and implications… namely the components of the Spirit), rather than the object of a coalition of convergent but particular impulses (on the part of the aforesaid components of the Spirit).

  Throughout the process of the Spirit revealing itself, matter—as Aristotle rightly discerned—carries within it the potentiality of the change that it experiences. Nevertheless the aforesaid change 1) is operated by matter itself (in collaboration with time). 2) It inherits the actualizing and selective impulse on the part of a unified swarm of (elementary or implied) archetypes and of axioms (and their implications). And 3) it concerns as much the constitution of matter as its organization. Those are so many aspects of the change at work in the cosmos that were beyond the scope of Alexander’s mentor.

The deployment of the Spirit in the cosmos

  Ultimately the history of the cosmos can be apprehended as the history of the Spirit which—via its drive to create time and the world, as well as via its (breathed) drive to sort and to update the implications—accomplishes selectively its essence (therefore its content) unfolding over the course of time which occasions the decryption (and the triage) of the implicit properties of matter (whether at the level of its arrangement or at the level of its composition).

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A conversation with Howard Bloom, for The Postil Magazine

Howard Bloom photo 2  Howard Bloom started in theoretical physics and microbiology at the age of ten and spent his early years in science. Then, driven by the desire to study mass human emotion through the lens of science, he went into a field he knew nothing about, popular culture. He founded the biggest PR firm in the music industry and worked with superstars like Prince, Michael Jackson, Bob Marley, Billy Joel, Queen, AC/DC, Aerosmith, Billy Idol, Joan Jett, Styx, Hall and Oates, Simon & Garfunkel, Run DMC, and Chaka Khan. Bloom went back to his formal science in 1988 and, since then, has published seven books on human and cosmic evolution, including The God Problem, Global Brain, and The Lucifer Principle. Called “next in a lineage of seminal thinkers that includes Newton, Darwin, Einstein, [and] Freud” by Britain’s Channel 4 TV, and “the next Stephen Hawking” by Gear magazine, he is the subject of BRIC TV’s documentary The Grand Unified Theory of Howard Bloom.

  Grégoire Canlorbe: As an entrepreneur in the public relations industry, you were particularly active under the Reagan era. How do you explain that the eighties saw both a return to some conservative values and an explosion of creativity and coolness in music and movies?

  Howard Bloom: That’s a very good question. I’ve never thought of that connection before. My wife had been a socialist when I met her in the 1960s. And then in the 1970s she became a conservative. So she was siphoning money out of our bank account and giving it to Ronald Reagan’s political campaigns—without telling me. She knew I hated Reagan. But I never connected Ronald Reagan with what was going on in popular music at that point. In the 1960s popular music was the music of rebellion. Rock music was about raising your fist and saying to adults: “I have a right to be an individual. I have a right to exist.” Rock was in tune with the hippie philosophy: “Don’t trust anyone over 30.” And, “We’re here to overturn the establishment.” In other words, rock and roll was part of a rebellion whose political activists were working to toss people our parent’s age out of power. That was the 1960s. But there was no overt philosophy—there was no ideology—of rebellion in the 1970s and the 1980s. However if you look at the attitude of the artists who emerged, it was sheer rebellion.

  Joan Jett got onstage and raised her fist. And the way she raised her fist was the strongest part of her message. She was a woman. And as a woman, you were expected to be like Grace Slick or Janis Joplin: the guys had the guitars, the power instruments, and you did not. You simply crooned into the microphone. But Joan was saying: “I’m going to take over the fucking guitar, myself. I have the power. I own the power on stage. And I am going to rebel as a self-contained entity not needing the “weapons” of “males with guitars.” My band? Hey, that’s just an extension of me.” Joan’s was the rebellion of girls who had been raised with working mothers. And for a middle class girl to be raised by a working mother was something brand new. It was a result of the invention of indoor plumbing, the washing machine, the drier, and the dishwasher. Women were no longer the slaves of water-hauling and clothes washing. And the women’s liberation movement had given them the freedom to compete with men in the workplace. Now the daughters of these liberated women had a very new experience of what it meant to be female. And that sense came to a head in Joan Jett. Or it came to a fist. But as for men, I mean, look at several of my other clients. Billy Idol also raised his fist in a gesture of rebellion. Did the anger of these fists have anything to do with the Reagan era? It’s hard to tell.

  John Mellencamp also came to the lip of the stage with his fist raised. If you were here, I could show you the difference between the raised fist of each of those three artists. Each made a slightly different muscular statement—a statement made with muscles. And then, there were bands that were already slipping into acceptance of a parent’s generation, and acceptance of an older generation. Not rebellion, but acceptance. And those were bands like Spandau Ballet, Berlin, which were both my bands, and a bunch of others. Later, the whole attitude of rebellion would disappear from popular music. At least, it would be minimized significantly. In fact, Michael Jackson would live with his mother, his father, and his brothers—an unthinkable act among the rock rebels. And that business of raising your fist on stage would no longer be part of the package, if you were a rock ‘n’ roller. In Michael Jackson it would be replaced by fierce pointing.

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Preliminary Notes to a Renovation of Platonism — Part One, The Flaws of Aristotelian Hylomorphism

Fernand_Khnopff_-_I_lock_my_door_upon_myself  Plato was manifestly a medium (similar to Pythagoras), whose thesis of the subdivision of reality into a virtual realm (inaccessible to the senses) and a concrete realm of the senses ultimately came to elucidate his privileged experience of the superior stage of reality that is the supra-sensible field; Aristotle, on the other hand, resembled much more what can be described as a sensitive. In what follows, I would like to defend a renovated version of the Platonic perspective, against the Aristotelian negation of the existence of virtual entities that Plato called “Ideas,” and which the master of Aristotle rightly identified as the model of concrete entities.

  Therefore, I will argue as follows:

  1) Any concrete entity partakes of an ideational model (which may be termed, “archetype,” but which, contrary to the traditional understanding of archetypes, must be deemed as the singular model of a given entity, and the model of the unique and shared traits of a given singular entity)—which configures, or determines, the layout and the composition of the aforesaid entity, and that the “matter” constituting concrete beings takes charge of its own information, except in the case of those concrete beings that are artificial.

  2) Here, the ideal, or virtual realm is hierarchized: it is constituted by elementary archetypes, as well as archetypes implied by the elementary ones. Plus, the starting rules of the cosmos (as such, the laws present at the time of the Big-Bang) and the implications of such rules, the latter being incessantly iterated and complexified over the course of cosmic history.

  Besides the ideal field is imbued with a possibly conscious impulse, whose object is the incarnation of the ideal realm into matter. This impulse engenders the temporal start of the material field, and therefore of the universe. Yet the ideal realm materializes itself, all the while remaining beyond matter.

  3) Time occasions a process of communication between matter at the instant (T) and the actualizable properties of matter at the instant (T-1), which yields so many implications that it is possible to extract from elementary archetypes and from starting rules. Matter, within the framework of this extraction of the implications in collaboration with time, repeats in a fractal mode the starting rules of the cosmos. These consist of a handful of pairs of opposites (namely: attraction and repulsion, integration and differentiation, fission and fusion) branching (via the iteration which causes the extraction of their implications) into the laws of the cosmos.

   4) The primordial unity from which the cosmos proceeds consists in the impulse on the part of the ideational field to selectively accomplish its own content into innovative matter, and the bliss for man (especially the Faustian man) lies in the knowledge of the material unfolding of the Spirit (by which I mean the ideational field taken from the angle of its unified multiplicity), and in the extension of the creative gesture of the cosmos—via science, technique, and art.

  5) The atemporal movement consisting for the Spirit of actualizing (while sorting) the implications that it carries within it projects—on the walls of the metaphorical cavern of the material and temporal field—a shadow which consists in the begetting (at the level of matter and on the part of matter) of increasing levels of order and complexity. A generation nonetheless not assigned to a predetermined final state of cosmic evolution—and not kept away from randomness and from error.

  Knowing the course and the laws of the cosmos that are the incarnation of the Spirit mobilize clairvoyance (that is to say,  the intuition of the supra-sensible field), just as well as conjecture (and induction) from the sensible datum.

Hylomorphism faced with the emergence process

  As for Aristotle’s substitution of the archetypes, from which proceed the concrete entities, with the notion that a concrete entity owes its determination to the “form” which is inherent to it, I will naturally begin by questioning the Aristotelian perspective for the benefit of the rehabilitation of archetypes.

Continuer la lecture de « Preliminary Notes to a Renovation of Platonism — Part One, The Flaws of Aristotelian Hylomorphism »

A conversation with Daryl Kane, for The Postil Magazine

Daryl Kane  Daryl Kane is an American politician best known for his book Cultural Cancer: Treating the Disease of Political Correctness, his podcast Right Wing Road Trip, and the journal Revenge of the Patriot whose editor he is. He runs as a Republican candidate for POTUS in 2024.

  Grégoire Canlorbe: You are campaigning for the presidential election of 2024 under the banner of Christian morality, economic freedom, ethnic identity, and the fight against leftist cultural cancer. On the issue of immigration, how exactly does your program stand in relation to Trump’s politics?

  Daryl Kane: Immigration obviously is such an important topic and I give Trump credit for emphasizing it in his campaign. Rhetoric aside, how much has he achieved? I’m not sure, I think a lot of good has been done but really when he, when we’re talking about slowing, even stopping the tide, this is a stopgap mentality, it’s not a conversation about solutions. Very clearly, the American people, and really just about all citizens of Western nations—look, this is has been political warfare and the damage sustained is reaching, has really passed a point where we can just end this nonsense without also taking remedial, restorative measures. This is naturally a very charged topic and one which must be approached with sobriety but also with care and humanity. On the one hand we have a ship that is sinking and you know, we can’t just plug the holes, we have to also start removing some of the water. But we’re not talking about water, we’re talking about God’s children so you know, perhaps to the chagrin of some, no I’m not just going to arbitrarily throw everyone out. But you know, I actually don’t think we really have to either. One big talking point for Trump is about moving us to fully merit based immigration which strikes most conservatives as a tough, sensible response. Certainly this is better than the prior lunacy, things like “diversity visas” which for me is a term that I often instruct people to pause for a moment and think about. What exactly is a “diversity visa?” Well, obviously it’s a seat in our country which we are setting aside, reserving for people on the basis of them being less similar to our current citizens than other would be immigrants. For me, you know, I’m not sure we do want to move away from identity based immigration. I think maybe we keep a lot of that stuff, and by the way this pertains to domestic programs as well, where you know we spend billions a year to promote this or that group, really any group that we don’t usually associate with mainstream Americanism. Maybe we keep a lot of this diversity infrastructure, at least the concept of them but we actually invert them, or you know replace them with a desire to reinforce or advocate for traditional Western identity. Maybe we start setting visas aside for, oh I don’t know, white, English speaking Christians? (Laughs)

  You see, no one ever really bothered to explain to Americans why they needed things like diversity visas, diversity scholarships, etc. They were just sort’ve injected in, draped in this very flowery, humanistic rhetoric. I think it’s time to start talking about things like homogeny visas and see what happens when the Left has to justify why it’s ok for them to play this game but not us. Let’s have a national dialogue about the benefits of both ends of spectrum and let’s see which of the two seems more beneficial at this point in time. And look, I’ve said this too, I’m not an anti diversity person. Diversity can be good, it can be bad. I do like being able to enjoy all sorts of unique ethnic cuisine in cities and things of that nature. A lot of people scoff at equality now and you know, I don’t know, that ideal still resonates with me and I don’t want us to lose that ability to make friends from different places, to connect and be decent to one another. But I think quite clearly the level of diversity which we now have, frankly—and this is putting it mildly, it’s plenty.

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A conversation with Peter Frost, for American Renaissance

Peter_Frost2  Peter Frost is a Canadian anthropologist. His main research interest has been the role of sexual selection in highly visible human traits, notably diverse hair and eye colors. Other interests include vitamin D metabolism in northern hunting peoples and gene-culture coevolution, such as genetic pacification due to the state monopoly on violence.

  Grégoire Canlorbe: You are notably known for your claim that the most plausible origin for the high frequency of light coloration of skin in European ethnicities lies in sexual selection (rather than in natural selection). Could you remind us of your argument?

  Peter Frost: It’s not just light skin. It’s also the extraordinary variety of hair and eye colors. I prefer to begin with them because they are much less explainable by anything other than sexual selection.

  Take hair color. Most humans have black hair and one allele for hair color. Europeans have over two hundred for colors ranging from black to blond. The conventional explanation is straightforward: as humans entered higher latitudes, with less solar radiation, there was less selection for dark skin and, consequently, an accumulation of defective alleles for pigmentation. So the number of hair colors grew as a side effect.

  That scenario has two problems. First, the genetic linkage between skin color and hair color is weak: if we took all humans with black hair, we would have a group with the full range of skin colors. Second, millions of years are needed to accumulate that many alleles through relaxation of selection. Yet modern humans have been in Europe for scarcely 45,000 years.

  Did Europeans get their hair colors from the Neanderthals? According to a study of five alleles for red hair, one of them seems to be an archaic introgression, but the others are of modern human origin. Even if we assume that all of the alleles for hair color had slowly accumulated during the long existence of the Neanderthals, the timeline is still too short — at most three quarters of a million years. Furthermore, even if they all had a Neanderthal origin, we would still need to explain how they reached their current prevalence. Europeans today are only 1 to 4% Neanderthal.

  That’s not all. Eye color, too, diversified during the same 45,000 years. So we have two color polymorphisms, with different genetic causes, developing in parallel within the same limits of time and space. There must have been a process of selection. Something helped preserve those new colors and pass them on to subsequent generations.

  That something, in my opinion, was sexual selection. It begins when too many of one sex have to compete for too few of the other. The latter are in a buyer’s market and can pick and choose among prospective mates. Conversely, the “sellers” are in a worse position and have to market themselves as best they can. The successful ones are those who can attract attention and hold it as long as possible, typically by means of bright colors.

Continuer la lecture de « A conversation with Peter Frost, for American Renaissance »