Where do extreme right-wing anti-immigration views come from?

by on June 19, 2016 at 12:43 am in Data Source, Education, Law, Philosophy, Political Science, Religion | Permalink

Very often they are passed down father to son.  Here is a recent paper by Avdeenko and Siedler:

This study analyzes the importance of parental socialization on the development of children’s far right-wing preferences and attitudes towards immigration. Using longitudinal data from Germany, our intergenerational estimates suggest that the strongest and most important predictor for young people’s right-wing extremism are parents’ right-wing extremist attitudes. While intergenerational associations in attitudes towards immigration are equally high for sons and daughters, we find a positive intergenerational transmission of right-wing extremist party affinity for sons, but not for daughters. Compared to the intergenerational correlation of other party affinities, the high association between fathers’ and sons’ right-wing extremist attitudes is particularly striking.

Here is a sentence from the paper:

Young adults whose parents were very concerned about immigration to German during their childhood years have a 27 percentage point (60 percent) higher likelihood of also expressing strong concerns about immigration as young adults.

This of course should make you less confident of your anti-immigrant views, if indeed you hold them.  Similarly, the intergenerational transmission of particular religious beliefs is also a strong reason not to be very confident in them.  If you get your religious beliefs from your parents and other relatives, through whatever mechanism, rather than from God, well…why are your parents a more reliable source of knowledge about this question than anyone else’s parents?

1 I Gimlet June 19, 2016 at 12:53 am

Because your parents love you and everyone else’s parents do not.

2 Anon7 June 19, 2016 at 3:22 am

The good professor does not exhibit enough Socratic skepticism. One’s own includes not only one’s oikos but also the entire polis, which attempts to impose its biased notions on its youth. Of course, the perfectly just city does not allow itself to be corrupted by immigrants, who would degrade its character.

3 anon June 19, 2016 at 11:42 am

Marco Polo is overrated?

4 nigel June 19, 2016 at 7:40 am

Beat me to it IG. See J. H. Newman, an essay in aid of a grammar of assent. This simplistic rationalism harkens back to semi-inebriated dorm room philosophy discussions. I’m disappointed.

5 anon June 19, 2016 at 11:47 am

I was once standing at bar’s urinal when an inebriated freshman wandered in, stood at the next one over, and said “reality, what a concept.” I looked over to see if he was drunk joking, but he seemed drunk serious.

You have to make these discoveries sometime.

6 Heorogar June 19, 2016 at 12:26 pm

They’re not in dorm rooms. They’re slouching in Moms’ basements drinking Dad’s’ beers.

7 Bill Reeves June 20, 2016 at 4:38 pm

My sentiments exactly. Those that don’t understand the political and social impacts of family and culture should not be allowed anywhere near the levers of power. I read today that a mother literally pried the jaws of a mountain lion off if her 5 year old’s head with her bare hands. Detached academics don’t seem to understand the power represented by that simple example.

8 Donald Pretari June 19, 2016 at 1:48 pm

Would that were always so.

9 Urso June 20, 2016 at 10:46 am

So obvious I can’t believe it needs to be said. Want to know who does not have my best interests in mind? The editorial board of the Washington Post, NYT, WSJ, etc. So why should I trust them?

10 derek June 19, 2016 at 1:04 am

I’d support immigration with substantially more enthusiasm if otherwise smart people stopped talking in broad terms about the issue. What in blue blazes is ‘far right wing preferences’?

That could mean that someone thinks immigrants should learn english. Or that one should expect after a generation that the families would become part of the melting pot. Or that there should be a limit to the numbers so that health care and social services and schools can handle the newcomers effectively. Or that maybe a choice be made of the smarter or more capable ones who would fill specific needs in the country. Or that is is particularly unwise to essentially enslave the newcomers to established ethnic power structures that mirror the places where they were glad to leave. Or that there is a serious risk of importing the civil war they are fleeing from if care is not taken.

I start with the assumption that the law enforcement officials will be utterly useless when it comes to ethnic neighborhoods, based on the experience in Canada and many other places where it has utterly failed when needed. I add the assumption that the advocacy groups will end up representing the most vile and disgusting aspects of the immigrant group. That politicians will encourage the dysfunctional social dynamics that create ghettos; stupid and poor and with appropriate gratitude produces a solid and reliable voting bloc. That seemingly normal westerners will suffer effective lobotomies when faced with immigrant criminal elements.

In other words, the current immigration enthusiasts have proven themselves to be very poor representatives of a basically pretty good idea.

11 Nomenym June 19, 2016 at 2:20 am

These days, it seems that ‘Far right wing preferences’ mean being in favour of anything less than proactive demographic replacement and cultural disintegration. Overall, I’m pretty libertarian about immigration, but I’m still a far-right extremist because I worry that demographic replacement and cultural disintegration might not be entirely for the better.

12 Heorogar June 19, 2016 at 12:33 pm

“Far right wing preferences” means any and all disagreement with or opposition to the progressive program to deconstruct America and our way of life.

If this be racist, make the most of it.

Let’s make America [fill-in-the-blank]! La Raza revolutionists would fill in “Mexico.” Hillary would scribble, “Libya.”

13 Alistair June 19, 2016 at 4:07 am

Agreed. If the idea is so good, why are it’s advocates so mealy-mouthed and imprecise with terms? Why doesn’t Cowen discuss the various groups in more detail and discuss the attractiveness of different optima to each of them?

14 Massimo Heitor June 19, 2016 at 9:54 am

derek, Nomenym, Alistair: these comments are more insightful than the OP or the linked article.

15 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 11:07 am

The specific concerns and suggestions you raise don’t seem “far right wing”.

But when you refer to “the experience in Canada and many other places where it has utterly failed when needed”, I conclude that you probably are far right wing, and put on a more reasonable and nice face to start, just to buy some credibility before you try to lead us off the deep end.

What are these failures you refer to in Canada with respect to policing ethnic neighbourhoods?

16 derek June 19, 2016 at 11:48 am

Ahh, the studied ignorance of the devoted.

Google canada terrorist incident with most casualties

Air India aircraft blown out of the air near Ireland. This was when the Sihks were in a serious conflict in India, one of theirs had murdered a politician, there was a reaction where the Indian military did some nasty stuff. There were murders, street fights, physical fights in temples. The RCMP was utterly useless both in preventing and prosecuting the crime. The Prime Minister at the time called the Indian Prime Minister who reminded him that most of the dead were Canadian citizens.

The recent Florida incident illustrated the utter uselessness of security authorities in the face of immigrant ethnic people. It illustrates my point; it is far easier to keep a job not going after what you know is happening in an enthic situation than making a fuss and losing promotions because you are insufficiently multicultural or whatever brain dead notion the moment vomits up.

I’d suggest that you present these proposals to the devoted and I guarantee you will be called racist.

17 Andao June 19, 2016 at 1:18 pm

“immigrant ethnic people” – the gunman was second generation…how many generations should the assimilation police keep under surveillance?

18 Jack Reacher June 19, 2016 at 3:31 pm

Well, since the “vast majority” of perpetrators are mooslem, — answers are easy.

19 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 4:03 pm

Didn’t that happen over 30 years ago?

At about 300 deaths, corrected for the 30 year timespan during which nothing like that happened, you arrive at an average of 10 per year (ignoring that nothing like that happened for 30 years), you arrive at a 1 in 3.5 million risk.

I think I’ll obsess over the possibility of slipping on some gravel on the walking path to the shop instead of falling into irrational paranoia about things that really aren’t that big of risk.

I bet you’re one of those people that laughs off statistics like “such as such pollution causes 400 deaths per year in Toronto alone” but then obsesses over an incident that occurred over 30 years ago.

I’m not sure which proposals you’re referring to, but given your discussion of multicultural as “whatever brain dead notion the moment vomits up”, well, I guarantee that when you’re called racist it’s because people call it as it is.

Question: Where’s all your concern about all the Christian mass murders or recent years? Or, does religion only matter when it helps to pile on the hate for people you know nothing about?

20 derek June 19, 2016 at 11:52 am

Go talk to the folks waving Mexican flags who belong to the group funded by Bank settlements. What do they call themselves? La Raza? Suggest that US policy be that immigrants learn english.

21 derek June 19, 2016 at 11:54 am

Belgium seemed to have had a bit of a problem with the police being utterly useless when it comes to policing a specific ethnic neighborhood. I don’t watch much news, so maybe I miss all the rah rah stuff. But I do read about why these events seem to catch the brilliant by surprise.

22 derek June 19, 2016 at 11:56 am

In Canada recently, as in Germany, anyone not supporting the accepting of large numbers of Syrian or indeterminate refugees is and has been vigorously condemned as ‘far right wing extremists’.

23 David Lloyd-Jones June 19, 2016 at 12:41 pm

“…based on the experience in Canada and many other places where it has utterly failed when needed.”

There has been no such experience in Canada. The reference is imaginary.


24 stephan June 19, 2016 at 1:10 am

So a man is not a blank slate but can be influenced by his father on a multitude of topics (I am sure also including economics). Is that a surprise ?. I would venture a man is also more likely to like sauerkraut if their father did.

If your father really had zero influence on you, then one could ask: why do you need one ?

25 nigel June 19, 2016 at 7:48 am

You don’t — in fact, since your parents likely transmit only boorish and regressive ideas, like religion and anti-immigration ideology, we should eliminate them like Soviets and have everyone’s kids raised by the state (except for the upper crust of course). People won’t go for that initially because their irrational animal instincts will leap into action and they’ll be pissed, so we’ll start with universal pre-K. Studies show it improves outcomes! Added bonus: eliminating parents strengthens the case against traditional moral views on sex and gender. Pansexual utopia anyone?

Oh wait…turns out being inculturated by your parents is kind of important.

26 obvious strawman June 19, 2016 at 8:44 am

Compared to the intergenerational correlation of other party affinities, the high association between fathers’ and sons’ right-wing extremist attitudes is particularly striking.

27 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 11:09 am

Why more father-son than father-daughter, for example?

The finding worth reporting was not “the correlation is greater than zero”, but rather “this particular correlation is very strong”.

28 derek June 19, 2016 at 11:58 am

Cultural expectations. Men have been expected to become fathers and have families. Women have been expected to marry a man and mother his children. The likelihood of success of those arrangements has been dependent on more pliant women and less pliant men.

This arrangement seems to result in more children, making it likely that the situation will continue.

29 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 4:05 pm

I dunno. Women tend to spend more time with children than men. It’s surprising that the effect would be concentrated in that manner. I guess transmission of racist cultural mores is a special case that some minority of men take special efforts to pass on? Or … what other interpretation might be reasonable?

30 Cliff June 19, 2016 at 11:25 am

Do they distinguish between genetic and environmental factors?

31 Rick Hyatt June 19, 2016 at 12:06 pm

Of course not, as the word ‘socialization’ should have told you before even finishing the abstract – remember, every slate is blank and correlation==causation. Even though it’s already known that broad political attitudes and immigration attitudes are heritable from Hatemi and the others…

32 nomenym June 19, 2016 at 1:18 am

So where do left-wing pro-immigration views come from?

33 Lurker June 19, 2016 at 2:31 am


34 A B June 19, 2016 at 9:11 am

Not getting along with your right-wing father, of course. Or getting along with your left-wing father.

35 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 11:14 am

No one telling you to hate people, either explicitly or implicitly just by observing how daddy treats brown people like crap.

Plus, being confident that they won’t steal your jobs, instead of the contradiction of thinking that you’re both better than them and unable to compete with them.

36 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 11:15 am

Mostly, I don’t understand why this is a left-wing right-wing issue. Based on economic positions, I’d expect precisely the opposite, considering supposed left/right divergence on free markets, etc.

37 Cliff June 19, 2016 at 11:26 am

So you conflate whatever the paper considers to be “anti-immigration” with vile racism? Classic progressive strawmanning/ad hominem

38 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 4:08 pm

Classic. Putting words into people’s mouths that they didn’t say, painting them into an extreme corner, and then calling THAT person the straw manner.

If you perceived anything along the lines of “ad hominem”, then you should look in the mirror instead of getting angry that people point out that racism is real.

39 JWatts June 20, 2016 at 3:57 pm

“Classic. Putting words into people’s mouths that they didn’t say, painting them into an extreme corner,…”

Your previous comment was: “No one telling you to hate people, either explicitly or implicitly just by observing how daddy treats brown people like crap.

You most definitely have become a complete Troll, Nathan. Congrats.

40 TMC June 19, 2016 at 12:41 pm

Usually being either a kindred spirit – benefitting from the welfare system. Could be receiver of checks, administering the system, or just receiver of votes.

41 daguix June 20, 2016 at 6:53 am
42 Philippe Bélanger June 19, 2016 at 1:42 am

My father believed the propositions of Newtonian mechanics and so did his. The women of our family, however, don’t. I’m fairly sure this pattern holds across many families. Are we to become less confident in them? Inquiring minds want to know!

43 londenio June 19, 2016 at 2:09 am

I don’t believe this pattern holds across many families.
Are the women in your family concerned with anomalies that can be better explained using Relativity?

44 londenio June 19, 2016 at 2:02 am

Look at the paper. Method is fine. Effect is significant. But the effect is small for this to be an issue. Parental right wing affinity is a categorical variable and so is the child’s. _Marginal_ effect is .06 for “all” and .13 for just boys. The marginal effect is the change in probability. Bottomline, other factors influence the political leaning way more.
[Note: I am skimming this paper quickly, Sunday 7.30am, so i may have missed something]

45 obvious strawman June 19, 2016 at 8:45 am

how? link not working

46 londenio June 19, 2016 at 9:00 am

Google the authors.

47 The Original D June 19, 2016 at 4:14 pm

The marginal effect in the other direction (i.e. my dad was a racist so I’m not) probably correlates with whether your father was a good father or bad father. Did he take you to baseball games, teach you how to fish? Or did he drink a lot and beat you?

Also, I’m curious whether there’s any correlation with birth order. I seem to remember hearing that first-born sons are most likely to adopt their fathers’ political views/

48 RSF June 19, 2016 at 2:10 am

So, do we have any insight into whether deeply misogynistic views held by immigrants are passed down to their offspring? Is that a concern? Should it be a concern?

49 ChrisA June 19, 2016 at 2:52 am

There is a very interesting paradox here. Many of the Sailerists worry about the political views of new immigrants (especially Muslims and Hispanics) eventually degrading the civil society of the US. But the political views they are complaining about about seem to be very traditional right wing populist views that the Sailerists favour; such as traditional roles for women, large families, religious, anti-gay, anti-capitalist statism, anti-drugs, protectionism etc. You think these views would be welcomed by the Sailerists as potentially offsetting the current left wing liberal trend. And likewise the liberals and libertarians should be the ones protesting against immigration as too much of it is likely to slow the increasing trend toward social liberalism in the US. But it’s the other way round.

50 londenio June 19, 2016 at 3:15 am

The missing variable that makes the paradox go away is mild-to-moderate racism.

51 Cliff June 19, 2016 at 11:28 am

The missing variable is voting patterns

52 The Original D June 19, 2016 at 4:17 pm

And even minorities are racist. Ask Mexicans in Chicago what they think of Puerto Ricans. (I guess that’s a nationality but the way they talk about them sounds like racism.) Ask a Chinese person what he thinks about the Japanese. Or about Jews, which they tend to hold in high regard.

53 Tokarev June 19, 2016 at 4:10 am

>Many of the Sailerists worry about the political views of new immigrants (especially Muslims and Hispanics) eventually degrading the civil society of the US. But the political views they are complaining about about seem to be very traditional right wing populist views

Right, exactly. American homophobes would like religious people to not be coerced into catering gay wedding ceremonies using state violence, therefore their views are similar to Muslim homophobes who support the death penalty for gays. Just like how the NYT tried to blame the homophobia of Omar Mateen (a Muslim registered-Democrat) on American Republicans, without even mentioning Islam. Apparently in the Clown World of 21st-century braindead liberals, Omar Mateen decided to massacre gays while listening to Rush Limbaugh or something.

A sane liberal might acknowledge that the political views of western conservatives and liberals are a lot closer to each other than they are to those of most of the Muslims in the world, and that therefore they have a mutual vested interest in keeping sane border controls. In reality Liberals don’t seem to care that their 3rd world immigrant pets have fundamentally incompatible values (and increasingly so, each generation in the Muslim world has *more* reactionary views, and even relatively moderate countries like Turkey are backsliding) as long as they keep voting for left-wing parties that offer them welfare benefits and eventual demographic conquest.

54 ChrisA June 19, 2016 at 10:08 am

@Tokarev – but the American homophobes are only asking for these diluted rights rather than, say, the right to kill gays, because of liberal society. I mean just a few years back it was fairly common to jail or severely punish homosexuals in the West just like many of these “Muslims” would like.

To a libertarian atheist wouldn’t both the caricatured muslim and Sailerists views look pretty similar? The only difference being the Sailerists have gone through some conditioning by society so they don’t make their demands as extreme as the caricatured muslim ones.

55 Cliff June 19, 2016 at 11:33 am

Absolutely not. I am a liberatarian atheist and the two views could not be more opposed. Sailer is a citizenist not a racist or bigot. There is absolutely zero chance of Sailer ever advocating or wanting to kill gays or legally punish them in any way. Conservative Muslim ideology is inherently bigoted and sexist.

56 anon June 19, 2016 at 12:15 pm

Cliff, imagine yourself a more independent thinker, and less an enabler.

Something overtly racist only pops from Sailer 5-10% of the time. His enablers dutifully sweep it under the carpet. I guess they need to, to believe that the other 90-95% doesn’t come from the same place.

57 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 11:21 am

I didn’t know that the cops came around to beat the snot out of the proudly discriminatory bakers.

Jesus would have baked the cake.

58 Cliff June 19, 2016 at 11:35 am

You really think he would have? Is this the same guy who was flipping over tables screaming at moneychangers?

59 derek June 19, 2016 at 12:02 pm

What happens to those people if they don’t pay the fines?

60 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 4:15 pm

Cliff – Well, technically, I don’t think he knew how to bake cakes. But the stories present him as a pretty non-judgmental guy. He certainly wouldn’t have gone around parading prideful discrimination. The specific example would be that he let Mary Magdolin touch him, which the prudes thought was a disgrace to even so much as speak with, let alone consort with, people who didn’t follow the ways of the Pharisees.

The story about the money changers, etc. at the temple was completely different. Assuming that the story is roughly reflects what actually happened (a generation or two after the fact of it happening), probably is had a lot to do with the massive hypocrisy of the priest class going around damning people for all manner of trivial things and then breaking laws about commerce, temples and the sabbath.

derek – if they don’t pay the fines, their money can disappear from their accounts and they can declare bankruptcy. I guess the power to do so originates from the electorally determined power of the state, including slower-changing appointments of judges, etc., by elected officials.

This isn’t at all like that elected official who categorically refused to perform her statutorily mandated job.

61 asdf June 20, 2016 at 12:24 am

Jesus never condones sins at any point during his ministry. He says he loves people in spite of the sins, that he offers them forgiveness for sins, and that if they accept his grace he will give them the strength to combat sin.

He doesn’t say that sin isn’t sin. It would be like saying up is really down. Even in his stories of forgiveness he says to people “go forth an sin no more.”

One of the biggest lessons of Jesus’s ministry is trying to teach people that they are sinners. His biggest opponents deny they are sinners. His own disciples are told they will sin and deny it. Much like active homosexuals deny they are sinners today.

However lovingly he would phrase it, Christ would not say that sin isn’t really sin. This would be a self refuting concept.

62 stephan June 19, 2016 at 4:50 am

There is no paradox . Hispanics make up 17% of the US population and Muslims only 1%. Hispanics are Christians and integrate much better. If 17% of the US population was Muslim it would look very different.

Islam is a very different system of religion and governance Christians don’t think Muhammad is a prophet, don’t practice Jihad, don’t pray to Mecca 5 times a day and don’t veil their women in a hijab or Burqa. Christians don’t believe non believers should be subjugated, that underage girls should be married, that women have no say in choosing their husband, that men can beat their wives, that the testimony of a woman is only worth 1/2 of a man, that Sharia law precedes secular law, that gays should be killed,. These beliefs are fairly common among Muslims. Christians don’t think cartoonists who mock a prophet should be killed ( a large proportion of Muslims do).

In France, Muslims are ~10% of the population. Most Muslims think of themselves as Muslims before being French, it’s their uber-identity, most of them are not interested in integrating but want dis-assimilation. Segregation is not a fate endured by immigrants but a project hatched by them ! In Muslims no go areas the problem is not that police is outgunned there but that the residents will resist any policing no matter how mild. They have seized territory, they want Islamic enclaves in the West that will grow over time through population growth. Integration is a dream of the liberal west not a plan of the Muslim immigrants.

After WW2 France had significant immigration from Italy, Spain and Poland. Nobody talked about second generation immigrants then. They did not have to because this second generation disappeared into the melting pot. We are now at 3rd generation Muslim immigrants and the melting pot dream is further than ever.

Liberals and Libertarians are the “useful idiots” ; they have a naive benign view of Islam. They think they can assimilate it, reform it, control it, dilute it, render it harmless, Islam may look liberal and tolerant at first when weak, but increasingly becomes violent when strong

63 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 11:25 am

And most Christians think of themselves as Christian before …. whatever nationality they are.

As a Christian point blank: “What’s more important to who you are. Being Christian or being American/Canadian/British…”.

The one who puts nationality before religion wouldn’t be much of a Christian, would they?

64 Cliff June 19, 2016 at 11:37 am

Christianity is not a political religion. “Render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s”

65 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 4:18 pm

“Christianity is not a political religion”

And that’s why Europe convulsed in widespread bloodshed for hundreds of years over … nothing to do with religion? Thankfully, you are much less wrong than you would have been in the past in saying such a thing.

Question: If Christianity is not a political religion, then please discuss the electoral chances of an avowed atheist in an American presidential election, with special attention to their prospects among Christian voters.

66 The Original D June 19, 2016 at 4:19 pm

Tell that Roy Moore.

67 Andao June 19, 2016 at 1:32 pm

Isn’t the problem with specific areas where Muslims happen to live? Trumpians seem to put Indonesian and Malaysian Muslim immigrants in the same bucket as those from other countries, when the Southeast Asian immigrants seem to have assimilated very well. Perhaps there are problems with specific geographies, but saying all Muslims have a proclivity towards certain characteristics is excessively broad.

68 asdf June 20, 2016 at 12:28 am

They say Muslim because they can’t say Arab/Central Asian.

Well let me be fair. It’s a mixture of religion, culture, and genetics that makes the toxic stew.

Also, when most people think of immigration they think of mass immigration of third world peasants. Usually through some makeshift way due to close geographic proximity. No peasant is floating on a raft from Southeast Asia to Europe. It’s pretty commonly known that if someone immigrates through legal channels, came by plane, and had the money to afford all that they are probably from the talented tenth of wherever they are from.

69 Sam Dickerson June 19, 2016 at 2:24 am

Religion is a free will choice influenced by parents. I stress Free Will because a casual glance at history shows generations choosing other options by choice. Atheism wouldn’t exist if each person followed their parents.

The Center of Christianity started in Jerusalem. By Free Will, not upbringing, it moved to Antioch and Alexandria. It moved to Constantinople and Rome. The Center of Christianity moved to North America. It now resides in South America and Africa. Next generation, it will be China. Not by parentage, by the decisions of individuals. My father’s religion was money, but he had children whom choose different vocations.

70 Alistair June 19, 2016 at 4:11 am

Yeah. Good luck exercising your “free will” choice for anything but Islam if your parents were Islamic and you come from an Islamic country. After you’re socially ostracised, they’ll regretfully stone you to death.

Even in the west, intergenerational Islamic transmission is something like 97%. The social pressures (and fair degree of domestic violence) see to that.

71 Blaise June 19, 2016 at 4:51 am

“Atheism wouldn’t exist if each person followed their parents.”

Or religion wouldn’t exist maybe. It depends how far back you go and what were the views of first humans on this.

72 Sam Dickerson June 19, 2016 at 8:57 am

Exactly , I agree. Complex religious systems cannot exist as a deterministic cultural transmission from parents. Anything more complex than the ‘fight or flight’ response from the para-sympathetic nervous system would require some amount of intelligence. even reluctant Muslims make the rational choice ‘i don’t want the death penalty so I Will be a Muslim’.

73 Anon June 19, 2016 at 12:12 pm

You mean sympathetic nervous system? Parasympathetic is “rest and digest”.

74 Keith June 19, 2016 at 2:34 am

Is this Tyler’s attempt at a heartwarming Father’s Day post?

75 Zeitgeisty June 19, 2016 at 4:46 am

TC may well object to Father’s day because it does not reflect morally correct radical individualism. If fathers treat their children differently than the children of a stranger, then why not extend the preferences to one’s own community or nation at the expense of other communities or nations?

76 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 11:30 am

Does it benefit one’s community to hold negative attitudes towards others?

77 Cliff June 19, 2016 at 11:38 am

If they are warranted

78 derek June 19, 2016 at 12:11 pm

It always has, and that is why these things are intractable.

You are the brilliant atheist with knowledge of cultural evolution. Tell me why it has always been rational to fear strangers and to gather with those familiar to you?

If you can’t quite get your mind around it, it was a survival advantage. Likely if you ventured outside to unfamiliar places you would be considered a threat, have your belongings or life taken, or as a woman taken as a sex slave if you were lucky, raped and killed if not.

Societies advanced and developed cultural norms that cared for strangers, always with an eye on self protection.

We have it pretty good now, there has been a cultural assumption of security and the respect for basic laws of human conduct. They break down very quickly when the other however defined conducts themselves in a way that is either considered a threat or directly a threat. That survival advantage kicks in with a vengeance, no matter how often Obama pontificates, and creates divisions in the fragile fabric of society.

Understanding and appreciating this should be the fundamental basis of an immigration policy. There will be ugly things happen, but if done well, moderately and with the assumption that the newcomers will integrate with the existing it can work very well indeed.

But I don’t trust the current immigration enthusiasts. It is far easier to call people racist and bulldoze over their objections than to act in a rational way. We are beginning to see the collapse of that model, as we are seeing the collapse of the globalization model. For the same reason.

79 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 4:24 pm

I don’t think it’s rational to fear strangers. For starters, we don’t live in the bush any more and I’m not walking a theif mafia infested road.

One of the fastest ways to get into trouble in an unknown neighbourhood is to start walking around like you fear everyone.

Like, don’t be dumb. You don’t give full trust to just about anyone. But assuming 100% distrust of people you know nothing about? It can lead nowhere but to trouble.

I sort of get your point about the role in survival in the caveman era or even later. But in this day and age, assuming that mistrust is a good survival strategy is more likely to end up in grief than anything. Unless you’re in an environment where there are obvious signals that you have to watch out carefully at every second for every possible threatening motion. But such a situation could only result from brainwashing-induced paranoia and faux-survivalist “ethics” – we would all be far worse off were such practices and views to proliferate.

80 Curvy lines June 19, 2016 at 2:41 am

The CIA Factbook shows that Christians outnumber Communist Party members. To think they will decline in number is folly.

81 Thor June 19, 2016 at 5:48 am

True, but after 1989, it thankfully became for any but the most diehard and fervent to continue to hold their views.

82 Thor June 19, 2016 at 5:49 am

I was joking (above)

83 Asher June 19, 2016 at 3:09 am

Let me explain.

According to the model of rationality favored by the economics profession, people do (positive) and should (normative) choose their cars, jobs, dwellings, spouses and so on based on the utility these amenities provide, compared to the costs they incur.

If we are to be consistent, we should also affirm that people do and should choose their beliefs based on the utility they provide and the costs they incur. People who have any other basis for choosing beliefs are acting irrationally according to the (admittedly risible) axioms of this approach to social science.

Another characteristic of economists is that they tend to admire and follow the teachings of Adam Smith. Adam Smith explicitly affirmed a “psychological comfort” theory of belief adoption. So here is another reason that our orthodox marginalists should favor this approach.

There are many reasons that one belief system might provide more utility than another. It might be in currency with people I like to associate with for other reasons, or perhaps there is simply a desire to share beliefs with others (network externality). This could also be instrumental e.g. helps people synchronize expectations. A belief system can also be more or less beautiful. Some belief systems are frankly ugly and repugnant and there I see no reason a rational person should adopt one of these.

Adopting a belief because it is held in common with people we love provides extensive utility and is hence ipso facto rational. Most people get utility from passing beliefs on to their children, and adopting beliefs because they are held by our parents is likely to increase the chances that we in turn will succeed in passing our beliefs on to our children.

It follows that nothing could be more rational than adopting religious beliefs because our parents affirmed them,

I think that most of humanity through most of history understood these insights quite intuitively. I hope I have been successful in explaining it to the rest.

84 Pensans June 19, 2016 at 3:11 am

This is pretty thin gruel. Extreme right wing? Religion is just a cultural transmission. Standard village atheist, university liberal fluff.

Cowen’s rationalistic atheism and universalism is much more extreme and is found almost exclusively among people living in a very narrow slice of privilged populatons in the West.

85 Alistair June 19, 2016 at 4:16 am

Cowen’s problem is he often doesn’t recognise how unusual his position is, and how profoundly strong countervailing forces are in much of human society and history. Economist really do seem to have a bit of a blind spot with culture.

Less forgivable is his snobbery in not recognising that in other equilibria those “bad beliefs” he deplores may even be rational.

86 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 11:34 am

I think you overestimate how many people agree with you to an even greater degree than TC might.

87 Cliff June 19, 2016 at 11:40 am


88 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 4:26 pm

He seems to suggest that basically everyone is the opposite of the position he paints TC into.

Maybe in some communities in the USA. Honestly, I think TC is quite aware of his relative situation, but Pensans is extrapolating from an isolated social situation where he only meets people like himself and runs into “whacko atheists” online.

89 Mazirian June 19, 2016 at 3:40 am

Here’s a link that works for me. They claim to be studying “the importance of parental socialization on the development of children’s far right-wing preferences and attitudes towards immigration”, but of course they cannot do that as, lacking a genetically informative study design, they cannot separate genetic effects from socialization effects. They admit as much in the paper even if the abstract readily lends itself to the sort of misinterpretation Tyler perpetuates.

The transmission of attitudes within families has been studied using behavioral genetic methods, and the results for immigration are similar to other political attitudes: genetic effects predominate while shared environmental effects are modest or non-existent.

90 prior_test2 June 19, 2016 at 3:42 am

‘genetic effects predominate’

So Prof. Cowen’s hope to improve the world through designer babies is rooted in science. How encouraging that must be, for a certain mindset.

91 Tokarev June 19, 2016 at 3:50 am

So there is a correlation in political views between parent and child. Naturally this means conservative views–but not left-liberal views–should be called into question. This makes no sense whatsoever, but neither does anything about this Jim Jones era of suicide cult leftism.

92 Blaise June 19, 2016 at 4:57 am

“Compared to the intergenerational correlation of other party affinities, the high association between fathers’ and sons’ right-wing extremist attitudes is particularly striking.”

That’s the key sentence to understand what Cowen means.

93 suicide cult leftist June 19, 2016 at 11:02 am

Shhh. Don’t dispel his narrative. It’s all that keeps him going at this point.

94 Cliff June 19, 2016 at 11:42 am

What were the left-wing extremist parties they included?

95 derek June 19, 2016 at 12:14 pm

Left wing extremists don’t have kids. Solves that problem.

96 Open-Minded Liberal June 19, 2016 at 4:21 am

As a liberal, I don’t believe things just because my parents believed them. I believe them because my college professors believed them. That’s why I have sane, purely rational-empirical beliefs in The Blank Slate, Freudian/Lacanian psychoanalysis, the heroism of Che Guevara, Gaian ecology, and the impending destruction of the world by Global Warming.

97 Thor June 19, 2016 at 5:54 am

Ironically there’s nothing blank-slate ish about Freud, who had a robust theory of human nature (cross cultural dispositions), even if he was wacky. That such a thoroughgoing skeptic should be lumped in with postmodernist social constructionists is amusing, or depressing, or both.

98 Zeitgeisty June 19, 2016 at 7:25 am


99 kb June 19, 2016 at 8:23 am

In addition to Straussian, we should add Swiftian to our modifiers at this site,

100 Clear-Minded Rightist June 19, 2016 at 11:04 am

You idiot. Don’t you know a person’s skin tone is the only thing that matters about him?

101 Cliff June 19, 2016 at 11:43 am

I saw a pretty dark-skinned white guy down at the beach. I asked him to go get me a towel

102 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 11:37 am

Did you know that black and white thinking is a strong predictor of being easily brainwashable?

Think for yourself. Remarkably few college professors teach any of the things you mention, with the exception of the obvious fact that C02 is a greenhouse gas and the likely global warming will impose very real costs on a lot of people.

103 sam the sham June 19, 2016 at 2:40 pm

Nathan… do you link to your thought control conspiracy papers ironically? The most effective brainwashing I’ve seen has come from moral relativists comfortable with shades of grey. Everything is grey, of course, nothing is perfect. The black becomes grey, the white becomes grey, everything is the same. Now that you have false moral equivalence, you can be persuaded to do anything.

I could use some spare cash myself. How much does professional trolling pay these days, Nate?

104 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 4:29 pm

If you have any specific criticisms of the scientific literature presented there, please be explicit. Most of it refers to long-established science, things which are been repeatedly demonstrated for over 40 years and which are actively being researched in diverse civilian and non-civilian outlets.

And, I emphasize, “thought control” is the completely wrong term because the term itself suggests that there is no way around it once they “get you”. “Thought influencing technologies” is much more accurate. You can be manipulated, externally influenced, but not forced.

105 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 4:32 pm

Wow. That was some fancy footwork.

Black is grey. White is grey. Now black and white are both the same and neither exists.

But I am the troll.

Question: Would you support a law that required disclosure of the paying organization for people paid to post online? My opinion is that heavy penalities should be levied against those who pay and/or accept money to manipulate public opinion online without disclosing the source of the funds.

But if you know anywhere that’s willing to pay me money to write wtf I want, please let me know.

106 Sam the Sham June 19, 2016 at 9:10 pm

Nate/Troll Me:

No, I did a casual review of your thought control conspiracy link, and it all looks technically accurate, much like Jade Helm, Benghazi, the New World Order and the Bilderburg Group. It’s difficult to take most of that too seriously. As far as paid trolling, this very blog had a few TC posts about Russian troll farms, I believe – and of course major corps and the US does the same. Considering the caliber of the readers of this blog, it wouldn’t be a waste of effort for someone to astroturf it.

Our last encounter you were defending the obvious idiocy of gender studies. “Remarkably few college professors teach any of the things you mention”, you say now, and you were defending professors espousing nonsense then. You can’t have it both ways. You are performing what I’m calling the Two-Step – you hold one Reasonable Position in one thread, and another Reasonable Position in another, and dance between the two if anyone calls you on it*. Krugman and Christopher Hitchens are both masters of it. Krugman is intelligent, but who really thinks he ever argues in good faith anymore?

Look, Nate, you’re a sharp cookie. I love a good Devil’s Advocate, which I think is what you’re aspiring to. You’re coming across as someone, paid or not (good mind-controlled subjects don’t need to be paid, that’s why you mind control them! jeez!), astroturfing. There’s of course no reason you should care about some stranger on the internet’s opinion of you, beyond the fact I do my best to be honest, but… be honest and consistent, and if you break ranks with your beliefs for the sake of argument, perhaps make note of that in your post. I’ve gotten the point where I expect more sincere and honest posting from mulp than you, for pete’s sake. He’s usually consistent with himself, and I respect him when I disagree with him (which is frequently).

And to your question, I’m not sure I would support a law requiring disclosure of astroturfers, although libel laws should be more easily enforceable. I also support Citizen’s United for a similar reason. It doesn’t matter how much Hillary spends on advertising, she’s not getting my vote, so she can just spend away. Bad ideas can wander into the ring all they like, good ideas will endure.

*An imperfect example. Last year was a movie called Gods of Egypt, with white actors. This year will be a movie called Ghostbusters (Reboot) with ladies as the leading characters. Reasonable Stance A is “Be faithful to the source”, and Reasonable Stance B is “It’s just a movie, don’t think too hard about it, and enjoy it or don’t”. A good ideologue will go to Stance A for Gods of Egypt, and then to Stance B for Ghostbusters. Either stance is ok, but our culture is being reshaped with contradictions. You should add it to your Mind Domination Rulebook, if this post had no other merit for you.

107 Sam the Sham June 20, 2016 at 5:50 pm

Nate, are you going to run away again? Or are you looking for another rational discussion to disrupt and sow chaos?

I’d love to have a good discussion with Nate, but you’re only giving us Wormtongue.

108 Thomas June 19, 2016 at 3:03 pm

He is mocking the thinking of people like you, Bill, and Barkley Rosser.

109 Chris Krofferon June 19, 2016 at 4:28 am

My story is very much the opposite; I was raised by kindly, loving, open parents who taught me that racism was just about the worst thing that existed. But only on my own path of intellectual discovery did I come to realize that, despite their good intentions, reality is more complicated. The differences between ethnic groups are substantial and have meaningful consequences on just about every aspect of life: work, politics, education, crime-ridden vs. nice neighborhoods, etc. I still actively remind myself that every individual is an individual, and that you can’t use stereotypes to judge person A or B without knowing more about them. And yet, when you look at a map of the world, or open any newspaper anywhere, it’s clear that biology and different evolutionary paths explain just about everything, and have done for centuries.

110 Blaise June 19, 2016 at 5:02 am

Actually the world is even more complicated and biology doesn’t explain everything.

111 So Much For Subtlety June 19, 2016 at 5:29 am


Yet again Left wing academic (to repeat myself) studies only exist to separate the smugly self righteous would-be intellectuals from the mass of peasants.

112 Clear-Minded Rightist June 19, 2016 at 11:06 am

Well thank God we’ve got the smug internet commentariat to counterbalance it.

113 Jan June 19, 2016 at 8:10 pm

Someone should study your particular syndrome of factlessness and almost exclusively vitriolic views on the world.

114 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 11:41 am

Actually, it’s mostly history and stuff.

But if your white supremacist friends have convinced you otherwise, then, dear white flower with your silk smooth skin and superior self, just might not be open to considering that history and geography, not biology, explains most of how things are different between places.

115 Cliff June 19, 2016 at 11:46 am

As if you know. History is independent of the people who lived it? News to me. Go tell Jay Man about his lily white skin I’m sure he will be amused. Just another progressive shutting down discussion with the Racism hammer

116 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 4:36 pm

Cliff said “progressive”. Ergo the other guy is wrong.

As usual, I take a non black and white position, you push me into either black and white, and then purport that I’m the one engaging in simplistic thinking.

117 nomenym June 19, 2016 at 12:05 pm

“Actually, it’s mostly history and stuff.”

Just mostly? Not all? Are you implying that some observed differences between groups are biological? If so, how much? Even if these differences are mostly an accident of history and stuff, does that mean we should ignore the extent to which they’re not? For example, if you’re implying that part of the reason (though not most of the reason) why some groups exhibit greater crime and corruption is because of genetics, then shouldn’t you expect immigrants from such groups, on the margin, to bring with them that propensity for crime and corruption? Even if these effects are relatively small, should they not be considered?

Even if you believe these genetic effects are small (explaining perhaps 5% of the differences between groups), how confident are you that people who expect larger effects are wrong? At what point does believing in these effects become “racist”? 5%, 20%, 50%? Given behavioral genetics research, shouldn’t it be reasonable to expect these effects, alongside “history and stuff”, to be significant?

118 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 4:35 pm

Maybe they are in the opposite direction to what you expect?

I assume they are exceedingly small. Not very relevant. But I’m not the kind of dumbass that will claim empirical credibility when the information simply does not exist (ignoring the multiplicity of “research” which fails 1st year stats principles).

119 nomenym June 19, 2016 at 9:53 pm

OMG you’re so racist!

120 Jan June 19, 2016 at 8:09 pm

I’d say most people struggle to not be racist in some subtle way or another, or at least not stereotyping people. Of course when you actually embrace the idea of racism that all goes out the window, and you will have a very hard time judging each person as an individual–no matter how many times your remind yourself.

121 Chris Hansen June 19, 2016 at 4:45 am

Me too and I’m a life long Democratic voter with lefty parents. I flipped a couple of years ago when it became apparent to me that the left were basically ends justify the means Marxists. Maybe I just got old and want the kids off my lawn.

122 Chris Hansen June 19, 2016 at 4:53 am

Oh shit. It’s a trap.

123 Roy LC June 19, 2016 at 5:02 am

Being right wing in Germany is different from being right wing in the United States, and in Germany it meant different things in say 1976, 1996, and 2016. Interestingly in the US it does as well but not in a remotely comparable way, and also much of the modern US right, outside of the US South did not have grandparents who were on the right.

124 Massimo Heitor June 19, 2016 at 9:57 am

I’d be interested to hear what these differences are. Clearly, “right” is a highly fluid meaning. All major parties of Japan are far more immigration restrictionist than the “far right” of US or Europe. Does this make all of Japan super extreme right?

125 Roy LC June 20, 2016 at 7:48 am

Right means on the right of a particular nation’s political spectrum, and it does not necessarily involve immigration at all. Labor unions are very very rarely on the right, but are not infrequently over the past two to three generations found opposing immigration.

126 Thor June 19, 2016 at 6:05 am

Where do pragmatic, moderate, small-c healthily skeptical conservative immigration views come from? Or does Tyler believe that any talk of restricted immigration is racist?

127 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 11:45 am

The option to pose everything in black and white is always available.

If you would like to portray a moderate non-open borders position with immigration restrictions that doesn’t involve extensive hateful invective, and which perhaps even demonstrates potential (or even seemingly real) respect towards other groups, then I don’t think you’d be representing the sort of viewpoint referred to in the article.

128 Cliff June 19, 2016 at 11:48 am

Maybe you don’t think so, but our progressive elite would. After all I am in favor of essentially Canadian immigration policy but apparently I’m super-racist or something?

129 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 4:37 pm

I think it’s the part where you basically say “black people are inferior” that leads people to call you racist, not the part where you support Canadian-style immigration policy.

130 Genauer June 19, 2016 at 6:43 am
131 rayward June 19, 2016 at 6:54 am

That religion is mostly inherited from parents is understandable – believing in a creator and supreme being is so irrational that it can only come from attachment to parents – and I suppose right-wing views are mostly inherited for the same reason: they are so irrational that they can only come from attachment to parents. [Caveat: in the US, right-wing has become synonymous with conservative, at least it has since 1980 (some would say 1964), although this year may expose the distinction.]

132 Genauer June 19, 2016 at 7:30 am

The US is a somewhat outsider with your two-party system

To paint conservatives as “right wing” is also very common in the European multi-party political landscape, mostly by left-green journalists, who are actually the “mainstream” of the published opinion.

The 20 – 30% left wing folks love to paint the 50% (FPÖ) or 67% (orban in hungary) parties as “right extremist”

In contrast, DVU, NDP were really very right wing in Germany, and without a chance to ever get over the 5% hurdle into parliament. REP was different.

133 bjk June 19, 2016 at 7:07 am

Anti-immigration is a low-status opinion, so it needs some impetus to resist herd thinking and higher-status positions. The fact that so many people are against immigration despite it’s very low status, that indicates that it is a sincerely held opinion. Tyler and his open borderists hold a high status opinion, that should make him think twice about why he holds the opinion he does.

But it doesn’t really matter, the open borderists will be living in armed compounds ala South Africa in a few generations, so we will find out who was right.

134 chuck martel June 19, 2016 at 8:42 pm

No, it doesn’t matter because neither you nor anyone else can predict the future or has the right to determine it personally. In a few short years everyone writing these comments or reading this blog will have been interred or cremated. The people of the future will deal with their problems according to their own wishes and capabilities and won’t be listening to the advice or directions of their ancestors. Eat, drink and be happy for tomorrow you die.

135 M June 19, 2016 at 7:12 am

Wrong-thinking is easier for people with a supportive parent, I expect.

To have the ‘rents think you’re a godless savage Communist is bad, I guess, but not near so bad as having them think you’re a godless racist.

In our societies today, being a Communist or an No Borders fanatic is seen as only a little bit wrong thinking, while being a heavy immigration restrictionist is double-plus un-good extra-“problematic” wrongthinking.

People will avoid stressing the parent-child relationship, I think, and particularly if they’re the types to actually feel some measure of loyalty to their people.

So there’s much less freedom to think freely for yourself than on other topics. It’s a symptom of the ideological conformity on the topic imposed by the Left and the socially Centre-Left international Establishment.

136 Cliff June 19, 2016 at 11:49 am

Agree with this

137 Bob June 19, 2016 at 8:20 am

As far as parents go, remember the one of the seminal verses of Judaism and Christianity was “I am the God of thy father, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” Pretty much all of the Old Testament centers around a familial covenant between God and the descendants of a single family. In the New Testament, there are likewise “For the promise is unto you, and to your children, and to all that are afar off, even as many as the Lord our God shall call.”

Most Christian theologies have long maintained that parental transmission is the typical way that God reveals himself.

Frankly, when it comes to beliefs and parents, the inability of atheists to retain the next generation strikes me as much more difficult data point. After all, 60% of kids raised by atheists will adopt some faith at some point in time in the US. Globally, atheism is even poorer at maintaining itself through the generations. China, Russia, Eastern Europe, Cuba, and many other places that had generational atheism enforced by state power for generations saw massive swings back to professed belief in God in recent decades due to liberalization or revolution. When you have atheist parents raising atheist children with an atheist state overseeing their education, I cannot see many more favorable conditions for transmitting a “true” belief, but the most dramatic decline in world atheism happened nonetheless.

138 Joël June 19, 2016 at 8:52 am

Do you have figures or sources for the “dramatic decline in atheism” you say happened?

I don’t see that in Europe, except perhaps in the part of it that was communist,
but then it is likely an artifact, for the very low figures of religious faith under the communism are not reliable.

139 Sam Dickerson June 19, 2016 at 9:07 am

In cases where Atheism is enforced by the state then relaxed, you will observe a dramatic decline in atheism.

140 Joël June 19, 2016 at 9:55 am

Yes, that’s my point. But this is a one-time event which may have happened only in part of Europe. Besides this, is there
any other evidence of decline in Atheism in Europe?

141 Bob June 19, 2016 at 11:00 pm

As noted, the outright atheist declines comes mostly in Eastern Europe: Latvia, Hungary, Ukraine, and the other former communist states. Pretty much everywhere that forced people to adopt atheism in the 20th century saw a dramatic drop in the number of self-identified atheists (pretty much only Estonia, East Germany, and the Czech Republic are the only exceptions). After having multiple generations of atheist transmission and state coercion we must conclude that atheism is either not a naturally logical proposition or that logical propositions are no more likely to take root and thrive in populations than non-logical one.

Things get murkier outside of areas of communist indoctrination, but the important thing to remember is that atheism is a different animal from irreligion (of which it is a member). Europe is seeing a surge in people who are irreligious, but not necessarily self-identifying atheists. http://www.science20.com/writer_on_the_edge/blog/atheism_peaks_while_spiritual_groups_move_toward_convergence-156528 is a pretty deep dive into the numbers, but suffice it to say it does look like the world hit peak atheism a while ago and is not currently experiencing a resurgence.

Atheism, as specific category outside of “none” or “nothing in particular” seems to have a pretty poor long term prognosis and I would be very unwilling to suggest that we should evaluate any set of beliefs based on demographics. Strict atheism is terrible under this metric and any rigorous weighting of belief transmission is going to end up favoring Christianity, Islam or some variant thereof (e.g Mormonism).

142 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 11:49 am

Judaism and Christianity are different religions.

You could start by looking up the meaning and usage of the word “Catholic” for a perspective on why a lot of people wouldn’t consider your perspective as very relevant.

143 Joël June 19, 2016 at 8:41 am

Your reasoning here, Tyler, is completely flawed, and that’s clear even without reading the paper.

If the anti-immigration attitude that is studied is defined in a very restricted way, such that only a small minority of the population holds it, then the correlation says something but about very few people, probably almost no one on this website.
If that anti-immigration attitude is defined in a large and inclusive way, and its proportion stays relatively constant, then this means obviously that the pro-immigration attitude is also heritable and then judging the values of one or the other based on their heritability is non-sense.

Actually what the observes in the last generation is certainly a rise of the anti-immigration attitude (everywhere I look, France, UK, USA, close to half the population has hostile views to immigration), so there has to be many people who are now anti-immigration and whose parent were pro=immigration; there doesn’t have to be so many people the other way around.

As for me, my parents are pro-immigration (my father a long-time member of the French socialist party), my four grand-parents were all immigrants to France (from Tunisia, Germany and Romania), I am myself an immigrant from France to the US, and I still have somewhat favorable views on immigration in general, but I strongly oppose the massive immigration of “refugees” from the Middle East to Europe. In the US, I don’t think this is nearly as critical a problem, but a ban on that immigration would be a good signal sent to Europe, and for that reason I also support it.

144 nomenym June 19, 2016 at 10:42 am

“Actually what the observes in the last generation is certainly a rise of the anti-immigration attitude (everywhere I look, France, UK, USA, close to half the population has hostile views to immigration), so there has to be many people who are now anti-immigration and whose parent were pro=immigration; there doesn’t have to be so many people the other way around.”

I suspect that peoples’ views haven’t actually changed much, but that what counts as pro- and anti-immigration has shifted. Elite academic, media, and political opinion has become more pro-immigration, so what used to be moderate opinion is now being labeled as right wing extremism. These days, far-left pro-immigration views aren’t just about supporting open-borders, but outright encouraging and celebrating the marginalization of peoples and cultures of white European origin. Moreover, a lot of people who seemingly have far right-wing views (e.g. build a wall and send them home) aren’t really all that anti-immigration in principle, but just believe there has been too much immigration for too long, and so a correction is needed in the other direction.

145 Joël June 19, 2016 at 2:30 pm

Yes, I think what you say is right.

146 David Pinto June 19, 2016 at 8:51 am

So it’s genetics, like everything else.

147 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 11:56 am

Yes, indoctrinating children occurs via genetic means.

Did you get that perspective via genetic means? Or just ignorance about genetics and viewpoint transmission?

148 anon June 19, 2016 at 1:03 pm

Good as a joke, if it is a joke.

And it must be. A baseball guy could never miss that a planet than play the game is not really divided in any meaningful way.

149 SweetPea June 19, 2016 at 9:49 am

why would an anti-immigration stance be “extreme right wing”? Why wouldn’t it simply be a political position just as pro-immigration is? Why would anyone believe ONLY those on the right object to massive or even minimal immigration? Why is immigration good? We each as taxpayers have to pay for each immigrant and their children for a couple of generations. Is that fair? Why shouldn’t pro-immigration people foot the entire bill? Many immigrants have serious communicable diseases and our own government is placing them into our communities without any notice of either the placement or the diseases. If your children catch TB and you object to it are you “extreme right wing”? If you are extreme left wing are you immune to these diseases???

150 Troll me June 19, 2016 at 11:59 am

Are you arguing for a 500,000 annual cap or to gun them down at the border? Somewhere in between? How about 2 million a year?

“Extreme” is a thing.

151 Steve M June 19, 2016 at 10:07 am

You get almost everything from your parents, from language to ability to reason, to fundamental understanding of the world. Why single out feelings about immigration as somehow untrustworthy? There must be something wrong with this Cowen fellow: has anyone checked his passport?

152 That's the fun part June 19, 2016 at 10:26 am

Language and reason are complex and I don’t think you are given the capacity for them from your parents. If that was the case my father was cruel because he had a son and a dog. He decided to give only one of us the ability to speak and reason.

153 Cliff June 19, 2016 at 11:52 am

Okay, but according to this study “far-right” party membership is even more likely than other things to be transmitted inter-generationally. So that is why it should be especially suspect.

154 Neo-falangist June 19, 2016 at 10:25 am

Meh. One can also look around the world and see where things work better. Take extreme right-winger Justin Trudeau’s Canada for example, a country that deports its illegals and is sparing of its refugee approvals. Objectively better results than those in the anarchic, anti-white, hate based immigration system of the US.. http://news.nationalpost.com/full-comment/f-h-buckley-youre-more-conservative-than-you-think

155 The Other Jim June 19, 2016 at 11:07 am

What percentage of the US population is “anti-immigrant”? It’s a very tiny number in the single digits. You are asking a very moot, pointless question.

Unless of course you were referring to people who merely want existing laws enforced. That is, you believe that just wanting to have a border is an “extreme right-wing anti-immigration” sentiment.

Which would make you clinically retarded.

156 Joël June 19, 2016 at 2:33 pm

I tried to make the same point in a comment above, but you’re’doing it much more eloquently.

157 Art Deco June 19, 2016 at 11:11 am

The moderator finds it a revelation that one’s father influences one’s views on politics and religion?

This of course should make you less confident of your anti-immigrant views, if indeed you hold them.

Why? My father was shrewd. The cretins employed by the Mercatus Center are not.

158 anon June 19, 2016 at 11:58 am

My dad taught school in the inner city, I aspire to his “kids are kids” lack of prejudice.

159 The Anti-Gnostic June 19, 2016 at 2:31 pm

Your dad is a naive fool.

160 anon June 19, 2016 at 3:28 pm

35 years in inner city schools probably doesn’t leave anyone naive. And all my dad, his friends I met, never stopped liking the kids.

161 The Anti-Gnostic June 19, 2016 at 4:14 pm

Kids aren’t a physical threat. They are easy to like and have neotenous features to trigger paternal instinct.

162 anon June 19, 2016 at 6:47 pm

By school, I mean junior high, and high. There were gangs, and my dad did supervise armed security, but as everywhere most kids are good. Most aren’t in gangs.

163 Tyler's Dad June 19, 2016 at 11:11 am

Look, I apologize to everyone for Tyler’s opinions. It isn’t his fault.

164 Cliff June 19, 2016 at 11:53 am

Ha ha!

165 anon June 19, 2016 at 1:00 pm

How about Tyrone’s opinions?

166 anon June 19, 2016 at 11:56 am

If you grow up in a California town with a Spanish name, it is hard to think you are growing up in any kind of New Europe.

Actually “Hacienda Heights” is the kind of Spanglish word that you come to think defines a chunky melting pot. You’d have to be kind of a jerk to grow up there and not know you were the newcomer.

La Puente, the next town over, had a rougher reputation, and a name that I think dates to the Portolá expedition.

167 anon June 19, 2016 at 12:08 pm

Oh, “Hacienda Heights” now has the largest Buddhist temple in North America.

I can remember a few parents fighting that, but most people thought they were weird. The temple cancelled plans for the 7 story Budda though, which was sad.

Still, pretty good cultural mixing.

168 ad June 19, 2016 at 1:00 pm

This of course should make you less confident of your anti-immigrant view

But, of course, it shouldn’t make me less confident of PRO-immigrant views, because there is no chance they come from other people. No sir, not at all.

169 anon June 19, 2016 at 1:08 pm

As someone above said, it was a trap. And many put their foot in the loop.

Rather than say “sure, people are people, but we can still use a points system to get good applicants” many just fell for it. They defended the racism instead.

Maybe I shouldn’t be too proud though, I was raised the other way. I had a head start. As you say.

170 Simonini June 19, 2016 at 1:33 pm

If we lived in a society where the schools, government, and media were all run by know-nothings instead of people who think worrying about immigration is racist, I’m sure the people who disagreed would also mostly be children of other people who disagreed.

171 static June 19, 2016 at 3:58 pm

It seems possible to favor large increases in controlled, targeted legal immigration, without opening up the welfare state to anyone who wants a seat at the table!

172 Ryan Murphy June 19, 2016 at 8:13 pm

Like some other commenters, I also skew towards thinking of things in terms of genetics. The overwhelming evidence points to shared environment meaning very little (besides perhaps, something like the particular religion you choose).

I would challenge Cowen’s statements about religion and anti-immigrant attitudes on the grounds that they can so easily be flipped. Maybe *you* don’t see the dangers immigrants pose because you lack the mental organ to do so (Note: I do not believe immigrants pose such dangers). The correct interpretation is that the genetic component should weaken your priors. They aren’t evidence of one side or another, they are evidence that everyone is biased.

173 anon June 19, 2016 at 11:31 pm

If you roll back in history, how many cultures have your genes had?

It is a pretty strong bet that I share a few genes with Eric the Red, and yet I feel little impulse to raid your village. Of course, if I were 17, and that was the high reward career path ..

Anyway, incentives have changed.

174 M June 21, 2016 at 3:29 pm

You probably do share quite a few genes with Eric. However, selection over the last 2000 years makes your population a little different from his in some ways – http://dx.doi.org/10.1101/052084. Some of the differences may even be behavioural.

If Eric was around today, he probably wouldn’t burn your village. That’s mostly a product of the times and environmental influence.

But, still, if he were around today he might be more likely to fall into your nation’s underclass (assuming you haven’t found that magical set of policy prescriptions that eliminates this entirely). And if he and his contemporaries all did, then they might notice that. Then your country’s national dialogue and public life might begin to be consumed by a vicious culture of people claiming victimization and discrimination, as the cause for this, and then become undermined by self doubt and exhaustion from constant claims of discrimination. Plus you’d have a slightly larger underclass you might not want.

175 Jan June 19, 2016 at 8:13 pm

This is exactly what I’ve always thought about the indefensible approach to choosing religions. Filed under “more reasons to be skeptical of any organized religion.”

176 JJ Cintia June 19, 2016 at 9:53 pm

If you’re into social science, you should try Astrology and read your horoscope. Its about as accurate and the people who believe that won’t call the police and SWAT you or try to get you fired if you say it’s crap.
This re-education garbage and blaming parents and patriarchy is what you can expect from these midwits. According to them Karl Marx was a scientist, and Communism never worked before but this time for sure.
Let me tell you. Its been my experience that whether you love or hate diversity is less a matter of ideology and more a direct correlation to proximity. The people who love it come from Mayberry type White communities where diverse people of color are scarce and rare. Singularly some of these Stone Age savages can behave human enough to not require a 911 call and a trip to jail. However those people who actually experience the unholy cosmic horror of real diversity fucking hate it and would vote for Hitler if he could remove it from their lives.
There is just something monstrous and horrible about having an entire village from Mexico living next door to you in one house with five or six cars parked on the lawn. The maniacal children which can number up to about a hundred playing all day and all night everywhere. Mariachi music blaring all day.
And lets not forget the extra special aggrieved black anthropoid otherwise known as the rape ape or pavement ape. These things are really horrendous. They hate you for things you never did, because of stuff that happened to their “ancestors”. This could be the Ancient Egyptians, Cleopatra from Macedonia, Slaves from Africa or strangely even the German Composer Beethoven. There stupidity is only matched by their hatred and vile behavior. They will ask constantly for money, kinda like a bully who steals lunch money at school. And the wonderful horrible nightmare of hearing rap played at about a thousand decibels at 3 AM while you try to sleep to go to work and your kids try to sleep before going to a ruin the givernment claims is a school but is actually a continuous crime scene.
You see its the people who love diversity that are prejudiced because they’ve never really experienced it. Those that have hate it for GOOD REASONS.

177 Frank June 20, 2016 at 3:46 am

I live in a state that is diverse and does not have the problems you describe.

And I’ll tell you why. Since everyone coming in pretty much has to fly here there is close to zero illegal (oh! excuse me! I mean “undocumented’) immigration.

So people come because they really want to be here and not somewhere else, know they have to work for a living, have had some degree of vetting by theTSA, and integrate, and get along.

178 Sir Barken Hyena June 20, 2016 at 11:20 am

Cowen is getting to the point with these posts where he simply isn’t even worth making fun of. He’s got that end handled quite well himself.

179 Josiah June 21, 2016 at 9:36 am

This of course should make you less confident of your anti-immigrant views, if indeed you hold them.

But only your anti-immigrant views. No need to question your pro-immigrant views, if indeed you hold them.

180 Krzys June 21, 2016 at 11:25 pm

This is just an idiotic comment. What is passed is not information, but values and attitudes.

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