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All humans were once hunter-gatherers. Back then, versatility came with the territory. There were only so many game animals, and they differed a lot in size, shape, and color. So you had to enjoy switching back and forth from one target animal to another. And you had to enjoy moving from one place to another. Sooner or later you’d have to.

Beginning 10,000 years ago, farmers made their appearance. Now monotony came with the territory. A plot of land wasn’t something you could forget while you took off somewhere else. It needed constant care. The tasks were also more repetitive: ploughing, sowing, harvesting …

Things worsened as farming became more advanced. You had to focus on one crop and a limited number of key tasks.

Different means of subsistence have selected for different mental traits, and this selection has had genetic consequences. Monotony avoidance has a heritability of 0.53 (Saudino, 1999). This predisposition has usually been a handicap in modern societies, so much so that it often leads to criminality. Males with a history of early criminal behavior tend to score high on monotony avoidance, as well as on sensation seeking and low conformity (Klinteberg et al., 1992).

Today, if you have trouble fitting into your society, you might still survive and reproduce. In the past, you probably wouldn’t. Other people would take your place in the gene pool and, over successive generations, their mental makeup would become the norm.

That’s gene-culture co-evolution. We have reshaped the world we live in, and this human-made world has reshaped us. After describing how our ancestors radically changed their environment, Razib goes on to write: “We were the authors of those changes, but in the process of telling that story, we became protagonists within it” (Khan, 2014).

China: a case study

Advanced farming—intensive land use, task specialization, monoculture—has profoundly shaped East Asian societies, particularly China. This is particularly so for rice farming. Because the paddies need standing water, rice farmers must work collectively to build, dredge, and drain elaborate irrigation networks. Wheat farming, by comparison, requires no irrigation and only half as much work.

Advanced farming seems to have favored a special package of predispositions and inclinations, including greater acceptance of monotony. This has been shown in two recent studies.

The first one was about boredom and how people experience it in their lives. The results from the 775 Chinese participants were then compared with the results from a previous survey of 572 Euro-Canadians. It was found that the Chinese participants were less likely to feel bored in comparable situations. They seemed to value low-arousal (calm, relaxation) versus high arousal (excitement, elation) in the case of Euro-Canadians (Ng et al., 2014).

The authors attributed their findings to cultural learning. One may wonder, however, why preference for low arousal persists in the face of China’s massive influx of high-arousal Western culture.

Relational thinking, collectivism, and favoritism

The second study had the aim of seeing whether the sociological differences between rice farmers and wheat farmers have led to differences in mental makeup. When 1,162 Han Chinese performed a series of mental tasks, the results differed according to whether the participants came from rice-farming regions or wheat-farming regions (Talhelm et al., 2014).

When shown a list of three items, such as “train”, “bus”, and “tracks”, and told to choose two items that pair together, people from rice-farming regions tended to choose “train and tracks,” whereas people from wheat-farming regions tended to choose “train and bus.” The former seemed to be more abstract relational in their thinking and the latter more relational abstract. This pattern held up even in neighboring counties along China’s rice-wheat border. People from the rice side of the border thought more relationally than did people from the wheat side.

A second task required drawing pictures of yourself and your friends. In a prior study, Americans drew themselves about 6 mm bigger than they drew their friends, Europeans drew themselves 3.5 mm bigger, and Japanese drew themselves slightly smaller. In the present study, people from rice regions were more likely than people from wheat regions to draw themselves smaller than they drew their friends. On average, people from wheat regions self-inflated 1.5 mm, and people from rice regions self-deflated -0.03 mm.

A third task required imagining yourself doing business with (i) an honest friend, (ii) a dishonest friend, (iii) an honest stranger, and (iv) a dishonest stranger. This person might lie, causing you to lose money. Or this person might be honest, causing you to make money. You could reward or punish this person accordingly. A previous study found that Singaporeans rewarded friends much more than they punished them. Americans were much more likely to punish friends for bad behavior. In this study, people from rice regions were more likely to remain loyal to friends regardless.

Interestingly, these findings came from people with no connection to farming at all. They grew up in a modern urban society, and most were too young to have known the China that existed before the economic reforms of the late 1970s. It looks like rice regions have favored hardwiring of certain psychological traits: less abstract thinking and more relational thinking, less individualism and more collectivism, and less impartiality toward strangers and more favoritism toward kin and friends.

Why farming sucks, for you but not for me

These findings corroborate the ethnographic literature on the differences in mentality between hunter-gatherers and farmers. Hunter-gatherers typically see farming as a kind of slavery, and they have trouble understanding well-meaning outsiders who want to turn them into land-slaves.

Yes, for the same land area, farming can produce much more food. But it’s hard work, not only physically but mentally as well. Humans had to undergo a change in mentality before they could make the transition from hunting and gathering to farming

Those humans ended up transforming not just their physical landscape but also their social and cultural landscape … and ultimately themselves. By creating new values and social relations, they changed the rules for survival and reproduction, thereby changing the sort of mentality that future generations would inherit.

Humans transformed the world through farming, and the world returned the favor.

References

Khan, R. (2014). Our cats, ourselves, The New York Times, The Opinion Pages, November 24
http://www.nytimes.com/2014/11/25/opinion/our-cats-ourselves.html

Klinteberg, B., K. Humble, and D. Schalling. (1992). Personality and psychopathy of males with a history of early criminal behaviour,European Journal of Personality, 6(4), 245-266.
http://psycnet.apa.org/psycinfo/1993-18051-001

Ng, A.H., Y. Liu, J-Z. Chen, and J.D. Eastwood. (2014). Culture and state boredom: A comparison between European Canadians and Chinese, Personality and Individual Differences, 75, 13-18.
http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S0191886914006321

Saudino, K.J., J.R. Gagne, J. Grant, A. Ibatoulina, T. Marytuina, I. Ravich-Scherbo, and K. Whitfield. (1999). Genetic and environmental influences on personality in adult Russian twins, International Journal of Behavioral Development, 23, 375-389.
http://jbd.sagepub.com/content/23/2/375.short

Talhelm, T., X. Zhang, S. Oishi, C. Shimin, D. Duan, X. Lan, and S. Kitayama. (2014). Large-scale psychological differences within China explained by rice versus wheat agriculture, Science, 344, 603-607.
http://internationalpsychoanalysis.net/wp-content/uploads/2014/05/RiceversusWheatScience-2014-Talhelm-603-8.pdf

(Republished from Evo and Proud by permission of author or representative)
 
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  1. Anon • Disclaimer says:

    If you look at the percentage of Americans who voluntarily choose to farm these days, it’s pretty obvious most U.S. citizens have a hunter-gatherer temperament. We collectively bolted out of that job once the basic ‘survival-necessity’ for it disappeared and we could do something more fun for a living.

    As for Asians, I’d be interested to see if their lack of boredom means they have entire populations that are farther out on the Asperger’s scale than Westerners. They seem to have less empathy for other people than Westerners, and can be mind-bogglingly brutal to each other in a way that’s very aspy. They also can be utterly focused on boring stuff–especially if it’s visual-spacial work–in a manner that’s not Western. That’s also an aspy trait. Some people call Aspergers’ the disorder of ‘too much male brain,’ and it makes sense in the case of Asians.

  2. Interesting. Anecdotally spending a little time in China the northern “wheat” eaters sure seemed to be the calmer and quieter people when compared to their souther rice eating neighbors. The Cantonese in particular all seem like they are screaming and screeching at each other

  3. YS says:

    But Europeans received an infusion of farmer genes from the Near East about 8,500 years ago. Europe became an agrarian society after that. This is the same kind of pseudoscience, or selective use of scientific data, that is used to back up nonsense like the Paleo diet, i.e., Europeans are hunter-gatherers who did not adapt to a sedentary lifestyle. However, Europeans can digest starches and lactose more efficiently than hunter-gatherers could – a clear sign of adaptation to a settled agricultural and pastoralist lifestyle.

    • Replies: @Smiddy
  4. @Anon

    “we could do something more fun for a living.”

    like working in a call center.
    or being a file clerk.
    or coding.


    Off topic: I just read John Grisham’s “The Associate.” Lawyering the NYC way was not as much fun as small-town lawyering. That was one theme in the novel.

    A minor theme involved the mother of the main character, Kyle. She was divorced from Kyle’s father, was bipolar, an artist who produced bad art and lived a solitary and reclusive life working on her art. Her husband and Kyle paid her occasional visits, but other family members avoided her for years at a time. Kyle’s connection was pro forma and not warm or close.

    Is anyone else noticing an increasing number of “crazy women in the attic”, estranged from their families; diagnosed (I suggest over-diagnosed) as bipolar or the like, barely functioning and not integrated into any community?

    What is going on in this phenomenon, anthropologically, sociologically? Are the women flunk-outs from the Leave It to Beaver school of the “American dream”? What are the children of these women thinking? Is there some new trend that makes cutting off contact with parents, especially mothers, hip? Or was a life-long parent-child relationship also a product of Hollywood or Victorian England that is now reverting to some anthropological norm?

  5. Fake Name says:

    As a Caucasian parent of multiple Chinese (adopted) children, I can at least say anecdotally that the Chinese coefficient of boredom is no different from that of my Caucasian children. There are racial differences, however, such as certain tastes or aversions in food or the propensity for leanness or obesity. With the same kitchen preparing the same foods for all the children, all the Caucasians grew overweight and all the Chinese remained skinny. And in my very limited personal observation, the Caucasians are all very linear, organized “engineer-like” thinkers. The Chinese kids do not come naturally to that kind of thought pattern and tend to process things in what appears to be a cheerful garble. After raising this mixed family, it is absolutely no marvel at all to me that the Chinese never developed an alphabet, for example. The sort of thought process that would make the benefits of an alphabet naturally obvious doesn’t easily occur in a Chinese head. And now that the advantages of an alphabet are plain for them to see, guess what? they still don’t have an alphabet and are cheerfully content with the limitations that imposes. Maybe it’s because they’re too easily bored with spelling. ;-D

    Love and kisses to all,

    Fake Name

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  6. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Anon

    Family farms declined with the rise of mass industrial manufacturing and centralized agriculture. Most people left farming to do monotonous work in factories, not “fun” jobs resembling hunter-gatherer lifestyles.

    With globalization and outsourcing, mass manufacturing jobs disappeared and what’s remained have largely been monotonous service industry work such as clerical work and retail, and monotonous professional work like law and finance.

    Farming is actually becoming more popular because the available non-farming jobs are monotonous and not fun and without the economic advantages they once provided. In the past, the jobs provided higher salaries, job security, pensions, etc., but no longer do. They were monotonous in the past, but they provided greater economic benefits. Now they’re just as monotonous, but lack the economic benefits they once provided.

    “New go-to career for New England’s young: Farming

    Farming is hip in New England: Across the region, young people are choosing crops over cubicles, new farms are popping up and the local food movement is spreading.”

    http://www.capecodtimes.com/article/20140822/NEWS11/140829857/0/NEWS06

  7. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Fake Name

    In China, kids actually learn Pinyin, which is a phonetic notation of Chinese using the Latin alphabet, and then learn the characters. In Taiwan, they learn Zhuyin, which is a phonetic notation using Chinese character derived symbols that divides syllables into initials and middles/endings, but is not a pure alphabet since dipthongs and some common vowel/consonant combinations are represented by one symbol.

    They’ve known about the benefits of alphabets and the disadvantages of characters for a long time. There were serious considerations of abandoning characters and adopting the Latin alphabet or some other alphabet decades ago. Before the modern period, they had extensive and close contact with alphabets as the Manchu, Mongols, Tibetans, Indians, etc. had alphabets. The characters weren’t a huge problem back then because mass literacy wasn’t an issue, and because the characters served as a sort of universal language for unintelligible dialects and languages and a literary language. They sort of served as Latin did in the West, as a universal language and a literary language with a large body of extant literature.

    In the modern period when mass literacy did become an issue, there were serious considerations of adopting an alphabet. But it seems that since mass literacy was achieved without huge difficulty, alphabets haven’t been considered as much anymore. Computers have actually made learning and using characters easier, since the primary difficulty is writing the characters, and with computers the main input is Pinyin alphabet input, which converts the input into the characters. Reading is relatively easy.

    Korean is written with an alphabet. Japanese is written with Chinese characters and two sets of syllabaries.

  8. KA says:

    Psychopathy low socialization ,and high arousal level can be anticipated among the criminals . McCain and his supporters , Ted Cruz and his supporters, Cheney and his supporters, Rice or Power and the supporters can be expected to have similar behavioral marks . They are also least likely socialize with strangers and show in group loyalty . They are least likely to settle down,work hard,trudge along difficult repetitive tasks follow the manual of the humanity made of subtle points and nuances . They will show low attention span ,hogh impulsivity and tendency to bomb or act before thoughful deliberations and negotiations or dialogue with the strangers or the enemies of their own making or choosing just like a criminal would choose and designate someone as enemy before acting .
    These are modern day hunter gatherers . They are mercenaries ,merchants of death ,and exporters of violence . They won’t survive without war. They will be eliminated from the society unless they find professions of hunting and killing . McCain could nt fit . He has to go to military and then out of pure psychopathy betray his country. He can’t be a teacher,bus driver,or physician or judge or salesman at a shoo store . He can’t be a doorman cab driver,laundry man,farmer,or shopkeeper or builder or construction site manager . The high are usual the psychopathy,the inability to carry empathy ( necessarry for socialization ) ,impulsivity,and disregard for the norm can only fit with a career of hunter gatherer and a philosophy of forces .
    That is why Lindsey Graham can say that a lot of money should and could be made in Libya after killing of Ghadafi . Psychaths could say that Iraq war and the reconstruction ( with cements and bricks made in US , and managed by US engineers and managers) efforts could be paid by Iraqi oil and Iraq or foreign( Nepalese,Indian) slave labor .
    If we compared the psychological,religious,and cognitive profiles of these with say that of Iraqi or Nepalese We will see the formers exhibiting confidence,entitlement,righteousness,grandiosity ,assertiveness faith in violence, tendency to con or lie and cheat , exhibit bravado,go after weak, and no plan to settle down but expand at the cost of other,no urge to get trained and find job but to rob and gather while Iraqi or Nepalese will show fear,docility,obedience,tendency to follow moral scruples,work for family, and show low arousal and low impulsivity .

    • Replies: @KA
  9. KA says:
    @KA

    Complaining against Boredom is internally inconsistent with the life situation of Iraqis ,or Nepalese or Chinese . Their life is bore . It is repetitive,devoid of varieties , labor intensive . Mc Cain and Cheney gang or the neocon interventionist are in a different world where opportunity is created out of other’s fragility,weakness,and the inherent ability to provide material gains without getting hurt . They like psychopath avoid self injury ,like psychopath con everybody and deny any responsibility,they like psychopath blame other, they like psychopath move from one job to another without completing every aspect of the job that they promised ( Iraq to Libya to Syria to Iran or back to Vietnam or China and back to Russia ) these hunter gatherers have to look for new trees and animals and have to make constant geographical adjustment or movements . They have to create sometimes for smooth gathering and hunting- Kurdistan and S Sudan . Boredom is internally inconsistent with a culture of violence,lying,and covering the tracks or footprints . They have to be innovative in languages and methods . They have to create linguistic obfuscation . Conning provides the adrenaline and adds together to impulsivity like as it is gushing out for actions in Eukraine.

  10. KA says:

    To wrap it up – for 400 to 500 years Europeans elites and royals have been hunting and gathering with motivation,adrenaline,confidence,righteousness,repeated success , violence,lack of empathy,and brutal determination and often risk taking behaviors with low chances of self injury or financial losses . It must have done something to the gene rooting out those genes that favored reconciliation deliberations,compromises ,constructive engagement,and hard task of bettering the future with the resources he or she had or have and by hard boring annoying workload .

  11. Nevermind the boredom of farming rice. You can always whistle while you work, and I’ve done some of my best thinking while appearing to do something monotonous, whether it’s mowing the grass or hiking in a park. But what about the boredom of *eating* rice every day, day after day. Doing that without becoming suicidally depressed is the real trick. I’ve come to the conclusion that seeking variety in food is a built-in survival instinct, because it forces finding new/novel food sources and that’s critical in case the original source fails. It’s a particularly strong instinct that people spend lots of money and time on – easily rivaling the amount spent on dating although often the two are combined. If it wasn’t for that instinct, we could all get the freeze-dried MREs from Costco for the year and be done with it. So making rice interesting enough to eat every day – or selecting for people with the ability to do so – should not be underestimated.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  12. george says:

    “So you had to enjoy switching back and forth from one target animal to another.”

    I thought hunters stood on the same tree stand until something walked by. Or walked from trap to trap all day like an industrial age watchmen. Or followed the same herd of Bison. So hunting is more tedius than you assume. Agriculture on the other hand offered the possibility of free time to do things other than procure food.

    Many things done well become tedious, for example weaving.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  13. M says:

    @ Fake Name: That tells you about how the Chinese mean (or the Chinese adoptee mean) is compared to your kids (in those traits)… not so much about the Chinese mean compared to the Euro-American mean. Wouldn’t happen to be that you and your (I guess husband) are engineers by any chance?

    • Replies: @Fake Name
  14. Sean says:

    For thousands of years, China’s farmers have used human manure, or “nightsoil”, as fertilizer Wikipedia :”The use of unprocessed human feces as fertilizer is a risky practice as it may contain disease-causing pathogens. Nevertheless, in developing nations it is widespread. Common parasitic worm infections, such as ascariasis, in these countries are linked to night soil, because their eggs are in feces”.

    The landscape of human genes involved in the immune response to parasitic worms “Among the 810 genes subjected to helminth-driven selective pressure, we identified ectodysplasin A (EDA) and its receptor (EDAR). EDAR has been subjected to strong positive selection in populations of Asian descent “. The east Asian EDAR mutation (highest in the Han) causes increased scalp hair thickness, shovel-shaped incisors, more eccrine sweat glands, and reduced size of the breasts.

    Apparently the colonisation of the Tibetan plateau by farmers (who were possibly the first people to have lived there year round) was down to them having barley, which is resistant to frost. The Tibetans are about the only people who had much in the way of polyandry (woman marrying more than one man) apparently connected to the difficulty of farming there.

    Physical characteristics would be selected for by natural selection on the plateau, there are the ones for breathing at high altitude of course, but bearing in mind that’the UV-B radiation during the summer on the Tibetan plateau is among the highest levels in habituated regions of the world’ ( Norsang 2009), polyandry is a good contender for why Tibetans are relatively pale.

    Psychological characteristics may have been selected to make Tibetans cope with the mental stress of sharing their wife, and the amount of work required to farm on the plateau. It is noteworthy a religious (Buddhist) view of life as impermanent and consisting of suffering is particular to Tibet. Rather than violence, there appears to be a tendency for self immolation.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  15. foo123 says:

    The famous saying (based on reality) that chinamen will eat anything that walks, swims, crawls, or flies. They eat dogs for crying out loud !

    It’s just an alien culture of alien people.

    They’ve spent 3000 years next door to the Indo-Europeans/Aryans and adopted one of their religions (Buddhism) which is entirely written in the core Indo-European language of Sanskrit. But they still don’t have an alphabet. They paint their words.

    Here’s the classic study:

  16. Sean says:

    The Dopamine D4 Receptor Gene (DRD4) Moderates Cultural Difference in Independent Versus Interdependent Social Orientation.

    “As in earlier work, European Americans were more independent, and Asian-born Asians more interdependent. This cultural difference was significantly more pronounced for carriers of the 7- or 2-repeat alleles than for noncarriers. Indeed, no cultural difference was apparent among the noncarriers..”

    As far as I can gather the 7R allele that is implicated in sensation seeking behaviour (including interracial mating) and ADD/ADHD in Europeans is very rare in Chinese. It is the 2-repeat allele that is commonly found in East Asians with ADD/ADHD. Weird. They seem have their own allele for being easily bored.

    • Replies: @unpc downunder
  17. @foo123

    The comments about the wide variety of food sources is originally other Chinese commenting on the Cantonese

  18. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Chief Seattle

    Well you can’t just eat rice, even if you wanted to. You’ll die from malnourishment. If you just eat rice you get Beriberi and die:

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Beri_beri

    Rice is just starch, like potatoes. It’s worse than potatoes though since potatoes have more nutrients and you can survive fairly well on potatoes alone. The Irish for example were eating almost exclusively potatoes, 10 to 15 pounds a day, before the Irish Potato Famine, and they were healthier than the wheat eating English.

    Rice is a carb staple like potatoes or wheat and it has to be eaten with other things like meat and vegetables.

    • Replies: @Bill
    , @dcite
  19. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @george

    Yes, successful hunting generally requires a lot of patience and focus and day or multiple day pursuits. It’s not exactly like playing whack-a-mole….

    Perhaps in the tripics, you can frequently switch among various abundant targets while hunting for bush meat, but you’ll starve with that approach elsewhere. Worthy game will almost always hear and smell you before you’re close enough to make visual contact. You don’t really have the luxury of switching among abundant targets.

  20. AshTon says:

    Re: Wheat/rice in China – Is there a similar link between personality and behaviour in Europe?

  21. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @foo123

    The famous saying (based on reality) that chinamen will eat anything that walks, swims, crawls, or flies. They eat dogs for crying out loud !

    Apparently, the Swiss eat dogs and cats. And those that do are farmers:

    http://www.newsweek.com/not-just-christmas-swiss-urged-stop-eating-cats-and-dogs-287378?piano_d=1

    Founder and president of the group Tomi Tomek told the BBC that 3% of Swiss people eat cat or dog meat, 80% of them being farmers. The Lucerne, Appenzell, Jura and Bern areas are the main culprits.

    “One woman gave me a recipe for cooking newborn cat,” Tomek said. “I went to the police, a veterinarian and the government and they all told me that there was no law against it.” She was told to write a petition and try to get a politician to support her. She’s now rallied five to her cause.

    Cat meat even features prominently on Christmas menus in some parts of Switzerland, Tomek said, while dog meat is also used to make sausages. “It is an old tradition in Switzerland to eat dog meat like sausages and use dog fat for rheumatism,” she said. “They eat cats because they taste like rabbits.” They are apparently prepared in the same way and best served with white wine and garlic.

    “Farmers will eat their cats and dogs when they have too many, says Tomek. “I told them to sterilize the animals but they said it was too costly and it made a good meal.”

  22. looking at global TFR data one clearly sees who reproduces and who does not. So the current world (as an environment FOR humans shaped BY humans) seems to be a world where rice-farmers and east asians in general are rather not fit in an evolutionary sense, other groups seem to be much more fit.
    Although the huge difference between Americans and Europeans shows that it is not only genes that matter, but also culture. Certainly both, nurture and nature, play an important role in this field.

  23. @ Solonto Croesus
    of course most people in western countries have boring jobs. But their life is still like that of a hunter-gatherer. While they are at the workplace their main occupation is not working but gossip, flirting, fighting. And most of their energy and time goes into what they outside of their job, which is again gossip, flirting, fighting in addition sports, drinking alcohol, having fun.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  24. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Erik Sieven

    Which hunter gatherers, though?

    In the tropics, there’s lots of easily acquired food around, and enough population density to spend most of the time gossiping and fighting.

    Northern hunter gatherers have to always be hunting and procuring food to survive. They also don’t have high population densities.

  25. Fake Name says:
    @M

    Dear M,

    The only Chinese daughter to have been IQ tested, and this only once, showed IQ at 120. This is well above the mean for American Caucasians (normalized at 100) and for Americans of Han Chinese descent, which is somewhere above 100.

    Kind regards,

    Fake Name

  26. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    Because the paddies need standing water, rice farmers must work collectively to build, dredge, and drain elaborate irrigation networks.

    Irrigation tended to be done by the government via public works projects. The state would tax labor i.e. use corvee labor, hire landless peasants, use prisoners, etc.

  27. Joe Webb says:

    I live in Silicon Valley. I am retired but hear white folks talk about the chinks. They all say the same thing, cheaters, thieves , etc. in their business dealings.

    Any chink comes from a long line of traits, per the article, centered on collectivism, Obey/command political structures, and hero – worship.

    Karl Marx said the laws of dialectical materialism do not apply to
    Asia…the land of Oriental Despotism. When a chink hails from “red” china, is it possible that he will be like other genetic specimens from the same breeding cohort? Or , N. Korea, or S. Korea or Japan? Already, Japan is veering back toward its traditional standards of governance…collectivism and little or no democracy.

    It is genetic folks. Culture is usually a distortion of genetics based behaviors by ruling classes…whether liberal or communist. Most art is a lie in the service of some ideology. Biology and genes are not an ideology. See identical twin studies, like the Minnesota Twin Study…genetics pretty much totally controls outcomes in these identicals raised separately in different environments. Indeed, as someone said….and thank you… :

    Just the Facts Ma’m. Liberals only have feelings, distortions, and lies in the service of their own narcissism…I want the world to be X…that is what I want. Boo-hoo, hop ….the Bad Man says it isn’t true…boo-hooooooo. O Ialmost forgot, they also have Jobs, do YOU Understand! Jobs to lose! Look at Watson who just put his Nobel medallion up for auction…to scorn the liberals who have made him, he says, a non-person. Liberals are totalitarians.

    Joe Webb

  28. Luke Lea says:

    A nice essay and very well expressed. This kind of thinking should become conventional wisdom in another generation or two. Just too damn sensible to ignore.

  29. When shown a list of three items, such as “train”, “bus”, and “tracks”, and told to choose two items that pair together, people from rice-farming regions tended to choose “train and tracks,” whereas people from wheat-farming regions tended to choose “train and bus.” The former seemed to be more abstract in their thinking and the latter more relational. This pattern held up even in neighboring counties along China’s rice-wheat border. People from the rice side of the border thought more relationally than did people from the wheat side.

    The body of the above paragraph says the rice people think more abstractly than relationally. But the last sentence says the rice people are more relational. Which is it?

  30. AG says:

    “Japanese drew themselves slightly smaller”

    East Asian soldiers are likely follow oder to death, never abandon their duty, less likely to surrender. They only surrender due to enligntment of new believe not due to self-preservation. Kamikaze is genetic tendency to carry out order at all cost, not due to fananticism.

    Chen Tang, a Han Dynasty general (same periord of Roman empire) (Chinese: 陈汤; was famous for his battle against Zhizhi in 36 BC, and a quote 夫胡兵五而当汉兵一 “a single soldier of Han is equivalent to five Northern barbarian soldiers”. Another famous quote “明犯强汉者,虽远必诛” from Chen Tang: “No matter how far away, who dares to offend mighty Han will be put to death”.

    Sense of duty plus IQ advantage is the answer for one Han Chinese solder worthing five barbarian soldiers. If every thing equal, the bet is sure thing.

    • Replies: @AG
    , @Smiddy
  31. Fake Name says:
    November 30, 2014 at 2:58 am GMT
    As a Caucasian parent of multiple Chinese (adopted) children, I can at least say anecdotally that the Chinese coefficient of boredom is no different from that of my Caucasian children. There are racial differences, however, such as certain tastes or aversions in food or the propensity for leanness or obesity. With the same kitchen preparing the same foods for all the children, all the Caucasians grew overweight and all the Chinese remained skinny. And in my very limited personal observation, the Caucasians are all very linear, organized “engineer-like” thinkers. The Chinese kids do not come naturally to that kind of thought pattern and tend to process things in what appears to be a cheerful garble. After raising this mixed family, it is absolutely no marvel at all to me that the Chinese never developed an alphabet, for example. The sort of thought process that would make the benefits of an alphabet naturally obvious doesn’t easily occur in a Chinese head. And now that the advantages of an alphabet are plain for them to see, guess what? they still don’t have an alphabet and are cheerfully content with the limitations that imposes. Maybe it’s because they’re too easily bored with spelling. ;-D

    Love and kisses to all,

    Fake Name

    Reply

    I wouldn’t take the observations of a mother who made her own children overweight seriously. The average child would never become overweight on a healthy diet unless they had a severe condition.

    As someone who has interacted with dozens of chinese and and lives around both whites and chinese the idea that whites have “engineer” like thinking whereas that chinese are more creative is utterly absurd. Chinese have an extremely strict, linear minds from personal observation whereas whites are prone to spontaneity and creativity.

    Also as someone who is ethnically Caucasian I find it off putting that someone would appropriate that term to refer to white people. Altough Caucasions are white in appearance ultimately a cuacasian is someone from the caucasus. If we used your racial definition then you would also have to say Indians are Caucasions.

  32. AG says:
    @AG

    In contrast, middle eastern solders are more likely disobey their commander and save their skin first over their duty. Very few of them fight to the last man. Iraq army facing Isis is most recent example.

  33. Max Payne says: • Website

    The only thing I can relate with this is my Chinese gamer friends.

    When I was 13-16 (2001-2003? somewhere along those lines) I used to play online computer games heavily (Ultima Online, Diablo 2, BF1942, etc.)

    I would get bored after 3-5 hours of playing, I’d need at least a 30-60 minute break before I can get back into it again but my Chinese friends…. they’d pour 12 hours straight non-stop every day (and weekends was a whole other level of dedication).

    It didn’t matter what type of game. Strategy games, multi-massive online, whatever…

    That might also explain those laws in Asian nations against playing MMOs for long stretches….

  34. Sean says:

    Northern Chinese, especially Koreans, have dry earwax. Whether earwax is wet or dry is determined by one gene with two alleles, it’s recessive. Breast cancer is reported to be less common in East Asians with dry earwax . The dry earwax allele usually means no body odour.

    The impact of natural selection on an ABCC11 SNP determining earwax type.“…we show that absolute latitude is significantly associated with the allele frequency of rs17822931-A in Asian, Native American, and European populations, implying that the selective advantage of rs17822931-A is related to an adaptation to a cold climate. Our results provide a striking example of how local adaptation has played a significant role in the diversification of human traits”.

    I wonder if something about the type of agriculture at high latitude is the cause of the northern selection for dry earwax . Something in the north, especially the east Asian north, seems to have been selecting for a personality type.

    Ten thousand years ago, people in southern China began to cultivate rice and quickly made an all-too-tempting discovery — the cereal could be fermented into alcoholic liquors. Carousing and drunkenness must have started to pose a serious threat to survival because a variant gene that protects against alcohol became almost universal among southern Chinese and spread throughout the rest of China in the wake of rice cultivation.”

    The Koreans have a number of peculiarities in addition to the dry earwax; they have low testosterone and a very high suicide rate. They don’t have as high a prevalence of the anti alcohol adaptation (if that is what it actually is) found in southern China. It can’t be that Koreans are to conscientious to abuse alcohol, because compared to other east Asians Koreans drink quite a lot.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  35. “As a Caucasian parent of multiple Chinese (adopted) children, I can at least say anecdotally that the Chinese coefficient of boredom is no different from that of my Caucasian children.”

    There was actually a controlled study, using Chinese-American and European-American newborns, which found differences in temperament between the two groups even in infancy. The Chinese-American newborns cried less easily and were more easily consoled. They could also adapt to almost any position they were laid in.

    See “Ethnic differences in babies” – Daniel G. Freedman

    http://books.google.ca/books?hl=fr&lr=&id=ZSizAQAAQBAJ&oi=fnd&pg=PA221&dq=chinese+newborns+authornbsp:Freedman&ots=qmXzoc4LA2&sig=9ok39HeCPwJTLsUfE_-yq4EcXxQ#v=onepage&q&f=false

    Erik Sieven,

    In a post-traditional environment, East Asians seem to have the lowest fertility in the world. Curiously enough, this is true even among Chinese Americans and Chinese Canadians, so it’s not because of current conditions in East Asia.

    Downward slope,

    Sorry, my mistake. Instead of writing:

    “The former seemed to be more abstract in their thinking and the latter more relational.”

    I should have written:

    “The former seemed to be more relational in their thinking and the latter more abstract.”

    In other words, thinking tends to be more abstract in wheat regions and more relational in rice regions.

    I’ll try to have this correction made.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  36. AG says:

    “In a prior study, Americans drew themselves about 6 mm bigger than they drew their friends, Europeans drew themselves 3.5 mm bigger, and Japanese drew themselves slightly smaller.”

    Cultural clash

    Western culture is highly competitive which is promoting your own kind and trashing others.

    Confucius culture is about harmony and humbleness which promote modesty and self-pity . You see lots of that in Chinese language especially Ancient ones which often refer themself in a very inferior tones.

    Westerners feel entitled superior in order to make themself happy. Orientals feel needed to be inferior in order to make other happy.

    Confucius way to be self-pity and self-mockery is to make other people feel better in order to reduce tension and achieve harmony.

    In official ancient Han languages, an common person often refer himself as 小人 (lowest one ), an educated person called himself 鄙人(not sophisticated one); an official called himself 卑职(lowerly ranked); even emperor called himself 孤 or 寡人 (lonely one). From top to bottom, every one called himself in such inferior way to make others feel better. They tried to avoid any terms to make other feel inferior.

    In other part of world, such behavior is totally alien and counterintuitive. English culture is only exception which also has a lot of self-pity and self-mockery. Most English humor is about making fun of oneself. Humility and modesty are very unique product of mature civilization.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Self-actualization

    Only self-actualized people do such self-mockery (Non-hostile sense of humor. This refers to the ability to laugh at oneself.) Self-actualizers are mostly elites in their societies.

  37. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Peter Frost

    They could also adapt to almost any position they were laid in.

    See “Ethnic differences in babies” – Daniel G. Freedman

    I’ve heard that Freedman also did these studies on Amerindian infants and found they were even more adaptable than the Chinese infants.

    Is this true? And if so, would that suggest that these behavioral tendencies predate agriculture?

  38. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Sean

    I’ve noticed that all the East Asians – Chinese, Japanese, Koreans – like to drink. But they can’t handle as much alcohol because they lack that enzyme that breaks it down. And the liquor they tend to drink tends to have less alcohol than Western liquor. So while they enjoy drinking, the alcohol they end up consuming in a drinking session seems to be less than among other populations.

    Amerindians like to drink as well, but they seem to end up drinking so much alcohol that it ends up completely debilitating them. Perhaps the East Asians were in similar circumstances and adapted accordingly to avoid the debilitation Amerindians seem to suffer.

    • Replies: @Sean
  39. Bill says:
    @Anonymous

    Well you can’t just eat rice, even if you wanted to. You’ll die from malnourishment. If you just eat rice you get Beriberi and die:

    You’d die of some nutrient deficiency syndrome (scurvy, most likely) but not beriberi. Beriberi is thiamine deficiency syndrome. Brown rice has thiamine, lots. It is white rice which lacks thiamine. Since white rice is more expensive (not now, of course) than is brown rice, beriberi is a disease of wealth.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  40. Sean says:
    @Anonymous

    Not exactly. “The variant gene rapidly degrades alcohol to a chemical that is not intoxicating but makes people flush, leaving many people of Asian descent a legacy of turning red in the face when they drink alcohol.”

    Turning red in the face is similar to blushing, which is quite an interesting thing in itself and has been hypothesised to be an honest signal of apology to the group by demonstrating that one is feeling embarrassed. Blushing isn’t obvious in the dark skinned though.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  41. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Bill

    Yes, brown rice has lots of thiamine, as well as more of other nutrients compared to white rice. However, eating brown rice doesn’t necessarily mean you will get more nutrients. Because in addition to the nutrients, the husk and bran of the rice contains toxins and anti-nutrients that will inhibit nutrient and mineral absorption. Refining rice makes it much less toxic and turns it into pretty much pure starch.

    The same applies to wheat and other grains.

  42. @IC : The ‘northern barbarians’ in the quote referred to the ancestors of Northeast Asians such as the Japanese and Koreans.

  43. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Sean

    The Tibetans had a fairly powerful military and empire in the middle ages.

  44. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    If you read Chinese literature and thought, there is an aversion to abstraction and analytical and metaphysical thinking. They tend to believe that such thinking is inadequate or misleading and that the best we can do is try to devise metaphors that attempt to indirectly capture the whole, which is ultimately ineffable. The characters themselves are these sorts of metaphors, rather than abstract representations of words.

    The closest analogue I can think of might perhaps be the later Heidegger, after he turns away from the tradition of Western philosophy and science which he regards as misguided and tries to conceive of an anti or non-metaphysical thinking and emphasizes poetry as a form of thinking and alternative to philosophy and science.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  45. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Anonymous

    I forgot to add that, incidentally, Heidegger had a rural background and idealized the German peasant farmer and agrarian lifestyle in his later philosophy.

  46. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Sean

    You do see face redness while drinking among some Europeans, at least northern Europeans. If you go to a pub in Britain or Ireland you can usually see red faced drinkers. Presumably a different mechanism is involved than the one in Asian redness? Is it just fair skin and increased blood flow?

    You hear about how drinking beer was vital in medieval Europe because brewing beer made water potable and safe to drink in pre-modern times. The Egyptian workers who built the pyramids were paid in bread and beer, and perhaps beer served a similar purpose there as a potable form of water. If Asians couldn’t safely and comfortably consume alcohol, how did they consume potable water in pre-modern times? Did tea serve this purpose?

  47. dcite says:
    @Anonymous

    brown rice will sustain you and provides the B complex so you don’t get beri beri. But one reason people “polished” rice to white is because that way they knew it was clean. Keeping the food supply clean was a constant struggle. One reason they rarely ate raw vegetables is because of the use of “night soil” for fertilizer. They didn’t trust a dunk in the open water barrel to clean them off.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  48. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @dcite

    Brown rice also inhibits zinc, iron, and calcium absorption. Which makes it especially bad for a non-dairy consuming population. White rice isn’t just cleaner but it’s close to a pure form of starch without most of the toxins and anti-nutrients encased in cereal grains. Raw vegetables weren’t just dirty but low in calories, unhealthy, difficult to digest, and unappetizing for the most part.

  49. Sean says:

    “Singaporeans rewarded friends much more than they punished them. Americans were much more likely to punish friends for bad behavior. In this study, people from rice regions were more likely to remain loyal to friends regardless.”

    In Martin Nowak’s book the Supercooperators he says “the equations suggest there is an optimum level of mobility (meaning the rate at which people move between different sets and explore new sets). … With intermediate mobility cooperators have a chance to hang around long enough to benefit each other but they also escape from defection by colonising new sets.” (See here)

    Selection among rice farmers has produced immobile cooperation?

  50. Numinous says:

    Good timing, Mr. Frost! Now the New York Times has an article on how rice and wheat farming produce differences in culture. They even use your “train, bus, tracks” example.

    Although I wish articles like yours and the Times’ would present more comprehensive studies not focused on two extremes (people of Western European descent versus people of East Asian descent.) Take the Indian subcontinent, for example. There’s a wheat/rice line there too. Rice predominates in the South and East; wheat in the North and West (Pakistan and NW India.) Yet what conclusions can we draw from that? If anything, northwesterners are more clannish than people further east and south. And I believe the wheat-growing parts of the Middle East are also very clannish/collectivist.

    • Replies: @Sean
  51. Sean says:
    @Numinous

    Re. “clannish/collectivist”. Friends are not kin, so if by ‘clannish’ the kin selection form of inclusive fitness is meant, the rice farmers were not shown to be clannish.

    Allow me to elucidate. The study was of 1,162 Han Chinese “some were from rice areas and were some not. Those from rice regions were “more likely to remain loyal to friends regardless”. So as I read it the rice farmers are more loyal to friends (symbolic community) irrespective of how the friends acted, and the obvious inference to draw is the selection for rice farming was for psychologically adjusting oneself to others in one’s group, while other types of farming produces people with more mobile allegiances.

    Cooperation declines when cooperators don’t have the option to switch allegiance, because they are stuck in a group with non-cooperators, who flourish by getting a free ride. Assuming there are other groups to go to, mobile cooperators can leave a group that has a free-rider problem and move to a group consisting wholly of cooperators. As I read the post, the Han rice farmers have somewhat of a tendency to be immobile cooperators.

    I don’t see where the post is talking about Westerners at all. However politics is a good way to think about these things. The opposite of the rice farming mindset could more efficient at promoting cooperation (assuming you are not in a totalitarian state). For instance, a congressman could still favour his family (you don’t have to send your son off to be killed in a war you vote for), but because you have less unconditional loyalty you can leave one political set and move into another by moving to the left or right wings of the party, insofar as it suits your purpose. For an individualist the more sets the better. Hence the demand for pluralism.

    • Replies: @Anonymous
  52. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:
    @Sean

    The only reliable evolutionary system in which cooperation is sustainable is one in which the replicators (genetic and memetic) share a common fate aka vertical transmission. This is why the meiotic lottery works in multicellular sexual species and it is how symbiosis between species can evolve in ecologies where migration is restricted — migration being the origin of the evolution of virulence via horizontal transmission. However, since restricting migration is not practical in much of nature, there is an “optimal virulence” in which a replicator tests the limits of its ability to, in essence, “take the money and run”, and exploits to that limit.

  53. AG says:

    “In a prior study, Americans drew themselves about 6 mm bigger than they drew their friends, Europeans drew themselves 3.5 mm bigger, and Japanese drew themselves slightly smaller.”

    Any data on Africans? My prediction is that they draw themself even bigger than average Americans. This is only speculation, not truth or fact.

  54. Smiddy says:
    @YS

    Europeans got lactose tolerance from the Bell Beakers, a culture/people that originated out of Iberia, and earlier, Nomadic Northern Africa, five or so thousand years ago. The very reason so many Europeans are lactose tolerant in the first place, is because of hunter-gatherer culture. You don’t even know your pre-history.

  55. Smiddy says:
    @Anon

    Their “lack of boredom” has also resulted in higher intelligence, higher IQs, than among Europeans. So as much as you’d like to use this information for your prejudices, by only showing one side of the coin, all you end up proving… Is that whites aren’t that bright. You make a great example of a white ethnocentric ;)

    • Replies: @AG
  56. Smiddy says:
    @AG

    Today, when it comes to physical ability, genetically speaking, Blacks > Whites > Asians. But when it comes to intelligence, Asians > Whites > Blacks. And, in all reality, rhythm, instinct, and physical ability counted for much more on the ancient battlefield than intelligence. So, in all fairness, it definitely isn’t a sure bet.

    Another note – Chinese and Roman armies never met, the two empires faintly new of one another. White people are part of Chinese myth because of their corporate, hunter-gatherer ways (not the other way around).

  57. AG says:
    @Smiddy

    Indeed.

    About decade ago, a commentator on this blog had a post in different blog. He claimed the society is classified due to choice people make. In his words, people who rather die than become slave become masters: people who rather to be slave than die become slaves. With such simple reasoning, he reveals his low IQ like those in ghetto or high school bullies. In his perfect world, society is just another example of ghetto or high school life.

    I have no idea about his social status then. Later he did reveal his low working class status. Bingo, no surprise that he is one of low IQ, low SES person. The truth is people with lower the IQ, lower SES often have inflated self worthiness. They pass judgment easily and simply. They tend to see the world in simple black/white manner. They can only use generalization to judge any individual. To see the world in multiple angels or perspectives needs higher intelligence. So generalization, and black/white view of the world is simple way to look at thing and appealing to simple mind (low intelligence).

    Yet, in his comment or post, he present himself with very much like an authority. This inflated self-worthiness is very much in line with the research finding of low IQ people (Rushton). He has no idea such attitude actually reveals low intelligence. These are the clue to identify low IQ through their words. If you have a chance to visit ghetto, almost every one of them feel that they can become President. If there is a psychological test of drawing circle about themselves, they will draw a super large circle about themselves. These people have incredible ability to deny facts not in their favor (partially due to lack of ability to recognize fact) and less prone to depression (due to fact denial ability).

    http://www.apesantsandancestors.com/major-new-theory-on-the-impact-of-farming-on-social-psychology/

    To whom it may concern, if you know I am talking about you, you demonstrate some long term memory which is part of intellectual ability. If you have no clue at all, your mental ability is really very low. Long term memory is critical for crystallized intelligence. I know you are a common sense guy who can only judge thing by your common sense. But common sense can not help you to find truth, only good enough to survive.

  58. “As for Asians, I’d be interested to see if their lack of boredom means they have entire populations that are farther out on the Asperger’s scale than Westerners.”

    Another mental issue related to boredom is ADHD. Impulsive extroverts are notorious for having a short attention and struggling to stay on task while doing repetitive, unexciting work. However, ADD without hyperactivity may actually be a positive trait for some mundane jobs.

    While doing simple, boring tasks inattentive introverts who daydream a lot can entertain themselves by mentally wandering instead of physically wandering or distracting others. However, in modern times, flexible attention has become increasingly important, and having a strong tendency to daydream or switch over to “brain default mode” is a significant liability.

    ADHD is generally regarded as being less common in Asia, but I don’t think anyone studied if ADD without hyperactivity is. A while ago I remember reading that a European study found ADD without hyperactivity was actually more common among German school kids than American children, although in Europe it’s regarded as a mild form of depression rather than a learning or cognitive disorder.

  59. @Sean

    I think there is some evidence ADD and ADHD affect different neurotransmitters and different parts of the frontal lobes.

    ADD is related to problems with norepinephrine in the right side of the brain (similar to some forms of depression) while ADHD is related to problems with dopamine in the left side of the brain. Hence, there is probably a separate gene for ADD.

  60. Dipwill says:
    @Anon

    Given how the “HBD” scene and such are predominantly white and jewish and filled to the brim with nerds and spergs, and just how much of this scene seems inherently autistic, I doubt it.

    But in all seriousness, I’ve wondered this myself, but I don’t see any evidence for it whatsoever, even if their cultures do seem generally more “autistic”. I really think people in this scene, and in general, have an absolutely caricatured idea of what it asian “collectivism” is and how asians behave. My experience with asians, I’ve never really gotten the impression of them being so introverted and anti-social and non-risk taking etc. I’d say they are less boisterous, and do have tendencies towards different pathologies, and there undoubtedly are tendencies in east asian cultures that are distinctively dettached or sociopathic (particularly in China), but this image I see crop up doesn’t really exist. It also doesn’t square with the suicide rates and the feelings of social atomization that crop up in east asia, particularly the NEET phenomenon in Japan- if they’re so adapted for these things, why do have these problems?

    Your image of them as being less empathetic and how they can be “mind-bogglingly brutal” isn’t what you think it is, and I’d think you’d be better off looking at yourself and the kinds of people in this scenes. I have seen vastly too many white nerds, spergs etc. etc. for this to be possible. And I love the idea that’s cropped up that ADD/ADHD is virtually non-existent among them- why do reports of it even crop up in east asia? I really doubt it’s all over-reporting. And don’t even get me started on Rushton’s image of them, as basically asexual and sexually underdeveloped. I kind of think a lot of what he wrote about them was some sort of projection.

    This is why I also can’t take Frost’s ideas here completely seriously. For every few good ideas he has, he seems to have some remarkably caricatured or outright dumb ones, and he seems to be abit self-aware, once remarking how the HBD scene is mostly male because men are social retards.

    Other gems:

    “And in my very limited personal observation, the Caucasians are all very linear, organized “engineer-like” thinkers. The Chinese kids do not come naturally to that kind of thought pattern and tend to process things in what appears to be a cheerful garble. After raising this mixed family, it is absolutely no marvel at all to me that the Chinese never developed an alphabet, for example. The sort of thought process that would make the benefits of an alphabet naturally obvious doesn’t easily occur in a Chinese head. And now that the advantages of an alphabet are plain for them to see, guess what? they still don’t have an alphabet and are cheerfully content with the limitations that imposes. Maybe it’s because they’re too easily bored with spelling. ;-D”

    And it turns out the Koreans invented an alphabet, one of the most efficient in the world. It took them awhile to widely use it (which they do now with no issue), but are the Koreans that different from the chinese?

    And this is from someone who’s raised Chinese kids, who comes out and says they’re incapable of developing an alphabet. Sure.

    IC:

    Your rambling anecdote doesn’t prove anything. People in this scene I also find have a bizarre idea of morality and how it factors in with intelligence, and I’d say this was most exemplified in Michael Levin’s work, where he claimed an essentially linear correlation between IQ and morality. Murray did this too. Big surprise Levin was a libertarian moral relativist and Murray too is a libertarian with a Thai wife.

    I do think whites and asians are more prone to aspergers/autism than blacks, and there seem to be distinct forms of sociopathy/psychopathy and social anomie and pathology that go hand in hand with them. There’s a lot of angles in this regard people have long overlooked.

  61. Dipwill says:
    @foo123

    Someone already mentioned the thing about the Swiss and dogs, but I really do think more could be said about this- I really think the attachment we have to dogs in the long run is something that largely arose out of their versatility. Canines have the greatest genetic plasticity of any animal and are suited to more roles in human society than any other. Pigs are also genuinely more intelligent than dogs. I’m not saying we should eat dogs, but when you really get down to it, there’s no true rational reason just why we do so, but I think we shouldn’t really eat pigs either. I don’t really know why asian cultures have often eaten dogs, but I don’t think it really arises from any distinct sociopathy or pathology in the way many people think it does, or many other foods.

    Look at how lobster used to be looked at- they’re insect-like and were seen as food mainly befitting of prisoners and such. Now it’s a delicacy. And I don’t think many people will have issue eating insects down the road, given how likely it is we’ll be moving more to meat from them.

    And just look at the kinds of things Scandinavians sometimes eat.

    The part about indo-europeans is funny too- China is fairly isolated from much of the rest of Eurasia, by desert, the himalayas, the plains of central asia etc. Interactions with “indo-europeans” have not been terribly consistent.

    I don’t know if the chinese write buddhism only in sanskrit, but there’s that idea again I’ve seen crop up a number of times- “The Chinese were (and are) incapable of developing their own alphabet!” You don’t even have to look at the case of Koreans (or are they really different? According to Jayman, the north and south of Korea might be!)- do chinese/asians who grow up in the west (or anywhere else that use alphabets) have any difficulty writing and reading alphabets? Does their handwriting or processing look any different?

    But yes, “HBD” is where rationality reigns, and asians are the ones more likely to be autistic, not the people who spin retarded theories about the chinese and alpabets.

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