never got transylvania

man, clannish peoples have looooong memories.

i was searching last night for some good turkish music on youtube — you know, as one does — and i came across…

…well, first of all — who knew there was so much ottoman classical music to choose from on youtube?! that was my first surprise. then i came across…

… (heh) THIS raging “debate” between what appears to be some turks, greeks, albanians, croatians, and i don’t know who else (trolls, prolly). here’s just a taste of the discussion — and these are some of the most reasonable, rational bits of it (sorry ’bout the language – click on image for LARGER view):

never got transylvania

old grudges die hard.

oh. i did find some good near eastern music in the end, but it wound up to be some syrian stuff rather than turkish. nice music!

previously: tribalism on the innerwebs

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clans in evolutionary biology – the clan haldane

as in j.b.s. haldane of — “would you give your life to save a drowning brother?” “no, but I would to save two brothers or eight cousins.”fame.

the clan haldane is a lowland scottish clan. historical records suggest an anglo-norman origin for the clan, but the genetics tell of a mixed origin — y-chromosomes of some haldane men have been found to be of both the r1b and i haplogroups.

the haldanes backed:
– robert the bruce
– the covenanters
– and the british against the jacobites.

two out of three ain’t bad! (~_^)

don’t ask me what the family crest represents!:

clan haldane crest badge - sm

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clans in the news: india, israel, etc.

first of all — how come no one ever told me that the indian (as in call centers) diamond industry was run in large part by ca. 2500 jainist families? a lot of them from palanpur (see also here). from time magazine:

“The Surat diamond trade was built by a dynamic and enterprising religious community – the Palanpuri Jains, followers of an ancient religion that emphasizes nonviolence and vegetarianism. Jains account for 0.4% of India’s population. The Palanpuris, who hail from the town of Palanpur in the Indian state of Gujarat, form a close-knit community that thrives in the atmosphere of secrecy and informality that envelops the diamond trade – there are often no written contracts, many transactions occur in cash, and stones worth millions of dollars are transported with virtually no security. ‘It’s an industry built on trust,’ says Biju Patnaik, a Bombay-based diamond-industry expert at Dutch bank ABN AMRO. The Palanpuris have also ventured over-seas, setting up small family-run polishing centers in Antwerp and Tel Aviv, and slowly elbowing into the U.S. as diamond sellers. In Manhattan’s midtown diamond district, Palanpuri businessmen sitting beneath portraits of their saint, Mahavira, now run shops side by side with black-coated Hasidim from Brooklyn.”

yeah, it’s an industry built on trust all right … in family members! fellow inbred members prolly (there are some hints that cousin marriage is a-okay amongst the jains — and we know that uncle-niece marriage is allowed with that other diamond-trading group — the hasidim).

see also Jews Surrender Gem Trade to Indians and Jainism in Belgium

i suppose that, like me, you’re all closely following the story of the unfortunate mr. urooj khan who lived in chicago and who, the day after collecting his $1 million lotto winnings ($425,000 after taxes), DIED from CYANIDE poisoning!

the question is, whodunit?:

– his wife/cousin who cooked his last meal (kofta curry) which she may or may not have eaten with him (reports differ)?
– his father-in-law/uncle who lived with mr. khan and who owes $124,000 in back taxes?
– his brother-in-law/possible cousin (married to mr. khan’s sister) with whom mr. khan’s daughter by his first wife is now living and who is suing khan’s wife/estate for the daughter’s share of the lottery winnings (or so he says)?
– his brother who called the police to say that mr. khan’s death was suspicious and that they should exhume his body to check for any funny business (which they are gonna do)?
– someone else entirely?

if this were back in the old country, clearly there would be a clan war a-brewin’!

see also: Brother of $1m lottery winner cyanide victim revealed to be relative who tipped off police about his ‘unnatural death’ and Poisoned Lottery Winner Urooj Khan’s Family Knew Something Wasn’t Right, Nephew Says

meanwhile, in israel:

1 dead, 6 apartments burned in J’lem clash of clans

these are arab, not jewish, clans…

“22-year-old man dies in hospital after being stabbed in a conflict between two family clans; six apartments, cars burned in fire.

A clash between two family clans (hamulot) in the northeast Jerusalem neighborhood of Beit Hanina left one man dead and led to a massive fire that burned six apartments on Tuesday….

“The warring Arab families threw rocks at police officers who tried to respond at the scene, though they did not injure anyone else, according to Jerusalem police spokesman Shmuel Ben-Ruby….”

very helpful. =/

and, although not really a clan per se, here’s an extended family for you … one set of identical twins married to another set of identical twins, and both couples have some kids …

sanders families

… shouldn’t all those kids — all those cousins — be related to each other as though they were all siblings? they should, shouldn’t they? amirite?

previously: clans in the news: deutschland

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clans in the news: deutschland

*update below*

from gates of vienna, excerpts from a translation of this article (links and emphases added by me — there are a LOT of links in the original article, presumably mostly to german sites):

“Germany: A ‘Society of Prey’ — Kurdish-Lebanese Clans and the Helplessness of the Constitutional State

“While the federal government and the opposition in the Bundestag adamantly regard immigration as an indispensable contribution to Germany, the intensity of the conflicts between some groups of immigrants and German society is steadily increasing.

“One example of this are many social problems caused by members of Kurdish-Lebanese clans in Berlin, Bremen, and Essen, cities which according to declarations from judicial authorities are out of control….

Regarding Lebanese clans, hierarchically organized groups meet strong ethnic self-awareness and a strong family cohesion which is supported by a large number of young men ready to fight a modern society composed of small families and with liberal institutions that can hardly assert themselves when facing this challenge….”

long-term inbreeding vs. long-term outbreeding (i think). there’s more…

“… An anonymous crime investigator mentioned that this group considers Germans to be ‘a society to be looted, both as born victims and losers….'”

morality applies to the ingroup and not to the outgroup. some more…

“… The police often meet aggressive groups of men while patrolling the streets, men who are part of families in which ten children per woman is not a rarity, who are available in large numbers and can be quickly mobilized because of an unemployment rate of 90% and the culturally-conditioned tendency of men from these groups to remain in the streets all the time. The police must more and more frequently retreat and even traffic stops against members of these families can be made only with extra police presence.

According to the Commissioner for Integration of Neukölln, the male members of the Lebanese clans are generally prone to a special level of aggressiveness. The children in these families increasingly realize that no German can be in a position to set limits for them. The mere mention of their family name would be enough to force others to give them money and other goods. An admonition in the school or a mere criticism of a neighbor is seen as an attack against the collective honor of the community, to which one is ready to respond with violence. Individual members of a clan can always count on the support of many male relatives. For example, in March 2012, when the German Sven N. fatally injured a Lebanese in Neukölln in self-defense, he had to leave the district after receiving threats from the Lebanese clan. The attacker who died was, however, considered by many of his relatives as well as by Arabs and Turks in Berlin as a martyr and buried in a ceremony in which several thousand Muslims were present.

“At their main centers in Berlin and Bremen, members of these clans appear as a group strongly prone to criminal activities. According to the central police department in Bremen, 1000 out of the approximately 2,600 Lebanese in Bremen (mostly men) are registered as suspects of having committed crimes. The statistical result is that almost every male Lebanese in Bremen was at least once a potential subject of a legal proceeding. In Berlin, the crime rate among Lebanese youth in cases of aggravated robbery is about 16 times higher than among ethnic Germans. The overall incarceration rate is 14 times higher than the average of the male population in the same age. Even amongst heavy offenders, Lebanese are strongly overrepresented. The former Berlin Attorney Roman Reusch spoke of ‘proper training for professional criminal activities’ in some Lebanese clans. Police sources reported similar information. Male family members would often begin committing crimes as early as elementary school age. Imprisonment would be understood in their environment as a kind of an initiation rite.

“Hostility to Germans is extremely blatant among many members of the Lebanese clans, who according to a report from the Süddeutsche Zeitung: ‘despise everything that is not part of their culture, first and foremost the Germans.’ According to information from the media, an internal report made by the Berlin police described the situation of the Germans in places with strong Lebanese presence as follows:

“‘For German youths residing in districts that are dominated by ethnic gangs, the situation, according to the criminal police experts, has already become dramatic. Their withdrawal with defensive behavior was perceived as weakness, which meant a loss of honor — and also danger: The number of German teenagers being beat up or robbed because they were an easy target was significant in ethnically dominated conflict-ridden neighborhoods….’

“The mayor of the district of Neukölln, Heinz Buschkowsky, had in this context pointed to different cultural conditions that hinder self-assertion on the German side:

“‘The enemy is the hated Germans, they are the target of their aggression, and they have nothing to counter the flash mob which gathers in a few minutes via a circulated SMS, a group of people who immediately display a threatening attitude. Germans are considered easy prey…. We raise our children to be non-violent. We reject violence at these encounters and teach this attitude to our children. Others teach their boys to be strong, brave and ready to fight. The starting situation is simply not equal.

“Government employees are being increasingly threatened and intimidated, too, and therefore they avoid conflicts with the clans. There were also examples reported in Bremen in which the police no longer investigated complaints made by Germans in cases involving Lebanese clans. Judges and prosecutors who are involved in cases against them are under police protection due to threats from members of those Lebanese clans. The Berlin youth court Judge Kirsten Heisig said she had been threatened by a clan after she sentenced some of its members to prison. Shortly afterwards she committed suicide under circumstances that have not been fully clarified. According to the head of the department of Organized Crime in the Berlin public prosecutor’s office, it is possible for the clans to ‘clearly exercise any kind of influence on evidence’ due to their capacity to threaten. Video recordings document the disproportionate behavior of Lebanese against legal personnel, who do not dare to oppose them. A judge allowed herself to be insulted in court for nine minutes without even daring to contradict the accused person. Many Lebanese criminals receive remarkably mild punishments, and if they have to go to prison, they enjoy privileges and continue their illegal activities from behind bars, while acquittals are hailed as victories over the German state….

“Meanwhile, leftists try to mobilize Arab youngsters as allies against the police, and the liberal journalist Malte Lehming explained the problems as an expression of social progress and said of Lebanese and other youth gangs:

“‘They are young, brave, mobile, hungry, willing to take risks, initiative. The country needs such people.'”

hmmmm. maybe he’s right. finally…

“… According to the police in Bremen, well-integrated Lebanese from important clans are an ‘absolute exception.'”

update 12/29: here are some links to msm stories which were linked to in the original german article i’ve provided the links to the german msm stories and to corresponding google translations. enjoy! (several of these articles are multiple pages long, so make sure to click through to the other pages. note that not all of the links below go to the first page.):

Arabische Großfamilien – Staat kuscht vor kriminellen Clans (United Arab families – state lies down against criminal clans)

Organisierte Kriminalität – Schrecklich nette Familien (Organised crime – Terrible nice families)

KRIMINALITÄT – Blutige Selbstjustiz (CRIME – Bloody vigilantism)

Clans in Deutschland – Machtlose Polizei (Clans in Germany – Powerless police)

Bremer Clan: Mord mit Ansage (Bremer clan: murder with announcement)

Arabische Kriminelle in Deutschland – Das regeln wir unter uns (Arab criminals in Germany – We agree among us)

Deutschlandradio Kultur – Länderreport Arabische Clans (Germany Culture – Country Report: Arab clans << kinda a messed up translation. sorry!)

Angst ist ein schlechter Ratgeber – Einblicke in die Parallelgesellschaft Neuköllns (Fear is a bad advisor – Insights into a parallel society Neukölln)

Kriminelle Großfamilien – Sechs arabische Clans im Visier der Polizei (Criminal extended – Six Arab clans targeted by the police)

Kriminelle Großfamilien halten Polizei auf Trab (Criminals extended families keep police on their toes)

Die bittere Wahrheit über Multi-Kulti (The bitter truth about multiculturalism)

Niedersachsen – Verband besorgt über Gewalt in Gerichtssälen (Lower Saxony – Association concerned about violence in courtrooms)

Warum lässt sie sich das gefallen? – Miri-Schläger beschimpft Richterin 9 Minuten lang (Why she puts up with that? – Miri-Schläger insulted Judge for 9 minutes). this and the following three articles are related to the miri-clan.

Bremer Justiz: Warum kuschen Sie vor den Miris, Frau Richterin? (Bremer Justice: Why fawn at the Miri, Judge?)

Milde Strafe für diesen brutalen Miri (Mild punishment for this brutal Miri)

Polizei löst Siegesfeier des Miri-Clans auf (Police solves victory celebration at the Miri clan)

previously: clans in the news: aleppo and clans in the news: the lebanon and clans in the news

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the return of the return of chinese clans

avner greif — of Family structure, institutions, and growth – the origin and implications of Western corporatism fame (well, famous on this blog anyway), and who is rapidly becoming one of my favorite researchers even though he doesn’t take into account human biodiveristy things (nobody’s perfect!) — and father guido tabellini have a fantastic paper out titled: The Clan and the City: Sustaining Cooperation in China and Europe.

they really get why western europe works the way it does while china works in a whole other way — except they’re missing the underlying biological reasons, of course. here’s what they have to say:

“In a clan, moral obligations are stronger but are limited in scope, as they apply only toward kin. In a city, moral obligations are generalized towards all citizens irrespective of lineage, but they are weaker, as identi…cation is more difficult in a larger and more heterogeneous group. We refer to this distinction as limited vs generalized morality.

i like that. more…

“Institutional mechanisms also differ between the clan and the city: clan enforcement mainly relies on informal institutions, whereas the city relies more on formal enforcement procedures. In terms of economic effciency, these two arrangements have clear trade-offs. The clan economizes on enforcement costs, whereas the city exploits economies of scale because it sustains cooperation in a larger and more heterogeneous community.”


where greif and tabellini get it wrong is that they believe that people become clannish or not depending on what sort of moral system they have. *sigh* which is exactly backwards, of course (i think) — a population’s moral system stems from whether they are clannish or not, not the other way around. but here’s there take on it:

Two otherwise identical societies that differ only in the initial distributions of moral traits evolve along different self-reinforcing trajectories of both cultural traits and organizational forms. Initial diffusion of kin-based morality leads to a steady state where clan loyalty is widespread, the clan provides public goods, the share of the population living in the city is small, and intra-city institutions are weak. This equilibrium captures the arrangements that prevailed in China.

“Conversely, if generalized morality is initially widespread, the organization of society moves to an opposite steady state, where strong and large cities act as the main providers of public goods, as in the evolution of Europe. Thus, to understand the different paths in China vs Europe, we need to focus on cultural differences in their respective early histories. Even if China and Europe had access to the same technologies, and neglecting the role of geography and other factors, social organizations and cultural traits evolved endogenously and mutually reinforced each other.”

yeah. almost. but, just where did the “initial distribution of moral traits” come from in the first place?

they’ve also got a lot of interesting stuff on the return of clans in china today. ruh roh:

“The persistence of cultural attitudes is matched by a striking persistence of clans as a central organization in Modern China.

“The modernization movement in the early 20th century was hostile to the clans, that were viewed as an obstacle to economic development. In 1904, the Chinese government legalized corporations with the explicit intention to foster joint stock companies. The law failed in this regard, as Li Chun explains: ‘the idea that members of the public would be invited to join one’s business and share in its control and pro…fits was indeed repugnant. On the other hand, the notion that one’s money be put into the pocket of some strangers for them to run a business was just as unthinkable’ (Li, 1974, p. 205 cited by Kirby, 1995, p. 50).

“The communist regime officially abolished the clans upon gaining power in 1949: clans’ properties were confi…scated, elders lost their legal privileges and authority, clan legal codes were no longer recognized, and the ideology of class consciousness was promoted (e.g., Huang, 1985, p. 308). Had the clans been a product of the state, they would not have survived the crackdown since 1949. If, however, clans had been a product of the coevolution of deeply held moral convictions, social organization, and institutions [not to mention biology – h. chick], clans should have persisted and reemerged following the reforms that allowed individuals to organize themselves. This is indeed what has happened since 1978.

“A county-level survey in 2000 (by Liangqun and Murphy, 2006, in Jiangaxi) documents that 70 surnames out of 99 (in 40 villages) updated their genealogies since 1981 and 41 surnames invested in their ancestral shrines since 1991 (p. 230). A 2002 representative national survey of more tham 300 villages reveals lineage activities and kinship organizations in 66 percent of the villages (Tsai, 2007, pp. 154–7). Clans resumed their role in securing property rights from predation by officials, organizing weddings and funerals, providing welfare, contributing to public projects, and promoting mutual aid arrangements (ibid). Inter-clan confl‡icts also resumed and collectively owned rural fa…rms often formally exclude non-locals (Thøgersen, 2002). About 90 percent of the 887 households that migrated to or from one of 50 villages relocated to their ‘ancestral village’ and 60 percent relocated due to inter-lineage tension (Liangqun and Murphy, 2006, p. 623).

“We quantify clans’ persistence using a random sample of 76 counties, 205 villages and 4274 individuals from China General Social Survey, 2005 (GSS05). The GSS05 asks (only) rural residents whether there is a clan organization in their community and, whether it is a surname-based or a temple-based clan organization. Although under-reporting of clan organizations is likely given tradition of suppression by the communist authorities, the census reveals 277 clan-based organizations. A clan organization almost always (90 percent) has a genealogy, a graveyard, or both. The two organizational types differ, however, in their economically-relevant assets such as land, estates (other than ancestral hall), and trust funds. Only 26 percent of the surname-based network have such an asset compared to 78 percent of the temple-based organizations (F12). On average there is 1.35 organizations per-village and one organization per 15.5 respondents. The highest number of people per-clan organization is in the eastern region (35) and the lowest is the northwest.

Almost 70 percent of the population live in a county with positive sample probability of a village having an organization and in 41 percent of the counties the village-probability of having a clan organization is at least 50 percent. In fact, clan organizations currently exist in each of China’s six regions although there are no temple-based clan organizations in the north (Figure 2, note that the northwest is a separate region) but they are particularly strong in the south-central region and, speci…cally, in Guandong, the richest province. These findings correspond to our historical discussion in which we noted the relations between out-migration from the North and the rise of clans.

“Table 5 presents the number and fraction of organizations –out of the 277 in our sample that ful…ll various functions. Most common are cooperation-promoting functions –resolving private disputes within the village and handling inter-village relations –and providing public goods in the village or the clan.

“Our online appendix also documents that the frequency and strength of clans in modern China is negatively correlated with urbanization in townships (i.e. excluding major cities), as predicted by the model. Speci…cally, data from China County-prefectural Statistical Yearbook, 2006 (YB06) and China General Social Survey, 2005 (GSS05) reveals that in the sample of 76 counties, clan strength is negatively correlated with urbanization even after controlling for such variable as education, infrastructure investment, and distance from the coast.

This re-emergence of clans is particularly noteworthy given that the reforms were not designed to foster clan organizations. Households, and not clans, were given land-use rights in the former collective farms and privately-owned businesses were permitted. Yet, kin-based and relations-based exclusive organizations have re-emerged and resumed their traditional role in supporting cooperation.”

previously: the return of chinese clans and china today… and whatever happened to european tribes?

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