Tweet anthology March-May 18 English/Français
Scientific Papers on Subliminality (a selection)
“subliminal stimuli—because they are outside a human’s ability to perceive them—can have no effect on humans” (W. James Potter, Media Literacy, 2013)
“Mere exposure enhances positive evaluation, independent of stimulus recognition” A replication study in Japan and the U.S. by Keiko Ishii 2005
“Subliminally activating the concept of trust (vs. distrust) leads participants to judge a series of strangers as more (vs. less) trustworthy.” (Posten, Ockenfels & Mussweiler, Journal of Economic Psychology 2013)
“subliminally presented hint stimuli cause better solution performance and greater relaxation of constraints when actually solving the problem later” (Miyata, Otagiri, Suzuki)
“increasing perceptual fluency during mere exposure modulates autonomic nervous responses, such as pupil diameter, and eventually leads to preference.” (Pupil Response and the Subliminal Mere Exposure Effect [SMEE], Yoshimoto et al. 2014)
“negative emotion induced by unconscious stimuli (subliminal fear priming) enhances rejection of unfair offers” in the ultimatum game (Takagishi et al. 2016)
Subliminal Mere Exposure Effect & Preferences: “massed exposure has an instantaneous effect on likability, whereas accumulative exposure has a long-term persistence effect” (Japanese Journal of Psychology 2011)
“The results provide the first evidence for subliminal emotion-specific cognitive effects. They show that cognitive functions such as appraisals can be affected by subliminal emotional stimuli of the same valence.” (Zixu Yang & Eddie Wong 2016)
“Participants were instructed to rate how much they like images after being subliminally exposed to masked lexical prime words that exhibit positive, negative, & neutral connotations … The consistent results confirmed the overall priming effect on participants’ explicit ratings.” (Dhanya M. Mohan et al. 2016)
“The processes which allow novel information to shape subsequent decisions are generally thought to depend on consciousness … However, growing evidence indicates that the human unconscious can perform various high-level cognitive functions that might allow decision processes to benefit from subliminal messages (Ruch et al., Subliminal messages exert long-term effects on decision-making, Neuroscience of Consciousness, 2016)
“Two recent studies have found that subliminal visual cues can improve athletic performance, as well as, physical functioning in older individuals” (Subliminal cues impact motivation, endurance, and longevity, C. Bergland, Psychology Today 2014)
You vote for politicians but they don’t do what you want, they do what media wants and you don’t vote for media.
To United Black Books: I’ll buy any book by late President Idi Amin Dada, for instance his Middle East Crisis (1974). Your price will be mine.
Please take a look at this tweet (pic) by Afro-American Eric and the number of likes and retweets. I followed him. After this tweet he said he was shadowbanned, and it was true, then his account was shut down.
I would like to be sure freemasons do not use the state apparatus to oppose peaceful conversions to islam, because that would be a violation of the tenets of the secular state. That people convert to islam, in prison or elsewhere, is none of the secular state’s business. Any opposition of the secular state to peaceful conversions to islam is illegal.
Mark Anthony Conditt, Austin Bomber, explained on Reddit how he made his bombs, and that his favorite authors are John Grisham and Tom Clancy: his inspiration for Austin bombings? Why not? Also, Conditt was reading the Bible when he went on rampage. If you can bring legal charges against a Muslim cleric or intellectual for inciting terrorism, then be consistent and bring charges against novelists admired by Mark Conditt, like John Grisham, so a judge or jury can examine their writings carefully.
Books in the public domain won’t be what their authors made them any longer. For example, Austrian youth novel Hatshi Bratschis Luftballon by F.K. Ginzkey: “Dort gelangt er auf eine Insel, wo „Menschenfresser“ (bzw. in neueren Ausgaben Affen)…” “…alle Hinweise auf Türken in der Ausgabe von 1968 ersetzt.” (Wkpd) That is, in a recent edition, instead of colored cannibals the character now meets apes, and all references to Turks have been removed.)
You have no right to rewrite the books of your culture. You’ve no right to rewrite a book and leave the author’s name on the cover. You’ve no right to make believe your writers and intellectuals were nice people when they were not.
Terrorism alarm in Rome. Authorities are looking for Mathlouthi Atef, a 42-year-old Tunisian national who might be willing to carry out an attack. The manhunt was launched after the Italian embassy in Tunisi received an anonymous letter. (ISPI Terrorism, March 25)
Ridiculous. Now they launch manhunt on receiving anonymous letters and even advertise it. Can they get any lower? [Read further for more remarks on anonymous denunciations.]
Un problème avec Twitter : tous les détritus à étiquette bleue y vont de leur larme de crocodile, pour des RT, quand un gendarme se fait tuer par un djihadiste, et du coup au hashtag #ArnaudBeltrame, zéro analyse, on est obligé de demander ce qui s’est passé à ceux qui regardent la télé. 😦
Stéphane Poussier, du parti Les Insoumis, condamné à un an de prison avec sursis et privé de droits civiques pour son tweet sur #ArnaudBeltrame. Une question aux soixante-huitards qui nous gouvernent : peut-on dire que les CRS sont des SS ? – Hier les CRS étaient des SS, aujourd’hui ils sont le rempart contre les SS islamofascistes et le SS Stéphane Poussier.
Après l’attaque de Trèbes, la jeunesse en colère manifeste dans la rue : « Fichés S : SS ! Fichés S : SS ! »
#ArnaudBeltrame He broke all rules, acted on impulse with no proper training for what he intended, was shot dead. End of story.
How can you break rules in a situation where no rule is left?
Rules and procedures for hostage-taking situations involve elite corps with elite training. Do not ask countryside gendarmes what you ask the RAID or have them trained at the same level.
Si un cambriolage peut être qualifié d’antisémite, je vois mal comment un crime ou délit quelconque dont une personne juive serait victime peut, a contrario, ne pas être qualifié d’antisémite. Cela veut dire que, si la victime est supposée connue comme étant juive par l’auteur de l’acte, le caractère antisémite de l’acte est présumé de manière automatique et la circonstance aggravante retenue.
Alors que le caractère antisémite du meurtre de Mireille Knoll n’avait de prime abord rien d’évident (“Investigators say no apparent anti-Semitic motive”), on en vient à se poser la question du timing : est-ce que cela a été déclaré antisémite avant ou après la Marche blanche ? Que l’Assemblée nationale interrompe ses travaux dans ce contexte incertain (la justice délibérant sur le caractère antisémite de l’acte) et invite les députés à la Marche blanche, a un petit côté « grosse pression sur le pouvoir judiciaire ». Et la séparation des pouvoirs ? Mesdames et messieurs les députés, laissez la justice faire son travail, la démocratie vous en sera reconnaissante.
La Marseillaise ? Toute cette pub subliminale pour l’Olympique de Marseille, ça me rend malade.
To the Spokesman of Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan, Zabihullah Mujahid (Talibans): I don’t know why but, from France, access to http://shahamat1.com is ok but access to http://alemarah-dari.com [both websites are run by the Talibans] isn’t allowed and I get a warning from the ministry of interior. Any idea what these idiots are doing?
If you have been aggrieved by YouTube, I’m not sure there’s anything you can do other than what Nasim Aghdam did [she went on a shooting rampage at YouTube’s headquarters in San Diego]. Just let me know.
One user assumes Nasim Aghdam went on rampage for the sake of the “2 cents” she was making from her YouTube videos, but others say her videos were viral so more likely it’s her livelihood she lost overnight, with no credible recourse against Google.
I don’t really know how making money on YouTube works but I fancy 1000s, 10.000s, 100.000s, millions of views will attract companies eager to advertise, so the prejudice to Nasim Aghdam may have been quite significant. I hope her relatives will sue YouTube/Google. The prejudice she suffered from Google is on the record. The harm resulted from a unilateral breach of contract upon which terms Nasim Aghdam had made financial expectations.
“Elon Musk warns about the coming of an immortal dictator [an AI dictator].” Anybody with a boss bossing him every day of the week will hardly see what’s so wrong with a dictator.
[Attaque à la voiture bélier à Münster, le 7 avril] Je suis #munster (Le munster est un fromage qui pue)
#Münster Make no mistake: Europe will convert to islam peacefully. I hope freemasons won’t try to prevent it with violence because then they’ll have to be stopped. People are free to convert to islam. People’s motivations for converting (or not) is their own business provided there is no violence involved.
#Münster « Rien n’indique pour le moment qu’on ait affaire à des motivations islamistes » (Ministère) devient dans la bouche des journalistes « La piste islamiste écartée » (letelegramme/fr). Clairement, quand on maîtrise la langue française, la piste islamiste n’est pas écartée.
#Münster “The attacker is German and no refugee” (authorities). The refugees of today are the Germans of tomorrow.
This is how blockchain might solve the internet privacy problem.
Does blockchain solve the internet privacy problem by cancelling privacy or by making it impossible for governments to track criminals?
J’ai toujours pensé que le café du commerce avait plus de couilles que les médias.
Germany: 6 people detained over plot to carry attack during half marathon in Berlin have been released. (ESISC)
Clear indication that these individuals plotted no attack and that the elements the police used to detain them hardly qualified, such as anonymous denunciations.
France: All the suspects, detained on April 9 in connection to the Magnanville attack, liberated due to the lack of incriminating evidence. (ESISC)
So what was the “evidence” used to detain them in the first place?? Anonymous denunciations?
Germany: Reichsbürger committed more than 10,500 criminal offences between 2015 and 2017. (ESISC)
While jihadists only stab or vehicle-ram every other day, German neonazis have committed 3,500 criminal offences PER DAY these last 3 years and you had no idea! Like, treading on protected lawns? Governments really take us for pinheads.
[Émeutes urbaines à La Reynerie, Toulouse, après un contrôle policier sur une femme portant le voile islamique ayant mal tourné] #LaReynerie « Nous avons beaucoup trop de contrôles d’identité, avec de la vraie discrimination. » Emmanuel Macron, 2 mars 2017, pendant la campagne présidentielle. Un candidat devenu président dit qu’il y a de la « vraie discrimination » dans les contrôles d’identité, et les victimes de cette discrimination devraient rester sans réagir ? N’importe quoi.
Qu’attend Macron pour corriger la situation? À moins qu’il ne déclare avoir eu tort de tenir ces propos, tant qu’aucune mesure n’est prise les contrôles d’identité doivent être considérés comme illégaux car discriminatoires et donc contraires à la Déclaration des droits de l’homme. Toute résistance à un contrôle d’identité est légitime et se justifie par les paroles du magistrat suprême de la République, le président Macron.
“Ask not what the jihad can do for you – ask what you can do for the jihad.” J.F.Kennedji
Evolutionary psychologists, after Jack London [several utterances along these lines in The People of the Abyss], say Europeans who migrated to America were a fitter breed than those who stayed “behind.” Ridiculous: They left Europe because here in Europe they were outbred in the struggle for life.
To a land of opportunities… If, say as workers, migrants to America could find no opportunities in Europe, it wasn’t that workers weren’t needed in Europe, mark you.
America’s industrial might depended on the same cause that is now seeing China rising: It was American workers scabbing on European workers (longer workdays, fewer vacations &c).
Evolutionary Psychology (EP) and Sociobiology hold, after Jack London, that the strong outbreed the weak. Yet from Western falling birth rates they fail to conclude to the weakness of the white race. Is it because most EP scholars are whites?
Twopence question. Given that the strong outbreed the weak, who are the strong: Christians or Muslims?
[Attaque à la voiture bélier à Toronto, le 23 avril ; Twitter buzzait de rumeurs sur la nature djihadiste supposée de l’attaque et donc en même temps d’appels à la tolérance] #TorontoAttack What if the solution wasn’t inclusiveness but islam? Think about it.
British “Permanent Under-Secretary at the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and Head of the Diplomatic Service” visits Sikh Golden Temple in Amritsar and then tweets he is glad to have visited the “mosque.” European elites in a nutshell.
Sexes being in the ratio of 1:1, in monogamous societies a voluntary celibate of one sex means an involuntary celibate or incel of the other sex, unless the number of voluntary celibates is equal for both sexes.
Deux jeunes femmes victimes d’une agression islamophobe : la police refuse la plainte et leur dit « arracher le voile, ça n’existe pas dans la loi française. » (Nacéra, 24 avril)
Les voies de fait, comme l’acte d’arracher une partie du vêtement de quelqu’un, sont condamnées en droit français.
Pas si le vêtement est interdit (avec un lien vers la circulaire du 2 mars 2011).
La circulaire du 2 mars 2011 [relative à la mise en œuvre de la loi du 11 octobre 2010 interdisant la dissimulation du visage dans l’espace public] concerne le voile intégral, et même une personne en contravention victime d’une voie de fait est fondée à porter plainte car le droit français n’admet pas le lynchage. De plus, une voie de fait motivée par le port du voile islamique comporte un facteur aggravant.
Citation de la circulaire : « Les tenues destinées à dissimuler le visage sont celles qui rendent impossible l’identification de la personne. Il n’est pas nécessaire, à cet effet, que le visage soit intégralement dissimulé. Sont notamment interdits, sans prétendre à l’exhaustivité, le port de cagoules, de voiles intégraux (burqa, niqab…), de masques ou de tout autre accessoire ou vêtement ayant pour effet, pris isolément ou associé avec d’autres, de dissimuler le visage. »
Le voile islamique est certes mentionné dans la liste : il s’agit du voile intégral, et la liste donne deux noms de voile intégral. Ce qui signifie que le voile islamique non intégral ne fait pas partie de la liste.
La précision qu’il « n’est pas nécessaire…que le visage soit intégralement dissimulé » concerne des masques ne couvrant qu’une partie du visage, tels que dominos, loups…, qui rendent de fait l’identification de la personne impossible sans cependant couvrir tout le visage.
La liste n’est bien sûr pas exhaustive (« sans prétendre à l’exhaustivité ») car quelqu’un pourrait se mettre une boîte en carton autour de la tête et dire que la loi ne l’interdit pas, mais cela n’autorise pas à mettre dans cette liste le voile islamique non intégral.
Si la circulaire cite les cagoules, elle n’interdit pas les cagoules qui ne cachent pas le visage, pas plus que les chapeaux, qui recouvrent les cheveux (utiles pour identifier une personne), que les lunettes noires (qui cachent les yeux), ni de porter la barbe, de se maquiller, de changer de coupe de cheveux, etc.
La cagoule est donnée comme un exemple parmi d’autres de la définition. Une cagoule qui ne cache pas le visage ne correspondant pas à la définition, ce type de cagoule n’est pas concerné.
« Le Conseil d’État dit qu’un chef d’établissement peut recommander aux mères de ne pas porter le voile dans les sorties scolaires. Je recommande donc aux chefs d’établissement de recommander cela aux accompagnatrices. » (Ministre de l’éducation nationale)
Une recommandation n’étant pas une injonction, les accompagnatrices qui ne souhaitent pas ôter leur voile ne sont susceptibles d’aucune sanction en droit. Je leur recommande donc de garder leur voile si c’est ce qu’elles souhaitent.
Le Conseil d’Etat a dit quelque chose d’inutile et de futile, alors qu’il dénonce en général le « droit non normatif ». Une recommandation, en droit (normatif), ce n’est rien du tout. Le ministre a répété une chose inutile et futile, et en même temps blessante pour les Musulmans.
Selon moi, le droit dit que : si un chef d’établissement recommande à une femme de retirer son voile pour une sortie scolaire et celle-ci refuse, il n’a pas le droit de l’empêcher de participer à la sortie pour ce motif. S’il avait le droit, ce serait en effet plus qu’une « recommandation ».
Ce qu’il y a de 👎 dans la réponse du ministre, même si l’instrument juridique auquel il se réfère est dépourvu de caractère normatif, c’est qu’il veut intimider les femmes voilées, les décourager de participer à la vie de la collectivité, alors que le voile est légal. Les mères voilées ont le droit de participer à la vie de la collectivité et il est franchement 👎 que le ministre cherche à les décourager de le faire.
Si vous laissez faire, ils empêcheront les mères voilées de participer aux sorties scolaires, puis à ci puis à ça, puis à tout, puis ils diront : « On vous l’avait dit, les femmes musulmanes, c’est des fatmas qui ne sortent jamais de la maison. »
Today they wax indignant about fake news. Tomorrow they’ll tell you fake news is a necessary weapon in war (it’s already stated in their history books) and don’t you dare rectify fake news, it’s a betrayal of your country.
Try to write “melancholy Taiwan turtle swinging on a swing provoked a flock of dirty, mutant snapping tortoises” in Chinese and good luck: 憂鬱的臺灣烏龜蕩鞦韆尋釁幾羣骯髒變態囓齒鱷龞 Millions of pen strokes! (Traditional vs simplified Chinese writing: The nonsensical sentence is a textbook example of the intricacy of traditional Chinese writing.)
To my Uyghur friends, next time they compel you to renounce Uyghur alphabet, tell them: “Melancholy Taiwan turtle swinging on a swing provoked a flock of dirty, mutant snapping tortoises.”
Le Canard enchaîné du 2 mai, n° 5088, écrit à propos du compte Twitter d’Al-Jazeera (français) une fausseté qui peut être facilement démontrée : « la notion de race [y est] utilisée comme critère fondamental dans la lecture du moindre événement » (P.1: AlJazeera se la joue cool) et lui reproche sa position anti-raciste. Bien sûr, ces journalistes ne sont pas racistes, vous diront-ils, ils sont même antiracistes ; c’est seulement qu’ils ne supportent pas les antiracistes musulmans.
[In reply to someone who made fun of a Filipino Jihadist with long, well-cared hair] Perhaps it is the reason the boy prefers Jihadist insurgency to the regular army: He can keep his long hair and cool looks, whereas in the army he would be just another bot.
Un militaire ne peut appartenir à un syndicat, ne peut faire grève, ne peut participer à des élections ni se faire élire… Notre société a donc besoin d’esclaves ?
In modern societies, soldiers choose to enlist. They know what to expect. Slaves, on the other hand, don’t quite have the same level of choice.
As they agree to live without basic rights, they are scabs who drag down the citizenry.
Un président des riches est toujours élu par les pauvres, car il faut une majorité pour être élu. J’emm… la démocratie.
Sur le site web du ministère français des affaires étrangères : « Tous les déplacements à Gaza sont formellement déconseillés. Les ressortissants français doivent être conscients qu’ils s’exposent à des risques particulièremt élevés (attentats, enlèvements ou bombardement israélien). » Attentats ? Enlèvements ?
Editorial du Monde, 18 février 2017 : « Si qualifier de ‘crime contre l’humanité’ ce chapitre de notre histoire [la colonisation] est maladroit, cela a permis d’engager la discussion sur une question sensible. »
Quel maladroit, ce Macron, ah la la!
Macron : « La colonisation fait partie de l’histoire française. C’est un crime, un crime contre l’humanité, c’est une vraie barbarie. Et ça fait partie de ce passé que nous devons regarder en face, en présentant nos excuses à l’égard de ceux envers lesquels nous avons commis ces gestes. »
Mais quel maladroit, ce Macron !
Discrimination pratiquée au sommet de l’État : « La secrétaire d’Etat M.S., en visite à Trappes, ne s’est pas arrêtée dans un café ‘tenu par des musulmans’ afin ‘d’éviter un incident’. »
[« En cause, selon Le Canard enchaîné, le préfet des Yvelines, Jean-Jacques Brot, qui a ‘invité prestement’ M.S. à poursuivre son chemin ‘afin d’éviter un incident’. » (Valeurs actuelles en ligne, 10 mai) Le préfet discriminatoire doit être évidemment révoqué mais cela ne risque évidemment pas d’arriver puisque, par exemple, le journal Valeurs actuelles (les valeurs en question sont évidemment les valeurs boursières), là où je titre « Discrimination pratiquée au sommet de l’État », titre quant à lui : « M.S. persona non grata dans un café tenu par des musulmans. » Alors que personne n’a demandé leur avis aux tenanciers du café !… Quelques sources bien islamophobes sont allées jusqu’à dire que le café, tenu par Mme Zoulika Zehrdi, était « interdit aux femmes » !… Tout ça à cause d’un sale préfet.]
#WorkHard so you can have debts! “Thrift negates thrift.” (When people spare on minimum wage they lower the standard of living and thus depress wage levels) Jack London, one of those American classics Americans don’t know.
France: Close associate of Khamzat Azimov arrested in Strasbourg and transferred to DGSI headquarters. (ESISC)
Close associate to a lone wolf? or just a friend of his? Tomorrow, when they talk of having arrested the mastermind of the operation, know that it is his Alzheimer grandmother. You don’t need a close associate to take a knife in your kitchen, go out and stab people. What was the close associate’s role in so intricate an operation?
France: 2 young women arrested in connection to Paris May 12 stabbing; another suspect indicted and imprisoned; investigation does not confirm the version of the lone wolf attack. (ESISC)
Summum of ridicule [or, rather, infamy]: A man stabs people on the street and is shot dead, and police imprison scores of people. These people didn’t hold the knife, didn’t shelter the attacker after the attack. Imprisoned for knowing a guilty man!
L’ami de Khamzat Azimov, Abdoul Hakim A., sera « lui aussi » jugé pour « assassinat et tentative d’assassinats en lien avec une entreprise terroriste » (lefigaro/fr) car on a trouvé une photo d’un drapeau de Daesh sur son ordinateur… La France sur le chemin de la dictature policière et militaire. (Mais ne vous inquiétez pas : il y aura toujours des députés pour vous dire à la télé que la France est un pays libre. La place de député est trop bonne pour qu’on s’en passe, même en dictature.)
Connaître un assassin et télécharger de la propagande djihadiste n’a jamais été et ne sera jamais un « assassinat », sauf peut-être dans une dictature bien franchouillarde de chez nous à gerber.
Comme pour les politicards, un attentat=>une nouvelle loi sécuritaire, maintenant pour les flics, c’est un Tchétchène fait une attaque au couteau=>une ratonnade chez les Tchétchènes. Bravo, quelles méthodes !
We’re told only 20% (1/5) of American Jews support American embassy move to Jerusalem and that Trump acts on behalf of Millenarists waiting for Armageddon. Yet Obama made the same promise and he wasn’t supported by Millenarists. So? So Millenarists are straw men.
I see no future in Western countries for Christian Zionists who base their politics on Armageddon. Such pigeons.
Il me semble, mais c’est une hypothèse, que si j’étais un antisioniste notoire, j’aurais tendance à vouloir un chirurgien arabe plutôt qu’un chirurgien juif pour une opération délicate… Ce qui pourrait être interprété.
À qualifications égales, et même inégales jusqu’à une certaine limite, je prends le chirurgien arabe, dans le modèle mathématique théorie des jeux, théorème n°14.
There’s just a lot of wrong in the world, but there is so much right. (Rose McGowan)
Scientists have found there are two and a half wrongs for every right in the world.
Quand un ministre ou député parle de « guerre contre le terrorisme », il viole la séparation des pouvoirs car il demande implicitement le dessaisissement du juge et l’application de la « justice » militaire.
#SantaFeHighSchool [shooting] 2-digit toll attained (10 dead). Dimitrios Pagourtzis, 17, kinda kept his cool, wasn’t even shot. [To be continued in TW13]
This is a sequel to xxxvi.
Suicide For Sex
The essay on the evolutionary dimensions of civilizations (xxxvi) started by recalling the hot discussion on the relationship between Islam and the West. Regarding this relationship, evolutionary psychology book Why Beautiful People Have More Daughters (2007) by Alan S. Miller and Satoshi Kanazawa attempts to provide an explanation of Muslim suicide bombings that I wish to discuss presently.
According to Miller and Kanazawa, suicide bombers are 1/ always Muslims, because 2/ Muslim societies are polygynous, which means that some men remain without mates throughout their lives, and 3/ Islam promises virgin mates to the martyrs in the afterlife, which is bound to be appealing to men without mates.
1/ “While suicide missions are not always religiously motivated, when religion is involved, it is always Islam.” (p. 165).
The emphasis on the word “always” is the authors’; they seem to be confident there is no exception. Yet, the statement is incorrect. Even if we dismiss WW2 Japanese kamikazes as a religious phenomenon, although the Japanese government of the time was implementing a policy of State Shintoism that emphasized the divine descent of the Emperor of Japan and thus infused patriotism with a sense of the divine, so much so that one of the first moves made by the Americans after Japanese surrender was to demand that the Emperor publicly declares to his people he was no god, we find “militant” suicides in other religions too.
Albeit the following examples, from Christianity, Hinduism, and Buddhism, are not strictly speaking suicide missions, that is, acts aimed at provoking casualties to an enemy while sacrificing one’s own life in the very act (of which I see no other historical example beside Japanese kamikazes and Muslim Jihadists), those other suicides are similarly intended to promote the cause and interests of a religion in a confrontational context, and nothing in the evolutionary interpretation of suicide missions by Miller and Kanazawa explains per se why the suicide takes the form of a military mission rather than of something else. The promise of haur uljanati, the houris of paradise, is actually made to all male believers and not specifically to human bombs.
Martyrs are well-known characters of the earlier times of Christianity, especially the Roman times, and the suicide-like indifference to death displayed by these people during their ordeals became propaganda for the nascent religion, which certainly contributed to its success. That these martyrs did not die with weapon in hand while Muslim martyrs die with weapon in hand or rather being themselves the weapon (human bombs) is not to account for by polygyny and/or by the promise of houris but rather by the warrior ethics contained in the Quran and Islamic tradition.
This being said, Muslims can also be martyrs in the Christian sense, that is, allowing enemies of the faith to take their lives without resistance rather than in the act of fighting. Some hadiths tell how idolaters used to submit Muslims to the test trying to force them to pay homage to idols, which is against the will of Allah, and that the Muslims who, being firm believers, refused were put to the sword. This is the same as the Biblical (Catholic and Orthodox) story of the Maccabees.
Fundamentally, contemporary suicide missions are only a variant of such past acts of martyrdom. Knowing that allegiance to one’s God will be, with more or less certitude, cause of one’s death at the hands of God’s enemies and accepting it, is a form of suicide that the history of several or all religions can attest. Again, that this allegiance takes the form of a suicide commando mission rather than more passive or acquiescent forms of suicide is accounted for by the warrior ethics that is present in the Quran and Muhammad’s exemple, whereas it is absent from the Gospels and the life of Jesus.
In Hinduism, the jauhar was a form of collective suicide sanctioned by Brahmans; it was especially frequent among Rajputs during their wars with Muslim conquerors. When all chances of victory had vanished, the women first took their own lives, slaughtering their children on the occasion, and the men then went to fight to death on their last battlefield. The custom insured that no prisoner was taken by the enemy. We find a similar episode in the siege of Masada during the first Jewish-Roman war (73-74 AD): According to classical accounts, the besieged Jews eventually committed mass suicide rather than surrendering to the Romans.
Finally, there is the practice of self-immolation in Buddhism, of which recent history provides a few examples, the best-known being the self-immolation through fire by the Vietnamese monk Thich Quang Duc in 1963, in protest against the religious policy of the American-supported South-Vietnamese government. The legend says the monk’s heart did not burn and is now kept as a holy relic in the vaults of the Vietnamese National Bank.
So, although suicide missions as such are only found in current Muslim Jihadism and WW2 Japanese kamikazes (who could well have been performing a religious act), the will to sacrifice one’s life for one’s faith is a feature common to the history of many and perhaps all religions.
2/ “Across all societies, polygyny increases violent crimes, such as murder and rape, even after controlling for such obvious factors like economic development, economic inequality, population density, the level of democracy [“obvious factor”?], and world regions. (…) The first unique feature of Islam, which partially contributes to the prevalence of suicide bombings among its followers, is polygyny, which makes young men violent everywhere.” (p. 166)
The reason polygyny increases violent crime is that it exacerbates male competition for females. As the sex ratio is roughly 50-50, by allowing some men to mate with several women to the exclusion of competitors, polygyny forces some other men to remain without mates.
Miller and Kanazawa go on: “However, polygyny by itself, while it increases violence, is not sufficient to cause suicide bombings. Societies in sub-Saharan Africa and the Caribbean are much more polygynous than the Muslim nations in the Middle East and Northern Africa (…) Accordingly, nations in these regions have very high levels of violence, and sub-Saharan Africa suffers from a long history of continuous civil wars, but not suicide bombings. So polygyny itself is not a sufficient cause of suicide bombings.” (p. 166).
The authors are not dealing with institutional polygyny but with what I call (see xxxvi) cryptic polygyny, that is, the practice of polygyny no matter what legal arrangements regarding matrimonial bonds are. Among the most polygynous nations in the world, as they appear listed in note 31, p. 210, we find, for instance, Antigua and Barbuda, Bahamas, Barbados, Haiti (all these with the “maximum polygyny score of 3.000”). These are countries which populations are largely Christian and where the institutional form of pair-bonding is monogamous marriage and institutional polygamy is outlawed and criminalized. So bear in mind that, although the authors do not make it explicit, it is not institutional polygyny that is at stake. Other forms of polygynous practice, that is, cryptic polygyny is not in the least “unique” to Muslim countries; as Miller and Kanazawa write, “All Humans Societies Are Polygynous” (subtitle p. 91).
The violence alleged to be caused by polygyny relates to a “polygyny score” that has nothing to do with institutions and legal systems. Were we to examine these polygyny scores by country, we might find that Muslim countries do not stand particularly high. Among the twenty most polygynous countries listed page 210, I find the following to be predominantly or significantly Muslim: Morocco, Nigeria, Niger, Chad (53%). That makes four countries out of twenty.
Besides, Miller and Kanazawa overlook the fact that a good deal of Jihadists do not come from Muslim countries at all. Some of them come from Muslim communities in Western countries; many of these communities have been secularized in the course of acculturation, and the Jihadists had to undergo a sort of reconversion process from a materialist, secularized lifestyle to radicalism. Some others are even autochthonous converts from these Western countries with no previous family or any other links with Islamic traditions. The number of foreign fighters combatting today in the ranks of Daesh would be about 30,000.
Before conversion or radicalization, these people had the same access to women as other men, that is, in an evolutionary perspective, the same access as other men at the same status level. (Given that a lot of Jihadists had a delinquent career, it may even be argued that their access to mates was in fact greater than that of other men from the same city parts, thanks to the fast money such careers allow.) If the number of people from Western countries willing to resort to terrorist violence is great, then, following Miller and Kanazawa’s idea, polygyny in Western countries – by which more men are prevented from mating – must be high. By stressing polygyny as a factor in violence in general and in terrorism in particular, the authors, again, are not saying that institutional polygyny is the cause.
Institutional polygyny might in fact contribute to reduce the prevalence of actual polygyny in a society. The idea has been broached in xxxvi using the concept of reproductive climate along A.S. Amin’s lines. Institutional polygyny is a long-term institution that promotes men’s commitment to their mates and children. So is institutional monogamy, albeit the data (current divorce rates in the West, polygyny scores in Christian Caribbean and African countries) seems to indicate it fails to curb short-term strategies in some regions.
3/ “The other key ingredient is the promise of seventy-two virgins waiting in heaven for any martyr in Islam. This creates a strong motive for any young Muslim men who are excluded from reproductive opportunities on earth to get to heaven as martyrs.” (p. 166).
There is no denying that such a belief can serve as motivation. Even more than the warrior ethics I have invoked in (1/), belief in houris is doctrinal. Hence, whereas polygyny as such is not associated uniquely to Islam (see 2/), the belief in question clearly is, because you cannot rewrite the Quran, can you? Yet, houris, unless I’m mistaken, are no privilege of the martyrs but are promised to all believers, so the reason some Muslims choose death and others acquire sex slaves as war spoils, as allowed, I am told, by Daesh, remains to be explained. Suicide missions suggest that obedience is extreme in these movements, but so it is in any fanatical group.
Religions promising afterlife describe it as everlasting bliss, and although this bliss does not always explicitly entail incarnated virgins available for sexual acts, it can be appealing enough to induce the sacrifice of one’s life for one’s belief.
As far as Hinduism and Buddhism are concerned, the varied existing heavenly abodes where souls may spend some time during the course of their transmigrations are described in picturesque details, some of them being quite erotic, a fact that suggests the existence of a similar motivation in these religions. The way Apsaras, or celestial dancers, for instance, are depicted in ancient art is unmistakable (picture: Curvaceous Apsaras from the well-known Khajuraho temple). They are spouses of the celestial musicians Gandharvas, and it is possible to reincarnate as a Gandharva or as any other minor deity.
Not only these heavenly abodes entail sexual representations, but the very idea of reincarnation may serve sexual motivations. A Buddhist might be willing to commit a suicide attack in order to be reincarnated as a playboy; what would prevent him, as a playboy, from mating with 72 virgins or more? For the time being, Buddhist clerics do not promise next life in the incarnation of a womanizer in exchange of a suicide mission, although they could do so, inside the very frame of their creed, and the reason why it is only Muslim clerics who promise afterlife sexual gratifications as a reward to suicide attacks is not explained by our authors here.
Buddhists are not known to play this card, although some believers certainly aspire to a more gratifying sexual life after their next birth, as some are wearing so-called charm amulets to improve their sex life in the present already. In Thailand these amulets often depict the legendary character Kun Paen in the company of multiple nude women; other charm amulets represent women in acts of bestiality, some others are in the shape of a penis, at times anthropomorphized (penis man). Thai monks routinely bless such talismans.
As to the idea that Jihadists, on the Iraqi theater of operations, kill more Iraqis than they kill Americans because they are “unconsciously trying to eliminate as many of their male sexual rivals (fellow Iraqi men) as possible,” it is far-fetched. As stated above, Daesh counts some 30,000 foreign fighters, for whom Iraqis are no more fellow men than Americans, and that would be half of Daesh’s army. A simpler explanation is that it is more difficult to kill an American than an Iraqi in Iraq – not only because of numbers, but also because American soldiers are certainly better trained and better equipped, and they probably station their Iraqi allies on the most “strategic” positions.
All these elements suggest that Miller and Kanazawa’s explanation is somewhat shallow.
Jihad vs Panda Express
As explained in xxxvi, Jihad is not parochialism but globalism. I define it “Islam as globalism.” If you want to give Barber a better example of parochialism, I suggest you name France to him. He could have titled his book “La France vs McWorld” or “La France vs Jihad,” and that for sure would have been a better illustration of the opposition he makes between parochialism and globalism. Need I expatiate?
Islam is a global power. Some people deny the existence of “Panislamism,” arguing Islam’s diversity. They do not seem to notice the current movement toward homogenization at work throughout the Muslim world, albeit they know the movement’s name as they appropriately call it Wahhabism or Salafism or fundamentalism.
Islam is a global power. They’ve got human bombs. They’ve got petrodollars and sovereign funds. They’ve got migrant communities throughout the Western world and beyond. They’ve got sympathy among scholars and intellectuals round the world. About this last point, let me tell you the story of Professor Subramanian Swamy from Harvard Summer School.
Prof. Subramanian Swamy taught Quantitative Methods in Economics and Business at Harvard Summer School from 2001 to 2011. As an economist he wrote papers together with Nobel Prize Paul Samuelson. He is also involved in Indian politics and was India’s minister of commerce and industry from 1990 to 1991. He was president of the Janata Party from 1990 to 2013, until the party merged on with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). The party is labelled Hindu nationalist.
After the 2011 Jihadist bombings in Mumbai, Swamy wrote an article in an Indian paper that was deemed Islamophobic by a few readers. After a campaign of denigration, he was dismissed from Harvard Summer School, in America, the same year. It turns out I took his class in Summer 2004. I did not know his credentials at the time and I can testify that, as a professor, he never talked about these issues, so I would never have guessed the truth about him had I not discovered it by chance years later on the Web. I disapprove of his dismissal.
Swamy and other Indian politicians are for example accused, including in the West, of demonizing Mughal rule. There is one funny argument in the views of those who defend the Mughals as tolerant rulers. They say Mughals promoted intercommunity marriages, but Hindus claim these marriages amounted to sequestering Hindu women, their war booty, inside Muslim harems. If the latter are correct, then Mughals’ defenders would be praising as enlightened tolerance and benevolent wisdom the age-old practice of all ruthless conquerors throughout history.
Here is how Swamy envisions India’s relationship with the country having the largest Muslim population in the world, namely Indonesia: “Over 90 per cent of the economic world powers’ commercial sea-traffic passes through the narrow (90 miles) Malacca Strait. If we can develop naval power to the point where we can police this strait, it will give India enormous power and leverage to influence international events. This has diplomatic implications. It is obvious, for example, that we cannot control the Malacca strait without the active cooperation of Indonesia. However through proper diplomatic moves we can obtain Indonesia’s cooperation and forge a strategic relationship with that country because we have long historical links with these islands through our cultural links of the past.” (Hindus Under Siege: The Way Out, 2007, p. 97).
Swamy is perhaps overconfident, because Indonesia, albeit often advertised as a model of tolerant Islam (Islam warna-warni, or “multicolored Islam,” as the phrase goes), is undergoing the same process of homogenization through radicalization at work round the Muslim world. One example will suffice to buttress this contention.
The following passage deals with the current situation in Thailand’s three southernmost provinces, whose population is prominently Muslim (>80%), in an otherwise overwhelmingly Buddhist country (92%). “As of September 10, 2008, there were forty-one beheadings according to the Bangkok Post. Terrorism experts argue that the style of many of these southern Thai beheadings is influenced by Muslim militant actions in the Middle East. However, there is more evidence to suggest that Thais are being trained in Indonesia or that the expertise comes from Indonesian-trained Thais who have stronger regional and local connections than countries in the Middle East. According to the Thai newspaper Isrā, in one instance a Thai ustaz (Islamic teacher) who teaches Islam in Yala Province had trained as a commando and studied Islam in Aceh, Indonesia. Among the Thai ustaz’s commando training were techniques for beheading people.” (M.K. Jerryson, Buddhist Fury: Religion and Violence in Southern Thailand, 2011, p. 92).
What is striking in this piece of information, besides the gruesome facts and the trial for incompetence the author is making against “terrorism experts,” is that Thai Jihadists do not train in Malaysia but in Indonesia, although (i) Malaysia is the closest neighboring Muslim country, (ii) whose policy is more Islam-oriented than Indonesia’s. It seems Jihadists find a safer shelter and/or better logistic support in Indonesia, which hints at the latter truly being the soft underbelly of the region with respect to fundamentalist plans, in spite of the showcase of Muslim tolerance. Indonesia is a poor country, ranking 100th as to GDP per capita (at purchasing power parity) (10,517 INT$), compared to 44th for Malaysia (25,639 INT$) (World Bank 2014). In 2002 Indonesian government allowed Aceh province to enforce Sharia law and is now under pressure from other provinces to extend this policy. To summarize, it is in tolerant Indonesia that Thai (Patani) Jihadists learn beheading techniques.
Savanna Park Virtual
As my friend X says, “A life among people who fancy themselves in the savanna is not worth living.” He means that people live in a virtual savanna; they believe in the reality of an environment of evolutionary adaptedness (EEA) that is no more. To discuss the present point, let us return to Why Beautiful People Have More Daughters by Miller and Kanazawa.
“Since the advent of agriculture about ten thousand years ago and the birth of human civilization which followed, humans have not had a stable environment against which natural selection can operate.” (p. 26). This is why intelligence, that is, as the same Kanazawa defines it in his book The Intelligence Paradox (2012) (discussed in xxxv), the capacity to deal with “novel and nonrecurrent adaptive problems,” has become important in human societies: Human civilization, our man-made environment is unstable and requires dealing with novel problems on a much more frequent basis, almost on a daily basis. Yet, our instincts often stand in the way and prevent us (the less intelligent of us) from dealing adequately with our current environment. For instance, abusing one’s mate is an instinctually adequate behavior to intimidate her into complying and shying away from close contacts with other men that would jeopardize the man’s position; yet, this behavior is criminal and may result in incarceration, ruining entirely the position that the man intended to secure (p. 24).
Therefore, intelligence can be construed as a non-emotional path to knowledge, because our emotions have been shaped in the stable environment of the ancestral savanna in order to make us behave in the ways adaptive to that environment. In spite of some scholarly attempts to discard the dichotomy reason-emotion, no matter how you take it emotions are in the way when you try to solve an equation. This is why for all abstract problems machines will do a better job than humans in the future.
Machines would already have replaced human toil and work if humans were not intent on preventing this evolution as much as they can, out of emotions designed in the vanished savanna. In 1941 already, James Burnham contended: “Using the inventions and methods available would, it is correctly understood, smash up the capitalist venture. ‘Technological unemployment’ is present in recent capitalism; but it is hardly anything compared to what technological unemployment would be if capitalism made use of its available technology.” (The Managerial Revolution). Given the pronounced tendencies toward crime attested by the current, already massive, permanently unemployed “underclass,” decision-makers are doing their best to have low-productivity industries and services subsidized in exchange of the latter maintaining the highest possible figures of human toil, which, from the advent of division of labor through the assembly line and bureaucratic procedure in organizations on, has become unbearably monotonous and machinelike.
It would be unbearable too, in the service sector, to interact as customers with humans playing the role of machines if that would not satisfy some inner savagery and cruelty keen on seeing other people degraded and at one’s mercy – a savanna emotion. The usual person, placed in such a situation as a waiter or shopkeeper, talks back to customers, whereas machines are always well-behaved. Do not bring savanna apes to confrontation when you can have these functional operations processed by machines.
The managerial revolution that has taken place and is the real engine of our affluence has nothing to do with old-days capitalism. Entrepreneurs are gone or they stand in the way. For aught I know, the entrepreneur today is the cleaning lady I pay. The engine of economy is elsewhere, amidst organizations contracting with the state, organizations offered foreign contracts through diplomats’ bargaining, oligopolistic markets, contractors entirely dependent on organizations, organizations that are shareholders, organizations filled with interchangeable organization men whose personal value is nil as measured by their departure or removal or passing away having no effect whatsoever on the company’s market value… The human factor there is the problem – what can make the machine go awry some day or the other. So-called experts sustain the myths of capitalism, but that is spin.
Spin is the word for politics too. The spoils system is over, ended by the Civil Service Reform (USA) and the “rise of the technician bureaucracy” (Aufstieg des fachgeschulten Beamtentums) (Max Weber). Recalling the so-called “Monicagate” in their light-hearted fashion, Miller and Kanazawa explain that other politicians (men) have affairs too. Do they? “It would be a Darwinian puzzle if they did not.” (p. 144). I suggest another “Darwinian puzzle”: Why does not “the most powerful man in the world” (p. 143), as some journalists, and a few light-hearted scholars, like to call the president of the United States, have the largest harem on earth? It looks like the most powerful man is a nice and decent functionary who’s doing as he’s told. He’s there for the cameras, making believe, by his presence, in the savanna tribe. This is monkey dance. Entertainment for the savanna brain.
The profound meaning of democracy, as most high civil servants do not come and go with elections (which is spoils system) but serve any elected person and apply, each in his or her sphere of competence, any program that comes out of the ballot box, is either that bureaucrats, because they put themselves at the service of others’ ideas, live an ignoble life (construing living for one’s ideas as noble), or that ideas don’t matter in the least and our societies follow an inevitable course.
When the once most powerful man in the world named Bill was faced with impeachment proceedings for his whoopees in the White House and his lies, he said please not to make him waste his time, ‘cause he’s got a job to do. May I ask who appointed him to the job? It’s no job at all. At most we’ll have to call it an office, and one is not appointed there by competent persons for one’s competence but by the people as a good monkey dancer or a good person, depending on how you see things.
Do journalists investigate politicians’ private lives or not? If they do, do our authors mean that most affairs escape these investigators’ attention? Well, well… Why not assume that journalists are good investigators, when this assumption, precisely, is made about them in other fields? Because the scarcity of affairs would be a Darwinian puzzle…