the “happiest, healthiest” community in the u.s.

rural south dakota! (^_^) no, really.

luke asked: “OT, but maybe you can do some posts in the future on the ‘happiest, healthiest communities’ in the U.S., assuming there are some. Putnam, for example, has shown an inverse relationship between diversity and trust. So presumably he found some high-trust communities somewhere? Are they just neighborhoods in large metro areas? What about Lake Wobegons?”

well, i looked up putnam’s “E Pluribus Unum” paper [opens pdf] and, yes, he did indeed find some high-trust communities somewhere: rural south dakota, bismarck (north dakota), new hampshire, (moving to) montana, lewiston (maine)…. omg! it’s proximity to canada, again!

putnam looked at racial homogeneity in communities and inter-racial trust, racial homogeneity in communities and trust of neighbors, racial homogeneity in communities and intra-racial trust, and racial homogeneity in communities and ethnocentric trust. on each of these metrics, those communities with greater homogeneity just had more trust in all directions — the opposite was true in heterogeneous communities.

if trust means “happiest and healthiest” — and it sure seems to be important in having a functioning society (at least functioning as we know it) — then homogeneity is the way to go. of course, another important thing might be the *type* of population/subpopulations in a society — diversity might work okay if your diverse society is (mostly) composed of non-clannish groups.

here are some of putnam’s graphs for you to enjoy. click on graphs for a LARGER view (should open in a new tab/window — you might have to give ’em a click there, too, to view them full-size):

note that rural south dakota should NOT be confused with north minneapolis, which is a very vibrant community.

(note: comments do not require an email. south dakota!)

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76 Comments

  1. Haha, my gf had a thing or two to say about this. :) ;P

    She’s from Maine (from right on the Canadian border, in fact) and went to college in Lewiston. Apparently, among Mainers Lewiston is known as “the armpit of Maine.” It has a reputation of being crime and drug-ridden (and this was the Lewiston of 2000, back when it was more ethnically homogenous; today it has a large population of Somali refugees). Putnam should have visited further north and east in Maine. Had he had gotten more data from these parts, he would have found something different, probably to the top of his charts in terms of trust.

    Myself having lived in New York City, Connecticut, and now Maine, I can definitely say that there is an increase in trust going in that order. This article made me think of a friend of mine who’s a subway musician in NYC. His autobiographical book Underground gives one a glimmer into this contrast in trust between NYC and more rural (and Whiter) places outside the City.

    Other things strike me as interesting about Putnam’s data. Rural SD scores highest, but does he mean including or excluding the many Native American reservations? I assume he means off the reservations, as declares this area as being highly homogenous.

    Also, notice how low Detroit scores in terms of trust, as opposed to its level of homogeneity. Detroit is fairly homogenous—homogeneously Black. It doesn’t necessarily have a reputation for being friendly or trusting—indeed, quite the opposite (something that jives with the limited experiences I’ve had there). Jared Taylor remarks that it may not be homogeneity so much that impacts trust as the absence of minorities. Many of the surveyed areas that are homogeneously minority are urban areas, and I suspect that that may be a confounding variable to a degree, because living in an area of high population density may make everyone more miserable and suspicious. I wish Putnam had looked at some of the rural areas in the SE and SW, where we could get the attitudes of rural Blacks and Mexicans who live only with their own people.

    It’s my suspicion that the requirements for a high trust society are two-fold. You need a society that is ethnically homogenous of people who are inherently highly trusting. As you’ve observed, people who haven’t gone down that “special path” that NW Euros have, especially those whose origins stem from closer to the equator, tend to be less trusting overall. I would predict that if one looks at rural minority areas, we wouldn’t necessarily find such high-trust (or more clannish, in-group over out-group based trust).

    Putnam should have also looked at Hawaii, which is ethnically diverse, but such diversity consists primarily of Whites and East Asians (and some SE Asians & Pacific Islanders). My experience in Hawaii would lead me to say anecdotally that they are much more trusting than New Yorkers, but not as trusting Mainers.

    As an interesting note on your observations about the level of inbreeding in a community and in-group/out-group trust, my gf remarked that in places that are highly trusting and close-knit—like her home town—many of the residents are extended family. Such a situation arises because there isn’t much inflow of new residents into the community, and as such, the people there are necessarily partly inbred. In her town, they even have a term for outsiders that move in: “people from away” or “PFAs”. While PFAs are generally well received by the towns folks (that trust thing), there is a definite awareness of their status as outsiders that persists in their interaction with the native-born residents.

    But on the issue of population density, here’s one other thing. My gf experiences says something about north of the border. She’s visited both Montreal and Quebec City and she’s noted some serious distinctions between the two places. Montreal, she reports, isn’t a friendly city by any means, where the people are rude and not necessarily helpful. Interestingly, Montreal is a kitbash of ethnicities, and in addition to being where French Canada meets English Canada, has a large immigrant population.

    By contrast, she reports that the people of Quebec City are warm and friendly, much more so than in Montreal. This is despite the fact that Quebec City has nearly half a million people. However, Quebec City is almost entirely ethnically French. In fact, it’s distinct in that it is perhaps the “Whitest” city of such size anywhere in the New World.

    Reply

  2. “Also, notice how low Detroit scores in terms of trust, as opposed to its level of homogeneity. Detroit is fairly homogenous—homogeneously Black. It doesn’t necessarily have a reputation for being friendly or trusting—indeed, quite the opposite (something that jives with the limited experiences I’ve had there). Jared Taylor remarks that it may not be homogeneity so much that impacts trust as the absence of minorities.

    I think there’s two separate things in that. Most homogenous ethnic enclaves – Indians, Pakistanis, Chinese, Iraqis etc – are fairly peaceable (minus honor-crime) and i’d say medium trust with reasonable amounts of social capital – Indians probably visibly the most, Chinese possibly the same but less visibly. Homogenous white areas (non-underclass) i’d say were slightly less peaceable on average than them but higher trust which i think fits the greater degree of outbreeding combined with less centuries spent being pacified by high-density living. Some African populations aren’t that bad either.

    I think the slave-descended black problem (and some other groups like Somalis and Albanians) is there’s a very specific kind of extremely violent impulsive individual and if you have too many of them in a population they prevent any kind of normal society from functioning. 80% of the black population are terrified of the other 20% so there’s no social capital even with homogeneity.

    .
    “I wish Putnam had looked at some of the rural areas in the SE and SW, where we could get the attitudes of rural Blacks and Mexicans who live only with their own people.”

    Yes and me. I have a feeling the underclass environment has been specifically selecting for violence.

    .
    “It’s my suspicion that the requirements for a high trust society are two-fold. You need a society that is ethnically homogenous of people who are inherently highly trusting.”

    Agreed. There’s probably a percentage of diversity that wouldn’t effect it *but* they would have to be the same underneath i.e. outbred, IQ etc blah blah.

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  3. Some African populations aren’t that bad either.

    I think the slave-descended black problem (and some other groups like Somalis and Albanians) is there’s a very specific kind of extremely violent impulsive individual and if you have too many of them in a population they prevent any kind of normal society from functioning. 80% of the black population are terrified of the other 20% so there’s no social capital even with homogeneity.

    Maybe there’s actually a decent environmental explanation for this one. In Africa, and in some other underdeveloped Black nations, Blacks live closer to their ancestral environment. There’s less mobility and hence far less anonymity than you get in your average urban ghetto in First World nations. Your neighbors are far more likely to be your extended family and the whole community is probably fairly related in general (thanks to polygyny). Conflict in those environments tend to be mostly between-group tribal warfare-type clashes. Within the group life is relatively peaceable and trust is moderately high because everyone knows everyone.

    By contrast in First World ghettos, while they are some long-time neighbors, there’s a lot of mobility with new people constantly coming in and going out. As well, while there’s de facto polygyny, there’s enough shuffling around so that extensive networks of blood bonds with your neighbors generally don’t form. Shared identities don’t take hold and for some individuals, everyone else is fair game (as opposed to only the members of rival tribes). In essence, cities put Blacks in crowded urban environments without them having lived that way long enough to evolve either the docility of long-time urban dwellers or the broad sense of altruism and trust of highly outbred groups.

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  4. Well, thank you for the info, but brrrrr!

    I noticed a good deal of special pleading on Putnam’s part. All those extra Nobel Prizes weren’t evenly spread around for instance, and the national income gains go to capital, not labor.

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  5. @jayman – “Apparently, among Mainers Lewiston is known as ‘the armpit of Maine.’ It has a reputation of being crime and drug-ridden (and this was the Lewiston of 2000, back when it was more ethnically homogenous; today it has a large population of Somali refugees).”

    well, one man’s crime-ridden armpit might be another man’s peaceful, trusting paradise. (~_^)

    seriously — if we look at crime rates for lewiston vs. san francisco (toward the bottom of putnam’s trusting heap) in 2000 we get:

    lewiston crime index: 290.3
    u.s. average crime index: 308.9
    san francisco crime index: 451.9

    clearly much better to live in lewiston 2000 than in san francisco 2000 (unless vibrancy is your thing).

    but sure, yeah >> Putnam should have visited further north and east in Maine. Had he had gotten more data from these parts, he would have found something different, probably to the top of his charts in terms of trust.

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  6. @jayman – “Rural SD scores highest, but does he mean including or excluding the many Native American reservations? I assume he means off the reservations, as declares this area as being highly homogenous.”

    yeah, i don’t think he’s including a reservation in the south dakota data. “rural south dakota” refers to one south dakotan county which he describes as (pg. 144):

    “…in our rural South Dakota county (95 percent white) celebrating ‘diversity’ means inviting a few Norwegians to the annual Swedish picnic.”

    heh. (^_^)

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  7. @jayman – “Also, notice how low Detroit scores in terms of trust, as opposed to its level of homogeneity. Detroit is fairly homogenous—homogeneously Black. It doesn’t necessarily have a reputation for being friendly or trusting—indeed, quite the opposite (something that jives with the limited experiences I’ve had there). Jared Taylor remarks that it may not be homogeneity so much that impacts trust as the absence of minorities.”

    well, that could very well be right. or that minorities make the negative effects of diversity even worse.

    notice one of the worst scoring communities in putnam’s survey is north minneapolis and that is pretty much a group of black neighborhoods:

    “After the 1960s when much of the white flight occurred, the black population largely settled in North Minneapolis.”

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  8. @jayman – “It’s my suspicion that the requirements for a high trust society are two-fold. You need a society that is ethnically homogenous of people who are inherently highly trusting. As you’ve observed, people who haven’t gone down that ‘special path’ that NW Euros have, especially those whose origins stem from closer to the equator, tend to be less trusting overall.”

    not gonna argue with that!

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  9. @jayman – “As an interesting note on your observations about the level of inbreeding in a community and in-group/out-group trust, my gf remarked that in places that are highly trusting and close-knit—like her home town—many of the residents are extended family. Such a situation arises because there isn’t much inflow of new residents into the community, and as such, the people there are necessarily partly inbred.”

    interesting!

    @jayman – “In her town, they even have a term for outsiders that move in: ‘people from away’ or ‘PFAs’. While PFAs are generally well received by the towns folks (that trust thing), there is a definite awareness of their status as outsiders that persists in their interaction with the native-born residents.”

    i recently saw (again!) that classic movie, Jaws, and there’s a funny scene in it where sheriff brody’s wife (remember they moved to amity island to get away from dangerous new york) is trying to find out from one of the locals when she and her family (the brodys) will be considered “Islanders.” the native lady explains — never! if you’re not born on the island, you’re not an islander. (~_^)

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  10. @g.w. – “Some African populations aren’t that bad either.”

    no, indeed. remember the world values survey numbers showing that many african groups are quite “civic.” they do seem to care, but maybe they just don’t manage any better ’cause of the iq problem.

    @g.w. – “I have a feeling the underclass environment has been specifically selecting for violence.”

    sure. in an upper-class (high iq) environment you can outwit your competitors; in an under-class (low iq) environment, individuals will probably more likely resort to brute force.

    Reply

  11. @jayman – “Your neighbors are far more likely to be your extended family and the whole community is probably fairly related in general (thanks to polygyny).”

    consider, too, that africans weren’t one people when they were first brought to the americas. the genetic relatedness of the original black slaves was really shuffled up. how long would it take for blacks in this country to forge a new african people here? have they had the opportunity? i dunno.

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  12. @luke – “Well, thank you for the info, but brrrrr!”

    (^_^) (^_^) (^_^)

    oh, no problem! just throw a parka on and you’ll be fine. (~_^)

    @luke – “I noticed a good deal of special pleading on Putnam’s part.”

    not just special pleading, but also that in the long run diversity and immigration is just going to be GREAT for everybody and the problems we’re seeing now are just short term things. how the h*ck can he be so sure?!

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  13. “Maybe there’s actually a decent environmental explanation for this one. In Africa”

    I think it’s genetic via environment. The biggest distinction is definitely farmers vs pastoralists and if i knew more about the different histories i wouldn’t be surprised if how many centuries they’d been farming wasn’t important and at what population density (and probably if it was couple farming or female only farming).

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  14. @JayMan
    Oops, missed a bit. Black gangbangers complain about Somalis being psycho and gangsters complain about Albanians. It’d almost be funny if it wasn’t so tragic.

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  15. Also when i say homogenous ethnic enclaves (with some exceptions) can have plenty of social capital i mean they have it *within* the enclave. It doesn’t translate city-wide. At a city-wide level if you have scores of ethnic enclaves it’s no different to a diverse neighborhood but on a larger scale. You can see the effect in local politics as it goes from mostly civic to mostly dog eat dog.

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  16. I am calling bullshit on this piece. I am from West Virginia.

    There are about 14.5k blacks in the Charleton WV Metro area (309k people). 14k in Kanawa County, 7500 of which are in Charleston itself. 800 in South Charleston, 400 in Cross Lanes, 900 in Dunbar. That leaves about 4.5k to be scattered around the rest Kanawa County, and 500 more to be scattered around the remaining 109k people in the Charleston Metro Area, the rural parts of the Kanawa Valley.

    Now we West Virginians, especially us in the rural areas, we don’t trust anybody. Maybe a few close neighbors. And I hate to spoil the liberals dreams, but we certainly don’t trust anybody “that don’t look like us”, and we don’t trust people we don’t know.

    Regarding the area where this was done, there was student in one of my college classes whose family was run out of town after he came back from his romp in San Fran with AIDS, or maybe it was his brother. Anyways, after they were run out, the townsfolk burnt the house down because it was diseased – at least I think they waited until after they were gone.

    So, yeah, I am calling bullshit.

    The only other explanation could be that people responded in a manner in which they perceived themself, what’s that called?

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  17. @r j p

    Well let’s take a look at this:

    Check out this map of poverty in the U.S. by county. Also take a look at this map (from here) of areas of persistent poverty in the U.S.

    This and the NAEP scores of the U.S. states broken down by race would indicate that the average IQ of White West Virginians is about 94, assuming that the mean White national NAEP score is equivalent to an IQ of 100.

    As well, we have the fairly high rate of inbreeding, at least historically, in Appalachia. As we’ve seen on this blog, trust works differently in inbred societies.

    If anything you’ve actually lent support to some of the notions raised in this post.

    In a future blog post on my own blog I will take a look at the American South, Appalachia in particular.

    Reply

  18. @r j p – “I am calling bullshit on this piece.”

    i love it when someone calls b*llsh*t! makes the discussion much more exciting! (~_^)

    seriously — you’re saying that rural west virginia (kanawha valley) shouldn’t have scored so highly on trust levels? — that maybe they were just telling the survey takers what they wanted to hear. hmmm. maybe. you could be right. hard to know.

    it’s not like the “distressed cavaliers” of virginia weren’t inbred (see this post, too), so that could conceivably have contributed to low trust levels amongst (west) virginians. what about hackett fischer’s indentured servants of virginia, though? who were they? many were apparently irish and scottish (low-ish trust), but there were a lot of english, too. can their background help explain the low trust levels (if you’re right) of west virginians?

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  19. @jayman – “In a future blog post on my own blog I will take a look at the American South, Appalachia in particular.”

    oops! great minds…. (~_^) i’ve got an appalachia post in the works (i.e. on one of the back burners in the dark and dusty recesses of my little brain), too. nothing big, just an interesting thing i ran across the other day. look forward to comparing notes! (^_^)

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  20. First, I am from West Virginia, I am not from Appalachia.

    My only intention was I don’t believe the paper hbdchick reference is necessarily believable based on where West Virginia ranked.

    Second, Appalachians have been fuct by about every outsider that came into the state. First it was the mining companies, and it wasn’t pretty. The Battle of Blair Mountain. The only place in this country that unions provided any meaningful influence in my opinions were in the coal mines of West Virginia.

    West Virginia is not easily traveled terrain. That is probably why there was some inbreeding in the past. Have you ever walked up a 800 foot tall hill to get to the bottom on the other side and then up another to do the same to an area where multiple families could settle? That’s Appalachia to this day, except a person probably has a car today – probably. Looking at a two hour hike each way, your second cousin might start looking good, hell she’s probably wondering if anybody would make the hike for her. For the record, first cousin marriage is illegal in West Virginia. – Side note, a study done a few years back found that the lack of a reliable automobile is a barrier for many in Appalachia on government support, it was in the Charleston Daily Mail I can’t find it.

    I have friends that have hunting cabins in Appalachian West Virginia. You know from the moment you go into these areas that you are an outsider, they know by the vehicle if nothing else, but your money is good though and they are polite, of course.

    Would I ever go by myself to a cabin in an area I had ever been once or twice before which had a general grocery store which I might have visited three times where the girl behind the counter seemed sweet and was awful nice to me, seemingly out of her way nice?

    Yes I probably would have when I was younger and dumber, BUT I never had the opportunity until I had aged though that period. So …. I am still alive.

    I am not saying it is Deliverance down there, but outsiders are carefully scrutinized in “hollers” far away from areas like Charleston, Huntington, Wheeling, etc.

    Anyways, after the mine owners come the unions. Then the outsiders come in in the 60s to buy votes for Kennedy. Do you think the hillbillys thought there life would actually change in anyway based on their vote? Then the clear air people came. Then the anti-strip-mine people. Then the clean air people again. Every time, West Virginians lose jobs. Now they’re back again, against mountain top removal and power plants (along our rivers). But you can only build little communities over hill and over dale in terrain like West Virginia. You can’t have strip malls, you can’t even really have a functional and safe airport. You can however have a dead football team, We Are Marshall.

    If the power plants in West Virginia shut down, Baltimore, Philadelphia, and Wash DC are SOL. And I have actually emailed my Senator from West Virginia (I am still a legal resident) asking him to push legislation that if West Virginia is blacked or browned out in order to feed an outside entity that the fine would be 10X the cost of the needed power taken from West Virginia.

    I might be from the lily white middle finger in the air of of State of West Virginia, but I love my state. All of it.

    Even the people not shown in the video.

    I’m in Chicago for work. Would I rather be back in my home looking for hedging solutions for coal operators In a heartbeat, but that has all been farmed out to Goldman Sux. There are no jobs in West Virginia because of the recent regimes. West Virginia is the beaten mule of states. We aren’t allowed to do shit there courtesy of the EPA.

    hbdchick seriously — you’re saying that rural west virginia (kanawha valley) shouldn’t have scored so highly on trust levels? — that maybe they were just telling the survey takers what they wanted to hear. hmmm. maybe. you could be right. hard to know.

    Yes, I am saying that. There is a term for responding to questions based on how you perceive yourself and a term for responding to how you want to be perceived.

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  21. @rjp – “There is a term for responding to questions based on how you perceive yourself and a term for responding to how you want to be perceived.”

    yeah, i know. i can’t remember it either, g*sh d*rnit! (^_^)

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  22. @rjp – “West Virginia is not easily traveled terrain. That is probably why there was some inbreeding in the past. Have you ever walked up a 800 foot tall hill to get to the bottom on the other side and then up another to do the same to an area where multiple families could settle? That’s Appalachia to this day,”

    mountains again.

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  23. @rjp – here’s (maybe a stupid) question: putnam, et. al., surveyed people in kanawha valley (which includes charleston, right?). might there be much difference between the people in the valley and the folks up in the hills? i mean, maybe the low-trust folks you’re describing are not found so much in the valley, i.e. maybe putnam didn’t really survey them?

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  24. maybe the low-trust folks you’re describing are not found so much in the valley, i.e. maybe putnam didn’t really survey them?

    That is a possibility hbd.

    I will admit I have never spent any time in Charleston, which is in the Kanawha Valley …. just realized my misspelling … oops. But then Charleston is not “rural” and at 15% black, residents may have different opinions, but I still question.

    Just noticed something. — Why Wikipedia should never be considered a definitive reference:

    Wheeling is a city in Ohio and Marshall counties in the U.S. state of West Virginia. It is the county seat of Ohio County.[4] Wheeling is the principal city of the Wheeling Metropolitan Statistical Area. As of the 2010 census, the city population was 28,486 (31,059 in Ohio County, 360 in Marshall County).

    31,059 + 360 is greater than 28,486, right?

    Anyways, back to Charleston. Charleston has a very high crime rate.

    http://www.neighborhoodscout.com/wv/charleston/crime/
    vs.
    http://www.neighborhoodscout.com/wv/wheeling/crime/
    vs.
    http://www.neighborhoodscout.com/wv/morgantown/crime/
    vs.
    http://www.neighborhoodscout.com/wv/charles-town/crime/

    If that is accurate, I am many times safer in boring old shrinking Wheeling (Upper Ohio Valley) or collegiate liberal Morgantown (Monongahela Valley), than Charleston. But you also got to take into consideration that it pays to upgrade crime in low crime area and pays to downgrade crime in high crime areas for federal grant purposes. And I really don’t know how big the hillbilly heroin (Oxycontin) or meth problem is in Charleston. As for Morgantown, I would expect his findings might more correlate to that area due to the large out of state population.

    Charleston still has a high crime rate. It could be some liberal enclave in the Mountain State, but I doubt it. Because the white people are almost all still West Virginians that know better than to go to the darker parts of town. And if you are a full throttle liberal, do you really want to be in Charleston, West Virginia, nearly 200 miles away from any serious population center?

    Now as for the far Eastern Panhandle I would expect it to be completely different at this point from all the rest of WV. My cousin tells me Charles Town is nothing but a shithole suburb of DC. It is poised to become a major gambling center on the East coast, bar other states legalizing full casino gaming. One of my sisters lives near (but not too near) that area and tells me real estate agents are very careful when discussing crime in an area around there — this area’s the high school has a good tennis team vs. that area’s high school has a great basketball team.

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  25. The problem with estimating IQ by NAEP scores is that while it correlates, on the whole, with general intelligence, it can be more easily confounded than an actual IQ test by variables such as educational resources. Thus a state like West Virginia, which is poor, and thus unable to spare a lot of local resources for education, and not a special object of concern for the elites (because poor whites are the one minority about whom our elites don’t give a sh*t) will probably underperform, while an area like Washington DC that has had lots of educational resources lavished on it will have its performance artificially raised (although not to a degree that justifies the immense resources expended on it). This probably explains the results found here:
    http://anepigone.blogspot.com/2010/05/state-iq-estimates-2009.html
    My guess is that the table understates the gap between mostly-white West Virginia and mostly-black Washington DC (although W.VA, possibly the poorest of white states, still comes out ahead of Washington DC).

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  26. One error earlier, I meant Martinsburg WV, not Charles Town.
    http://www.neighborhoodscout.com/wv/martinsburg/crime/

    I by chance happened to stumble on a movie somebody at work told me to watch, at first I thought it was going to be a comedy, then I was like is this a mocumentary? Then I was like I don’t know what this is, but it is sad. According to Wikipedia it is a documentary.
    The Wild and Wonderful Whites of West Virginia
    And I hate to say this, but this movie is an accurate portrayal of life in a lot of small West Virginia mining and mill towns.

    If you watch the movie, there is one thing that sticks out to me that is striking, the faces of the women. A lot of the women from the smaller towns in WV have that same look: the pallid skin, especially of the face, the dark seemingly deep set eyes, and the long thin noses. It may be indicative that there are two few degrees of separation in the family trees. None of my sisters have that look.

    I’m done. No more WV talk for a while.

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  27. Forgot one thing about the movie, it takes place in Boone County, which is just south of the Kanawha Valley.

    The movie can be found on torrent sites like Isohunt.

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  28. @rjp – “As for Morgantown, I would expect his findings might more correlate to that area due to the large out of state population.”

    well, that’s the thing. we can’t be sure exactly who putnam surveyed (that was my problem with murray’s recent work as well) — plus there are the eternal problems with self-reported data — are people telling the truth, or just what they think is expected of them?

    i thought of another thing, too, with the west virginians surveyed — maybe they had an extra incentive not to tell the truth ’cause they want to improve the reputation of that area of the country. you know, put a stop to the stereotype that west virigians (and appalachians) are constantly infighting and not trusting and hate blacks, etc., etc. who knows?

    it would be useful to have other data on kanawha valley — and everywhere else in putnam’s survey! — to see how it all compares. some harder data would be nice.

    @rjp – “31,059 + 360 is greater than 28,486, right?”

    heh. somebody can’t add! or cut-and-paste correctly.

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  29. @rjp – “The Wild and Wonderful Whites of West Virginia”

    huh. interesting. i’ll keep an eye out for it.

    @rjp – “If you watch the movie, there is one thing that sticks out to me that is striking, the faces of the women. A lot of the women from the smaller towns in WV have that same look: the pallid skin, especially of the face, the dark seemingly deep set eyes, and the long thin noses. It may be indicative that there are two few degrees of separation in the family trees.

    that was my thought as i was reading your comment!

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  30. @Georgia Resident

    I thought that initially, but the thing is that IQ tests that measure “crystallized” g, that is knowledge and such that come from learning, as the NAEP or SAT do, are more g-loaded, oddly enough, than tests that measure fluid-g, like many straight IQ test or the Raven’s Progressive Matrices would.

    Though educational resources are often lacking in impoverished areas, it is a hand-in-hand relationship with IQ, because lower-IQ areas tend to be poorer.

    As well, the quality of instruction is lacking in poorer areas in large part because lower-IQ students can only absorb a curriculum that is only so rigorous.

    The PISA results out of rural China vs rural India, both impoverished, casts doubt on the poverty causes low scores phenomenon.

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  31. @rjp:

    “A lot of the women from the smaller towns in WV have that same look: the pallid skin, especially of the face, the dark seemingly deep set eyes, and the long thin noses.”

    Well there is that attractiveness-IQ thing. Half Sigma discussed a Slate article that notes that it may not be that people get better looking as they get smarter, it’s just that there are fewer attractive people among the unintelligent. The effects of inbreeding depression on IQ may be part of the reason why this is so.

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  32. Follow up:

    “@jayman – “Apparently, among Mainers Lewiston is known as ‘the armpit of Maine.’ It has a reputation of being crime and drug-ridden (and this was the Lewiston of 2000, back when it was more ethnically homogenous; today it has a large population of Somali refugees).”

    well, one man’s crime-ridden armpit might be another man’s peaceful, trusting paradise. (~_^)

    seriously — if we look at crime rates for lewiston vs. san francisco (toward the bottom of putnam’s trusting heap) in 2000 we get:

    lewiston crime index: 290.3
    u.s. average crime index: 308.9
    san francisco crime index: 451.9

    clearly much better to live in lewiston 2000 than in san francisco 2000 (unless vibrancy is your thing).”

    Lewiston mayor tells Somalis to ‘leave your culture at the door’

    LEWISTON, Maine — Mayor Robert Macdonald’s comments to the BBC earlier this year have again put the city in the spotlight — and not in a good way.

    In a documentary on America that aired Sept. 11, Macdonald told the BBC: “You (immigrants) come here, you come and you accept our culture and you leave your culture at the door.”

    Those comments came up again last weekend when the Maine Global Institute played the segment during a workshop in Portland.

    Macdonald attempted this week to clarify the statement, telling WGME television: “When anybody comes here from any country, they have to embrace our culture. Now, do they have to give up their own culture at home? No. If they want to carry on you know, the Irish St. Patrick’s Day, the French, the Italians, everybody, they all keep their culture, but we all practice a unique culture, and that is an American culture that over 200 years has been developed.”

    He also dismissed concern from the immigrant community that the comments apparently aimed at Somalis were divisive and hurtful.

    “If you believe in (Somali culture) so much, why aren’t you over there fighting for it?” Macdonald said in the WGME interview. “If you believe in it so much, why aren’t you over there shedding your blood to get it? Why are you over here shirking your duties?”

    Like the sign says… ;)

    Reply

  33. @jayman – “‘If you believe in (Somali culture) so much, why aren’t you over there fighting for it?'”

    heh. that was a brilliant touché. (^_^) and i am totally gonna steal it….

    macdonald — good highland clan name. (~_^)

    Reply

  34. So now, of course, there are protests calling for his resignation:

    Maine mayor tells Somalis to ‘leave your culture at the door’:

    Somali immigrants and their supporters in this former mill city in central Maine say Mayor Robert Macdonald should apologize and step down for what they call repeated anti-immigrant remarks, including telling a British Broadcasting Corp. interviewer that immigrants should “accept our culture and leave your culture at the door.”

    A group of about 50 protesters rallied outside City Hall on Thursday before delivering 1,400 petitions to Macdonald’s office, asking for his resignation.

    The mayor’s remarks sounded like he was telling immigrants to abandon their religion, their language and their identities, said Nimo Yonis, 26, one of an about 6,000 Somali refugees who live in Lewiston and the neighboring city of Auburn. The mayor’s words were painful, hurtful and “represent hate,” she said.

    “Basically, he’s telling us to forget who we were,” Yonis said. “Just leaving your culture at the door is leaving what you believe, what you stand for and who you are at the door.”

    Reply

  35. @jayman – “The mayor’s words were painful, hurtful and ‘represent hate’….”

    i really hate (ironic!) all this nonsense about “hate speech” and “representing hate,” blah, blah, blah. the western world has really become a ginormous gaggle of wusses.

    Reply

  36. Here is a conumdrum.

    The most ethnically clannish of white Americans tend to state the most pride while at the same time having some of the worst social and economic problems in the country, including in some cases even when compared to areas with large minority populations. This demographic is most concentrated in the rural South. While most proud of being Scots-Irish, white and Southern, they are simultaneously most proud of being American and they indeed have the highest rates of identifying simply as American. However, if their social and economic problems were representative of white Americans, it is hard to imagine that America ever would have become as great of a nation to be proud of.

    Among the least ethnically clannish of white Americans are also the least likely to declare or even being known for having pride, at least not as overtly in terms of manifesting as part of political movements or being used in political rhetoric. This demographic consists mostly of the German and Scandinavian descendants that are concentrated in the Farming states in the North. They have some of the fewest social and economic problems in the country, but they seem more humble about it. In their quiet way, they have helped define oe aspect of what has made this country so successful.

    What is interesting is that this is partly a divide between concentrations of British whites and concentrations of non-British whites. This seems to even extend up into Canada with the French population. Historically, there was an immigration pattern of French into the present Northern US and an immigration pattern of Northern Europeans up into Canada. French is still spoken in some of the most Northern areas of the US.

    This reminds me of an analyisis I recently did based on a large set of mapped data:

    http://benjamindavidsteele.wordpress.com/2013/07/02/maps-are-fun-us-data/

    What stood out to me was how much cultural diversity existed in the North. This is seen in terms of ethnicities, specifically non-English and more generally non-British ethnicities. This even includes significant pockets on non-whites, usually Hispanics, in rural farming states. Iowa is an example of such a state and most Iowans support a pathway to citizenship for undocumented workers, even as they also support more well controlled immigration.

    This embrace of diversity extends to languages beyond just French speakers. The reason for this is because Northern states have have few English-only language laws. It doesn’t seem to bother Northerners as much if their residents also speak some other language. This is probably related to why there are so many ethnic islands concentrated in the rural North. The pluralism of the North appears to be responsible for the continued survival of traditional white cultures in that region, specifically non-British, and the socially healthy factors that go along with the mostly Northern European descendants.

    It isn’t even just about having a mostly white poplation. The rural South and the Upper South is almost entirely white. It just makes me wonder about what defines and who gets to define what is America.

    Reply

    1. @Benjamin:

      “The most ethnically clannish of white Americans tend to state the most pride while at the same time having some of the worst social and economic problems in the country, including in some cases even when compared to areas with large minority populations. This demographic is most concentrated in the rural South…

      Among the least ethnically clannish of white Americans are also the least likely to declare or even being known for having pride, at least not as overtly in terms of manifesting as part of political movements or being used in political rhetoric. This demographic consists mostly of the German and Scandinavian descendants that are concentrated in the Farming states in the North.”

      The reason for this, according to Peter Frost’s and HBD Chick’s ideas, is that Germanic/”core” Europeans were selected for docility, where as those more “proud” groups, the Scotch-Irish (who descend from the Border Reivers), Southern Italians, and Catholic Irish retained their earlier behaviors, where being ready to respond to any transgression with violence was necessary.

      For a summary (including links to HBD Chick’s and Peter Frost’s work), see here:

      HBD Fundamentals: On the evolution of modern advanced civilized peoples | JayMan’s Blog

      Reply

  37. @JayMan – I’ll have to check out Peter Frost. Does he have a blog or does he have any writings available online? I’m still trying to understand the reasons. Some of the Northern European immigrants were living in violent border areas such as Alsace-Lorraine that switched back and forth between France and Germany. What made Northern European border people different from British border people?

    Reply

  38. @JayMan – I’ve had this border issue on my mind for a long while.

    I have ancestors both from the Scotland/England border and from the German/French border. These lines of my family all came to the area around Virginia and North Carolina. Many of my ancestors went quickly to the frontier which is yet another border area, one ancestor having been born in Kentucky before the revolution and before even Daniel Boone was there.

    My mom’s family remained in that Appalachian border area during the Civil War when it was truly a violent place. My dad’s family headed to Texas shortly after the revolution there which is another border area.

    For some reason, many of my ancestors liked borders. The only thing I can figure is that they felt at home on borders because that is what they had always known.

    There is one rally intriguing aspect to consider. The Romans were at the root of it all. The Roman Empire ended at Scotland’s border and at German’s border. This Roman history permanently altered these two regions leaving unhealed scars that would erupt in centuries of wars along these two borders. Those wars would motivate many of the emigrants that left or America.

    I don’t know what percentage of American immigrants were border people. I also don’t where most of them arrived and settled. I’m familiar with the Scots-Irish history as most of them came to the Quaker colony because of the religious tolerance, but obviously their worldview clashed with that of the Quakers. The Palatine Germans came a little later and I suppose most of them came the same route as the Scots-Irish. Many Germans did settle in Pennsylvania and the Midlands, but I haven’t a clue how many of them were Palatinates. Some of my German family ended up in Appalachia before making their way to the Midwest.

    I sense there is something very important about these border people. I suspect they tend to be more middling on the inbreeding/outbreding scale with equal parts fear and curiosity toward others. I know that the early frontier was a culturally diverseplace. It was common for pioneers to intermarry with those outside their ethnic group, including with the natives, and cmmon for pioneers to know multiple languages. These frontier people embraced multiculturalism in ways we can’t imagine.

    The frontier was a truly weird border place. Daniel Boone fought the Shawnee and he was adopted into a Shawnee family. This meant he was forever considered Shawnee. To be on the frontier meant to have multiple loose identities which didn’t always have any grounding in genetic ties. Shawnees and pioneers laid the roundwork for the later identity of the American mutt. My guess is this is why people in this region to this day often identify solely as ‘American’ or even ‘Native American’, even though many of them technically have Scots-Irish ancestors. As a side note, this is also the area of the melungeon population.

    I don’t know how these border people fit into hbd chick’s views. They seem to not easily fit into any category which seems to make sense considering that they were defined by a border identity. Take the Scots-Irish who largely are neither Scottish nor Irish; heck, as I recall they have some French Hugenot mixed into their ancestry. Their clannishness was mostly reactionary and quickly disappeared under other conditions such as their settling in the Midlands. I’m thinking there might be a big difference between clannish reactionaries and the more settled clannish traditionalists, an example of the latter bein the Highland Scots.

    I’d love to hear what hbd chick thinks of all this.

    Reply

  39. @benjamin – “Some of the Northern European immigrants were living in violent border areas such as Alsace-Lorraine that switched back and forth between France and Germany.”

    did the populations in the alsace-lorraine region fight amongst themselves locally, or was the region just the stage for fighting between nations (french vs. germans) on a larger scale?

    @benjamin – “What made Northern European border people different from British border people?”

    well, the thing that (i think!) made the british border people different from the southern english is their history of mating patterns — the mating patterns were much closer for a longer period of time in the border regions of england/scotland than they were in the south. and the working theory around here is that long-term close mating makes a population clannish (i.e. a fightin’ people!).

    i don’t know the long-term mating patterns of the alsace-lorraine region. i have some conflcting reports. one says that in the nineteenth century, cousin marriage rates there were very low in alsace-lorraine. another says that the cousin marriage rates in the region was extremely high — approaching 50%! the latter would make sense, since the region is mountainous, and mountaineers tend to marry closely. (it’s possible that the discrepancy, here, is due to one researcher looking at uplanders and the other looking at valley populations.) they ought to be a rambunctious, fightin’ sort-of people, though, if so! see my post, the auvergnat pashtuns, for example. (~_^)

    Reply

  40. @benjamin – “The most ethnically clannish of white Americans tend to state the most pride while at the same time having some of the worst social and economic problems in the country, including in some cases even when compared to areas with large minority populations.”

    well, and this is exactly what you find back in their home countries in europe. look at the piigs: portugal, italy, ireland, greece, spain — all clannish (some more than others) — all very proud — and all with woeful economic problems!

    Reply

  41. @benjamin – “What stood out to me was how much cultural diversity existed in the North.”

    yup. see the audacious epigone’s post: Law Alone? (it was included in this week’s linkfest, so you may have seen it already.)

    Reply

  42. @benjamin – “I’ll have to check out Peter Frost. Does he have a blog or does he have any writings available online?”

    here’s peter frost’s blog: Evo and Proud. always good stuff from peter! (^_^)

    Reply

  43. @benjamin – “There is one rally intriguing aspect to consider. The Romans were at the root of it all. The Roman Empire ended at Scotland’s border and at German’s border. This Roman history permanently altered these two regions leaving unhealed scars that would erupt in centuries of wars along these two borders.”

    nah. the irish were (are) just as clannish — and just as busy fighting each other right up to the nineteenth century (and in northern ireland still up until … oh … yesterday!) — and the romans never made it there (or maybe only slightly). see some of my posts on the irish and their clannishness:

    early and late medieval irish mating practices
    clannish medieval ireland
    early modern and modern clannish ireland
    mating patterns, family types, and clannishness in twentieth century ireland

    Reply

  44. @hbd chick – For your purposes, do you not see any significant differences between clannish border people and clannish non-border people?

    I was speculating that border people might be less inbreeding than the clannish further away from violently contested national/imperial borders. You’d think border people would be less inbred simply because all that war would result in a whole lot of breeding via rape. The ultimate of outbreeding would be foreign soldiers raping the locals.

    I was further speculating border people might be more used to dealing with outsiders. Even on borders, there are periods of greater peace that would lead to trade, cultural exchange and intermarying.

    Another speculation on my mind is that maybe border people are drawn to one another. I find it interesting that the Shawnee who were a border people would adopt into their families people like Daniel Boone who was of a border people. Borders make for strange bedfellows, sometimes literally.

    If this last speculation is correct, it would be expected to find Scots-Irish and Palatinates settling down in the same areas and intermarrying. A similar thing might be found among non-border people. The English and Scandinavians who settled the Upper Midwest were non-border people. Maybe the Germans who settled in the Upper Midwest were aso non-border people with fewer of the Palatinates.

    Just some thoughts.

    Reply

  45. @benjamin – “You’d think border people would be less inbred simply because all that war would result in a whole lot of breeding via rape.”

    ah. no. by inbreeding i specifically mean the long-term marrying of close relatives (second cousins or closer) and by outbreeding i mean people who avoid that.

    the reason for this is kinda … complicated … but you might be able to make some sense of it by reading one or both of these posts (i really need to write up a better “start here” page!): theories and where do clans come from?

    to understand the working theory, you need to know a little biology first, and that is the theory of inclusive fitness. inclusive fitness says that you can increase your own genetic fitness by not only reproducing yourself, but also by assisting family members with whom you share the same genes — like your brother and, especially, like your brother’s kids. by helping them to live (and reproduce), you increase your fitness — you get a genetic payoff by helping them — you leave more of your genes behind in this world both in your own kids AND in your brother’s kids. this is, it is theorized, the way that altruism evolved (or one of the ways, anyway).

    there’s a famous quip by an even more famous biologist/population geneticist by the name of j.b.s. haldane who, when asked if he would lay down his life for his brother, quipped no, but i would for two brothers or eight cousins. this little joke is reflecting the amount of genes we share with our different relatives.

    the thing is, in an inbreeding society, all of the relatives share more genes in common than in an outbreeding one — and the more/longer/closer they inbreed, the more genes the relatives share in common. AND so the GREATER the genetic payoff for helping a relative in an inbreeding society. and remember, helping a relative could, of course, mean going off and fighting an outsider/enemy. so this is why i think that the selection for beligerent, tempermental personality happens quickly in inbreeding societies (think: the arabs, the yanomamo, the chechens, the scots, the border reivers) — there’s a comparatively big genetic payoff for these behaviors (whereas there’s not in outbreeding societies).

    any inter-breeding that may happen in border zones does not, necessarily, have to reduce the amount of fightin’ spirit (or clannishness in general) in a population, because you might just be swapping “genes for beligerence” between two clannish populations!

    what you need, i think (remember that this is all a working theory!), to unravel clannish societies and make them more individualistic and universalistic in spirit is sustained outbreeding (i.e. the non-marrying of close relatives) in order to dilute the concentration of clannishness genes in a population. i think that the lowland scots, thanks to their history, were probably halfway down that road, and that that’s why the eventual scots-irish were a bit clannish but not as much as, say, the highland scots. i don’t know the mating history of the people from alsace-lorraine — and i don’t really know their history, either — i shall have to investigate! (^_^)

    Reply

  46. @benjamin – “Another speculation on my mind is that maybe border people are drawn to one another. I find it interesting that the Shawnee who were a border people would adopt into their families people like Daniel Boone who was of a border people. Borders make for strange bedfellows, sometimes literally.”

    that i believe! and i already concluded the same thing myself. people like people — are attracted to people — who are like themselves. wouldn’t be strange at all if fightin’ border peoples got along well together! (under the right circumstances, of course. (~_^) )

    Reply

  47. @hbd chick – The border people attraction hypothesis interests me the most. The border Native Americans were constantly adopting whites into their families. Bluejacket was a white raised since a boy by Shawnee and he became one of the fiercest Shawnee warrior leaders. It didn’t bother the Shawnee to follow a white guy like Bluejacket into battle against whites.

    There are other examples that seem to show a clannish attraction without the border factor. Puritans weren’t border people, but they were fairly clannish in that they were more mistrusting of outsiders than almost any other early colonists. They were a tight-knit group. However, when abducted in war, many Puritans didn’t want to return to their Puritan families and commuities. Sometimes they would marry into one of the native tribes or marry one of the French who were closely allied to the natives.

    The American frontier period seems to mix things up in ways that wouldn’t happen under more ordinary circumstances. On the frontier, there were a larger number of inter-ethnic marriages and they were accepted as normal. However, when the frontier became more settled, the inter-ethnic marriages decreased and became stigmatized. So, the clannishness of, for example, the Scots-Irish was only apparent after they grew large enough in number to enfoce clannishness on their own people.

    This relates to the fact that the Scots-Irish and other early Southern immigrants were disproportionately single men. In the North, it was more common for entire families or even entire villages to immigrate together. Why that difference? It seems odd that the clannish Scots-Irish would so often immigrate as lone individuals, at least the initial waves of immigrants. Even the Quakers with their nuclear families were seeming to act more clannish in their immigration patterns than those early Scots-Irish bachelors.

    I’m coming at this topic from more of a historical prspective. I’m trying to fit the odd historical details into what you are explaining to me. about mating patterns and such

    Reply

  48. What caused so many early immigrants to the South to come as individuals who were typically male bachelors? And what caused so many early immigrants to the North to come as part of families, villages and churches? Is this related to their being more clannish border immigrants who settled in the South than in the North? If not, what is the cause?

    Immigrants traveling without family doesn’t sound like clannish behavior. Weren’t there enough women at home for all the Scots-Irish to marry? i recall part of your explanation about clannish behavior is that it leads to early marriage rather than delaying until an individual is established with money, a good job or land. So, why were these supposedly clannish Southern immigrants delaying marriage? If it wasn’t a preferred choice, what was keeping them from finding women to marry them?

    This seems to throw a monkey wrench into the works.

    This is the type of thing that has contributed to my wondering about clannish border people maybe being different than clannish non-border people. Intuitively, it sort of makes sense to me that clannish border people might be more likely to venture forth without taking their entire clan with them. Living on a border, they are used to a lack of social stability and general uncertainty.

    Consider the fact that the Scots-Irish already had moved from one border to another even before they came to America. Their willingness to immigrate to the Ulster Plantation maybe says something about them as a people. The Irish only immigrated to America after many of them had already been evicted from their land and were starving to death, but if not for such extreme conditions they probably would have been less likely to leave their homeland willingly as the Scots-Irish were willing to do.

    Then consider the respective histories of clannish people in America. Scots-Irish concentrated a bit more in the South. The Scottish, Irish and Italians concentrated more in the North. What differentiates Scots-Irish from these other clannish ethnic groups is that they were border people. So, why did the clannish non-border people feel more comfortable in the North and often in big cities? And why did the Scots-Irish apparently prefer the South and rural areas? Furthermore, why did Irish and Italians organize large crime groups and labor unions while the Scots-Irish didn’t?

    My own speculation is that clannish border people tend toward more reactionary politics. An impulse toward reaction is more important when living on borders. Life is less predictable and stable on borders, and so more complex organizing is less useful. The Irish and Italians were a more settled people because of their not being border people and so they were more used to organizing on a larger scale.

    One thought I had was that the Scots-Irish were less inbreeding and so maybe less clannish in certain ways. Another thought is that maybe they were even more clannish than the Scottish and Irish. The Scots-Irish never organized themselves along ethnic lines, but the Irish and Italians quickly organized themselves along ethnic lines. This larger sense of ethnic loyalty is clannish, although a larger and less inbreeding clannishness. Or maybe it is the other way around as I first thought. This larger sense of clannishness maybe is built on a strong base of tight-knit kinship groups.

    Whatever may be the case, there is a clear distinction between clannish border people and clannish non-border people. It manifests in their immigration and settlement patterns, in their social behavior, and in their politics. This makes me then consider, along the lines of your view, whether there are measurable differences in family structure and breeding patterns. The tricky part is finding good enough data to determine what the difference might be. It could be some entirely different factor beyond inbreeding vs outbreeding.

    Reply

  49. @Benjamin:

    “What caused so many early immigrants to the South to come as individuals who were typically male bachelors? And what caused so many early immigrants to the North to come as part of families, villages and churches? Is this related to their being more clannish border immigrants who settled in the South than in the North? If not, what is the cause?

    Immigrants traveling without family doesn’t sound like clannish behavior. Weren’t there enough women at home for all the Scots-Irish to marry? i recall part of your explanation about clannish behavior is that it leads to early marriage rather than delaying until an individual is established with money, a good job or land. So, why were these supposedly clannish Southern immigrants delaying marriage? If it wasn’t a preferred choice, what was keeping them from finding women to marry them?

    This seems to throw a monkey wrench into the works.”

    The Cavaliers, who settled the Deep South/Tidewater seem to be who you have in mind. The settlers to the South were primarily lesser nobles, younger children of wealthier families, and indentured servants.

    I think the Cavaliers were an “in-betweener” group as far as clannishness goes, like the Puritans, both being not as clannish as the Scotch Irish. The Cavaliers seem to have taken on a different flavor in their behavior than the Puritans did, as in they seemed to lack the connection to family (by in large), but certainly didn’t have the universalist sentiments that the Quakers, or even the Puritans had (Puritans were egalitarian to other Puritans, but the Cavaliers didn’t view individuals in their own society as equal in the slightest).

    In terms of clannish traits, the mixed-and-matched nature of the British forerunners to the American nations present an interesting challenge for HBD Chick’s hypothesis. Each of these groups were to varying extent “in-betweeners”, but none had true clannish or universalist traits, with the possible exception of the Quakers.

    If we were to rank the American forerunners on a clannishness scale, from least to most clannish, I think it would go something like this:

    1. Quakers
    2. Puritans
    3. Cavaliers
    4. Scotch-Irish

    The ones of the end have more “pure” (clannish vs non-clannish) behaviors, but the ones in-between are a bit more confused.

    “My own speculation is that clannish border people tend toward more reactionary politics. An impulse toward reaction is more important when living on borders. Life is less predictable and stable on borders, and so more complex organizing is less useful.”

    Probably about right.

    “Whatever may be the case, there is a clear distinction between clannish border people and clannish non-border people. It manifests in their immigration and settlement patterns, in their social behavior, and in their politics.”

    You may be on to something.

    Reply

  50. @JayMan – “The Cavaliers, who settled the Deep South/Tidewater seem to be who you have in mind. The settlers to the South were primarily lesser nobles, younger children of wealthier families, and indentured servants.”

    You could be correct about that. I’ll have to keep my eyes peeled for more exact details on that issue. I don’t recall at the moment which book it was in that I read about single men in the South. I actually can think of one book where this comes up, but I think there may have been another book or two that discusses it. I’ll have to get back to you on that.

    If it wasn’t the Scots-Irish who were coming as single men in the early immigrations, then that would make a lot more sense in terms of their being a more clannish people. I don’t know as much about the details of who the Cavaliers were.

    My own Virginian aristocracy probably came from the Scottish border area of Peebles. They were named Peebles which is a Scottish name. I’m not sure why my Scottish family came with slaves to Virginia at around the same time when the Cavaliers also arrived there. The Peebles patriarch came first and later the family.

    My Peebles do sound like clannish people. The name means tent-dwellers. They built tents because it made it easier for them to rebuild after being attacked which apparently happened regularly at some point. They would hide the women and children in pits below the tents. The tents would burn, but saving family was more important.

    So, my family fits the violent clannish stereotype of Southerners.

    “In terms of clannish traits, the mixed-and-matched nature of the British forerunners to the American nations present an interesting challenge for HBD Chick’s hypothesis. Each of these groups were to varying extent “in-betweeners”, but none had true clannish or universalist traits, with the possible exception of the Quakers.”

    Yeah, you get what I’m struggling with. There seems to be a whole lot of confusing in-betweener behavior. I’m just trying to make sense of it all.

    Reply

  51. @Benjamin:

    “If it wasn’t the Scots-Irish who were coming as single men in the early immigrations, then that would make a lot more sense in terms of their being a more clannish people. I don’t know as much about the details of who the Cavaliers were.”

    According to DHF, the Scotch-Irish were second only to the Puritans as migrating as family groups (70% and 90% coming as families, respectively), with a fairly even gender ratio (1.6:1.0 M:F). The Borderlanders’ clannishness doesn’t seem so weird now.

    It was the Cavaliers that came as individual, single men (20% in family groups, 5:1 M:F ratio). Many of those men died off, failing to strike it rich. One can imagine that some serious Gregory Clarkian selection was very much still occurring in the coastal South. Hence, today’s White Southerners are likely overwhelmingly descended from the plantation lords, and not the common Joes of the day.

    “Yeah, you get what I’m struggling with. There seems to be a whole lot of confusing in-betweener behavior. I’m just trying to make sense of it all.”

    It will come in time. I went through a similar process; as soon as think you’ve “got it”, some more complexity rears its head trashing your would-be understanding. That’s part of the fun.

    It is possible that some of the confusing traits of the Puritans and the Cavaliers come from simple founder effects; if you were to split the American population, within a region, selecting by say political orientation, the daughter populations would contain interesting odd differences. Example: the Mormons, who are descendants of Puritans.

    Reply

  52. @benjamin – “Bluejacket was a white raised since a boy by Shawnee and he became one of the fiercest Shawnee warrior leaders. It didn’t bother the Shawnee to follow a white guy like Bluejacket into battle against whites.”

    dna testing doesn’t back up the bluejacket-as-white-man meme, unfortunately.

    that’s not to say that adopted clannish individuals haven’t made great warriors for peoples who were not their own!

    Reply

  53. @benjamin – “Puritans weren’t border people, but they were fairly clannish in that they were more mistrusting of outsiders than almost any other early colonists.”

    right. but i think (not certain yet, just think) that this is because the puritans — the east anglians — were from a swampy corner of england which pushed them towards greater inbreeding, like mountaineers. definitely the east anglians were more extended family oriented in the medieval and modern periods than south and central england.

    Reply

  54. @benjamin – “i recall part of your explanation about clannish behavior is that it leads to early marriage rather than delaying until an individual is established with money, a good job or land.”

    no, it’s the other way around, really — delayed marriage was a side-effect of the manor system in medieval europe. you had to wait until a farm property opened up on the manor before you could marry and have kids — either the farm your parents were working for the lord of the manor or some other farm.

    many, many generations of this sort of behavior probably/possibly selected for (at least partly anyway) the slow time preference preferred by many europeans: late marriage, for instance.

    clannishness doesn’t lead to early marriage — it just doesn’t discourage it. the manor system, otoh, did discourage clannishness by enforcing the cousin marriage bans and insisting on nuclear families rather than extended ones. clannishness and early marriage go together simply because the clannish areas of europe are the ones that missed out on manorialism.

    @benjamin – “So, why were these supposedly clannish Southern immigrants delaying marriage? If it wasn’t a preferred choice, what was keeping them from finding women to marry them?”

    not sure. i would suspect it was simply economics. according to wikipedia:

    “[F]actors contributing to the mass exodus of Ulster Scots to America during the 18th century were a series of droughts and rising rents imposed by often absentee English and/or Anglo-Irish landlords.”

    dunno to be honest with you.

    Reply

  55. @benjamin – “I’m coming at this topic from more of a historical prspective.”

    i’m coming from a sociobiology perspective, so i’m grateful for all the historical details! thanks! (^_^)

    Reply

  56. @benjamin – “Consider the fact that the Scots-Irish already had moved from one border to another even before they came to America. Their willingness to immigrate to the Ulster Plantation maybe says something about them as a people.”

    yes, that’s interesting. they do seem to have some nomadic tendencies as a group. not that there’s anything wrong with that! (~_^)

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  57. @benjamin – “Furthermore, why did Irish and Italians organize large crime groups and labor unions while the Scots-Irish didn’t?”

    yeah! that’s a good question.

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  58. @benjamin – “My own speculation is that clannish border people tend toward more reactionary politics.”

    i’ve been coming to a similar conclusion, too.

    it’s interesting that your clannish border people — who i think are my middling inbreeders/outbreeders (my “in-betweeners”) — are also the peoples who “reacted” to the reformation, pushing back in a more clannish direction, i think.

    (some other groups in the radical reformation pushed in the other direction — towards more universalism. i’m guessing these were more outbreeding groups. still needs to be established though.)

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  59. @benjamin – “One thought I had was that the Scots-Irish were less inbreeding and so maybe less clannish in certain ways. Another thought is that maybe they were even more clannish than the Scottish and Irish. The Scots-Irish never organized themselves along ethnic lines, but the Irish and Italians quickly organized themselves along ethnic lines. This larger sense of ethnic loyalty is clannish, although a larger and less inbreeding clannishness. Or maybe it is the other way around as I first thought. This larger sense of clannishness maybe is built on a strong base of tight-knit kinship groups.”

    yes, it can all get a bit confusing in a serious head-scratching sort-of way. (~_^)

    i’m not sure either, but if you look at both the irish and italians back in their native lands — back in the 1800s and earlier, i mean — they just weren’t united ethnically or nationally AT ALL! it’s when they got to the u.s. that they started to unite more along ethnic lines. it’s a new context, and that made a difference, i think.

    i’m not saying that clannish people always behave the same way all the time wherever they are. clearly external conditions matter.

    i think that the irish and italians united along ethnic lines in the new world indicates clannishness. it’s an expression of the bedouin/pashtun saying: “I against my brother, my brothers and I against my cousins, then my cousins and I against strangers.” (~_^)

    i think you’re right that, thanks to their history of less inbreeding, the scots-irish were less clannish than the irish and italians (but more clannish than the southern english) and, so, never managed/bothered to organize along obvious ethnic lines. they just became americans.

    Reply

  60. @benjamin – “The tricky part is finding good enough data to determine what the difference might be. It could be some entirely different factor beyond inbreeding vs outbreeding.”

    yes and yes! (^_^)

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  61. @jayman – “In terms of clannish traits, the mixed-and-matched nature of the British forerunners to the American nations present an interesting challenge for HBD Chick’s hypothesis. Each of these groups were to varying extent ‘in-betweeners’, but none had true clannish or universalist traits, with the possible exception of the Quakers.

    If we were to rank the American forerunners on a clannishness scale, from least to most clannish, I think it would go something like this:

    1. Quakers
    2. Puritans
    3. Cavaliers
    4. Scotch-Irish”

    yeah, they’re all in-betweeners in various ways, aren’t they?! i wonder if it took another hundred, hundred-fifty years or so before the real, hard-core universalists (the methodists) appeared in england? maybe the earliest universalists were down in the low countries … which would make sense, given that’s where manorialism started.

    like i said over on your blog, i would swap those groups around a bit … again, i haven’t got a CLUE about the quakers, so i’m just going with your positioning for now — but apart from them, i think the list should look like this…

    1. Quakers
    2. Cavaliers
    3. Puritans
    4. Scotch-Irish

    …for reasons i gave in the comments on your post. (^_^)

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  62. @benjamin“…although the HBD crowd can way over-emphasize the genetic angle.”

    one can NEVER over-emphasize the genetic angle! (~_^)

    thanks for linking to the blog, btw. (^_^)

    Reply

  63. @HBD Chick:

    “like i said over on your blog, i would swap those groups around a bit … again, i haven’t got a CLUE about the quakers, so i’m just going with your positioning for now — but apart from them, i think the list should look like this…

    1. Quakers
    2. Cavaliers
    3. Puritans
    4. Scotch-Irish

    …for reasons i gave in the comments on your post. (^_^)”

    I’ve seen it. I’ve responded. :) I agree that the Cavaliers and the Puritans seem to be very similar in level of clannishness, and may represent parallel paths of sorts, so it can be hard to decide which was more clannish, if one was at all. Ultimately, looking back at what David Hackett Fischer said, it seems that the Cavaliers were quite a bit more kin (extended-family)-centric than the Puritans, so it would seem that the former were more clannish by the most fundamental aspect of this.

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  64. @jayman – “…looking back at what David Hackett Fischer said, it seems that the Cavaliers were quite a bit more kin (extended-family)-centric than the Puritans….”

    ah ha! ok. thanks for pointing that out!

    back to the drawing board…. (~_^)

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  65. @hbd chick – “dna testing doesn’t back up the bluejacket-as-white-man meme, unfortunately.”

    Thanks for the correction. I’ve never read much about bluejacket. I only know of him in passing. That is what you get for superficially knowing a lot of things but few things very deeply. I can’t know everything, no matter how hard I try. Life is too short and my work hours are too long. Curse the gods!

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  66. @hbd chick – “one can NEVER over-emphasize the genetic angle!”

    Don’t get me wrong. I think genetics plays a gigormous role. I simply don’t know what that role precisely includes or means. I see genetics as more of a gambling game. You place your bets and hope for the best.

    There is immense potential within genetics, but if manifests in particular ways for reasons it seems we haven’t fully figured out yet. It’s the interaction that is the key part, interaction of genes with other genes and interaction between genes and environment. I’ve even heard of research showing our behavior can alter our genetics and those alterations can get passed on… which is truly strange.

    Genes in isolation seem to be missing something important.

    This could be another difference between you and I. You are studying genetics by way of ethnic populations and their breeding patterns. I came to genetics by way of personality psychology.

    In the psychological research, genetics are more of a probabilistic factor. Genes plus environment predispose someone to particular traits, but nothing is absolutely determined. Even when those traits clearly manifest, there is a broad spectrum and diverse ways in which they can manifest. It forces one to speak in extreme generalizations which have near infinite exceptions.

    “thanks for linking to the blog, btw”

    Anytime. If I didn’t find your blog interesting, I wouldn’t link to it. So, kudos to you.

    Reply

  67. I just noticed another blogger who wrote about South Dakota, but who did so directly in relation to Colin Woodard’s American Nations:

    http://thedisplacedplainsman.blogspot.com/2011/11/south-dakota-is-really-part-of-two.html

    That blogger also mentioned the homogeneity angle in the comments section:

    “My larger point is that ethnic divisions, especially in the Western half of North Dakota where I grew up still matter. Many of the small towns retain the ethic character of their original settlers. By the way, thanks for going beyond the Fargo stereotypes.”

    But also points out that this is within a larger multicultural context that isn’t without conflict:

    “The arguments between Norwegians and German-Russians may not be as well known as those between Irish and Italians but they seem similar.”

    Woodard responded to this in the comments section:

    “I’d argue that the Midlands is defined by ethnic pluralism — many ethnic communities living side-by-side and not necessarily mingling (or even agreeing) with one another. This definition doesn’t contradict the eastern South Dakota experience you’ve just described, it embraces it.”

    That response maybe applies to what you wrote here in this post. The homogeneity of ethnic islands/enclaves isn’t the same thing as the homogeneity of, for example, the rural South of Greater Appalachia. These ethnic islands maintained their ethnic homogeneity by becoming isolated communities amidst other isolated communities, and not by becoming a homogenous post-ethnic white population.

    Maybe the good life of South Dakota isn’t homogeneity per se but the traditional community structures that have survived in the Northern rural farming states and pretty much nowhere else. Homogeneity as it exists elsewhere ends up destroying these traditional community structures. It is precisely because of Midwestern pluralism and not homogeneity that these traditional ethnic islands survive.

    It should be pointed out that, in Woodard’s map, South Dakota is divided between Yankeedom, Midlands and Far West. The former two are the Eastern half which is the most populated part of the state which would mean most South Dakotans share some combination of Yankee and Midlands culture and so are more similar to the neighboring ethnic islands landscape of Minnesota, Wisconsin and Iowa.

    The South never allowed ethnic islands to survive to such an extent, except at the rural fringes and even then not so much. The South perfected homogeneity by passing laws that, for example, enforced English language on the entire population. The rural North did the complete opposite and allowed non-English languages to flourish and so the traditional ethnic cultures flourished along with their languages.

    Reply

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