Polymath Jared Diamond, author of Guns, Germs, and Steel, has a new book coming out: Upheaval: How Nations Cope with Crisis and Change. From The Guardian:
… Diamond suggests that the UK should remain within the EU but, as he puts it, “talk some sense into the immigration policy”.
One of the factors that Diamond cites as important in dealing with crises is a strong national identity. The book is a forceful if rather old-fashioned argument for the continuing importance of nationhood. “Nation states are here now and they are here for the foreseeable future.”
Nor is he much interested in the intersectional approach to politics, in which struggles are delineated along gender, ethnic and cultural lines. They don’t feature in a chapter on the future of the United States. And he is not sure they should feature in the next presidential election.
“The Democrats will not win by emphasising LGBTQ issues, and similarly the best thing for members of the LGBTQ groups would be a Democratic victory, and the best way to assure a Democratic victory will be to appeal to mainstream Americans and not strong-pedal the LGBTQ issues.”
He says his editor questioned this decision to avoid minority rights, but his rationale is that “while there’s still a lot to be done, the role of women and race issues have gotten better rather than worse. Whereas the issues that I discuss are the things that are still getting worse.”
And among these issues Diamond believes is the rise of mass migration. He argues that it is a growing problem for the developed world that is widely recognised by politicians but seldom admitted publicly.
“There are about a billion Africans in Africa and almost all of them would be better off economically and politically and in terms of personal safety in Europe,” he says. “The cruel reality is that it’s impossible for Europe to admit a billion Africans but Europeans will not acknowledge this conflict between ideals and reality.”
He concedes that this stance puts him on the same side of the argument as people such as the populist Hungarian prime minister Viktor Orbán. “It’s unfortunate that people can come to a common conclusion for sensible reasons and for vile reasons,” he says. “But because of the relative lack of honest discussion, the issue has gotten hijacked by the racists, just as in the United States.”
Diamond himself has been accused of racism, particularly by anthropologists, who have questioned his work with indigenous people in New Guinea, where he has conducted extensive field research. It is ironic because in Guns, Germs, and Steel Diamond explicitly sets out to refute racial readings of history, arguing that the reason Europe became globally dominant was to do with geographical advantages.
One anthropologist published an academic paper entitled F**k Jared Diamond, in which he accused the genteel American of disguised “racism” and “environmental determinism” which served to normalise colonialism. Why, I ask him, is he so resented? Diamond puts it down to his success and the popular style in which he writes. What about his politics? Although he refuses to be drawn on the subject, it is clear that he resides somewhere on the conservative wing of liberalism.
“I don’t think that’s the reason because the reality is that I’m a mixed bag. My views about immigration do not coincide at all with extreme liberal American views about immigration, but I would be praised by anthropologists for my views on the intelligence of New Guineans compared to the intelligence of Europeans.”
I pointed out back in 2005 that if you read Diamond’s book Collapse carefully, you’ll notice he’s an immigration heretic.
Here’s my 1997 book review in National Review of Diamond’s Guns, Germs, and Steel.
Personally, I’m a huge Jared Diamond fan. His 1991 collection of his magazine articles, The Third Chimpanzee, helped inspire me to follow his path in switching over from a sensible career to writing highbrow popular articles.
Granted, his 1997 vast bestseller Guns, Germs, and Steel was kind of a sellout, but we all have to decide what we’ll do for money. Myself, I wouldn’t have done that. What I will do is ask you three times per year for money.
April is one of the three months of the year (along with December and August) when I hassle you for donations. I sometimes find myself discouraged, but then my loyal readers chip in with cash in its manifold forms, which I find highly encouraging. Say not the struggle nought availeth.
Here are eight ways for you to contribute to me, iSteve:
First: You can use Paypal (non-tax deductible) by going to the page on my old blog here. Paypal accepts most credit cards. Contributions can be either one-time only, monthly, or annual. (Monthly is nice.)
Second: You can mail a non-tax deductible donation to:
P.O Box 4142
Valley Village, CA 91617
Third: You can make a tax deductible contribution via VDARE by clicking here.
Please don’t forget to click my name at the VDARE site so the money goes to me:
VDARE has been kiboshed from use of Paypal for being, I dunno, EVIL. But you can give via credit cards, Bitcoin, Ethereum and Litecoin, check, money order, or stock.
Note: the VDARE site goes up and down on its own schedule, so if this link stops working, please let me know.
Fourth: if you have a Wells Fargo bank account, you can transfer money to me (with no fees) via Wells Fargo SurePay/Zelle. Just tell WF SurePay/Zelle to send the money to my ancient AOL email address steveslrAT aol.com — replace the AT with the usual @). (Non-tax deductible.) Please note, there is no 2.9% fee like with Paypal or Google Wallet, so this is good for large contributions.
Fifth: if you have a Chase bank account (or even other bank accounts), you can transfer money to me (with no fees) via Chase QuickPay/Zelle (FAQ). Just tell Chase QuickPay/Zelle to send the money to my ancient AOL email address (steveslrATaol.com — replace the AT with the usual @). If Chase asks for the name on my account, it’s StevenSailer with an n at the end of Steven. (Non-tax deductible.) There is no 2.9% fee like with Paypal or Google Wallet, so this is also good for large contributions.
Sixth: send money via the Paypal-like Google Wallet to my Gmail address (that’s isteveslrATgmail .com — replace the AT with a @). (Non-tax deductible.)
Seventh: [Warning: Does this still work?] You can use Bitcoin using Coinbase. Coinbase payments are not tax deductible. Below are links to two Coinbase pages of mine. This first is if you want to enter a U.S. dollar-denominated amount to pay me.
This second is if you want to enter a Bitcoin-denominated amount. (Remember one Bitcoin is currently worth many U.S. dollars.)
Eighth: At one reader’s request, I recently added Square as an 8th fundraising medium, although I’m vague on how it works. If you want to use Square, send me an email telling me how much to send you an invoice for. Or, if you know an easier way for us to use Square, please let me know.