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[Music clip: Haydn's Derbyshire March No. 2, organ version]
01 — Intro. And Radio Derb is on the air! Greetings, listeners, from your consequentially genial host John Derbyshire, here to bring you some sour, cynical, skeptical, and subversive commentary on the week's news.
Our cousin nation across the Pond has featured large in that news. For one thing, the Brits got themselves a new Prime Minister on Tuesday — their 78th if you start the count from Sir Robert Walpole and ignore some quibbles about the counting.
For another, their actual, constitutional Head of State, Queen Elizabeth the Second, passed away on Thursday after more than seventy years on the throne. She was their 56th monarch if you start the count from Alfred the Great, which not everyone does.
Ignoring all the quibbles, that's an average tenure of only 3.9 years for Prime Ministers versus 20.6 for monarchs. Moral of the story: If, for your next life, you are offered the choice between being Britain's Head of State or mere head of government, go for the Crown. You'll have longer tenure and the accommodations are way more spacious.
I shall give what I hope is appropriate coverage — one segment each — to those events later in the podcast. As a former Brit myself, though, I am wary of imposing too much Brit-centric news on my fellow Americans. I'm more interested in Britain than the average American but not that much more. There is plenty going on in the U.S.A. we need to air our opinions about, and indeed in other places not under the dominion of the Crown, so I shall start with those.
02 — Truth or consequences. I hold the eccentric opinion that effective social policies should be based on true facts about the world. That includes the biological world — the world of living creatures, to which our species belongs.
Social policies that are not thus based will fail, leaving society — that's us, listener — worse off than before. In the Radio Derb transcript I shall therefore title this segment: "Truth or consequences."
In that spirit I'm a race realist. Our species, like any other species with wide distribution, consists of local groups — races — separated from each other for many hundreds — even thousands — of generations, sometimes in radically different living environments. These groups exhibit different statistical profiles on all kinds of heritable traits. That's just Biology 101.
We now have multiracial societies where descendants of these groups live together under a single common legal and cultural system. We see those statistical differences plain, in every multiracial society. Here in the U.S.A. blacks, whites, and Northeast Asians present strikingly different statistical profiles in all sorts of categories: presence in AP Math classes, arrests for crimes of violence, and so on.
These statistical differences, these inequities — some of them very striking indeed — are not the fault of anyone other than Mother Nature. Here, however, we encounter the sad truth I expressed in Chapter Seven of my book We Are Doomed, quote:
The ordinary modes of human thinking are magical, religious, social, and personal. We want our wishes to come true; we want the universe to care about us; we want the approval of those around us; we want to get even with that s.o.b who insulted us at the last tribal council. For most people, wanting to know the cold truth about the world is way, way down the list.
When one of those statistical differences results in worse social outcomes for one race when compared with another, it is natural — just as natural as the differences themselves! — for the less-advantaged race to blame the more-advantaged one for making the difference happen.
The blame can take different forms.
or the theory of "systemic racism," currently very respectable in the U.S.A.
These blame theories aren't totally fantastic. There really have been historical examples of one race conspiring to keep another race down, although you can argue that this or that example was not driven by blind malice but by frank, practical accommodation of innate race differences. There are also peculiar cases, like the Hindu caste system, where biology and sociology work on each other in ways we don't completely understand.
The different social outcomes by race — those inequities — that we see in today's U.S.A., however, are sufficiently well explained by race realism. Races exist and races differ statistically in all heritable traits: size, shape, color, strength, disease susceptibility, behavior, intelligence, personality.
Can we get to a place where such simple, straightforward truths are widely accepted and endorsed by our cultural authorities? Perhaps not. Perhaps our tribal impulses — innate, wired in, part of our human nature — are too strong. Probably no more than half of America's current adult population could successfully complete a course in basic statistics. By contrast, close to a hundred percent of us are capable of blaming other people for our own failures.
Truth is truth none the less, and we should honor those who speak the truth against mighty headwinds of social disapproval. Magna est veritas et praevalebit: "the truth is great and shall prevail." A fictional schoolboy once mis-translated the Latin original as, "the truth is great and shall prevail a bit." I'll allow that's closer to our everyday experience, but I'll take what I can get.
03 — Jared Taylor at Arizona State. Hence my extravagant admiration, often expressed here at Radio Derb, for Jared Taylor, proprietor of the American Renaissance website and its parent organization the New Century Foundation.
Jared has been in the news, in a small and local way, this past few days. Two podcasts ago I alerted you to the fact that he had a speaking engagement with a student group at Arizona State University in Tempe on September 9th.
Based on the experiences of myself and others — Amy Wax, for example — with these speaking engagements, I wondered aloud whether the college bureaucrats would allow Jared's talk to proceed; and if they did allow it, whether it would end with broken windows and neck braces.
To the college's great credit, Jared's speech did proceed as scheduled; and the campus police, quote, "provided courteous, efficient security," end quote. I took that quote from Jared's own account of the event, posted at American Renaissance on Monday.
I urge you to read that account. Not only does Jared describe the event, he writes with eloquence, good nature, and wit. He further provides links to video clips of the protestors outside the lecture hall, and to a video of his address. Closing quote:
The event was an unqualified success, and deeply upsetting to the enemies of free speech.
VDARE.com's own correspondent Reginald De Chantillon posted his coverage of the event here on Tuesday. I hope you'll excuse me one more quote here, this one from near the end of Reginald's piece. Quote:
In summary, the ASU CRU sponsored event with Jared Taylor was an outstanding success that saw him in his first campus appearance in ten years, during which he brought needed information to a new and young audience.
"ASU" there stands for "Arizona State University," of course. "CRU" stands for "College Republicans United," the student organization that invited Jared.
I confess to being a bit baffled by that name, "College Republicans United." Jared tells us that CRU has been around for a few years now and has chapters on several dozen campuses. Good for them, and may their numbers increase, but what's with the name?
College Republicans are not united. At Arizona State there is a rival student group to College Republicans United called just "College Republicans." That group joined with the anarchists and anti-white activists on campus to denounce CRU's invitation to Jared. You following? CR denounced CRU.
That split of course reminds us that on a national scale, the Republican Party is on the same page as radical Democrats where honest speaking about race is concerned. Perhaps that's the whole idea of CRU's chosen name, to make a joke of establishment Republican cowardice and cuckery.
Whether it is or not, I wish CRU well. If some college by you has a CRU chapter and you see an advertised event, try to attend. Don't pass up on your attendance at a family party to attend, though: the CRU one may get cancelled by college bureaucrats. If the CRU event does happen, don't wear your best clothes; there might be pushing and shoving from demonstrators.
And the coverage of that ASU event has left me wondering. The thing I'm wondering is: Might we be about to enter a new interglacial? Let me just explain what I mean. New segment, please.
04 — A new interglacial? In geology an interglacial period is one of the warm spells that punctuate an Ice Age. An Ice Age lasts for millions of years. Within an Ice Age there are these warm spells — interglacials — lasting mere thousands of years. The glaciers retreat for a while, then they come back.
In an opinion piece back in 2009 I hypothesized that there had been a modest flowering of honesty about race in the mid-to-late 1990s and early 2000s, tapering off thereafter as we returned to the previous hypocrisies — like glaciers retreating for a while, then coming back. I even attempted to quantify this "interglacial" period by counting the number of relatively race-realist books year by year. (I didn't use the word "interglacial" in that article. I think Peter Brimelow actually coined this usage of the word.)
There's definitely something to it — to my hypothesis, I mean. Back in the 1990s Jared Taylor was appearing on C-SPAN. If Reginald De Chantillon is right that the ASU event was Jared's first campus appearance in ten years, perhaps the glaciers are retreating again.
Or it might be a false dawn. As a constitutional pessimist, I'll reserve judgment until I see more signs of openness. I won't be too surprised if I do see some, though.
It's been twenty-odd years since Jared was talking on C-SPAN. That's been twenty years of zero progress in advancing "equity" — that is, equal outcomes by race — in spite of mighty efforts and vast expenditures.
It's also been twenty years of increasingly desperate attempts to force the issue by means of increasingly brazen anti-white measures on the part of both private and public organizations. Here's a selection just from the past few days; and I'll confess I lifted it from American Renaissance's handy aggregator of news stories about anti-white Discrimination.
And so on. As anti-white measures get ever more shameless white Americans are bound to start noticing in spite of all the heavy school and workplace indoctrination sessions against noticing. This should be especially the case for young people just entering into the main body of society and suddenly seeing — and not just seeing but experiencing — how empty all the cant about "white privilege" is.
I know from personal contacts that when this year's crop of college graduates go out applying for jobs, the story they hear from their older friends and relatives already in the workforce is that big organizations, both public and private, are diversifying up as fast as they can, so that white and Asian applicants are at a disadvantage in getting hired.
Possibly this is just urban legend; I haven't seen any statistics confirming it. The point is, though, that true or false, the youngsters are hearing it from people who are in the system and know more about the job market than they do. This has to be giving young people a good strong nudge towards race realism.
A new interglacial? Possibly. And sooner or later there comes an interglacial that isn't an interglacial at all, but the actual end of an Ice Age. Hey, we can hope. Magna est veritas et praevalebit.
05 — Remembering Smyrna. Yeah, yeah, I'll get to the British stuff in just a moment. First, though, a headline that caught my eye at Business Insider, September 7th. Headline: Greece warns another European war could be on the horizon as Turkey hints at the possibility of an invasion.
The substance of the story is that there are rising tensions between Greece and Turkey over rival territorial claims in the wine-dark Aegean Sea and disagreements over the neighboring airspace. Quote: "The friction has brought them to the brink of war three times in the last half-century," end quote. That's from Associated Press.
Just what we need, right? — two NATO members going to war. Whose side do we take? Uh … Can we please, please get out of NATO?
The reason that headline caught my eye was … Smyrna.
Smyrna is a city — quite a big one, population over three million — on the west coast of Anatolia, which is to say modern Turkey. If you can't find it on your atlas that's because it is nowadays known by its Turkish name: İzmir.
You need some history here. What is today Turkey was, until World War One, the Turkish heartland of the Ottoman Empire, run by Turks. Smyrna belonged to that empire.
It wasn't whole-heartedly Turkish, though. It was in fact one of those multi-ethnic cosmopolises — like Alexandria five hundred miles to the south before Nasser took over Egypt, or Hong Kong under British colonial rule, or Beirut before the civil wars. The inhabitants gave all their energies to commerce, hoping the politicians of the world would leave them alone.
They wouldn't, of course. The Ottoman Empire took the wrong side in WW1. In the peace treaties that followed the war the victorious nations aimed to carve up the loser nations so they wouldn't be strong enough to make trouble again.
This western part of the Ottoman Empire they decided should go to Greece. Where Smyrna was concerned this would have been fair enough, as there were more Greeks in the city than Turks. Some scholars in fact think there were more Greeks in Smyrna than there were in Athens.
Problem was, that while the Turkish Army was no longer strong enough to fight the allied powers of Europe and America, it was still strong enough to fight Greece, and the allied powers were too exhausted to get involved. So war broke out between Greece and Turkey: the Greeks claiming what the peace treaties had granted them — including Smyrna — and the Turks determined to hold on to the Anatolian heartland … including Smyrna.
The Greeks landed an army in Smyrna and advanced thence to Central Anatolia. The Turkish Army met them, drove them back, and occupied Smyrna. That occupation began on September 9th 1922 — precisely one hundred years ago to the day as I am telling you this story.
Four days after that, on September 13th, fire broke out in Smyrna. The fire raged for more than a week. The non-Turkish population of the city — mainly Greeks and Armenians — crowded along the waterfront to escape the flames. There were tens of thousands of them and there are harrowing eyewitness accounts of their suffering in that week while the city burned behind them.
That was the Great Fire of Smyrna, one of the lesser horrors in a century of horrors. It happened one hundred years ago next week.
The Greeks are still mad as hell about it. Presumably the Armenians are too; but the only Armenian I know is Mark Krikorian, and I keep forgetting to ask him about it.
06 — Liz Truss. OK, now the Brit stuff. I'll do it in two segments: one for the new Prime Minister Liz Truss, one for the passing of Queen Elizabeth.
I know next to nothing about Ms Truss, who until this week was a second-rank politician in a second-rank country. Hastening to catch up, I read the speech she gave on Tuesday after getting Queen Elizabeth's nod of approval as Prime Minister. Then I made a quick scan of her cabinet to see if I had a clue about who any of them were. They being a bunch more of second-rank politicians in a second-rank country, I mostly didn't.
Then I read some commentary from British pundits I've found to be honest and unillusioned. My Number One go-to guy Ed West hasn't yet given us opinions specifically on the new Prime Minister, but Number Two has. That would be Douglas Murray in a Wednesday piece at The Sun, a London tabloid.
OK, the speech. I'll give you the key part of it. It's a little over one minute.
[Clip: As Prime Minister, I will pursue three early priorities. Firstly, I will get Britain working again. I have a bold plan to grow the economy through tax cuts and reform. I will cut taxes to reward hard work and boost business-led growth and investment.
That was the speech — well, the key part of it. There was no mention of immigration, and no mention anywhere in the rest of the speech. Douglas Murray was withering about this. Quotes from him.
Look at the boatloads of people arriving into our country illegally every day now and notice that the majority are young men. Are they going to be paying into our country? Or are they going to be a burden on it? Despite the best hopes of the open-borders lobby, most will spend their lives as a drain on this country.
There certainly are. For example: Brexit notwithstanding, the U.K. remains under the jurisdiction of the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg. That's a key resource for so-called "human rights lawyers" to use when thwarting government attempts to deport illegal aliens.
A measure to advance Britain's detachment from this foreign court was due to come before Parliament next week. The new Prime Minister has, however, withdrawn her support from it. So it will go on being well-nigh impossible for Britain to deport illegals.
You get the idea. Britain's Conservative Party — Liz Truss's party — is, like our own establishment Republican party, utterly useless on the National Question. Like the GOP it's a party of cucks and cowards and seat-warmers whose main aim in life is to not have liberal journalists write unkind things about them.
You could summarize Ms Truss's speech as follows.
We'll give you a tax cut! We'll print extra money and give it to you so you can pay your energy bills! No, no, of course that won't cause inflation! We'll send more money to Ukraine! We'll import a million more cheap doctors and nurses from the Third World with limited English-language skills! Don't worry, everything will be fine!
Oh, the cabinet? The four key positions, with translation into the U.S. equivalent, are as follows: Prime Minister (that's basically chief executive), Home Secretary (Attorney General, more or less), Foreign Secretary (that's Secretary of State), and Chancellor (Treasury Secretary). In Liz Truss's new cabinet, not one of those positions is held by a white male. Ms Truss herself aside (she's a white female) there's a black guy, a mulatto guy, and an Indian woman.
And this is a government formed from Britain's Conservative Party.
I need a drink.
07 — QE2. The Queen of England died at age 96 after more than seventy years on the throne.
Some of my fellow Americans, including my own kids, have offered me their condolences, or asked me about my feelings. It's all very kindly meant and I appreciate it in that spirit. I'm an American myself now, though, so the only difference between me and any other American here is some fond nostalgic memories of my English childhood.
That England is utterly gone now, destroyed by uncontrolled mass immigration, a loss I have occasionally lamented here on Radio Derb. Might Elizabeth have prevented that? Some Brits think so: Sean Gabb, for example, who ten years ago here at VDARE.com called her Elizabeth the Useless.
Some Americans concur. Right after the news of Elizabeth's passing came out an American, American-born friend of mine emailed in to say, inter alia, quote:
Everything she's admired for — the reticence, the dignified pomp, the preservation of at least some tradition — contributed to the appearance that her country was still what it had been, when it was about not to be and then was not. She contributed to an illusion, and she thereby facilitated complacency.
OK, I take the point. Browsing through my own remarks about Elizabeth, though, I can't think of anything I would change in these comments I put into Radio Derb two years ago.
On the rare occasions I mention the Queen in these podcasts, I usually confess having a soft spot for her. She's been there all my life, the still center of a changing world, showing up on TV every Christmas to offer some pleasant platitudes in the same fruity 1930-ish upper-class accents that no-one but she speaks any more. Her coronation in 1953 was the first big public event to really impinge on my awareness. My sister Judith still has her coronation mug from that event; I forget what happened to mine. I probably threw it at Judith and missed.
08 — Miscellany. And now, our closing miscellany of brief items.
Imprimis: As far as the U.K. has gone into the darkness, the Republic of Ireland has gone farther.
Case study: Enoch Burke, who teaches history, politics and German at a Church of Ireland, co-educational boarding school located in Multyfarnham, in Ireland's County Westmeath. The Church of Ireland is the Anglican Church in Ireland — in American terms, the Episcopal Church.
Mr Burke is himself a devout Christian. Ordered by the school authorities to use the pronoun "they" when speaking to, or about, a male student who claimed he was transgender, Mr Burke refused. The school suspended him pending the outcome of a disciplinary process. They got a court injunction barring him from the school premises.
When, in defiance of the injunction, he was found sitting in an empty classroom at the school, police were called. Mr Burke was taken back to the court and sentenced to prison. Latest news I have, Friday morning, is that he's still there five days later, in an isolation cell, forbidden to communicate with other prisoners.
His case has been adjourned for a week, so it'll be two weeks in solitary. To get that much jail time in New York City nowadays, you'd have to set fire to the Empire State Building.
Item: Latest addition to our federal executive: Demetre Daskalakis, just appointed by Joe Biden to be the official White House National Monkeypox Response Deputy Coordinator.
Let's face it: At this point the ruling class is just screwing with us, aren't they?
Apparently staring counts as harassment now. But hey, what doesn't? Gotta keep those safe spaces safe!
You remember the old joke about people from Finland. "A Finnish introvert looks at his shoes when he's talking to you. A Finnish extrovert looks at your shoes when he's talking to you." So I guess this nightclub will be real popular with Finns, however many there are Down Under.
On the other hand they should ban Demetre Daskalakis. If you can be on the same dance-floor as him without staring in disbelief, you've got more self-control than I've got.
09 — Signoff. That's it, ladies and gents. Thank you for your time and attention, and my apologies for being even more behind on email than usual.
I have an excuse. The Mrs and I took a long Labor Day weekend vacation which we spent in the lovely state of Maine. Being off the grid for four days, the email mounted up.
On the plus side, I came back from Maine with some signout music. Let me explain.
For the highlight of our vacation, I ticked another item on my personal bucket list. The name of the item was "clambake."
There's a clambake seven days a week, mid-June through to Labor Day, on Cabbage Island in Linekin Bay on the southern coast of Maine. Mrs Derb has been wanting to do the Labor Day clambake for a couple of years but at first didn't realize how early you have to book. This year we got it right, booked way back in March.
So there we were on Cabbage Island Monday afternoon, scarfing down two handsome lobsters each with clams — of course! — corn on the cob, baked potato, onion, eggs, and trimmings. There was chowder to start with, blueberry cake for dessert, and beer to wash it all down. A real New England feast; and less than ninety dollars a head with boat ride and all. You can pay more than that at a midscale restaurant in New York.
Thanks to the people who organized the event. We came away happy and very full — totally skipped dinner that evening.
Before Monday I had gone through life with only a very sketchy idea of what a clambake is. My entire knowledge of clambakes came from being dragged along at age eleven to see the movie version of the Rodgers & Hammerstein musical Carousel. There's a clambake in that; and the location shots for the movie were made in and around Boothbay Harbor, whence we took the boat to Cabbage Island.
My taste in movies at that time favored cowboys, ghosts, and space travel. I thought Carousel was kind of girly, and didn't take much in. It left me with a very vague idea that the main feature of a clambake was checkered tablecloths. My mother and older sister were more enthusiastic: Mum was singing the soundtrack while doing her housework for months afterwards.
So here's a snippet from that soundtrack: the cast of the 2018 Broadway revival giving us "This Was A Real Nice Clambake."
There will be more from Radio Derb next week.
[Music clip: Cast of the 2018 Broadway Carousel, "This Was A Real Nice Clambake."]