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Consequences, shmonsequences

March 7, 2011

My husband sent me some blog fodder inspiration that I thought I’d share/tie together

first: the humor

One of the interesting aspects of this humor is how much the Chinese are clamping down internally on any unrest. Is it a distinctive of the communist party vs. dictatorships? Or is it another dynamic?

We’ve talked a lot about the consequences of shipping the ultrasound technology plus the technology necessary to execute an abortion without killing the mother outright to cultures that don’t give a flip about the value of women in society

Interesting pattern when you look at the “Regime uninstall” joke above – “The ominous rise of the bachelor generation

According to the United Nations, there are far more men than women on the planet…. In many Asian societies, girls are less well looked after than boys because they are economically undervalued

When Sen first added up the missing women—women who would exist today if it were not for selective abortion, infanticide, and economic discrimination—he put the number at 100 million. …. even as living standards in Asian countries have soared, the gender gap has widened. That’s because a cultural preference for sons over daughters leads to selective abortion of female fetuses, a practice made possible by ultrasound scanning, and engaged in despite legal prohibitions

Yeah, so what you ask?

According to the German scholar Gunnar Heinsohn, European imperial expansion after 1500 was the result of a male “youth bulge.” Japan’s imperial expansion after 1914 was the result of a similar youth bulge…

 Heinsohn has also linked the recent rise of Islamist extremism in countries like Afghanistan, Iraq, and Pakistan to an Islamic youth bulge. …

Either this bachelor generation will be a source of domestic instability, whether Brazilian-style crime or Arab-style revolution—or, as happened in Europe, they and their testosterone will be exported.

Elections have consequences. So do ideals lived out in the real world, as applied by cultures that don’t have the same Westernized values. A post-modern shimmy around that concept doesn’t change the outcome, even if the outcome isn’t aligned to the original intent.

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5 Comments leave one →
  1. March 8, 2011 7:39 am

    seems to me that Lynn has hold of the tail, and Level Head the trunk–different parts of the same beast, perhaps?

    • March 8, 2011 11:21 am

      seems to me that Lynn has hold of the tail, and Level Head the trunk–different parts of the same beast, perhaps?

      Oho! You mean, something like the Six Scientists of Climate Change?

      There were six learned scientists
      Who spoke upon a dais
      They were environmentalists
      And each one had a bias:
      Each scientist within this list
      Knew climate change would fry us.

      These honest women, honest men
      Read others’ proclamations
      And sure they were: each one of them
      From all the Earthly nations
      Thought Climate Change results were in
      — at everyone else’s stations

      The first one measured Greenland ice
      And nearly went berserk
      It’s thicker! But upon advice
      From his new PR clerk
      He learned that Climate Change relies
      On someone else’s work.

      The second measured CO2
      And how fast it would grow
      He looked at rocks and ice cores too
      From very long ago
      It’s much less now! But this won’t do
      So “that part we won’t show.”

      For if we’ve got a tiny part
      Of CO2 we had
      When plants evolved and got their start
      Why, more would make them glad
      And grow much faster! But take heart:
      He’s sure it’s really bad.

      Another looks at temperature
      By Jones and Mann and Hansen
      The Hockey Stick is now unsure
      (Poor methods they were chancin’)
      Small towns are cooler? He’ll obscure
      With clever software dancin’

      The fourth? She quantifies our star
      And how hot it appears
      It’s now more radiant by far
      Than in eight thousand years
      But that increase won’t make the bar
      Man can’t change solar gears

      And still another looks at salt
      The ocean deeps are trappin’
      Effects aren’t large in ice, basalt
      Or mud, but still they’re yappin’:
      “New movies! Books! It’s mankind’s fault!
      ‘Cause you know, it COULD happen!”

      The last of all is hunting trees
      For signs unprecedented
      He seeks in rings the cool degrees
      He hopes the past presented
      But evidence of warmth he sees
      So that part he’s invented

      And so on. Each researcher knows
      Catastrophe is near!
      And mankind is the cause. It grows
      More dire every year
      Despite that solid evidence
      Is “everywhere but here.”

      Each day they chanted, loud and long
      To ward off private doubts
      The news folks made the language strong
      And now are doomsday touts
      But read the research! PR’s wrong!
      The data is what counts.

      – – – – – – – – –

      With apologies to John Godfrey Saxe. I wrote the above years before ClimateGate.

      ===|==============/ Level Head

  2. March 8, 2011 12:33 am

    I’m amused by the image, particularly with regard to Belgium. The same “no o/s installed” could almost apply to Jordan, after King Hussein fired the government.

    It does not seem to me that revolutions and jihad are “caused” by an excess of males. Instead, these are symptoms of the infection of Islam with the Wahhabi sect (in one area), China’s draconian (heh) population control measures, and different issues going on in Latin America.

    The assertion that females are undervalued, and that perhaps a hundred million unborn females have been terminated as a result, does seem fair. But sad as this fact is, it is not the largest problem that the jihadists and Chinese confront us with. And in both of those cases, the moderation of the jihadists and communists would solve that problem — though in China the “bare branches” will suddenly be full of unharvested fruit.

    The United States needs to take an enlightened interest in its own affairs, and reward good behavior (only!) around the world. It does not mean a withdrawal from global politics, and there will occasionally need to be wars undertaken in our defense. The more capable our warmaking engines, and the more serious our resolve to use them, the less likely it will be that they will ever be used.

    But if we were to adopt such policies, the jihadist problem would go away; enlightened countries would not tolerate it, nor countries that allowed it to fester. We almost did this in March of 2003 — our demonstration that we were not bluffing suddenly dried up Usama bin Ladin’s funding from the Saudis and stopped Iran’s building of nuclear weapons. It was only a year later, when our resolve faltered, that UbL risked a strike against Madrid. Socialist Zapatero took power, caved in Iraq (as expected), and money began to flow again. And Iran once again picked up the nuclear tools and went back to work. That one election in Madrid was probably the second most significant win in al Qaeda’s history.

    It is not the youth bulge behind these issues, it seems to me. It is suddenly old, sagging US policies.

    ===|==============/ Level Head

    • March 8, 2011 10:02 am

      Level Head – I actually do believe population balance and densities have greater impact long term than just policies. Example: without the black plague in Europe, there would have been little/no imbalance between the serf workforce available to work the landowners lands and the number of holdings needing workers. The rules of labor supply/demand tipped in a way that the landowners started competing for workers (by paying them). Population imbalance results in competition for workers & a change in wages. The vikings converting to Christianity and needing something/somewhere to fight helping encourage the crusades is another. I do agree the DIRECT short term measurable impact is policy – but history has shown that when supply & demand change because a critical resource becomes more constrained (whether more women to marry, not enough land for all to work, too much land for the number of available workers)…history gets made

      • March 8, 2011 11:32 am

        Level Head – I actually do believe population balance and densities have greater impact long term than just policies.

        I completely agree. But one of the authors you quoted above seemed to be laying the blame for jihadism at the feet of population:

        Heinsohn has also linked the recent rise of Islamist extremism in countries like Afghanistan, Iraq, and Pakistan to an Islamic youth bulge. …

        The word “linked” is ambiguous, of course, but the implication is out there for the casual reader.

        Jihadism afflicted Islam in its earliest days, and from time to time through the intervening centuries. Mahatma Gandhi hoped to take advantage of the jihadism of the radical “musselmen” to provide a violent buffer between his people and the British.

        Indonesia has been population-dense for a long time, but it is only the recent injection of Wahhabi jihadism into their Muslim population that has given rise to recent unrest there. The Muslims are still a small part of the population — but now there is a small, violent part of the population, so the jihadists are large in impact.

        Nevertheless, population pressures have driven substantial changes from historical times to recent, and you will find no argument from me on that score. But I think that the level of commitment of a given group to violent ends, as opposed to their relative proportion, is a bigger factor for the jihadist problem. Indonesia? About 5% Muslim, but Christians are being slaughtered. Turkey? Almost the mirror complement — and Christians are being slaughtered.

        ===|==============/ Level Head

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