»  Taki's Magazine

September 22nd, 2010

  Diversity Down Under


May I quote myself, please? Thank you.

The remarkable thing about the Diversity cult is that all the circumstances of the actual human world refute its tenets, wherever we look. I don't think it is an exaggeration to say that there has never been an ideology so heartily and jealously embraced by all the main institutions of a society, that was at the same time so obviously at odds with the evidence of our senses. It is as if the entire Western world had committed itself to the belief that human beings can fly by flapping their arms … In the world at large, diversity causes nothing but problems.
                 —  We Are Doomed, p. 25

Just so. You can stick a pin at random into the land portion of a world globe and be pretty sure you have found a place that is vexed by diversity. Consider for example New Zealand.

You don't hear much about New Zealand. The place slumbers away quietly down there in the antipodes, minding its own business for the most part, its only consequential neighbor country being Australia, a thousand miles away across the Tasman Sea. Australians regard the Kiwis as dimwitted country cousins, and amuse themselves by telling Kiwi jokes, which have a regrettable tendency to feature unnatural acts with sheep. (Sample: "Say, did you hear? Kiwis have found two new uses for sheep!" — "Really? What are they?" — "Meat and wool!")

Et in Arcadia ego, though. Even remote, tranquil New Zealand is disturbed by the frictions and conundrums of racial conflict. Much of New Zealand's diversity, like much of America's, was there from the start, so that New Zealanders, like Americans, never had any choice but to manage it as best they could. Their record, like ours, is mixed. Also like ours, it is worse than it need have been, thanks to a blithe willingness to import yet more diversity before having found a way to cope with the original tranche.

In New Zealand's case the main populations are European and Polynesian on a rough 70-20 cut, the remaining ten percent either Asian (Chinese the biggest group) or unspecifiably mixed. The Europeans are overwhelmingly of British ancestry, with small admixtures of other Germanics, French and Slavs.

Government statistics divide the Polynesians between Maori and Pacific Islanders ("PIs") in ratio roughly 2:1. The Maori were the first people to settle New Zealand. They were there when European settlement began in the 1820s. They are unrelated to Australian Aborigines. Indeed, it's a curious feature of this part of the world that the Australians were one of the first groups of Homo sapiens to take possession of a sizable land mass, at least 40,000 years ago, while the Maoris were one of the last, around a.d. 1250-1300.

PIs are a newer stock, practically all of them post-WW2 immigrants or their descendants, with the big inflows dating from the 1970s and 1980s. For approximate analogies, think of the West Indians and Pakistanis flooding into Britain on the same timescale, or — shifted forward a couple of decades — the mass Hispanic immigration into the U.S.

The scale of these post-WW2 migrations was, relative to the home-nations populations, tremendous. Scroll down to Table 1.1 in that last link. There are nearly three times as many Cook Islanders living in New Zealand as in the Cook Islands. For Niue the ratio is more than ten: 22,476 Niueans in New Zealand with only 2,166 left back home. Niue may be the first nation (yes, it's a nation) to be completely emptied out by emigration.

Maoris and PIs are all Polynesians speaking related languages, but there are considerable ethnic differences. Even down at the level of biology this is true. Cavalli-Sforza's monumental History and Geography of Human Genes shows the Maori-Samoan genetic distance as 0.06 — sixty percent of the English-Polynesian difference! The Maori-Cook Islander genetic distance is smaller, only 0.015 — equivalent to an Italian and a Basque. Richard Lynn's IQ estimates for Maoris and PIs are 90 and 85 respectively.

While of course there is much variation, as there is in any large group, Polynesian New Zealanders as a whole are underachievers. In crime statistics, for example: the Maori, who are 14 percent of the population, represent roughly half of all criminal justice offenders and victims. Polynesians — Maori and PI both — are way over-represented among high school dropouts. PIs are unemployed at twice the national rate. Illegitimacy is soaring — from 6 percent to 75 percent in 35 years among Maoris, according to former finance minister Roger Douglas … and so on. Several of these underclass pathologies were on display in the 1994 movie Once Were Warriors.

The longer an American looks at New Zealand, the stronger gets the déjà vu effect. Politically, the Polynesian New Zealanders vote left, which is to say for the greenish-progressive Labour Party. (The Maoris have their own party, but the convoluted electoral system permits a voter to split-vote; Maoris commonly vote both Maori and Labour.) However, along with the desire for a dole or a government job goes much social conservatism. Evangelical Christianity is strong among PIs, and issues like gay rights can keep them away from the polls.

And though the Maoris have not yet produced a Louis Farrakhan, Islam is making inroads. Two New Zealanders are listed in the current edition of The 500 Most Influential Muslims (page 129 of this rather large pdf file), one of them a Maori. The book's compilers tell us that: "Islam is an increasingly important religion for the indigenous population of New Zealand, and is the fastest-growing religion among the Maori community." Lucky for them, there is a plentiful supply of sheep's eyeballs.

New Zealand diversicrats confront these issues with the same vapid babble we hear from our own. We must fix the schools; we must ostracize and stamp out "hate"; we must respect our differences.

Alas: after half a century of this stuff here in the U.S.A., it is pathetically clear that nobody has a clue how to "fix the schools"; that neither mistrust, nor contempt, nor pity, nor weary indifference, necessarily include any component of hatred; and that a willingness to respect big differences in rates of crime and illegitimacy is awfully hard to inculcate.

Well, well, perhaps the Kiwis will have better luck than we've had.