Kevin MacDonald joined me on my Youtube channel Tuesday night (Nathan Cofnas enters an hour after Kevin leaves and here is Nathan’s rebuttal to Kevin’s rebuttal) and Richard Spencer joins me at 5pm Wednesday (CA time).
Nathan Cofnas responds (Quillette): “Just read it. Pretty much what I expected. He repeats his arguments in more or less the same style, doesn’t address my arguments head on and in some key cases just ignores them. Probably I will publish an annotated version of the PDF.”
“I think his theory is like feminism. No matter what happens feminists can explain it in terms of the “patriarchy.” Women make less money than men?–Patriarchy (obviously). Women are more likely to win custody battles?–Patriarchy
(because judges stereotype them as suited for a maternal role). Women are less likely to write Wikipedia articles than men?–Patriarchy (silences women’s voices). By explaining everything, feminism ends up explaining nothing. Similarly, MacDonald’s theory is formulated so that it is consistent with basically all Jewish behavior. Jews are
supposed to act to advance Jewish interests, but it’s only Jewish interests *as each Jew understands it*. So when we find Jews opposing Jewish interests (e.g., advocating multiracial immigration to Israel) MacDonald says that it must be that they believe that this will actually advance Jewish interests in the long run. Or when we see the vast majority of reform/unaffiliated Jews (the ones who participated in Jewish intellectual movements) intermarrying, it is because this is part of a strategy to make connections to the non-Jewish community and preserve a core of ethnic Jews. By explaining everything the theory explains nothing.”
Stephen emails: “Luke, I just saw that KMac went on a podcast “Me ne frego” yesterday to discuss Cofnas’ paper. It’s a Swedish (I think) podcast who occasionally do shows in English of a high, somewhat intellectual quality.”
Nathan Cofnas replies to me:
I’m not convinced by Casey’s point about the President’s Commission on Immigration and Naturalization. I had another paragraph on MacDonald’s misrepresentations of the PCIN report, but I cut it because someone suggested that it was too complicated and that it disrupted the flow of the paper:
“MacDonald (1998a:283) writes: “The Commission thus viewed changing the racial status quo of the United States as a desirable goal, and to that end made a major point of the desirability of increasing the total number of immigrants (PCIN 1953, 42).” However, there is nothing about the desirability of changing the racial status quo of the U.S. on page 42 of the PCIN’s report. In response to an email asking for clarification, MacDonald pointed out two passages on pages 107 and 108. Page 107 says that “what succeeded in maintaining a ‘racial status quo’ was not the arbitrary and unsuccessful national origins formula, but the reduction in the total amount of immigration.” But here the report is not saying anything about the desirability of changing the racial status quo. It is observing that the quota system was not “successful” in achieving the goal for which it was established, because “the distribution of actual immigration (quota and nonquota) varies considerably from that of the quotas themselves” (p. 6 of the report). Page 108 of the report says that the “rigidity [of the system] prevented the accomplishment of certain desired national objectives and required the Congress to bypass the national origins system on many occasions through special immigration legislation.”
Again, it is not saying anything about the desirability of changing the racial balance of the U.S. It is only saying that the quota system sometimes had to be bypassed to achieve what legislators saw as desirable goals, such as admitting every year “100 aliens (and members of their immediate families) who are certified as useful in executing the intelligence mission of the Central Intelligence Agency.”
You probably saw that KMac gave an interview about the paper. He doesn’t address any of my arguments. But he says he’s publishing a more detailed response tomorrow.
I agree with your response to Casey. The US was founded by Anglos, but the 1790 citizenship law (and the practice of slavery) shows that the US was traditionally thought of as a country for “white people,” not just for NW Europeans. If the Jews cited in the PCIN’s report were undermining NW European unity in order to promote white unity, it’s not obvious how this would constitute an attack on the American system as it was originally conceived. MacDonald’s complaint against Jews certainly isn’t that they promote white unity.
Why do I feel so intensely sympathetic to Kevin MacDonald? Because his academic ostracism reminds me of what happened to my father in 1980. I was 14. I saw what that did to my dad, to my family, to me, to our friends, and to our community.
The first time I read the Introduction to the Culture of Critique (COC), I was swept away. I recognized someone like my dad, but at the time I didn’t realize why I was so emotional and sympathetic. I see why now. When I read Kevin MacDonald, when I read about Kevin MacDonald, when I talk to Kevin MacDonald, I’m talking to my father circa 1980, the year our lives forever changed, and not for the good.
So that’s why I was going around telling people to read COC. I wanted them to better understand my story.
Luke Ford, an Australian living in the USA, who “converted” to Judaism in 1993, interviews Kevin MacDonald and his response to a recent critique of his highly ignored (by academia), yet important book, “The Culture of Critique“, by the 30 year old, academically unknown, New York jew, Nathan Cofnas. Cofnas was scheduled to come on with MacDonald, but was unable to, due to time zone differences, as he’s in England, studying at Oxford.
Ford plays somewhat of a devil’s advocate on behalf of Cofnas, quoting some of Cofnas’, yet to be released, responses to MacDonald’s 18,0000 word response to Cofnas’s critique.
This transcript covers the first 71 minute part of the Youtube video with MacDonald, and not (currently) the remaining part of the total 220 minute video, where Cofnas does appear in the last third of it.
Ford: What is your perspective on the default hypothesis and why your perspective on Judaism as a group evolutionary strategy is superior?
MacDonald: Well the default hypothesis is just absolutely the most basic thing. I mean, it’s like jews are smart. I haven’t looked at it lately, but I guess it’s the idea that simply the jews are smarter, or something. And that explains everything. On the other hand, I mean, what I’m trying to do is more than that. Acknowledge that jews are smart, they are on average. But the default hypothesis is the simplest possible explanation that might account for it.
I’m trying to do something more ambitious. Nothing wrong with that. It’s just a matter of finding if it’s true, or not. I mean, I have to show it’s true, but if I do show, then I’ve shown something more than the default hypothesis. And that is, you know, in science you want the truth. You don’t want, simplicity is wonderful, but the default hypothesis is certainly is good. It’s something I guess. But it’s not going to be where you want to be ultimately. You want to find out were jewish motivations important? Were the sense of jewish interests important? Those are the kinds of things you want to do.
Ford: Now one thing that’s interesting about the Cofnas critique is that Cofnas is obviously a race realist, and so is Steven Pinker. And I think there were two other jews and a non jew on the peer review are signing off on a paper of race realism. Did you see any significance to that?
MacDonald: Well it’s interesting. I had heard that I guess. That he is a race realist, which is wonderful. And I think Pinker is also. I mean, I don’t know about Pinker. The only thing I’ve seen by Pinker that suggests that is he does believe that jews are smarter. And he does believe that there’s some kind of selective pressures within the jewish community to produce that. That’s certainly part way there. I don’t know if he believes in black White IQ differences, I really don’t, but it’s interesting. It’s part way. It’s shows he’s not completely, you know, got his head in the sand! And then yeah he’s a pretty smart guy. I’m not denying that either.
Ford: If these if these professors are signing off on an academic paper, you know, based on race realism, saying that jews are smarter, they are implicitly signing off that other people are less intelligent.
MacDonald: They are. And I think, you know, they would not want to talk about blacks being smarter than, … the Whites being smarter than blacks, or something like that. Although I’m not sure. But I’ve never seen anything by Pinker suggesting he believes that.
And I haven’t read really anything of Cofnas at all apparently. Apparently he did something about Samuel Morton, the 19th century anthropologist. I got some email about that. And it did suggest that he was more of a race realist, or something. But I, you know, I really don’t know anything about the man, except seeing this article he did about me.
Ford: So was this the first time in your memory that you heard the name Nathan Cofnas?
MacDonald: Yeah! That was the only time, you know, and it sort of shocked me! It took me by surprise. It, what happened Saturday was it Saturday night?
MacDonald: Something like that and I didn’t get going on it. I sort of glanced at it on Sunday and then I started working on a reply on Monday. Pretty furiously, and I ended up with 18 thousand words for heaven’s sake, it in a rather short period of time. So it’s rather intense. I don’t like things hanging out there! You know, when someone posts saying, you know, there’s an automatic feeling:
“Wow! This guy knows what he’s doing! You know, and he’s really nailed MacDonald and everything!”
I just don’t like the idea that it’s sitting out there. So, I mean, I could have taken more time, maybe done a little better job, but and I may revise it in the future. But I wanted to get it out there! I don’t like things sitting out there.
Ford: One thing I loved about your rebuttal and about your writing in general, is the emotional honesty! Like you don’t mind [08:02] putting yourself on the line and using your own life and the most painful parts of your life as examples of your theories.
MacDonald: [chuckling] well, you know, I’m used to it! I’ve been defending myself for 20 years! I mean, not like this quite. But if you go to my website I have a section on replies to my critics. And people have been all over me 20 years. At my university as I said, in the introduction, or footnote. I mean, I was subjected to intense hostility on faculty email lists, and people arguing against different things. They never really went after “Culture of Critique”, but they made points about different things.
And I was for a while in the late 90s after the books came out I was on this history email discussion, saying, you know, about jewish history. Somebody got me on there. And boy, that was intense! , because they were really going after me! But, you know, I you know, [09:02] I answered them as best I could, and I didn’t feel I was being nailed, you know. So I’m used to it! I’ve got a whole folder what I got. It’s called “Defense” where I’ve written all these defenses of my work. And it’s repetitive! So I’ve seen it all, basically.
And I’ve been around the block on a lot of these things. And one thing that surprised me about Cofnas is he’d seem to think that having a counterexample, if you find a jew who criticized psychoanalysis, or criticizes Israel, or something, I mean, as if that can refute what I’m saying! I just didn’t understand how you could think that! Because I mean, I have seen it before and it’s remarkable that came up so often in his critique.
Ford: Yeah. How much explanatory power does the default hypothesis have for jewish intellectual influence? Does it does it account for 90% of it, do you think?
MacDonald: Well, I wouldn’t want to venture a guess on that. I mean, there are a lot of jews, as I say in there, that are do good work. And I think that’s not the issue. The issue are these particular movements that have been very influential. And I do get into the little bit on the philosophy of science in the middle of it somewhere. I talk about being “falsifiable”, because at one point he said that I’ve never acknowledged any evidence that could refute the theory. And I’ve seen other people say that.
But it’s so obvious! The way to refute my theory is simply say that I’m wrong about my historical accounts! It’s like any historian. And, you know, what my books are basically, the basic approach is evolutionary psychology, but within that, quite often, history becomes important. In the culture of critique it’s intellectual history. Basically psychoanalysis, Frankfurt School, and so on.
So if you want to show I’m wrong. All you have to do is say well, you know, psychoanalysis is not a jewish movement! Well Cofnas never even tries to do that! He doesn’t even go there! He makes little, you know, forays here and there. And again, when it comes out, and I’ve always done those with my critics. I go through every last point that they make! I don’t leave anything out! And so that’s why they ended up being very long. I mean, I quoted him, and had to write on it, and sometimes, a lot of times I brought in stuff from the books. So it got very lengthy. But, I don’t like to, you know, think that:
“Well he didn’t answer this he didn’t answer that, you know, he debated this and so on so.”
If I’d written a five-page thing and pointed out a few things, that would be one thing. But I think then I’d be open to that kind of charge. But he made all these claims about “cherry-picking”, and what was the other thing, “misrepresentation”. Well, I went through every one where that was claimed. And I mean, I’d like to see him do the same, because in my reply I said that he’s misinterpreting, misrepresenting what I’m saying, in a number of places. And in one case I did say it was cherry-picking. So I mean, if he wants to repeat what I said, he’s got a job on his hands. But if he wants to do as thorough a job as I did. And we’ll see if he does that. I don’t know if he. I haven’t heard from him since it since I posted my thing.
Ford: Did Cofnas in any way make an intellectual contribution to this discussion?
MacDonald: Well I didn’t feel it did in the end. He didn’t really engage any of the real thesis of the thing. I mean, one of the most heartening things on Saturday, or Sunday, I got an email from a professor I know. A very well-regarded guy, respected in evolutionary psychology. He said he just didn’t engage any of you main points. He didn’t! So even if he was right about all these things he said, it didn’t really threaten any of the major points. I mean, take psychoanalysis. Did he ever show, did he even try to show that these guys didn’t identify as Jews? No! Did he try to show that they didn’t have a sense of jewish interest? No! And that’s the fundamental thing! Did he try to show that they really didn’t have any influence? Well, that’s absurd in the case of psychoanalysis! Very absurd!
So in a way I was heartened by that, because, very heartened by that! And when I looked through this thing, I had to agree. I mean, I hadn’t even read it all yet. But it just doesn’t do anything. Take the chapter on the Left. Well, it doesn’t show that jewish identification, … he never even raises one example! I’ve got dozens of examples in there! He never gives one example where he says:
“Well these guys didn’t really identify as Jews because, you know, X Y & Z.”
Well he doesn’t do that! So again, I was feeling that he hadn’t really addressed the point. The points that he did make, were interesting, but they didn’t attack the central thesis, you know. So a lot of it did involve, well, you know, as a misrepresentation you didn’t, you ignored this, or something like that. Okay, I went through that and I think I rebutted it. We will see what happens now.
Ford: So how would one falsify your theory of judaism being a group evolutionary strategy?
MacDonald: Well it’s like I said a minute ago. You would show that, … the basic idea of a group evolutionary strategy is simply a group that is an effective group in terms of natural selection and evolution. And what that would require, is you have to show that they are able to regulate the behavior of the members of the group. And in my first book “People That Shall Dwell Alone” is about that. It goes into traditional jewish societies. It doesn’t even get to 20th century, it’s almost all the ancient world and so on, and into the 19th and early 20th century, maybe. But if you look at those communities they were very tightly structured! Okay. So the behavior of jews towards each other were highly regulated!
For example if once you had a business monopoly, a second Jews couldn’t go in there and try to challenge that monopoly. In other words, if it was a fellow jew, they couldn’t do that. So if, for example, a jew failed to pay his taxes, do other things required by the community, well they would punish him. And, you know, in the 19th century in Russia, they had jails in synagogues. And if somebody married a non-jew, well the whole family would be tarnished.
Those are the kinds of things, the kind of sanctions on individual jewish behavior within the community. That is what makes it a group evolutionary strategy, because you’re able to regulate the members of the in-group and prevent cheaters! The problem, you know, the theoretical problem has always been. And that’s how I started out. I do mention that in the rebuttal, in the first couple pages, about how I got to where I am.
Again, a lot of it’s, maybe, in footnotes. But what I say is, that I got the idea of a group evolutionary strategy, I started out I was interested in monogamy. Why is monogamy such a big thing in Western European history? And it’s not the case in so many other cultures. If you look at the Arab world, Africa, China, you don’t see monogamy. And so I ended up seeing that. I noticed that there are a lot of social controls, that people were regulating marriage. The church was regulating marriages.
And then, I wrote a book in 1988 on developmental psychology. But the last chapter I focused on the Spartans. The ancient Greek Spartans. And you see there’s a very engineered society. It was started by a guy named Lyserges who had [18:00] an idea. I mean, he had a program a blueprint for how this should work. And so Spartan kids were brought up to be soldiers. Their whole life was to be a soldier! They were taken away from their families.
They were, so this was all an engineered thing, in the same way jewish communities you have these religious studies. You teach them these things. And everything in child development is very much programmed. And so I went from the Spartans, and I didn’t really then, really focused on the idea this is a contribution to thinking about humans in evolutionary terms. It really hadn’t been done before. And that is to emphasize the group level., because again it was a heresy back in the 1980s. It was just, you know, everything was individual selection. Groups don’t matter. All groups can be analyzed as a bunch of individuals.
I said no! Human groups are different from animals. We can regulate ourselves in a way from external pressures, these [19:00] social controls and ideology. And if you look at the Spartans they would have an ideology that would rationalize the whole thing.
Of course, Judaism have had an ideology of how they rationalize what they did within their communities. But by what they did that within those communities made them effective groups from an evolutionary standpoint, evolutionary selection between groups.
Ford: As jews are now marrying out, well above 50%, does that mean that jews are no longer employing a group evolutionary strategy? Or is it no longer effective? Or is this part of the group evolutionary strategy, marrying non-jews?
MacDonald: Yeah well, I think that’s the thing. I mean, the phenomenon of intermarriage is certainly very common in the West now. You could be talking about America and other European based countries. And that’s, because these controls broke down really! I mean, hey, you know, I actually [20:01] should write about that! Yeah, the point is, in traditional society you couldn’t marry anybody you wanted! That was, you know, if you did, your whole family would be screwed! You know, there was just no way to do that!
Those controls broke down in the 19th century. And the jews was, you know, this was called “emancipation”. They left they the jewish ghettos, they went to the universities, they, you know, did all these things. And when they got out in the real world, they started intermarrying. And they sort of lost those intense community ties.
But if you look in Israel you don’t see intermarriage, because they’re pretty much there with other jews. And it’s interesting that in the early 20th century that was the whole point of Zionism. A very major point of Zionism, as it developed in the early 20th century, was to prevent assimilation and to prevent intermarriage! They could see this happening already in Germany. And they [21:01] they were thinking that this is the end of Judaism. And you still see that. A lot of jewish activists like, say Alan Dershowitz, they are very concerned that in the long run there won’t be any jews, or there won’t be any sort of ethnic jews. It’s going to change that dramatically.
Ford: Is there a certain rate of intermarriage that would invalidate your theory of Judaism as a group evolutionary strategy? I mean, if it goes north of 60 percent, if it goes north of 70 percent?
MacDonald: Yeah I think it’s interesting, the fact is that what I’ve done, you know. The first book was on traditional societies and most of the second book was really. The third book [“The Culture of Critique”] is on really, almost all of it is really on secular Jews, who are not that attached to the jewish community. But they do identify as Jews. And they have a sense of belonging to a jewish community. But it’s not like it was. And in a way what you have to hesitate to say is that Diaspora Judaism in America is a group evolutionary strategy.
I almost hestitate to call it that. I would call it that in traditional societies for sure! That’s the whole point of the first book. And you might even say that in Israel, because they, you know, it’s an ethno-state. But, and in America, certainly there are vestiges of that. But the point of “The Culture of Critique” is that it’s almost like I get out of that framework. And the most important thing is how do these jews, how are they influencing culture?
And the fact is, even though they may be intermarried, and maybe they’re not like, Theodor Adorno was only half jewish, I think. And yeah he was very strongly [23:01] identified as a jew. And so he participated his intellectual movements that I covered. So, was he part of a group evolutionary strategy? Well, I suppose he is. What I’d have to say is that the ones who are participating in the group evolutionary strategy are the strongly identified jews who are actively trying to promote jewish interests as they see them. Of course, there are going to be disputes among them as to what jewish interests are.
So I would say that Freud was part of a group evolutionary strategy in the sense that, you know, and intellectuals today. If you look at, say the American, the ADL, say. Someone like Stephen Greenblatt, Abe Foxman. Those guys are strongly identified jews, they are doing what they see as advancing jewish interests. At some point [24:00] and another point I think I do make somewhere in the reply, is that if you look at the leadership of the Jewish community, it’s still ethnically jewish. I mean, you look at something like Greenblatt. He’s got two jewish parents, four jewish grandparents all the way back. Abe Foxman. I don’t know of any real leadership position here that’s held by people who are intermarried and so on.
But, in any case, I mean, it’s certainly the case that there’s a lot of intermarriage. But even that, a lot of the children of these people do strong identify as Jews, and a lot don’t. And so a lot of them are going to fall by the wayside. They’re not going to be jewish anymore. So, you know, your mom’s jewish and your dad isn’t, then so then you marry a non jew, pretty soon, it’s not going to be there anymore. And your probably not even gonna be welcome in the jewish community.
But at some point it’s gonna dissipate and end really did you got a jewish great-great-great grandparent, so what?
Ford: So let’s just say for discussions sake, just to push you on this point. If jewish out marriage rates in the United States climb above 70%, it would be then fair to say that, most jews in the United States and not following a group evolutionary strategy?
MacDonald: Yeah i’d probably say most of them are not, but you’d have to interview them and see what they’re up to. You know, I mean, part of it would just be, you know, how strongly do you identify as a Jews? You know, do you, are you active in jewish organizations? Do you like, …, because after all there are two elements of the whole thing. One is genetics, and one is culture. Now for centuries the culture and the genetics were sort of tied together completely! , but that’s not the case so much anymore. But you could have a person who’s a quarter jewish, or [26:01] something like that, and he strongly identifies as a Jews. But I think most of those people will not, and they will their children will not marry a Jews. And so they’re sort of dropping out of the whole thing.
Ford: So, I mean, your theory of Judaism is a group evolutionary strategy does not have to apply it to every single jewish community, like, …
MacDonald: Oh no! Not at all.
Ford: Much better than other jewish communities. For plenty of jewish communities it’s not going to be a useful tool of analysis. Like you said a jewish community with an 80% intermarriage rate, it’s not really a useful tool for that sort of community. Is that fair?
MacDonald: Yeah I mean, 80 percent, yeah, even 60% you’ve got an awful lot of people who don’t identify much anymore. And they’re gonna fall out. And that’s a concern that jewish activists. I know that. I mean, when I wrote the book and it’s interesting, because in 1998 I wrote two books. And they both dealt with that issue that in the last chapter of each of those books.
And at that time there was a lot of writing within the jewish community, in the jewish press. Condemning intermarriage and trying to shore it up. And trying to prevent it., because all the studies started coming out, you know, 30, 40, or 50 percent, you know, at that time 50 percent was, I think, was what people were saying. And then people could hardly believe it. But there’s a real backlash against that attempt to shore it up. Well I guess it failed! It’s gotten worse.
Ford: Okay. So there’s a guy in the chatroom who lives in Europe, I don’t believe he’s jewish, but his boss is jewish. And his boss just looks very askance at Zionism.
Ford: So in the modern world like after the “Holocaust” we’ve now had a jewish state for approximately 60 plus, 70 years. In this modern world if you have a jewish community where they are opposed to the existence of an ethno-jewish state, you know, currently known as Israel, and then, and that’s widespread, let’s say it’s like 60% of the community, just to use that figure from intermarriage. Does that then challenge the usefulness of the tool of Judaism as a group evolutionary strategy, when you have a majority of a jewish community are opposed to the jewish state.
MacDonald: Well in the reply I talked about there is a jewish Orthodox, jewish sect that does not accept Israel. Yet they strong identify as jews. It does exist! And there are certainly critics of Israel. One of the points I make in the reply, is that critics of Israel are getting more and more common among jews. I mean, one of the websites I read every day is Mondowiess. A great website! And they’re very critical of Zionism as it exists in Israel now. And these guys are strongly identified as Jews. Phillip Wiess is time.
MacDonald: Editor and he’s talks about that. And I think he wants to feel part of the jewish community. But at the same time, he’s a sort of liberal lefty kind of guy. Who can’t stand with what he’s seeing over there. And so he’s very critical. And he probably thinks in the long run, this is not a good strategy for jews. To have a state that’s doing, you know, the ethnic cleansing, they’re taking over the West Bank, they’re seizing more and more land, and annexing, and so on.
And those are the things that are giving Israel a sort of pariah status in the world now! Well if you’re jewish, you gotta say, well either you’re gonna say, well that’s fine, you know. But a lot of jews I think are sort of clenching their teeth and they’re saying, you know:
“Are we doing the right thing here?”
But again, another point I make though, I think in Israel, within Israel, the fanatics are in charge! And I made that point in response to the review by the “Israel Lobby” the book by Mearsheimer and Walt., because their point, they wanted, they are very critical of Israel and how it’s influenced our foreign policy. And they’re very critical about what Israel’s done to the Palestinians. So what they say is for Israel’s own good they should shape up! And they should stop all this stuff! And, you know, become a sort of regular state. But I don’t see that happening.
And what I see is that people like Natalie Bennett is talking about, you know, succeeding Netanyahu. Well, he’s a leader of the secular movement. I think that it’s just going to get more [31:02] intense as time goes on. I mean, the people having the children over in Israel tend to be the more orthodox. This is the case in this country.
Where in Israel they are coming to a majority there if not already. I don’t think a sort of, you know, the people who started Israel, the so-called labor Zionist, they were very much liberal on the Left and all that and even though, they were aggressive and so on. It’s gotten more intense over the years, obviously, beginning with the Begin government back in 1970. So yeah, I think Israel is getting more extreme. I think it’s going to keep going that way.
Ford: A jewish reader of yours, writes in the chat room:
“If individualism are key to Western beauty and greatness, how can this be retained with ethnic cohesion?”
MacDonald: Well yeah, it is a very good question. What I would hope is that we could have a period where we would sort of give up [32:00] our individualism, re-establish ourselves, get back on our feet, and then reestablish individualism afterwards. We’re gonna need some cohesion here for a while. We’re going to need some sense of the mission that we have to right things in Europe, and America, Australia, New Zealand, and other places.
So I think that’s gonna require more of a collective mentality. And, you know, I’m a northern European. I’m quite individualist, but at the same time I understand the need to sort of submerge myself in a movement! I realized I’m not going to necessarily approve of everything everybody does. I have to look at a lot of different alternatives. But the point is that I’m going to join a more collective society, submerge my individualism a little bit, in order for the greater good.
Ford: Right. So if jews are prominently represented on both the hereditarian race realist side, you’ve had a lot of jews speaking at American Renaissance, as well as being prominently represented on the opposite, the egalitarian side. What explanatory power does your theory of Judaism as a group evolutionary strategy have, if you have prominent jews, and in numbers, on both sides of the debate such as the hereditarian versus the egalitarian perspective on racial IQ differences?
Oh! What happened? I lost Kevin MacDonald! Doggone it! Let me throw in an invite back so. Sorry!
MacDonald: Sorry I looked at the thing and it said iI was off and now I realized it wasn’t. Anyway, the answer to your question is, and this came up, you know, in my reply. The question isn’t a matter of counting heads. The question is who’s been influential? And so in chapter two I talk about that, and the point is that the anti-hereditarian have in a very real sense won that day. And the reason they won it is, because of jewish activism.
And the prime example is Stephen Jay Gould. I mean, and I give a lot of attention to him in that chapter. He’s been enormously influential. Harvard professor, you know, he also wrote a lot in [35:00] the popular press. He had a column at Natural History. He became like a superstar, an academic superstar! I saw him talk once, and he was a brilliant speaker! You know, he gave a slide show, he had three screens going, he was very flamboyant and talked with absolute confidence! I’ll never forget it, I’ll never forget!
He said right towards the end, and he’s talking about the human brain, or something. He said:
“What could be more obvious and that the human brain, our ideas and everything, our brain itself is not under natural selection!”
And I just, you know, I’m sitting there in the audience, and I’m saying:
“Are you kidding me?”
But he said it was such a aplomb! You know, in a roomful of academics and they’re all cheering wildly! I mean, it was like this guy was very, very, effective! So again, it’s the same way with it with Israel! I mean, there are [36:00] a lot of jews now who are criticizing Israel, but who’s important? AIPAC is important! The Sheldon Adelson is important! Haim Sabin is important! You know, there that’s where the money comes from. And if you should cross AIPAC, you know, if you cross AIPAC you’re gonna be in trouble if your politician. So even if you find a substantial percentage of jews are critical of Israel, or something like that, it may not mean a darn thing! You see what I mean?
You can have people like Nancy Siegel and Richard Herstein, the co-author of “The Bell Curve”. Great scientists! But what happened to “The Bell Curve”? Nothing! Yeah, I mean, aft 20 years, you know, that’s been around since 1994! And it was a huge blow up at the time, but has “The Bell Curve” influenced public policy at all? Has “The Bell Curve” [37:02] influenced? Charles Murray would be the first to admit this! Herstein had a dialogue on this, a long time ago, around 1994.
So the point is, not how many jews are in which way, whatever movement, the question is who won and why! And so that’s what you have to look at in all these cases, really.
Ford: A question from the chat:
“What do you think about Jared Taylor including Ashkenazim as White?”
MacDonald: Well I’m not sure. You know, in a way Ashkenazim are White. I mean, there’s a certain substantial European admixture there. Maybe 40 percent, overall. But, you know, if it goes up one 1% a year a generation, over forty generations you’re talking about that. And so there is a substantial admixture. An awful lot of Ashkenazi jews certainly look European. I think of someone [38:01] like Jon Stewart. I mean, he doesn’t look jewish at all to me. So there are these genetic reasons why you might say that, but what I’ve always said is two things, two points I’d like to make.
One point is, I think that Jared Taylor may see this is a tactical issue, more than anything else. He realizes that Jews are powerful and I think he wants to have a movement trying to recruit White America basically and get ourselves back on our feet. And one way to do that, maybe, is to get Jews on our side. And I don’t disagree with that. I think more power to him! If he wins, hey, I’d say:
“Jared you won! Congratulations! You had the best strategy!”
But the other thing is that besides genetics there’s also identity. And the fact is that most [39:02] jews, you know, the jewish education is geared to seeing jews as a victimized group historically, as a persecuted group. Christianity as a persecuting force, and again I was thinking of Ford, because Ford came up in the reply and, you know, where he talked about the persecuting Catholic Church and seeing the Catholic churches as their enemy. Well, you’re seeing an essential Western institution as an enemy.
And, of course, the reason for that is during the Middle Ages some of the Pope’s, not all popes, but some of the Popes were very anti-jewish. You had this in the Spanish Inquisition which had strong religious overtones. You had these Crusaders in the Middle Ages killing jews on the way the Holy Land. So into the present really.
So there is that, there. But what that means is a lot of jews do not identify with Western culture. Even if they are, you know, maybe if they are 60 percent European. Some of them probably are, some of them probably much less. But they psychologically they don’t identify with it. So it’s not just genetics, it’s identity. How you think of yourself.
And the fact is, these jews who were involved in these jewish intellectual movements I talked about, were strongly identified as jews. And so that’s the critical thing is jewish identity for them. And that’s where I had to show it in each of those books.
Ford: Now, in your chapter on the Frankfurt School, you said that these jewish intellectuals strongly identified as jews. But I believed the only evidence you brought to support that was that they cared about the “Holocaust”. Now you don’t have to strongly identify as a jew to care about the “Holocaust”. So, on what basis do you say that the Frankfurt School intellectuals strongly identified as jews?
MacDonald: Why I have to look over my old chapter again [chuckling]. It is more than that! Belive me. I mean, there was some examples of that.
MacDonald: I mean, Horkheimer especially. Look at his writings, especially as he got older, very strongly. And you look at the book like “Dialect of the xxx”. I spend a lot of time on that in the reply. I mean, it is such, so obviously an apologetic. You know, it’s an attempt to say basically that, an attempt to account for anti-semitism, but in the most convoluted, weird way!
Where the actual behavior of jews in this historical time doesn’t matter. It’s not like they ever went into something that happened in the 16th century, or the Inquisition, or something, and tried to see what was going on [42:00] the other side. Instead it was a psychoanalytic. It was just crazy! And that can only happen if you are strongly motivated to vindicate jewish history. And to exculpate any kind of blame for it.
Ford: Yeah. It seems though that the Frankfurt School did push the same kind of multicultural agenda both on jews and non-jews. It’s not like they were pushing cohesion, unity, and exclusion for jews, and then the opposite for non-jews. They were, by and large, pushing the same recipe on both jews and non-jews. Would you agree with that?
MacDonald: Well! Were they pushing it on non-jews? I had sections, let me look at my reply, because they did come up in this whole discussion. Let me see if I can find it. Well at a basic level you had Frankfurt School funded by the American jewish Committee. It’s hard to believe that they had no jewish identification. It’s hard to believe they didn’t care about Jewish continuity. That’s certainly what the American jewish Committee was all about. I have a long section, I’d like to be able to see it, in order to really answer this here, in my reply.
Ford: What chapter is that in “The Culture of Critique?”
MacDonald: Chapter five, yeah.
Ford: Chapter five, okay. Let’s scroll down to, because you do your rebuttal basically chapter by chapter, so that makes it a lot to, …
MacDonald: Well almost, he went out-of-order. He’d put three after five. Okay, let’s look at the Frankfurt School.
Ford: Here, just while you while you’re scanning that, to see what you want to highlight, I just want to bring to attention Nathan’s response to your rebuttal. So Nathan shared with me a draft of his response. He still needs to do more work on it, and he gave me permission to quote from it, but not to share it. So that’s, you know, those of the ground rules that I’m dealing with. And this is Nathan. He’s saying:
“That members of the Frankfurt School had a strong reaction to the “Holocaust”, which is hardly surprising, does not mean that they strongly identified as jews, or supported jewish ethnocentrism.”
MacDonald: Is this a reply to what I wrote now?
Ford: Yeah, yeah he hasn’t published this as yet, so if you feel that I’m engaging in dirty pool, I won’t, …
MacDonald: No. Again, I would like to see what, … I’m scrolling through my own reply here now. Okay I said I do not assume they approve of this behavior simply, because they were jewish. The first part, a strong identification of the jewish principal figures and the group’s most influential work. “The Authoritarian Personality”. Max Horkheimer says “the goal of philosophy is to vindicate jewish history.”
Well, what do you think that means! I mean, that is strong Jewish identification! This is more than simply concern about the “Holocaust”, for heaven’s sake! Take Adorno, much of Adorno’s later work may be viewed as reaction to the “Holocaust” [46:02]. But that’s Adorno, I suppose. But he seems to be obsessed with that. But again, he also participated in writing “Dialectic of the Enlightenment”. He’s working on a book funded by the American jewish committee, all about anti-Semitism. So I take that as evidence of a strong jewish identity, absolutely!
Ford: Okay. Let me read two sentences from your rebuttal, and two sentences from Cofnas’ rebuttal of your rebuttal. And just go from there. So Kevin writes:
“There are really two possibilities here about the Frankfurt school. They realized it was a double standard, but didn’t want to publicize that, for the obvious reason that they would be seen as hypocrites. Or, they were deceiving themselves by simply focusing on White ethnocentrism as pathological, while blocking out any thought about how this presents an intellectual inconsistency i.e., self-deception.”
Now this is Nathan’s response:
“There is a third possibility. Members of the Frankfurt School opposed ethnocentrism for both jews and Gentiles alike. This third possibility seems especially plausible given that MacDonald has no positive evidence for the first two possibilities, besides the fact that the “Holocaust” loomed large for the Franklin School, which is irrelevant.”
MacDonald: But that is a total gloss on what I’m saying! Good heavens! I mean, I just read you about Max Horkheimer, you know, and the fact that the whole thing is concerned, that the “Authoritarian Personality” is so obsessed with anti-semitism. So to me that’s obvious that they are strongly identified as jews. I just can’t even imagine that they aren’t.
Ford: Yeah. When you said that they’re obsessed with anti-semitism, is it possible that they were equally obsessed with anti-racism?
MacDonald: Well they certainly are concerned about racism, as they had the ethnocentrism scale, it doesn’t explicitly mention jews. And that is interesting. I think that in general jews have seen a strong correlation, which is the case. And I think it’s a basic idea of the “Authoritarian Personality” is that if you don’t like blacks tb you probably won’t like jews. And so they go together.
Ford: But it’s also, is it also possible that they cared as much about blacks as they cared about Jews?
MacDonald: Well, they might have, but, you know, again they’re doing this in my opinion, and I don’t see anything to rebut that, they’re doing this, because they see, because [49:02] of their jewish identity. And they may well feel strongly about blacks, or something like that, but I do think that they, … and I do think that, some more stuff. The idea that they see a jewish future. They don’t think that the jews are going to stop. That jewish ethnocentrism, and really what it takes is jewish identity, to maintain a jewish future, I don’t think they‘re not opposed to that. And, you know, the group continuity. Well what else is it really? That’s really what it amounts to among jews.
Ford: From an Orthodox perspective the Frankfurt School jews are a bunch of jewish goyim who eat bacon and, you know, we feel nothing in common with them. And, you know, we basically loathe them! How does how does Judaism as a group evolutionary strategy, you know, analyze the other repugnance that Orthodox jews feel for jews like the Frankfurt School?
MacDonald: Well, yeah. I mean, there again there are divergences within the jewish community. There always had been, there always will be.
What you have to do is look at were the influence lies. These Orthodox jews did not do anything about the Frankfurt School. The Frankfurt School were very influential. And so that’s all I’m trying to do in “Culture of Critique”.
To show that these movements were created by strongly identified jews, and they were successful. Now the fact that some jews didn’t like that, or don’t like Frankfurt school, or people that eat bacon, or something like that, it’s irrelevant to that, really.
Ford: So you mentioned in the paper that you’re not going to respond to Nathan’s ad hominem attacks. And I just want to read a few sentences here from Nathan. He says:
“I never made any ad hominem attacks against Kevin MacDonald. My paper does not call him, or his theory anti-semitic, nor does it attribute nefarious motivations to him. However in this reply, it is MacDonald who makes an ad hominem attack against me. He suggests, …”
MacDonald: Where’s that?
“He suggests that I am motivated to criticize him, because of my jewish ethnicity. As Kevin says, one suspects that Cofnas had a foregone conclusion about “Culture of Critique’s” value. What psychologists term “motivated cognition” which as I attempt to demonstrate was characteristic of the jewish intellectuals reviewing “Culture of Critique” like the hyper purist discussed in several places in “Culture of Critique” he was looking for ways to condemn research he didn’t like of deeper reason.”
So were you were you arguing here in your rebuttal that Cofnas was motivated to criticize you and denounce you, because Cofnas is jewish?
MacDonald: Well, yeah, I mean, I you want to call that “ad hominem”. What I’m saying is that I think it’s motivated, I think it’s strongly motivated. What I resented was him calling me incompetent. What I resented was saying I was full of misrepresentations. False! That I was cherry-picking right and left. False! I mean, he was saying all kind of things that we’re just really disrespectful! And just trying to make me out to be some kind of an idiot! And I just really resented the tone of this thing, to tell you the truth!
I had one sentence at the end where I where I suggested that he’s motivated by his ethnicity, which is the case. I suggested, I didn’t, you know, say [53:02] it was some kind of a knockdown argument, obviously. But he did not engage any of the basic ideas. Come on! What are you doing? And he thinks he’s refuted me? Come on, it’s ridiculous!
Ford: You knew “The Culture of Critique” was incendiary, so what sort of reaction did you expect of the book?
MacDonald: Well I didn’t know. I thought that maybe I would get condemned, or get bad reviews, or something. But what was interesting was, nothing happened. And so I think Cofnas mentioned Frank Salter’s review, and that was about it. And yeah, so obviously it was quite different with the first two books, especially the first book. It got positive reviews and everything. I mean, it was a surprise. I didn’t know quite what to expect but then it pretty obvious there was going to be silence.
Ford: Yeah. Now you write in your rebuttal:
“I began to see myself as having a dog in this fight”
Once you worked on your immigration chapter of “The Culture of Critique”.
“and what was happening was from an evolutionary perspective, a disaster of the White people of the West! Ethnic displacement is like reducing an extended family, or other lineages. It is a drastic loss of fitness as Frank Salter has shown. Really no different from displacement of one subspecies, or species, …”
MacDonald: That is just a typo there.
“… this is natural selection in action, though it’s hard to call the process natural, because it’s a consciously engineered process”
So this is Nathan’s response:
“Later in this reply MacDonald argues that some jews, such as Alan Dershowitz, support multiracial immigration to [55:02] advance jewish interests as they understand them. But here he acknowledges the obvious point that multiracial immigration to a country which he equates with ethnic displacement, opposes the ethnic interest of the majority inhabitants of the country.”
So were you inconsistent here?
MacDonald: What do you mean? How my interests are what?
Ford: Okay, so in your rebuttal you make the point that ethnic displacement is reducing, is like reducing an extended family.
Ford: Okay. So when Alan Dershowitz supports multiracial immigration to Israel, to advance jewish interests, as he understands that. This multiracial immigration is the same sort of ethnic displacement that you would decrying in the West.
MacDonald: Well, yeah absolutely! And the response to that is simply again, there are differences of opinion [56:01] among jews! You have to look at where the power is! And Alan Dershowitz does not have any power over Israeli immigration policy, pretty obviously! Because right now Israel is expelling Africans right and left. And they are very strong, you know, restrictions on who can come into Israel. So, I don’t care.
You know, there are a lot of reasons why Alan Dershowitz might have those opinions. And I mentioned that in my reply. He may think that, well it’s good PR, you know, that Israel still depends on the West, we can’t have this image of being racist. We can’t have this image that Judaism is all about genetics. And he might even think that it’s, you know, crazy in the long run! All right, and the other thing he may well think, well 2% is no big deal! I mentioned that. So I don’t know what his motives are, but it doesn’t matter!
The point is that Israeli policy is to create and maintain and ethno-state and they are succeeding at that! Admitting 2% of Ethiopians, or something like that, it’s not going to change that. And as also said, the Ethiopians are on the fringes of society over there. They are not being integrated. A lot of Israelis hate that. And some religious authorities think they’re not even really jewish. Well it’s not exactly a warm welcome!
And, you know, again what matters is where the power is! Not, you know, counting heads, like even famous heads like, Chomsky, or Dershowitz, or something like that, to see where the power is. It’s empirical, you know. It’s not like I [58:01] have a theory of what all jews do every time! You know, the theory is descriptive, to see where the power is. Whether it’s an influential intellectual movement like psychoanalysis, or the Frankfurt School, or Israeli immigration policy, or jewish influence on immigration policy in America. That’s all I’m trying to do! Yeah I don’t get that the thrust of that argument at all.
Ford: Okay, so I believe that Nathan will publish his rebuttal later this week, but gave me an advance look at a draft,
So you Kevin write:
“I see the jewish community as having important diversity of viewpoint.”
Ford: And Nathan says:
“Any reasonable interpretation of MacDonald would clearly put limits on the diversity of viewpoint that we would expect to find among jewish ethnic activists. When jews are over-represented among the leadership of [59:01] violently opposing movement, for example, the pro-Israel lobby versus Boycott Divest Sanction movement, opponents versus advocates of free speech, this does not fit in any obvious way with MacDonald’s theory.
Should we expect Jews to cluster around those movements that actually advance their group interests? MacDonald claims that jews disagree about how to advance their common ethnic interests and this is why they are often the leaders both of movements and the movements opposition.
This implies that a large percentage of jews not only fail to determine what is in their best interests, but are actively working against those interests by opposing the movement that would actually advanced them. Isn’t jewish over-representation in opposing movements evidence in favor of the default hypothesis?”
MacDonald: No! It’s not! Again, as I said, a minute ago, what we’re looking at is where the power is!
Jews have different opinions about where, what to do, and so on, and for all I know, you know, at some point the BDS movement may win. But the point is it’s a jewish, if you are correct. I mean, my impression is there may be jewish leadership, but a lot of it’s Palestinian and other people who are really sort of carrying the weight. But in any case, say it is a jewish movement, and you’ve got opposing jewish movements. Fine! And you’ve got opposing jewish religious movements in a sense, you know, their different views and things.
But if you’re looking at say something like American immigration policy, or our policy towards Israel. Does it matter that you’ve got a BDS movement? If the BDS movement can’t influence American foreign policy in the least? Not at all! Doesn’t matter! And they may succeed at some point, so this is gonna change.
That’s why I say, this is not a predictive theory. I can’t predict where this is going to go. The BDS movement may get powerful enough to sway American companies to change their attitude, and then you have these elites in the United States really pressuring the government to, you know, stop supporting Israel so much. We’ll see what happens! Who knows what will happen? It’s up in the air.
But the point is that you have to look at these movements, see where the power is, and ask yourself is it a jewish movement? Are they advancing their version of jewish interests? Who’s winning and who’s losing? So it’s the same thing with immigration policy. You could, you can find jews who are opposed to immigration, open immigration, certainly.
And I talk about Stephen Steinlight in my and my response. He’s a lone figure and it’s hard to fight any a significant [62:00] jewish group. I can’t think of it. There there are none! But there are few jews who are opposed to open border kind of immigration. Larry Auster was very effective! And at the end of his life, you know, he talked about how jews were so central to the whole thing. To the movement for open borders.
So you have these individual jews and maybe even at some point, I guess FAIR the American, the organization called FAIR. It’s an acronym for immigration reform Federation for American Immigration Reform, or something. At the head of that is a guy named Stein. Okay, that’s nice. But FAIR is not a jewish intellectual movement! [chuckling] it’s headed by a jew and he’s not even typical of the jewish community by any means.
So we’ll see! At some point, you know, I know I also made a note of that. Jews had to make change on immigration. In the UK I can certainly understand why they would. You got someone like Pamela Geller, you know, she can’t stand Muslims! And, you know, the reason is because, you know, she’s very strong identified jew. She does not want Muslims in these European countries! She thinks it’s a disaster for Jews. And I think she’s probably right. And what you see in the UK is that Muslims are getting more and more power, you know, especially with the Labour Party. They have been called anti-semitic, and this and that and everything else. But the reason is, because Muslims are a significant force now for labor.
What you see is sort of like in America where the Labor Party is losing the support of White Britons. They are going for the Conservative Party, and the Labour Party is getting more non-White. So Jeremy Corbyn is very anti-Israel, or at least very critical of Israel. I don’t know his exact position. But we’ll see what happens. We have to see who is good at winning and then is this a jewish movement and are they successful?
Ford: I’m probably repeating myself here, but I’m gonna risk looking stupid. You said that your theory of Judaism as a group evolutionary strategy does not have predictive power, or value then what is the value if it isn’t if it doesn’t help, you know, either predict the future, or to better understand patterns in the past?
MacDonald: Well I think we better understand things, absolutely! I mean, you talk about the default hypothesis. Well it’s a vast improvement on the default hypothesis if you can show that these movements were fundamentally motivated by jewish interests and jewish identity. And that’s a fundamental advance over the default hypothesis.
But it’s not predictive. How could it be? I mean, I talk about that explicitly in the article. I say so sort of like predicting the weather in Los Angeles in ten years on September 9th! You know, I mean, that’s ridiculous! They can’t do that, but that doesn’t mean there isn’t a weather science. And so when you describe things and try to understand how they happen, that’s all historians ever try to do, I’m embedding mine ultimately in evolutionary psychology, of evolutionary biology.
So it’s a little different from standard history. But historians don’t really try to predict the future. They try to explain the past. What causes what, and I’m happy to just say leave it at that. That’s enough of an accomplishment.
I can’t keep going for too much longer, because my wife, …
Ford: Okay! Okay. So I’ll tell you what, I’ll just read a final point by Nathan.
Ford: And you can say “I’ve already answered that”, whatever.
So you wrote:
“Jewish support for any particular idea, or cause will be sensitive to each generations perceived interest, given changing circumstances. Cofnas has a static ahistorical conception of jewish interests.”
And Nathan responds:
“The examples of jewish disagreement that I give are not comparing jews in different historical periods, but comparing jews in the same periods. We cannot explain these disagreements by appealing to the fact that historical circumstances change and call for different strategies.”
MacDonald: Well there are several times in his review that he acts as if Zionism is sort of an essential. You know, that Jewish strategy is essential to being jewish. That’s ridiculous!
I mean, his criticism on Freud, he says something like, what was it, he said Freud in 1929, there was a riot in Jerusalem, and Freud would not sign a petition, or something like that. They just sort of put it on the Arabs. And so that meant that Freud was not much of an ethnic activist, or you didn’t care about jewish interests.
But again not all people, especially 1929, would have seen it that way. And even if you’re a Zionist, someone like Philip Weiss is a Zionist, in a way. He’s critical of Israel but he’s not like he’s he wants Israel to stop being Israel! He wants it to soften. And Freud may have been the same way.
As I said, about Freud motives, well he may have thought that, you know, you talked about the fanaticism of our people. Well sometimes yeah you can blame [68:02] your own people for getting out of control a little bit. It’s a bad strategy! You know, Zionists have pursued a lot of different strategies in the early years, and still does.
And you don’t have to agree with all of them. And maybe they thought that what happened there in Jerusalem was part of the jews fault, and that we shouldn’t do that. So he’s not going to sign this petition. Doesn’t mean he’s not a Zionist. It certainly doesn’t mean he doesn’t have a strong jewish identity, a sense of jewish interest. But he’s got his own interpretation!
Again, you have to see where the power is! Where the influence is! Where, who’s running the show! I when it comes to influencing US foreign policy it’s AIPAC. It’s neocon! It’s sympathetic jews like Haim Sabin for the Democratic Party. They’re the ones that are pulling the weight, and they’re strong identified as Jews. They have a strong sense of what Israeli interests are. And jewish interests [69:01] are supporting Israel. They’re right now in the driver’s seat, aren’t they? Well, then that may change. And I can’t predict the future.
Ford: Well okay. Thank you Kevin! I hope you feel that I treated you fairly. I mean, we’ve done a lot, …
MacDonald: Yeah I didn’t expect this, but it’s really good to get it out.
Ford: Okay, thank you so much for your time Kevin. I really appreciate it.
MacDonald: Thank you, I enjoyed it myself. Thank you.
Ford: Okay. Take care. Bye bye. So that was Kevin MacDonald the retired psychology professor and author of “The Culture of Critique” series, a jewish trilogy did and we’re dealing with the Nathan Cofnas critique of the Kevin MacDonald book, “The Culture of Critique”. And I invited Nathan Cofnas to come on the show, after checking with Kevin MacDonald. And Kevin MacDonald was absolutely fine with me inviting Nathan Cofnas on the show. But due to the time zone that Nathan Cofnas is in right now, this just did not work for him.
But Nathan did share with me a draft of his rebuttal to Kevin MacDonald’s rebuttal. And I’m not allowed to share this draft, but I am allowed to quote from it. So I’m gonna read a little of Kevin MacDonald and then I’m gonna read from Nathan Cofnas’ critique. And obviously I am a convert to Orthodox Judaism. I have a dog in this fight. I prefer positive explanations of jewish history and jewish behavior rather than negative ones.
My Jewish friend R. reads Kevin MacDonald’s response to Nathan Cofnas and makes these notes:
“My book was incendiary, and I knew that.” Shows awareness for the situation
R: Draws a sympathetic character, honestly speaks about his troubles
“Sadly most of the writers for both TOO and TOQ have had to remain anonymous because of the reign of terror at universities (and in the private sector) against anyone who dissents from the status quo on race and ethnicity.”
R: Sad effect of limiting of speech
“Misguided intellectual movements like psychoanalysis may be successfully rebutted and eventually fall by the wayside”
R: has psychoanalysis been successfully rebutted? Source? Textbook? Maybe in the US. Aren’t there analysts out there doing good work? I don’t like this whole cloth dismissal of this wing of psychology. Maybe I am misinformed.
“However, the effects of immigration policy are of immediate and critical concern for the entire West.”…
“…immigration policy determines the future demographic composition of the nation. Ethnic groups unable to influence immigration policy in their own interests will eventually be displaced by groups able to accomplish this goal. Immigration policy is thus of fundamental interest to an evolutionist.”
R: Goes on to cite Makes a key point that immigration is used to displace indigenous groups, fair point.
“I began to see myself as having a dog in this fight. What was happening was, from an evolutionary perspective, a disaster for the White people of the West. Ethnic displacement is like reducing an extended family”
R: admits he is no longer objective. Sweet old man honesty. But may not benefit his scholarship.
“I never felt welcome thereafter. And although I was blackballed at least once at a prestigious academic journal, I did manage to continue to publish my work on personality, developmental psychology, evolutionary theory of culture, and the evolution of intelligence in reputable, even prominent academic venues. More painful were events at my university beginning in 2006–07 following a visit by Heidi Beirich of the Southern Poverty Law Center,”
R: Kmac is pouring his guts out here and we have to appreciate his openness and courage.
*****“Much of Cofnas’s critique depends on the claim that I conceive of the Jewish community as monolithic”
R: My partial reading of CoC is that you did write as Jews as monolithic. I saw no differentiation other than left or right both using the same strategy of undermining gentiles. If you see Jews as different parts what is your taxonomy?
*****“However, the purpose of my book is to study movements that have been influential and to determine the Jewish role in these movements. This is entirely compatible with dissent by some Jews.”
The purpose of the book was to prove that Jews use ideas to undermine gentile society. The name of the book is called “culture of critique”. Culture connotates a universal way of being. It would have been more appropriate to call the book Jewish influence on left ideas, if that was your only claim.
You go farther than just claim Jewish influence, this is a part of a larger group strategy.
******”As a result, although the theory is falsifiable (e.g., by showing that these movements were not in any interesting sense Jewish or that they didn’t really have any power or influence), it cannot be falsified by providing individual counterexamples.”
To go overly autistic, you don’t define what you mean by -Jewish Influence- is one Jew enough? What about half Jewish? More problematic, most of the “Jews” involved were assimilated or atheistic. Would sematic be a better definition?
But being reasonable to his lack of definition – his hypothesis can be falsifiable. IE does movement X have a few Jews in it. However, larger claims become more messy and complicated if the leaders of both side of an issue are, in fact Jewish. Or worse, the left leaning Jew is an atheist and the right-wing Jew, is a believer. An other important point – for arguments sake lets assume you are correct and these are jewish influenced movements is it reasonable to look for other psychological factors other than in-group vs out-group dynamics. For example, Luke Ford’s conversion to Judaism may be significantly influenced by a wish to reject his community which he saw as inadequate in helping him with his sickness, or a wish to strike against his father, or a lack of nurturing due to the early loss of his mother. (sorry Luke) Did CoC examine other important psychological aspects in the Jews under study? Is it a possibility that other variables have explanatory values either enhancing or confounding their choices to push gentile undermining behaviors?
I did not read all of CoC so I may be incorrect in saying this: does CoC address intra-group conflict between Jews? Certainly, there are differences in interests between capitalist class elite Jews, the intellectuals, the radicals and professionals, small business owners and workers? Did you cover the differences in, money donations, moral and material support to causes? Are they compared with gentile divisions? What about geography? I find it hard to believe that such a diverse selection of professions, industries, wealth, education, observance have such narrow interests and lack of infighting.
Are different movements supported by different groups of Jews? For example, have you found a taxonomy for the Jews that support neo-conservatism vs. altright vs left?
*****”Cofnas in several places characterizes my view as stating that the fact that some non-Jews have participated in Jewish movements implies Jewish manipulation, Machiavellianism, or that they have been blindly indoctrinated (e.g., Margaret Mead as a “puppet” of Franz Boas). These are misrepresentations. My view is that non-Jews who participate in Jewish movements may have a variety of motivations, ranging from sincere belief (perhaps motivated by their own, independently derived hostility to the cultural norms being attacked by the movement) to naked self-interest (non-Jews who see career opportunities by participating) …. But even when participating in such a movement has material rewards, there is no implication that the non-Jews involved don’t sincerely hold their beliefs.
R:I remember reading this passage in the book. I thought it was garbage then too. I found the text insinuating that mead and others were under a spell, and were just pawns of Boas. If I remember correctly, CoC makes no allowance to any positive motive for either Mead or Boas. There was not an ounce of truth seeking or wish to benefit humanity. Just a raw “let society burn” attitude. I felt his lack of nuance in the motivations of the subjects of this case was ridiculous. You don’t go through all this work to become a professor send your students to Papua New Guinea just on ideology to destroy the gentiles. Or there was not enough evidence cited to even approach this conclusion.
*****“In general, Jewish support for any particular idea or cause will be sensitive to each generation’s perceived interests given changing circumstances. Cofnas has a static, ahistorical conception of Jewish interests, assuming, e.g., that supporting Zionism is essential to Jewish group interests and selfidentity since the origins of political Zionism or perhaps since the origins of the Diaspora (the traditional Jewish phrase: “Next year in Jerusalem”). On the contrary, as discussed in several places here, Jewish support for causes like Zionism, radical leftism, or particular governments have a history—a beginning, a middle, and often an end. If it’s one thing that has characterized Jews throughout their history, it’s that they have been what evolutionary biologist Richard Alexander termed “flexible strategizers.” 5 There is no reason to suppose that will not continue in the future.
R: Very weak. On the surface, Kmac makes a contextual argument – what is in the best interest in the Jews at the movement – is what the Jews will support.
First, this makes the argument that Jews only support what is in their interest – thus are amoral. There is no evidence to support the theory that Jews are amoral, in fact being left – as we will show bellow can be very counter the interests of Jews (high taxes for social welfare, anti – war and affirmative action). It might be argued that Jews are more moral than gentiles, using this argument. He may then argue that having the morality of left is what is in their self-interest (altruistic for selfish reasons) however, this becomes a tautology as all actions can be explained in the same way and thus it is not an informative theory.
Second, if taken literally Kmac presents a taxonomy of Jewish group differences – ie generations, and a device for how these policies change. Meaning each generation will a have difference in what benefits them and there will be conflict at least between generations on what interests are prioritized and how scarce resources are distributed.
Third, Kmac’s refutes the idea that Jews have immutable goals and principles which runs counter to the idea of a stable religion itself and belief systems. This argument means that Jews are capable of any argument or any action. Let us not be naive, there are demagogues in every culture, which can distort and turn them to slaughter. However, there must be some principles and goals that Jews wont sacrifice, that are in fact immutable, otherwise there is no meaningful definition to the religion. To me
Fourth, in order to believe that Jews opposed Israel, and would abandon Israel as the context demands, – may show a self or local community interest – not just what is overall best for Jewry. Which runs counter to Kmac’s theory. However, the opposition to Israel today is most likely to due to the morality of the existence of a Jewish state which forcibly took land from indigenous Palestinians, which is against Jewish universalistic morality, and runs counter to Kmac’s insinuation of Jewish amorality and group cohesion.
“ Cofnas claims that if he is successful in refuting CofC, he would have in effect refuted the first two books as well (here and here).”
R: I have not read these books, so I cannot comment.
“Cofnas proposes a “default hypothesis” of Jewish involvement in twentieth-century liberal movements, namely: Because of Jewish intelligence and geography—particularly intelligence—Jews are likely to be overrepresented in any intellectual movement or activity that is not overtly antiSemitic.” I accept the idea of high average Ashkenazi IQ, especially verbal IQ, although I defer to Richard Lynn’s research on the mean; my critique of Cochran and Harpending is here. I therefore expect Jews to be overrepresented in intellectual movements, and we could leave it at that.”
R: Kamc admits that his work can be viewed as an expansion of Cofnas’.
*****“I agree that in general and for obvious reasons, Jews won’t be attracted to theories that cast Jews in a bad light; indeed, a major point regarding Jewish motivation for the theories discussed is to oppose anti-Semitism. Moreover, as mentioned below, Jews have been underrepresented in some theories and cultural trends that do not cast Jews in a bad light or at least do not necessarily do so—e.g., populism, paleoconservatism, and promotion of European national cultures.”
R: Excellent that Kmac admits that Jews wouldn’t be attracted to theories that don’t tear them down.
Kmac does bring out a good point that Jews are (or may be) promoting certain theories to oppose anti-Semitism. However, are ’populism, paleoconservatism, and promotion of European national cultures.’ truely semetic neutral. There is an other factor, which is class which may complicate this analysis. Do professionals, educated and the capitalists favor these kinds of ideas. If Jews are represented in these socio-economic class, it would go a long way to explain why they opposed him. For example, I think many jews opposed trump, not so much of because of his policy, but because of his blue collar sensibilities.
“In general, relatively few Jews were involved in most of these movements and significant numbers of Jews may have been unaware of their existence. Even Jewish leftist radicalism—surely the most widespread and influential Jewish sub-culture of the twentieth century— may have been a minority movement within Jewish communities in the United States and other Western societies for most periods. As a result, when I criticize these movements I am not necessarily criticizing most Jews. Nevertheless, these movements were influential and they were Jewishly motivated”
R: Fine jewish dominated but admits that a very small minority even know what is going on. Strikes against evolutionary theory.
******“Determine whether the Jewish participants in those movements identified as Jews and thought of their involvement in the movement as advancing specific Jewish interests. Involvement may be unconscious or involve self-deception, but for the most part it was quite easy and straightforward to find evidence for these propositions. If I thought that self-deception was important (as in the case of many Jewish radicals), I provided evidence that in fact they did identify as Jews and were deeply concerned about Jewish issues despite surface appearances to the contrary”
R: I find this shocking. It is difficult to tease out motivations. It is speculation to claim to know someone’s unconscious desires when separated by time and space. I would expect one to be an expert on an individual’s biography before they could even claim anything about understanding their subconscious motivations. Didn’t see that level granular discussion in CoC, nor a nuanced discussion of motivation. When I read CoC it felt like quotes were cherry picked.
“Keep in mind that the influence of an intellectual or political movement dominated by Jews is independent of the percentage of the Jewish community that is involved in the movement or supports the movement. [For example, Zionism is a Jewish movement that, until the establishment of Israel, was not a majority view within the Jewish community. It was nevertheless influential (e.g., obtaining the Balfour Declaration, pressuring President Truman to recognize Israel).]”
R: Again showing disagreement between jews on one of the most important issues of their time. This only serves to weaken Kmac’s general theory of jew’s behavior.
“Several of the movements I discuss have been very influential in the social sciences. However, I do not argue that there are no Jews who do good social science, and in fact [in Chapter 2] I provide a list of prominent Jewish social scientists who in my opinion do not meet the conditions outlined under (2) above.”
R: Fair. Point for Kmac
“Cofnas claims that I haven’t provided evidence that Jews involved in particular intellectual movements have often gone out of their way to recruit nonJews as visible leaders of the movement….. However, this phenomenon goes far beyond the intellectual and political movements discussed in CofC. In Chapter 6 of Separation and Its Discontents (pp. 193–196) I discuss several historical examples, beginning with the New Christians during the period of the Inquisition in fifteenth-century Spain. Jewish organizations had an active role in establishing and maintaining gentile- dominated organizations opposed to anti-Semitism in Germany in the period from 1870 to 1933 and in supplying materials without any indication of their source to anti-fascist candidates in the U.K. in the 1930s….” (so forth)”
R: never any discussion that maybe gentiles don’t want to see Jews suffer and be hurt? Also, reaching back to these examples seems like a stretch. 1500 century Spain? I would need to see tons of examples and from every day life. However, I suppose it is possible that Jews would seek gentiles to represent them, in the way companies may hire attractive salesmen.
“As I note in Separation and Its Discontents, such a strategy makes excellent psychological sense: From an evolutionary perspective the intent is to make the Jewish cause appear to be in the interests of others as well. When goals are cast in ethnic or national terms, they are not likely to appeal to those outside the group….”
R: we have to give this point to Kmac. However, there may also be an opposite effect where an outsider can give critical points– take American idol, when a British judge plays the part of the “bad cop”. And interestingly, this concept is replicated across many popular entertainment shows, the foreigner – often British for music talent, French for cooking shows, Russian or Germain for engineering. In other words, outgroups can symbolize other factors not just bad or danger.
“Cofnas claims that I cherry-pick examples and ignore examples that do not fit my theory, pointing to examples like Noam Chomsky and Karl Marx. However, as noted above, there is no implication that all Jews (or all famous Jews) fit into a particular mold. “
R: Fine, what is your taxonomy or universal feature – Jews only make policy based on a moral self-interest?
“There was in fact strong opposition to Zionism within the Jewish community during the early decades of the twentieth century motivated by fears, based firmly in Jewish history, that Zionism among Diaspora Jews would be seen as disloyalty by their fellow citizens (see the sections titled “Zionism as a Risky Strategy” and “Zionist Extremism Becomes Mainstream” in “Zionism and the Internal Dynamics of Judaism,” 220–228).”
R:Fine, lets accept Kmac’s premise that Jews were afraid of creating Israel for the idea that supporting the creation was politically dangerous, that still means that local interests won out over existential interests. In other words, Jews looked after their own skin even if it meant other groups of Jews would suffer, which is ordinary self-interest. It speaks against Kmac’s overarching thesis of Jews looking out for Jews.
*****“Chomsky’s position has been outside the Jewish mainstream, although quite recently segments of liberal Jews have actively opposed central features of Zionism as it exists in Israel today (e.g., Philip Weiss (editor of Mondoweiss), Jewish Voice for Peace, J Street).” Like Chomsky, these Jews tend to be on the left, generally perceiving a conflict between contemporary leftist ideals of multicultural harmony (which they support) and the reality of Israel’s oppression of the Palestinians.”
R: one of the most cited living scholars is Chomsky, a liberal atheist jew who’s most famous for criticizing Israel https://sites.google.com/site/jcfdewinter/most-highly-cited-scientists
When reviewing stakeholder theory, it is important not to ignore any parts (funding, intellectuals, positions etc)
Perhaps another hypothesis is that Jews, seek harmony because they view that as a moral good. However, this possibility is not mentioned. As seeking harmony is viewed as a self-interested behavior, which begs the question, what behavior would falsify Kmac’s claims of self-interested behavior drive Jewish politics.
“It’s also worth noting that although there has always been a substantial consensus on Israel since its establishment by American Jews, the Israel Lobby has maintained this consensus partly by policing the Jewish community by punishing dissenters (see here, here, here)—a very traditional mechanism of control within the Jewish community discussed in Chapter 7 of A People That Shall Dwell Alone. Nevertheless, dissent is growing within the Jewish community-“
R: point taken for kmat on policing.
*****R: Does Kmac’s theory predict or explain why there is drop in Jewish support for Israel?
“These donors collectively contribute vastly out of proportion to their numbers and many of them are wellknown to be strong supporters of Israel. In the U.S., donors like Haim Saban (“a one-note person whose one note is Israel”) and Sheldon Adelson, prominent donors to the Democrat and Republican parties respectively, come to mind as primarily motivated to support pro-Israel policies. But they are not alone. On a list of “the top 50 donors to 527’s and super-PACs, eight of the 36 Republican bigs were Jewish, and of the 14 Democrats, only one was not Jewish.” The Democrats are basically funded by Jews, and Jewish donations to the GOP are too large to be ignored by politicians seeking higher office. President Trump’s largest donor was Sheldon Adelson (at least $25 million),… etc”
R: here kmac argues that Jews have a large influence in politics due to their large donations. Fine.
However, if money equals access and power, what percentage of money in total comes from Jews or these Jews? What about small donations, and money to candidates?
“Jewish participation on the left over the time span covered in the book (~1900–1970), and in general the point of that chapter is that Jewish leftists tended to have strong Jewish identifications and were quite concerned about anti-Semitism (perhaps not the case with Marx).”
R: this I cant speak to, as I am not knowledgeable in this area.
“With Emancipation into Europe, the axis of this moralism shifted from a horizontal to a vertical plane, splitting into the toplofty “mission to the Gentiles” of Reform Judaism on the one hand and, on the other, into Marx’s underclass of society and Freud’s underside of personality. In each case, proletariat and id were invested with a subversively pure moral critique of the hypocritical, if superior, civilization of the West”
R: inflammatory speech against intention jews for new ideas. I would contend that some of Freud’s ideas of repression valuable along with Marx’s critique of the division of labor (alienation). I may ad that Marxism was taken from dialectical materialism of Hegel, a gentile and utopian Christians. The first communists could be said to be Christians. Marx was – in his mind – using science to create a real society. Taken from this prospective Kmac is interpreting any scientific ideas as a threat or delegitimizes whites/Christianity, even if they are sourced from gentile ideas.
******” He brings up affirmative action which I discuss briefly in Chapter 8. However, … I have never done an examination of the relative importance of different strands of Jewish activism and voting have been in the affirmative action debate and so don’t care to comment”
R:Killshot why would jews support affirmative action, which directly harms their interests. He doesn’t explain it, cant predict it nor care to
******“Similarly, in the lead up to the Iraq war, there was considerable (I think decisive: here, here, here) influence from neoconservatives and Jewish organization like AIPAC, but polls indicated most Jews opposed the war.”
R:Killshot, in this vital issue – of war, Jews were against the Iraq war which is claimed by many Altrighters to be a war for Israel. Does mass opposition to the Iraq war falsify or invalidate Kmac’s theory. Lets grant Kmac’s premise that neocons are Jewish and are responsible for pushing the war. Were they necessary or sufficient? Does it matter that the vast majority of Jews were in opposition? According to Kmac’s theory, why were the majority of Jews against the Iraq war? Was It purely because they thought it would not benefit Israel? Maybe they didn’t think it would benefit the US, or both? Or perhaps they are morally opposed to a war of aggression?
*****“Is the theory presented in CofC predictive?”
R: Killshot. Admits his theory is not predictive. What about a war with Iran or Russia, or Polygamy, or sex with children, or animals? According to KMac would these be Jewish led movements?
*****“Cofnas does not dispute my evidence that Boas was a strongly identified Jew who saw his work as combatting anti-Semitism and that he was motivate by his hatred for the Prussian aristocracy.”
R: Killshot on Cofnas
“I discuss the issue of the motivation of non-Jews who were involved in these movements in several places, essentially proposing three compatible reasons: identification with a group that sees itself as oppressed, evolutionarily influenced social learning mechanisms in which prominent individuals are looked up to and admired, and the material rewards available to those who sign on to the movement (see Chapter 1).”
R: again only nefarious motives on their behalf, however this attack is believable.
“I have expanded on these ideas in an article “Why are Professors Liberals” in which I use the work of Neil Gross and Ethan Fosse as a framework for understanding the characteristics of successful intellectual movements.10 (1) those involved in the movement had a complaint (anti-Semitism, cultural exclusion); (2) they were able to form cohesive, effective networks; (3) they had access to the most prestigious academic institutions.”
R: weak, there are no explanations for why these are true.
“To put it very crudely, Freud needed a goy” [(Chapter 4, 114]) and many on the radical left (who often felt out of place in what was essentially a Jewish milieu; Chapter 3, 71–72).
R:To claim that Freud brought Jung along is outrageous. It is not believable. Jung is devastatingly brilliant. His writings prove it. Even if we accept Kmac’s premise – that means that Freud thought there was strong enough resistance to his ideas just because he was not a gentile. How should a Jew act if he is not followed purely on his race.
*****I quote Benedict as saying we should study other cultures in order “to pass judgment on the dominant traits of our own civilization”— quite possibly a plea for tolerance for homosexuality
R: this may be interpreted in may ways. It seems that Kmac often makes the most convenient interpretation. The reason we study other cultures is to learn about them, appreciate them and take lessons from them so we may better ourselves.
“Moreover, nothing rides on Herrnstein’s motives for doing what I regard as excellent research. In Chapter 2 he is listed as a prominent Jewish social scientist who does not fit the framework of CofC, and I am happy to leave it at that”
R: Does this change or alter your theory?
The capstone of his argument is that Jews moved our society away from Darwinism to a moral viewpoint. The effects are that we moved away from a materialist view but he shouldn’t so much blame Jews, but blame Nazis.
The core of the Jewish argument is that Kmac’s materialism is amoral. It will lead to the horrors of 20th century.
I think this is the most important point of all.