Category Archives: Latin America

“Race and Psychopathic Personality,” by Richard Lynn

I am getting rather tired about having this argument about whether Blacks, or Black males in particular, are more antisocial than men of other races. People are pushing back against this in the comments section. This really ought to be the final word on the subject.

Original here.

For as long as official statistics have been kept, blacks in white societies have been overrepresented in all indices of social pathology: crime, illegitimacy, poverty, school failure, and long-term unemployment. The conventional liberal explanation for this is white “racism,” past and present, which has forced blacks into self-destructive choices.

More clear-headed observers, however, have sought a partial explanation in the low average IQ of blacks. Low IQ can lead to crime because less intelligent children do poorly at school and fail to learn the skills needed to get well-paid jobs or even any job. Unemployment is therefore two to three times higher among blacks than whites. People without jobs need money, have relatively little to lose by robbery or burglary, and may therefore commit property crimes. The association between low intelligence and crime holds for whites as well, among whom the average IQ of criminals is about 84.

Nevertheless, as Charles Murray and the late Richard Herrnstein showed in their book The Bell Curve, low IQ cannot entirely explain a black crime rate that is six-and-a-half times the white rate. When blacks and whites are matched for IQ, blacks still commit crimes at two-and-a-half times the white rate. This shows that blacks must have some other characteristic besides low intelligence that explains their high levels of criminality.

Prof. Herrnstein and Dr. Murray found the same race and IQ relationship for social problems other than crime: unemployment, illegitimacy, poverty, and living on welfare. All of these are more frequent among blacks and are related to low IQ, and low IQ goes some way towards explaining them, but these social problems remain greater among blacks than among whites with the same IQ’s. Low intelligence is therefore not the whole explanation.

Prof. Herrnstein and Dr. Murray did not offer any suggestions as to what the additional factors responsible for the greater prevalence of these social problems among blacks might be. They concluded only that “some ethnic differences are not washed away by controlling for either intelligence or for any other variables that we examined. We leave those remaining differences unexplained and look forward to learning from our colleagues where the explanations lie” (p. 340).

Psychopathic Personality

I propose that the variable that explains these differences is that blacks are more psychopathic than whites. Just as racial groups differ in average IQ, they can also differ in average levels of other psychological traits, and racial differences in the tendency towards psychopathic personality would explain virtually all the differences in black and white behavior left unexplained by differences in IQ.

Psychopathic personality is a personality disorder of which the central feature is lack of a moral sense. The condition was first identified in the early Nineteenth Century by the British physician John Pritchard, who proposed the term “moral imbecility” for those deficient in moral sense but of normal intelligence.

The term psychopathic personality was first used in 1915 by the German psychiatrist Emile Kraepelin and has been employed as a diagnostic label throughout the Twentieth Century.

In 1941 the condition was described by Hervey Cleckley in what has become a classic book, The Mask of Sanity. He described the condition as general poverty of emotional feelings, lack of remorse or shame, superficial charm, pathological lying, egocentricity, a lack of insight, absence of nervousness, an inability to love, impulsive antisocial acts, failure to learn from experience, reckless behavior under the influence of alcohol, and a lack of long-term goals.

In 1984 the American Psychiatric Association dropped the term psychopathic personality and replaced it with Antisocial Personality Disorder. This is an expression of the increasing sentimentality of the second half of the twentieth century in which terms that had acquired negative associations were replaced by euphemisms.

There are other examples. Mentally retarded children are now called “slow learners” or even “exceptional children;” aggressive children now have “externalizing behaviors;” prostitutes are “sex workers;” tramps are now “the homeless,” as if their houses were destroyed by earthquake; and people on welfare are “clients” of social workers. However, the term psychopathic personality remains useful.

While psychopathic personality is a psychiatric disorder, it has long been regarded as the extreme expression of a personality trait that is continuously distributed throughout the population. In this respect it is like other psychiatric disorders. For instance, severe depression is a psychiatric disorder, but everyone feels depressed sometimes, and some normal people are depressed more often and more severely than others. It is the same with psychopathic personality. There are degrees of moral sense throughout the population, and psychopaths are the extreme group.

There is a difference between blacks and whites—analogous to the difference in intelligence—in psychopathic personality considered as a personality trait. Both psychopathic personality and intelligence are bell curves with different means and distributions among blacks and whites. For intelligence, the mean and distribution are both lower among blacks. For psychopathic personality, the mean and distribution are higher among blacks. The effect of this is that there are more black psychopaths and more psychopathic behavior among blacks.

In 1994 the American Psychiatric Association issued a revised Diagnostic Manual listing 11 features of Antisocial Personality Disorder:

(1) inability to sustain consistent work behavior;

(2) failure to conform to social norms with respect to lawful behavior [this is a euphemism for being a criminal];

(3) irritability and aggressiveness, as indicated by frequent physical fights and assaults;

(4) repeated failure to honor financial obligations;

(5) failure to plan ahead or impulsivity;

(6) no regard for truth, as indicated by repeated lying, use of aliases, or “conning” others;

(7) recklessness regarding one’s own or others’ personal safety, as indicated by driving while intoxicated or recurrent speeding;

(8) inability to function as a responsible parent;

(9) failure to sustain a monogamous relationship for more than one year;

(10) lacking remorse;

(11) the presence of conduct disorder in childhood.

This is a useful list. Curiously, however, it fails to include the deficiency of moral sense that is the core of the condition, although this is implicit in virtually every feature of the disorder. All of these behaviors are more prevalent among blacks than among whites and suggest that blacks have a higher average tendency towards psychopathic personality.

Questionnaires can be used to measure psychopathic personality in normal populations. The first to be constructed was the Minnesota Multiphasic Personality Inventory (MMPI), which was devised in the 1930’s. This instrument consists of a series of scales for the measurement of a variety of psychiatric conditions regarded as continuously distributed in the population, such as hysteria, mania and depression, and includes the Psychopathic Deviate Scale for the measurement of psychopathic personality.

During the 65 or so years following its publication, the MMPI has been administered to a great many groups. Mean scores have been published by different investigators for a number of samples of blacks, whites, Asian-Americans, Hispanics, and American Indians. All of these studies show a consistent pattern: Blacks and Indians have the highest psychopathic scores. Hispanics come next followed by whites. Ethnic Japanese and Chinese have the lowest scores. The same rank order of racial groups is found for all the expressions of psychopathic personality listed by the American Psychiatric Association, and these differences are found in both children and adults.

Conduct Disorder

The terms psychopathic personality and Anti-social Personality Disorder, however, are not used for children or young adolescents up to the age of 15 years. They are instead said to have conduct disorders. The principal criteria set out by the American Psychiatric Association (1994) for a diagnosis of Conduct Disorder are persistent stealing, lying, truancy, running away from home, fighting, arson, burglary, vandalism, sexual precocity, and cruelty. Childhood Conduct Disorder is therefore an analogue of psychopathic personality in older adolescents and adults. A number of studies have shown that Conduct Disorder in children is a frequent precursor of psychopathic behavior.

Studies have found that the prevalence of conduct disorders is about twice as high among blacks as among whites. This is the case not only in the United States but also in Britain and the Netherlands. Other racial groups also differ in the prevalence of conduct disorders among children. As with all the other expressions of psychopathic personality, conduct disorders are frequent among American Indians.

Children with conduct disorders are sometimes suspended or expelled from school because of constant misbehavior, particularly aggression. In both the United States and Britain, black children are disciplined in this way three or four times as frequently as white children, while East Asians have low discipline rates. In misbehavior in schools as in so much else, East Asians are the “model minority.” In the United States, Indians have a high discipline rate.

Lack of honesty is one of the core features of the psychopathic personality, and one measure of this characteristic is the default rates on student loans. About half of American college students take out loans, but not all graduates repay them. The 1987 National Postsecondary Student Aid Study consisting of 6,338 cases reports default rates as follows: whites—5 percent, Hispanics—20 percent, American Indians—45 percent, blacks—55 percent.

Bad credit ratings also reflect a failure to honor financial obligations. A report by Freddie Mac of 12,000 households in 1999 found the highest percentage of poor credit ratings was among blacks (48 percent). The next highest was among Hispanics (34 percent), while whites had the lowest at 27 percent.

Psychopathic personality is the extreme expression of a personality trait that is continuously distributed throughout the population.

A prominent feature of psychopathic personality is a high level of aggression, which is expressed in a number of ways including homicide, robbery, assault, and rape. All of these are crimes, so racial and ethnic differences appear in crime rates. High black crime rates have been documented by Jared Taylor and the late Glayde Whitney in The Color of Crime. For homicide, rates for black males are about six times the white rate, and for black females they are about four times higher. The homicide rate for East Asians is about half that of whites. The high homicide rate of blacks is also found in South Africa, and homicide is generally higher in black countries than in white and East Asian countries.

As regards other crimes, the robbery rate for blacks is about twelve times the white rate, while the assault rate is about five times higher. The high black rates for these crimes are followed in descending order by Hispanics, American Indians, whites and East Asians. The rate for rape is about five-and-a-half times greater for blacks than whites, and two to three times greater among Hispanics and Indians as compared to whites, while East Asians commit rape at about half the white rate.

Domestic violence shows the same race differences. Severe violence by husbands against wives is about four times more common among blacks as whites. Black wives assault their husbands at about twice the white rate. American Indians assault their spouses even more often than blacks do. High crime rates among blacks have been found not only in the United States but also in Britain, France, Canada and Sweden.

A prominent feature of psychopathic personality is an inability to form stable long-term loving relationships. David Lykken, a leading expert on psychopathic personalities, writes of the psychopath’s “undeveloped ability to love or affiliate with others,” and Robert Hare, another leading expert, writes that “psychopaths view people as little more than objects to be used for their own gratification” and “equate love with sexual arousal.”

Marriage is the most explicit expression of long-term love, and a number of studies have shown that blacks attach less value to marriage than whites. Questionnaire surveys have found that blacks are less likely than whites to agree that “marriage is for life.” Two American sociologists, R. Staples and L. B. Johnson, write that “Blacks do not rank marriage as highly as whites” and that “Black Americans’ acceptance of this form of relationship is inconsistent with their African heritage.”

In a study of an American sample of 2,059 married people, C. L. Broman found that “blacks are significantly less likely to feel that their marriages are harmonious and are significantly less likely to be satisfied with their marriages.” Other studies of racial and ethnic differences in attitudes have found that whites think about marriage more often than blacks and have a stronger desire than blacks to find the right marriage partner. There are also racial differences in rates of cohabitation, which also reflects a commitment to a long-term relationship. A survey of 24-to 29-year-olds in Britain found that 68 percent of whites had cohabited but only 38 percent of blacks.

Blacks in the United States, Britain, France and the Caribbean are less likely than whites to marry or enter into stable relationships. In an American survey of 18-to 64-year-olds carried out from 1990 to 1996, 61 percent of whites were married but only 35 percent of blacks. The most likely to be married were East Asians (66 percent).

Fifty-five percent of Hispanics and 48 percent of American Indians were married. The same race differences are found in Britain. In a survey carried out in 1991, among 30-to 34-year-olds 68 percent of whites were married but only 34 percent of blacks. Studies of marriage rates for France in the 1990’s have also found that blacks are less likely to be married than whites. These differences are also found for cohabitation, with fewer blacks living in unmarried cohabitation relationships than whites.

Differences in marriage rates are reflected in differences in illegitimacy rates. In the United States, black illegitimacy rates are down slightly from their high in 1994, when 70.4 percent of black women who gave birth were unmarried. The 2000 figure of 68.7 is still the highest for any racial group and is followed by American Indians at 58.4 percent, Hispanics 42.7 percent, whites 22.1 percent, and Asians 14.8 percent. The Asian figure includes populations with greatly differing illegitimacy rates, with native Hawaiians for example at 50 percent, Japanese at 9.5 percent, and Chinese at 7.6 percent.

Low rates of stable relationships are found among blacks in the Caribbean islands. In a review of the literature the sociologists B. Ram and G. E. Ebanks write that “In the Caribbean in general . . . there is a substantial amount of movement from one sex partner to another and also a very high percentage of reproduction outside marriage.”

When they do marry, blacks are less tolerant than whites of monogamous constraints. An extreme form of intolerance is murder of one’s spouse. In Detroit in 1982-3, 63 percent of the population was black, but 90.5 percent of those who killed their spouses were black.

Less extreme forms of aversion to monogamy are adultery and divorce. The Kinsey data on college graduates collected in the 1940’s and 1950’s found that 51 percent of blacks were unfaithful to their spouses during the first two years of marriage compared with 23 percent of whites. Several other studies have confirmed that the incidence of marital infidelity is greater among blacks than among whites. Blacks cite infidelity more frequently than whites as a cause of divorce.

Blacks also have more sexual partners than whites. The Kinsey survey found that about twice as many black college graduates had had six or more partners before marriage than whites. Many later studies have confirmed this. A survey of 2,026 15-to-18-year-olds in Los Angeles in the mid-199’0s found that 38 percent of blacks had had five or more sexual partners, 26 percent of whites, 21 percent of Hispanics and eight percent of East Asians.

The same differences are found in Britain. In a study of a nationally representative sample of approximately 20,000 16-to 59-year-olds carried out in 1990, 36 percent of blacks had had two or more sexual partners during the previous five years, compared with 29 percent of whites and 18 percent of Asians.

Delay of Gratification

The impulsiveness component of psychopathic personality includes an inability or unwillingness to delay immediate gratification in the expectation of long-term advantage.

The first study to demonstrate differences between blacks and whites in the delay of gratification was carried out by W. Mischel in Trinidad in the late 1950’s. He offered black and white children the choice between a small candy bar now or a larger one in a week. He found black children were much more likely to ask for the small candy bar now, and this difference has been confirmed in three subsequent American studies.

This racial difference has been noted but given different names by different writers. In The Unheavenly City Revisited, Edward Banfield writes of the “extreme present-orientation” of blacks, and Michael Levin writes of “high time preference,” an economist’s term for preferring cash now rather than a greater sum in the future.

The APA Diagnostic Manual refers to the psychopathic personality’s “inability to sustain consistent work behavior,” and a number of studies have shown that blacks are less motivated to work than whites and Asians, while Hispanics are intermediate. For example, black students do fewer hours of homework than whites and Asians. Among college students with the same Scholastic Aptitude Test scores, blacks get poorer grades than whites, probably because they don’t work as hard.

This helps explain black unemployment. Several American ethnographic studies of inner city blacks have concluded that many are unwilling to work. Thus, E. Anderson writes that “there are many unemployed black youth who are unmotivated and uninterested in working for a living, particularly in the dead-end jobs they are likely to get.” The sociologist S. M. Petterson writes that “it is commonly contended that young black men experience more joblessness than their white counterparts because they are less willing to seek out low paying jobs.”

American Asians are the opposite of blacks in this respect. They have low rates of unemployment, and it has been shown by James Flynn that they achieve higher educational qualifications and earnings than would be predicted from their intelligence, suggesting they have strong work motivation.

In the United States, unemployment rates are highest among Indians followed in descending order by blacks, Hispanics, whites and ethnic Chinese and Japanese. These differences are frequently attributed to white racism, but it is difficult to reconcile this explanation with the lower rate of unemployment among East Asians as compared with whites and also with the higher rate of unemployment among Indians as compared to blacks.

Blacks in Britain, Canada, and France are frequently unemployed. In Britain, the 1991 census found that 26 percent of black men were unemployed compared with 11 percent of whites and ethnic Chinese. In Canada in 1991, 13 percent of black men were unemployed compared with seven percent of whites. In France in 1994, 11 percent of black men were unemployed compared with eight percent of whites.

Recklessness

Psychopaths appear to enjoy taking risks because it stimulates them, and there are several ways in which blacks show greater recklessness and risk taking than whites or Asians.

In the 1989-93 American Teenage Attitudes and Practices Survey, 9,135 youths aged 12 to 18 were asked to consider the question: “I get a kick out of doing things every now and then that are a little risky or dangerous.” Fifty-six point nine percent of blacks agreed, as compared with 38.6 percent of whites. Driving habits are an index of risk taking and recklessness. A number of studies have shown that blacks run red lights more often than whites and have more frequent accidents. Five studies have shown that blacks do not use seat belts as often as whites. Hispanics and Native Americans likewise have more accidents caused by recklessness and risk-taking than whites and East Asians.

Sexual behavior can be reckless. Among those who do not wish to have children, blacks are less likely to use contraception than whites, and this has been found in both the United States and Britain. One result is that black women have more unplanned babies than whites. In the United States in the 1990’s blacks had about twice the proportion of unplanned babies as whites and Asians. In Britain, a survey of teenage births carried out in 1994 found that these were three-and-a-half times more common among blacks than among whites and Asians.

The behavior of reckless men also causes unplanned pregnancies. Surveys have asked adolescent males if they would feel “very pleased” or whether they would care if they were responsible for an unplanned pregnancy. Twice as many blacks as whites say they would be very pleased or that they would not care. To be very pleased or not care about saddling a teenage girl with an unplanned pregnancy expresses a great degree of reckless regard for the well-being of others. In the United States, the percentage of teenage blacks who have fathered an illegitimate child is approximately three times greater than that of whites, with Hispanics intermediate.

Another consequence of reckless avoidance of contraceptives is that blacks are more likely to get sexually transmitted diseases—including HIV and AIDS—all of which are more prevalent among blacks than among whites and Asians. At the present time, about 80 percent of the word’s HIV carriers are blacks in sub-Saharan Africa.

A common expression of Conduct Disorder in children and young adolescents is sexual precocity. Many studies have shown that blacks are more sexually precocious than whites and Asians. Surveys in the United States in the 1990’s have found that 33 percent of black 13-year-olds have had sexual intercourse compared with 14 percent of whites and Hispanics and four percent of East Asians. Similarly, a survey in Britain in 1990 found that by the age of 16, 18 percent of blacks had had intercourse compared with 13 percent of whites and five percent of Asians.

We consider finally the psychopathic characteristic described by the American Psychiatric Association as “inability to function as a responsible parent.” One of the most straightforward measures of this is abuse and neglect.

The American Association for Protecting Children has found that black children constitute approximately 15 percent of the child population and about 22 percent of cases of child abuse and neglect. The First (1975) and Second (1985) National Family Violence Surveys carried out in America examined the use of violence towards children, defined as hitting them with the fist or with some object, and kicking, biting, and beating them up. It does not include slapping or spanking. It found that 1.2 percent of white parents and 2.1 percent of blacks inflict this kind of severe violence on their children.

Data published by the United States Department of Health and Human Services for 1996 showed that maltreatment was about three times more common among blacks and about one-and-a-half times more common among Hispanics than among whites.

The most extreme expression of the inability to function as a responsible parent consists of killing a child. Racial differences in the homicide of infants in their first year of life were examined for approximately 35 million babies born in the United States between 1983-91. This study found that 2,776 of these had been murdered, the great majority by mothers or the mothers’ husbands or partners. The rate of infant homicides for blacks and Native Americans was 2 per 10,000, compared with 0.6 per 10,000 for whites and 0.4 per 10,000 for East Asians. In the early 1990’s the racial differences became even greater, with blacks having four-and-a-half times the infant homicide rate of whites and Hispanics.

Complete Consistency

There is almost complete consistency in the racial differences in outcomes that can be considered measures of psychopathic personality. In everything from child behavior to sexual precocity to adult crime rates, we find Asians at one extreme, blacks and American Indians at the other, and whites Hispanics in between. These differences are not only consistent through time but are found in countries such as France, Britain, Canada, and the United States, which have very different histories of what could be called “racism.” Indices of high psychopathic personality in blacks are likewise found in the virtually all-black societies of Africa and the Caribbean.

Racial differences in psychopathic behavior persist even when IQ is held constant, and the same racial differences are found in essentially every kind of measurable behavior that reflects psychopathic personality. The most plausible explanation for these differences is that just as there are racial differences in average IQ, there are racial differences in what could be called “average personality,” with blacks showing greater psychopathic tendencies. The argument that white “racism” is responsible for black social pathology is increasingly unconvincing.

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Crime Rates in Black Countries, among Black Populations and in Black Cities and Neighborhoods around the World

Thinking Mouse: Many African nations have a similar homicide rate to far eastern Europe, despite having much lower incarceration rates and younger demographics.

Incarceration rates are low because the police are often incompetent and much crime is not prosecuted or even reported.

Black Africa has had some of the highest homicide rates on Earth for decades. Crime is so bad there are travel warnings against going to most of those countries. Are there travel warnings telling people not to go to Eastern Europe? I recently went through the US State Department warnings for Black Africa and in every single country in the region, there were warnings about high levels of crime and violent crime. I believe Senegal was somewhat of an exception and most of the crime there was property crime.

I would not feel frightened going to Eastern Europe. I would feel frightened in most large Black African cities except possibly in the Sahel. I have heard that Senegal is relatively low crime. There is terrorism now in the Sahel though, so it is dangerous on that basis, but the crime is not very high. Of all of the countries in Black Africa, I would probably recommend Senegal as safe enough to take a careful vacation there. I’ve also heard that it is a very interesting country. It might be nice as a human to visit Black Africa once in a lifetime.

Generally the Muslim parts of Black Africa are safer, more orderly, calmer, and have less crime than the Christian areas.

However, there is an ethnic group of 1 million people in Burkina Faso that has a homicide rate of ~1/100,000, about the same as Japan’s. So this shows that not all Black populations automatically commit lots of violent crime and homicide. But whatever environment this group has created to make such a safe culture does not seem to be easily replicable outside of that group. The group is Muslim, and study of Muslim texts is mandatory for all young people, so the group is educated. Elders are revered and respected and children fear their wrath and do not disobey them much. Elders take it upon themselves to mentor youths and young adults as a matter of course. Ethnic pride is high and members read texts about the group and participate in frequent cultural exercises.

In addition, much of the crime in Black Africa is simply not reported, as police are incompetent, corrupt, and take bribes. In a number of those countries, police set up roadblocks specifically to take bribes from motorists.

The Black Caribbean has a high violent crime and homicide rate.

I read a recent figure for the UK that Blacks were 2% of the population, and they committed 20% of the homicides. In the US, Blacks are 13% of the population, and they commit 53% of the homicides.

All of the high homicide US cities are Black. In LA, the top nine most dangerous police precincts are in Black neighborhoods.

Has the commenter ever been around large numbers of Black people? Gone to school with them, went to their parts of time, driven around in cities where there are many of them? You need to stay out of areas where there are large numbers of low income Blacks. Those areas dangerous as Hell. I taught in Black schools for years.

You had to leave school before sundown. Once I went back to see my school at 9:30 at night and it was absolutely terrifying. Basically these neighborhoods can be more or less ok in the daytime (I drove around them a lot and went out to eat a lot), but don’t go off the main streets even in the daytime and make sure you are out of the area after dark.

There Are Many Good Black People even in the Ghetto

However, having worked in those schools for years and spent some time in the deep inner city of LA (South Central LA), I will say that it is trivial to meet decent people in that area. My car broke down twice in Black areas, once in South Central and once in Compton. Both times, Black adults came out and helped me get my car going. In both cases, there was an older man in his 40’s. In one case there were some young men in their 20’s helping him. They were extremely nice people.

I dated a Black woman in South Central and though she was a scumbag crack addict, I spent some time in her barbershop talking to some older Black men in their 50’s and 60’s. They were extremely cool. One  man acted a bit strange around me and I asked my date and she said he hates Whites and has not been around them much. But he was very nice to me, although he seemed  a bit awkward around me. I think he was surprised to find a friendly, decent Black man.

Even in South Central, a lot of the older Black men from 40-60 are very good people, assuming they are not imprisoned and are still alive. Particularly if they own a home. Black culture has a way of winnowing out the worst people who tend to spend much of their lives incarcerated or else die young.

A number of the incarcerated ones get out and though they are not great people, I would not say they are bad people either. I spent a couple of hours talking to a 45 year old Black man who had done ten years in prison for robbery and attempted murder. He seemed quite a bit calmed down.

People tend to age out of crime and bad behavior anyway and even among adults, it is young adults who act the worst and commit the most crime. Even many psychopaths burn out in middle age and become depressed/alcoholic while the condition lessens and moderates quite a bit.

The Black teachers and aides at the schools I taught at were generally very nice people, although some were pretty angry. I mostly befriended Black female teachers. Some of the administrators were very cool too.

However, in the very heart of the ghetto, in deep Compton near Willowbrook, not only were the students the worst of all, but they hated Whites the most. In addition, a number of the Black female teachers seemed to hate Whites, something I never dealt with before.

Many of the older Black women even in the ghetto are very good people, especially if they are deep into religion. Even some of the Black students I taught were good people, especially if they were deep into religion. At one school, a Black female senior seemed to be in love with me and asked me out and tried to get my phone number.

Though Bad People Are a Minority in the Hood, There Are Simply Too Many of Them

The problem with these areas is not that everyone is lousy. In fact there are many decent and even good people even deep in the ghetto. However the rate of lousy, bad and out and out evil and dangerous people is much higher than in White areas. There are just too many bad people around (although they are a minority) such that it makes traveling and spending time there a dangerous endeavor.

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Street Crime in Latin America

Rahul: What I noticed about crime in South America was that in most areas crime isn’t really prevalent, however cities just yank up the crime rates. And the cities are very very bad. In the rural areas, a lot of drug production happens, in the cities, the drug shit happens. Oh, and gang rivalries and violence certainly help in increasing the crime rates.

Chavistas studying the issues think it started with the drug production and dealing in the area. Drug production and dealing is going on all over the region, and a lot of crime is associated with it. Yes the crime in poor parts of Venezuelan cities is very bad, but in the wealthier areas, it’s not that dangerous.

Other cities in Latin America are similar. Colon, Panama supposedly has a very high crime rate and it’s a real shithole.

A lot of Black Caribbean countries are serious shitholes of violent crime.

There is a lot of crime in the rural parts of Mexico though because that is where the drug cartels are.

Lima, Peru, has a lot of crime. Hold onto your wallet or get a money-belt, better yet. Watch out for your purse. Pickpockets, petty thieves and purse-snatchers are everywhere, especially in tourist areas.

Crime has been horrific in Brazilian cities like Rio and Sao Paolo forever now, of course.

There is a lot of street crime in Latin America. You need to be very careful of your surroundings and who you are associating with, especially at night.

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Filed under Brazil, Caribbean, Central America, Crime, Intoxicants, Latin America, Mexico, Organized Crime, Panama, Peru, Regional, Social Problems, Sociology, South America, Urban Studies, Venezuela

Crime in Venezuela

How do you think Venezuela will handle crime? its extremely rampant, like 3.5 worse than Russia.

It’s like that all over the whole region and no one can fix it there either. Venezuela has had a very high crime rate forever, long before Chavez came in. This is another problem that long predates him. Frankly, most of it is in the poor barrios, so most people are not effected. They tried a thousand things under Chavez to lower crime, but nothing worked. The Opposition won’t be able to get a handle on it either and all of the Opposition’s shenanigans have only made crime a lot worse.

How come no one talks about the crime rates in Colombia, Honduras, Guatemala, Mexico, and El Salvador? And in the Caribbean for that matter? They are all up there with Venezuela’s and no one can fix it in those places either. Once your crime rate gets really high, it is not such an easy thing to get a handle on.

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The Dutch Disease, an Economy Depended on Oil Revenues, and Other Problems of the Venezuelan Crisis

Thinking Mouse: What are your thoughts on allegations of mismanagement of resources in Venezuela? Having your government based on a good as volatile in price as oil (and especially when the gringos own and produce most of the oil) seems pretty stupid.

This is called the Dutch Disease and it is the cause of a lot of things including the chronic inflation that country has, which was never as bad as this though.

It’s been going on forever, but the Gulf states are all doing that too. Most oil countries do that. 97% of Venezuela’s income comes from oil. That didn’t change over the Chavez years. On the other hand, the Chavistas talk about it all the time.

There are supposedly efforts underway to develop the economy right now, but I am not sure how successful they are. It is not working to have the business class, aligned with the fascist Right, importing the food and manufactured goods.

NOT working. That’s what is causing the whole economic crisis right there because they started an economic war where they stopped producing a lot of the products that people needed most. However, they kept producing other products just fine.

There was no basis in raw materials to have those shortages in certain products. Those were simply manufactured crises by the business class refusing to import or manufacture various products.

They also hoarded a lot of products too, and they sent many other goods either to Colombia or directly to the black market instead of the real market. 1/3 of all imported goods so straight to Colombia. They do this because they can make more money smuggling to Colombia or selling on the black market.

So the government is saying we need to start making this stuff ourselves or growing and producing it ourselves. The government used to import all this stuff because the business class has been refusing to produce stuff forever, but with the drop in the price of oil (a conspiracy created by the US) the government could not do that anymore, so the crisis developed.

Around when Chavez died, there were two large attacks on the currency which may have exploded the Black market. And the black market is run by a opposition fascist in Louisiana who deliberately monkeys with the black market price of the dollar, jacking it up all the time. So the value of the black market dollar skyrocketed compared to the dollar at its normal exchange rate and this precipitated the whole crisis.

Incidentally, several opposition leaders have openly admitted that they are trying to destroy the economy in order to create a crisis and bring down the government.

The recent US sanctions made things even worse and were designed to make it impossible for Venezuela to get out of the crisis by cutting them off from the international banking system and making it hard for them to get loans and impossible for them to restructure their debt.

The government has needed forever to float the currency to get out of the crisis, but he refused to do that as it is a very difficult political decision to make and it would make a lot of their base mad. So they avoided doing this for years and hence perpetuated the crisis. Recently they created a New Bolivar that is not set on the dollar but is instead set at the price of oil. This is the same thing as floating the currency more or less, so we will see how it works.

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The Success of America’s Longstanding Propaganda War Against the Concept of Socialism

Socialism, the very concept, especially in its social democratic and democratic socialist varieties, is the ho-hum status quo on most of the planet.

The war on the very concept of socialism has probably been worse in the US than anywhere else in the West. It has a 3rd World death squad tinpot dictatorship feel about it. I keep wondering when the rightwing death squads are going to show up in the US. They show up everywhere else in states with a US-style reactionary and Left-hating culture.

The difference between the US war on socialism and the war on socialism waged in various death squad democracies is that the war on socialism has been more successful in the US than anywhere else on Earth other than Colombia, but the Left is armed to the teeth there. The war on socialism was just as bad if not worse due to the death squads and all of the imprisonments, beatings, tortures, murders and genocides all over Latin America and in the Philippines and Indonesia.

These countries differ from the US however in that all those Latin American countries and SE Asian countries have gone Left in recent years.

Even in the Philippines, Duterte calls himself a socialist and had friendly relations with the Maoist NPA  guerrillas when he held office in Mindanao.

In Indonesia, the female elected President recently ran on a socialist ticket.

To the south, Mexico has been officially socialist since the Revolution. The Left in Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, Colombia, Peru, and Argentina was armed to teeth and fought vicious wars against reactionary regimes. That has to count for something.

In El Salvador, the former Left guerrillas are now running the country.

In Honduras, a leftwinger was recently elected President only to be ousted in a coup sponsored by the CIA and Hillary Clinton.

Nicaragua of course had a successful Leftist revolution, and those revolutionaries have been holding office now there for quite some time.

Haiti elected a Leftist in Jean Bertrande Aristide, only to be ousted by Bush Administration officials via a contra death squad army from the Dominican Republic. Aristide himself was arrested at gunpoint in his mansion by armed Blackwater mercenaries acting under the command of the Pentagon.

A number of the island states in the Caribbean have gone Left in recent years and most were members of the Chavista Bolivarian Movement. Most political parties in the Caribbean have words like Left, Socialist, Workers, Progressive, etc. in their party names regardless of their ideology because any party that wants to get anywhere in the Caribbean has to at least dress  itself up in Left garb.

Grenada had a successful Leftist revolution that was subsequently overthrown on illegal grounds by Reagan.

Venezuela of course has been voting Leftist since 1999 when the Chavistas took power. They have never left.

In Ecuador, a Leftist, Rafael Correa, ruled for many years. Recently a man named Lenin Moreno ran on a Leftist ticket of continuing Correa’s Left reforms, but as soon as he got into office, he immediately shifted gears and went hard Right.

Right-wing parties run as fake Leftists all the time in Latin America because generally rightwingers running on a rightwing agenda cannot get elected down there because most Latin Americans hate rightwingers and don’t want them in power. Hence the Right obtains power by contra wars and fascist mob violence in the streets, waging wars on economies and currencies, judicial, legislative, and military coups, and even open fraud.

The definition of conservatism is aristocratic rule. It is the antithesis of rule by the people or democratic rule.

The definition of liberalism is democratic rule by the people, not the aristocrats.

Not many Latin Americans want to be ruled by aristocrats, so the Right down there has to seize power by extra-democratic means.

The Opposition in Venezuela recently ran on an openly social democratic platform, but most people thought it was fake they would turn Right as soon as they got in.

In Brazil, the Left has been running the country for some time under the PT or Worker’s Party until it was removed by a rightwing legislature in an outrageous legislative coup. They even imprisoned a former president, Lula, on fake corruption charges. A female president was recently elected who was an armed urban guerrilla in the 1960’s.

In Paraguay, a Leftist former priest was elected President, only to be removed in an outrageous legislative coup.

In Chile, not only was Leftist Allende elected in the 70’s, the Left was not only armed  all through Pinochet’s rule and once came close to assassinating him. In recent years, a socialist named Michele Bachelet has won a number of elections.

In Bolivia, Leftist Evo Morales has been in power for a long time.

Uruguay recently elected a Leftist, a former armed urban guerrilla in the 1970’s.

Argentina recently elected two Leftist presidents, the Kirchner, a husband and wife. A rightwiger was recently elected after a rightwing Jewish billionaire named Singer obtained a court judgement against Argentina in a US court. That judgement bankrupted the economy, so you could say that the Right destroyed the economy in order to get elected.

So with the exception of Peru, Costa Rica, Panama, and the Guyanas, all other countries have since gone full Left at one time or another recently. Costa Rica’s already a social democracy, and Peru had an ultra-radical murderous Left for a very long time. Panama’s been reactionary since the CIA murdered Omar Torrijos by sabotaging his helicopter and killing him via a fake copter crash. The Dominican Republic and Jamaica have not gone Left since the 60’s and 70’s.

But the war on socialism has been so much more successful here in the US than even in the above named backwards countries because even the world norm of social democracy was so demonized here in the US that it never even got off the ground.

In some ways, the US is one of the most rightwing countries on Earth at least in terms of political economy.

 

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Alt Left: Female Satisfaction and Women’s Rights

A feminist criticized me for saying that women even under conditions of out and out femicide as in Mexico, Honduras, Guatemala, El Salvador, and Colombia are not self-harming (because women don’t do that in those places) and in fact, seem happier than women in the West who have much more rights and are self-harming at a dramatic rate. She suggested that I was saying that women down there were happy to be living under conditions of femicide, but that’s not what I said.

I don’t think the women in those places should be happy due to conditions down there, but perhaps they think this woman-killing is more or less normal.

Women in those places don’t self-harm.

I’m not sure how they feel. The women in those places are pretty beaten down, submissive, etc. and are not used to standing up for themselves.  They’re pretty much resigned to living under patriarchy, and they think it’s just normal. I doubt if any women are happy to be living in a femicidal country. But the main reaction of women in these places seems to be fear more than anything else. I know they are frightened. And they definitely don’t go out at night. I have heard that in Guatemala nowadays, as soon as the sun goes down, all of the women vanish from the streets. Perhaps it is better than when my mother visited a long time ago during the Civil War. She said that back then, when night fell, everyone  left the streets and the streets were empty save for soldiers who literally stood on every corner.

I recall a recent article about a young Mexican woman who was an illegal immigrant but who had lived in the US for some time. She was deported back to Mexico, but only to Tijuana! I’ve been there more than once. They interviewed her and she said that after dark it was not safe for women to go outside due to the all of the violence against women. She said that it was so much safer in the US and that she could go out at night there.

In my mostly Hispanic town, I see Hispanic recent immigrant women (possibly illegal) around my neighborhood walking after dark from dusk to 10 PM. They look so happy to be doing that. It’s as if they are finally free! Compared to the femicidal Hell they come from, they probably feel like they are living in paradise of women’s rights.

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Alt Left: Why the Rise in Self-Harm among Young Females in the West?

There is a surge in self-harming among young women in the West. One figure showed that 25% of 14 year old girls were self-harming.

Feminists argue that it is the viciousness of patriarchy in the West, the prevalence of misogynistic pornography, and the endless microaggressions that young females in the West face every day in their viciously woman-hating societies.

Ok, nice theory. But even if one acknowledges that patriarchy exists or existed, isn’t it obvious that the very vilest and most extreme versions of patriarchy (but normal in a historical context) exist in other parts of the world like Arab and Islamic World, India, Black Africa, and Latin America? Women are treated an order of magnitude worse there than in the West, where at the very least huge holes have been smashed in patriarchy, and personally I think what’s left is more like remains than a coherent hole.

In the areas where patriarchy has been dealt a serious blow and is much weaker, girls and women are cutting themselves and self-harming.

In the areas where patriarchy is alive and well, and women are seriously oppressed even to the point of femicide (Mexico, Guatemala, El Salvador, Honduras, and Colombia), no women are self-harming at all. In fact, they often seem quite happy.

Now how is this self-harming caused by male oppression when it is occurring in the places where such oppression is the lowest, and women have the most freedom and power?

I work in mental health and I am not even sure we know why females self-harm.

As far as porn destroying the self-images of young women and causing them to self-harm, I assure you that young women nowadays are literally growing up watching porn, I mean from age 13 on. They loved to watch it as teenagers, and they love to watch it now. I know this because I talk to young women quite a bit, even underage girls, and I still date young women all the way down 18 and 19 year old girls. And I am 60 years old.

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NATO, the WTO, and the Prospects for Resistance to US-EU Militarized Economic Hegemony (the Axis of Resistance)

Interesting comment from a reader.

Thinking Mouse: But the enemies of NATO are corrupt crooks at worst and non-pragmatic idealists at worst.

I think historical materialism influences morality too, we don’t posses our beliefs, but our beliefs posses us, and beliefs live upon the technology of an certain mode of production. On a positive note, the world does seem to become more multipolar with the emergence of China, Turkey, Japan, Russia, India and large parts of Africa. I don’t think these nations will get Independence, but just more fair deals with America thanks to their ability to defend themselves.

Eventually when technology and infrastructure spread across the world, will the proletariat take their fare share from the petit and normal bourgeoisie!

Africa might have large riots about tax evasion and the WTO´s forced laissez faire in 20-40 years, or maybe anti corruption will be more gradual.

First of all, I would like to thank the comrade for his excellent comment. It is smart and informed comments like these that make this site so great.

Who are the enemies of NATO? Venezuela, Russia, Belarus, Turkey, Syria, Iran? Anybody else? Who cares if they are corrupt? Nations have a right to self-determination. Anyway, a lot of NATO allies and even members are corrupt and even murderous or genocidal.

“China, Turkey, Japan, Russia, India and large parts of Africa”

Exactly. This is why Russia is so important. China is not allied with NATO at all. Isn’t Japan a de facto NATO ally or member? And isn’t India a NATO ally? Turkey is a NATO member that is now on the outs with the rest of the alliance. It’s still the Sick Man of Europe after all these centuries. I agree a lot of Europe seems to be not actively allied with NATO. What about Egypt and Sudan? Haven’t they signed on to the anti-Iran bullshit?

“Eventually when technology and infrastructure spread across the world, will the proletariat take their fare share from the petit and normal bourgeoisie!”

We can only hope, comrade! Or barring that, at least dream. Instead of ruling society, I think proletarians should aim for something a lot lower – simply getting something more like their fair share in society.

Africa might have large riots about tax evasion and the WTO´s forced laissez faire in 20-40 years, or maybe anti corruption will be more gradual.

Corruption is endemic in all of Black Africa, is it not? Tax evasion? You mean African elites do not pay their fair share? How long has the WTO been enforcing neoliberalism in Africa? I thought only the IMF could do that. Why would the riots be 30 years off instead of sooner?

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More Support for My Theories about Hispanic Intelligence, Culture, Etc.

I would however say that this mostly applies to Mexican-Americans. I am not even sure if it applies to Mexicans in Mexico because there is actually a High Culture in Mexico. In Mexico City there is opera and the main paper has a large book review section every week. In other words, a true highbrow intellectual culture, right in the heart of Mexico. It goes without saying that the members of this highbrow culture are White or a lot Whiter than average Mexicans. But in Mexico, White and people involved in highbrow White Mexican culture extends all the way down to 60-70% White. These people have an idea of lowbrow culture as being “naco.” Naco is also associated with quite a bit of Indian blood. In Mexico, it’s not whether you have Indian blood or not. It’s more a matter of just how much Indian blood you have. I have never thought that Indians were particularly dangerous. Even the racist Latin American Whites that I read on Stormfront (I read 1,000 pages of their threads) said that Indians were fairly harmless. They said that they could get loud, rude and verbally violent, but it didn’t often expand beyond that. One said, “You have give an Indian a handful of tortillas and a six pack, and he’s good for the night. He goes off quietly and you never hear from him again.” On the other hand these Latin American Whites were scathing in their views of Latin American Blacks, who they viewed as very violent and downright dangerous as Hell. It is interesting to note that in Latin America, the existing Blacks are often quite mixed with not only White but also Indian. The result – a White – Indian – Black mix like Hugo Chavez and many others in the far north and the east of Latin America (Venezuela,  Colombia and Brazil ) and the far south of Central America (Panama) and parts of the Caribbean (Puerto Rico) – is called a Zambo. This term is a source of some ridicule among Latin American Whites like Chileans or Peruvians (some of the worst Whites in Latin America) as a term for a mystery casserole of a human so badly mixed that they are nearly indescribable, but a lot of Zambos are quite beautiful. Cali, Colombia is a Zambo city and the women of Cali are said to be the most beautiful in all of Latin America.

The high culture of Mexico City compares starkly with the rest of Mexico.

Your typical Mexican mestizo is a pretty lowbrow person – he’s probably never read a book in his life nor does he wish to. Nevertheless, even the lowliest cook in a corner market knows how to read and write. They definitely teach you that in Mexican schools and most Mexicans have been to school.

And most Mexicans from Mexico,  even a lowly corner cook like I mentioned, know something about Mexican history – the Civil War of course and even the clerical contra rebellion afterwards ~1930 that most Americans have never heard of. Every Mexican knows who Emilio Zapata and Benito Juarez are. I was stunned at how many of these very uneducated people had even heard of Frieda Kahlo. How many Americans know who she was?

How many Chicanos know even a parallel basics of US 20th Century history? And you will never meet a Mexican-American who knows who Frieda Kahlo is nor do they care to find out.

Beyond that, we descend even lower to Mexican Indians, who not only don’t read books but may not even know what a book is. Mestizos believe in some strange saints in their profoundly syncretic Catholicism, but when you get out to the Indian villages, people actually still believe in witches. As you can see, the descent from High Culture down to beyond lowbrow is a steep one indeed. You will nearly break a leg walking too quickly down that slope.

The South Americans I have met in the US are not so anti-intellectual as the Chicanos below. South America after all has a much better High Culture than Mesoamerica. South American High Culture is so intact because the culture of Spain still lingers down there to a great degree while it has nearly vanished from Mesoamerica. I have talked to rich people in Lima and Bogota who literally spent half the year in Spain. Literally.

I had an Argentine girlfriend once. She often called me Senor instead of my first name (imagine an American girlfriend routinely referring to you as sir) and was in stunned awe of the fact that I was an hombre de letras or a “man of letters.” Intellectualism is a big deal in Argentina.

The Salvadorans and Nicaraguans I have met in the US were highly politicized, and I was shocked at how smart they were. You think you are dealing with another “ignorant Mexican in a mini-mart” until you start them off on politics, and they start rattling away and soon leave you in the dust. Every Salvadoran I have ever met has heard of La Matanza (The Massacre), and that happened in 1932. And I’ve not met one yet who could not tell me who Farabundo Marti was (see La Matanza above).  How many Americans know who Farabundo Marti was?

Most Americans don’t have the slightest idea what either of those things are. It just goes to show that you can take a society with an IQ like Chicanos and supercharge them politically and possibly even culturally if the objective conditions are right. The Colombians, Peruvians, and Chileans I met here and outside the US (not to mention the Argentine woman) had a shockingly deep knowledge of politics for an ordinary person, and the Latin Americans were often as learned as a Spaniard or at least wished to be.

How many Americans know who Tupac Amaro was? But the young Peruvian woman I knew all about him and even knew quite a bit about his wife, who is a proto-feminist hero down there to some mestiza and indigena women..

I never asked her who Jose Carlos Mariategui was, but I am sure she could have told me all about him too. Another Peruvian woman I met knew all about Jose Arguedas and his famous novel The Fox Above and Below, which ties in with Mariategui, if you think about it. Arguedas was one of the most famous figures in Peruvian literature and his own daughter, incredibly enough, sat on the central committee of the Shining Path. Sendero was about indigenismo and to a lesser extent feminismo than anything else.

They even his name in the formal long name of their group – El Partido Comunista del Peru en la luz del pasado sendero luminoso del Jose Carlos Mariategui or The Communist Party of Peru in the Light of the Shining Path of Jose Carlos Mariategui.

Here is a recent comment from a half-Mexican American who agrees with most everything I have said about these people.

As a half-Hispanic raised with Hispanics, I mostly agree with this. My Mexican mother who immigrated illegally to the US paid tens of thousands for in-vitro fertilization, and that’s what pulled me out the ditch. This was evidently high-quality sperm because I still managed to turn out above average.

The people around me were impressed that I actually liked to read and learn. When I was young, the other Hispanics were amused that I could memorize the times tables and recite miscellanea about science and history, besides being capable of drawing dragons properly.

To give you context, my mother has been living in the US for over 25 years, and still does not understand a drop of English. They have a culture which consists of strong work-ethic (never missing a day of work and so on) followed by self-induced brain death post 9-to-5. They just watch mindless television and do not learn.

I discovered my own origins at the age of ten. I also achieved standard atheism at the age of nine (which I consider a standard benchmark for the ability to display rudimentary acts of rationality.) Then it took me years of hard work to unwire all the Catholic stupidity in my mother’s brain. This culture has no concept of logical reasoning, so her mind kept swinging in repetitive loops whenever I tried to carefully and methodically pin her down to the implications of specific arguments.

I succeeded in that endeavor, and am now in the process of teaching her where she is actually standing by explaining the crucial insights of Relativity and Quantum Mechanics. People may laugh at the fact that she didn’t know the Earth was a sphere orbiting the sun, but yet most ‘educated’ humans alive today are just as ignorant about reality. For example, by not knowing that there is no universal now sweeping forward, or by holding the belief that we are made of little billiard ball particles bouncing around.

In my experience, whites at least fake like they want to learn. They’ll say “Oh yeah, that’s cool. Schrodinger’s cat is dead and alive… lol… because it’s all probabilistic, hur dur” or something. Of course, they don’t know jack-shit and also prefer to consume mindless media, but their culture says it’s okay to be smart. Hispanics just don’t give a shit. A lack of intellectual culture is their biggest setback.

The ghetto lower-middle income schools I went to were torture. The kids couldn’t do basic algebra; the teachers were underachieving whites who couldn’t get higher paying jobs in other districts or who preferred having less responsibility because black and hispanic parents wouldn’t bitch to them about grades, or have any expectations whatsoever really. And the teachers made no secret about this, they outright told us this was the reason.

Also, what you say about Mexicans bringing Mexico is absolutely true. I stayed in La Villita when I went to university in Chicago because some kind family members we barely knew were willing to rent super cheap. As I walked through the dirty streets past yet another leather boot store blasting trumpet music I almost felt ashamed, like ‘How could Mexicans escape to a new country and yet prefer to make it Mexico again?”

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